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Forum Post: Ban Billionaires.

Posted 5 years ago on Dec. 31, 2012, 2:48 p.m. EST by VQkag2 (16478)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

"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." — Louis Brandeis

It's time we outlaw billionaires by placing a 100% tax on wealth over $999,999,999.

Since 1980, the top 1% has taken 80% of all new wealth created.

The richest 400 Americans -- all of whom are billionaires -- own more wealth than the bottom 150 million Americans combined.

We work harder. Productivity is up. But the profits are taken by the billionaires, who buy politicians and legislate rules to the ever greater advantage of billionaires -- and to the disadvantage of clean air, food, water, security, healthcare, education, retirement, and energy.

A 94% top marginal income tax rate when this nation was prospering has been reduced to 35% today. It's time we learned our lesson, reversed these trends, and banned billionaires.

Please join RootsAction and OpEdNews in sending this message to Congress and the President:

Sign the petition




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[-] 2 points by jph (2652) 5 years ago

ALL income, including capital gains and inheritance, over one million dollars in a year should be taxed at 90%. I would also put everything over 250k at 60% or so,. and on down,. people generating 50k or less would not pay anything while those generating less than say 12k are topped up to 12k.

This is not simply to be 'nice', this adds a great deal of needed stability to the economy, while keeping all people from falling to homelessness.

Why this is not done is clear, the top are greedy and they have no empathy for others,. as well they are clearly short-sighted and not forward thinking enough to see that a just society is a more enjoyable society, for everyone themselves included.

[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 5 years ago

"Lifting the Veil : Obama and the Failure of Capitalist Democracy", (Video) :

multum in parvo ...

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I like all that. I would add a 1/2 % tax on every fin transaction as well.

[-] 2 points by jph (2652) 5 years ago

I like that also! Super computer AI-controlled high-speed trading has turned the "markets" into such a rigged and manipulated game that is worked over by those in the know, and with the means,. peoples retirement investments (that this debt-based monetary system makes necessary) are pilfered instead of saved or grown,. pathetic.

Invest in your future; http://slowmoney.org/

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Corrupt, scam artist financiers. at least we'll get a piece with that trans tax.

[-] 0 points by inclusionman (7064) 5 years ago

Rich don't give.!! Greedy, selfish, bastards

Good reason to force charitable giving amongst the billionaires.



[-] -1 points by greysone (-264) 5 years ago

rockefeller university, duke university, carnegie-mellon, carnegie tech, stanford, rice, vanderbuilt university, ford foundation, zuckerman, icahn, paul allan, leonard case, clark, cornell,drexel,hobart, hunter,pace, pepperdine,purdue,skidmore, sarah lawrence,smith,vasser, wheaton.baruch, bates,brown, bucknell,clemson, colgate, dartmouth, hofstra, johns hopkins,juilliard, reed,stevens institute of tech.,tufts, tulane.

[-] 0 points by inclusionman (7064) 5 years ago

Overpriced colleges who should be forced to cut tuition drastically.

And the charity they give is less as a percent of their wealth compared to the low income people who give a bigger percentage of their income.

[-] -1 points by greysone (-264) 5 years ago

those people founded the colleges and universities. they are not responsible for their current tuitions. they did not have to endow them or start them but they did, disproving that the rich dont part with their money

[-] 0 points by inclusionman (7064) 5 years ago

The rich give less as a percent of their income.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 5 years ago

Thanks for the ACTION clause !

Too many of our posts are little more than philosophical rants

Call your congressman & senator 202-224-3121 Main Congress TN

[-] 1 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

Well, you know, studies show it conclusively. Billionaires are bad for your health.

One prescription might be that rather than ban them, require them to invest all of the money either in or through a US taxable entity.

If they invest their money elsewhere, let them live elsewhere. Give them one year to repatriate their money, pay the taxes on it and stay. If other countries would implement the same policy, billionaires might then moved by seeing the exploitation of the people who are making money for them and might want to see them paid enough to live on, to have medical care that allow them to live reasonable life spans etc.


[-] 0 points by brightonsage (4494) 5 years ago

We should have a rate higher than 39.6% since we have never had incomes as high as these. Not France's 75% that just got knocked down by their Supreme Court but maybe 49.5%?

[-] 1 points by JohnFKennedyIV (11) 5 years ago

Banning billionares? Why? 100% tax? That's just evil.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

No it ain't! What is evil is Billionaires buying the govt, rigging the system against the 99%, outsourcing our jobs, stagnating our wages, exploiting workers, transferring our wealth to them, and living off of our hard work & our govt largess.

That's evil

[-] 1 points by niphtrique (323) from Sneek, FR 5 years ago

Happy new year to you all.

Banning billionaires alone solves very little, even though it is needed for the reasons mentioned. Without additionals measure billionaires will move to tax havens and destroy the country from abroad. You have to strike the root of the problem, which is international finance and you must restore the sovereignty of the nation. The following should be established:

  • popular control on politics via referendums;
  • national sovereignty and the end of transnational entities;
  • a monetary system that supports national and local development.


