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Forum Post: Inequality Is Not Inevitable By JOSEPH E. STIGLITZ

Posted 3 years ago on July 2, 2014, 8:07 a.m. EST by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ
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[-] 5 points by agkaiser (2078) from Fredericksburg, TX 3 years ago

Inequality is not only not inevitable.

It's not sustainable.

[-] 1 points by MattHolck0 (3867) 3 years ago


[-] 0 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

Floodwallstreet is a step towards ending inequality.


Join the flood

[-] -1 points by turbocharger (1756) 3 years ago

There is a sizable portion of the population who simply don't really want to grind it out to make it, I'm friends with lots of em.

For this group, not sure what the solution is. If someone gets some great news, has a great week, and then gets trashed comes home and punches their spouse in the face, the issues are much deeper than just monetary/economic.

[-] 3 points by DouglasAdams (208) 3 years ago

Is Stiglitz too close to the problem? Inequality has been a problem from the beginning. In the context of management and labor there should have been an understanding between equals in a partnership. In Capitalism the Bourgeoisie own the means of production the Proletariat are wage earners. The quick solution is to eliminate private ownership. Transfer ownership to the Commons. Capitalism is always focused on self interests. That's why trickle down Reaganomics won't work.

That's also why homeowners and the middleclass gained nothing from bailing out the Big Banks. Big Banks are private enterprises receiving corporate welfare from the taxpayer. Their ownership should be transferred to the Commons. They cannot support themselves without borrowing from the Federal Reserve at ultra-low interest rates.

Transferring ownership to the Commons goes against a century of government policy.

[-] 3 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

The people should get those ultra low interest rates! Not banksters

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

Damn Douglas this is pretty well written and you make good points, however i do think the "quick solution" would lie with things such as "card signed, vote cast" union representation and other things a public option in the health care system, social security tax with-held on all types of income first dollar to last and the money used to secure the future of all who need it, things along those lines I believe could be done , not that I strongly disagree with you......

[-] 2 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago
[-] 2 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

if you haven't read my profile, please do, in it you will see where I speak of the real danger of inherited wealth, my position stems not from a sense of "fairness" but cold economics as more and more people are born to their positions rather than earning them through labor it becomes more difficult to fill skill jobs, as the capital falls to weaker hands through inheritance it is less effectively applied. The very people who tout a wish to reduce the sense of entitlement work tirelessly to preserve the entitlement of inheritance.

[-] 1 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

Agree 100%. & the inheritors only use their wealth to 'invest' in non job creating schemes.

A wealth tax, would be helpful:


One view.

[-] 4 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

even worst the best paying job around is conning the inheritors from the money best paying jobs should be those that help us provide comfort and needs without killing the planet in the process... I agree on the "wealth" tax I think people should pay the cost of an item according how much of it they own, like if you go in with 2 others to buy a race horse, ( and I'll bet you $10,000 dollars it'll be a winner) but you pay half and me and the other guy pay a quarter each and we all own it in that percentage then when the feed bill comes you should pay half, same for the country you should pay according to the amount of it you own, so like the WalMart family would be paying half I think.....

[-] 2 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

Seems like a reasonable approach that would certainly minimize inequality,

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

wow I got 5 points on that comment, this is a tax plan whose time has come i think.

[-] 5 points by grapes (5152) 3 years ago

Inheritance tax of 100% on all amount of the estate exceeding $600,000 per inheritor indexed to inflation will level the inequality in a single generation and jumpstart innovations. There is NO limit on the number of inheritors allowed for sharing the estate, to encourage the spreading of wealth.

Let each inheritor get enough to start an enterprise of their own but not enough to loaf off for the rest of their life.

[-] 0 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

I have posted setting it at $5,000,000 and 95% a couple of years ago when I first came on, I'd be will to go to $5,000,000 I have no problem with people being well off because mom or dad did well, but it is the democracy threatening amounts families like the Waltons have that is a concern to me. To me I am not really trying to make the nation "fair" to me it is more about survival we have created a system so unbalanced it can not continue for much longer, I believe. Don't get me wrong I like fairness as much as the next guy, it's just I think there is only so much "control" I'm willing to give up for it.

