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Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 06:59 AM
Original message
We are Losing America Right Before our Blind Eyes (UPDATED 4/21/10 - Bandwidth Warning)
(NOTE: this entry has been updated, and will continue to be updated with new and current source statistical information in the future. Please click the link for reference material. DU data contributors, note the special thanks in the references section!)

We are Losing America Right Before our Blind Eyes (UPDATED 4/21/10)


What is the most non-talked about reality in the United States of America today? The fact that we no longer lead the world in almost any indicator. The United States is no longer the best place for an average person to live. Our health care lags behind our peers, so does our educational system.

I'm going to tell you a fact, then back it up with statistical data, the accuracy of which you can directly verify for yourself, and readers will still have a hard time accepting it as the truth.

Here it is:

Most Americans are relatively worse off in many ways than people in 19 other industrialized powerhouse countries (Japan, Germany, United Kingdom, France, Italy, Canada, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Ireland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland). These countries are the United States industrial peers, and part of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Lets take a look at the details:

  • Per Capita Income: U.S. Second

  • Income Inequality: U.S. First (meaning worst)

  • Overall Poverty Rate: U.S. Highest

  • Child Poverty Rate: U.S. Highest

  • Elderly Poverty Rate: U.S. Highest

  • Infant Mortality Rate: U.S. First (meaning worst)

  • Leisure Time: U.S. Last (meaning worst)

  • Maternity Leave: U.S. Last (meaning worst)

Try to let this information sink in if you can. The United States of America, supposedly a shining beacon and the envy of all the world, has the highest infant mortality rate of its 19 other peer industrialized nations. We have the highest poverty rates. We have the highest income inequality of anyone.

Worse still, if you were to take away the top 1% of income earners in the United States, our median-income would completely free-fall to levels well below the rest of our industrialized peer nations. In other words, the average income for most Americans is actually far, far less than the listed median.

Shouldnt this news shock us? Shouldnt be reported on every media outlet as the biggest news story around? BREAKING NEWS: Our country is in serious trouble, and falling behind the rest of the industrialized world! Something must be done.

But no, instead I could find only a single published article about the data, from a blog no less, The Village Voice. Heres some of what they wrote about some of these numbers:

Income inequality: "Despite the relatively high median income in the United States, inequality in the United States is so severe that low-income households in the United States are actually worse off than low-income households in all but four peer countries."

Leisure time: "The average full-time U.S. worker, at 46.7 weeks per year, works more than the average worker in any peer countries, and about one month more than the overall average, which is 42.6 weeks."

Maternity leave: "The United States last among its peer countries in generosity of mandated maternity leave benefits."

Child care: "The United States spent $1,803 per child, which was less than a fourth of what was spent in Denmark, less than a third of what was spent in Norway and Sweden, less than half of what was spent in Finland and France, and well below spending in Austria, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, and the United Kingdom.

On (Not) Getting By in America

The previous statistical information, while deeply troubling, is actually just the tip of the iceberg of unreported and ignored American realities. Lets look at some others (this section will be continuously updated as new information is located):

  • % US Wealth Controlled by the Top Fifth of Americans: 93 percent

  • Median Wealth, Black Women: $05.00 (Five Dollars)

  • # of Citizens Jailed: 1st in the world

  • # of Homeless Americans: Between 2.3 and 3.5 Million

  • Trade Deficit Ranking out of 190 Countries: 190th (Worst)

    Corporate Welfare in the United States

    • % of Foreign-owned Corporations doing Business in the US Paying ZERO US Taxes: 72 Percent

    • % of US Corporations paying ZERO US Taxes: 67 Percent

    • Effective Tax Rate paid by all Publicly Traded Corporations: 12 Percent

    • Effective Tax Rate Paid by Largest Multinationals: 25 Percent

    • US taxes paid by Exxon-Mobile paid on $37.3 Billion profit in 2009: ZERO

    • US taxes paid by General Electric on $10.3 Billion Profit in 2009: ZERO

    • US taxes Paid by Bailout Recipient Bank of America on $4.4 Billion Profit in 2009: ZERO

