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Millionaire investor and star of Shark Tank Kevin O’Leary believes income inequality serves a purpose. In fact, he believes income inequality is fantastic.

The following exchange occurred on his Canadian show the Lang & O’Leary Exchange:

Amanda Lang: The wealth, that’s according to Oxfam, of world’s 85 richest people is equal to the three and a half billion poorest people.

Kevin O’Leary: It’s fantastic. And this is a great thing because it inspires everybody. They get the motivation to look up to the one percent and say I want to become one of those people. I am going to fight hard to get up to the top. This is fantastic news and of course I applaud it. What can be wrong with this?”

Stunned Amanda Lang: Really?

Kevin O’Leary: Yes really.

There should be context to every dialogue. That snippet seems to give the impression that Kevin O’Leary is an unfeeling and callous person. When taken into context with the rest of the interchange something becomes more obvious.

Follow me below the fold for that context.

Amanda Lang asks if O’Leary believes some poor kid wakes up in Africa thinking about being the next Bill Gates. He replies that income inequality creates the motivation that everybody needs. Lang made the most important statement that simply flew over his head. She asserts that one cannot pull up their socks if they don’t have any.

O’Leary immediately plays the redistribution card. “Don’t tell me that you want to redistribute wealth again,” O’Leary said. “That’s never going to happen, okay?” He further says the stat on income inequality is “a celebratory stat,” O’Leary said. “I am very excited about it. I am wonderful to see it happen.”

A few days ago I wrote this blog post titled “Most Of The Rich Are Undeserving Of Their Wealth & Income.” It received some pushback from a few people. O’Leary’s sentiment is currently codified in an ideology that prevents the poor in the aggregate, access to success.

The ideology that says “I did it and therefore you can too” is flawed in the context of opportunity. O’Leary's dismissal of Lang’s statement about the poor person not having a sock to pull up in the first place is where those that think like O’Leary fail. There are exceptions where some, because of sheer luck and brawn, are able to supersede their environment and condition. However in the aggregate one’s station is static and one’s upward mobility is very low. Increasing income inequality makes this worse.

The following snippet from the referenced Oxfam report should be heeded.

Given the scale of rising wealth concentrations, opportunity capture and
unequal political representation are a serious and worrying trend. For
instance:

  • Almost half of the world’s wealth is now owned by just one percent of the population.
  • The wealth of the one percent richest people in the world amounts to $110 trillion. That’s 65 times the total wealth of the bottom half of the world’s population. 
  • The bottom half of the world’s population owns the same as the richest 85 people in the world.  
  • Seven out of ten people live in countries where economic inequality has increased in the last 30 years.
  • The richest one percent increased their share of income in 24 out of 26 countries for which we have data between 1980 and 2012. 
  • In the US, the wealthiest one percent captured 95 percent of post financial crisis growth since 2009,while the bottom 90 percent became poorer.

This massive concentration of economic resources in the hands of fewer people presents a significant threat to inclusive political and economic systems. Instead of moving forward together, people are increasingly separated by economic and political power, inevitably heightening social tensions and increasing the risk of societal breakdown.

O’Leary’s joy in increasing levels of income inequality is at best ignorant. He fails to understand that all forms of capitalism are at risk. The increasing instability that will increasingly come about with exploding income inequality is unstoppable by him or any army. He disregards it at the peril of his own wealth and the world’s current order.