A government can become an oppressive force that is not working in the interest of the citizens. Only with a referendum law the citizens can be in control of their government. In this way the citizens can introduce legislation, reject legislation or remove officials from their position. A referendum can solve some important issues more effectively than the political debate and bargaining. For example, the health care debate in the United States became heated while opponents of the reform claimed to have a majority. A referendum could have taken the issue of the table, so the country could move on.


National sovereignty

A nation must be free to choose a tax regime. Profits must be taxed were profits are made otherwise there will be a competition between countries to make their laws the most suitable for oligarchs and multinational corporations. Corporations should not have operations in different countries unless laws and taxes are synchronised, because differences in laws and taxes enable corporations to move profits between countries. It should not be possible for a corporation located in a foreign country to have a controlling stake in a corporation directly or via intermediate entities. All structures that have the purpose of evading national laws and taxes should be eliminated.

To break free from the grip of the New World Order, countries should reassert their national sovereignty. This does not have to mean ending international treaties but some treaties may need to be terminated. International cooperation has many advantages but it must be voluntary and this requires national sovereignty. At the core of national sovereignty stands the national currency. ... If nations do not have full national sovereignty, international financial markets will force them to accommodate oligarchs and corporations at the expense of their peoples.


Natural Money

Current account deficits destroy the productive capital of importing nations. This is a process of reverse economic development resulting in a third world economy. Holding Natural Money currency reserves is costly because of the holding tax. This will cause exporting nations look for matching imports, so comparative cost advantages will be the dominant driver for international trade. With Natural Money the effects of stimulus remain within the country so stimulus will be more effective. This mechanism is needed to assert national sovereignty otherwise it is not possible to break free from international finance.


[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

These are all great ideas, I think better models than we have. Less likely to be manipulated by the wealthiest.

Let's hope the new year brings some more understanding and momentum to these grassroots concepts.

Happy New Year.

[-] 0 points by highlander10 (-16) 5 years ago

Once the billionaires are banned, would that be the end? I doubt it.

[-] 1 points by inclusionman (7064) 5 years ago

Nope! Only for them.


[-] 0 points by highlander (-163) 5 years ago

Here is a question. In the Cold War era of the Soviet Union, where the state owned the means of production, where was the incentive for the workers to work at their utmost if they didn't lose their job and had no hope of advancement?

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

R&D is paid by govt and corps profits, not the billionaires individual income.

Same thing with Stadium! govt bonds, rarely do billionaire owners pay. Why the fuck should I pay for a stadium for a billionaire owner.? What are we communists?


[-] 0 points by highlander (-163) 5 years ago

There are a number of investments in research and development as well as multiple projects, funded by private companies, that are multi-billion dollar ventures. It is hard to build, say, a football stadium or refinery, without the capital saved up to invest and not stripped from every other item of the company's budget. Solyndra, the poster child of green energy, received $500+ million from the government. As a privately funded entity, it would have been next to impossible to come up with the capital to start up that affair.

[-] 0 points by highlander (-163) 5 years ago

Where will the incentive be to expand a business, become more efficient, or work harder if what you earn gets taxed away?



[-] 0 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 5 years ago

Yep. Ban the financial aristocracy.Im not saying get rid of the family farm etc.But people like the waltons should have to get a job.Not continue to plunder our country.


[-] 0 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 5 years ago

Im very sorry but I do not sign petitions.




[-] 0 points by freehorseman (267) from Miles City, Mt 5 years ago

Happy new year.

[-] 0 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

The reason that only 1% of the population in this country is extremely wealthy is because it's apparent 45% of the population don't know how to do it.

It's apparent that the "middle class" do have the opportunity to become part of the 1% but there is little hope for the rest.

[-] 1 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

Blame the victim? The 1% has stolen ourwealth and are holding us down with indentured servitude.

The movement against the fat, lazy, greedy, selfish wealthy is growing.


[+] -4 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Hey, everyone has an oppotrunity to succede. If that wasn't the case then Obama wouldn't have been president.

[-] 0 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

Everyone is being exploited and held down by the greedy, selfish corp 1%'rs who have stolen, & hoarded our wealth.

[-] 0 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

So tell everyone - how did successful people in this country become successful? Think they ripped everyone off - I mean there is a "Middle Class" group of people who are business people and they are very successful. Are they "greedy"?

[-] 1 points by Ackhuman (-88) from Fairfax, VA 5 years ago

50% of the Forbes 500 were on the list at birth.

[-] 0 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

Middle class is the 99%. They have been exploited and taken advantage of. Too many 1%'rs (some support the 99%) got there money through inheritance from families that got created their wealth on the backs of the working class.

In the last 30 years the 1% have changed laws to benefit them, and hurt the middle class. We no longer value work/labor (as we MUST) and now worship hedge fund/day trader/invest bankers who make money without producing & without hard work.

Somethings gotta give, it ain't fair to the vast majority (99%) of hard working American families.

[-] -3 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

The middle class consists of 47% to 49% of the population in the USA - not 99% ad you say.

As far as "hedge fund/day trader jobs they are on the decline and don't come nowhere near other jobs that are out there for the offering.

Show me some stats on how many of the 1%'rs got their money through "inheritance from families that got their wealth on the backs of working class"

I hear this all the time but no one has ever provided concrete information showing figures on this. How about it - think you can produce some facts about this.

