Society and Culture

Andy Warhol, Coca-Cola, and the Occupy movement

Nick links to Andy Kessler’s excellent op-ed in today’s WSJ about the fact that the poor and rich in America don’t have remarkably different consumption habits in a wealthy society, rendering “We are the 99 percent” type of claims that much more ridiculous. Roll the tape back to 1975 and you can find none other than Andy Warhol colorfully making the same point in his book The Philosophy of Andy Warhol (From A to B & Back Again):

What’s great about this country is that America started the tradition where the richest consumers buy essentially the same things as the poorest. You can be watching TV and see Coca-Cola, and you know that the president drinks Coke, Liz Taylor drinks Coke, and just think, you can drink Coke, too. A Coke is a Coke and no amount of money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking. All the Cokes are the same and all the Cokes are good. Liz Taylor knows it, the president knows it, the bum knows it, and you know it.

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