Peter Joseph : “A Democratic Precondition?” : United We Stand Festival 2018, Texas, April 29th 2018

My name is Peter Joseph and I’ve been
working for the past ten years in the hopes to see some meaningful
long-lasting change in this world; a long ten years it’s been. In 2009 I helped start a nonprofit
called The Zeitgeist Movement. It’s a global sustainability
advocacy organization and we specifically
focus on economic change because we feel it’s the most
important to set the stage for more viable levels of change politically, socially and so on. And as expressed in great
detail in my recent book ‘The New Human Rights Movement’
published last year, we as a species are faced with some powerful social pathology, (I’ll let that word sink in) a pathology driven in fact by our system of economic survival. A pathology if left unchecked,
and uncountered, will only exacerbate wealth and income inequality
and hence social instability, it’s gonna ruin our habitat through
the drive for economic growth and no doubt continue to undermine
basic principles of equality, justice and democracy. And with this latter issue which
is what brings me here today, in the free and equal event
‘United We Stand,’ what enables a truly
democratic open free society? where a population can actually
reach rational consensus on the direction it wishes to go, allowing for political
egalitarianism if you will, intergroup respect, and the
elimination of power-based oppression. And if I was to frame the issue I would do so in the following way. Do we have a proper “precondition”
for viable democracy, not only in this country
but on this planet? Now what do I mean by that? A precondition means
something that comes before in order for something else
to follow in causality. For example a legal precondition to driving a car of course
is to obtain a driver’s license. Medically a person can have a genetic
precondition for a given disease, and the same can be applied towards
environmental exposures such as smoking cigarettes is a
precondition for lung cancer. But the context here is sociological. If we as a society are to strive
for increased human rights, social equality and egalitarian
democratic principles, can we conclude that the most foundational
and dominant institutions, traditions, practices,
root philosophies of our society, can we conclude that they
foster the proper precondition to allow for more optimized democracy? Are we planting seeds in
lush nutrient-rich soil? or are we planting seeds in arid,
stone, nutrient-void soil with little hope of growth? To consider that,
we’re gonna go back in time, Roughly 12,000 years ago the
human species transitioned from nomadic hunter-gatherer societies – tribes foraging and hunting with
no real agricultural skills – to farm-cultivating settled societies. This has been termed the
Neolithic Revolution. Before the Neolithic Revolution as
corroborated by numerous anthropologists studying both existing and
historical hunter-gatherer societies, social and economic life
was actually very different. Small bands or tribes operated
without money or markets, they were egalitarian, and they had
no economic dominance hierarchy. It also is well-established
they had much less violence, certainly no large-scale warfare. And while modern culture would gawk at the seemingly crude reality
of hunter-gatherer life, it has been well argued in fact that there
was a kind of minimalistic affluence, a happiness and simplicity. If you don’t know you’re poor,
well, maybe you’re NOT poor. A unique distinction because it
challenges how we today think about social success or even “progress” itself. To highlight the contrast anthropologist
Marshall Sahlins once stated “To accept that hunter-gatherers are
affluent is therefore to recognize that the present condition of
man’s slaving to bridge the gap between his unlimited wants
and his insufficient means is a tragedy of modern times. Modern capitalist societies,
however richly endowed, dedicate themselves to the
proposition of scarcity. Inadequacy of economic means is first principle of the
world’s wealthiest peoples. The market industrial
system institutes scarcity in a manner completely without parallel. Where production and distribution are
arranged through the behavior of prices, and all livelihoods depend
on getting and spending, insufficiency of material means becomes
the explicit calculable starting point of all economic activity.” I’d like you to keep this
notion of scarcity in mind as it’s a central understanding
to our political economy as I will discuss. As far as survival, hunter-gatherers mostly had
a gift economy it was called, where they shared with no direct
expectation of reciprocation. Think about that. There are even modern stories of outsiders having their first visit
with these cultures and they would be given things like
handicrafts from the existing tribes, and the Western cultures would feel
the need to give something in return as many in our market
exchange culture would. And this reciprocal behavior was actually
considered offensive to the tribe as they felt the exchange
was a refusal of friendship. British anthropologist Tim Ingold
highlights the difference between giving and exchange has to do with … a social perception,
based around autonomous companionship, versus involuntary obligation. Autonomous companionship
