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Forum Post: Why do you believe I owe you anything?

Posted 8 years ago on Oct. 11, 2011, 11:08 a.m. EST by TheOnePercent (25)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

I would probably be considered in the 1% based on my personal assets and income. The taxes I pay exceed what most people earn in a year. I grew up with an abusive alcoholic father and lived in a small apartment. I did not have money growing up. I never had anything handed to me. I never hated people who had more than me and I never expected a handout on a silver platter.

I worked hard, never went to college, started my own business, came across many failures but never gave up or blamed other people.

So why do you expect me to pay for your failed decisions? Is it my fault that you bought a house you clearly could not afford? Is it my fault that you paid $100,000 for a degree that has no job market which you failed to research?

How about focusing your sights on the real root of the problems with our country - the government itself. The housing crisis, out of control deficit, and rising tuition costs can all be directly or indirectly contributed to the federal government.

There is no doubt that policies in this country need to be revised, but what are you accomplishing by protesting against "the wealthy" - do you expect rich people to stop being rich?

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744 Comments


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[-] 9 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Whether you think you owe us anything or not, you share this nation with us. You share our resources, our infrastructure, our mindspace, our wealth (it didn't magically appear). We want you to be rewarded for success, but to the tune of 400 people owning more wealth than 150 million? No. It will not stand. Whether you think you owe us or not, we're coming. I'd consider working with us for a more equitable system, before things get out of hand.

We are focusing on the power behind the government, sir. My vote matters not, my $20 contribution matters not, only the candidates and policies chosen by the elites and funded by corporate wealth have a chance in this oligarchy, and it will not stand.

[-] 4 points by TiffanyBubbles (12) 8 years ago

Succinct. Thanks looselyhuman -- could not have said it better.

[-] 3 points by gwilson239 (16) 8 years ago

Agreed.

[-] 3 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 8 years ago

Hear, hear!

[-] 2 points by sewen (154) 8 years ago

Why do all these 1%ers think this is about them. It is about corruption and Crony Capitalism. I don't think most people are against the guy who worked all his life and pays his taxes. Or the poor person who overbought on their home because they wanted to be part of the "American Deam". Or about Americans being wooed by cheaper imports... though I do wish we would buy domestic (Just think of what would happen to all those companies that shipped our jobs overseas).

It is about Wall Street Gambling on 1.4 quadrillion dollars of derivatives, a big potion that has no meaning to our economy or well being... except that it could potentially crash the worlds economy. 70% of all trades on Wall Street are made by computers not humans (High Freguency Trading... See 60 Minutes - High Frequency Trading [14:09]: http://goldmanbanksters.com/work-ethic/high-frequency-trading/ ). Wall Street is spending billions on computers , software and co-location spots in the HUGE Stock Exchange's Data Centers. Computers don't look at a companies value, but if someone is trying to buy some stock... and get in before them. Trades are made in nano-seconds, between the computers in the data centers. Computers are amoral.

Speaking of amoral, unlimited Commodities Speculation that artificially increases prices on oil and food and causes people all around the world to starve to death should be stopped. Also, Naked Short Selling that can take down a company in weeks (case in point, Bear Stearns) should be stopped. Derivatives should be regulated and shouldn't be allowed to trade untill they are explained well enough to be understood by both the regulators and the buyers.

Speaking of regulators, we need regulators with balls. We need to stop the Revolving Door policy between Wall Street and Regulatory agencies. We need to re-establish the laws that were dismantled during 1999-2001 by Robert Rubin, Larry Summers, Alan Greenspan, Phil Gramm and their gang. We need to put into jail the people who caused the 2008 crash and who are still perpetuating the frauds (bubbles). See: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QEhQrnKTQk0 How Goldman Sachs Takes Your Money . Someone took Matt Taibbi's (Rolling Stone) article "The Great American Bubble Machine" and put to video... the video keeps going faster-and-faster... a great 10 minute watch.

[-] 0 points by WhyIsTheCouchAlwaysWet (316) from Lexington, KY 8 years ago

Why do all these 1%ers think this is about them.

I can give you several reasons.

1) The initial main stream media coverage of this movement was shody. They've been doing better lately, but the first impression most Americans got with OWS was not a good one.

2) People take the 99% and 1% rhetoric too seriously. I've seen several threads of people trying to break down whether or not they are 'technically' the 1%.

3) Plenty of people are willfully misinterpurting this cause, which can be easy to do considering everyone's lack of familiarity with a leaderless, populist movement. One person sees a video of a socialist using the People's Mic and in their minds, we're all socialists.

[-] 2 points by sewen (154) 8 years ago

How-about "The Greedy" v.s. The Rest of US". Except it is much more than greed. Who can possibly use 1, 10, 20, 30, 40 billion dollars. It is more for power. To bad they are screwing it up for the rest of us.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

any of you idiots read yesterdays wall street journal? (of course not) well a story in there talks about the results of polling 200 of you morons. here's what they said: 70% of you want wealth redistribution, 58% would advocate violence to get what you want, only 15% of you are unemployed (that stat surprised me) and an overwhelming majority of you voted for Obama, but prob wont vote for him again. in short, the writer concludes that essentially this is a radical left wing movement that has the potential to turn violent. my guess is a violent marxist group wont last long in this country. good luck idiots!

[-] 1 points by JohnWatson (250) from Nürnberg, BY 8 years ago

People see experts doing this:

http://www.tysknews.com/LiteStuff/riding_a_dead_horse.htm

But they don't know how to really solve their problems because even these experts don't really know about this:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/maybe-this-will-get-the-support-of-mainstream-medi/

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

your postings above are silly. wrong and inaccurate. just dumb and missing the point, like the OWS movement.

[-] 1 points by JohnWatson (250) from Nürnberg, BY 8 years ago

So please could you put them right and show the point or are you just trolling a little bit around?

[-] 3 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

Here Here!!

[-] 3 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

amen.

[-] 2 points by equalityandmore (2) 8 years ago

I agree with looselyhuman. The 99% do not hate the wealthy or Big corporations. We only hate that you, the One Percent are the ones who voted in and support lawmakers that sleep in bed with the big corporations who lobbied hard for De-Regulation, less taxes for Big corporations and risky financial transactions, lesser taxes for the wealthy and reduces salaries for the workforce which in turn contributes to the Housing Crisis and out of control debt and who reduce education spending which in turn spurs educational institutions to raise tuitions fees.

[-] 1 points by ryanm (33) from Wichita, KS 8 years ago

Speak for yourself. I do hate them. Nothing but a bunch of old dragons sitting in their caves hording gold. They don't care about making good products, they don't care about doing right by their employee's, they don't care about making sue their home economy is secure, they only care about increasing the profit margins but any means, and that is garbage.

[-] 1 points by an0n (764) 8 years ago

Do we have to worry about you? By the way, I agree with most of your sentiments I'm just not at the violence stage (saw your other post). I would just say that a violent movement will fail, and even if it succeeds, it has surely sewn the seeds of its own destruction. IMO

[-] 1 points by ryanm (33) from Wichita, KS 8 years ago

I don't expect this, or any movement to succeed. I am only stating what will have to happen in order for humanity to move past the cycle it is currently in. Build->Develop->blossom->decay->collapse->rebuild->develop->blossom->decay-Collapse->on and on ad nauseum.

[-] 1 points by an0n (764) 8 years ago

All of this has happened before, and all of it will happen again.

Cyclic history, while probably somewhat true, is at the core of philosophical pessimism. Pessimism is both valid and unhelpful. Can't blame you though, I feel it.

[-] 1 points by ryanm (33) from Wichita, KS 8 years ago

I'm not being pessimistic, I am being realistic. In order for things to change, humanity needs to change. The behavior that needs to change is generally "alpha mentality", the specific sub sections being greed and power lust.

[-] 0 points by marcxstar (167) from Los Angeles, CA 8 years ago

I see this movement doing and embodying exactly what you are saying needs to happen.

[-] 1 points by ryanm (33) from Wichita, KS 8 years ago

That would be nice.

[-] 1 points by JohnWatson (250) from Nürnberg, BY 8 years ago

There was a time not far away in history where we were in the same situation as today. And have you ever thought about that no one is to blame for this situation because maybe it is immanent to our system that history gets repeated?

And if all the economic theories until now couldn't provide a solution why it always goes near a collapse though we tried so hard to avoid the next global war then it could be time to look at our system from a different point of view.

http://occupywallst.org/forum/maybe-this-will-get-the-support-of-mainstream-medi/

[-] 1 points by TheRealDeal (4) from Miami, FL 8 years ago

http://www.wearethe99percentshirt.com/ - Shirt seen all over OWS, Occupy DC, Occupy Miami, and Occupy Seattle. 15% of all proceeds go to an Occupy organization...this week? Seattle!

[-] 1 points by hoot (313) 8 years ago

your right that the 1% owes something to this country which they provide through the taxes they pay, they pay for resources infrastructure and mindspace and 400 people is alot less than 1% of 150 million people

[-] 1 points by IQ143 (21) 8 years ago

And what "power" will you be using to get our money?

[-] 2 points by April (3196) 8 years ago

I do not want your money! In fact, I want you to KEEP YOUR MONEY! Keep your money out of my government. Because it is my government too. Our government is supposed to be by the people, for the people, and of the people. NOT - by the 1%, for the 1% and of the 1%. So, by all means, please keep your money! 1% buys their representation, 99% are left with the scraps.
I don't want your money. I want my democracy back.

[-] 2 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

Carl Sandburg wrote,

"The people will live on. The learning and blundering people will live on. They will be tricked and sold and again sold And go back to the nourishing earth for rootholds, The people so peculiar in renewal and comeback, You can't laugh off their capacity to take it. The mammoth rests between his cyclonic dramas."

That mammoth has rested since the 1940s when it last arose to change things. The wealth and income disparity at the time mirrors our own. The people rose up and found a champion for their cause in Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Policies put in place then reversed the situation and both wealth and income were redistributed in a more equitable manner. That popular movement was so strong it caused an unprecedented 4-term presidency.

The people can and will do it again. The only reason the current recession did not become another depression is because of safety nets put in place then, like social security. You should be grateful that a non-privatized social security saved your hard working ass from bread lines and soup kitchens.

[-] 2 points by naturesmeds (25) 8 years ago

You have not noticed that our current military is part of the 99%. Who do you think owns more guns, the 99% or the 1%? I feel no need to buy a gun. (yet) By the time you figure it out, it might be too late to purchase one. If you are unwilling to read more before you start typing again, you will likely waste more time, and your odds go down farther. I would be surprised if even 1 of these posts were truly from the1%.

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

The power on display now, and more to come; the power of humanity that can't be ignored; the power of an active populace no longer blinded by the shiney toys and false dreams dangled in front of us.

[-] -1 points by WhoIsJohnGalt (2) 8 years ago

"the power on display now, and more to come; the power of humanity" though this sounds eloquent, its nothing more than stating, we are going to get your money by looting it, IE by force. Sentiments like this are nothing but desires for the unearned, desires to cheat reality. If you want greater opportunity protest the governments involvement in business which makes it harder for you to get a job instead of just bitching that somebody owes you something. LIFE DOESN'T OWE YOU ANYTHING AND NEITHER DOES ANYBODY ELSE. Your entitled to the protection of your rights, to the free use of your mind and nothing else

[-] 4 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Objectivists like to talk about all government as basically theft, violence against the haves by the have-nots, and then will go on to talk about protection of property being the only valid role for government. That protection comes down to the use of violent force to keep the system from righting itself. To keep the unnatural disparities of wealth your kind wants to see perpetuated from naturally being dissipated by social forces that will not bear them, without threat of retribution by a well armed paramilitary police force.

You talk about fairness and "rights" and like to base those things on natural law, but you have to implement coercive barriers to prevent what's really fair and natural from occurring; which would be minor accumulation of wealth being tolerated in a well-fed society, and no more.

Life doesn't owe you your ivory tower nor your barricaded compound, my friend.

PS - my point was never that property should not be protected by government, or that others should steal, but to point out the hypocrisy of your self-serving position on the role of government; to artificially maintain an unnatural state, when you'll go to such great lengths to describe how unfettered free market greed is actually the natural state, and therefore virtuous.

[-] 0 points by FransiscoDAnconia (17) 8 years ago

Governments are formed on the basis that rational individuals share specific and numerous requirements for them to at the least survive as unique and free individuals let alone enjoy their own lives.

Rational individuals acknowledge that these things are required to properly live, to seek happiness and to interact with other men. And that no force is necessary for rational men exercising reason to interact and live among each other. Those that choose to act otherwise may be retaliated against with all necessary force.

The rational result of this is to form a government of RATIONAL men who seek to protect the individual rights of all first and foremost. Granting it only the power which individuals have to do INDIVIDUALLY to protect those things required to live their lives without interference from others.

No Objectivist fully supports the way current governments are formed. But they sure as hell don't support your disgusting view of how governments ought to be formed and for what purpose: Force for you to plan the lives of others and rob the labor of others to support what you have decide is someone else's need.

Your ideas are premised on force because you have decided men can't all exercise reason effectively. Our ideas are rational and based in reality to deal with man as his nature dictates and as he can be and should esteem to be: A being which has a faculty of reason and who must choose to exercise that faculty to exist properly among other individuals or face the consequences which rightly follow from not acknowledging reality and his nature.

You are inconsistent and ignorant of Objectivism let alone the hundreds of years of political philosophy which has allowed people like Rand, Bastiat or even Locke from coming to similar conclusions and refining/adding to them.. I honestly feel a shallow pity for you for choosing to not understand this position properly, especially if you value liberty, individualism and rationality.

I expect your movement to fail, this will be the cause.

[-] 2 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 8 years ago

The Law by Frederic Bastiat almost 200 years old but reads like current events.

The Law can be found free on line at:

http://www.fee.org/pdf/books/The_Law.pdf

Everyone should read it.

[-] 1 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

Selfish Ann Rand died alone and in poverty,accepting the very social program she abhord...Social Security. Hence her fictional philosophy only back fired on her. She didn't have it right.

[-] 1 points by FransiscoDAnconia (17) 8 years ago

It's not my fault if you believe that. Ayn Rand desired that men not evade reality, I am glad you didn't get that memo.

[-] 1 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

Our government already is failing dramatically and acts irrationally all the time. There is no honest debate currently, only dissent for personal political gain. We do not have ( I believe it is virtuous and/or disinterested NOT rational) people (lets not forget the ladies in this modern age) in government.

Congress' constant pointless bickering is much worse than real Americans on the street expressing themselves honestly and frankly.

The early philosopher are just that - early. Do you think we are too stupid to improve on an idea? Its time to evolve and take this country to the next level. Its time for new political philosophies and I would hope whatever is in store for us will be a hell of a lot more rational than what we are stuck with now.

It is our labor that has gone unrewarded, not yours. Enjoy it, but don't think for a moment you work harder than a dairy farmer, a teacher, a fisherman, or a mill worker. Don't think for a moment that your worth to this country is measured by your bank account, It isn't. And don't think for a moment that you live in a rational world, you don't.

Those same philosophers you just quoted also believed that virtuous governments required a certain degree of wealth equity and that wealth accumulated at the top spelled disaster. Americans adopted and implemented this enlightenment value long before communism was even developed. Trust me, you don't want to be the one guy who has cash ona street full of failing people. You want strong, healthy neighbors that can take care of themselves. To that end, you need an economic system that does not funnel cash in such alarmingly accelerated and unprecedented amounts to such a few people.

[-] 1 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

Agreed. The worse congress ever. Does nothing. Says nothing. Solves no problems at all. I am sic of those puppets on the hill. They should be run out of town!

[-] 1 points by eliphas8 (30) 8 years ago

You make make me sic

[-] 1 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

Troll you are 5 days late with the insults.Right back at you!

[-] 1 points by eliphas8 (30) 8 years ago

Its a bad joke no reason to call me troll (if you didn't get it I was referring to how you misspelled sick as sic a term to denote misspellings)

[-] 1 points by teachthenprosper (10) from Waycross, GA 8 years ago

well said

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Struck a chord, huh?

Don't forget Nietzsche! And thanks for the pity, I know that's a philosophical stretch for ya.

And nice work "deducing" that I'm a commie. :)

[-] 0 points by FransiscoDAnconia (17) 8 years ago

No. But thanks for the chance to correct your misunderstanding of why Objectivists support very specific government.

Also, Nietzche bored me. I prefer a message that encourages people to choose happiness and seek it. Not choose power and accumulate it. Which by the way is absolutely counter to Objectivism.

I really hope you change your mind. You can be a value to other men you just have to choose to be productive and live a happy life without the stolen effort of others.

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

You assume I am not a productive member of society. Where we differ is on motivation, conception of rationality, understanding of the human condition and human nature, and acceptance that the "natural" is always the right. You have corrected nothing, only illuminated your philosophy's arrogance.

[-] 1 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

:~D

[-] -1 points by jdog (146) 8 years ago

Francisco presents a clear and well supported argument. You do not.

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

I'm sure it does feel that way when his politics and philosophy match your own.

[-] 0 points by jdog (146) 8 years ago

both points apply - clear and supported. Even if I disagree with you, I will give you credit when you present a clear concise argument supported by facts, or even make a concise, honest statement about your ideas.

He said, "Your ideas are premised on force because you have decided men can't all exercise reason effectively." He makes the point that you do not "value liberty, individualism and rationality". You say nothing to disprove what he said here about you.

You said,"The power on display now, and more to come; the power of humanity that can't be ignored; the power of an active populace no longer blinded by the shiney toys and false dreams dangled in front of us."

that is just a bunch of horseshit...

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Nothing you say or quote by Francisco is "supported by facts." It just happens to agree with your opinion. Go fly a kite.

[-] 0 points by jdog (146) 8 years ago

his statements about what you said are exactly what you said:

He said, "Your ideas are premised on force ...

You said, "Whether you think you owe us or not, we're coming. I'd consider working with us for a more equitable system, before things get out of hand."

sounds like your ideas are premised on force, wouldn't you say?

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

"...because you have decided..." Facts?

Anyway, he and others infer force, which I felt no need to correct, and, further, that's not the post he replied to.

[-] 0 points by jdog (146) 8 years ago

btw -"The power on display now" - is pretty funny - here's OWS in Atlanta -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3QZlp3eGMNI - real power, huh?

how about OWS in Washington - 53 people (less than.0099% of Washington's population) - they argued about wether they should get into the elevators and push buttons -lol

[-] -1 points by IQ143 (21) 8 years ago

The "power" on display now? If it is power, it would have gotten you something by now. Do you have any bill pending in Congress? No. Have you acquired any real property? No. Any change to the Constitution? No. Any laws changed or enacted? No. Anybody anywhere doing anything differently because of you actions? No. It is just short-term street entertainment. Sort of like a reality TV program with limited shelf-life.

[-] 2 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

I am IQ 156, but that's not important. Even the brightest among us are susceptible to delusion. The French royalty had an attitude similar to yours before the revolution. We had our revolution, and policies were initiated then to make violence unnecessary now. If you think the tea party had an influence in the last election wait until you see the effect of this "American Spring" just beginning, when we hold elections next fall!

[-] 1 points by Yepper (277) 8 years ago

Intersting about the elections next fall. Who do you suggest we vote for?

[-] -1 points by gibsone76m (298) from Washington, NJ 8 years ago

This group doesn't exactly represent the most tactical, intelligent members of our society. It doesn't surprise me that the best that they can come up with is standing outside the homes of rich people. What was the point of that anyway? Did you think they would start throwing money out of the windows to make you go away?

[-] 3 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

Now you are the one showing your lack of intelligence. Do you actually think we would jump to get it?

As the old saying goes 'If you can't beat 'em...join 'em" We The People are coming and we won't be Stopped.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

well if you liked that comment here's another: the financial crisis was NOT caused by wall street. Wall street was a victim. the cause stemmed from inept govy leaders, like Dodd and Frank, who mandated that fannie, freddie, and FHA underwrite mortgages to buyers with incomes at 80% levels to the median income. in other words, to those who couldnt afford the house they were buying and the mortgage they were taking. this perverse force allowed bad mortgages to proliferate and infect balance sheets of many unsuspecting institutions, including the banks themselves. i know i work on wall street. All this followed the flawed left-wing thinking that everyone should own a house, regardless if they could afford one. The same inept politicians that caused the crash devised silly new regulations that attacked the banks (Dodd Frank bill). Hey folks, if you want to go after the bad guys and occcupy something, then please go occupy Washington, DC.

[-] 1 points by Yepper (277) 8 years ago

You have a point. Republicans were in control from 2000-2006 before the Democrats took over congress in 2007. In 2006, the final year under President Bush and a Republican Congress, the unemployment rate was 4.6%. Today, under Obama and a Democrat congress, the unemployment rate is 8.9% (according to the Federal Government - but 16% according to Gallup). Under Obama & the Democrats, poverty has reached its highest level since 1959. The numbers don't lie. The failed economic policies of Democrats have been destroying lives, wrecking our economy & shattering the American dream since the Democrats took over congress in 2007. The before & after statistics prove it.

A brief history lesson: 1977: Jimmy Carter (D) signs the Community Reinvestment Act, guaranteeing homes loans to low-income families. 1999: Bill Clinton (D) puts the CRA on steroids by pushing Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac (F&F) to increase the number of sub-prime loans (owning a home is now a 'right'.). 1999 (September): New York Times publishes an article, 'Fannie Mae Eases Credit To Aid Mortgage Lending', which warned of the coming crisis due to lax lending policies of the Clinton (D) administration. 2003: White House calls Fannie and Freddie a "systemic risk". The Bush (R) administration pushes Congress to enact new regulations. 2003: Barney Frank (D) says F&F are "not in a crisis" and bashes Republicans for crying wolf and calls F&F "Financially Sound" Democrats block Republican sponsored regulation legislation. 2005: Fed Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan voices warning over F&F accounting "We are placing the total financial system of the future at a substantial risk" 2005: Sen Charles Schumer (D) says "I think F & F over the years have done an incredibly good job and are an intrinsic part of making America the best-housed people in the world.". 2006: John McCain (R) again calls for reform of the regulatory structure that governs F&F. 2006: Democrats again block reform legislation. 2008: Housing market collapses: Democrats blame the Republicans.

Obviously the Republicans aren't free of guilt concerning the cause of this crisis because they didn't try hard enough to prevent it and in some cases allowed it to happen (one of the reasons conservatives and independents disliked Bush by the way and one of the reasons that many of those votes went to Obama as a 'protest' against Bush's liberal tendencies). But as can plainly be seen the Democrats hold the lion's share of blame for the economic melt down we're currently enjoying.

How can it be the 'fault' of the Republicans when the democrats are the ones that caused the current recession/depression and have been in complete control of the purse strings of the country from 2007 - 2011? Only in the mind of the socialist propaganda machine can it be 'Bush's fault' when 90% of the blame rests squarely on the shoulders of the democrat party.

Seems like it's CLEARLY the democrats that are the ones doing this to us...and to a WAY lesser degree, the Republicans. Maybe Obozo misspoke and he actually meant the democrats want to make the U.S. a third world nation

[-] 1 points by IQ143 (21) 8 years ago

You are going to be stopped alright...tomorrow morning! How could you possibly even think you could lead a revolution if you can't even manage your own trash? Ha, ha. Saw the mess on several TV stations. Gross!

[-] 1 points by rb12 (5) 8 years ago

"What's the point of protesting?"

.... seriously?

[-] 1 points by WeWillNeverStop (5) from San Diego, CA 8 years ago

It can't be a revolution if there isn't anyone or anything to oppose it. Of course rich people are going to get mad at us for protesting; they just assume that the greatest way to quel us and shut us up is to comment on unimportant thing (ie, trash or calling us hippies). The British didn't necessarily think that their colonies (now the United Fucking State of America) would dare rise up and take control. And the same can be said for many revolutions in the past. But.... Let's not be lead astray from the real goals at hand. There are millions upon millions of people out of work in this country. I work 40 hours a week to live in a shitty 1Bd apt, and I'm thankful to have a job. I want everyone in OUR country to work just like, if not harder than me: and not just for money, but to better society and the world as a whole.

[-] -2 points by gibsone76m (298) from Washington, NJ 8 years ago

HAH...a bunch of dirty out of work jealous losers...how intimidating

[-] 3 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

Marie Antonette said the same thing.

[-] 1 points by eliphas8 (30) 8 years ago

Marie Antonette was an idiot and a victim, it was the king who believed that he could exploit the poor with no consequences.

[-] 1 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

you are six days late with your insults troll. Ha ha.

[-] 1 points by eliphas8 (30) 8 years ago

Just because I disagree with you on small points does not make me a troll, by and large I agree with your point I was just stating that killing a mans wife because her marriage was arranged to the wrong person is a tragedy.

[-] 0 points by littleg (452) 8 years ago

This is a democracy, as people's choice we will do as below,

We will abolish current dollars and create our own electronic money and our own banks. To hell with your dollars, your banks and your wallstreet !

Lets see who is rich and who is poor then..

The money you have earned is only because of the sweat of some other people. No man alone can earn millions of dollars without anybody else working with him or for him.

You should be ashamed of having some easy money and not really working with your body or mind to earn it. Greedy Stupid fellows!

[-] 1 points by IQ143 (21) 8 years ago

Why don't you do that tomorrow ( Friday).? You can start right now and see how far it gets you. Ha, ha.

[-] 0 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

i work on wall street. i work very hard, every day. i get up at 5:15 and get home around 8:00. i make good money, but i earn it. so your comment about "easy money" is far from reality. Also, i do what i do because i'm one of the few who have build the skills and experience to be here. You had the same opportunity that i had. only i did it and you didn't. does that make me a bad person? im paid good money because im highly skilled, sort of like a baseball player. my employer wouldnt pay me one dime more than the value i bring to the business. So i guess im worth what im paid. so whats the problem 99%-ers? What am i missing??

[-] 3 points by littleg (452) 8 years ago

Dear friend,

My comment doesn't apply to people who earn hourly wages like you. I don't want equal wages for all if that what's you are afraid of.

Let's say you own rental properties and don't do any job. You know just waste your time without doing anything but earns millions of dollars every year. These people have no moral ground to pay less taxes. In fact the more easy money you earn, the more taxes you should pay.

How much rich people should pay ? that's not rich people to decide. That will be decided in a democratic way taking into account country's poverty, hunger, war, infrastructure needs etc by the elected representatives.

Humans instinctively know what's unfair and what is fair. Nobody needs to be told what is fairness.

Good luck!

[-] 1 points by khewitt333 (35) from Brooklyn, NY 8 years ago

Dear Wall st worker, no one doubts you work hard for your money and that you have skills. I too have skills. I sacrificed 11 years of my life to graduate school to become one of the most educated people in this society. For 11 years I worked at least two jobs while a full-time student and I had a lot of help - scholarships, awards - otherwise I could not have survived. I worked very hard and I still do. I chose to become an educator to help make this society a better place. Every day I strive to help my college students read, write and think critically. I contribute to this society and work just as hard as you do. However, I work for NY state system (SUNY) and make about enough money to live on comfortably if I am careful. Why aren't I rewarded for all of my hard work the way you are? Because I rely on what the legislature and tax payers see fit to pay me, not on market forces. I'd argue my job is actually more valuable than yours, but the larger forces of society don't see fit to reward it financially. Why not? Because we are a society driven by a free market philosophy and the idea that making money is what counts. Wall st by definition makes money off other people's money, labor and products. I don't mind if you make more money that I do, but please, don't tell me your job is more valuable or that you contribute more to society, or that you work harder. I don't have less money than you because I am lazy, I have less money than you because our society does not reward my hard work because it does not value higher education.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

you went to grad school for 11 years and that's your best response ?! hope you didnt pay a lot for those degrees. first, i didnt say anything about my job being more valuable than yours, or what i contribute to society, or that i work harder than you, ot that anyone is lazy. my point was that my value is determined by my employer and what i contribute to the business. period. i dont steal what i make, and, like a baseball player, i am paid what the market will bear. stop crying because you work hard but dont make the big bucks. does a hardworking ditch digger make big bucks? probably not. your ideas about how are capitalist system works and finances the businesses that put people to work is flawed. let me guess, you were a music major? arts a crafts?

[-] 1 points by khewitt333 (35) from Brooklyn, NY 8 years ago

I was using the "you" as a general "you." Sorry if that didn't come across. You seem to have taken my response very personally as you feel the need to insult me personally. I was shifting the discussion to the value our social and political structures put on certain forms of work. In other words, certain workers make more because that work is what our social structures reward, not because it actually contributes to making the world a better place. More importantly we can work to change our social structures and the values we reinforce (and what contributions we reward). I do happen to think society should value what I do more than it does, because without the work I do people wouldn't be prepared for other jobs and people wouldn't be able to understand the ways society works, and then explore innovative ways to change our social, political and economic structures. And I do get very tired of people who make a lot of money trumpeting that they "work hard" -- as if the people who aren't making lots of money don't.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIcqb9hHQ3E&feature=share

this video says it all. the occupy wall street movement has force and passion and is rooted in widespread frustration. however its target - -wall street -- is off the mark. look at this you-tube video to see where the OWS efforts would be more appropriately targeted.

[-] 1 points by khewitt333 (35) from Brooklyn, NY 8 years ago

I absolutely agree wall st is not the only cause of financial problems in the US. How it Washington has become the handmaiden of corporate interests and the moneyed interests (not just in this country, but globally) is the broad problem. The policy-making system is no longer a democracy, in which each vote counts, it is a plutocracy in which money speaks louder than votes. The financial interests on Wall st are part of the plutocracy, but not the only problematic part. the system is screwed up in many ways. My particular bone to pick relates to public education (both secondary and higher education) because the US govt caters to moneyed interests but refuses to give serious attention to ensuring its citizens are educated so they can participate in democracy in a meaningful way. Throwing money at public education is not necessarily the answer, but devoting serious attention to the need for the US to have an educated citizenship is necessary if we intend to have a strong economy in the long run. Wall st figures into because it represents the skewed values of our society. The US govt had to bail out the financial institutions in the US so the economy would not collapse. But then many of the financial institutions took that tax payer money and paid out large bonuses and continue to reject regulation so they don't take on such huge risk. Its as if "Wall st" (and I use the term loosely) wants all the benefit of the bail out but none of the responsibility to reform so it does not happen again. In the meantime, the rest of the US suffers the consequences of the failing economy. To return to higher education, as a state employee, I face not only a salary freeze for the next 3 years, but a possible 2% pay cut because the state has economic troubles. I know Wall st isn't the only source of NY financial troubles (indeed the financial sector brings a lot of of money into NYS) but it does seem unfair that financial institutions and many of the people who work for them reap the rewards of the govt bail out, while people like me suffer the consequences. After all, my tax money propped up the financial system.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

lets start with your last comment: "people like you suffer the consequences". really? how so? how do you think wall street negatively impacted you? and is that a net negative? or do the huge but not seen or recognized 'benefits' of the wall street system offset any perceived negatives? and the so-called prop up of the financial system that you and everyone else seem to be claiming was in fact in the end a profit because all tarp money given to banks was repaid WITH A PROFIT. lastly, no one has, or could if the wanted to, 'reject regulation". the flawed and rediculous dodd frank bill has closed down wall street prop desks and put thousands out of work. and for what? prop desks had nothing to do with the cause of the cirsis or any subsequent pain. they all survived in tact. i know i worked on one of the biggest. politicians blamed wall street to distract from their own guilt, which huge.

[-] 1 points by khewitt333 (35) from Brooklyn, NY 8 years ago

what is a prop desk?

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

a prop desk is a proprietary trading desk. all banks have (had) them. they basically use the bank's own capital to make investments in a variety of securities, stocks, bonds, etc. the people that work in these groups are generally hand picked or elete within the bank, but only get paid if they finish the year with a significant profit. otherwise they get fired and someone else gets a chance. thats the ruthless part of wall street not many hear about.

[-] 1 points by rb12 (5) 8 years ago

"You had the same opportunity that I had, only I did it and you didn't."

Wrong.

It blows my mind that people can convince themselves of this over-simplistic garbage.

4/10 for seeming to really believe what you say.

