Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Capital Accumulation and its Consequence


Capitalism favors profit over the ecological integrity of the land that provides the resources for production, and treats the environment as a dumping ground for byproducts and waste. Capitalism is the driving force of ecological destruction. Carbon emissions already released into the atmosphere will continue to warm the planet for years to come. Although a certain level of climate change is guaranteed, it is still possible, through radical action in the coming decade, to give our descendants a better chance at a decent life: to lessen the possibility that they will inherit the hell-scape environment we currently are on course for. The way to solve the environmental emergency, of which climate change is only one aspect, is to replace capitalism with a different social and economic model. Its foundations is a grow-or-die system. Capitalism is threatening the future of humanity.

Capital accumulation creates profits for a small percentage of the population instead of the vast majority of us who do the work to make those profits possible. This has resulted in a system in which eight men have as much wealth as the 3.6 billion people that make up half the world.  

Leading the pack is Elon Musk whose wealth is up by triple digits, $127 billion, in just one freaking year. His gain alone would be good enough to make him the world’s third wealthiest individual after Bezos and Gates. His net worth is now $155 billion.  If Musk continues on the path he has been on during the year, he will soon be number one, and could be the first to reach a trillion. On a typical single day in 2020, Musk’s wealth increased by almost $348 million which comes to $14.5 million every hour, $241,628 every minute, or $4,027 every second.

The total gains of the 1%, as of the third quarter of 2020, came to $1.47 trillion. The net gains of the wealthiest big 10 alone are 21.7% of the entire gain of the roughly 3.3 million wealthiest in the USA. Those holding positions 11-20 have wealth of about half the amount of the top 10, $502.2B, with gains for the year so far of almost $54.9 billion, a figure that would be $70 billion when excluding their colleagues who lost wealth. The total wealth of the top twenty comes in at $1.544 trillion. This amount represents 65.4% of the total wealth of the poorest half of the U.S. population who, as of the end of the third quarter of 2020, held wealth worth $2.36 trillion. The wealth of the 10 wealthiest individuals comes to 44% of the wealth of the poorest 50%, roughly 165.5 million people.

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