versus involuntary obligation. He states “Clearly both hunter-gatherers and agricultural
cultivators depend on their environments. But whereas for cultivators
this dependency is framed within a structure of reciprocal obligation, for hunter-gatherers it rests on the
recognition of personal autonomy. The contrast is between
relationships based on trust and those based on domination.” I want to read that part again. “The contrast is between
relationships based on trust and those based on domination.” This is a subtle the powerful distinction. It’s not only referring to
the trust of each other, but also the trust of
the planet to provide. So, in short, there’s a kind of
trade-strategizing dominance that we’ve become accustomed
to in our day-to-day lives since the Neolithic Revolution;
a gaming process that we have to engage for
survival and we take for granted and we don’t really look at what it means,
sociologically and psychologically. And the result has been
thousands of years of in-group out-group antagonism, elitism, stratification,
and of course oppression. And in the thoughtful words of
neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky, “Hunter-gatherers had thousands of
wild sources of food to subsist on. Agriculture changed all that, generating an overwhelming reliance
on a few dozen food sources. Agriculture allowed for the stockpiling
of surplus resources and thus, inevitably, the unequal stockpiling of them, stratification of society
and the invention of classes. Thus it has also allowed for
the invention of poverty.” Since the Neolithic Revolution we have had a process of economically
driven cultural adaptation built upon the survival requisites of the relatively new,
settled agrarian paradigm. This evolution of post-Neolithic
culture was self-guided by systemic environmental pressures
and survival inferences (what you do), a kind of geographical
determinism in fact, common to the natural dynamics of the
new mode of production: the new economy. This gave birth to
dominance-oriented incentives, values and protections, evolving of course patterns of conflict,
hierarchy, elitism, disproportionate allocation
of physical social resources, and hence the world you see today. And to translate this into common terms, in political economy as we would hear it if we were going to college
for political economy: Thus you have the basis
of property (ownership), capital (means of production), labor specialization (jobs), regulation (government), and protection (law, police, military). In other words you have grounds for what is
the ultimate mechanism of survival today – something we again take for granted
because we’re so used to it – the simple market system of economics. And what I’m getting at here … is you can’t understand anything that’s
happening in the world, especially politically, without relating back to the
incentives and procedures of what creates survival in society:
its economy. And our economy today
is explicitly based upon the unnuanced assumption of scarcity and is hence Darwinistic, Malthusian. It inspires endless power
antagonists between groups, fighting. Not to mention, of course, extreme and unnecessary
deprivation and poverty for many. Pick up any textbook, introductory textbook on economics and
you’ll see it’s very very clear the way the entire world apparently
is to be associated: resources and means are scarce –
end of story. From that premise the architecture
of not only the economy but society has been derived. In the book I call it the root
socioeconomic orientation of our world, and it justifies brute competition,
narrow self-interest, elitist hierarchy, inequality
and oppression. It’s that simple. Now, that stated, what can we learn about the nature
of government within all of this? Well first, we see that
government actually proceeds from the economic premise of a society, not the other way around. It is this preordained economic
mode of society that decides what government is to be, does,
and where its loyalties rest. If you examine historical
variations of social systems, say capitalism of course,
communism as it existed, socialism, feudalism, mercantilism and so on, you’ll realize that the governing
architecture of those systems serve to protect and perpetuate
the prevailing economic and class structures that
ultimately define them. Feudalism for example was a
structure based upon land ownership, labor and class interdependence, going from the peasant to the king. Capitalism in contrast is based
upon dynamics of private property, buying and selling, ownership, and the mechanism of ownership
and wealth translating of course into power and control. And to understand the specific
nature of government today, specifically in the United States – the forbidden experiment of the
world as far as I’m concerned – a detailed 2014 study conducted by
Professor Martin Gilens at Princeton and Benjamin Page at
Northwestern University concluded “The preferences of the average American
appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant
impact upon public policy.” The researchers concluded that lawmakers’
policy actions tend to support – guess what – the interests of the wealthy,
Wall Street, and big business. And what fascinates me, fascinates me, is that many in America –
most in America – act like this is some kind of anomaly, some kind of corrupt anomaly, as though the US government and in effect,
