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Harvard and Duke study

11 Mar

Harvard and Duke study shows that the top 20 percent own 84 percent of the wealth. Meaning that the bottom 80 percent of the pop. is chasing 16 percent of the wealth.

 

http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5iFVvbTfKUYgVxsNFsRdbWz_0LRSA?docId=CNG.6f30bc546f63595bb7c3371011b8e415.451

“On average the top 20 percent of earners were seen as holding just 32 percent of wealth, less than the 84 percent in reality.”

“Perspectives on Psychological Science.”

Business school professors Michael Norton and Dan Ariely .

 

Also, ck out 1. Steele and Barlett, journalists
2. Berkeley, economics dept., Saez
3. Common Cause
4. progressive democrats of america

and other research and journalism groups

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NY Times on Wall St bailout

22 Jan

Wall Street Bailout Plan, Explained

Published: September 20, 2008
<nyt_text>

WASHINGTON — News reports about the upheaval in the world of finance have been full of esoteric terms like “mortgage-backed securities” and “credit-default swaps,” but the crisis has resonated for people who know little about Wall Street and who did not think they would ever have to know. Here are several questions and answers of concern to Main Street Americans:

Q. The bailout program being negotiated by the Bush administration and Congressional leaders calls for the government to spend up to $700 billion to buy distressed mortgages. How did the politicians come up with that number, and could it go higher?

A. The recovery package cannot go higher than $700 billion without additional legislation. As for that figure, it lies between the optimistic estimate of $500 billion and the pessimistic guess of $1 trillion about the cost of fixing the financial mess. But the $700 billion is in addition to an $85 billion agreement on a bailout of the insurance giant American International Group, plus $29 billion in support that the government pledged in the marriage of Bear Stearns and JPMorgan Chase. On top of all that, the Congressional Budget Office says the federal bailout of the mortgage finance companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac could cost $25 billion.

Q. Who, really, is going to come up with the $700 billion?

A. American taxpayers will come up with the money, although if you are bullish on America in the long run, there is reason to hope that the tab will be less than $700 billion. After the Treasury buys up those troubled mortgages, it will try to resell them to investors. The Treasury’s involvement in the crisis and the speed with which Congress is responding could generate long-range optimism and raise the value of those mortgages, although it is impossible to say by how much.

So it would not be correct to think of the federal government as simply writing a check for $700 billion. It is just committing itself to spend that much, if necessary. But the bottom line is, yes, this bailout could cost American taxpayers a lot of money.

Q. So is it fair to say that Americans who are neither rich nor reckless are being asked to rescue people who are? What is in this package for responsible homeowners of modest means who might be forced out of their homes, perhaps for reasons beyond their control?

A. Yes, you could argue that people who cannot tell soybean futures from puts, calls and options are being asked to clean up the costly mess left by Wall Street. To make the bailout palatable to the public, it is being described as far better than inaction, which administration officials and members of Congress say could imperil the retirement savings and other investments of Americans who are anything but rich.

But it is a good bet that the negotiations between the administration and Capitol Hill will include ideas about ways to help middle-class homeowners avoid foreclosure and perhaps some limits on pay for executives. And it should be noted that neither party is solely responsible for whatever neglect led the country to the brink of disaster.

Q. How is it that the administration and Congress, which have not tried to find huge amounts of money to, say, improve the nation’s health insurance system or repair bridges and tunnels, can now be ready to come up with $700 billion to rescue the financial system? And is it realistic to think that the parties can reach agreement and get legislation passed in a hurry?

A. The first question will surely come up again, involving as it does not just issues of spending policy but also more profound questions about national aspirations. As for rescuing the financial system, elected officials in both parties became convinced that, while a couple of venerable investment banks could fade into oblivion or be absorbed by mergers, the entire financial system could not be allowed to collapse.

And, yes, the parties are likely to reach an accord. Many members of Congress are eager to leave Washington to go home and campaign for the November elections, and no one wants to face the voters without having done something to protect modest savings portfolios as well as giant investors.

<nyt_author_id>

Stephen Labaton and David M. Herszenhorn contributed reporting.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/21/business/21qanda.html?_r=0

Obama inauguration promises hope for progressive lib politics

22 Jan

Published on Monday, January 21, 2013 by Common Dreams

The Extremist Cult of Capitalism   by Paul Buchheit

 

A ‘cult,’ according to Merriam-Webster, can be defined as “Great devotion to a person, idea, object, movement, or work..(and)..a usually small group of people characterized by such devotion.”

  Capitalism has been defined by adherents and detractors: Milton Friedman said, “The problem of social organization is how to set up an arrangement under which greed will do the least harm; capitalism is that kind of a system.”

John Maynard Keynes said, “Capitalism is the astounding belief that the most wickedest of men will do the most wickedest of things for the greatest good of everyone.”  

Perhaps it’s best to turn to someone who actually practiced the art: “Capitalism is the legitimate racket of the ruling class.” Al Capone said that.  

Capitalism is a cult. It is devoted to the ideals of privatization over the common good, profit over social needs, and control by a small group of people who defy the public’s will. The tenets of the cult lead to extremes rather than to compromise. Examples are not hard to find.  

1. Extremes of Income   By sitting on their growing investments, the richest five Americans made almost $7 billion each in one year. That’s $3,500,000.00 per hour. The minimum wage for tipped workers is $2.13 per hour.  Our unregulated capitalist financial system allows a few well-positioned individuals to divert billions of dollars from the needs of society. If the 400 richest Americans lumped together their investment profits from last year, the total would pay in-state tuition and fees for EVERY college student in the United States.  

2. Extremes of Wealth   The combined net worth of the world’s 250 richest individuals is more than the total annual living expenses of almost half the world – three billion people.   Within our own borders the disparity is no less shocking. For every one dollar of assets owned by a single black or Hispanic woman, a member of the Forbes 400 has over forty million dollars. That’s equivalent to a can of soup versus a mansion, a yacht, and a private jet. Most of the Forbes 400 wealth has accrued from nonproductive capital gains. It’s little wonder that with the exception of Russia, Ukraine, and Lebanon, the U.S. has the highest degree of wealth inequality in the world.  

3. Extremes of Debt   Up until the 1970s U.S. households had virtually no debt. Now the total is $13 trillion, which averages *out to $100,000 per American family.   Debt appears to be the only recourse for 21- to 35-year-olds, who have lost, on average, 68% of their median net worth since 1984, leaving each of them about $4,000.  

