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Guest Post: Why The Left Misunderstands Income Inequality

Tyler Durden's picture




 

Submitted by Azizonomics

Why the Left Misunderstands Income Inequality

There is a widely-held notion on the political left that the key economic problem that our civilisation faces is income inequality.

To wit:

America emerged from the Great Depression and the Second World War with a much more equal distribution of income than it had in the 1920s; our society became middle-class in a way it hadn’t been before. This new, more equal society persisted for 30 years. But then we began pulling apart, with huge income gains for those with already high incomes. As the Congressional Budget Office has documented, the 1 percent — the group implicitly singled out in the slogan “We are the 99 percent” — saw its real income nearly quadruple between 1979 and 2007, dwarfing the very modest gains of ordinary Americans. Other evidence shows that within the 1 percent, the richest 0.1 percent and the richest 0.01 percent saw even larger gains.

 

By 2007, America was about as unequal as it had been on the eve of the Great Depression — and sure enough, just after hitting this milestone, we plunged into the worst slump since the Depression. This probably wasn’t a coincidence, although economists are still working on trying to understand the linkages between inequality and vulnerability to economic crisis.

I mostly agree that income inequality is a huge problem, although I believe that it is a symptom of a wider malaise. But income inequality is an important symptom of that wider malaise.

Here’s the key chart:

However it is just as important, perhaps more important to identify the causes of the income inequality.

I have my own pet theory:

The growth in income inequality seems to be largely an outgrowth of giving banks a monopoly over credit creation. In 1971, Richard Nixon severed the link between the dollar and gold, expanding the monopoly on credit creation to a carte blanche to print huge new quantities of dollars and give them to their friends.

 

Unsurprisingly, this led to a huge growth in the American and global money supplies. This new money was not exactly distributed evenly. A shrinking share has gone to wage labour.

However the dominant explanation on the left is that this is down to the tax structure. I can’t falsify this theory, because the data supports it:

But why has the government chosen to tax corporations less, and payrolls more?

Who owns the government? Political donors — they finance the political system. Before one vote is cast candidates tailor their platforms to meet the criteria of donors. Who are political donors? Well, they are people with spare capital to expend in the name of getting politicians elected.

Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the presumptive 2012 Presidential nominees:

(Even bigger money flows through the Super PACs. A full breakdown of Super PAC donors can be found here; the same donor profile emerges).

So who are the biggest donors? Banks & large corporations: the very people who have benefited most from the post-1971 tidal wave of fiat credit creation.

So not only has an exorbitantly high proportion of new credit gone into corporate and financial profits, but the beneficiaries have used these fruits to buy out the political system, thus ensuring that they keep an even higher proportion of their incomes, while making up for this slump with greater borrowing, and greater taxation of payrolls.

The political left — epitomised, I suppose, by the Occupy movement — often call for “taking the money out of politics”. By this, they seem to mean holding elections that are not funded by private money, where all candidates are given the same resources. The reality of this, of course, is that such a measure would require a change in the Constitution, as privately-funded political advertising is protected speech under the First Amendment.

But let’s assume — just for the sake of argument — that a law “taking the money out of politics” could be enacted by simple majorities in the House, the Senate, and a Presidential signature (after all, President Obama’s legislative program has not maintained much respect for the original intent of the U.S. Constitution). Even under those implausible circumstances, why would Congress pass such a law when the entire political system is dominated by financial donors who want their money to very much be in politics? After all, it is not just for the sake of tax avoidance — government largesse produces lucrative contracts for contractors. The more money the government has to redistribute, the more incentive there is to spend money to get your people into office redistributing it, and government has more money to distribute — both in absolute terms, and as a percentage of GDP — than at any time since World War II.

The other (and simpler) proposed solution from the left is raising taxes on the rich, so that they pay a “fair share”. There are two problems with this. Firstly, that raising taxes during an economic depression is contractionary, and will (like the misguided and destructive European austerity programs, which of course include tax hikes) depress economic conditions further. And even if this was a good proposal (it isn’t), the political class will fiercely resist such proposals. Today, the Democratic-controlled Senate voted down the so-called Buffett Rule, that would have imposed a 30% floor on taxation for incomes over $250,000. (Buffett — as a top recipient of Federal Reserve bailout cash — would have no problem paying such a rate, unlike those far poorer than him who never took a penny of bailout money. Buffett would do well to spend less time in the bath thinking about Becky Quick, and more time using his capital to create jobs, to end this depression.)

Income inequality is a symptom of a grave problem: corporatism.

From Professors Ammous and Phelps:

Now the capitalist system has been corrupted. The managerial state has assumed responsibility for looking after everything from the incomes of the middle class to the profitability of large corporations to industrial advancement. This system, however, is not capitalism, but rather an economic order that harks back to Bismarck in the late nineteenth century and Mussolini in the twentieth: corporatism.

 

In various ways, corporatism chokes off the dynamism that makes for engaging work, faster economic growth, and greater opportunity and inclusiveness. It maintains lethargic, wasteful, unproductive, and well-connected firms at the expense of dynamic newcomers and outsiders, and favors declared goals such as industrialization, economic development, and national greatness over individuals’ economic freedom and responsibility. Today, airlines, auto manufacturers, agricultural companies, media, investment banks, hedge funds, and much more has at some point been deemed too important to weather the free market on its own, receiving a helping hand from government in the name of the “public good.”

 

The costs of corporatism are visible all around us: dysfunctional corporations that survive despite their gross inability to serve their customers; sclerotic economies with slow output growth, a dearth of engaging work, scant opportunities for young people; governments bankrupted by their efforts to palliate these problems; and increasing concentration of wealth in the hands of those connected enough to be on the right side of the corporatist deal.

A realistic program to  ”take the money out of politics” — in other words, to return America’s form of government to its original constitutional intent, like the program advocated by Ron Paul — would do a lot to decapitate corporate power and the military-industrial-financial-corporate complex, who are mostly dependent upon government largesse, favourable regulation, bailouts, and moral-hazard-creating fictions like limited liability — for their very existence. But that won’t fly with either the political kingmakers, or the welfare-loving hordes of  voters (and often for good reason — many of us have paid taxes toward welfare all our lives, and don’t want to lose out of something we have paid for).

