Nobody wants to talk about this, it seems, but me. (Ok, that’s not entirely fair, but it sure is in the political context!) So be it.
The middle class is receiving less of America’s total income, declining to its smallest share in decades as median wages stagnate in the economic doldrums and wealth concentrates at the top.
A study released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center highlights diminished hopes, too, for the roughly 50 percent of adults defined as middle class, with household incomes ranging from $39,000 to $118,000. The report describes this mid-tier group as suffering its “worst decade in modern history,” having fallen backward in income for the first time since the end of World War II.
Three years after the recession technically ended, middle class Americans are still feeling the economic pinch, with most saying they have been forced to reduce spending in the past year. And fewer now believe that hard work will allow them to get ahead in life. Families are now more likely to say their children’s economic future will be the same or worse than their own.
In all, 85 percent of middle class Americans say it is more difficult now than a decade ago to maintain their standard of living. Some 62 percent say a lot of the blame lies with Congress. A slight majority say a lot lies with banks and other financial institutions. Just 8 percent blame the middle class itself.
Let’s go down just some of the abuses heaped on the middle class over the last couple of decades.
- Offshoring of labor. Democrats, Republicans and the national Libertarian Party along with its Presidential candidate all trumpet “free trade” in one form or another. The truth is that multi-national corporations go where labor is cheap and environmental standards non-existent. This is not, as commonly asserted, about a “competitive workforce” — it is about bulldozing and destroying the people’s means of agrarian and small-business production, effectively forcing them into servitude, then polluting their air, land and water on top of it. That this was the intent all along (as I have asserted all along and others have claimed is poppycock) is now being proved by Foxconn and others moving plants out of China and into places like Indonesia precisely because the locals in China, despite a jackbooted government, are rising up — willing to risk death rather than see their children poisoned and their futures destroyed. Having stripped the land bare like a pack of locusts these vulchers then move onto the next victim nation where the government can be paid off to enslave its people and destroy its resources.
- Theft and bribery as a business model. What else do you call Jefferson County, Alabama? The people there were rooked raw by the banksters with crooked swap deals that were ultimately entered into as a result of actual bribery. There were convictions of local officials too. But the people still are paying the price for the crooked deals and will be into the indefinite future, while those who were on the other side of those deals were not forced to disgorge the ill-gotten gains. Why not?
- State-sponsored murder as a business model. What else do you call Mr. Terry, who was shot by a gun illegally run with the permission of our own BATFE, answering to Mr. Holder as AG? Who’s gone to prison for this? If I knowingly furnish a gun to a prohibited person and he shoots someone with that firearm I can be charged as an accessory before the fact to murder and must stand trial for that act. Why are Mr. Holder and the other responsible parties in the BATFE free men?
- Health-care is an outright extortion racket. Think not? Perhaps you can tell me what you’d call pricing something 10x higher for one person than another simply based on their state of duress — or whether they bought a payment system from a specific institution or party? It wasn’t that long ago that health care was purchased for cash with a checkbook, and if you didn’t have money then you relied on private charity. If we had that system today you could pay for a 4-day stay in the hospital and delivery of a child for $1,000, simply by looking at inflation from 1963 to today. Virtually everyone could afford that. Instead the same procedure costs 10x that much with the explicit intent of forcing you to buy so-called “insurance” — a clear racket. Obama has made it worse but Romney and Ryan have no plan to reverse it, and neither does Governor Johnson. In fact none of them will touch this issue. Every one of these three candidates is and has been committing open fraud upon the public with their so-called “health care” plans for this nation. They are intending to and are in fact supporting big pharma and the medical industry screwing you blind and play on your fear of death along with rhetoric about “Granny being thrown down the stairs” as their stock in trade.
- Education. Same deal. College was paid for with a checkbook 30 years ago. Today? You take loans as a student, and worse, the colleges and government demand that your parents disclose all their income and assets, even though you as a student are a legal adult. The result is that if you have money you are forced to pay for the student without money who sits next to you in class. This is theft. Set up an Air Conditioning business and try to demand that everyone must disclose all their assets and income, you will price your Air Conditioners based on that, and will give poor people AC units “for free” (with the richer people’s money, of course.) You wouldn’t survive 15 minutes in business doing this unless you could get the government to force every firm in the business to do the same thing. Well?
- Housing. Who sold the middle class on the idea of housing being an “appreciating asset”? It sure wasn’t the middle class’ idea. It’s also a lie, incidentally, willfully and intentionally promulgated by the banksters and politicians. A house is a depreciating asset. But even if you continually put into it new inputs to maintain its value without ever-expanding credit the “price” of that house cannot continue to go up; it contains the same number of bathrooms, bedrooms, kitchen(s) and surfaces. Absent your improvement of the space it remains what it was, less wear and tear. Yet for a decade the middle class was “urged” to treat houses as retirement assets that would go up in value (always) and could be tapped on a revolving basis to cover expenses. When this proved to be false (as it always was) those who touted this were not held to account even though the middle class had its wealthdestroyed by this willful and intentional pack of lies. And make no mistake — it was willful and intentional, as the underlying arithmetic simply cannot be argued with — exponential growth on a continual basis is mathemtically impossible.
Of course it doesn’t stop there. The non-union Delphi employees had their pension stolen to cover the UAW’s shortfall when the Obama Administration swooped in to “rescue” GM. Over 100,000 perjured affidavits were filed by banks in foreclosure actions — later admitted to — and then a handslap fine was “administered” (which the banks simply pass on to their customers, victimizing the common American twice.) The same game is now being played by credit-card companies — the very same banks — and why not? A good part of the time the defendant doesn’t show up and thus the bank gets away with it, and even if they do show up and make a stink, they know they won’t be jailed for filing bogus documents.
Where does it stop?
It doesn’t until you demand a better class of politician. It doesn’t until you tell Mitt Romney, President Obama and Governor Johnson to all “fuck off!” when they call asking for your support and money, until and unless they take these issues on and put forward actual plans to fix them, including jailing all of the guilty parties involved in the destruction of your middle-class lifestyle.
Yes, some of our challenges are structural and beyond our control. But Health Care and Education’s ramp in cost could have never happened without the explicit support and acts of government.
Theft and fraud, as exemplified in Jefferson County Alabama and the Delphi workers pensions, could not go on without explicit support of and refusal to prosecute by government.
To the middle class: You did not “lose ground” due to natural forces. You had your wealth and prosperity intentionally stolen by actors both government and private, acting with the full support of our government.
Again: These were intentional acts.
Worse, there are exactly zero candidates for President who are willing to merely speak to this matter, say much less promise prosecutions and removal of the special protections that have made those abuses possible.
And that’s a fact.