Shocking United States Wealth Distribution
What else would you call this? Watch, listen, or read here. And P.S. I'm moving to WVA and the newsletter is going on a two week delay.
This is where I hastily scribble about what’s going on. May include righteous anger and typos.
I’m hopping the Ohio River and moving to a new apartment in West By God Virginia as soon as I press send.
Merely saying it out loud makes me want to expire at the thought of packing all my crap. But be warned that this punky little newsletter will likely be on a two-week hiatus as I move and get settled in. I expect to be settled and cookin’ by the end of the month or the beginning of October. Lots of content in the works, especially as election season ramps up.
This week’s content is a deep dive into the straight-up shocking wealth inequality we’re all putting up with right now. You can watch, listen, read, and always share below.
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And because of that, we’re allowed to say that 400 of the richest people in history are running humanity into the ground to preserve levels of private wealth that make the United States defense budget look like a piss ant. Try saying that on CNN.
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Listen to this video as a mini Podcast
I usually share a verbatim transcript. This is the script I used to film the piece with sources included.
The people getting rich without doing work are the 1% and this is a deep dive about it because there is So. Much. Misplaced. Blame. On. Welfare.
So let’s pretend that you just inherited *loads* of money.
1.7 million dollars is the average inheritance for a child of 1% parents. We’re gonna be that child today. And we want to never hold any job, ever. We don’t want to start or run a business. But we do want to live in luxury and also, make our inheritance into a huge fortune.
We use our investment calculator on the World Wide Web to put our 1.7 million inheritance in the stock market. We don’t touch it for 40 years. And we bank on a 10% average return over the long run.
Let’s make a fortune. Bang. 1.7 million in, nearly 77 million out.
Ya see that? Crazy right?
Let’s do a million in, over one year, at a 10% return.
There’s the magic. You get your million back, plus $100,000, in other words, 10%. And all you have to do is not shit… Except inherit money, and then multiply it with other people’s labor.
What was that? Other people’s labor?
Yeah. Money doesn’t grow on trees. Someone has to work to make the money, and that someone is the worker at the company whose stock you hold. But they don’t get all the money their work creates. They get the lowest wage the company can get away with paying them. And the rest goes to shareholders.
And that’s the whole game. That’s what all this is!
The lower the wages the companies pay, the more profit they keep, the better their numbers are for Wall Street, the more valuable their stock is, and so on. And there you go! It’s a free money-printing machine for the already rich that’s powered by people working more hours for crap pay. Story of America right now.
*BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE*
The super-rich are SUPER rich. There are multiple individuals with hundreds of billions of dollars riding this gravy train. The average billionaire makes $14 million every day.
So let’s get back to welfare and look at how much we spend on that compared to the wealth gains of the 1% over one year, 2021.
Here’s a chart. $30.3 billion is how much we spent on direct cash welfare in 2021 for the whole country. It’s called TANF, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. That is included in the SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) budget otherwise known as food stamps. SNAP also includes every dime we spend on farm subsidies. The total spent for SNAP in 2021 was $113.8 billion.
Now watch this. The 1% gained $6.5 trillion dollars in new wealth in 2021, thanks to everything we talked about today. There it is to scale. See how it dwarfs welfare spending?
Keep in mind these gains are not from running a business, they’re from holding stock that entitles you to gains created by people doing work that makes the stock valuable.
And get this! The gains of the 1% are just shy of the ENTIRE federal budget in 2021 -Defense spending, Social Security, Medicare, Welfare, ALL of it.
Oh yeah, making money this way is called capital gains, and rich people made it so capital gains are taxed at half the rate of your wages when they’re taxed at all because the super-rich evade taxes all the time and stick you with the bill!
They try to say people at the bottom are dragging us down, but the real theft is at the top because if their gains were your wages, you, watching this video, would be so much richer.
This is why, and this is one of my favorites, wealth distribution in the United States looks like this:
Pretty bad as is right? Except this graph doesn’t even have the 1% on it. It stops at 99%. And the scale here is in millions. Ya ready to add the 1%?
This is what we’re living with right now. All of the money is at the top. All of it. There is no distribution.
And can you imagine what they do with all that money?
How they build media networks to make sure you stay mad at poor people instead of thinking about…. this?
How they break all kinds of laws that would land you in jail?
How they bust unions so an entire class of people never gets the power to do anything about… this?
How they buy off the government, and keep lackeys, who are passing away on live TV, in there to do their bidding?
And especially how… (video loops to start)