[-] 0 points by IQ143 (21) 8 years ago

Only one piece of information is missing. HOW would you do this? You can't answer the specifics of HOW.

[-] 2 points by mimthefree (192) from Biggar, Scotland 8 years ago

why not just do what they do.

Pull up a computer screen, type "create 10 billion dollars" and hey presto, you've got 10 billion dollars to use. Congratulations, you're a bank!

[-] 1 points by IQ143 (21) 8 years ago

Great idea! Why don't you try that right now? Friday morning 07:01 you are heading back to the drive thru window!

[-] 2 points by littleg (452) 8 years ago

If you support it, then figure it out. If you oppose it, then worry about it.

[-] 1 points by LivingComfortably (2) 8 years ago

In the one percent, more than 55% of their annual income contributes to taxes. In the ranges of the 99%, we pay between 1 and 12%. Not only does OP share this nation with us, he FUNDS it with his earnings.

[-] 2 points by tr289 (916) from Chicago, IL 8 years ago

You math doesn't add up and you are conveniently leaving out a very important fact... Using your numbers, 55% of $20,000,000 is a lot of money but you are still rich. 12% of $18,000 and you can barely afford a 1 bedroom apartment in most cities.

[-] 0 points by SaveCapitalism (0) 8 years ago

Sounds like you should get off the street and start looking for a new job. From the looks of what is going on, there is a lot of time being wasted in a picket line that could be used to improve a resume, submit an application, or take an interview. Also, it looks like a lot of your competition in the job market is wasting just as much time as you are, so if you act now, there may be a good opportunity waiting for you.

[-] 1 points by tr289 (916) from Chicago, IL 8 years ago

I should get off the street's and start looking for a job ? Why would i do that ? I'm a small business owner that is semi retired at the ripe old age of 34.

I'm assuming you are a corporate pee-on with a base model BMW that you think impresses your boss ?

[-] 2 points by abmebratu (349) from Washington, DC 8 years ago

Unfounded statistics. Please back up your stats.

[-] 1 points by bootsy3000 (180) 8 years ago

totally agreed, need several credible links.

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Please back up those statistics. The tax burden on the top 1% is down considerably (like, 200%) since its high in the 50s, and factoring in capital gains, the wealthiest currently pay an average of 17%. Robert Reich covers it pretty well in these two videos worth watching: http://robertreich.org/post/11113448478 and http://robertreich.org/post/10157767903

By the way, independent source for 17% effective tax rate for the 400 wealthiest Americans: http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/04/17/national/main20054702.shtml

[-] 2 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/numbers/displayatab.cfm?DocID=2995

This link is from the Tax Policy Center (called a non-partisan group by the Politifact site) 2011-

You can see: The top 1% makes 16.8% of the cash income in the US. Their individual tax rate is 34.3% They pay 25.6% of ALL of the Federal Income Tax collected in the US.

The top "quintile" makes 54.6% of the cash income in the US-BUT they ALSO pay 69.7% of the total Federal Income Tax collected in the US.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Again with the "Federal Income Tax" which we know they pay at a higher rate (progressive tax code) than us. Again, most of their actual income is classified "capital gains" which is taxed at a much, much lower rate, and so their overall tax burden is significantly less. 17% of total income, in fact.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

If "most" of their income comes from capital gains, it means that their "actual income" is coming from the sale of assets that were purchased with MONEY THEY ALREADY PAID INCOME TAXES ON!

Are you saying that you think it's FAIR or RIGHT to force people to pay "income tax" TWICE on the SAME MONEY?

[-] 2 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

Fact: they do not pay tax on their already taxed income. They pay the 17% on the income that wealth generates. Surely you are not so stupid as to actually believe what you posted.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

He's trying to get me to accept the idea that they pay 17% on EVERYTHING. And now he's saying it's perfectly fine to tax people TWICE on the same money.

[-] 1 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

I work and earn $24,000 and pay the variety of taxes I am charged on those wages. I live in my car, keep my things in storage for $28 a month, clean up at my health spa for $30 a month. I invest the rest. When I pay taxes on my investment I am only taxed on the increase, not on my already taxed money. What are you trying to say?

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

From the article: "It's not deductions or tax credits that are the major reasons the effective rate gets lowered for the rich. It's the way certain kinds of income are taxed that gives them the edge over rank-and-file Americans"

The "capital gains tax" prior to 2003 was 20% and 10% depending on your INCOME tax bracket. Now it's 15% and 5%.

The problem is you are using tax terms as if they are interchangeable and mean the same things. They don't.

Effective tax rate is: The percentage of total income paid in federal and state income taxes. Marginal tax rate is: The rate of tax on the last dollar of taxable income. Capital gains tax is: A tax levied on profit from the sale of property or of an investment

Our progressive tax code does not treat each dollar earned in the exact same manner. That would be a flat tax. If someone makes $40,000 a year =our tax code taxes the first $4000 of that money at a different rate than it does the last $4000 someone earns. This person's "marginal tax rate" number will be different than their "effective tax rate" number.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

I have never stopped claiming anything other than the overall tax burden on the wealthy, because of the significant portion of their income that is treated as capital gains, is lower than the tax burden on the poor and middle class, for whom capital gains is not a significant portion of their tax burden. That is how the effective tax rate is calculated.

I've not brought up marginal tax rates except in passing, but also believe we need to restore those to Eisenhower levels, I'm not claiming it's related to capital gains.

Finally, a flat tax would not have progressive brackets, which is not at all what I'm proposing. I'm simply proposing that capital gains be taxed using the same progressive tax brackets as income tax.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Do you think that would affect how/when "the rich" invested their money?

Taxing capital gains at the same rate as income hurts the middle class a lot more than the rich because taking a huge chunk out of their "additional" income affects them more than taking a huge chunk out of the rich's.

But here's my point-every single dollar of "capital gain" that is earned by the middle class is taxed at the EXACT SAME RATE as every single dollar of "capital gain" that is earned by the rich. Capital gains made by the POOR are taxed at a LOWER rate.

In reality the system is BIASED against the rich, but you don't like that reality. You're envious that the wealthy have enough money-(which this country already took taxes from and has used for it's benefit) that they can now afford to not work and live off of the gains being made by their formerly taxed capital. The money that they risk LOSING ALTOGETHER by investing in companies that provide jobs, and industries that provide energy and in labs that do medical research and in countries with struggling economies.

But you see, in order for a rich individual to earn a capital gain at all, whatever it was that individual INVESTED that money in has to have been successful. It has to have been part of something that GREW. Or Prospered. Or been a POSITIVE to the economy rather than a NEGATIVE. These are also the people who DONATE MILLIONS of dollars to build hospitals, college campuses, offer scholarships, fund charities, supply schools with computers and books and playground equipment. These are the people who give BILLIONS of dollars to charity every year.

And when you tank their companies-they lose it all....and so do we.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Not if you look at the numbers. Effective tax burden on the middle class would hardly budge if you bumped up capital gains, because, again, capital gains are a very small part of the overall income for an average person. It would be almost a 1:1 increase in the effective tax burden (every percentage in capital gains rate increase would be .8 or some such in effective rate increase) on the wealthy. And, no, I don't believe in voodoo economics statements about affecting investment - if there's money to be made (and capital gains rates don't matter if there isn't) they will be there.

Nice editing, mr. pot. Love this "envy" term. I don't want or need anyone's anything, just fighting for the underdog - which is NOT the wealthy as much as you would like to believe it.

[-] 1 points by oldtimer (3) 8 years ago

I pay my cleaning help with money that is already taxed. Why do they have to pay on it again? Why is the tax rate on dividends and capital gains only 15% while my cleaning woman pays 25% -- and almost 50% counting social security tax. Why do you think your gains from the sale of assets shouldn't be taxed as least as much as gains from hard work?

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

The money you pay her with was taxed before you got it too. Talk to the government about that one.

How the crap do you know what your cleaning woman pays on her taxes?

The Social Security tax (OASDI) rate for wages paid in 2011 is 4.2 percent for employees and 6.2 percent for employers, but nice try.

Making capital gains tax as high as taxes paid on income HURTS poorer people more than the rich. You raise it on the rich, you raise it on everyone else too.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Yep.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

I thought you were against profiting from the "99". Your argument means that anyone whose income tax rate is MORE than 15%, who sells a house, or an asset or some stocks etc would pay their actual income tax rate instead of 15%. Ouch. More of a tax burden for the poor.....nice logic.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Yep, because capital gains are a regular concern for the poor (or even middle class), and all that buying and selling of property that they do - and for such profits! Ridiculous.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

http://www.danter.com/statistics/homeown.htm

According to the 2010 Census-The home ownership rate for 2010 was 66.9%.

Not 1%. Not even 20%. Or 50%. 66.9% of US citizens have a mortgage.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

And most saved up for years to make their down payments, not some previous sale that netted enough to where capital gains where a significant portion of their tax burden. They simply aren't. Capital gains are a rich man's game and the rates are a shelter for him alone.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

I'm not talking about first time home buyers. Many people have to sell their homes and move, to downsize, job transfers, death of a loved one etc. Things accrue value not matter WHO owns them.

Capital gains CANNOT BE EARNED without an initial investment. How are you not understanding that? Are you really THAT uneducated about this topic?

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Again, capital gains could be made 90% tomorrow and the middle class would barely feel it.

Return on investment is income, and should be taxed accordingly. Period.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Return on investment is income that resulted from the investment of income that has ALREADY BEEN TAXED. Income that has already been taxed is called CAPITAL. That's why they call it a "gain" on the former "capital" that you earned as "INCOME".

The middle class might not feel it on a daily basis, but you tell the old widow who spent 30 years paying of her house that "it doesn't really hurt" when she sells that house to move into a retirement center and only gets 10% of it's value out of it.

Idiot.

[-] 2 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

First, the widow paid for her house. That investment is never considered capital gain. The gain is the increase in home value over what it cost her. Second, she would not be in the 90% tax bracket unless she made nearly $2 million in the taxable year if we used the marginal rates of the late 1940s through the 1960s. (91% on anything above $1,830,000 in today's dollars.) Do you have any idea of the meaning of marginal rates and how they apply? Furthermore the tax code lets you spread a single windfall gain over 5 years, so she would have had to see profits near $9,000,000 to put her earnings over that amount in the top rate category.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Um...please re-read looselyhuman's comment. He said "capital gains could be made 90% tomorrow and the middle class would barely feel it". He's not talking about the 90% INCOME tax bracket-he's talking specifically about capital gains tax. And my response was directed at the widow's "capital gains" being taxed at 90%.

Everyone whose "income tax bracket" is 15% or more-which means EVERYONE whose AGI is more than $8,500, pays 15% on their "capital gains" as well. (Those making LESS than $8,500 pay 5% in capital gains)

The definition of a marginal tax rate is:The rate of tax on the last dollar of taxable income.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

And the gain is the part that's taxed, rightfully, but not enough. You're making it way more complicated than necessary. Obfuscation is the only way you can win these arguments.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Then all you had to say was "I think the wealthy should be paying MORE than 15% on their capital gains." Instead, when I asked if you thought it was fair or right to force people to pay INCOME tax on the same money twice, you said "YEP".

*nice editing of your posts along the way....just sayin

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

The point was always that capital gains ARE income and should be taxed the same, at which point, along with a progressive tax rate, things would be fair.

And they do pay 17% on everything, because such a large portion of their income IS capital gains. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2011/04/18/967905/-Wealthiest-Americans-paying-17-percent-effective-income-tax-rate,-down-9-points-since-1992-

Whatever.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Where does the middle class live? Where did the mortgage bubble come from? Who are all these people protesting that they are being foreclosed on?

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Yes, they made huge profits on the previous home, which is why they needed no-down-payment loans, and especially on the home that was foreclosed on them. Fool.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

People who make HUGE profits on the sale of a previous home, and put it down on their next home, HAVE SMALLER MORTGAGES (AND don't pay any capital gains on it if they do) as a result. Which make it easier to make the payments and reduces the risk of FORECLOSURE.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

But the point is, they DIDN'T make huge profits. Sarcasm. Most were probably upside-down or near enough. And besides, had they actually made that down payment cash on the previous sale, they'd have retained most of it on the next purchase. Capital gains have nothing to do with the lives of average people. You know it's true. Just stop.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Capital gains are not paid if the "cash" is being reinvested. They WILL pay capital gains on it at some point in the future if they do NOT reinvest it.

I know plenty of "average" people who invest in real estate that aren't anywhere NEAR the top 10%, much less the top 1%. And lots of those "average" folks have 401ks that involve the stock market.

Your posts show that you don't even begin to represent at least 50% of the 99%.

[-] 0 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 8 years ago

Money that the rich are investing provides capital for business to grow so they can produce more goods and hire more people. Money that rich people spend for yachts and cars and big houses creates jobs directly. Money that the rich give to charity help the poor, the sick, and the general welfare of all. Money that the rich pay in taxes is a hell of a lot more than you or I pay. Anyone who made their riches through theft, fraud and unfair advantage, like Burnie Madoff and many of the bankers, should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Anyone who made their riches through hard work, good decision and fair play should be commended and copied. Poor people don't hire very many employees.

[-] 1 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

When one has to dig himself out of social holes such as skin color he is rarely able to do more than get to ground level through often extreme hard work and careful planning. Big businesses that ship jobs out of the country to workers who labor under slave like conditions make it even harder to get just to ground level, much less to rise to prosperity.

It is a fallacy that the wealthy create jobs. No matter how much money one has he will not invest it in workers unless there are customers for the output of that labor. Henry Ford said, "If I pay a man enough to buy my car, he will buy my car." FDR said economic stability could not exist "unless prosperity is uniform--that is, unless purchasing power is well distributed throughout every group in the nation." Looking Forward, pg. 17. The policies that came out of this belief so upset the extremely wealthy that they tried to execute a coup to end FDR's presidency. But the result was prosperity and growth across the nation. Jobs are created when people want a product and have the means to buy it.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 8 years ago

"It is a fallacy that the wealthy create jobs." What?!? Who the hell do you think creates jobs.? Poor people. The rich don't spend all their money, at least the smart ones, they don't bury it in the back yard. They invest it. When they invest their money that creates jobs. Did you know that there were people who made millions during the depression. Google Michael J. Cullen, Charles Darrow or Proctor and Gamble. The first two made millions with good ideas and P&G did well because they created demand for their products by advertising aggressively the same goes for Kellogs. Even in the worst of times people are spending money they just look for a better deal. Old Joe Kennedy invested his money right and made millions. Print and radio did well during the depression as well as the movie industry. Each of these examples created jobs. They invested their capital wisely and made money in the worst depression up until that time. The legacy of FDR helped cause many of the problems that we have today like the nanny state.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

According to looselyhuman, there aren't any rich peole who earned their wealth through hard work, good decisions, and playing fair.

[-] 2 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

your confusing (like most of your points) income tax with capital gains tax. We all pay the same for the latter, the so-called rich pay way more for the former.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

You're confusing your bitching for the english language.

17% total tax burden for the wealthy, when capital gains are factored in (which, really, only they have). The 99% is paying MUCH more - which is fine, as long as it's as high or higher at the top.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIcqb9hHQ3E&feature=share

this video says it all. the occupy wall street movement has force and passion and is rooted in widespread frustration. however its target - -wall street -- is off the mark. look at this you-tube video to see where the OWS efforts would be more appropriately targeted.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

your an uninformed idiot.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

That would be "you're" You + Are. Figure out a one of the most simple aspects of the English language, contractions, before you call anyone else an idiot.

[-] -1 points by WhoIsJohnGalt (2) 8 years ago

Bottom 50% of Americans contribute about a little over 3% of total income taxes paid. The top 1% pay 40% of the income taxes...

If your suggesting that mathematically it should be worked out that 99% of the population combined should pay less in taxes than 1% of the people, I'd like to see the tax system you would put in place....

If you want to bring up a point about tax breaks, subsidies, loopholes etc, that is an issue in itself. But by suggesting that rich people in general do not pay their fair share(IE the same just portion as everyone else) of taxes, is mathematically incorrect. In fact they pay more than their fair share.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Income tax, progressive, check. Capital gains, equal, check.

Problem: lower-income people pay taxes on almost all their income as "income tax", higher-income people pay taxes on a large portion of their income as "capital gains tax", at the lower rate. Overall, effective tax rate for 400 wealthiest Americans, averaged and weighted for portion paid to income vs. capital gains taxes, is 17%. Effective tax rate is higher for some of the lowest-earning Americans.

It has nothing to do with the strawman you threw together above, my dear Objectionable friend.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

so earn and save your money so you too can pay cap gains tax and lower your effective rate. stop whining just because your an underachiever. i make much money each year just on my portfolio, which i built up over 30 years. how bout you? not our fault you wasted your life savings on vacations, hot cars, blowing white powder up your nose, loser.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

I'm an underachiever? You'RE an underachiever. You + Are. It's amazing to be schooled on people who obviously didn't acquire the most basic education - for which I blame the policies you espouse that starve the educational system for funds.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Here are the stats from Politifact- http://www.politifact.com/georgia/statements/2011/apr/20/tom-graves/tax-burden-overwhelmingly-wealthy-congressman-says/

"...a report by the Internal Revenue Service that was completed this past winter, based on 2008 data. The report shows that the top 5 percent of taxpayers paid 58.7 percent of federal income taxes. The top 25 percent of taxpayers paid 86.34 percent of total income taxes."

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

I don't care whether it's income or other taxes. The rich pay 17% overall on the wealth they pocket. For the lower portion of the populace, almost the entire tax burden is "income" tax, so when you talk about the rate of our income tax, it's the rate at which we're taxed in total (factoring out sales taxes, but not property taxes, because, really, who owns property in this bracket?). For the wealthy, only a small portion of their earnings are classified as income, the rest is capital gains, which almost never applies to people at the bottom. 17% is what the wealthy pay of their total income. I pay a LOT more.

[-] 0 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 8 years ago

People at the lower portion of the populace don't pay income tax. Almost 50% of the populace pays no income tax. Your right the income tax is totally unfair it should be done away with.

[-] 1 points by orionstarman (123) from Kingsville, MD 8 years ago

I stand corrected. That 50% number is a bit of an exaggeration. But I stand by my statement that the income tax is totally unfair and should be done away with.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

If you need to spin the facts to make your point, your point is invalid.

There are two kinds of capital gains. Long Term gains (on assets/securities held for more than 1 year) and short term gains (on assets held for less than 1 year.) Short term capital gains are taxed at the same rate as your tax bracket (because you made the "profit" during the same year you purchased the item). Long term capital gains are taxed at 15% if your regular income tax rate is higher than 15% and at 5% if your regular income tax rate is 15% or lower.

Capital gains tax applies when you sell an asset for a profit, that you bought for a lower price. (A house, stocks, bonds etc.) Since you already paid the TAX on the "capital/money" you used to purchase the asset they can't tax you again on that money. They can only tax you on the "profit" you made when you sold that asset.

The "rich" pay 34.3% on all new income they earn from a job or business (PLUS corporate tax on that money if they DO own the business) AND the same rate (34.3%) applies to any capital gains/profit they make through purchasing AND selling an asset for a profit in a one year time period. (They only pay 15% on capital gains earned from holding an asset for MORE than one year).

So saying that you "pay a lot more" on your income is WRONG because you ARE comparing two different taxes to each other as if they are the same, and they are not.

Anyone who has a mortgage pays property taxes-not matter what their income level is, and they get to DEDUCT their property taxes from their AGI BEFORE they pay income taxes on the remainder.

[-] 1 points by bourgeoiswallstreet (38) from Lexington, KY 8 years ago

STOP PEOPLE! tax rates are not the issue - wages for the working class are the issue! If a corporation pays a generous and equitable wage then the owners may keep the (severely diminished) profits as reward for their risk. It's really how you look at it. This argument about tax rates will go no where and is a waste of time. By forcing the corporations to pay higher wages, profit share, and increase benefits you in effect are "taxing" them and you take away this absurd elitist argument about tax rate percentiles.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

There are many companies that pay "higher/high" wages, profit share, and increased benefits. Believe it or not, there are millions of people who do the jobs they do because they feel that they are fairly compensated for their work.

If you want to point out the corporations that are NOT paying equitable wages to their employees, that would be great. But I object to using generic terms and generic parameters to lump all companies into the same category. THAT wouldn't be generous or equitable for us to do.

[-] 1 points by bourgeoiswallstreet (38) from Lexington, KY 8 years ago

basically all jobs that pay minimum wage are not paying equitable wages. Would paying a higher minimum wage put many businesses out of business? of course, and they should be put out of business. Clearly their business model is one modeled on labor that can barely feed a family. This is the free market at the expense of human beings. Sure that burger is cheap but is it really cheap (socially speaking)? I'd rather see a young entrepreneur start up a burger shop where the Mcdonald's was run out any day.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Do you actually think that all of the employees at McDonald's make "minimum wage"? http://www.aboutmcdonalds.com/mcd/careers/employee_benefits/investing_in_your_future.html

Their website indicates that they offer profit sharing, a savings plan, a 401k plan and other benefits. They even have a social responsibility page.

[-] 1 points by bourgeoiswallstreet (38) from Lexington, KY 8 years ago

Mcdonalds can't help the damage they do to our society. They may pay more than minimum wage, but not much. How about .40 cents more? cashiers make an average of $7.65 http://www.glassdoor.com/Salary/McDonald-s-Salaries-E432.htm Now the benefits are great and all but a mcdonald's job is really a job for a high school kid getting experience to move on to another job. Which is a great thing. However, let us discuss how Mcdonalds is really ruining the country.

Documentaries such as Food, Inc, Fast Food Nation, Super Size Me have brought to public light how Mcdonalds is changing our agrarian economy and the rural way of life. More and more small farmers and their communities are being destroyed. They are in effect destroying the very culture many conservatives cherish. Conservatives wonder why this country is becoming more liberal? Corporations such as McDonalds and Monsanto have destroyed rural life and these family's children turn to urban centers for gainful employment, here they are exposed to different cultures and ideas which will inevitably turn them more liberal and caring of people that are different such as gays and foreigners. Or these kids, with the breakdown in rural society, turn to drugs such as Oxycotin which has devastated rural communities (brought to you by Big Pharma).

I want rural america to go back to the way things were. I want manufacturing to come back to America. I wish we could take what we've learned today and go back to a Victorian society when people cared for their community and for government. Here is the thing, you can have your apple pie and church without giving corporations free reign to control our lives.

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

I've never given corporations the ability to control my life. They simply don't. I don't use credit cards. I don't borrow money from banks. My husband's 401k is invested in wall street, but we know the risks involved in investing so we aren't counting on it to support us when we retire either.

I live in a community where people care about each other and take care of their neighbors. They are active in our local government and schools and they keep a hawks eye on the status quo. Most of us know debt is bad and that realistic people should make realistic preparations for realistic future events. But we also know that people are free, and should be free, to make their own choices. Even if they are stupid. Even if they are lazy. Even if they make bad ones.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

tl;dr. Taxes down on wealthy from 1950s 91% marginal. Total tax paid on all monies taken in is less at the top, not more.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Just a for future perusers, justhefacts finally accepted my position here: http://occupywallst.org/forum/why-do-you-believe-i-owe-you-anything/#comment-69484

[-] 0 points by thatguy (11) 8 years ago

looselyhuman, you come across as very jealous. As I am trying to determine what this movement is all about, it appears that for you it is just not fair that different tax codes are in effect. justthefacts has presented a very detailed analysis on how the tax codes work and your answer is that "Taxes down on wealthy from 1950s 91% marginal. Total tax paid on all monies taken in is less at the top, not more"

Good grief man, are we going to go after everyone who makes a dime on capital gains? What if at some point I decide to invest and end up making some money on my investments? Does that mean i will now be a target of the 99% even though I am part of it?

This does not bode well. I am rethinking my position on how I personally feel about OWS. I work hard for what I have even though it may not be much or appear much to someone with more than me but I can at least sleep at night knowing I am not out the screwing my fellow man. But, when justthefacts lays out just the facts, and i see some of the responses, I feel that too many that are commenting are just jealous.

there have been some very good and valid arguments made for and against and I am glad that i am able to better educate myself on some of the issues. I will continue to participate and read before I come to a decision on this movement.

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

http://almostclassical.blogspot.com/2011/03/90-tax-rate-myth.html

Here's a "liberal" blog that explains it nicely. "On earned income, the richest U.S. taxpayers paid close to 40 percent of their earned incomes in taxes in 1944. We simply didn't count much of the compensation as taxable income."

Or Politifact- "The marginal tax rate is the top rate of income tax charged to individuals on their last dollar of earnings. So in 1955, for example, when the top marginal tax rate was 91 percent, that was the tax rate owed on a person's income over $300,000. That person would, however, pay 20 percent on the first $2,000 of income; 21 percent on the next $2,000 in income; 24 percent on the next $2,000 and graduated on up to the highest rate. On average, a person making, say, $500,000 would pay substantially less than 90 percent of their income in federal taxes. "

In other words, everyone making LESS than $300,000 in the 1950's was paying WAY more taxes than they are today too. In fact, here's a link to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities article titled:

"Federal Income Taxes on Middle-Income Families at Historically Low Levels "

http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=3151

[-] 0 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Here's another fun fact:

Take 1 million dollars made by the richest 1 % and taxed at 34%=$340,000 paid to US gov.

If you took that SAME $1 million dollars and split it equally among the bottom 4 quintiles, and tax it at 15%= $150,000 paid to US government.

*Calculated 15% effective tax rate this way-Bottom two quintiles have NEGATIVE tax rates-meaning they get more back from the government than they pay in taxes-if they pay taxes at all. Approx 20% rate-5% for bottom two quintiles=15%.

[-] 0 points by betuadollar (-313) 8 years ago

But the fact that we "share" the same resources - air, water, and space - does not mean you should get paid for consuming them. I can think of a much more equitable solution. And believe me, others will, too.

The American formula for success is a very simple one... very simple. Why have you not learned it? As others obviously - see the above posting - have? Where were you when he was hungry (and learning)?

[-] 0 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

any of you idiots read yesterdays wall street journal? (of course not) well a story in there talks about the results of polling 200 of you morons. here's what they said: 70% of you want wealth redistribution, 58% would advocate violence to get what you want, only 15% of you are unemployed (that stat surprised me) and an overwhelming majority of you voted for Obama, but prob wont vote for him again. in short, the writer concludes that essentially this is a radical left wing movement that has the potential to turn violent. my guess is a violent marxist group wont last long in this country. good luck idiots!

[-] 0 points by Arachnofoil (104) from Charlotte, NC 8 years ago

Your infrastructure? It sounds like this guy paid for most of it.....

[-] 0 points by LobbyDemocracy (615) 8 years ago

It is time for a change, and I have a way to help it happen. I am founding a lobbying organization to represent the interests of the majority. We need to find a way to overcome the $3.5 billion that was spent on lobbying last year. The one thing that we have that they do not is numbers. We have the votes to make a difference. Although the power of the vote is the ultimate power, we need a way to make our voices heard between elections. We need a way to let our elected representatives know that we are watching, we are listening, we are speaking and if they do not heed the call they will be voted out. If you are interested please check out www.lobbydemocracy.com to find out more.

[-] 0 points by Uguysarenuts (270) 8 years ago

User name is correct.

[-] 0 points by gibsone76m (298) from Washington, NJ 8 years ago

This post wreaks of envy. you get what you earn. you get what you deserve. why do you think you deserve a cent of that money? maybe if you worked harder you would be in the 1% too.

[-] -1 points by goeib1 (163) 8 years ago

And this only PROVES what a MOB this really is. The 1% er's going after the achievers in life.

[-] -1 points by cheeseus (109) 8 years ago

You are better off than the homless guy who doesn't have $20 to give. To him, you are rich and elite....The homeless guy uses our resources and infrastructure too but isn't paying anything. What's his contribution in this equal utopia of yours? If the homeless guy wins $200 million from the lottery should he now give up 40% to taxes? When he was homeless you wanted to take my money and give it to him. Now that he's rich you want him to pay 40% while you pay hardly anything. Is that fair?

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIcqb9hHQ3E&feature=share

this video says it all. the occupy wall street movement has force and passion and is rooted in widespread frustration. however its target - -wall street -- is off the mark. look at this you-tube video to see where the OWS efforts would be more appropriately targeted.

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

"If the homeless wins $200 million from the lottery should he now give up 40% of it to the government?"

Umm, duh. Yes. More.

[-] 1 points by cheeseus (109) 8 years ago

So he should be punished simply because he has more money than you? I just don't happen to think we should use jealousy to discriminate against another human, much less forcibly steal from him because of it.

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Paying your fair share in society is not punishment. Everyone should pay a part of what they bring in, no matter how they "earned" it. The only exception is people for whom that's an unbearable (i.e. survival-impacting) hardship, as part of the safety net which is part of the social contract in a civilized society.

[-] 0 points by cheeseus (109) 8 years ago

It is punishment because the majority has decided what is "fair". I prefer a society based on an individuals rights and their contribution to society is to respect the right of other individuals. Helping those less fortunate is a noble goal. It doesn't take government force to help. It can be done by those within society which choose to help.

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

And when charity fails, which it often does? Greed is the motivating factor for the most succesful in this world, and it does not lend itself to charitable tendencies. Fortunately a democratic society is not run by the 1%, so the less greedy among us have a say. Some of the 1% may feel a little noblesse oblige but most don't. Our government is obliged, because we've accepted the social contract ideals of our founding fathers, which include "to promote the general welfare." It makes us a more just society than Somalia.

[-] 0 points by cheeseus (109) 8 years ago

Charities often fail for the same reasons that corporations do. Still, there is nothing stopping you as an individual to help people. There is nothing stopping the needy from helping themselves, or hopefully they gave enough love and respect that another human feels an urge to pay it back. Society should be voluntary and a network between people, not a government which is always the most powerful corporation that we are forced to fund.....

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Hopefully does not cut it. I llike the theoretical elegance of your system but in practice it leads to injustice. It's the direction we've been heading since the 80s, and the resulting inequality is the highest of all advanced nations.

[-] 1 points by AllieOop (1) 8 years ago

cheeseus 0 points 4 days ago It is punishment because the majority has decided what is "fair".

Fairness is decided with a vote. Big corporations are buying their politicians and votes to determin what "Fair" is, to somehow work our in thier favor, while the middle class is getting squeezed for every dollar and dime they work so hard for. How is that fair??

Where do you think all of your money is coming from??

[-] -1 points by occupie (75) 8 years ago

You are all talk. No bite.

[-] -1 points by lessthanfortythousand (8) 8 years ago

"I'd consider working with us for a more equitable system, before things get out of hand." - is this a threat?

Is this movement really just for unemployed trouble makers to stir shit up? I barely make ends meet each month, and the protesters make it difficult for me to get to my job on time. Is it in your intentions to do me out of a job as well?

and about the 400 people that own most of this world's resources and wealth, do you think this is a recent phenomenon? Do you really think you have what it takes to change what's been going on for centuries with a movement filled with people who can't balance their check book and lost their homes?

Part of growing up is accepting what you cannot change, and work hard on the things you can. In theory, the most idealistic society is a communist one, in which everyone shares the same resources, makes the same salary, and lives in the same state funded concrete block apartment. There are still a few countries like that left on this planet for those who would prefer to live that way. Personally, I wouldn't.

[-] 2 points by rayl (1007) 8 years ago

simply because the world has always been so, doesn't mean it can't be changed and its certainly no reason to do nothing. the world can be changed. the world is always changing. it will continue to change. you can steer or just hang on, your choice.

[-] 2 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Everyone uses the "logical conclusion" strawman as if nobody is capable of measured steps towards a reasonable goal. Communism is a long way from the 400 oligarchs. There is middle ground. We've had it in this country; 40 years ago it was far better than today. It's better in Sweden, Germany, France, and a hundred other places - the US currently has the greatest inequality of all industrialized democracies, and that's all occurred since the 80s.

Yes, yes i do believe that "a small group of committed individuals can change the world, in fact that's the only thing that ever has."