[-] 1 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

No wealth in this country (or any other) has been created WITHOUT the labor of decent hard working American families.

No evidence required. It is obvious! It goes without saying. However if you feel for it you can offer evidence that some wealthy have amassed wealth without the labor of hard working Americans.

[-] -2 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

So what is the other option - do you have one?

[-] 1 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

Value labor fairly. We need real increase of wages. Living wage with cola. andan end to this new obscenity of execs making 400x the average worker. Reward insourcing, punish outsourcing. Correct the tax system so that upper income pay more, and lower income pay less.

That would be a good start.

[-] -2 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 5 years ago

Your wages will always be manipulated if you dont address the monetary policy and tax policy of this nation. Simply increasing them and putting them on a COLA scale, that will be implemented and monitored by the very people we are fighting, is a short term feel good move that will not structurallly change anything.

[-] 0 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

Damn. So no wage increases, or in/outsourcing changes?

What should we do? How do we change "the monetary policy"?

I did mention the tax system, was that not to your liking?

[-] -2 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

So how do you plan to do that? It's great to talk about it but what is your plan - how would it be implimented?

[-] 1 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

It will be implemented when enough people are educated, and support the righteous effort.

Years of hard work will be required, we should expect slow progress, small victories, and difficult setbacks.

But knowing it is the right thing and being part of a growing movement to benefit the entire country will energize us.

Don't you want to improve the entire country.? We need you! Your class needs you!

[-] -2 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Well you need to have a "written outline" explaining in details your changes to hand out to people - otherwise just talking about it won't work.

It works like this - I want a race car that will go 200 miles per hour. You come to me and say I can build that car.

I ask you how you will do it - you tell me well I'll make the engine bigger, make the car more stable, etc.

So you have given me a "blanket statement" but you didn't provide any details like what size engine will I need, will it be a turbo or supercharged, what gear ratio will be needed.

So until you provide details to the general public you aren't going to get them involved - you have to prove to them that what you have is better and will work

[-] 1 points by repubsRtheprob (1209) 5 years ago

You are truly wise and generous with your advice on how we should go about improving our country, and the lives of the working/middle class.

Thank you so much.

[-] -1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 5 years ago

Unless they are simply not interested in race cars.

[-] 0 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 5 years ago

just keep living under that illusion created by the worship of celebrity culture.

How many presidents can we have in comparison to population size? Why do you think they have to sell out to corporations and banks to get elected?

Have you ever worked a real job? It's a bunch of people competing to move up, and usually everyone is qualified but only one person can move up every now and then. The rest just sit at the same job getting a 25 cent raise due to corporate policy caps.

The corporate takeover is real. And Now that they're done outsourcing as much as they can, they're coming for full time jobs. Because with a desperate workforce you can manipulate. Full time workers will be bought out and replaced with part time workers, so they don't have to pay benefits. Inflation on the rise will only push people further toward the poverty line. And people blindly accept rising prices for the same damn shit they bought last year.

It's an empire of illusion. War is for peace. And if you're not rich blame yourself. It's not due to a rigged system where corporations and banks have corrupted the government to write legislation in their favor, and doll out trillions to them.

Go read a book. Step out of the illusion.

[-] -3 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Hey, a person can't be helped who thinks they can't succede. We have a society of "sheep" who want someone else to lead them and as a result they have to deal with where they are in life - instead of wanting to be successful. Can't help those people.

[-] -1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 5 years ago

I updated this comment above while you were responding. read it again.

We do have a society of sheep, and you are part of it.

[-] -2 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Now what makes you think that I am part of the "sheep society"? I work for a living, make a decent wage, have all the toys I want and cater to no one.

So if that's what you call being "sheepish" then I am guilty.

[-] -1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 5 years ago

"have all the toys I want"


[-] -1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 5 years ago

why aren't you a multi-millionaire?

Shouldn't you be? You've worked so hard? Maybe if you bought some politicians you could have them write laws so you can manipulate the system and profit like wall street does. Where's your 14 billion dollar subsidy? Where's your trillions in interest free loans?

[-] -2 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Never wanted to be a "millionaire" - however if I decided to do so, I would work towards that goal.

[-] -1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 5 years ago

that is not my point. I am simply pointing out that Wall Street banks and corporations have corrupted the government to commit acts of fraud so they can harvest billion of dollars. They are not working hard and making it on valor. They are getting rich off exploitation and fraud. They are cheating the system.

[-] 0 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Banks and corporations are "lending institutions". So tell me how are you going to stop them - if a person wants to borrow money to start a business, where will they get it from?

[-] -1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 5 years ago

I'll answer your terrible question of "just lay back and accept the scam" with another question

instead of giving interest free loans to banks, why aren't we just directly giving interest free loans to the people?

Why is our monetary policy solely based on giving money to Wall Street? That is not the purpose of monetary policy as originally drafted in the constitution.

Please go read a book about the fraud committed by these banks.

[-] 0 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Well can people go somewhere else to get a loan - and can they get that loan at less then compound interest?

