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  • #13
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    Why just the US? Why not talk about wealth inequality throughout the world? When you look at this video do you picture yourself in the bottom or at the top? What will your income be when you retire and sell your house in one year? Should people who are just entering the workforce be pitied because they make so little money? Are those evil rich the same evil rich as 10 years ago? How about those poor poor? If I took a group of students and put green armbands on 10% and red armbands on 90% and purposely favored the green group, could I get you to resent the green armband group? What principals would you sacrifice to get even? What power could I obtain by promising comeuppance against those green fat cats? Do you enjoy being a victim?

    http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/...
  • #19
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    @DerivePI Exactly. For Example, How come people never talk about Arafat and his stealing of billions in aid meant for 'his people'.
  • #55
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    It's not simplistic to point out that the wealthy have spent the last 30 years fixing the system to work in their favor.

    Not only do the wealthy rig the system to boost their incomes, but they have also made their wealth more persistant.

    We are well on the way to an English system of a rigid economic class structure.
  • #63
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    The mere term "distributed" is the key to the Lefts social engineering agenda. Reward Excellance and hard work with increased Wealth or take hard earned money from others in service to Social Engineering and Collectivism like in Castro's Cuba.
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  • #5
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    I work as hard now as I did 12 years ago when I started my business. But with the added taxes, restrictions, and the economy my business has suffered greatly. I believe this chart is dead on. I feel that the economy and the banking industry killed what growth we had. Politicians, both republicans and democrats fell in step with NAFTA allowing corporations to go to Mexico, India, and China taking not only American jobs, but allowing loopholes that Obama wants closed to generate more tax revenue (which I do believe is fair)! But getting back to the chart, it is not the rich keeping this country down, it is our elected officials who continue to allow China and companies like Walmart, to dictate what they want instead of the American people. Walmart does employ a lot of Americans-most part time with extremely high health plans, but they also are a huge overseas slave labor enforcer. If the congress and the president would repeal NAFTA that would force factories back to American soil along with more tax for the government. We would have more jobs, people would be able to once again buy homes, and get off of welfare and food stamps. It would be great for this country but when you have corrupt politicians taking money from corporations it's a no win situation. Think about this. Why would someone spend millions to get elected to a job that only pays $174,000 a year? I know there are other incentives but it doesn't make sense unless you are already rich.
  • #8
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    Excellent post!!! You are spot on here.

    The global market was great for business but not for the country. It made a handful of companies extraordinarily wealthy, but did nothing to bolster the economy of the country. It separated American business from America.

    We have to also remember that America has been a country with an economy dependent upon those in the middle. If you slide too many people one way or the other, those left in the middle can no longer be a reliable fulcrum. And that's exactly what's happened over the last decade. We pushed too many people towards poverty or too many towards massive wealthy. The gap between the two has become so wide that those in the middle can no longer keep things in balance.

    Wealth is one thing. Multi-million dollar salaries is another. If a company has enough money to pay these kinds of salaries, then certainly the price of their products (gas, for example) must be scaled to fit. Hence, the consumer is being sucked dry in order to help pay bloated salaries.

    I wish more people had open eyes like yourself and could see the real picture going on.
  • #12
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    10 Ups here.

    People don't understand that a lot of things we have and are taxed for now, didn't exist 40-50 yrs ago when our parents were growing up. NAFTA was/is a disaster.

    And you are right. 174K a yr , They show up broke and leave millionaires.
  • #40
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    This is spot on. This is exactly what a friend and I were discussing 15 years ago. He said "you better get while you can now because it ain't gotta be there later."
  • #67
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    "it is not the rich keeping this country down, it is our elected officials"

    Your elected officials belong to the rich.



    NAFTA, outsourcing, and subsidies are all examples of the rich buying the outcomes they want.

    Defunding education and social services is how they plan to keep it.

    ---

    "Why would someone spend millions to get elected to a job that only pays $174,000 a year? I know there are other incentives but it doesn't make sense unless you are already rich."

