The Root of Rising Inequality: Our “Lawnmower” Economy (hint: we’re the lawn)

STRAIGHT LINE LOGIC

In a global economy in which debt is the foundation (see Debtonomics Archive), it should come as no surprise that debt merchants have done better than most. It should also come as no surprise when myriad debt bubbles eventually pop and the global economy is put through the wringer. From Charles Hugh Smith at oftwominds.com:

This predatory exploitation is only possible if the central bank and state have partnered with financial Elites.

After decades of denial, the mainstream has finally conceded that rising income and wealth inequality is a problem–not just economically, but politically, for as we all know wealth buys political influence/favors, and as we’ll see below, the federal government enables and enforces most of the skims and scams that have made the rich richer and everyone else poorer.

Here’s the problem in graphic form: from 1947 to 1979, the family income of the top 1% actually expanded…

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The Rot Runs Deep 1: The Federal Reserve Is a Parasitic Wealth Transfer Machine | Charles Hugh Smith

August 27, 2012.   Today I launch a series entitled “The Rot Runs Deep” that examines the moral and financial rot at the core of American finance, politics and culture. We have reached a unique junction of American history: the confluence of Big Lie propaganda, neofeudalism and the worship of false financial gods.

The Federal Reserve is a wealth transfer machine, skimming wealth from the productive many and transferring it to the parasitic few. The Big Lie propaganda machine of corporate media and the Central State has perfected Orwell’s nightmare vision of centralized media and a fascist centralized State which turn lies into self-serving “truth.”

Since the Federal Reserve is once again expected to “save” a crumbling, exploitative Status Quo, let’s use the Fed as an example. The propaganda machine would have us believe that the Federal Reserve, the privately owned central bank of the U.S., has “saved” the Status Quo from financial ruin on numerous occasions by “smoothing out” the business cycle (credit expands and contracts) and by “stimulating aggregate demand” by lowering interest rates and pumping money into the economy (quantitative easing). Continue reading

MUST READ! “Dear Person Seeking a Job: Why I Can’t Hire You” | Charles Hugh Smith via ZeroHedge

Potential employers have to respond to the incentives and disincentives that exist in today’s world, and those do not favor conventional permanent employees.  I know you’re hard-working, motivated, tech-savvy and willing to learn. The reason I can’t hire you has nothing to do with your work ethic or skills; it’s the high-cost Status Quo, and the many perverse consequences of maintaining a failing Status Quo.

The sad truth is that it’s costly and risky to hire anyone to do anything, and “bankable projects” that might generate profit/require more labor are few and far between. The overhead costs for employees have skyrocketed. So even though the wages employees see on their paychecks have stagnated, the total compensation costs the employer pays have risen substantially.

Thirty years ago the overhead costs were considerably less, adjusted for inflation, and there weren’t billboards advertising a free trip to Cabo if you sued your employer. (I just saw an advert placed by a legal firm while riding a BART train that solicited employees to sue their employers, with the incentive being “freemoney” for a vacation to Cabo.) Continue reading

Is This What We’ve Become? | charles hugh smith

… Propaganda and marketing are the dominant forces in America, along with a willingness to suspend reality to avoid whatever is complex, knotty, difficult or painful.

Is this what we’ve become, a nation so fearful of the truth that we shun it, avoid it, or paper it over at every turn? It would seem so…

must read —>charles hugh smith: Is This What We’ve Become?.