Fighting a class war based on the old rules is a losing proposition for poor and working class Americans. It’s time for new rules. A new way of thinking when it comes to our economic system.
Traditional media and some talking heads are starting to recognize the huge level of income inequality and wealth gap in the U.S. U.S. hasn’t experience this level of inequality since time preceding the Great Depression. There are serious consequences to this level inequality. One of which we are seeing today - those at the top do what ever they can to keep what they have by controlling the political system. Yep, we’re talking a plutocracy.
To some it’s obvious what is happening. In fact, Warren Buffett, famous stock investor, even called it:
“There’s class warfare, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”
Mr. Buffett was at it again today in an op-ed in New York Times titled “Stop Coddling the Super Rich” where he called for higher taxes on the super-rich.
There’s no question that Mr. Buffett is right about class warfare but raising tax rates on the super-rich is not enough. We have serious structural problems in our economy that will not be addressed by simply raising tax rates on the super-rich. Stagnate wages and household incomes is one the problems that will still remain. What do we do about that?
My concern is that this one thing - increased tax rates on super-rich - is being sold as the end all be all to our economic ills. It’s not. The problems we have relate in large measure to our economic system.
Fighting class warfare by the old rules is obviously a losing proposition for poor and working class families. This debate over taxing the super-rich is part of the old rules. We know that tax rates can easily change again under another presidential administration and another party controlling congress. What we need is fundamental and transformational change to our economic system. This won’t happen using the old rules.
We must change the Rules of Engagement on this class war. Or in non-military lingo - we must challenge the status quo. We can do that by starting a New Economy - one that competes with the current economic system that’s the root cause of our economic problems. This involves creating new institutions that could eventually replace existing ones. One example would be to increase the use of credit unions and local/community banks and snubbing the big banks. Another would be increase use of business models that prioritize people and environment over profits.
There are two things that I would explicitly add to these principles (because that’s just how I roll) and those are to encourage more cooperative businesses and worker ownership. Both would go a long way to improving local economies and overall democracy, increasing community wealth and promoting business models that put people and environment before profits.
Economic empowerment gained from creating a New Economy and building local, self-sufficient economies will lead to political empowerment. Now, that’s Change that we can believe in.
economy financial+crisis budget+deficit obama unemployment jobs credit+cards social+security debt personal+finance capitalism deficit bailout mortgage economic+crisis wall+street+bailout new+economy mortgage+crisis job+guarantee retirement+savings deficit+hawks economic+stimulus cooperatives credit+unions financial+regulatory+reform income+inequality health+care+reform financial+oligarchy 401k worker+cooperatives gdp federal+debt financial+conglomerates tarp new+normal money scams fiat+currency debt+management globalization savings consumer+protection stimulus neoliberal unemployment+rate tax+cuts wall+street middle+class investing consumer+debt investments china economic+growth wages federal+reserve stocks government+spending negative+equity risk foreclosure budget financial+planning credit+card+debt debt+settlement federal+deficit democrats republicans financial+bailout fiscal+policy evil pete+peterson health+care financial+literacy jobs+crisis foreclosures move+your+money full+employment modern+monetary+theory stock+market neo-liberal checking economic+policy u.s.+treasuries bonds economic+mobility job+growth bank+of+america foreclosure+fraud taxes consumer+spending cfpa ira inflation class+war jobs+report federal+budget de-regulation financial+crisis+inquiry+commission deficit+commission debt+servitude krugman free+trade solidarity wisconsin income+tax refinancing debt+collection loan+modifications trickle+down+economics financial+stability+plan poverty retirement working+class currency tbtf monthly+budget wills economics #finreg estate+planning consumer+credit gold+standard debt+ceiling auto+industry president+obama center+for+responsible+lending mutual+funds innocent+fraud aig life+insurance personal+income trade+deficit market+fundamentalism consumer+financial+protection+agency cash+flow banking identity+theft fraud compound+interest too+big+to+fail predatory fdic state+of+the+union u.s.