7 Matching Annotations
  1. Nov 2021
    1. Figure 6: Changing geographic source of emissions of world’s richest 1% 2015–2030

      China and India will have the largest growth of elites between 2015 and 2030. Therefore, strategic, culturally appropriate interventions need to be applied to this elite demographic.

  2. Sep 2021
    1. Exploring the consumption practices of the super-rich begins to highlight that they are best described as 'fast subjects' who dwell in what Castells (2000) terms the 'space of flows' rather than the 'space of places'.

      Good terminology- space of flows, denoting the necessity of (carbon intensive) travel to move from one place to another. Seen from the 19th century, even the average car-driving citizen of the 20th century is elite. A 100 hp car, which is now almost an average power rating of most internal combustion engines, is the power equivalent to the 19th century analog of maintaining 100 horses.

    2. there has been a spectacular rise in luxury consumption, with the consumption patterns of the global elite acting as a marker for those further down the income scale. Robert Frank (2000) describes the process as 'luxury fever', as consumption expectations are ratcheted up all the way down the income scale. The global elite are pushing up people's expectations and assumptions. In the US, for example, the average size of house has doubled, in square feet terms, in the past thirty years. In part it is a function of the positional nature of consumption. We consume in order to position ourselves relative to other people. Not only do the global elite raise the upper limit, everyone is thus forced to spend more just to keep up, but they also become the perceived benchmark, Juliet Schor's work, for example, shows that people are no longer keeping up with the people next door, but the people they see on television and magazines (Schor, 1998). In order to keep up with these raised consumption standards people are working harder and longer as well as taking out more debt. The increase in luxury consumption has raised consumption expectations further down the income scale, which in order to be funded has involved increased workloads and increased indebtedness. It is not so much keeping up with the Jones but 'keeping up with the Gates'.

      The elites point the way for those in even the lowest income brackets to follow. This crosses cultures as well. Capitalism trumps colonialism as former colonized peoples reserve the right to taste the fruits of capitalism. Hence, hard work, ingenuity and leveraging opportunity to accumulate all the signs and symbols of wealth, joining the colonialist biased elites is seen as having arrived at success, even though it means contributing to the destruction of the planetary commons. The aspirations to wealth must be uniformly deprioritized in order to align our culture in the right direction that will rescue our species from the impact of following this misdirection for the past century.

  3. Jul 2021
    1. Making money didn’t violate the spirit of equality, but an air of superior knowledge did, especially when it cloaked special privileges.
  4. Jun 2021
    1. Meritocracy harms the elite as well. Life for the meritocratic elite is dominated by work. Substantial numbers of elites report that their work interferes with their health, prevents them from forming strong relationships with their children, gets in the way of good relationships with their spouses, and even makes it harder to have a satisfying sex life.
    2. A Harvard Business Review survey found that 62 percent of high-earning individuals work over 50 hours a week, more than a third work over 60 hours a week, and one in 10 work over 80 hours a week. According to Markovits, elites today work an average of 12 more hours per week than middle-class workers (the equivalent of 1.5 additional workdays).

      This may be the case for high-earners, but where do these people sit with respect to the higher elite or "leisure class"?

      Are these hard working high-earners a new class of people that has emerged that aren't the previous elite of the mid-1900s?

      What effect does the rise of finacialization (versus manufacturing or service sectors) since the 1970's have on this shift? Did these high-earners arise out of a hole in the market to service the elites on the highest rung up to make their wealth grow faster?

      There seems to be a hole in this argument with respect to the prior quote:

      Fifty, 60, 70 years ago, you could tell how poor somebody was by how hard they worked. Today, that relationship has been completely reversed. Elites work for a living. They work harder than they used to. They work harder in terms of brute hours than the middle class on average, and they get most of their income by working.

  5. Feb 2019
    1. This is not the first time that the US “common man” has embraced populism. Who said the following? “What are the real issues that exist today in these United States? It is the trend of pseudointellectual government where a select elite group have written guidelines in bureaus and court decisions… looking down their noses at the average man on the street … the auto workers, … the little businessman…” (quoted in Cowie: http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1919&context=articles) This was George Wallace, in 1972, the year he scored a victory in the Democratic primary in Michigan, due primarily to “working-class” opposition to school busing on the heels of white flight to the suburbs. His “populist” message of “anti-elitism”, “anti-crime” and anti-busing wasn’t openly racist, but that was its content. Dewey Burton, the young male symbol of the 1970s (white) working class followed for years by the US media (as told by Cowie, above) was not a racist in his personal attitudes, but his alienation from ossified New Deal politics within a Fordist economic model that provided “only” high-wage job security (and for fewer and fewer people) manifested itself in a form that is fairly indistinguishable from the suddenly new “revolt” of the white working class in the rust belt in 2016 – and this well before Fordism entered into its terminal crisis later in the 70s.

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