Bad Government Policy Has Created the Worst Inequality On Record … And It’s Destroying Our Economy

It’s Not an Accident … It’s Policy

America is experiencing unprecedented inequality. And a who’s who of prominent economists (and investors) say that inequality is hurting the economy.

Defenders of the status quo pretend that this inequality is something outside of our control … like a force of nature. They argue that it’s due to technological innovation or something else outside of policy-makers’ control.

In reality, inequality is rising due to bad policy.

Nobel prize winning economist Joe Stiglitz said this month:

Inequality is not inevitable. It is not … like the weather, something that just happens to us. It is not the result of the laws of nature or the laws of economics. Rather, it is something that we create, by our policies, by what we do.

We created this inequality—chose it, really—with [bad] laws …

Gaming the System to Pillage and Loot

The world’s top economic leaders have said for years that inequality is spiraling out of control and needs to be reduced. Why is inequality soaring even though world economic leaders have talked for years about the urgent need to reduce it?

Because they’re saying one thing but doing something very different. And both mainstream Democrats and mainstream Republicans are using smoke and mirrors to hide what’s really going on.

And it’s not surprising … Nobel winner Stiglitz says that inequality is caused by the use of money to shape government policies to benefit those with money. As Wikipedia notes:

A better explainer of growing inequality, according to Stiglitz, is the use of political power generated by wealth by certain groups to shape government policies financially beneficial to them. This process, known to economists as rent-seeking, brings income not from creation of wealth but from “grabbing a larger share of the wealth that would otherwise have been produced without their effort”

Rent seeking is often thought to be the province of societies with weak institutions and weak rule of law, but Stiglitz believes there is no shortage of it in developed societies such as the United States. Examples of rent seeking leading to inequality include

  • the obtaining of public resources by “rent-collectors” at below market prices (such as granting public land to railroads, or selling mineral resources for a nominal price in the US),
  • selling services and products to the public at above market prices (medicare drug benefit in the US that prohibits government from negotiating prices of drugs with the drug companies, costing the US government an estimated $50 billion or more per year),
  • securing government tolerance of monopoly power (The richest person in the world in 2011, Carlos Slim, controlled Mexico’s newly privatized telecommunication industry).

(Background here, here and here.)

Stiglitz says:

One big part of the reason we have so much inequality is that the top 1 percent want it that way. The most obvious example involves tax policy …. Monopolies and near monopolies have always been a source of economic power—from John D. Rockefeller at the beginning of the last century to Bill Gates at the end. Lax enforcement of anti-trust laws, especially during Republican administrations, has been a godsend to the top 1 percent. Much of today’s inequality is due to manipulation of the financial system, enabled by changes in the rules that have been bought and paid for by the financial industry itself—one of its best investments ever. The government lent money to financial institutions at close to 0 percent interest and provided generous bailouts on favorable terms when all else failed. Regulators turned a blind eye to a lack of transparency and to conflicts of interest.

***

Wealth begets power, which begets more wealth …. Virtually all U.S. senators, and most of the representatives in the House, are members of the top 1 percent when they arrive, are kept in office by money from the top 1 percent, and know that if they serve the top 1 percent well they will be rewarded by the top 1 percent when they leave office. By and large, the key executive-branch policymakers on trade and economic policy also come from the top 1 percent. When pharmaceutical companies receive a trillion-dollar gift—through legislation prohibiting the government, the largest buyer of drugs, from bargaining over price—it should not come as cause for wonder. It should not make jaws drop that a tax bill cannot emerge from Congress unless big tax cuts are put in place for the wealthy. Given the power of the top 1 percent, this is the way you would expect the system to work.

Former Sectretary of Labor Robert Reich recently noted:

When so much wealth accumulates at the top, with money comes the capacity to control politics… It’s not that people are rich, it’s that they abuse their wealth … The wealthy contribute to political candidates and the access that their contributions buy entrenches inequality by securing subsidies, bailouts and policies that lead to even greater inequality.

Bloomberg reports:

The financial industry spends hundreds of millions of dollars every election cycle on campaign donations and lobbying, much of which is aimed at maintaining the subsidy [to the banks by the public]. The result is a bloated financial sector and recurring credit gluts.

Indeed, the big banks literally own the Federal Reserve. And they own Washington D.C. politicians, lock stock and barrel. See this, this, this and this.

Two leading IMF officials, the former Vice President of the Dallas Federal Reserve, and the the head of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, Moody’s chief economist and many others have all said that the United States is controlled by an “oligarchy” or “oligopoly”, and the big banks and giant financial institutions are key players in that oligarchy.

The chairman of the Department of Economics at George Mason University says that it is inaccurate to call politicians prostitutes. Specifically, he says that they are more correct to call them “pimps”, since they are pimping out the American people to the financial giants.

Economics professor Randall Wray writes:

Thieves … took over the whole economy and the political system lock, stock, and barrel.

No wonder the government has saved the big banks at taxpayer expense, chosen the banks over the little guy, and

No wonder crony capitalism has gotten even worse under Obama than under Bush.

No wonder big Wall Street players are continuing to loot taxpayer money and public resources.

No wonder the big banks continue to manipulate every market and commit crime after crime and … and profit handsomely from it, while law-abiding citizens slide further and further behind.

Yet Obama is prosecuting fewer financial crimes than Bush, or his father, or Ronald Reagan.

No wonder:

All of the monetary and economic policy of the last 3 years has helped the wealthiest and penalized everyone else. See this, this and this.

***

Economist Steve Keen says:

“This is the biggest transfer of wealth in history”, as the giant banks have handed their toxic debts from fraudulent activities to the countries and their people.

Stiglitz said in 2009 that Geithner’s toxic asset plan “amounts to robbery of the American people”.

And economist Dean Baker said in 2009 that the true purpose of the bank rescue plans is “a massive redistribution of wealth to the bank shareholders and their top executives”.

