If this were The Beat With Ari Melber instead of Between The Lines, I might show off how super cool I am by beginning this blog with a quote from the Wu-Tang Clan song “C.R.E.A.M.” But that’d be too easy, wouldn’t it? (For the record, I love Wu-Tang Clan.)
Instead, I’ll report that I think American capitalism is stupid.
What do I mean by that? Just that I think there are plenty of examples of more equitable societies across the globe and, perhaps, we don’t have it all figured out here.
Before you tar and feather me and throw me before a congressional hearing, I’ll give an editorial defense a shot: Capitalism is an endlessly fascinating subject. And so we bull ‘n’ bear it up with this month’s theme, where we hear authors opine on money, business, crypto, banks and just plain hustling.
Working itself is one aspect of our lives that has drastically morphed forever in the past couple of years. Most of us have to participate in some fashion of labor—capitalism strikes again!—and it’s a landscape that looks unfamiliar. You can bet our writers are all over that sea change, too.
I write this from my job, part of a career that has ridden waves of destruction in the journalism world (more on that next month) over the course of 16 years. My father worked at a newspaper, and when I didn’t know what the hell to do after college, I pretty much just did what he did. (We’re kind of like Lieutenant Dan’s family except with less battlefield dying.)
Because my family never had a whole lot of money, I’ve always approached the enterprise with an outsider’s eye—and, yes, a journalist’s one (well, two), also. Why are Americans so focused on the economy when there’s a once-in-generation pandemic going on? Why do billionaires keep launching dick rockets into space instead of fixing problems here on Earth? And how long are we really gonna keep the whole penny thing going? Got so many jars of pennies, starting to feel like Howard Hughes over here.
Some of these questions—and much, much better ones—are asked and answered by The Doe’s stable of capable correspondents.
Dollar, dollar bills, y'all. Here we, here we go, check this shit, yo.