[-] -1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 5 years ago

there is nowhere you can go to get billions in loans at below market rates, even as low as 0%, nor can you get them to buy your worthless assets for billions of dollars. Only Wall Street can do that because they commit fraud, rig the system, and finance politicians to change laws, get rid of necessary regulations, and get securities a pass under RICO laws. They finance politicians who then appoint their execs to head roles over the treasury and the federal reserve, thus receiving trillions. This is not just working hard and succeeding, this is racketeering and fraud.

[-] -1 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

I am not talking aboug getting a billion dollar loan - I am talking about the person who wants to get a loan to purchase a home, car, start a businesses - etc. Where can they go elsewhere to get loans if the plan is not to give money to wall street?

[-] -1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 5 years ago

Corporate takeover? -your thoughts

and yes to your sheepish comment.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Didja sign the petition?

[-] 1 points by LeoYo (5909) 5 years ago

45% of the population don't need to know how to do it. They only need to desire it. If the desire were there, they would acquire the knowledge to do it. Instead, they choose to work for the 1% rather than pursue working cooperatively for themselves. They choose to further enrich the private bankers by keeping their money in the banks rather than pool their money together in their own national credit union. And they choose to continue payments to private insurance companies rather than make payments towards their own financial security in their own national mutual insurance company, creating their own universal health care and social security systems. It's an ongoing collective choice, not a lack of knowledge, that's responsible for the continuing state of affairs. If each individual truly desired to work for themselves rather than for the 1%, nothing would be able to stop them from eventually figuring out how to do it. The 1% don't make themselves wealthy, they merely take advantage of everyone else's ongoing choices to make them wealthy.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I think the 1% rigged the system against us, Many of the 99% do NOT know how to do what you describe. & the PTB guide us to the systems that serve the 1%.

If more people knew more, they would move their money, find a way to work for themselves etc.

[-] 2 points by grapes (5184) 5 years ago

LeoYo speaks the truth. Credit unions for example was born of the Great Depression so the little guys get a fair shake. The desire to partake no more of the unjust system can lead to building a better fairer system. Maybe you should link up with LeoYo to start a credit union, open up a national mutual insurance company, and create your own universal health care and social security systems.

By building up an alternative reality and escaping to it from our "unjust" reality is a way forward.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Occupies successful move you money campaign is what we should repeat, & build on. the effort to purchase, abolish medical debt is the right approach.

The debt working groups that are working on these issues are the way to progress in this area. I agree with Leoyo. We all should leave these big banks, Nothing is easy! It will take years of hard work, in the street & in the voting booth.

We should be ready for slow progress & setbacks.

[-] 2 points by grapes (5184) 5 years ago

Yes, buying up debts is the very fast way to become a multibillion-dollar Occupy. See how the banksters do it: pick from a longer list of approved assets including equities and securitized mortgage debt.

The approach is to wait-till-people-forget and gradually-sock-it-to-the-idiots. This is how it was phrased: The longer timetable for applying the LCR[liquidity coverage ratio] should ensure “that the ensuing costs on banks, and therefore their clients’ products” are “introduced more gradually,” Patricia Jackson, head of prudential advisory at Ernst & Young LLP in London, said in an e-mailed statement.

Now globally financial garbage will be recognized as assets. Occupy should open an account at the Federal Reserve and deposit these "assets" and voila! -- liquefaction produces a multibillion-dollar Occupy. Borrow against it a few times through sock puppets and all of that will turn into real money.

[-] 1 points by vaprosvyeh (-400) 5 years ago

You seem to be saying that doing what the criminal banksters did is fine if the money ends up in the hands of OWS? If you crash the economy and run the American taxpayer further into debt, it's all good, but if someone else does it, it's evil.


[-] 1 points by grapes (5184) 5 years ago

Did I advocate that OWS take this path? Pointing out a way to do it shows the possibilities to EVERYONE. Thinking about whether that is moral or not is up to any and all of them. If people can let the banksters go scot free, they will not even feel anything missing if a few billions of dollars materialized from "thin air."

Why would this crash the economy at all? You do not seem to comprehend at all the size of the U.S. economy relative to a few billion dollars worth of "thin air" made liquid. The U.S. federal reserve is creating $85 billions every month from "thin air" to buy up U.S. treasuries and mortgage-backed securities. That has NOT crashed the U.S. economy. In fact, it was insufficient to boost the U.S. economy to a faster paced recovery. A few billions here and a few billions there is just cockroach excrement. For the U.S. economy, I yawn if it were just billions. I open my eyes if it were trillions. What it took to bring on the Great Recession was hundreds of trillions of dollars worth of securitized debt-derived instruments laced with financial E. coli for investors. That is about five orders of magnitude higher than billions so a few billions will be nearly white noise.

No one seems to take any notice at all that on the average, international mega-banks are $11 billion (2010 figures) short in reserves according to Basel III. The implementation of Basel III has been deferred according to the article linked to. Instead, equities and securitized mortgage debt will be used as reserves. According to this standard, the U.S. federal reserve has just won the title of being the safest bank that the world has ever known because it now has reserves in its balance sheet of greater than $2 trillions. It is also becoming even safer every month by $85 billions. Think about that -- now I ask you why the U.S. is number one and will be number one for the foreseeable future. We have the safest banking system in the world!