4. Extremes of Health Care   A butler in black vest and tie passed the atrium waterfall and entered the $2,400 suite, where the linens were provided by the high-end bedding designer Frette of Italy and the bathroom glimmered with polished marble. Inside a senior financial executive awaited his ‘concierge’ doctor for private treatment. He was waiting in the penthouse suite of the New York Presbyterian Hospital.   On the streets outside were some of the 26,000 Americans who will die this year because they are without health care. In 2010, 50 million Americans had no health insurance coverage.  

5. Extremes of Justice   William James Rummel stole $80 with a credit card, then passed a bad check for $24, then refused to return $120 for a repair job gone bad. He got life in prison. Christopher Williams is facing over 80 years in prison for selling medical marijuana in Montana, a state which allows medical marijuana. Patricia Spottedcrow got 12 years for a $31 marijuana sale, and has seen her children only twice in the past two years. Numerous elderly Americans are in prison for life for non-violent marijuana offenses.   Banking giant *HSBC, whose mission statement urges employees “to act with courageous integrity” in all they do, was described by a U.S. Senate report as having “exposed the U.S. financial system to ‘a wide array of money laundering, drug trafficking, and terrorist financing'” in their dealings with Mexico’s Sinaloa cartel, which is considered the deadliest drug gang in the world.   HSBC received a fine equivalent to four weeks’ profits. The bank’s CEO said, “we are profoundly sorry.”  

In the words of Bertrand Russell, “Advocates of capitalism are very apt to appeal to the sacred principles of liberty, which are embodied in one maxim: The fortunate must not be restrained in the exercise of tyranny over the unfortunate.”   Accurate to the extreme.

 

 

 

Paul Buchheit is a college teacher, an active member of US Uncut Chicago, founder and developer of social justice and educational websites (UsAgainstGreed.org, PayUpNow.org, RappingHistory.org), and the editor and main author of “American Wars: Illusions and Realities” (Clarity Press).

“The United States of Television”

5 Jan

“The United States of Television”
a brief essay

“Television is the finest instrument of the devil,” wrote author Norman Mailer. Through it, the mass media has invaded the living rooms of virtually every home in America. It has indoctrinated everyone in the power of consumption; shown us the glamorous life of actors; the two parties and their agenda; the importance of household products to our lives; it has reminded us of the joy of giving at Christmas; the noble pathos of war; and of course, the news from around the world, slanted to showing our own country in a positive light in contrast to the others.

Television has a strange, familiar aspect. In the middle of the night, like the Almighty, it is there when you need it. The sad thing is, we’ve become so conditioned to its presence that we can’t imagine it not being there. Literally, it is our earthly reward for putting up with America’s crime problem; its high cost of living; traffic; pollution; and other ills. The pervasive phenomenon that is television is so potent that it is almost unpatriotic to criticize it. The tube has become, for better or worse, a force in everyone’s lives, replacing the town hall, the parson, and the schoolmarm. It gives us our values, influences our decisions, and has almost achieved personhood. It is the mode whereby commercial forces aim to influence us in our private decisions.

The most salient fact about TV is that it seems to present us with real, unmediated life, when of course, the truth is the opposite. Almost every moment of televised airtime has been carefully stage-managed for maximum result by faceless executives, advertisers, public relations people, political party ops, and other clever bitches and sons of bitches. So powerful is the medium that people have, since its inception, emulated what they see on it. They dress the way they see TV people dress, act the way they act, speak the way they speak. (It can be no coincidence that television emerged, historically, about the same time that Hitler and the Atomic bomb did. It is a symbol of the negation of real meaning. It is a symbol of its own emptiness.)

TV is a force for good, according to some, but to others it is a force of evil. The point is moot. The most salient fact is that TV is not neutral. It propagandizes us, and in the final analysis we allow it to, for the only purpose of television is to get you to watch more television.

Dec 8, 2012

Three essays: On Washington. On the decline of Marxism. On America.

5 Jan

On Wa(r)shington DC

A purely secular culture vs. a Christian one? The problem with Christendom is that it is not national or race-based, but international in scope. The patriots of nations must put the interests of their own nation-states first. Marxism, like Christianity, was primarily a transnational idea. But American nationalism, like that of Germany, was markedly self-interested. Just as a person is capable of self-interestedness, so must be the nation-state, if it is to survive in this world. The Founding Fathers and most of the leaders we’ve had, have put country first. They were both nationalists and patriots, but once the USA became a victor, following the World Wars, we succumbed to the urge to reorder the world. We followed and emulated the class-based British Empire, with mixed results. The American colossus has since then become a dinosaur, inflicting upon us such catastrophes as Vietnam and the Iraq War. Even the formerly pacific-seeming Obama has succumbed to the Beltway. He remains pompous and cautious about expressing his true intentions, while largely failing in his national agenda of improving the lives of people here in the States, long after the New Deal and the Great Society programs were criticized and attacked by the right-wing crowd.

The State, the Pentagon, and the mass media, not to mention Wall Street, have all been shown to be highly fallible. More and more of us are beginning to grow critical of the Establishment. The USA is becoming a ‘society of the spectacle,’ a parody of itself, an emulator of the British Empire. The Georgetown and Ivy Leaguers think that they’ve replaced the blue bloods of the United Kingdom, and are in a position to protect the institutions of capitalism by sending the less-fortunate, less well-educated working classes to fight and die for them in foreign fields. The wisdom of the Iraq war is still being questioned; the Afghan war, less so. Still, it’s clear that our policies in the Middle East have largely failed. The ‘Arab Spring,’ has turned bloody. A war in Syria has consumed 40,000 lives or more. Al Qaeda and the Taliban, far from being defeated, have reconstituted themselves. And what is our earthly reward?
TV, which represents to us a seemingly constricted, if not wholly censored view of the recent wars. The comedy shows and other junk forms of entertainment constitute a decadent parody of American pretensions.
America wants to have its proverbial cake and eat it, too. And the mass media offer up a daily dose of sugary substance for us to ingest.

During the halcyon fifties, the Frankfurt School declared that America was becoming an ‘authoritarian society, but in truth, we’ve become a ‘meritocracy,’ a society in which the Ivy Leaguers and near-Ivy Leaguers rule over the rest of us. America wants first class brains running the country. Have we been well served? And what do the Prepsters of the Northeast corridor really intend for us?