Originally posted to ProgressiveLiberal on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 09:16 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (177+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Thinking Fella, Pinto Pony, annieli, ERdoc in PA, doroma, Azazello, ZedMont, JeffW, kck, livingthedream, Youffraita, oldcrow, ExpatGirl, Egalitare, a2nite, schumann, Caniac41, TKO333, Raynfala, subtropolis, JerryNA, OHdog, touch128, SphericalXS, puckmtl, Capt Crunch, winkk, old wobbly, CJB2012, poco, sturunner, jbsoul, NinetyWt, indie17, Laurel in CA, brainwave, skepticalcitizen, Habitat Vic, peptabysmal, Aunt Pat, OLinda, nailbender, yoduuuh do or do not, pat bunny, Damnit Janet, chuck utzman, Knucklehead, geebeebee, jedennis, Minnesota Deb, lotlizard, lalo456987, Shippo1776, dull knife, Mike Kahlow, SCFrog, theBreeze, bkamr, newinfluence, myrmecia gulosa, ramara, high uintas, ichibon, fixxit, jck, wader, dotdash2u, millwood, hilltopper, IndieGuy, plato 451, Heart of the Rockies, Skennet Boch, royce, MinnesotaMom, cablecargal, aitchdee, psnyder, CcVenussPromise, politicalceci, remembrance, where4art, cspivey, wasatch, eru, Captain C, quill, Jeff Y, OjaiValleyCali, stevenaxelrod, floydgrant, GAS, fumie, Arabiflora, rbird, YucatanMan, DerAmi, DMentalist, RUNDOWN, markthshark, eeff, Alumbrados, caul, thornycuddles, skohayes, MadRuth, Amycat, ratcityreprobate, oslyn7, Blue Bell Bookworm, SaraBeth, LeftieIndie, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, wishingwell, Sura 109, theKgirls, golem, Ishmaelbychoice, emal, FrY10cK, citizen dan, Mark Mywurtz, shortgirl, Justus, gypsytoo, Kristina40, maryabein, Bluebirder, Debs2, eagleray, 417els, Safina, ER Doc, rlb, roberb7, katrinka, TracieLynn, Bear, flowerfarmer, flitedocnm, sciguy, stevemb, tofumagoo, librarisingnsf, enufenuf, davehouck, novapsyche, KayCeSF, soundchaser, raincrow, multilee, Librarianmom, GrannyOPhilly, cipher14, daeros, alx9090, LSmith, Old Sailor, Teenygozer, happymisanthropy, lcrp, joedemocrat, eddieb061345, kevinpdx, alliwant, devis1, Jim Beard, MHB, Matt Z, Turbonerd, Zack from the SFV, akze29, Dave925, Throw The Bums Out, ewmorr, twocrows1023, wilywascal
  •  "...What can be wrong with this?” (16+ / 0-)
    The increasing instability that will increasingly come about with exploding income inequality is unstoppable by him or any army

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 09:27:01 AM PST

  •  celebration of dizzying wealth.... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    VPofKarma, JerryNA

    I'm no historian, but all of this feels a bit like what I've read about the unbridled optimism and brazen capitalism of the Robber Baron era, where the ultra-rich could speak like this in public, full of hubris and callous disregard for anything but wealth, and not be called out for it.

    I'm no Catholic, but I suspect its people like this that are the inspiration for some of Pope Francis' recent conversations.

    The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it. - Albert Einstein

    by ERdoc in PA on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 09:34:41 AM PST

    •  I've never understood the motivation of the Koch (33+ / 0-)

      type billionaires. When is enough enough? Increasing percentages of wealth is eventually unsustainable, they'd really do better long-term having a fairer (1950s-1970s type economy), protecting the environment would protect their rich progeny's future---unless they're planning to quickly terraform and move to Mars, etc.

      •  For folks like the Kochs... (17+ / 0-)

        the answer is "NEVER!" At least, that's the answer until they have everything, at which point they realize that none of it is worth anything because if no one has any wealth besides you, you won't be able to sell anything because no one will be buying. I think they will have irreversibly gone Galt by then. Hope those dollars are tasty, because the rest of the world will be a desolate, poisonous wasteland.

        Your black cards can make you money, so you hide them when you're able; in the land of milk and honey, you must put them on the table - Steely Dan

        by OrdinaryIowan on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 09:10:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Polk, the trader that the "Wolf on Wall Street" (49+ / 0-)

        was based on wrote an article that provided some insights that I've been thinking about ever since I read his article in the NYT a little over a week ago.

