First time I have to totally disagree with you, Tim
Wealth has long since ceased to be the accumulation of past generations of labour. That is the whole point.
Wealth is low entropy organization. It used to be made by 'renewable' energy assisted by man's intellect, and sometimes constructed with human energy, but it hasn't been since the start of the industrial revolution.
Wealth now is artificially assisted energy storage. Either to create an artefact like a house or a computer, where stability and organisation is the main goal, or to create food where energy content is the goal.
Today, with robots displacing the lower two thirds of the labour market already, the huge mistakes being made by those who cling to Marxists interpretations of the economy, are the most real and present danger to the West. When Marx wrote his polemic, vast quantities of low skilled labour ran the productive economy and it dominated the nascent service sector.
Today Robots do what Marx's 'labour' did, and we are all capitalists now. If you own a dishwasher, vacuum cleaner or a tumble drier or washing machine, you are using capital to displace labour in your home.
And that has taken us to a point of crisis: Fundamentally the wealth we utilise and consume (depending on whether its fixed asset or consumable) can be, and is, created by a vanishingly small number of humans, and rather a lot of energy. The rest of the human beings are totally and utterly unneeded and unnecessary in that process of production.
The only humans still needed are those that design and program the robots, and handle the bureaucracy of capitalism.
BOFH is not a joke. we, the IT crowd, actually control the new world.
And do you know? I think if we exercised our power and controlled it properly, we would do a better job than politicians and economists...
And the first thing we need to do is to understand that there is, except in the case of IT professionals, no relationship between material worth to society and income.
Just because someone is utterly useless and unproductive doesn't mean they don't (or indeed do) deserve an income of any given level.
The presumed goal of advanced roboticisation of society is to eliminate work as the primary occupation of human beings, The leisured society.
This ought to be a highly desired and desirable state, but both Left and Right are raising their hands in (faux) horror at the spectre of high structural 'unemployment'.
And yet the answers are all there. To increase the personal wealth of everybody means letting capital displace labour, and generate as much wealth for as little energy input as possible, and if that means people staying at home or playing football in the park instead of rushing mindlessly round the M25 trying to sell more crap to each other than anyone needs, so be it.
Then the job of the 'new socialist' becomes working out how much of that wealth should be distributed to the idle, not very rich.
We should not denigrate 'benefits culture' - we should celebrate it. WE should extend it to everyone. A Universal pension to anyone who can prove they were born in this country (and absolutely nothing to those who were not) would ensure a guilt free life of idle pleasure for all.
Toss in loss of income to those who have more than two children, and you limit populations levels naturally.
Run the whole lot off about 50 nuclear power plants, and you have a golden age within reach, and we could then start to concentrate not on keeping peoples physical wants satisfied, but exploring the reason why even with so much stuff, people are still amazingly miserable.