Class Society

Bring it on, I hear myself thinking. Our economic reality is called class society. The wealthy one percent accumulates more and this seems to be a law of capitalism itself – we all know how the story goes.

Given my pet dogma that makes saving our planet for future generations an absolute priority, I ask certain questions before I rally against class society. I ask how a class society could impact ecological footprints.

What if we accept the economic reality and adapt our culture to it? What if we abolish the shoe-shiner-to-millionaire culture and embrace a class hierarchy? No need to keep up with the Jones’ because they belong to a different stratum anyway. No need to flaunt your Chevy, no need to dream about piles of cash. Everybody would know their place. Once you’re in a certain social class this will be on your ID chip. Your ‘voting power’, your credit limit, your right to blow carbon in the atmosphere, your right to use public services, and a host of other things will depend on that. But don’t worry: every five years you have a chance to rise in the hierarchy when your ID chip is updated. If you belong to a lower class you can check out coleslaw, apples and vinegar, but not bacon, dates and grape seed oil. If you belong to the elite your voting power will be about 300 times that of a normal wage earner and you can take out the credit you need to fuel the economy with your private jet. Meanwhile, the lower classes will have negative carbon credits: they will have to plant trees to stay out of debt. The elite, upon seeing environmental disaster coming in the form of tornadoes, droughts, floods, migrants, dead bees, dead oceans, dead everything, will use their phenomenal voting power to cut down on the modest pollution that the ‘middle class’ was traditionally allowed to.

How utterly ridiculous. I know. But am I not making explicit what is going to be our reality anyhow?