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Now We Know: Economic Inequality Is A Malady — Not A Cure

Economy Memo Pad Politics

Now We Know: Economic Inequality Is A Malady — Not A Cure

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It has been a long, long time since Americans accepted the advice of a French intellectual about anything important, let alone the future of democracy and the economy. But the furor over Thomas Piketty’s stunning bestseller, Capital in the 21st Century – and especially the outraged reaction from the Republican right – suggests that this fresh import from la belle France has struck an exposed nerve.

What Monsieur Piketty proves, with his massive data set and complex analytical tools, is something that many of us – including Pope Francis — have understood both intuitively and intellectually: namely that human society, both here and globally, has long been grossly inequitable and is steadily becoming more so, to our moral detriment.

What Piketty strongly suggests is that the structures of capitalism not only regenerate worsening inequality, but now drive us toward a system of economic peonage and political autocracy.

The underlying equation he derives is simple enough: r > g, meaning the return on capital (property, stock, and other forms of ownership) is consistently higher than economic growth. How much higher? Since the early 1800s, financiers and landowners have enjoyed returns of roughly five percent annually, while economic growth benefiting everyone has lagged, averaging closer to 1 or 2 percent. This formula has held fairly steady across time and space. While other respectable economists may dispute his methodology and even his conclusions, they cannot dismiss his conclusions.

As a work of history and social science, Capital in the 21st Century outlines a fundamental issue while providing little in policy terms. Piketty mildly suggests that nations might someday cooperate in a progressive and global taxation of capital gains, with shared proceeds. There isn’t much reason to hope for any such happy solution. But then it isn’t up to Piketty to solve the problem.

He has already done America and the world a profound service by demolishing the enormous shibboleth that has long stood as an obstacle to almost every attempt at economic reform, from raising the minimum wage to restoring progressive taxation: Only if we coddle the very wealthy – and protect them from taxation and regulation — can we hope to restore growth, employment, and prosperity. Only if we meekly accept the revolting displays of power and consumption by the very fortunate few can we expect them to bestow any blessing, however small, on the toiling many.

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Joe Conason

A highly experienced journalist, author and editor, Joe Conason is the editor-in-chief of The National Memo, founded in July 2011. He was formerly the executive editor of the New York Observer, where he wrote a popular political column for many years. His columns are distributed by Creators Syndicate and his reporting and writing have appeared in many publications around the world, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, The New Yorker, The New Republic, The Nation, and Harpers. Since November 2006, he has served as editor of The Investigative Fund, a nonprofit journalism center, where he has assigned and edited dozens of award-winning articles and broadcasts. He is also the author of two New York Times bestselling books, The Hunting of the President (St. Martins Press, 2000) and Big Lies: The Right-Wing Propaganda Machine and How It Distorts the Truth (St. Martins Press, 2003). Currently he is working on a new book about former President Bill Clinton's life and work since leaving the White House in 2001. He is a frequent guest on radio and television, including MSNBC's Morning Joe, and lives in New York City with his wife and two children.

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84 Comments

  1. CripesAmighty April 26, 2014

    For the rich and the right, rampant inequality is a feature not a bug. It provides them with the political and economic means to continue to extract ever-greater mountains of work and wealth from the population. By translating wealth into political power, today’s plutocrats ensure a disempowered and desperate citizenry, allowing them free reign in policy, and propelling a downward spiral on wages, so that they may expropriate more of the fruits of the labor of others.
    We can’t wait for the next generation to arrest this degenerate decline, and as the companion study demonstrating that policy no longer responds to any influence but money indicates, marching chanting and voting is past it’s sell-by date. What is required is strategic, asymmetric, kinetic class war.

    Reply
    1. FredAppell April 26, 2014

      The only problem with “class war” is that right now most people are expending all their time and energy in just trying to survive. Those that are working have been reduced to a type of enslavement by being forced to take wages they can’t reasonably live comfortably on.
      The wealthy have declared war on all of us and we’re quickly losing the one effective tool that we had in our arsenal, Democracy! The “Money is Everything” mantra is the dominate religion of the 21st century. Unfortunately for us, money is everything, we need it, they have it and we’re screwed.

      Reply
      1. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

        The show aint over ’til the fat lady sings but it sure sounds like she’s tuning up,doesn’t it?

        Reply
        1. FredAppell April 26, 2014

          It definitely does, the rich are destroying this country just as they tried before we had the New Deal.

          Reply
          1. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            It would be a good time for a new FDR personality to surface.
            By the way,I hope you have been well and resolved your issue with that “secretive” group we discussed previously.

            Reply
          2. FredAppell April 26, 2014

            I hope your well also. And yes, I did resolve it. I watched a very interesting program on secret societies. It dispelled some of the myths regarding their organization but it also confirmed some of the negatives that you and I discussed. I’m no longer interested in joining them.

            Reply
          3. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            Glad to hear it Fred.I can’t recall what we said verbatim,but I think the upshot was that the positives of the group did not outweigh the negatives.There is never a “just because” reason for secrecy.

            Reply
          4. FredAppell April 26, 2014

            They built this nation, for it’s worth, I don’t know if now we’re seeing the consequences of that or if we strayed away from the original intent. No one alive today can say for certain one way or the other. But there is a major negative, their secrets are theirs to keep and any betrayal has dire consequences. Death is a consideration. By the way, there are a lot of other organizations that are directly linked to them of which I wasn’t even aware of. Their bigger than anyone could have imagined.

            Reply
          5. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            Yes indeed! I have a book using the group name as its title,authored by H.Paul Jeffers that gives an account of an historic disappearance of an individual that confirms more or less that death is an option they employ.I would be willing to bet that they have been corrupted by unfettered capitalism as surely as anything else that has been and that they have gone astray from the honorable motives that existed more than two hundred years ago.

            Reply
          6. FredAppell April 26, 2014

            If someone had told me that 5 or 6 years ago I would have dismissed it as paranoia. Things certainly have changed with my thought process. It irks me a little that I could share the same fears with some folks from the right who can manage to find conspiracies around every corner but in an odd sort of way isn’t that what we’re striving for, that is, all of us to find a commonality and unite for the good of us all?
            I wrote down the author’s name that you provided above, later on I’ll do some research and see if maybe some of his papers were published on the internet.

            Reply
          7. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            As I’m sure you know,former Governor Jesse Ventura,certainly not a republican,does a bang up job of trying to uncover any number of issues that are kept secret and that we have questions about that go unanswered.I think he renders a service merely by shedding whatever light he can on these things that are kept from the public.It has become popular these days to accuse someone such as Ventura of being paranoid and seeing conspiracies everywhere,but I’m sure that you also know that just because one is paranoid does not mean that it isn’t justified.
            Certainly we have seen enough right wing whacko examples of ridiculous conspiracies where none exist.I truly wish that there was a sincere effort for both sides to find common ground,in fact it is imperative.Unfortunately,there are several conspicuous right wing individuals who have made it clear that their objective is to divide the electorate. By the way,that too is an old fascist tactic.