Without the government’s creation of the too big to fail banks (they’ve gotten much bigger under Obama), the Fed’s intervention in interest rates and the markets (most of the quantitative easing has occurred under Obama), and government-created moral hazard emboldening casino-style speculation (there’s now more moral hazard than ever before) … things wouldn’t have gotten nearly as bad.

As I noted in March 2009:

The bailout money is just going to line the pockets of the wealthy, instead of helping to stabilize the economy or even the companies receiving the bailouts:

  • A lot of the bailout money is going to the failing companies’ shareholders
  • Indeed, a leading progressive economist says that the true purpose of the bank rescue plans is “a massive redistribution of wealth to the bank shareholders and their top executives”
  • The Treasury Department encouraged banks to use the bailout money to buy their competitors, and pushed through an amendment to the tax laws which rewards mergers in the banking industry (this has caused a lot of companies to bite off more than they can chew, destabilizing the acquiring companies)

As I wrote in 2008:

The game of capitalism only continues as long as everyone has some money to play with. If the government and corporations take everyone’s money, the game ends.The fed and Treasury are not giving more chips to those who need them: the American consumer. Instead, they are giving chips to the 800-pound gorillas at the poker table, such as Wall Street investment banks. Indeed, a good chunk of the money used by surviving mammoth players to buy the failing behemoths actually comes from the Fed.

Quantitative Easing

It is well-documented that quantitative easing increases inequality (and see this and this.)

Quantitative easing doesn’t help Main Street or the average American. It only helps big banks, giant corporations, and big investors.

The Federal Reserve has been doing quantitative easing for 5 years … and inequality has shot up over the last 5 years. It’s not a coincidence.

Subsidies to Giant, Wealthy Corporations

Massive subsidies to big corporations is also part of the problem. Indeed, some financial analysts say that the taxpayer subsidy to the giant banks alone is $780 billion per year.

The average American family pays $6,000/year in subsidies to giant corporations.

This is a direct transfer of wealth from the little guy to the big guy … which increases inequality.

Goosing the Stock Market

Moreover, the Fed has more or less admitted that it is putting almost all of its efforts into boosting the stock market.

Robert Reich has noted:

Some cheerleaders say rising stock prices make consumers feel wealthier and therefore readier to spend. But to the extent most Americans have any assets at all their net worth is mostly in their homes, and those homes are still worth less than they were in 2007. The “wealth effect” is relevant mainly to the richest 10 percent of Americans, most of whose net worth is in stocks and bonds.

AP writes:

The recovery has been the weakest and most lopsided of any since the 1930s.After previous recessions, people in all income groups tended to benefit. This time, ordinary Americans are struggling with job insecurity, too much debt and pay raises that haven’t kept up with prices at the grocery store and gas station. The economy’s meager gains are going mostly to the wealthiest.

Workers’ wages and benefits make up 57.5 percent of the economy, an all-time low. Until the mid-2000s, that figure had been remarkably stable — about 64 percent through boom and bust alike.

David Rosenberg points out:

The “labor share of national income has fallen to its lower level in modern history … some recovery it has been – a recovery in which labor’s share of the spoils has declined to unprecedented levels.”

The above-quoted AP article further notes:

Stock market gains go disproportionately to the wealthiest 10 percent of Americans, who own more than 80 percent of outstanding stock, according to an analysis by Edward Wolff, an economist at Bard College.

Indeed, as we reported in 2010:

As of 2007, the bottom 50% of the U.S. population owned only one-half of one percent of all stocks, bonds and mutual funds in the U.S. On the other hand, the top 1% owned owned 50.9%.***

(Of course, the divergence between the wealthiest and the rest has only increased since 2007.)

Professor G. William Domhoff demonstrated that the richest 10% own 98.5% of all financial securities, and that:

The top 10% have 80% to 90% of stocks, bonds, trust funds, and business equity, and over 75% of non-home real estate. Since financial wealth is what counts as far as the control of income-producing assets, we can say that just 10% of the people own the United States of America.

Tyler Durden notes:

In today’s edition of Bloomberg Brief, the firm’s economist Richard Yamarone looks at one of the more unpleasant consequences of Federal monetary policy: the increasing schism in wealth distribution between the wealthiest percentile and everyone else. … “To the extent that Federal Reserve policy is driving equity prices higher, it is also likely widening the gap between the haves and the have-nots….The disparity between the net worth of those on the top rung of the income ladder and those on lower rungs has been growing. According to the latest data from the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances, the total wealth of the top 10 percent income bracket is larger in 2009 than it was in 1995. Those further down have on average barely made any gains. It is likely that data for 2010 and 2011 will reveal an even higher percentage going to the top earners, given recent increases in stocks.” Alas, this is nothing new, and merely confirms speculation that the Fed is arguably the most efficient wealth redistibution, or rather focusing, mechanism available to the status quo. This is best summarized in the chart below comparing net worth by income distribution for various percentiles among the population, based on the Fed’s own data. In short: the richest 20% have gotten richer in the past 14 years, entirely at the expense of everyone else.

***

Lastly, nowhere is the schism more evident, at least in market terms, than in the performance of retail stocks:

Saks chairman Steve Sadove recently remarked, “I’ve been saying for several years now the single biggest determinant of our business overall, is how’s the stock market doing.” Privately-owned Neiman- Marcus reported “In New York City, business at Bergdorf Goodman continues to be extremely strong.”

In contrast, retail giant Wal-Mart talks of its “busiest hours” coming at midnight when food stamps are activated and consumers proceed through the check-outs lines with baby formula, diapers, and other groceries. Wal-Mart has posted a decline in same-store sales for eight consecutive quarters.

As CNN Money pointed out in 2011, “Wal-Mart’s core shoppers are running out of money much faster than a year ago …” This trend has only gotten worse: The wealthy are doing great … but common folks can no longer afford to shop even at Wal-Mart, Sears, JC Penney or other low-price stores.

