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A Visual Reminder Of US Social Stratification

Tyler Durden's picture


While many watch the revolutions starting virtually on a daily basis in the "developing world", few are concerned that these have any chance of occurring in the United States: "our society is far more cohesive and far less stratified" the rebuttal logic goes. Is it? Over the past two years, the one social class that has received the most voluminous amount of opprobrium is the ubiquitously derogatory "bankster" which represents far more a wealth and income qualification, that a job description. Americans it appears are becoming increasingly sensitive to the stratification within our own society, even if on a subliminal level. And while we have repeatedly shown before in visual terms just how polarized US society is, it worth reminding every few months or so, that the US is rapidly becoming a banana republic not only in its approach to legislative and judicial matters (not to mention regulatory), but toward the distribution of income and wealth. Not that there is anything wrong with a stratified society: after all, that is the purest hallmark of a capitalist society. However when one introduces the basest elements of socialism (and, ostensibly, communism and fascism according to some) in its midst, then things get far more transparent and subjective. Below we once again bring to our readers attention, in easily digestible format, the dramatic schisms that continue to tear through the fabric of US society. And if there is anything that the revolutions in the Maghreb should have taught us by now is that extreme social polarization can only last for so long before a violent snapback restores equilibrium, usually through bloodshed and death.

Graphics courtesy of Mother Jones'

How Rich are the Superrich

A huge share of the nation's economic growth over the past 30 years has gone to the top one-hundredth of one percent, who now make an average of $27 million per household. The average income for the bottom 90 percent of us? $31,244.

Note: The 2007 data (the most current) doesn't reflect the impact of the housing market crash. In 2007, the bottom 60% of Americans had 65% of their net worth tied up in their homes. The top 1%, in contrast, had just 10%. The housing crisis has no doubt further swelled the share of total net worth held by the superrich.

Winners take it all

The superrich have grabbed the bulk of the past three decades' gains.

Out of Balance

A Harvard business prof and a behavioral economist recently asked more than 5,000 Americans how they thought wealth is distributed in the United States. Most thought that it’s more balanced than it actually is. Asked to choose their ideal distribution of wealth, 92% picked one that was even more equitable.

Who's Winning

For a healthy few, it's getting better all the time.


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Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:16 | 987204 prophet
prophet's picture

Equal Bitchez!

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:42 | 987270 Michael
Michael's picture

Free E-Book for ZH readers. Today Only.

Feudalism aka American Capitalism
by David F.

"The book presents overwhelming evidence that masquerading behind a democratic facade, an economic elite comprising less than 1% of the population is quietly and cunningly ruling America. Their immense wealth and power enable them to exercise so much control over the governmental process, that they effectively operate the country as a Feudal oligarchy. The book will leave little doubt that Government has been serving as a tool to subsidize and legitimize their exploitation of national and international resources, while legislative tax changes have left the nation with a Feudal wealth distribution system.

Presenting the evidence to substantiate this argument is not the main reason the book was written. Documenting the methods used by the elite to manipulate, control and exploit those with less money or power is the real purpose. At least 80% of the book is devoted to documenting their very effective methodology.

While it is evident that most people are somewhat aware that government appears to cater to corporations and influential lobby groups, the average taxpayer is practically oblivious to the extent to which the wealthiest 1% directly and purposely control and manipulate the lives and destinies of everyone else on the planet.

For those who have been brought up on a steady diet of the American Dream, but notice that today's reality and the American Dream seem to be growing further and further apart, it may be worth keeping in mind that if a frog is placed in a pan full of cold water, and the heat is turned up gradually enough, the frog will fail to sense the danger, and instead of jumping to safety, it could quite unknowingly allow itself to be cooked. In a similar fashion, the media continues to be used to desensitize and/or misinform the general public into repeatedly accepting domestic and foreign policies that are very often diametrically opposed to the best interest of the majority.

While the average American does have "a vague idea" that corporations (as well as the economic elite) use plenty of techniques for avoiding taxation; how many know that the proportion of Federal Income tax derived from Corporate income tax declined steadily from 32% in 1952; to 23% in 1960; to 17% in 1970; to a low of 9% in 1985? Without vital knowledge such as this, the public will remain in the dark as to what is really causing the decline in most Americans' standard of living. .

Although the growing deficit and the near trillion dollar banking industry losses will inevitably lead to continuing cuts in the standard of living for present and future generations, most Americans feel powerless to alter their deteriorating economic conditions, and simply take consolation in the belief that everyone else is also feeling the pinch."

Nothing could be further from the truth ! 

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:08 | 987370 jmc8888
jmc8888's picture

Good stuff :)

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:53 | 987626 Rusty Shorts
Rusty Shorts's picture

 - "don't ever tell anybody that they're not free "


Easy Rider explains why 'they' hate us.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:31 | 987691 asdasmos
asdasmos's picture





Takes a closer look at what brought about the financial meltdown.




Inside Job download links:

( Movie Site


Wait 45 secs then download it. I provided a couple in case it gets taken down. You only need to download one.


Awards & Nominations:


Winner          Directors Guild Award               Outstanding Achievement in Documentary
Winner          New York Film Critic Circle         Best Documentary
Winner          National Board of Review          Top 5 Documentaries of the Year
Winner          Writers Guild Awards                Best Documentary Screenplay

Nominated     Academy Awards - Oscar           Best Documentary

Nominated     Critics' Choice Award                Best Documentary
Nominated     Producers Guild Award              Best Documentary
Nominated     American Cinema Editors Award Best Documentary Edited
Nominated     COFCA Award                          Best Documentary
Nominated     CFCA Award                            Best Documentary
Nominated     Gotham Awards                       Best Documentary
Nominated     Sierra Award                           Best Documentary
Nominated     OFCS Award                           Best Documentary
Nominated     PFCS Award                            Best Documentary
Nominated     SDFCS Award                          Best Documentary
Nominated     Satellite Award                       Best Motion Picture, Documentary
Nominated     WAFCA Award                         Best Documentary

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 11:06 | 988330 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

Wouldn't be as big an issue if all Americans were better savers of their income, just like the Japanese, Germans, and Chinese.

The only way you add wealth is by consuming less than you earn.

Saving, saving, saving and investing.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 14:04 | 989286 OS2010
OS2010's picture

I agree.  Infectious Greed was/is not unique to the upper classes.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:30 | 987427 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

Many of these countries have one type of race in these prospective countries. We don't. Along with income disparity, we have racial differences.  Our societies are racially horizontally integrated now. In any civil unrest, could it make for trouble? You bet.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:45 | 987470 dick cheneys ghost
dick cheneys ghost's picture

Greece strikes set to resume.........