            Reply
          8. FredAppell April 26, 2014

            I do know. I didn’t vote for him because I live in Connecticut but he did say a lot of things that made sense, he definitely wasn’t a party guy…that’s for sure. After awhile though I stopped listening to him because I didn’t want to believe his warnings. He did however earn some credibility with me when he moved out of the country. For some people, a move like that would have ruined his integrity in their eyes, it had the opposite effect for me, he said he was moving out and he was very candid about why and he did move out. That’s integrity. It’s also worth noting that Jesse was a navy seal in Vietnam long before the wrestling and political career. It’s too bad that Ted Nugent won’t leave. We’ll take Jesse, Ted can become someone else’s problem.

            Reply
          9. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            Absolutely.I think he is a moral,straight,stand up kind of man.I know I would enjoy his company and his friendship as well.

            Reply
      2. CripesAmighty April 26, 2014

        That is the conundrum, ain’t it?

        Reply
        1. FredAppell April 26, 2014

          It certainly is, I agree with everything you said except look how far we’ve been pushed already, and we take just it again and again. Occupy Wall St. was supposed to be our big declaration and yet they were made to look like criminals and malcontents by our media. I expected that of FOX but not the rest of the media. Right then and there is when I realized that our own media is also selling out the people for the almighty dollar. We’re running out of places to turn to.

          Reply
          1. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            The major media has lied to us about every war the U.S. has been involved in since Vietnam.Notice that there are no more independent journalists allowed at the front lines anymore.All news reporters are imbedded.That is to make sure that the people don’t get the honest picture anymore like we used to when Uncle Walty was reporting.Consider when was the last time you watched the news and saw caskets of U.S.dead soldiers being unloaded from a plane.

            Reply
          2. FredAppell April 26, 2014

            Mark, you can’t possibly be insinuating that people die in war! I thought war was much more sanitary these days. Isn’t that what the powers that be keep telling us? Come to think of it, you’re right, I haven’t seen any coverage of caskets being loaded or unloaded at all. Let’s face it, it’s a rich man’s war. We will never wipe out Al Qaeda, the Taliban or any other terrorist group for that matter. Whether we stay and continue to fight or leave, the terrorists will still be there. Their ideology is too enticing for pissed off young men who have nothing to lose. What’s the old saying, you can defeat the man but you can’t defeat an idea or something to that effect. And it sure would be nice to have some independent reporting going on
            with out the spin but those days may be over as well.

            I’m sorry that I opened up with sarcasm but it’s the only mechanism I have to cope with all the b/s going on.

            Reply
          3. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            No need to apologize for sarcasm to me.I understand its many uses.If you were abusing it,you would know.The sophomoric types use sarcasm as a weapon.They won’t agree but for them sarcasm is the refuge of the insecure and those who do not have the strength of their own convictions.Your use does not fall into that category.
            I agree that it’s a rich mans’ war,too bad the rich bastards aren’t the ones fighting it.As for the terrorist ideology- There are those who employ terrorism because their circumstances have been reduced to the extent that they believe it is the only tool they have to fight back.On the other hand are the jihadists who may also feel thesameway but who,in reality,do have other means and opportunities to achieve their goals.As far as destroying terrorism goes,it is the same as racism.You can cut down the tree but the roots grow deep.Therefore only evolution can erase either one.
            Spinless news is a rare commodity these days.I would recommend some good sources of factual news.The first would be the Bill Moyers Report.Find it on-line as well as PBS on Sunday mornings.Second is the Charlie Rose Hour,also on PBS and Bloomberg Channel.Third is The Washington Spectator which Moyers recommended to me,it has news that you just are not going to hear about anywhere else and it is straight up and unbiased truth.
            Well my friend,I hope that helps a little.After all the talk about the secret group, I have today picked up the book again after many years in case I need to commiserate with you about the contents there-in.I must sign off for now.I am due for a long turn in my kitchen.I hope the balance of your weekend is pleasant.

            Reply
          4. FredAppell April 26, 2014

            Enjoy your meal buddy and thanks for the advice, I will follow through with. Have a weekend and we’ll talk soon.

            Reply
      3. Gene Roberts April 26, 2014

        FredAppell, you are not envious are you?

        Reply
        1. FredAppell April 26, 2014

          Are you kidding me? All my bills are paid, I’m not drowning in debt so what would I be envious about?
          For what it’s worth Gene, I’m not one of those millions of Americans that buys lottery tickets. But our economic system was supposed to be built on upward mobility, now that’s being taken away. I’m now making the same income that I made 23 years ago. If you find my comments to be envious, that’s your problem, not mine.

          Reply
      4. jnap April 28, 2014

        I agree with everything you wrote except that many people do not survive on what the earn and have to have food stamps, earned income credit and other government programs in order to survive. Take away those safety nets, as the Republicans are trying very hard to do, and watch the working class rise up.
        Maybe we should do away with all subsidies, including those to big business and see what happens.

        Reply
        1. FredAppell April 28, 2014

          Don’t I know it! I have two sisters who are both on some kind of assistance or another and it kills me to not be able to help either one of them. I’ve been
          lucky so far that I haven’t had to seek assistance, but I’m only one or two bad paychecks away from being there myself as are millions of us. The reason I didn’t initially point out what you have mentioned is because I was afraid of sounding redundant. Sometimes the more I say, the less it makes sense. 🙂

          The subsidies that big businesses have enjoyed have been packaged and sold to the American tax payers as essential to keep prices more affordable for us, some people buy that story but they fail to realize just who is paying for those subsidies…us! I truly believe that subsidies for the so-called job creators is nothing short of blackmail and bribery. Thanks for your input.

          Reply
    2. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

      One thing that the people must learn and accept is that neither political party is friendly to their hopes,dreams, or desires,much less their will.A thorough study of our foreign policy over the past forty years reveals an attitude held by elites in the corporate,industrial,financial,intelligence,and military sectors,that it is perfectly acceptable for the U.S. to pillage any other country’s resources with impunity and that those who resist this concept are to have their lives diminished,even to the point of forfeiture.
      Even those News entities that are perceived these days to provide unperverted reporting are and have been culpable in their failure to reveal the grand plan of global rule and subservience.
      What is further revealed is an attitude in government that it is not its responsibility to render aid to its citizens in times of natural disaster,as was the case during and after Katrina.This attitude is spreading to include no care for the people in any other regard besides that which keeps them working to provide constant profits.
      No matter who holds the post,the presidency has in effect become little more than a title and figurehead.Notice how many of the Bush policies continue to this day while we have been entertained with images of former presidents Papa Bush and Bill Clinton in jovial companionship.If the stink of that rat does not raise suspicion it is due to willful ignorance.
      I do not wish for violent confrontation but it may be inevitable if the people are intirely disenfranchised at the poles regardless of which way they lean.I pray that it is not too late for promotion and preservation of the people’s best interests through peaceful revolution.

      Reply
      1. ExRadioGuy15 April 26, 2014

        The False Equivalency argument is blatant and pathetic GOP/Libertarian Fascist propaganda, Mark…
        Stop it….you’re embarrassing yourself…
        If you’re a Republican, it’s also projection…

        Reply
        1. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

          Why don’t you go stick your head up your ass and fuck yourself.Your accusation of fascism is typically convoluted and everyone on this page who knows me,knows that I am a dedicated enemy of fascism.
          Only an absolutely uninformed fool would perceive it as projection.But if the shoe fits then feel free to wear it.