        From "For the Love of Money" by By SAM POLK in The New Your Times on JAN. 18, 2014

        Now, working elbow to elbow with billionaires, I was a giant fireball of greed. I’d think about how my colleagues could buy Micronesia if they wanted to, or become mayor of New York City. They didn’t just have money; they had power — power beyond getting a table at Le Bernardin. Senators came to their offices. They were royalty.
        Coming from a pro-union, strongly Democratic family, I didn't find it too difficult to turn my back on a 6 figure income in the corporate world to become a teacher, when I realized that the way to get ahead was to outsource middle class professional and manufacturing jobs to India and China.  But I'm honest enought to recognize that choosing to go with my progressive values was probably as much a gift of birth as it was a personal choice. If I'd been raised in the Koch family?  bleck yuck gag  Would I have chosen to work for the greater good or for greed and power?  I'd like to think I would have made the same decision, but I know that I can never really know.

        In the article, Polk goes on to describe how things changed for him:

        ... it was actually my absurdly wealthy bosses who helped me see the limitations of unlimited wealth ... they were talking about the new hedge-fund regulations. Most everyone on Wall Street thought they were a bad idea. “But isn’t it better for the system as a whole?” ...  my boss shot me a withering look. I remember his saying, “I don’t have the brain capacity to think about the system as a whole. All I’m concerned with is how this affects our company.”

        I felt as if I’d been punched in the gut. He was afraid of losing money, despite all that he had.

        Fear?  How could anyone experience fear with that kind of power?
        From that moment on, I started to see Wall Street with new eyes. I noticed the vitriol that traders directed at the government for limiting bonuses after the crash. I heard the fury in their voices at the mention of higher taxes. These traders despised anything or anyone that threatened their bonuses. Ever see what a drug addict is like when he’s used up his junk? He’ll do anything — walk 20 miles in the snow, rob a grandma — to get a fix. Wall Street was like that. In the months before bonuses were handed out, the trading floor started to feel like a neighborhood in “The Wire” when the heroin runs out.
        Reading the article, reminded me of bonus time when I was in the corporate world. We weren't playing for bonuses like traders get, but we still got 5 figure bonuses in the range of what I make in an entire year. The more profit we managed to make -- yes, in part by increasing the top line -- but increasingly more by vulture capitalism moves, the bigger the bonuses. But, what was happening to the people affected didn't seem to bother anyone else. About a month before bonus time, it would get really wierd in the office. Some executives would start obsessing about every little nuance in top executives' tones, and what they may have really meant by what they said. Executives who didn't really need the money would get incredibly uptight and worried that they'd get less than last year, or less than someone else.

        It didn't used to be that way.  I remember when bonus time used to be a good and happy time. Back then, companies included corporate citizenship goals in their annual plans, caring about and appreciating employees was a expected, and the goal was to make a solid, steady profit between 13-18% year after year.  It started changing in the 90's, and I wonder if there is any way we will ever return to that more balanced place ever again with the greed/money/power addicts running things, now.

        wow. Sorry for the long post.  

        Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

        by bkamr on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 10:12:16 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Can you make this a diary? (7+ / 0-)

          It's well written and put-together, got a great message and insight, and deserves a bigger audience

          Nobody deserves poverty.

          by nominalize on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:00:26 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  yes please write a diary or several (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bkamr, flitedocnm, enufenuf

          this is a core topic of interest to many I am sure.

          I have been trying to understand their mindset for some time. and how it got so bad and so far removed from reality and the sense of ethics and honor that at one time still existed in boardrooms.

          and most of all I wonder if any of them, enough of them, are reachable.
          if we could change this from the top down rather than bottom up. we all know how impossible it is to change the belief system of the 'base.' They are authoritarian followers and will only believe what their trusted leaders tell them to.

          but the network, the message/money machine is there, they built it and paid for it and used it successfully. If only we can get the ones running it to finally see the 'big picture' and how they're cutting their own throats and then change the tune...just a thought I've been trying to put into my own diary...

          if Polk can wake up maybe other big players can? Can we get people like him or some of the other billionaires who see the insanity of the greed and where it will lead to convince others of their peers?
          (I'm thinking of the video of the unpublished TED talk by that one guy, can't think of the name off hand.) People like that to wake up their friends and associates at the very top. The trading floor will be toughest now, where the hard core addicts do their thing, but the base would follow rather quickly I should think...something to think about

          no man is completely worthless, he can always be used as a bad example.