——–

“Those who are ignorant of history are condemned to repeat it.” G. Santayana

From the hour of the caveman, civilization has somehow emerged, triumphant, but man himself hasn’t changed much. Democratic systems protect us with a system of laws that are supposed to protect our inalienable rights.
The Marxist system failed even to acknowledge that people have rights! Hence Marxism needed to be recalibrated or dismissed.
America in response to the challenge of the Soviet Union, developed a form of liberal social engineering, a progressive alternative to the Marxist ideas which we staunchly opposed.
The social and economic disparities of capitalistic society were perceived as being easily remedied by mass education. But can education really socially engineer for us a ‘better tomorrow?’ It stands in contrast to the rough individualism preached by Emerson during the 19th Century. Individualism today is under intellectual attack in the academy. It’s taught to the business class, but it is not embraced in all quarters. It became transformed into Carnegie’s “Gospel of Wealth,” a strange subversion of Christianity, a muscular Christianity, as Teddy Roosevelt called it – appropriate to the age of Titans and so-called “Robber Barons.” Carnegie practiced what he preached, endowing colleges, universities, libraries and museums liberally, in order to bestow upon the common man the benefits of superior culture.
Hence the capitalists began to realize that they had to protect their culture from Marxist critiques of ‘hegemony.’ We must ask, isn’t life in the USA better because of the brains of such giants as Ford, Edison, Carnegie and other great men of industry? They were called ‘robber barons,’ by the newspaper men of their day.

Taking a radical view, the Marxists wanted to destroy capitalism altogether, believing that the future is better served by a dictatorship ruling over the Proletariat (the working classes). Few today agree with Marx’s ideas. We prefer to have our rights protected by a liberal democratic state, with a mixed capitalist economy. That’s what we are told we live under; although the fact that twenty percent or more of the US Federal budget goes directly to the waging of warfare in foreign post-colonial nations must give us pauce. Hence, we must conclude that it is the common folk, the middle-classes, the working-classes, and the poor that President Obama must forge together into a new social democratic, liberal alliance. The alternative provided to us by the Republicans, namely a Romney-Ryan ultra-right-wing agenda of austerity combined with tax cuts for the wealthy, failed to win over the majority of the voting public in 2008. So the rich now must pay higher taxes. But what about the rest of us?

Opposing Marxism: there have always been the advocates of “Culture and civilization,” meaning largely, but not exclusively white culture and civilization. Christianity, although Judaic in origin, spread throughout the world, thanks to the Roman Empire. Hence it thereafter became the official belief-system and expression of the white peoples.
Art, science, culture, civilization, and the Christian religion have produced the modern world in its better aspect. The northern hemisphere nations, namely the US, Canada, Europe and Britain, and the Soviet nations share a common civilization. Culture is only aspect of that glorious achievement of Western man. Science was another aspect. And Marxism was sold to the Russian peoples as a form of ‘scientific socialism,’ one which sadly failed. We must address the causes of this catastrophe.
Marxism was the ‘light that failed,’ (Koestler) because it arrogated to itself absolute power and certitude to a tiny ruling class. The Marxist nations had their power struggles and upheavals: the Mensheviks fought the Bolsheviks, the Trotskyites fought the Stalinists. Literally they were at each others‘ throats. Nevertheless, the Marxists did succeed in ultimately creating a ‘planned economy,’ which functioned for a few decades, at the price of freedom.
Unable to spread the Marxist gospel of ‘scientific socialism,’ by force in Western Europe during the late, unlamented “Cold War,” the Communists exported it to the undeveloped or Third World, where it still continues to breed anti-American critics, like Chavez in Venezuela. Marxism was rejected by the northern nations, ultimately, but it was embraced by many of the anti-colonialist intelligentsia in the so-called “Third World.” This is what constitutes Marxism today, or Marx mingled with a strong dose of anti-colonialistic fervor.
Marshal Tito of Yugoslavia, and later Chairman Mao, wanted to become the leaders of a second wave of Marxist insurrection throughout the world. The Red Chinese gov’t adopted the ideas of the German, Marx, and combined them with their own native peasant philosophy. Today, the Red Chinese people have largely sloughed off Marxism, although it is still the official ideology of the State. Over one billion people presently live under the dictatorship of the Party, long, long after the Russian Communist party marched off to lick its wounds following the Soviet collapse on Dec 25, 1991. The question is, Will Marxism take a new form and lead those of the ‘wretched of the Earth,’ to allude to Frantz Fanon?
The people of America largely reject Marxism, preferring our soft and easy Coca-Cola capitalism. No brains required for belonging. In academe, Marxism has become largely passé, but it still has its vociferous advocates in certain trendy corners. Neoliberalism, environmentalism, and feminism have largely superceded fashionable Marxism, but there’s always a certain amount of social discontent, within and without the USA’s borders, which may, like the can of Coke, explode under pressure right under our noses.
Marx, I would argue, is still relevant as a system of criticism of the vagaries of militaristic American state capitalism.

The truth is that the rich, the corporations, and the connected run America, rather than the common folk, who are becoming increasingly vocal about their alienation from the system.

—-
In America:

In America, there exists the city, the town, the village, the farm and the woods. The people of one part of the country don’t necessarily like or understand those of the next tier of society. Thus we have developed the phony, ‘red-blue’ state division. The people of small upstate towns fear and loathe the people of the great cauldrons of social experimentation that we call big cities. They see in them the future of the multicultural US already being born, and view it with great suspicion.
Hence there is a lot of fear and loathing in these states. The ‘disunited states of America,’ brought to you by
Wa(r)shington. Doubtlessly they will resort to the usual rhetoric of the struggle for the ‘hearts and minds of the masses,’ but in the end, the Karl Roves and the Dick Morrisses, the talking ‘pundits,’ are all cut from the same cloth. They all end up at the same dreary cocktail parties in Georgetown, exchanging engaging witticisms doubtlessly gleaned from Mark Twain or some other true wit.

Hostess; Walmart strike; can progressive-reform politics win?

21 Nov

C(r)apitalism. The struggle of labor vs. capital. Is there a left alternative to Marxism?

We need a statement.

Can we create a progressive reform version of liberal democracy to replace the internally declining American system?

Our complaint:

1. War is brought to you every five to ten years brought to you by the Pentagon and the lovers of high-tech.

2. The stifling of the working-class (the proletariat) and the suffering of the invisible poor.

3. Jobs which are shipped overseas by the corporations and the political class, working hand in hand. The state is supposed to regulate business and protect us from powerful private interests. With their wealth and connections, of course, the powerful can ‘lobby’ politicians. But who speaks for the rest of us?

4.Corrupt Big Business and Wall St devise strategies to control the media, which helps stifle dissent.