    Unless you aspire to become rich...
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  • #2
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    It SHOULD: be an incentive for hard work. Unfortunately, big government has completely skewed the factors that once led to financial success, and in doing so, has created an environment of entitlement that keeps people from reaching their full potential. It seems that government no longer rewards success, but punishes it. And rather than see success as something honorable and good, government schools teach that financial success is only achieved through exploitation, resulting in a society that sees financial success as something criminal..unless, of course, the successful people are liberals.
  • #29
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    I don't think it is the role of government to punish or reward success... Nor should gov't punish or reward failure... and I have never heard of a gov't school teaching kids that exploitation is a means of achieving success.(Side not: "Success" is not the same as "wealth") Exploitation is something taught to adults working for other adults who exploit others to achieve wealth... I think there is ample evidence for a reasonable young worker to come to the conclusion that exploitation is a means to wealth, and that it is criminal.
  • #51
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    @DogLady_1 - Speaking of "criminal exploitation"...

    "President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney spent a combined $30.33 every second this election cycle, as a binge of campaign spending deluged voters with rallies, banners, and of course, TV ads.

    The figure comes from a grand total of more than $1.7 billion spent by both sides through mid-October. And that works out to more than $79 million per month, and more than $2.6 million every day, according to data provided by the Federal Election Commission."

    That money would have gone a long way to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and help the needy.

    But it went up in smoke.
  • #59
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    @AntiPorcheria - "That money would have gone a long way to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and help the needy." So true! They might have gained alot of voters that way too! LOL But, I think many people would call that "buying votes"... But there is nothing "criminal" about spending money on political campaigns... private Americans gave their money willingly to those causes, and it was spent exactly the way those donors expected it to be spent... outrageous maybe, but not criminal...
  • #147
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    @AntiPorcheria There is nothing stopping anyone who donates money to a political campaign from also donating money to charity. Indeed, the majority of political donors do. Regardless, the money spent on the campaign did not "go up in smoke". It put a lot of people to work putting together rallies, printing banners, and paying for TV and radio ad people to put together those ads and broadcast them. The campaign was in reality a $1.7 billion boost to the economy.
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  • #11
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    I think the point most people are missing is that these people are not earning this money. It's not as though they built something or invented something or came up with a better idea or solved a problem. These people simply manipulated markets or took advantage of the system. Do those CEOs really earn those multimillion dollar salaries and more than the people who work for the company he or she runs?
  • #84
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    Bingo!----Somebody who can reason, and understand that this small percentage of the ultra wealthy are not only controlling the markets (and the right here still believes in "free markets")---They are crafting the "rules" via our bought & paid-for legislators, to keep the whole system rigged....Thank god someone else here understands whats going on.
  • #3
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    .....because no one can truly start off their Monday mornings with just the right amount of white guilt being poured into their coffees.
  • #85
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    Yeah, that's it...keep fighting among our selves...That's just exactly what that upper 1 % want people like you to do...It takes the spotlight off of them and their manipulation of the "free markets" and the US Population. Nice job!
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  • #6
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    This shows something not mentioned in the video. What happens when the middle class tries to live and budget their money using the government method. Deficient spending. When you live maxed out on your credit and not investing or saving you get this. It's not the fault of the very few that don't live like this. This will be used to try and take the money from those that were smart
  • #36
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    Unfortunately, the bail-outs proved that the wealthiest Americans also borrowed their way to the top... that's why they claimed to be "too big to fail"... If their loans were called in, they'd all be living below middle class. The only sector of people who can't be blamed for the financial crisis are those that live within their means... They are the "smart" ones...
  • #96
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    @DogLady_1 you have a point. But lets qualify that with irresponsible debt. For example I lease most of my equipment. Which is frees up capital I need for other things. I can't afford to spend $700,000 for a tractor and dirt pans. When I can lease five for the same outlay. The revenue from that equipment more than covers the lease payments. What's important is keeping my debt to income ratio under control. I can always sell out and more than cover my debt. I've been careful with my money and made a decent profit. But we are the only country that obesity is a serious problem among the poorest segment of society.
    You also don't pay your CEOs according to the average salary. You should pay them for the amount of revenue they generate. I said should. But I resent it when I'm accused of greed. I've earned my money by hard work and smart investing. I took risks and they paid off. But every risk I took could have bankrupted me. That's the key. You have to be willing to lose money to make money. That's why I say I've been broke lots of times but never poor.
  • #247
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    @DogLady_1 Gettin' an inspiration for a song. So far I've only got the refrain: "Too weak to fight, too big to fail, too darned pretty to go to jail!".
    Reflecting on our times from the Middle Class, to big business to 'Babe' LaFave, lol.
  • #258
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    We've had so called wealth inequality since time began, and its exaggerated when folks become dependent on govt for their existence. It makes for good talking points in socialist societies to create class envy, by blaming the rich for ones predicament instead of themselves and a govt that creates dependency -- which also undermines and destroys the middle class in the interim.

