Income Inequality - Oxfam Report

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    http://www.oxfam.org/en/pressroom/pr...or-rich-elites


    Wealth of half the world’s population now the same as that of tiny elite


    Wealthy elites have co-opted political power to rig the rules of the economic game, undermining democracy and creating a world where the 85 richest people own the wealth of half of the world’s population, worldwide development organization Oxfam warns in a report published today.

    Working For the Few, published ahead of this week’s World Economic Forum in Davos, details the pernicious impact that widening inequality is having in both developed and developing countries, helping the richest undermine democratic processes and drive policies that promote their interests at the expense of everyone else.

    The report says that there is a growing global public awareness of this power-grab. Polls done for Oxfam in six countries (Brazil, India, South Africa, Spain, the UK and US) show that most people questioned in all those countries believe that laws are skewed in favor of the rich.

    Social stability and security are at risk: urgent action needed

    Inequality has shot up the global agenda in recent years: US President Obama has made it a key priority for 2014. The World Economic Forum (WEF) has identified widening income disparities as the second greatest worldwide risk in the next 12-18 months. WEF’s Global Outlook report, published in November, warned inequality is undermining social stability and ‘threatening security on a global scale.’


    Full 32 page report is linked on page or can be found here;

    http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam...-200114-en.pdf

    The study suggests that social instability threatens security on a global scale. Of course it's recommendations include doing the exact opposite of what has been happening, at least here in the United States.

    Strengthening wage floors ie; minimum wage

    Cracking down on financial tax dodging. It almost seems as if tax dodging in some circles is seen as a badge of honor.

    Support progressive taxation on wealth and income.

    Curbing the power of the rich to influence government. The supreme court ruling on Citizens United made it far easier for this to happen.

    Investment in free health care and education. For example, NOT Obamacare. Access to higher education in the USA has been further restricted by tuition fees climbing far higher than the rate of inflation.

    What concerns me is that should the trends seen in the United States continue, I do think we might see civil unrest, food shortages, and much more violence. Give it ten or twenty years.

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  2. 145 Comments...

  3. 5
    Many have been saying this for a while. Not sure if it is good or bad to see in print this way.

    I agree the US is in trouble with the rich hoarding of money and keeping the rest of the country under their control. I believe there is a DSM dx. for such behaviors.

    I will continue to live my life with the mantra, "Go and do likewise" from The Christian Left.
    Esme12, StNeotser, LadyFree28, and 2 others like this.
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    Bless your hearts...those of you who think Obama really cares and is not just trying to avoid the focus of his disastrous roll-out of Obamacare.

    Back from his $4 million Hawaii vacation, President Barack Obama seems poised to sound the populist trumpet in an effort to turn the page on 2013’s disastrous Obamacare rollout.

    Many pundits are speculating that Obama, seeing the popularity of liberal populists like New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio, will use the current debate over unemployment insurance to engage in more divisive rhetoric:

    The Obama administration has set the stage for a push that could rekindle cries of class warfare -- calling for renewed long-term unemployment benefits, a minimum wage increase and a campaign against what Democrats call "income inequality."

    Ahead of his multi-week, holiday vacation in Hawaii, President Obama pushed Congress to move forward on extending federal unemployment benefits that weren't included in the budget deal Senate Democrats and House Republicans struck to fund the federal government for the next two years. The White House has scheduled an East Room event on Tuesday in which the president will appear with people who lost that insurance.

    One potential challenge for the President’s prospective populist push is his own family’s affluence. Despite the President’s public lowering of his own salary, the Obamas' tax returns show a family whose incomes would routinely place them in the highest bracket, with lucrative income streams outside of the White House. Last year, however, the Obama family paid an effective tax rate of only 18 percent.

    http://www.truthrevolt.org/news/mill...m-populist-too
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    Quote from aknottedyarn
    Many have been saying this for a while. Not sure if it is good or bad to see in print this way.

    I agree the US is in trouble with the rich hoarding of money and keeping the rest of the country under their control. I believe there is a DSM dx. for such behaviors.

    I will continue to live my life with the mantra, "Go and do likewise" from The Christian Left.
    We would all like to think we are more giving than the rest...but the bible says to sell all that you have and give to the poor. Have you sold everything? Next time you see a homeless, blind VET on the streets with his legs blown off, who protected you while you whine on your computer...or fed a mouth in Africa before you fed your own...let me know...I'll apologize! The majority of American's don't deserve it...sorry!
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    Let's talk about some real Inequality.
    The kind of Inequality where people don't get to ride on the backs of those rich evil people.
    A group of people who have no idea what it's like to own a nice home, have a computer, have a cell phone, have running water, have a card that can buy a basket full of groceries, have heat, air, education. Come on!
    Don't shoot yourself in the foot. You like your life don't you?


