In a recent conference entitled, "How to Think about Inequality," author James Piereson discussed key topics explored in his books, Shattered Consensus and The Inequality Hoax.
In Shattered Consensus, Piereson suggested that America is on the abyss of a new and historic phase of economic and political upheaval he calls the "Fourth Revolution." He cites three prior turning points in our nation's history: Jefferson's "Revolution of 1800," which created popular political parties as we know them, the Civil War and the New Deal. Piereson said he doesn't know when The "Fourth Revolution" will occur or what form it will take.
But as today's electorate respond to the rhetoric of current Presidential hopefuls one could argue that Piereson may be wrong in his timing. Between our dangerously unsustainable debt and the raw emotions of primary voters so evident in their passion for their respective candidates, we are far from the edge of Piereson's Fourth Revolution. We are in the midst of it.
The current political cycle reveals that many Americans are demanding unprecedented accountability from their elected leaders concerning wasteful spending and policies that have labeled our nation "The United Give Me States of America." A growing majority of citizens want economic growth, job creation, national security and many insist on an end to policies of political correctness, as they believe it is unraveling our basic right of freedom of speech.
Of equal concern are the prospects of ongoing terrorist acts against our nation and our allies, the unimaginable threat of a nuclear 9/11 or the global upheaval from a bankrupt America triggered by a default on our nation's unsupportable $19 trillion national debt. As stated previously:
In stark but simple terms, unless Americans are made aware of this financial crisis and demand accountability, the very fabric of our society will be destroyed. Interest rates and interest costs will soar and government revenues will be devoured by interest on the national debt. Eventually, most of what we spend on Social Security, Medicare, education, national defense and much more may have to come from new borrowing, if such funding can be obtained. Left unchecked, this destructive deficit-debt cycle will leave the White House and Congress with either having to default on the national debt or instruct the Treasury to run the printing presses into a policy of hyperinflation.
When there is no food on the table, when the dollar has no value, that is when demagogues like Hitler get into power.
That "Fourth Revolution" envisioned by Mr. Piereson would also need to include those in America who would seek to have our nation become a socialist state.
During his discussion, Piereson also addressed regressive taxation along with a broad range of economic and public policy issues that he covers in his companion book, The Inequality Hoax.
Piereson's presentation was well received and thanks should be offered to those who provide an important platform for some of our nation's most leading commentators and newsmakers.
Lawrence Kadish serves on the Board of Governors of Gatestone Institute.