The real conclusion of this is that the status quo is not sustainable. Corporatism and oligopoly is almost never sustainable, because of the dire social consequences. Today, almost 20% of young people are unemployed, wasting on the scrapheap. The median net worth of the young is lower than it was 30 years ago. The number of long-term unemployed has spiked to an all-time-high. Prison populations are at all time highs — and the highest in the world, both proportionally, and in absolute terms. America’s former industrial belt rusts; American manufacturing (what’s left of it) has often been reduced to re-assembling foreign components. America is heavily dependent on foreign oil. The American imperial machine is suffering from a lack of manpower. America’s strengths are melting away in a firestorm of misguided central planning, imperial waste, and corporate corruption. America’s social culture is fiery and combustible and individualistic. Young people denied opportunity by a broken system will do something about it. Occupy Wall Street and the 2012 Ron Paul Presidential campaigns were the first manifestations of the jilted generation dabbling in politics.

The political left misunderstands the causes of income inequality —confused by the belief that government can somehow challenge the corporate and financial power it created in the first place — and thus proposes politically unrealistic (non-) solutions, particularly campaign finance reform, and raising taxes on the rich and corporations. Yes, the left are well-intentioned. Yes, they identify many of the right problems.  But how can government effectively regulate or challenge the power of the financial sector, megabanks and large corporations, when government is almost invariably composed of the favourite sons of those organisations? How can anyone seriously expect a beneficiary of the oligopolies — whether it’s Obama, McCain, Romney, Bush, Gore, Kerry, or any of the establishment Washingtonian crowd — to not favour their donors, and their personal and familial interests? How can we not expect them to favour the system that they emerged through, and which favoured them?

In reality, the system of corporatism that created the income inequality will inevitably degenerate of its own accord. The only question is when…

 

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Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:25 | 2361444 brewing
brewing's picture

crime of the century...

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:33 | 2361467 hardcleareye
hardcleareye's picture

Read all about their schemes and adventuring
It's well worth a fee
So roll up and see
And they rape the universe
How they've gone from bad to worse
Who are these men of lust, greed, and glory?
Rip off the masks and let see.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:08 | 2361571 iDealMeat
iDealMeat's picture

Cut your consumption / consent in half..  Buy the shit you don't need on craigslist..  Stop participating and stop caring..

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:17 | 2361606 Fukushima Sam
Fukushima Sam's picture

Get rid of funny money, you get rid of the epidemic of mal-investment.  It's that simple.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:25 | 2361646 Troll Magnet
Troll Magnet's picture

hmm...and i thought our liberals were just hopelessly brainwashed. 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:34 | 2361674 donsluck
donsluck's picture

Compared to most of the world, the USA has no liberals. We are much closer to Syria in liberal/conservative bent then to say France. This is mostly due to our large population of radical Christian fundamentalists, similar to the radical Muslim fundamentalists of Syria.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:42 | 2361711 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

Your are quite correct, but most folks will not have a clue as to what you mean. Most conservatives in America have been brainwashed to believe anyone and anything less conservative than themselves is outright Marxist, Socialism, Communism, or any other "-ism" from a list of antiquated, outdated ideals...much like conservatism. But hey, keep swinging, there are a few around here who might catch a clue.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:04 | 2361804 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

Looks like you took a wrong turn at HuffPo, douchebag! Go back from whence you came.

Don't let the door hit you on the ass on the way out.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:16 | 2361850 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

See...brainwashed morons run rampant here.

I've rarely read HuffPo so go back to your bag of low-IQ stereotypes and pull out another one genius.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:23 | 2361893 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

You haven't read HuffPo??? Well for pete's sake, man, get started! You'll be a lot happier over there, trust me. Chock full of libtards!

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:34 | 2361943 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

Naw, It's much more fun over here riling up the conned-servitards. All you have to do is present facts, logic or a new idea and they go apeshit. They are quite happy in their mental rut, and they don't tolerate anything outside of that rut too well.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 21:55 | 2362959 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

How many fish do you find in the treetops?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 17:18 | 2362418 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

This Article headline is a magnet for Lib Trolls.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:07 | 2361818 JW n FL
JW n FL's picture

 

 

for ALL! of you that have been successfully programmed to believe the POOR! of America are to Blame!

for ALL! of you ignoring the Fact that Wall Street has been GIVEN! At LEAST 4 Times MORE! Money that ALL! of the military in the United States!! (that was waging 2 wars and multiple little fronts).

For ALL! of you that believe starving the most well armed populace in the World improves your quality of life and survivability!

This movie for you Dumb Fuck(s)!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fMkrJOOTjj4&feature=related

 

The people who give Washington DC the most Lobby Dollars!

Get the Most FREE! Money from Washington DC in the form of the Working Classes Tax Dollars Paid into the System!

 

The Poor! are NOT FUCKING YOU!!

You being Ignorant! and staying Ignorant!! is what is FUCKING THE COUNTRY!!

YOU! wanna be thinkers who refuse to the numerical facts and follow your feelings!

YOU!! are to Blame! EVEN MORE SO THAN THE POOR!! who produce NOTHING!!

Because Your! CONTINUING IGNORANCE!! Enables! the Government to FUCK EVERYONE OVER!!

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:38 | 2362318 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

In 2011 more than one in four Americans went without any kind of healthcare coverage at all.  When the average Cuban peasant has better care than hard working Americans there is something DESPERATELY wrong with our nation.  Now we are fast approaching a quarter of the nation on food stamps, and over 20% un or under employed.  Even as their are millions with untaxed dynastic wealth that do not constitute income and thus shelter trillions from the productive use of the economy. 

I understand income inequality all too well, it is the right that does not understand what is going to be done about it, here is a hint, a very large kettle and 55-65 gallons of very hot oil.  But to be fair, and it IS fair, what we need is a national property tax and personal luxury tax, lower the income tax to 12% on all income over the first 40k of income, delete ALL deductions and exemptions, and return the estate tax to 50% on everything over 2 million except for family owned productive land such as farms or factories, or other business related land and plant/equipment.  Call financial gains what they are, INCOME and tax accordingly. 

We are a lot closer to an uprising of the lower half of the population than any of you would ever believe and I for one wonder why they have been so patient.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:26 | 2361908 midtowng
midtowng's picture

Most conservatives in America don't know the definition of the words such as: marxism, communism, socialism, fascism, feminism, muslim, etc.

   They lump them all together as if they were equal. What they are really saying is "these words scare me".

