What Occupy Wall Street is mad about

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Chris, Oct 15, 2011.

  1. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    CHARTS: Here's What The Wall Street Protesters Are So Angry About...

    Let's start with the obvious: Unemployment. Three years after the financial crisis, the unemployment rate is still at the highest level since the Great Depression (except for a brief blip in the early 1980s)

    Corporate profits just hit another all-time high.

    Corporate profits as a percent of the economy are near a record all-time high. With the exception of a brief happy period in 2007 (just before the crash), profits are higher than they've been since the 1950s. And they are VASTLY higher than they've been for most of the intervening half-century.

    CEO pay is now 350X the average worker's, up from 50X from 1960-1985.

    CEO pay has skyrocketed 300% since 1990. Corporate profits have doubled. Average "production worker" pay has increased 4%. The minimum wage has dropped. (All numbers adjusted for inflation).

    After adjusting for inflation, average hourly earnings haven't increased in 50 years.

    In short... while CEOs and shareholders have been cashing in, wages as a percent of the economy have dropped to an all-time low.

    In other words, in the struggle between "labor" and "capital," capital has basically won.

    Of course, life is great if you're in the top 1% of American wage earners. You're hauling in a bigger percentage of the country's total pre-tax income than you have at any time since the late 1920s. Your share of the national income, in fact, is almost 2X the long-term average!

    In fact, income inequality has gotten so extreme here that the US now ranks 93rd in the world in "income equality." China's ahead of us. So is India. So is Iran.

    And, by the way, few people would have a problem with inequality if the American Dream were still fully intact—if it were easy to work your way into that top 1%. But, unfortunately, social mobility in this country is also near an all-time low.

    So what does all this mean in terms of net worth? Well, for starters, it means that the top 1% of Americans own 42% of the financial wealth in this country. The top 5%, meanwhile, own nearly 70%.

    And remember that huge debt problem we have—with hundreds of millions of Americans indebted up to their eyeballs? Well, the top 1% doesn't have that problem. They only own 5% of the country's debt.

    And then there are taxes... It's a great time to make a boatload of money in America, because taxes on the nation's highest-earners are close to the lowest they've ever been.

    More to come....
     
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    Last edited: Oct 15, 2011
  2. The T
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    The T George S. Patton Party Supporting Member

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    Humans get angry. Animals go MAD.

    Learn it, live it, know it.
     
  3. Sunni Man
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    Sunni Man Diamond Member

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    I really don't care what the OWS "Flea Party" wants or thinks. :cool:
     
  4. Photonic
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    Photonic Ad astra!

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    You don't' think they have a legitimate concern?
     
  5. Photonic
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    Photonic Ad astra!

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    Pretty bad when Iran's fiscal policy is better than ours.
     
  6. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    CHARTS: Here's What The Wall Street Protesters Are So Angry About...

    Remember when we bailed out the banks? Yes, and remember the REASON we were told we had to bail out the banks? We had to bail out the banks, we were told, so that the banks could keep lending to American businesses. Without that lending, we were told, society would collapse...

    So, did the banks keep lending? Um, no. Bank lending dropped sharply, and it has yet to recover.

    So, what have banks been doing since 2007 if not lending money to American companies? Lending money to America's government! By buying risk-free Treasury bonds and other government-guaranteed securities.

    And, remarkably, they've also been collecting interest on money they are NOT lending—the "excess reserves" they have at the Fed. Back in the financial crisis, the Fed decided to help bail out the banks by paying them interest on this money that they're not lending. And they're happily still collecting it. (It's AWESOME to be a bank.)

    Meanwhile, of course, the banks are able to borrow money FOR FREE. Because the Fed has slashed rates to basically zero. And the banks have slashed the rates they pay on deposits to basically zero. So they can have all the money they want—for nearly free!

    When you can borrow money for nothing, and lend it back to the government risk-free for a few percentage points, you can COIN MONEY. And the banks are doing that. According to IRA, the "net interest margin" made by US banks in the first six months of this year is $211 Billion. Nice!

    And that has helped produce $58 billion of profit in the first six months of the year.

    And it has helped generate near-record financial sector profits—while the rest of the country struggles with its 9% unemployment rate.

    And these profits are getting back toward a record as a percentage of all corporate profits.

    And those profits, of course, are AFTER the banks have paid their bankers. And it's still great to be a banker. The average banker in New York City made $361,330 in 2010. Not bad!

    This average Wall Street salary was 6X the average private-sector salary (which, in turn, is actually lower than the average government salary, but that's a different issue).

    And so, in conclusion, we'll end with another look at the "money shot"—the one overarching reason the Wall Street protesters are so upset: Wages as a percent of the economy. Again, it's basically the lowest it has ever been.
     
  7. LordBrownTrout
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    LordBrownTrout Gold Member

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    Yes, we were all told that armageddon would occur, the sun would burnout, and we'd all die if we didn't get the banks their 750 billion. Well, I, and most people were against bailing them out 4 years ago. We never should have bailed them out. Where was y'alls wrath then???????? O VOTED TO BAIL THEM OUT! Where was y'alls wrath?????
     
  8. Full-Auto
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    Full-Auto Gold Member

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    They were so sure they would get some Obama stash. The players did, the useful idiots got another speech.
     
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  9. The T
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    The T George S. Patton Party Supporting Member

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    Indeed. But the O is different. He wasn't Sworn in...he was Immacculated as smarter than Bush...and continuing the same crap as Bush...
     
  10. The T
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    The T George S. Patton Party Supporting Member

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    Lip service. SOSDD.
     

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