Economics

The Facts About Income Inequality

What Occupy Wall Street gets right-and wrong-about the U.S. economy

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The last thing I wish to do is wade into the morass of income statistics to ascertain if the rich are really getting richer while the rest of us are getting poorer. We've all heard the line about "lies, damned lies, and statistics" (though we don't know who first said it), and we've been warned that "if you torture the data enough, they will confess anything."

The point is that there are many pitfalls in the income stats if you don't know to look for them. For example, people often unknowingly compare apples and oranges, say, household income in two different periods with average households of different sizes. If single-earner households take the place of two-earner households, an unadjusted comparison could be highly misleading. (The growth in the number of households has been outpacing population growth.)

Or take median and average income: It's easy to be misled, as Donald Boudreaux shows:

Imagine what the average or median income would be in a room occupied only by Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, and Bono. Now imagine that I enter the room and accept their offer to become their full-time shoe-shiner at an annual salary of $500,000.  Because this income is higher than I earned before entering the room, I'm richer. And because my entering the room does not lower their annual incomes, none of them is poorer. But my presence in the room (with my new income still far below that of each of these men) dramatically lowers the room's average income, and pretty significantly lowers its median income, even if the income of each of these men rises during the current year.

Everyone is richer, yet average and median incomes are lower.

Economic Mobility

Even without those problems, we'd have to factor in mobility. People move up and down the income structure. Studies that follow individuals who start on the lowest rung (typically younger people) find that a good share of them move up within several years. So it's misleading to compare the lowest 20 percent of 40 years ago with the lowest 20 percent today as though they were the same people. The influx of low-skilled, uneducated (so-called illegal) immigrants would depress the average income of the lowest 20 percent—although they believe they are better off here than where they originated. (See more about the problems of income analysis in this Robert Samuelson column.)

(Article continues below video.)


Many people nevertheless insist that the income gap is growing. How do they know? Apparently the most popular indicator is the Gini Coefficient, which is said to prove that the gap has been growing dramatically in the new century.

But does it really? Not according to the Census Bureau. As summarized by Mark Perry:

According to three different Census Bureau measures [including two that use the Gini Coefficient], income inequality in America increased only gradually from the 1960s through the mid-1990s, but since then has remained relatively constant. Therefore, the factual record of income data in the United States certainly doesn't support the claims that income inequality has "exploded" recently. A more accurate description of income inequality over the last several decades would be to say that it "flat-lined" starting in about 1994. [Emphasis added.]

This is the opposite of the standard story in which incomes were more equal until the new century. (See graph above and another here. Also see this graph showing that income inequality for individuals is less pronounced than for households and families. Alan Reynolds discusses the 1 percent's share of wealth here.)

No Stagnation

As for stagnating middle-class incomes, Terry J. Fitzgerald, senior economist of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, presents data showing this is not the case. "[T]he economic compensation for work for middle Americans has risen significantly over the past 30 years," Fitzgerald wrote in 2007. (Effects from the Great Recession would be cyclical not secular and would not count against Fitzgerald's conclusion.)

I could also add that what matters is not one's position relative to the richest, but one's absolute position and its improvement year to year. Studies demonstrate that for decades the time it takes the average worker to earn the money to buy any given consumer good has been shrinking. (And the goods are often of much better quality.)
This statistical picture seems well confirmed by observation. Any baby-boomer should be able to attest that living standards across the board in America have palpably improved over the decades. Today low-income people have things the middle class didn't dream of 40 years ago—and even some things the rich couldn't have had at any price because they hadn't been invented yet. And this is not primarily due to consumer debt.

So when advocates of increased government intervention invoke the alleged growing income gap—a rallying cry for Occupy Wall Street—we libertarians certainly should correct them if for no other reason than that we should demand intellectual accuracy and integrity from everyone, including ourselves. (I live in fear of "confirmation bias." If I've gone wrong here, show me.)

But here is what we should not do: We should not react as though an actual growing income gap today would indicate a moral flaw in the libertarian desideratum: a social system based on mutuality, consent, and free exchange. Too many market advocates react defensively to the inequality charge—as if someone just insulted their mothers. They seem to be saying, "Don't you dare talk about my beloved economic system that way!"

Not What We Want

Need I point out that the current corporatist system is a far cry from what libertarians say they want? In the response to OWS I find a disturbing preponderance of what Roderick Long calls "right-conflationism" (or for Kevin Carson, "vulgar libertarianism"): "the error of treating the virtues of a freed market as though they constituted a justification of the evils of existing corporatist capitalism." In this case, those who routinely criticize "crony capitalism" respond to allegations about growing income inequality as though the charge were being made against laissez faire. To be sure, some OWS protesters think they are doing that. But libertarians should know better, and it is their responsibility to point that out.

I'm of course not suggesting that no income inequality would exist in a freed market, though I am suggesting that the political means to gaining mega-wealth (the vast array of anti-competitive measures including intellectual "property" laws) would not exist.

That the wealth of the nonrich grows is no reason to be complacent about corporatism. It simply shows that something less than complete freedom goes a long way. I suspect that in a freed market, many of the super rich would be much less rich, while most people of modest means would be wealthier. I await the empirical evidence.

Finally, a word to the OWS protesters: Don't base your complaint against the current corporatist system on false grounds. There are plenty of legitimate grievances. A straw man will only give observers reason to dismiss you.

Sheldon Richman is editor of The Freeman, where this column originally appeared.

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  1. I knew an article about what they did right would be too short for reason.

    1. Hmmm. Doesn’t Reason have a twitter feed?

      1. What they did right is too short for that too.

        1. Whatchya got against rape and lice, Suki?

        2. Hey, they let these people speak on camera.

          1. The OWS dick with the hair saved his most incisive and cogent killer argument for the end as the Russian guy walked away: “Are you a racist too, man?”

            1. Those three dumb fucks were excellent examples of socialist intellect.

              1. Just three?

                1. Our numbers are legion!

                  1. We have HUNDREDS!

                    1. Can I join?

                    2. In soviet Russia idiot uses YOU.

                    3. New Republic is competitive with you.

                2. No, but they were featured…if that’s the right word.

          2. *baaaaaaaaaaaaaaarf*

  2. Sheldon Richman

    Sheldon? A Sheldon can do your income taxes, if you need a root canal, Sheldon’s your man… but humpin’ and pumpin’ is not Sheldon’s strong suit.

  3. Until we had capitalism the rich were rich and the poor were slaves.

      1. woops

      2. actually i take that back, even the rich were poor before capitalism.

        1. The rich of the past were shitting in outhouses(or holes…basically no real plumbing) and dying of disease like the rest of the plebes. The only thing they really had over the poor were more clothes(who the fuck cares), full stomachs, and lots of women to fuck(big plus). A caveat to this is that the richest of the rich were outright thieving tyrants who blatantly stole from their subjects unlike the soft tyrants who steal from us today under the guise of the “public good”. The poor then, if not outright slaves, might as well have been. They were lucky to live past 30 and had to get around by foot or horse just like their rich overlords. Now America has the fattest poor people in existence, most of whom make it past 60 thanks to medical advances, drive cars, surf the internet, waste disposable income on cigarettes and alcohol, and enjoy the occasional hooker or two. Not too shabby for being poor.

