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Forum Post: Every now and then, something happens that makes you wonder about conspiracy theories. That something has happened.

Posted 2 years ago on Jan. 15, 2012, 1:11 p.m. EST by ModestCapitalist (2342)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Its not that big of a deal. Nothing Earth shattering. But a couple months ago, I printed a page from the CBO (Congressional Budget Office) regarding the drastic changes of American income share by class from the years 1979-2007. As you can see from my re-post below, those drastic changes favored the rich.

This is a portion of a previous entry in which I address income shares by quintile and back it up with an official government report.

The CBO report I am about to make reference to breaks down shares of net American income by quintile. Since a quintile represents 1/5, the middle quintile would certainly represent the 'middle class'. But we'll expand further out to all 5 quintiles just to cover all bases. Keep in mind these statistics represent income AFTER taxes.

Between 1979 and 2007, the share of net income for the lowest quintile dropped by 27.9 percent. Does that prove the expansion of the lowest class? Damn near it but lets eliminate all doubt.

Between 1979 and 2007, the share of net income for the second quintile, dropped by 23.6 percent. Does that prove the expansion of the lower class? Isn't it possible that the lowest two quintiles were always the lower class and the middle class had always represented just 1/5 of the US population? Well, thats what justhefacts would swear so lets eliminate that last shred of doubt. Lets move onto the middle quintile. The indisputable 'middle class'.

Between 1979 and 2007, the share of net income for the middle quintile dropped by 14.5 percent. There you go. Indisputable proof that at least 3/5 of Americans lost their relative share of net income between 1979 and 2007. Indisputable proof that America's middle class had shrunk and its lower class had expanded between 1979 and 2007. Indisputable mathematical proof. Still, lets move onto the next quintile.

Between 1979 and 2007, the share of net income for the fourth quintile dropped by 10.3 percent. There you go. Indisputable proof that at least 4/5 of Americans lost their relative share of net income between the years 1979 and 2007.

Bankruptcy and consumer debt rose significantly during this time frame. By 2007, consumer debt alone rose to nearly $2,000,000,000,000. Thats NEARLY TWO TRILLION DOLLARS.

So we've proven the actual shrinkage of the middle class and the actual expansion of the lower class. We've clearly established a loss of financial assets.

So where did the money go? The highest quintile? Lets take a look.

Between 1979 and 2007, the share of net income for the fifth quintile rose by 23.8 percent. Should we blame them? The highest quintile? Do we really want to blame a full 20% of the American population?

Not in my book. Lets take a closer look.

Between the years 1979 and 2007, the share of net income for the top decile (one tenth) rose by 40.2 percent. Thats a 16.4 percent spread just within 10 percent of the population. Lets take a closer look.

Between the years 1979 and 2007, the share of net income for the top ventile (one twentieth) rose by 61.9 percent. Thats a 21.9 percent spread just within 5 percent of the population. Interesting. Now, lets take a look at the final piece of the puzzle from this particular time frame.

Between 1979 and 2007, the start of the Great Recession and the worst financial crisis in nearly 80 years, the share of net income for the top centile (one hundredth, top 1%) rose by 128.0 percent. Thats a spread of 66.1 percent just within 5 percent of the population.

Now, for the curious event.

I did have a link here to the CBO report regarding these statistics but the page has just very recently been replaced with the usual crap about 'Federal Income Tax rates'. The usual crap that favors the rich with no regard whatsoever for TOTAL effective rates (Federal, State, and local combined) which are near flat across the top 4 quintiles.

I can't help wondering why that page regarding those drastic changes of income share by class which was in place for several months at least was replaced with another after I posted the link on this site.

There is no doubt. It was good a few days ago. Now, its been replaced.

I will search the web for that page. Perhaps its just been moved. But why?

3 Comments

3 Comments


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[-] 2 points by debndan (1145) 2 years ago

I wouldn't say that this incident would qualify as a garden variety 'conspiracy theory'

It's well known that certain trolls on this site (far right and far left) have been using software to disrupt normal peoples postings and links when they can't discredit said facts and links

Sorry to say that the far right and far left are opposed to freedom of speech, when that speech happens to be true.

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (22162) 2 years ago

Excellent summary.

[-] 1 points by ZenDogTroll (13032) from South Burlington, VT 2 years ago

The why is most easily answered - obviously to make it more difficult to document what you and others have been saying.

The real question is by whom and how did this occur? Is it a result of natural processes, and if so how did these processes come to be put in place?

Incompetence? Or design?

And if not, if it is in fact an isolated incident that cannot be explained by normal procedure, then the questions become interesting.