[-] 1 points by grapes (5152) 3 years ago

As for "control," every U.S. citizen of great means can rescind their U.S. citizenship and move to a different country to avoid the death tax. They can give away or spend their wealth before death. They can bequeath to huge number of people in their will. They can endow trust funds or foundations. They just are not allowed to escape the tax judgment day when death comes.

[-] 1 points by grapes (5152) 3 years ago

$5,000,000 still affords a life of "I don't know!" and "I don't care!" - a life wasted in loafing if you ask the rich mom or dad who bequeaths. This amount also enables the financial leeches to feed off of the often unsuspecting (lucky but tragic) ones.

We probably can amend the rule to take care of cases of the feeble minded through a government insured trust fund endowed by the doting parent(s). For very illiquid or huge estates, corporations can be formed to keep the businesses going by having the government hold bonds to be purchased over time by the owners of the corporations.

To me, $5,000,000 is not just "well off;" it is "dozed off."

[-] 1 points by MattHolck0 (3867) 3 years ago

never be afraid to say "I don't know" if you don't

[-] 1 points by grapes (5152) 3 years ago

If you know that you don't know, you really know something very important so you are wise. If you say, "I don't know," you are wise and honest. However, if you say, "I don't know," in conjunction with "I don't care," you really mean, "I don't even want to know," which will keep you ignorant. Not good.

[-] 1 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

Green jobs/action on Climate change can increase economic equality.

Join the peoples Climate March on 9/21


[-] 2 points by MattHolck0 (3867) 3 years ago

I want my complete loan records mailed to me in text format

so I may discuss and debate their merits in public

[-] 2 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

some things you have to do for yourself, I suppose you could start typing and posting it here....

[-] -1 points by MattHolck0 (3867) 3 years ago

I'll watch the mail

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

One would think this sort of thing might be of interest here, but you see since I don't feed the ego of idiots like Nader or any other Green Party want-a-bes all I say is disdained.

[-] 2 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

"Don't let the bastards drag you down"

The fact that they avoid good posts simply illustrates their commitment against progressive change.

Keep on truckin boss, You're doin fine.

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

OWS has stuck its head up its ass and stopped working for change, now it just works for itself trying to create its own seprate power stucture instead of working to change things now, the 1% has quitened the flurry about wealth inquality and soon it will be so bad it will be too late and America will develop a perament lower class, the rich will not give up their power

[-] 2 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

Maybe so. Not so important to me.

Occupy put the progressive agenda/argument into the national dialogue, & inspired countless likeminded organizations to take action, & finally Occupy has pushed many leaders to support our goals.

I applaud that success of occupy & I encourage all of our (& other progressive groups) efforts to correct theright wing destructive policies that the 99% suffer under.


[-] 3 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

still a damn shame really, there was such promise in its many prospects but like so many things it has fallen victim to ego,

There was a small blip in awareness of inequality but it has become the windmill of our time everyone sees it and says "oh my" but nothing is done like climate change and the debt and if any do address it as Clinton did both debt was down and real wages up as long as the GOP lives it will be there to get us back to debt and inequality, inequality is how the current generation is controlled the debt controls future generations.

[-] 3 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

Economic Inequality is at the root of much suffering. That battle has made some progress, but years of hard work remain.

Apathy,& despair are not our friend.

Stay strong.

[-] 3 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

quite to the contrary inequality has increased since 2011 no progress has been made, only talking heads on the least watched news network, a few lines in a speech, much could of been done if those seeking their own power had been less influential, if the GOP had been held accountable clearly instead of the embracing of the Greens and attacking of the Dems the GOP was on its heels and people know the rich are too damn rich all that was needed was to connect the two, GOP=low Wages this is a truth that should have been easy to tell, but so many saw in OWS their opportunity to expand their own power rather than change a Nation.

[-] 3 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

Pretty depressing.

[-] 3 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago

I see more progress on this issue. I agree with your contention that the GOP has been the obstacle, & that very little has been accomplished.

But I also know that this change will be slow, & hard.

If we stay focused we will succeed.

