Share on Google Plus Share on Twitter Share on Facebook 2 Share on LinkedIn Share on PInterest Share on Fark! Share on Reddit Share on StumbleUpon Tell A Friend 5 (7 Shares)  
Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites View Article Stats   5 comments

OpEdNews Op Eds

How the Super-Rich Are Abandoning America

By (about the author)     Permalink       (Page 1 of 2 pages)
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; , Add Tags Add to My Group(s)

Well Said 5   Must Read 3   Interesting 3  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H2 11/4/13

Become a Fan
  (6 fans)

As they accumulate more and more wealth, the very rich have less need for society. At the same time, they've convinced themselves that they made it on their own, and that contributing to societal needs is unfair to them. There is ample evidence that this small group of takers is giving up on the country that made it possible for them to build huge fortunes.

 

Photo: luna715/cc/flickr 1. 

They've Taken $25 Trillion of New Wealth While Paying Less Taxes

The 2013 Global Wealth Databook shows that U.S. wealth has increased from $47 trillion in 2008 to $72 trillion in mid-2013. But according to U.S. Government Revenue figures, federal income taxes have gone DOWN from 2008 to 2012. Even worse, corporations cut their tax rate in half.

American society has gained nothing from its massive wealth expansion. There's no wealth tax, no financial transaction tax, no way to ensure that infrastructure and public education are supported.

Just how much have the super-rich taken over the past five years? Each of the elite 5% -- the richest 12 million Americans -- gained, on average, nearly a million dollars in financial wealth between 2008 and 2013.

2. For the First Time in History, They Believe They Don't Need the Rest of Us

The rich have always needed the middle class to work in their factories and buy their products. With globalization this is no longer true. Their factories can be in China, producing goods for people in India or Europe or anywhere else in the world.

They don't need our infrastructure for their yachts and helicopters and submarines. They pay for private schools for their kids, private security for their homes. They have private emergency rooms to avoid the health care hassle. All they need is an assortment of servants, who might be guest workers coming to America on H2B visas, willing to work for less than a middle-class American can afford.

The sentiment is spreading from the super-rich to the merely rich. In 2005 Sandy Springs, a wealthy suburb of Atlanta, stopped paying for most public services, deciding instead to avoid subsidizing poorer residents of Fulton County by hiring a "city outsourcer" called CH2M to manage everything except the police and fire departments. That includes paving the roads, running the courts, issuing tickets, handling waste, and various other public services. Several other towns followed suit.

Results have been mixed, with some of CH2M's clients backing out or renegotiating. But privatization keeps coming at us. Selective decisions about public services threaten to worsen already destitute conditions for many communities. Detroit, of course, is at the forefront. According to an Urban Land Institute report, "more municipalities may follow Detroit's example and abandon services in certain districts."

3. They Soaked the Middle Class, and Now Demand Cuts in the Middle-Class Retirement Fund

The richest Americans take the greatest share of over $2 trillion in Tax Expenditures, Tax Underpayments, Tax Haven holdings, and unpaid Corporate Taxes.

The Social Security budget is less than half of that. Yet much of Congress and many other wealthy Americans think it should be cut. These are the same people who deprive the American public of $300 billion a year by not paying their full share of the payroll tax.

4. They Continue to Insist that They "Made It on Their Own"

They didn't. Their fortunes derived in varying degrees - usually big degrees - from public funding, which provided almost half of basic research funds into the 1980s, and even today supports about 60 percent of the research performed at universities.

Next Page  1  |  2

 

www.UsAgainstGreed.org

Paul Buchheit is a college teacher, an active member of US Uncut Chicago, founder and developer of social justice and educational websites (UsAgainstGreed.org, PayUpNow.org, RappingHistory.org), and the editor and main author of " American Wars: Illusions and Realities " (Clarity Press). 


Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact Author Contact Editor View Authors' Articles
Related Topic(s): ; ; ; , Add Tags

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

The Extremist Cult of Capitalism

How the Super-Rich Are Abandoning America

Labor Day Without Jobs: Exposing the "Job Creator" Fraud

Ten Numbers the Rich Would Like Fudged

Man in Office

Comments

The time limit for entering new comments on this article has expired.

This limit can be removed. Our paid membership program is designed to give you many benefits, such as removing this time limit. To learn more, please click here.

Comments: Expand   Shrink   Hide  
5 people are discussing this page, with 5 comments
To view all comments:
Expand Comments
(Or you can set your preferences to show all comments, always)

... by Ellen Brown on Tuesday, Nov 5, 2013 at 1:06:10 PM
Fine article.  All of the rich's ill-gotten g... by Ernie Messerschmidt on Tuesday, Nov 5, 2013 at 1:12:12 PM
"Who gives a crap about some imbecile?" OMG..&... by Textynn N on Tuesday, Nov 5, 2013 at 1:40:26 PM
a superb and well-documented news report.... by Eric Zuesse on Tuesday, Nov 5, 2013 at 3:13:59 PM
At least Marie Antoinette said: "Why don't they ea... by BFalcon on Tuesday, Nov 5, 2013 at 9:14:52 PM