    "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his a$$, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's".-- Exodus 20:17

    Famous Quotes on Wealth Redistribution, Class Warfare and Envy--

    "If we can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people, under the pretense of taking care of them, they must become happy." Thomas Jefferson

    "That is not a just government … where the property which a man has in his personal safety and personal liberty, is violated by arbitrary seizures of one class of citizens for the service of the rest." James Madison

    "The utopian schemes of leveling [wealth redistribution] and a community of goods, are as visionary and impractical as those which vest all property in the crown. These ideas are arbitrary, despotic, and, in our government, unconstitutional." Samuel Adams

    "Property is the fruit of labor. Property is desirable, is a positive good in the world. That some should be rich shows that others may become rich, and hence is just encouragement to industry and enterprise." Abraham Lincoln

    "Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another; but let him labor diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built." Abraham Lincoln

    "Though the people support the government; the government should not support the people." Grover Cleveland

    "Since when do we in America believe that our society is made up of two diametrically opposed classes—one rich, one poor—both in a permanent state of conflict and neither able to get ahead except at the expense of the other?" Ronald Reagan

    When will you poor dependent socialist 'porkers' get it???

  • #287
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    @S-N-A-F-U - Good quotes... Let's start with repealing the income tax and Patriot Act. Then dismantle the DEA, ATF, Dept. of Ed., NSA, and lifetime pensions for civil servants, federal contractors and veterans.

    Then let's exercise our 9th and 10th Amendments which allow the states to take care of their own citizens in the way they deem best, and without federal intrusion...
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  • #42
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    My father grew up dirt poor! He made every penny he had before his untimely death to be pretti high on that scale. He did spread his wealth by paying his employees fair wages and great year end bonuses that were percentages of the money earned that year. He also gave large amounts to charity and tithed 20% to his churches mission work. Not just spreading the word of Christ, to medical missions that our church always has in multiple places in the world at all times. He sold his businesses at retirement, but kept going with charity as our family is still doing. What would the government do with that money if they do as they want and take most of it when my mother dies. I'm sore not spread it around the way my father did and we do now. They'll do what they do now and piss it away! I forgot to add that my dad also gave money to worthy individuals who needed a leg up.
  • #62
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    Good on your father. The thing is that businesses all have the opportunity to do exactly what he did, but most don't. Why? Because greed is human nature and why give 100 employees a $1,000 bonus when you could instead give yourself a $100,000 bonus?

    After WW2 until 1980 it was not even a close choice because to give yourself a huge bonus like that would mean you would be taxed at 70-90%, so instead it went to the employees and invested within the company to avoid those high taxes. It's great that your father practiced what he preached and probably had a successful business with happy employees. Unfortunately the norm today is that every employee is replaceable and all profits should be reaped solely by those at the top. It's a sad state of affairs.
  • #146
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    @AceLuby
    It is sad, but I do know many men just like my dad through him. There are those men out there. I wish the corrupt would quit overshadowing. Also, just to be clear the bonuses had nothing to do with taxes. My dad didn't even use loopholes. He was a strong Christian and the Bible says "Give into Ceasar that which is ceasar's", that means taxes.
  • #149
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    @BelinKS I know there are people that run good businesses, unfortunately the biggest businesses don't, and happen to hire a lot of people. I never said your dad did what he did for tax reasons, I believe you when you say he actually practiced Christianity in his life, it's a rare trait that you should be proud of. What I'm saying is that we used to have a tax structure that built these incentives into it, so that the greed natural in human behavior could be tamed.
  • #37
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    Where is the "who cares" choice. People should quit worrying about other people's business and mind their own. That goes for finances and wealth, sexual orientation, gun rights, marriage, and so on.
  • #52
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    Think the problem is society has lowered their standards in schooling and employment in effort to show they are not biased or prejudice when they should have been raising the bar all along.