Durden also notes:

Another indication of the increasing polarity of US society is the disparity among consumer confidence cohorts by income as shown below, and summarized as follows: “The increase in equity prices has raised consumer spirits, particularly among higher-income consumers. The Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence index for all income levels bottomed in February/March of 2009. The recovery since then has been notable across the board, but nowhere as much as for those making $50,000 or more.”

Business Week notes:

Barry Ritholtz, [CIO of Ritholtz Wealth, and popular financial blogger], says millions of potential investors may conclude, as they did after the Great Depression, that the market is a rigged game for insiders. Such seismic shifts in popular sentiment can have lasting effects. The Dow Jones industrial average didn’t regain its September 1929 peak of 355.95 until 1954. “You’re going to lose a generation of investors,” says Ritholtz. “And that’s how you end up with a 25-year bear market. That’s the risk if people start to think there is no economic justice.”

Americans know that the system is rigged against them. See this. We know that the government is giving Wall Street crooks a pass. 70% of Americans know that the government’s economic policies have thrown money at the banks and hosed the people.

In such an environment, the average American has largely gotten out of stocks and other investments.

Over-Financialization

When a country’s finance sector becomes too large finance, inequality rises. As Wikipedia notes:

[Economics professor] Jamie Galbraith argues that countries with larger financial sectors have greater inequality, and the link is not an accident.

Government policy has been encouraging the growth of the financial sector for decades:

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-2DxXTVc4xnc/USfwvMBlO-I/AAAAAAAAB_Y/a1dyx_5U5Hs/s1600/financial+and+nonfinancial+sectors+-+compensation+Les+Leopold.jpg

(Economist Steve Keen has also shown that “a sustainable level of bank profits appears to be about 1% of GDP”, and that higher bank profits leads to a ponzi economy and a depression).

Unemployment and Underemployment

A major source of inequality is unemployment, underemployment and low wages.

Corporate Profits v. Jobs

Government policy has created these conditions. And the pretend populist Obama – who talks non-stop about the importance of job-creation – actually doesn’t mind such conditions at all.

The“jobless recovery” that the Bush and Obama governments have engineered is a redistribution of wealth from the little guy to the big boys.

The New York Times notes:

Economists at Northeastern University have found that the current economic recovery in the United States has been unusually skewed in favor of corporate profits and against increased wages for workers.

In their newly released study, the Northeastern economists found that since the recovery began in June 2009 following a deep 18-month recession, “corporate profits captured 88 percent of the growth in real national income while aggregate wages and salaries accounted for only slightly more than 1 percent” of that growth.

The study, “The ‘Jobless and Wageless Recovery’ From the Great Recession of 2007-2009,” said it was “unprecedented” for American workers to receive such a tiny share of national income growth during a recovery.

***

The share of income growth going to employee compensation was far lower than in the four other economic recoveries that have occurred over the last three decades, the study found.

Obama apologists say Obama has created jobs. But the number of people who have given up and dropped out of the labor force has skyrocketed under Obama (and see this).

And the jobs that have been created have been low-wage jobs.

Low Wage Jobs

For example, the New York Times noted in 2011:

The median pay for top executives at 200 big companies last year was $10.8 million. That works out to a 23 percent gain from 2009.

***

Most ordinary Americans aren’t getting raises anywhere close to those of these chief executives. Many aren’t getting raises at all — or even regular paychecks. Unemployment is still stuck at more than 9 percent.

***

“What is of more concern to shareholders is that it looks like C.E.O. pay is recovering faster than company fortunes,” says Paul Hodgson, chief communications officer for GovernanceMetrics International, a ratings and research firm.

According to a report released by GovernanceMetrics in June, the good times for chief executives just keep getting better. Many executives received stock options that were granted in 2008 and 2009, when the stock market was sinking.

Now that the market has recovered from its lows of the financial crisis, many executives are sitting on windfall profits, at least on paper. In addition, cash bonuses for the highest-paid C.E.O.’s are at three times prerecession levels, the report said.

***

The average American worker was taking home $752 a week in late 2010, up a mere 0.5 percent from a year earlier. After inflation, workers were actually making less.

AP pointed out that the average worker is not doing so well:

Unemployment has never been so high — 9.1 percent — this long after any recession since World War II. At the same point after the previous three recessions, unemployment averaged just 6.8 percent.

– The average worker’s hourly wages, after accounting for inflation, were 1.6 percent lower in May than a year earlier. Rising gasoline and food prices have devoured any pay raises for most Americans.

– The jobs that are being created pay less than the ones that vanished in the recession. Higher-paying jobs in the private sector, the ones that pay roughly $19 to $31 an hour, made up 40 percent of the jobs lost from January 2008 to February 2010 but only 27 percent of the jobs created since then.

Alan Greenspan noted:

Large banks, who are doing much better and large corporations, whom you point out and everyone is pointing out, are in excellent shape. The rest of the economy, small business, small banks, and a very significant amount of the labour force, which is in tragic unemployment, long-term unemployment – that is pulling the economy apart.

Money Being Sucked Out of the U.S. Economy … But Big Bucks Are Being Made Abroad

Part of the widening gap is due to the fact that most American companies’ profits are driven by foreign sales and foreign workers. As AP noted in 2010:

Corporate profits are up. Stock prices are up. So why isn’t anyone hiring?

Actually, many American companies are — just maybe not in your town. They’re hiring overseas, where sales are surging and the pipeline of orders is fat.

***

The trend helps explain why unemployment remains high in the United States, edging up to 9.8% last month, even though companies are performing well: All but 4% of the top 500 U.S. corporations reported profits this year, and the stock market is close to its highest point since the 2008 financial meltdown.

But the jobs are going elsewhere. The Economic Policy Institute, a Washington think tank, says American companies have created 1.4 million jobs overseas this year, compared with less than 1 million in the U.S. The additional 1.4 million jobs would have lowered the U.S. unemployment rate to 8.9%, says Robert Scott, the institute’s senior international economist.

