Thomas Piketty's Capital in the 21st Century is about more than proving that wealth inequality built up over centuries under so-called free market capitalism, or its social democratic versions in Europe, has to be its natural state.
Since the 1970s, Republican economic policies have prevailed that diverted most of the fruits of prosperity to the wealthiest, so that the rest of U.S. have less to spend -- even though consumer spending drives 70 percent of economic activity.
Its most graphic evidence is how much of our productivity surge has not been returned to those who created such wealth since the 1970s. That was when the philosophy of "government is the problem" took hold. A coincidence? Hardly.