Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class War Yet

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class War Yet






    This week, David Segal at the New York Times [3] broke the news to America that not only was Apple -- the computer and gadget manufacturer formerly seen as a symbol of good old American ingenuity -- making its profits on the backs of abused factory workers in China, but also on poorly paid store employees here in the US.

    Apple store workers, he wrote, make up a large majority of Apple's US workforce?30,000 out of 43,000 employees in this country?and they make about $25,000 a year, or about $12 an hour.

    Lawrence Mishel at the Economic Policy Institute [4] notes that that's just a dollar above the federal poverty level. This for a company that paid nine of its top executives a total of $441 million in 2011.

    ?The discrepancy between Apple?s profits/executive pay and its compensation to its workers is a particularly glaring example of what is occurring in the wider economy,? Mishel writes.

    And he's right. Also this week, Henry Blodget at Business Insider posted three charts [5] that show just how out of whack our economic system really is. Corporate profits are now at an all-time high, while wages as a percent of the economy are at an all-time low, and fewer Americans are employed than at any time in the previous three decades.

    Companies like Apple are squeezing their workers, leaving them to live on less, while lavishing pay and benefits on their executives. The death of lionized Apple chief Steve Jobs seems to have opened a floodgate of reporting and criticism of the company's labor practices, but all this really proves is that Jobs and his empire are no better than, and no different from the rest of the US business elite. Just like everyone else, they're taking their profits directly out of workers' pockets.

    ?One reason companies are so profitable is that they're paying employees less than they ever have as a share of GDP. And that, in turn, is one reason the economy is so weak: Those 'wages' are other companies' revenue,? Blodget points out. And high unemployment makes workers willing to accept those poverty wages. When you're desperate for a job, any job is better than nothing.

    Right-wingers from Michele Bachmann [6] to Ron Paul [7] have used high unemployment as an opportunity to call for eliminating the minimum wage entirely, letting companies decide just how little they think their workers are worth. Companies love to claim that if they're forced to pay more, they'll have to eliminate jobs, but these numbers show that actually, they're able to keep wages low and refuse to hire; available cheap labor supposedly leads to more job creation, but it's the hollow, gnawing fear created by ongoing high unemployment that keeps wages low and workers passive. And the rich are getting ever richer.

    The ?recession? is over?officially it ended in 2009 [8], but for most people the pain was just beginning. Real incomes have continued to fall, governments continue to slash budgets while corporate profits just keep going up. This is the new normal.

    And it's only going to get worse.

    The rhetoric of austerity, sounded loudest from Republicans but often echoed by far too many Democrats, is a language of belt-tightening, of shared sacrifice, of somber speeches by pompous politicians who proclaim that they feel your pain while announcing budget cuts that freeze salaries, lay off workers and force more work onto those who remain. And CEOs use that same language when sorrowfully explaining why they simply can't create jobs. Morgan Stanley's CEO, James Gorman [9], beset by New Yorkers at his bank's shareholder meeting, blamed the lousy economy when asked why he hadn't created the jobs his company had promised the city in exchange for massive tax breaks.

    Because that's what rich corporations are able to buy with their record profits; politicians who turn around and hand them even more money, often in the form of tax breaks that hollow out city and state budgets and force even more austerity, even more social service cuts that fall on the backs of the same underpaid workers. (Remember FreshDirect [10], handed $129 million in tax subsidies to create $8-an-hour jobs?)

    Corporate taxes, too?at least the ones corporations actually pay?are at a 40-year low [11], with an effective tax rate paid of 12.1 percent. They've fallen from about 6 percent of GDP to less than 2 percent, according to ThinkProgress's Pat Garofalo [12]. Once again, that's what you can buy when you'd rather pay politicians than your workers.

    Chris Hayes, in his new book Twilight of the Elites, notes that the ultra-wealthy have spawned a whole ?income defense? industry dedicated to preserving their wealth and power, an industry that works tirelessly to push policies that favor the rich. He writes:

    Over the last decade, the political arm of the income defense industry has been wildly successful. The tax cuts passed by Bush and extended by Obama represent a total of $81.5 billion transferred from the state into the hands of the richest 1 percent. Meanwhile, hedge fund managers and their surrogates have deployed millions of dollars to lobbyists to maintain the so-called carried interest loophole, a provision of tax law that allows fund managers to classify much of their income drawn from investing gains as ?carried interest? so that it is taxed at the low capital gains rate of 15 percent, rather than the marginal income rate, which would in most cases be more than twice that. It was this wrinkle in the law that helped Mitt Romney, a man worth an estimated quarter of a billion dollars, pay an effective tax rate of just under 14 percent in 2010. In 2008, 2009, and 2010, the House of Representatives passed a bill closing the loophole, only to see it beaten back by an intense wave of lobbying in the Senate.