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Cool sounds like a plan

[-] 1 points by grapes (5184) 5 years ago

From the article there: A sample of 209 banks assessed by the Basel committee had a collective shortfall of 1.8 trillion euros ($2.4 trillion) at the end of 2011 in the assets needed to meet the 2010 version of the LCR, according to figures published by the Basel group.

$2.4 trillion / 209 banks = $11 billion / bank on the average, so these banks had all better be huge.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Yeah. They sure better. What are you suggesting.? Another crash comin?

[-] 1 points by grapes (5184) 5 years ago

It is a con game so confidence will prop things up for a while at least. It is what physicists call hysteresis. We went on ecstatically for years after housing prices had taken off.

When the transition will occur cannot be pinpointed precisely because it involves investors changing their minds but finance sooner or later must track reality. Those who see the signs and take precautions tend to be hurt least. 50% loss takes 100% gain to make up. Be a fundamentalist speculator (i.e., Latin: specere -- to see). Keep the eyes peeled and finger on the trigger like practicing defensive driving.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I don't drive. So you're saying there WILL be another crash? When? How do you know? What are you doing to prepare?

[-] 1 points by grapes (5184) 5 years ago

Defensive driving is just looking at present configuration and situation and matching that against your mental model of what can go wrong and the sequence of things going wrong and finding ways to escape or at least minimize the impact. The military calls it "situational awareness" and the Chinese called it "Fengshui" but I suspect the Chinese forgot where their ancestors' wisdom had really originated from and became somewhat dogmatic.

The information above was put out BEFORE the European Sovereign Debt crisis hit in force so it has not been revised to take care of the holes that had appeared in the "liquid" assets, some of which were surely European sovereign debts of the PIGS R US countries (Greece is there but the show seems to have slowed down in Rome but we in the US will not let the investors down to let the show become boring). The burden of coming up with more "liquid" assets was obviously onerous, ergo the easing of the LCR rules and there will surely be more financial "relaxations" coming this year. They will magically help as long as enough investors believe in the tooth fairy so we will see.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Huh? So we're NOT gonna crash?

[-] 1 points by grapes (5184) 5 years ago

The world is governed by quantum physics so we are in a superposition of states. Crash is not well defined in the question so the answer is maybe and maybe not. The very fact that a crash is predicted and believed widely can make the crash disappear if it is not grave enough.

We tend to get into crashes when there is overwhelming evidence that crashes are impossible because the foreseen crashes are usually hedged against already. It is possible that some investors were slow so they would get caught just like in 2011 when Irene came to New York's vicinity and there was some flooding. New York City put plans into place to avoid the flooding of the subways. Then in 2012 Sandy came by and showed the slow pace of prevention against floods was inadequate. This is not news but some who were alert and acted fast minimized their damages. An example is Goldman Sachs -- they sandbagged their building for Sandy's arrival. Many outfits in lower Manhattan did not. It did not take a rocket scientist to know that more than 14 feet of storm surge would overwhelm the low-lying areas of Manhattan, not to mention Breezy Point that is low-lying on the waterfront exposed to the Breeze.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Cool. that makes sense. You are very wise.

[-] -2 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Well if a person desires to work as an "employee" instead of going into businesses for themselves - working as their own independent individual employee" then I wouldn't say that the "wealthy take advantage"

I would say the "wealthy" have done what you just mentioned. They started out with little or nothing and became successful.

You must not forget that we have a lot of "sheep" in this country whom are easily lead instead of them taking the lead.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

You're blind to the unfair rigging of the system that the wealthy have perpetrated against us.

You blame the victim. I know that when you are looking at a con job, the guys who get away with the loot are the con artists.

[-] -1 points by Shayneh (-482) 5 years ago

Keep calling people who won't take responsibility for themselves "victims".

Hitler used that technique - keep telling someone they are in need and eventually they will believe it.

Apparently you think Americans who have the capability to get themselves out of the situation they are in as being "stupid and need government handouts".

I on the other hand give credence to the fact that these people do have the capability to improve themselves but have been led to believe otherwise.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I know that the wealthy have bought the peoples govt, rigged the system against the 99% and are living off of our hard work.

It is the wealthy who is sponging off the govt, and using the govt to transfer our wealth to them!

[-] -1 points by vtexan (-17) 5 years ago

How about BANNING poor people. No more free food..free rent...free Obama phones....free heat for their homes....FREE condoms.....free schooling......free healthcare. Man if those mopes actually had to pay for stuff....the economy would be going gangbusters.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

OR the economy would be going like gangbusters if fools like you would stop defending the wealthy criminals and stop attacking the hard working American families that the wealthy prey on.

[-] -1 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

Yes, but it would take away the dems low information voter base. OR it might actually take a few generations and they might get back the work ethic that the dems have been working so hard to erase.

[-] -1 points by epirb (-29) 5 years ago

Guess your city pension is not covering your expenses. Maybe you should get off your fat ass and get a job.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

No pension. I've earned all I have since I worked myself off of welfare from age 17 forward.