          Reply
          1. ExRadioGuy15 April 26, 2014

            Your response has been flagged and it perfectly proved my points, Mark….

            Reply
          2. Mark Forsyth April 26, 2014

            Flag away you jerk.I will be here when you are long gone.You also know what you can do with your unmitigated trollism.

            Reply
  2. Bill Thompson April 26, 2014

    But what can you do when 50% of the US population is driven by ideology as opposed to facts and science. Religious and social prejudices are the pathway to the uber wealth’s power and continued dominance. When anger, hate and ignorance supersede logic, Science and facts we find ourselves in the position we presently witness regarding our political leanings. Many of the most misfortunate members of our society continue to vote against their own best interests, they are simply being played, and will continue to point their fingers in the wrong direction. Oddly enough these are people in many cases that are highly educated. As an example a lifelong friend of mine who holds the number two position in the largest healthcare organization on Long Island and New York city is a tea party enthusiast. But when asked about specifics regarding recent Supreme Court rulings and other matters she is completely unaware. She is so wrapped up in the running of the hospital organization, spending upwards of 60 hours of week at work that National news has completely escaped her. In the end of a busy day she gets her news from newsclips from Fox, truly frightening.

    Reply
    1. FredAppell April 26, 2014

      Well said, they are being played. Their being controlled by a group that isn’t even religious nor remotely interested in a social contract. They’re users, their god Ayn Rand has told them to take all they can while they’re still alive. Funny how someone who was anti-civilization and preaching survival of the fittest also supported using the resources of that civilization for nothing but personal gain.

      Reply
      1. VulpineMac April 26, 2014

        Before you call Ayn Rand “their god”, you might be well off to read the novel which is used as their reference. It is quite clearly a social commentary and it doesn’t exactly put a pretty face on either side of the argument.

        Reply
        1. FredAppell April 26, 2014

          Would you be willing to clarify your last sentence a little more. I’m not sure of the construct you’re using, thanks!

          Reply
          1. VulpineMac April 26, 2014

            Quite simple really. Read the book and learn what it says for yourself.

            Reply
          2. FredAppell April 27, 2014

            I decided to take your advice by researching Rand a little closely. While I am in no financial condition to buy any of her books at the moment, I did find a couple of worthwhile links discussing her character and philosophies. Now I’m more confused than ever, not so much about her, but about the people that choose to idolize her. What I was most guilty of was generalizing those who follow her with those who may be following a different set of principles. The most interesting thing I found noteworthy was how she absolutely detested the modern libertarians. Rand was quoted as saying she could at least have a reasonable conversation with conservatives and progressives or communists to reach an agreement
            with them on some things but she thought that libertarians (her most ardent supporters) are the scum of the earth. I’ve simplified things a bit but I’m not done researching her yet. I do know that both progressives and conservatives found her to be repulsive, the thing that keeps nagging at me is how Libertarians can reconcile with her opinion of them. At any rate, thanks for challenging me, you forced me to see that this isn’t as black and white as I initially thought it is.

            Reply
          3. VulpineMac April 28, 2014

            Nothing ever is, Fred. NOTHING ever is.

            Reply
        2. Stuart51 April 26, 2014

          Likewise, ‘survival of the fittest’ was not ‘preached’ by Darwin; he observed & documented it, but felt to the extent that it might reflect the human condition, we had failed.

          Reply
  3. charleo1 April 26, 2014

    Doomed to eventually fail, for all but the monied aristocracy. That’s the long term prognosis for the U.S. economy, if we the people, cannot somehow find a way to win back our democracy, and rebalance the economy. The hour is already late, and the outcome uncertain. The power of money is so deeply entrenched in our governments at al levels. The bonds so seamless between elected officials, lobbyists, and powerful special interests, they may no longer be distinguished one from the other. The agenda of the monied elite has become the agenda of the government. And it’s only by the most ardent, and sustained efforts, near an upcoming election, that the agenda slightly turn toward the concerns of the majority. Then, irrespective of promises of diligent hard work on behalf of the most wonderful, hard working people on Earth, the American electorate. It’s back to business as usual. Carving out niches for this wealthy constituent. Politicians flying off to Aspen, or Las Vegas, to partake of the copious luxuries, while discuss the most effective ways in which they could empower those unseen, and unaccountable entities behind the throne. And the many ways those entities could best insure their present positions in Govt. It is a symbiotic relationship, exclusive in it’s membership. A club where the Middle Class is not welcome. It is, after all, considered in poor taste, to attend one’s own funeral. And as Presidential contender Mitt Romney remarked, “Such things need to be discussed in quite rooms.” Far from the noise of the clattering masses.

    Reply
  4. Gene Roberts April 26, 2014

    I really tire reading all the negative on both sides. It would be interesting to see just what each party really wants as an end. It is the fight as to how to get to the end that is dividing us.

    Reply
  5. Gene Roberts April 26, 2014

    As far as the rich. It is interesting how soo many who have very little will buy lottery tickets to get rich. So, being rich isn’t really the issue. But greed is found on both sides.

    Reply
    1. CripesAmighty April 26, 2014

      Hey, chances are better playing the lottery than working your ass off in this chutes and ladders economy, so, what the fuck? Why not?

      Reply
  6. lottopol April 26, 2014

    “..In free-market capitalism, capital generates income for the
    owners of the capital which in turn is used to create additional capital. This
    is very good. Sometimes, it can be actually too good. As capital continues to accumulate, its owners find it more and more difficult to deploy it
    efficiently. The business sector generally must interact with the household
    sector by selling goods and services or lending to them. When capital
    accumulates too rapidly, the productive capacity of the business sector can
    outpace the ability of the household sector to absorb the increasing
    production.

    The capitalists, or if you prefer, job creators use their increasing wealth and income to reinvest, thus increasing the productive capacity of the business they own. They also lend their accumulated wealth to other business as well as other entities after they have exhausted opportunities within business they own. As they seek to deploy ever more capital, excess factories, housing and shopping centers are built and more and
    more dubious loans are made. This is overinvestment. As one banker described the events leading up to 2008 – First the banks lent all they could to those who could pay them back and then they started to lend to those could not pay them back. As cash poured into banks in ever increasing amounts, caution was thrown to the wind. For a while consumers can use credit to buy more goods and services than their incomes can sustain. Ultimately, the overinvestment results
    in a financial crisis that causes unemployment, reductions in factory
    utilization and bankruptcies all of which reduce the value of investments.

    If the economy was suffering from accumulated chronic underinvestment, shifting income from the non-rich to the rich would make sense. Underinvestment would mean there was a shortage of shopping centers,
    hotels, housing and factories were operating at 100% of capacity but still not able to produce as many cars and other goods as people needed. It might not seem fair, but the quickest way to build up capital is to take income away from the middle class who have a high propensity to consume and give to the rich who have a propensity to save (and invest). Except for periods in the 1950s and 1960s and possibly the 1990’s when tax rates on the rich just happened to be high enough to prevent overinvestment, the economy has generally suffered from periodic overinvestment cycles.