          by srfRantz on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:13:32 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  ^^^^ Top Comment. Not too long at all. Thank you. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bkamr, LSmith

          "We can either have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few. But we can't have both." - Justice Louis Brandeis

          by flitedocnm on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 08:38:53 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  The MOST saintly individuals are those (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Calamity Jean, bkamr, Dave925

          who ARE born into wealth and power, but reject it for the sake of helping others.  Gautama the Buddha is one example: according to Buddhist traditions (which may be exaggerated, of course), his father concealed from him as much as possible the EXISTENCE of disease, disaster, suffering, old age and death, and he first discovered them on his 21st birthday.  Then he left the royal palace and began his search for enlightenment.

          There is a story of a conversation between two Greeks, a true moral philosopher and a phony court "philosopher."  The latter mocked the former, "too bad you have to eat beans because you never learned to flatter the king."  The former replied, "too bad you have to flatter the king because you never learned to eat beans."

      •  For people like that, (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Calamity Jean

        even way too much isn't enough.

        Don't meow, or I'll take your picture.

        by Old Sailor on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 10:47:45 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  No, no, no. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        nuthangerfarm, Dave925

        They actually believe their nonsense.

        They are not trying to screw anyone or become rulers of the world for the power.  They believe they know the TRUTH and want to spread it to the rest of us.

        They believe they are the good guys.

        "Our problem is not that the glass is half empty or half full, but that the 1% claims that it is their glass." ---Stolen from a post on Daily Kos

        by jestbill on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 11:04:15 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  It's an addiction (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dave925, mldavis254

        and, as in any addiction, there's never enough drug. The amount of money is an abstraction after a point. But deep inside these people, in places they don't let you see, they feel very fragile and insecure. Only more money can make that insecurity go away for a while.

        Voting is the means by which the public is distracted from the realities of power and its exercise.

        by Anne Elk on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 09:13:23 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's not just an addiction (0+ / 0-)

          I agree that in some cases this incessant lust for more money is a simple addictive behavior, but in many cases it is a symptom of something far more disturbing and destructive. To many of the super wealthy, and the sycophants they attract, it is not just the amount of money that is an abstraction, it is the money itself that is the abstraction. It is a way of keeping score in a psychopathic game of power and ownership. To these people the acquisiton of massive wealth is a means to an end in a game of real time Monopoly with dire consequences to the people they seek to control. That  they are incapable of understanding or relating to other human beings except as pawns and tools to stroke their own egos with.

          A pathological narcissist is entirely consumed with completely controlling his environment and everyone in it. Wealth is a tool to these people and a handy way of keeping score against their fellow psychopaths.

          I would also add that these same pathological personality types are often attracted to politics.

      •  They want it all (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dave925, mldavis254

        These people look upon every dollar as theirs.  They can never get enough.  The fact that you presently have control over some of their dollars infuriates them to no end.

    •  Same here (0+ / 0-)

      complete with yellow journalism to support them.

  •  That Kevin O’Leary tries to sell envy & greed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tardis10

    ...as he misses the point of the OXFAM report and the human interest in severe wealth inequality is so preciously revealing, historically, "common-sensically", but also metaphorically and biblically. As O'Leary clearly signals he's no source for guidance or wisdom his response unmistakably  resembles the snake in the Garden of Eden selling a bite of forbidden fruit. He hawks the 7 deadly sins to solve global poverty and rather than engage in productive or probative dialog.  
     

  •  Gee, would it be wrong for me... (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BigAlinWashSt, tardis10, a2nite, kck, VPofKarma

    ...to hope this clown gets mugged?

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 09:50:24 AM PST

  •  Oh, come on Egberto (8+ / 0-)

    He is right. History is filled with income inequality inspiring things. Just ask these people:

    Tsar-family_1001874c

    Marie_Antoinette_1767

  •  He's a sociopath,at play (8+ / 0-)

    in a system that rewards sociopathy. Mostly,they don't allow themselves to be so seen. But the current climate makes him feel comfortable unmasking. No,more than comfortable,it makes him feel powerful & feeds a belligerent recklessness that many like him display.