[-] 0 points by freakzilla (-161) from Detroit, MI 5 years ago

You didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

All my success came from my hard work and the many fam, friends, business mentors, public school teachers, the community organizers I worked with as a child, and of course those govt services we depended on while I was growing up. Welfare, food stamps, medicaid, public housing projects.

So I am not alone in being responsible for my success.

We're in this together.

[-] 0 points by vaprosvyeh (-400) 5 years ago

You obviously seem to be someone who believes that the wealthy should share their wealth with those who make it possible for them to have it in the first place. Just curious, how did you split up your wealth/success with the many family, friends, business mentors, teachers, organizers etc that helped you build it? Percentages based on how much or how little they affected your life? Or just a set and equal amount to each one?

[-] 0 points by freakzilla (-161) from Detroit, MI 5 years ago

That's right. If you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. Don't come in here bragging about earning anything. You think "I did well and it must be because I was just so smart". You're not smarter than anyone else. There are a lot of smart people out there. And it's not because you worked hard. Let me tell you something — there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. So quit patting yourself on the back.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

It's always a combination of hard work, outside support, and equal fair opportunity. I've never said (or thought) anything different. Notwithstanding your dishonest suggestions to the contrary.

Except with the 1% idle plutocrats who get everything handed to them, never work hard, and sit on their fat lazy asses, making an obscene living off interest and the work of the 99%.

[-] 0 points by freakzilla (-161) from Detroit, MI 5 years ago

Yeah, that Steve Jobs was famous for never working hard.

But we agree on two things.

One, you're not good enough to do it without help.

Two, we should go after lazy 1%'ers. People like George Clooney, Eva Longoria, Katy Perry, Samual L Jackson, Beyonce, Sean Penn, Alec Baldwin, Scarlett Johannson. It's not fair they have so much while so many have so little.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Steve Jobs of course worked hard and had the added benefit of being a genius, with a vision, of course even Steve Jobs had help.

All the progressives you mentioned probably work hard (I know they work hard to help the 99%). I'm sure they all support increased taxes on the1% to correct the destructive concentration of wealth holding down the 99%.

Of course the wealthy must agree, and it is the greedy selfish conservative 1% and the brainwashed repub 99%'rs that have created this problem and nurture it.

They (YOU) are the problem.

[-] 0 points by freakzilla (-161) from Detroit, MI 5 years ago

Maybe I am the problem, but to be fair, I didn’t build it. Somebody else made that happen. Personally, I blame you.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

If you didn't build it it is because you arelazy and dependent. Personally I believe you did build it. You just have the misfortune of believing right wing talking points.

They support the 1% corp oligarchs and advocate against their own class.

That's where you need to progress.

Get on it

[-] -3 points by ExGoldmanSachs (-52) 5 years ago

I never cared much about hard work. What matters to me is smart work. Sure a miner works hard and sweats all day while a programmer sits in a comfy office and moves her fingers on the keyboard. But what determines their worth is how smart they work. Similarly, take two programmers, one takes a whole day to write an algorithm while the other figures out the same in an hour. Who would you pay more? Obviously the latter. So don't whine about hard work.

A trader sitting the entire day at his terminal may end up closing with a few million dollars in losses while on another day he could be making millions in just one trade. Smart work matters. Hard work is pointless.

[-] -1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 5 years ago

Sign the petition. Join the data miners.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

You defend the billionaires by discouraging signing the petition against them.?

[-] -2 points by ExGoldmanSachs (-52) 5 years ago

haha.. what a loser.. And then your kids will demand that anyone scoring a A or A- should be banned and their grades changed to C+ which would be the upper ceiling for grades. And then we can take this mindset to sports as well. It would be a fun world indeed.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

STFU. or make sense, you brainwashed advocate against your own class.

[-] -3 points by ExGoldmanSachs (-52) 5 years ago

I do not see it as a class struggle. Besides, I would call a spade a spade, irrespective of class boundaries. May be if you and your ilk had put in the right amount of effort in school and college they would have had good jobs and at least a few thousand dollar in the bank. May be if they were smart enough to work their way up the corporate ladder they would have been at least middle management themselves... But hey you didnt. We did. And the spoils go to the victors.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I had a great job without the "right amount of effort in school"!!!! But My personal situation is not relevant.

The 1% corp oligarchs bought the peoples govt, rigged the system against the 99%, outsourced our jobs, stagnated the wages of remaining jobs, & crashed the world economy destroying millions more jobs.

You stand with those criminals who continue to prey on your family. They cannot continue these crimes without 1/2 the 99% (you, & repubs) advocating for them.

You are an ignorant tool for them against your own class!

You have no honor

[-] -2 points by ExGoldmanSachs (-52) 5 years ago

There are enough millionaires and billionaires rising out of rags (well almost) even today, Mark Zuckerberg being a popular and recent example. And there are many others. Many doctors too are part of the 1% and they did not rig the system to get into med school. Many silicon valley programmers who have tried their luck in many startups may also find themselves in the 1% (or 5%) because of one lucky IPO and months of sleepless work. And they didn't buy govt or rig the system either.

