Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
I don't think the issue is with technology. In the days of feudalism the wealthy owned the land, but didn't have any better technology available to them then the peasants.

The real issue is "might makes right". It is easy to buy off people to work against their self-interest. The poorer they are the less it costs. Thus, in feudal societies a small group of enforcers could keep the peasants in their place. The fact that these enforcers were really in the same social class as those they were controlling was ignored.

Today we see the same dynamic. For example, academic toadies are willing to spin webs of pseudo-intellectual lies - and all it costs is a salary at some university or think tank. Look up the wealth of a typical US plutocrat (say the Coors family) and then figure out how many pundits they can afford to buy without putting a dent in their wealth.

Even the wars are being fought by those who stand to gain nothing (and risk life and limb). In the Civil War the bulk of the southern forces were American peasants who owned no slaves, but were fighting for a class that they got no benefit from. In fact the slave economy drove down the wages of poor whites so that they were actively fighting against their own economic welfare. (As Frederick Douglass pointed out it is hard to compete with somebody who is being paid nothing.)

Today we see our soldiers fighting in areas where they stand to gain nothing no matter how the wars turn out. The economic and human costs of the wars will exceed any expense that not controlling middle east oil would have imposed for decades to come. So they aren't even fighting for the right to cheap gasoline. What they may save in this cost will be more than made up in the future by higher taxes, inflation and declining social programs that will be the result of the huge deficits.

It's not technology that's the issue, its power politics. It always has been and even democracies haven't eliminated the problems.

Policies not Politics
---- Daily Landscape

by rdf (robert.feinman@gmail.com) on Fri Jan 26th, 2007 at 12:47:49 PM EST

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