F. Scott Fitzgerald is said to have once said to his friend Ernest Hemingway: “The rich are different from you and me, Ernest”, to which Hemingway would have replied: “Yes, they have more money. “
Fitzgerald was right. Especially nowadays, when the richest people in America are not millionaires, or even people worth hundreds of millions of dollars, but rather billionaires, some like Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk and Warren Buffett , having total assets of over $ 100 billion. , the rich are not only quantitatively but qualitatively different.
There are 664 Americans today who are billionaires (that’s 1000 times $ 1 million in assets). This number is 50 people, or families, higher than it was a year ago.
Recall that these 50 people joined the billionaire club during the current pandemic crisis while American unemployment was at record levels, 700,000 people were dying of Covid. countless small and medium-sized businesses were shutting down because of the pandemic, and the nation as a whole was suffering greatly. During that same difficult time, the wealth of all America’s billionaires actually increased by $ 1.3 trillion (one trillion equals one trillion).
Who are these people? They live separately from the rest of us in lavish mansions, fly around the globe at their whim in their own private jets, adding perhaps 1,000 times the carbon of global warming to the atmosphere of the average American – maybe overwhelmingly more than that. Worse yet, most of them treat their working class employees (the people who actually create their wealth) like crap. Watch Jeff Bezos, until a recent surge in Tesla’s stock value and his wife’s divorce in which she got half of her assets, stock the richest man in the world: he’s expects his stressed and overworked Amazon delivery drivers to relieve themselves in the backs of their trucks in bottles, so he doesn’t have to pay them to slow down deliveries by going to a public restroom and taking the time to park the van, lock it, and enter a building before resuming work. By the way, look at Musk, whose company just lost a racial harassment lawsuit against a black elevator operator at his Tesla factory in Fremont who received $ 137 million in damages for the way he had to endure years of facial taunts from other employees and supervisors. without the company doing anything to stop it.
It is not unusual. The nation’s corporate elite view their employees as “labor costs” or “labor inputs” in their economic planning, and not as human beings to whom they, the owners and the bosses owe a huge debt of gratitude for diligently producing the surplus value that has so enriched them and the shareholders of the company to such obscene levels.
Now, as the current Biden administration contemplates an insignificant increase in the income tax rate for the rich – dropping it from 37% on marginal income above $ 454,000 for a single person or over $ 509,000 (more than half a million per year!) For a married couple, at 39.6%, we see how these heartless and egocentric scum are incomprehensibly greedy.
Ah the horror! A wealthy tax advisor says $ 400,000 isn’t a lot of money for many of his clients, who have high expenses (like big mortgages for oversized mansions on large areas in toney quarters) , but the truth is, for the really rich, every extra dollar they can hang on is important.
A Wall Street Journal article reported on Oct. 3, under the noteworthy headline “Democrats’ Tax Plans Worried About High-Income Business Owners,” explains that high-income business owners fear being harmed by the proposed increase in their taxes, as well as the businesses that made them stink rich.
Just as an example, increasing the maximum rate by 2.6 percentage points means that a family that made $ 800,000 per year, would have $ 297,000 of that princely sum taxed at 39.6% instead of 37% last year, and would end up with an additional $ 5,200 in income tax.
Does anyone, poor, middle-income, or rich, really think the extra amount of tax for a family earning $ 800,000 a year is anything to complain about or even think about?
It’s ridiculous !
The same applies to the increase in capital gains tax by the Biden plan. Biden proposes to eliminate the biggest tax giveaway for the rich – the ability to treat their income as “capital gains” which are 20% taxes, close to the lowest tax rate, even if they earn so much money that they would pay 37% on their earnings if it was wages like the rest of us (or 39.6% under the new proposal. Instead, no matter how much they are rich, they get away with 20%. The argument for this outrageous and long-standing loophole is that it is supposed to encourage business owners and shareholders to make productive capital investments in their businesses or support such investments in companies in which they hold shares with voting rights. additional income by someone one who earns $ 40,000 who gets a raise or overtime, and ends up having the post ra income taxed at 22%!
Yes, the rich are different from you and me. They just think they shouldn’t be taxed.
Complaining about taxes is as American as the Boston Tea Party, which was actually a tax revolt by settlers who did not want to pay taxes on imported goods. But what the rich do is not just complain about paying taxes. They are investing money in the campaigns of right-wing Republicans and Democrats who promise to remove tax increases on them, or even cut their taxes further.
The mind-boggling thing is that so many struggling millions of ordinary Americans who put food on the table, pay the rent, or try to save the down payment on a modest house is an almost impossible challenge. , continue to support candidates who support low taxes for the rich and rich, including even greedy pigs like Bezos, Musk and their fellow billionaires, while making average Jane and Joe pay the country’s bills.
All you have to do to figure out what’s going on is see how the federal minimum wage of $ 7.25 an hour has not been raised since 2009, when the dollar has lost 24% of its value during this period. All you have to do is see that Congress has used stealth in the form of a deliberately inaccurate Consumer Price Index to reduce the value of Social Security benefits by 30% in the past 20 years without never actually reduce them. The impact has been even worse because Congress has never adjusted the income level at which Social Security is first taxed. This means that over the decades more and more poor older people have come to see part of their Social Security benefit checks subject to income tax. Few people remember that until 1983 Social Security benefits were tax exempt because the purpose of the money was to help the elderly survive.
Such crimes against ordinary Americans only happen because the public is kept in the dark or misled by foreign matters of much less importance.
It’s time for the American public to wake up! There is a raging class war, one that is being waged by the ruling class of billionaires and millionaires against the rest of us. And the rich win! They win because they know where their interest lies: to get rich and hang on to their ill-gotten gains. And they also win because our camp is the sleepwalker, rocked by entertainment media hijackings, fundamentalist free market religion, and non-economic dog whistle issues like abortion, immigration, crime, vaccines. Covid and terrorism.