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June 5, 2005

You work for the 145,000

Shit is being stirred up by a recent analysis of tax reports done by the New York Times.  The upshot; the "Hyper Rich" are getting richer, and you're getting poorer.

Since 1983, the top 0.1% of tax payers, 145,000 in number, have seen their wealth grow, while everyone else has suffered a loss. For your reference, the top 0.1% of households had a yearly income of 1.2 million dollars or more in 1983.  That's in today's money, adjusted for inflation.  As of 2002 the same class of folks have a yearly income of 3 million dollars or more.  Their share of the nations income here was about 3.75% in 1983, and in 2002 it's topping 7.4, a virtual doubling! 

So how are the rest of us doing?  Well the top 10% of folks saw their incomes grow, even with adjusting for inflation.  Similarly adjusted, the bottom 90% had a general deprecation of earnings. 

So George W. saw this and said to his poor and undereducated flock and said "I'll give you tax cuts! We'll get rid of those services to the poor and disenfranchised and make the honest working man wealthier by the movement of money!"  (Nope, he didn't actually say that, come on... disenfranchised? Not without a days worth of phonetics practice.)

So how did that whole tax cuts thing work out for all of us?  Well, 53% of the tax cuts benefit the top 10% through 2010, and there's movement to extend or make those permanent.  15% of the tax cuts go exclusively to the 145,000. How's your yacht doing by the way?

And before you sit back and say "well that's not too bad, I can still afford two video game systems" let's remind you that these calcuations are only on reported income. The hyper rich are very adept at tax loopholes, overseas investments and offshore accounts. Vacations in the Cayman Islands are fun and profitable for the 145k.

So, what will George say when the press asks him about this analysis?  No doubt something like "Heh heh, I don't read the New Yark Tymes 'ceptin for that Garfield guy.  He's a funny kitty, don'tchaknow.  Let's talk about stem cells now."


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