    • US Taxes Paid by Chevron on $18.5 Billion Profit in 2009: 200 million (11% Tax Rate)

    • US Taxes Paid by Verizon on $11.6 Billion Profit in 2009: 1.1 Billion (10% Tax Rate)

    According to the Government Accountability Office, nearly three fourths of all foreign-owned corporations doing business inside the United States pay no taxes on that activity in multiple years between 1998 and 2005. Nearly the same amount of US-based corporations pay zero taxes to the United States Government. These facts fly in the fact of the ongoing Wall Street and corporate media narrative that US Corporations face the highest taxes in the world.

    But that should come as no surprise: lying to the American public to cover up the pillaging of the nation is nothing new.

    Corporate industry advocates and insiders are quick to claim that these numbers exist because 72% of Foreign companies and 67% of US Companies did not make a profit in the year that they paid no taxes. So of course they should not be expected to pay. I am pleased to report that this claim is a blatant, provable falsehood.

    Exxon Mobile reported 37.3 billion dollars profit in 2008, from 313 billion dollars in total sales, and paid not a dime to the United States government in taxes. Not one cent. General Electric not only reported 10.3 billion in profit, not only paid not a dime to the United States government in taxes, but actually received 1.1 billion back from the government in 2009.

    Two additional examples above show some of the nations largest corporations turning a profit and paying a tax rate of around 10 percent not the famed 35 percent marginal rate always being railed against by Wall Street. Indeed, the effective tax rate for all publicly traded companies in 2002 (last year of record) was an obscene 12 percent less than what many hard working middle income families pay each year.

    That percentage had been steadily decreasing over the last decade and the trend shows no sign of stopping. Again industry advocates are quick to claim that part of the reason for this average effective rate is because of companies operating as losses who thus owe no taxes. But again the facts get in the way of their narrative.

    In addition to the two examples of profitable companies paying about 10 percent, the GAO reports that of just the largest multinational corporations (excluding smaller domestic only companies more likely to operate at a loss) the average effective rate is still 25% far less than the marginal 35% rate.

    These statistics must be connected to the previous statistics in part one. We must be reminded, in light of this information on business-as-usual in America that we have the highest income inequality and highest poverty of the next twenty richest countries in the world, our industrialized peer nations.

    Charting the American Decent Into Last-Phase Empire

    The top 10% of America controls 71.5% of US Wealth The Bottom 50% control 2.5%




    Household income gains have flip-flopped in the last 30 years
    http://lh3.ggpht.com/_1_L_-hQp3zo/S87np5ChuKI/AAAAAAAAC... <4>.jpg



    The Gap Between Richest and Poorest Dramatically Widens in the Post-Reagan Era




    For the Last 20 Years, Everybody Wins! Except for American Workers




    Real average earnings have not increased in 50 years




    But savings rates are sinking




    The American Dream? Can you Pull Yourself Up by Your Bootstraps? Not Usually, No.




    If you aren't in the top 1%, then you're getting a bum deal




    We Are a Prison Nation




    And We Are a War Nation


    To those who find great comfort in shouting Im proud to be an American what exactly are you proud of? Shouldnt we be embarrassed to death about losing out to the rest of the industrialized world in every single one of these categories? Shouldnt we be outraged by the blatant pillaging of working America by the financial elite? It is a literal fact that our international peers are beating us across the board on what I believe to be key moral indicators of the health of our nation.

    So, what does USA #1 Mean? Number one in what?

    ____________________________

    (Some source information already included in charts above. The remainder is listed below. Special thanks to additional data miners: gmoney, SocialistLez, Bert & Oregone of Democratic Underground)

    Wealth Distribution:
    http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth....

