But let’s focus on the US since we started there; since 1980, the share of the national income has been decreasing for the bottom half percent of the population, while for the top percent it has been doing the complete opposite:
If you stretch that chart out farther, you find that inequality has been rising since the late 1960’s. It’s important to show that, because starting the chart in 1980 erroneously implies that inequality is a function of Reagan’s re-architecting of the tax system, which is false.
Creatures of the far-right have been picking up electoral steam in Europe, the US, and, just recently, Brazil. Even though these groups of people are gaining political power through the democratic system, their open contempt for it suggests that those who achieve real power would illiberalize democracy, or even take down democracy itself. Ultimately, that individual freedom Hayek and neoliberals so idealize, is under attack at this very moment in time.
I don’t know what this “far-right” term means anymore. Because it keeps getting applied to groups with incredibly variant goals and objectives.
For example, in the US, the Democrat party likes to refer to judges from the Federalist Society as “far right”. But the Federalist Society is committed to the application of the US Constitution in a literal sense, wherein individual freedoms are enshrined; ergo, they cannot possibly fit under any definition of “far-right” which would enshrine antidemocratic measures.
So, although I would agree that there are certain populist movements afoot that would (apparently) restrict freedoms, they exist both on the right and left, and as of today, none of them seem to come close to having the critical mass needed to actually threaten democracy in the US or Europe.
We are in this mess precisely because of the perpetual income inequality, that has hurt the lower and middle classes of Western democracies. This in turn has pushed people so far towards the edge, that radical thought (of any stripe) becomes attractive.
Hmmm. Attractive to who? You don’t see the poor involved in activist marches, as a rule; the activists are usually youth from well-to-do backgrounds who are taking it upon themselves to agitate for those of lower income groups, who apparently are too busy working.
Clearly, the goal as of this moment, should be to drop the neoliberal paradigm for good, and start taking social and economic inequality seriously.
I agree. More jobs at better wage is the solution.