The bastard son of the Church of Capitalism, Anti-Socialism
I was listening to an interesting interview last night on NPR on the way home. Didn't caught the subject of the interview, the name of the show or who was interviewing who but the thing that stood out in the few minutes I did hear, was how the cult of capitalism had created anti-social behavior.
See as a punk rocker and general rebel, I've always viewed Anti-Social behavior as a good thing. Not the criminal side of it but setting oneself outside of the mainstream as a form of self expression. I always loved it as a bonding agent to sub-cultures. In fact, I've always seen it as a positive thing.
Now if you take capitalistic competition and apply it to communities and societies, you produce a very negative anti-social behavior that maybe at the heart of many of the social problems the western world has been experienced over the past 50 odd years. Could wealth and greed be the true subculture that has had the greatest effect on the general population of any other social movement? Maybe this isn't a class war but really a cultural war that has been going on this whole time.
In the new world we are no longer divided by creed, religion, culture or color but by just how competitive you are willing to be. This can create a greater wedge between people than any good book or faith could even do. Poor is the new Irish, the new Black and the new Jew or maybe it always was. As this division grows wider the more one culture is isolated from the other. We can blame the growing isolationism on the internet, TV and countless other distractions but the reality is that it's simply greed and wealth. Could the whole break down of communities be as simple as the difference of income? Could it be that all our social ills are nothing but our false drive to beat out the other guy to obtain the American Dream?
Our latest finical mess was driven by this idea that if a free market is left to it's own devices it will correct itself through natural competition. Look where it got us. The same mess with the health care system. Time and time again the out come has been the same, the Haves will always do what is best for the Haves without any thought of the effect it will have on the Have Nots. With a sub-culture driven on the idea that the more the better and damn the cost to others will we have see a different outcome?
Really is there any way to solve this? I doubt it but there has to be a point where enough is enough. We need to begin to reward those who know when they are full and push away from the table to give someone else a chance to eat. To reward those that invest more in their fellow citizen's well-being then it their assets. I really don't believe Greed is all just human nature. It's a learned reaction based on a reward system that was established to keep the poor and oppressed, poor and oppressed. Because when it all comes to the bottom line, power is based on the faith of wealth.