Sunday, August 19, 2012

Three Things to Remember About Wealth, Work, and Those Diapers You Can't Afford

Effectiveness of spending is related to how that money is put back into the economy. The richer one is, the less likely that money will go back into the economy. The poorer one is, the more that money will actually be invested into the economy itself.

Courtesy of Media Matters for America

Read over that a few times. Let it soak in. When the rich receive tax breaks, the US economy loses money. Not gains it. The money doesn't go into creating new jobs. They don't have a desperate need to spend that money on food, clothes, rent, transportation. Where does that money go?

Excessive wealth for the super-wealthy goes into tax havens. Into hiding. Literally.

Tax havens: Super-rich 'hiding' at least $21tn

That's 21,000,000,000,000 dollars US.

Twenty-one thousand multiplied by a million - a thousand times.

This is the amount that two billion people combined would take home if they were paid what I hope to be making by the end of this year. Let's keep in mind that roughly half the world is working for two dollars a day, for what that's worth.

That's the entire economy of the US and Japan - combined.

And this is a conservative estimate.

And this is just actual financial wealth hidden in banks and investment accounts - far from investing in jobs or being subject to taxes. This money is money that won't go towards infrastructure spending, or extending unemployment insurance. Or feeding the hungry.

The twenty one trillion dollars here doesn't even account for other properties that belong to the super-wealthy. Land, houses, boats...

Nor does it account for the fact that the very same people who are hiding all this money did not actually made this money by themselves. This wealth is the work of workers, of those the super-wealthy have hidden their earnings from: the assemblymen, the miners, the shippers, the farmers, the hands, the distributors, the drivers, the retailers. The workers CREATED these earnings - they created this wealth and surplus. But the men at the top decided that they own the workers and their earnings and have decided to withhold them from the workers, from their families, from taxes which can be also be invested back into the community, and from the economy itself.

Worker from Mexico at a Cedar Mill near Leakey, Texas, near San Antonio 05/1973

Remember these three simple facts:
  1. Giving more money to those who do not have much is better for the economy.
  2. Those who have much have so much they don't know what to do with it. So they are hiding it away from the economy. Which means there will be more poor people, and more, and more. But at least they'll be okay.
  3. The worker is worth her wages. If she earned you money, please pay her appropriately. 


  1. Anonymous1:44 AM

    Good post, although I'm pretty sure the people who most need to read it will be the ones who aren't going to.

    Just a tiny math nitpick - "multiplied by a million - a thousand times" implies that you're multiplying something by a million to the power of a thousand (right? "multiplied by three five times" means x3x3x3x3x3 or x3^5 i.e. x243) which is going to give you a literally astronomical sum.

    whereas I am pretty sure you actually meant multiplied by a million, and then also multiplied by a thousand.

    1. Huh...

      Stupid maths and their exponentials and stuff!

      Thanks for the kind words, maggiebloome. I do think the power is ultimately in the people. And the more we are aware (and outraged), the more likely we are to activate and take back our power.

      Thanks for reading.


Be kind. Rewind.