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Forum Post: The rich are too rich. Period. I've had it with their false promises and bogus excuses. I don't care how much they 'give back'. I care how much they keep. You can't 'earn' 100 times the pay of a firefighter. You can only REAP it from a corrupt system.

Posted 10 years ago on Dec. 13, 2011, 11:41 a.m. EST by ModestCapitalist (2342)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The ugly truth. America's wealth is STILL being concentrated. When the rich get too rich, the poor get poorer. These latest figures prove it. AGAIN.

According to the Social Security Administration, 50 percent of U.S. workers made less than $26,364 in 2010. In addition, those making less than $200,000, or 99 percent of Americans (actually more like 98%), saw their earnings fall by $4.5 billion collectively.

The sobering numbers were a far cry from what was going on for the richest one percent of Americans.

The incomes of the top one percent of the wage scale in the U.S. rose in 2010; and their collective wage earnings jumped by $120 billion. In addition, those earning at least $1 million a year in wages, which is roughly 93,000 Americans, reported payroll income jumped 22 percent from 2009. Overall, the economy has shed 5.2 million jobs since the start of the Great Recession in 2007. It’s the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression in the 1930’s.

Another word about the first Great Depression. It really was a perfect storm. Caused almost entirely by greed. First, there was unprecedented economic growth. There was a massive building spree. There was a growing sense of optimism and materialism. There was a growing obsession for celebrities. The American people became spoiled, foolish, naive, brainwashed, and love-sick. They were bombarded with ads for one product or service after another. Encouraged to spend all of their money as if it were going out of style. Obscene profits were hoarded at the top. In 1928, the rich were already way ahead. Still, they were given huge tax breaks. All of this represented a MASSIVE transfer of wealth from poor to rich. Executives, entrepreneurs, developers, celebrities, and share holders. By 1929, America's wealthiest 1 percent had accumulated 44 percent of all United States wealth. The upper, middle, and lower classes were left to share the rest. When the lower majority finally ran low on money to spend, profits declined and the stock market crashed.

Of course, the rich threw a fit and started cutting jobs. They would stop at nothing to maintain their disgusting profit margins and ill-gotten obscene levels of wealth as long as possible. The small business owners did what they felt necessary to survive. They cut more jobs. The losses were felt primarily by the little guy. This created a domino effect. The middle class shrunk drastically and the lower class expanded. With less wealth in reserve and active circulation, banks failed by the hundreds. More jobs were cut. Unemployment reached 25% in 1933. The worst year of the Great Depression. Those who were employed had to settle for much lower wages. Millions went cold and hungry. The recovery involved a massive infusion of new currency, a World War, and higher taxes on the rich. With so many men in the service, so many women on the production line, and those higher taxes to help pay for it, some US wealth was gradually transferred back down to the majority. This redistribution of wealth continued until the mid seventies. By 1976, the richest 1 percent held less than 20 percent. The lower majority held the rest. This was the recovery. A partial redistribution of wealth.

Then it began to concentrate all over again. Here we are 35 years later. The richest one percent now own 40 percent of all US wealth. The upper, middle, and lower classes are sharing the rest. This is true even after taxes, welfare, financial aid, and charity. It is the underlying cause. No redistribution. No recovery.

The government won't step in and do what's necessary. Not this time. It's up to us. Support small business more and big business less. Support the little guy more and the big guy less. It's tricky but not impossible.

For the good of society, stop giving so much of your money to rich people. Stop concentrating the wealth. This may be our last chance to prevent the worst economic depression in world history. No redistribution. No recovery.

Those of you who agree on these major issues are welcome to summarize this post, copy it, link to it, save it, show a friend, or spread the word in any fashion. Most major cities have daily call-in talk radio shows. You can reach thousands of people at once. They should know the ugly truth. Be sure to quote the figures which prove that America's wealth is still being concentrated. I don't care who takes the credit. We are up against a tiny but very powerful minority who have more influence on the masses than any other group in history. They have the means to reach millions at once with outrageous political and commercial propaganda. Those of us who speak the ugly truth must work incredibly hard just to be heard.

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82 Comments


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[-] 6 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

The causes of the 1929 crash are incredibly like the causes of the 2008 crash. The financial products that enabled the '29 crash "investment trusts" are structurally identical to the CDO's that were employed to vacuum the wealth out of the middle class in 2008 except they were made up of stocks instead of mortgages. They were not only layered into tiers but there were also turned into baskets of investment trusts to magnify the leverage. I know CDO tiers were turned into baskets ---------I'm really not sure what the motive was but to dump the garbage on to some poor pension fund. When all the wealth ends up at the top like this, it usually just disappears. The rich don't keep that money in cash, they keep reinvesting it in a down market and loosing it.