“There’s a huge difference between what is good for American companies versus what is good for the American economy,” says Scott.

***

Many of the products being made overseas aren’t coming back to the United States. Demand has grown dramatically this year in emerging markets like India, China and Brazil.

Government policy has accelerated the growing inequality. It has encouraged American companies to move their facilities, resources and paychecks abroad. And some of the biggest companies in America have a negative tax rate … that is, not only do they pay no taxes, but they actually get tax refunds.

And a large percentage of the bailouts went to foreign banks (and see this). And so did a huge portion of the money from quantitative easing. More here and here.

Capital Gains and Dividends

According to a 2013 study published by a researcher at the U.S. Congressional Research Service:

The largest contributor to increasing income inequality…was changes in income from capital gains and dividends.

Business Insider explains:

Drastic income inequality growth in the United States is largely derived from changes in the way the U.S. government taxes income from capital gains and dividends, according to a new study by Thomas Hungerford of the non-partisan Congressional Research Service.

Essentially, what Democrats have been saying about income inequality — that it’s in a large part due to favorable taxation and deduction policies for high income Americans — is largely right

***

The study … conclusively found that the wealthy benefitted from low tax rates on investment income, which in turn caused their wealth to grow faster.

Essentially, taxing capital gains as ordinary income would make the playing field more fair, and reduce over time income inequality.

Joseph Stiglitz noted in 2011:

Lowering tax rates on capital gains, which is how the rich receive a large portion of their income, has given the wealthiest Americans close to a free ride.

Indeed, the Tax Policy center reports that the top 1% took home 71% of all capital gains in 2012.

Ronald Reagan’s budget director, assistant secretary of treasury, and domestic policy director all say that the Bush tax cuts were a huge mistake. See this and this.

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  • http://bigdanblogger.blogspot.com/ Big Dan

    The logical deduction of all of this is: super-rich people are evil, immoral, greedy, psychopaths, sociopaths, possibly even Satanic.
    The 1% could save/help everyone RIGHT NOW, and since it’s not happening and has never happened, logically they don’t want to, so see my first statement. They just want their money to continue growing at the expense of everyone else.
    The way *their* mainstream media stops a conversation about these FACTS is, by saying the pre-emptive statement if you bring up this subject:
    “THAT’S CLASS-WARFARE”

    https://www.google.com/#q=%22class+warfare%22
    Other terms & cliches the 1% use to stifle discussions are: “conspiracy theory”, “anti-semite”, “tin foil hat”, “if you don’t like it, leave this country”, “you hate america”, etc…

    • http://bigdanblogger.blogspot.com/ Big Dan

      “What if?” What if a cadre of superrich individuals tried to become a driving force in America to organize and institutionalize the interests of the citizens of this troubled nation? What if some of America’s most powerful individuals decided it was time to fix our government and return the power to the people? What if they focused their power on unionizing Wal-Mart? What if a national political party were formed with the sole purpose of advancing clean elections? What if these seventeen superrich individuals decided to galvanize a movement for alternative forms of energy that will effectively clean up the environment? What if together they took on corporate goliaths and Congress to provide the necessities of life and advance the solutions so long left on the shelf by an avaricious oligarchy? What could happen?

      Ralph Nader: “Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us!”

      http://www.amazon.com/Only-Super-Rich-Can-Save-Us/dp/B005CDU0PA

      I think they actually did this…in the future…in “Star Trek”.

      • MissusComprehensivePerspective

        Only ridding ourselves and each other of the diabolically self-harming idea to have super-rich on this planet can save us.
        There. Fixed that right up for you, Ralph.

    • MissusComprehensivePerspective

      “The 1% could save/help everyone RIGHT NOW, and since it’s not happening and has never happened, logically they don’t want to”

      Your words are all true, Big Dan. It’s demonstrably true that everything that must be done to reverse the human species’ march to extinction is perfectly physically possible and it’s only being made financially impossible by artifice. But people should consider: 100 people in a banquet room, 99 bothering no one, 1 acting up causing chaos, pinching the others’ wallets, hoarding the feast, trashing the room, destroying everyone’s safety, peace, and happiness. The question is: Can the 99 make the 1 behave if they decide to? Just how many people in agreement to make the 1 behave would it take to make him behave, to make him give back the stolen loot and stop destroying everyone’s everything?

      Isn’t it just as true, Big Dan, that “the 99% could save/help everyone RIGHT NOW, and since it’s not happening and has never happened, logically they don’t want to”? Isn’t it true that there is no reason whatsoever to have wealthpower giants on this planet and there’s every reason not to – and yet we have them, plus a long list of rationalizations for having them? Is it true that the only reason we humans have a neverending succession of gigarich tyrants in perpetuity is because every generation so far has seen fit to allow them?
      I say 7 billion people are all getting their thinking wrong. I say the rich are the wrong target. I say they are not ultimately the enemy and the problem. I say the ultimate enemy and the ultimate problem is not a ‘who’, it’s a ‘what’ – the enemy and the problem and our necessary target if we’d like to get back our chance to have a future at all is an IDEA, it’s the diabolically stupid majority general human opinion to allow no-limits to personal fortunes on this planet.
      Look at the picture whole, People of Earth: We daily despise and deride the wealthpower giants for their lack of a single scruple, yet we humans keep fiercely loyal to the mindless CUSTOM, the perfectly simple-minded MERE TRADITION of dangling that carrot of unlimited personal fortunes in front of everyone, and then we get mad that the tyrant oppressors don’t use their complete lack of scruples to resist the biggest temptation we refuse to simply eliminate.
      So who are the insane ones here, eh? Is it the wealthpower giants we actively and passively erect to have to endlessly beg our rights from – or is it US?
      Humanity, wake up and smell the uranium. 100% of you are in the midst of a globalocal emergency the likes of which you have never before imagined and you are down to 2 choices: Either murder the idea to allow the injustice of limitless personal fortunes on this planet or you WILL succumb to the results of having the next and the next and the next wealthpower giants ad infinitum until the violence attached to the injustice sets off the last global bombs rendering extinction for all.
      The human species STILL hasn’t the first clue the can of worms we opened when we long ago embarked upon the community project called division of labor. The extremes of wealthpower we have today are rooted where nobody is looking, in an enormous “logic whoopsie” made a very long time ago. It is incredible that no one has until now seen this. The illogic is today ubiquitous, but we still have a chance to expose it and rid ourselves of the ratio that is killing us all and this pretty planet. If you’re ready to stop straining gnats whilst swallowing camels, if you’re ready to stop trying and failing to deal with but a few of the millions of negative CONSEQUENCES of allowing overpayunderpay overpowerunderpower, if you’re determined to dig out the root cause of 99% of human suffering and be rid of it once and for all, you are invited to click my disqus name to discover posts that have powerful education to help all of us unlearn what everybody believes that simply isn’t true.
      Don’t do it to be nice to anybody else. Do it to save your own bacon.
      If you don’t want the human species to continue, my words are not for you.