all governments in the world, haven’t always prioritized
economic interests since inception: business interests, with a government constituency
generally composed of business powers. People act as though the society hasn’t been set up in
favor of the wealthy. They act as though … elitist business freedom
is some kind of corruption. And that troubles me because
it means that there’s a big mental block in the
way people perceive reality. People love to say things like “Get money out of politics!” without really thinking about
the vast contradiction inherent. While it may seem morally sound,
it’s actually quite silly in principle, given how our world operates. In a world where everything is for sale, in a world where gaming through trade,
trade-strategizing dominance once again, is the most dominant mode of
communication and action, the virtue, why would government and policy
be off-limits from this behavior? In fact if we’re to be
consistent in society it would actually be poor
form to object at all frankly; jokingly I think we should LET the
Koch brothers buy and run America! Why? because it would be consistent. It would be the purest,
most natural outcome in a system for the billionaires to
buy and run everything. That is what the system is. And you will never stop the force
of financial and business power as long as our society as
a whole is based upon it. So needless to say, when it comes
to the nature of our social system, as born from the geographical
determinism of the Neolithic Revolution, the very idea of any kind of effective
democracy becomes increasingly illusory. The system simply isn’t designed to cater
to the well-being and democratic control of the general majority. Rather it’s designed to
facilitate the affairs of business and most of all the protection of
big business which are naturally the dominant interests in the revolving
door of government as we know it. Hence, President Trump of course. He is not an outlier. He is EXACTLY what this system
suggests should run a nation: a CEO, a businessman, the president of the
United States Corporation. Put another way, the social system is
fundamentally fascist by nature. And until we change the
precondition of our economy there’s little reason to
expect much improvement. We can push the fascism
back as we do here, it’s always gonna keep pushing forward, and eventually based on the way
things are going, it’s gonna win. This is a book by Robert Brady called
‘Business as a System of Power.’ It was written in 1943 in the
heat of the Second World War. It is a comparative study of various
nations including fascist Germany, Japan, Italy and others. It links the root structure
and incentive of business to the rise of fascist
controls in the state. And it’s frightening, because today
nothing’s really changed when you look at the structure, at the institutions
and the mechanisms that are in play. In the forward of this text, another economist named Robert Lynd states
the issue well in regard to America. He says (and this is a critical quote
that really struck me when I read it) “Thus political equality
under the ballot was granted on the unstated but factually
double-locked assumption that the people must refrain from seeking the
extension of that equality to the economic sphere. In short, the attempted harmonious
marriage of democracy to capitalism doomed genuinely popular
control from the start. And all down through our national life, the continuance of the
Union has depended upon the unstated condition
that the dominant member, capital, continue to provide returns to
all elements in democratic society sufficient to disguise the underlying conflict in interest.” (Sufficient to disguise the
underlying conflict in interest!) “The crisis within the economic
relations of capitalism was bound to precipitate a crisis in the
democratic political system.” Sufficient to disguise!
You know what that is? That’s the fact that everyone walks around
with a cell phone that can make pancakes. That’s the fact that people have been
bought off in this society by gadgets and mindless property and
associations to their identity that really are quite trivial. And just keep them in a place of subservience
because they don’t want to rock the boat. All of that said, my goal here was to plant these seeds of consideration (because usually my talks
are a lot longer than this) and I honestly do not believe
we are ever going to see an optimization of democracy,
as we all hope, an optimization of democracy and equality, until we understand the
forces that move against it. And it just so happens that the
greatest force moving against it is the absolute foundation
of our social system and the foundation of our
survival as we know it. Arbitrarily so; it can be changed,
but this is where we are. And that is a conversation
I simply am not hearing these days. Everyone’s terrified to
talk about the social system. They don’t want to be labeled, dismissed. “How dare you say anything
negative about our beautiful market economy,
and all it’s done and all it’s created?” Well it’s created a
lot of positive things, and it’s created a whole
lot of negative things, and those negative things are gonna start
outweighing the positive if they haven’t already. So I hope you can extend this
discussion to your communities, food for thought. Thank you very much. [Applause]