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:01 | 987516 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

I don't think Greek police or Army units would ever fire on Greek people. But maybe this time, things over there will get more serious.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:13 | 987678 Michael
Michael's picture

Things just keep getting better and better.

"PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- The school district plans to send out dismissal notices to every one of its 1,926 teachers, an unprecedented move that has union leaders up in arms.

In a letter sent out to all teachers Tuesday, Supt. Tom Brady wrote that on Thursday the Providence School Board will vote on a resolution to dismiss every teacher, effective the last day of school." 

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 07:48 | 987964 Zero Govt
Zero Govt's picture

who's going to miss State education? ...nobody.

who will miss the State if we rid ourselves of this parasitical institution? .....nobody.

You might miss a business going bankrupt but nobody misses your Govt going bankrupt. 

...Bring It On...

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 07:59 | 987968 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

"who will miss the State if we rid ourselves of this parasitical institution? .....nobody."

The state provides security against someone coming along and robbing rich people's houses. You may have guns, but I doubt the wealthy people in RI do.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:54 | 988081 Zero Govt
Zero Govt's picture

not only is the State the biggest robber (tax, fines, duties) in society but it's also the most violent, particularly internationally. Regards house protection the State police are useless. Note how many businesses, retail, clubs and communities now have private security because whatever the State does is 3rd rate crap.

Govt is the problem, not the solution

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 19:04 | 990736 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

I'm not saying government is exactly the solution, but having zero government would lead us back to a time a lot like the Old West.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 10:29 | 988173 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

bobbyrib fail

'The state provides security against someone coming along and robbing rich people's houses'


incorrect....but they investigate after the fact

same with cameras, they prevent nothing,only aid in solving the crime


i have never seen cops out providing security in any neighborhood as a preventive measure...ever

riding bicycles,handing out tickets to people with their dogs off leash or writing speeding tickets yes

but even that does not prevent offleash dogs or speeding

and thats a police presence.....what the hell kind of security is that?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 19:02 | 990728 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

After someone's car was broken into in my friend's neighborhood, cops were driving around looking for suspicious activity.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:43 | 987612 Troll Magnet
Troll Magnet's picture

our population is collectively too dumb to change however.  if anything, those in the bottom 90% will just turn on each other.  in fact, the bottom 90%ers are pitted against one another now.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:01 | 987970 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture


That's what is going on in Wisconsin. This is class warfare and the middle class has all but lost. The clock in ticking. I would add "American middle class" to the list of species in danger of going extinct.


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:07 | 988012 Oh regional Indian
Oh regional Indian's picture

Bobby, OT, here is a rib-tickler for all...



Wed, 02/23/2011 - 10:56 | 988279 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

The lefties' class warfare tactic has been used since socialism invaded American shores from Europe.  It's old, tired, and doesn't work anymore, but the mainstream media loves the drama it may/may not portray.

A bigger problem is that the U.S. Constitution is based on providing the opportunity to make one's self do well in life or to see one's self fail trying. We get opportunity that people in other societies don't enjoy (e.g. France, Libya, Egypt, Syria, Pakistan, Greece, Portugal, Spain, Venezuela, Cuba, Burma, North Korea, Iran).

The bigger problem is that government, driven by the ruling class' attempt to maintain their stanglehold on power (and stay in office), has traded away or disintegrated personal responsibility, legislated it away from this society.  Examples: TARP, FannieMae, FreddieMac, Planned Parenthood, Tim Geithner not paying his taxes and not going to jail, Goldman Sachs getting off easy, GM and Citibank receiving a get-out-of-bankruptcy-free card from the Obama Syndicate, WaMu and IndyMac, among others, failing without any regulatory intervention for unsafe/unsound banking practices.

However, personal responsibility is a glue that is integral to the American opportunity our founders laid out.  Without it, taking a risk to do better for one's self is not merited.  The payout odds don't match the risk taken, so the overall economy plateaus or even stagnates in the absence of innovation.  And, innovation is also driven by the risk/reward payoff behavior affected by personal responsibility.







Wed, 02/23/2011 - 04:33 | 987867 Tapeworm
Tapeworm's picture

I didn't junk you, but do we have to continue with the frog story?

 My girls are saddled with debts as I was. I am sixty, so they and their cohort can be really pissed ast me and mine. I never took a penny from any of the gombit rackets and did pay in gobs that I knew would never be paid back to me. I saved at rates of 20%-55% of my income to fund my business with some for retirement. Buying glod at sub 300 and slAg at sub 5 pisses off the employees that were lectured upon why I did it.

 Even so, the employees that have gotten a minimum of 12.5% of their gross as a contribution to their SEP IRA are getting killed from the bank bailout on the interest rate and the forward costs of redeeming worthless assets.


 I will have to shell out gobs to maintain my buildings this year. We are quite busy at this point, so there will be several that will be angry with me for having to take a larger portion of the company income to squander on roofs that are years past when they should have been replaced. My costs are launching at the same time that my employees are getting hit too.

 Twelve years of ragging on them about what was happening to them might get a grudging hearing. It is too late now.

 My daughters eventually hear me on just how screwed their age cohort is. That isn't quite here yet. I found out that my wife signed up a local hotel room for a baby shower thing for hers and mine first grandchild.

 The little bugger is going to be born with a debt of some ridiculously unpayable amount.

  I figured that out fifty years ago, and despise the goo more every year. My kids must overthrow the boomers and their tax consuming parents so that they and their progeny can have a chance at using their efforts for themselves and their urchins.

 The cumulative debt of the banksters and the "best generation" and the boomers is too much. It is time for a showdown and I am with the real workers of the younger generation.

 Feck the teecher's union of wisconsin. Goomint skools are the enemy of all that had to put up with their applications of "equality".

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 06:17 | 987925 zhandax
zhandax's picture

Nice try.  The entrepreneurs I know who post at 3:33 are concerned with something other than building maintenance.  Now go back to your bankster sponsors and tell them you failed.  Is Lloyd's favorite movie "Throw Momma from the Train"?  Yahoo is freely available for turning idiots against each other.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:30 | 988037 slewie the pi-rat
slewie the pi-rat's picture


flaggin and shaggin, with fagin.  a nod of salute to all who struggle in the personal realm for the realm of today.

check out this song:

YouTube - Paul Simon - The boy in the bubble

the cassette i'm holding says 1986.


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:41 | 987998 spinone
spinone's picture

Actually, the frog jumps out when it gets too hot.  I tried it.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:49 | 988058 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture

Michael thank you for the link.  This book will be brought up at the next "council of men" in my community.

Council of men = Drinking beer under the carport with the guys in the neighbourhood until the wives tell us to come home.