[-] 4 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Well, the rich can't keep that much wealth in cash because there isn't enough cash in the supply to cover it. But they do hold that wealth in material assets and financial assets in addition to cash. Gold, silver, stocks, bonds, ect.

We can agree that the circumstances of '29' and '08' are very similar but I still see the CDOs, and investment trusts as the top layers of a structure bound to collapse because of a weak foundation. That foundation is the middle class. The largest group of consumers. If they would remain strong indefinitely, then virtually nothing based on their ability to support the economy could fail. This would include virtually all returns on all investments.

The problem is that these returns, along with profits in general are top heavy. They don't 'trickle down' as we were told they would. So as the wealth accumulates at the top, it becomes mathematically impossible to preserve stability in any sector of the market. Another problem is that by the time the market reacts, its too late. Some insiders see this ahead of time and sell off 'worthless paper' like they did just prior to the crash of the housing market. Others didn't and got screwed.

When markets fail, the pundits run around screaming about 'lost wealth'. I just don't see it that way. Value is lost in investments. Assets lose value. But that value is always based on the potential for future returns. Those returns for the most part, regardless of their complexity, are based on the strength of the middle class.

I won't sit here and tell you that I understand all of those financial gimmicks. Some I do. Others, I don't. But it just seems mathematically impossible to preserve stability in any sector of any market based on profits made from a shrinking middle class. Mathematically impossible. Thats why so many financial gimmicks were bet on in the late '20's. Thats why so many financial gimmicks were bet on just prior to the current crisis.

This is also why Europe is facing their own financial crisis. Their wealth is terribly concentrated much like our own. Their rich are too rich. Their middle class is shrinking.

Mark my words: Their will be no end to this crisis. Not one of us will live to see it. The recent market gains are based on crap. They are being effected by speculation with regard to daily or weekly events. Short term investors with no regard whatsoever for ethics are playing the market based on this speculation. It will crash hard again. Probably within two years when the remaining stimulus funds dry up and short term speculators run out of financial gimmicks to bet on.

Every major economy in the world will be in recession by 2015.

[-] 1 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

You are right the fundamental problems,trade deficit, lack of manufacturing jobs etc. are the prime movers of this economy. The attempts to jump start it by lowering interest rates, letting banks use more leverage, deregulating derivatives etc only serve to delay the inevitable. You also right about the cash, when all that leverage starts going the wrong way it sucks up a lot of the excess cash that got stuck at the top.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Thats not what I said but I do agree in part with your points about the trade deficit, and manufacturing jobs. Those are contributing factors. I don't like gimmicks and I'm all for regulating derivatives.

"when all that leverage starts going the wrong way it sucks up a lot of the excess cash that got stuck at the top." -What did you mean by this?

[-] 1 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

Well all the money that was created during the boom was created using leverage, leading up to 1929 and 2008. The normal leverage for banks was about 6 or 7 in other words for every 1 million dollars a bank held as collateral they could lend out 6 or 7 million.The banks asked for more leverage and they got it, 30 is a number I have read. So now for every 1 million they had as collateral they could lend 30 million.They created CDO's from mortgages and managed to get those bonds rated AAA and then used them as collateral to borrow more money. Every time they wrote a mortgage they collected a fee. Every time they turned it into a bond they collected a fee. Tons of that money got put into the stock market. So all the money floating around at the top of the bubble is based on an extraordinary amount of leverage that cannot withstand a down turn in home value. If you have 10k and loan someone 300k for a house and the house price goes down 10% you have used your 10k collateral and are now 20k in the hole. The crisis was actually worse than that because of the way mortgages were hacked up some of the CDO's were trading at 10 cents on the dollar ---------now remember that nearly worthless crap was what banks were using as collateral to create more worthless crap. In order to get cash to fill that sudden black hole of a lot of stocks were sold so even though it wasn't a stock crisis there was a huge market crash. the fed in a panic to stop bank failures and bank runs pumped 7 trillion in cheap loans to the banks. I can do the 1929 leverage problem as well but not at the moment.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Excellent. I only want to add that none of the above would have happened if it weren't for a relentless concentration of wealth and a shrinking middle class.

