The super-rich no longer need a middle class by Thom Hartmann, Alternet, Nov 6, 2013 They now inhabit a privatized economy and have left us at the mercy of the market…America is falling apart — and this nation’s super-rich are to blame….There was once a time in America when the super-rich needed you, and me, and working-class Americans to be successful….But times have changed, and the super-rich of the 21st century no longer think that you and I are needed for their continued success. And in some ways, they have given up on America, period….Unfortunately, these millionaires and billionaires who have given up on America and on the working class are in control of the political process in this country. Republicans are no longer investing in things that have traditionally made America – and the working-class – successful. Take America’s infrastructure for example…. America’s infrastructure is a mess….cutting funding to the nation’s infrastructure isn’t the right way to address American’s debt or spending problems. And it certainly isn’t the right way to rebuild this nation….But the super-rich don’t care about how much funding is needed to save this country, as long as they have their private schools, private hospitals, private airports and private places. The super-rich in this country are bleeding working-class Americans dry, while destroying the infrastructure of the nation that has done so much for their success….America’s wealthy elite did not make their fortunes on their own. Without a strong economy and infrastructure, America’s millionaires and billionaires would not be where they are today. It’s that simple…It’s ridiculous that working-class Americans struggling to survive day-to-day are paying more in taxes than billionaire banksters and oil tycoons….We’re all in this together.
The Middle Class Faces Extinction—So Does the American Dream by Stewart Lansley, Los Angeles Review of Books, Alternet.org, June 3, 2013 – Inequality is now one of the biggest political and economic challenges facing the United States…The return of inequality to levels last seen in the 1920s has had a profound effect on American society, its values, and its economy.…One of the most significant effects…has been the capping of opportunities and the emergence of downward mobility amongst the middle classes, a process that began well before the recession. Around 100 million Americans — a third of the population — live below or fractionally above the poverty level. A quarter of the American workforce end up in low-paid jobs, the highest rate across rich nations, while the wealthiest 400 Americans have the same combined wealth as the poorest half — over 150 million people…The nation is at last waking up to what has been reality for years — the vaunted American Dream (the ability of citizens to go from rags to riches, and one of the country’s most enduring values) is increasingly a myth…the long wage squeeze and the growing concentration of income at the top led to record corporate surpluses and an explosion of personal fortunes…the effect was the upward redistribution of existing wealth and the fueling of the bubbles — in property and business — that eventually brought the global economy to its knees. That inequality is also acting as a profound drag on the prospects of recovery…But unless Obama can find a way of breaking the firewalls created by the new plutocrats to protect their wealth from economic collapse and political interference, the likelihood is that the American middle class will go on shrinking, the American dream will further erode, and the nation’s economy will continue to stumble from crisis to crisis.
Big Lie: America Doesn’t Have #1 Richest Middle-Class in the World…We’re Ranked 27th! AlterNet by Les Leopold, June 18, 2013 – America is the richest country on Earth. We have the most millionaires, the most billionaires and our wealthiest citizens have garnered more of the planet’s riches than any other group in the world. We even have hedge fund managers who make in one hour as much as the average family makes in 21 years! This opulence is supposed to trickle down to the rest of us, improving the lives of everyday Americans. At least that’s what free-market cheerleaders repeatedly promise us. Unfortunately, it’s a lie, one of the biggest ever perpetrated on the American people. Our middle class is falling further and further behind in comparison to the rest of the world. We keep hearing that America is number one. Well, when it comes to middle-class wealth, we’re number 27.…Wealth is measured by the total sum of all our assets (homes, bank accounts, stocks, bonds etc.) minus our liabilities (outstanding loans and other debts). It the best indicator we have for individual and family prosperity…
Teaching People to Hate Their Own Govt. Is at the Core of the Project to Destroy the Middle Class By Dennis Marker, AlterNet, August 21, 2012 ……Teaching the middle class to hate their government was an essential part of the [conservative] plan… A middle class cannot exist without a strong government. This is because only a government has the power to stand up to the giant corporations of today’s world …Thirty years ago at the onset of the Reagan Revolution, the middle class basically appreciated and respected their government…the basic message of Reagan and the conservatives was that everyone would be better off if the federal government just disappeared. They were smart enough not to say this directly, however. Instead, they just landed one body blow after another without openly expressing their desire to destroy the government….