    Perhaps we should be telling people no instead readjusting the curve of success.
  • #53
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    @Republican5150 Exactly, not everyone deserves a trophy or a diploma simply because they participate, they should learn to earn things and take pride in accomplishments. That is what natural selection and survival of the fittest requires for a species to succeed.
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  • #16
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    For those who think the United States is a free world nation, you are delusional! We are a Plutocracy, not a Democracy.
    Someone dig Reagan up so I can kick him in the nuts!
  • #41
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    And there lies the problem, too many people aren't willing to work to achieve their goal. If you to kick dead men in the balls, YOU dig 'em up.
  • #69
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    I work 50 hours per week and barely keep my head above water. I know plenty of people who work 60 or more hours weekly and still can't get ahead.
  • #94
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    Keyjo---I've been saying that for years...I think that many people just either don't understand what that means or they are "ok" with being controlled and owned by the plutocratic ruling class.. Either way its unbelievable and dangerous!
  • #38
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    And stop spending us into insurmountable debt!

    "...a public debt is a public curse, and in a Republican Government a greater curse than any other... Allow a government to decline paying its debts and you overthrow all public morality — you unhinge all the principles that preserve the limits of free constitutions. Nothing can more affect national prosperity than a constant and systematic attention to extinguish the present debt and to avoid as much as possibly the incurring of any new debt." -Alexander Hamilton
  • #151
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    @Penn1699 Well all I can say to you is if that's what you took from this, then you, also completely missed the entire point. Believe what you will..Makes no difference to me one way or the other.
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  • #4
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    This is from the Daily Kooks, it's already questionable in validity. Besides, wealth is EARNED, not "distributed" as the Daily Kooks would like to see it. Want to be wealthy and successful? Get off your ass and get a job, work for that wealth.
  • #34
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    The video does not say that wealth should be distributed by some other force besides earning it... They are simply showing a graph that shows how many people are currently in each level of financial wealth. And since when did a job always guarantee wealth or success? And not all wealth is earned... some of it is achieved through theft and inheritance... But too many people label thieves and heirs as "successful", making "success" a very relative term...
  • #44
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    @DogLady_1 "And not all wealth is earned" of course, and that notion you describe is from the very LEECHES who do nothing but get a taxpayer-funded check every first of the month...
  • #50
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    @MarkJM - The vast majority of people who get taxpayer funded checks at the beginning of the month are 1) under age 18; 2) retired workers over age 65, or; 3) disabled... I don't think the word "leech" applies to them, although it does apply to 2% of check recipients... but I doubt they are letting their voices be heard, nor do I think anyone is listening to them.
  • #57
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    @DogLady_1 Since 2001, "entitlement" spending has surged 65% while defense spending has gone up only 19%. Federal Spending in 2001 was approximately $2 Trillion. Today it is over $3.75 Trillion, almost doubled. Number of individuals on the dole in 2001 was approximately 20% of the population, today it's 50% give or take, more than double. Problem today is people would rather sit at home and get "free" money (that taxpayers such as myself actually fund) than get off their duffs and get a job. No, a job does not mean automatic wealth, but it is a path towards that goal. Problem today is we have way too many lazy bums out there that no longer believe in hard work, as well as enablers like 0bama who seize upon their ignorant votes for it. If you are one of them, then you're welcome for the taxpayer handout you received on Friday.
  • #61
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    What the Kos carries is not the same as their opinions.