    1. Worship mighty capitalism…

      Because at least you’re not slaves!

    2. Except of course when you are. Slave trades and the commodities involved weren’t capitalism?

      And oh shit my building is shaking again.

      1. Slave trades and the commodities involved weren’t capitalism?

        Nope. That was Mercantilism, and until you can tell the difference, you will continue to embarrass yourself on these fora.

        1. What’s called Mercantilism was just capitalism’s earliest form (of its modern form, since trade has always existed). It wasn’t capitalism that ended slavery, it was the liberalization of society (abolitionist movements affecting political change), and in this country a bloody war. Capitalism lags behind this liberalization, if anything. It’s always profitable to have free labor, it takes laws to make that particular market forbidden.

          1. It wasn’t capitalism that ended slavery, it was the liberalization of society (abolitionist movements affecting political change), and in this country a bloody war.

            I like how you left out technological advance, which made it more profitable to use machines for labor, over the costs of buying and feeding slaves.

            Actually, I don’t like that, because you’re just being a mendacious asshole.

            1. No, tech advance had nothing to do with a small group of British men who formed a movement to end slavery. Tech advance had nothing to do with the British ending slavery and then using their armada to enforce an end to slavery across the seas.

              Too bad that notion only took hold in the Western world.

            2. Technological change has always been a partnership of markets and governments, and can easily be a force for bad. Technology, however it came about, may have made ending slavery easier, but it didn’t make it illegal. Do you think it should be illegal for humanistic reasons, or do you think it is bad because it is not as profitable?

              Still not buying Pro’s false choice between slavery and wage slavery.

              1. Do you think it should be illegal for humanistic reasons, or do you think it is bad because it is not as profitable?

                Don’t be an ass.

                1. I concur, HM. Tony is seriously going up to the line of “so, you guys are okay with owning people”.

                  Then again, he can’t use dictionary definitions properly – though that’s a trait shared by most liberals.

          2. “it was the liberalization of society”

            Fine. It was classical liberalism (not your form of “liberalism”, the progressive movement being associated with all kinds of racist and oppressive policies)… classical liberalism, made possible by the luxury of people having the resources to devote to causes such as abolition, due to the wealth that was rapidly created under a more or less (not perfect) free market and the protection of personal and property rights.

            “Capitalism lags behind this liberalization”

            Bullshit. How do you think people are able to find the time to pursue various causes? Its because they aren’t preoccupied with obtaining a loaf of bread for the week.

            Stoopid.

          3. capitalism’s earliest form was prostitution.

            1. Yea but the street walker in Tony can’t accept that.

          4. Capitalism allowed for liberalism.

            Capitalism precedes mercantilism and in fact precedes every thing. Capitlism is the state of nature, before the political state takes control. Before there is theft there is stuff to steal. Markets precede states. States exist to parasitize markets.

            Mercantilism was just a degenerate form of capitalism that was acceptable to collectivists, ie predators. Like fascism (mercantilism renamed) or socialism or slavery (communism) or feudalism are acceptable to predators.

            Pre-state, or in the interstices between states, there is no presumption that anyone has superior privilege to life, liberty, or property. Superior privilege is a collectivist concept. The systematization of privilege is the purpose of states.

            That’s why the Lockean notion of social contract is so pernicious. Like social justice, social contract is neither.

            But the states ever since have used this to persuade people that they gain something from the state. Which is of course, impossible. States can only rearrange resources, by definition states create winners and losers.

            The price mechanism is the source of wealth creation, assuring the most efficient return for a persons efforts. Government can only interfere with that process, thus all it can do is destroy wealth and re-arrange wealth.

            Too bad most ‘conservatives’ don’t understand that.

            And it was capitalism that ended slavery everywhere but in the US. We’re special because we killed half a million people to do something everyone else did peacefully.

            Slavery suffers from the same motivation flaw that socialism and communism suffers from. A paid free person creates more resources for an employer than a slave minus the cost of his upkeep and cost of keeping him penned. A slave society stagnates compared to a free one.

            It’s easy to understand this with a thought experiment. Given equivalent land, if I give you 5 breeding pairs to keep as slaves to work a plantation, and I get 5 couples to set up a farming community my community will out produce you at an exponential rate. Initially each member of my community will control less wealth than you do as slave lord. But my communities wealth will continue to outpace yours, and in time the laziest worker in my community will control more wealth than you do as absolute slave lord.

            North Korea is a good example of this sort of extreme collectivism in the modern era. An entire nation of effective slaves cannot give Kim Jong-il a quality of life as good as your run of the mill multimillionaire on wall street.

            That is why slavery ended.

            1. LOL man you are so full of shit. How about the exclusive privileged known as intellectual property? In the real world there is no capitalism, everyone tries to limit competition and become an incumbent. The government exists and has always existed to protect the richest capitalists.

              The idea that government ‘parasitizes’ anything is a big bullshit lie. Governments exist because human beings are assholes, governments are an attempt to balance diverse and competing interests. Human beings fuck shit up, not abstractions.

              You’re trapped in a language game like most libertards on reason.

              1. How about the exclusive privileged known as intellectual property?

                It’s your beloved state that does that. I have no problem with people protecting their ideas (encryption. w/e) so long as they shoulder the costs. Why must I pay for a bureaucracy to protect big pharma for instance?

                The government exists and has always existed to protect the richest capitalists.

                Uhh yeah, that was kinda my point. Follow the logic. But if they use capital to buy government protection you can call them capitalists, but they aren’t engaging in free markets or capitalism.

                The idea that government ‘parasitizes’ anything is a big bullshit lie.

                Lol you are seriously confused. Does government “exist and always has existed” help the richest capitalists or does it not? You are completely incoherent.

                Governments exist because human beings are assholes

                Stipulated.

                governments are an attempt to balance diverse and competing interests

                Again this contradicts not only history but your own statements.

                I don’t care what governments say they do, I only care what they actually do. What they actually do is protect privilege.

                Human beings fuck shit up, not abstractions.

                Well when the abstractions fuck up the brain of a human being like you then yes they fuck shit up.

                Fundamentally you believe some people deserve more privilege than others because they are in some category, or not. Your idea of ‘freedom’ is freedom to do what the government tells you to, except you want to be the one doing the telling.

                We reject those notions.

                And as I said before, since all you want to do is replace the old boss with a new more stupid and selfish boss, we aren’t much motivated to care.

                If you decide to be consistent in wanting to end theft and slavery then come back and we can chat.

                Until then you thieves on the left and right feel free to keep yelling at each other.

        2. There goes Tony again, looking for any excuse to take a shit on freedom.

          1. Seriously, Tony… equating modern-day capitalism to slave trading/ownership?

            Have you no sense of proportion, to paraphrase Joseph Welch…

            1. You guys don’t advocate modern-day capitalism.

              1. We have Crony Capitalism now. WE advocate Free markets and Free minds, how your closed Marxist mind got in here we will never understand.

