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Class Warfare Is Being Used To Divide America – And It Is Working

At a time when America desperately needs to come together, we are becoming more divided than ever.  The mainstream media and most of our politicians love to pit us against one another in dozens of different ways, and right now class warfare has become one of their favorite tools for getting us to hate one another.  If you are struggling in this economy, you are being told that "the wealthy" are the cause of your problems.  If you have money, you are being told that the poor hate you and want to tax you into oblivion.  Class warfare has already become a dominant theme in the 2012 race for the White House, and there will certainly be endless speeches given along these lines by politicians from both major political parties all the way up to election day.  Class warfare will be used by both sides as a way to divide America and get votes.  And the frightening thing is that it is clearly working.  There is more hatred between the poor and the wealthy in America today than at any other time that I can remember.  But hating people because of how much money they have or don't have is not going to solve anything.  Instead, it is just going to cause more problems.

The other day, Yale economics professor Robert Shiller told CNBC that the globe is already in a state of "late Great Depression".  The United States is heading into unprecedented economic and financial problems and we desperately need to pull together as a country and solve these problems.

But instead, our leaders are tapping into the politics of division in a desperate attempt to get elected in the fall.

Rather than focus on real issues and real solutions, our politicians attempt to make "the wealthy" or "welfare recipients" the focus of our debates.

Well, you know what?

Most people that are rich and most people that are poor are not purposely trying to abuse the system.  Most of them are hard working people that are trying to do the best that they can in a world that is increasingly going crazy.

These days, the Occupy Wall Street crowd loves to talk about how evil the "1 percent" is.  But most of the "1 percent" are people that have worked really hard and that have been fortunate enough to get some really good breaks in life.

Yes, there are some among the "1 percent" that do some really bad things.  The too big to fail banks and the big money managers on Wall Street should be held accountable for the crimes that they have committed.

But most wealthy Americans are not trying to oppress the poor.  Most of them are just trying to do the best that they can for themselves and their families.

Neither are most poor people trying to abuse the system either.

Yes, without a doubt there are some that do not want to work and that want to live on government benefits indefinitely.

But that is a minority.

Most Americans that are receiving government benefits today would rather be working good jobs that would enable them to provide for their families.

Most Americans understand that government handouts can never provide dignity and hope for a better future.

But if you don't demonize the poor and you point out the decline of the middle class, many Republicans will call you a "liberal" or a "socialist".

And if you don't demonize the rich and you don't blame them for all of our economic problems, many Democrats will call you a "pig" or a "fascist".

Unfortunately, playing the blame game is not going to get us anywhere.

The number of Americans living in poverty increased dramatically under George W. Bush and it also increased dramatically under Barack Obama.

Our country is drowning in debt, millions of our jobs are being shipped overseas, the middle class is shrinking at an astounding pace, and the Federal Reserve continues to destroy our financial system.

Getting angry at the wealthy or the poor is not going to fix those problems.

But it will distract us from the reality that both major political parties have been doing a horrible job.

Sadly, Americans seem to really enjoy blaming one another these days.  Just check out some of the slogans that have been seen on various signs at Occupy Wall Street protests....

"They Only Call It Class Warfare When We Fight Back"

"Eat The Rich - Feed The Poor"

"The Rich Are Wrecking The Planet"

So will destroying the lives of the rich solve our problems?

Of course not.

The truth is that we should want millions more Americans to be prosperous.  We should be cheering for one another instead of tearing one another down.

But that is heresy to many on the left.

On the right, it is heresy even to mention that our tax system is fundamentally flawed and that it has thousands of loopholes that are being abused by the very wealthy.

In a previous article, I detailed how many of the largest and most profitable corporations in America get away with paying absolutely nothing in taxes.

There is something very wrong with that.

Our income tax system should be abolished altogether, but if we do have to pay income taxes, then it is fundamentally unfair for some people and businesses to be able to pay little or nothing while the rest of us get absolutely obliterated by taxes.

But if you try to say that to many on the right, they will look at you in horror.