    Household Income Inequality:
    http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/tabfig.html

    Poverty Rates:
    http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/tabfig.html

    Child Poverty Rates:
    http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/tabfig.html

    Social Expenditure vs. Child Poverty:
    http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/tabfig.html

    Infant Mortality Rates Per 1,000 Live Births:
    http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/tabfig.html

    Public / Private Expenditures on Health Care:
    http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org/tabfig.html

    % of Foreign and US Corporations Paying Zero US Taxes
    http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d08957.pdf

    Effective Tax Rate for all Publicly Traded Corporations
    http://www.csmonitor.com/2004/0419/p16s03-cogn.html

    Effective Tax Rate for Largest (Multinational) Corporations
    http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d08950.pdf

    All other Corporate Welfare Data (on US Tax Payments for Corporations)
    http://www.forbes.com/2010/04/01/ge-exxon-walmart-busin...

    The top 10% of America controls 71.5% of US Wealth The Bottom 50% control 2.5%
    http://extremeinequality.org /

    The American Dream? Can you Pull Yourself Up by Your Bootstraps? Not Usually, No.
    http://emlab.berkeley.edu/users/webfac/dromer/e291_f07/...

    The Gap Between Richest and Poorest Dramatically Widens in the Post-Reagan Era
    http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth....

    Defense Spending Global Comparisons
    http://www.globalissues.org/article/75/world-military-s...

    Median Income of Black Women in the United States:
    http://uspoverty.change.org/blog/view/the_median_net_we...

    U.S. Incarceration Rates:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/23/us/23prison.html?_r=1

    Number of Homeless Americans
    http://www.nationalhomeless.org/factsheets/How_Many.htm...

    Additional statistical information, and excerpts of full SWA report:
    http://www.stateofworkingamerica.org /


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    ixion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:01 AM
    Response to Original message
    1. k/r
    for the Dream.
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    ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:04 AM
    Response to Original message
    2. This is so WRONG. The people must ORGANIZE or else all hope is lost. eom
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    ladjf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:06 AM
    Response to Original message
    3. Outstanding post. Thank you for you efforts to encourage
    Americans to wake up to the real "facts" that show the current situation for what it is, a once great Country falling into shambles as a result of criminal acts of greed.
    Printer Friendly | Permalink |  | Top
     
    patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:07 AM
    Response to Original message
    4. K & R
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    Mari333 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:09 AM
    Response to Original message
    5. knr
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    lunatica Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:10 AM
    Response to Original message
    6. kick an rec'd
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    crim son Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:14 AM
    Response to Original message
    7. Favorited.
    Great resource, thanks.
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    nc4bo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:16 AM
    Response to Original message
    8. Thanks for this and I know just where to post it.
    All this teabaggin' bullshit about how they want to take back "their" America. Can I safely say that we obviously live in two different realities?

    K&R!!
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    Subdivisions Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 11:27 PM
    Response to Reply #8
    43. We are living in 'THEIR' America. THEY and THEIR ilk are the ones
    who brought us to where we are today.
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    Delphinus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-10 07:00 AM
    Response to Reply #43
    68. Yes, n/t
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    Tuesday Afternoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:21 AM
    Response to Original message
    9. bkmrkd. K&R
    thanks for posting.
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    Wednesdays Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:22 AM
    Response to Original message
    10. But...but...but we have FREEDOM!
    :patriot:


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    daggahead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:25 AM
    Response to Original message
    11. USA! USA! USA! We're Number 1!
    :sarcasm:
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    LWolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:25 AM
    Response to Original message
    12. K & R nt
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    DontTreadOnMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 08:20 AM
    Response to Original message
    13. bookmarked for later reference
    !
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    RUMMYisFROSTED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 08:40 AM
    Response to Original message
    14. k
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    hootinholler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 10:19 AM
    Response to Original message
    15. One nit 11% of 18.5 Billion is about 2 Billion, not 200 Million
    Chevron Bullet in the corporate taxes section.

    Outstandingly informative, thank you for posting this.