              2. You just made an accurate statement. What gives?

            2. If he enjoys slave trading today he needs to move to Asia or Africa.

              1. We, at least, don’t advocate “fixing” the “mixed economy” by getting us deeper in debt, or that the “mix” always means “add more socialism to the mix”.

  4. I’d like to see a little of this “disturbing preponderance.”

    Because I’ve only seen “right-conflationism” in this strawman form, from “left-libertarian” Occupant symps “rebutting” libertarian objections to the Occupants’ lefty crap with “You’re either part of the problem…” lefty crap.

    One link, maybe?

    From the preponderance.

    Unless it’s too disturbing to show us.

  5. You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.

    1. As long as she’s legal, coveting the neighbor’s daughter is perfectly acceptable!

    2. Wish I had a female servant. Doesn’t have to be my neighbor’s.

    3. His gerbil?

    4. Actually, the Tenth Commandment (cited) contained one of the first known misprints.

      The word was actually “cover” not “covet” and the commandment was an injunction against sexual promiscuity and fetishism.

      1. Could you give an explaination of how one would “cover” one’s neighbor’s house? In this biblically misprinted manner …

        on second thought, never mind.

  6. Got the anti-IP jab in there, good man!

  7. Sheldon: Could you make this post any more boring? Even if I could get fired up about your point, you pulled out your wang and pissed all over it.

    1. Some people pay good money for that.

    2. Stay classy there, Jamie.

      Was there something in particular that failed to impress?

      I would think the typical left-leaning retort would be, “Yeah! Whatever, *Rich-man!* You rich men are all the same! Taking our money and keeping it for yourself! GIMME MINE!!!”

      Seriously, maybe someone else would be better suited for a piece like this than, “Sheldon-‘My Other Monocle is made of Blood-Diamonds’- Richman”

      Fuck, you should give him a top hat and a cigarette holder, and make him the Hit & Run team-mascot. Our team being named, “The Pluto-Crats”, naturally.

      And we don’t play any sports = We simply own all the teams and rig results. Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha!!

      1. Fuck, you should give him a top hat and a cigarette holder, and make him the Hit & Run team-mascot.

        So our mascot is FDR? Ironic, that.

        1. More like Bizzaro-FDR, maybe. Similar in outward appearance, but his special-forces are all the *opposite*

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tKZi30NsvB8

          He dismantles government programs, privatizes utilities, roads, armies, consults latin american dictators, corners commodity markets, and shoots the poor with bullets made of compressed money from the balcony of his gated-mansion overlooking the ghetto. He shouts “natural selection, bitch!” whenever he gets a head shot.

          1. I’ll only go along with this if it means that also his wife is amazingly attractive and heterosexual.

  8. The OWSers can’t even define capitalism. In fact, they eschew the very concept of definitions. Too rigid, too establishment, too…One Percent.

  9. “a job is a right”

    Fuckin’ socialists.

    1. Yea they just don’t understand that with out skills and modivation they are worth NOTHING.

  10. (Yes, this is a re-post. I’d like to get the word out. If you agree, feel free to copy/paste, modify ect.. this throughout the threads for the next few days.)

    Regarding White Indian.

    We are libertarians and for the most part believe people can solve problems by themselves with minimal authority/rules. We constantly claim that people will band together to act in their own best interests. Here is an idea…let’s prove it.

    Instead of pushing for moderators or registration… let’s treat this WI situation as a libertarian experiment. Let’s stand by our libertarian ideals and solve the problem on our own. Let’s ALL agree to NOT interact with WI at all. Would you post all day, every day if no one would respond to you? I doubt it.

    Let’s all agree to NOT FEED THE TROLL!

    Problem solved…in a libertarian manner.

    1. “Let’s all agree to NOT FEED THE TROLL!”
      No need for modification, just redundancy.

      1. Sevo, et al.
        Ya’ll need to realize that discussions of not feeding the troll are just as nourishing to a troll as direct engagement.

        1. We are powered by Sevo’s posts

    2. I don’t want to jinx it, but I think Reason actually banned the trolls. I haven’t seen a single comment from WI, rectal, or any of the other trolls (if there were indeed more than one) responsible for that 2000+ comment monstrosity today. I haven’t gone through Morning Links, yet, though. So either they’re semi-comatose from their massive shit-fest, or Reason finally did something about them.

      1. After reading through the Morning Links, it does appear that rectal is still around. So either they didn’t ban it/them, or the Troll Singularity Theory is false.

        I don’t see Epi, either…hmmm…

        1. I think there was a “real” WI, and one or more sockpuppets.

          1. I’m fairly confident that it was an OccupyReason thing.

            Somewhere is a room full of economically illiterate leftists laughing their asses off.

            1. Timmeh is there in that room, for certain.

            2. Sounds like a room in the White House.

            3. economically illiterate leftists

              But you repeat yourself

            4. “Somewhere is a room full of economically illiterate leftists laughing their asses off.”

              They better get back to work then!! I’m paying them good money to screw up Reason!!

      2. You could well be right.
        Not that vermin shit has to be relevant, but this thread alone could get ‘there’s no income gap when everybody’s starving’ or some such ‘comments’.

    3. “Let’s ALL agree…”

      You aint from around here, is you boy?

      Your proposal is fascinating, but probably a non-starter. Some among us are avid Dungeons & Dragons players, and its almost impossible to convince them not to attack Trolls on sight with a 2-handed Golden Mace.

      1. I prefer Magic Missile.

        Jus’ sayin’

        1. I prefer oil flask six packs.

        2. What are you? The level 1%?

          1. Psionics are the real 1%. Old-school, that is.

    4. I agree. “Scroll the Troll”

  11. You can’t argue facts with these people, that is for sure.

  12. “Many people nevertheless insist that the income gap is growing.”
    And many people might be correct; the poor are getting richer at a slower rate than the rich are getting richer.
    So what? Every time Bill Gates makes more money, so do the rest of us.

    1. In America the poor get rich and the rich get poor on a regular basis. These twits who bumper-sticker it into “The Rich Get Richer” are either ignorant or charlatans, or both.

      1. “In America the poor get rich and the rich get poor on a regular basis.”
        You’re right; I ignored that sort of income mobility.

  13. And the trolls came back, minus one.

    1. So where are they hiding?

  14. Barack Obama is a SCOAMF

    1. Way too kind. Have some respect, man.

  15. The question is not who has income, but what income buys you, and what isn’t dependent on income.

    If having more income means you get a bigger TV, more fatty gross food, more stupid garish clothes, who cares? And who cares if the poor have to do without those “goods”?

    But if having more income means that you gorge while others go hungry, that you monopolize residential land while others go homeless, that you bloat your tits with silicone while others suffer uncured harelips, then … we might have a problem.

    Right now, we have a host of public services and public amenities not dependent on income. It wasn’t always this way. Things changed over time; reformed; most people are happy to be living now rather than back then. Should school be among those amenities? The current answer is yes. Police protection? Yes. Fire protection? Yes. Food and Drug inspections? Yes.