    You say wealth is earned, but what if the kids of the guy on the bottom can't get a decent education, doesn't have connections, and can't get credit?

    Your image of America is way out of date.

    The wealthy are stacking the deck against you, but as long as you have your creationism and your 2nd amendment rights, you think you're free.

    Stop being a Foxhound, and see the truth all around you.
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  • #32
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    It's amazing how many idiots here think that the CEO of a bank has more value then a firefighter or teacher.
    Somedays I wonder why I bother coming here to have a discussion when most of the people here are barely intelligent enough to tie their own shoes.
  • #14
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    The spread between rich and poor in america is greater than that of France prior to the revolution (and is increasing). Americans are the least likely, in the OECD, to rise above their station in life and get the least benefit from their tax dollars. Unfortunately americans believe their shibboleths that hard work will improve their lot in life. There will be, no doubt, a plethora of comments on the evils of socialism and big government.
  • #10
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    Meanwhile, the top 10 hedge fund elites make on average nearly $1 million an HOUR. We’ll never find the resources to solve the unemployment crisis until we redistribute some of this obscene wealth.

    It starts by putting to rest the notion that hedge fund elites are just like any other. They are not. They make more money than everyone else, including our top movie stars and athletes...and they pay lower taxes.

    The Highest Income Celebrities, CEO and Hedge Fund Managers (2010)

    Hedge Fund managers $1,753,000,000
    Movie directors/producers $126,000,000
    Top celebrities from all fields $119,800,000
    Pop musicians $87,200,000
    Non-financial CEOs $47,100,000
    Athletes $44,600,000
    Movie stars $42,600,000
    Authors $26,900,000
    Lawyers $20,000,000
    Bank/Insurance CEOs $16,600,000

    Now, I don't believe any of these people are worth the kind of money they make, but $1 million dollars an hour!?!?!? I'm all for everyone doing their best and being paid what they're worth, but salaries in some industries are stretching the idea of wealth beyond the boundaries of what is healthful for our economy.

    http://www.alternet.org/story/151569/how_drac...
  • #15
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    So, instead of whining like a "have not," go to college, get a master's in finance and work your way up the ladder on Wall St and become a hedge fund manager.

    But no, you'll sit and whine with the Occupke Wall St crowd and complain that you want them to give you some of their money when you didn't work for it!
  • #17
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    @methinks

    This is old rhetoric that has never proven true; in fact, it's proving itself to be just the opposite and thousands of college graduates find themselves up to their eyeballs in debt with no prospect for a decent job.

    Article on TV recently claimed that today's college graduates are least likely to own a home or new car than their peers in years past. How's THAT for success?

    I have a college degree, Mr. ASSumption. It gave me the ability to think beyond the right wing radio brainwashing and to see what's really happening in this country.
  • #18
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    @PayThatCEO Did you ever consider that the chosen major of these college students may be the reason they can't find jobs? I have a nephew who majored in genetic engineering and computer science and he had a job right out of college. His cousin, on the other hand, majored in graphic arts...she cuts hair. Her fiance majored in theater...he manages a restaurant. There you have it.

    Liberal arts degrees are hyped up bullshit degrees that give college professors a cushy job and big $$ for the colleges that push them.

    You have a degree? What what your major?
  • #21
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    @PayThatCEO Old Rhetoric? You mean getting a degree in an area where you have a chance to get a REAL job doesn't work?(Not women's studies or Manchurian folk dancing degrees)

    Colleges these days take about anyone- have a degree that fits whatever they like, then in 4 yrs they wonder why they can't get a job in the real world with a degree in Art History.

