Though Charles and David Koch may be grabbing the headlines promoting a 1% neo-feudal agenda, not everyone in the upper echelons of the American plutocracy is on board. Nick Hanauer, a super rich venture capitalist, recently wrote a piece condemning neoliberalism – often called “trickle-down economics” – saying the current economic system is not only unfair and causing resentment but counter-productive to a thriving middle class saying “These idiotic trickle-down policies are destroying my customer base.”
Hanauer also offered a warning to his fellow 1%ers – The Pitchforks Are Coming.
Hanauer believes the commercial oligarchy that owns and operates America is living in a fantasy world when they think revolution can not happen in the US, telling his fellow plutocrats “I know there are many of you who are convinced that because you saw a poor kid with an iPhone that one time, inequality is a fiction. Here’s what I say to you: You’re living in a dream world.”
Therefore Hanauer says that if the 1% do not start supporting more equitable social and economic policies they are going to wind up on the wrong end of a guillotine.
What everyone wants to believe is that when things reach a tipping point and go from being merely crappy for the masses to dangerous and socially destabilizing, that we’re somehow going to know about that shift ahead of time. Any student of history knows that’s not the way it happens. Revolutions, like bankruptcies, come gradually, and then suddenly. One day, somebody sets himself on fire, then thousands of people are in the streets, and before you know it, the country is burning. And then there’s no time for us to get to the airport and jump on our Gulfstream Vs and fly to New Zealand. That’s the way it always happens. If inequality keeps rising as it has been, eventually it will happen. We will not be able to predict when, and it will be terrible—for everybody. But especially for us.
Whether Hanauer’s fellow 1%ers take his advice remains to be seen, but if things continue and push comes to shove, they can’t say they weren’t warned.