Friday, September 16, 2011

Follow the Money-Part Two

A couple of days ago, I posted about the seeming split between what the majority of people want from our government, and what we're actually getting.  I concluded that the way to figure out why was to 'follow the money.'  In that vein, here's where you get when you do just that:

As of 2006, the top .01 percent--that is 1/100th of one percent--of Americans make 976 times the income of the bottom 90%.  As of 2007, the top 1 percent of Americans have over 1/3 of all the wealth in America.  The top 10% have 71.5% of the wealth.  And the bottom 50% have 2.5 %.  So, who has the money to make campaign contributions and hire lawyers and lobbyists to get what they want? 

As of 2007, the top 1% own 50.9% of all stocks, bonds, mutual funds in America.  The top 10% have 90.3%.   The bottom 50% of Americans have .5% (one half of one percent).  So, who's gotten most of the benefit from the recent spate of "record profits?" 

Between 1990 and 2005, CEO's pay increased by 298.2%.  During the same period, average workers' earnings rose by just 4.3%.   So who is likely to be getting richer?

And finally, adjusted for inflation, average workers' hourly earnings are lower than in 1972.  So, who's going to be getting poorer?

I guess it isn't really too surprising that we're getting actions that are called for by the minority.  It's the minority that pays.

Above figures are from the article here.

Just for reference, in 2008, to be in the top 10% in income, you had to have a household taxable income of  about $109,000 or more.  The median, or 50th percentile, was around $49,000.  

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