[-] 1 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

and the fed lowering interest rates and allowing banks more risk. I'm not disagreeing with you at all I'm just saying that the housing boom was constructed and not just a random event. IMO Greenspan started lowering interest rates to combat the bust in internet stocks and that sowed the seeds for a housing bubble. Mortgages function like bonds. If the interest rate goes down bond prices, or housing prices go up. If the average American can afford a mortgage payment of $800 a month and the interest rate goes down the top line price of a house will go up accordingly. This scenario will of course fuel speculation. Throw in a bunch of crazy ARM loans with low 1st year payments,aggressive salesmen , wall street securitization of those loans and now you've got a really good bubble on your hands. All these fed maneuvers IMO are designed to perpetuate an unsustainable consumer economy. My opinion is to hell with China we need to make our own things,and pay the people who make them a decent salary. we can't keep believing we can make this situation work.

[-] 1 points by ubercaput (175) from New York City, NY 10 years ago

Let's help the rich...

[-] 3 points by ZenDogTroll (13032) from South Burlington, VT 10 years ago

According to the Social Security Administration, 50 percent of U.S. workers made less than $26,364 in 2010. In addition, those making less than $200,000, or 99 percent of Americans (actually more like 98%), saw their earnings fall by $4.5 billion collectively.

That is staggering.

Keep up the great work.

[-] 2 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

It makes my blood boil. Look at those figures. The lower 98% lost $4.5 billion. The richest 1% gained $120 billion. All in a single year. Those figures seem to suggest that much of the stimulus money ended up in their pockets, in addition to more money from the lower 98%. Words can not fully express just how disgusting this is. and nobody is doing a damn thing about it. When the numbers for 2011 are reported this coming spring, they will show that in 2011, the rich got even richer and the lower 98% got poorer. AGAIN. I'm not sure about that 2nd percentile. They might end up with a slight gain but nothing like that top percentile. It just makes me sick.

[-] 1 points by ZenDogTroll (13032) from South Burlington, VT 10 years ago

well, hang in there big guy.

we'll get this mess straightened out.

after all,

we're all Americans.

[-] 2 points by Samcitt (136) 10 years ago

Don't forget the people who caused this problem to tip over (the executives who gave themselves huge bonuses) are still giving themselves huge bonuses per year on top of their seven figure salaries. They will continue to do this until they can longer, whether that be due to a loss of resources or whether they are stopped by other means.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Good point. More legalized insanity.

[-] 1 points by stuartchase (861) 10 years ago

The Revolution has a new theme song!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-L-GOHa5-YQ

http://occupywallst.org/forum/in-the-name-of-allah/

The Revolution starts here!

[-] 1 points by OccupyCentre (263) 10 years ago

You are wrong about that. A firefighter earns $52500 per year. 100 times that is $5250000. Bank executives earn far more than that. Some get bonuses of over 150 million.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

You're right but I was just making a reference to one obscene level of income.

[-] 1 points by ubercaput (175) from New York City, NY 10 years ago

Rapicious capitalism. Either labour or capital rules. You can't have both.

[-] 1 points by BlueRose (1437) 10 years ago

Percentage-wise, the poor give more to charity than the rich. Just because a few advertize their names on PBS as sponsors does not mean the rich are as a group all that philanthropic.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

True.

[-] 0 points by FriendlyObserverA (610) 10 years ago

I have a question for you modestcapitalist,

during the great depression , or shortly before, ..were there protests ?

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Yes. There were masses in the streets calling for socialism. I don't think they understood what socialism really meant. But they knew that capitalism wasn't working for them.

[-] 0 points by FriendlyObserverA (610) 10 years ago

how long did these protests last .. were there results .. no one ever talks about this ? perhaps the war broke out and ended the protests ?

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Good question. I'll have to look it up.

[-] 0 points by Turrac (84) 10 years ago

I have my own business. Some years a firefighter might earn 100 times more than me. What then?

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Not unless you only make $500 some years. In which case, you qualify for aid.

[-] 0 points by Turrac (84) 10 years ago

I would qualify for aid some years. Thank goodness I've saved for those times. My point is that you can't make others rich by making the rich poor.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

I had a hunch that was a set-up question.

I don't want to make anyone rich. I want to prevent the rich from concentrating too much wealth and causing another depression.

[-] 0 points by Turrac (84) 10 years ago

You can't prevent the wealthy from accumulating wealth. However, you can make it easier for others to begin to accumulate wealth.

Many believe additional taxes on the wealth is the answer. From my perspective, that just gives government an opportunity to waste more of american's money.

Eliminating government red tape and providing easier credit access to new and small business will spawn more business and therefore create more wealth.

We simply cannot allow ourselves to be wards of the state!

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Unfortunately, that newly created wealth would be concentrated at the top just like it has been for the last 30+ years.

[-] 1 points by Turrac (84) 10 years ago

So are you proposing government manage people's income?