As for my family, they are well provided for because of the money I made (or my wife continues to make. I quit my job to start my own small fledgling company), thank you very much. And I don't think half of our populace is Republicans, that would be a grim scenario indeed ;-)

And lets not get on the high horse and talk about honor. At least I am not protesting on the streets for handouts and turning a public park into a puddle of poop. It is okay if people are not successful, not everyone is; but not trying and wanting handouts is a crime in my book.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Pointing out those wealthy who have not bought the peoples govt and did not rig the system against the 99% is NOT proof that it hasn't happened.

It has, and we must protest in the streets against all plutocrats, and the 1/2 of the 99% (you, other repubs) to get progressive solutions that benefit the 99%.

No handouts, justice.!

Get with the program and stop advocating for the 1% corp oligarchs

[-] -1 points by ExGoldmanSachs (-52) 5 years ago

I am sorry but i cannot support slackers

[-] 4 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Me neither! that's why I don't advocate for the lazy, do nothing, govt sponging, 1% corp plutocrats, who succeed by rigging the system & sucking the govt teet!

And I certainly don't believe the bullshit 'blame the victim' talking points of those greedy, selfish 1% corp oligarchs, who must demonize the 99% (your class!!) in order to keep squeezing us, & living off of our hard work.

[-] -3 points by ExGoldmanSachs (-52) 5 years ago

as far as salaries are concerned my last job put me comfortably within the 1%. and u need to b smart to be rich or at least ur parents/spouse needs to be smart

[-] 4 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Listen to you. You stumbled into the truth. In fact most of the 1% have inherited daddies wealth.

Generations have passed since much of that wealth was made. And generations ago that money was made in dishonest ways that exploited the hard working Americans.

I don't buy your supposition that you gotta be smart. You gotta have connections, family, political, ivy league school buddies.

You're either are blatantly lying of are pathetically blind.

[+] -4 points by ExGoldmanSachs (-52) 5 years ago

I am pretty sure neither Steve Jobs, Zuckerberg or Gates inherited their wealth. For that matter neither did I, though I am a very puny example. I have no family or political connections (dad was an engineer and mother a university prof) but yes I do have Ivy League school buddies (whom I met because i was smart enough to get into a Ivy League school) and now professional connections (people whom I have worked with, seen me perform and know that I am a capable guy). These connections come through diligent work.

[-] 5 points by Buttercup (1067) 5 years ago

You really need to stop siting a few individual examples. It makes you sound foolish. The success of Steve Jobs or Mr. Facebook does not represent the macro socio-economic picture.

The macro socio-economic picture is one of dwindling economic mobilitiy. Much of this is associated with an education system that is structured in such a way that gives a permanent educational advantage to students in wealthier zip codes and school districts.

Nobody is saying there isn't opportunity for a Steve Jobs or Bill Gates here or there. But a Steve Jobs and Bill Gates here and there is not sufficient for a healthy society and economy. The problem is one of broader equality of opportunity provided for all socio-economic levels. The extreme levels of wealth disparity that we have today contributes to the conditions that create unequal educational opportunity and, ultimately, economic opportunity. The extreme levels of income and wealth inequality leads to lower growth, the destabilization of democratic and government institutions, instability of society and the economy.

I'm sure you can do your own research. But here's a start for ya.






[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Many get into ivy league schools because of fam alumni. The wealthiest inherited their wealth and did nothing requiring smarts. Your examples are not representative of the wealthy I am referring to. They are exceptions.

The 1% corp oligarchs have bought the peoples govt, rigged the system against us, outsourced our jobs, stagnated the wages of our remaining jobs, destroyed millions more jobs when they crashed the world economy, & then took our taxpayer dollars in a socialist grab of govt largess.

That's how smart the people you defend are.

Pathetic. You are pathetically ignorant.

[-] -2 points by queef (-69) 5 years ago

Please explain this new system, to every pro athlete, Hollywood actor, TV personality, and lawyer. I'm sure they'll support you.

HA HA HA. What fucking idiots you people are. Yea...BAN WEALTH. and then see what gets done in this country.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Let 'em read about it. They don't have to support it. The 99% must. We outnumber them.

Only fools like you who advocate against you ownclass allows the billionaires to keep squeezing us.

Keep laughing while they prey on your family, You have no honor!

[-] -2 points by queef (-69) 5 years ago

Spoken like a true communist.

[-] 4 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I am more of a socialist although have lived and benefitted from capitalism all my life.

So whatever. But personally attacking me is not relevant and simply betrays the impotence of your position

[-] -3 points by lifevest (-4) 5 years ago

The republicans did not create the 16T debt, your idol obummer did.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I disagree.

Bush was left a national debt of under $5T after 3 years of surplus (from Clinton) and $6T in projected surpluses through 2009, instead he squandered that and created an annual deficit of $1.4T & almost a 12T national Debt

The remaining $4T occurred during Pres Obamas term (although he cut the deficit) but it was still from Bush incompetence and great recession.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

but the national debt is made up from the annual deficit which Bush left us $1.4T.

Pres Obama cut it some but traitorous repubs blocked all recovery/jobs proposals and obstructed his efforts to cut it more..

So we have continued to add the annual deficit bush created and left us to the national debt.

Repubs are the problem as always.