    With Citizens United, the Supreme Court gave the ultra-rich yet another weapon in the class war, another tool by which to control our politics. MIT economist Daren Acemoglu told ThinkProgress [13], ?We already had a very serious problem. Instead of trying to stem that tide [of money in politics], we?ve done the opposite and we?ve now opened the sluice gate and said you can use that money with no restrictions whatsoever.?

    It's bad enough when the rich use their money to buy themselves tax breaks that help them get even richer. But millionaires and billionaires from Bill Gates [14] to Betsy DeVos [15] to Mark Zuckerberg [16] are also putting money into pet political ideas; on education, for example, where their money buys them outsized influence over policy. Politics has become a playground for the ultra-rich, where they get to test their pet theories on the rest of us and we're expected to smile and thank them for their charity.

    It's not just tax breaks and subsidies that have created massive inequality?it's also full-on war on the only means of organized power that working people ever had: unions. Private-sector union density hovers around 7 percent right now, after years of concerted attacks, and for the last couple of years public sector unions have been in the 1 percent's crosshairs.

    From the Supreme Court [17], where Samuel Alito wrote a majority decision attacking unions' ability to collect money from workers they represent for political activity, to the reelection of Scott Walker in Wisconsin, public-sector unions are under pressure. Politicians keep slashing public-sector jobs [18], keeping unemployment high and tax revenues low, and stalling the recovery, but they're also part of the attack on the one part of the economy that still has a strong union culture.

    As unions declined, so have wages for most people. The Center for American Progress [19] found in a study that as union membership decreases, so does the so-called middle class's share of national income. The middle class long served as a buffer [20] between those at the top and those at the bottom. As long as the majority of Americans were comfortable, had decent jobs and pensions, and could send their kids to school, the wealthy could stay wealthy and the poor were pretty much just ignored. And that middle class was built through decades of union agitation, not just for higher wages and healthcare benefits, but for the eight-hour day [21], for the weekend, for safety in the workplace and some job security.

    But now the middle class has been hollowed out. Increasingly, there are the super-super-rich, and there are the rest of us.

    As Hayes writes, we're ruled by an ever-smaller group of elites who not only control all the resources, but all the power. The same people who are pushing wages downward are the ones paying for politicians' campaigns, and they're the same people on the boards of directors and trustees of our universities, our institutions?like JP Morgan Chase's Jamie Dimon [22], who serves on the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse, the Harvard Business School, Catalyst, as well as on the Board of Trustees of New York University School of Medicine.

    Meanwhile, for the vast majority of us, the recession that supposedly ended in 2009 looks more like a depression each day, and as long as low wages and high unemployment remain the order of the day, there's no recovery in sight.

    Corporate Profits at All-Time High; Wages at All-Time Low: Can We Call it Class War Yet? | Alternet


    Corporate Profits Just Hit An All-Time High, Wages Just Hit An All-Time Low - Business Insider
    William F. Buckley describes a conservative as, "someone who stands athwart history, yelling Stop." - and then proceeds to drag civilization back to times best left in history's dungheap.

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class War Yet

    It's gonna trickle down soon...
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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    all time high profits mostly were made overseas, not in the US.
    -S-

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    all time high profits mostly were made overseas, not in the US.
    Can you back up that claim?
    If gunners were as violent as anti-gunners believe, logically there wouldn't be any anti-gunners left.

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaphod View Post
    Can you back up that claim?
    yes
    -S-

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    Almost all of the 70 million iPhones, 30 million iPads and 59 million other products Apple sold last year were manufactured overseas.

    that's why i don't give them a dime. HP to Apple: Hey, we already make PCs in the U.S. | Business Tech - CNET News

    hp isn't perfect but at least they are trying.

    you don't get what you wish for ~ you get what you work for

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    yes
    We're waiting....

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    be interesting to know about any ripples of paranoia this class war has on the ultra rich. bet they have some bad ass security set ups. not sure if it's true but supposedly fear is rampant.

    you don't get what you wish for ~ you get what you work for

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    yes
    Then do so.
    If gunners were as violent as anti-gunners believe, logically there wouldn't be any anti-gunners left.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Little Wing View Post
    be interesting to know about any ripples of paranoia this class war has on the ultra rich. bet they have some bad ass security set ups. not sure if it's true but supposedly fear is rampant.
    Have you read "The Good Earth"?

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    -S-

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Foreign Profits
    Yet there is a more permanent reason for the decline that has to do with globalization: an increasing share of profits is now earned abroad and taxed more lightly than domestic profits, as Edward Kleinbard of the University of Southern California has underscored. Relative to domestic profits, foreign profits have been rising for several decades, and that trend is likely to continue.
    http://mobile.bloomberg.com/news/201...ates-fall.html
    -S-

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    Says nothing about profits mostly being made overseas. Just that overseas profits are higher than last year.
    If gunners were as violent as anti-gunners believe, logically there wouldn't be any anti-gunners left.