    It is not just a coincidence that tax cuts for the rich have preceded both the 1929 and 2007 depressions. The Revenue acts of 1926 and 1928
    worked exactly as the Republican Congresses that pushed them through promised. The dramatic reductions in taxes on the upper income brackets and estates of the wealthy did indeed result in increases in savings and investment. However, overinvestment (by 1929 there were over 600 automobile manufacturing companies in the USA) caused the depression that made the rich, and most everyone else, ultimately
    much poorer.

    Since 1969 there has been a tremendous shift in the tax burdens away from the rich on onto the middle class. Corporate income tax receipts, whose incidence falls entirely on the owners of corporations, were 4%
    of GDP then and are now less than 1%. During that same period, payroll tax rates as percent of GDP have increased dramatically. The overinvestment problem caused by the reduction in taxes on the wealthy is exacerbated by the increased tax burden on the middle class. While overinvestment creates more factories, housing and shopping centers; higher payroll taxes reduces the purchasing power of middle-class consumers. …”
    http://seekingalpha.com/article/1543642

    Reply
    1. CripesAmighty April 26, 2014

      The central problem is that ‘overinvestment’ no longer goes into creating excess capacity in the real economy (the old supply side canard), but is absorbed in financialization–the creation of artificial ‘assets’ (derivatives) that the rich push around the Wallstreet speculation circle-jerk, inflating new bubbles until they pop. At which point everyone else is left holding the bag for the concomitant artificial liabilities, crashing the real economy.

      Reply
      1. lottopol April 26, 2014

        That has always been going on, with securitization making go on steroids, as I said:

        “..The capitalists, or if you prefer, job creators use their increasing wealth and income to reinvest, thus increasing the productive capacity of the business they own. They also lend their accumulated wealth to other business as well as other entities after they have exhausted opportunities within business they own. As they seek to deploy ever more capital, excess factories, housing and shopping centers are built and more and more dubious loans are made. This is overinvestment..

        ..It is not just a coincidence that tax cuts for the rich have
        preceded both the 1929 and 2007 depressions. The Revenue acts of 1926 and 1928
        worked exactly as the Republican Congresses that pushed them through promised.
        The dramatic reductions in taxes on the upper income brackets and estates of
        the wealthy did indeed result in increased savings and investment. However,
        overinvestment (by 1929 there were over 600 automobile manufacturing companies
        in the USA) caused the depression that made the rich, and most everyone else,
        ultimately much poorer.

        Since 1969 there has been a tremendous shift in the tax burdens away from
        the rich and onto the middle class. Corporate income tax receipts, whose
        incidence falls entirely on the owners of corporations, were 4% of GDP then and
        are now less than 1%. During that same period, payroll tax rates as percent of
        GDP have increased dramatically. The overinvestment problem caused by the
        reduction in taxes on the wealthy is exacerbated by the increased tax burden on
        the middle class. While overinvestment creates more factories, housing and
        shopping centers; higher payroll taxes reduces the purchasing power of
        middle-class consumers..”
        http://seekingalpha.com/article/1543642

        Reply
      2. Allan Richardson April 26, 2014

        It’s the old Monopoly board game but with real money. With OUR money. Eventually there is no place left on the board to land without losing money, and no place to land where any new investment is possible. They’ve even bought up Free Parking, not to mention Jail!

        J. P. Morgan would be laughing at us in Hell.

        Reply
  7. Leftout April 26, 2014

    The us government takes in $4 trillion approx yearly in revenue, from all sources. If This is distributed equally among 400,000,000 US citizens or not, everyone would have $10,000 in their pockets. The GDP is 17 trillion, if all of this was distributed among all we all would have approx 40k /yr in our pockets…this is welfare level. From whom is there left to borrow. Or perhaps we should not spend as much. Economics is simple.
    Is my math ok?

    Reply
    1. awakenaustin April 27, 2014

      No, your math isn’t okay. Children. Avg family 4 persons(?) Married couple with two children. Your figures: $160,000.00/year.
      GDP = total goods and services produced in a year. This does not measure wealth in a nation, nor account for capital, infrastructure, etc. It may indicate how well an economy is doing, but it doesn’t accurately reflect wealth. Although of course there is a correlation between GDP and the wealth of a nation.
      If Economics and finance were actually simple, I guess everyone would do it.
      Statistics isn’t simple either.

      Reply
      1. Leftout May 7, 2014

        Economics is done everyday in everyday families.
        It is 2.67 people per house, except in NYC where it is easy to fake families….personal observations.
        True the GDP is all productivity, but the distribution of all eligible income would mean approx. $26000/family….. still not enough to pay bills …is my point. If all of the rich became poor it would be miserable. who could we blame for being poor.
        I would rather work for my money and assure myself something….. than waiting for handouts.
        Perhaps give everyone an apportioned 50K /year as a starter and you must pay for all established necessities, formulated by me. and if you want more you must get off your butt and make it.

        Reply
        1. awakenaustin May 7, 2014

          Home economics is done every day in every home. Economics isn’t. Quit trying to change the terms of the discussion to support your previous position.

          GDP does not measure or represent wealth. The article was about the distribution of wealth and the growing inequality and its adverse impacts.
          You apparently sought to dismantle a position supported by hundreds of pages of reported research and analysis with one silly in-apposite sentence about government revenues and GDP and incomes and you couldn’t even get your math correct. It still isn’t correct.
          Dividing GDP among the avg. 2.67 household is still $107,000 ~ per year.

          But hey, nobody but you is suggesting the distribution of GDP as a solution or even a faux solution. No one but you is talking about making the rich poor. You heard some GOP shill say this and you thought it cute. So you repeated it as if it actually means something which it doesn’t.
          It is your abysmal understanding of simple economics and finance which is responsible for you thinking this response of yours is somehow relevant to any effort at a reasoned discussion of the consequences of growing inequality.

          You certainly don’t lack in feelings of self-righteous innate superiority. If I believed the myths you believe I would be running down the stairs on Christmas expecting presents from Santa.

          Reply
          1. Leftout May 9, 2014

            As a family we deal with both home-economics and economics. Since we are printing money, why to start everyone off with a starter pkg, pay for want you want and make more if you want to. Is Christmas expectation any less real than running to the mail box from Uncle Sam Santa. What do you think is a good starter wage, salary, to be a base line and have everyone be satisfied…after all we would all spend it and people who are supplying services can make more….is that not what we have now.

            Reply
          2. awakenaustin May 12, 2014

            You are just being obtuse about the “economics” / “home economics” distinction.
            All governments print money. It is not the cutesy silly thing you pretend it is. The whole sentence is a ‘huh?’ moment.
            Uncle Sam Santa?
            I think, you may think, you are saying something here,but the spaces between the thoughts are enormous.
            The answer to your last statement is no.

            Reply
  8. RobertCHastings April 26, 2014

    Interesting that a Frenchman is getting more and better press than others who have saying the same thing for at least a generation, such as Gar Alperovitz and Noam Chomsky, while Robert Reich in the US has been saying the same thing since the Clinton administration.

    Reply
    1. browninghipower April 27, 2014

      You realize, that it’s always been difficult to be appreciated in your own homeland, right? Especially when for so long, the ‘Liberal’ Media has bent over backwards for the GOP.