[-] -1 points by lifevest (-4) 5 years ago

You really drank the obummer kool aid. you must be black, otherwise you would not be this stupid. In 4 years obummer increased the debt by 4t, it took Bush 8 years. Keep drinking the kool aid.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

What does my color have to do with anything? Are you suggesting that black people are not as smart because of their skin color?

Do you think that is a smart statement?

[+] -4 points by queef (-69) 5 years ago

Yea...that should fix our 16 $TRILLION dollar debt. Illegally confiscate a few billion dollars from a handful of people. You fucking people who post here have to be the stupidest mother fuckers on planet Earth

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

So you're not gonna sign the petition.?

And we're not trying to pay off your republican created $16T debt you fuckin moron.

We're gonna take those greedy, selfish billionaires money and give it back to the people they tool it from.

[-] 1 points by ProblemSolver (79) 5 years ago

Tell'em !

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Happy New Year

[-] 0 points by ProblemSolver (79) 5 years ago

Thank you.. all the best to a new year.

  • Lets take the money away from those badboy billionaires.
[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

If only.

[-] -1 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

why? you have no right to anyone else's property.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

They have no right to the wealth of the 99%!!!!

[-] 1 points by ProblemSolver (79) 5 years ago

VQkag2 , you hit the "Nail on the Head" .

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

We'll never get a 100% tax on billionaires but we gotta do something about this self destructive, obscene concentration of wealth amongst the 1%.

Correcting that problem will benefit ALL. The 99% and the 1%.


[-] 1 points by ProblemSolver (79) 5 years ago

Your heart is in the right place.

[-] -2 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

jealousy and envy.

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

I ain't jealous or envious. I demand justice and fairness. My love of the 99% and this great experiment of representative govt is what drives me to fight for economic equity.

ALL will benefit when we correct the obscene concentration of wealth that is destroying opportunity in America.

How can you betray your class and advocate for the criminals who bought your govt, rigged the system in their favor and continue to prey on your family.?

[-] -2 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

justice ? to mean redistibution,.............which is theft. if you want fairness, jfk said "life isnt fair".

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

the wealth of the working class has been redistributed to the 1% through the purchase of our govt, & the rigging of the system against us.

That is a theft. THE theft we seek redress on. Justice WILL prevail.

There is nothing the people united can't achieve.

[-] -1 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

you and al sharpton

[-] 3 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Al Sharpton is a great soldier for the 99%.

[-] 0 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

sharpton was sued and lost in the tawana brawley slander case . sharpton slandered pagones, was sued by him and sharpton lost the case. do you own search,.......".al shaprtons criminal record"

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Nonsensical, unrelated, decades old personal attack from a small man who cannot argue the facts of the important issue of billionaires stealing the wealth of the working class

[-] 0 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

al sharpton is a total miscreant. he's a fraud, liar, slanderer, and tax cheat. your kind of guy.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Your personal attacks on the great Al Sharpton simply betrays the impotence of you position.

You can't argue the issue so you resort to unfounded dishonest personal attacks against a man who is more than 100 times the man you could be.

[-] -1 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

sharpton is filth. tax credits ( business expenses) for all business , large or small, are legal.. please be explicit how " billionaires are stealing money from other people.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Nonsensical, unrelated, decades old personal attack from a small man who cannot argue the facts of the important issue of billionaires stealing the wealth of the working class

[-] -1 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

al sharpton is a fraud, a liar, slanderer, was convicted of tax evasion. what i stated was fact, nothing personal about it.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Nonsensical, unrelated, decades old personal attack from a small man who cannot argue the facts of the important issue of billionaires stealing the wealth of the working class

[-] -1 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

al sharpton, quilty of tax evasion, slander ( tawana brawley case) same with the crown heights riots and freddy's fashion mart.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 5 years ago

Ridiculous unfounded, dishonest personal attacks, from a small man who can't argue the facts of an unrelated issue.

[-] 0 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 5 years ago

Tax evasion should be something a person of your political beliefs should appreciate. As far as slander- please. Who hasnt been slandered?

That being said, Sharpton is just another hack that will eventually be grouped with the Hannities, Becks and Chris Mathews of the world, once it wakes up.

[-] 0 points by ProblemSolver (79) 5 years ago

That didn't stop them billionaires.. now did it.

  • Were gonna play by " Their Rules" !
[-] -1 points by aville (-678) 5 years ago

you have no game.

[-] 0 points by ProblemSolver (79) 5 years ago

That makes me want it even more.

[-] 2 points by GirlFriday (17435) 5 years ago

The only stupid mother fucker is you. What happened? Dumped on New Year's Eve?

[+] -4 points by queef (-69) 5 years ago

Apparently girl friday failed at math....40 billion can't pay for 16 trillion asshole. Got it?

[-] 1 points by GirlFriday (17435) 5 years ago

Ahhh Grasshopper, you fucking little dimwit. It won't have to pay for it right this second asshole. It will be legal. Got it?

[-] -1 points by outlawtumor (-162) 5 years ago

"You fucking people who post here have to be the stupidest mother fuckers on planet Earth"

Excellent summation of the situation and very astute,couldn't have said it better.