"Words ought to be a little wild for they are the assaults of thought on the unthinking." - John Maynard Keynes

[-] -1 points by Selfmade (12) 8 years ago

The 1% gave already if you haven't noticed:

http://www.taxfoundation.org/blog/show/24944.html

[-] 1 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

It obviously isn't enough. Keep giving. That the top 1% pay 40% just proves the point that the wealth in this country has been funneled to ... 1% of the population.

[-] 0 points by PierpontLuv (38) 8 years ago

Earned not funneled. Get a job, hobby, something....

[-] 1 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

Earned how? You have no idea. Earned as in Enron earned? Earned as in Bear Stearns Earned? Earned as in GM earned?

I have a job and a hobby.

[-] -1 points by TimUwe (39) 8 years ago

Sorry to inform you looselyhuman, but it is not your wealth. So explain what you mean by "..we're coming" What do you plan to do?

[-] 6 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

No you are not in the 1%, you don't even register, compared to real money you are poor - you are part of the 99%. I do not expect rich people to stop being rich - rather I demand that the ultra wealthy stop rigging the system in their favor. It is wrong to privatize profit and then socialize debt - which is exactly what wall st and the ultra wealthy have done.

[-] 2 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

Well stated. Also, just because this guy "made it," doesn't mean that everyone has made it for one reason or another. In fact, you're probably in the minority given those circumstances. The logic is flawed this way:

"If I made it, why can't everyone else"?

First, not everyone has the various circumstances that you had that, eventually, enabled you to make it.

Second, not everyone has the same tools or capabilities--assuming that they should is arrogant. If someone has a learning disability, what then? If someone worked as hard as they could, and still failed, and needs help, what then?

Third, you made it, congratulations, but here's the truth of the matter:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htX2usfqMEs&feature=player_embedded

Fourth, it's about basic fairness: the rich 1% used the system to gamble with: derivatives and mortgage-backed securities? That was the free market at work. "No Money? No Credit? No Problem!"--that was also the free market at work. No government hindrance or regulation. And that's what burned down the economy.

Fifth, taxes are the lowest for the wealthiest 1% in many years (http://tinyurl.com/3udnd56) adjusting them to be more egalitarian isn't class warfare, it's a policy decision that even Reagan agreed with: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgbJ-Fs1ikA&feature=player_embedded)

Sixth, as for focusing on the housing crisis, well here's a story of two different countries and what happened to them...

In Finland, they Decided to Eliminate Homelessness.

That was a prioritized policy decision: it wasn't wild eyed marxism, it was a choice. They're a capitalist society. They're successful. People aren't lazy and haven't been destroyed by intrusive government. They made a choice and it appears to be working for them. Unlike the rightists in this country, who exalt the individual over the greater good, many countries support their populations. They don't call them entitlements--that's an American construct. Finland? They strive mightily to ensure that their people--whoever they are--have shelter. Are they run by marxists denying freedoms? Um, no, they're very economically successful. They are however, one of the most educated countries on the planet. (source: the liberal rag WSJ). According to the European Federation of National Organizations Working with the Homeless:

"Perhaps the most concerted and successful effort to deal with homelessness is in Finland where, after the International Year of Shelter for the Homeless in 1987, the Government devised a multifaceted response to the problem. It included building of social housing, the creation of social welfare and health care services, and setting a target to provide a dwelling of minimum standards for every homeless person. The number of single homeless persons at that time was approximately 18 000. In just 10 years, the number of homeless in Finland was cut in half."

This was a national decision on a) prioritizing need, b) deciding what to do about that need, c) executing to meet that need. They decided--as a country--to make this a priority. Did it hurt them economically or otherwise impoverish them? No. They're one of the most successful countries on the planet. Are they less happy for it? No. They rank in the top 10 on having the happiest population (unlike the United States). Oh, and they're one of the most highly educated countries too--far more educated than the United States, in fact. (links: http://tinyurl.com/2e5coe; http://tinyurl.com/6877g38)

In the United States, they Decided to Bicker and Strut

Instead of focusing on improving society as a whole the United States focuses on non-existent enemies and puerile one-upmanship, all driven by political, religious, and cultural "sports-like" agendas. And as a result, we have made some really bad "life choices" over the last 10 years. We decided, for example, to invade a country that didn't attack us based on lies and insidious fear mongering. It cost the country $3 trillion dollars (50% more than the national debt from WWII to 1980), tens of thousands of lives, and pariah status in much of the world. What could we have done with that money? Make education and housing available and more affordable? Improve the nation's infrastructure? We'll never know, but that's what's known in macroeconomics as "opportunity cost. (links: http://tinyurl.com/2eb4zne)

It's about priorities and allocation of resources, not attacking people for being rich.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

i work on wall street. i work very hard, every day. i get up at 5:15 and get home around 8:00. i make good money, but i earn it. so your comment about "easy money" is far from reality. Also, i do what i do because i'm one of the few who have build the skills and experience to be here. You had the same opportunity that i had. only i did it and you didn't. does that make me a bad person? im paid good money because im highly skilled, sort of like a baseball player. my employer wouldnt pay me one dime more than the value i bring to the business. So i guess im worth what im paid. so whats the problem 99%-ers? What am i missing??

[-] 1 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

First, congratulations on your awesome job and skillsets! Second, I used to work on Capitol Hill and live in a nice big house! Third, What comment about "easy money"--I never said anything about "easy money"...

But since you mention it: I'm not against capitalism. I'm not against socialism. I'm against an equitable system that supports policies for the greatest good. Wall Street does well? Great. Taxes are the lowest they've been in many years. This is true. Bumping them up 1 or 2% on the wealthiest isn/t warfare, it's common sense. Even Ronald Reagan believed this. And so did James Madison. So does the uber Wall Streeter, Warren Buffett.

No one says you shouldn't keep a lot of your money. You just shouldn't get special treatment because much of your money is taxed at 15% because it's capital gains. To me? That's just laissez unfaire! ;)

It's not either/or. Germany is at least as capitalistic as we are. They're way successful. They also offer social services to their people and don't call it anything--socialism or capitalism or free market or marxism. They set priorities and execute. They decide what's important. I respect that.

Americans just aren't as smart as some of their European allies--including Finland Germany--because we can't seem to figure out equitable policy without demonizing the other. This board is a microcosm of that.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

people in germany and finland work for a living, and when they fall on hard times the social safety net is there to help them until they get back on their feet. In america too many people have made entitlements into a life style. We cant afford to go on like this -- where half the population works and the other half doesnt. The result is budget deficits and all the problems that go along with that.

[-] 1 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

well, you make a point. the system is flawed here, but i can tell you--and know this first-hand--that there are those in Finland (and no doubt Germany) who take advantage of the system. But the main point is that they're happier, in general. You build some fraud into the system, because it's inevitable.

Of course, OTOH, the actions of Bear Stearns, AIG, Lehmann? Those were not above board, were they? I'm guessing not, when it came to dangerous, increasingly worthless derivatives. So, really, it's all pretty damaged, but setting high level goals, and establishing acceptable limits of screw ups is part of the chaotic truth of our system.

You can't really blame budget deficits on people taking advantage of the system. That feeds into it, but if you look at the choices we've made as a country, take Iraq. The ultimate fraud. Depending on your source, that's between $1 - $3 trillion in deficit spending. Slightly more than what happens with social program fraud, you have to agree.

So, really, these kids? They didn't screw up the place. Older people did. And they're right to be pissed off and the inefficiency, stupidity, and inequality in our system. And be honest, if you're not a little pissed off, you're not paying attention, right?

The trick? Figuring out the common ground--and there is common ground--between left and right.

Peace.

[-] 1 points by jmcdarcy (158) 8 years ago

It's funny, I said the exact same thing you said in the first few paragraphs. I like what Elizabeth Warren said about business owners using the roads we built and the workers we educated. It makes sense. Send the latter back down...as Dekembe Matumbo would say...without government policies which built up the nation, nobody would be able to have the so called "American dream".

[-] 2 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

Agreed, and as I posted on my blog today:

...If you don't speak German as a native language, ach! It's the result of government intervention that took over the economy and helped save the world from fascism. If Ron Paul had been president, our national anthem would probably be "Deutschland Uber Alles.

...if you drive a car on the highway, please stop doing that! It's the result of socialist government intervention!

...If you are using the Internet, please stop now! DARPA, a federally funded entity, invented it and that's socialism that you're supporting--cease and desist!

...if your parents or grandparents get a social security check--go quickly, and take it away from them! That's socialism!! Those people are bloodsuckers!!

(source: http://groobiecat.blogspot.com/2011/10/laissez-unfaire-thoughts-on-national.html)

[-] 1 points by decriminalizeFreedom (10) 8 years ago

do you really think the Germans would have succeeded in invading a large country with a gun in every other household? didn't work with the Russians either.

[-] 2 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

We eliminated uncertainty of that potential outcome. Are you saying the United States didn't ensure victory in World War II? Because I think pretty much every historian worth his salt would disagree with you. But you miss my point, again, which is that if Ron Paul had been president, we would not have retooled the economy and we would not have engaged the Germans.

His and his supporters'' laissez faire view of the United States is not what made this country great. A balance of capitalism and government intervention when it was needed did. Is it perfect? it is not. But a balance is required, not extremist solutions.

Did you read about Finland? Or my other points?

[-] 1 points by decriminalizeFreedom (10) 8 years ago

um, don't put words in my mouth. are you saying that the president (any president) would not have engaged in war with Japan after the bombing, thus engaging them in WWII? if so, i'd say any historian worth his salt would disagree with you. :) by the way, war only retools the economy like a band aid fixes an infection, it just covers the problem for a while.

yes i did read your other post. I agree with the absurdity of the current faceless war(s) we are fighting. Finland is a different story and I won't go there with you.

[-] 1 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

First, I didn't put words in your mouth.

Second, Japan isn't the point, and yeah, we'd have gone to war, but we weren't just fighting Japan.

Third, "war only retools the economy like a band aid fixes an infection, it just covers the problem for a while" isn't the point. The point is that the president commandeered the economy in the most anti-invidual, common good way possible. That's the point. And if RP had been president--or someone with his ideological bent--that might not have happened, when it came time to gear up and defeat Germany. That's all I'm saying.

Some times, government does pretty great things. Not lately, but it can. Simply gutting it as RP wants to do would actually weaken us as a country. His is a very radical vision of the world, and in general, I don't think most people in this country are interested in radical, I think they're interested in reasonable...

[-] 1 points by decriminalizeFreedom (10) 8 years ago

what's with this anti ron paul agenda? why do you keep mentioning him?

[-] 2 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

Because he's the one truly and completely libertarian candidate. He basically wants to gut all federal government power, and that's completely radical. The government isn't perfect, but his level of government off our backs visions would not strengthen our country, and would undermine it.

Ayn Rand was an author who was focused on individualism. Great. You don't build a country based on her writings, and you don't maintain a network for the most vulnerable in society by getting a church bake sale together and hope to help your sick friend. More recently, if he'd been in power, the federal assistance needed for the Hurricane Irene victims would probably not happen; and he stated as much. That's not good for people devasted by mother nature, when states are already hurting economically: "Best of luck to you! Oh, well, remember, keep your powder dry, heh." Ugh.

I'm also against what he stands for, because if he'd been president at a number of critical points in our history, he wouldn't have just been annoying, he would have undermined the success of the country. And that's why I've posted this itemized list...

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Keep fighting the good fight, groobie. Enjoyed reading this thread.

[-] 1 points by groobiecat2 (746) from Brattleboro, VT 8 years ago

Cheers. I keep looking for common ground--and this person is at least civilized in questioning me--but so many of just angry, mean-spirited people. Why would anyone want people like that in their movement?

Instead of the old saw "The beatings will continue until morale improves," it's like "The verbal abuse will continue until you see the error of your ways."

Hey, i think I'll use that.

:D

Peace.

Groobiecat

[ There's a blog here: www.groobiecat.blogspot.com ]

[ There's an #OWS election process here: http://occupywallst.org/forum/come-to-the-nyc-general-assembly-on-10-15-12-to-st/ ]

[ There's a draft Declaration here: https://sites.google.com/site/the99percentdeclaration/ ]

[-] 1 points by ojosdelangel77 (33) from Fort Smith, AR 8 years ago

Thank you Nicely said!

[-] 1 points by LivingComfortably (2) 8 years ago

Actually, the top 1 percent of Americans are those with annual incomes of more than $348k.

If he pays more taxes than most make annually, yes. He is.

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

Can we verify this? That would make a very interesting statement if true...

[-] 1 points by Nulambda (265) 8 years ago

Annual income does not equal net worth or wealth. Nor bonuses for that matter....

[-] 3 points by April (3196) 8 years ago

I am not protesting "against the wealthy". In fact, quite the opposite. I WANT the wealthy to keep their money. I want them to keep it and stop buying the government with their money.

What I am protesting against is the 1% that buy their representation in our government. 99% are left with the scraps. Money speaks too loudly in our government. And is drowning out the voices of the 99%

What I am protesting for - Get the money out of the political system by establishing publicly funded campaigns and elections. I want fair and equal representation in my government. Separation of Money and State. I do not think this is unreasonable or radical in any way. I think this is the way our democracy was meant to be!

[-] 1 points by jim993911 (5) 8 years ago

That is exactly what I've been saying for years. No more buying the politicians via campaign contributions! Campaign finance reform is the number one item that needs to be addressed. Fix that and the rest will fall into place. It is the root of our corruption and bad policy problems.

[-] 1 points by April (3196) 8 years ago

I guess it took a little longer for some of the rest of us to catch on!
If we can't make this happen, nothing else will hardly matter at all. Please do everything you can to communicate this to others. We need to get our democracy back.

[-] 1 points by decriminalizeFreedom (10) 8 years ago

good point

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

well reasoned and easy to understand. I wish everyone in the OWS movement was as clear about their motives.

[-] 1 points by April (3196) 8 years ago

Thank you so much! I am trying.

[-] 1 points by clbo (5) 8 years ago

word

[-] 3 points by hojojms (3) 8 years ago

Being rich is not the problem - it's what the Republicans use to disguise the problems in this country. It is the unfairness the middle-class get, especially when the corporations need bailing out, we don't have a say; and now the American people need a bail out & you greedy butts won't even give $500.00 to invest in the country that helped make you rich. I am in the 1% also, but I love all God's little children. Since when did this country quit putting themselves in the shoes of others. If you are a christian, and you really believe in the bible - then read it and do what it says. Quit acting like you are dumb as to what has happened in this country. The Occupy Wall Street will win, and the unfairness will not prevail.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8706) 8 years ago

Yeah, whenever theere's a war to fight you 1%ers are the first to shout "We're all in this together!" Whenever there's money to be had suddenly it's all about you!

[-] 2 points by lessthanfortythousand (8) 8 years ago

Well said. and this is coming from someone who earns no where near what the 1% population does. I struggle to make my bills each month, but I still hang in there, do my part, contribute to society, knowing that in this once wonderful country I have the potential of earning more. And when I do, I certainly would not appreciate anyone telling me that it is my obligation to bail out someone who made irresponsible decisions and bought a house they couldn't afford with the money I worked hard for.

I can't afford to buy a house, so you know what I did? An extremely novel ideal to you all, I'm sure.... I didn't buy one, and I will continue to waste money on rent until I can afford to buy, whenever that will be. I live in a tiny studio apartment that isn't big enough to hold more than a bed a couple of pieces of furniture, but it's home, and is certainly better than expecting handouts from the wealthy class. It's what I call PRIDE, and I think a good percentage of our populations today lack it.

And when I said this country was "once wonderful", I'm optimistic that it will be again. Every great civilization goes through its ups and downs, we're simply down at the moment. Hang in there, Y'all. It will get better.

[-] 2 points by Texanwithquestion (7) 8 years ago

I am a 1% 'er. I am 34 years old and I make 1MM/year in ordinary income (not capital gains). My average Federal Tax rate was ~31% in 2010 after the deduction for mortgage interest and other very minor deductions (I paid 310K in Federal Taxes). I paid 25K in property taxes to the city/state government and I paid ~ 28K in sales tax during the year. All in all I paid 363K in taxes (36.3% of my income). I am not asking for sympathy, so save the "it must be tough" comments. We are not all created equal when it comes to resourcefulness and intelligence, that's reality. So, help me out: What is it that I am not doing for the 99% that I should be doing. Help me understand.

[-] 1 points by quadrawack (280) 8 years ago

As long as you didn't get government subsidies, bribe officials and regulators, engage in fraudulent schemes and then get bailed out by taxpayers, get special privledges because you donated scads of cash to politicians, then we're all cool. You didn't engage in corruption. You don't owe anyone anything.

But if you engaged in the above, that's where us 99%ters have a big effing problem.

[-] 1 points by L0tech (79) 8 years ago

No theonepercent, the answer is not an 80% tax.

I would like an honest answer to a question though; are you really 20x more intelligent and resourceful than your average nurse practitioner? Is the service you provide 29x as important as a teacher?

Lets say you are just the bees knees. I could see 8x, maybe 10x, but 29? The issue is not that we "want your money". The issue is that your earning potential has continued to rise, while the rest of the country has remained nearly flat. It's an outcry against an economic problem of dangerously inflated disparity, not a demand for handouts. When all the growth is at the top, there is no room for growth at the bottom.

It really isn't about "you" per se. It's about a broken system reaching critical mass.

[-] 1 points by cheeseus (109) 8 years ago

It's not fair! But, let's pay teachers a lot more money. Ironic.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Interested to see a response to this. Most likely that you should pay $800k in taxes.

[-] 1 points by Texanwithquestion (7) 8 years ago

The mis-information from Buffett, Obama et al regarding what the rich pay in taxes is ridiculous. Warren Buffet himself chooses what he is paid in Salary (OI). If he really cared about being equitable he would take a much larger salary. The reality is that Buffett, Gates, Soros etc want to prevent the intelligent and productive subset of the younger generation from accumulating enough wealth to compete with them.

[-] 2 points by impala (14) 8 years ago

troll!

everyone in the 1% got there by exploiting something: people, natural resources, political connections, something. You think you're entitled to your profits? Everybody at the top of the wealth pyramid owes their good fortune to powers outside of their control. You owe society for those opportunities you had that were denied to the rest of us.

[-] 2 points by tim4490 (15) 8 years ago

for once, somebody in the 1% is correct. The wealthy are only a branch off the tree of corruption. You must strike at the root of evil if you should expect to expel it.

[-] 2 points by gibsone76m (298) from Washington, NJ 8 years ago

AMEN!

[-] 2 points by MilkOfParadise (5) 8 years ago

Job markets disappeared overnight for many students, and most of the country feels that your 1% has inappropriate influence over our government. The stock market has stabilized but the job market continues to plummet. The surface problem is a dysfunctional government. The 'real root of the problem' is the corporate money flooding the system and advocating deadlock. Most of us just want a world where every father has a paying job that makes him happy and keeps him from the bottle and beating his kids.

[-] 2 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Yes, I have investments however I have no ties or influence over the government. It's not like I take a trip over to the White House every now and then and plot with government officials how we can further screw the middle class.

If you are targeting the billionaires like George Soros then you should make that more clear in your message, instead of just the 1%.

[-] 1 points by MilkOfParadise (5) 8 years ago

George Soros is 81 years old and an extreme progressive, if he's the only millionaire you can think of you're watching too much Fox News. You're either with us or against us, TheOnePercent. Don't try to change the conversation; show up or shut up.

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

"If you are targeting the billionaires like George Soros then you should make that more clear in your message, instead of just the 1%."

Yeah I agree, maybe its more like the 0.5 % or 0.25% that's to blame....

[-] 1 points by Wallstreet (4) 8 years ago

How is taxing the millionaires and billionaires going to create jobs? Siphoning money from the wealthy to the Federal Government will not stimulate small businesses to hire and encourage angel investors to invest in startups.

[-] 0 points by Brookelorren (5) 8 years ago

LOL, Soros is partially funding the OWS movement...

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

Yeah in 2008.... 2011-2008 = 3 years to start planning to enter the workforce?

And for the record, there was never a job market for english lit majors lol

[-] 2 points by Idaltu (662) 8 years ago

You don't owe me anything...but you owe yourself the opportunity to read what this movement is about. It is about stopping corporations from bleeding the public. That's it....you might read on here individual ideas but they don't represent what OWS is about. I don't want a welfare state...I just want the corporations to be held accountable for buying politicians.

[-] 4 points by fallan (6) 8 years ago

why arent you protesting the Obama administration who have wasted billions of your dollars and then said we bet on it and it didnt work.Trillions more dollars are going to be spent by your President the friend of Goldman Sachs on socialist schemes that wont work yet these Billionaires you protest against have employed millions of people and many have become rich..so how about setting of to the WH. today

[-] 1 points by quadrawack (280) 8 years ago

Because that doesn't work. It's like protesting a fetid garbage pile. It's already rotten to the core. Instead of targeting the garbage pile, which strategically makes no sense, it makes more sense to target the bacteriums rotting the pile. That means Wall Street.

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

Yeah but theres always going to be new set of billionaires trying to buy their interests in congress. If you focus on reforming government so that cant happen anymore wouldn't that be the best way to go about fixing the problem?

I personally don't want to see Obama waste any more of my money

[-] 1 points by quadrawack (280) 8 years ago

The problem is we already tried that. See how ineffectual the Tea Party was. They elected essentially more cronies. That's why the Dodd-Frank bill is so watered down. Since it's that doesn't work, it doesn't make sense to repeat the same mistakes. So take out the middleman, which is Congress, the presidency, and the Supreme Court. Target the actual government who lives on Wall Street.

Given how the main stream media is villifying us overall, apparently we've made a mark.

[-] 2 points by DanielPawlak (23) 8 years ago

We don't believe you owe us anything. We want WallStreeters to obey the rule of law and be accountable to market discipline. The state bails them out, but not the people. WallStreeters finance political elections, we want a chance to have fairer elections, untainted by corporate funding. You 1% can keep your little Ipods and fancy cars, we just want DEMOCRACY.

[-] 1 points by fallan (6) 8 years ago

democracy like hell you do.It sounds more like anarchy.you know the slogans they scream out Get the rich.. overthrow the government.. unions for all...yeah could have come out of the mouths of young lenins or Stalins.What you end up is not democracy but dictatorship always have always will

[-] 1 points by DanielPawlak (23) 8 years ago

that's a slippery slope argument fallan. There are socialists in the crowd, along with anarchists and tea party ron paul guys. The stuff they shout is wild, but it shouldn't be used to represent this movement. We should have a democratic system that yields officials accountable to the people. That's all we want.

[-] 2 points by sudoname (1001) from Berkeley, CA 8 years ago

The original call to action on OWS was to end lobbying (bribing) of politicians by the wealthy. I would rather have a benevolent 1% spend his money for the good of humanity instead of the government, because that person is probably very good at making his money go a long way.

A lot of people came together on this because of "socialist" reasons, but as our message becomes more focused, and less alienating to the majorities, I think you will see it come down to this.

[-] 0 points by decriminalizeFreedom (10) 8 years ago

yes, private investors are much better venture capitalists than the government. just look at the spending to return ratio!

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

It's all about motivation. The personality types that are highly successful are motivated by greed and self-interest. I will not entrust the fate of my civilization to their goodwill. Government has a mandate to serve the people, not the profits of a few. That it's been corrupted is the problem. We need greed to drive our economic engine, but the greedy should not be given responsibility for the general welfare.

[-] 1 points by Texanwithquestion (7) 8 years ago

These are great points, I dont think the majority of those now involved in OWS would understand or agree with you.

[-] 2 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

No one has any claim on the fruit of another's labor. Not anyone, not ever.

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

If the fruit of your labor is money, and that money only has value when exchanged in society - does not society have some claim over some part of it - after all, it is society itself that imbues the value. That is, if you were a hermit, outside of society, what value would the money have? It's very value only has meaning because of society. Hence society can rightfully claim part of that value back.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

No because money can have value outside of society say as two individuals meeting in the woods and decide to exchange some animal skins for money (as money as opposed to currency has inherent value).

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

"say as two individuals meeting in the woods and decide to exchange some animal skins for money" - exchange with who? Aren't you just describing a small society?

Also, that is a hypothetical fantasy and we live in reality. So in reality does the actual money that you actually earn have any value outside society?

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

A society is not two people as were in my example.

The pointing out of an example is all that it takes to destroy a universal statement. I did that.

And yes historically money always does because unlike currency it has value based on its composition.

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

"A society is not two people as were in my example." - In your example you try to imply there are only two people in total - if that is all the people there are then that is the society.

"The pointing out of an example is all that it takes to destroy a universal statement" - No, an example statement isn't all it takes - it shows that it is a hypothetical possibility - not an actual fact. You can claim something is hypothetically or logically possible - but that is not the same as something being actually possible in reality. One might ask questions of the relevant notion of "possibility" in your hypothetical example.

I believe you brand of naive libertarianism is meaningless outside the limited position of an individual hunter gather - in that context you are correct "No one has any claim on the fruit of another's labor." but you are not a lone hunter gather - you live in a society that itself provides the essence of the value to your earnings.

You say "value based on its composition" so you seem to think that money is historically valuable because of what it is made from - but if no-one else is around to recognize the value of its composition then what actual value does it have? After all - you cant eat gold.

All that aside, we live in an system that has a fiat money system - so in the actual reality we live in I would ask again - If society itself is the very thing that gives value to your earnings (the possibility of exchange with others) - do not the others, because they offer the possibility of exchange and therefore imbue the only possible value in it, have some claim over some part of it?

One might also add, that if pointing out of an example is all that it takes to destroy a universal statement - then my example of how society itself provides the value to your earnings destroys your universal statement of libertarianism.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

No I don't imply that. I show that two people can exist outside whatever society there may be and engage in trade.

Yes actually according to formal logic showing an example case where the argument presented fails destroys the argument.

Can you not make an argument without an ad hominem - calling me naive? I've worked within the realpolitk for about 20 years. My philosophy is derived through the logical application of a philosophy derived from a moral a priori position. I continually work to remove any contradictions or logical errors I find. If a moral framework is not both universal and logical it has no place in the minds of men.

It matters relatively little if one can eat gold unless you expect all of humanity to be cast back to an existence purely at the survival level and if you do why aren't you stockpiling ammo and food? Any time after that humanity has through almost every culture over the last 6000 years valued gold and silver metals. According to this model of human behavior that is likely to continue until the point we can convert elements into others at very low relative energy cost which would destroy the natural rarity.

The reality we live in also includes the fact that the fiat that creates legal tender laws can be voted away and there are a sizable number of people who want it gone. You are free to work against us just as we are free to point out the many ills that such a law causes.

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

I called your argument, your position, naive - not you - you seem very intelligent - would not debate with you otherwise.

How do you answer my final point - that if pointing out of an example is all that it takes to destroy a universal statement - then my example of how society itself provides the value to your earnings destroys your universal statement of libertarianism?

Also, you are arguing against yourself - "humanity has through almost every culture over the last 6000 years valued gold and silver metals" - yes, exactly, others value it - which is what gives it any value - gold and silver are worthless with out other people who value it - indeed it is the very essence of its value, if there are no other people (who exist to exchange with) then it has no value. It is in your own interest to have people to exchange with because without them the thing itself has no value. Therefore the other people are entitled to some part of its value, because without them it is worthless...

You should contribute to the well being of others, you have a duty to, because of this. Your idea that no one has any claim on the fruits of your labor itself only works at the basic survival level...

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

I respond by saying that it doesn't. Libertarianism is a political philosophy - it indicates the way that a system should be run - it does not attempt to define how a system is run.

That being said there is nothing within libertarianism that dictates that human interaction be limited or that societies should not or will not form for mutual protection - in fact this is pretty much assumed within libertarianism.

The basic position of libertarian thought is that the initiation of force is universally unjust. This applies as much to laws which force people to trade with a specifically designed piece of cloth or face punishment as much as it applies to any law which attempts to use force against peaceful action or interaction.

Currency is an item used as a medium of exchange. Money is currency that has value itself. This means that currency could be valued or valueless within a given society (for example Zimbabwe before going to the USD their currency was mandated to be used by law within the nation but carried virtually no value outside the society). Now had Zimbabwe used money (silver, gold, copper, platinum, palladium, barrels of oil, what have you) the currency (since money is both) would have retained its value for trade outside of Zimbabwe.

For example salt was so universally valued in Roman times that soldiers for a good period of time were paid in quantities of it - (it is from where we get the root for the word salary from the Roman salarium). Thus in that day one could "eat money".

And why yes if situations get dire enough that almost every human is literally starving to death gold and silver will have no intrinsic value (for that time being) - if that happens then humanity has much much more to worry about than having a medium of exchange - say like rampant cannibalism. And even then - maybe sharp knives will be used as money.

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

I am not attacking Libertarianism as a definition of a system - I am attacking the statement that "No one has any claim on the fruit of another's labor. Not anyone, not ever." - I have shown clearly, at least hypothetically, that this is not the case. By your own standards this example destroys your universal statement.

One has to laugh - salt as a currency didn't have value because it was also a food stuff - it was a currency because of its scarcity - if you ate your pay check it would kill you. So whilst you could, in Roman times, eat a small quantity of one form of currency - it was not the fact that you could eat it that gave it value. It was the possibility of exchanging it with others, it was the fact that others agreed it had value that gave it value.

You seem to want to perform intellectual acrobatics to do nothing more than attempt to justify selfishness and greed. I would say, you do benefit from society, society gives value to your earnings ergo you owe something to society. Society has a rightful claim over some of the fruits of your labor

If you don't want to contribute, don't think you have a duty to contribute - then stop deriving benefit from society - go and be a hermit. You simply wish to privatize the value of your earnings whilst socializing the protection of those earnings - whilst at the same time failing to recognize why your earnings have any value at all. A position which is Intellectually fraudulent at best, deeply hypocritical at worst...

..."And why yes if situations get dire enough that almost every human is literally starving to death gold and silver will have no intrinsic value" - something can't loose its intrinsic value. Gold and silver have no intrinsic value - there only value is in the possibility of exchange with other people who value them...

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

I don't find any place you've shown at all let alone clearly that it isn't the case. My own standards also don't destroy the statement. If you believe they do could you reiterate the argument that you believe does this?

If you notice I did not claim that salt had value because it could be eaten. If you could find where you believe I did please show me. I mentioned it as an aside to show that there were cases where "one could eat money" and I thought it was a bit of interesting historical trivia.

I don't attempt to justify what you attempt to demean. Greed is not desiring to keep what you already have - greed is wanting to take from others for one's self. The entire reversal of the meaning of greed should point clearly to whose moral system is contradictory.

Ah - I never said I wouldn't or didn't want to contribute to society. This is an assumption you've made and assigned to me and are now attacking - in other words a strawman. I said "no one has any claim to the fruit of another's labor." where in there did I say anything regarding my personal position about what I wish, would, or have done with the fruit of my own labor?

I would personally gladly give up deriving any benefit from what I am told is provided to me by the fruit of my labor being taken from me at gunpoint and then use it to engage in private contract for those services I desire back.

The initiation of force has no place in a civilized society and it matters not what one calls the entity that is introducing force into the scenario.

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

"No one has any claim on the fruit of another's labor. Not anyone, not ever."

"The pointing out of an example is all that it takes to destroy a universal statement."

I gave an example of when another has a claim, i.e. when 'the others' are the very thing that make value in the fruit of your labor possible. This is at least hypothetically possible, and as such destroys your general statement by your own argument.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

I disagree that others are the very thing that makes value of the fruit of labor, and I disagree that showing that somehow gives others a claim to the fruit of anyone else's labor.

Even if I agreed that you others do define value - it wouldn't give any claim because the individual in question would have the same relationship back (being an other to the other party) and thus negate any claim.

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

You don't have to agree - only recognize it as a hypothetical possibility - remember if it is even hypothetically possible it destroys your general statement.

Yes, the individual would have the same relationship back - he would have the same claim over others in the society - it is called reciprocation not negation.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Where is the hypothetical that so destroys it?

So everyone has claim to everyone else's property in your mind? How exactly would society function with packs of people laying claim to everyone else's property at the same time. You encourage a society where groups form only to steal property from others because they believe they have claim to it? It would be chaos.