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

I have zero faith in the government. They will always sell out to the highest bidder. My purpose here is to explain my point of view in detail. To help convince my fellow citizens that greed is a form of evil. The very concept of extreme personal wealth is immoral. There is no reason to celebrate it regardless of the pretty face. Those who epitomize it are pigs. They do not deserve our support.

[-] 1 points by Turrac (84) 10 years ago

So should people give up their wealth or not pursue wealth on moral grounds?

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

I've had it with your set-up questions. You're obviously here to defend the rich and/or the heavy concentration of wealth. You're here to bash those of who feel that its gone too far. I can't stop you but I won't play the games.

[-] 1 points by Turrac (84) 10 years ago

I'm not at all here to defend anybody. I'm simply trying to understand your position. I do find it interesting that at any time I ask questions of folks associated with ows, I get the defensive "I don't want to play anymore" answer. I'm not trying to set anybody up. You made a provocative statement and I want to understand what is behind it. You might be surprised how much we are in agreement, but I can't yet tell.

It feels like ows is just a big bitch session with no real solutions being presented.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

My position is explained at the top of this page. The rich are too rich. We give them too much of our money. They take some against our will and sometimes without our knowledge. I am fed up with all of it. There are no silver bullet solutions but as an individual, I have some ideas:

Spend your money as wisely as possible. Especially in middle and lower class communities. Check the Fortune 500 list and limit your support of high profit/low labor industries (Hollywood, pro sports, energy, credit, pharmaceutical, cable, satelite, internet advertising, video, and music, cell phone, high fashion, jewelry, ect.). Cancel all but one credit card for emergencies only. Call the provider and demand a lower rate. Be persistent. You may get it. (By the way. I gave this piece of advice long before NBC. I'm not looking for kudos. I'm telling you that NBC is directly affiliated with the credit industry. They could have given you this piece of advice years ago. Instead, they stood by and allowed their parent company, sister companies, and network sponsors to RIP YOU OFF. Even now, they give the occasional 'good guy' financial advice only because they are pressured to do so. They carefully balance every piece of 'good guy' advice with their primary goal to GET YOUR MONEY. Which is why their 'good guy' advice is so often followed by a plug for one of their sister companies, sister channels, network sponsors, or coorporate partners. For example: They tell you to pay down your credit card debt. Good advice. They should have given it years ago. Then, they tell you to GET MORE CREDIT CARDS and use them. Bad advice. One week Jean Chatzky tells you to avoid the 'free credit report' scam because it is always followed by a monthly service charge. Good advice. They should have given it years ago. The following week she stands by as her paid fellow advisor Carmen Wong strongly implies for you to have your credit monitered on a monthly basis and praises a caller for doing so. Bad advice. This is actually a plug for one of their network sponsors, coorporate partners, or parent company. The praise is nothing but a psychological trick. DON'T FALL FOR IT. Don't take ANYTHING they say at face value. Instead, read between the lines. Carefully weigh every piece of 'good guy' advice given against their primary goal. THEY WANT YOUR MONEY.). If you need a cell phone, then do your homework and find the best deal on a local pre-pay. You may be able to get one for as little as $10 a month. Don't text. The charge may seem low at the time but their profit margins are obscene. If you want home internet access, then check for a locally based provider. They can be found in nearly every city nationwide. Otherwise, use the least expensive big name provider, and share accounts whenever possible. If you need to search, then use the less popular search engines. They usually produce about same results anyway. Don't pay for any internet download. Their profit margins for such data transfers are obscene. Don’t pay to see any blockbuster movie. Instead, wait a few months and rent the DVD from a local store, borrow it, or buy it USED. Then loan it to a friend or family member. If you prefer the outing, then choose a film produced by the lesser known studeos with lower paid actors. If you want to see a big name game or event, then watch it in a local bar, club, or at home on network TV. Don’t buy any high end official merchandise and don’t support the high end sponsors. If its endorsed by a big name celebrity, then don’t buy it. If you can afford a new car, then make an exception for GM, Ford, and Dodge. If they don’t increase their market share soon, then a lot more people are going to get screwed out of their pensions and/or benefits. Of course, you must know by now to avoid those big trucks and SUVs unless you truly need one for its utility. Don’t be ashamed to buy a foreign car if you prefer it. Afterall, those with the most fuel efficient vehicles consume a lot less foreign oil. Which accounts for a pretty big chunk of our trade deficit. Its a reasonable trade-off. Anyway, the global economy is worth supporting to some extent. Its the obscene profit margins, trade deficits, and BS from OPEC that get us into trouble. Otherwise, the global economy would be a good thing for everyone. Just keep in mind that the big 3 are struggling and they do produce a few smaller reliable cars. Don’t frequent any high end department store, mall, or any business in a newly developed center or upper class community. By doing so, you encourage greedy developers, make them richer, and draw vital support away from industrial areas and away from the middle and lower class communities. Instead, support the local retailer and the less popular shopping centers. Especially in lower or middle class communities. If you can afford to buy a home, then do so. But go smaller and less expensive. Don’t get yourself in too deep and don’t buy into the newly developed condos or gated communities. Instead, find a modest home in a building or neighborhood at least 20 years old. If you live in one of the poorer states, then try to support its economy first and foremost.