[-] 1 points by MattHolck0 (3867) 3 years ago

please make the democrats make the rich man give me more money when he tells me what to do

[-] 3 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

I know one democrat (BHO) who wants to raise wages for the lowest paid but there are still too many GOP member of Congress to get the job done, if we want higher wages we have to get rid of more Republicans.

[-] 2 points by MattHolck0 (3867) 3 years ago

that or the corporate ownership structures

[-] 3 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

of course burning down the house is always an option but almost always the worst arise from the ashes to write the new set of rules

[-] 1 points by flip (7101) 3 years ago

looks like everyone is ignoring you - but you seem to be having fun anyway. the conversations in your head are the best ones aren't they - ok - i am done now - really. but i couldn't resist and it is a good article so it should be pushed up

[-] 4 points by 99nproud (2697) 3 years ago


I'm not payin attention to who's payin attention. Not related to the substance of the thread.

Your comment also omits any substance on the thread topic (economic inequality?).

Instead your comment is a schoolyard bully personal attack "conversations in your head are the best ones aren't they".

Illustrating clearly the weakness of your position on the substance of our disagreement.

Very warlike, & absolutely not peaceful.


[-] 1 points by publius31 (75) from Fort Lee, NJ 3 years ago

Inequality is not inevitable but it requires a definition of equality! There is only one equality, the equality to influence the laws under which we live. Today there is no equality since only 538 representatives make and vote on the laws. For equality to exist each citizen must vote directly on the laws under which we live: to live in actual democracy. voices, free speech, are vibrations in the air. Votes are counted, but votes on laws are effective, they are only ones that COUNT. See: http://assosactualdemocracy.com

[-] 3 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

such a change would require a Constitutional Convention given the current power structure and that the delegates to such a convention would require tremendous trust i do not believe such trust is warranted, i believe the GOP, the footmen of the 1%, can be destroyed at this time with a concerted effort to get the truth out to people. Once that has been done I believe a new party will emerge as as current constitution so favors two political parties I see this as the only method to achieve what is needed without giving all power to the GOP and thus the 1% by attempting to form a separate political power before killing the GOP.

[-] 1 points by publius31 (75) from Fort Lee, NJ 3 years ago

A Constitutional amendment doesn't require a Convention, 2/3 votes of both houses and 3/4 of states ratification is the way most of them have come about. But a convention is probably desirable today, but would run by the 1%. I think the removal of representatives from between the people and the laws, i.e. the people being the responsible legislature for themselves, can achieved by convincing 2/3 of the then sitting representatives to support the Amendment, one representative at a time. Even it requires electing candidates dedicated to change and taking a long time to reach the 2/3 requirement. We can support the candidates that agree with us and challenge those that don't.

[-] 3 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

In the mean time we could work like hell to keep the GOP from office so things don't get worse, right?

Until at least a few dozen representatives have signed on to the amendment, until then we should focus efforts on keeping the GOP from winning seats don't you agree?

[-] 2 points by publius31 (75) from Fort Lee, NJ 3 years ago

I very much agree. I don't think Democrats, or Independents, or any small piece of the population, will represent the people. They will represent their 'class values', their prejudices, their contributor's positions, their party's position, and their own human self-interest. Until human nature is changed the other guy is probably looking out for the other guy! When each of us has equal political power, when your vote and my vote are for laws, and not for people making the laws, we will matter, that single vote will matter, it will finally count and influence how the Country progresses or fails. Our fate will be our responsibility, and we'll accept it and make a more perfect Union, again and again. We should support this idea from assosactualdemocracy.com and change the Constitution so the people are the legislature - and not the Congress of Representatives. If 2 heads are better than one, 200,000,000 voters are better than 537...

[-] 3 points by factsrfun (8631) from Phoenix, AZ 3 years ago

you say you agree but I do not see your support for those that might keep the GOP from making things worse now, so you do agree one must inform the public of the close ties that the GOP has with wealth inequality and low wages while at the same time encouraging people to vote for, in most cases the Democrat but whoever stands the best chance of defeating the GOP on election day, understanding that right now over the next few months much could be done to encourage people to vote for the Dem to keep the seat from the GOP is the thing that we can do NOW to support the efforts of OWS then while some other fix may come the time for action is now and that action is to get out and vote against the GOP