5. The division of society into classes, while pols proclaim how ‘United,’ these disunited states are.

6. The struggle of millions of young people to pay for college education

7. Racism alive and well

8. The decline in living standards, the decline of the dollar, the rising cost of living, and the FEAR that the entire society seems to live under. Capitalism tends toward an hegemony. Monopolies develop, in defiance of the law. All of these create a condition of societal blight — brought to you by the old boys’ club!

9. Environmental disasters, such as BP’s polluting of the Gulf Of Mexico, which are becoming more and more common.

10. The denial in our discourse that there exists a class system, which causes dissension, alarm, and phoney religiosity.

WHAT A SHITTY STATE AMERICA IS IN TODAY, thanks to the 2 parties!
by the author….

——-
Below are some e-clippings
Join Us for November’s Actions!

Find an Action | Organize an Action

The election is over, now our real work begins. PDA and our partners will address the lame duck session and sequester debates, working to educate Congress in our home districts and on Capitol Hill. Most actions will be on Wednesday, November 21st.

Organize an office meeting or do a letter drop. If you can’t make it to your Congress member’s or Senators’ offices, use this action alert to contact the President, and your elected officials. Call the Capitol switchboard at (202)-224-3121. Tell all your friends to join us in these actions. Take action, then give thanks for all we’ve accomplished and share your inspiration with your friends and family at your holiday gathering.

Educate Congress | Find an Action | Organize One

We will educate our legislators about the need to:

1. Enact The Robin Hood Tax–also known as the financial speculation tax (FST).

2. Get us Out of Afghanistan and cut spending on weapons and war by 25%.

3. Provide Medicare for All, and Jobs for All.

4. To oppose any legislation or policy which would cut Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid benefits, COLAs, eligibility, etc.–which could endanger those programs.

Join activists nationwide telling our legislators to support Prosperity not Austerity. To make investments in people–education, job training, and job creation. We have to educate our elected officials on basic budget math. Tell them: If we stop wasting $trillions on death and destruction, and raise revenues through fair taxation, we can afford to invest in and care for all our people.

See you on the streets and in the suites!

Tim Carpenter
PDA National Director

—-
Join us!

Come to our Call – Healthcare For All!

What Day: Tuesday, November 20, 2012
What Time: 9:00 PM ET 8:00 PM CT 7:00 PM MT 6:00 PM PT
Call #: (605) 475-4800 Access Code: 791628#

RSVP for the call here.

——————————————————————————–

Moderator: Kurt Bateman, PDA HCHR IOT Co-coordinator

AGENDA:

•Welcome and Introductions–Kurt Bateman, Dr. Bill Honigman

•National Reports: Kurt on DC meeting attended by PDA Re: Saving Medicare and Social Security / Labor Issues. Kurt

•PDA National Medicare For All Slate…. how’d we do? IL 13th CD in particular. Kurt

•One Payer States news. Dr Bill and Kurt

•State Reports: Dr Bill on Calif Organizing model, others.

•Open Discussion–lessons from the elections, invite discussion from other areas. State innovation initiatives under ACA.

——————————————————————————–

RSVP for the call here.

Talk with you Tuesday!

In solidarity,

Dr. Bill Honigman
Kurt Bateman

———-

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Walmart Workers Walk Off Job in First Wave of 1000 Protests
2.How Germany Is Getting to 100 Percent Renewable Energy
3.Ten Numbers the Rich Would Like Fudged
4.Already? Obama Tells Supporters to Expect ‘Bitter Pills’
5.Election Over, Time For Progressive Dems to Face the Truth

NJ GOP’s Failed Attempt to Block Minimum Wage Bill

‘People Over Profits!’: Climate Justice Groups Slam ‘Wholly Irresponsible’ Tar Sands Plan

More News…
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Published on Monday, November 19, 2012 by Common Dreams

Ten Numbers the Rich Would Like Fudged

The numbers reveal the deadening effects of inequality in our country, and confirm that tax avoidance, rather than a lack of middle-class initiative, is the cause.

by Paul Buchheit

1. Only THREE PERCENT of the very rich are entrepreneurs.

According to both Marketwatch and economist Edward Wolff, over 90 percent of the assets owned by millionaires are held in a combination of low-risk investments (bonds and cash), personal business accounts, the stock market, and real estate. Only 3.6 percent of taxpayers in the top .1% were classified as entrepreneurs based on 2004 tax returns. A 2009 Kauffman Foundation study found that the great majority of entrepreneurs come from middle-class backgrounds, with less than 1 percent of all entrepreneurs coming from very rich or very poor backgrounds.photo: withayou via flickr

2. Only FOUR OUT OF 150 countries have more wealth inequality than us.

In a world listing compiled by a reputable research team (which nevertheless prompted double-checking), the U.S. has greater wealth inequality than every measured country in the world except for Namibia, Zimbabwe, Denmark, and Switzerland.

3. An amount equal to ONE-HALF the GDP is held untaxed overseas by rich Americans.

The Tax Justice Network estimated that between $21 and $32 trillion is hidden offshore, untaxed. With Americans making up 40% of the world’s Ultra High Net Worth Individuals, that’s $8 to $12 trillion in U.S. money stashed in far-off hiding places.

Based on a historical stock market return of 6%, up to $750 billion of income is lost to the U.S. every year, resulting in a tax loss of about $260 billion.

4. Corporations stopped paying HALF OF THEIR TAXES after the recession.

After paying an average of 22.5% from 1987 to 2008, corporations have paid an annual rate of 10% since. This represents a sudden $250 billion annual loss in taxes.

U.S. corporations have shown a pattern of tax reluctance for more than 50 years, despite building their businesses with American research and infrastructure. They’ve passed the responsibility on to their workers. For every dollar of workers’ payroll tax paid in the 1950s, corporations paid three dollars. Now it’s 22 cents.

5. Just TEN Americans made a total of FIFTY BILLION DOLLARS in one year.

That’s enough to pay the salaries of over a million nurses or teachers or emergency responders.

That’s enough, according to 2008 estimates by the Food and Agriculture Organization and the UN’s World Food Program, to feed the 870 million people in the world who are lacking sufficient food.

For the free-market advocates who say “they’ve earned it”: Point #1 above makes it clear how the wealthy make their money.

6. Tax deductions for the rich could pay off 100 PERCENT of the deficit.

Another stat that required a double-check. Based on research by the Tax Policy Center, tax deferrals and deductions and other forms of tax expenditures (tax subsidies from special deductions, exemptions, exclusions, credits, capital gains, and loopholes), which largely benefit the rich, are worth about 7.4% of the GDP, or about $1.1 trillion.

