The paper aims to analyze “The Broken Contract: Inequality and American Decline” article written by George Packer. In this article, the author tries to reveal the inner problems of the American government and society on the basis of the historical comparison between the differen epochs.
George Packer starts the article from describing of the latest issue in the American politics, which was Iraq war. He shows that the entire plan of the war was absolutely dissatisfying in accordance with the latest trends in social development. Packer believes that one of the greatest achievements of American democracy under the name establishment has absolutely disappeared since the 1960s. In the 1970s the unformal arrangement between the government, business, and labor, which guaranteed fair division of benefits of economic growth, was replaced by the new ideas of speculative economics. As a result, the entire system of national interest’s protection was destroyed because the rich elites received the right to ignore the intentions of other people.
This right was achieved due to the mistakes of government in Vietnam or Watergate scandal and with the help of consolidation of corporations. The practice of political lobby gave possibility for rich elites to increase their influence on political decisions. As a result, the rich elite’s share of the national income almost tripled in 40 years. Packer argues that it happened due to tax and labor laws.
The other negative consequence of the new governmental policy of supporting rich was that morals of American elites has changed. The top-managers prefer their life stories to be published in newspapers, especially with the information about their huge bonuses.
The author of the article concludes that it is almost impossible to change or influence this trend of plutocracy formation due to the growing power of corporations. This trend is absolutely opposite to the American Dream. It is essential for the nation to understand that “inequality undermines democracy” (Packer, 5)
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Packer, George. 2011. “The Borken Contract: Inequality and American Decline”. Web. February 15, 2016. <https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/united-states/2011-10-11/broken-contract/>