  1. Quite challenging putting together adequate metaphors to explain these Systems concepts to new groups. We need more people that can do this one thing well.

  2. thanks Peter! everyone, lets try our best to bring up discussions about the flaws of the market economy which are at the core of our social structure!

  3. TL;DR: The hierarchical structuring of capitalism and monied (or competitive) markets both incentivizes and normalizes oppression and in-and-out-group mentality; and, this leads to inequality, structural and direct violence, and unsustainable practices.

    You're welcome.

    Edit: PJ is a great speaker, and we need more like him.

  4. I see Peter, I hit like 😀 Keep it up Peter, great work! I hope the upcoming movie will be good as your past work 🙂

  5. So good to listen to Peter articulate the flaws inherent in this business model. When people complain about the corruption in the market and government, the correct response should be, "What else would you expect? The system is working perfectly." If you're looking for honesty and integrity, fairness and equality, then you want a new system. The Money Free Party is one way to spread this information. We need more speakers on the public stage.

  6. Reset values create new concepts of freedom that is at the core of every human being.Start with "less is more".

  7. 10 years already… Thanks Peter, I admire your commitment, it is incredibly challenging to stand your ground in front of harsh criticism. My hope is that people will start questioning the current system with an open mind and hopefully let go at ideas that no longer drive humanity towards a brighter future.

  8. This is a good example of his statement about open-source society. With those references, it becomes clear that Peter Joseph is NOT the only one who understands what is happening. Unlike the hero worship by sheep in the comments section here. A collaboration, meaningful discussion by many, is required to effect change.

  9. in the beginning, he mixes up precondition and cause.
    smoking is not a precondition for loungcancer, but a possible cause.

  10. Our crony capitalist system is dying & only the extremely wealthy benefit from it. Once automation kicks into full gear & 50% of all jobs are replaced by robot's (2030) we will need a new system or things will get very ugly.

  11. Peter keeps saying we need to change the economic system first, but it's entangled with law, governance, subsistence, and social norms, so we must engage ALL the existing systems and power structures.
    Some errata:
    "Preconditions" are things that MUST exist for the next to happen, so smoking is not a precondition for lung cancer although it is a factor.
    Also this:

  12. I'm glad Zeitgeisters finally realized they are on the left. Welcome, you are an important addition!

  13. New material posted by Abby Martin AND Peter Joseph all in the same couple of days? Stop it guys. I need to leave the house every once in a while!

  14. I like what Peter says and agree as the system is constituted insanity and destruction is assured. Peter though seems to mostly dismiss the possibility of a much more sane version of a market economy. He doesnt give much credit to the organizing power and creativity incentivizing power of markets that fascilitate the positive aspects of abundance we currently experience. Yes it comes at an immense price because its so biased in its basic principles.

  15. I would love to see a talk between Peter Joseph and Maynard James Keenan; Peter is a big fan, they are both deep thinking musicians so conscious of themselves and the world ~ don't know if it would work out fully, but it would be interesting!!

  16. Let's say you worked in a factory. You get word going round that the owner of the factory is seriously considering investing in new automation; which would replace the need for much of the human labor in the factory, including your job.
    So now you think to yourself:
    If he does that, if he chooses to automate, then I will loose my job and thus I will loose my monthly income of money which grants me access to food and shelter.
    This is terrifying, I don't want to starve to death cold on the street. I depend on having this job to be able to survive.
    On the other hand, I now recognize that if he does not automate (at least for now) I will then know with 100 percent certainty that me coming in here to do all this drudgery for 8 hours a day and 5 days a week – is objectively utterly unnecessary and it would be a pointless waste of my finite life on this planet to keep working here.
    Ultimately; given that my life depends on getting a monthly paycheck to be able to get access to the necessities of life – I am actually inventivized to WANT to be exploited 8 hours a day and 5 days a week, to do this boring and unpleasant work in exchange for a paycheck, even though I now know full well that it is completely unnecessary for me to do any of it.
    In no uncertain terms: Because of the society I live in I am being directly incentivized to beg for the opportunity to waste my short life doing bullshit work that a machine can easily do instead of me – ALL BECAUSE I DEPEND ON A PAYCHECK TO BE ABLE TO LIVE.

  17. Peter is the light in the dark. His ideas are nothing but the most relevant. Shame people are too fucked to get his message.

  18. The #1 problem facing humanity today is anyone who hasn't invested the time to become well-informed, free of misinformation and disinformation, on all the major issues of today AND who is not giving their time, energy, resources, and talents to the political process to make sure that only the most Loving/most Wise among us become our public servants.

    They have blood on their hands.
    They are complicit in the heinous crimes against humanity and Gaia Mother Earth.
    They can never ever dare speak of Love, Peace, Joy, or Creativity.

    The plutocratic families, the corporate oligarchs, and the international banksters, many of whom are Zionists (like the Neocons and members of AIPAC) and/or members of secret societies, have got them exactly where they want them…out of their way.

