When I was a teenager, I lifeguarded and taught swimming at the YMCA in Ottawa. When the Health Club manager was away, I was asked to fill in for him. It was a strange experience.
Background: My father had a Ph.D. in chemistry and ran the RCMP’s crime labs. My mother was a nurse, seamstress and artist. Our dinner-table conversations were substantive, interesting and full of humanity.
When I worked at the YMCA Health Club, all they cared about was MONEY and that’s all they ever talked about. The "Y" was where some of Ottawa’s money guys had lunch and regaled each other with stories of profit. It was a sad site for a young man, but mostly it was simply depressing. Where were the tales of helping other people live better lives?
I don’t think much has changed in the last forty-five years. I’m fearful that today’s moneyed elite have completely lost site of the collective good. The two percent of the population that controls ninety-eight percent of all the money appear to be oblivious to what’s happening around them. They even see massive foreclosure stats as a golden financial opportunity. I’ve always worried that Capitalism’s Achille’s Heel was and still is GREED.
Do you suppose Hampton billionaires learned anything from world history, specifically the French Revolution? Are they at all concerned by the Occupy Wall Street protests? I don’t know what to think about the protests, but I suspect sociologists might see them as a warning sign.
Related post: Conservative Greed