   If they want to be scared of those words that is their right. The crime is that they don't know what they mean and they aren't aware of the fact that they don't know what they mean. What's more, they don't care to learn what those words mean.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:36 | 2361947 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

You are correct. And look at the posts above to see how pissed they get when someone points that out to them.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:51 | 2362001 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

They don't even know the definition of condescending liberal.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:57 | 2362015 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

Just because a person does not consider themselves a conservative, it does not mean they are a liberal. Black and white thinking...yet another flaw of the conservative mindset.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:28 | 2362109 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

Only a condescending lib would make the statement he made.  So what label box do you put yourself in?  Independent free thinker,  who doesn't see the challenge to individual liberty from the left.  And don't dare say you're a libertarian. 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:33 | 2362127 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

I would never call myself a Libertarian. That whole flawed concept is pure condescention!

I'm one of those people who are in the middle. That makes me a liberal to conservatives.

I see challenges to freedom from both the left and right. Wasn't it self-proclaimed conservative Republicans who sponsored the NDAA? Wasn't Bush a big proponent of the Patriot Act?

Try looking both directions when crossing the street, not just left.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:20 | 2362255 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

NDAA, Progressive Repubs.and all the Democrats backed it.  Obama signed it, so there isn't much outrage from the left.  Bush is anything but a conservative, he trashed the Constitution as much as Obama.  It's 2 flavors of more Govt.  control and less individual freedom, but if there's hope to change any one side, it's with the Repubs.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 17:15 | 2362415 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

You claim Bush wasn't a conservative. He would claim otherwise, as would many who backed him. There seems to be a big disconnect between conservative idealism and reality.

Mon, 04/23/2012 - 05:53 | 2366123 Ar-Pharazôn
Ar-Pharazôn's picture

left or right doesn't matter........ IT'S THE SAME BULLSHIT OVER AND OVER AND OVER!!!!

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:01 | 2362202 NidStyles
NidStyles's picture

Most Christians are Progressives, they just don't understand what Progressivism actually is.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:19 | 2362267 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

If most Christians are progressives, why are progressives so afraid of Christians?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 21:56 | 2362963 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Progressives worship the State.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 18:16 | 2362582 UGrev
UGrev's picture

If you are not a constitutionalist conservative or hold the ideology that the blue print for this country, UNINTERPRETED, is the Constitution.. then you are on the left. To which degree is irrelevant as you are not on "the proper side".  

We are not a Democracy, much to your dismay. Please deal with this fact. 

Continuing to portray the many leftist ideologies in a manner which attempts to diminish their impact, or rather the impact the "words" have when uttered will fall on deaf ears here. We are not deaf, dumb or blind.  It's plainly obvious that people to the left of that line I described above have no desire to seek freedom, or balance. They just want to be part of the control hierarchy. 

Well.. to that I say.. EACH SHIT MOTHER FUCKER!! and come and try it.. 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:59 | 2361779 WTFx10
WTFx10's picture

Fuckin religion just another control mechanism. Invented to play off the fear of death. Fuckin brain washed zombies believe everything that was written 2000+ fuckin years ago. But you scream the truth into there faces about the shit that our leaders lie about constantly and they believe the fuckin fear mongers.

Fear is the only thing to be afraid of.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:05 | 2361811 Troll Magnet
Troll Magnet's picture

it'd be funny if 1,000 years from now the sheeps are worshipping harry potter.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:28 | 2361916 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

A 1,000 years from now? That's funny.

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 17:59 | 2363426 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:48 | 2362166 Mad Marv
Mad Marv's picture

You Sir, are correct.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 23:02 | 2363073 smb12321
smb12321's picture

How will withdrawl from the economy help small business?   We should support those local businesses that are the lifeline of the nation.   And why stop caring?  Jeez

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:25 | 2361637 Pool Shark
Pool Shark's picture

 

 

Somebody explain to me how the University of California; a taxpayer-funded entity, can give a single penny to Obama's campaign, let alone $1,648,685.00!!!

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:35 | 2361678 donsluck
donsluck's picture

The Supreme Court, that's how. How long have you hated America?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:06 | 2361815 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

For the same reason that government employees were allowed to unionize. To better loot the taxpayer and destroy the country.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:17 | 2361876 mkhs
mkhs's picture

 

Pool Shark

 

How can a bankrupt postal service afford to sponser a european bicycle team, the Olympics, whatever?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:46 | 2361980 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

It's called "freedom of speech."  Not sure I believe money should be treated as speech, but oh well, I don't make the laws.

If you hate the idea, you might want to check out North Korea.  I hear they have no use for such quaint concepts there.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:01 | 2362207 NidStyles
NidStyles's picture

You aren't too bright, are you?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:49 | 2362349 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

I dunno, you think maybe I read the decision wrong?  What's your interpretation of the Citizens' United precedent?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 23:06 | 2363078 smb12321
smb12321's picture

Using someone else's money (the taxpayers" is not "freedom of speech."   Particularly when government monopolies advertise for folks to use their service.

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 16:53 | 2364000 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Well if you're the guy who gets to decide what is and isn't "freedom of speech," what's that old piece of paper for?  And those 9 assholes in DC?

If you lay out all the details, and I'm in agreement, I'll volunteer my time in the campaign to make you king.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:00 | 2362025 GeorgeHayduke
GeorgeHayduke's picture

Can someone explain to me how contractual "defense" industries that have government contracts can donate to politicians? Seems like the same thing to me.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:25 | 2362105 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

It's called "freedom of speech."  Once the decision was made that we could treat money as equivalent to speech, it was all downhill.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:45 | 2362158 Boris Alatovkrap
Boris Alatovkrap's picture

But that's not right - oh no, what's the story?

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 13:39 | 2363763 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

 

...But there's you, and there's me.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:33 | 2361469 Thomas
Thomas's picture

The financialization at the end of empire is all described in Kevin Phillips's "American Theocracy".

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:55 | 2361535 duo
duo's picture

I just don't see how the financial "industry" can peacefully and voluntarily return to the 10% of the economy it should be, from the 40% that it is now.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:20 | 2361884 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

I don't see how the financial "industry" could have remained at 40% if the Banks weren't bailed out by Government.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:02 | 2362026 OpenThePodBayDoorHAL
OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

Since people were running around in togas there has been money and corruption in politics. And every society has to decide how much of the wealth goes to Capital and how much goes to Labor. If you get the balance wrong then the people show up at your gated community with pitchforks. We're not there yet but I think lots of people have started thinking about which farm implement they'd use, where to buy some rope, and how to make a torch.