    -Hoot
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 10:23 AM
    Response to Reply #15
    16. I must have messed up a decimal
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    daggahead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 11:05 AM
    Response to Reply #16
    17. Reminds me of "Office Space."
    I must have moved a decimal point. Dammit, I always screw something like that up!
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 04:13 PM
    Response to Reply #17
    28. Ahahhaha!
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    djp2 Donating Member (276 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 12:55 AM
    Response to Reply #15
    53. Should have been
    From original article............
    US Taxes Paid by Chevron on $18.5 Billion Profit in 2009: 200 million SHOULD HAVE BEEN (1.1% Tax Rate)
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    mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 11:06 AM
    Response to Original message
    18. OUTSTANDING POST! One of the best I've seen on DU recently....
    I wish I could recommend this 10,000 times. This is the information people need to know-- the robber barons and their lackey politicians have destroyed the great American experiment to enrich themselves with wealth and power.
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    newtothegame Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 12:14 PM
    Response to Original message
    19. "We are Losing America Right Before our Blind Eyes "
    Something we and the Tea Party can agree on.
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    fascisthunter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 12:18 PM
    Response to Original message
    20. I See a Correlation between this and the Rise of the Right Wing
    no coincidence there
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    northernlights Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 12:19 PM
    Response to Original message
    21. but we're #1 in basketball. also olympic gold medal count
    and football (not soccer).

    So all must be well.
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    Bryn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 12:26 PM
    Response to Original message
    22. K&R a must read
    bookmarked
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    Egnever Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 12:26 PM
    Response to Original message
    23. Wow awesome post
    Thanks for the work. We haven't been the greatest nation for a long time now. Unfortunately so few of our populace ever gets outside of America to see that there is a big world out there with lots of opportunities. So many believe that if you don't live in America you must live in a hut or something.

    It is really tragic and shows just how far a slogan can take you.
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    WCGreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 01:03 PM
    Response to Original message
    24. We are now the modern equivalent of Sparta....
    We always thought we were Athens but Sparta, war and little else, is what we have become.
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:26 PM
    Response to Reply #24
    35. I don't know as much about Sparta, but we seem a lot like the last days of Rome
    Edited on Wed Apr-21-10 07:26 PM by Political Heretic
    Good news though - if that's true and we're following Rome's path, then we still have public orgies to look forward to before the fall! :D
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    WCGreen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 11:49 PM
    Response to Reply #35
    45. Only for the rich...
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 11:59 PM
    Response to Reply #45
    46. Dammit! Foiled again!
    :D
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    Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 01:07 PM
    Response to Original message
    25. k/r
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    Terry in Austin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 01:09 PM
    Response to Original message
    26. K&R
    Tell it!
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    FiveGoodMen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 03:36 PM
    Response to Original message
    27. K&R
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 06:29 PM
    Response to Original message
    29. kick. And a personal statement:
    Edited on Wed Apr-21-10 06:29 PM by Political Heretic
    I acknowledge up front that I'm personally very passionate about this information having and continuing to have the highest visibility possible.

    Because I believe our country is, and has been in a gathering crisis, and that we are reaching a point of no return. In my opinion none of our politicians are honestly owning up to these realities, or willing to address the structural injustices that cripple our political economic system. Not Republicans and not Democrats. That is tragic, but it is also potentially ruining for America.

    We must confront the scope and depth of our national corruption, exploitation and greed. Pulling back from the brink will require radical action and dramatic change...

    I don't know if it will be possible. But these facts need to be burned into the minds of every American, every day, for as long as it takes.
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    inna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 06:45 PM
    Response to Original message
    30. KR+61

    Great post, tons of info! Thanks!
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    Bonobo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:13 PM
    Response to Original message
    31. I have known this for a long time.
    It is why I have left the U.S. with no intention of returning. I have been closely following things since about 1983 and it has been a growing, gnawing realization.
    I am happy to be away from the U.S., but I am terribly saddened by the loss in other ways. Also, I feel bad for the rest of you all.
    I pray that either America has a sea change or that you good ones that are not fortunate enough to be in the upper 10% manage to escape.

    Peace.
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    Kievan Rus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:15 PM
    Response to Original message
    32. I'm seriously considering leaving the US right now
    Edited on Wed Apr-21-10 07:16 PM by Kievan Rus
    The summer that I was nineteen years old, I got into the thought of leaving the United States for another country permanently. It started because I was pissed off about the fact that I couldn't legally drink here but could in virtually any other country at my age...and as the weeks of that summer rolled by, learned more and more of these facts listed above. I was completely, absolutely shocked when I initially learned a lot of this stuff five years ago. Ever since then, my thoughts of emigrating to Canada or Europe have never been too far from my mind.