    • MissusComprehensivePerspective

      “The 1% could save/help everyone RIGHT NOW, and since it’s not happening and has never happened, logically they don’t want to”

      Your words are all true, Big Dan. It’s demonstrably true that everything that must be done to reverse the human species’ march to extinction is perfectly physically possible and it’s only being made financially impossible by artifice. But people should consider: 100 people in a banquet room, 99 bothering no one, 1 acting up causing chaos, pinching the others’ wallets, hoarding the feast, trashing the room, destroying everyone’s safety, peace, and happiness. The question is: Can the 99 make the 1 behave if they decide to? Just how many people in agreement to make the 1 behave would it take to make him behave, to make him give back the stolen loot and stop destroying everyone’s everything?

      Isn’t it just as true, Big Dan, that “the 99% could save/help everyone RIGHT NOW, and since it’s not happening and has never happened, logically they don’t want to”? Isn’t it true that there is no reason whatsoever to have wealthpower giants on this planet and there’s every reason not to – and yet we have them, plus a long list of rationalizations for having them? Is it true that the only reason we humans have a neverending succession of gigarich tyrants in perpetuity is because every generation so far has seen fit to allow them?
      I say 7 billion people are all getting their thinking wrong. I say the rich are the wrong target. I say they are not ultimately the enemy and the problem. I say the ultimate enemy and the ultimate problem is not a ‘who’, it’s a ‘what’ – the enemy and the problem and our necessary target if we’d like to get back our chance to have a future at all is an IDEA, it’s the diabolically stupid majority general human opinion to allow no-limits to personal fortunes on this planet.
      Look at the picture whole, People of Earth: We daily despise and deride the wealthpower giants for their lack of a single scruple, yet we humans keep fiercely loyal to the mindless CUSTOM, the perfectly simple-minded MERE TRADITION of dangling that carrot of unlimited personal fortunes in front of everyone, and then we get mad that the tyrant oppressors don’t use their complete lack of scruples to resist the biggest temptation we refuse to simply eliminate.
      So who are the insane ones here, eh? Is it the wealthpower giants we actively and passively erect to have to endlessly beg our rights from – or is it US?
      Humanity, wake up and smell the uranium. 100% of you are in the midst of a globalocal emergency the likes of which you have never before imagined and you are down to 2 choices: Either murder the idea to allow the injustice of limitless personal fortunes on this planet or you WILL succumb to the results of having the next and the next and the next wealthpower giants ad infinitum until the violence attached to the injustice sets off the last global bombs rendering extinction for all.
      The human species STILL hasn’t the first clue the can of worms we opened when we long ago embarked upon the community project called division of labor. The extremes of wealthpower we have today are rooted where nobody is looking, in an enormous “logic whoopsie” made a very long time ago. It is incredible that no one has until now seen this. The illogic is today ubiquitous, but we still have a chance to expose it and rid ourselves of the ratio that is killing us all and this pretty planet. If you’re ready to stop straining gnats whilst swallowing camels, if you’re ready to stop trying and failing to deal with but a few of the millions of negative CONSEQUENCES of allowing overpayunderpay overpowerunderpower, if you’re determined to dig out the root cause of 99% of human suffering and be rid of it once and for all, you are invited to click my disqus name to discover posts that have powerful education to help all of us unlearn what everybody believes that simply isn’t true.
      Don’t do it to be nice to anybody else. Do it to save your own bacon.
      If you don’t want the human species to continue, my words are not for you.

  • http://bigdanblogger.blogspot.com/ Big Dan

    The logical deduction of all of this is: super-rich people are evil, immoral, greedy, psychopaths, sociopaths, possibly even Satanic.
    The 1% could save/help everyone RIGHT NOW, and since it’s not happening and has never happened, logically they don’t want to, so see my first statement. They just want their money to continue growing at the expense of everyone else.
    The way *their* mainstream media stops a conversation about these FACTS is, by saying the pre-emptive statement if you bring up this subject:
    “THAT’S CLASS-WARFARE”

    https://www.google.com/#q=%22class+warfare%22
    Other terms & cliches the 1% use to stifle discussions are: “conspiracy theory”, “anti-semite”, “tin foil hat”, “if you don’t like it, leave this country”, “you hate america”, etc…

  • MissusComprehensivePerspective

    What if you woke up tomorrow to find the front page of Washington’s blog, and many other blogs, providing people this beginning seed of economic clarity:

    All the wealth in the world = all the work in the world = all the workproducts. No work = no
    workproducts = money is worth nothing.

    Money represents wealth creation by work. Money is symbolic wealth – symbol of substantial wealth. Substantial wealth is workproducts – goods and services produced and provided by human work. Money is a license to take workproducts from the pool of workproducts produced by human work.