My property is formed from the intersection of nature and my work or any agreements I make for the trade of such. No one has claim to my property for that would require them to have claim to me. If one attempts to take my property one would be initiating force against me which is unjust and immoral.

I think you need to watch this introduction into the philosophy and just tell me at what point you disagree: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muHg86Mys7I

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

No, again you are performing intellectual acrobatics - it is at least hypothetically possible that the 'fruits of your labor' e.g. currency in a fiat system - in some part only have value because of the society the currency is recognized in. If the society contributes to the value of the fruits of your labor then it has claim to part of the value of them.

Your tacit ad hominem attack is also hypocritical - I have a double first in PPE - I don't need to watch an introduction to philosophy thanks.

Also, I agree that "No one has any claim on the fruit of another's labor." - if by that you simply mean the intersection of nature and my work - but this is just existence purely at the survival level. After that the "Not anyone, not ever" bit falls apart.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

That is a critique of a specific monetary system nothing else. The fruits of my labor are general in meaning not specific. For example were I to whittle away a rough carving of a bear from wood it would be my property and of value only to me - that is still value and it is still the fruit of my labor. The fruit of my labor can be a salad of fruit I've gone out and picked - and consumed. It is now of now value to anyone but myself as it fuels me. It could be a picture I produce of my father which after his passing has great value to me but no value to anyone else.

It isn't an ad hominem attack. You could be the most knowledgable person on the planet in the field of philosophy but not have exposure to a philosophy found in one inuit tribe. I have no idea what your exposure to this philosophy was so I provided you an intro. Do not feel insulted because I don't know intricate details about you.

[-] 1 points by fraser (35) 8 years ago

Again, I agree about basic survival - but we, at least I, am talking about the reality earning currency in society - not about picking fruit to consume or making art work for oneself. No one at all, ever, as far as I know would lay claim on any part of those things.

Again, I agree that those are other forms of value - but I don't need to show that society provides all value in all cases - only that in a fiat money system it is at least hypothetically possible that part of the value derives from society itself. That is enough to destroy your general statement

"No one has any claim on the fruit of another's labor. Not anyone, not ever."

However back in reality - you earn currency in society...did you make the currency? did you make the society in which it is valued? No - so in principal at least part of the physical and conceptual value has nothing to do with your labor. Failing to recognize that is just bizarre. If you don't wish to be taxed - then don't exchange your labor for currency, don't enter into the social contract. Once you do enter into a social contract, start using currency in society, etc - don't call foul when society asks for some of the value back.

ps...I took the implication that I needed an introduction philosophy to mean that you presumed I was making some kind of basic error, which I was not. I don't feel insulted - I was merely pointing out that this was the very same thing that you tried to pull me up on. I called an idea naive, and you took it as a personal insult. You offering me an introduction to philosophy I took as a rather weak way of attempting to call me naive.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Oh and no problem about the ps then...no insults are meant then none are taken. Glad we could talk it out.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Asking those questions of me in a society where I am punished if I don't use that currency (Legal Tender laws force the acceptance of the USD for all payments) isn't exactly fair now is it?

In a society where nuts were used as currency would I be morally obliged to give you some of my nuts simply because at some point we both agreed to use nuts as currency?

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

So you're a socialist, then?

[-] 2 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Not at all in fact my statement is entirely antithetical to the process by which socialism forces collectivist policies on others.

I have absolutely no idea how you could even fathom the idea that I am a socialist from my words unless English is not your primary language.

[-] -1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

What you described--that noone has a claim on the fruit of another's labor--is socialism. Capitalism is the opposite--that one man may obtain the fruit of another's labor if he can extract it by controlling the means of production. If you would like a more detailed explanation that demonstrates why this is so, please ask and I will be happy to provide that.

It is really amazing to me how many capitalists defend capitalism by describing it as socialism. Stop doing it.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

No it is not. Socialism pretends that others have a claim on everyone else's fruit of labor. They mistakenly believe that need or want is enough to abrogate the right of property of every individual. That somehow the tyranny of the majority is an acceptable excuse to violate the inherent and inalienable rights of others.

Capitalism states that one can only obtain the fruits of another's labor by consent - the contractual agreement to trade. This consent can take the form of an exchange of eggs for lawn mowing, an exchange of currency for hours of labor, or the exchange of a promise to repay with interest for the use of currency now.

You only arrive at your position by two possibilities:

  1. Not agreeing with the premise that all people have rights. or
  2. Ignoring the aspect of consent and contract. (which itself is a right - the right of contract).
[-] 2 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

Allow me to explain to you how capitalism works, then. I must admit, I'm getting tired of explaining to capitalists how the system they endorse works. I really wish you all would know what it is you support instead of blindly advocating something you clearly know nothing about.

Consider a man who builds a desk. It costs him $25 in materials and after he builds it he sells it for $100. That man has engaged in socialism. The $75 he earned is not "profit." It represents the value of his labor, and he keeps all of it. Now consider the same man who spends $25 in materials to build a desk, except that he finds he is unable to complete the desk because he lacks a certain expensive tool. His neighbor has the tool, and his neighbor agrees to lend him the tool in exchange for 20% of what he sells the desk for. The man agrees, finishes the desk, and sells it for $100. He gives $20 of that to his neighbor and so his surplus is $55. That $55 does not represent the full value of his labor, which is still worth $75 as he did the same exact amount of work as in the previous hypothetical. The neighbor, however, earned $20, even though he performed no labor whatsoever. The neighbor, therefore, received $20 in profit. And where did that profit come from? It came from the other man's labor.

Now consider this on a wide scale in which a society's productive wealth (capital) is concentrated in just a few private hands. This requires the majority of people to "sell their labor" in order to create wealth and sustain themselves. But they can never realize the full value of their labor because the people who control the capital will always be appropriating some of it in the form of profit. The more desperate the laborers become, the more fruits of their labor can be appropriated by the capitalist.

The sine qua non of capitalism is appropriation of the value of other people's labor. As such, you can understand how it is a pet peeve of mine when people come along advocating capitalism who do not even understand its most fundamental essence. Socialism is advocated precisely because it is a system in which those who labor retain the full value of their work. In socialism, profit is eliminated and the means of production are held by workers collectively. Now, I really don't care if you are a capitalist or socialist. What I care about is that you defend whatever system you endorse on its actual terms, and not the terms of a different system entirely.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Oh the Marxist theory of labor. Go build some mudpies and see how much the investment of your labor was worth if that labor is without demand.

Really now I expected a few paragraphs to be easier to debunk. I am getting tired of deluded people trying to redefine capitalism by trying to filter it through silly lenses.

If you don't want to agree to trade with people - don't. If you want to live with a communal pool of people and resources then find people who agree with you and do it. I really don't care how you choose to live your life or how you imagine voluntary exchange to operate so long as you don't attempt to use force on me to get me to live as you chose to. - That is how to live while respecting your fellow human.

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

“Trade” is not what capitalism is. Trade occurs in socialism. Your understanding of these concepts is deficient. Again, I don't care what you believe is best for society. I do care that you refrain from defending capitalism by describing it as socialism. It is intellectually disingenuous.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

You mix terms again. Words have definitive meaning and when you using meanings from your own view exchange of ideas is not facilitated - it is hampered. You're blinded by viewing everything through your ideological glasses.

Trade is the mechanism by which capitalism operates. With private property rights but without trade there could be no system labeled "Capitalism" for nothing would happen that each person did not make.

You expose yourself with your inability to converse without manufacturing definitions for yourself.

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

Trade does not define capitalism. I realize that you are a human and this gives you the ability to string words together into sentences, but things do not become true simply by virtue of your human capacity to do that. The sine qua non of capitalism is private ownership of capital used to generate profit, and this is not something that is up for debate. It is what everybody who is educated understands it to be: http://www.encyclo.co.uk/define/Capitalism

Trade is indeed involved in capitalism, but it is not what capitalism is. As I explained to you, trade--the exchange of goods--is not incompatible with socialism. Even markets are not the sine qua non of capitalism, because markets are not inherently incompatible with socialism. What makes capitalism and socialism fundamentally different is precisely what started this discussion, which you (wrongly) claimed was associated with capitalism when the reality is the exact opposite. My hypothetical shows very clearly why that is so, and is not subject to rational disagreement.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Its the height of the open-minded to assume that all debate against a topic must not be rational? Of course I don't think you understand what rational means and you mean to use logical (though you're still incorrect).

I don't believe we ever centered on the definition of capitalism in which case you're correct its the private ownership of the means of production - something I never argued against. You will note I said "Capitalism states that one can only obtain the fruits of another's labor by consent - the contractual agreement to trade" which is the direct result of the private ownership of the means of production. For this to happen the society must respect private property rights (in order to have ownership) and this happens most often and best in a society that respects and has established other rights such as the right to contract. As I've said without the ability to contract producing lots of X is useless since it would just sit there.

Perhaps I assume we could both step through these logical conclusions a bit faster so I do apologize for assuming you were following along.

Your hypothetical deals with the Marxist value of labor which I also showed in my mudpie example is entirely incorrect. The incorporation of labor into an object does not either define nor give an object value. The amount of demand for it determines value. Marx put the cart before the horse there.

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

I am not relying on any theory of value at all. What I am doing is explaining the necessary implications of capitalism. If you agree that capitalism is a system in which the means of production are privately held for profit, then you must agree that capitalism is a system in which the means of production (capital) are rented out to people who labor in exchange for a potion of the wealth that they create through their labor. You must also agree that the owner of the capital so rented obtains this profit without labor. It is the very mechanism by which capitalism proceeds. Profit is fundamentally the fruit of another person's labor. It is the reason why you can purchase a stock, go sit on your couch and watch television, and receive dividend checks in the mail. Now you can talk about why we as a society ought to allow this. What you cannot do is deny that it is what we do.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Not at all. If I own the means of production (grain mill) and mill grain for others I am profiting off of my own labor. I could build a grain mill and sell it and do likewise. Your position assumes some sort of factory setting and even thus I find your idea of labor extremely narrow.

Running a business involves many layers of organizational prowess that not everyone posses such labor is mental but you seem to be dismissing it entirely. The risk of capital is also a labor of the mind but you dismiss that seeing only the labor of others. To you the art of management is not labor, the ability to view the current business field and predict future demands is not labor.

Profit is fundamentally your total income minus one's total costs. If we are going to use definitions here.

Oh please if anyone could profit by simply purchasing stock the world would have nothing more than that over time. Purchasing stock requires a labor of the mind and an ability to expose one's self to risk. I personally invest with a small bit of money of mine and I have picked winners and lowers (more winners than losers thankfully) but if I had not done my investigative due diligence I could have easily lost money.

Perhaps you can come up with a reason why a person who invests wisely shouldn't be able to sit back on their couch and collect dividend checks?

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

If you own a grain mill and personally mill grain, you are operating what is in effect a collective--a socialist enterprise. You are not making a "profit," you are reaping compensation for your own labor. Now, if you own a mill grain and you hire people to work in it for your profit, you are operating a capitalist enterprise.

It is also possible for a person to occupy dual roles. For example, I could own a grain mill that I work in along with others that I hire to work alongside me. In this example, some portion of my proceeds is compensation for my own labor and another portion is attributable to profit (the value of the labor I appropriated from my employees in exchange for renting my capital out to them). I could also operate it in conjunction with others as a (socialist) collective. If I "hire" others to work alongside me, and then I distribute all the proceeds of the enterprise equally among us, that is socialism.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

No I am making a profit as profit is ones total taken in minus ones total costs. This is capitalist as the grain mill is privately owned. (I own it). Nowhere in the definition of capitalism is it stated that any labor has to be supplied outside of those who own the means of production.

You're also injecting terminology with your own definitions. I would not be renting my grain mill out unless that was the contracted agreement. Hiring someone to operate a machine for me is not renting it out as rent implies a temporary transfer of some of the ownership rights.

You continue to assign a value to labor itself. There is no value to labor itself without demand there is no "value of labor" inherent in work being done. Value only exists for those who are demanding it. You may not realize it but you are using Marx's labor theory of value. There is no inherent value to any work. Ever.

In any case you would necessarily seek the destruction of the right to property which is a fundamental right of all people.

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

It actually isn't true that operation of a grain mill by its owner is capitalism, because capitalism is the private ownership of the means of production for profit. And the proceeds that a sole proprietor has earned is not, in fact, profit, but compensation for the full value of his or her labor. Profit is what is earned by renting out capital to other people who labor. Profit does not exist absent that, which is why exploitation is inherent in capitalism. Again, that exploitation exists does not mean it cannot be defended. That is your call. But it does mean that you cannot defend it on the ground that it doesn't contain exploitation. You must explain why the system is beneficial despite the exploitation.

It is true that value only exists by virtue of demand, but it is also true that what people are demanding is socially useful labor. If I can will something into existence, then the value I assign to it is 0. The reason it has a value of 0 is because I don't have to do any work to obtain it. This is why air is free and diamonds are not. Diamonds require labor to extract. It is also why the value of something falls when technology reduces the amount of labor needed to create it.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Sure it is profit. The cost of the grain mill + opportunity cost are the costs associated. If the grain mill cost me 30 dollars and I make 5 dollars for operating it who would call that profit? Not I and not any other economist I know of. You're using a definition of profit that seems to only exist in your mind and that isn't conducive to a discussion between two parties.

Ok finally we are getting someplace. Thankfully you don't believe in inherent value of labor.

Do you also agree that labor can be mental in nature?

[-] 1 points by JanC71 (36) 8 years ago

"Now, if you own a mill grain and you hire people to work in it for your profit, you are operating a capitalist enterprise."

Question: What does 'owning a mill' mean to you in this sentence?

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

It means the society through its government will enforce my ability to exclude others from using it except on my terms and with my permission.

[-] 1 points by JanC71 (36) 8 years ago

Yes, I agree, and that's how it should be.

Explain to me: If I build or buy a machine, why would I not own it? And why should I not enforce this right (through government or private protection agency)?

Saying that I do not own the machine, is saying I didn't own the money that I bought it with, which is saying I didn't own the labor through which I obtained the money.

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

I agree that if you build a machine, you should own it. So would any socialist. But the question of what property people ought to be able to have and how they should be able to use it is a social one. There is no natural law that society's accumulated productive wealth (capital) should be placed in private hands for profit.

What you have to realize is that wealth production is a thoroughly social enterprise. Absent a society, we all would own only that which we could individually create (and maintain possession of to the exclusion of others). As you can imagine, we would all be incredibly poor. So we form societies and organize that society, ideally, to maximize all of our well-beings. And one way to do that is to organize how we create and distribute wealth so that we're all not just building our own shit individually. This raises the question of what is the best way to organize ourselves to create and distribute wealth. It is a social question that ought to be decided democratically.

Some people may believe that placing accumulated productive wealth (capital) in private hands is what should be done, despite the fact that it violates the principle that a person is entitled to the fruit of his labor, and some people may believe that accumulated productive wealth, because of its inherently social nature, should not be turned over to private individuals to profit from.

My only plea is that when somebody is advocating for one or the other, they describe it accurately. Which is a small request.

[-] 1 points by JanC71 (36) 8 years ago

To add to this. I kind of like the approach youtuber Jacob Spinney is taking on this. Keep in mind these are just a few loose ideas:

"I imagine the general rules in voluntary communities will be that the first person who makes use out of that land will be the default owner of it. And if there is more than one person who intends to make use out of the same plot of land, then they could simply hold an auction where the winning bidder gets the right to make use out of the land within 6 months, let’s say, and the proceeds are divvied out among the losing bidders. And if he doesn’t make use out of the land within that 6 month period, then the land becomes up for grabs once again. Practically, who owns what and by what legitimate means do they acquire it would be decided by property claims organizations who would in turn make those decisions based on what that particular community believes about property rights. The more wide sweeping and ridiculous the property claim, the more likely no property claims organization would recognize it, because if it did, then all of that organizations claims would no longer be recognized by any of the other property claims organizations. Because these organizations want their claims to be recognized by everyone else, they have the incentive to cooperate and recognize each others claims, and only make reasonable claims themselves. Individuals would be free to register their claim with any property claims organization they wish, and the more reputable the organization is, the more legitimate their property claim will be in the eyes of everyone else."

Link: http://www.jacobspinney.com/blog/?p=1625

[-] 1 points by JanC71 (36) 8 years ago

"I agree that if you build a machine, you should own it."

To me that settles the matter, especially if I take into account your definition of owning things.

The 2nd paragraph I agree with completely.

"Some people may believe that placing accumulated productive wealth (capital) in private hands is what should be done <...> should not be turned over to private individuals to profit from."

Nothing is being 'placed in' or 'turned over'. Initially everything in the world is unowned.

In a perfect none-coercive world, this accumulation can only happen through labor and trade. An area where things are less clear to me is how you can come to own things like land, and natural resources like oil. I favor the proces of homesteading, but there are a lot of grey area's there. I don't think there's a perfect way of dealing with potential property claim disputes, but some kind of third-party arbitration would be in order.

[-] -1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

Lets be clear. Our goal in OWS is to void all contracts, erase all debt and hit the reset button. All of the wealth is created by society. If you are in society then you owe everything you make to society. Its called the social contract. How about them apples?

[-] 2 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

I didn't know we had a spokesperson who was you. Maybe that is why you are here - it isn't why I am.

Lets be clear - no single person can represent 99% of Americans.

So let me get this straight - your idea is to void all contracts but you suggest that I submit to a social contract that I never signed or agreed to in anyway?

No. I am my own person and I alone own the fruits of my labor. You have no claim to my fruit except the greed you feel for it and make no mistake greed is wanting to take from someone else. You cling to one social contract theory that allows you to rationalize away your greed and lust to use proxy violence on others who disagree.

No. When you initiate force or call for it to be used against others you make the world a better place - you are an oppressor. You are the problem.

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

You are arguing with a troll. Captaindoody is anti-OWS, and probably paid to post here.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

I know this. The troll makes a perfect foil though. The target is not the person with whom I argue - it is those who may initially share the same thoughts and then through course of reading the exchange come to a different conclusion.

[-] 1 points by unended (294) 8 years ago

So you're both trolling. Wonderful.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Not really. My response has a purpose to further discussion. A troll simply attempts to disrupt. If you don't let them disrupt you they have no effect.

A troll turned to a productive purpose however - ahh now there is a win for everyone.

[-] 0 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

If you live in this country, you are part of the social contract. Sorry. By living here you consent to be governed and submit to the will of society, whatever it is. If society wants you to give blowjobs at the prison for your job, thats what you're going to do and like it.

[-] 2 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Show me where I signed this contract. All contracts require consent which I've never given.

All you're doing is repeating the logical fallacy of "appeal to popularity" which in political terminology is called the tyranny of the majority. An action does not become morally right simply because a mob agrees that it is.

If society wants me to give blowjobs at the prison I start executing everyone who attempts to violate my rights. Its easy to be high an mighty when you believe you can force everyone to do what you want - its not so easy when you start actually risking your life. You're the kind of person who would send others out to beat people up for disagreeing with you. You're a tyrant and a coward at heart.

"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is well-armed lamb contesting the vote"

[-] 0 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

You are part of the social contract by being born. You have no choice. You WILL do what you are told or you will die. Period. We're tired of having people like you around hoarding all the money. How would you 'create wealth' if it weren't for society there to buy what you are selling and protect you from roaming barbarians? How would you get to work without society's roads. Shut up and obey.

[-] 2 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

So you're entire position is anti-choice? That there exists no liberty in human action to decide how best to achieve one's own future happiness?

As I said you're a tyrant and a petty one at that. Everyone born must conform to your system or else. How enlightened. With this worldview your entire existence will be miserable as you meet free thinkers who disagree with you and will refuse to put into the little box you created for them.

Roads existed as travel paths long before humans even settled down to the first city.

You even believe societies organize out of force. They organize through mutual self interest of individuals making agreements. Agreements - as in by consent - as in by actual contract - not this imagined social contract.

You'll never be happy because you will never accept that a free people will never "shut up and obey".

[-] 0 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

There is no such thing as free people. There is only society. Are you now trying to say that Society can't decide things against the individual will? How old fashioned.

[-] 1 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

At least TheOnePercent is attempting to achieve some level of understanding. captaindoody is either an agent provocateur or a damned idiot who certainly doesn't speak for anybody but him or herself.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Continue to believe as you like. You won't ever either get the society you like or have a happy life. I wish you a happy life however as it means you will come to accept treating other people with the respect due all of humanity.

[-] 0 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

There has never been a society like you describe and there will never be one. There are no free people. As soon as you form a government you've lost it. Without a government you can't organize to get things done and its all just might makes right. Just accept your yoke and get to work. And on your way home from work, can you drop off some Butter Brickle ice cream and Devil Dogs? You'll pay of course.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

I hate to point it out to you but OWS itself is a non government self-organizing structure. You know the very organization you are in contradicts your basic assumption.

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

OWS does have leaders and a point of view. We're just not stupid enough to identify our leaders so that you can use their faults to tear down the movement. We're also not stupid enough to tell you the whole truth of what we want until it is far too late for you to stop it.

What are you going to do without society? Wall yourself in a compound? What is going to happen when the compound catches fire? You going to expect society to put it out for you?

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Again you assume society only forms via the coercion of force. I'll have my society of peacefully cooperating individual and you can try and repeatedly fail to form your society of enslaved people if you wish.

Don't be surprised when the slaves rebel and kill you though.

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

Your society will be so small and insignificant that it will be very quickly swallowed up by whatever barbarian tribe comes along. Without a MASSIVE military protecting you, Mexico, China, Russia, Cuba and every other country in the world will come in and claim you as part of their social contract, except that you will be second class contractees because you were conquered.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

So your entire position rests that we should act immorally because other people act immorally?

Do you honestly believe that is going to convince many people?

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

I don't have to convince anyone of anything. And morality is entirely subjective based on the individual and context. All I have to do is let them try and form their little cults and watch them come running back when the barbarians come. All you guys are so quick to point out 'reality' except when it doesn't suit you. Just know that when you come running back, you will come running back to serve in the sexual service corps. Prisoners need love too.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

You seem to imagine that people won't use force to protect themselves. I don't know how you come to that conclusion but this Army veteran is not shy about defending himself or his loved ones.

We will see how well you do in this regard when your beloved massive military collapses due to the dollar collapse.

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

Oh come now. Rambo was a movie. He didn't really kill all of those poor oppressed Vietnamese freedom fighters by himself. You will be overwhelmed and die. You might get a few of us but there are plenty more where we came from.

I want to bet on something. I would bet that the majority of people in this country would rather sit on their ass and have other people do the work. If I promise them that it will happen, I'd bet that they would run to me 10000 to 1 before they'd run to you, telling them that they have to work for a living.

[-] 1 points by Febs (824) from Plymouth Meeting, PA 8 years ago

Most of the people would rather sit on their asses. Its the nature of every animal to achieve maximum comfort for minimum expenditure of energy.

That being said I don't mind dying free. I am not asking anyone to run to me. People can do what they want to so long as they respect the rights of others. I won't join you, I never will. And you can die trying to get me to - all you will do is waste your resources and gain none. Good luck with such an efficient system of empire (hint: they all collapse for a reason).

[-] 1 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

Yeah, that's not our goal.

[-] 0 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

Yes it is! We're just not supposed to admit it. But none of the sheople are going to read this so its safe here. You're amongst friends bro.

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

Ok if that isn't what the movement is about, take 2 seconds to glance at the "top comments today." What do all of them have in common?

[-] 1 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

http://occupywallst.org/forum/im-in-the-1-here-is-the-truth/#comment-54603

looselyhuman 25 points 20 hours ago

Fuck Ayn Rand and her sociopathic spawn.

Yep, works for me.

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

So you agree, thats what the movement is about right? Why are you arguing with me? Keep to the message.

[-] 1 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

Oh I'm definitely not arguing with you, because that would be giving you far more credence than you are worth. But you go right ahead and pursue your childish all-or-nothing viewpoints. I don't need to point out who and what you are any further, you're doing a bang up job all by yourself.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

mortgage back securities turned sour and imploded for one reason and only one reason: the government changed the underwriting standards for getting a mortgage, which in turn grew and poisoned the balance sheets for many financial institutions. and guess who in the govy was responsible? those overseeing the HUD, Fannie Mae and Freddie mac, none other than Chris Dodd and Barney blowhard Frank. They cut the underwriting satndards for new mortgages to the bone so anyone with a heart beat could get an oversized mortgage. some on wall street were just as much victims as the borrowers. And Dodd and Frank hide behind accusations that Wall street did it. They even crafted the Dodd Frank bill so prop desks could be killed across wall street. a joke since prop desks had nothing to do with the meltdown. get smart people.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Is this a joke? Erase all debt? Do you even understand how economics works?

[-] 0 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

Yes. I understand economics. What you don't seem to understand is that society creates wealth. I am part of society so I want some of the wealth. NOW.

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 8 years ago

What happens to all of that money in your bank account when you erase the "debt" that is financing your fractional reserve account at your local bank?

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

I'll take all my money out before any of this happens. There isn't much in there anyway. And it isn't my money anyway. Its society's money. Even if I don't get it out in time, society will take care of me.

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 8 years ago

Do you know what fractional reserve means captaindoody?

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

I know that society creates and owns all the wealth. I know that the possession of money should be decided by need and not by old fashioned ideas like merit or hard work. This is the new world. This is the new way. This is OWS. We're going to hit the reset button, confiscate everything and then decide who gets what. You better be a nice little doggy or you won't get anything. Run along now. Go play in the sandbox building your monuments. And hope that we don't come along and kick them down just for the hell of it.

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 8 years ago

Ok you are either deranged or a troll. Run along and play.

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

Look at any of the "top comments today". Take two seconds and read them. Do you not understand what this is about? What is wrong with you? Open your eyes man. I'm not deranged or a troll. I'm just honest.

[-] 1 points by SwedeInNYC (12) 8 years ago

Erase debt makes no sense: effectively saying that individuals should not take responsibility for their own actions of the past. It is very surprising that taking responsibility for ones own finances always seemed to be the responsibility of the "bank" and not the individual. Erasing all debt would remove any incentives, and how do you justify such an action to the individuals who have been paying on time and are servicing their debt? Clearly, that would not be fair.

Whether you like or not, debt is a part of an economic society, even your society.

[-] 1 points by captaindoody (339) from Elizabethville, PA 8 years ago

But you're assuming that everyone who has debt chose to go into it with full knowlege of the contract. What about the guy who went into debt because he needed his appendix out? And I really don't care much about the bank and its money, except that I want it. All of it.

[-] 1 points by SwedeInNYC (12) 8 years ago

Yes, I assume that all individuals must take responsibility for their own actions. If you enter into a contract it is your responsibility to understand your obligations under that contract. I certainly agree that contracts etc can be made easier in this country and be made more understandable.

Debt for health care and debt for real estate or other personal investments are 2 separate issues, and should not be inter-mixed. If you bought property and now cannot afford to live their anymore because you bought too big of a house that cannot afford, as you had assumed that house prices would continue to rise and used your house as an ATM to fund other living expenses, it is your responsibility and no-one elses. Their were far too many people that acquired property during the last 10 years, which did so without planing ahead.

In terms of healthcare, I agree with you that I do not think it is right that someone has to go into debt for healthcare. But the issue of health care is a whole other issue which I feel is not represented by the OWS movement. Perhaps your next protest should be against the entitlement system and healthcare, in particular the insurance companies. The US spends 2 times as much on health care as any other nation in world, yet it does not result in any benefit. In fact, if you look at statistics from WHO, the US is lagging on most indicators to the majority of developed nations. Reform is needed on the entitlement system in the US, in particular health care, as it is among the biggest risk and factor for the American budget deficit and long-term viability as a nation.

If you wish to create change the OWS need to change the political system and stop electing politicians that are unwilling to to make tough decisions. Furthermore, if you did vote in the last election or any election you have no right to protest in OWS. Simply because it is your democratic obligation to vote, it is the one key obligation you have in a democratic society. The argument that their was no candidate to vote for is invalid, as you can always vote blank. Then at least you are participating as a democratic citizen. It would be interesting to see how many within the OWS, or the 99%, that actually did vote in the last election. Based on US election statistics from the Census bureau it was roughly 41% in 2010.

[-] 2 points by imrational (527) 8 years ago

I have no problem with you having your wealth (provided it was obtained in an ethical manner). I merely want you to keep your money out of my government. I don't want you buying legislation to protect you and your company while others don't get the same treatment.

An example was in Las Vegas where they passed an anti-smoking law for restaurants and bars... but left the major casinos exempt, supposedly because they had better air handling equipment. What resulted was small mom & pop casinos, bars and restaurants had smokers leave them to go to the big casinos (which was one of the intents of the biased and bought legislation in the first place).

[-] 2 points by HellForTheCompany (2) 8 years ago

Protesting the wealthy is not in itself a goal. While many wealthy people such as yourself worked hard and were not given special opportunity, the statistical reality is that the economic and legal system in this country allows that an elite minority class continues to dominate the institutions that the majority are forced to participate in, and they define the standards of financial success and what it is to have a "good life."

Specific policy issues that need to be addressed by decision-makers in government that would be supported by the OWS protestors are extensions of the Dodd Frank financial regulatory bill, or the repeal of corporate personhood. Definitely, the movement should focus on the feasible policy changes that can be made now by government in response to a popular uprising.

All people should be able to do what you have done. Some of us went to college because we were told that was what you do to get a good job and succeed in life. Not everyone failed to research whether they would have a career--the economy took a nosedive as a result of financial deregulation and corporate greed, leaving many talented young graduates unable to fulfill their true purpose in society.

This is not the fault of people who have acquired individual wealth. It is, as you say, the policies in this country that need to be revised, so that everyone can have the opportunity to work hard and live a decent and productive life.

[-] 1 points by angelofmercy (225) 8 years ago

Protesting the wealthy is not in itself a goal? Then why is there a piece on CNN and other sites today that is your goal as of today ? http://money.cnn.com/2011/10/10/news/economy/occupy_wall_street_protest/index.htm

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/10/11/wall-street-protesters-plan-millionaires-march-to-tycoons-new-york-city-homes/

If it' not a goal , then why do it ?

If this is not your goal , then why associate with those that do have this goal? Are with the others that think you guys should burn the fed down , along with the exchange ? You really need to look around at your fellow protesters and ask yourself is this what you want to be associated with.

[-] 2 points by RutherfordBHayes (18) from Buckhannon, WV 8 years ago

Unemployment is the biggest problem today. My friend is an aerospace engineer but he is being laid off from the Space Shuttle program. The US has given up on space and now China has more launches per year than the US. His skills would be very valuable in China but here he is worthless.

And by the way I doubt your story is true. There are so many people who come on this forum and say 'I am the one percent'. I think every person of the one percent club has visited this forum , it's kind of like 79% of students think they are in the top 10%. So what is the name of the business that you own?

[-] 1 points by MikeyD (581) from Alameda, CA 8 years ago

Moral of the story? Move to china and make some $$$

[-] 1 points by MrWombat (124) 8 years ago

Read - No human rights and slave labor wages.

Kind of like what's happening here so what would be the difference in at most a few decades from now?

We paid for our cheap goods with our jobs and our lives. I hate to say...this was created by the people.

[-] 1 points by MikeyD (581) from Alameda, CA 8 years ago

It was created by our elected representation. Still waiting for the OccupyDC program that protests the end of the Space Shuttle program.

[-] 1 points by MrWombat (124) 8 years ago

Also about the Space Shuttle Program -

At a certain point we stopped caring about infrastructure. I agree with you there. We should be investing in crucial programs not abandoning them because of "moon rocks".

[-] 1 points by MrWombat (124) 8 years ago

Well...yeah. But when we get down to it all - it all comes to the Power of The Almighty Wallet.

I hate to admit this...but my parents are strong proponents of "free" trade even as my dad and I are unemployed and my mom is supporting a family of four on her wages alone. And she's a nurse working at a rehab center and thank god she chose nursing, because it is one of the few jobs out there that can't possibly be outsourced or replaced by automatons. And she's trying to find a better position right now, but she can't. Because there is an overabundance of supply even in the nursing field and with everybody in "panic mode" and choosing "recession free" degrees and not necessarily any degree that brings a good and talented pool of workers...yeah that supply is just going to keep growing exponentially.