Other sources have estimated that about two-thirds of the annual $850 billion in tax expenditures goes to the top quintile of taxpayers.

7. The average single black or Hispanic woman has about $100 IN NET WORTH.

The Insight Center for Community Economic Development reported that median wealth for black and Hispanic women is a little over $100. That’s much less than one percent of the median wealth for single white women ($41,500).

Other studies confirm the racially-charged economic inequality in our country. For every dollar of NON-HOME wealth owned by white families, people of color have only one cent.

8. Elderly and disabled food stamp recipients get $4.30 A DAY FOR FOOD.

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) has dropped significantly over the past 15 years, serving only about a quarter of the families in poverty, and paying less than $400 per month for a family of three for housing and other necessities. Ninety percent of the available benefits go to the elderly, the disabled, or working households.

Food stamp recipients get $4.30 a day.

9. Young adults have lost TWO-THIRDS OF THEIR NET WORTH since 1984.

21- to 35-year-olds: Your median net worth has dropped 68% since 1984. It’s now less than $4,000.

That $4,000 has to pay for student loans that average $27,200. Or, if you’re still in school, for $12,700 in credit card debt.

With an unemployment rate for 16- to 24-year-olds of almost 50%, two out of every five recent college graduates are living with their parents. But your favorite company may be hiring. Apple, which makes a profit of $420,000 per employee, can pay you about $12 per hour.

10. The American public paid about FOUR TRILLION DOLLARS to bail out the banks.

That’s about the same amount of money made by America’s richest 10% in one year. But we all paid for the bailout. And because of it, we lost the opportunity for jobs, mortgage relief, and educational funding.

Bonus for the super-rich: A QUADRILLION DOLLARS in securities trading nets ZERO sales tax revenue for the U.S.

The world derivatives market is estimated to be worth over a quadrillion dollars (a thousand trillion). At least $200 trillion of that is in the United States. In 2011 the Chicago Mercantile Exchange reported a trading volume of over $1 quadrillion on 3.4 billion annual contracts.

A quadrillion dollars. A sales tax of ONE-TENTH OF A PENNY on a quadrillion dollars could pay off the deficit. But the total sales tax was ZERO.

It’s not surprising that the very rich would like to fudge the numbers, as they have the nation.

Paul Buchheit is a college teacher, an active member of US Uncut Chicago, founder and developer of social justice and educational websites (UsAgainstGreed.org, PayUpNow.org, RappingHistory.org), and the editor and main author of “American Wars: Illusions and Realities” (Clarity Press).
. ..

borrowed from:
Common Dreams
Breaking News & Views for the Progressive Community.
Independent, non-profit newscenter since 1997.

To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good.

http://www.commondreams.org
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This Black Friday, tell Walmart: Workers deserve respect

Valarie Long, SEIU

Last month, employees at 28 different Walmarts all walked out of work simultaneously to stand up for living wages. But this Friday — Black Friday — it’s gonna get even bigger.

Flashmobs, Twitter storms, and justice-themed caroling are just a small portion of what will sweep Walmarts nationwide on the biggest shopping day of the year.

Stand with Walmart strikers, and find out now how you can take part in this national outpouring for good jobs. Click here.

In October, for the first time in Walmart’s 50-year history, more than 70 workers at multiple Los Angeles-area Walmarts walked off the job to demand a living wage, affordable healthcare, and respect from their employer. The strikes caused a ripple effect, and soon there were strikes in 12 other cities around the United States. But Walmart refused to listen, even retaliating against their workers.

Now, thousands of Walmart employees from across the country are coming together on Black Friday in an unprecedented action. The action will protest Walmart’s continued retaliation against its employees, and advocate for improved working conditions and fair schedules. But most of all, these actions are about respect.

This Friday, gather with friends, family, and co-workers to stand with Walmart strikers, and stand up for better jobs and a better future.

In Solidarity,

Valarie Long,

SEIU Executive Vice President

IN solidarity with:
http://occupywallst.org/

Is Critical Marxism relevant?

5 Nov

Let us note that Marxism failed as a political philosophy, yet its specter lives on as a force of criticism of society. I’ve decided that Marx was wrong about certain things, but I’d have to do more research to find out about the ‘reform capitalism,’ movement. Marx arrogantly asserted, in the “manifesto,’ that all other forms of socialism would be ‘toast,’ in comparison with the Marxist version.

So.. if you still want to read my old essays, here goes:

===
Marxism is principally an analysis of society. We cannot change society without first having some form of understanding of society. Hence, Marxism is a branch of sociology, as well as of history and economics.

The mass media exist to provide the populace, especially the working-class, with ‘false consciousness.’ It’s quite ingenious. The proletariat (working-class and the poor) is continually subjected to the false images of the capitalist marketplace. Purportedly this affects them, both as workers and consumers, to lust for the material objects shown on their shiny TV sets. The products used by the wealthy are shown on TV and in the movies, in the faces of the poor, who keep working harder and harder, unable to afford to buy them. If the poor steal, they wind up in prison, but if they buy these products, they avoid paying for the things they really need: food, housing, and clothing. That is ‘false consciousness’ in a nutshell. The mass media exist to keep the workers deluded; yet every day, they feel their oppression as all-too-real. This is why America’s permissive society tolerates drugs, alcohol, and vice in general. The working-class has to have an outlet. When that fails, the Establishment gives them something even worse: War.

Critical Marxism is still relevant because it reveals to us that there is a structure to society:

At the top of the heap are the owners of the means of production are: the rich, the industrialists.

The bankers and the politicians are their employees.

The police are their only real protection from a mass uprising of the working-class.

The military and the jails gobble up a significant portion of the working-class, so that the middle class can experience a little less competition from below.

Religion was developed as an idea-system, that would keep the workers from attaining a truer understanding of society. They would get their reward in some nether world.

The media spread false consciousness. The products of the capitalist marketplace are dangled before the salivating mouths of the have-nots, and this keeps them on the treadmill of hard work.

The educational system exists to keep the class-system in place. University for the well-off; vocational school for the poor.

The middle-class has emerged in postwar America, but it is being taxed heavily in order to pay for the sins of the rich and the poor alike.

Capitalism leads mankind to war after war; and who dies in these largely pointless conflicts? Mainly the children of the working-class! And who brings them these wars? The ruling class!