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:59 | 988093 majia
majia's picture

Great job David. I can see how much work went into this. I'm currently working on a book project titled, "Neo-feudalism." I do believe this type of work is publishable but you need to go through an academic publisher, especially a smaller one like Pluto press that is independent.

Thu, 02/24/2011 - 04:56 | 992138 techperson
techperson's picture

Publish it yourself.  The model is print on demand with Lightning Source (sub. of Ingram) and distribution through Amazon.  Use a 20% short discount.  Bookstores won't carry it, but they wouldn't anyway, and Amazon will sell it at 10% off list.  You don't have to inventory books.  See Survive The Great Inflation on Amazon.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 11:10 | 988348 FatFingered
FatFingered's picture

Frog soup, anyone?  Thanks Michael.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 13:14 | 988948 rlouis
rlouis's picture

I've been looking for a good definition of feudalism that I could wrap my mind around - not some b.s. from the likes of Carroll Quigley or even the dictionary definitions based on medieval serfs/peasants pushing and pulling plows (behind a horse if they had one) or pledged military service.  So, I give this a 2 thumbs up - thanks

"Feudalism: control by an entrenched minority esp. for its own benefit : social, political, or economic oligarchy. "

Thu, 02/24/2011 - 01:05 | 991824 Xkwisetly Paneful
Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

Those damn elitists that made capital available to anyone who cold make an X at historically low rates and the end result is an economic holocaust.


Otherwise the usual razor sharp points.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:57 | 987333 takeaction
takeaction's picture

I am new here.....I would like your take on this video from Joe Rogan.  I think it applies to this entire thread..

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:01 | 987350 Michael
Michael's picture

Welcome. Joe is great. Thanks for the link.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:07 | 987366 takeaction
takeaction's picture

I didn't know if it was appropriate to post this.  It is graphic and is on point in my opinion!  Have been a "gawker" for quite some time here....great site.  Decided to dive in.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:36 | 987447 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

Did you really learn anything by listening to that ?  Probably not. He is telling you what you already know. This is one of my little fat buddy's(alexander bullhorn jones) hollywood pals isn't it?  Yes it is.  He is another one of these people that is sticking his nose in patriot business and nothing of importance will ever come out of his "discussions" as it is intended.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:43 | 987460 Michael
Michael's picture

I am going to laugh my ass off when the Iraqi and Afghan people rise up by the millions and drive the US troops out of their countries, just like they are doing with their dictators in North Africa and the Middle East. The assets of those countries belong to their people, not the oligarchs.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:46 | 987474 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

I wonder under the circumstances if Iraq had just surrendered in the first place and allowed the invasion to go on, unopposed, would it have made any difference? I say yes. For the beast lives off of death and destruction and when there is peace, it suffers. What would they have done if Saddam had said, fine, we surrender, we were wrong. Come in, my country is yours? What then?  No war to fight, no one to kill. Hmmm......

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:26 | 987702 dark pools of soros
dark pools of soros's picture

remember Bush said mission accomplished after Iraq switched back to oil for dollars and currency reserves.... looks like the world didn't really get scared about that

they staged 9/11 to buy a decade of time...  what next? Nuke Iran? 

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:50 | 987480 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

double post

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:59 | 987342 Ray1968
Ray1968's picture

The bottom 99% own nearly 100% of the firearms and ammo.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:31 | 987431 Michael
Michael's picture

Thank God for that.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:39 | 987451 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

Bizarre isn't it?  So tell me. If you were a ruler, how would you control this problem?

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:43 | 987462 Aristarchan
Aristarchan's picture

Decree a chemical change in the composition of the propellant in ammo that would make it explode upon initiation by the primer. A small change is all it would take.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 04:08 | 987858 Antipodeus
Antipodeus's picture

It already does - that's how firearms work, you know.  Now, if you could decree that steel (i.e. the barrel & chamber) no longer had the strength of steel, well THAT might work!



Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:51 | 987477 Michael
Michael's picture

1) Abolish the Federal Reserve.

2) Abolish the IRS.

3) Abolish The Department of Homeland Security.

I can think of a dozen other things but I'll leave it at the 3 big ones.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:48 | 987481 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

Dunno, massive propaganda? Militarize the police? Huge new Stasi-esque 'HomeLand Security' battalions? Huge third world immigration? There's many things I would do...

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:53 | 987495 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

I am curious. Do you think this is a weakness that we can exploit or am I missing something , perhaps out of ignorance but what toys they may have?  Because you have got to know they know full well that Amerika is a armed camp. So I am thinking how would they deal with his in a civil unrest situation?  Food and water perhaps?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:03 | 987520 Michael
Michael's picture

They have already made preparations with the Continuity of government programs.

I don't think it will work because they didn't factor in the power of the Internet and cell phones back then.

Continuity of Government

Congressman Steve Cohen AKA Nathan Thurm

Thu, 02/24/2011 - 01:07 | 991835 Xkwisetly Paneful
Xkwisetly Paneful's picture

They should tax posting inane drivel on the internet and nothing else.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:16 | 987549 GreenSideUp
GreenSideUp's picture

I really, really hate to contemplate it; gives me nightmares, but how to control an armed populace?  Let me count the ways...

Shut off power grid, water supply; food supply lines for starters; apply any number of poisons through any number of delivery methods, Shock-n-Awe, tactical nukes...

And unfortunately yes, I think there are people of no conscience in TPTB crowd that are evil enough to do any/all of these things should things get out of control.  That's why I'm an advocate of starving the beast, peaceful civil disobedience and laughing at and ignoring them and their stupid-azz rules & regs rather than starting a violent revolution.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:43 | 987728 CPL
CPL's picture

That is not how to control a population, mainly for the reason that it has never been done.  It's not what you know about a similar situation, it's what you don't know and how fast it happens.


Example, what if all the power went off tommorrow and people decided "fuck it, I'm not paying taxes to these bastards" and it happened.  Would TimMaY keep helping BenBen printing money?  How would the military overseas gets paid?  Would a gun point force people to pay what they do not have?


That's how money and debt works.  If everyone is in hock, then their is no society carrot but most people have enjoyed the fun of it all. meanwhile. 


As punishment, food and energy will be your lashing post to retract the cost out of you.  If enough of you die, most if not all will fall in line for your beatings as if it were the air you breathe.  Gladly accepted, perhaps with a grimace and a grumble, but the beating will continue until you are properly sheep...if not you, then your children to feed from fatten sows commanding bigger and better salaries through Unions to teach your kids everything you didn't know, which is to shit in your corn flakes daily because you admire difference (I'm excluding all the stormfags because they deserve nothing other than a kick to their own mother tits, possibly a poison pill in their Coors light).

