Friday, February 21, 2020

American Kool Aid

I've been studying about social stratification as seen from South & North Korea 사회 계층.

Americans don't talk about this topic sufficiently. We're taught about meritocracy, and the problems of prejudice, but do not really analyze caste & class in the USA.

Some squeamishness stems from American racial prejudices. I'll not write about common conceptions, but some citizens have difficulty shedding linkages to such words as hordes or savages or slaves.

We should recognize Native Americans as victims of deliberate GENOCIDE.  ... as Landowners deprived of their inheritance by voracious intruders led by a handful of resource-extracting capitalists. This is not "maybe" - it is fact.

Americans prefer make-believe: pretending there's a bedrock justice in the land of the free & the brave, while in fact the foundation is theft & bullshit. Do you yourself dare to confront Truth? If so you'll find Truly Criminal Hype.

Anyhow, South Koreans passionately discuss social caste and class rigidities in many books and on TV. The film "Parasite" is a further example.

The typical American could learn valuable lessons from South Korean analyses of social stratification. While my Korean abilities are poor, I'm smart enough to recognize bits of their wisdom.

「대통령을 꿈꾸는 아이들은 어디로 갔을까」의 저자 오찬호는 대다수의 젊은이들이 ‘9급 공무원’을 희망하는 열풍을 들여다보며 미래가 없는 우리 사회의 어두운 면을 지적하고 있다.

"Difference in wealth under the capitalist system is inevitable. The problem is the wealth gap. Instead of leaving the economy to market alone, the government should actively intervene in fair distribution and make efforts to bridge the wealth gap. A good society should be equipped with a social safety net that does not give up what is human, meaning you'll not be poor in any job. Minimum salary guaranteed, and not undermining dignity. So valuable jobs exist but poor jobs do not exist. Young people can then challenge a variety of jobs that aren't ninth-class civil servants. Through this, our communities will cultivate many more types of lives. If diversity is guaranteed, opinions will inevitably increase and our tolerance index will naturally rise. If the tolerance index rises, our society will be able to move away from "focus on self" and be happy with solidarity and cooperation."
-- Hye-kyung Shin   신혜경  [excerpt]

(I saved as HTML and ran the page through Google translate)