    What about essential medical care? Over sixty-five, yes. How about everybody else? Most people think “yes” is the right answer. Some Glibertards disagree. Let’s have the debate.

    The less that the essential components of a decent subsistance are fatally dependent on private income, the less of a problem “income inequality” poses. The more that private income deprivation entails deprivation of those essential components of a decent subsistence, the bigger the problem of “income inequality” looms.

    Don’t like “income envy?” Then support a robust welfare state. It gives the peasants less to complain about.

    1. “Some Glibertards disagree.”
      And brain-dead assholes make up sidlly names.
      That would be you.

      1. another sevo post…

        I need a hint…

        “rhymes with whale…”

        Hm?

        Hm.

        Oh yeah!

        ******
        *FAIL*
        ******

        1. Have some soup, “we”.

        2. “I need a hint…”
          I’ll say!

          1. I’ll say it’s dinner time.

        3. I’m a nerd-ass internet pop culture pussy. I type things like
          “*FAIL*”.
          -You

      2. sevo|11.7.11 @ 7:39PM|#
        “Let’s all agree to NOT FEED THE TROLL!”
        No need for modification, just redundancy.

        sevo|11.7.11 @ 8:38PM|#
        “Some Glibertards disagree.”
        And brain-dead assholes make up sidlly names.
        That would be you.

        Sevo’s typical response is an angry outburst against those he sees as trolls. And yet…

        1. There’s a difference between angry words and wanting to/committing violence, NM.

    2. Actually, I support a robust non-state. That way I don’t have to be concerned with anyone’s complaints.

    3. Look up a list of welfare programs, “we”.

      Then, tell us there aren’t enough such programs.

      Shit, you can get a whole book full of ’em. That guy on TV with the gaudy suit jacket covered with dollar signs, shouting “FREE MONEY!!!”… does that ring a bell?

      Well, fuck, maybe you’re right… maybe we should spend, oh, maybe 90 percent of the federal budget on handouts to the poor. It’s worked a charm up til now, right? We just need to subsidize MORE poverty!

      Stupid fuck.

      1. Well, fuck, maybe you’re right… maybe we should spend, oh, maybe 90 percent of the federal budget on handouts to the poor. It’s worked a charm up til now, right? We just need to subsidize MORE poverty!

        We like the jib of your cut.

    4. OK, let’s give you a hint:
      “Don’t like “income envy?” Then support a robust welfare state. It gives the peasants less to complain about.”
      Stupid shits like you think the government is a protection racket, asshole.
      Is that hint enough?

      1. http://www.leskobooks.com/

        Here you go, “we”. Knock yerself out.

        1. So we have a new government agency:
          The “Office of Passing Out Jackets With Question Marks”?
          I like it; should be cheap. And almost ass stupid as ‘we’.

          1. I thought he had dollar signs on his jacket. It’s been a long time since I sought out anything to do with Lesko, admittedly, so my memory is a bit vague.

            Coulda sworn The Riddler wore that same getup, though…

      2. A “protection racket” is exactly what the government is. Hopefully democratic and mutual, as opposed to the mobster model, but yes, a protection racket to be sure.

        1. Get thee to an Occutard rally, then. Why are you hanging around here, when you could be amongst your own kind?

          Go! Gambol with the Che-shirt crowd!

          1. Again, define “Sterling Silver Jewelry” All that’s essential for me is that I have enough for a roof over my head and three squares on my table. The rest is icing. And again, it’s ALL dependent on private income. That’s something the Progressitards can never seem to grasp.

    5. But if having more income means that you gorge while others go hungry, that you monopolize residential land while others go homeless, that you bloat your tits with silicone while others suffer uncured harelips, then … we might have a problem.

      Begging the question that this is a problem in the first place.

      Right now, we have a host of public services and public amenities not dependent on income.

      It’s ALL dependent on income, Progressitard.

      What about essential medical care? Over sixty-five, yes. How about everybody else? Most people think “yes” is the right answer. Some Glibertards disagree. Let’s have the debate.

      Until Progressitards define “essential medical care,” the debate is impossible.

      The less that the essential components of a decent subsistance are fatally dependent on private income, the less of a problem “income inequality” poses.

      Again, define “essential.” All that’s essential for me is that I have enough for a roof over my head and three squares on my table. The rest is icing. And again, it’s ALL dependent on private income. That’s something the Progressitards can never seem to grasp.

      Don’t like “income envy?” Then support a robust welfare state. It gives the peasants less to complain about.

      An infantilized population will always find something to complain about, especially a perpetually pozzed one that progressives belong to.

      1. Well it also helps if the peasents are stupid too…its a work in progress.

        Thank you, Thank you very much

    6. Don’t like “income envy?” Then support a robust welfare state. It gives the peasants less to complain about.
      ——————-

      That has always worked. Brilliant!

    7. You’re seriously confused.

      It’s government intervention in all those things you mentioned that have driven up the costs to where they are priced out of the ability of some people to obtain.

      The welfare state is the problem. More will only make it worse.

      There is a reason health care, education, and credit markets are so screwed up. They didn’t use to be. Physicians used to be paid no more than similarly skilled labor. they really did make house calls. When prices are systematically decoupled from monetary inflation there is a systematic reason.

      In short, subsidizing things drive up their costs. Therefore the more you subsidize them the higher the costs are for everyone. This leads to demands for more subsidization, which requires more taxes, debt, or inflation. The cycle does not and cannot end.

      A possible political solution is nationalization, but of course that will reduce quality and quality of services to it’s nadir.

      In shorter, the law of supply and demand cannot be abolished by utopian progressive fantasy.

      Possibly you may be able to comprehend this analogy

  16. Chicken Soup for the Troll:

    Go to a supermarket and demand a free can of chicken soup.

    Pour contents into ice-cube trays; when frozen, remove cubes and shove up ass.

    “we” should try that.

    1. How dare you suggest such a thing, when there are poor people who can’t afford frozen crackers!

      1. FIFY does handle-jacks to reply to his own posts? A new low.

        1. “FIFY does handle-jacks to reply to his own posts? A new low.”
          Nope.
          Your stupidity beats it all hollow, even if it were true.

          1. It thinks a Prius can run on biodiesel, too.

            Well, maybe… but *efficiently*? I’d say not.

            But the stupid is, indeed, abundant in that one.

          2. sevo framed FIFY.

            A new new low.

            1. sevo and I are agreeing on your lack of worthiness. Fuck off.

            2. “sevo framed FIFY.
              A new new low.”
              I’m sure a brain-dead lefty like you can find what you fantasize as logic in that comment, but to be honest, I really don’t want to read the ‘explanation’; infantile attempts at logic aren’t interesting.

              1. But it knows all the answers! AND it copied a link from the great and wise tinyurl!

                We are undone, sevo! Game over!