The American Election Circus has reached a fever pitch of absurdity, 1 1/2 years of fake distraction and full coffers for ad agencies but no real choice or debate is being offered. Contrast with France, where this weekend voters can choose the existing business as usual bankster puppet (Sarkozy), a guy who wants the top tax rate at 75% (Hollande), a woman who wants to kill all immigrants (Le Pen), A guy who wants to cap all incomes over $500K (Melenchon, polling at about 20%), an eco-activist (Joly), a centrist (Bayrou), a Euro-skeptic (Dupont-Aignan) and a Trotskyite (Arthaud)

The death grip of the two-party fake choice is the problem, Perot tried to break it, so did Dr. Paul...

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:04 | 2362220 NidStyles
NidStyles's picture

Actually the problem has more to do with you morons assuming that "society" has to decide where the fuck my money goes. How about you leave my money alone, and do what the fuck ever you wish with your own?

 

You people are like fucking leeches, every time I pull one off, another of you retards shows up somewhere else.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:35 | 2362311 OpenThePodBayDoorHAL
OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

Sorry, the "society" decides this whether you like it or not, through things like laws and tax policy. If your argument is that we don't need laws and should have no taxes, then I'd ask: what color is the sky on your planet?

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 08:52 | 2363452 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

usual bankster puppet Sarkozy? a bit semplistic, I'd say.
The bankster part, I mean...

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:16 | 2362071 Iwanttoknow
Iwanttoknow's picture

Thomas,

thank you for mentioning Kevin phillips.all of his books should be compulsory reading for all americans.

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 12:29 | 2363684 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

Thomas said:

The financialization at the end of empire is all described in Kevin Phillips's "American Theocracy".

An excellent book, it also takes into account the interplay of peak oil with financialization and politics.

If you enjoy eye-opening books, I highly recommend Imperial Hubris by Michael Scheuer. It puts the whole "War on Terra" into perspective, including why it is another "war" in which winning is not one of the objectives.

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:54 | 2361522 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

It's not just that the 'left' is generally math-challenged when they put forth the usual hare-brained schemes to tax high incomes more in so far as they do not understand the difference between the mean and the median, but even more by the fact that they cannot see that there are differences in how incomes are procured:

Labor, entrepreneurism, investment or rent.

The three former are through hard work and ingenuity, the latter is through government privilege.

Insofar that the political 'left' refuses to enact a tax reform that shifts taxes away from the productive public and onto the rent-seekers (be it in landed property or through legal privileges that e.g. corporations, and especially banking corporations, live high on and through), by reducing and simplifying the tax code, increasing thresholds to income taxes by at least the inflation YoY, and lowering rates, the 'left' is BETRAYING their supposed constituents by letting them sink ever deeper into the choking mud of tax rules and the resulting destitution.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:27 | 2361625 LowProfile
LowProfile's picture

 

Labor, entrepreneurism, investment or rent.

 

The three former are through hard work and ingenuity, the latter is through government privilege.

 

Cannot vote that perfect summation up enough, with your permission I'm going to steal it.

 

Going to work it into my "manifesto":

 

You want to fix this?  Simple:

1.) Let GOLD trade free of taxation and derivatives.  No more levered futures contracts.  1:1 allocated only.  No tax on gold sale, capital gains or otherwise.  Do it with silver too, while we're at it.

2.) Impose a national progressive real estate tax with a super high threshold, say $10,000,000.   No federal taxation below that level.  Amend The Constitution to allow the threshold to rise based on the amount of gold produced each year (approx 1.5%).  Amend The Constitution so that the states cannot tax real estate below a threshold of $5,000.000.

3.) Ban all other forms of taxation with a Constitutional amendment.

That fixes the problem for about 1000 years.  Taxation is progressive, but only above a very high threshold, allowing those who want to live simply and self-sufficiently to do so if they wish.  This forces the monied elite to deploy their capital towards CAPITALISM (seeking profit via production of goods and services), as opposed to their current method of seeking a return on their money, COLLECTING RENT.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:27 | 2361658 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

"Cannot vote that perfect summation up enough, with your permission I'm going to steal it."

 

Permission granted.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:32 | 2361667 LowProfile
LowProfile's picture

Thanks!

Just realized my "manifesto" had a fatal flaw.  2.) should read:

2.) Impose a national progressive real estate tax with a super high threshold, say $10,000,000.   No federal taxation below that level.  Amend The Constitution to allow the threshold to rise based on the true rate of inflation measured against gold, silver, energy and food.  Amend The Constitution so that the states cannot tax real estate below a threshold of $5,000.000.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:38 | 2361685 XitSam
XitSam's picture

But shouldn't energy and food be priced in gold or silver?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:49 | 2361984 LowProfile
LowProfile's picture

It's a work in progress, I'm welcome to suggestions!

The thinking behind a basket is that a basket is less prone to manipulation than a single item.

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:05 | 2362036 OpenThePodBayDoorHAL
OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

I'd love to see Tyler sponsor a new Continental Congress and prepare THE ZH MANIFESTO. Maybe take some of his millions and sponsor a cruise ship party where it all gets decided.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:15 | 2362068 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

"Maybe take some of his millions and sponsor a cruise ship party where it all gets decided."

 

Which afterwards declares itself a sovereign nation.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 17:43 | 2362490 Thisson
Thisson's picture

There already is a Zero Hedge Manifesto.  It's a link on the top-right corner of your screen.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 17:43 | 2362488 Thisson
Thisson's picture

You can't measure inflation by looking at a basket of goods.  Inflation is measured by the totals of CASH and CREDIT in an economy. 

For example: in an economy with a fixed supply of money and credit, any commodity (including gold and silver) can still change price as people's preferences change.

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 09:05 | 2363463 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

Robert Heinlein - the SF writer - favoured a tax on land only.
Some europeans propose a VAT - a tax on consumpition only.

A friend of mine proposes a payroll tax only (!) with only taxpayers being frenchised/voting. Calls it a Plebeian Republic.

Another says a republic should sell half of the voting rights on markets - spares the BS...

