Taxes Are The Price We Pay For an EQUAL Society.

Thomas Piketty, the world-famous French economist, has ran the numbers on American income inequality. And, his analysis confirmed what many of us already know – low taxes on the rich have made them much richer, and have left the rest of us trying to catch up.

According to new research presented at the American Economic Association, since 1980, incomes for the top one percent have grown about four times faster than the bottom 90 percent.

After reviewing surveys, national accounts, and other tax data, Piketty and his colleagues found that most of that growth has been driven by capital income.

Before 1990, most of the income gains – even in the top one percent – were the results of higher wages. Because taxes went up along with higher pay, income equality was relatively consistent for decades. But, when those at the top started bringing in more of their income through capital gains, the income gap started to widen.

Previous studies have suggested that low taxes on capital gains income are “by far the largest contributor” to income inequality, and this latest research confirms that suggestion.

For most of us, wages have been relatively stagnant over the last 40 years – increasing by less than one percent per year. Meanwhile, the top ten percent are taking in a larger share of the income than they did in the roaring 1920s, and they've convinced the working folks like us to oppose any increase in the taxes that would help level the playing field.

As Piketty's research shows, our system is rigged to benefit those at the top, and it's so broken that many Americans believe they should oppose the tax policies that would bridge the great wealth divide.

Rich people have every right to make their money off of capital investments, but that doesn't mean they deserve lower tax rates than the people who must work to survive. We can't close the income gap without closing the tax divide, so it's time to make those at the top pay their taxes, just like the rest of us.


Legend 7 years 3 weeks ago

This is why the police are being militarized.

John_mulkins123's picture
John_mulkins123 7 years 3 weeks ago

The rich are getting richer because they have organized over decades to take over the government, and they now own it, Congress, the Supreme Court, and the Executive Branch to some degree. The attempted coup led by Smedley Butler in the United States was not the end of their efforts to take control. the coup is ongoing.

Now that we have the power to organize and to express our will as one people, I would encourage all those who find the current oligarchy distasteful to join in and support the movement for a more democratic union. They have the money. We have the numbers.

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 7 years 3 weeks ago

We're not getting what we're paying for. We're getting taxation without representation.

PaulHosse's picture
PaulHosse 7 years 3 weeks ago

Well, I guess that explains why some are more "equal" than others.

Hephaestus's picture
Hephaestus 7 years 3 weeks ago

#3 You bet.

And, we're not getting representation either

This can only end in revolution, as history shows

However, I'm not certain the we are ready for that yet quite

We have no leader at the moment

I do believe in "the 11th hour" though

Hephaestus's picture
Hephaestus 7 years 3 weeks ago

#3 #4 I wonder why we are repeating the same things over expecting a different outcome?

A statement made by many others

TarryFaster 7 years 3 weeks ago

What is too rarely pointed out, is that when we allow the rich to pay less taxes, we end up with less tax revenue to support the/our Commons. The usual result is, that the right-wing/corporate/fascist/oligarchy/1% and their under-informed/under-educated/bigoted minions then scream and holler that we simply can't afford -- and thus must cut (too often surreptitiously) -- the critical programs that the majority of us want, need and use to keep our nation evolving in a positive manner.

happyashell's picture
happyashell 7 years 3 weeks ago

It is said that we should not tax the rich and give to the poor. Is it OK for the rich to help create bubbles and financial crisis and then when the economy implodes they buy all the assets that the middle class and the poor lose. This increases their wealwealth and income. The wealth of our nation rises up the economic ladder each time we have had a recession and a depression in our economy. The rich get richer and the middle class and the poor lose what little wealth they have been able to accumulate between the boom and bust cycle.

There is a way to help get our economy off the boom/bust roller coaster our economy has been on for the last 100 years. You will understand after you read this article. "Proposed Solution For Modern Economies That Create Bubbles And Financial Crisis" at

Kend's picture
Kend 7 years 3 weeks ago

I hear over and over that the RICH do not pay appropriate taxes on this blog. Yet just a few weeks ago here I was told they pay 39.5 %. Just how much of a fair share of what some one else has worked for is fair 50% 75% 90% here in Canada, it is 50% federal plus provincial tax of up to 15% seems everyone in Canada is fine with that exempt the wealthy. We have to be careful not to chase the money out of the country as well. I am curious, what is your number? For both Federal and state what should the max be? Keep in mind the higher the tax rate the less likely the wealthy will invest in anything. I think we can all agree the we need the wealthy to invest.

DavidKaas's picture
DavidKaas 7 years 3 weeks ago

Although I do not know the exact amount, there is unbelievably, money that can be made but not taxed. Is this true or not? The fairness in our own gov't spending of Health Care, Education and Social Security, will never surpass our MIlitary budgets with either a Demo/Rep. President in the White House.

THAGOODSPORT 7 years 3 weeks ago

Eisenhour had a 90% tax on the wealthy and then that was just fine with them then. Regan started helping the wealthy and greed has taken us to what we have now. Tyranny did not work for England, France, Greece and alike. Even the Romans thought they could have it all. History will repeat it self if we do not look back and learn.

Mark J. Saulys's picture
Mark J. Saulys 7 years 3 weeks ago

I don't agree that investments are a morally acceptable way to earn money. I read about 15 years ago in a publication of the Democratic Socialists of America that "socialists don't buy stock investment, they don't profit from the labor of others" and I agree. In any case, it is aptly named "unearned income" and certainly shouldn't be taxed at a LOWER rate than money that is sweated for..
Kend! 39.5% is the MAXIMUM RATE, even if the employees you pay nickels to made you a BILLION dollars this year.
Taxes that go to the social programs of the working people are part of those working people's just compensation for all the hard work they do to make their employers rich. It makes up for their UNDERCOMPENSATION. What business owners don't pay in wages they must pay in taxes.
If they refuse to do either, as they are now, then you have what is happening now, the destruction of the middle class and the pauperization of working people.

Mark J. Saulys's picture
Mark J. Saulys 7 years 3 weeks ago

Kend, when you tax personal incomes at a higher rate business owners keep their money in their business and grow it.

Kend's picture
Kend 7 years 3 weeks ago

Mark maybe companies do leave there money in the company but their is very little incentive to work hard and grow the company. Most wealthy people will put their money in some kind of long term investment like vacant land and will sit and wait for a change in policy. Just watch Americe boom in December. The best thing for business growth is a government that business is not afraid of.

mathboy's picture
mathboy 7 years 3 weeks ago

"Has ran"? Oh, that's just so awful.

Mark J. Saulys's picture
Mark J. Saulys 7 years 2 weeks ago

Kend, other business owners I've heard speak on it don't seem to agree. Perhaps we need to dash any hopes of policy change like before Reagan. Business owners don't deserve so much influence on policy in a democratic society, working people deserve more.

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