If you would reinvigorate the markets, give to the homeless, the naked, and the hungry. They redistribute their wealth.
The wealth of nations is in the labor and industry of the teeming masses upon which the economic pyramid is founded. The pyramid has become inverted. All the wealth has been accumulated and stored at the top. The labor of the masses no longer has any value according to Adam Smith and Keynes.
"While Capitalism "embodies all the vices of Mankind wrapped in the mantle of necessity" that necessity will only exist until we have generated enough goods to satisfy the needs of the masses", they said. That time has apparently come, we have enough 'stuff'.
Labor has apparently outlived its usefulness. It no longer has a value. Which is unfortunate. We have been replacing Labor (people) with Capital (labor saving devices) for hundreds of years and now people are no longer necessary...except as as 'market'...(Whatwhich means they must participate in the process...somehow...doesn't it?
Wait, I know! Let's have a revolution, kill all the rich people as we have done for thousands of years and redistribute their stuff...like a 'potlatch'...! Or a progressive tax policy...
And when I say 'redistribute', I don't mean a diversified portfolio!
Dr. Buruma, For what it's worth, I'm in complete agreement. After 10-15 years in the area, I've watched with alarm, the replacement of a delightful Cosmopolitan laissez-faire with a furious Nationalistic arrogance.
"If hard work was all it took..." Management has nothing to do with education, job skills, hard work, etc. Managers are often the dumbest people in the company,...and the least skilled. Management is an old-boys-club of Princeton graduates not community college graduates. And still...it's not what you know, it's who you know.