“[A] number of new studies suggest that, in certain key ways, people with that much money are not like the rest of us at all. As a mounting body of research is showing, wealth can actually change how we think and behave—and not for the better. Rich people have a harder time connecting with others, showing less empathy to the extent of dehumanizing those who are different from them. They are less charitable and generous. They are less likely to help someone in trouble. And they are more likely to defend an unfair status quo. If you think you’d behave differently in their place, meanwhile, you’re probably wrong: These aren’t just inherited traits, but developed ones. Money, in other words, changes who you are.”

Severe income inequality DECREASES, not increases, the chances of the poor and middle class to get ahead, not that Libretario Cowen would care much; as an extreme libertarian he’d rather have massive suffering, loss, and decreased growth rather than give up even a tiny amount of personal freedom.

It DECREASES the chance to get ahead when you have to work 40 hours per week while going to college full time, thus having far less time to study, learn, and succeed. Studies have shown that this substantially reduces the odds of graduating, as well as learning, and GPA. But, hey, let’s cut college aid even further, so we have even more income inequality!

It DECREASES the chance to get ahead when poor – and middle class – children have no health insurance, so they grow up sicker, and more poorly developed mentally and physically, and when their mothers can’t afford to spend the time to breastfeed due to work, or to buy and cook the healthier foods, whole fruits and vegetables. Or when they have to live in more and more polluted areas because of Republican deregulation. But, hey, no problem, the rich can afford to move away from the pollution. It’s only the children of the poor – and middle class – who as a result will be sicker, dumber, and more likely to suffer from behavioral problems.

It DECREASES the chance to get ahead when poor and middle class children can’t go to pre-school because their parents can’t afford it, or they can only afford day care which just sits them in front of the TV because that’s a lot less time consuming and expensive than teaching.

It DECREASES the chance to get ahead when little regulated for-profit schools can prey on unknowing young people with promises of great careers from substandard education that does little to increase earnings, but costs 10 times as much as GOVERNMENT community colleges, and is financed with loan shark private student loans that can quickly grow exponentially so they’re impossible to ever pay off, but thanks to the Republicans can never be escaped in bankruptcy – Welcome back indentured servitude! Always nice to ruin lives before they can even get started, and the poor kid has any idea even what’s going on. But hey, Pure Free Market! And better to ruin a billion lives than give up even one micron of personal freedom, right Libretario?

(via theamericanbear)

pantslessprogressive:

A Message to the 53 Percent
Congratulations on successfully mastering a condescending tone. I have some news for you, though: you are part of the 99 percent. I am part of the 99 percent. My neighbor in his brand new Prius is part of the 99 percent. Our grievances are wide-reaching. Our stories and backgrounds are vastly different.
Don’t believe me? Here’s some anecdotal evidence for your taking: according to my income, I am the 60 percent. I am young like many of the Occupy Wall Street protesters. I have a full-time job and will soon be a salaried employee. I make enough money to live in DC with roommates, pay my bills, pay my student loans and still have a little money left over each month. I have worked damn hard but I am also incredibly lucky. Hard work is not universally successful. Just because my hard work and your hard work eventually paid off doesn’t mean hard work pays off for everyone.
So I guess you and I are the same, no? I’m just outside your “53 percent” range, but I also have a job and also “actually pay taxes“… as though someone working a minimum wage job barely surviving on their paycheck doesn’t pay taxes.
The purpose of “I am the 53 percent” seems to exist solely to say, “I didn’t have an easy life either, but I worked hard and now my life isn’t so bad, so stop complaining.” Despite the inherently condescending nature of your grievances, your stories are important, too. Yes, even you, Erick Erickson (pictured above). We don’t all agree. Erickson might try to throw salt on me and brandish a cross any time my progressive being crosses his path, but I don’t wish for the complete destruction of capitalism. Being part of the 99 percent means our ideas for solutions to our nation’s problems will not be the same. And you’re rolling your eyes because we’re outraged at Wall Street? Actually, no, I’m not sure you’re rolling your eyes; you’re merely keeping your eyes shut:
How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis
The People vs. Goldman Sachs
Hedge Fund Gamblers Earn the Same In One Hour As a Middle-Class Household Makes In Over 47 Years
The More Americans That Go On Food Stamps The More Money JP Morgan Makes
The new “Let Them Eat Cake!”
Is the SEC Covering Up Wall Street Crimes?
Obama Seeks to Win Back Wall St. Cash
Revolving Regulators: SEC Faces Ethic Challenges with Revolving Door
“The richest 5 percent of households obtained roughly 82 percent of all the nation’s gains in wealth between 1983 and 2009. The bottom 60 percent of households actually had less wealth in 2009 than in 1983, meaning they did not participate at all in the growth of wealth over this period.”
Q: “Are you comfortable with the fact that several of your member companies have engaged in large-scale criminal activity?”; A: “You’ll have to be specific.”
pantslessprogressive:

A Message to the 53 Percent
Congratulations on successfully mastering a condescending tone. I have some news for you, though: you are part of the 99 percent. I am part of the 99 percent. My neighbor in his brand new Prius is part of the 99 percent. Our grievances are wide-reaching. Our stories and backgrounds are vastly different.
Don’t believe me? Here’s some anecdotal evidence for your taking: according to my income, I am the 60 percent. I am young like many of the Occupy Wall Street protesters. I have a full-time job and will soon be a salaried employee. I make enough money to live in DC with roommates, pay my bills, pay my student loans and still have a little money left over each month. I have worked damn hard but I am also incredibly lucky. Hard work is not universally successful. Just because my hard work and your hard work eventually paid off doesn’t mean hard work pays off for everyone.
So I guess you and I are the same, no? I’m just outside your “53 percent” range, but I also have a job and also “actually pay taxes“… as though someone working a minimum wage job barely surviving on their paycheck doesn’t pay taxes.
The purpose of “I am the 53 percent” seems to exist solely to say, “I didn’t have an easy life either, but I worked hard and now my life isn’t so bad, so stop complaining.” Despite the inherently condescending nature of your grievances, your stories are important, too. Yes, even you, Erick Erickson (pictured above). We don’t all agree. Erickson might try to throw salt on me and brandish a cross any time my progressive being crosses his path, but I don’t wish for the complete destruction of capitalism. Being part of the 99 percent means our ideas for solutions to our nation’s problems will not be the same. And you’re rolling your eyes because we’re outraged at Wall Street? Actually, no, I’m not sure you’re rolling your eyes; you’re merely keeping your eyes shut:
How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis
The People vs. Goldman Sachs
Hedge Fund Gamblers Earn the Same In One Hour As a Middle-Class Household Makes In Over 47 Years
The More Americans That Go On Food Stamps The More Money JP Morgan Makes
The new “Let Them Eat Cake!”
Is the SEC Covering Up Wall Street Crimes?
Obama Seeks to Win Back Wall St. Cash
Revolving Regulators: SEC Faces Ethic Challenges with Revolving Door
“The richest 5 percent of households obtained roughly 82 percent of all the nation’s gains in wealth between 1983 and 2009. The bottom 60 percent of households actually had less wealth in 2009 than in 1983, meaning they did not participate at all in the growth of wealth over this period.”
Q: “Are you comfortable with the fact that several of your member companies have engaged in large-scale criminal activity?”; A: “You’ll have to be specific.”
pantslessprogressive:

A Message to the 53 Percent
Congratulations on successfully mastering a condescending tone. I have some news for you, though: you are part of the 99 percent. I am part of the 99 percent. My neighbor in his brand new Prius is part of the 99 percent. Our grievances are wide-reaching. Our stories and backgrounds are vastly different.
Don’t believe me? Here’s some anecdotal evidence for your taking: according to my income, I am the 60 percent. I am young like many of the Occupy Wall Street protesters. I have a full-time job and will soon be a salaried employee. I make enough money to live in DC with roommates, pay my bills, pay my student loans and still have a little money left over each month. I have worked damn hard but I am also incredibly lucky. Hard work is not universally successful. Just because my hard work and your hard work eventually paid off doesn’t mean hard work pays off for everyone.
So I guess you and I are the same, no? I’m just outside your “53 percent” range, but I also have a job and also “actually pay taxes“… as though someone working a minimum wage job barely surviving on their paycheck doesn’t pay taxes.
The purpose of “I am the 53 percent” seems to exist solely to say, “I didn’t have an easy life either, but I worked hard and now my life isn’t so bad, so stop complaining.” Despite the inherently condescending nature of your grievances, your stories are important, too. Yes, even you, Erick Erickson (pictured above). We don’t all agree. Erickson might try to throw salt on me and brandish a cross any time my progressive being crosses his path, but I don’t wish for the complete destruction of capitalism. Being part of the 99 percent means our ideas for solutions to our nation’s problems will not be the same. And you’re rolling your eyes because we’re outraged at Wall Street? Actually, no, I’m not sure you’re rolling your eyes; you’re merely keeping your eyes shut:
How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis
The People vs. Goldman Sachs
Hedge Fund Gamblers Earn the Same In One Hour As a Middle-Class Household Makes In Over 47 Years
The More Americans That Go On Food Stamps The More Money JP Morgan Makes
The new “Let Them Eat Cake!”
Is the SEC Covering Up Wall Street Crimes?
Obama Seeks to Win Back Wall St. Cash
Revolving Regulators: SEC Faces Ethic Challenges with Revolving Door
“The richest 5 percent of households obtained roughly 82 percent of all the nation’s gains in wealth between 1983 and 2009. The bottom 60 percent of households actually had less wealth in 2009 than in 1983, meaning they did not participate at all in the growth of wealth over this period.”
Q: “Are you comfortable with the fact that several of your member companies have engaged in large-scale criminal activity?”; A: “You’ll have to be specific.”
pantslessprogressive:

A Message to the 53 Percent
Congratulations on successfully mastering a condescending tone. I have some news for you, though: you are part of the 99 percent. I am part of the 99 percent. My neighbor in his brand new Prius is part of the 99 percent. Our grievances are wide-reaching. Our stories and backgrounds are vastly different.
Don’t believe me? Here’s some anecdotal evidence for your taking: according to my income, I am the 60 percent. I am young like many of the Occupy Wall Street protesters. I have a full-time job and will soon be a salaried employee. I make enough money to live in DC with roommates, pay my bills, pay my student loans and still have a little money left over each month. I have worked damn hard but I am also incredibly lucky. Hard work is not universally successful. Just because my hard work and your hard work eventually paid off doesn’t mean hard work pays off for everyone.
So I guess you and I are the same, no? I’m just outside your “53 percent” range, but I also have a job and also “actually pay taxes“… as though someone working a minimum wage job barely surviving on their paycheck doesn’t pay taxes.
The purpose of “I am the 53 percent” seems to exist solely to say, “I didn’t have an easy life either, but I worked hard and now my life isn’t so bad, so stop complaining.” Despite the inherently condescending nature of your grievances, your stories are important, too. Yes, even you, Erick Erickson (pictured above). We don’t all agree. Erickson might try to throw salt on me and brandish a cross any time my progressive being crosses his path, but I don’t wish for the complete destruction of capitalism. Being part of the 99 percent means our ideas for solutions to our nation’s problems will not be the same. And you’re rolling your eyes because we’re outraged at Wall Street? Actually, no, I’m not sure you’re rolling your eyes; you’re merely keeping your eyes shut:
How Goldman Sachs Created the Food Crisis
The People vs. Goldman Sachs
Hedge Fund Gamblers Earn the Same In One Hour As a Middle-Class Household Makes In Over 47 Years
The More Americans That Go On Food Stamps The More Money JP Morgan Makes
The new “Let Them Eat Cake!”
Is the SEC Covering Up Wall Street Crimes?
Obama Seeks to Win Back Wall St. Cash
Revolving Regulators: SEC Faces Ethic Challenges with Revolving Door
“The richest 5 percent of households obtained roughly 82 percent of all the nation’s gains in wealth between 1983 and 2009. The bottom 60 percent of households actually had less wealth in 2009 than in 1983, meaning they did not participate at all in the growth of wealth over this period.”
Q: “Are you comfortable with the fact that several of your member companies have engaged in large-scale criminal activity?”; A: “You’ll have to be specific.”

pantslessprogressive:

A Message to the 53 Percent

Congratulations on successfully mastering a condescending tone. I have some news for you, though: you are part of the 99 percent. I am part of the 99 percent. My neighbor in his brand new Prius is part of the 99 percent. Our grievances are wide-reaching. Our stories and backgrounds are vastly different.

Don’t believe me? Here’s some anecdotal evidence for your taking: according to my income, I am the 60 percent. I am young like many of the Occupy Wall Street protesters. I have a full-time job and will soon be a salaried employee. I make enough money to live in DC with roommates, pay my bills, pay my student loans and still have a little money left over each month. I have worked damn hard but I am also incredibly lucky. Hard work is not universally successful. Just because my hard work and your hard work eventually paid off doesn’t mean hard work pays off for everyone.

So I guess you and I are the same, no? I’m just outside your “53 percent” range, but I also have a job and also “actually pay taxes“… as though someone working a minimum wage job barely surviving on their paycheck doesn’t pay taxes.

The purpose of “I am the 53 percent” seems to exist solely to say, “I didn’t have an easy life either, but I worked hard and now my life isn’t so bad, so stop complaining.” Despite the inherently condescending nature of your grievances, your stories are important, too. Yes, even you, Erick Erickson (pictured above). We don’t all agree. Erickson might try to throw salt on me and brandish a cross any time my progressive being crosses his path, but I don’t wish for the complete destruction of capitalism. Being part of the 99 percent means our ideas for solutions to our nation’s problems will not be the same. And you’re rolling your eyes because we’re outraged at Wall Street? Actually, no, I’m not sure you’re rolling your eyes; you’re merely keeping your eyes shut:

redlightpolitics:

Income inequality is more severe in the U.S. than it is in nearly all of West Africa, North Africa, Europe, and Asia. We’re on par with some of the world’s most troubled countries, and not far from the perpetual conflict zones of Latin American and Sub-Saharan Africa. Our income gap is also getting worse, having widened both in absolute and relative terms since the 1980s.

You know what bothers me about these US centric explanations of income (or any other) inequality? How they always highlight that the US is OMG OMG SINKING TO THE LEVEL OF THE WORST! As if, being in any way similar to Latin America (an area where, shall I remind everyone, the US had a big, powerful helping hand sinking in the first place) was the most undesirable and wretched thing that could happen to a nation.

You want to do better as a nation? I applaud that! In fact, I’d say every nation shares your noble goal. But please, do not posit that the worst that can happen is to be similar to one of those OMG UNDERDEVELOPED PLACES. I hail from one such place and you know, I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Even though my birth country also makes efforts to better herself. In any case, perhaps it’d be more useful if you compare yourselves to places like Sweden, Norway or even my current home country, The Netherlands. You know, compare yourselves to equal Western powers, since we are on the subject of equality.