www.RogerWendell.com
Roger J. Wendell
Defending 3.8 Billion Years of Organic EvolutionSM
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God and Money from Time Magazine - 09-11-2006 The Concentration of
Wealth and Power
(Note: I started this page many years before the '08 meltdown* and the 2011 "Occupy" campaigns...)

*Admittedly, the U.S. Government's policy on home loans and mortgage securities (Fannie Mae
  and Freddie Mac) was the biggest contributor to the 2008 financial and economic crisis...

 

Yellow Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for more information about Capitalism and its failures...
Yellow Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for some information about economics in general...

 

 

"The salary of the chief executive of a large corporation is not a market award for achievement.
It is frequently in the nature of a warm personal gesture by the individual to himself."
- John Kenneth Galbraith

 

 

"According to Forbes, the 400 wealthiest Americans have more wealth than the bottom 150 million Americans combined."
source: Michael Snyder The Economic Collapse Blog, May 26, 2013

 

Millionaires club gets bigger, members richer

"The number of people around the globe with at least $1 million in assets swelled by 6 percent last year to 10.1 million, according to the 12th annual World Wealth Report released Tuesday by Merrill Lynch & Co. and Capgemini Group, a consulting firm."

"That means an additional 600,000 people became millionaires or richer even as problems tied to the U.S. credit crisis spread in the second half of the year."

"The combined wealth of the millionaires' club meanwhile grew 9.4 percent to $40.7 trillion. Their average wealth, which didn't include primary homes, surpassed $4 million for the first time."

"The super rich -- those with at least $30 million -- grew by 8.8 percent in population while their accumulated wealth grew by 14.5 percent. This rarefied group controls about a third of the $40.7 trillion."

"For such an elite club, 10.1 million may seem like a lot of members. But the figure represents just 0.15 percent of the world's population of 6.7 billion."

- Candice Choi, Associated Press Writer
Tuesday June 24, 2008

 

"With a country so rich in natural resources, talent, and labor power the system can afford to distribute just enough wealth to just enough people to limit discontent to a troublesome minority. It is a country so powerful, so big, so pleasing to so many of its citizens that it can afford to give freedom of dissent to the small number who are not pleased."

"One percent of the nation owns a third of the wealth."

- Howard Zinn, A People's History of the United States, pp. 570-571

 

Money The Economist
Special Report Inequality in America
The rich, the poor and the growing gap between them
June 17th-23rd 2006 (pp. 28-30)

"After you adjust for inflation, the wages of the typical American worker - the one at the very middle of the income distribution - have risen less than 1% since 2000."

"During the 1950s and 1960s, the halcyon days for America's middle class, productivity boomed and its benefits were broadly shared. The gap between the lowest and biggest earners narrowed." "A few years later, at the start of the 1980s, the gap between rich and poor began to widen."

"If all Americans were set on a ladder with ten rungs, the gap between the wages of those on the ninth rung and those on the first has risen by a third since 1980. Put another way, the typical worker earns only 10% more in real terms than his counterpart 25 years ago, even though overall productivity has risen much faster."

"...the share of aggregate income going to the highest-earning 1% of Americans had doubled form 8% in 1980 to over 16% in 2004. That going to the top tenth of 1% has tripled from 2% in 1980 to 7% today. And that going to the top one-hundredth of 1% - the 14,000 taxpayers at the very top of the income ladder - has quadrupled from 0.65% in 1980 to 2.87% in 2004."

"All in all, America's income distribution is likely to continue the trends of the recent past. While those at the top will go on drawing huge salaries, those in the broad middle of the middle class will see their incomes churned."

 

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Yellow Arrow Pointing Right Click Here for The UNU/WIDER World Income Inequality Database and the Gini coefficient...

"The richest 1% of the population now owns almost 35% of all the private wealth in America, more than the bottom 90% of the population combined." - The Wealth Inequality Reader (edited by Dollars & Sense and United for a Fair Economy),   p. vii "The income of the 400 wealthiest taxpayers grew steadily in the years 1992 to 2000, while their tax burden plummeted." - Today's Headlines: (New York Times) Thursday, June 26, 2003

 

America by the numbers
Time Magazine cover story - October 30, 2006

"The very idea of redistributing wealth can feel un-American in the land of Horatio Alger, until you look closely at how it's spread now. Half of us earn less than $30,000 a year, 90 percent less than $100,000. To get an idea of how we value our values, Howard Stern earns every 24 seconds what takes a cop or a teacher about a week to earn."

