Friday, May 11, 2012

Stimulus—for whom?

As I’ve been saying for years, any fiscal stimulus will go to the 1 percent:  “The American income distribution is like a Detroit V8 firing on one cylinder:  it doesn’t matter how much you step on the gas, only one cylinder going to fire” (source, March 2011). 

In the 2010 recovery, 93 percent of the gains were captured by the top 1 percent. That’s because top incomes grew 11.6 percent in 2010, while the incomes of the 99 percent increased only 0.2 percent. (source)

It when we know facts like this that Larry Summers’ obtuseness in recommending more debt and more fiscal stimulus becomes truly breathtaking.  Well, at least we know Jamie Dimon won’t be becoming Treasury secretary now, after his bank’s trading blooper.

The problem is the distribution, people.  Take away from the military industrial security complex and give to infrastructure workfare and education, and for Christ’s sake, raise taxes on the rich. And make the banks write down or charge off debts that won’t be repaid.

When things go wrong, people get mad, and when people get mad, they make mistakes.

I just watched Bill Moyers on public television.  He showed a bunch of people saying they are mad at corporations, that corporations are looting the common people.

But corporations are just a form of social organization that is very good at raising capital and producing goods and services.

It is the ruling class who are looting the common people, a ruling class of interlocking boards and CEOs and lobbyists and Congressmen and just plain greedy people who have forgotten to reward the people who are doing the work because they along with almost everyone else in America bought into the notion that greed is good and that it’s okay to take more than your share.  I want it all now.  It’s time for you to get into me.

The problem is the ruling class and the American social values that have until recently validated the behavior of our ruling class.  Greed has been good since Ronald Reagan’s presidency, approximately.  We let them get away with it.

The solution is to bring the people in the ruling class down to earth by raising marginal tax rates to at least 75 percent on income over one million dollars.  Take the fun out of expropriating the employees and shareholders of their corporations, let the rich bear their fair share of cleaning up the fiscal mess Wall Street created (whether they’re on Wall Street or not).

If they want to take their money out of the country, they probably can, but the IRS is making it more and more difficult.  If they want to leave, let them go, it’s still a free country, relatively speaking.

The Tea Party movement and the Republican party are sucker’s games, talking about getting government off people’s backs, when all they’re really talking about is protecting the highly unequal status quo and keeping taxes low for rich people. […]  (source)

No comments:

Post a Comment