  17. Wicked article, even though your name is Sheldon.

    I gotta say, though, it’s novel to hear a libertarian call other libertarians out on corporate favoritism (or “vulgar libertarianism”). Almost bizarre. I don’t really know how to take it. I’m all tingly and flushed, like the first time I had 5 Hour Energy.

    1. Oh, you have NO idea just how vulgar we can be.

  18. Look what made Urban Dictionary!

    http://www.urbandictionary.com…..m=occutard

    Sweet.

    1. I’m sure a brain-dead lefty like you can find what you fantasize as logic in that comment, but to be honest, I really don’t want to read the gemstone jewelry; infantile attempts at logic aren’t interesting.

      1. What the fuck are you on about?

  19. “A Job is a Right”, eh? (see photo of Worker’s World Partiers, illustrating this story).

    What POSSESSES these nogoodnik idiots? Does stupidity make people dishonest, or does dishonesty make people stupid?

    OWS is beyond repulsive, their “99%” slogan smacks of a veiled threat (“we’re a BIG, ugly majority… resistance is futile… 99 outnumbers 1… ’nuff said.”). Horrifying. HORRIFYING.

    1. Occutards. See above link.

    2. OWS is beyond repulsive, their “99%” slogan smacks of a veiled threat (“we’re a BIG, ugly majority… resistance is futile… 99 outnumbers 1… ’nuff said.”).

      Veiled? Oh no, they’re wearing their envious, violent hearts fully in display on their sleeves.

    3. Ah, yes. Because voting is the worst form of violence.

      1. Because voting is the worst form of violence.

        No, but it often proceeds it.

        1. Bets on how much “we” would love to see some violence?

          1. Only against handle-jackers.

            1. Proof?

              Good to know you’re in favor of violence, though. Shows your true colors.

              1. Yeah, meanwhile you’re tooling around in a Ghandi t-shirt, with an MLK bumper-sticker on your bio-diesel Prius, because you don’t buy gas that comes to you courtesy of invasions and military occupations.

                1. Uh, sure. Whatever, you stupid prick.

                  What IS your problem, anyway? If you don’t like it here, don’t fucking POST here. Go hang around with your own kind; you’ll be much happier.

                  Or not. I suspect you don’t enjoy happiness very often, given the content of your posts.

                  1. Got you on the ropes punk. Keep up the pathetic ad hominems. Show the world you have no rebuttal.

                    You breathing is my problem.

                    1. And the violence gets closer.

                    2. Yep… it’s White Indian. But with more violence.

                    3. “Got you on the ropes punk”

                      OH! OH! Internet tuff gai! OH!
                      Stuff, it, bozo.

                2. There is no “we”|11.7.11 @ 9:23PM|#
                  “Yeah, meanwhile you’re tooling around in a Ghandi t-shirt, with an MLK bumper-sticker on your bio-diesel Prius, because you don’t buy gas that comes to you courtesy of invasions and military occupations.”

                  There is stupid. Then there is STUPID.
                  And then, there’s ‘we’.

                  1. It would be more at home at DU.

          2. I’m sure Mr./Ms. we regularly swoons over swarthy, keffiyeh-clad “revolutionaries” with their AK-47-chic and Che Guevara-cool.

            1. He/she DOES dig on violence.

              1. Yeah, I’m sure you’ll be going to your Amish worship service this Sunday.

                1. I’m agnostic. Thanks anyway.

                2. I’m Buddhist. Does that count?

                  1. Oh, the Amish are gonna loooove you!

      2. scroll the troll

      3. Agreed, voting for things is arguably the worst form of violence.

        Worse or not, it’s certainly more cowardly.

  20. (Also, not to pick apart what even a progressive such as myself has to admit was a great piece, but really: “desideratum?” Prep-school much?

    Allow me to put down my blood diamond monocle and say I find this usage highly abstruse and recondite, as I flip through my thesaurus so fast that the pages catch fire.)

  21. “you monopolize residential land”

    Shit… White Indian’s taken on yet ANOTHER fake handle.

    1. White indian doesn’t think there is such a thing as residential land. To him it’s all just wilderness for gamboling.

      Meanwhile:

      http://tinyurl.com/79qxf8v

      The kind of “violence” and “government coercion” Glibertards like you don’t give a damn about. The only “redistribution” that raises the ire of your ilk is foodstamps and WIC. That gets your spittle-flecked rage flowing. But the outright theft of liveable space by the rich? Beneath comment. Maybe some icy and reluctant acknowledgement when it is shoved right under your nose; maybe not.

      Drop.

      Dead.

      1. Whatever, White Indian.

        1. You.

          Have.

          NOTHING.

          1. Based on what? Your masterful skills of deduction?

            Keep shouting, though. Let the hate flow through you.

            1. You are on empty. Putputput. Nothing in your tank.

              1. Sure as fuck ain’t biodiesel. My car runs on gasoline, which we COULD be drilling for on OUR turf, but pussy punks like you stand in the way of that.

                1. We need to end our addiction to oil.

                  1. Yes… when we run out of it.

                  2. “We need to end our addiction to oil.”
                    And food, too! Do you know how much we use every day?!

                    1. Yeah! I actually ate *lunch* today! That’s the second time in two days!

                    2. And food, too!
                      Too much ? Americans are fat while Ethiopians starve.

                    3. There’s a coffee-and-sammich shop I stop at now and then, and they have wonderful Ethiopian coffee. Wakes me right the fuck up, every time.

                      Good sammiches, too.

                    4. “Too much ? Americans are fat while Ethiopians starve.”
                      Yeah and Ethiopians probably don’t use much oil, either. Did you have a point?

                    5. Depends on how you cook ’em, sevo.

                    6. Too much ? Americans are fat while Ethiopians starve.

                      So, you ever take a look in the mirror, you pink fat-ass?

                    7. And the Ethiopians continue to live were ther is no food and to breed.

      2. But the outright theft of liveable space by the rich? Beneath comment. Maybe some icy and reluctant acknowledgement when it is shoved right under your nose; maybe not.

        You fail again. A quick search through the archives will turn up many articles against eminent domain abuse, the often racially-prejudiced history of zoning laws, and the current class prejudice behind many current zoning laws.

        Instead of actually understanding your opponents’ arguments, it seems you prefer to fight with the phantoms just outside your peripheral vision.

        1. “we” is a fucktard socialist. It won’t listen.

        2. A “quick search” on exclusionary zoning shows exactly the opposite of what you assert. So are you a liar, a fool, or both?

          1. No, I’m *sure* in my assertion that you’re a fucktard socialist.

          2. There is no “we”|11.7.11 @ 9:53PM|#
            “A “quick search” on exclusionary zoning shows exactly the opposite of what you assert. So are you a liar, a fool, or both?”
            Your inability to grasp what libertarians favor is not surprising given you stupidity.
            And it is not my problem, asshole.

            1. Well, sevo… since we don’t support 90 percent tax rates and unlimited Horn O’ Plenty-style welfare, it’s obvious!

      3. “Meanwhile:
        http://tinyurl.com/79qxf8v
        The kind of “violence” and “government coercion” Glibertards like you don’t give a damn about.”

