Announcing an Innovative, Comprehensive Social Advancement Agenda that Can End Our Dark Times
America Needs Radical Social Advancements
The threats are real. If current trends continue, our society will descend into fascism or disintegrate.
We need detailed agendas for fundamental advancements in our political and economic systems. My books, The New Enlightenment and Amazon as Metaphor provide them.
These Are Dark Times.
Now, a Path to the Light is Clear.
What Are People Saying About The New Enlightenment?
REUVEN S. AVI-YONAH, Ph.D.,
University of Michigan International Tax LLM Program Director. Read more.
I hope my books attract you to be part of a mass movement in the direction they define. In all cases when a nonviolent 3.5% of a country’s population actively demanded major social change they succeeded.
Signs of Dark Times
Many Polls Show a Widespread Desire for Fundamental Social Advancements
More Signs on Dark Times Page
⇒ The above polls’ majorities would be significantly larger if we had well-functioning mass media and educational institutions.
⇒ And their desire for major social advancement would be much more urgent.
“The ruling class has the schools and press under its thumb. This enables it to sway the emotions of the masses, and make its tool of them.” (source)
The mass media does not report adequately on economic and political inequalities, their consequences, fundamental causes, and robust solutions. Read more.
Also biased in ways that benefit elites at the expense of the rest of us are our educational institutions. Read more.
The Ways to Prosperity for All and a Genuine Democracy
If you believe that our economic and political systems require fundamental advancements, you will find this website and my books interesting, and I hope much more—inspiring and useful. If you would be satisfied with minor economic and political system reforms, you will not be interested in my work.
If instituted, the political system advancements I detail will create a better-functioning democracy than has ever existed in a large society. A well-functioning democracy will enable us to institute the economic system advancements I detail that will eliminate poverty, create a large dominant middle class, and bring democracy into the workplace.
Enlightenment Philosopher Leaders of the 18th Century American Revolution Would Be 21st Century Revolutionaries
Some of the most significant injustices described in the Declaration of Independence to justify and motivate the Revolutionary War are like those we experience today. They must again motivate a revolutionary advancement.
Our Descent Into Darkness Can End.
Extreme and Growing Economic and Political Inequalities Threaten Our Nation’s Survival
Compared to our plutocrat’s wealth, the famously extravagant wealth of the “roaring twenties” plutocrats was little.
Compared to our plutocrat’s income, the famously extravagant income of the “roaring twenties” plutocrats was little.
Views on Our Path into Darkness ↓
Technological Advancements Enabled Historically High Productivity
A well-functioning democracy would have ensured that our unprecedented productive capacity enabled everyone to meet their material needs easily. Instead, in the wealthiest nation in history, the United States, 17.3% or 57.1 million people lived in poverty in August 2020. (Source)
The graph’s “Productivity” line is a measure of the value an average worker produces per hour and “Hourly compensation” is for the typical nonsupervisory worker.
Productivity and Pay, 1948-2018
As our political system's functioning declined, a small elite’s share of national income boomed
Upper corporate managers benefited massively from the profit boom created by the growing value generated by their employees. About 2/3 of our top 0.1% in income are top corporate managers.
Managers of large corporations are empowered to create extraordinary degrees of social harm. Reasons exist to be concerned about top managers’ power and character. Read more.
Average Income Ratio: Top 0.1%/Bottom 90% & Confidence in Congress
When stock prices rise, owners of stocks benefit.
Who owns stocks?
The public indeed owns public companies, but the top 1% own more than the rest of us combined and 16 times the amount 80% of Americans own.
73% of workers prefer to work for an employee-owned company rather than one owned by external shareholders. If most businesses were worker-owned and controlled, the wealth and income inequality reduction and other social benefits would be immense. See how we can accomplish this.
(I did not include a bar representing the .003% portion of public company value owned by the bottom 50% because you would not be able to see it.)