  19. I feel like an opportunity was missed to discuss the actual title of the talk, which was implied but not elucidated like the current conflict of ideology. Explaining the underpinning of having democratic freedom as being economic freedom from the coercion of external economic forces. The economic pressure on people makes it difficult if not impossible to participate or participate effectively in a democracy. Things like being more susceptible to un-skeptical reporting from the MSM, not having the time or patience to understand local, national or international politics and make sound decisions that impact policy. How many people can't vote because of precarious work? Or don't know anything about politics or even current events because they work 2 or 3 jobs? This should have been the focus of the last half of the talk, the ideas we can implement now that make the transition more likely, UBI, direct democracy, hell even raising the minimum wage or getting universal healthcare are things that will ease the economic burden on people and allow them to think about the issues we advocate.

  20. The very foundations of our society are very corrupt to the core, we're doomed. I don't see that changing anytime soon anyway.

  21. "The unemployment rate is significantly lower than it was at the height of the financial crisis, but for Main Street, growth hasn’t been quite so apparent. About one in five U.S. jobs still pays a median income below the federal poverty line. Median household income is only up 5.3% since 2008 and remains well below where it was in 1998, if you adjust for inflation. Workforce participation remains nearly as low as it’s ever been. Meanwhile, the top 1% of American earners saw their incomes go up by leaps and bounds since the Fed started manufacturing money — to more than 40 times that of the bottom 90%." – Naomi Prins

  22. Luke Rudkowski & Jason Bermas were Talking Shit about Peter saying they were gonna Debate him, I Guess Not?

  23. You have to hand it to Peter, he is one of the only humans to discuss economics from a detached and a social science based method. We have deal with ‘referent’ not abstraction!

  24. We will end terrorism, war and poverty simply by every day telling one new person that now EVERYBODY can live a life of luxury in a Resource Based Economy!
    Individual steps to transition include spreading of FCNs (Free Collaboration Networks)

  25. Please watch and share my video "Why we will not stop climate change. Capitalism's inability to decarbonize"

  26. Not sure if anyone will see this, but if you do, please get back to me. I have been trying to help this movement out for some time now, but I can't find an outlet for me to do so. There is nowhere to apply for the NPO. Tired of grassroots because everyone I talk to doesn't give two fucks about what I say, despite it being empirical fact, and not my opinion. Tired of being grass roots. I would much rather do something meaningful with my 50+ hour work time. Too many pointless and unnecessary jobs out there, and I think far too much to simply mentally check out and act like what I am doing matters, when it really contributes very little to society as a whole.

    If anyone has any ideas on how one can move forward in such a way to join the NPO or more directly help this movement, it would be appreciated if you let me know. Not grassroots. Like I said, been doing that for 10 years, people don't listen to me. They just counter argue based on emotional opinions and completely ignore doing any real research into the topic themselves. Tired of trying to convince lazy people to stop being lazy. I would much rather hop on board with people who have a greater understanding of this than I do because talking to people who have no idea what's going on is so frustrating. The concepts just go over their heads and I am done with my words falling on deaf ears. Much rather spend my time directly contributing to this movement.

  27. Nothing matters… The Unemployment rate could be ZERO and it would not matter… When the Real Reason for anemic growth in GDP is Wages… and Those wages have been flatlined for over 40 years when inflation adjusted. Congratulations goes to libertarian and republican think tanks and legislatures… they have achieved freedom through voluntary slavery (That's you) without much as even a whimper out of the public. A truly totalitarian takeover by the top 10% hiding in plain sight. (MS)

  28. From 1:15 when democracy was used in the same sentence with equality it seemed like democracy diminished in half. It opened my eyes on how meaningless the term is in the light of higher sociological development. Dah, the society is managed by demos, more or less, in any case.

  29. Hey, on a different note: can someone in the P.J. camp deconstruct the notion of The Pareto Effect and its use by certain shills in the mainstream as a justification for rule by oligarchy?