    We humans started out hunting and gathering. Then we got agriculture, and settlement – food
    became storable. This freed us up to invent job specialization, division of labor, which necessitated trade. The purpose of trade is to give out the specialized products we ourselves produce, and get the products we want that are produced by the other specialists.
    What is supposed to happen is that a working person’s wealth after a transaction is the same as it was before, just in different work-products. Trade shouldn’t leave us better off or worse off in work-value. The amount of work in the products we buy should be equal to the amount of work we do. Anything else is theft, that is, unilateral or one-sided shift of wealth from an earner to a freebie-getter. People should – in justice economics, would – share the substantial wealth (produced only by work) in the same proportions they would without trade, when each person consumes what she produces, which is natural automatic justice.

    The very simple, very dangerous fact that has been overlooked by all economists and virtually all thinkers, and which has never entered the common mind of humanity, is that in any transaction the two things exchanged cannot be equal in workvalue. There must be more work gone into one thing than the other thing. There is no way to determine with absolute precision the exact workvalue of the two things. They must be unequal. The chance of them being of exactly equal workvalue is infinitesimal, and equality of workvalue will occur in almost no transactions. This necessarily means that wealth will pass automatically from one person to another in every transaction. Every transaction will be a
    fair-exchange-no-robbery, plus a robbery. The two things will be of workvalues x, and x + y. The x’s will be the fair exchange and the y will be the robbery. One will get out more than he put in, the other will get out less. On top of the fair exchange, in which both work and both reap, one will work and the other will reap. Inevitably. Unavoidably. Multiply the ‘invisible’ drop of theft in each exchange by trillions of transactions and you get the extremes we have today.

    Both parties exchanging their work may think they profited, but if both profited, the mere exchange would have caused an increase in net value of both products, and mere exchange cannot increase value. This obvious truth has not stopped economists from teaching that both do profit. They argue that the exchange is voluntary, and therefore what can be wrong with it? They ignore the involuntary elements in transaction. The one who loses does not know he loses. You can’t be said to have volunteered to do something without knowing what that something is. There is a measure of coercion in all transactions.

    Division of labor is a community project made possible only because everyone participates equally,
    therefore the benefits rightly accrue to all in equal proportion to the work they do…

  • anonimo bersaglio di criminali

    Ipotizzate che siano avventute o STIANO AVVENENDO, tutte o alcune tra queste:

    non è finito il Nazismo, hanno solo inscenato gli armistizi, hanno eliminato i gragari, altri gli hanno lasciati liberi, hanno creato morti per dare delle prove vere ma artefatte, sulla vita delle persone: esistono Nazisti a riempire le greggi, Neo-nazisti a riempire le greggi, esistono queelli che il Nazismo ed i greggi li usano perchè essi sono i veri Nazisti, Satanisti, mettono la società a dividersi a farsi in gruppi, per organizzarvi gli uni contro gli altri, occupare le vostre menti il vostro tempo in stupide lotte quando basta un semplice pensiero:

    eravate nelle grotte, tre di voi cacciavano, uno conciava le pelli, uno sapeva coltivare, un altro sapeva come farvi mangiare riutilizzare le cose e curarvi, tutti erano capaci di fare queste cose e le facevano a turno, poi hanno inventato una macchina che conciava le pelli al posto di uno di voi, una macchina che abbreviava i tempi e riduceva la fatica nel preparare cure ed alimenti, hanno inventato le enciclopedie per risparmiarsi il tempo di stare tutti ad ascoltare uno che si occupava di riferire.
    Avevano ottenuto più tempo libero beneavere benessere; poi è nato uno in più, ha collaborato ancora meno di quanto gli altri collaboravano tra loro prima, e gli altri avevano ancora meno tempo occupato rispetto a prima che nascesse, stavano tutti ancora meglio.

    Usavano per l’energia quella dal Sole, il calore, il movimento, l’espansione la compressione, la compressione rispetto allo stato neutro, l’espansione rispetto allo stato neutro, usavano la caduta per e la risalita per capillarità e differenza di temperature, usavano i moti convettivi, usavano circuiti chiusi l’acqua che sale o qualcosaltro e quella che scende, usavano galleggianti che si muovevano sulla verticale in funzione della dilatazione di due fluidi uno liquido uno già gas e che si alzavano ed abbassavano per espansione e decompressione, usavano tantissimi metodi, usavano una parte dell’energia per pagarsi a se stessi l’unico altro interesse oltre a quello di vivere più liberi in armonia, avere figli, e gioire della bellezza di chi avevano e quello in cui stavano: avere più energia per costruire qualcosa che recuperasse più energia; avevano sempre più tempo a disposizione, sempre più idee da condividere per migliorarsi tutti, sempre più energia. Spostavano l’energia attraverso la rete riassorbendo il calore da tutta la Nazione di un fluido che restava liquido solo perche raffreddato all’ingresso, ed usavano la sua espansione per produrre energia, poi usavano il fluido a temperatura giusta, perchè a rete era dimensionata e costruita per fare si che da tutto questo processo permettesse di produrre energia recuperandola dall’ambiente e fornendo al contempo un servizio; il calore veniva sottratto al gas utilizzando una macchina che di per se aveva bisogno di pressione, pressione data dall’espansione, pressione data dal calore, il calore dal raffreddamento del gas compresso veniva ceduto ad altro circuito, ed il calore della macchina che creava la pressione veniva pare recuperato ed immesso in altro circuito;
    anzi che dividere la popolazione, fare lotte, guerre, criminalità, istigare, fomentare, dividevano l’energia, il caldo ed il freddo, e gli incanalavano in circuiti distinti, usavano il sole. In un cilindro con un pistone, da una parte una cosa si espandeva, grazie al sole, e poi ne veniva recuperato il calore, dall’altro capo la stessa veniva compressa, e poi ne veniva recuperato il calore, quella compressa assorbiva poi altro calore quando si espandeva e quella evaporata era già raffreddata ed assorbiva altro calore, nel frattempo quella massa girava l’Italia o il mondo; intanto il sole continuava a mandare, alla fine non si sapeva dove mettere l’energia.

    ha! si erano costruiti gli impianti prima, mi ero scordato.

