Occasional blogging, mostly of the long-form variety.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Social Contract is Broken

Dave Johnson has a new post up at Campaign for America's Future, "Tax Cuts are Theft." In it, he visualizes the Social Contract as a cycle, as seen above:

A beneficial cycle: We invest in infrastructure and public structures that create the conditions for enterprise to form and prosper. We prepare the ground for business to thrive. When enterprise prospers we share the bounty, with good wages and benefits for the people who work in the businesses and taxes that provide for the general welfare and for reinvestment in the infrastructure and public structures that keep the system going.

But as he explains, under Reaganomics, and our current trickle-down system:

... The social contract is broken. Instead of providing good wages and benefits and paying taxes to provide for the general welfare and reinvestment in infrastructure and public structures, the bounty of our democracy is being diverted to a wealthy few.

Head on over to read the whole post, and see his modified graphic for the Social Contract after Reaganomics. (An earlier post of his, "Reagan Revolution Home To Roost - In Charts," is also well worth a look.)

I wrote about these issues fairly recently in "Attack of the Plutocrats" and "The Social Contract," which have their own diagrams, but I like Dave's graphic of the economic social contract as a cycle.

Update: Sara Robinson has a good follow-up post to Dave's.



lisahgolden said...

It's a mess and without the removal of money form our political system, it will never be fixed.

I miss Molly Ivins.

Paul W said...

I completely agree. There used to be what I called The Deal: Study hard, get good grades, don't break the law, go to college, get a degree, and you get a decent job at decent wages which you can use to fund a family and continue the Great Circle of Life. But somewhere along the way in the last 20 years, that Deal disappeared. And because nobody wants to pay for anything anymore (screw taxing the rich, let's just put it all on Daddy's Credit Cards and let the grandkids cope with the bills!) we can't have roads, libraries, better schools, safe workplaces, job security, and any form of a safety net in case of catastrophe.

What the hell happened to our country? We went from "There But For the Grace Of God Go I" to "I Got Mine, Go F-ck Yourself".

bill said...

Dude, don't you unnerstan'? Trickle-down means rich people will be opening up all kinds of factories and shit and givin' people jobs workin' in 'em. Wha? Whaddayou mean they're closin' the factories an' shippin' the jobs overseas? Are you shittin' me?