Suck on the tit of the government too long and you find that you are getting less of a bargain and start weighting the concept unheard of's called an option.  The option to quit the shit racket and live your life.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 12:40 | 988759 MachoMan
MachoMan's picture

If the power went off tomorrow, then no one would pay taxes anyway because production would be impossible... 

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:19 | 987554 seek
seek's picture

Isolate and overwhelm. I'm sure the #1 priority will be killing communications (which prevents members of the "armed camp" from coordinating and massing.) Internet "freedom" kill switch bill? I'm sure a couple phone calls would get AT&T and Verizon to kill twittering pronto. I'd imagine they'd try to wall off inner city areas to contain them as well.

Food/water is a longer-term method, but you look at what's happening in the middle east, the majority of everything is going down in 72 hours to a week, and food is only useful to manipulate after about the 72 hour mark.

The real issue is that it's not like everyone is going to march in DC on short notice. The powers that be need to contend with problems all over the map, with places like NYC and LA being radically different in terms of geography and tactical response. If things break out roughly simultaneously, I think it turns into a giant, unwinnable game of whack-a-mole.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 06:43 | 987933 Jendrzejczyk
Jendrzejczyk's picture

"I'd imagine they'd try to wall off inner city areas to contain them as well."

Mission already accomplished in many cities. Look at the "sound barriers" that have been installed along the beltways surrounding urban areas. Could they have another purpose?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:33 | 988040 SilverRhino
SilverRhino's picture

Ring roads, "sound" barriers, median fences, concrete collision barriers.  Look around many cities and you will see that they are literally ringed in concrete / barriers to movement except along easily guarded check points.  

That was not designed to stop an invading army trying to get IN.  

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 10:39 | 988203 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

i've looked at those sound barriers and had the same thought


easier method to control the sheeps is your dirty when its fall/winter to control movement/food supply easier

i'm sure there would be more folks out in WI if it was a nice spring day

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:34 | 987594 tallystick
tallystick's picture

That's why they developed bioweapons.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 05:06 | 987868 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

Good point.

If there comes a time where the ruling elite feels the herds are out of control they'll simply start killing them off in large numbers.

Who would stop them?  Nobody.

But the kill-off would have to happen quickly, before those carrying it out get a conscience and start having second thoughts.

What good would 300 million guns be against bioweapons? People would drop dead looking around for someone to shoot.

After a few days everybody's dead, civil unrest stopped, useless eaters killed off, after a few weeks bio-agents decompose in the environment, problem solved.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 06:27 | 987928 cossack55
cossack55's picture

And hire BP for the clean-up.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:19 | 987982 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

The ruling class in the US would be all alone in the world at that point. The rest of the world would condemn such an act. Those who wouldn't condemn it (China) could then defeat the U.S. in a war (no way to reinforce the army thrrough conscription).

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 12:43 | 988778 MachoMan
MachoMan's picture

I'm pretty sure we release the bio weapons over there first...

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 19:07 | 990750 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

Then they nuke us.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 21:04 | 991035 MachoMan
MachoMan's picture

So was the test of our missile defense system on the MSM a ploy or do we actually have viable technology in that department in sufficient numbers to stave off most everything?

Also, isn't the point of a pre-emptive attack to kill your adversaries without them knowing who did it or, if so, to ensure they cannot retaliate?  Seems to me that by the time a disease spread to enough people, it would be hard to diagnose as being uniquely american...  basically what you're saying is that knowing they were going to die anyway, they would just set off their nukes...  I dont buy it.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:58 | 987509 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

Also I must add, that they have stripped the NG units of any heavy weapons and taken them to the major army bases. They did this about two years ago. So they were perhaps thinking ahead that this would be a prudent thing to do. So all of the goodies are under heavy guard and lock and key........rats........

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 11:24 | 988419 SilverRhino
SilverRhino's picture

Vietnam showed what irregular light infantry are capable of.  

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 02:50 | 987793 Freddie
Freddie's picture

TV.  The masses are easily control by the TV and the media.  Every day it is another puff piece about hussein and mrs. ribs.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:08 | 987976 Dangertime
Dangertime's picture

The best way to keep in power is the "lets you and him fight" methodology.


Keep the people at eachothers throats.  And, if times get really rough, then let the side with the weakest alliance actually win.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:28 | 987583 reader2010
reader2010's picture

but they've got GM food for them. 

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:39 | 987722 midtowng
midtowng's picture

At least half of the bottom 99% can be willingly hired to kill the other half.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 04:35 | 987869 cossack55
cossack55's picture

Is the payout in Au or Ag?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:21 | 987985 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

The payout would be to bask in the glory of the praise of the top 1%. These half midtown g speaks of are southern middle class Republicans.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:44 | 988001 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

I'm just kidding about my last post.

Seriously, does anyone else find it awesome that Walmart is now a victim of its own success? They can't seem to meet their estimated sales numbers. Could it be that they "slaughtered" the very people who shop in their stores by advocating that small business owner outsource manufacturing to a cheaper location (watch the Age of Walmart) which took away jobs from the US and sent them overseas. Now with nearly 20% U6, their earnings are less than expected. Could they have shot themselves in the foot too much?


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:14 | 988023 nmewn
nmewn's picture

"I'm just kidding about my last post."


I was trying to reconcile "These half midtown g speaks of are southern middle class Republicans." with the northern upper class Democrats we have become so accustomed to running shit off into the ditch ;-) 

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:10 | 987372 chopper read
chopper read's picture

raising taxes on 'the rich' means nothing. 

The ruling elite populate our government. they are not hurt by taxes. in fact, quite the opposite, as raiding government coffers is their primary business. its a rigged game, and has been since the creation of the private Federal Reserve Banking cartel and the Income Tax in 1913. It grew even worse upon removal from the gold standard in 1971. The federal government bond market exists for our enslavement and nothing more. The promises were lies. Only now, decades after these promises were made, some folks are beginning to wake up to the heist. While still others remain in a slumber and are kept from revolting with a little bit of bread and some circuses, or because their willful ignorance will not allow them to see past what they were taught in government schools in favor of what truly is.


It is debt-based money which creates our perpetual indebtedness; this is the primary challenge we face as it allows a ruling class to hold (and front-run) our bonds as eternal debt-slavemasters. Many of these slavemasters are not even U.S. citizens, so they cannot be taxed on the income. Further, when you read the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, you will learn that, not only does this ruling class have a private monopoly, but they have written into law that all of this interest income to the private Federal Reserve Banking cartel is TAX-FREE. Its all right there in black and white print.