    I've pretty much decided that as soon as I have enough money saved up and a solid job in another country, I'm out of here.
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    Dinger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:17 PM
    Response to Original message
    33. K & R!
    Excellent, as usual. :)
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    corkhead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 07:22 PM
    Response to Original message
    34. wow! two fantastic and concise bookmarkable threads in one day
    Edited on Wed Apr-21-10 07:26 PM by corkhead
    along with this one...
    http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

    Both express precisely why I am a Democrat.

    :toast:
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    waiting for hope Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 09:03 PM
    Response to Original message
    36. K&R
    Nicely done PH ..

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    Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 09:35 PM
    Response to Original message
    37. K&R!
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    RagAss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 09:38 PM
    Response to Original message
    38. But we lead the world in Mass Suicides !
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    amborin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 09:44 PM
    Response to Original message
    39. K&R
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    Oilwellian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 10:31 PM
    Response to Original message
    40. Great resource
    We really must answer the lies with truths. Thanks for compiling this information. Bookmarked, K'd & R'd :D
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    Nikki Stone1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 10:49 PM
    Response to Original message
    41. K & R
    .
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    Ruby the Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 11:19 PM
    Response to Original message
    42. Eye opening. THANK YOU for pulling this together.
    K&R & bookmarked.

    Wow.
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    Toucano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-21-10 11:29 PM
    Response to Original message
    44. K&R n-t
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    Oldtimeralso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 12:08 AM
    Response to Original message
    47. K & R and proud to be # 100
    Some of those "real Americans" need to read this.
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    Oldtimeralso Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 12:08 AM
    Response to Original message
    48. K & R and proud to be # 100
    Some of those "real Americans" need to read this.
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    lonestarnot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 12:13 AM
    Response to Original message
    49. K & R! Bookmarking!
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    Redemption Seeker Donating Member (17 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 12:37 AM
    Response to Original message
    50. K&R
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    valerief Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 12:40 AM
    Response to Original message
    51. We're number 1 all right. The Best of the Worst. nt
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    me b zola Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 12:49 AM
    Response to Original message
    52. K&R
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    clyrc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 01:32 AM
    Response to Original message
    54. I had my daughter read this
    I am going through a time of being angry about what I wasn't taught when I was young, and having to slowly and painstakingly gather the tools I need to understand the world. I refuse to give my kids the same handicap, if I can help it.

    Thank you, Political Heretic, for this thread.
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    truebrit71 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-23-10 04:24 PM
    Response to Reply #54
    66. I am going to do the same...
    ..
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    pundaint Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 01:59 AM
    Response to Original message
    55.  Alas we're also no 1 in refusing to hear the truth - good luck with that
    I sent these statistics to about 35 people in my address book the last time these stats went around, and I got zero responses. These were all educated folks. The rank and file American really doesn't yet give a shit, by my informal survey.
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    Swagman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 02:43 AM
    Response to Original message
    56. thanks..but it's a depressing dose of reality
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    harmonicon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 03:07 AM
    Response to Original message
    57. I think it's time to realize that those countries are not our peers
    I think our peers are really countries like Mexico and Turkey, but even they are ahead of us in many ways. At least Turkey has banned the death penalty, for instance. Really, to be considered a top country I would like to think that one would have to have a functioning universal healthcare system and no death penalty. Maybe we should just be considered some sort of new binary country with China... right now we need each other, but the problem there of course is that China will eventually have no more need for the US once they've tapped us out and move on. We'll have nowhere to go.

