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America, the land of the destitute

AlterNet [1]


By Paul Buchheit [2]

Five Ugly Extremes of Inequality in America — The Contrasts Will Drop Your Chin to the Floor [3]

Any of the ten richest Americans could pay a year’s rent for all of America’s homeless with their 2012 income.
March 24, 2013  |
The first step is to learn the facts, and then to get angry and to ask ourselves, as progressives and caring human beings, what we can do about the relentless transfer of wealth to a small group of well-positioned Americans.

1. $2.13 per hour vs. $3,000,000.00 per hour

Each of the Koch brothers saw his investments grow by  $6 billion [4] in one [5] year, which is three million dollars per hour based on a 40-hour ‘work’ week. They used some of the money to try to  kill renewable energy [6]standards around the country.

Their income portrays them, in a society measured by economic status, as a million times more valuable than the  restaurant server [7] who cheers up our lunch hours while hoping to make enough in tips to pay the bills.

A comparison of top and bottom salaries within large corporations is much less severe, but a lot more common. For CEOs and minimum-wage workers, the  difference [8] is $5,000.00 per hour vs. $7.25 per hour.

2. A single top income could buy housing for every homeless person in the U.S.

On a winter day in 2012  over 633,000 people were homeless [9] in the United States. Based on an annual single room occupancy  (SRO) cost [10] of $558 per month, any ONE of the  ten richest Americans [4] would have enough with his 2012 income to pay for a room for every homeless person in the U.S.  for the entire year [5]. These ten rich men together made more than our entire  housing budget [11].

For anyone still believing “they earned it,” it should be noted that  most [12] of the Forbes 400 earnings came from  minimally-taxed [13], non-job-creating capital gains.

3. The poorest 47% of Americans have no wealth

Read More-100 [3]