If we keep letting our multinationals rape us all, our industries are screwed. Almost nothing is made in USA anymore, yet we still buy and borrow and depend on problem-hiding stimuluses so that we "can buy more"...from China. Bay Area tech jobs are in danger right now from the South Korean FTA. So our tech industries are next.

Soon we will be leader of nothing with everybody being poor and uneducated...all because there is no more demand in the USA. And these same multinational thieves are now calling -us- "entitled and arrogant wage thieves", even as they demand that we accept pennies an hour labor at long long hours, which reduces the tax revenue and consumption from the bottom percentile even more and clogs up desperately needed jobs.

[-] 1 points by teachthenprosper (10) from Waycross, GA 8 years ago

You make a great point, the successful countries have been concentrating on and building their infrastructure--that's why they are having success.

Our elected officials on the other hand spend, I mean waste, hard earned tax dollars without any retribution, then go and borrow more when they run out of money and wonder why people are angry. They didn't do much to keep the jobs from leaving this country because they were in cahoots with the Corporations who funded their campaigns.

[-] 1 points by MikeyD (581) from Alameda, CA 8 years ago

Globalism is inevitable. We need people in charge who are intelligent enough to get us there without bringing our quality of life down to that of the lowest common denominator (Botswana? or maybe Somalia).

[-] 1 points by MrWombat (124) 8 years ago

If it is inevitable then we need fair trade.

Which requires a complete disposal of our toxic "Fuck America!" Career Politicians bought out by our cancerous "Fuck America!" multinationalists.

[-] 1 points by MikeyD (581) from Alameda, CA 8 years ago

Agreed. Our trade policies with China are ridiculous and benefit nobody but the Multinationals. Don Trump has this spot on. The question people need to be asking themselves is, why are our elected officials selling the American public down the river for the sake of Multinationals that have no real loyalty to any country? The answer: Corruption.

[-] 1 points by MrWombat (124) 8 years ago

We Shall Occupy Wall Street! Amen!

[-] 1 points by lifesprizes (298) 8 years ago

All it takes for evil to prevail is for good men and women to do nothing

[-] 1 points by frankchurch1 (839) from Jersey City, NJ 8 years ago

Once again, because the rich rob from us,.

[-] 1 points by abmebratu (349) from Washington, DC 8 years ago

This movement is not about that my friend. It's about taking what's ours.

[-] 1 points by German (82) 8 years ago

You will never understand what makes the different between the social behavior of human mankind and the social behavior of monkeys. Do you ?

[-] 1 points by bwturner1951 (34) 8 years ago

I, for one, am not protesting against the wealthy so long as their wealth was/is obtained under the laws of the land.

I challenge you to honestly say that government is the problem, when government is the organization that charters corporations, protects their rights and freedoms at home and abroad and pays enormous sums of money to many of these corporations in the form of payments for goods and services. If I may be so bold, I will hazard a guess that what you really meant to say is that some governmental decisions, laws and regulations that you don't agree with are the problem. i.e. the laws and regulations that require you to do things that you would not otherwise do in the course of conducting business or living your life. And there is the crux of the problem. No one wants to abide by laws or follow regulations that they don't like or agree with. But, in a democracy, laws are passed and enacted by our elected representatives and enforced by the agencies of the government that have statutory authority in the specific regulation area. Obviously you know there are competing interests and in our society we value winners above all else. In the context of this dialogue a winner is someone who prevails in getting his/her/its laws and regulations enacted and enforced, respectively. So now we have a happy group that prevails and an unhappy group that not only did not prevail but has to support with their money and time the group that did prevail. I'm sure you know of what I speak. Farm and corporate subsidies. Tax breaks for those who don't really deserve or need them except to obtain more money. Undue protection under the law for acts that are marginally lawful or unlawful.

Special interest groups are rampant and their purpose is to divert as much government money to their cause as they possibly can. I use money in this context as a universal medium of exchange through which they can more easily obtain what they really want, whether it is more money, power, stuff or control. The special interest groups whipsaw our elected officials from one issue to another in their attempt to accomplish their purpose - get more stuff from the government. But, the most attention is given those special interest groups that already have the most money, power and control and who can help those elected officials stay in power themselves. It's a self-perpetuating process that doesn't make for good governance because of a lack of accountability and transparency.

So, I propose that government isn't really the problem but that the abuses of government by the wealthy and powerful is. I'm not suggesting that you do that but certainly there are some that do. Technically, lobbying isn't abuse but let's agree one important presupposition. Lobbyists do not gain access or get the attention of elected officials based on the merit of their proposals and ability to meet their schedules. As a business person, simply put yourself in their place. Wouldn't you prioritize your time around those people and organizations that would allow you to accumulate more wealth and stuff? Please don't think I'm suggesting such a business practice is abuse. But within government, which should be concerned about the health, happiness and welfare (not WELFARE) of everyone, such practices create stress, anger and poverty in many parts of the populace.

I will work side by side with anyone who will attempt to eliminate the corrupt influences on our politicians (as well as eliminate the corrupt politicians) and restore fairness and democracy to our great country.

[-] 1 points by JohnWatson (250) from Nürnberg, BY 8 years ago

I don't think you owe us anything except thinking about this ( http://occupywallst.org/forum/maybe-this-will-get-the-support-of-mainstream-medi/ ) and realize that you are also part of the 99%.

[-] 1 points by JustinKleinrichert (21) from Rochester, IN 8 years ago

You say that you own your own business correct? May I ask what it is that you do?

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

any of you idiots read yesterdays wall street journal? (of course not) well a story in there talks about the results of polling 200 of you morons. here's what they said: 70% of you want wealth redistribution, 58% would advocate violence to get what you want, only 15% of you are unemployed (that stat surprised me) and an overwhelming majority of you voted for Obama, but prob wont vote for him again. in short, the writer concludes that essentially this is a radical left wing movement that has the potential to turn violent. my guess is a violent marxist group wont last long in this country. good luck idiots!

[-] 1 points by Moonrivernyc (4) 8 years ago

YOU SHOULD OCCUPY CAPITAL HILL, NOT WALL STREET!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

YOUR TAX DOLLAR ALL WENT TO FRIVOLOUS LAWYERS AND POLITICIANS AS A DIRECT RESULT OF OBAMA'S POLICY, NOT WALL STREET!!!!!!

READ THIS

Top Income in U.S. is...Gasp!...Wash. D.C. Area

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-10-19/beltway-earnings-make-u-s-capital-richer-than-silicon-valley.html

Federal employees whose compensation averages more than $126,000 and the nation’s greatest concentration of lawyers helped Washington edge out San Jose as the wealthiest U.S. metropolitan area, government data show.

The U.S. capital has swapped top spots with Silicon Valley, according to recent Census Bureau figures, with the typical household in the Washington metro area earning $84,523 last year. The national median income for 2010 was $50,046.

The figures demonstrate how the nation’s political and financial classes are prospering as the economy struggles with unemployment above 9 percent and thousands of Americans protest in the streets against income disparity, said Kevin Zeese, director of Prosperity Agenda, a Baltimore-based advocacy group trying to narrow the divide between rich and poor.

“There’s a gap that’s isolating Washington from the reality of the rest of the country,” Zeese said. “They just get more and more out of touch.”

Total compensation for federal workers, including health care and other benefits, last year averaged $126,369, compared with $122,697 in 2009, according to Bloomberg News calculations of Commerce Department data. There were 170,467 federal employees in the District of Columbia as of June. The Washington area includes the District of Columbia, parts of Northern Virginia, eastern Maryland and eastern West Virginia.

Embracing K Street In recent years Washington has attracted more lobbyists and firms with an interest in the health-care overhaul and financial regulations signed into law by President Barack Obama, according to local business leaders.

“Wall Street has moved to K Street,” said Barbara Lang, president and chief executive officer of the DC Chamber of Commerce, referring to the Washington street that’s home to prominent lobbying firms. “Those two industries clearly have grown in our city.”

Still, household income fell even in Washington by 0.8 percent last year from $85,168. In the San Jose area, home to Cupertino-based Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO) in San Jose, income dropped to $83,944 from $84,483 in 2009.

Median income in both metro areas has been falling since 2008, when it reached a record in each place. The 4.7 percent drop in Silicon Valley during that period was three times larger than the Washington region’s 1.5 percent fall.

‘Shallower Recession’ The flow of federal dollars in and around the nation’s capital helped the region weather the economic slump better than most areas and is contributing to its recovery. The unemployment rate in the Washington metro area in August was 6.1 percent, compared with 10 percent in San Jose, according to Labor Department figures. Nationally, joblessness was 9.1 percent in September for a third straight month.

“The region did experience a shorter, shallower recession than San Jose,” said Sara Kline, a Washington analyst at Moody’s Analytics Inc. in West Chester, Pennsylvania. “The federal government stepped in to take efforts to dampen the recession. It was focused to some extent in the D.C. area as well, given the presence of federal workers there and contractors. That insulated it from more of a downturn.”

Federal government spending for programs excluding Social Security and Medicare in fiscal year 2011, which ended on Sept. 30, rose to $2.38 trillion from $2.3 trillion the previous year.

Lawyer Capital Last year Washington also had the most lawyers per capita in the U.S. compared with the 50 states, with one for every 12 city residents, according to figures from the American Bar Association and the Census Bureau. In New York State the figure was one out of every 123 residents, while in California the ratio was one in 243.

Associate attorneys in the Washington area who have worked between one and eight years had a median salary of $186,250, compared with the national median for their peers of $123,521, according to a survey by the Washington-based National Association for Law Placement.

[-] 1 points by OurTimes2011 (377) from Arlington, VA 8 years ago

If this movement is truly successful, it will represent a major change in the economic and political systems of the US.

One major factor in keeping the population under control are the artificial class and race barriers that have been erected by the ruling class. (Howard Zinn's A Peoples History of the US has the best explanation of this.) By the way, I include union leadership in the 1% ruling class.

OWS tries to be a classless, raceless movement. This frightens the ruling class to no end.

Thus, one of their major social control mechanisms has failed.

To counter this in the short term, they have encouraged hatemongers to post on this forum, and to express sympathy with OWS. The racist right has been insistent on denying Obama any cooperation. These forces of hate have felt threatened since Obama's election, anyway, and they sense the power of this movement. Without an artificial racial and economic divide, these groups would have no reason to exist.

Many poor whites make up the bulk of these hate groups, but others, specifically immigrants (East Indians, Russians, etc.), belong, too. The poor whites have been more negatively impacted by the financial crisis than most, so the risk to the ruling class is two fold:

Hatemongers might just wake up and realize they have been played by the 1%, and actually join the movement. This would be a nightmare for the ruling class.

Many of the exploited poor white folks who are hate group members or sympathizers are also members of unions and the police/armed forces. Without a reason to protect the 1%, the 1% would suddenly become quite vulnerable physically.

If the ruling class can paint this movement as racist and antisemitic, they can lower the attractiveness of OWS to the bulk of Americans, who believe in fair play above all else.

I suggest occupiers remain peaceful and positive.

[-] 0 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

everything in that poll cited by the WSJ is consistent with all the ramblings ive been reading by you OWS idiots in this and other websites. the common themes are the same: redistribute wealth, because you have no stuff so you want our (1%) stuff; raise taxes on anyone whos' successful and not a loser like you (plural), overthrow wall street, overthrow the gov if they wont listen, use voilence if we have to, and so on. idiots, go away your 15 minutes are up, so get out of the park, stop crapping on and near one another, make goals for yourselves and try to be productive members of society, not whining little a-holes. in short, shutup, go away and get a life!

[-] 1 points by OurTimes2011 (377) from Arlington, VA 8 years ago

You are not a member of the 1%. Perhaps you want to be, perhaps you are getting paid to spam the forum, who knows. I and the other OWS supporters on the Forum don't really care. As with FDR, we welcome your hatred. This Forum is about freedom of speech. We practice what we preach, which means we have to put up with trolls. At some point soon you will be forced to face who and what you are. Why don't you try responding to the facts outlined above?

Additional flames cheerfully ignored.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

And which facts above might you be referring to? be specific please (if thats possible for you)

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

you have no idea who i am or what % i belong to.

[-] 1 points by OurTimes2011 (377) from Arlington, VA 8 years ago

Hahahahaha. Testy, aren't we? Got ya!

You don't have as much anonymity as you think.

Let me help you out.

You are not a member of the 1%. You think you are, you wanna be, but you are not.

The facts I refer to are these: One major factor in keeping the population under control are the artificial class and race barriers that have been erected by the ruling class.

FCI.

[-] 1 points by Kulafarmer (82) from Kula, HI 8 years ago

Excellent, was trying to have a discussion about something similar earlier, some people just cant get it through their head that just because someone is wealthy it isnt right to make them pay more, dont understand the wealth redistribution thing many of these people have, i havent got a lot but work my ass off for what i do have and ill ne damned if id give it away to cover someones shortcomings, not the amrrican way

[-] 1 points by MonetizingDiscontent (1257) 8 years ago

Millionaires are not the top 1% people do the math. This guy is probably just a millionaire 99%er. A well to do one, but WELL within the 99%. Thats for sure.

You paid your taxes. The 1% dont. Taxes are for slaves. You just happen to be a very productive one. Welcome to the 99%

[-] 1 points by LoTek (53) 8 years ago

Wealthy+Government=Equally Complicit+(public ignorance+apathy)=Financial Breakdown.

Just simple math, but I'm sure you identified that with your Masters training.

Daddy sucked, I get that too. Your lack of empathy is YOUR problem, not his, or ours for that fact. Quit whining. You're just as culpable for breaking moral and social contract for ignoring, and now, actively disdaining the problems at hand.

[-] 1 points by DragonflyT (7) 8 years ago

ok..but unless your portfolio resembles a "Warren Buffet" portfolio, you are the 99%. Not everyone rising with this movement is against the rich, not everyone in this movement views capitalism as evil. The 1% don't pay taxes and have hundreds of billions, people are underestimating how much the 1% have...sorry but millionaire is not in the club.

[-] 1 points by Meeky (186) from Los Angeles, CA 8 years ago

Render unto Caesar!

[-] 1 points by bocon007 (1) 8 years ago

Again, we hear from one of the Randian supermen. No one ever gave this guy a break. No one ever gave him a handout. No one ever contributed to his education or good health or the city or town in which he lived. No one ever even offered him a pat on the back.

To hear him describe it, he was born from sea foam onto a deserted island and managed to feed and educate himself entirely on his own until he blossomed into the successful business man he is today. He owes no one a thing. To himself and only himself does he owe allegiance.

He doesn't understand that what he tells himself to justify the 1% is a myth.

[-] 1 points by kookla (79) 8 years ago

In your case what puts you in the 1% is you complete lack of cognition about what is driving this protest. Instead like the rest of the greedy 1% all you can focus on is what someone wants to take from you. Much like a dog who has 6 bones, they can't enjoy even one because he is constantly growling snarling and snapping at any dog that might come close to chew on one of them. You are owned by your things, and have lost your humanity in the process.

[-] 1 points by ryanm (33) from Wichita, KS 8 years ago

You may have started your business on your own, but you got to be part of the 1% by standing on other people's backs and pushing their faces in the mud.

[-] 1 points by captaindola (1) 8 years ago

Entrepreneurs are part of what has made this nation great. They are also part of the 1%. I agree that all Americans should help rebuild our country-but I don't think that the 1% are at fault for our nation's demise. We are all collectively at fault. Many of us borrowed more money then we should have, many of us bought what was sold to us and didn't question whether we needed that new electronic shown in the tv commercial. 1% of the people DID not elect George Bush twice. It takes more votes than that. Yes, there is terrible corruption in our government today and yes, corporations and individuals have used that to their own advantage. But we must also take responsibility for our own actions or lack their of. Our ignorance has been their bliss.

[-] 1 points by Avoice (81) 8 years ago

You don't owe me anything. Unfortunately, not all 1% share your core values. Rising tuition costs represent what is wrong with some corporate practices. Profits drive education. Whether it's tuition, college loans or even the lucrative business of cornering the bookstore market maximizing profits in the key ingredient. Presidents of public and private institutions have reaped the financial benefits of increased college costs.

[-] 1 points by commonsense11 (195) 8 years ago

The 1% are way to busy to comment on this forum. Get over yourself you are not who you claim to be.

[-] 1 points by 5thelement (27) 8 years ago

Credit to you for making something of yourself but this is bigger than your grasp. In the massive pyrimid structure that is society we're all just playing a part/role. The system(s) is/are not designed for everyone to benefit from it, you've only been fooled into thinking that everyone can. Only a few truly benefit from it and inorder for that to happen others has to suffer because the system is flawed. Classism, racism and countless other "issues" and lies that the media hypes up all plays a part, their purpose is to divide. If you divide people that makes it easier to control them. This is part of what its about. Think about it!

[-] 1 points by YourSoDumb (42) 8 years ago

Why don't all you whiners go knocking on Oprah's door. If it hadn't been for her infatuation with Barack Obama and his idiotic policies, the man and his staff wouldn't be ruining this country right now. Why don't all you whiners go knocking on Bernanke's door? He is the one running the Federal Reserve and spending unknown amounts of taxpayer dollars on who knows what. I could name quite a few people that ALL YOU WHINERS could go see about your issues. I would send you to see Franklin D. Roosevelt, but he is long gone.

[-] 1 points by Patron32 (79) 8 years ago

You make some valid points, and I feel that your perspective is sincere. The fact is that yes, a fortunate man, even one as hard working as yourself, should do what he can to look after those who for whatever reason are not as industrious, strong, or enjoy the fruits of as much integrity as you or I have. It is the moral imperative. If principles are dictated by what we do for others, not only ourselves, then we are on the right path are we not? There is more to think about than our own small little worlds, because everything in them, is dependent on something or someone else. Cheers, and thanks for sharing.

http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/94223

[-] 1 points by ThinMan2 (46) 8 years ago

I would strongly encourage you to enlist the services of a licensed home inspector, plumber and/or electrician to advise you accordingly. Best wishes with your endeavors!

[-] 1 points by beautifulworld (23136) 8 years ago

It is very arrogant of you to think that anyone is asking you to pay for their "failed decisions." If someone loses their job or house that doesn't mean they made "failed decisions." What the 99 percent want is for the 1 percent to pay their fair share of taxes, not to mention, fair wages to their employees.

[-] 1 points by xyzxyz (0) 8 years ago

I don't want to work, I just want the gov to steal from you. This is a democracy and we have the numbers to force the government to take all the money you worked so hard for. I want free food, housing, cars, college, vacations, ski trips, snowmobiles, $10K a week spending money and I don't want to do anything other than vote for democrats.

[-] 1 points by StopWhining (5) 8 years ago

The top 1% who you are all demonizing pay more than the bottom 90% in taxes every year. To pay for roads, schools, cops etc... If you succeed in "bringing them down" you will ruin this nation that THEY built. So what if they make more money than you. There is always someone richer and someone poorer. Just like there is always someone fatter or skinnier than you. The world is not fair. In fact, if you want to make it fair, Everyone would pay the same % in taxes right? That is the definition of fair.

[-] 1 points by StopWhining (5) 8 years ago

I agree with this post. Get off your ass and go make something of yourself. People that work hard are entitled to as much money as they earn. Money doesn't grow on trees! People bought the services or goods this guy produces and he got rich because enough people decided they wanted to give their money to his company to have what he offered. Now that he is rich all of a sudden it is his fault that everyone else is not? The OWS sound like a bunch of whiny little kids complaining. What is your goal with this whole thing? I have heard that you are upset over the government bailouts of big banks and corporations. Well it was the Democratic president that you all elected that pushed for those bailouts! I agree, lets get rid of OBAMA!

I have heard you are upset because you have student loans and no jobs. Who forced you to go to college? Who forced your hand to sign the loan agreement? Did you even read it? These banks offered you the money to go to college and not pay a nickel for 4 years and your answer is to bash them? If you wanted to go to college but the student loan program didn't exist, you would not have gone at all!!!! Wake up and take a look at what you are saying. I went through a phase when I got out of college where I was slinging shoes at a shoe store and paying for my loans. Thinking it was unfair the whole time, guess what, I still owed the money when I was done griping!

I do agree with a lot of your complaints about greed. What do you suggest we do to change it?

[-] 1 points by SmallBizGuy (378) from Savannah, GA 8 years ago

No you do not owe me (or anyone else) anything. If I want your money, I will sell you some of my products or services, and we will both be happy. If everyone was rich......I would have a huge customer base to help me get rich too. Hey!....I love you rich guys.

[-] 1 points by oldtimer (3) 8 years ago

No, I believe that the rich should stay rich. But I also believe that they should not corrupt the political system to lower their tax rates at the expense of the poor. No one gets rich by himself -- think of all the people who helped you. Your comment on college tuitions is very telling -- you believe that if you are poor it's your fault, so you deserve to starve.

[-] 1 points by Riott (44) 8 years ago

Perhaps some here are against the 1% it's more of a mindset. My position is I'm not against you, your wealth, or any other person who has a good living. I'm against a government that's corrupted and bends to the will of money over it's people. I'm tired of the government bending rules and bailing out corporations who then get millions in kick backs while we the 99% pay for it. I'm tired of them getting money and tax breaks while the Americans pay their fair share. I'm tired of the greed. I'm tired of credit and insurance companies walking over us like ants. Based off what you said, theonepercent, your interests are inline with majority of ours, you are the 99%.

[-] 1 points by smarzie (62) from Portsmouth, OH 8 years ago

We don't hate rich people. We just want some accountability and we want corporate money out of politics. We want the one percent to pay their fair share. We realize the government is just as guilty as Wall Street for creating this mess, but if you live in society, then yes, you owe something back to it. And I disagree with the line about houses people "clearly" couldn't afford. No, that was not clear, the loaners made sure of that. And there are no job markets for vitually any kind of work right now. I'm certainly not begrudging your success, but what do you think about more and more people falling into poverty? Did everyone suddenly decide to get together one day and make really bad decisions all at once? No. This is not the people's fault. It's not hard to see what's happening in this country. It's get easier for the rich elite, the middle class disappears, and the poor grow exponentially in numbers. And Wall Street and the politicans all have a hand in it.

[-] 1 points by alwayzabull (228) 8 years ago

You are an ignorant man.

[-] 1 points by Elysium22 (95) 8 years ago

Brother dont worry As i think this movement should begin to accept your kind a bit more.The real criminals are the federal reserve the International banks that have robbed the nation.And widened the gap between US and you financially.Speak your voice let your opinions be heard in the assemblies and become part of the movement

[-] 1 points by frankieshoes1 (2) 8 years ago

everyone works hard but that does not mean everyone will be as successful as you. you may have forgotten that timing,circumstance,economic climate and just good luck got you there. and just to clarify, it's the people who create money from nothing that give the wealthy a bad name. if you create wealth from nothing then the people who actually work and produce something foot the bill for ALL of your wealth same as a ponzi scheme. There is no such thing as unlimited wealth -- it has to come from somewhere. limited resources-limited wealth. The Fed creates money from thin air and the only backing is the sweat of workers in this country. Why shouldn't these people pay a proportionate sum in taxes. they have basically swindled it -- easy come easy go.

[-] 1 points by frankieshoes1 (2) 8 years ago

everyone works hard but that does not mean everyone will be as successful as you. you may have forgotten that timing,circumstance,economic climate and just good luck got you there. and just to clarify, it's the people who create money from nothing that give the wealthy a bad name. if you create wealth from nothing then the people who actually work and produce something foot the bill for ALL of your wealth same as a ponzi scheme. There is no such thing as unlimited wealth -- it has to come from somewhere. limited resources-limited wealth. The Fed creates money from thin air and the only backing is the sweat of workers in this country. Why shouldn't these people pay a proportionate sum in taxes. they have basically swindled it -- easy come easy go.

[-] 1 points by polfilmblog (1) 8 years ago

Is this a joke?

"How about focusing your sights on the real root of the problems with our country - the government itself."

The government itself "coddles" you, moron. It's your bought and paid for crony government you yourself are complaining about (seek therapy). It's pretty much beyond debate.

You didn't get rich by yourself. You rely on our laws, infrastructure and the labor and the organization of our society. You damned well should pay more, and if we get some actual representation wrested from the likes of you and your class, then you will undoubtedly will pay more for your lavish life. Or else go to some other country. You rich exploiters have no loyalty beyond your own personal circles.

[-] 1 points by mindhawk (175) from Jefferson City, MO 8 years ago

Actually, I was in the middle of my degree when Bush got elected and the economy tanked but for real estate and the military (breaking international law of course). So it was, in my opinion, a bait and switch.

The government is controlled by business interests at this point, so when you say the government is the problem, you are talking about a puppet, not the puppeteer.

The collapse of the stock market in 2008 was not caused by students being lazy and making unreasonable demands, it was caused by very wealthy informed people who pump and dumped the entire economy, and they knew they were doing it.

So now there are more jobs than people, more people graduating from school than new jobs being created, and even when I did get a job it was for a lot less than I ever expected, there are no bonuses and I am treated as expendible because there is a line of people for my job, and I am a linux system administrator.

So I was told by U.S. News and World Report in high school that I would be able to make 35k a year upon graduating with my degree! And 15 years later I had to move to a major metropolitan area for more opportunities and guess what, with 10 years experience I'm making less than 50k a year, which even Bill Orreilly(who is usually delusional, but even a blind hog finds an acorn once in a while) says is poor.

I reject this social contract. It is unjust, I was lied to, and have been lied to, and am being lied to. I was unemployed for a year and couldn't take a girl out on a date. During that time I wrote prolifically, but no one I mailed my work to even considered it because they are flooded with unemployed people spending their time writing.

As for you, I don't know how you got your money, so maybe you didn't build another chain restaurant or box store that is a blight on the neighborhood, maybe you didn't start an exploitative cash for gold or paycheck loan store, maybe you aren't clear cutting forests and destroying mountains for more pollutants to put into the air, maybe you are building solar panels and wind turbines.

Even if you aren't one of the criminals selling out this country for our %'s, the country needs help and who can afford the sacrifice? It isn't me.

Sounds like it's you though. So you're country needs you and you post this condescending message calling everybody lazy? Claiming you have never blamed anyone(yeah right!) Blaming the government that is not controlled at all by the people, with some sob story that is meant to really show how you are so much better than us because you were able to work your way out of a condition that was just like ours(even though the economy hadn't been on the brink of collapse every single day of your adult life.)

For these and other reasons, my response to you could be summarized as such: Get Your Head Out Of Your Ass

[-] 1 points by medievalambient (8) 8 years ago

The intelligent ones here know it's not about you giving away your money. It's about dealing with the corrupt government. America IS NO LONGER FREE, and we must change that. We must tear down this destructive government, just like it says in the Declaration of Independence. It's time for a revolution. If people are smart, they know that this isn't about you. The government is to blame. They've ruined this country. I'm tired of being bossed around by people who are supposedly equal to me. The only government that makes sense is NO GOVERNMENT. Anything less is unnecessary control over free human beings. We should DESTROY THE US GOVERNMENT BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY.

[-] 1 points by medievalambient (8) 8 years ago

The intelligent ones here know it's not about you giving away your money. It's about dealing with the corrupt government. America IS NO LONGER FREE, and we must change that. We must tear down this destructive government, just like it says in the Declaration of Independence. It's time for a revolution. If people are smart, they know that this isn't about you. The government is to blame. They've ruined this country. I'm tired of being bossed around by people who are supposedly equal to me. The only government that makes sense is NO GOVERNMENT. Anything less is unnecessary control over free human beings. We should DESTROY THE US GOVERNMENT BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY.

[-] 1 points by OWSNewPartyTakeNY2012 (195) 8 years ago

There are a lot of trolls with elaborate stories on this site, the structure is becoming predictable. The two reasons I don't believe your story are 1. its pretty cliche 2. it pretty much backs the same old corporatist B.S. they've been spouting at us for years. Triumphant will/ pay no attention to the man/ greed is good/ quit asking for handouts you dirty hippies/ cut taxes. You think we haven't heard this stuff before.

[-] 1 points by junglylion (55) 8 years ago

believing is believing, why believing must require a reasonable reason?

we are all attached together. can you survive without the 99%?

you cannot...

so, you will be despised to be rich when most are still very poor but you are reluctant to give...

so, they will not support your survive anymore....the 1% will not exist without the support of the 99%

for no reason, the 1% should help the 99%...They just should do this, or else, they will not allow to exist...

[-] 1 points by AdaMadMan (5) from Ada, OK 8 years ago

1 %, I personally do not believe you owe anything to anyone.... But there are others in the 1% who are crooks and criminals and should be brought to justice. (Aka The Federal Reserve.) Those of you who are rich of your own means good f'n job.

[-] 1 points by ComplexMissy (291) 8 years ago

I do think that some of the people who are arguing for this cause are missing some points. I hope everyone will watch this video, it expains a lot: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PNRVRbpJMP0

[-] 1 points by kimmid (27) 8 years ago

If you really are in the top 1%, you should pay WAY more than what most people earn in a year because that's probably what you earn in a day! I have NO problem with capitalism, but I DO have a problem with gluttony. You say you worked hard and accomplished the American dream--- GREAT for you. Most of us have no problem with that! The problem comes when greed at the top leaves nothing for the people who help you every day to BE the top 1%. Example-- Tyson Chicken didn't want to pay their factory workers a raise, so they just imported workers from Somalia who would work for next to nothing. This is blatantly wrong! Companies cannot just start importing workers from poor countries just so they don't have to pay a fair wage! It's atrocious! Companies aren't paying out dividends to shareholders, they just give themselves bonuses and huge salaries! Capitalism is fine, but the gluttony has to end!!!

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

any of you idiots read yesterdays wall street journal? (of course not) well a story in there talks about the results of polling 200 of you morons. here's what they said: 70% of you want wealth redistribution, 58% would advocate violence to get what you want, only 15% of you are unemployed (that stat surprised me) and an overwhelming majority of you voted for Obama, but prob wont vote for him again. in short, the writer concludes that essentially this is a radical left wing movement that has the potential to turn violent. my guess is a violent marxist group wont last long in this country. good luck idiots!

[-] 1 points by kimmid (27) 8 years ago

1 points

[-] 1 points by Couchboy (8) 8 years ago

"Goldman Sachs lost money on just one trading day in the first quarter, according to a securities filing on Tuesday. 5/10/11"

Hey 1%-er. explain this one..... still believe wall street isn't cheating. You're on the losing end of those stock trades pal

[-] 1 points by soapman (2) from Mocksville, NC 8 years ago

This Country needs to have a more equitable system. It needs to start in washington who is controled by big money. To understand how money really works in this World you have to dig deeper to find the truth. It was arranged back after World War 2. Our Country has allowed it to get out of hand and not listen to the warnings before the damage. What has happen in this Country and thru out the world could have all been prevented. I remember back about 20 years ago that Company CEO's made average of $600,000-$800,000 a year to run a Company. Lower Management made around $80,000-$100,000 a year. I made $55,000 last year and I lived well. What does a CEO today that makes 50 million dollars, bonus, stocks, etc do with that much money. He does not turn around and put his money back into the Company to become a Job Creator. Profits provide that, but as long as Mr CEO keeps cost down and profits high, he will get another 5 million dollars added to his salary, more bonus, and stocks and on and on. The common man in that same company gets nothing. I have to pay in a lot each in taxes. 38% of what I make goes to taxes. Don't know how much I spend just on Sales Tax ( 6.75%). Our current Tax system needs to be dumped and all loop holes terminated. Everybody pays the same % in tax. More money you make the more you will pay. Works in England and they have a national Health plan, and free college and education that everybody in their Country helps pay for. Our Country is all about how much money you make and what you own. It has come to the time in our history to make big changes and everybody take a big bite out of the shit sandwich and start pulling our Country back together and go into a new fresh direction or we will be in a real war of the classes in this Country. Have you ever wondered why we are not mentioned in the predictions of events to happen in the world. Maybe we destroy ourselfs and not part of the end.