    There are very simple remedies to these problems, but they aren't even mentioned in the political debate in the US, so the prospect of them happening seems not just unlikely, but impossible. WE. ARE. FUCKED.
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    hay rick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 04:40 AM
    Response to Original message
    58. K&R
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    cate94 Donating Member (573 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 04:44 AM
    Response to Original message
    59. Wow.
    I knew this was happening but I didn't realize how far we had fallen.
    Thanks for putting this together. Bookmarked.
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    liberal N proud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 06:12 AM
    Response to Original message
    60. Some astounding numbers
    Edited on Thu Apr-22-10 06:22 AM by liberal N proud
    Good work!
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 04:34 PM
    Response to Original message
    61. Our President, Democratic Leadership, and the bulk of Democratic representatives never address this
    Edited on Thu Apr-22-10 04:36 PM by Political Heretic
    They refuse to acknowledge that our country is fundamentally broken. And you can hear them refuse to acknowledge this over and over again - still claiming we are the greatest country in the world, still saying our fundamentals are solid, still saying that what we need is to "restore" our economy to the way it was before the financial meltdown.

    Guess what, the "way it was" before was categorically unjust - and if justice doesn't matter to you that much, then just focus on the fact that it was also completely unsustainable.

    We're driving toward the cliff of our own demise and our politicians are so owned by the financial elite that they refuse to even acknowledge these realities.

    I mean, no one can reasonably dispute that these numbers are disastrous, that they represent extreme inequality and injustice, and that they are shameful. And yet, has a war on economic inequality been declared? No. Has a war on Poverty been declared? No. Has poverty even been seriously mentioned? No.

    Instead all talk is about slapping some new "paint" on our broken machine. Have some new regulation for Wall Street to circumvent as they always do. Have some health insurance "reform" that empowers the same bad actors all over again. The ship is sinking. And neither the President, nor Democrats, nor Republicans are confronting that - because their financial masters don't care if the ship is sinking. They're making billions, and they brought their own life rafts.

    WAKE UP.



    Keeping in Democrats in power doesn't matter unless Democrats are more willing that Republicans to deal with our sinking ship! If they are not - and so far they are not - then we'll sink with Democrats in office or we'll sink with Republicans in office.

    Leaders and personalities in Washington are not going to save us. Stop fawning over them and posting cute pictures of their cute kids or their cute clothes or their cute multi-millionaire friends and get to work

    The only ones that are going to save us is US. By declaring political war on anyone who continues to refuse to acknowledge the scope and magnitude of our crisis and act to transform our institutions that are destroying America as we watch.

    God damn American politicians who steadfastly refuse to acknowledge American inequality and exploitation. God damn them. Omission is every bit as much a sin as commission. You want to be a patriot? Start speaking truth to power. Start demanding that the people who are supposed to be representatives of the people either acknowledge the American reality reflected in these statistics or get the fuck out of Washington while we find someone who will.

    This is too important for the same old popularity and personality politics that has been the hallmark of American life for too long.

    I'm waiting on President Obama to hold a press conference and tell the world that he acknowledges that we have the highest income inequality of any western nation in the world, and that the Top 20% of America holds 93 percent of all wealth and what we rank dead last in the world among our top twenty economic peers with the highest poverty and most children in poverty of anyone. I'm waiting on him to declare that a state of emergency, constituting a clear and present threat to the health and wellbeing of our country. I'm waiting on him to declare war on poverty. I'm waiting on him to declare war on structural inequality. I'm waiting for him to tell the world that we can't go on economically as we have for the last generation.

    I'm waiting for Democrats to start every press conference they have by addressing this CRISIS, as though they believed it would be absurd and immoral to start with anything else (which it is.)

    And until I hear this, quite frankly they can GO FUCK THEMSELVES. Because they are participating in the destruction of my country and the rape and pillage of my friends. God damn them.

    The question you should be asking, in light of these information is not why am I so angry, but WHY AREN'T YOU? Why aren't you demanding accountability from our leaders? Why is it that you don't believe its an an injustice against basic moral decency to keep pretending that our system is "basically fine" and can be fixed with a little more "regulatory reform?" Why are you willing to shill for a status quo that results in these numbers?

    We're in a crisis where we face losing our country - and right now one of our corporate owned politicians are saying a damn thing about these realities. Are you going to keep being an enabler? Or are you going to say, enough!
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    ProSense Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-22-10 07:56 PM
    Response to Reply #61
    62. "Wake up" One would have had to awaken in the 1950s. Look at the dates of the charts
    Look at where this all started.