[-] 1 points by Turrac (84) 10 years ago

Your suggestions are right on. There is no need to contribute if you don't have to. I grew up on a Midwestern farm. I was raised in the fashion you suggest.

While I do agree that some of the wealth in the world is obscene, I am also a realist. The rich do get richer. However, I am also living proof that if you work hard, mind your money, and pay attention to details you can accumulate modest wealth and lead a comfortable life. In addition you can do the right thing by contributing jobs and resources to society.

I just don't buy into the concept that the rich are stealing from the poor and keeping them down. In this country anyone can be successful if they want it bad enough.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Be on the lookout for commercial brainwash plots on TV. They are written into nearly every scene of nearly every show. Most cater to network sponsors, coorporate partners, and parent companies. Especially commercial health care. In particular, high profit pharmaceuticals and excessive medical testing. These plugs are countless, calculated, and VERY well written. They have commercial brainwashing down to a science. DON'T FALL FOR IT. Get off the couch and take care of your own body the way nature intended. There is no substitute. If you must see a doctor, then DEMAND that he/she give you more than 5 minutes of their undivided attention. Otherwise, dispute their unreasonable charges. Be prepared with written questions about your condition and get them answered one at a time. If they refuse, then dispute their unreasonable charges. If they prescribe excessive medical testing, then ask if they personally own the equipment or if they are paid a commission for each test. If they find nothing new or signifigant, then dispute their unreasonable charges. If they prescribe a pharmaceutical, then ask for a generic. Better yet, concider a change in lifestyle or simple tolerance. If they still recommend the name brand pharmaceutical, then ask about any financial ties or conflict of interest. If they get offended, then dispute their unreasonable charges and consider a new doctor. If you must drug away your sniffles, worries, jitters, aches, and pains, then at least do your homework. Be aware of the possible side-effects ahead of time. Don't be surprised to find yourself back a week or two later feeling worse. In which case, you should dispute their unreasonable charges. If you are diagnosed with another medical condition, then ask your doctor what he/she has done to rule out those possible side-effects. Otherwise, dispute their unreasonable charges. Don't let any greedy doctor treat you like a number, make you wait an hour, or rush you out of their office. Otherwise, dispute their unreasonable charges. Don't fall for this CRAP that doctors have no choice but to over-book their time or over-charge their patients because of a high overhead. ITS A LIE. YOUR DOCTOR IS MOST LIKELY A MULTI-MILLIONAIRE. The same goes for their bogus claim to over-test so many of their patients because they are afraid of missing something and being sued for it. THAT IS ANOTHER FLAT-OUT LIE. Afterall, if this were true, then it would only explain some of the unnecessary testing. NOT THE OBSCENE CHARGES. It also wouldn't explain their own financial ties directly to the manufacturers of said testing equipment. Thats right. Most doctors hold stock in the very same companies that produce that equipment. Its another conflict of interest. So don't fall for their CRAP. Demand their undivided attention and respect. Afterall, they took an oath. If you have the opportunity before being admitted, then check the record of your hospital. Check to see if they have been investigated or sued for providing unnecessary treatment, excessive medical testing, or fraudulent billing. Dozens have already been caught doing so. Do all of the above regardless of your coverage. Don't force your employer to cover the obscene and often fraudulent charges of a corrupt health care industry. By doing so, you make the problem worse. Keep your guard up when watching ANY talk show. These people are not your friends. They are not your advocates. They are paid actors hired to get your attention and your money. Some of them are also executive producers (Oprah Winfrey, Ellen Degeneres, and Dr Phil.). Nearly every word, smile, and stupid joke is rehearsed ahead of time. Including those which take place so often during what appear to be 'technical oversights' (Today Show. Even their stage hands are mixed in behind the scenes so that you can hear them laugh at every stupid joke.). Its all fake. Its all calculated. These people are not trying to make the world a happy place. They are trying to entertain you only because their marketing studies have shown that you are more likely to drop your guard and support their sponsors. Nearly every segment is about marketing some over-priced product or service. They will use any excuse to plug a gadget, fashion item, travel destination, credit card, university, drug, medical test, surgical procedure, movie, TV show, book, magazine, song, website, ect. Almost all of it over-priced. Almost all of it resulting in higher profits for their sponsors, partners, and parent companies. DON'T FALL FOR IT.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Big business is fine on occasion depending on their product, ethics, employment, profit margins, and profit sharing. Do your homework. If they are screwing up our economy or society, then don't pay them for it. If you want to support any legitimate charity, then do so directly. Never support any celebrity foundation. Don't be fooled by the sale of baby photos, lies about percentage of income donated, or praise from other well known public figures. Celebrity foundations are CRAP. They spend most of their funding on PR campaigns, exotic travel, and super high end accomodations for themselves. Thats right. Filthy rich public figures have been jet-setting the world in the name of 'humanity' for years. Riding in personal jets, staying in super-exclusive resorts, and living it up in exotic locations around the world the likes of which most people could never afford even if their lives depended on it. They bring along agents, advisors, publicists, hair, make-up, wardrobe, lighting, and photo crews who are also in it for themselves. They are paid six or seven figures for their part to schedule, manage, document, showcase, praise, and publicize the 'good will' of said public figures and their respective industries. Every possible expense is passed of as 'incidental' or 'necessary' and billed right back to some 'foundation' named after said public figure and/or respective industry. Every possible tax deduction is claimed. Which are incredibly vague and diverse thanks to our sold-out government. Deals are cut with major networks who agree to praise the 'good will' or 'humanitarian' effort of said public figures and plug their latest commercial project around the same time. Others from around the world pick up the story and save these industries billions in advertising every year. Resulting in higher profits and paychecks for the 1% club. When its all said and done more wealth is transfered from poor to rich. NOT the other way around. So don't support any charity named after a living celebrity. Don't be fooled or inspired by any photo you see in a magazine, any clip on TV, any affiliation, or any short term short sighted progress report. Instead, go to Charitywatch.org and look up a top rated charity to support your favorite cause. Its all there. For example: 'Habitat For Humanity' is a top rated charity. They have been for many years. They operate with a low overhead, volunteer workforce, and donated materials. They have built homes for the less fortunate in nearly every city nationwide. Including New Orleans. They do so as we speak. No similar effort can match their progress hour for hour or dollar for dollar. So there is no legitimate reason to support a slower, less efficient effort represented by a filthy rich Hollywood actor who flies in on a personal jet, takes most of the credit, and makes a deal with a major network for plugs just days before the premier of his latest film or DVD release. By doing so, you support not only the inefficient effort, but also the filthy rich actor. Concentrating more wealth and dumbing down our society further in the process. Instead, support 'Habitat For Humanity'. Its not perfect. It is affiliated with some big business. However, it is MUCH more efficient, effective, and less corrupt than 'Make It Right'. The difference is profound. In general, support the little guy as much as possible and the big guy as little as possible.

