Our Oh-So-Patient Overclass

The mainstream excuse for letting capitalists keep economic surpluses is that they deserve it because of their patience in waiting for a return and foregoing consumption.

That’s always been a massive joke, of course, since surplus-takers have never foregone an ounce of personal luxury.

And, as Frances Wheen suggests, the abstinence theory of private capital was formulated after and against Marx’s emphasis on the taking of unpaid and alienated labor-time as the real core of business fortunes.

But now, we have the chance to see the true object of overclass patience, the one thing these self-congratulating world-wreckers are actually oh-so-willing to wait for.  The blatant reality before us is that our overclass is the ultimate pack of procrastinators.  In our age of dire planetary problems, the investing stratum is quite willing to wait until Hell freezes over before they admit they were wrong, that it is indeed quite possible for the rich to be too rich and powerful, and everybody else too poor and powerless.  A sick, sick system…

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11 years ago

You forgot to mention that we are always told that they take the risk of investment, and thus deserve the disproportionate rewards of production. But with the financial crisis and government bailouts, this is obviously bunk as well.

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