15 Mind-Blowing Facts About Wealth And Inequality In America


http://digg.com/d31XATl

http://www.businessinsider.com/us-wealth-inequality-2010-7#the-gap-between-the-top-001-and-everyone-else-hasnt-been-this-bad-since-the-roaring-twenties-1



22 Statistics That Prove The Middle Class Is Being Systematically Wiped Out Of Existence In America

http://www.businessinsider.com/22-statistics-that-prove-the-middle-class-is-being-systematically-wiped-out-of-existence-in-america-2010-7


an opinion from a friend...
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Two of the periods with the lowest tax rates on the highest brackets were the 20’s, leading up to the Great Depression of the 30’s and the 00’s, leading up to the current Great Recession. Contrariwise, the tax rates on the highest brackets during the 50’s and 60’s – when the economy was booming and the middle class swelled to its greatest extent in history – varied from 70-90% *or more* at various times during that period. All of those extra tax dollars were going to fund the greatest program of highway construction and similar infrastructure spending ever undertaken by any country since the Roman Empire, along with all those massive cold-war era military projects which, whatever else they did or didn’t do, created a lot of jobs.


Lest anyone suggest this is a coincidence, consider the relative stimulative effects of tax cuts for the wealthy vs. direct government spending. Give thousands of dollars to someone who doesn’t need it, and they are more than likely to invest it in various forms of highly speculative ways (the current markets in “bundled derivatives” are just the latest variation of this theme – the roaring 20’s were full of similar financial gimmickry). Give a hundred dollars to someone who really needs it, and they will spend it on food, clothes, fuel and other tangible goods and services. And since there are so many more people who need a hundred dollars than there are those to whom many thousands of dollars is still only chicken feed, all those purchases of tangible goods and services ripple out much further into the economy than the occasional consumption of a gold-plated (no, really) hamburger at some ritzy restaurant by some fat-cat wall-street type.

History has shown time and again that trickle-down economics just doesn’t work, because the money never trickles down. It gets caught up in a maelstrom of financial speculation with ever more dollars chasing one another in dubious forms of “investment” that doesn’t correspond to any real economic activity. “Trickle-up” policies are the only way to get us out of this recession and start growing the middle class once again. This is confirmed by the current threat of a double-dip recession: since the stimulus pushed by Obama and passed by Congress was too small and too much of it wasted on tax cuts, it is no wonder that as soon as it petered out, hiring slumped again and consumer confidence went back into the toilet. This *exactly* mirrors the history of New Deal spending: the Republicans resisted and kept it smaller than it should have been, and the Democrats were too chicken to stand up for their principles and so the economy stuttered and shuddered along until the ultimate “stimulus” program – World War II – broke out when unfettered deficit spending was finally perceived as what it had been all along, i.e. patriotic. Sure is a good thing we learned *that* lesson… Sigh.
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