The other day, there was a New York Times article that detailed the extreme measures that Apple takes to avoid paying taxes.  It turns out that Apple sets up shell offices all over the globe in order to evade taxation....

As it has in Nevada, Apple has created subsidiaries in low-tax places like Ireland, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and the British Virgin Islands — some little more than a letterbox or an anonymous office — that help cut the taxes it pays around the world.

That same article talked about how Apple has become a model which hundreds of other companies have followed.  To giant corporations such as Apple, tax evasion has become an art form....

Apple, for instance, was among the first tech companies to designate overseas salespeople in high-tax countries in a manner that allowed them to sell on behalf of low-tax subsidiaries on other continents, sidestepping income taxes, according to former executives. Apple was a pioneer of an accounting technique known as the “Double Irish With a Dutch Sandwich,” which reduces taxes by routing profits through Irish subsidiaries and the Netherlands and then to the Caribbean. Today, that tactic is used by hundreds of other corporations — some of which directly imitated Apple’s methods, say accountants at those companies.

So what is the solution to all of this?

Raising income taxes won't work too well because the tax lawyers are always several steps ahead of our politicians.

The truth is that when taxes get raised it is always the middle class that gets absolutely clobbered and the wealthy always find more ways to reduce their exposure.

Just take a look at Mitt Romney.  He made more than 42 million dollars in 2010 and yet Romney had an effective tax rate of only 14 percent.

If I could find a way to have an effective tax rate of only 14 percent I would be jumping up and down for joy, and so would millions of other Americans.

Our tax system is deeply, deeply broken and needs to be thrown into the trash can.

Abandoning the current tax system would not solve all of our problems, but it would be a start.

Unfortunately, neither political party is willing to even consider this.

Instead, the Democrats want to raise taxes a little bit and the Republicans want to lower taxes a little bit.

But neither alternative will do much of anything to solve any of the real problems we are facing.

Our economy is dying and it is not producing nearly enough jobs for all of us.  When Barack Obama took office, the number of "long-term unemployed workers" in America was 2.6 million.  Today, it is 5.3 million.

At this point, an astounding 53 percent of all college graduates under the age of 25 are either unemployed or underemployed.

So where is all of the "change" that Obama promised?

Things just keep getting worse.

Since Obama has been in the White House, 14 million more Americans have gone on food stamps, and more than 25 percent of all American children are enrolled in the program today.

How will class warfare help those people?

Will blaming the wealthy make things better for them?

They are already receiving government handouts.

Will increasing those handouts a little bit more fundamentally change their lives for the better?

Of course not.

What those people need are good jobs.

But instead, both the Democrats and the Republicans continue to pursue the same job killing policies that have been destroying American jobs for decades.

Without good jobs, the number of Americans dependent on the government is going to continue to grow.

In a previous article, I detailed the explosive growth of social welfare benefits that we have seen under both Republicans and Democrats....

Back in 1960, social welfare benefits made up approximately 10 percent of all salaries and wages.  In the year 2000, social welfare benefits made up approximately 21 percent of all salaries and wages.  Today, social welfare benefits make up approximately 35 percent of all salaries and wages.

The goal should not be to rape the rich and give out even more social welfare benefits.

Instead, the goal should be to develop an economy that creates good jobs.

We need have an economy that empowers individuals and small businesses.

Instead, we have an economy dominated by big government and big corporations.

We have an economy that funnels the vast majority of the economic rewards to a tiny elite while most of the rest of us struggle.

Just consider the following statistics....

*Back in the 1970s, the top 1 percent of all income earners in the United States brought in about 8 percent of all income.  Today, they bring in about 21 percent of all income.

*The following is how income gains in the U.S. were distributed during 2010....

-37 percent of all income gains went to the top 0.01 percent of all income earners

-56 percent of all income gains went to the rest of the top 1 percent

-7 percent of all income gains went to the bottom 99 percent

*In America today, the wealthiest one percent of all Americans have a greater net worth than the bottom 90 percent combined.

*According to Forbes, the 400 wealthiest Americans have more wealth than the bottom 150 million Americans combined.

