“ ‘It has always seemed to me,’ said Doc, ‘The things we admire in men – kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling – are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest – sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest – are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first they love the produce of the second.’ ”
John Steinbeck – Cannery Row
I reckon Steinbeck hit the nail on the head here with respect to the current debate regarding our political economy.