Why is it that while America is supposedly in crisis - or jobless "recovery" - the rich continue to increase their wealth at a rate that is creating staggering wealth inequality? The net worth of the Forbes 400 richest Americans grew by 13% in the past year to $1.7 trillion, as the gap between rich and poor continues to widen at a staggering rate.
Meanwhile, average workers' wages haven't budged over the last 40-years, and the real minimum wage--adjusted for inflation--has declined over the same period. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), between 1979 and 2007, the top 1% of Americans income grew by 275%! And between 2002 and 2007, the income of the top 1% grew 10 times faster than the income of the bottom 90%. The CBO also found that between 1979 and 2005, after-tax income for middle-class Americans (adjusted for inflation) rose by 21% while the richest 0.1 per cent grew by 400%!.
How much longer can this obscene transfer of wealth to the privileged few from poor and hard-working Americans continue before most Americans become serfs if they're not already?
“We can have a democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can’t have both.” US Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis (1846 – 1941)
“Men did not make the earth… It is the value of the improvement only, and not the earth itself, that is individual property… Every proprietor owes to the community a ground rent for the land which he holds.” — Thomas Paine