There’s this ‘big idea’ that capitalism and innovation are going to save us from climate change—and while I won’t deny that I’m sure plenty of Americans won’t mind building walls around everything, if you at all think the wealthy give two shits about anyone else surviving then I have a bag of magic beans for you at a great price.

The future is a bevy of heavy-construction companies run by heirs of tech and the energy industry. They’ll build massive structures on earth for when the wealthy need protection from the elements, and they’ll build massive structures in space for when the wealthy want to, well, basically do whatever the fuck they want. The lower classes will remain where they can, clamoring up in town-sized camps near walls or caves or other elemental protections.1 The poor will be the labor force helping to build all this, out in the storms and the heat and hail. Unionization won’t be possible because there will be too many willing to join, even in the face of such horror, due to the slight few benefits the position will offer that will make life on earth barely, but still, livable—a life between the walls and the weatherproofed urban centers where the bourgeois look out at the sky through glass and steel and concrete and blood and comment on its color. Some workers will be selected for space builds, spending hours assisting machines, doing any dangerous manual labor and eventually being kept in group facilities out of sight of anyone among the stars. This will be truly terrifying, as equipment will be re-issued year in and year out, and something like a loose bind in a spacesuit is a death sentence. A woman wearing pearls at dinner orbiting the moon will comment about an article she read on how stressful it is for executives these days, and the margins are so tight on the new Space Race, and she’ll try to use an omelette and some eggs as an example but having never cooked a fucking day in her life, she’ll fuck up the metaphor just look like an asshole but since no one was really listening and nobody really cares anyway, it won’t matter.

I know Trump can be offensive, but this is the truly evil shit.2 As Will Menaker put it on the introduction to this episode of Chapo Trap House

“[This tax bill] is surely going to perform the final coup de grâce on whatever is left of democracy or America or civil society. I wish I had something funny to say or something more uplifiting, but this is all bad. And the thing that I said earlier this week, when it looked like it was going to pass, is it’s to me a hallmark of a defeated culture and society. That we seem pretty much worn out by this and the class war is over and I feel like the bad guys won. This tax bill is the culmination of probably 30-40 years of a right-wing movement in this country to steadily chip away at the welfare state and transfer more and more of society’s wealth into fewer and fewer hands.”

Tax season is coming up and this bill was passed two years ago and still has another few to go before it finishes consuming what’s left of the middle class as a construct of the American economy. People told me after the 2016 election it was time to fight, but that felt really short-sighted. This is all that happened during that fight: Trump got what he wanted. The rich got what they wanted. The taxpayers paid for it all.

It is so beyond obvious that there needs to be a strong punch from the left. An actual strike back at capitalism, not some Elizabeth Warren-branded version of progressive values. Large corporations and wealthy Americans need to be taxed to high heaven and the wealth redistributed to the people in a green new deal, social programs, infrastructure, education and a 20-year projected growth for the minimum wage. Anything short of throwing the democrats in with the republicans they basically are and saying We are moving this country left is going to result in just more of everything that’s been happening in the decline of American culture since the Nixon years.

      Notes
  • If you think this won’t happen I highly suggest looking under the overpasses or bridges of literally any major American city right now.
  • No I did not forget ICE and the detention facilities, but as deportation was also a fairly big project for the Obama administration, I don’t think the US government’s horrific treatment of immigrants can be placed solely on one man. Trump did separate families, which is unconscionable, but to me the entire fucking system is a sham.