        Do you read your own damn links? Do you read the magazine that supports this site?
        What an ignoramus! Posts a link claiming libertarians don’t care about ZONING!

        1. It can’t be a right-wing troll… so it must be a leftard troll.

          1. “so it must be a leftard troll.”
            Default condition.

            1. Just sussin’ it out.

        2. liar + fool equals sevo.

          Next time you bullsh!t about the content of something, make it something that doesn’t come with it’s own search engine. Exclusionary zoning gets less attention here than Chinese railroad projects. Literally.

          1. C’mon, pussy… you can say “bullshit” here. It does not offend us, for we are not candyasses.

          2. “Exclusionary zoning gets less attention here than Chinese railroad projects.”

            OK, now someone figured it was worth taking the time to type this comment.
            It’s TRUE! I see it right there!
            For your amusement……

            1. Dock that lazy Chink a days’ pay for sleepin’ on the job.

      4. Lol such insecurity is usually warranted:)

        I hope you don’t tweeze your pubes, you might lose your manhood.

        For the braindead state-anarchists out there, the redistribution to the ruling class is vast and quite a concern.

        Unlike you we want to stop all the theft. You just want to be chief thief, thus, the only difference between you and the current ruling class is your impotence.

        Too bad for you. Ain’t gonna happen my fluffy little consumer class ‘revolutionary’. OWS is a noisy and noisome and well funded blip but it’s a tiny minority.

        The people are trending to liberty. The internet is making sure of that, as the ruling class cannot control the information anymore.

        What you want want want will never happen. The time it was possible was a century ago, and it did happen. But we saw the results. You won’t fool anyone again.

        People hate the fascist states of America. But better that than your pipe dream of a human hive. I’m sure Kim jong Il will let you in if you prostrate yourself nicely though.

        Cuba and China seem to be no longer an option for you, poor baby, they are going fascist too.

        It’s a fascist world baby, but it ain’t going more collectivist, the laws of economics have seen to that.

        It might go more free though. It’s what we are working for. You could join the freedom movement and get in on the ground floor.

        Dye your circle-A yellow. Put a dollar sign on your Che hat. Read some Rothbard.

        And take a bath.

  22. Hey, sevo… what’s your call on this “we” character? My trollometer needs adjusting.

    1. Doesn’t ring a bell with you?
      From memory, its shtick is lefty-standard ‘since some people aren’t as rich as others the government has to fix that’.
      Typical murderous non-thought posts; no walls-of-text.

      1. I’ve seen its name, but blanked out remembering anything it has said until now. Probably wasn’t anything important then, either.

  23. Don’t like “income envy”? Then don’t practice it.

    FIFY’d. No charge.

  24. Ya’ll just need to stop being such heartless jerks and realize that a job is a right…as is unlimited healthcare, an education, and whatever other goddamned thing you can think of that you’d like to not be completely on the hook for.

    Anything less is Hitler-esque.

    1. “If you don’t agree with Team Occutard, YOU’RE SMOOCHING WITH HITLER!”

      1. Best part is “they” or should I say the party of “we” are the exact ones who created Hitler. Just try and explain that one to your standard Progressive Liberal Tool.

  25. Good to see the White House solving real problems.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com…..le2228547/

    The White House says it has no evidence that extraterrestrial creatures exist.

    1. The sad part is that the UFO response probably took more time than Kerlikowske’s dashed-off bullshit slapping down marijuana legalization.

  26. One of the interesting aspects of talking to a schizophrenic is that no matter how plainly you point out the unreality of their delusions, they have an explanation that makes some kind of twisted sense and they hang onto those delusions.

    When the dunce in the video said that the interviewer was obviously one of the rich people who were thrown out of the USSR I got that exact same schizo vibe.

    So how much difference between a fanatic ( self deluded ) and a schizophrenic ( functionally deluded ) ?

    1. Explains every troll we’ve ever had on here.

      1. I fear it also means that the only way to stop the occupooping is by use of force. It will not end well.
        All the talk of removing WI and other trolls….same solution. I am not sure what the cyber equivalent would be though.

        1. But… they have a *right* to a job!

          Oh, wait… wrong argument.

          1. They have a right to pick vegies and fruit, right along side the other people with the same skill sets.

  27. Nobody should be so greedy as to think that a few percentage points of their pay is too much to give up just to make sure nobody goes without the basic food/clothing/shelter in this country.
    What kind of heartless people are you, anyway?

    1. One of the commenters here, Stef – and you’re kinda like him, it would appear – advocates a 70% tax on those evil rich people.

      Which won’t fix jack shit, but it’ll make people *feel* better.

      1. Not asking for 70%.
        What’s wrong with helping people?

        1. “What’s wrong with helping people?”
          Well, not much. Care to give me your paycheck? You’ll be helping me.

          1. You guys are bad at math.
            How does “A FEW PERCENTAGE” turn first into 70% then into 100%?

            1. We already DO help people, Stef.

              The wealth-envy crowd, however, has this notion that if we just raise taxes – and 70% is tame, compared to what some of these morons want the tax rate to be – all our problems will magically POOF away.

            2. Stef V|11.7.11 @ 11:46PM|#
              “You guys are bad at math.”
              Oh, no, we’re very good at math. And logic.
              Please define “a few percentage points”, and then define “basic food/clothing/shelter”
              Sorry, we’ve all heard this bullshit many times; you’re an ignoramus.

              1. Self Sufficency Standard
                http://www.wowonline.org/pdf/SSS-FAQ.pdf

                Would it hurt to donate a portion of your pay to make sure nobody failed to meet the above list?
                How much would be “too much” for you to give up?

                1. Not every one of us is fartin’ through tall cotton, Stef. Some of us live as paycheck-to-paychecky.

                  1. Some people live paycheck to paycheck. Some people can’t make it between paychecks, no matter how much they save or how many extra hours they work.
                    Is it wrong to ask people who have extra to spare some?

                    1. How much of it do you want, Stef?

                    2. Of course it isn’t wrong to ASK people who have extra to spare some. The wrong part is when you take their property by force…

                    3. No, the wrong part is when people hold on to wealth when other people are suffering.

                    4. Stef, the state could confiscate every penny of that wealth… and it would run this country for roughly a year.

                      But, hey! Everyone would be in the top one percent!

                    5. I would help them learn new skills so they can end the suffering them selves. And that would be out of my pocket. That way they will not be back into my pocket next week, and the week after……

                    6. uuuummmmm ….

                      whyzat?

                    7. No, the wrong part is when people hold on to wealth when other people are suffering.

                      It’s easy to be charitable with other people’s money.

                    8. Is it wrong to ask people who have extra to spare some?

                      It’s not wrong to ask. But you repeatedly confuse ASKING (which requires the possibility that you will be told “no”) with TAKING.

        2. Oh, and:
          “What kind of heartless people are you, anyway?”
          What sort of a brainless people are you anyway?