    The average cost of a home in Texas is $176,000
    Now let's take a look at Haiti.


    1. More than 10% of Haitian children die before age five.b
    2. Eighty percent of Haitians live under the poverty line and 54% live in abject poverty. The average per capita income in Haiti is $480 a year, compared to $33,550 in the United States.

    Haiti is poor; we all know that. But just how bad are things?
    Rising food prices have forced some residents of the poorest slums in Port-au-Prince to eat "cookies" made primarily of a dried yellow mud. Traditionally, pregnant women and children have eaten the cookies as an antacid and for calcium, but now some residents have, out of desperation, turned the mud cookies into regular meals.
    http://www.gadling.com/2008/01/31/ho...ings-in-haiti/

    Last edit by jaad on Jan 21
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    I just feel so sorry for American's who have it so bad. If "inequality" destroys us, at least we have a few years to live first!

    http://www.skinsolutions.citymaker.c...omevspoor.html
    Last edit by jaad on Jan 21
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    I think many people push for income equality as long as it entails taking other people's money. When it comes to giving up half or more of their income and/or wealth to give to poor people in other countries then it's suddenly not such a great idea.
    VivaLasViejas and jaad like this.
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    I'm sorry but those answers don't seem to be addressing the issue.

    Should I ask as questions;

    Do you think that tax dodging is OK? Is it OK if a rich person does it?

    Do you think that rich people and corporations should have special influencing power over government that is not available to the general electorate?

    Do you think that the rich should continue to make laws in favor of themselves that do not help anyone else?

    Do you think that 85 people should have as much wealth as 3 and a half billion people?

    Did you read the report at all?

    Do you think a college education should cost $60K when the average household income is $50K?
    Art_Vandelay, Pudnluv, Elvish, and 3 others like this.
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    I'm sorry but those answers don't seem to be addressing the issue.

    Should I ask as questions;

    Do you think that tax dodging is OK? Is it OK if a rich person does it?

    Nope, I don't think tax dodging is OK for anyone. The problem is lots of "tax dodging" is the use of deductions or credits which have been put into the tax code. Is it okay for people to dodge taxes by deducting mortgage insurance, medical costs, or charitable contributions? Is it only wrong if a rich person uses those deductions?

    Do you think that rich people and corporations should have special influencing power over government that is not available to the general electorate?

    That is a great question to ask the current administration and all of those in Congress. A companion question would be should collective groups of workers have special influencing power over companies that is not available to the individual worker? Is there a solution to either question if those are problems?

    Do you think that the rich should continue to make laws in favor of themselves that do not help anyone else?

    I'm not sure on this. Should poor support laws that favor themselves that do not help anyone else?

    Do you think that 85 people should have as much wealth as 3 and a half billion people?

    Nope, I think all wealth in the world should be collected and piled in my backyard. I'll give it out to people as they need it. Realistically, is there a proposed solution that does not include stealing people's money?

    Did you read the report at all?

    Honestly I did not. I've read many in the past and found them to typically be whining diatribes about how unfair life is and how it's just not right. Rarely have I seen a proposed solution and when there is a solution it involves stealing people's money.

    Do you think a college education should cost $60K when the average household income is $50K?

    Nope, it is a crime how financial aid has enabled colleges to raise tuition at a rate faster than the increase in health care costs. That is a bubble that is longer overdue for a bust.
    VivaLasViejas and SC_RNDude like this.
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    Interesting terminology, "stealing other peoples' money". Seeing that Romney is under investigation and would likely be charged with a RICO felony if he were not such a prominent person. I can practically guarantee that if he were a labor leader he would be in jail while they investigated. Theft by deception is still theft. Theft by intimidation is still theft.

    I suspect what you were alluding to is a raise in taxation for high incomes. Personally I would like to go back to the 39% that they used to pay. I would like to see corporate subsidies end. I would like to see corporate welfare come to an end. While you worry that someone wants to steal money, we already have that happening by many companies in a variety of ways.

    If yo look at history you will find that each time in history this kind of power and financial power base was created it ended badly. We currently have the opportunity to do something to prevent the revolution that is brewing.

    I just read that a member of Congress needs to raise $10,000 each day for re-election. We need money out of the election process. As long as corporations are considered citizens and have none of the responsibilities that humans have we will continue to have an imbalance in power that is lethal.
    StNeotser, herring_RN, LadyFree28, and 2 others like this.


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