    2

    Ne è nato un’altro ed un’altro ancora, avevano inventato anche le comunicazioni a distanza, avevano anche inventato le armi, avevano reso più semplice e veloce la caccia, andava uno solo meno tempo ed il resto sistemava le armi, poi avevano imparato a coltivare ed allevare, avrebbero dovuto diventare di più, avrebbero dovuto fare come ogni cosa avviene in natura, seguire leggi esponenziali, verso il meglio per tutti, avrebbero dovuto stare meglio, invece,

    avevano anche cominciato ad introdurre sistemi e macchine, gerarchie, ruoli, solo che era tutto calibrato male, calcolato male, volontariamente, non per cercare e simulando un’errore ma per dividere, forse per il gusto di alcuni che avevano detto mi basta così oppure perchè avevano smesso di essere tutti capaci, di essere tutti disponibili a turno, di essere tutti competenti e necessitare a turno l’accompagnamento anchesso a turno di qualcuno che a turno era li da prima di loro ed esso aveva avuto l’accompagnamento, gente che si specializzava temporaneamente, su varie cose, gente che si specializzava molto più e per sempre solo per mettere in circolo nuove idee condivise. Non erano le macchine ad aver creato il problema, erano alcuni sistemi alcuni usi di non fare fluire le conoscenze, e dire che avevano visto il successo dell’enciclopedia, ed le differenze dopo la sua diffusione.

    Invece si erano dimenticati di fare presente che sarebbero finiti su fazioni distinte, ma che essi non erano come il caldo ed il freddo essi non erano macchine essi erano soggetti a tanti imprevisti, imprevisti da superare con la collaborazione ma quando serviva nonostante erano tanti era più facile incontrare chi voleva anzitutto il proprio interesse, poi il vostro, o peggio non incontravate chi poteva aiutarvi, eravate tutti iperspecializzati… eravate in procinto di cominciare qualcosa di esponenziale, la regressione, l’incivilimento, la guerra, l’ultima.

    3

    Avevano voluto distinguersi, oppure si erano dispersi e si sono ritrovati su fazioni distinte, poi hanno continuato a volersi distruggere, rallentare, distinguersi, primeggiare, competere anzichè collaborare, hanno preferito essere “furbe”, non sapendo ne capendo che non avrebbero visto tante più cose nello stesso tempo trascorso:

    hanno inoculato a tutti con scuse di pandemie, vaccinazione, sostanze che si sono diffuse nel sangue nei tessuti, nelle sinapsi;
    hanno inoculato sostanze, capaci di farvi morire prima, se non pagate per assumere antidoti temporanei che inibiscono quelle sostanze
    hanno inoculato sostanze, capaci di togliervi il piacere, se non pagate per assumere antidoti temporanei che inibiscono quelle sostanze;
    hanno inoculato sostanze, capaci di togliervi la paura, se non pagate per assumere antidoti temporanei che inibiscono quelle sostanze
    hanno inoculato sostanze, capaci di togliervi i sentimenti, se non pagate per assumere antidoti temporanei che inibiscono quelle sostanze;
    hanno inoculato sostanze, capaci di togliervi la fertilità, se non pagate per assumere antidoti temporanei che inibiscono quelle sostanze;
    hanno inoculato sostanze, capaci di irendere instabile la vostra memoria, se non pagate per assumere antidoti temporanei che inibiscono quelle sostanze;
    hanno inoculato tante sostanze, o virus, o batteri, ovaccini, o “farmaci”, con il concetto di “chi più ne ha più ne metta” che servono a mantenere in piedi il capitalismo, a fare “girare l’economia”, a farvi produrre e progredire (molto più piano) nelle conoscenze, benavere, “benessere”, ma lasciando che il maggior potere su di voi sia di chi appartiene a determinate sette, l’hanno fatto in modo così calibrato da fare sembrare che non detengono capacità finanziarie impensabili ma, pur essendo sopra la media del potere d’acquisto complessiva sono parecchio al di sotto di chi rientra nella classifica dei più ricchi: tanto hanno il potere di controllarvi in altro modo;
    le hanno inoculate nei modi più disparati, acqua, aria, vaccini;
    hanno fatto il debito e l’interesse, l’interesse sul debito, l’interesse sull’interesse, hanno fregato tutti, hanno fatto guerre, crisi, hanno fatto criminali, hanno necessitato di criminali, vi hanno tolto la vita, il tempo, le passioni, vi hanno tolto l’essenza umana, infine vi hanno promesso di diventare eterni, vi hanno preso per il culo prima, indovinate… quelli che hanno preferito queste cose vi prenderanno per il culo ancora, loro ed i loro figli, ma fate loro capire, anzi che fare la guerra come si dice…

    Le hanno inoculate all’insaputa della quasi totalità della popolazione, l’hanno fatto adepti di sette, l’hanno fatto perchè quelle sette hanno programmi per farsi nominare a capo di tutti voi

    mettete attenzione nell’immaginare che lo stiano facendo di questi tempi, che ci voglia un certo periodo di tempo perchè tutto quello che vogliono inocularvi riesca a “fissarsi” al vostro organismo rendendovi dipendenti dal sistema di chi vi ha inoculato sostanze, o virus, o batteri, o vaccini, o “farmaci”.

    4

    Eppure avevano, avete tutti, da tempo, l’enciclopedia, tutti l’istruzione, tutti i bisogni, tutti le necessità: cosa manca o cosa è di troppo? l’interesse, l’interesse che è divenuto individuale anzichè sociale, interesse che vi hanno educato a vedere come necessario conservare fare solo ed il più possibile proprio, per stare meglio, interesse che se fosse stato al fine di far crescere tutti avrebbe consentito un progresso omogeneo più rapido.