[-] 1 points by kimmid (27) 8 years ago

If you really are in the top 1%, you should pay WAY more than what most people earn in a year because that's probably what you earn in a day! I have NO problem with capitalism, but I DO have a problem with gluttony. You say you worked hard and accomplished the American dream--- GREAT for you. Most of us have no problem with that! The problem comes when greed at the top leaves nothing for the people who help you every day to BE the top 1%. Example-- Tyson Chicken didn't want to pay their factory workers a raise, so they just imported workers from Somalia who would work for next to nothing. This is blatantly wrong! Companies cannot just start importing workers from poor countries just so they don't have to pay a fair wage! It's atrocious! Companies aren't paying out dividends to shareholders, they just give themselves bonuses and huge salaries! Capitalism is fine, but the gluttony has to end!!! .

[-] 1 points by strawberryfields00 (7) from Fremont, CA 8 years ago

All the money you made, you made from the 99% paying for your product. They made you what you are. Is is so bad to live like a prince instead of a king for the sake of the people who made your business what it is?

[-] 1 points by peconicken (2) 8 years ago

The wealthy tell their pawns (the politicians) what to do so that the playing field favors the wealthy. We don't want anything you worked hard for, just pay your fair share and stop contributing money to politicians in order to stack the deck in your favor. Bottomline, the politicians carry the most fault because they are elected to represent all CITIZENS equally, which they don't do. The entire political system needs to be revamped (starting with firing every incumbent politician), and the regulations favoring the almighty coprorations need to be removed; a true democracy and a true free market need to be reestablished.

[-] 1 points by peconicken (2) 8 years ago

The wealthy tell their pawns (the politicians) what to do so that the playing field favors the wealthy. We don't want anything you worked hard for, just pay your fair share and stop contributing money to politicians in order to stack the deck in your favor. Bottomline, the politicians carry the most fault because they are elected to represent all CITIZENS equally, which they don't do. The entire political system needs to be revamped (starting with firing every incumbent politician), and the regulations favoring the almighty coprorations need to be removed; a true democracy and a true free market need to be reestablished.

[-] 1 points by Evolution101 (1) from Okeechobee, FL 8 years ago

Anyone who thinks they are self-made is decieved. I bet your momma handed you something during her lifetime. You the1% are guilty of corrupting the government system you love to blame.You the 1% have created the system by which equality in law is non existant; and you've corrupted the media to cover up your crimes and brainwash the masses with your materialist propaganda. I could go on but you don't want the truth; you just want to justify your crimes. I didn't buy a house I couldn't afford, our pay 1000,000 for a colledge degree for the record. But I understand that when the people do not assert control over people like you; then some of the 1% wealthy will pervert and corrupt the law; in order to take unequal advantage of others first causing the misery; then profiting from it.

[-] 1 points by concord1775 (12) 8 years ago

I love Elizabeth Warren and Brooksley Born.

[-] 1 points by rva (4) 8 years ago

You assume that Free Market Capitalism is alive and well. I've got news for you: FREE MARKET CAPITALISM IS DEAD. It has been killed by a growing oligarchy that wants to rule not just this country but the world. It has been replaced by corporate socialism.

The 99% are not ready to be reduced to a slave class on par with the sweat shop workers of the third world.

This society belongs to ALL of us and if we do not begin thinking of society as a whole EVERYONE (even the top 1%) will eventually be destroyed by this machine.

[-] 1 points by teachthenprosper (10) from Waycross, GA 8 years ago

well said

[-] 1 points by TheRealCitizensUnited (33) 8 years ago

I guess our forefathers were not grown ups then you shame them with an attitude of take what is given to you and never have the heart or courage to even attempt to make things better in an unjust situation. Of course, everyone called them rebel rousers and said they would never succeed because they were looking at achieving too much!! I am sorry that you were never able or willing (whichever it is) to further your education because then you might understand more about where America came from and why the right to protest was considered important enough to be in the constitution. It is sad that a little inconvenience in your life gives you such a give up victim attitude!! I truly feel sorry for you as a fellow American. Also, the ridiculous imbalance of wealth and power that currently exists in America IS a recent phenomenon. I have watched it develop during my own lifetime and predicted this movement 15 years ago. When you discuss 66% home ownership, how many of these homes are already paid off or have ridiculously low mortgage payments because they were bought or owned or handed down by the boomers during more equitable times, and then how many of these homes are bought and owned by the youth of today? These kids are trying to live on what I made at their age 30 flippin years ago waitressing and gas was 50 cents a gallon. (If they can get a job). If they have any work history at all, they are considered over qualified by fast food companies) The blue collar jobs are already gone. This is at a time when corporations are sitting on the most tremendous pile of cash in American history. Do you not look at the percentages of unemployment for the youth who are then spending tens of thousands in student loans to better themselves instead of giving up and laying on the couch, then being told while they are doing it that there will be no jobs for them when they are done. What the hell did everyone expect they would do? They are American! You never should have taught them American history and ideals if you really just wanted them to go away, stay on the couch and shut up!! This is THEIR future and I hope they STAND STRONG, STAY PROUD, KNOW THEY ARE RIGHT, IGNORE THE NAYSAYERS AND THE 1% AND PERSEVERE!! Remember, time spent arguing with the naysayers and the 1% is time that can be vested toward bringing others to your movement. Take it from an elder, you will never convince the ignorant and the cold hearted of anything right and just. It makes them too uncomfortable with themselves!! Just keep pushing forward!!!!

[-] 1 points by thejunkie (50) 8 years ago

Funny American

  1. Starts using Drug.
  2. Enjoys Drug.
  3. Drug leads to suffering.
  4. Cries about suffering.
  5. Try to lower drug prices.
  6. Elect new drug dealers.
  7. Continue using drug.
  8. Enjoy drug.
  9. Drug leads to suffering.
  10. Blames drug dealer
  11. Dies from drug.
  12. Drug dealer dies from lack of funny american.
  13. America dies from lack of funny american and drug dealer.
  14. One funny american left makes Hollywood movie and watches it alone.
[-] 1 points by radical22 (113) 8 years ago

If you worked hard and earned your money LEGITIMATELY then you do not owe anyone anything. If you stole it, like the crooked wall street bonus pools, then we have a big problem.

[-] 1 points by ThirdParty2012 (52) 8 years ago

The issue that you missed, and in my mind most important, is our government allowing foreign companies to exploit our markets, and exploit our laws. Read about the poor bastards with bad chinese drywall who can't sue the manufacturer in china, only the US distributor. So operate from china, you get favored trade status, you get cheap labor who expect no benefits, and have no legal liabilities.. the perfect storm to crush our manufacturing sector.

[-] 1 points by daleziemianski (15) from Lancaster, OH 8 years ago

I, being a member of OWS, personally don't think you owe us anything and personally I don't care whether you give us anything or not. Keep it, man. You earned it. Do what you want with it.

What we want is for corporations to not be permitted to manipulate our government into passing laws. Laws should be made by the majority - by the people. Bribery should not be permitted in ANY form. Corporations who financially back candidates do so with the intention of getting favors once their candidate is in office. That's not Democracy - that's Fascism. That's bribery.

That's all we want.

The lamestream media portrays us as beggars because that's what the corporations who sponsor them want you to think of us.

YES people are mad that they can't find a job, or that they lost their job because their jobs went to Mexico, and because in order to get an education they have to already have money. But their situation is the result of decisions made in Washington that were NOT made by the citizens of this country.

Did YOU vote to impose an unconstitutional tax on wages? Did YOU vote to have trillions of dollars go straight to the banks? I don't recall meeting anyone who did that. I don't believe the majority of the citizens of the US did that either.

Keep your cash - spend it on whatever you like.

We just want money OUT of the decision making process in our government. We believe that once the decision-making power returns to the people, and not to those who bribe the people we elect, laws that created the situations we're not happy with will be changed, and children won't be starving in our own country.

Hope that's OK with you :-)

[-] 1 points by teachthenprosper (10) from Waycross, GA 8 years ago

When Reagan fired the air traffic controllers, it was one definitive moment of government arrogance riddled with the attitude---"we don't work for you anyone."

Today 25 years later, it is natural for the government and politicians to walk around with this 'entitlement' to justify and defend what they do--they think the people elected them. No one votes for corruption except the people who stand to gain something from it. It is beyond me why lobbyists and Corporations can legally contribute to a campaign to begin with.

This has to change, because in my mind my vote doesn't even count anymore. One suggestion was to put yourself on the ballot in 2012. If most people did this, there would not be, could not be a majority. Then maybe a whole new set of candidates would arise. I wouldn't vote for ANYONE campaigning now, as they are all cut from the same cloth.

[-] 1 points by cskarlupka (13) from Annapolis, MD 8 years ago

TheOnePercent, IQ143, et al.

Would you be interested in discussing realistic solutions that are implementable that focus on the real issues, the government itself? Possible and probable how tos?

While I was initially going to address TheOnePercent's inquiries, I realized you, I and others could mutually benefit from a progressive solutions-based conversation.

Be well and thrive.

[-] 1 points by tenknots (1) 8 years ago

I agree, but I don't paint the government as the biggest problem Wall Street greed is. People who desire to make money without providing a good or service to anyone. People who make up new ways to make money that does not add to the good of anyone but themselves or their company. People who take huge risks with other people's money yet have little or no risk themselves.

Government watchdogs need to do their job and laws need to - severely - punish those who break the public trust.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

government watchdogs? get real. The financial crisis was NOT caused by wall street. Wall street was a victim. the cause stemmed from inept govy leaders, like Dodd and Frank, who mandated that fannie, freddie, and FHA underwrite mortgages to buyers with incomes at 80% levels to the median income. in other words, to those who couldnt afford the house they were buying and the mortgage they were taking. this perverse force allowed bad mortgages to proliferate and infect balance sheets of many unsuspecting institutions, including the banks themselves. i know i work on wall street. All this followed the flawed left-wing thinking that everyone should own a house, regardless if they could afford one. The same inept politicians that caused the crash devised silly new regulations that attacked the banks (Dodd Frank bill). Hey folks, if you want to go after the bad guys and occcupy something, then please go occupy Washington, DC.

[-] 1 points by tritone (36) 8 years ago

You live in America. You have benefited by living here. Your success is founded on all that has been available to you by living here. You rail against the gov't. Our American system of gov't is of, by and for the people. If you don't like it, you can move. The protesters are practicing what is afforded to them by the Constitution. How about going to Norway where there is a 50% tax rate on incomes above $124,000. They also have no homeless, national healthcare, and more entrepreneurs per capita than the United States. The wealthy there may not all be crazy about the tax rate but many or most see it as an investment in their country. Maybe they're more patriotic than the greedy wealthy of America? There are many other Americans who also have grown up in tough circumstances, have worked hard but maybe didn't have things fall so favorably for them as you have. You think they should lose their homes and starve because they failed to have your luck? What about those who lost their homes and/or home because of a major health issue like cancer or an accident? What, tough luck, screw them? Interesting article on Norway and their socialist system: http://www.inc.com/magazine/20110201/in-norway-start-ups-say-ja-to-socialism_pagen_3.html

[-] 1 points by justaltmedia (1) from St Andrews, NS 8 years ago

Hi! I'm a small businessman and an Afghan War vet. I don't believe that you owe me anything, butI believe that my children are facing a real crisis. Having worked within government I can assure you that there are very clear links between government officials, big business and policy. That is an unacceptable mix.

My concern is based on my children. They simply will not have the opportunity to advance in life (financially or otherwise) if the plutocracy continues or deepens. I am financially stable, but not well connected,

[-] 1 points by naturesmeds (25) 8 years ago

TheOnePercent might have more assets than I, but he is not even close to being in the top 1%. - Next!

[-] 1 points by Restorefreedomtoall1776 (272) from Bayonne, NJ 8 years ago

You are really clueless, but I do believe there is hope for u if u try to educate yourself about the realities around u. Get real and join the movement!

[-] 1 points by takeTsquare (77) 8 years ago

Hello I am also the 1% and I joined this revolution last May in Spain not because I think I owe something to the 99% or that they should reclaim something to me. I joined because we share this planet and I am a qualified person who can be part of the solution instead of continue being part of the problem. It is OUR CHOICE, we have the POWER and we will transcend together.

[-] 1 points by Christinaruef (1) 8 years ago

Bravo looselyhuman - Dear one % , The greed destroyed 235 years of progress and wealth this country made ,FOR THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE.. Our Founding Fathers would be rolling over in their graves. Simply put - you destroyed lives, Liberties and the feedom to pursue happiness . Do you know what a HOST is - Its You ( not the kind that brings you drinks ) How about Treason? Treason - Noun - Treachery towards one's country.Truth hurts !! How about the Preamble? We the People,in order to form a MORE perfect union,Provide for the common defence, ( Military) PROMOTE THE GENERAL WELFARE -Hint thats all of us.Every generation gave more than the last . Could you imagine if Henry Ford did what Wall Street did? How about Ben Franklin or Thomas Edison.Trust me- You woud be riding a horse and writting in the dark .They gave more then they took. Thats how this country was built - up untill 20 - 30 years ago. Think of us as an INTERVENTION !!!! I believe 99% just hirred OUR lobbist and I also believe we finally found those weapons of mass destruction our military was looking for ie: Wall Street, DC, Banks and every large, out sorced corp. you can name . Sincerely, Third Generation 99%

[-] 1 points by SPORTCARX (21) 8 years ago

I am happy for you that you are in the top 1%. All I ask is that you give back the 3% Bush Tax cuts.. that is all .. I do not believe you should be taxed at 50%.

when your taxes were cut what did you do with the money? spend it save it?

Give a working poor stiff a tax cut and he will spend it. spending money helps improve the economy and creates jobs.. saving money and buying stocks does not.

[-] 1 points by oregoniangirls (2) 8 years ago

I agree. We do not expect you to pay for our "failed decisions" because it is not us who are making the decisions. The banks and brokers are the parties who decided to lend to people they knew would not be able to make their payments so they could flip them and make a profit. There is no "failure" here of people who went on to get a college education, for it is the businesses who are at fault, businesses that moved their operations oversees in order to avoid paying these educated people the money their knowledge deserves. We are all as hurt and as blessed by the "American dream" you speak of, and it is only through the hard work of others before you that the freedom to create your own circumstances is even offered.

I agree that this conflict is with the decisions of people in government and big business economics, but please never sound so conceited as to refer to the circumstances of others as their own "failed decisions." Just as we do not know your circumstances, you do not know ours. Solidarity can only be achieved when we drop blaming our fellow citizens and decide to focus our anger on those who make decisions that affect all our circumstances.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

any of you idiots read yesterdays wall street journal? (of course not) well a story in there talks about the results of polling 200 of you morons. here's what they said: 70% of you want wealth redistribution, 58% would advocate violence to get what you want, only 15% of you are unemployed (that stat surprised me) and an overwhelming majority of you voted for Obama, but prob wont vote for him again. in short, the writer concludes that essentially this is a radical left wing movement that has the potential to turn violent. my guess is a violent marxist group wont last long in this country. good luck idiots!

[-] 1 points by oaco4242 (56) 8 years ago

I don't think those who are the most knowledgeable of the events that are occurring in the financial and government are blaming people such as you. I would argue that it is the 1% of the 1% that have corrupted our system - I love capitalism -- it makes sense to me, and I use it, as long as the resources of the planet can be preserved. This is the misinformation you have received because of the generalization that we are the 99% -- it really should read we are the 99.9%

And kudos to you! I have a pizza place and was able to grow 12% during the 08 recession, what business are you in?

[-] 1 points by christopherj (77) 8 years ago

I think it is very important to understand that most of the people that support this movement have jobs, and are not in the streets. If that were not the case, it would not succeed. There are even some very wealthy people (Ben & Jerry’s, Dylan Ratigan and others) that have publically stated their support. I think that anyone who says that many of the things that have been going on in this country by people who are REALLY POWERFUL (not just a mini mansion and a Benz) for the last 15-20 years is immoral, and illegal free, is intentionally ignoring it.

Also, considering that our society requires you to have a job in order to live the (at least) average American dream, why would you create an environment that sends jobs away from your society? That simply doesn’t make any since to me. The countries we sent our jobs to keep our imports into their country at a very, very low minimum. Our political leaders aren’t stupid; somebody got rich.

[-] 1 points by randyharberson3 (6) 8 years ago

randyharberson3 In 2008 I filed a 150 billion complaint in the Arizona US district court. The reasoning behind this complaint was that I was upset about the bailout money and the bonuses that the banks were giving out to the CEO's. I requested in my complaint information to where the funds were going, also at that time I requested that the remaining 300 billion dollars should be used towards citizens who were facing forclosures. It is my understanding that as a citizen I have a right to request this information. However, the justice department did not think this was proper. Therefore, they aggresively fought the case labeling me as a radical with their briefs. In this suit I listed the treasury department and Hank Pauson as defendants. Shortly after this lawsuit President Obama came to Phoenix after he was elected and alloted some 80 million dollars to help people going through foreclosures. Another 123 million was given to help this cause, yet to this day only 3 houses have been modified. Which brings me to believe that something is not right. I feel that under the freedom of information act that every federal grant should be monitored and accounted for. Therefore I wish that citizens would aggresively pursue under their rights and find out where and how the funds are used, for instance the stimulus funds which incidentally create jobs regardless of what the republicans and other right wing nut cases say, but I feel Obama in passing the stimulus act did not realize that with this amount of money that the potential for fraud is tremendous. This is too much money and impossible for the government to monitor. Although the media such as the Arizona Republic has concerns about this problem it is up to the citizens to monitor them properly under the freedom of information act. I will make a challenge to President Obama, pay me 60 thousand dollars a year and give me 3 helpers or accountants with good eye sight and I will save the government at least $2 million in one year. Again I challenge him even though my energy level is very low and I am 73 yrs old. I am tired of the way things are going, I feel like the middle class and poor are under attacked and I don't like the atmosphere of greed that is being used by wall street corporations ect. Since I filed the complaint in U.S district court the IRS has constantly harrassed me, which pisses me off as I am only on social security. I dont know whether this is Obama's administration but something isn't right when companies like G.E and others don't pay any taxes and Suprme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' wife who made thousands from working at the Heritage Foundation and he put on his tax reform 0. Another thing that bugs me is during the bailout Ben Bernnake and Hank Pausson forced Bank of America to buy Merril Lynch, which cost the investors millions. In all due respect they broke FEC regulations which were against the law, yet the prisons are full of individuals. Are some more equal than others? If you break the law you break the law. Again if I am given freedom of information rights I again challenge the government that I will save them $2 million in one year.

Randy Harberson randyharberson@yahoo.com

[-] 1 points by randyharberson3 (6) 8 years ago

randyharberson3 In 2008 I filed a 150 billion complaint in the Arizona US district court. The reasoning behind this complaint was that I was upset about the bailout money and the bonuses that the banks were giving out to the CEO's. I requested in my complaint information to where the funds were going, also at that time I requested that the remaining 300 billion dollars should be used towards citizens who were facing forclosures. It is my understanding that as a citizen I have a right to request this information. However, the justice department did not think this was proper. Therefore, they aggresively fought the case labeling me as a radical with their briefs. In this suit I listed the treasury department and Hank Pauson as defendants. Shortly after this lawsuit President Obama came to Phoenix after he was elected and alloted some 80 million dollars to help people going through foreclosures. Another 123 million was given to help this cause, yet to this day only 3 houses have been modified. Which brings me to believe that something is not right. I feel that under the freedom of information act that every federal grant should be monitored and accounted for. Therefore I wish that citizens would aggresively pursue under their rights and find out where and how the funds are used, for instance the stimulus funds which incidentally create jobs regardless of what the republicans and other right wing nut cases say, but I feel Obama in passing the stimulus act did not realize that with this amount of money that the potential for fraud is tremendous. This is too much money and impossible for the government to monitor. Although the media such as the Arizona Republic has concerns about this problem it is up to the citizens to monitor them properly under the freedom of information act. I will make a challenge to President Obama, pay me 60 thousand dollars a year and give me 3 helpers or accountants with good eye sight and I will save the government at least $2 million in one year. Again I challenge him even though my energy level is very low and I am 73 yrs old. I am tired of the way things are going, I feel like the middle class and poor are under attacked and I don't like the atmosphere of greed that is being used by wall street corporations ect. Since I filed the complaint in U.S district court the IRS has constantly harrassed me, which pisses me off as I am only on social security. I dont know whether this is Obama's administration but something isn't right when companies like G.E and others don't pay any taxes and Suprme Court Justice Clarence Thomas' wife who made thousands from working at the Heritage Foundation and he put on his tax reform 0. Another thing that bugs me is during the bailout Ben Bernnake and Hank Pausson forced Bank of America to buy Merril Lynch, which cost the investors millions. In all due respect they broke FEC regulations which were against the law, yet the prisons are full of individuals. Are some more equal than others? If you break the law you break the law. Again if I am given freedom of information rights I again challenge the government that I will save them $2 million in one year.

Randy Harberson randyharberson@yahoo.com

[-] 1 points by christopherj (77) 8 years ago

I think people are protesting that part of the one percent that say they’re capitalist, but the truth is they pay their way to success by buying laws and votes from public figures that are supposed to look out for the best interest of the masses. By forming functions such as A.L.LE.C., where business leaders have cocktails with law makers to discuss laws that they would like to see passed. In a true democracy this sort of thing is a big NO, NO. If your business were to create an invention that threatened a conglomerate, they would simply have laws passed to prevent your product from hitting the open market (they would claim that there are safety issues or something like that). Take the trucking industry for example; huge trucking companies were the main supporters of so many fees and tags, and other cost that now come with ownership of a trucking company. Large trucking companies were getting to much competition from the guy with only two trucks.

Also, if you pay an individual fantastic money to run your company only to find that he’s actually running it into the ground (to the point where it actually threatens the very existence of your business), why would you allow them to resign so that he or she could walk away with millions of your companies dollars. This person should be fired. Many of the failed financial institutions did just this, then took tax payers’ dollars (and had lay-off’s) and ran with it. This is not capitalism, and it’s not good business, its corporate welfare. I really don’t think you want to throw yourself in the same basket as those guys.

If you run your business in the U.S. and protect your establishment with the local fire dept. and police dept. which are paid for with tax payers dollars, then your business is a part of a community, and in most cases the business would not be successful without the support of that community. If your business uses the American infrastructure in any way (for example: roads to ship products), you should provide jobs in your community. I’m also doing pretty well for myself, but it’s because of my customers that patronize my business that I can make such a claim. I also get paid pretty well by my employer, who is doing well because of revenue coming from American patrons. The truth is, if you got rich in this country, you really didn’t do it alone.

[-] 1 points by justda (7) from Seattle, WA 8 years ago

I blame the jews....

[-] 1 points by MiMi1026 (937) from Springfield, VA 8 years ago

You have some good points. However this is NOT a protest against the wealthy. This demonstration is making other WeThePeople aware of the hijacked of this government by wallstreet, We want the government for the people and by the people RETURN to The People.

[-] 1 points by pc3 (20) from Missoula, Mt 8 years ago

Its because I am not greedy, I went to college to get knowledge not to maximize my profit, the problem is that the world should revolve around knowledge and understanding. Not greed. Do you really think you are anything special? No your just greedy. Which is a sin.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Ok.

[-] 0 points by pc3 (20) from Missoula, Mt 8 years ago

Exactly

[-] 1 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

You don't owe anyone anything. You owe allegiance to your country though and right now your country needs you to cough up some dough since the middle class is all out at the moment. You are being asked to pull your own weight since you live here and have benefited from being a citizen of this country. As for working hard? That is great, we should all be busy little bees. I grew up around steel and coal workers that all worked much harder than you and that didn't save their pensions from getting looted or their jobs as corporate raiders sold off pieces of the local economy and exported jobs using tax breaks. You don't get to look down on them because the system failed them.

I have every right to blame Wall Street bankers for causing the system that we all rely on to fail and go into recession. We are not in recession because individual people made bad choices or are morally inferior to you. Get the hell off your high horse and write a check to Uncle Sam with a big fat thank you note for the opportunities that being American has afforded you.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

I'm not a wall street banker. I'm not a multi-billionaire. Go ask them to pay your way, not me.

[-] 1 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

No one is paying my way, I am employed and pay a healthy amount in taxes. I dress sharp for work and get up at 6:00AM every day. My property taxes have gone up almost 200% in just ten years because of unfunded mandates which are tantamount to taxation without representation. I'm not asking you to pay MY way. I could care less about your money, I could cough. I care that the 1% is not paying their fair share. Again, I don't know why you feel superior or like you have the right to tell people who are economically stressed to the breaking point or unemployed and have ALREADY paid more than their fair share to go somewhere else for solutions. Its called greed and greed is a sin in most religions and is considered a corrupting influence in republics. Your unwillingness to support the community and nation you are a part of demonstrates that you are both un-patriotic and morally corrupt. This is why people are mad, they have problems created by other people's moral shortcomings as fellow citizens and the best you can come up with is go ask someone else? If you can't accept that people are pissed for a real reason then you deny their experience and thus their identity and shouldn't even be trying to have a conversation with them because you have no real reason to post.

Keep your money, choke on it.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

i work on wall street. i work very hard, every day. i get up at 5:15 and get home around 8:00. i make good money, but i earn it. so your comment about "easy money" is far from reality. Also, i do what i do because i'm one of the few who have build the skills and experience to be here. You had the same opportunity that i had. only i did it and you didn't. does that make me a bad person? im paid good money because im highly skilled, sort of like a baseball player. my employer wouldnt pay me one dime more than the value i bring to the business. So i guess im worth what im paid. so whats the problem 99%-ers? What am i missing??

[-] 1 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

Is that you don't produce anything or work anywhere near as hard as someone with a blue collar job. Love to see you in a coal mine or steel mill. Or on a dairy farm or lobster boat. In fact it looks like you hard working guys just dumped 20% of the wealth of this country down the drain and are getting rewarded for it. So tell me - what function to you serve? Would anyone miss you if you didn't show up for work or would they just grab some bright young kid out of business school (I think there is an over-supply right now) and save on your over-inflated salary?

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

your comment shows an enormous ignorance of how the world works -- how good growing companies access capital for new plants and acquisitions all of which requires workers and underpins out system. if you dont like the system and want to kill it then i guess your saying our companies dont need capital and we all should go back to sustenance farming and animal husbandry, like pre-mid 19th century. Ignorance is at the core of your opinion, indeed the core of the entire Occupy Wall street movement, which is why you will never gain momentum and die and fizzle like so many other poorly thought out movements through out history. you will be an insignificant footnote in history. goodbye

[-] 1 points by Shazam (54) 8 years ago

Still here bub. Not going anywhere until things change. I have taken advanced economic classes and done quite well in them so I'm not scared by your psudo-analysis. Wall street killed the American system. Don't want to be a part of whatever it is you are trying to create without a middle class.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIcqb9hHQ3E&feature=share

this video says it all. the occupy wall street movement has force and passion and is rooted in widespread frustration. however its target - -wall street -- is off the mark. look at this you-tube video to see where the OWS efforts would be more appropriately targeted.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

how did wall street kill the American system!?, you brain washed babbling idiot

[-] 1 points by rarebird (14) from Portland, ME 8 years ago

The point is not that someone should be denied their opportunity to build wealth. The point is that there is an IMBALANCE in wealth as it relates to the work done. It is to be expected that a business owner should receive more money than his/her employees from that business - they have more at stake - sometimes everything they own is at stake, additionally they have more responsibility. Someone who is a financial investor in a business should have the OPPORTUNITY to redeem profits from that investment if the business is a success. Presumably if the business is a success, it is largely due to they employees. If you have a business that makes stuff - it is the employees making it, if you have a business that sells stuff it is the employees selling it. But to suggest an investor (or owner) should redeem such a large % of the profits when they are not the largest % of the performance is the root of the argument. If a venture capitalist invests $100k in a business and 5 years down the road reaps $1m at the cost of say 25 peoples jobs, is that equitable? Indeed the $100k was necessary to get the business going, but it is the employees that KEEP IT GOING. If those 25 employees still had jobs at roughly $35,000 (median income) the investor still would have plenty of profit in a short amount of time. They'd be paying their taxes and we wouldn't be asking you for them.

[-] 1 points by Texanwithquestion (7) 8 years ago

lets do the math on that? whats the probability that a business succeeds? 10%? If I invest 100K in 10 businesses and only one succeeds (these are the stats) what return do I need on that one success to break even? Yep, its 1MM. You people let the size of the number get in the way of the reality of the math.

[-] 1 points by rarebird (14) from Portland, ME 8 years ago

That is the risk of investing in the free market.

[-] 1 points by Texanwithquestion (7) 8 years ago

Yes but you have a certain expectancy for each investment. That number has to be + for it to be a rational investment.

[-] 1 points by bigbangbilly (594) 8 years ago

Just be glad that you earn something even though you pay taxes more than what other people earn you also earn more than what is needed to survive or at least be comfortable. It depends on how you earn your income and what do you do with your income.

(I do suspect that you are a troll)

[-] 1 points by ywerd (4) 8 years ago

Is it my fault that you're a welfare queen freeloader who only gets by because a rigged system lets you get by? The worst part of theonepercent's foolishness is that he can't admit to being a do-nothing that's propped up by an endless stream of welfare. You're the one on the taxpayer's tit, you big baby. We're pulling you off. It's long overdue.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

You're a moron. I receive no welfare, just income that comes from business transactions from customers. No one is holding a gun to their head to purchase my services/products. They need a service/product and are willing to exchange money for it. On top of that I pay taxes. Grow up. Maybe one day you will experience the real world and what having responsibility is like.

[-] 1 points by derek (302) 8 years ago

Financial obesity imposes costs on society, as does financial starvation. Here is a possible idea to balance things out with justifications as to why it makes sense. Consider a universal basic income of US$2000 per month for all US citizens from birth instead of needs-based welfare and unemployment insurance or age-based school payments and social security (which currently average about US$700 per US citizen per month total). This could be paid for with a combination of various taxes and rents from government assets or revenues from government services. This basic income could be considered reparations for enclosing the ecological commons and industrial commons with land rights, copyrights, patent rights, and so on, as well as health and aesthetic costs incurred from pollution, and risks incurred from nuclear weapons and nuclear energy, and spiritual costs from the violation of the Earth. These are all things the wealthy benefit from disproportionately and may have been "externalities" imposed by any business venture on society, given businesses often socialize costs but privatize gains (the worst form of socialism). A basic income represents a human right to some of the fruits of industry whose abundance springs mostly from our common cultural heritage more than work. This would take about one half the US GDP, or about the same size the GDP was in 1997, and the rest of the GDP was enough back then to motivate people to work (assuming people need financial incentives to work anyway).

See also for justifications:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basic_Income_Guarantee

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_credit

http://www.livableincome.org/amillionairegli.htm

http://knol.google.com/k/beyond-a-jobless-recovery

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4vK-M_e0JoY

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6XAPnuFjJc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AC7ANGMy0yo

http://idlenest.freehostia.com/mirror/www.whywork.org/rethinking/whywork/abolition.html

http://www.smallisbeautiful.org/buddhist_economics/english.html

http://www.eco-action.org/dt/affluent.html

http://www.jamesphogan.com/books/info.php?titleID=29&cmd=summary

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Externality

[-] 1 points by TLydon007 (1278) 8 years ago

You owe us nothing. We simply want taxes to go up so unpatriotic bags of slime like you will leave our country, leaving behind people that love america so much, they're willing to give something back to it.

[-] 1 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

Let's start with shipping 14 million jobs offshore. Every job lost is tied to 3-5 other jobs by the multiplier effect. Moving these jobs out of the country gave you "one-percenters" huge profits. The lost jobs mean less tax revenue. It is only proper that those who caused the lost tax revenue to line their pockets make up for the loss out of that profit. You want more? I've got plenty of it.

[-] 1 points by Shortsleevedmagician (17) from Hibbing, MN 8 years ago

Well, for being "job creators," you don't seem to be making too many jobs.