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    -S-

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaphod View Post
    Says nothing about profits mostly being made overseas. Just that overseas profits are higher than last year.
    if I'm wrong prove it.
    -S-

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    And another thing, like you libtards like to say corps don't pay taxes or pay very very low taxes why do they have their money overseas?
    -S-

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    if I'm wrong prove it.
    You already proved it for me with your links.
    If gunners were as violent as anti-gunners believe, logically there wouldn't be any anti-gunners left.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    And another thing, like you libtards like to say corps don't pay taxes or pay very very low taxes why do they have their money overseas?
    Read the tax code.
    If gunners were as violent as anti-gunners believe, logically there wouldn't be any anti-gunners left.

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaphod View Post
    Read the tax code.
    "According to the CCH Standard Federal Tax Reporter, as of 2013, it now takes 73,954 regular 8-1/2" x 11" sheets of paper to explain the complexity of the U.S. federal tax code!"

    I don't have time to read 74,000 pages. please enlighten me with your extensive knowledge of the tax code.
    -S-

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaphod View Post
    You already proved it for me with your links.
    lol. I'll be waiting.....
    -S-

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    "According to the CCH Standard Federal Tax Reporter, as of 2013, it now takes 73,954 regular 8-1/2" x 11" sheets of paper to explain the complexity of the U.S. federal tax code!"

    I don't have time to read 74,000 pages. please enlighten me with your extensive knowledge of the tax code.
    I guess you better start reading.
    If gunners were as violent as anti-gunners believe, logically there wouldn't be any anti-gunners left.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    lol. I'll be waiting.....
    Read your links. Apparently you didn't read them the first time around.
    If gunners were as violent as anti-gunners believe, logically there wouldn't be any anti-gunners left.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Swiper View Post
    And another thing, like you libtards like to say corps don't pay taxes or pay very very low taxes why do they have their money overseas?
    geez I don't know maybe because US banks are paying less than 1% APR on deposit accounts and low rates even on fixed rate terms accounts and the real rate of inflation is closer to 4.5% annually. US savers are being punished with artificially low interest rates to fuel excess debt based consumption. this only started in the 80's and the interest rates have increasingly decreased as the real US economy has continually gotten worst and worst.

    US Bank Accounts - Compare Bank Account Deposit Interest Rates

    the only tard around here is you the person that knows absolutely nothing about everything....
    William F. Buckley describes a conservative as, "someone who stands athwart history, yelling Stop." - and then proceeds to drag civilization back to times best left in history's dungheap.

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Anyone who can't see the wage stagnation and how what we are paid goes a very short distance is a retard. Swiper, you're fucking retarded, read the facts and stop taking your info from the media that distorts the facts.
    AY Fan Club President.

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by oufinny View Post
    Anyone who can't see the wage stagnation and how what we are paid goes a very short distance is a retard. Swiper, you're fucking retarded, read the facts and stop taking your info from the media that distorts the facts.
    We need to make sure the job creators are not paying taxes, paid in tens of millions of dollars annually, and the workers are paid barely above poverty, no medical benefits, and no pension.

    The wealth will trickle down....trust me
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    Quote Originally Posted by oufinny View Post
    Anyone who can't see the wage stagnation and how what we are paid goes a very short distance is a retard. Swiper, you're fucking retarded, read the facts and stop taking your info from the media that distorts the facts.
    you're so confused. where did i state that low wages in not a problem? Or better yet, when did i even mention anything about wages????? try reading my posts next time, moron.
    -S-

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by exphys88 View Post
    We need to make sure the job creators are not paying taxes, paid in tens of millions of dollars annually, and the workers are paid barely above poverty, no medical benefits, and no pension.

    The wealth will trickle down....trust me
    Yep. My last company just got rid of all the most experienced people, kept the ass kissing low paid dipshits and all the execs got raises, big raises. Honestly, all these public companies can go fuck themselves; they are all just pawns on the globalist chess board.
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    Quote Originally Posted by LAM View Post
    geez I don't know maybe because US banks are paying less than 1% APR on deposit accounts and low rates even on fixed rate terms accounts and the real rate of inflation is closer to 4.5% annually. US savers are being punished with artificially low interest rates to fuel excess debt based consumption. this only started in the 80's and the interest rates have increasingly decreased as the real US economy has continually gotten worst and worst.

    US Bank Accounts - Compare Bank Account Deposit Interest Rates

    the only tard around here is you the person that knows absolutely nothing about everything....
    they keep their money overseas not because of taxes? the tax code has no effect about why they keep their money overseas? lol
    Last edited by Swiper; 04-28-2013 at 03:12 PM.
    -S-

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    Corporate Profits at All-Time High Wages at All-Time Low Can We Call it Class W

    Quote Originally Posted by oufinny View Post
    Yep. My last company just got rid of all the most experienced people, kept the ass kissing low paid dipshits and all the execs got raises, big raises. Honestly, all these public companies can go fuck themselves; they are all just pawns on the globalist chess board.
    Unions...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zaphod View Post
    Read the tax code.
    so the reason is taxes?
    -S-

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