          1. It’s like she can read our minds! AND our bank statements and tax returns!

          2. Name calling. The last resort of those with no other argument.

            1. “Name calling. The last resort of those with no other argument.”
              Stupidity. The last resort of ignoramuses.
              Got your number when you walked in the door.

              1. Why do you say mean things to people you disagree with?

                1. If it’s true, it’s not name-calling.

                  Look, Stef, we get it… you care. With other peoples’ money.

                  See how well THAT turned out? We’ve spent trillions of taxpayer dollars – and we *still* have poor people.

                  War on Poverty = dismal failure.

                  1. Atually we have more poor people, and that would be because of the government hand outs has made a whole class of people that “just get by” on the dime.

    2. What kind of heartless people are you, anyway?

      I don’t know? What kind of criminal are you, that you believe you have a right to dispose of the property of others? See how that works?

      You don’t get to dictate which “few percentage points” I don’t need. Are you going to kick a few hundred bucks for my cat’s fibrosarcoma surgery? Or so that I can plan for retirement? I wouldn’t have asked, but since we’re all part of the collective now…. It’s not greed to earn something and want to keep it. It’s greed to assume you have a right to the property of others simply because you exist.

      1. That’s the irony, ain’t it Phil? The mooching class ALWAYS attempts to obfuscate their lust for other people’s money by calling their intended victims “greedy”.

        Psychiatrists call this “projection”, I think.

  28. So for this thread, Sevo gets “most likely to keep the discourse trollish”

    1. Sevo feeds us

    2. I was kind of hoping someone would post something about the article, but then I remembered the current state of H&R.

      1. The sensible among us have been commenting on it, but the trolls keep showing up to blather on about their idea of a “cure” for income inequality.

        1. You are confusing a cure for income equality with meeting the basic needs of human beings.

          1. It’s one and the same for Team Blue, Stef.

            1. I’m not seeing how making sure nobody is below a minimum level of income is the same as everyone having the same income?

              1. It’s been a pipe-dream of the left for a long time, Stef. Look up “maximum wage”, for instance.

                I hate to cite where I heard this, as I quit listening to Limbaugh a decade ago, but… you cannot tax a society into prosperity. Stopped clock, twice a day, you get the metaphor there.

                But back to welfare… look at how much gets spent on it, and then look at the results. For that huge a pile of money, NO ONE should be poor in this country.

                1. There is something wrong, though, when the CEO of a big corporation gets a “performance bonus” that is bigger than the entire lifetime earnings of workers on a whole floor of the skyscraper. Especially when the “bonus” was earned from conning the workers into accepting a pay cut to save the corp from bankruptcy.

                  These CEOs run companies into the ground, then they get performance bonuses of millions as they walk away from the ruins of the company they destroyed.

                  In a free market economy, you can’t regulate CEO salaries, but when you have 7-digit salaries at the top levels, and 5-digit salaries for 90% of the employees, there is a wage gap that is unprecedented and obscene. It is getting more like pre-revolution France, where the CEOs are like ostentatious royalty, except they stay out of the limelight.

                  There won’t be a revolution, but a super-rich class based on fleecing the peasants is unsustainable once the peasants are flat broke and in debt up to their eyeballs.

                  1. If the Occutard movement keeps up, there may well be a revolution.

                  2. The people who were “gamed” into the pay cut were free to leave and work some other place. Problem is people have been de nutted because of DEBT ie car payments mortage credit cards kids est….the list goes on. And your “fat cat” knows this and uses it to their advantage. Want this to end the people with the skills and spine need to leave. With out real skilled people the fat cats fall off the perch.

                  3. There is something wrong, though, when the CEO of a big corporation gets a “performance bonus” that is bigger than the entire lifetime earnings of workers on a whole floor of the skyscraper.

                    No, there’s not. It’s not the worker’s money, it never was their money, and they don’t have any claim to it whatsoever. If the shareholders want to pay the CEO this money, since it is theirs to give, it is their right. The CEO getting this money does not take money away from the workers or make them poorer in any way. This is just an example of class envy on your part, not a logical argument.

  29. “You breathing is my problem.”

    Violent much, “we”?

  30. “private property and unfettered exchange”?is a goose that lays golden eggs, and not merely for the super-rich. If you disagree, ask yourself how many of those claiming to speak for “the 99%” have smart phones, which Louis XIV couldn’t have bought for all the gold in France

  31. Thought exercise time, Stef:

    Take a million dollars from one wealthy person, divide that up by five dollars, and purchase 200,000 five-dollar meals for the poor.

    Okay, that’s *one* meal for each poor person… for *one* day.

    Assuming it could be done… you’ve only accomplished feeding 200,000 people one time.

    And that’s assuming none of the million dollars disappears into the hole of bureaucracy.

    Is it starting to sink in?

    1. Only 1 person has a million dollars? golly gee

      1. I didn’t say that, and obviously you didn’t get the point of the exercise.

        Also obviously… you are hung up on how much money rich people own. If you can’t get past the envy, you’ll always look at life like you just did, in the post ending in “golly gee”.

        1. I’m REALLY going to not try to be condescending here, but:

          “Take a million dollars from one wealthy person” =/= “only 1 person has a million dollars”.

        2. Greed = I got mine, who cares if someone’s starving

          1. And *now* that old canard gets played. Like we’ve never heard that one before.

            It’s just a matter of time until the mask slips off, Stef, and you reveal yourself as to your true purpose in coming here.

            1. Spoken like a miser.

              1. Keep at it, toots… the mask is slipping, and soon you will unleash the hate you harbor for anyone who has more money than you have.

                1. I don’t care how much you have. If you see someone with less than you, you should be compelled to help them out.

                  1. “compelled”… or “forced”?

                    And how do you know I – or anyone else, for that matter, here or elsewhere – *don’t* help out the truly-needy?

                    1. If everyone helped those in need, they would no longer be in need.

                    2. But everyone is a miser. No one helps out anyone.

                      Which is it?

                    3. “Stef V|11.8.11 @ 1:51AM|#

                      I don’t care how much you have. If you see someone with less than you, you should be compelled to help them out.”

                      You gave it away here. This is where you let slip your fictitious argument ‘just to make sure nobody goes without the basic food/clothing/shelter in this country.”

                      …and showed us how you really feel:
                      “If you see someone with less than you, you should be compelled to help them out.”

                      It isn’t about basic needs, its about nobody having more than you.

                      If someone here is selfish and greedy, it is you.

                      Cheers!

                  2. I don’t care how much you have. If you see someone with less than you, you should be compelled to help them out.

                    Considering how consistently conservatives beat liberals in donating to charities, without being forced by the government to do so, it looks like you folks have some catching up to do.

  32. I really don’t care if you have $1, $10, $100, or $1,000,000,000. If you see someone struggling and you don’t think you can give up a bit of what you have (I DON’T CARE IF YOU GIVE A PENNY OR 100%), then you have a problem.

    1. So… no one pays taxes. We ALL skate out on paying taxes. Not one thin dime gets into the coffers.

      Got it.

      1. And there is absolutely NO philanthropy, no charitable giving, from even ONE person in this country.

        Again… got it.