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 09:38 | 2363493 i-dog
i-dog's picture

It saddens me that these discussions always immediately devolve into an attempt for a statist, one-size-fits-all, central planning solution ... from which the usual divisions and arguments ensue ... playing directly into the hands of the Hegelian oligarchs to maintain the status quo! The current system is fucked, and any central planning alternative will also be fucked from the start!

Let each town, county and state compete for residents and industry on the basis of what they choose to adopt in the way of currency, taxation, system of governance, and defense. Some will succeed and some will fail (just as many do now, even under the caring control of the Anglo-Americans and the UN).

In this world of extensive travel and instant communications, each will learn from the successes and mistakes of the others very quickly and normalise accordingly.

Arm them all with guns and nukes, or not, if they wish, and none will be stupid enough to attack another. Aggressors are far better controlled by diplomacy, alliances and 'shunning' than by a corruptible Big Brother.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:46 | 2361731 odatruf
odatruf's picture

My question would be how you value the real estate for tax purposes?  It's not a complaint or a reason to oppose your idea, just an administrative detail to work out.

What for example, would stop TPTB from ascribing a value of $5 million to each of the three properties I own that are worth about $1 million total on the open market?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:48 | 2361740 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

"My question would be how you value the real estate for tax purposes? It's not a complaint or a reason to oppose your idea, just an administrative detail to work out."

 

The same way the market, realtors and various assessors do it.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:22 | 2361895 ejmoosa
ejmoosa's picture

Real estate should be valued at the last sales price recorded for it.  Any other value is merely speculation.  

You should not pay additional taxes for pruchasing something  and then having a third party declare it is now worth more than you paid.  That's just  speculation.

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:48 | 2361982 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

Assuming that the bidding has happened openly, public and well announced, I agree.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:50 | 2362170 fnordfnordfnord
fnordfnordfnord's picture

Or else I ought to be able to go down to the tax office and declare "Sold!" deliver them the title to my real estate and collect my check from them for the full value (minus the taxes, I guess).

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 18:59 | 2362676 FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

It should be valued like race horses.  Whatever the owner values it at, anyone else can buy it for that amount.

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 09:28 | 2363481 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

Heinlein's method: the owner values/prices it and pays the tax on it.
Everybody can bid up on that price.
The owner can counter by repricing and paying past taxes on it.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:47 | 2361736 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

I'd not set the threshold very high, but conversely I'd only tax the land upon which the real estate stands.

Limiting entry to use of land, which is nature-given and scarce, will inevitably rob the broad public of natural opportunity, thus leading to unemployment and poverty, just as Henry George originally wrote.

 

As for buildings - these are capital and human-made, and as such un-scrace (assuming no punitive taxes discourage their production, such as labor taxation), and thus not something you would wan't to tax. Perhaps with the exception of a time-limited tax on super-high value mansions along your proposal, which are naturally only valued such because of the exuberance of either the realtor or the banks that pump the RE market to bursting as it has been the past decade.

 

As a Land (Value) Tax is enacted, the income tax, first and fore most, the federal one, can be reduced, from the bottom up. I suggest an immediate tax exemption (ie 0% bracket) up to twice the national poverty line. After that, there can be a 15% bracket, and over 10x the poverty line, a 30% tax. As the LVT is phased in with rising rates, the income tax basic rate (the 15%, and the derived 2x15%) can be progressively lowered, until it is eventually abolished entirely.

 

BTW, people cannot vote on your posts if theyre initiated with a quote.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:10 | 2361831 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

Ah, the old "tax the rentiers" canard. Thinly reconstructed Marxism courtesy of neo-Marxist Michael Hudson.

Unfortunately, when the state taxes private property, it de facto becomes public property. When all private property becomes public property... HELLO MARX!

Go sell crazy somewhere else. We're all full up here.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:46 | 2361977 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

"Ah, the old "tax the rentiers" canard. Thinly reconstructed Marxism courtesy of neo-Marxist Michael Hudson."

 

Do your homework properly. Taxing the land value, which by and large is publically created, is anything but Marxism. In fact, it is an attack on 9,5 out of 10 of Marx' original commandments.

 

"Unfortunately, when the state taxes private property, it de facto becomes public property."

No, private property is what you as a property holders get from having your title recognized and protected by a public judicial institution, as well at the right to take the fruits of land + labor mixed with it into your posession, under the constraints delineated by the landed rent reclamation of the land value tax. That is, YOU DERIVE ECONOMIC BENEFIT FROM HAVING PUBLIC PROTECTION OF YOUR EXCLUSIVE USE OF YOUR PROPERTY AND PROFIT AND PRODUCT DERIVED FROM SAME.

 

"When all private property becomes public property... HELLO MARX!"

HELLO IGNORANCE more like.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:48 | 2361990 Quisat_Sadarak
Quisat_Sadarak's picture

Let's pretend I get up everyday and work my income.  Hard to imagine in this day and age, but bear with me.

Whether I buy game consoles, beer, or land, it is my choice to make whatever purchases as I please. If purchase land and I decide to rent it for whatever purpose, that is my choice to do with the property that I have worked to obtain.  This no different with any type of property, be it land, houses, cars, tools, etc.  Nobody cries for the landowner when their property is destroyed in say a natural disaster and they lose their property.  There is risk associated with owning the land.  Renting is a way of allowing someone to utilize property without taking on the risks of owning.  It's all about risk and reward, you see.  Those who take the risks deserve to reap the rewards.  

This concept of "renting is evil" is just pure non-sense.  

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:54 | 2362008 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

"This concept of "renting is evil" is just pure non-sense."

 

This misconception comes from that you assume land is just any other purchaseable good as beer, cars or game consoles, which is completely false on a number of counts, one being that land continually appreciates, whereas almost all products of human labor (ie. gadgets) depreciate as they fall apart in time; another being that since that human labor cannot crate new land, the natural reources are scarce (exemplified in the peak oil which is giving you 4....5....6....$ gas these days), and thus disproportionally benefit those who hold title on them in comparison to those who are excluded by same title-giving (Government Privilege).

Hope it helps.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:04 | 2362014 Quisat_Sadarak
Quisat_Sadarak's picture

Your premise is false, sir.  

Land continually appreciates when it is purchased using FRNs the FED continually depreciates by printing money.  Maybe one day the light will turn on for you.  I admire your struggle though.

Even with peak oil, if you prices oil in terms of gold, the price per gallon would be at an all time low.

And human labour *does* create land.  