How 'rich' people allocate their capital in the private sector is up to them. If they place it with the wrong individuals, via the private bond market or stock market, then they risk losing. Even after a few generations, a fool and their money will soon part, EXCEPT when that fool can play by a different set of rules, including both (1) having the 'legal' ability to counterfeit money when others cannot and (2) having a privatized monopoly on a debt-based money system which serves to enslave an entire nation of people who must use this corporate currency as 'legal tender for all debt public and private' and who must become indebted to their debt-slavemasters simply in order to get it - this 'legal tender'.


A distinct ruling elite populates our government (and also works in the shadows), steering right back into their own foreign accounts the very same tax dollars that you wish to collect from them. Further, when you advocate tax rate increases, you are hurting the successful florist or restaurant owner down the street, for example, who may make around $250,000 per year respectively and respectfully. These small-time millionaires (with a little 'm's) of America are the true 'middle class' in comparison to the ruling elites who are worth tens and hundreds of millions and billions. Further, small-time American millionaires are the only individuals who have the extra time to better understand how the rest of the once-free people in America are getting shafted by the ruling elites. In essence, the small business person is the threat to the ruling elite who would rather he or she simply work for a corporation and fall into line under the fascist oligarchy. So it is no wonder that the true middle class, the 'little millionaires', are being aggressively targeted in class warfare that NEVER touches the parasitical criminals at the top of the food chain.


you and I have paid a line-item tax on our pay, called the Social Security Tax, for quite some time. Yet, this money is gone. Why? It was raided by the ruling elites by front-running the bond market and giving government contracts to their crony friends. Of course, virtually none of these individuals even pay taxes, but rather harbor their monies in offshore accounts in far off places as they govern our country from unelected seats via their campaign puppets.  They view us quite literally as their debt-slave livestock.


For the reasons aforementioned, I respectfully disagree with 'raising taxes' as a solution to our deficit dilemma. We require, instead, a revolution. Starve the beast. End the income tax (perhaps in favor of a consumption tax at the point-of-sale). End the private Federal Reserve Bank monopoly. End debt-based money of any kind. Return to asset-backed currencies which cannot be covertly taxed by those who own the printer. Return to the U.S. Constitutional Republic which once made our country great and our ancestors free to live and prosper.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:19 | 987400 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

Well, 'indicative planning' might be more peaceful,  but I can understand your impatience.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:23 | 987408 ronin12
ronin12's picture


Excellent post.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:44 | 987464 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

I know some rich jews and I am here to tell you, they are buying PM hands over fist. Now why do you think that is I suppose? Maybe the word came down from the mob boss, that they have to take care of number 1?  Hmmm?  Another words, in that community, they smell trouble on the horizon and also I must add these people are not gold bugs per se. They are buying for a reason. When I talk to them about things to come, they listen in silence and concur. Imagine that. From friends of my enemies, I get more response than I ever have from the sheeple. Weird world we live in.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:43 | 987613 Dave
Dave's picture

Sheeple are totally baffled. They are so overwelmed that anytime someone brings it up you get the 1000 yard stare in return. Then they go watch TV. I've quit trying to bring attention to the situation. Sheeple think I'm crazy. And maybe I am. Let 'em starve in the dark.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 14:04 | 989296 jemlyn
jemlyn's picture

Hear!  Hear!

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:45 | 987468 Todays Tom Sawyer
Todays Tom Sawyer's picture

+1776 great post chopper read! 

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:11 | 987542 Agent P
Agent P's picture

"you and I have paid a line-item tax on our pay, called the Social Security Tax, for quite some time. Yet, this money is gone."

The money was never there dude, it was a ponzi from the start.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:41 | 987726 midtowng
midtowng's picture

If it means "nothing" then how come the rich are so obsessed with their tax rates?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:13 | 988020 Big Corked Boots
Big Corked Boots's picture

Many of the rich have the same level of productivity as the bottom 10%. They have nothing better to do other than obsess about thier money.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:16 | 988027 Big Corked Boots
Big Corked Boots's picture

Many of the rich have the same level of productivity as the bottom 10%. They have nothing better to do other than obsess about thier money.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 04:53 | 987881 Antipodeus
Antipodeus's picture

Thank you for a great post!  "CORPORATE CURRENCY" was the stand out for me - says it all in TWO words!!


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 05:14 | 987895 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

"They view us quite literally as their debt-slave livestock."

"We require, instead, a revolution. Starve the beast. End the income tax ..."

Livestock don't revolt.

They go obediently to their slaughter.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:51 | 988004 Bobbyrib
Bobbyrib's picture

If you increase taxes on the top 1%, but then decrease spending that benefits these people they do not win. It would be a good trick, but pulling it off would be almost impossible, so I see what you are saying.

I agree that small business owners should be able to keep more of their money if they made in legitimately. It's businesses that reach across national borders who should have to pay more. I respectfully disagree that the "Flat Tax" is the correct tax system for the US. It will push the tax burden to the lower classes. It is a horrible idea.


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 10:09 | 988119 Matto
Matto's picture

The two people who junked you should be lynched for treason against the people.


There are plenty of movements for full reserve banking/public banking and gold & silver standards. Get involved and spread the word everyone!!


Under a debt based money system for someone to have wealth (free and clear of debt) someone else must go further into debt - the charts and tables above show just how indebted the populace has become to support the 1% ownership of everything. A revolution is well overdue. 

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 07:00 | 987939 Azannoth
Azannoth's picture

The are no medals for 2nd place! Life is a bitch get used to it

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 10:07 | 988115 jimijon
jimijon's picture

Well in the Olympics it is a Silver medal! Not so bad these days.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:29 | 987990 Twindrives
Twindrives's picture

Idi Obama: In so many ways the perfect leader for the world's most powerful banana republic.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:18 | 987210 NorthenSoul
NorthenSoul's picture

it worth reminding every few months or so, that the US is rapidly becoming a banana republic not only in its approach to legislative and judicial matters (not to mention regulatory), but toward the distribution of income and wealth.

Yet, people just seem eager to engage in hard core denial about it. Must be because the consequences of this situation demand that someone accept how far down the drain our country is now.


Not a very pleasant thought, isn't it?

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:41 | 987284 Yes_Questions
Yes_Questions's picture

You are talking about the evolution of leadership.


Unfortunately right now, the middle class is starting to eat its young in the U.S.  Oh, we looove teachers, but the 20%+ real unemployed tinderbox is being set alight by the match of careless (read opportunist) political leaders apparently beholden to the top (sic) 0.01% income families who'd rather rule in hell than....


