What’s Driving Social Discord in the USA: Russian Social Media Meddling or Soaring Wealth/Power Inequality?

What’s Driving Social Discord in the USA: Russian Social Media Meddling or Soaring Wealth/Power Inequality? By Charles Hugh Smith.

There are two competing explanatory narratives battling for mind-share in the U.S.:

1. The nation’s social discord is the direct result of Russian social media meddling– what I call the Boris and Natasha Narrative of evil Russian masterminds controlling a vast conspiracy of social media advertising, fake-news outlets and trolls that have created artificial divides in the body politic, or exacerbated minor cracks into chasms.

2. The nation’s social discord is the direct result of soaring wealth/power inequality — the vast expansion of the wealth and power of the nation’s financial elites and their protected class of technocrat enablers and enforcers (the few) at the expense of the unprotected many.

Core to this narrative is the view that the elites and technocrats have engaged in a massive, coordinated official/media propaganda campaign of fake news aimed at persuading the bottom 95% that their prosperity and financial security are expanding when the reality is they have lost ground they will never be able to recover.

This propaganda campaign includes official (i.e. gamed/distorted) statistics such as unemployment and inflation, a reliance on the manipulated stock market to “signal widespread prosperity” and a steady drumbeat of corporate media coverage promoting the Boris and Natasha Narrative as the primary source of all our troubles. …

History is clear: declining social mobility, declining access to political power, declining financial security and the rising concentration of wealth and power in elites are what drives social discord and instability, not the meddling of “outside agitators.” …

Who benefits from us buying the Boris and Natasha Narrative?