Income Inequality in America

Steve KinsmanStarred Page By Steve Kinsman, 22nd Jan 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/3b428nyr/
Posted in Wikinut>Money>Economics

Indeed it is true - the rich keep getting richer and the poor keep getting poorer, as income inequality is now greater than ever, particularly in the United States.

Oxfam reports on income inequality

A new study by Oxfam, the British-based anti-poverty charity, reported by McClatchy News Service for the Miami Herald, confirms that just 85 individuals have garnered economic assets and income that is equal to the income of 3.5 billion people. That bears repeating, so that it can sink in: 85 people own as much wealth as half the world's population.

Engineered crises

We need to understand that these periodic financial meltdowns such as the Great Depression of the thirties and the economic crisis precipitated by Wall Street in 2008 are always engineered - planned - by the financial elites.

The Oxfam report points out that the rich are getting enormously richer as the rest of us struggle to make ends meet and become ever poorer due to wealth redistribution to the top one percent: "...while the recent financial crisis was an enormous burden on the world's poor, it ended up being a huge benefit to the rich elite. The very wealthiest people on earth collected 95 percent of all of the post crisis growth."

Entire food stamp budget equal to the income of just thirteen Americans

We have heard Mitt Romney, Bill O'Reilly and his Fox News cohorts continually refer to the wealthy as " makers" and food stamp recipients as "takers," although most of the latter are children, the elderly, or low-wage workers. Just thirteen Americans garnered as much money last year from stock market investments as the entire food stamp budget, and none of those thirteen Americans "made" a goddamn thing. The richest four hundred Americans took in 300 billion dollars in 2013, which is roughly equal to the entire safety net which includes Social Security, government pensions, food stamps, aid to dependent children, disability payments, and so forth.

Americans' income in 2013

According to the Oxfam report, the breakdown of income in the United States for 2013 is as follows:

The richest 400 people made an average of 750 million dollars each in 2013.
The .01% (12,000 families) made about 40 million dollars each.
The .1% (120,000 families) made about 3.6 million dollars each.
The remaining 1% (1,068,000 families) made over $830,000 each.
The 2.5% (4,800,000 households) made about $300,000 each.
The 6-10% (6,000,000 households) made about $95,000 each.
The 11-20% (12,000,000 households) made about $39,000 each.
The 21-40% (24,000,000 households) made about $13,000 each.
The 41-60% (24,000,000 households) made about $4,000 each.
The 61-80% (24,000,000 households) made about $333 each.
The bottom 20% (24,000,000 households) made nothing.

What's glaringly clear from this is that while 400 Americans last year made an average of 750 million dollars, in as many as 72 million families income did not exceed $13,000.

Oxfam concludes in its report that "Capitalism is supposed to provide everyone the opportunity to benefit from our country's productivity, but it hasn't worked that way for the past thirty-five years. Today only the people who already have money can increase their wealth. Congress doesn't seem to recognize, or doesn't care, that the system is horribly distorted in favor of a small group of people who need to do very little to take most of the nation's wealth."

Indeed, it was reported last week that now, for the first time in history, more than half the senators and representatives in Congress are millionaires, and that the average annual income of members is over 7 million dollars. How can these folks possibly understand the struggles of ordinary Americans? In short, they can't, and they don't.

Link: Capitalism - the Most Grotesque Economic System Ever Devised

Preview image from cansock.com
All other photos and charts from democraticunderground.com

Tags

99 Percent, Capitalism, Economics, Income Inequality, One Percent, Steve Kinsman

Meet the author

author avatar Steve Kinsman
I live in California with my wife Carol, where I have been practicing professional astrology for 35 years. I write articles on astrology, but I enjoy writing on a variety of other subjects as well..

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Comments

author avatar Retired
22nd Jan 2014 (#)

Great article Steve. Very informative, but at the same time, very depressing. Capitalism at its finest. The fact that such poverty can exist in the world's richest nation is a situation that can only be described as despicable.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
22nd Jan 2014 (#)

I totally agree. Thanks for commenting Mike. I appreciate it.

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author avatar Kingwell
22nd Jan 2014 (#)

I think the cartoon says it all. The rich are always looking for more. Thanks for this.

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

Very well said as teh medium class is becoming a rarity and the poor get poorer everyday!

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

Yes. Thanks for commenting Fern.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

Agreed. And despite all the evidence (articles like this one, books like 99% and Perfectly Legal, documentaries by every major news source, legal actions) the vast majority want to stick their heads in the sand and find a poor dog to kick. So ensconced in the American Dream, I fear they will never wake to see the monster in their closet. And yet I know I am as much part of the problem as I am the solution -- talking big games but still spending plenty of money at WalMart, where my dollars stretch the farthest. .

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

I have never set foot in a Walmart store and I never will, because they fail to pay their workers a living wage, forcing them to get government assistance to survive, and costing us all more in the long run. It is unconscionable that the Walton family owns as much wealth as 40 percent of the American people, and I for one refuse to put another dime in their pockets.

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author avatar Nadine May
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

Yes we indeed do live in an alarming economic climate. The more articles that are written on this topic the better.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

Thank you Nadine.

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author avatar Stella Mitchell
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

I believe we need to all hold on to our seat belts in the West , as we may be in for a very rocky ride ,Steve . However , compared to many countries around the Globe , we still have much to be thankful for at present .
Bless you
Stella ><

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
23rd Jan 2014 (#)

Agreed. Thank you Stella.

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author avatar Retired
24th Jan 2014 (#)

It is the same here in the UK. I was recently told that there is a huge surge in professional people needing to use food banks.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
24th Jan 2014 (#)

We are headed for a world-wide economic crash, made inevitable by the actions of financiers and bankers. Thanks for commenting Jackalyn.

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author avatar shannonfarlouis
26th Jan 2014 (#)

Great article and you are 100% right I agree. I wonder what will happen to the poor when the world-wide economic crash does happen? Interesting information you have provided here and it really makes one think about the very near future.

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
26th Jan 2014 (#)

The numbers of poor will increase immeasurably when the crash comes, as it inevitably will, because the lords of money are doing the same things today that caused the 2008 crash. Thanks for commenting shannonfariouis. I appreciate it.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
28th Jan 2014 (#)

Thanks Steve for highlighting a fact that tugs at our conscience, at least those who have not lost it! The rich have so many ways to increase their wealth as the system favors them. They transfer funds at no cost while I pay $30 to transfer $1,000 not counting the exchange rate that the rich can not only negotiate but also have private bankers to help them. For the poor it is take it or leave it. Sadly, democracy and freedom are skewed to favor the rich - they are the favored elite able to dictate terms. When the rich becomes richer at the cost of the poor something is wrong indeed - siva

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
28th Jan 2014 (#)

Well said. Thank you Siva.

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author avatar M G Singh
3rd Feb 2014 (#)

Capitalism in its extreme form leads to income disparities. The alternative is pure Marxism which has never been followed. Great post

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author avatar Steve Kinsman
3rd Feb 2014 (#)

People mistakenly believe the only alternative to capitalism is Marxism. Not so. Please see my article "A World Without Money is Possible".

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