    Growth spurt of the top 1 percent, 1987:





    Growth spurt of CEO pay, 1994:





    Decline in average hourly earning, 1972:





    Decline in personal savings, 1982:





    Downward mobility, 1946




    This situation didn't happen overnight, and it was Bush's policies, separate and apart from the decades of financial inequity, that delivered the U.S. to the brink of financial catastrophe.

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    Stumbler Donating Member (599 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-23-10 08:29 AM
    Response to Original message
    63. Too late to rec, but not too late to reply
    Great post! Thanks for the info
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    juajen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-23-10 03:15 PM
    Response to Original message
    64. I've known where we were heading for a long time.
    It isn't difficult to see the failure of our government to give adequate COLA to SS recipients, just as there is horrible inequity in minimum wage and salaries of college graduates. It now pays barely more if you have even two degrees.

    Yes, we have lost our country, and every time I mention how bad it is, all I get is a non-response, whether dem or pug. It's as if the people in this country are all brain washed. It's that line, "this is the greatest country in the world!". Everyone who travels at all knows this simply is not so. Tragically, most people believe they are the exception, and that everyone else is doing well, just not them. This is very sad and has been depressing me and other elderly wiser people who know better. We've unfortunately come to the conclusion that nothing will be done because too many people have no idea what is happening or has already happened, and the elderly get absolutely no respect in this country, and we have little clout or wealth.
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    november3rd Donating Member (653 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-23-10 04:16 PM
    Response to Original message
    65. Go viral
    This post needs to go viral on Facebook and Twitter as well as every other blog and news outlet website in the country.

    Think of the loss of trillions of dollars in equity by tens of millions of Americans over the last three or four years, and of the hundreds of billions in profits by the financial services banks and other giant corporations over the same period.

    Where did all those profits come from?

    Where did all those losses go?


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    bobbolink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Apr-23-10 11:09 PM
    Response to Original message
    67. One nit: The number of homeless people. Nobody knows. However, what we DO know is that 1.35 MILL
    1.35 MILLION school children are homeless in the U.S.

    Not infants.

    Not toddlers.

    SCHOOL CHILDREN.

    We know that because accurate school records are kept.

    So, anyone who thinks there are "only" 2.5 million homeless people in all are fooling themselves.

    It is MUCH higher.

    But quibbling about the number is ridiculous. The POINT is to having housing for all. NOT SHELTERS, but actual HOUSING.

    Today there is an outcry about the victimization of Hispanic people, as there should be.

    But where is the outcry about the criminalization of homeless people across the nation? Where is the outcry about the number of homeless people dying ill on our streets, and being killed for sport?

    WHY is that NOT enraging DUers?
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-10 08:43 PM
    Response to Reply #67
    69. Good additions.
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    TheBigotBasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-24-10 09:05 PM
    Response to Original message
    70. The American dream is dead.
    It died not under Reagan or even under the equivalent of Thatcher in the UK, but under their "kinder softer alternatives". Bush 1, Major and Blair.

    Reagan and Thatcher at least offered a way out and up out of poverty, while driving everyone else down. Even those routes were smashed to pieces under their "kinder alternatives". If either Reagan or Thatcher had done what was done to Anglo American capitalism there would have been revolution. Instead it was clapped in and everyone sucked it up.

    We now have "management politics" which is simply how best to deliver what is needed for International Corporate companies who do not give a damn about the people they employ or where they are based.

    When the excessively profitable Company pays less in tax than the employee - something is seriously wrong.
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    Political Heretic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-25-10 05:52 PM
    Response to Reply #70
    71. We live in occupied territory.
    People who shut their eyes and plug their ears to the crisis saying "we've been through worse" don't see the fact that our political and economic system has been taken over by groups hostile to ordinary people, that the system we have no does not function to serve our needs or interests or take our input...
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    Little Star Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-25-10 06:21 PM
    Response to Original message
    72. Holy Cow! Good Information! Thanks! n/t k&r
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