Anyway, if the new face of leadership in the newly liberated African Countries is not genuine, may we NOT follow in that lead.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:29 | 987425 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture


"... political leaders apparently beholden to the ..."

well, in the case of WI and others, there are cowardly lions hanging around in a motel adjacent to an adult establishment.  Said lions are apparently beholden to individuals associated with the NEA who have 'taken it to the streets' to protest that they really deserve the package that they have/sure wish they could 'negotiate' in the future, no matter that their package is 150 percent higher, on average, than the 'packages' that the poor folks paying them make.

Greece in Madison.

I am confused about the "new face" of leadership and your perception of 'genuine'.  In Egypt, a military coup was just more-or-less engineered.  Which face might you be talking about?

- Ned

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:14 | 987384 jmc8888
jmc8888's picture

Yep, people still think of ourselves as if this is Sept 1946 and we can do no wrong.

In reality we're much closer to 1938 Germany.

Look at Germany BEFORE and AFTER the idiocy, and are Germans normally good people? Yes.  Were they cultured, literate, even most advanced in the world with things? Yes.  It's just monetarism confused their people, and a madman (put in by monetarists to pay off THAT fraudulent debt imposed by the Treaty of Versailles) went berserk.  Such are the occurrences when reality doesn't matter, and just paying off the debt does.

Walker/Christie are fascist.  Because it doesn't matter to them that the debts and the situation causing the debts are fraudulent, it just matters that they are paid.

It isn't very pleasent.  It means almost everybody is wrong, about just everything.

But then again, most people think we're capitalists, not monetarists, who ask for gov't bailouts when their gravy train jumps the tracks.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:42 | 987461 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture

Dude, please let all of us know your hash dealer--really good stuff your using.  Thanks.

"In reality we're much closer to 1938 Germany."

So when was the fire, and when was the election?

"Walker/Christie are fascist."

Walker is outta gas, has no money to pay his future bills.  He's saying, well, that the future course of the WI budget is, well, ... unsustainable.  He's trying to do something inside his sphere of control to fix that problem and avoid laying union members off.  The union members wish a different outcome.  They wish to be paid from a dry well.  But, after all, they are in the NEA, so have no concept of 'dry well'.

Christie is in the same boat, maybe more leaks.  But he is laying out the position and, well, if the legislature wishes to shut all the thing down, he's cool with that.  He's going to emulate another great executive during a shutdown; he's going to order out a pizza and , no, well, he's going to watch the Mets.  (least he's no Yankees fan).

Fascist?  Don't see any of them running any companies, controlling any companies, having czars to 'monitor' any companies.

Do you?  I didn't think so--so you agree that they are nay fascists.

- Ned


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:54 | 987631 jmc8888
jmc8888's picture

ROFL and Walker is an idiot for not understanding the situation is outside of his control. So are all those that mistakenly follow such fascist ideas.

What can he do in regards to collpasing monetary system?  He can either help his people, or throw them to the fucking wolves under an idiot plan that will never work, nor matter in the larger scheme of things.  When the economy collapses, it will matter not what Christie or Walker 'saved' by screwing over those that have already been screwed.

Um yeah, 1938 fascism was on the march, and had ALMOST started an irreversible path. (again due to MONETARISM, what you are preaching)

I think that is very close to where we are today, given the fascist rules that have been put in place in order to serve the banksters wishes.  Bankruptcy legislation, repeal of glass/steagall, cuts, ALL TO PAY OFF WHO? To benefit WHO? Oh yeah, business.  So if you do EVERYTHING for BUSINESS, above all sanity regarding the people, somehow this isn't fascism? Wow you are fucking nuts. 

Let's see.....budget cuts through austerity to pay off fraudulent debts = fascism.  Maybe you haven't heard. Printing dollars to pay off the fraudulent debts (like Obama) is ALSO fascism. 

Only the idiots don't understand the LEFT/CENTER/RIGHT/TEA/Wall Street is pushing fascism.  Obama is a fascist, so what do you think the even more pro-cocksucking bankster people like Walker and Christie are? Even more fascist.  But let's call all fascists, fascists as if it matters between the two which one is more so.

But let's take the current situation and apply it to YOU.

So if someone ran up 100,000 dollars on your credit, you would agree to pay it off? You must since that's what in essence you're advocating.  Otherwise you wouldn't be for budget cuts CAUSED by the fascist monetarists policies, and would enact Glass-Steagall instead.  But no, you don't want to actually think, you want it to appear to your own mind merely that you think, even if you actually don't.

What if they garnished your wages, or raised the prices on what YOU specifically buy to do just that?  That's what Walker and Christie are doing. 

There's fascism all around, the fact that you can't see it means you're more blind then Stevie Wonder. 

So if you don't run a company, and as a politician one just take bribes and orders FROM the people running the companies, somehow there is a difference in that and it isn't fascism?

Christie and Walker's entire ideology was written by banksters.  How do you not realize that? Oh yeah, because you believe the sophistry, even amongst all this.  Insane.




Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:26 | 987701 Michael
Michael's picture

You can call the liberals fascists as well. They shoved Obamacare down our throats colluding behind closed doors to give the booty to the insurance companies without calculating what the conservatives would do when they got power. The republicans won 535 state house seats and many governor elections last November. Now the shoe is on the other foot and the dems got to live with it till 2012 at least.


The 75% non-public union taxpayer workers say eviscerate the public sector unions.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:43 | 987731 midtowng
midtowng's picture

Actually the polls say the exact opposite.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 05:26 | 987901 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

"The 75% non-public union taxpayer workers say eviscerate the public sector unions."

I believe the first phase of the coming civil war in America will be people not getting a government check vs people getting a government check.

Public sector workers, retirees, welfare recipients, etc, will become targets of enraged ripped-off taxpayers all around them. 


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 12:52 | 988811 MachoMan
MachoMan's picture

You're leaving off banksters and other bailout recipients...  all welfare queens...  what most of the public personnel don't understand is that they're on the same team as the banksters...

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 19:56 | 990443 cranky-old-geezer
cranky-old-geezer's picture

Banksters et al will be behind massive security.

Those other folks will be right out there among enraged looted taxpayers.

Wait till 401ks and similar private sector retirement accounts are confiscated while public sector pensions are protected.  Things will get really dicey really fast.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 02:37 | 987782 Assetman
Assetman's picture

Man, you have some serious issues.  Everything you see and hear is NOT fascism.

That's especially true at the State level.  It's not as if WI or NJ has the means to bailout ANY banking cartel at this point.  They either impose fiscal austerity on their bloated underfunded budgets -- or they impose haircuts on the debts (pension funds won't be happy). 

If only they had their own printing presses, Walker and Christie could impose their own fascism at will, and perhpas, create their own banana republics. 