      Reply
      1. RobertCHastings April 27, 2014

        So glad you enclosed the term “liberal” in quotation marks, indicating the term is used in error. There are SOOO many things voters and readers in this country would know if, indeed, the US press were liberal, such as where the jobs have gone, or wealth inequality due to upward redistribution, or all about ALEC, or the number of people in US prisons and how this country ranks compared to the rest of the world in prison population, or any one of a number of other issues that they DON’T know about because the media is NOT liberal.

        Reply
  9. joe schmo April 26, 2014

    Piketty is a Communist….plain and simple. He does not even have stats to back up his ideology. Look it up. I have always said that you all are pseudo Liberals. Your real agenda follows the theories of Karl Marx.

    ….and why should we think that France is an expert at running a Country. According to the German news magazine ‘Der Speigel’ the French are beginning to change their tune… Sounds eerily familiar.

    ‘Throughout the country, unemployment reaches new highs each month, factories are shut down daily, hundreds of thousands take to the streets to protest gay marriage, anti-immigration and the French are increasingly outraged over a barrage of new political scandals as the country hovers on the cusp of waning global relevance.’

    Reply
    1. Mark Forsyth April 27, 2014

      Boy have you got it wrong.A simple,honest,and thorough reading of the Wikipedia article on Nazi Propaganda Minister,Joseph Goebbels,will straighten out even a misbegotten troll in regard to the nature of the Nazi’s.The party that Hitler would come to control,in its early days realized the need to include the working class as well as the aristocrats.Pre-Hitler Germany was in fact very socially democratic.Hitlers fear of Bolshevism rising up in Germany caused him to exclude the socialist faction to the point that they were persecuted as badly as the Jews.The party name National Socialist German Workers Party was a colossal hoodwink to make the Nazis more appealing to the German working class.The Nazis typically abhorred Socialism,Communism,Capitalism as well as Intellectualism.Even those who are minimally educated know that World War Two was fought to rid the world of fascism,not socialism.
      Democracy by its very nature is inherently social and is one reason why a successful democracy has many “SOCIAL” programs.
      What you are promoting is nothing less than corporate fascism.Corporations in America don’t want to control the government,they want to BE the government.
      If you are promoting corporate fascism above the ideals of our Democratic Republic,then you are a damn stinking fascist and your stinking ass should be blown up.

      Reply
      1. joe schmo April 27, 2014

        LOL, really…..my family lived under 3 regimes. Two were deplorable. I think you can guess what they were. They had to escape Europe because of them. The one closest to what we have now was developed by Karl Marx.

        In case you weren’t aware, Conservatives are not against wealth creation, however; just like you they are also against the Corporations. So what constitutes a true democracy? Not the one you are throwing in our faces at the moment…… Social programs should be for the sick, female with children, elderly and a temporary fix until someone finds a job. That’s it!

        Reply
        1. Mark Forsyth April 27, 2014

          If you promote or favor the destruction of Social Programs then you are the enemy of all who depend on them.Conservatives are not showing themselves to be opposed to Corporations as you say.Name one who freely,openly,and publicly condemns them for their fascist pursuits.

          Reply
          1. joe schmo April 27, 2014

            I suppose you misunderstood….I didn’t say eliminate all of them, did I. That is the problem with you socialists, you think the way Conservatives think is in one direction. We are not allowed to think similar but different than you because your Man does not want that. Divide and conquer. If you went onto different Conservative sites you would see that the majority of the Conservative PEOPLE don’t like the Corporations. The representatives whom I believe you are referring to are the RINO’s in the party. Those are the ones that the Conservatives wish to vote out….and I might add, our side is not the only one who is in the deep pockets of corporations:)

            Reply
          2. Mark Forsyth April 27, 2014

            Joe,I don’t for a minute think that Conservatives or the GOP are the only ones with corporate relationships.I know that there are Democrats that don’t condemn corporate governmental influence because they benefit from it one way or another. It is because I believe that the Corporations pose a fascist threat that I want to see a purge of politicians who have allowed themselves to be unduly influenced and legislation that prohibits current or past corporate officers from holding high office.
            While I am indeed a dedicated socialist,I tow no party line and though I voted for him,Obama is not my man and I do not blindly defend him at every turn.There are instances when I have found him to be a major disappointment but I would still rather have him in office than Bush or Romney or any Koch sponsored candidate. I also favor the formation of a viable third party but I will not support the Tea Party or Libertarians.

            Reply
          3. joe schmo April 27, 2014

            Unfortunately, that will be hard to do, that is, purge politicians who have allowed themselves to be unduly influenced by Corps. I believe many Conservatives including myself would also agree. We feel the Corporations have overstepped their bounds, yet we also believe that outsourcing has created a huge problem for the US.

            We Conservatives felt Bush did a terrible job and we believed him to be too Liberal. Romney never got much of a chance and wasn’t strong enough to put his foot down. However, I still believe a man with some business background would be an advantage for the Country. Diplomacy is an important at the home front as well as internationally.

            As for the Koch’s. Seems they are the Liberal target. I see no one else in sight. We won’t even go into that on your side….Gates, Buffet, Soros, Zuckenberg, Hollywood Elite, Oprah and the list goes on and on. Too many to mention. But that’s OK you can keep bashing them. Doesn’t change a thing. At least we have at least one ‘uber’ rich who gives to the the Conservative cause. You have a whole schloo.

            If you are an admitted ‘socialist’ then perhaps you feel that Obama hasn’t done enough. Communism is a horrible regime. Of course you have lots of government, but you also have no rights or freedom… You can dislike the TP or Libers all you want, but I would take them over Communism any time. In my opinion, that political regime is the scourge of the earth. That’s OK you can have it. Thankfully, this is still a free Country for a while longer…..

            Reply
          4. Mark Forsyth April 28, 2014

            I didn’t say that I favor Communism.Being a Socialist does not make me a communist.You might want to reread what I’ve said about Democracy.I don’t favor communism any more than fascism.They are both totalitarian and don’t kid yourself into thinking that you desire a free country any more than I do. If you want to get into what is or isn’t a scourge then you should also include unregulated capitalism.It will always lead to corporate fascism.For more than a hundred years,corporations have tried to take over the government,not to control it but rather to be the government.Any true American would oppose that as it is anathema to government that is OF,FOR and BY THE PEOPLE..Oh,and don’t think that I am entirely liberal either.I am blue collar all the way and I still know how to kick ass.

            Reply
          5. joe schmo April 28, 2014

            OF, FOR and BY THE PEOPLE….Hmmmm…Keep that spirit up because I think that will be the only thing that saves us in the long run. Right now it is OF, FOR and BY THE GOVERNMENT. Just remember…how much government do you want infringing in your life?

            Reply
        2. browninghipower April 28, 2014

          Too bad you didn’t stay there.

          Reply
    2. browninghipower April 27, 2014

      Well, as you so demonstrably with your ignorant rant, please remain in the sewage of feckless intellectual denial and foggy bliss. Just where do you get this shit? I have to ask, have you read Piketty’s tome? Did you even bother to read Conason’s article? Or did you just have a drizzly mind shit and cut and paste your post? Please, sir, get help before you hurt yourself.

      Reply
      1. joe schmo April 27, 2014

        ‘Intellectual denial.’ That’s a good one. As usual you have no rebuff other than to cuss at me. Seems I struck a nerve.

