One of the most obvious sign of this escalating disparity is the lowering of non-upper-class standards of living. In the United States, the top 20% of income earners control 93% of the wealth (2010). The next 20% of income earners, the middle class controls just 6%, with the remaining 60% of income earners, the lower class, controlling just 1%. What happens when the economy takes another turn for the worse, and the upper class moves to protect its investments with layoffs, or send manufacturing jobs overseas? People are willing to work for less pay because there is less work, and the lower classes are forced to acquiesce to the upper classes' economic strategies. Economists are predicting an eventual "phasing out" of the middle class, creating a modern feudal system in which the majority of the populace is in the working class, serving the economic interests of the power holders. Is this a reality you want your children to grow up in?
So what is the solution to our society's ills? Is money inherently evil? The staunch opponent of capitalism, communism, proposes that a system in which everyone is given an equal share of resources in exchange for work on a government-run progrom is the logical solution to the capitalist problem. As we can see, this does not work in the real world. This also leads to the same problem: power consolidated in the hands of the few, to the point where it is detrimental to the society as a whole. This is much worse than our system in which the working man is held to a low standard of living, but is still free to vote with his dollar. Another alternative suggested is Anarchy, in which there is no financial or government system, and individuals are free to live however they want, on their own terms. For obvious reasons, this is not a suitable system. Capitalism, for all its flaws, really is the best system man has invented thusfar. Man is accountable for his own success, there is mobility between social classes (although it is difficult to move up a rung), and man can live the way he wants to, within reason. Everyone is free to accumulate as much wealth as they can, and the more you make, the more you are taxed. So what could possibly go wrong here? The problem is that those who win the game get to make the rules, and they start acting in their own selfish interests. Society as a whole suffers. How do we stop those with vast amounts of power from damaging society?
The winners have won, and have reached an endgame state where they are able to influence global policy in their favor. The only weapons we have against the problem of power consolidation is to give the government more oversight, increase progressive taxation, and end campaign donations. Unfortunately, the system we have created for ourselves here will likely continue in perpetuity. There will always be those who win the game, and those who live in poverty. The money movers at the top of the power pyramid will continue to dominate world affairs, and the working class will continue to serve their wishes. This is morally wrong, but this is the system we have created for ourselves. There is no question about it: too much money is evil incarnate, but the absence of a monetary system is just as bad. The consolidation of power is society's oldest struggle, and is not a foe that will be vanquished any time soon.