Here are a few examples... It has been done for centuries when the Dutch pump out water and build levees.  

And more recently in Dubai where the Palm Islands have been created.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palm_Islands

 

 

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:13 | 2362053 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

"Land continually appreciates when it is purchased using FRNs the FED continually depreciates by printing money. Maybe one day the light will turn on for you. I admire your struggle though."

What is the price of 1 sq. ft. og land in Manhattan, in gold, for the last two centuries?

 

The light will very rapidly turn on for you once you answer this question.

 

"And human labour *does* create land. Here are a few examples... It has been done for centuries when the Dutch pump out water and build levees."

No, the labor expended are improvements that make existing land available for human use. The land was already there. Obviously, human labor cannot create mass and energy out of nothing.

 

"And more recently in Dubai where the Palm Islands have been created."

Likewise false.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:41 | 2362152 Quisat_Sadarak
Quisat_Sadarak's picture

Why don't you tell me what the price of land is in Manhattan priced in terms of gold, for the last 200 years.    Did it ever go down in price at any point in time?  Have land and houses ever been overpriced anywhere on the planet (even in terms of FRNs)?  Lately?  Wink, wink, nudge, nudge, know what I mean?  

I don't understand why you choose Manhattan as your frame of reference.  There is other land around which is undervalued out there you know.  

Yes in Dubai, land was infact created, where is did not exist before.  There was water.  Then through human labor, land was created.  The Dutch lost land due to flooding where land was destroyed, and through human labor and ingenuity their were able to recreate land by removing water.  There are many many many examples of this around the globe.  I cite two to show that your thinking is seriously flawed.

I don't plan on educating you, that is up to you.  You thinking has been shown to be seriously flawed to this point.

 

 

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 06:51 | 2363385 Death and Gravity
Death and Gravity's picture

"Have land and houses ever been overpriced anywhere on the planet (even in terms of FRNs)? Lately? Wink, wink, nudge, nudge, know what I mean?"

 

So now your argument is changed from land appreciating due to inflation in fiat, to being simple overpriced.

 

"I don't understand why you choose Manhattan as your frame of reference."

 

Choose any other high-population or high-commerce density spot in the world. Hong Kong, Shanghai, London. The point remains the same.

 

"Yes in Dubai, land was infact created, where is did not exist before. There was water. "

 

Please do expend the effort of reading what I have written before you respond to it. Also, read up on the economic definition of what 'land' is. Hint: It is not dry land.

 

"I don't plan on educating you, that is up to you. You thinking has been shown to be seriously flawed to this point."

 

As always with these net debates, it is ironic how much the ones who use this line themselves are reluctant to step back from their pulputs for just a few moments to examine their own claims.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:29 | 2361931 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Georgism.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:09 | 2361830 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

The Fed Govt owns more than 40% of all American Real estate.  Maybe they should auction it to it's citizens and collect some real taxes.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:31 | 2361938 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

What if the Chinese buy it all?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:52 | 2361998 LowProfile
LowProfile's picture

We will nationalize it.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:01 | 2362023 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

China already has it as collateral on the money your Govt. borrowed from them.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:32 | 2362125 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Do you have to think hard to make up batshit-crazy stuff to post on the innerwebz?  Or does it just come to you like voices in your brain?

let's see if I can do it...

Lizards are owlblossoms descending from the heavens of Mars!

The core of every second of life is eternal fire!

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:53 | 2362007 LowProfile
LowProfile's picture

 

The Fed Govt owns more than 40% of all American Real estate.  Maybe they should auction it to it's citizens and collect some real taxes.

Thanks for reminding me:  I would include an amendment that the Fed Gov't cannot own more than 15% of the country's land, and the states cannot own more than 15% of their respective state's land AS ASSESSED BY DOLLAR VALUE....

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 17:40 | 2362482 Thisson
Thisson's picture

There's nothing wrong with gold futures contracts, at least the ones that are all marked to market regularly, properly margined, and centrally cleared via COMEX.

Why shouldn't gold producers be allowed to hedge their output if they so choose?  And why shouldn't speculators be allowed to take the other side of the wager?

Free markets requires freedom, not a centralized nanny state telling people that their arms' length transactions are prohibited.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:54 | 2362009 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

"Investment" isn't a product of hard work or ingenuity.  There's some skill involved, sure, but there's also a tremendous amount of luck to it.

"Investment" is about the same as "rent."  You had wealth, so you converted it into some form that returns income for no continued labor.

That's where the whole capitalist thing starts to become a bit of a problem.  Once people think they *deserve* money for not working, you end up with a class of parasites.  Most of the attention is focused on the parasites at the bottom of the income ladder, but the ones at the top are the folks who get away with the most money.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 23:15 | 2363093 smb12321
smb12321's picture

The Left has always operated like NPR - huge intellectual support from the powers that be, the "intellectual elite" with mouthings of support for the underdogs.  It's that obsession with egalitarianism, the act of imposing equality regardless of input.  The Left's contention that everyone - but especially the poor, the zombies and the uneducated - should share the rewards REGARDLESS of their productivity is my main gripe.   Why the hell should I work, scrimp, plan and save only to have some do gooder hand a good chunk of my income to political supporters? 

Sat, 04/21/2012 - 13:27 | 2363741 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

    The Left's contention that everyone - but especially the poor, the zombies and the uneducated

Dude, if that's a contention of "The Left," you should realize you're in a vast left-wing bastion of "thinkers" right this very moment! 

Have you ever read these posts around here?  35% of them are assertions of the inferiority of the poor uneducated zombies watching Dancing with the Stars and eating chips purchased at Walmart.  Seriously--perfectly good threads are frequently overrun by the dog-pile of commentary expressing JUST HOW STUPID EVERYONE IS.

But WE'RE all smarter.  WE'RE the really GOOD people.  It's not OUR fault we're surrounded by a country of IDIOTS.

Blah. 