A Small Elite Has Captured Massive Wealth Generated by Our Society
This graph displays U.S. wealth inequality. It’s extreme primarily because corporate ownership grotesquely favors a small elite. The 13,000 households in the top .01% have an average wealth of $608 million.
So you can see the $79,200 average wealth of households in the bottom 50%, I multiplied it by 500.
As a result of four centuries of systemic racism, Black families’ median wealth is about one-tenth that of white families. No progress has been made in reducing wealth inequalities between black and white households over the past 70 years. Read more.
Average Household Wealth by Wealth Percentile Groups, $Millions
The 2019 data graphed is from a Federal Reserve wealth survey. The vast inequality shown continued to boom. Based on Forbes data, U.S. billionaire wealth increased by $1.6 trillion, or 55%, from 3/18/20 to 7/9/21.
Now Is The Time for a New Enlightenment
Extreme Inequalities Are Tearing
Our Social Fabric and
Harming Our Health
One Way the Wealthy Captured Our Political System: Campaign Contributions
Top 0.01%’s Share of All Campaign Spending with Their Share of All Income, 1980-2016
In the largest study of its kind, Princeton University researchers analyzed 2000 public policy outcomes over three decades. From their report:
“… the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact on public policy…Policymaking is dominated by powerful business organizations and a small number of affluent Americans.”
The Capitol Building
Where We Have a Corporate Elite
Twisting Public Policy to the Right
After elections end, policymakers’ offices are overrun by high-paid lobbyists providing information and advocacy to serve corporate managers and major owners’ interests.
The pharmaceutical industry spent $4.7 billion on lobbying between 1998 and June 2021, more than any other industry. As a result, tens of millions of adults cannot pay for needed drugs due to high drug prices that have contributed to the death of millions.
Drugs are cheap to manufacture, and R & D costs far from account for the difference in average manufacturing and retail costs. Without patent’s promise of monopoly pricing power to incentivize drug R&D, my publicly funded system will accelerate the development of effective and safe medicines. The system has no net cost for the government due to a large decrease in Medicare and Medicaid drug expenditures, and it makes prescribed medicines available to patients at no cost. Read more.
The Wealth of Nations
The Wealth of Nations, the title of the famous book authored by the “father of modern economics,” Adam Smith, the 18th-century Scottish philosopher, could be the title of the biography of some Americans. On February 11, 2022, Jeff Bezos had wealth greater than the nations Iceland, Iraq, Ukraine, Ecuador, Lithuania, Costa Rica, and Cyprus combined. Elon Musk had the combined wealth of the same nations plus that of Luxembourg.
No functioning democracy would allow systems to exist where a few individuals could take such a grotesque proportion of the wealth generated by collective action and social resources.
See Prosperity, Justice, and Inequality for the economic and moral justifications for a far more equitable distribution of income and wealth.
Economic and political inequality has grown independent of which party controls the congress or the presidency.
We need a new political party but not nearly as much as a new political system.
The New Enlightenment and Amazon as Metaphor detail the fundamental political system advancements we need.
Guides on the Way to a New Enlightenment
Building Blocks at the Foundation of a Prosperous and Far More Just and Democratic Society:
Average citizens in deliberative groups involving 0.1% of the citizenry develop some public policies. Read more.
Lobbying system puts all citizens and corporations on a level, transparent playing field. Read more.
New public institutions disperse benefits of internet commerce, support pharma R&D, resulting in free prescription drugs. Read more.
Manuals for a Movement
Far more than offering details and new perspectives on our social ills, The New Enlightenment and Amazon as Metaphor are manuals for a movement to a fundamentally superior society.
Free Review Books
Progressive political organizations or activists planning to form one, consider my public policy proposals for your advocacy. I will send you the books for no charge.
Only Systemic Advancements Can Solve Our Social Problems
If a detailed agenda for creating a fundamentally more just and better-functioning society is what you desire, you will find my books useful and inspiring.