For decades we have been fed the big lie of "trickle-down economics". You know, when the rich get richer, some of that wealth will "trickle down" to everyone else. So, how's that been working out? When you think about it, that warm, wet stuff trickling all over you ain't wealth, folks!
As an economist, I can tell you the wealth is not trickling down, it is gushing upward, from us to them.
These days, about 25% of the income in the U.S. goes to the top 1% (Ed. Note: the top 1% actually collects over 40% of the national income: click here). The other 99% are worse off every year than the year before. It would be one thing if the 1% got 25% of the income but the 99% gained wealth as well. However, the fact that the 99% are doing worse is simply proof that the 1% are making their gains mainly by taking from the rest of us.
Every time you buy food or gas, pay insurance or the phone bill or the cable bill, you pay more, which means that even if your income increases, you end up with less. Maybe you are among the millions who lost your job so that the fat-cats could increase short-term profits and pad their bonuses. Maybe you are one of millions whose home was foreclosed; maybe you were one of millions whose hard-earned retirement accounts were raped by Wall Street.
Amazingly, at least half of the 99% believe the lie of trickle-down economics, and other fairy tales: the 1% are job creators, 47% of us are "takers", tax cuts and stimulus programs create jobs, privatization of government services saves money, the economy is growing, unemployment is coming down, there is very little inflation, that the stock market being up 200% and housing prices up 12% means that Americans are wealthier than ever, America has the best health care in the world and private insurance is the only way to provide it, our two-party system is best, and so on.
I suggest that you take a look at who is selling the Kool-Aid before you buy another cup. If you guessed that these ideas came from the 1% and their pet politicians via their pet media, you guessed right.
There was a time when the 1% got wealthy by wealth-creating activities: manufacturing, building, and so on. They got a share of the wealth created by middle class workers. The middle class was built on wealth-creating activities. These days, the 1% don't need wealth-creating (and job-creating) activity to get rich. Now the big money is in financial activities: banking, stocks, private equity, insurance, which do not create wealth. At best, these activities simply transfer existing wealth to new pockets. Why build a factory and hire workers when you can just plunder pension funds, collect corporate welfare, and charge some more fees?
So who are the "takers"? Regular people who have lost their jobs and receive unemployment benefits? People on Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid? People on welfare or food stamps?
Or is it "private equity" guys who eliminate thousands of jobs, bury companies in debt, and get paid hundreds of millions of dollars, then pay taxes at a lower rate than you do? (Half of us voted for one of those guys for president last time!) Or Florida Governor Rick Scott who personally made over $300,000,000 in the health care industry--you know, by charging sick people high prices, and collecting billions from Medicaid and Medicare that we pay for? (Never mind where his company got the extra $1.7 billion to pay the fine for Medicare fraud).
How about corporations like GE that earn billions, export jobs, and pay no taxes at all? How about Goldman Sachs and the bankers and the Wall Street gangs that suck trillions out of our economy?
Think for a minute and you will realize that the real "takers" are the ones who are selling the Kool-Aid. They pay for the propaganda, they buy the politicians and the laws that protect their big money interests and give them the rights to pick your pocket and to destroy our economy and our environment while they are at it.
If you are reading this, you are already a potential part of the solution. Social media can inform more voters than TV spots--and deliver much more information to everyone than TV news.
I have made several posts about my economic plan for Florida, and how as governor I will create one million good middle class jobs. I have written about how we can end corporate socialism in Florida, and how we can improve health care for everyone while reducing costs. I will continue posting about more aspects of my economic plan, including how we can reduce taxes without reducing services, and how we can slash the cost of insurance and health care in Florida.
As governor I will veto any tax increase in Florida. I will also veto any tax giveaways to special interests. I will veto any bill that benefits special interests more than it benefits the people of Florida.
We can stand up for ourselves and against big money special interests, no matter how much they spend. Social media can reach more voters, with more information, than all of the mass media combined.
If you want a governor who will work hard to serve the big money special interests, vote Scott or Crist. Either way you can be sure your costs of living will go up, but don't worry, the 1% will get their share. They don't spend a hundred million dollars to elect a governor without expecting billions in return--right out of our pockets.