Friday, December 15, 2017

It's Official - the Rich are Eating the Poor

Just in time for the Republican's "Bugger the Poor" tax reform, a study has been released that  US lawmakers have been raiding the poor to funnel wealth to the wealthiest. From the Washington Post.

Back in 1980, the bottom 50 percent of wage-earners in the United States earned about 21 percent of all income in the country — nearly twice as much as the share of income (11 percent) earned by the top 1 percent of Americans.

But today, according to a massive new study on global inequality, those numbers have nearly reversed: The bottom 50 percent take in only 13 percent of the income pie, while the top 1 percent grab over 20 percent of the country's income.

Since 1980, in other words, the U.S. economy has transferred eight points of national income from the bottom 50 percent to the top 1 percent.

That trend is even more remarkable when you set it against comparable numbers for wealthy nations in Western Europe. There, the bottom 50 percent earn nearly 22 percent of the income in those economies, while the top 1 percent take in just over 12 percent of the money.

The 2018 World Inequality Report, written by a team of leading international economists including Thomas Piketty of “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” fame, finds that the rise of income inequality in the United States is “largely due to massive educational inequalities, combined with a tax system that grew less progressive despite a surge in top labor compensation since the 1980s, and in top capital incomes in the 2000s.”Since the 1970s the price of higher education has skyrocketed, putting the price of tuition out of reach for many low-income students. Over the same time, the tax code became more generous to the wealthiest Americans — the top marginal income-tax rate fell from 70 percent in 1980 to 39.6 percent in 2017, taxes on capital gains fell by more than half from the mid-1970s to the mid-2000s, and the estate tax has fallen as well.

Those changes have made it easier for high-income Americans to grab more and more of the income pie in any given year.

When are the American people going to come to their senses and break loose from the rightwing conditioning that leaves them complacent to this abuse? By all rights they ought to take to the streets with pitchforks and torches and start stringing up their legislators from lamp posts where they can be properly appreciated.


Trailblazer said...

Too true.


Trailblazer said...

When are the American people going to come to their senses and break loose from the rightwing conditioning that leaves them complacent to this abuse

It's called the American dream!!
As G Carlin said you have to be asleep to believe it.
In my travels to Oregon USA, a beautiful State, I see no end of trailer trash!
There are campsites of RV's that are lived in full time.
The cost of heating one of those things through the winter would tax the income of most of the inhabitants.
They without exception they fly the stars and stripes!!


Toby said...

CBC Ideas ran this tonight.

"Facebook, Google, Apple and Amazon are manipulating our lives and threatening our democracy"

Tal Hartsfeld said...

Second-story balconies would be more exciting than lamp posts.

Trailblazer said...

Say no more.

Have we lost the fight..


The Mound of Sound said...

Wrong, TB. History shows we've only lost if we're ready to accept defeat.