Rich People Things

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OR Books, Oct 15, 2010 - Humor
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It's never easy being rich: endless tax avoidance, the Sisyphean search for reliable domestic staff, the never-ending burden of surly stares from the Great Sea of the Unwashed as one goes about one's rightful business. Toughest of all is simply keeping track of everything one owns. There's so much of it. And personal possessions are just the beginning.
You must keep a gimlet eye, too, on the myriad people and institutions that safeguard your gilded status: politicians, newspapers, financial instruments, branches of government. They all belong to you. But staying on top of what they're up to is a full time job. What's an overstretched gazillionaire to do?
Now, with the publication of Rich People Things, the problems of our over-classes are, well, over. In a concise, easy-to-use guide, Chris Lehmann catalogs the fortifications that shelter the opulent from the resentments of the hoi polloi. From ideological stanchions such as the Free Market and the Prosperity Gospel, through the castellation of media, including The New York Times, Wired Magazine and Reality Television, to burly gatekeepers such as David Brooks, Steve Forbes and Alan Greenspan, the well-to-do will find, in these pages, a comforting and comprehensive array of the protections that allow them to sleep sound at night.
For the rest of us, Lehmann's sparkling prose, at the same time pointed and whimsical, together with the clever, teasing illustrations of Peter Arkle, can at least provide a diverting glimpse into how the top one percent maintains an iron grip on almost half of America's financial wealth.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
The US Constitution
11
The New York Times
19
Meritocracy
27
Populism
33
David Brooks
39
The Free Market
47
The Stock Market
53
Ayn Rand
119
The Memoir
127
The Supreme Court
135
Higher Learning
143
The Troubled Asset Relief Program
153
The Lobbying World
161
Libertarianism
169
The iPad
181

Class Warfare
61
The Democratic Party
67
The Prosperity Gospel
75
Wired Magazine
81
The Creative Class
87
Malcolm Gladwell
97
Reality Television
105
Steve Forbes
187
Alan Greenspan
197
The Sporting Life
205
The Language Problem
213
Notes
229
Copyright

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