I know these ideas aren't perfect. A lot of people work in various industries. I'm not trying to cost America jobs. I don't want the lower, middle, or even upper classes to lose money. My ideas are designed to slow down the relentless transfer of wealth to the richest one percent. Hopefully, to help prevent another Great Depression. I don't see any perfect solutions. Some lower, middle, and upper class jobs will be lost either way. I hope yours isn't one of them.

[-] 0 points by FriendlyObserverA (610) 10 years ago

Is there any way to prevent another great depression ?

Even with all our knowledge , do we have a solution ?

How do we stop the wealth from reaching the top .. and is it not already too late ?

we are in the throws of an economic downturn .. with many of the poor already spent their last resources .. and the government in deep deep debt unable to provide stimulus .. Over in Europe they too are struggling with similiar difficulties .. did Detroit just announce bankruptcy .. this is all begining to crash .. have we not past the point of no return ... and if it does crash will the rich still be on top ? will they still be rich ? back in the great depression how did the wealthy make out ? did they survive ?

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

I'm no expert but I think we could prevent another depression by supporting the little guy more and the big guy less. Some jobs would be lost in big business and replaced by small business (There is no perfect solution unless the rich are willing to take losses for a few years for the good of society. But they won't. No way in hell.). I do believe that we are right on the edge. I also believe our Federal government could have made real progress by now if they weren't so damn sold out.

When the market crashes hard in 2012 or 2013 at the latest, the incomes of the rich will be effected simply because the lower majority will be not be able to afford anymore of their overpriced crap. But this will also effect the incomes of tens of millions of ordinary (decent) Americans and hundreds of millions of ordinary (decent) people worldwide.