So what is the solution to that problem?

Is it to attack the rich and take away all their money and give more government handouts to the poor?

Of course not.

Rather, we need to change the rules of the game so that individuals and small businesses are empowered to succeed.

We need to decentralize economic power and dramatically reduce the undue influence that big government and giant corporations have over our economic system.

We need to create an environment where almost anyone that has a good idea and that is willing to work hard can succeed.

But instead of focusing on real solutions like shutting down the Federal Reserve, converting to debt-free currency, eliminating the income tax, shutting down the IRS, massively reducing the size of government and getting rid of thousands upon thousands of unneeded regulations, the mainstream media and our politicians are going to continue to try to get Americans to blame one another for our problems.

The efforts to divide America are working, and hatred is growing to unprecedented levels in this country.

Eventually this will lead to mass rioting in our major cities and that will make our problems far worse.

Hatred and division are not going to bring us a better future.

They are only going to destroy us from within.

We don't need hate.

What we need is more love and more solutions.

Unfortunately, our leaders are leading us down a very dark path, and we are heading for a future that is going to be a complete mess.

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  • Trix

    Mike, I couldn’t agree with you more. The trick being used by corrupt government through out history has always been “divide and conquer”.
    In order to regain their right, all people must unite and grab their freedom back. Or if you cant be united, just concentrate your attack on the corrupt system instead of each other.

  • James Hartwick

    There are some good points in the article, but I think it vastly underestimates how the wealthy, through corporate owned media and politicians, have re-written the rules over the last 30 years to create a situation where 93% of income gains goes to the top 1%. If you get money out of politics, the people can rule. Regulations and laws can be written to level the playing field so that the golden rule–”the person with the gold, rules”–does not apply. Under the right conditions, government can be used as tool to regulate economic externalities and create incentives in areas such as green energy, education, health care to promote long term economic growth. A government where “We the People” rule, not “those with money” ruling, would do much to alleviate what ails this country.

  • Optimistic Pessimist

    Aw Michael,

    From many of the posts here it seems the divide is working well.

    It is such a shame that this happens – although here in the UK maybe my parents generation have an understanding of pulling together in times of strife.

    Good luck to all and keep up the good work.

  • Pault

    At the heart of it is communism. This has always been a basic principle of Marxism. The fools who are duped by it are playing right into the Marxist scheme. The aim is to put all wealth into the hands of government so they can control our lives and destroy freedom.

  • http://itsafluffy.blogspot.com DL

    Class war? Maybe, but from my mountain rural perch it seems more like “the criminal psychopaths against the sane.”

  • monk

    Class warfare? Government control? For forty years the government, corporations, and households were using each other! The government deregulated and provided tax cuts in exchange for more borrowing and power via the military, which was also used to prop up the dollar. Corporations benefited from deregulation through financial speculation, and provide easy credit to households. With a propped-up dollar and easy credit, households availed of the “American Dream” in exchange for voting for government which supported corporations.

  • REED RICHARDS

    Michael,

    Your propoganda train has not skipped a beat since I last read it. Class warfare is real, whether you like it or not. Problem is, a class war being waged by the asylum states government and the monopolistic robber barons connected to it has not been dislodged at present. And since most asylumites here aren’t too bright, they continue to vote for a war party that does not have the the people’s interests at heart. But hey, propogandize away. It’s not like the asylumites are going to wake up before the final economic collapse anyway………..

  • Evie

    The global economy is useless unless it works for everyone. No the people will not work for low wages,pay high costs and willingly go into credit to feed the golden geese_the well connected elite. There could be plenty of high wage jobs in a day by changing acvounting rules. Just ask the banks_billions in taxpayer welfare and they collect bad debts after writing them off as loses. People are tired of being demoralized by the system.

  • Kent Harris

    FairTax FairTax FairTax FairTax FairTax FairTax FairTax FairTax FairTax.

    It is morally wrong to tax ones labor. Honestly, I don’t care how much a person makes. It costs the economy about 300 billion dollars a year with our current tax system. Eliminate the current tax system and we could have an instant savings to our economcy and both parties could lay claim to making it better for everyone, but politicians are not about to give up the power they have invested in this horrible system of theft.