Marx saw societal stability differently from Adam Smith. He believed that money and industry hold the status quo in place. As long as the upper class keeps the lower class happy enough in their oppressed state, the rich will become richer and the lower class will accept their inferior position in life.

Analyze and protest capitalism!
—————————————————–

*Sidenote: We need a “Social democratic” alternative to Orthodox Marxism. Marxism was revised by Bernstein and others. Europe developed socialism, a better alternative to hardline Marxist-Leninism, which concentrated all power in a few hands.

America has followed a Liberal Progressive model in terms of FDR’s reforms during the “New deal,” which is precisely what Romney-Ryan were attacking.
Nov 9, 2012

Haldane on “Reformation of finance.”

4 Nov

Bank of England Executive: Occupy Movement Was ‘Right’

Arguments of anti-banking movement ‘loud and persuasive’

– Common Dreams staff
Published on Tuesday, October 30, 2012 by Common Dreams

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2012/10/30-2
http://occupywallst.org/

A senior executive at the Bank of England on Monday said the Occupy London Stock Exchange was “loud and persuasive” and helped prompt a “reformation of finance.”

Bank of England executive Andrew Haldane said Monday that Occupy London Stock Exchange protestors helped prompt a “reformation of finance. (Photo courtesy The Independent.) Andrew Haldane, executive director of financial stability for the bank, said the protestors attracted public support because “they are right,” The Independent reports.

Occupy London Stock Exchange spokesman Ronan McNern said Haldane’s comments were “definitely welcome,” but he added, “They could have done something about this a lot faster.”

While some argue that the group’s efforts have been “long on problems, short on solutions,” and others that the financial system remains “essentially unaltered … and reform has failed,” Haldane said, “I wish to argue both are wrong.”

He continued:

Occupy’s voice has been both loud and persuasive and that policymakers have listened and are acting in ways which will close those fault-lines. In fact, I want to argue that we are in the early stages of a reformation of finance, a reformation which Occupy has helped stir … You have put the arguments. You have helped win the debate. And policymakers, like me, will need your continuing support in delivering that radical change.

Barclays and Lloyds seek to change their “sales-oriented culture” and return to their Quaker roots, the BBC reports Haldane said. “There is the quiet, but unmistakable, sound of a leaf being turned. If I am right and a new leaf is being turned, then Occupy will have played a key role in this fledgling financial reformation. You have put the arguments. You have helped win the debate. And policymakers, like me, will need your continuing support in delivering that radical change.”

———-

essays on the sorry state of things in the USA.

23 Oct

essay #1
America: an analysis of a sick society——–

Part One

It is American bourgeois society that is responsible for war, which is caused due to the conflicts inherent within the capitalist system.

The middle class seeks to segregate itself in suburban communities from the lower classes, and is aware that it isn‘t ‘good enough‘ to become the upper class; the lower classes are trapped in their miserable, overworked lives and bear long-held resentments towards the classes above them; the upper classes are threatened by taxes and media scrutiny of ‘white collar crime‘.

*Twenty percent of the budget goes to the Department of Defense, which needs a war every few years in order to justify the expense to maintain a gigantic standing army. The money spent on the military is not returned to civilian society and is largely used to create new weapon-systems that will only be discarded and replaced continuously – or used up in ‘wars of convenience‘. Who pays? The common man and woman pays.

The rich avoid both military service and taxation, in order to prop up their style of living and bribe the congressmen who purport to represent everyone, but whose legislation is usually directed against the working classes. The only way for the working class to escape this vicious cycle is to join the very military half their taxes are paying for.

It is the very structure of society that leads to conflict after conflict with the ‘external enemy‘, in order to avoid reforming itself to deal with the structural inequities produced by Kapitalism. Television and radio exist to produce 24 hour propaganda and whip up hysteria over the supposed enemy. The continual barrage from the mass media represents a kind of brainwashing or thought-control.

The whole US system is held together with televised pablum and misinformation, corrupt government, and the police-state euphemistically called the ‘criminal justice system‘. American jails are bursting at the seams with prisoners because their low-income work does not give them opportunities to improve themselves or pay for the consumer goods they’re led to believe they need to buy. Society is being flooded with minorities who are then blamed by politicians for the problems of society; in truth, they are allowed in by a change in immigration law (1965 Immigration Act); this will help drive down wages and prevent the emergence of a unified proletariat demanding higher wages and union representation.

America is utterly riven with internal social conflicts; hence the need for an ‘external enemy’ and the continual drumbeats of war on “communism“, “terrorism“,“drugs,“ you name it — which serves as the glue that keeps society from reforming itself.

The opiate of the masses, television, exists mainly to keep people brainwashed and cow-content and afraid of the ‘criminals’ they are constantly showing on detective shows to scare the middle classes into accepting right-wing policies of ‘law and order‘; this helps maintain the status quo, keeps the police busy, and prevents the working-class from protesting. The most grotesque crimes occur thanks to society‘s sickness. The complete mockery of democratic ideals that is the existing social order cannot be criticized openly because of society‘s hatred of dissent.

Part Two

The attacks on “Nine-Eleven” proved that government gives priority to military over civilian needs. One suspects that civilian society exists largely to support the military and the State, and not the other way around. The government was unable or unwilling to protect the Pentagon and the World Trade Center despite a military budget of $665 Billion dollars.

*Twenty percent of the US budget goes to the Department of Defense. To add insult to injury, private contractors profit from no-bid contracts forged behind closed doors between senators and their old-boy network friends; and line the pockets of multimillionaire or billionaire politicians who seem very eager to send your son or daughter into harm’s way while their kids get private education and Ivy League treatment. Thus, the average US citizen must play at being the “Policeman of the World”.

Bridges collapse; the Southern border grows increasingly porous; civilian train infrastructure lags decades behind Europe’s; crime flourishes; people die from a lack of affordable health insurance — and why? Because fat, corrupt senators of both parties keep voting for military spending priorities over civilian ones.

In the absence of a threat from “communism“, a new threat called ‘terrorism’ has been manufactured, thanks to the government’s prior sponsorship of Bin Laden (Afghan resistance, 1980‘s “Mujhahadeen“). Although the government claims that the astronomical spending on military technology saves lives during wartime, the Dept. of Defense skimped on spending on helmets in 2003!

The American secondary education system compares poorly to that of many Asian and European nations and produces armies of semi-educated young people. The cost of tuition at colleges and universities continues to skyrocket out of control; Washington does little or nothing to help students pay for it because they want young people to serve in the military. This will help prevent them from thinking independently at a young age, thus leaving real education only for the well-off.