The rich won't have the income they have now, and their assets will lose some value (ours will too) but they will still have their riches and their record high relative buying power. The best we can hope for without a partial redistribution and policies/behavior to prevent further concentration would be a perpetual state of struggle and hardship for the lower 80 percent or so.

We are still in big trouble along with the majority worldwide. These recent and very modest gains in stability won't last more than another two years max.

I'm no expert but thats what I believe.

[-] 0 points by FriendlyObserverA (610) 10 years ago

It does look bleak.

the system just does not function efficiently .. there is no reason why we should have unemployment whatsoever .. the whole economic system is man made.. with some faults that need changes and repair .

There is no reason this day and age we should be facing such dire economic hardship.

thanks for the response.

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 10 years ago

Why are people that are sucessful at life and make money ,demonized?

[-] 1 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

It's not the successful people like Steve Jobs who make a good quality product that sells well who are the main targets here. Banks banking and bankers have been on quite a pillage the past 10 years and for the most part they produced nothing that helped the economy, no jobs, no food, no land , no product. Nothing that even pays a saver a decent interest rate, junk ,junk and more junk that ended up as taxpayer bailouts

[-] 1 points by HarryCrew07 (433) 10 years ago

Its an unfortunate lumped-sum category. I know plenty of people who are successful that are kind and giving human beings. For me personally, this movement is a lot more about figuring out just where that wealth and success came from than it is about demonizing who ended up with it. It came from hard work and dedication yes, but it also came from the systematic pilfering of other countries resources. For me, this movement is about accountability, though I still think that OWS accepting responsibility for its actions is quite a ways off.

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 10 years ago

pilfering of other countries resources? Is that what my doctor did?

[-] 1 points by HarryCrew07 (433) 10 years ago

Probably not directly, but through the practices of our government, yes. This is about accountability for all, all who participate in the system we have created.

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 10 years ago

does that pilfering apply to my lawyer and account?

[-] 1 points by HarryCrew07 (433) 10 years ago

It applies to every single individual that participates in the current global economic system.

[-] 0 points by Perspective (-243) 10 years ago

So why aren't you accountable for your own life? Why aren't you accountable for not being wealthy?

[-] 1 points by HarryCrew07 (433) 10 years ago

I am certainly accountable for why I am not wealthy, as I do not desire to be wealthy. Other than the ability to give more of my money away I have no need for wealth, and find no pleasure in many of the professions which provide wealth. I work hard, but I don't work towards capital/material accumulation as my ultimate goal. From a very young age I decided that life would be purposeless if it was simply about material/wealth accumulation. This being said, I am still accountable for all of the violence that I facilitate with my purchasing power.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Read the post.

Next.

[-] 0 points by fandango (241) 10 years ago

I read it. Not everyone who has money made it in the stock market.

[-] 0 points by Apercentage (81) 10 years ago

Jealousy

[-] -1 points by necropaulis (491) 10 years ago

Then stop buying everything-including water, electricity, and food. Dig a well, grow your own food, and Make your own stuff. Problem solved

[-] 2 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

Next.

[-] 1 points by CellarDoorV (5) from Clovis, NM 10 years ago

this is an unrealistic proposition. first, anyone who attempts to dig a functioning well in their back yard is probably going to get picked up by the local officials and hit with a serious fine. second, "making your own stuff" means quitting your job in order to take the time to make all the things you'd need--but then you won't have the money to buy the basic materials required to "make stuff." So, maybe you can trade food for basic materials, but that would require that you had access to enough land to grow food not only for nourishment but for trade as well. and guess who owns the land?

[-] 0 points by necropaulis (491) 10 years ago
  1. I was being sarcastic

  2. If I do the surveys, and get the permit, yes, I can dig a well in my backyard right now... Except that in my situation, I live on the slope of a pretty high hill. Also, "officials" would not "pick me up". If they say what I was doing, they would tell me to tear it down/fill it in. If I didn't do that then I would be fined. I make own stuff all the time, and I still have my job. It's more technology, but I get it done. So do a lot of other people. I sometimes trade stuff for other stuff. But I usually trade stuff for money. I don't need to trade my food. I grow enough myself with a 50' x 50' garden. And I own my land. I paid that mortgage you all cry about

[+] -4 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

A rich man had 5 million dollars and gave it all to a poor man. Five years later the rich man had 10 million dollars accumulated and the poor man that was given the 5 million was broke again. Thats how it is with the mentality of the poor. They have no respect for money.

[-] 3 points by Frizzle (520) 10 years ago

Just your own wild fantasy?

