While the Top 10% and the Fed Cheer Stocks Rebounding, the Bottom 60% Lose their Livelihoods and Lives

ILLUSTRATION: The Wall Street Journal

If you have any doubt that the Fed and Wall Street will some day be dismantled, please re-read this ‘real life in America’ list again.

By Charles Hugh Smith | 17 April 2020

OF TWO MINDS — The pandemic is a stark, brutal spotlight on income/wealth inequality in America: while the top 10% who own the majority of the nation’s wealth cheer the Federal Reserve’s relentless pimping of the stock market, the bottom 60%–America’s vast underclass of low-paid, marginalized, gig-economy, Amazon warehouse precarious proletariats (precariats)– are losing their livelihoods and tragically, their lives as the pandemic ravages the ranks of those who cannot work at home and those whose health is impaired by the ceaseless struggle to survive in Unequal America.

The inequality isn’t just in wealth and income; it’s in what that wealth and income can buy– stability, security and better health. While there are plenty of wealthy Americans in poor health, there’s no getting past the reality that those with big incomes, 7-figure net worths and gold-plated healthcare insurance paid by their employer or family-owned enterprise can afford to be gym rats, hire personal trainers, get regular dental care, eat costly delicacies from Whole Foods (Whole Paycheck to precariats)–in other words, everything needed (including the financial security that enables a good night’s sleep) to be slim and healthy.

America’s vast Underclass is dying in the pandemic because their health is impaired by inequality.

As long as there are plenty of precariats earning less than $30,000 a year to walk their dog, empty Mom’s bedpan, ship their order from an Amazon “fulfillment center,” a.k.a. 21st century sweatshop, deliver their groceries from Whole Foods, drive their Uber ride, clean their McMansions, etc., the top 10% could care less about inequality in America. […]

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