    "George RR Martin is not your bitch" ~~ Neil Gaiman

    by tardis10 on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 09:59:34 AM PST

  •  The main point he misses is huge (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    a2nite, TKO333, papercut, JerryNA

    Most of the wealth being created (in the US especially) is through manipulation of money, not creating anything, the basis of "wall street" is empty, almost imaginary, trading, and extraction (ala Bain) that creates wealth for a few but benefits only the few, and leaves all others in the dirt with nothing to hold to get anything better. If they keep this pattern going, their 'private armies'  and private jets won't save them from the recurring problem of the middle ages (whose economic model they admire) peasant revolts, and in the age of high explosives and automatic weapons, it won't be swords and armor against wooden pitchforks.

    May you live in interesting times--Chinese curse

    by oldcrow on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:09:45 AM PST

  •  I'd be all up for income equality too (0+ / 0-)

    if I didn't realize it will destroy society.

    http://callatimeout.blogspot.com/

    by DAISHI on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:26:24 AM PST

  •  Take it with a grain of salt (0+ / 0-)

    On that show O'Leary is definitely a strong believer in capitalism, but he sometimes says some very obviously trollish things to play up his part.  I think it's just another form of his own self-promotion to spin things that way by saying ridiculous things in order to create conflict, since it generates attention.

  •  Thanks nt (0+ / 0-)

    nosotros no somos estúpidos

    by a2nite on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:51:14 AM PST

  •  Yeah just like megamilions inspires people (0+ / 0-)

    And the odds are about the same. You have to be either very privileged or very deluded to play.

  •  Sure! (0+ / 0-)


    That's the attitude you'd expect when you're in the small circle and not outside same.  Moreover, there should be encouragement to improve and the motivation to pull yourself up by your bootstraps is admired... only that presumes bootstraps, at all, the remotest where-with-all to improve... and this is forgetting that you are largely not allowed into the circle.  Remains you have to be paid money to spend money and your garden variety employer is going to be as niggardly as he can in that regard.  In other words O'Leary is full of self-serving, duplicitous, and narcissistic b____t.  Isn't this the same guy profiting amidst the most corrupt, unethical, and fully criminal behavior from the business and banking community ever endured?

  •  I read things like this and wonder, (0+ / 0-)

    ...why is it those on the left hate guns so much? Do you really think these parasites are going to give up their power and privilege willingly?

    There used to be a time when the aristocracy feared revolt from the people, and had to guard against it at all times. Even now, in places like Europe people take to the streets for less than this. We just roll over and spread our cheeks wider. WHY?!

    In this country, the ones who care about the victims of this brutal system are self-neutered into pacifists who will never do more than ask meekly for crumbs, while the other side of the aisle openly worships at the feet of the moneyed masters and they seem to have no qualms with violence at all.

    The 1% kill with impunity, knowing that the left's own principles insulate the scum from the consequences of their action. I think this should change.

    "Is there anybody listening? Is there anyone who sees what's going on? Read between the lines, criticize the words they're selling. Think for yourself, and feel the walls become sand beneath your feet." --Geoff Tate, Queensryche

    by DarthMeow504 on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 01:06:52 PM PST

  •  rising income inequality fantastic says o'leary (0+ / 0-)

    seriously, i don't even regard him a member of the human race.  he should crawl back under the rock he calls home.

  •  One of his Shark Tank comments tells you all you (0+ / 0-)

    need to know about him. One offer was from a young Chinese_American couple who had developed a vastly improved Sippy-Cup for kids and wanted to manufacture it in the USA to keep jobs in  this country and because of concern that since Chinese regulations are so spotty that the product may not be safe or will be perceived as not being safe. He said the only thing that mattered is the money they would save per cup by having it made in China.

    Life is just a bowl of Cherries, that stain your hands and clothes and have pits that break your teeth.

    by OHdog on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 09:52:25 AM PST

  •  Kevin O’Leary (7+ / 0-)

    ... will be one of the first up against the wall when the revolution comes.  What an asshole.

