HOW THE WEALTHY ARE SCREWING AMERICA!

By Jack Jodell, Aug. 16, 2011

CLARIFICATION:
I do NOT hate people simply for being rich. There are a good many of the wealthy who consistently aid charities and who actively support efforts to better the lives of suffering poor people everywhere. These rich people are to be commended for their sense of civic duty and social justice. Unfortunately, there are relatively few of this type person around today. Most rich simply do not care in the least for those well below them on the income scale, or, worse yet, resist and oppose any governmental attempt to help the poor. THOSE are the ones I don’t have any time for. They play the rest of us who DO care for chumps.

Below is a true piece I am reprinting for you. It appeared in Sunday’s edition of AlterNet. THIS SHOULD BE REQUIRED READING FOR EVERY VOTER IN THE COUNTRY! PASS IT ON TO ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS!

Americans Don’t Realize Just How Badly We’re Getting Screwed by the Top 0.1
Percent Hoarding the Country’s Wealth

With an unprecedented sum of wealth held within the top
one-tenth of one percent of the US population, we now have the most severe
inequality of wealth in US history.
August 14, 2011  |  

As American philosopher John Dewey said, “There is no such thing as the liberty or effective power of an individual, group, or class, except in relation to the liberties, the effective powers, of other individuals, groups or classes.”

In my report, The Economic Elite vs. the People, I reported on the strategic withholding of wealth from 99 percent of the US population over the past generation. Since the mid-1970s, worker production and wealth creation has exploded. As the statistics throughout this report prove, the dramatic increase in wealth has been almost entirely absorbed by the economic top one-tenth of one percent of the population, with most of it going to the top one-hundredth of one percent.

If you are wondering why a critical mass of people desperately struggling to make ends meet are still not fighting back with overwhelming force and running the mega-wealthy aristocrats out of town, let’s consider two significant factors:

1)
People are so busy trying to maintain their current standard of living that their energies are consumed by holding onto the little they have left.

2)
People have very little understanding of how much wealth has been consolidated within the top economic one-tenth of one percent.

Considering the first factor, it is obvious that people have become beaten down psychologically and financially. A report in the Guardian titled, “Anxiety keeps the super-rich safe from middle-class rage,” suggests that people are so desperate to hold onto whatthey have that they are too busy looking down to look up: “As psychologists will tell you, fear of loss is more powerful than the prospect of gain. The struggling middle classes look down more anxiously than they look up, particularly in recession and sluggish recovery.”

Considering the second factor, people do not understand how much wealth has been withheld from them. The average person has never personally experienced or seen the excessive wealth and luxury that the mega-rich live in. Wealth inequality has grown so extreme and the wealthy have become so far removed from average society, it is as if the rich exist in some outer stratosphere beyond the comprehension of the average person. As the Guardian report states:

“having little daily contact with the rich and little knowledge of how they lived, they simply didn’t think about inequality much, or regard the wealthy as direct competitors for resources. As the sociologist Garry Runciman observed: ‘Envy is a difficult emotion to sustain across a broad social distance.’… Even now most underestimate the rewards of bankers and executives. Top pay has reached such levels that, rather like interstellar distances, what the figures mean is hard to grasp.”

In fact, the average American vastly underestimates our nation’s severe wealth disparity. This survey, featured in the NY Times, reveals that Americans think our society is far more equal than it actually is:

“In a recent survey of Americans, my colleague Dan Ariely and I found that Americans drastically underestimated the level of wealth inequality in the United States. While recent data indicates that the richest 20 percent of Americans own 84 percent of all wealth, people estimated that this group owned just 59 percent – believing that total wealth in this country is far more evenly divided among poorer Americans.

What’s more, when we asked them how they thought wealth should be distributed, they told us they wanted an even more equitable distribution, with the richest 20 percent owning just 32 percent of the wealth. This was true of Democrats and Republicans, rich and poor – all groups we surveyed approved of some inequality, but their ideal was far more equal than the current level.”

This chart shows the survey’s results:

The overwhelming majority of the US population is unaware of the vast wealth at hand. An entire generation of unprecedented wealth creation has been concealed from 99 percent of the population for over 35 years. Having never personally experienced this wealth, the average American cannot comprehend what is possible if even a fraction of the money was used for the betterment of society.

Given modern technology and wealth, American citizens should not be living in poverty. The statistics demonstrate that we now live in a neo-feudal society. In comparison to the wealthiest one-tenth of one percent of the population, who are sitting on top of tens of trillions of dollars in wealth, we are essentially propagandized peasants.

The fact that the overwhelming majority of Americans are struggling to get by, while tens of trillions of dollars are consolidated within a small fraction of the
population, is a crime against humanity.

The next time you are stressed out, struggling to make ends meet and pay off your debts, just think about the trillions of dollars sitting in the obscenely bloated pockets of the financial elites. I still cling to the hope that once enough people become aware of this fact, we can have the non-violent revolution we so urgently need. Until then, the rich get richer as a critical mass with increasingly dire economic prospects desperately struggles to make ends meet.

With an unprecedented sum of wealth, tens of TRILLIONS of dollars,held within the top one-tenth of one percent of the US population, we now have THE MOST SEVERE INEQUALITY OF WEALTH IN US HISTORY. Not even the robber barons of the Gilded Age as greedy as the modern-day economic elite!

About jackjodell53

I am an American Dissident trapped in a country where poor and middle class people are constantly being exploited and lied to by a very rigid and conservative plutocratic elite. I believe in government OF, FOR, and BY the people, not one controlled as it now is by corporations and special interests.
This entry was posted in AlterNet, commentary, news, Politics, wealth disparity and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to HOW THE WEALTHY ARE SCREWING AMERICA!

  1. Great post, Jack. Talk about income redistribution! Workers are busting their butts and all we hear is how they are over-paid, while the top fraction of 1% are collecting all the benefits and all the money. It is time people wake up and LOOK at what is happening, not what they are TOLD is happening.

    • jackjodell53 says:

      Jerry,
      The only people being “overpaid” in this economy are the bastards who are hoarding all the wealth—CEOs and the lazy fat trust funders like Grover Norquist. WE all know the score; THOSE idiots don’t!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s