        I am all to well aware of Communism. My parents escaped from it. I grew up with family in Eastern Europe. I visited Eastern Europe as a child. My parents talked about the politics of Eastern Europe quite often. Sooooo, if you feel like being at an equal but poor level with everyone else, feel suppressed at your every move, are afraid for your life because you opened your mouth or tryed to escape, want to stand in line for food, not own your home, drive dilapidated old cars, head back to the dark ages, have no free enterprise, no innovation and have the government own everything but your soul. Fine, have your way. Enjoy government healthcare and get paid the same as everyone else working an 8-5 job. I know allll to well what it’s all about. You have no idea what you are wishing for. As you well know extremism does not just stop it just keeps getting worse….until something or someone comes along to break it.

        Actually, I did read the article and I think it is disgusting.

        Reply
        1. browninghipower April 28, 2014

          Well, despite your pitiable whining and sad story, you’re still an idiot and you still have no fucking idea what you’re talking about. my grandparents escaped Communism as well and yet they never stopped hating the inequality bullshit and discrimination foisted upon them by those glorious capitalists. All they ever wanted was a fair shot. You, sir, are still an idiot…and I have no problem pointing that out to you. Pinketty is not a communist just because he proves that today’s plutocracy and capitalism is destroying American’s economy because their avarice is killing GDP. JUST WHAT IS COMMUNIST ABOUT THAT YOU JERK? Sheesh, your ignorance is appalling!!!!!!

          Reply
          1. joe schmo April 28, 2014

            Pitiable whining? LOL, what a sad state of affairs. Don’t think I was whining. ‘Glorius Capitalists?’ Why did they even bother. Maybe they should have returned if it was that bad. My family had quite different circumstances. My father came over to Canada as an indentured servant. He shoveled cow shit for a dairyman and then worked as a butler for a wealthy man. Yet he persevered and took classes in electronics at night, eventually landing him the opportunity to go to America and work at either Hewlett Packard or Stanford. He ended up at HP. I really feel fate had little to do with this it was his DETERMINATION to succeed and the right choices he made. In Europe he worked as a waiter and a coal miner. So don’t give me that BULLSHIT about how unfair Capitalism was to your grandparents.

            Now I get it. Many of you have stated the same thing. Downtrodden and unlucky some how in life. The victims of a ‘laissez faire’ run amuck that unjustly devoured yours (or your families) hopes and dreams with an impecunious hand. In their neediness they resorted back to the palliation of government. The very thing they abhorred, they rebounded back to. The suppressive hand of government in a now free society. Sad, Sad, Sad.

            Having taught in a very diverse public institution. I know this lack of confidence very well because many of my students did not feel comfortable enough in themselves to move out of the poor situation they were in. It really didn’t matter how much I tried to convince them. What made matters worse was the fact that the then President of the college didn’t feel they would either and he strived to eliminate classes that would take these students to higher institutions. He wanted to implement vocational classes. At one point in my life, I actually had fallen prey to that same weakness, but somehow I was determined to make something out of my life regardless of what my family had faced.

            I’m sorry that your family did not have a fair shot. Hopefully you got yours. It would surprise you how many Conservatives would agree with you in regards to Corps and outsourcing. Unfortunately our media pits us against each other while your side tries to destroy anything that was once free.

            I wish you well, sounds like you are quite young and I have outlived you by one generation. I feel sorry that you are not and will not live the life that our generation once enjoyed. I am not going to call you names because I feel sorry for you. Good Luck. Your side is so corrupt and you have your head in the clouds. Maybe one day you will wake up. One day, after it is too late.

            Reply
          2. browninghipower April 29, 2014

            You’re still shoveling shit. Please, go away or go back and finish elementary school. And don’t try to tell me you attended college.

            Reply
          3. joe schmo April 30, 2014

            Knowledge is power:) I have a master’s….. good try!

            “Governments don’t want a population capable of
            critical thinking. They want obedient people just smart enough to run the machines and just dumb enough to passively accept their situation.” –George Carlin

            I will slither away when I fee like it. Still a free country and we still have a 1st Amendment. For now.

            Reply
          4. browninghipower April 30, 2014

            My pal, George Carlin was an avowed anarchist. He was also very smart and a free thinker, unlike you. Of course you can remain here. But you’re still shoveling ignorant shit. And your Masters? What matchbook University did you receive that from because they sure missed the mark. Another Fox moron. Buh Bye…

            Reply
          5. joe schmo May 1, 2014

            Your pal? I guess we can agree on the fact that we both liked Carlin’s humor. I am more like him than you think:) Believe it or not I think Liberals and Conservatives can always find common ground somewhere, you just choose not to see it…

            Batchelors well know school in California and Masters, well known private school in California. No, no mark missed, there were some very Liberal courses. Because I was ingrained with Conservative values, I did not get brainwashed. I actually had a very Communist History professor. I just ignored the rhetoric.

            No Fox moron, listen to many sources including yours.

            Reply
        2. jnap May 7, 2014

          Thanks for showing what 30 years of Republican conservative
          policy has done to the middle class and this country at large. Socialism such
          as “Social” Security and Medicare; the ability of all Americans to
          get and maintain health insurance, regardless of current health status, and
          without fear of it being cancelled because of an illness is absolutely part of
          a social agenda but it is not communism. I too have first hand knowledge of
          what it is like to live in a communist society and to equate the social program
          we have in this country and the Affordable Care Act with communism is
          ludicrous. Your assertions are sophomoric, at best, and border on being
          ridicules.

          I’ll bet you are one of those small business people that has achieved a certain
          degree of success and therefore think you have all of the answers and that
          those that do not reach your level of success are either lazy or stupid.

          Have you had this superiority complex very long?

          Reply
          1. joe schmo May 8, 2014

            Socialism is the by word here. Our medical situation was far from perfect. Where the old one failed the new one will be a complete and utter catastrophe.

            It really surprises me how many Liberals on this site actually came from Communism and they are still somehow Communists. I guess it figures because I have a cousin in Europe who is like that. My Dad came from Communism yet loathes it. My opinion is not juvenile or ridiculous.

            Honestly, I know how socialized medicine works because we have family members who were Drs. in Europe. They opened a private clinic so that they could give their patients quality care…..and Obamacare is not even close to what the European system is like. You cannot choose your Dr., the premiums are outrageous as are the deductibles. If you have money most likely you can pay for better care. I believe a lot of people will not get the care they need unless they can pay for it outright. Good luck with Obamacare.

            So the fault of everything with regard to the middle class lies solely with the Republicans. Gee, where did you get that moronic notion….hmmmm MSNBC? Wouldn’t have to do with nearly 3 decades of Liberal reign would it?

            I would like to use Detroit as an example:

            Detroit was once one of the world’s great cities. It was the 4th largest metropolis in America, jobs were plentiful because of the auto industry, and Motown even kept it on the cutting edge musically.

            Unfortunately, from 1962 until the present day, the mayor of Detroit has been a Democrat.

            The result?

            Detroit’s population has dropped from 1.8 million to just over 700,000, the unemployment rate is over 50% if you count the people who’ve given up on finding jobs, property values have dropped so much you can buy homes in the crime-ridden city for $500, and Detroit has gone bankrupt.

