Here's Why the Rich NEED to Treat the Rest of Us Like Dirt

by John Spritzler

August 15, 2018


A society with some rich and some poor is a class society, one based on class inequality. It is a society with an upper class and a lower class. The very worst thing about a class society is that the upper class has to treat the lower class like dirt. The upper class must do this in order to make lower class people "know their place," to make lower class people internalize the notion that they are an inferior lot that does not deserve to enjoy life the way upper class people do, and to accept their position at the bottom of an unequal society where they must unquestioningly do what they are told to do by their "betters"--the upper class folks. 

If lower class people were treated with the full dignity and respect that upper class people take for granted as their due, then before long the upper class would be in serious trouble. Lower class people would begin to question--even more than they do already, which is a lot!--why society is so unequal with a privileged few lording it over everybody else. 

The upper class knows very well that most working class people value equality and think the inequality of our society is morally wrong. The upper class knows that working class people, if left to themselves, would make a far more equal society. This is why the upper class dares not leave working class people to themselves. The upper class is forced to control the working class intensely. Treating the working class, especially the poorest working class people, like dirt is a strategy of social control that the upper class must use or risk revolution.​

The upper class knows that when people are not economically insecure (i.e., when there is no poverty and no fear of falling into poverty) people start feeling not like dirt but like people who can dare to stand up to the ruling upper class and fight to make society truly equal and egalitarian. This is what happened in the "radical 60s," when economic inequality was at a long time MINIMUM in the U.S. and unlike today many families could live well on the income of only one high school graduate; in France a revolution almost took place in May of 1968 when economic inequality was at a long time minimum and economic prosperity was very high compared to the hardships that had followed World War II. The ruling class was frightened to death in the "radical 60s"; it blamed the problem--a challenge to its authority in all walks of life--on "rising expectations." It deliberately arranged in subsequent decades to lower people's expectations. This is discussed in an article (click here) about one of the ways the ruling class did this: making health care profit-driven with HMOs. 

Almost all of the problems that the upper class creates for working class people (many of which are discussed on the subpages of our "Specific Issues" page) are ways that the wealthy ruling upper class treats working class people like dirt. The upper class motive for this is not simply to maximize profits; it is to assert social domination over the working class. 

When our rulers treat us like dirt, it is for the same reason that slave owners in previous centuries treated their slaves like dirt--to make them know their place. It is the same reason that the royalty and aristocracy treated peasants like dirt. The way that we're treated like dirt has changed over the years, but it's still a fact that we're treated like dirt, especially the poorest of us.

Let's remove the rich from power to have real, not fake, democracy with no rich and no poor! Here's how.





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