  •  kevin O'leary (5+ / 0-)

    I wonder what he will say when he sees the crowd with torches, pitchforks and clubs gathering outside his home?

  •  Wrong (9+ / 0-)

    Kevin doesn't know what he's talking about. I doubt the majority of people not in the 1% wealthy look up to that 1%. I know I don't, in fact, for the most part I only have disdain for them. And it's not because I'm not wealthy....I'm happily comfortable.

    If you want to be in their "shoes/life" then you have to take "all" of the baggage that goes along with it....bad marriage, heart problems, infidelity, drugs, alcohol abuse, stress, etc....for an example. I personally don't need any of that or want it.

    The only reason the GOP says these things, I think is because they feel they must justify their wealth. Those that are not wealthy GOP believe this statements so they can justify why they aren't wealthy.

    Most of the wealthy GOP have no concept of being poor, good example kevin her or romney. It's above their intellect. They likely even know yet not admit the people who keep this country running and them in their wealth is the average American worker....not the wealthy.

  •  Yes, I'm feeling such a joyful sensation right now (4+ / 0-)

    Joy means soul-crushingly depressed, right?

  •  O'Leary (4+ / 0-)

    This is exactly why the world has unrest and demand change. This is just what Karl Marx and the French Revolution,  and Russian Revolution and all the rest where  all about, when you have people like him talking like he does. Oh yes this can happen right here in America. I wonder if they remember what happened to some just like him after the French Rev ?? A country will not survive when that gap of rich and poor becomes too wide. Maybe it is time to dust off those old books by Marx and Engles.

    •  revolution (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thornycuddles, happymisanthropy
      This is exactly why the world has unrest and demand change. This is just what Karl Marx and the French Revolution,  and Russian Revolution and all the rest where  all about, when you have people like him talking like he does. Oh yes this can happen right here in America. I wonder if they remember what happened to some just like him after the French Rev ?? A country will not survive when that gap of rich and poor becomes too wide. Maybe it is time to dust off those old books by Marx and Engles.
      Better still, dust off those old books by Emma Goldman, Bakunin, and Proudhon. (real anarchists)

      Anarchism is anti-capitalist, and advocates egalitarianism, mutual aid, and reciprocity, and goes back centuries. -- DailyKos User ZhenRen

      by thanatokephaloides on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 11:20:34 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Close the gap (6+ / 0-)

    It's human nature to abuse those we put below us and excuse those we put above us. But that has to stop.

    One way to stop it is to demand equal shares of our common natural heritage, to demand Citizen's Dividends from the worth of Earth, from our society's spending for all the land and resources it uses. Nobody made the world, we all need a portion of it, and it's all of us together, our mere presence, that makes locations valuable.

    We need to insist that our governments recover these socially-generated values of sites and resources, and not tax our earnings, purchases, and buildings, and then disburse the raised revenue to the citizenry in general, a la Alaska's oil share.

    Once we all get a fair share, then there won't be any surplus leftover for the greedy elite to grab. Instead, it'll flows as extra income into the accounts of us all. Now starting at progress.org.

    Geonomist, Portland, Pacific side

    by Jeffery Smith on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 01:42:21 PM PST

    •  Mind the gap. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thanatokephaloides

      The GOP can't win on ideas. They can only win by lying, cheating, and stealing. So they do.

      by psnyder on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 10:12:02 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  In another diary, I posed 3 things to put these (9+ / 0-)

      bastards on the defense.  I'm sick of always being on the defense!  And, I don't want a revolution.  Too many of us and our children would end up being killed in the streets.

      No, I'd like to see us as progressives, or MarketForThe People, or even an alliance with the Tea Partiers (they do hate the banksters, too) take up a simple set of proposals to curb the 1%.  

      1. The 1% Tax on every Wall Street Transaction. It's a US Econmy Toll. We get to pay tolls for using bridges and highways ... they get to pay tolls for the interstate commerce infrastructure they use.  Money goes for higher education and job training in the form of GRANTS, not loans.

