Piketty talks to a specific audience. Perhaps he hopes enough capitalists will be far-sighted and realize that open oligarchy may stimulate mass rebellion. He thinks there are good people like himself who care about democracy and understand that it must be paired with capitalism. In U.S. terminology, he is a liberal, on its left flank. The people next to them on the political spectrum hold the same beliefs but profess socialism in one or another cloudy version. These are the social democrats.They have had a rough time for a couple of generations. Capital, weakened by fundamental problems in its economy, became heavy-handed in a drive to raise the rate of exploitation. It dumped the old generation of social democrats whom it had coddled. A section of progressives are excited about Capital 21 because it might help revive social democracy. For the rest of us, Capital 21 provides solid data about the very rich. Piketty’s work is a demonstration of the adage, follow the money. Good advice. But when you need deep understanding of society, follow the labor.
Read also: Piketty’s Inequality – A “wicked” problem