Alas, they cannot.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 12:15 | 988645 jmc8888
jmc8888's picture

ROFL, fascism is fascism.  Sorry you don't see it, and want to discount it just because somehow you can't handle it?

Issues? Wow, because everybody that sees things clearer than you MUST have issues. (or do YOU since you can't see the fucking obvious at this LATE stage of the game?)

I don't want to see it, I call WHAT I see, no matter what it is.

Yes, they are imposing fascist austerity, so they can pay off the bad debt.  They don't need to pay it, Walker and Christie not only ARE going to pay it, they are going to take away people's shit AND rights to do it.

That's fascism.  Destroy the people to pay off the banksters.  (banks ARE businesses)

I did say Obama is a fascist, the fascism is on ALL sides.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 04:48 | 987877 cossack55
cossack55's picture

Agreed.  If Walker/Christie were even the least interested in the welfare of "their" citizens, the Iceland model would work quite well.  I can not understand why these states don't adopt the Bank of North Dakota model used since 1919.  Fuck the TBTFs.  Then proceed to 10th Amend. action and nullify all the stupid ass DC laws and proceed in to regional prosperity. 

BTW, I keep hearing everyone, and I mean everyone, saying the economy must be allowed to grow.  Can anyone name anything in the universe that "grows" forever (other than human stupidity).

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 13:50 | 989190 Dyler Turden II Esq
Dyler Turden II Esq's picture

It is more like feudalism than fascism. See:


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:43 | 987729 midtowng
midtowng's picture

WI isn't broke and the dispute isn't about money. Walker admitted as much.

It's about breaking unions. Nothing else.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 02:59 | 987802 Assetman
Assetman's picture

I don't believe that for a second.  But if you have a quote from the gov, I'd love to see it.

All one needs to do is look at the underfunded status at WI's public sector pension funds to get an understanding that this is more than a "breaking unions" issue.

That being said, Walker certainly appears to be very aggressive in his desire to strip the "union shop" provisions out of his own public sector.  It's certainly a good way to piss off a whole lotta people.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 03:01 | 987805 i.knoknot
i.knoknot's picture

it's not that we-that-pay mind the existence of today's "unions"... let 'em exist 'till the end of time, for all i care.

i'm just done paying for them and their sub-par services.

so long as they're an imposed monopoly, break 'em in half, then do it again.

when we have choice/options again, perhaps i'll join one.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 03:42 | 987840 blindman
blindman's picture

monopoly.  control.

collective bargaining, where the problem?

it interferes with monopoly, one power.

the aim is to eliminate the collective in competition

with mono poly.  so, eliminate the collective thereby

eliminating the problem of bargaining.  domination

and servitude, debt slavery, are achieved.  fucking

bingo.  collect your fucking prize, and fuck em' all

on the way out.   and peace and good will and all that

on the fucking holidaze.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 03:45 | 987843 DaBernank
DaBernank's picture

Good. Unions have no place in the public sector, it's an aberration that came about in 1959. FDR opposed it completely for a reason:

"The process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service," Roosevelt wrote in 1937 to the National Federation of Federal Employees. Yes, public workers may demand fair treatment, wrote Roosevelt. But, he wrote, "I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place" in the public sector. "A strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of Government."

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 04:43 | 987872 blindman
blindman's picture

by "government" did he mean the government as puppet of

the fascist banking cartel?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 03:08 | 987810 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Trying to balance a state budget is fascist?  LOL!  Spending more money then you take in is fraudulent?  The new liberal mantra that all money is free.  Your debts are not your responsibility.  We will just borrow from oabam's stash.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:20 | 987219 savagegoose
savagegoose's picture

yeah but what was $1M 2000 dollars in 1913? $50k? was that even the top bracket back then?

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:22 | 987224 eigenvalue
eigenvalue's picture

The question is: How can we solve this problem? Gold standard? I think there is more to be done than the gold standard.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:46 | 987278 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

"Muffy, Chad and I think that we should just kill the poor in the year of our LLoyd 2011. 'Auchteritywitz' is a darling place to start, it'll scare the trousers off of those insufferable middle class liberals by pitting them against the plebians, then we can get the rest by ramping up our boy Bene's 'no inflation' policies. Pahss the Claret, will you Muffers? Chin-chin."


Alternately, maybe if we just point that 10% in the right direction, and a little encouragement...

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:48 | 987309 weinerdog43
weinerdog43's picture

Capital idea sir.  A veritable Modest Proposal. 

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:58 | 987339 Michael
Michael's picture

Abolish tax on labor. Excises taxes and taxes on profits and gains like it says in the Constitution are fine.

Abolish the IRS.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:45 | 987472 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture

Mikey, ya gotta' b kleer on witch part of d'Constitution u b talkin' 'bout.

'cuz, income tax thing, b their.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:55 | 987500 Michael
Michael's picture

If you are talking about the 16th amendment, it was never ratified and there are 2 Supreme Court rulings that says so.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 06:49 | 987935 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Put up the legal cites, or you're delusional!

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:35 | 988026 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:32 | 988032 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 09:25 | 988033 New_Meat
New_Meat's picture

Yep, put up the legal cites.  Including your plan to achieve nirvana by 4/18 this year.

Stycho-regardless of that, he's delusional.

- Ned

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:48 | 987307 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Free currency (ie no government imposed standard) + tiny, extremely limited government funded solely by fees (port fees, mainly).

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:30 | 987428 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

'Tiny' is a bit vague, sure sounds great though!

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 10:17 | 988140 jimijon
jimijon's picture

The Internet has changed everything. Banking, education and government are actually experiencing the fact that they are becoming obsolete. 

In an effort not to get too windy, let me take on government. First off, rewrite all the laws again simplifying them so that any "educated" person can understand them. Publish them all. Next have all corporate, banking, and government entities publish ALL numbers, accountings, payrolls, etc. Then crowd source, just like here on ZeroHedge, who is or what is breaking the simplified rule sets. 

Then government can simply take the evidence to trial and then punish appropriately.

Then, we can shrink government immensely.

For instance, in Chicago we have these blue light cameras everywhere that only the "police" can use and see through. What is the use there? Give access to the people so they can look through them themselves and record the evil doers vs. waiting for a sleepy gobmint police person sleeping through it all.

The tools are here for the renaissance after the fall.


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 16:46 | 990177 Raging Debate
Raging Debate's picture

I am on board. Apparently, so is Goldman Sachs (government) and Facebook (4D evolved management model from 3D). The main problem is demographics. The larger voting bloc is older and wishes as much status quo as possible. The evolving won't happen now without the wealth decentralizing. After the crash of 2008, the Boomers won't be reinvesting en masse again, they are downsizing.  