[-] -1 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

No a true story.

[-] 2 points by Frizzle (520) 10 years ago

And we are suppose to take your word for it i guess?

[-] 0 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

You seem to have all the answers so you tell me why do we have so many poor and so few rich. Greed, envy, jealousy, selfishness are all human traits. Is it your wild fantasy to change human nature? Good luck with that.

[-] 2 points by Frizzle (520) 10 years ago

It's going to be hard talking to you if you believe that human nature is the problem. http://www.deep-ecology-hub.com/nature-of-human-beings.html

The problem is the system we live in.

[-] 0 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

who runs the system? Robots?

[-] 1 points by LetsGetReal (1420) from Grants, NM 10 years ago

Really? Where could we learn more of the facts about this man who gave all he had - 5 million dollars - to a poor man. Your story strains credulity.

[-] 0 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

And your point is?

[-] 1 points by LetsGetReal (1420) from Grants, NM 10 years ago

If you need me to spell it out for you, the point is that it is not a true story.

[-] 1 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

You are so very smart and bright. How long did it take for your most intelligent cranial knowledge to figure that out Einstein? Im just curious as to your chronological age. If you have never heard the parable I am guessing 19 years young.

[-] 1 points by ModestCapitalist (2342) 10 years ago

The wealth in America and Europe didn't go from equally distributed to terribly concentrated in 5 years. It went from somewhat concentrated to terribly concentrated in 35 years.

Next.

[-] 1 points by PandoraK (1678) 10 years ago

Wow, don't think much of people do you?

I know many a poor man who would have at least 4 million left of that 5 and shared what was missing so all he knew could live better.

You need to get out more.

[-] 0 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

I assume you are just assuming. You need to learn how to read. I don't know how many times I have read about poor Joe Blow winning the lottery just to piss it all off in a few years. I do need get out more though. Thanks for your concern.

[-] 2 points by naepius (15) 10 years ago

We will never be told every story of altruism and selflessness because they work against the system by showing people that they can find fulfillment in their lives in ways besides the purchasing of commercial goods.

The times you have read about 'Joe Blow' are counted in terms of how prevalent the media wants it to be 'known' that unscrupulous wasting away of newfound wealth is the norm among society. This way, your logic will point you towards believing that those who amass wealth and hold on to it are being scrupulous with the methods they use to attain said wealth.

The truth is that they are anything but scrupulous and that those who do piss away newfound wealth are at least putting it back into the economy instead of hording it for the purpose of taking more wealth away from the economy.

Animosity and jealousy are the mindsets that enable rampant commercialism. Hence the reason why stories that elicit such thoughts towards others' fortunes and what they do with them are generally less than a stone's throw away from each other.

[-] 0 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

I agree with what you are saying. The first thing people should do is get rid of their TV's or at least Cable. Its such a waste of time. I haven't watched more than a few hours of TV in the last 10 years. I live below my means and I rent my house. I own a car and a truck and have zero debt.

[-] 2 points by PandoraK (1678) 10 years ago

I was referring to the generalization you were making. There are a great many poor who if they had the opportunity could invest very well. Before you ask why don't they, the answer is it takes an awful long time to save up 5 bucks at a time to be able to have enough to invest.

As for 'Joe Blow' winning the lottery and piss it all off in a few years, there are thousands more who have not. Good news doesn't sell papers. So we rarely hear about any one else.

As for being concerned, that's what we all should be, concerned about each other, it makes for a kinder world.

[-] 1 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

Where did the rich man get that second 5 mil --------I'll bet it was from the money the poor man spent. If the poor man now has no money to spend where will the rich man get his next pile of money? you think he can get it from other rich men? I doubt it.

[-] 3 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

Yes other rich men. Its called smart investments.

[-] 2 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

Not investments, high stakes poker. Real investments, real equity, depends on productivity and consumption.Consumption depends on the poor having money. I will say the rich have done a spectacular job getting the poor to pay their gambling debts over the past decade.

[-] 0 points by Frizolio (80) 10 years ago

China now has a middle class of consumers that rivals America so we are not needed anymore. The politicians on both sides really did sell us down the river with the so called free trade. Its DC that is the problem. They have a legal bribery system called special interest. We need to first and foremost demand the Special Interests and lobbyists cease and desist. If that doesn't change nothing will. The Occupiers need to Occupy Washington DC.

[-] 1 points by demcapitalist (977) 10 years ago

Yup ,overturn citizens united.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 10 years ago

Occupy Kstreet has been ongoing for a while now.

Try and keep up. I'd imagine they even have their own forum.