    Hanno usato i vostri soldi per finanziare ricerche per anni per esempio, per finanziare progetti, programmi, erano soldi di tutti, soldi che avrebbero dovuto ritornare a tutti, invece finivano ai più fortunati, oppure ai più furbi. Soldi che venivano spesi per costruire realizzare cominciare qualcosa a spese di tutti, soldi che venivano presi a prestito dalle banche che ne richiedevano il ritorno con l’interesse, ma il cui valore era dipeso da tutti voi, soldi di carta o numeri, creati dal nulla che non costavano, ma valevano l’interesse individuale, valore attribuito dall’operato delle popolazioni, valore impossibile da attribuire secondo regole fisiche (quanto vale un foglio di carta con la grafite sopra e quanto vale un foglio di carta bianco?). L’unico valore fisico sono il tempo, l’energia, la massa, che sono poi tutti la medesima cosa. Tutti questi sono stati “convertiti” come?

    Hanno speso, hanno ottenuto qualcosa oppure sono finiti in tempo perso, sono le idee d’altronde, possono essere anche sbagliate, oppure giuste, quanto costano le idee? Poi hanno venduto quanto era riuscito di positivo, anzi hanno svenduto, qualcuno ha comprato a poco, ha guadagnato si è fatto il proprio interesse ed ha taciuto eventuali problemi ai più, che tanto erano specializzati, e manco si sono accorti che vedendo il quadro di un pezzo solo ci avrebbero trovato l’inghippo, un peggioramento più grande del miglioramento.

    Qualcuno aveva guadagnato, altri erano precari, altri a tempo determinato, avevano trasformato in caste la società. Avevano reintrodotto il feudalesimo aveva no reintrodotto la guerra il caos, solo che anzi che esservi feudi vi erano aziende, competizione, gruppi criminali, famiglie, partiti, logge, sette.

    5

    Intanto c’era da ripagare il debito contratto dal dover ripagare l’interesse alla banca che aveva prestato i soldi allo stato per finanziare la ricerca, debito sul debito. Un’interesse che nel tempo superava l’aumento di valore reale che tanto non vi sarebbe stato nessuno che avrebbe potuto calcolarlo, interessi fasulli di numeri e carta, interessi di numeri e carta che di per se stessi erano un costo, perchè consumavano energia a spostarli, a calcolarli. Interessi che non sarebbero stati mai ripagati, mentre alcuni stavano sempre peggio altri sempre meglio, anzi che differenziare l’energia avevano differenziato il potere, invece l’energia era sempre calda, il caldo in più finiva nei fiumi ed in atmosfera anzichè essere incanalato e sfruttato, l’energia arrivava si usava poco e si disperdeva, diveniva un problema anzichè l’aiuto dal cielo, quel che stava in circuiti separati invece erano le persone. Ridicolo eh? Insomma comunque quest’energia venisse prodotta se ne usava la metà, se arrivava dal sole se ne usava la metà. Pensateci qualunque cosa interponiate tra voi ed il sole ha un lato più caldo ed uno più freddo, e sui due lati vi sono zone più o meno calde o più o meno fredde a seconda della distanza dalla cosa che avete interposto. Dovevate sfruttare questa differenza (da un lato le cose si espandono per calore dall’altro si contraggono perchè sono meno scaldate, di mezzo c’è semplicemente uno strato a dividerle. Nel fotovoltaico si usa solo lo strato riscaldato come nel solare termico, mentre la parte in ombra manco la consideriamo, pensateci nel fotovoltaico anzichè mettere due pannelli uno sotto l’altro irragiandoli a turno così da mantenerli alla temperatura migliore ed usando il freddo anche, si utilizza un sistema che spreca il freddo per farli mantenere in temperatura, quando anche meglio si potrebbe sfruttare un solo pannello che al fotovoltaico combina l’effetto Seebeck. Metà delle differenze create dal sole se ne vanno disperse, metà delle energie nelle nostre caldaie se ne vanno disperse, gli esperti vi avevano detto che calcolavano per avvicinarsi al 100% di efficienza invece sarebbero al massimo arrivati al 50% ed ancora mancava qualcosa, il tempo, avrebbero potuto rendersi conto che in realtà si avvicinavano all’1% ne al 100 ne al 50. Anche gli esperti erano stati e si erano convinti di cose sbagliate, erano in pochi poche idee. E c’era chi parlava di sovrapopolazione.

    Avevano introdotto un sistema goffo pesantissimo macchinoso, imprevedibile, dilatato nel tempo e che si confrontava con l’imprevedibilità del nostro Universo, della nostra Terra, con la loro complessità, vi avevano garantito che specializzavano, fino a farvi scegliere un percorso di specializzazione preciso dall’infanzia quasi, perchè così potevano alcolare tutto con precisione, poi non importa se lo stesso sistema prevedeva criminalità falsificazioni interessi individuali errori involontari errori mascherati, poi fa niente se manco sapevano di cosa fosse fatto l’Universo e di quanto infiniti fossero i quanti, nell’infinito e nell’infinitesimo.

    Vi avevano garantito, avete scelto e siete stati indotti a credere, non avete controllato perchè neanche sapevate più come fare, neanche potevate, siete finiti nella discesa sempre più ripida, verso il baratro.

    Attenti, ogni cosa che fate, tutto il tempo che passa è politica, è scelta, più o meno sbrigativa, è arbitrio, sforzate un po più il vostro pensiero prima, prima che dobbiate sforzare pensiero e fisico dopo per ottenere ben poco ed in pochi, e magari neanche vi piacciono molto gli altri di voi che anno cosi, meglio sforzarsi prima ed essere di più… più teste sono meglio di una, tre più di due, 10 miliardi più di 7 miliardi.

    Diciamoci tutti ma quante cazzate abbiamo fatto, quando ci parliamo facciamoci notare queste cose, cooperiamo. Non facciamoci la guerra…

  • meganeskey

 

 

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