I recently wrote about how ludicrous it is that anyone in our political system is opposing the expiration of the Bush era tax cuts. As the middle and lower-classes continue to be mired in bankruptcy, overwork and misery, there are politicians “gearing up for a fight” against a few percent tax on the less than 5% or Americans who are fortunate enough to make more than $250,000.
Bush created the tax cuts for the wealthy claiming it would boost the economy, the old GOP standby of “trickle-down economics”.
A friend of mine pointed out a wonderful follow-up to my post, an article in the Business Insider about how the middle class is being systematically wiped out.
To think, we are so self-loathing and full of contempt for ourselves and our fellow Americans that we openly allow our politicians to think, even for a moment, that Bush era tax cuts for the rich should not be allowed to expire.
Ninety percent of American make less than $100,000 a year and we’re scared to death to think that the few people who make more than $250,000 a year might some how punish us, or make things worse (is that possible) if we raise their taxes a few percent. I hope our grand tradition of voting against our own self-interests comes to an end soon.
Click after the jump to see the 22 statistics that prove the middle class is being systematically dismantled and destroyed by the haves:
- 83 percent of all U.S. stocks are in the hands of 1 percent of the people.
- 61 percent of Americans “always or usually” live paycheck to paycheck, which was up from 49 percent in 2008 and 43 percent in 2007.
- 66 percent of the income growth between 2001 and 2007 went to the top 1% of all Americans.
- 36 percent of Americans say that they don’t contribute anything to retirement savings.
- A staggering 43 percent of Americans have less than $10,000 saved up for retirement.
- 24 percent of American workers say that they have postponed their planned retirement age in the past year.
- Over 1.4 million Americans filed for personal bankruptcy in 2009, which represented a 32 percent increase over 2008.
- Only the top 5 percent of U.S. households have earned enough additional income to match the rise in housing costs since 1975.
- For the first time in U.S. history, banks own a greater share of residential housing net worth in the United States than all individual Americans put together.
- In 1950, the ratio of the average executive’s paycheck to the average worker’s paycheck was about 30 to 1. Since the year 2000, that ratio has exploded to between 300 to 500 to one.
- As of 2007, the bottom 80 percent of American households held about 7% of the liquid financial assets.
- The bottom 50 percent of income earners in the United States now collectively own less than 1 percent of the nation’s wealth.
- Average Wall Street bonuses for 2009 were up 17 percent when compared with 2008.
- In the United States, the average federal worker now earns 60% MORE than the average worker in the private sector.
- The top 1 percent of U.S. households own nearly twice as much of America’s corporate wealth as they did just 15 years ago.
- In America today, the average time needed to find a job has risen to a record 35.2 weeks.
- More than 40 percent of Americans who actually are employed are now working in service jobs, which are often very low paying.
- or the first time in U.S. history, more than 40 million Americans are on food stamps, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture projects that number will go up to 43 million Americans in 2011.
- This is what American workers now must compete against: in China a garment worker makes approximately 86 cents an hour and in Cambodia a garment worker makes approximately 22 cents an hour.
- Approximately 21 percent of all children in the United States are living below the poverty line in 2010 – the highest rate in 20 years.
- Despite the financial crisis, the number of millionaires in the United States rose a whopping 16 percent to 7.8 million in 2009.
- The top 10 percent of Americans now earn around 50 percent of our national income.