It's a bit fuckin' discouraging to observe how completely lacking self-awareness people can be.  The reason the revolution won't be televised is because the final battle has to take place within your own mind.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:58 | 2361542 Alcoholic Nativ...
Alcoholic Native American's picture

Whats 9/11 have to do with anything?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:53 | 2361757 WTFx10
WTFx10's picture

Jewish Mafia, Please seperate the race from criminal. Is there a hebrew word for organized crime? Italians have enough trouble.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 19:09 | 2362689 FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

The only "race" the Ashkenazi or Eastern European faux-Jews are is caucasian.  Italian isn't a race either.  It's, likewise, a nationality or tribe if you prefer.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:51 | 2362172 greyghost
greyghost's picture

no shit crime of the century.....under contributors for obama?   THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA????? is that even legal? that a goverment organization giving calif taxpayer money to a political organization and someone running for political office! where did the poster get this information?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:34 | 2361447 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Connect the dots.  A nation of corporations with one party, for the banks (and their corporate masters), by the banks (and their corporate masters).  GDP goes up, but the middle class get a smaller piece of the pie and higher prices.  Yes, it's good to be in that top 0.1%- Winning.

 

Long black markets, see underground post below.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:40 | 2361490 bigdumbnugly
bigdumbnugly's picture

campaign contributors chart says it all.

how bout a third chart with ron paul contrbutions?  just for the entertainment value of course...

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:29 | 2361458 LongSoupLine
LongSoupLine's picture

how do we get this to go viral?!?!?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:33 | 2361468 spiral_eyes
spiral_eyes's picture

Everyone e-mail it to Paul Krugman. Get him to argue back. He won't be able to resist.

But he will lose.  

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:34 | 2362304 Coldsun
Coldsun's picture

Like the ego deflating a$$ whooping he got from Steve Keen?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 18:46 | 2362648 spiral_eyes
spiral_eyes's picture

Yeah, exactly. 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:40 | 2361493 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture

 

 

For things to go viral, they usually need to be devoid of reality.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:52 | 2361525 fuu
fuu's picture

Well then most of this article should be everywhere by 4pm.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:49 | 2361510 Sauk Leader
Sauk Leader's picture

Attach it to a video of a monkey riding a dog.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:06 | 2361566 AngryChair
AngryChair's picture

Or a monkey eating a dog.  Any dog recipes?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:45 | 2361715 i-dog
i-dog's picture

 

"Any dog recipes?"

AnAnonymous should be able to help you there.

Or, let Baidu.com be your friend....

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:27 | 2361915 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

i seen what you done there

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:55 | 2362184 Chaos_Theory
Chaos_Theory's picture

Change the title to "Kim Kardashian sucks off all American Idol and Dancing with the Stars contestants" video. 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:30 | 2361460 Shizzmoney
Shizzmoney's picture

Great article....although this should be renamed, "Why the political class misunderstands income inequality".....

As in...."they are PAID to misunderstand it".

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:34 | 2361464 dick cheneys ghost
dick cheneys ghost's picture

meanwhile, the underground economy keeps growing and growing and growing............

 

http://www.ukiahdailyjournal.com/ci_20401483/nearly-one-third-mendocino-...

 

http://www.centralvalleybusinesstimes.com/stories/001/?ID=20838

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:33 | 2361466 dwdollar
dwdollar's picture

The truth is too painful for most. It's easier to pretend there's two sides and a legitimate election process.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:45 | 2361470 fuu
fuu's picture

Right, left, blah blah.

"The political left — epitomised, I suppose, by the Occupy movement — often call for “taking the money out of politics”.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:33 | 2361473 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

So ~ If I click on that AD LINK on the right to tell 'Michelle' that "I'm In", do I make the list?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:36 | 2361482 vincent van goo
vincent van goo's picture

How come Obama has such a lead with $$$$ ?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:57 | 2361538 Stax Edwards
Stax Edwards's picture

Because Romney is not the official GOP candidate yet.  Check back after the convention and you will see some major tightening of those spreads.

(not my junk BTW)

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:55 | 2361770 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

Because Goldman Sachs runs the world and they gave Obama much more $$$ than Romney.  No guessing required.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:37 | 2361483 Alcoholic Nativ...
Alcoholic Native American's picture

Socialist policies are keeping the job creators from unleashing the flood gates of trickle down.  It's as simple as that.

Deregulate, do away with social saftey nets, and reign in big government to the task of protecting property rights (intellectual as well) and a military ONLY.

THIS BULLSHIT HAS TO STOP

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:41 | 2361497 GeneMarchbanks
GeneMarchbanks's picture

LOL.

The 'opposition' has Stockholm Syndrome. Here, have a delicious Hot Pocket instead? [hands him a tasty corporate treat]

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:57 | 2361541 LawsofPhysics
LawsofPhysics's picture

Wake the fuck up, this is not socialism (unless you are referring to the socialization of fucking private losses).

This is fascism.  

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:38 | 2361684 donsluck
donsluck's picture

I agree.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:17 | 2361864 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

Stop quibbling over definitions. Fascism is a form of socialism, there is a reason it was called the National Socialist Party.

The system of control is ever so slightly different (Communism = the elite controlling the wealth that is nominally owned by "the people", vs Fascism/Corporatism = elite owning the wealth that is nominally controlled by "the people".)

The end result is the same.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:38 | 2361956 GeneMarchbanks
GeneMarchbanks's picture

A have a subtle eye for social movements, kudos. Whatever you do, under no circumstance, please, allow yourself to pick up a book. Ever. 

You have it down perfect. Don't let these fools fuck with your mind clarity.

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:23 | 2361633 American Sucker
American Sucker's picture

 

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." - H. L. Mencken

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:38 | 2361484 Silver Dreamer
Silver Dreamer's picture

Don't you love how the "US Government" can give a candidate half a million of our money?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:40 | 2361492 CuriousPasserby
CuriousPasserby's picture

This is probably a list of the employers of the donors. So that's federal employee donations. I was wondering how schools can give, but it's probably their employees.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:40 | 2361489 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

CRONY ROGER

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:03 | 2361561 the not so migh...
the not so mighty maximiza's picture

Nice!!, inside a dead skull, how fitting.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 15:15 | 2362066 OpenThePodBayDoorHAL
OpenThePodBayDoorHAL's picture

beautiful, Jerry would have loved it

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:41 | 2361495 brodix
brodix's picture

The main issue is as to what ideas prevail when it all does come crashing down. It's not a matter of left vs. right, but economic sustainability. Efficiency breeds confidence. Confidence leads to inefficiency. It's matter of incorporating such cycles within the paradigm and not having one entity in control. Capitalism used to be about efficient distribution of resources, now it's about accumulation of assets. So now resources are being  destroyed in order to create increasingly fictional assets. It will blow up and all that really matters is the next paradigm.