[-] 1 points by KeepTryingAmerica (6) 8 years ago

Talk about missing the point. Having grown up abused has made us quite sensitive, no? No one hates YOU. Unless you're one of the bloodsuckers running the operations of the 1%. What part of the tax inequality discussion did you not hear??? I assume (and maybe this makes an ass out of me) that your business is not solely run by you, and it employs others? If I'm correct, and you truly are part of the "one percent", then there is a high possibility that whomever answers the phones or does the deliveries PAYS MORE IN TAXES THAN YOU. So why shouldn't people get angry over this? Explain to me how this is us expecting you to pay for our "failed decisions"? Explain to me how someone who was working hard towards a degree in a field they loved in 2006-2008 or before that only to graduate and find out they might never get a job in that field? How the hell was anyone supposed to know what was going to happen? Maybe even those GREEDY, UNETHICAL banks that gave out bad loans like Halloween candy didn't know the floor was about to be yanked from under them. Or at least not when. Seriously, everything is wrong right now in this country. And to hear you 1% whine about people finally waking up and talking about it makes me want to vomit.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Good job pulling these "facts" out of your ass. The top 5% pay 60% of the taxes in this country. I can guarantee that I pay FAR more than anyone who works for me. Also, instead of spouting off rhetoric about greedy banks wanting to line their pockets by giving out bad loans, do some actual research into how that came about. It was the federal government who implemented policy to make a requirement to give out these loans. Then you have people making $30k/year buying $500k homes which they obviously can't afford. Banks DO NOT want to give out bad loans, they lose a lot of money.

[-] 1 points by KeepTryingAmerica (6) 8 years ago

Why don't YOU do some research and then you will find that the banks giving out bad loans sold them and therefore didn't care either way, and this happened multiple times to many loans and here we are, me and you arguing over what they did. This was a time where you could walk in with a driver's license and get a loan. No longer my 1% friend. Now you get nothing less than a rectal exam. And I know this because my loan is government backed. The Americans who purchased homes they couldn't afford are accountable too, just like the banks that wrote them and the gov't who implemented the policy. I truly believe in the freedom of speech but don't expect anyone not to be annoyed with your whining.

[-] 1 points by quadrawack (280) 8 years ago

And yet the banks were documented over and over and over again actively signing loans out to massive credit risks.

So do they not want to give out bad loans or do they want to? And what's with all the robo signing of mortgages, which in a society that had it's rules, is outright illegal, but because those rules were removed, it's legal.

[-] 1 points by KeepTryingAmerica (6) 8 years ago

Exactly, thank you.

[-] 1 points by mimthefree (192) from Biggar, Scotland 8 years ago

Is it our fault you spent your whole life pursuing an illusion?

(The American Dream, they call it that because you've got to be asleep to believe it. - George Carlin.)

[-] 1 points by SmallRestaurantOwner (2) 8 years ago

You owe me nothing... I don't expect anyone to give me anything. I think the majority of protesters feel the same way but want to see the government represent the population...not corporations and the 1%. It isn't all about taxes either. This movement is addressing far more issues. Companies like Monsanto that are a true testament to how easily the government can be bought and how easily the government has failed us. The banks... The issue with the 1% is that the money controls government. If you aren't spending your money lobbying to change policy for your financial gain then you probably are not the 1% that the majority of protesters are talking about. It isn't a simple protesting the wealthy or wealthy v. poor. The problem is the hold that Wall Street has on our government and it shouldn't be ignored.

Also, I know it is a lot of protesters out there with a lot of different complaints but before the group sets up parameters and changes to be made it first needs to grow. The larger the group, the more effective changes can be made. Let's end the banter and think rationally. If the banter keeps up it will simply evoke a mob mentality and an "Us v Them" situation which isn't the goal here. It is about a change for the better of everyone. I mean you have money and pay your taxes but are you really okay with how your tax money is being spent? Are you really okay with Government Agencies like the FDA being ran by former employees of Monsanto, Genentech and Dupont?

[-] 1 points by SmallRestaurantOwner (2) 8 years ago

You owe me nothing... I don't expect anyone to give me anything. I think the majority of protesters feel the same way but want to see the government represent the population...not corporations and the 1%. It isn't all about taxes either. This movement is addressing far more issues. Companies like Monsanto that are a true testament to how easily the government can be bought and how easily the government has failed us. The banks... The issue with the 1% is that the money controls government. If you aren't spending your money lobbying to change policy for your financial gain then you probably are not the 1% that the majority of protesters are talking about. It isn't a simple protesting the wealthy or wealthy v. poor. The problem is the hold that Wall Street has on our government and it shouldn't be ignored.

Also, I know it is a lot of protesters out there with a lot of different complaints but before the group sets up parameters and changes to be made it first needs to grow. The larger the group, the more effective changes can be made. Let's end the banter and think rationally. If the banter keeps up it will simply evoke a mob mentality and an "Us v Them" situation which isn't the goal here. It is about a change for the better of everyone. I mean you have money and pay your taxes but are you really okay with how your tax money is being spent? Are you really okay with Government Agencies like the FDA being ran by former employees of Monsanto, Genentech and Dupont?

[-] 1 points by atki4564 (1259) from Lake Placid, FL 8 years ago

True, you shouldn't pay for their failed decisions, and although I'm all in favor of taking down today's ineffective and inefficient Top 10% Management Group of Business & Government, there's only one way to do it – by fighting bankers as bankers ourselves. Consequently, I have posted a 1-page Summary of the Strategic Legal Policies, Organizational Operating Structures, and Tactical Investment Procedures necessary to do this at:

http://getsatisfaction.com/americanselect/topics/on_strategic_legal_policy_organizational_operational_structures_tactical_investment_procedures

Join

http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/StrategicInternationalSystems/

if you want to support a Presidential Candidate at AmericansElect.org in support of the above bank-focused platform.

[-] 1 points by Flsupport (578) 8 years ago

I just want to say this argument might be a little foolish. 341 times we have argued with a trolling comment that misses th point. Lets give it a rest.

[-] 1 points by TheMismatch (50) from Lafayette, IN 8 years ago

You have some points. We, as consumers, have to take responsibility for our purchases, regardless of any "predatory lending schemes" that are out there- you can't be victim of predatory lending if you don't sign the papers.

What the movement seems to be railing against most isn't so much "being rich" in and of itself, but of the unfair advantages the rich have built into the system to benefit themselves. We see the very wealthy pressure lawmakers, through lobbyists, to craft laws that cut their taxes to a lower percentage than what we pay. We see multinational corporations pay no federal taxes at all. We see these companies hand out millions in bonuses to their highest echelons after downsizing their middle-class positions and sending those jobs overseas.

I'd listen to the people in OWS who say "Down with capitalism!" about as much as I'd listen to the people in the Tea Party who say "Obama isn't really a citizen!"; that is to say, not at all. Capitalism, and the ability to rise from circumstances like yours into the upper class, is our way of life and part of the American dream. What I think Occupy is decrying is the systematic removal of mechanisms for people to climb up to those heights.

[-] 1 points by German (82) 8 years ago

The problem of the government are the low taxes - reduced by the Bush government - but only for the 1% while the 99% have to pay for.

And the problem of the US is the unfair partitioning of the income, which can't be justified with economical efficiency - not with this spread.

[-] 1 points by GypsyKing (8706) 8 years ago

It is this attitude of nobles oblige that will be tour downfall in the end. Put another way you simply don't care about anyone but yourself.

[-] 1 points by mimthefree (192) from Biggar, Scotland 8 years ago

your argument is absolutely correct. Nothing you have done is wrong.

Nobody expects you to pay for anything.

Your failure though is in the identification of the root cause. the root problem is not the government itself at all. The root problem is the value system disorder that encourages individuals like yourself to hoard and collect income and neglect everyone else. It infects everything, like a cancer spreading throughout the world.

[-] 1 points by ojosdelangel77 (33) from Fort Smith, AR 8 years ago

You owe us because it's us that made your business grow instead of fail! It had nothing to with your choice, but the choices of your customers. Now because of their sweat and hardwork to earn money to use your business, you have that silver spoon! Trampling the rest of the country to get your fortune does not make you smarter or better. Take for example WalMart, worth multibillions, yet there employees are more likely to be on foodstamps, wic, and other govnt assistance, causing our defecit. If rich and big business were giving back half of what they take they would still be billionaires and there employees could afford to feed their families. They could afford to cut there prices helping out their customer. Etc. Not to mention the wealthy are the ones buying political power and decisions. that is my personal problem. And I don't know you and you may be one of the good wealthy that do give back. But there are so many wealthy that don't pay their fair share of taxes and so on. Also I'm all about ending the fed, cutting out supporting the wealthy in other countries with our money and debts. And maybe if they couldn't afford that hosue, the bank shouldnt have been allowed to loan them that money. Please do your research MANY wealthy do NOT pay their fair share of taxes!

[-] 1 points by Wallstreet (4) 8 years ago

If you want to make a dent in the system. Don't shop at WalMart. Don't buy Walmart stock. If everyone avoided Walmart. Revenue would decline and make a significant impact on shareholders equity. But wait! Then Walmart might need to layoff people, due to lost revenue. There are consequences for every action. Oh and by the way, how is taxing the wealthy going to create jobs?

[-] 1 points by ojosdelangel77 (33) from Fort Smith, AR 8 years ago

You owe us because it's us that made your business grow instead of fail! It had nothing to with your choice, but the choices of your customers. Now because of their sweat and hardwork to earn money to use your business, you have that silver spoon! Trampling the rest of the country to get your fortune does not make you smarter or better. Take for example WalMart, worth multibillions, yet there employees are more likely to be on foodstamps, wic, and other govnt assistance, causing our defecit. If rich and big business were giving back half of what they take they would still be billionaires and there employees could afford to feed their families. They could afford to cut there prices helping out their customer. Etc. Not to mention the wealthy are the ones buying political power and decisions. that is my personal problem. And I don't know you and you may be one of the good wealthy that do give back. But there are so many wealthy that don't pay their fair share of taxes and so on. Also I'm all about ending the fed, cutting out supporting the wealthy in other countries with our money and debts. And maybe if they couldn't afford that hosue, the bank shouldnt have been allowed to loan them that money. Please do your research MANY wealthy do NOT pay their fair share of taxes!

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

i work on wall street. i work very hard, every day. i get up at 5:15 and get home around 8:00. i make good money, but i earn it. so your comment about "easy money" is far from reality. Also, i do what i do because i'm one of the few who have build the skills and experience to be here. You had the same opportunity that i had. only i did it and you didn't. does that make me a bad person? im paid good money because im highly skilled, sort of like a baseball player. my employer wouldnt pay me one dime more than the value i bring to the business. So i guess im worth what im paid. so whats the problem 99%-ers? What am i missing??

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Are you kidding me? Do you even have the slightest idea how the economy works or how a business functions?

My customers are looking for a product or service. They have currency to pay for said product/service. A transaction takes place where I deliver the product or service and they pay for it.

It's called a business transaction with mutual benefit for both sides. Where are you getting the notion that I owe them anything after this (let alone someone who is not even a customer)? You are a moron.

[-] 1 points by Wallstreet (4) 8 years ago

I agree, these so-called 99% cannot figure out how a simple economy operates. How a portion of each dollar in the economy funds various items (e.g., wages, taxes, insurance, retirement, etc.) All these 99% people use Twitter and Facebook, which by the way makes Mark Zuckerberg more wealthy.

[-] 1 points by ezflex (4) 8 years ago

WE want a fair playing field. Why is it fair for the rich to get richer on the backs of other "fellow" Americans/humans. WHY is aid cut for social programs and even education so that the wealthy become wealthier? PAY YOUR FAIR SHARE!! Maybe just this one thing makes me better than you - If I were rich I'd VOLUNTARILY pay because we all know that tax cuts for the wealthy is WRONG. Forget your laws! YOU share this planet and you have obligations. STOP being so selfish!!

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

The top 5% already pay 60% of the taxes in this country. How is that not a fair share?

[-] 1 points by looselyhuman (3117) 8 years ago

Because they own 70% of the wealth?

[-] 1 points by thejunkie (50) 8 years ago

They want to continue using the drug but without the consequences or destructive symptoms. Junkies protesting for cheaper drugs and blaming the dealer for their suffering.

[-] 1 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 8 years ago

its not that we think you owe us anything, its that we are sick and tired of evil con scam BSers stealing from us and then make beleiving like when we complain about it we are saying they owe us something. They have lied, stolen, cheated, and robber baroned their way through the caste wars. The shit is over, its come to this end.

we don't want you to pay for our failed decisions. we want you to quit trolling, wake up, and if you are on the side of evil pricks, to stop. Considering that you are trolling us, you are on the side of evil pricks.

the real root of the problem IS corporate oligarchy- government is one more victim of that problem.

we expect the rich people to stop being CROOKED.

http://www.oligarchyusa.com/

http://www.istockanalyst.com/finance/story/5390832/some-fascinating-stats-about-our-corporate-oligarchy

http://foreignpolicyblogs.com/category/21st-century-challenges/ethicsandeconomics/

According to a 2008 article by David Rothkopf, the world’s 1,100 richest people have almost twice the assets of the poorest 2.5 billion (Rothkopf, 2008). Aside from the obvious problem – that this global elite has their hands in everything from politics to financial institutions – …

http://theprogressiveplaybook.com/2011/09/occupywallstreet-an-american-tahrir/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ght22PnCXy0

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/miles-mogulescu/wisconsin-is-ground-zero_b_825321.html

http://last-lost-empire.com/blog/?tag=global-corporate-oligarchy

To the extent that we, the people, are removed from control over our lands, marketplaces, central banks, and media we are no longer empowered. In practice, those few who do control the land, central bank, media and "free market" are the real rulers of our corrupt and declining "democracy."

Due to propaganda from a corporate-owned and edited media we are kept from knowing, much less debating, the nature of our system. Due to a central bank owned by bankers, media owned by a few global concerns, and trade regime controlled by global corporations (i.e., one designed to remove the people from control over their markets and environments) the vast majority have become little more than latter-day serfs and neo-slaves upon a corporate latifundia.

To restore a semblance of effective democracy and true freedom Americans, and people around the world, need to re-educate themselves as to the true nature of their political and economic systems. Toward this end, OligarchyUSA.com is dedicated to providing old and new information, books, links, reform ideas and debates not easily found or accessed today in establishment media.

OligarchyUSA.com is but one more site and sign of the times as ground-up counter-revolutions arise around the world... all in response to a forced and freedomless globalization courtesy of a ruling global elite perfecting their top-down plutocracy and revolutions of the rich against the poor. In short, democracy is no longer effective today. For this reason, it is toward a restoration of truly effective and representative democracies, and natural freedom, that this site is dedicated.

[-] 1 points by bootsy3000 (180) 8 years ago

Two words: social contract

[-] 1 points by ARod1993 (2420) 8 years ago

Incidentally, I'm fully behind the protests, and I'm a computer science major at MIT. Underachiever? Pfft. Don't make me laugh; if you can call three to four hours of sleep per night underachieving then I want to see your schedule. I came from a working-class to poor family and I'm already reviewing high-level internship opportunities from companies like Boeing. And yet somehow I'm still behind these people. Why?

Because my family went through hell in order to put my sister and I on the track we are now; my mom left a teaching job to homeschool my sister and I to keep us out of a dysfunctional inner-city school system, so we've been living on one rather precarious income since I was three. My dad's union job got through almost to the end, until a hedge fund by the name of Brynwood Partners took over and decided to break the union. We would not have survived the resulting eleven-month strike and plant closure were it not for unemployment benefits, food stamps, and a strong community that really cared for us when we needed it most.

Here's the thing: because of our family and community my sister and I were uniquely equipped to weather the storm that hit us; not everyone is so lucky. Any number of small things could have derailed us at that point, and for every one of me who makes it through there are ten more who through no fault of their own get screwed out of an opportunity to move up.

I was raised the old-fashioned way; life doesn't owe you one particular outcome over another. Life doesn't owe anyone a job simply by virtue of their existence. Jobs, wealth, happiness: all of these things are earned. The one and only thing in this country that a man is owed is a free and fair opportunity to better himself, and it is these opportunities that have been drying up over the past three decades.

In the old days, if you were good with your hands and willing to work you could get top-notch vocational training and hold down a solid middle-class career with just a high school diploma (or sometimes not even that). In the old days, the ordinary American had opportunity after opportunity available to him and all that was asked of him in return was that he got off his ass and grab one.

These days, that's all drying up. Vocational training of the old sort is dying out, and half the new sort is provided by for-profit "colleges" that often screw unsuspecting students. Academic degrees leading to the professions are hardly for everyone, and whole groups of people get closed out of that game before they even realize they're playing. Getting a decent job of the type that sustained our parents and grandparents is getting more and more difficult.

In short, we will be happy to stop stinking up your parks and get jobs if you will point us toward opportunities we can reasonably be expected to be able to take advantage of. Until then, we will stay exactly where we are and grow stronger and stronger until the system has no choice but to make these opportunities available to us again.

[-] 1 points by Steve15 (385) 8 years ago

The point is that you are not a 1% The term1% is referring to the multinationals who control our elected officials and finance future officials who will win seats in our government. They are grossly intertwined and we are aware of that. You can start by checking out the council on foreign relations. Why do our elected officials sit with unelected people like CEOs and Bankers to discuss our future and foreign policy? Knowing this explains why our media lies for them, our soldiers steal oil and natural resources for them and our food has carcinogenic chemicals in it for increased profits with a revolving door FDA. Thats a start.

[-] 1 points by decriminalizeFreedom (10) 8 years ago

you know what is NOT the free market at work? bailing out the banks that made those choices, groobiecat2. If the free market was at work, FOR REAL, the banks that bundled those sub prime mortgages and almost wiped out, they would have gone under! but we bailed them out. The free market is only bad when it is a half assed free market like that.

[-] 1 points by peacejam (114) 8 years ago

hi TheOnePercent, we would 'expect you to pay for our failed decisions' etc if we voted in enough politicians to change the US law so that you had to. you're right, you don't owe us anything unless the law and police say you do. democracy will determine what our social contract will be.

[-] 1 points by deadkip (3) 8 years ago

aww poor guy life was a little tuff than he got lucky.... don't forget you owe every thing to us, who the hell do you think bought your product/service that made you your money. how do u ever make any money w/ out the 99%... are you going to buy and sell to yourself?... your logic is deeply flawed.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Then come take it from me

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

What would happen if a wealthy person bets on the downfall of the european currency and simultaneously would pay a representative in bratislava just to say "no" on the european safety fund? ^^

[-] 1 points by StevenMagnetgAyq5lzi952 (40) 8 years ago

Because we bailed YOU out with our hard earned money.

Ungrateful twerp.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

I didn't get a bailout

[-] 1 points by StevenMagnetgAyq5lzi952 (40) 8 years ago

Then you're not part of the 1%

Welcome to the ranks.

[-] 1 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Then how about you define the target that you are protesting against as "the people who got bailouts" - the majority of high net worth/earners like myself who you consider the 1% never received a bailout of any kind

[-] 1 points by StevenMagnetgAyq5lzi952 (40) 8 years ago

High net earners......I see you're doing plenty of earning, arguing on a forum online. Bravo, employee of the year material right here.

I don't speak for everyone, but I consider the 1% to be people who monetarily benefit at the expense of others. For example, there's no logical reason why I have to pay a few thousand in taxes but GE gets a 3.2 billion check. I also see no logical reason why half of the government wants to lower the tax rate on people who make over 250k into the low teens or even single digits, but wants to jack up the tax rate on those who make under 106k by 50%....and in the same breath criticize others for "class warfare".

[-] 1 points by dingalingy (54) 8 years ago

Sorry, i read your story -- we are not against people, we are against the system. we are not against success, but against a system that allows only a few to succeed.

[-] 1 points by dingalingy (54) 8 years ago

you stole the land to begin with

[-] 1 points by dingalingy (54) 8 years ago

You don't own the air and you don't own the water but you pollute it

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

Didnt you recognize yet? Everything that makes fun for the "99ers" is illegal. Youre only allowed to have fun if you belong to the wealthy "1" percenters. You can buy your freedom e.g. by bribery, cheating or infiltration.

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

hey IQ143. Look at the upper left the sign of this homepage you just met! Even a brain muscled elite head like you can guess what power we bout to use if necessary. I mean by all means necessary my wealthy mafious friends.

[-] 1 points by ponypasture (2) from Cambria, CA 8 years ago

We do not expect the rich to stop being rich. We do expect the rich to stop riding on the roads we pay for, to stop sending their kids to the schools we pay for, to stop using anything we pay for, including any government services like fire and police. When the rich realize we are all in this together, perhaps they will be willing to support this country, too.

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

but the rich do pay for those things too....

[-] 1 points by pskrob80 (28) 8 years ago

No one expects rich people to stop being rich. Remember, because of the supreme court, corporations are now considered people. We expect the actual people running these corporation-citizens to be responsible. We expect equality, respect, health, clean air, and accountability when one of these people (BP, for instance) commits one of the largest criminal acts of negligence and environmental destruction ever witnessed by humanity, and then profits off of us, the 99% who have to face changing and grim realities. If being rich is your idea of happiness, then great, go be rich. My idea of happiness is a world in which we strive to be our best while encouraging the same in our communities, our personal lives, and our world. Remember, all these borders are imaginary and only serve to keep us divided along ethnocentric lines.

[-] 1 points by shadaxgale (230) from Oswego, NY 8 years ago
[-] 1 points by mamaows (2) 8 years ago

I see Leona Helmsley is still with us! Hi Leona. I remember you waving your high tax bill in front of the cameras. Boo Hoo. You clearly think you are better than us 99% & that you are "entitled" by some God given right. Go down to a homeless shelter & take care of some poor sick poor people who can't afford health care. Put your tax money where your mouth is. Redistribution of insane vulgar wealth is the only way. Now go back to your country club swim.

[-] 1 points by esoteric81 (14) 8 years ago

If you don't want to owe society anything, that's fine. Get a boat and go live out on the ocean away from the rest of us.

[-] 1 points by sluggy (49) 8 years ago

I think everyone would pay less tax if the governments of this world spent less on corrupt things, wars, overpaid officals, bailing crap out.

[-] 1 points by Nulambda (265) 8 years ago

A. I don't think you are the 1%. My question to you is do you own your business, or has been leveraged with debt to allow your business to grow, whether it be in equipment communications, clients, or staff? What percentage does a bank own your business? How much of your earnings was atenolol by interest (inflation, taxation, loans) Those that control this market, who pay no taxes because they are multinational, global cartels are the 1%.

Those that use your interest payments to pay for our military as their personal army for their financial gain, who profit on both sides of the war, who create barriers to your business so you can not compete against their monopolies are the 1%.

Now, I do agree with taxation. If two or more people decide that they have a vested interest in working together, then they both contribute to the other, taxing each other. A community is group of people who come together for some shared cause. If a community wants to come together to invest in a common community cause, that is their choice. I do object, however, to forcing an individual to join a community.

If a person chooses not to pay into a community, then they have that right. The community has no obligation to this person either. Today the 1% force us into their "global community" against the voice of the people. This elite owns all of our debt, which they believe means they own you.

This is the 1% we are all up against. The problem is the wealthy in this country are a logical extension of this debt creating wealth machine. And Wall Street is the financial arm of the united states. I am all for communities (like business) coming together to organize for a common mission statement. This is a form of free market socialism.

But that is not what we have in the united states. We have a 1% manipulating markets to control the dispersion of wealth for their own self interest and keep us in debt for this purpose.

[-] 1 points by helpusall (2) 8 years ago

Can someone please give actual data points. All I hear is generalizations and whining. Let's go through the top 20 people on the Forbes Americas top 400 richest and see how many of these people "bribed" and "stole":

You can find the link as follows: http://www.forbes.com/forbes-400/#p_1_s_arank_All industriesAll states_All categories

  1. Bill gates - no
  2. warren buffet - no
  3. larry ellison - no
  4. Charles Koch -
  5. David koch
  6. Christ Walton - no
  7. George Soros - no (incase you are wondering, no George Soros doesn't create mortgage backed securities, he invests in the stock market, if you can't tell the dfiference you're too dumb to know)
  8. Sheldon Adelson - no
  9. Jim Walton - no
  10. ALice walton - no
  11. S. Robson Walton - No
  12. Michael Bloomberg - No
  13. jeff Bezos - No
  14. Mark Zuckbrberg - No
  15. SErgey Brin - No
  16. Larry Page - No
  17. John Paulson - No (again if you can't tell the difference between what a public investor does and a mortgage originator then go read a book --- paulson 'can't "create" anything he can only invest in securities that are out there)
  18. Michael Dell - No
  19. Steve Ballmer - No
  20. Forest Mars - No

Out of a whopping 20 people, all a big fat NO. We can sit here and start debating the 2 investors (Paulson and Soros), but again that's not what they do. THey didn't "bribe" anyone in the government. Sounds like a bunch of whiners trying to find scape goats for their losses

[-] 1 points by mimthefree (192) from Biggar, Scotland 8 years ago

Buffet has admitted he pays less taxes than his secretary.

Gates is funnelling millions into "charitable causes" all around the world that have questionable aims, like funding vaccine programs that may or may not be causing all sorts of brain problems. Of course these millions he can write off against his taxable income, and his bookkeeper is only as honest as the money he is paid to hide the honesty.

Bloomberg is the mayor of New York and owner of a tv network. Seriously? Are you trying to deny that money can't buy you political power and influence when you put Bloomberg in that list? Whether it's legitimate or not, it's a systemic flaw.

And that's just off the top of my head. - Give me a day, and I could write 200 pages on the corruption of these 20 people.

Honestly. (eyeroll)

[-] 1 points by mimthefree (192) from Biggar, Scotland 8 years ago

zuckerberg has been tied to the CIA for "cyberintelligence and counter-terrorrism".... need I go on?

[-] 1 points by jmcdarcy (158) 8 years ago

I think you've made some important points here. I think people like TheOnePercent are caught in the middle. Because we the people have seen Federal Government fail over and over to take any kind of action to help the middle class. When Bush is in office, he cuts taxes for the wealthiest Americans. When Obama is in office, he funnels hundreds of billions to bail out wall street and folds on the debt ceiling. He makes the point of compromise to say that we must raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans, those who can afford it most. But politicians balk and Obama caves. I mean these ass holes (Republicans) want to cut NPR's funding as though that is the solution to the debt crisis but god forbid we hike up the taxes for those who can afford it most. It's not that I think we need to hike up taxes on the wealthy so bad, it's the juxtaposition that when faced with the demands of the vast majority of Americans, the government SOMEHOW always seems to pass policies that benefit the few. Our outrage is stirred up by the fact that the needs of the many are great and more worthy of legislative attention than those of the few. So the point:

You're caught in the middle because we're fucking sick of the government coddling the rich. And you are absolutely correct. You see what I just said? THE GOVERNMENT coddling the rich. You're right about the fact that it is ultimately the government to blame. If elected officials had some integrity it wouldn't matter how much money GE gave to someone's election campaign, because they would uphold their oath of office and serve their constituents. Check out this great article on the subject: http://www.collegian.com/index.php/article/2011/10/occupy_wall_street_misguided_on_meaning_of_capitalism

So come on OWS, I'm with you and I know why you're angry. But TheOnePercent is right. The only rich ones you should be angry at are the pricks who gambled with our economy. The rest of the blame goes to our cowardly crooked lawmakers and their cowardly crooked laws which allow the 1 percent to cook the books. And if the government is to blame, we are to blame! So God bless OWS for standing up for what is right and taking action to fix our Democracy. But too often I speak to individuals with passion for alternative ideas who don't vote! Don't throw in the towel on the electoral process just yet! Get in there and vote third or fourth party or log onto americanselect.org to have a direct election of a president. We HAVE to throw these bums out in 2012...ALL OF THEM!

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

Does this forum have a +like button? Because I definitely liked hearing you say that.

[-] 1 points by Mariannka (63) 8 years ago

I am amased at how Occupy works. Would like to have your input on the movement to understaqnd it better. It’s only couple of minutes to answer 10 questions. I only collect 100 answers and happy to send results if you are interested. Please, take some time for it: Thank you! http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Q3NF7QB http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Q3NF7QB

[-] 1 points by alwayzabull (228) 8 years ago

It's not rocket science. Have you been paying attention in the last decade? This movement is not calling for socialism. It's calling for the end of corporate welfare, and an end to Washington passing legislation designed to benefit the highest bidder.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 8 years ago

"never gave up or blamed other people" is a key concept that isn't very popular among this group that is brought together by he concept of blaming other people, and giving up on the system.

You'll hear the word "fair" on this site a lot. But our economy is not fair. It's natural selection. Survival of the fittest. Lamenting the inherent unfairness of natural selection is interesting philosophy and possibly a valid point, but that's just how the world works, and complaining about it is like complaining about gravity.

[-] 1 points by Poplicola (125) from Jersey City, NJ 8 years ago

This isn't an attack on the rich. There is nothing wrong with being rich. There is a problem with being rich and stealing from the poor. There is a problem with few people controlling the wealth, and to that end there is a problem when those who control the wealth are not helping their country and society progress.

David Walker, former US Comptroller General and chief of the GAO, warned before the 2004 election that if large economic changes were not made, by 2009 the United States and its taxpayers would not be able to afford the interest payments on the national debt. A study authorized by the US Treasury in 2001 found that in order to keep servicing the debt at its current rate of growth, by 2013 income taxes would need to be raised to 65%.

If the United States cannot afford to pay the interest on its debts, that would be the final stage of economic collapse and hence result in a total textbook bankruptcy. The systematic crisis would in turn spread to the rest of the world.

How did this happen? Why is the US national debt $14,819,350,000+? Of the 203 countries in the world today, only four (!) do not owe others money. The collective external debt of all the governments in the world is now above 40 trillion dollars and this number doesn’t include the massive about of household debt in each country.

The whole world is basically bankrupt. But how? How can the world as a whole owe money to itself? Obviously, it’s all nonsense. There is no such thing as ‘money’. There are only planetary resources, human labor and human ingenuity. The monetary system regulated by Federal Reserve is nothing more than a game… and an outdated and dysfunctional one at that. Those in positions of social power alter the rules of the game, at will. The nature of those rules is guided by the same competitive, distorted mentalities that are used in everyday “monetary” life, only this time the game is rigged at its root to favor those who run the show. For example, if you have 1 million dollars and put it into a CD at 5% interest, you are going to generate $50,000 a year simply for that deposit. You are making money off of money itself… paper being made from other paper … nothing more - no invention - no contribution to society – no nothing.

That being denoted, if you are a lower to middle class person, who is limited in funds, and must get interest based loans to buy your home or use credit cards, then you are paying interest to the bank, which the bank is then using, in theory, to pay the person’s return with the 5% CD! Not only is this equation outrageously offensive due to the use of usury (interest) to ‘steal from the poor and give to the rich’, but it also perpetuates class stratification by its very design, keeping the lower classes poor, under the constant burden of debt, while keeping the upper classes rich, with the means to turn excess money into more money, with no labor.

That reality aside, there are other games in the system which have worked for decades, but are just now starting to bloom into the inevitable mathematic disasters that should have been anticipated 100 years ago. The point is, our system is broken. Simple policy change will not solve our debt problem. We need to alter the governmental paradigm if we wish to repay our debt. First step: our government must fire the Federal Reserve Board.

[-] 1 points by oregoniangirls (2) 8 years ago

Thank you. A very succinct description of the absurdity of our current system.

[-] 1 points by Mariannka (63) 8 years ago

I am amased at how Occupy works. Would like to have your input on the movement to understaqnd it better. It’s only couple of minutes to answer 10 questions. I only collect 100 answers and happy to send results if you are interested. Please, take some time for it: Thank you! http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Q3NF7QB http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/Q3NF7QB

[-] 1 points by Gina (5) 8 years ago

No one is protesting wealthy people. Only GREEDY people. People who take from hard working people to get Rich. People who think its ok for the middle class hard worker to have to pay high taxes, while Greedy people don't. I dont see any Justice in that. Greedy people like financial advisors who are sneeky and steel peoples money so they can own several homes and cars that do not belong to them anyway. really they should be called THIEVES. People who call themselves CEOs and get paid millions ayear, for sitting on their LAZY GREEDY asses. While the middle class are the ones who really make the business work to begin with.

[-] 1 points by cbernard7 (16) from Coral Springs, FL 8 years ago

we are a land of opportunity, which of course lends itself to creating opportunists.

but we can't just let those opportunists run rampant with no regulation.