            How did Democrats kill one of the most prosperous cities in America? With the same sort of unfettered liberalism that Democrats like Barack Obama, Harry Reid, and Nancy Pelosi want to foist on the rest of the nation.

            1) Unions crippled the auto industry: The Big 3 automakers could afford unions when they practically had a monopoly on auto production in the United States. However, once they started facing real competition from overseas, the unions made them less and less competitive. The unions forced the companies to pay out more than market value for their workers, put stifling work rules in place that made flexibility and innovation difficult, and created generous pension plans that are proving to be unsustainable. This wouldn’t have been possible without a symbiotic relationship between the unions and the Democrats in government who tied the hands of the Big 3 automakers and simply wouldn’t allow them to get rid of the unions that were slowly strangling them to death. Eventually because of the unions, the Big 3 automakers had to deal with significantly larger costs per car than their overseas competitors and they took it out of the only place they could: the cars. As the quality of their products dropped, their competitors took an ever larger share of their market, and there were fewer jobs to go around. If you want to know why the “Motor City” is up on cinder blocks in Michigan’s front yard, this is where it started.

            2) White citizens were demonized until they left: Detroit was a heavily segregated city and in 1967, there were black riots. After that, white flight to the suburbs began. This was dramatically exacerbated when Coleman Young became Detroit’s first black mayor in 1972. Young was cut from the same cloth as men like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, but unlike the two of them, he actually had power. Young systematically drove white government employees out of their jobs so they could be replaced by blacks, was hostile to the white suburbs, and was generally perceived as anti-white. Naturally, a lot of white people just left, which reduced the population and significantly cut into the tax base. Today, Detroit is a 7.9% white city, and if he were alive and kicking, that would probably suit Coleman Young just fine. (AND YOU SAY YOU HAVE NO PREJUDICE ON YOUR SIDE)

            3) Out-of-control crime helped drive much of the black middle class out of the city: Ever heard of “Devil’s Night?” It’s the night before Halloween and in Detroit, fires are set all over the city. Combine the sort of criminal mentality that produces an unofficial “holiday” like that with a sky high unemployment rate and Draconian laws designed to make it difficult for law abiding citizens to arm themselves, and it’s not a surprise that crime is a problem in Detroit. However, the issue goes much deeper than that. In case you haven’t noticed, in a conflict between a cop and a criminal, the hearts of liberals almost always seem to bleed for the thug. Combine that with the liberal tendency, when money gets tight, to cut essential programs instead of their perks and the goodies they hand out to their supporters, and you end up with a police department that is both dramatically underfunded and completely incompetent.

            4) Reckless government spending bankrupted the city: Detroit’s tax base has been plunging like an anvil dropped into the Marianas Trench and so, in true liberal fashion, liberals have raised taxes to make up for it instead of cutting spending. “The city’s per-capita tax burden is the highest in Michigan. Detroit has the country’s highest property taxes on homes, the top commercial property tax and the second-highest industrial property tax.” Unfortunately for Detroit, you can’t get blood from a stone. As jobs and wealth fled the city, there was simply less cash available for big government programs, pensions, and the incredibly generous, but almost completely unfunded union health care program. It’s fantastic that the city paid “80 percent to 100 percent of retirees’ medical costs,” but 99.6% of those costs were unfunded. As Obamacare supporters should have learned by now, it’s a lot easier for politicians to make big promises about what they’re going to give you than it is to back them up in the real world.

            5) The government is completely incompetent: Ever notice that the bigger government seems to get, the less it does anything well? Citizens of Detroit could tell you all about that. The school system is horrible, which explains why a staggering 47% of the population is illiterate. In addition, 40% of the street lights don’t work, only about 1/3 of the ambulances are running, and 2/3 of the parks have been closed since 2008. Just to give you an idea of its priorities, an independent report in 2012 suggested the city fire 80% of the Water and Sewage Department including a horseshoer” that it has on staff even though it has NO HORSES.. How did the union respond to that report? “They don’t have enough people as it is right now. They are just dreaming to think they can operate that plant with less.” Detroit may not have enough police, ambulances, or competent teachers, but if you ever need a horseshoe in the Motor City, they’ve got you covered.

            Yes, my friend this will become our world if you don’t start sharing….Sad but true:)

            Oh and it would surprise you….We are poor Conservatives never been on welfare, barely making it but somehow we hold onto the American Dream.

            Reply
    3. jnap May 7, 2014

      I guess you think you have this all figured out but you are indeed very wrong. While I would agree that many people become successful through hard work once they achieve a certain wealth they have all of the odds in their favor. They can invest in various things including the stock market because they have the excess funds to do it. They can donate to political parties and greatly influence those that would represent them. They can, through this process, get laws changed that help their business and achieve even greater wealth. They can stop improvements in wages and benefits to their employees and constantly threaten them with layoffs and firings. They can stash their money in offshore tax havens and starve all levels of government necessary funding to maintain all of the infrastructure and safety nets. All of this amplifies their power while reducing that of the middle and lower class.
      Look at the facts, the middle class is going away while the lower class continues to expand.
      There is a tipping point where the middle class has had enough, when they can no longer maintain even a basic standard of living and I think we are close to that point.
      Workers need to rise up and demand a fair piece of the pie.

      Reply
      1. joe schmo May 8, 2014

        Of course they have all the odds in their favor and why shouldn’t they have. Their success is something they worked hard to achieve. Why should you or I take that away from them. Why do you think you deserve their money? You don’t.

        We are low middle class Conservatives do you think I want to take the money away from someone who knows how to make it and make it work for them as well. Of course not, they earned it and they can do whatever the hell they want with that money. That always was the AMERICAN DREAM IN ACTION and should remain that way.

        What changed. The Liberals decided they deserved a piece of the pie. Bullshit, you don’t deserve a single piece of it.

        The middle class is going away because of the Liberals union and the taxes that are being infringed on companies right and left.

        Thanks to your Unions we have this:

        http://youngcons.com/29-mindblowing-photos-that-show-you-how-badly-liberalism-has-ruined-detroit/

        ‘The biggest problem with modern liberalism is that it has devolved into little more than childlike emotionalism applied to adult issues. A liberal picks which policies to support based on whether they make him feel “nice” or “mean” and then he declares a policy to be a moral imperative based on his emotional reaction to it. There’s no consideration put into whether the cost of a program is worth the benefits provided or whether the policy ultimately benefits more people than it harms; there’s just a wild lurch based on feelings. Unfortunately for liberals, governing in that fashion is not sustainable over the long haul and leads to the sort of disasters we’ve recently seen in Greece and Detroit.’

        If you check out a comparison of Red to Blue states with regard to job generation and tax breaks the Blue states with their heavy on the Union lose every time. The Red states with Conservative Governors and less unionization win every time.

        You can read the article here. This article is an excellent example of how Liberal ideology ruins business:
        http://www.thelimbaughletter.com/thelimbaughletter/201303?pg=12#pg12

        Reply
        1. jnap May 8, 2014

          Maybe you like living in an oligarchy ruled society but I don’t. What the hell good is a country where 1% own almost everything and the 99% struggle. Where roads and schools are lacking basic funding 20% lack basic health care and the rich move their money overseas.
          I’ll tell you whats happens when it gets this imbalanced Head roll. maybe you would like your head cut off Marie Antoinette? Some people are tired of being told to eat cake. The rest of your post is so despicable that it doesn’t deserve further comment.

