DENMARK: A CLASS CONFLICT BATTLEGROUND

October 15, 2020

[Also see "Class Inequality Soars in 'Social Democratic' Germany" and "Why They're Rioting in Sweden" and "The 'Iceland Did it Right' Myth"]

 

[Also read "Mom & Pop Capitalism?" if you think all we need is old-fashioned "good capitalism."]

One sometimes hears people describe Denmark as an illustration of "good capitalism" in which everybody is happy. What such people omit to say is that Denmark is a battleground between ordinary people--the working class (including those who work hard as "small business owners") and the very wealthy upper class. Oh yes! There is indeed a billionaire upper class in Denmark; read about some of its members here.

Since Denmark is indeed a capitalist society based on money, and since in such a society money is power, the billionaire upper class has lots of power despite the fact that it consists of very few individuals.

The billionaire upper class wants society to be unequal. Duh! Otherwise the billionaires would not be so much richer and more powerful and more privileged compared to ordinary people.

Most Danes want society to be equal in the no-rich-and-no-poor meaning of the word. They want the economy to reflect the egalitarian economic principle of "From each according to reasonable ability, to each according to need or reasonable desire with scarce things equitably rationed according to need."

This is why there is class conflict in Denmark. Read about this conflict in the following news articles, which report on just a small sample of the many examples of class conflict in Denmark:

Danish state to lock out 400,000 public sector workers: the beginning of the end for ‘class peace’

New Danish strike threatens to stop Öresund trains

Danish trade unions demand hike in minimum wages

Danish workers conduct general strike for gains in wages, jobs, and vacation days, 1998

Denmark: 100,000 public sector workers on strike

THE MORAL OF THE STORY

 

The moral of the story is this. To the extent that Denmark is a place where people are quite possibly happier on average than people in the United States due to enjoying the fact that Denmark is less unequal than the United States, it is ONLY due to the fact that the working class has waged a battle with some successes against the capitalist upper class of Denmark. It is NOT due to the existence of any supposed "good kind of capitalism." Capitalism is not good. It is a social and economic and political system that is based on class inequality and that puts actual power (in both the government and private sector) in the hands of those who aim to preserve and protect class inequality.

Capitalism is the current way that the advocates and beneficiaries of class inequality manage society and seek to legitimize class inequality. Most people want an egalitarian society, one in which class inequality is abolished. While ordinary people can indeed wage fights against the capitalist rulers and win substantial reforms, those reforms remain at risk of being taken away or otherwise undermined by the upper class that is hostile to them. The only way to secure good reforms and achieve what most people REALLY want--an egalitarian society--is by taking the struggle against capitalism all the way to removing the rich from power to have real, not fake, democracy with no rich and no poor.

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