And yes, you may be one percent, but you less than 1% OF that 1%, and alot of that 1% is screwing us 99 percenters over big time.

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

The only system abusers are the bankers

[-] 1 points by abmebratu (349) from Washington, DC 8 years ago

You don't owe me anything, but remember I can also be like you and say I don't owe anything, at which point our societal contract will collapse, that's when all hell breaks loose. So, my advise to you is be careful about what you say, especially if you have the most too lose. The notion of "I don't owe you anything" will backfire on the rich worst than on the poor. As long as one is a part of society then he or she must pay a fair share for the good of that society. At the end of the day humans are social animals. We know of no other way to be. So let's be more compassionate for the sake of our common good.

Lastly, I would like to say that the rich are in no position to act like they got nothing to lose by making such antagonistic statements like "I don't owe you anything" ...Word to the wise.

[-] 1 points by AustinReality (3) from Austin, TX 8 years ago

Congrats TheOnePercent .. you are absolutely correct.. you don't OWE us anything.. and neither does anyone else .. well except The FED, but that's another argument...

Where do people get off thinking that because someone makes different life choices than I did.. and came out further ahead than I did because of MY choices, that they owe me something???

that has to be the MOST ridiculous thing I've ever heard!

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

Hey "99%". Tax em!

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

Who do you think you are, reducing me on such a naiv philosophic state of mind? If you is the speech under the "1%" is speaking then change will gonna come soon.

[-] 1 points by bjkahuna (40) 8 years ago

What is your business? How did you start your business? How much do you pay your employees?

[-] 1 points by patriot4change (818) 8 years ago

More and more... the Revolution will begin to focus on the "fat cats" in Washington D.C. And, just as you suggest, the People will realize that we need to CLEAN HOUSE in Washington... and start over with a fresh, new set of morally conscientious representatives. That includes, however, dismantling the power and influence of Wall Street and the Federal Reserve.

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

The "99%" Rest has to be brave now. Got to let them "1%" fall and make them pay for their often applied criminal intends. Come on man you know it is like that. The only thing that is different from real street crime is the uniform...collar & tie ...

[-] 1 points by doninsalem (74) 8 years ago

You don't, you owe yourself.

[-] 1 points by doninsalem (74) 8 years ago

Well if it were the Titanic the standing orders (and/or gentleman thing to do) after women and children first should be fill the life boats, everybody else find and lash anything together that floats for the person (or people) to your right (or left), and if anybody hands anyone a rock, well then that's enough reason to put anybody over. "Most sincerely", (LOVE-n-STUFF) DONNIE Salem Mass. EST. 1626 P.S.
If you are ever on any side of a disorganized sinking ship, stick with the side saying "come on it's you and I" (not me and you). Before anybody says that what I said/say was a threat for murder in "putting anybody over", FYI Billy Zane's character put a bullet through his own head for being a failure in that movie. +

[-] 1 points by bill2k (12) 8 years ago

Set them "1%" further more under pressure, so one can see what the "1%" is capable to do. Set pressure on them. Keep going. "occupy Frankfurt and London" The "city boys" must fall

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 8 years ago

you owe me because my parents owned the property and now I do

so pay rent

You owe me because you signed a loan contract

now pay interest

[-] 1 points by quadrawack (280) 8 years ago

You don't owe the 99% anything. Until you buy our government and bribe our officials. You're in the 1%? Good for you. I aspire to that route as an entrepreneur.

But the moment you f--k it up for all of us by bribing regulators, making campaign contributions that put in lawmakers that rewrite the laws and regs in your favor and demolish the small mom and pop shops and entrepreneurs, create cartels by colluding with other players in your industry to subvert and raise prices on everyone, like what's happened in healthcare, subvert the financial system by making those same lawmakers make what was once illegal, not to mention immoral, legal again (like derivatives), subvert the patent system by changing what was the biggest job creator of all time, the first to invent, into the biggest corporate advantage of all time, to first to file, which completely wrecks startups abilities to create REAL NEW JOBS,

then there is f--king HELL TO PAY.

A pissed off 99%ter who still believes in what once worked. A world that Earl Nightingale spoke of many times in his seminars. A world that no longer exists today because of 1%ters corrupting the system to hell.

[-] 2 points by clbo (5) 8 years ago

I'm really glad you put in the distinction between people who attain wealth through legitimate means (starting a business, or whatever) and those who use wealth to alter the rules to their advantage (bribes, lobbying, etc.). I definitely agree that people who engage in the latter activity, whether on the side of big business or big government, ought to be the target of everyone who's pissed off at the system - not each other or people who have different ideas about how to solve the problem.

[-] 2 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

Could you give some examples of individuals or corporations that have actually done these things? I think it would help strengthen your argument since there have been so many half researched generalities thrown around so far. Like you said (and I agree with you) there should be a clear distinction between someone who has legitimately obtained their wealth and success through hard work, and someone who has exploited or bribed, etc the government to gain unfair advantages.

[-] 1 points by bourgeoiswallstreet (38) from Lexington, KY 8 years ago

Here's an example. Most health insurance drug benefits go through a pharmacy benefit manager (PBM). Medco is one of them. You can no longer go to your friendly small independent pharmacy but rather you must send your prescription to their giant pharmacy warehouse. Don't you see a conflict of interest here? This in my opinion is very unethical. Legal but unethical. Another example CVS/Caremark. A pharmacy chain teams up with a PBM and now that PBM makes everyone go to CVS. Do you think this really is about reducing drug costs or is it about corporate profits? Don't get me started on Walmart.

[-] 1 points by quadrawack (280) 8 years ago

Thank you. A lot of people have no idea how much collusion into cartels a lot of these industries are. It's like having the monopoly without dealing with anti-monopoly laws.

[-] 1 points by bourgeoiswallstreet (38) from Lexington, KY 8 years ago

I forgot to mention that these PBMs have lucrative deals with big Pharma for what are called "rebate" (essentially kick backs). So not only do they make you use their pharmacy they make you use specific drugs that get them the most kick backs from Big Pharma. Have you ever wondered why a certain brand name drug was covered but not others? Now you know. http://www.nu-retail.com/quantifying_Medco_business_model.pdf

Don't forget that George Bush made it illegal for the government to negotiate drug prices. Which is a huge example of how corporations have manipulated the system to their advantage.

[-] 1 points by teachthenprosper (10) from Waycross, GA 8 years ago

You hit it right on the head, quad. Nothing wrong with aspiring for wealth and attaining it. However, once we get there, there has to be a conscience and moral ground here. It seems that there is nothing wrong with being unethical or even devious as long as it's 'legal.'

Legal wasn't the main derivative on what this country was founded, but in a 'lawyered-up' nation it is now paramount to everything. The means justifies the end and visa versa.

[-] 1 points by trose23 (3) 8 years ago

lol sounds like your life was against the odds...like 99 to 1??

[-] 1 points by fallan (6) 8 years ago

as a Brit we have had all this anarchist crap before including the riots in the summer.Of course there are criminals in the capitalist system so what there are criminals everywhere including the Obama government some not paying their taxes.A lot of those protesting want government to lead them by the hand and if they dont then it must be those evil capitalists who are responsible.Bl**dy grow up and think yourself lucky you arent living in North Korea where millions are starving under a communist regime or Africa suffering from decades of famine.You dont know what poor is maybe you should fly out to those places and find out instead of dossing about with your clenched fists

[-] 1 points by Vooter (441) 8 years ago

If the folks on Wall Street who created the CDO and mortgage-backed security time bombs that brought down the economy in 2008 had gone to prison, and if our disgustingly Supreme Court hadn't ruled that corporations are "people" who can donate endless money to political campaigns (but without the responsibilities of actual people--i.e., taxes and prison), a lot of this might not have been happening. But the U.S. government and the bankers on Wall Street decided not only to spit in the public's face, but to laugh while they were doing it, and now it's retribution time. What don't you get?

[-] 2 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

mortgage back securities turned sour and imploded for one reason and only one reason: the government changed the underwriting standards for getting a mortgage, which in turn grew and poisoned the balance sheets for many financial institutions. and guess who in the govy was responsible? those overseeing the HUD, Fannie Mae and Freddie mac, none other than Chris Dodd and Barney blowhard Frank. They cut the underwriting satndards for new mortgages to the bone so anyone with a heart beat could get an oversized mortgage. some on wall street were just as much victims as the borrowers. And Dodd and Frank hide behind accusations that Wall street did it. They even crafted the Dodd Frank bill so prop desks could be killed across wall street. a joke since prop desks had nothing to do with the meltdown. get smart people.

[-] 1 points by Cindy (197) 8 years ago

There is a lot of talk about people buying houses they could not afford. Many of the folks struggling today are people who bought houses years prior to this collapse and had sufficient monies to fund it until businesses run by other folks began to fail. They were laid off. Businesses were folding and folks were let go. That is why they no longer can afford the home. Many people did manage to hold onto the home but had to endure piss poor credit scores because of smaller or late payments. There was not a warning that this crash would occur. Then banks were bailed out with taxpayers money. Taxpayers were burned. CEO's took bonuses with the bailout money. And now wish to add a fee for using the debit card. Taxpayers want the money back. Plain and Simple. The People's Bail Out.

[-] 1 points by teachthenprosper (10) from Waycross, GA 8 years ago

My sister went through exactly just that, Cindy. She's been a legal secretary for over 25 yrs and she and her husband have been in their house over 5 yrs. She was laid off (or should I say--her job was given to a college intern for less pay). A year later, she is back working in her same profession and luckily didn't lose her home.

She has paid taxes her whole life and of course didn't have any clue that she would be displaced in lieu of a college intern by the jackoff attorney in the law firm she worked for. Who would think with all of the lawyers in this country and gaining, she was in the wrong profession? I am committed to the People's Bail Out Plan and you're more than welcome to join in!

[-] 1 points by justhefacts (1275) 8 years ago

Funny thing is, the "govt" keeps telling us that these banks have paid back "most" or "all" of the money they were loaned. WHERE is that money now? Only the govt knows.

Another point-selling someone a mortgage who has "sufficient monies" to pay that mortgage is a normal, regular practice. It's a normal risk taken by both the bank AND the borrower that the borrower will be able to pay off the mortgage. Selling a mortgage to someone who has "insufficient monies" or a bad credit history because the federal government is demanding that those "poor" or "risky" borrowers deserve a house to-is a sick, stupid thing to do.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

Well said Mr one percent. We are a country that has lost its way. Life is a fierce competition and grind, so we should congratulate those who make it to the top, not persecute. As long as half the people in this country pay for the other half we are on the road to disaster. The goal should be to make more of us rich, not attack those who have attained that position. the Occupy Wall Street movement is rediculous, unfocused, and ignorant.

[-] 1 points by jmcdarcy (158) 8 years ago

Let us not forget the scale on which the American people were defrauded by America's largest financial institutions. And yet justice has never been served, not to anyone. Nobody has been arrested, the financial system remains unregulated and unreformed, and ex-CEOs from the very financial institutions which caused the problem now occupy the White House in positions in which they can direct economic policy from. If this is not cause for outrage then what is? It's high time we had a protest movement to stand up for justice in this country.

The latest line in politics is weather or not we should raise taxes on the rich. We all know it's not about actually raising taxes...it's about exposing loyalties of senators. When you have people like Warren Buffet saying that his secretary paid a higher tax percentage than himself, it makes it seem like a reasonable thing to raise taxes on the wealthy. Why? Not because the wealthy DESERVE to have taxes raised, but because our country is in dire straights and we need to do SOMETHING. We can't do anything that will make unemployment worse and we all know that trickle down economics is a sham. I don't actually care if the wealthy have taxes raised or not...I care that our politicians get their heads out of their asses and start making up laws that make sense instead of watered down crappy laws which serve no one and aggravate everyone.

The question must be asked, where do senators get off representing the interests of the few rich against the interests of the many middle class people who's volume of votes actually put them into office? Or does it just always so happen that the laws which the wealthy advocate are somehow morally superior and Senators, on their honor (HA!), feel compelled to vote for them. Something is fishy here. Real fishy. And we're real tired of it.

[-] 1 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

Why does life have to be a fierce competition and grind? There are more than enough resources to make sure that nobody starves. Just imagine what could be produced if people weren't constantly concerned about where they will sleep tonight, and what they will eat tomorrow? I challenge you to explain why greed needs to be the zeitgeist we all live by. Do so without calling me a socialist or a communist or whatever other Argumentum ad Hominem you might come up with.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

very few people in this country have to worry about what they will eat tomorrow.

[-] 1 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

What planet do you live on? I'm also talking about the world, never mind the country. But I tell you what, you just go on and troll this little website all you want from your comfortable office. I will be out in the street gaining momentum and support. See you on the other side of history!

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

funny. so you want to tax wall street so you can feed the world? good luck on the street getting that support and momentum.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

Because when you seek most things in life, from buying a house, going to college, to getting a job you are competing with someone, indeed you are competing in the market place for these things. The higher the goal, i.e beach house or ivy league school, then the more intense the competition, hence for some with high standards life can be a grind, by choice. regarding greed, that's your word not mine.

[-] 1 points by clbo (5) 8 years ago

To avoid the "capitalism distilled by some dude on a forum" post, I'll link this instead:

http://www.nytimes.com/1997/06/22/weekinreview/in-principle-a-case-for-more-sweatshops.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm

Main point: The beginning stages of capitalism in poor countries is not sunshine and lollipops by any measure, but that doesn't mean it isn't raising standards of living.

[-] 2 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

I didn't say I was against capitalism, I asked why life had to be a fierce competition and grind. Regarding the beginning stages of capitalism in poor countries, why are they poor? Were they just too lazy? Didn't work hard enough? The dreaded C-word or S-word? So the question remains: Why is greed good?

I may be an idealist, but I'm ok with it. We have enough to go around. The children in the article you posted can be far more valuable to the world than working in sweatshops. I am well aware of MY status as a 1%er to the rest of the world. I'm willing to part with a chunk of my lifestyle to make someone else's life better, and often do.

[-] 1 points by clbo (5) 8 years ago

My bad - I read into your words.

I guess what I wanted to get at was that life doesn't necessarily have to be harsh competition and grind when the standard of living for everyone has some sort of floor under it - and capitalism is a proven way of raising that floor. Greed is good in the sense that under the correct set of institutions it can be directed in such a way that the primary means of gathering more and more resources is to more effectively serve your fellow man. That obviously isn't the case today, since people just buy off the rule makers and circumvent the market - so that, too, is idealistic.

I don't think having a system based on greed precludes what you're talking about with realizing the massive disparity between what we have and what many parts of the world have. You could be greedy in the sense that you're driven by wanting to help folks in Africa, or whatever, and so you start up a business to amass resources in order to be able to affect change more effectively than you could individually. That isn't the normal thing that happens, but some people do this sort of thing.

So I wouldn't say greed is good per se (wanting a lavish house and 50 nice cars while other people are starving), but that ideally society could organize itself such that we channel that type of greed into having to help society at large through competition on the market.

[-] 2 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

We're not that far apart. Come on down and join your local GA! We need you!

[-] 1 points by brokeandstarving (62) 8 years ago

you are only broke and starving until you are not broke and starving.....just like the pro athlete who comes from the broken ghetto home always goes back to take care of his peeps, why is it that i never read about the kid from a terrible background who makes it big in business coming back to help his own?

[-] 1 points by Anomnomoose (44) 8 years ago

"Kid from a terrible backround" why would you want to go back and help those who may have contributed to that terrible backround?

[-] 1 points by stray (219) from Philadelphia, PA 8 years ago

How many people can even remotely equal your success given the current climate? Not everyone can be so lucky, and hard work does not necessarily equal success. I'm sure there are people who worked harder than you and didn't succeed in the same way. Apparently you don't consider yourself fortunate. Reality check: money doesn't make you better than anyone.

I applaud your success, but you're missing the point. People want the same opportunity that you had, that their grandparents had, and so on. That's not easy when most of the country's money is consolidated in very few hands. No one can have a piece of the pie when its all in someone else's hands.

[-] 0 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

I am young and earned what I have within the past 3 years. While I am not mega-rich, wearing a top hat with a waxed moustache and laughing at others misfortunes, I do have a considerable net worth and you would think I am an everyday person if you saw me. As with many other people who you would classify as the 1%.

If I am not who you are targeting, then this movement should really re-consider their message.

[-] 0 points by stray (219) from Philadelphia, PA 8 years ago

In what industry? A lot of small businesses failed during the recession, and since then. Did they just "not work hard enough?"

If you seriously feel like you need to come here and make a post that summarizes to "I deserve everything I have and you all should fuck off" then what do you really want people to say to you? Self righteous is as self righteous does. What are you doing to help the economy, since it seems you view yourself as a "job creator"?

[-] 3 points by Anomnomoose (44) 8 years ago

Many deserve everything they have. Like if you went to college for an arts degree, you most likely deserve to end up on the street because you CHOSE to sink $50,000 in the most useless degree. This guy earned what he has. I see no reason why you should be so antagonistic towards him for being enlightened on what some of that one percent is made up of. Not everyone is the same.

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

I don't think that was what TheOnePercent's point was. It seems more like he/she, like myself, is confused at who the movement is actually targeting due to lack of clarity in purpose by the group as a whole. Until I spent a few hours on here today reading posts and comments, I felt similarly. Now, I realize that the actual issue is with ultra high net worth individuals that engage in questionable lobbying activities. Or I could be wrong lol but thats the impression I've gotten in the last hour or so from ppl on here.

[-] 1 points by kazoo55 (195) from Rijs, FR 8 years ago

Yes, hand over your lupins with all speed and be gone.

[-] 0 points by RealityCheck9 (0) 8 years ago

Also I find it funny that you people can bitch and complain but none of you actually have a real practical solution. And the way you twist the media is no different than the people you claim to be fighting.

Get a clue and get your own life stop expecting people to give it to you.

[-] 0 points by Adzoe (11) from Bakersfield, CA 8 years ago

"The housing crisis, out of control deficit, and rising tuition costs can all be directly or indirectly 'contributed' to the federal government." Perhaps you meant "attributed". FDR said and later penned, "Do what we may to inject health into our ailing economic order, we cannot make it endure for long unless we can bring about a wiser, more equitable distribution of the national income." LOOKING FORWARD page 31. He accomplished this by raising the top marginal tax rate to 91%. Unemployment rapidly decreased as we built Hoover and Grand Coulee dams, paved America, won WWII, created suburbia, built the freeway system, sent men to the moon, etc. In that same generation the national debt that had grown to 120% of GDP fell to its pre-depression level. It continued to fall until the Reagan/Bush-Bush administrations when it rose rapidly, pausing only in the Clinton years. Under the Reagan economic program our space program is faltering, our infrastructure is crumbling, and unemployment is rising. Unfortunately the Republicans have blocked any efforts to reverse the Reagan era tax policies, so the rapid rise in the national debt continues under Obama. No matter how much you protest paying higher taxes, how do you propose to fix the current drastic problem. FDR had a solution that worked wonders. What is yours?

[-] 0 points by ywerd (4) 8 years ago

This onepercent bum has been paid to post here. What a louse. Get a credible job, shit eater. Or, go back to your masters to beg for more hand-outs. You won't find any here.

[-] 0 points by FransiscoDAnconia (17) 8 years ago

Thank you Theonepercent. Keep strong, many of us support and back you, I may not be able to say I am in the 1% but I am still with you.

[-] 2 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

Thank you for your support, keep strong too buddy

[-] 0 points by bogusanger7 (83) 8 years ago

It is not the fact that rich individuals got to where they are because of 'HARD WORK', but how many people have gone into making these individuals rich and why is there a crony, grease the palms, turn your backs on those who actually created your wealth in this country. Tell us, how does your business run, with machines? who built those machines and the products you sell...YOU??? You are unrealistic because you are living in a society where there are consumers and there are producers..So...where do you get your wealth from..the producers or the consumer. Hell yeh, you owe people something with your holier than thou selfish ass...since without people...you wouldn't have a damn business IDIOT!!!

[-] 0 points by livengood (11) from St Petersburg, FL 8 years ago

Congratulations for your wealth, if that is how you measure your happiness and success. Noone wants your money, everyone wants to see the tax money used during Wall Street bailout to trickle down, not giving ridiculously high untaxed bonuses to each other and politician payoffs with our tax payer money that bailed them (you?) out.

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

here's a small fact that folks tend to overlook: did you know that every penny of the $700 billion bailout money paid to wall street firms was paid back to the government, with a profit! funny how that gets overlooked. Only companies that haven't repaid bailout money are AIG (insurance co) and GM (auto)

[-] 1 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

list of examples please.

[-] 0 points by occupythegreenparty (157) 8 years ago

First of all No one gets ANYWHERE on their own. We are all subject to the stories that came before ours. And those stories determine the ease or difficulty to which you can create a successful story yourself. There are MANY stories that have been crushed due to the inequality of how the law was applied to people. And the MAIN reason the law was applied unequally is because those with money INFLUENCED the law makers, and judges.

Therefore we FOCUS our sights on our government which you seemed to have missed; we focus on how to get the powerful money OUT of our government. So that we all have that equal opportunity in life that you are so unaware doesn't exist.

[-] 0 points by RichardGates (1529) 8 years ago

we don't expect you to pay anything, just don't expect anything in return for all the nothing. no cooks at the restaurants, no taxi, no bus, no firemen, [No Police]... i mean you guys are so far removed from reality, count your blessings little man.

[-] 0 points by Cindy (197) 8 years ago

So your point is that if you were raised by an alcoholic father in a small apartment you should become a workaholic in a large house and have no compassion for the masses? I'm sorry for your childhood. Laws have been put in place to protect children. It is not perfect. Has the pain of your childhood subsided with your focus on business? Is it buried deep down or is it coming up at a time when America is once again standing up for equality?. Standing up to Father Finance. Abuse in any form or fashion is wrong even if it's financial.

[-] 0 points by theman (44) 8 years ago

you tell that hippie scum

[-] 0 points by esoteric714 (0) 8 years ago

"How about focusing your sights on the real root of the problems with our country - the government itself."

The government itself controlled by Wall Street. Once you realize that, you'll understand why the protests are happening.

As for the rest of your comment, are you hiring? If not, STFU with your criticism of people out there on the street fighting for their future.

[-] 0 points by Vic1967 (4) 8 years ago

I was on welfare and now I'm making three figures a year by running my own business simply because I was not able to find any job. I'm ready to pay higher taxes because I understand that:

  1. Those who in need should have a chance
  2. If there is too many of those who in need, they could unite and overthrow the small part of those who is too greedy and too arrogant
[-] 2 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

There is no one stopping you from voluntarily writing a check to the IRS so you can set an example

[-] 0 points by Vic1967 (4) 8 years ago

and you are the one expects to have everything without paying taxes. You want police to protect you, you want army to fight for you, and etc, but you do not want to pay taxes... - this is what will destroy you

[-] 3 points by networth0dollas (21) 8 years ago

yeah seriously, hes paying taxes dude. the argument in this thread never said anything about him expecting things without paying a fair share of taxes.

[-] 2 points by kmanpdx (105) 8 years ago

The question is, what is fair share and who has $$ to pay lawyers and accountants to find the grey area's for exploitation? Not me, although, maybe if I did, I could manage to lower my effective tax rates. I don't want to do that, however. I want to contribute my share for the people.

[-] 3 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

I already pay considerable taxes, but I like how you assume that I pay none. I pay income tax, sales tax, property tax, etc.

I have no problem against taxes, although I do believe the tax codes need to be vastly simplified. But it seems like you are saying that I do not pay enough. If that is the case, go ahead tax me at 80% - your argument may be that "well, you still have enough to live on!" but then watch what happens to my business, the people who I pay, and the overall economy. Hint: it won't be pretty.

[-] 1 points by anticorporateantistate (7) 8 years ago

rich guy thinks he's john fucking galt implying he's not james fucking taggert

trololololol

Our Brezhevite "capitalist" system is so broken that instead of having people like Rockefeller and Vanderbilt (say what you want about their business practices, they WERE self-made men), the new rich are guys like Madoff and Paulson.

[-] 1 points by kmanpdx (105) 8 years ago

What % do you pay in federal taxes? What about state? Warren Buffet only paid 17% in 2009. I paid almost double that in federal.

[-] 0 points by Vic1967 (4) 8 years ago

Tax increase is not as scary as it looks like. It's not the end of the world. The proposed tax increase assume increase only on the part of income that is above of $1M. I have a business as well and one of the biggest part of my expenses are Visa's fees, transactions fees and other bank's fees. I welcome coming restrictions (thanks to the Government) in these fees and I'm ok with extra taxes - it is not going to be 80% - it is better than having people on the street like it was in Egypt.

[-] -1 points by Bizinuez (120) from Raleigh, NC 8 years ago

When you say, "go ahead tax me at 80%" Do you understand that the 80% would apply only to very top of your earnings? There is a staggering percentage of the population that actually thinks you can move into the next higher tax bracket and come out making less money. That is not how progressive taxation works. So yes, if your upper income was taxed at 80%, you would have MORE than enough to live on. Does any business owner actually say "Oh I can't expand and make more money because my taxes will be too high?!" Hint: No. No they don't. And if they do, then they're pretty terrible business owners and bad at business.

I'm glad to see that you don't have a problem with taxes. As far as what you owe, you DO owe. You owe it to this country and this world to take a chunk of what you made and pay it forward to the next kid, so he has the same (or dare I say, even better!) opportunities you did. I respect you for being able to pull yourself out of a terrible living situation and make it, but if you think that it was through no small amount of luck, nor was assistance was provided you, then you may need to check yourself.

Regarding not having a hotline to the Whitehouse, you are much more likely to be able to afford a $25k/plate dinner to rub elbows with the President than I, or 99% of the population. If you don't have that kind of scratch, you ain't as One Percent as you think you are.

[-] 0 points by wemartin89 (7) 8 years ago

What is wrong with you paying the same percent of tax that everyone else pays? Do you think that just because you make more money that you should get a tax break? It doesnt come out even that way does it?

[-] 0 points by opensociety4us (914) from Norwalk, CT 8 years ago

you don't owe me anything. you owe a society that provided you with the opportunity to make more than you need and the argument is that you owe it more than you've given it so far.

[-] 0 points by thesoulgotsoldontheroadtogold (148) 8 years ago

We don't expect rich people to stop wanting to be rich. We do expect government to step in when the rich people, in their one-track-mindedness to be rich, are abusing and stepping on the rights of other people....

[-] 2 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 8 years ago

Do you ever stop to think that the Government itself abuses and steps on your "rights" more than any 1% does? Do you even know what your "rights" are?

[-] 1 points by thesoulgotsoldontheroadtogold (148) 8 years ago

what's your point? wall street is the entity that controls and centralizes the economy it is the neck that is turning washington with its moneyed interests, if you don't have anything constructive to say, save your breath... corruption is human nature, but so is goodness

[-] 1 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

i work on wall street. i work very hard, every day. i get up at 5:15 and get home around 8:00. i make good money, but i earn it. so your comment about "easy money" is far from reality. Also, i do what i do because i'm one of the few who have build the skills and experience to be here. You had the same opportunity that i had. only i did it and you didn't. does that make me a bad person? im paid good money because im highly skilled, sort of like a baseball player. my employer wouldnt pay me one dime more than the value i bring to the business. So i guess im worth what im paid. so whats the problem 99%-ers? What am i missing??

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 8 years ago

My point is that I would be more inclined to listen to the OWS voice if they included government as a causation in this mess and not some innocent bystander manipulated by the evil Wall St. If you don't believe that this Government isn't in willful and direct collusion with Wall Street, I have some property on Jupiter you might be interested in.

[-] 1 points by thesoulgotsoldontheroadtogold (148) 8 years ago

yes, govt is very willfully in collusion with wall st, but if you don't stop wall st money influence, it will infect any new batch of people you put into washington.....

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 8 years ago

And how do you propose stopping Wall St. money influence? Through legislation? Legislation from the very people that benifit directly from the influence they are legislating against? Hopefully now you see the problem.

[-] 0 points by kazoo55 (195) from Rijs, FR 8 years ago

I agree, protesting against 'the wealthy' is silly. The ones who do have no clue. Furthermore, the government is just part of the problem, complicit, bought and paid for. The real issue that needs to be addressed is the usury by the FED - and that the US Dollar consists of nothing but ever more debt, to be paid back by the people by income tax. Those guys hold everyone of us by the short & curly ones. Surely this must bother you too. Another one is the astronomical national debt and the bizarre derivatives whose boundaries must by now have reached the outer limits of the know universe. None of this makes sense, this is our planet, and this corrupt system, this house of cards fucks up everything.

[-] 2 points by mimthefree (192) from Biggar, Scotland 8 years ago

or perhaps the system of ownership itself as promoted by Smith?

which inevitably leads to economic slavery?

Read "the money trick" here:

http://prahalathan.blogspot.com/2006/01/great-money-trick.html

[-] 1 points by kazoo55 (195) from Rijs, FR 8 years ago

Yes, good piece, thankyou, it makes an excellent point. A man's got to eat, that's why he'll always be dependent on his labour for the kindhearted capitalist to get some. But the latter will happily let him starve in the streets whenever he pleases. Oh, the beauty of capitalism and free market. So, what would you propose then?

[-] 1 points by mimthefree (192) from Biggar, Scotland 8 years ago

socialism is a system where everybody owns the means of production. anarcho-communism. resource based economy.

call it what you will, but the main problem is inequality. Equalise everything, and a very large majority of people worldwide would be happier (i.e the 99%)

[-] 1 points by libertarianincle (312) from Cleveland, OH 8 years ago

Thank you Kazoo...you are the ONLY person here who points the finger where it belongs.

[-] 0 points by MikeyD (581) from Alameda, CA 8 years ago

Yeah, but you are willing to work for yourself! I want somebody else to provide me with a job!

[-] 1 points by Vic1967 (4) 8 years ago

you always work for yourself and your family (if you have one), even when somebody provide you with job. You have to change your mentality. If you want to see changes in your Country you have to do something and not wait when somebody make those changes for you in your favor. We have to rebuild our mentality and stop waiting when somebody does something for us while we are drinking beer in front of TV.

[-] 1 points by MikeyD (581) from Alameda, CA 8 years ago

No! Those greedy fortune 500 banks owe me a good paying job! They also need to stop gouging me for ATM fees! Its not like I can just bank with someone else!

[-] 2 points by Vic1967 (4) 8 years ago
  1. Nobody owns you anything except the Government that you elected.
  2. You are angry and this is good - put it in action
  3. I agree that corporation have to pay higher taxes - they make money on us, they are bailed out and they abuse the system - so they have to pay higher taxes, but they do not owe you a job. When they pay higher taxes the Government should put these extra funds into creating jobs - that is where you can get the job.
[-] 0 points by angelofmercy (225) 8 years ago

I do not believe that you are the 1% , but more like the 53% :) http://www.theblaze.com/stories/the-53-want-the-99-to-learn-from-their-example/

I'm sure many of them would not like for me to go to their house , and take their crap because I felt It was mine. But yet it's ok for them to think it's ok to do it to others. lol

[-] 0 points by TheOnePercent (25) 8 years ago

I would also like to add that I am young, like most of you

[-] -1 points by theman (44) 8 years ago

you tell that hippie scum

[-] -1 points by IWantFreeStuff (119) from New Orleans, LA 8 years ago

Dude. You're just a hater. All of your wealth should be redistributed, and you should be sent to a re-education FEMA camp. LOL Just wait until Obama gets re-elected, and suspends general elections. He'll show you in his third term in office. Gimme my free stuff.

[-] 1 points by synonymous (161) from New York, NY 8 years ago

Its not that Mr. One Percent is a hater...But most likely one of the thieves receiving kickbacks...

[-] 2 points by joewealthyhaha (152) 8 years ago

so anyone who is successful is a thief? sounds like the words from a bitter loser.

[-] 1 points by synonymous (161) from New York, NY 8 years ago

I am Alleging criminal conduct, you are making ad hominem attacks... Typical Douchepublican deflection designed to prevent the American people from achieving Constitutional Justice...