My Thought, Exactly


Posted by Bob Lord

Some time ago, I posted about Phil Mickelson's public whining over his tax rate. One of our conservative commenters concluded that I was "jealous" of Phil Mickelson. Although it would be fun to have Phil Mickelson's golf talent, the notion that I was "jealous" of him was hilarious to me. I actually consider myself incredibly lucky in terms of the hand I've been dealt in life, so jealousy is a foreign concept to me. But if I was asked to name people whose talents I'm envious of, Phil Mickelson's golf game and financial acumen would not enter my mind. To me, it would be far, far cooler to write as well as Matt Taibbi or Chris Hedges, be able to make a living doing so, have thousands of people eager to read what I have to say, and maybe, just maybe, help make the world a better place in the process.

So, I'm reading this week's issue of Too Much, the online newsletter for the Institute for Policy Studies Program on Inequality and the Common Good and the editor makes this statement, which so precisely captured my reaction to being told I was jealous of Phil Mickelson:

Those of us who pound away at the keyboard about how unequal our world has become have grown accustomed to one particular line of attack. You envy, the attack goes, the super rich. You blast them because you can’t be them.

Well, truth be told, those of us who write about inequality do have an envy problem. Only we don’t envy the rich. We envy those talented visual artists who can explore inequality far more compellingly than our words ever could. We particularly envy “Politizane.”

Who’s Politizane? A total mystery. All we know: Someone identified as Politzane last November uploaded to YouTube a six-minute video entitled “Wealth Inequality in America.” Before this month, hardly anyone had seen these six minutes. That all suddenly changed. In an eye's blink, this amazing video became the biggest share-the-wealth cyber sensation ever, with millions of hits.

My thought, exactly.