The three richest men in America are worth more than the bottom 50 % of the rest of the country. That’s approximately 165 million people who’s combined wealth does not equal the approximate 2.67 trillion combined worth of Gates, Bezos, and Buffet.
Mr Buffet says his secretary pays more in taxes then he does. Bezos famously paid no taxes last year. Gates says he’s paid 10 billion in taxes over “the years,” but should have paid more.
Certainly Gates and his wife have engaged in philanthropic acts, as has Buffett. They get to pick and choose who and where to put their money. Bezos is inquiring on Twitter about good places to “be philanthropic”
The middle class in America is almost gone. It started going on the early 80’s with Reaganomics, which reduced the tax rate on the super rich from 70% to 28%. He assured us that the resulting “trickle down” affect from the wealth which pooled at the top, would benefit all Americans. Reagan’s Vice President George H.W. Bush, derisively called it “voodoo” economics. Trickle down economics obviously hadn’t work. If you think it has, go back and read the first paragraph. Go listen to Joe Burrow’s Heisman Trophy speech. What a guy he is!
As long as our leaders continue to cater to the rich and super rich in this country, we will never see a strong middle class again. I don’t like taxes. I paid 28% most of my working career though. I paid the same percentage of income taxes as people making millions and millions of dollars more than me. I never got those nice deductions they go either. I did what most people in my position did back in those days…..bought on credit. And that, my friends, is how they keep us in check. That’s how they keep us enslaved. Who’s not paying back money on cars, houses, student loans, credit cards, etc.? How many people take their paychecks directly to those “payday” loan companies every week and get back about 50% of what they earned, pay 50% in interest, and then renew their loans for the next week, because otherwise they don’t have enough to live.
The super rich effectively has bought the country since the 1980’s with political contributions, and even exponentially increased their hold after the Citizens United Supreme Court decision in 2010. The Koch brothers, Sheldon Adelman, George Soros….and yes, the three men mentioned in the first paragraph, can pretty much buy politicians…and have. We even know now here in Georgia how much it costs to buy yourself a seat in the Senate.
Will Americans look at things one day with clear eyes, unfettered from the propaganda of one side or the other, and choose to select people to represent and govern us who will act in our self interests? I doubt very seriously I’ll ever live to see it.