  30. Can someone please define "equality"? Also, how do you expect to extinguish "elitism" while it is built directly into the female attraction mechanism? It is the nature of women, and righteous by way of our culture, for them to find and reward the highest quality males, based on physical fitness, wealth, and genetics to pair with. The "romance novel" cliche exists for a reason. The "Christian Grey" archetype exists for a reason. It was the exact same thing as Mickey Rourke when he did "9 1/2 Weeks". Women are not going to stop selecting those type of men. It isn't their choice. They don't decide who to be attracted to. It happens to them, during ovulation it is a scientific fact that they seek out men who are showing, literally in the face, more presence of testosterone. The conqueror male is the preferred type of men that women want to reproduce with. This is not evident by way of their words, but is overwhelmingly evident by their actions.

  31. The socialists would do better to borrow from a rich man's library than steal from his bank account. I listened to this dude for ten years. Ten whole years squandered prattling about how unjust everything was, and how horribly victimized I am. How awful to get caught up in this ideological possessed noise of inequality this, inequality that. You bet your ass I'm unequal to a man like Warren Buffet or Bill Gates. I haven't a damn clue what they know about finances, marketing, sales, investments. Income inequality? I'm twenty-seven, generally the 1% are old as fuck. It takes time to accrue wealth if one chooses to study and learn it. Equality of opportunity with everyone treated as fairly as their behavior deserves is how it is and how it ought to be. People these days behave like entitled, whining brats with a hand permanently outstretched with demands while engorging on everything that's great in this world, simultaneously hating the very shapers and makers who have brought it into existence for their abuse… How about a little gratitude? Is it perfect? Absolutely not. But it sure beats the hell out of what the socialists and Communists did in Nazi Germany and the Gulag.

  32. Damn Peters lookin GOOD in this video. That angle, lighting, and fresh shave…. incredible

    His words are pretty cool too

  33. If Capitalism as its currently constituted was the Thesis and RBE was the Antithesis…What would the Synthesis look like?

  34. modern slavery , soon to become slavery thru begging for mercy with the implementation of automation and mandatory government paychecks as to not incite a revolution and keep everybody IN NEED

  35. money has always been about enslavement and coercion. otherwise you wouldnt need armies to enforce it or taxes to collect it. it was invented in babylon to enslave the human race to elite fews. thank god we are finally waking up to its stupidity! let the sleepers awaken!!!!!!!

  36. All you are saying assumes that… there is a better alternative which is not based on a monetary system.
    Sorry but there isn't. Also it is not always true politics favours big businesses and when it does it is not always a bad thing.

  37. Peter, you are the only person in the public sphere making any sense. I consider your work the most important work today, really I do, you are the most important person right now. Keep it up.

  38. This is the movement that gives me most hope; however, those in power have a deeply rooted interest in maintaining their hold over economic situations. People are complacent with capitalism/slavery not because they are simply ignorant, but because those who control the economy have invested in that ignorance, and it has worked. I'm a firm believer in physics, and that to stop a force in one direction a force greater than that force must be exerted in the opposite direction; you don't stop the tyrannical hold the 1% has over the masses by short speeches, and minuscule changes here and there within the political system. I honestly believe the only way to change society is to uproot it; the institutions that compose the elite stronghold are far too vast, robust, and fortified to succumb to anything a law-abiding citizenry could throw at it; the laws are made by the 1% and so the game is fixed in favor of the 1%; you simply can't win by playing their game, for their game, when played, only has one outcome, and that is the further expansion and fortification of their power – we can't play their game. That means, the only solution is Anarchy. Capitalism culminates into abject order (eventually, a ruling 1% and a subordinate 99%), Anarchy is the opposite of abject order. Anarchy is the only force that can sufficiently undo the enslavement built by Capitalism, not some TEDtalk or congressional appointment.

  39. What is the solution? what you have to tell us? I Got it ! so what ? tell me what to do? do you have a formula to change all this "precondition" – Shit ?

  40. Unfortunately you will incite class warfare which the wealthy oligarchs will win — violently — if you tell them their number of yachts and mansions is abundant, since things they own in single figure’s are to them by definition scarce. So TZM has a really, really long road ahead to educate and acculturate a greater majority of the world’s power elite that they can actually be quite happy and content with what they already have accumulated. The trick, or part of it, is peacefulness, you have to show them social democracy and a resource economy is not a threat to their current lifestyle or moderate aspirations. You need to be prepared to allow the wealthy to retain all their current wealth, since in the current paradigm wealth equates to political influence and power. You have to let them cling to this while gradually breaking down the power structures which link money to power, in order to get social justice evolving peacefully. Over time such greed will die out, but not in the short run it seems.

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