 My view:http://www.exterminatingangel.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view...

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:44 | 2361500 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

There are no "causes" of income inequality.

A lot of people who are well off were just at the right place at the right time, it's as simple as that.

Other people are born with an extremely high IQ that allows them to do pretty much anything

Other people simply just work their fucking asses off, save like a motherfucker, and at some point later in life, after being responsible and hard working finally achieve an above average income.

Most people don't have the first two, and if you don't have the first two, you better start on that last one.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:54 | 2361530 spiral_eyes
spiral_eyes's picture

You're missing it. Income inequality as measured by the graph in the article has increased since we went off the gold standard.

Yes, some people will always be cleverer or better connected than others.

But this is extreme grift undertaken by a bunch of financial and governmental criminals who are intent on lifting themselves up above the wider society and pissing on everyone else.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:40 | 2361691 donsluck
donsluck's picture

IQ has very little to do with it. Have you forgotten GW Bush?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:46 | 2361504 cat-foodcafe
cat-foodcafe's picture

Nobody seems to get it....the GOV is here to take all your stuff and put the weaklings into fenced compounds.  Left, Right, all stupid, all asleep. We are going to Hell on a Fast Express.  Hidden Bastards have been destroying USA for 50 years.  People are asleep.  Look at Detroit:  Ruins and bankrupt.  Get ready, coming soon to a city near you.  More cognitive dissonance.  Go back to sleep.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:41 | 2361695 donsluck
donsluck's picture

Not necessarily stupid or asleep. There are many things out of your control.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:51 | 2361515 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture

1)  But income inequality is an important symptom of that wider malaise.

2)  Yes, the left are well-intentioned.

Total agreement with #1, total disagreement with #2.  The left - and we're talking the Alinsky left crowd that has seeped into the power broker chairs - loves nothing more than perpetuating dependence of the muppets on the government.  That precipitates mass despotism and capitulation of individual sovereignty, particularly those that buy into the hope that the next left-wing Messiah will get it right and take care of all of their needs. 

There are a number of underlying causes to income inequality (which BTW is a natural outcome, but becomes unnatural and divisive when the variance is fueled by corruption as it inevitably does).  Let's just not forget that those willing to believe the Jedi mind tricks and unwilling to think and work for themselves is a contributor.

 

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:55 | 2361526 spiral_eyes
spiral_eyes's picture

What percentage of the left are actualy Alinskyites?

It's the same question as "what percentage of the right are friends with the Koch brothers?"

The problem isn't the wider left or wider right, it's the elites on both sides, although the point of the entire article is that the footsoldiers on the left are wrong when they believe government can or wants to fix the problem.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:01 | 2361537 mayhem_korner
mayhem_korner's picture

 

 

Alinskyites want to control the masses, so their agenda goes beyond lining their own pockets. 

I view the economic issues of this whole thing as a veil - the real issues deal with individual sovereignty.  Statists, who are leftists, want everyone to yield their liberty to them. 

Edit: if the quote about the left being well-intentioned refers to the naive footsoldiers, I would probably agree with that.  I took the quote as referring to the TPTB left.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 13:03 | 2361557 spiral_eyes
spiral_eyes's picture

You seriously thinking that your average lefty liberal actually thinks in those terms?

Yes, their political allegiance supports those kinds of politicians (Clinton, Obama, Jay Rockefeller, etc) 

But this isn't a problem of your average lefty lying there at night dreaming about how he can take your liberty. The ordinary left in my experience are very well-intentioned, just they support ideas that achieve the reverse of what they actually want.

If you carefully explain to them how their political views are actually achieving the opposite of what they want, then you can win them over.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:18 | 2361882 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

The average libtard is a fucking emotional retard who lives in a world entirely within his or her mind. Complete disconnection with reality.

Does that help you understand?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:37 | 2361952 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

So how long have you been a libtard?  And why are you confessing HERE?

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:29 | 2362295 Buckaroo Banzai
Buckaroo Banzai's picture

...and you just proved my point.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 16:45 | 2362342 boiltherich
boiltherich's picture

Coming from the Nazi right I am rather proud to be counted as a thinking and fair liberal progressive, with weapons.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 17:05 | 2362390 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Dude, the "reality" is that you don't have even a schoolboy's understanding of most of the words you throw around here.  It's all fashionable in this crowd to say "fascism is communism" and "liberalism is stupidity," but you're really harming our ability to have any kind of meaningful discussion.

Whenever someone points out your poor vocabulary, you call them a "libtard."  I don't have anything personal against you, but I think we all benefit from engaging in real argument.

Why don't you actually try to SAY something?  If your ideas are even half as brilliant as you're convinced they are, you just might inspire one of our fellow Hedgers to go do something constructive.

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 12:55 | 2361532 Sauk Leader
Sauk Leader's picture

Thomas Sowell Does a pretty good job talking about this

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=26QxO49Ycx0

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 14:58 | 2361516 BlackholeDivestment
BlackholeDivestment's picture

Supreme Court Morons say the Company Robot and you are equal.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-uOfQ1QD6cU&feature=fvst

... and Organized Torture is OK.  http://article.wn.com/view/2012/04/19/Supreme_Court_rules_PLO_corporations_cant_be_sued_under_tort/ 

So, let me get this straight, companyr robot running the market http://www.zerohedge.com/news/catching-silver-crusher-algorithm-act 

(and http://www.zerohedge.com/news/latest-market-craze-stock-trading-robots-reacting-stories-written-robots  writing articles about it, lol)

...then robot robber robs you to get you to accept one of two evils, then the company machines count the vote http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4aKOhbbK9E and you can get your ass kicked as long as it's organized. Lol.

...and who is tempted to vote for one of two evil bastards? LMAO. 

On a side note: http://www.teapartytribune.com/2012/04/13/obama-lawyer-admits-forgery-but-disregards-image-as-indication-of-obamas-ineligibility-damage-control/ 

How ridiculous Ameruca is. http://www.raidersnewsupdate.com/petrus-sixteen.htm 

RAAAAPE!!! Time to do the CRUSHER http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFAKpttMyXU&feature=results_main&playnext=1&list=PL91ABED62F9847E54

Fri, 04/20/2012 - 21:42 | 2362943 FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

On a side, side note it can be argued that Mickey Mouse is very popular and maybe he is the best rodent for the job.

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