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Beyond Resistance: The Story Of 2016

Beyond Resistance: The Story Of 2016

This is the time of year when people try to make sense of the preceding twelve months. It’s a fool’s errand, in one sense. A year is an arbitrary division of time. We decide what it means in retrospect, and we never get it exactly right. But the meaning we give it will guide our actions in the future, in thousands of conscious and unconscious ways.

We tell ourselves stories, and before we know it our stories are telling us.

Democratic operatives got the story wrong. Too clever by half, as always, they thought victory lay in canned phrases and obsolete data models. But the political class that gave us “Microtrends” missed the macro trends all around us, the ones affecting most people’s lives.

Here’s a macro-trend: According to a recent paper by Thomas Piketty, Emmanuel Saez, and Gabriel Zucman,

“… the bottom half of the income distribution in the United States has been completely shut off from economic growth since the 1970s … In contrast, income skyrocketed at the top of the income distribution, rising 121 percent for the top 10 percent, 205 percent for the top 1 percent, and 636 percent for the top 0.001 percent.” (emphases mine)

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