The incredible amount of money being spent on the military’s exigencies and the decline of our now crime-ridden, corrupt society are directly related. Why is US military spending five to six times that of Russia’s in the absence of a Cold War threat? That represents money that will never go into textbooks, affordable housing or other useful services. The poor continue to suffer from an absence of social services, medical insurance, and a safety net; they are being deprived of their human rights.

American workers, stripped of their union rights in order to support the profits of the business class, can barely make ends meet or see any real gains or derive any pleasure from their often low-wage, monotonous work; they are driven into debt in order to pay for consumer goods, and are forced into competition with foreigners who are willing to work for less. The stresses of modern life cause people to age prematurely and die from lack of healthy living in order to achieve the horror of waste that is the “American way of life.”

Television continues to poison the human spirit with soul-destroying, mindless drivel. News shows purport to inform society yet serve often as little more than mouthpieces of faceless corporate behemoths and political parties that serve those private, moneyed interests rather than the public good.

The gasoline crisis continues, enriching the supporters of terrorism; war and violence flourish without end; and mind-boggling levels of political corruption come to be seen as tolerable. Meanwhile, the sheep-like, cowed population refuses to protest.

The “United States” is a misnomer; the “disunited states” would be more apt. The real goals of politicians are to serve multinational corporations that don’t give a damn about communities, providing stable ‘living wage’ jobs, or supporting ‘democracy’, per se. People work fifty, sixty, eighty hours a week to afford things beyond the reach of their checkbooks. The whole ideology of American bourgeois society is fallacious; when people cease believing in it, perhaps there will be room for real ‘change’. In the interim, there will be ‘class warfare’ between the haves and the have-nots.

We are living under the dictates of a National Security State (NSC-18). The military-industrial complex and the State forged a convenient alliance during the emergency that was World War Two, which was quickly revamped for the relatively unnecessary wars of Korea and Vietnam – conflicts that were never won despite the enormous amount of blood and treasure spent on them.

In the United States, 2.3 million people languish in prisons, many for drug and property crimes. Police use illegal tactics and unnecessary force in order to obtain evidence to facilitate the ‘criminal justice system.’

Denmark, by contrast, has 4,200 people in prison; they have socialized medicine; beautiful cities; and a near absence of corruption; tolerance for other peoples’ rights; and a high quality of life marred only by high rates of taxation. All that too is beginning to change thanks to the influx of unwanted Muslim immigrants.

This is the end result of market-driven government-sponsored capitalism. Ten percent own 48 percent of the country’s wealth; that means that ninety percent are fighting over 52 percent remainder of the pie. If the pie isn’t expanding, well, you can see what the results are yourself: crime, chaos, and divided government unable to accomplish anything useful.

Part three

To add further insult to injury, anyone who is critical of society is scorned and maligned. The media propaganda-machine parrots the Administration, thus helping to ‘prevent thought’, which as Orwell wrote, was the very purpose of propaganda. To maintain people’s belief and acceptance of ‘society’ is its purpose; its modus operandi is to limit the capacity for thought of the human mind and constrict it to the ideology of the social order. To further debilitate human intelligence, drug and alcohol abuse are tolerated to the extent that they help keep society ignorant. All that matters is the prevention of a mass uprising against the status quo, for to control society is government’s purpose, not to educate or improve it.

It’s increasingly obvious to the whole world that America cannot live up to its high-flown and outdated rhetoric about ‘democracy,‘ and that modern society produces more ills than it can solve. “Materialism” has become a way of life. Although there exists such luxuries as the Internet, on it is to be found every variety of filth, pornography, spam, and misinformation. Although there are one to two automobiles per suburban family, there is also a high level of debt, high rents, bankruptcies, divorces, drug usage, long commutes, conflicts between employers and the workers, noise pollution, violent arguments, and abysmal traffic. There is also an ongoing breakdown of families and communities that helps fill up the prison system with the less fortunate.

America’s inner cities are becoming sewers of corruption, crime and drug-infested neighborhoods where despair, violence and the after-effects of centuries of racismprevail. Much of America’s problems are systemic in nature, caused by racism, classism, sexism, crime, overpopulation, corruption, bad government, the destruction of the natural environment, as well as uncontrolled mass immigration from third-world countries. In other words, chaos –leading to cries for ‘more police‘ protection for the suburban bourgeoisie. Welfareis grudgingly given to the ghettoized minorities, who are then blamed for their own socio-economic troubles caused by an anti-egalitarian stratification of wealth. America’s economic growth seems to be ‘unsustainable’ and the fear exists that government will succumb to authoritarian solutions if social disorder results.

This is the end result of the country’s growth not into a ‘democratic republic’ –but an Empire, fostered by “Reagonomics,“ corporate greed, and Republican-sponsored class warfare of the ultra-rich against everyone else.

America, the Utopian promise of the world, is in practice a disaster.
Oct 23, 2012.

————

essay 2

The persistence of poverty amidst plenty, that is capitalism. Film can SHOW PEOPLE the failures and inequity of Capitalism.

We are all privileged prisoners in a fool’s paradise. Television was invented to distract a sheep-like, complacent public. T.V. shows represent carefully-crafted illusions for the public to imbibe the capitalist message with its eyes. America is the nation in which the rich flagrantly celebrate their wealth, and the poor, behind closed doors must bite the proverbial ’grapes of wrath’ unseen.

Let us acknowledge that there is a privileged class that will fight for its possessions.

America has not yet succeeded in ending poverty nor in giving everyone ’equal rights.’ What meaning can such rights have when there aren’t any economic rights? The ideology of the state is belied by the reality of life under capitalism, a life of debt and penury for millions of people. In the gap between perception and perceived object lies the truth.

—-

essay 3

Corporate Plutocracy:

An investment banker now makes one million times what a teacher makes.

The corporations have influenced the state and school boards to ‘dumb down,’ the textbooks, because neither corporations nor schools want young people to think for themselves. They saw the educated classes dump on the State during the Vietnam War period, and they applied their lessons well.

The Occupy Wall Street movement in some sense represents a continuation of that kind of principled protest against the dreaded status quo.

Occupy Wall St represents for millions the end of an illusion, namely the uncritical blind faith in capitalism, and the demand for immediate social reform of institutions.

TV, drugs, rock, religion, beer: they all represent the same thing, the attempt to keep the better part of the masses ignorant and happy.

Mankind is separated into socio-economic classes, and it is imperative that the working-class remains ignorant as such. Educated people aren’t going to do the grunt work that the common man must do in order to survive.