+treasury+securities net+worth class+warfare bankruptcy derivatives goldman+sachs mortgages debt+consolidation eu great+recession gold keynes refinance fico+scores debt+crisis credit+scores real+estate mortgage+foreclosure financial+regulation banking+system target+date+mutual+funds argentina fierce subprime bad+bank bullshit phone+scams financial+regulations national+debt free+markets united+states now savings+plan alan+greenspan deficit+errorists payroll+tax+holiday time+value+of+money cost+of+unemployment ponzi+schemes swipe+fees savings+bonds shadow+banking+system fica+tax madison paulson future+value pensions fed+audit debit+cards credit+markets fair+debt+collection+practices+act tax+code #wallstreetscam great+divergence warren+buffett treasury+department present+value tax+deal cooperative+economy predatory+home+lenders cash cdo walker ppip job+loss 20-year+mortgage obama+tax+deal short+sales liquidity u.s.+debt poverty+rates conservatives home+buying economic+purgatory long+term+unemployment vicious+cycle cash+management treasury+securities detroit+schools home+closing banks deficit+hawk american+capitalism bartering emergency+savings efca debt+hysteria online+scams income+taxes investment inequality community+gardens economic community+banks debt+to+gdp recession austerity email beige+book mortgage+modifications yuan risk-return investment+advice estate investment+yields happy+year finreg hyman+minsky american+dream malicious+software deflation corporate+bailouts federal business+roundtable cooperation dot+com+bubble leading+economic+indicators chris+dodd lei deferred+annuities bailouts economic+policies balancing+checkbook alternatives returns housing+bubble disability+income+insurance scam fiscal+sustainability home+mortgage fixed+rate+annuity lobbyists debt+is+evil balance+check+book credit+report teach-in currency+manipulation bill+gross insurance variable+rate+annuity corporate+tax+breaks credit+card+law deficit+spending tina general+motors economic+indicators budgeting financialization warren+mosler washington+consensus foreclosure+rescue+services gross+domestic+product race+to+bottom big+banks marx june+jobs+report open+auction lost+decade financial+genocide republican+budget emergency new+capitalist+manifesto bank+fees credit+card minsky tips geithner commercial+real+estate direct+jobs+program civil+disobedience human+capital direct+deposit reaganomics overdraft cfpb galbraith social+security+cards personal+consumption treasuries protests balance etf economic+justice barack+obama worker+ownership wall+street+bailouts exports household+debt fallacy+of+composition gas+prices obama+administration destruction citizens+united outlays unemployment+benefits imports card+act fallacies securities+laws save public+option living+standard unions july+2011 laid+off citigroup financial+sector foreclosure+gate auto+loans emergency+funds deductibles strategic+defaults keynesian wiped+out productivity+ralph+nader new+era+windows money+market+accounts unemployment+insurance fox+news+channel human+capitalism savings+tip financial+reform arra free+credit+report chicago money+market+mutual+funds afl-cio fox move+money predatory+lending credit+rating+agencies credit+reports fallacy uaw employment principal+reduction roger+ailes close+banking+accounts countervailing+powers refund+anticipation+loans jobs+data moody's revolution tax+reform denmark propaganda banking+services john+k.+galbraith tax+refund debt+forgiveness lehman+brothers cornel+west exuberance disposable+income national+infrastructure+bank corporate+welfare u.s money+manager+capitalism birth+certificate monetary+policy option+arm mortgage+loan+modifications subprime+mortgages corporate+profits interest+rates greece quantitative+easing political+system fundamentals living+wage output+gap success consumption ltcm universal+health+care income+distribution household john+mccain minimum+wage new+democrat+coalition two+americas frontline senate+democrats eurozone debt+commission haymarket american+recovery+and+reinvestment+act oligarchy two+economies income regulations ben+bernanke california+budget catfood employee+ownership existing+home+sales jobless+recovery carried+interest john+edwards mark+to+market budgets payroll+tax euro chicago+idea paladino robert+reich gmac life+settlements tax+holiday ireland mlk fannie+mae housing+market cowards slavery dollar sector+balances