  • David Ingwersen

    “The top 1% are hard working and just got some good breaks in life” You are full of shit.
    The top 1% would screw you and the working poor to DEATH to keep their 1% and you know it. Just look at retirement, medical benifits and or a “Living wage” that the %1 do NOT provide. They ship the jobs to Singapore as HP did some 10 years ago after they could not rape puerto rico deep enough. Now the Chinese are asking 6.00 per hour and several companies are coming back to US to automate new plants and pay LESS workers.
    Anyone who believes that the 1% are hard working and just got some breaks is a Nazi to his heart. The 1% got their money by screwing the working American. And if the Americans are too much to handle they import more diaper heads and mexicans that are just happy to exist. So they show themselves for they KIND of people the 1% really are. = Anti American, Anti Constitution, Man haters and a destroyer of american families, prejudice, war mongers, child molesters and general SCUM. Your comments are from a low I.Q. Politically Correct (which is a communists invented term) bottom feeding AH. I hope you get what you absolutely deserve while you live in your “White Washed Grave”.

  • andeee

    As I see it the real problem is not taxes or wealth but inheritance which provides a vastly uneven playing field from birth, which over generations compound the difference to the extremes we have now. Just as an un-thought out idea how about the government taking all inheritance from everybody on death. Then there would be little or no taxes to pay for everyone. If some one works hard or strikes it lucky let them enjoy the fruits of there labor but on there death it is redistributed among society. Is it that crazy?

  • http://www.sutton-associates.net Andy

    GDP growth as currently measured is a total fabrication. Government spending counts as ‘economic growth’. Ok, maybe in the days of budget surpluses I could see that – maybe. However, it is absurd to count deficit spending in GDP. It must be paid back. The Keynesians in the media and academia love to leave this out. Debt is a reversible transaction. Unless of course the intent was never to pay it back in the first place, which is going to cause all sorts of other problems. Stimulus spending is double-counted in GDP; once as government spending and a second time when final goods are purchased. GDP as it is currently measured is a complete joke.

  • http://facebook Emil berlendy

    there is no class war being created by any it,just there,not all byalot of the rich look down on lower class people,example i have been a window cleaner in new york city i had a job to do at 8 in the morning i did not have time to take the service elevator so i tried to take the front they said no but then i saw a tenent walk in the front with a dog,once i had to use the bathroom the woman said i rather you not it was just cleaned,i guess her urine was cleaner these are jus a few examples there are many more,so no one created class war its already there and always will be with most of the rich.

  • http://facebook Emil berlendy

    There is no class war being created by anyone it,s already there I was a window cleaner in New York City I had a job at 8 I had no time to take the service elevator but then i seen a women walk in with a dog,another example I had to use the bathroom bad the woman said i rather you not it was just cleaned,i guess her urine was cleaner than minewe need no one to divide us up into classesmost of the rich always look down on the lower,but a kid once told me that his father was a ceo of a big company 400 men worked under him they all looked up to him i said thats nothing my father is a window cleaner the whole city has to look up to him.

  • Didrik

    The US has a very class counscious upper class. They can buy politicians and elections, what can the common man buy? They can only vote, and what good does a vote have when the system is being rigged? Democracy is dying in America, replaced by elite rule to serve elite and corporate interest.

    Poor people can only react by protesting and organizing (that’s why Neocons and neoliberals want to CRUSH the unions, they don’t want people to have the SLIGHTEST of power), and of course then the elite and the media try to trick the public by “reporting” that they are “waging class warfare”, but in reality they are just REACTING NONVIOLENTLY to class warfare.

    You have nothing going on sir in this blog sir. Stop you bull********** bypartizanship, wouldn’t surprise me if you’re a wolf in sheep clothing. People, take your democracy back, middle and poor class, organise, you don’t have to be a socialist to get what’s wrong with Coporate States of America inc.

  • Pip

    Who is Michael and where is the last name in order for me to scour the web in search of his credibility

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