 

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Money Quotes:
"Another problem we face today is the gap between rich and poor. In this great country of America, your forefathers established the concepts of democracy, freedom, liberty, equality, and equal opportunity for every citizen. These are provided for by your wonderful Constitution. However, the number of billionaires in this country is increasing while the poor remain poor, in some cases getting even poorer. This is very unfortunate. On the global level as well, we see rich nations and poor ones. This is also very unfortunate. It is not just morally wrong, but practically it is a source of unrest and trouble that will eventually find its way to our door."
     - His Holiness, The Dalai Lama, in the introduction to his book, An Open Heart

"Someday our grandchildren will very likely look back at the individual, selfish control of the wealth of the world by a small elite the same way we view slavery today."
     - Corinne McLaughlin and Gordon Davidson in their book, Spiritual Politics

"We can have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both."
     - Justice Louis D. Brandeis

"I have all these resources, that in a sense, are society's resources."
     - Microsoft Billionaire Bill Gates, commenting on his personal wealth during a 60 Minutes II interview, June 2000

"...the world does not reward honesty and independence, it rewards obedience and service. It's a world of concentrated power, and those who have power are not going to reward people who question that power."
     - Noam Chomsky in his book, Understanding Power

"Capitalism [is] a word that has gone largely out of fashion. The approved reference now is to the market system. This shift minimizes - indeed deletes - the role of wealth in the economic and social system... It would be hard to think of a change in terminology more in the interest of those to whom money accords power. They have now a functional anonymity."
     - John Kenneth Galbraith, economist and author

"The inevitable tendency in capitalism is the accumulation of wealth. According to its own laws, capital always moves to where it can generate the greatest profit, never the greatest good. Why does everyone know the saying, 'The rich get richer, and the poor get poorer?' Because it's true."
     - Richard Curtis in the Colorado Daily, page 6, June 8-9, 1994

"Those who have more should help those who have less."
     - Former President Jimmy Carter in a taped interview by Al Franken, on Air America, 11-16-2004

"When we want anything from the rich, we'll take it!"
     - Edward Abbey, speaking at the United Methodist church, 1820 Broadway, Denver, Colorado on Tuesday, March 29, 1988

"Thirty thousand years ago, when men were doing cave paintings at Lascaux, they worked twenty hours a week to provide themselves with food and shelter and clothing. The rest of the time, they could play, or sleep, or do whatever they wanted. And they lived in a natural world, with clean air, clean water, beautiful trees and sunsets. Think about it. Twenty hours a week. Thirty thousand years ago."
    - from page 285 of Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park

"The rich will be greedy, unscrupulous, and totally useless characters, while the poor will be simple, unassuming people whose daily work is far more profitable to the economy than it is to them. In other words, I'm quite convinced that you'll never get a fair distribution of goods, or a satisfactory organization of human life, until you abolish private property altogether."
    - Sir Thomas More Utopia, p. 66

"I am for doing good to the poor, but...I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. I observed...that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer."
    - Benjamin Franklin

 

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Money Did you know?

*From the February 25, 2003 ABC Evening News interview with Jim Morris of the United Nations World Food Program

 

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Money Estate Taxes:

In about 2003 the conservative political movement began
an intensive campaign to end taxes on wealthy estates:

It's time to strengthen estate taxes - not eliminate 'em!

 

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Money The Ridiculous:
Blessed are the Rich Time Magazine Cover - 09-11-2006
Blessed are the Rich?
It's no secret that the rich have always felt it was their God-given right to corner markets, horde wealth, and control others. CNN Reported on the September '06 Time Magazine Cover story this way; "A booming movement that began with Evangelical Christians holds to the belief that a God who loves you does not want you to be broke. In a Time poll, 17 percent of Christians surveyed said they considered themselves part of such a movement, while a full 61 percent believed that God wants people to be prosperous. The movement's renaissance has infuriated a number of prominent pastors, theologians and commentators."

It amazes me that "believers" would think that one of God's concerns are that they become prosperous while children are starving to death in other parts of the World. God wants you to be rich? Ridiculous!

- Roger J. Wendell

 

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Recommended Reading:

 

Links:

  1. America!
  2. Bad Guys
  3. Buy Nothing Day
  4. Capitalism and its failures
  5. Economics
  6. Engineers Without Borders Ingénieurs Sans Frontières
  7. Global Issues that affect everyone
  8. Government employee unions
  9. Inequality ORG
  1. Inflation Data
  2. Military Expenditure totals for the entire planet!
  3. Oxfam - Finding lasting solutions to poverty and suffering around the world
  4. Politics
  5. Poverty Net - The World Bank Group
  6. Responsible Wealth
  7. Voluntary Simplicity
  8. War
  9. Wealth and Power Assets or Addictions? by Dan Mahony

 

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