          Reply
          1. joe schmo May 9, 2014

            The truth hurts doesn’t it. Your kind has taxed and unionized business right outta here. Gee I wonder why they move out and move their money over seas. If I were rich, I certainly would do the same. This government still owns you because even though you have your business invested elsewhere your citizenship still requires that you pay the damned government man money. It’s criminal.

            Don’t even go there with me regarding schools. We have pumped millions upon dollars into our schools for decades, and globally, our students are mediocre at best. They cannot even compete globally. Common core, phewy. Makes me want to puke. Instead of rewarding and propelling forward students who excel, we hold them back with the dummies. No wonder they score substandard in reading, writing and rithmetic. No longer is their discipline, respect, responsibility and integrity.

            Corporations have run amuck and left the country because they can. Liberals try to hold them back and they sprint faster. Besides most of the 1% nowadays are Liberals. They don’t create jobs and make money off your backs.

            http://nikitas3.com/1083/why-are-so-many-rich-people-liberals/

            Guess the laugh is on you….

            Reply
          2. jnap May 10, 2014

            The laugh is on asshol#s like you. Republicans hate this country and want to turn it into an Oligarchy where only a small percent prosper and the rest just barely survive. You will be among the first that has their “let them eat cake” attitude severely adjusted by a very sharp cutting implement one day. It has taken the republicans 30 years to screw up this country and it will take many more to reverse their “I only care about myself” attitude
            Just to let you know that some of us are rich and we don’t send our money overseas, do pay people a living, decent wage and have no problem with health insurance and care for everyone. As for unions, you would be working as a slave with no benefits if it wasn’t for them.
            As for the rest of you BS post shove it up your posterior. Most of us don’t care what you think because you are only care about yourself. Karma has a way of catching up with people like you so enjoy the fruit of your hateful labor.

            Reply
          3. joe schmo May 11, 2014

            OMG, that is really a laugh. Republican’s hate this country. Seriously! Just how do we hate it? Because we want lower taxes, because we don’t want jobs outsourced, because we want a quota like we used to have, because we want to see the space program flourish, because we believe in small business, because we believe in innovation, because we say the ‘Pledge of Allegiance,’ because we love the terms Liberty and Patriotism, because we have faith in our military, because we believe in God and because we love the red, white and blue.

            FYI – we are not all that happy with Corps. Just so you know. We believe in Capitalism but not corruption in business. Just what do you think has driven companies out of the United States? Do me a favor and look it up.

            Oligarchy, why don’t you go in the bathroom and look in the mirror because that is what you are projecting. The very thing you think we are.

            30 years to screw up this country. LOL Wow! Just who has been the main Man in the White House the last 30 years and I wouldn’t count Bush a total Conservative because he was a psuedo Republican anyway. Alllll Liberals, yup and after 50 years of Liberals in Detroit and 20 something in California. Shaking head, not a good scenario. Your form of socialism has a suppressive agenda. Not unlike another one I know of.

            Take a gander if you dare:

            http://youngcons.com/29-mindblowing-photos-that-show-you-how-badly-liberalism-has-ruined-detroit/

            Unions started out with good intentions. However, like everything else time changes and corrupts organizations. Unions are no different.

            Karma has nothing to do with it. Time will tell. As for the ‘selfish’ part of your rant. We are not so much selfish. Just protecting our stake in this Country. You know, the one you no longer want to share with us.

            Reply
  10. Daniel Jones April 27, 2014

    Are YOU In The Know?
    Elitism has never worked as a long term concept.
    People proving themselves is one thing, but there has to be equal chances for all to do so, or the inevitable result is a class-based mentality that presages absolute destruction.
    It happened with Rome, with the nobility of France, and it’s happening now.
    NOW You Know.

    Reply
  11. Kurt CPI April 30, 2014

    While Piketty’s conclusions cannot be dismissed (and are, in fact – as Conason points out – pretty much what common sense would dictate), his solutions are, at the least, questionable. If the wealth is concentrated at the 0.1% elitist summit, that’s a shame – indeed a crime. But simply taking the money yielded by innovation, sweat, and risk and distributing to the population as a “base income”, along with other such policies, is challengeable as a cure. Like all economic issues, it’s not just about where the money goes, it’s far more about how it gets there. With the US behaving like a third-world economy (worse – not only raw materials, but industry and production), yet living like an industrialized nation, the rewards are being reaped accordingly.

    Reply
  12. jnap May 8, 2014

    The Republicans have you completely brainwashed. The Unions and the auto industry did just fine until some American cities feel all over themselves to get the Japanese to put some auto plants in their states. Never mind the fact that the Japanese auto industry was getting zero interest loans from the Japanese government. Never mind the fact the the American military was taking care of the Japanese security at American expense. The Japanese could build cars and electronic products because they didn’t have to worry about supporting a military. Further, they put high tariffs on American products and totally protected their workers. Additionally, many American companies were and are busy sending billions overseas to tax havens while the average American works for peanuts and 15 to 10 percent of American don’t even have basic health care.
    You sir are an idiot and like most conservatives only worried about what you can do to help the rich get richer.
    You are wrong and your opinions will join all of those in the dustbin of history.
    Ultimately liberals win because they care about people while conservative only care about money and themselves.

    Reply
  13. NUNU CALIGRIL October 25, 2016

    HOW I GOT CURED FROM HERPES VIRUS I was having MALADY DISEASE in 2012 and I have tried all I can to get cured but all to no avail, until i saw a post in a health forum about a herbal man is name is DR.EDEMEME who prepare herbal medication to cure all kind of diseases including MALADY DISEASE, at first i doubted if it was real but
    decided to give it a try, when i contact this Herbal Man at, edeharbelhome@gmail.com he prepared a MALADY Herbal Cure and sent it to me via courier service, when i received this herbal cure, he gave me step by directions on how to apply it, when i applied it as instructed, i was totally cured of this deadly disease within 7 days of usage, I am now free from the deadly disease called Malady, all thanks to DR.EDEMEME. Contact his for herbal cure, spell caster and malady disease at his email: edeharbelhome@gmail.com

    Reply
  14. NUNU CALIGRIL October 25, 2016

    ..HOW I GOT CURED FROM HERPES VIRUS I was having MALADY DISEASE in 2012
    and I have tried all I can to get cured but all to no avail, until i saw a post in a health forum about a herbal man is name is DR.EDEMEME who prepare herbal medication to cure all kind of diseases including MALADY DISEASE, at first i doubted if it was real but
    decided to give it a try, when i contact this Herbal Man at, edeharbelhome@gmail.com he prepared a MALADY Herbal Cure and sent it to me via courier service, when i received this herbal cure, he gave me step by directions on how to apply it, when i applied it as instructed, i was totally cured of this deadly disease within 7 days of usage, I am now free from the deadly disease called Malady, all thanks to DR.EDEMEME. Contact his for herbal cure, spell caster and malady disease at his email:
    edeharbelhome@gmail.com

    Reply

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