    Don't blame the successful that you chose a degree with such a narrow scope, you have little luck getting a job. The proven financial basics of education, work hard and save money- shouldn't change because we have a generation of morons who went for an easy degree.
  • #22
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    @methinks Liberal Arts Degrees are nothing more than a ticket to 2 years of Grad school. I know this first hand LOL. See my post above.
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  • #20
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    So much validity in one spot. The charts show what has been obvious for quite some time.
    Many holler for the 'right' of a free market. What free market? It has been a manipulated market. There is no one willing to admit that.
    Government has allowed and has facilitated this. Tax rates and regulation are strangling the country but it's not the 'job creators' that are being effected. It is the rest of America that takes the hit. While the ,er,,um,, upper crust scream about unfairly high tax rates, they don't pay that. They scream about regulation but they don't feel it unless they do something truly obvious and get caught at it. They make their own rules and politicians enable that.
    There is no 'free market' when the futures markets manipulate the current market. The futures market , while it may have been a good idea, is used for one thing only-to manipulate current markets for the benefit of the few. There is no other purpose. Hedge funds have become another fallacy following in the foot steps of the futures markets. It is all just rearranging the true market for the benefit of the few.
    There is so much more that I haven't touched on here. When you follow the whole progression it gets absolutely mind-boggling.
  • #237
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    This happened after 70 years of "progressive" policies -- how could it be??
    Progressive policies cause regressive realities. With the exceptions of retirement and racial civil rights, every single "progressive" policy since World War II has backfired and fostered MORE poverty and a shrinking middle class:
    - GI Bill's military group preferences brought suburban sprawl and white flight from inner cities, leaving them to drugs, violence, joblessness, welfare dependency (= net loss);
    - Labor union benefits were co-opted by the gov't, making unions obsolete and benefiting everybody (even the unemployed)= net loss;
    - Interstate highways enabled exurbs, water depletion, unequal public schools, pollution, walled bedroom communities, and housing bubbles (with help from Housing Fairness)= net loss;
    - Atheism in public schools (prayer ban) gave more reason to attend parochial schools, aggravating unequal education even more = net loss;
    - Medicaid mandates on states forced them to cut every other public service or raise regressive taxes, make state lotteries and Indian casinos, enabled underclass offspring to multiply while forcing college student loans (and delayed offspring) on shrinking middle class = net loss;
    - Feminists inexplicably waited until baby boomers were flooding the labor pool to tell women to work, too -- thus driving down wages even more, increasing divorce rates, rush hour traffic, and childhood delinquency = net loss;
    - Birth control misuse upped hedonism, teen suicides, and human de-evolution (the wrong people use it, and the wrong people do not)= net loss;
    - Ethanol (burning food for politics) has driven up food prices (and Food Stamp rolls) and diminishes car mileage MPGs = net loss;
    - Global warming/climate change politics have driven up energy costs and cost of living needlessly, based on weather hysteria, to keep grant funding streams. Worse, climate cultists also support development in 3rd world, involving industrialization and market globalization, causing even more pollution and human suffering = a loss;
    - Obamacare gives employers reasons to NOT hire more workers, to cut hours and other benefits, or fold shop and retire early; plus it adds another middle class tax on individuals = net loss;
    - Immigration "Reform" : Minimum Wage law is why illegal immigrants come here, to work underground and live in group homes together. While American underclass can't find/won't work for minimum wage, join gangs, sell or use drugs, live in public housing alone with unwed offspring (funded by Medicaid at expense of middle class).
    [ In Europe, some nations without minimum wage (Germany, Sweden, Switzerland and Denmark) have lower unemployment and illegal immigrant rates, compared to U.S. People there must work for any wage just to pay healthcare tax. But their neighboring nations (France, Greece, Spain, Italy) encourage welfare instead, have more illegals, more underground economy, crime like the U.S.]= net loss.
  • #224
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    The Tax Code, excessive regulations and the Federal Reserve are the major causes of the plight of the middle class. These are the culprits of wealth inequality.
  • #219
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    It's interesting to note that wealth has become drastically more unequal since the '70s despite our ever-increasing government-controlled attempts at wealth redistribution, regulation and taxation of businesses, and the drastic increase in government size, debt, and spending. Maybe moving "forward", as we have for the past several decades, isn't the answer to the problem - maybe we should move "backward", perhaps to just before 1913...
  • #210
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    I think our problem is simply that we have way too many people who want what others earned given to them for know reason other than they want it. I remember when we looked up at the people who worked hard and made it to the top. Now we have a society that wants to throw rocks at those who earned what they have.
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