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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 4/21/14

The Neo-Liberal Deception

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Message Lionel Reynolds

Having said that, the report is a stunning indictment of the Neo-Liberal deception.

In the opening executive summary the reader is informed that:

Almost half of the world's wealth is now owned by just one percent of the population.

The wealth of the one percent richest people in the world amounts to $110 trillion. That's 65 times the total wealth of the bottom half of the world's population.

The bottom half of the world's population owns the same as the richest 85 people in the world.

Seven out of ten people live in countries where economic inequality has increased in the last 30 years.

The richest one percent increased their share of income in 24 out of 26 countries for which we have data between 1980 and 2012.

In the US, the wealthiest one percent captured 95 percent of post-financial crisis growth since 2009, while the bottom 90 percent became poorer.

In the 'People's Republic' of China, now firmly established as an integral component of the world capitalist order, supplying cheap consumer goods to the US/EU economies and using its massive US dollar foreign exchange reserves to help bankroll the US/NATO war machine, the report states that the richest 1% have more than doubled their share of national income since 1980.

The report reveals the stunning fact that 18.5 trillion dollars - a sum greater than total US GDP, is held unrecorded and offshore in tax havens - the lion's share held in a network of current and former British possessions - Hong Kong, The Cayman Islands, Singapore, Jersey, Bermuda and Guernsey.

As for the distribution of wealth, 10% of the global population control 86% of total global assets, whilst the bottom 70% control just 3%.

Regarding the increased rate of surplus value extraction from developed economy labor, and its relationship to the off-shoring of manufacturing and anti-union legislation, the report explains that:

<blockquote>

A report from the International Labour Organization (ILO) shows that between 1989 and 2005, union density (a measure of the membership of trade unions which represents union membership in relation to the total labor force) mostly declined in countries for which data are available, and that union density is negatively correlated with income inequality. Power relations between owners of capital and workers have changed dramatically in the past three decades in many countries, mostly as economies have moved from manufacturing to services, and as globalization has allowed for outsourcing of jobs. This is reflected in the decreasing share of income going to labor: over the past three decades, wages, salaries and benefits represent a smaller share of national income in nearly all ILO member countries.

</blockquote>

There is, however, one region that is bucking the trend and that just happens to be the region of the world in which significant elements have bucked the trend to Neo-Liberalism and are turning to the Left - Latin America. The report explains that:

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Lionel Reynolds is an independent analyst who maintains the Dispatches From the Empire blog www.dispatchesfromempire.com

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