Investment bankers used to be great at VC and making seeds but now that they have melded the Golden Calf and got what they wanted, they own the majority of the world!

Even if they all mean well now on leadership, it will take several years to kick-start organic growth. Give two more years for Dollar devaluation/Yuan appreciation AND assets to plunge so the connected players buy it cheap. Then and only then, the capital will flow but another five years before the people feel they can breath again and see daylight...

Our species is much too impatient waiting around another decade and the geopolitical events are confirming that opinion. Major military misadventure must be a calculation in your investment risk/reward diligence...

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:22 | 987230 FrankIvy
FrankIvy's picture

Never really liked these types of articles.  Sure there's an issue, but most Americans don't have a large "share" of national net worth because they are stupid with their money.  For every guy making 100 grand a year who has smartly saved a half million to a million over a multi decade period, there are 19 boneheads who have squandered that same level of income on garbage.  So their average net worth appears rather low and belies their ability to have had more.  Case in point.  If you were stupid enough to buy a 700,000 McMansion in 2005, well then your net worth is probably negative because you took a 40% hit on equity - so far.  Not that you had any equity to start with, with your 110% LTV mortgage, but whatever.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:26 | 987246 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Our real problem is we don't spend nearly enough time quibbling over rounding errors.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:49 | 987306 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture


Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:41 | 987285 Dr. Porkchop
Dr. Porkchop's picture

The perma growth economic model requires people to be bad with money. If people only bought what they needed, the economy would be a lot smaller.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:12 | 987540 UninterestedObserver
UninterestedObserver's picture

And then there would be less people making the magical 100k+ a year to go with the smaller economy and so on...

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:19 | 987557 snowball777
snowball777's picture

Oh no, Hermes will have to have a <gasp> sale.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:07 | 987363 Agent P
Agent P's picture


The key is to have a hatred for debt that exceeds the desire to own things you need that debt to purchase.  Most of the bottom 90% (and many of those in the top 10%) do not possess this characteristic. 

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:21 | 987562 snowball777
snowball777's picture

Those damn pesky food, shelter, and education habits; will those spendthrift ingrates never learn?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:47 | 987732 Agent P
Agent P's picture

I'm a huge advocate of all three items you mention.  I eat everyday, have a nice house and a masters degree.  

I was referring more to the folks who make decent middle class incomes, but lever up so they can live like the rich..."own" a McMansion, buy a new Escalade/Denali/BMW every three years, have all the iToys, and do whatever else the Joneses are doing. 

I'm just the opposite.  I've always been frugal and have lived within my means.  I'm in my mid 30's and I've never in my life carried a credit card balance.  I make enough money (now) to land in the top 10% of income, but I still drive a 10 year old car that cost less than $20k when I bought it new.  I do have a mortgage, but it started at 80% LTV and has been paid down to 60%.  I've refi'd twice to take advantage of lower rates (never to take money out), the second time switching to a 15yr loan to accelerate the pay down.

You don't have to be a financial wizz to understand that earning compound interest is a good thing, so paying compound interest is just the opposite.



Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:17 | 987979 snowball777
snowball777's picture

I'm much like you; graduated with my BSCS loan paid off, drive my paid off 2001 $24k Jetta (no more than $100/hp is my rule of thumb), no CC debt, no mort (born too late to ride the RE wave), and earn in the top 3% in a good year. I'm sitting on my 20% down and annoyed that I have to wait out the American dream as house values drop even more over the next few years.

I agree that we're in dire need of more personal responsibility and have the same attitude that you appear to about what I call the "affectation of wealth". I used to live in Newport Beach where keeping up with the Jones' is a full-contact sport and leasing the good life is preferable to admitting to one's actual means.

90%...."folks who make middle class incomes"...which is it?

Maybe 20% of people fall in that latter category these days depending on your definition. For me, that means $50k - $75k (1st group above the median of $44k). The distribution of US income is bimodal and only one of the bumps in the histo is growing as the middle group evaporates to one side or the other. I'd wager less than half of them are profligate in the sense you meant and that most of the "conspicuous consumption" is from people who are in Charlie Gibson's Middle Class (tm)...i.e. the 90k-200k crowd.


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 14:29 | 989453 Misstrial
Misstrial's picture

Not sure why you were junked snowball; like you I was born too late to be able to buy a home that was 2-3x my salary.

imo, real estate is going down about 20 percent more, probably more here in Cali where home prices at 10-15x annual salary is the norm in the SF Bay Area and L.A./OC/SD.

Still saving, not buying. 


Wed, 02/23/2011 - 06:52 | 987937 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Get yosef a copy:

"Uncommon Cents - Benjamin Franklin's Secrets to Achieving Personal Financial Success", ISBN: 0-939817-06-3, by Lynn G. Robbins

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 08:17 | 987980 snowball777
snowball777's picture

Financial success doesn't require secrets, just discipline.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:22 | 987232 pyite
pyite's picture

The megarich in this country just need to remember that a large middle class serves as a buffer between them and the ultra poor with pitchforks.


Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:33 | 987259 GreenSideUp
GreenSideUp's picture

Pitchforks?  The ultra poor 'round these parts have these:

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:42 | 987289 Dr. Porkchop
Dr. Porkchop's picture

lol...does it shoot the casing out the top?

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 00:13 | 987544 UninterestedObserver
UninterestedObserver's picture

homeboy night sights? glock? 

try ACOG,308,HK,AP rounds,etc

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:37 | 987273 Dr. Porkchop
Dr. Porkchop's picture

..and a large portion of that middle class actually believes they are middle class.

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 23:05 | 987360 Vendetta
Vendetta's picture

indeed.   According to the graphs above, I'm supposed to be in the top 10% but it sure as hell doesn't feel like it.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 02:35 | 987778 hardmedicine
hardmedicine's picture

The top 10% is not what it used to be FOR SURE.  I can say that with assured indignation.  Each year my feeling of being a slave grows with my income. 

Tue, 02/22/2011 - 22:49 | 987316 Milton Waddams
Milton Waddams's picture

The megarich consider themselves global citizens rather than American citizens (until the SHTF- then they wrap themselves in the flag and plead for assistance) and for good reason; they have business interests, homes, etc. all over the globe. From their lofty vantage point, America is just another market consisting of a pool of overpriced labor.

Wed, 02/23/2011 - 01:12 | 987677 Oracle of Kypseli
Oracle of Kypseli's picture

I still don't get why some rich people have to buy houses all over the world when staying at 5 star presidential suite will be more efficient and cheaper. Are they insecure or something? 

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