====================

Walter Lippman, Harvard University, wrote, “Where all think alike, no one thinks very much.”

The dollar rises about .13 times per year, and wages rise about .12 times per year every year. But the cost of living rises. This keeps millions of people working harder and harder for nothing.

Capitalism means,

a) the collapse of the social contract

b) unrestrained exploitation of the environment

c) war on Unions

d) wal-mart wage-slavery

Detroit now pays $14 an hour when less than a few years it paid $28 an hour, thus plunging millions of workers in poverty.

ALEC means corporations which fund right-wing Republicans: BP, the Koch Brothers, Comcast , duPont, Altria, Ford, Dow Chemicals, Exxon Mobil, SPR, Bayer, UPS, Amazon, Shell Oil.

American politicians now support a permanent Gulag of for-profit, big-profit states: NY, IL, CA, TX, and Fla. Soon it will be all fifty states in the so-called, “Land of the free.” Is this what they died for on the beaches of Anzio and Normandy? The emprisonment of millions of people, just so that the state governors can declare the unemployment level to be lower than what it really is? Just so that corporations can keep wages low, and create a permanent class of wage-slaves?

The Treasury and the Fed over-looked the corruption of Libor, the scandal in which investment bankers manipulated the interest rates in order to profit from the suckers who are ‘born every minute.’

FIGHT GANGSTER CAPITALISM.

essay 4

Three million jobs were lost between 2000-09, when US manufacturing died at the hand of the corporate class and the political class, its paid puppets.

The Fortune 500, not the people, control American ‘democracy.’ They demonstrated their contempt for the people by getting W elected over the peoples ‘ choice. They not you control this ‘democracy’ America sends your sons and daughters to die for in endless, undeclared, un-winnable wars while they receive tax-payer bailouts.

American capitalism means FRAUD.

Thanks to corporate America, the entire USA is now a Company town, which is how they always wanted it. It is a Banana Republic in which even the basic human need for access to medical care is being thwarted by certain members of the political class.

Thank you for reading this.
———————————–

Notes: “The price of Inequality,“ Stiglitz, Book tv.

Ivy League is producing mainly ‘financiers.’

Human capital goes into ‘investment banking’ rather than productive work.

America has the least ‘equality of opportunity.’

The top one percent grabs 20 percent of the income and 40 percent of all the wealth.

There has been a ‘hollowing out’ of the Middle-class.

Reaganomics redistributed wealth to the top.

Poverty is everywhere increasing.

Technology; off-shoring of manufacturing; and illegal aliens permitted to enter the country.

There is Justice for those who can pay, the Haves.

The people in the top tier of the economic ladder have greedily grabbed more and more of the economic pie for themselves, while the ranks of the poor increase as the workers fail to cope with the rising cost of living.

Lobbying in DC; speculation on Wall Street; the failure of investment in jobs and infrastructure; the weakening of democracy; disenfranchisement; the decline in all standards including the rule of law, thanks to the USA Patriot Act; collusion between Wall St and DC: these aspects of capitalism are leading millions of people to question finally the nature of this ‘democracy.’

Six members of the Walton (WalMart) family now own more than the wealth of the bottom 30 percent of the population. Naturally, they will use that wealth to buy politicians who will help keep that wealth in their hands, and out of the state’s.

The self-protecting phony blue-blood elites of the Ivy League have rigged the educational system to benefit themselves.

The failure to ensure health care rights for millions of people makes a mockery of American claims to truth, goodness and right.

*Twenty percent of the US budget goes to the military. (corrected. Source: Fox news, Oct. 23, 2012).

Capitalism, means, ‘property-owning,’ rent-seeking.’

Capitalism tends toward the monopolization of power and wealth in the hands of the subsidized few.

Corporations now run every aspect of our lives.

The average tax rate at the top is 15 percent, and they’re in tears!

Wall St has positioned itself against the interests of Main Street in true banana republic fashion.

What are the living standards now for the worker?

Corporate welfare leeches off an out-of-date tax code.

Drug companies ripped off the government, ie the taxpayers.

Laws support ‘market capitalism,’ and that too is rigged by the capitalists, to stifle competition.

Bankruptcy laws support derivatives and the bailout of banks, leading to an unstable economy.

Progressive transfers are needed to equalize population wealth.

15 percent on capital gains which are taxed lower than the 35 tax rate for hard-working people.

The middle-class struggles to pay for its standard of living while trying to live like the upper-class.

Meanwhile the people at the top avoid taxation, and the people at the bottom are preyed upon with sales and other taxes.

Alan Greenspan (Fed) wanted to control the economy, which he couldn’t do if all the debts were paid off.

‘Campaign finance reform’ is thwarted at every turn.

Derivatives are favored by the tax code.

American capitalism has created a divided society. ‘Where the poor are many, and the rich are few,’ Aristotle said, ‘nations are gradually ruined.’

——

essay five

Obama is Goldman Sachs. Investment houses pressed Congress to abolish Glass-Steaghall, or Depression-era regulations and restrictions.

‘Crony capitalism’ is what David Stockman calls it. The Fed gave trillions in secret loans to large banks and corporations.

The two parties, according to Jesse Ventura, are bought and paid for by corporate and banking interests.

The middle-class is in decline.

Hedge-fund managers get mediocre returns yet they still get rich.

The minimum wage is stuck at the 1950’s level.

Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, and Morgan Stanley all profited from the mortgage boom after 9-11.

In 1950, manufacturing comprised 27 percent of US GDP. Now it is down to 12 Percent of US GDP.

The living wage has declined, sending millions of people into poverty.

Tax revenue as a percentage of the economy has dropped to 1950 levels.

Libor is the key interest-rate sent by big banks in collusion, to better cheat the consumers, borrowers and other suckers.

Capitalism necessarily segregates people by economic class, the bourgeoisie, or middle-class; the upper class; and the working class and the poor. The system feeds on the labor of the working -class, and the police exist in order to keep it in line. The co-ordination of people’s minds in line with their overlords.

Panem et circunem: bread and circuses. That’s how the Romans ruled the many, by giving them welfare (bread) and entertainment (the Coliseum). Later they found Christianity to be a useful tool in order to keep the minds of the workers busy.

American Capitalism isn’t even efficient. The USA lost twelve trillion dollars in only three years.

THE RAVAGES OF CAPITALISM:
UNEMPLOYMENT
WAR
GREED
CORRUPTION
SOCIAL DECLINE
THE POLICE STATE

WAGE-SLAVERY