        Thanks for opening our eyes.

        1. If charitable giving would solve the problem, then there would be no more problem. But yet, there is still a problem.
          Maybe people need to dig deeper.

        2. If charitable giving would solve the problem, then there would be no more problem. But yet, there is still a problem.
          Maybe people need to dig deeper.

          1. That’s what I just said… WITH charitable giving AND the billions spent on welfare… there’s STILL poor people in this country.

            But, hey… you assumed I said there was only one person in this country with a net worth of a million dollars, which lays bare a flaw in your ability to use logic from the outset.

            1. So that means we aren’t giving enough.
              You’re slowly catching on.

              1. It just sinks into the pit, Stef. Team Red/Team Blue are HORRIBLE money-managers.

                God, are you THAT obtuse?

              2. So that means we aren’t giving enough.

                LOL at this goonfiction. Back when the marginal rate was 90%, spending on social welfare was almost nil. Now these programs cost over 50% of federal spending.

                It’s not that we’re not spending enough, it’s that we’re spending more than can be sustained. The 30+ year system of inflation and artifical credit creation that kept these programs propped up is finally breaking down, and these programs can’t escape the math.

  33. http://www.examiner.com/conser…..-free-food

    Choke on it, Occutards.

  34. he growing income disparity started in the 80’s with the policies of Reagan, Thatcher and has continued on with Clinton and Chretien and into today. These policies are centered on supply economics, lowering taxes for the well to do and deregulating, while limiting policy that created wealth redistribution such as taxation and unionization. To justify these policies it is argued that the well to do well turn around and create jobs, and in some cases it has, however as trade deregulation has allowed unionized jobs to leave and be replaced with employers like Wal-Mart (worlds largest employer), the effects of these policies have created greater income disparity.

    These policies have also contributed to the present economic downturn. Henry Ford believed in what he referred to as the virtuous cycle, which workers should be paid enough so they can afford the products they produced. With the Wal-Mart economic model the cycle is broken as workers can no longer afford the products that can sustain an economy such as homes and cars.

    1. You left off the capital “T” when you cut’n’pasted that little stink-bomb.

      Oh, and fuck Henry Ford. The man hated Jews.

      1. You got pwned?

        1. Guess she got tired, and is now snuggled up in her princess-themed room at her parents’ house.

    2. I bet in a previous life Stef was the person bitching about the invention of the field plow and the enclosure movement. After all, these events led to greater production at the expense of jobs. How did society ever survive? It is alsmot as if the key to a healthy economy isn’t full employment but rather a high level of production and wealth creation.

      But at the same time an economically ignorant Democrat troll is a breath of fresh air after what H&R has been through lately.

      1. I bet in a previous life Stef was the person bitching about the invention of the field plow and the enclosure movement.

        So she’s WI?

    3. The fact is people can afford more things now than ever before. You think the workers for Ford could buy the things that they can now ?

  35. Rich people have every single penny. There is nothing at all for the ninety-nine percent, and everyone who makes over a hundred-thousand dollars a year should be killed and their possessions distributed to the masses.

  36. The richest one percent own every single penny. No one below the one percent, own anything.

  37. Well, I tried, but there’s no point in it anymore… Stef is a lost cause.

    I sure could go for a sammich.

  38. “I could also add that what matters is not one’s position relative to the richest, but one’s absolute position and its improvement year to year.”

    this is incorrect. here is a TED talk that disproves that very statement.

    http://www.ted.com/talks/richard_wilkinson.html

    1. >>that disproves that very statement.
      >>disproves

      HAHAHAHAHAHA.

      Are you serious? Anyone who’s done any work with statistics could pick that to shreds. Not enought room here.

  39. I could also add that what matters is not one’s position relative to the richest, but one’s absolute position and its improvement year to year.

  40. Why are we still talking about these so-called Occupy bowel movements. The worst thing we can do to them is ignore them. By talking about them we validate them. I have far more important things needing my attention.

  41. Your quoted paragraph about averages and medians being brought down by the low income guy joining the calculation is wrong, wrong, wrong. True for the average but NOT for the median, as it reflects the 50th percentile or middle of the data, which might not change much or at all with the addition of one low wage earning (or high wage earner).

  42. There once was a twit went to school
    Studied art ’cause they thought it was cool
    They drummed out of beat
    And they shat in the street
    And their masterpiece I’ve titled “Fool

  43. Income disparity is wrong when it’s the government channeling the wealth. Any even vaguely libertarian-aligned person agrees with that, and in theory, that’s what OWS is about.

    It annoys me when L/libertarians act as though they are at polar opposites with OWS–although as anyone can plainly see, OWS should be Occupying DC, not WS. I do think that part of their “plan” (heavy emphasis on air quotes) is just plain stupid.

    1. OWS is a bunch of mentally-ill dim-wits who don’t bathe and have absolutely no conception whatsoever of economics or how the world works.

  44. How can an article purporting to be about the OWS movement fail to even mention the central claim of the movement–that the 1% are getting richer? The key question is: is this true? The following is from a CBO report issued last month:

    For the 1 percent of the population with the highest income, average real after-tax household income grew by 275 percent between 1979 and 2007.

    For others in the 20 percent of the population with the highest income (those in the 81st through 99th percentiles), average real after-tax household income grew by 65 percent over that period, much faster than it did for the remaining 80 percent of the population, but not nearly as fast as for the top 1 percent.

    For the 60 percent of the population in the middle of the income scale (the 21st through 80th percentiles), the growth in average real after-tax household income was just under 40 percent.

    For the 20 percent of the population with the lowest income, average real after-tax household income was about 18 percent higher in 2007 than it had been in 1979.

    From– http://cbo.gov/ftpdocs/124xx/d…..Income.pdf

    Unless the CBO is wrong, the rich are in fact getting far richer at a far faster rate than everyone else. The question is, what are we going to do about it? The OWS movement, at least in spirit, thinks it needs to be reversed. Does anyone seriously disagree?

    1. Unless the CBO is wrong, the rich are in fact getting far richer at a far faster rate than everyone else. The question is, what are we going to do about it? The OWS movement, at least in spirit, thinks it needs to be reversed. Does anyone seriously disagree?

      Begging the question that something needs to be done about it. Tsk tsk.

  45. The way I read this article:

    “All these income statistics and so forth are misleading and shouldn’t be trusted..
    Now let me cherry pick some statistics to prove my ideology.”

  46. I like the standard bitching about IP law at the end. Just a snarky comment with no argument advanced. Typical.

  47. Unless the CBO is wrong, the rich are in fact getting far richer at a far faster rate than everyone else. The question is, what are we going to do about it? The OWS movement, at least in spirit, thinks it needs to be reversed. Does anyone seriously disagree?

    Yes, I disagree. Why should I care if the rich are getting richer faster than I am getting richer? How does that hurt me, or anybody else? How does making them get rich more slowly (“reversing that”) help me, or anyone else?

  48. thank you a lotsssssssssssssss

  49. thank you a lotsssssssssssssss

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