      2. The Bill of Rights Only Applies to People Constitutional Amendment push.

      3. The Fair Income Tax -  Income Tax from Investments = Income Tax on Labor

      Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

      by bkamr on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 10:30:45 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  3 things to put matters right (4+ / 0-)
        I'm sick of always being on the defense!  And, I don't want a revolution.  Too many of us and our children would end up being killed in the streets.
        For most of us, it's not what we want; it's rather what we fear.
        No, I'd like to see us as progressives, or MarketForThe People, or even an alliance with the Tea Partiers (they do hate the banksters, too) take up a simple set of proposals to curb the 1%.  

        1. The 1% Tax on every Wall Street Transaction. It's a US Econmy Toll. We get to pay tolls for using bridges and highways ... they get to pay tolls for the interstate commerce infrastructure they use.  Money goes for higher education and job training in the form of GRANTS, not loans.

        Agreed in toto. I would add to that a tax on any company which (a) exported ANY jobs from domicile in the United States to avoid paying American style wages and benefits; and (b) a similar tax on any company doing business in the United States which in practice requires a college degree to obtain any job which could be performed fully adequately by a high-school graduate.
        2. The Bill of Rights Only Applies to People Constitutional Amendment push.
        My proposed Amendment for that purpose reads as follows:
                               AMENDMENT xxxxx

        Article 1: The rights and privileges enumerated and protected under this Constitution, and the Constitutions of the several States, shall apply solely and exclusively to natural biological individual human beings.

        Article 2: Provided, that such Groups, Corporations, and Entities as are actually named in this Constitution, and in the Constitutions of the several States, shall have the rights, privileges, and responsibilities enumerated to them by this Constitution and, if applicable, the State Constitution in which they are so named.  

        [This is to keep this Amendment from accidentally destroying Congress, the State Legislatures, etc.]

        Article 3. All Groups, Corporations, and Entities not described by Article 2 above shall have such rights, privileges, and responsibilities as shall be determined from time to time by the Congress or the State Legislature which created them by law.

        Article 4. The terms "speech" and "press", as used in the first Amendment to this Constitution, shall only mean actual communications between natural biological human beings, and shall in no way, shape, or form be used to apply such protections to Money.

        3. The Fair Income Tax -  Income Tax from Investments = Income Tax on Labor
        And only certain investment income at that. Tax dividends at no higher rates than wages. (This encourages companies to distribute their profits rather than retain them all internally.) Tax speculation gains at a considerably higher level. (This would make businesses aim for long term profitability rather than the fastest buck mentality controlling Wall Street (and thereby the remainder of the American economy) today.

        Damn right! It's more than time!!

        Anarchism is anti-capitalist, and advocates egalitarianism, mutual aid, and reciprocity, and goes back centuries. -- DailyKos User ZhenRen

        by thanatokephaloides on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 12:03:17 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Wonderful clarificatons and additions! Any (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          thanatokephaloides

          idea for how we could get anyone else to ge onboard?

          Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

          by bkamr on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 01:02:30 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  get on board (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            bkamr
            Wonderful clarificatons and additions!
            Thank you!!  :-)
            idea for how we could get anyone else to get onboard?
            It's happening already, especially the demand for an amendment to reverse Citizens United. We just need to keep it moving along......

            Anarchism is anti-capitalist, and advocates egalitarianism, mutual aid, and reciprocity, and goes back centuries. -- DailyKos User ZhenRen

            by thanatokephaloides on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 10:20:34 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  wealth abuse (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      happymisanthropy
      It's human nature to abuse those we put below us and excuse those we put above us. But that has to stop.

      One way to stop it is to demand equal shares of our common natural heritage, to demand Citizen's Dividends from the worth of Earth, from our society's spending for all the land and resources it uses. Nobody made the world, we all need a portion of it, and it's all of us together, our mere presence, that makes locations valuable.

      Wealth comes from only one source: the application of LABOR to the Earth's natural resources.

      Or, as others have put it: All wealth is created by Labor. Labor is entitled to all it creates.

      Once we all get a fair share, then there won't be any surplus leftover for the greedy elite to grab. Instead, it'll flows as extra income into the accounts of us all. Now starting at progress.org.
      It's got to be better than the way we're doing it now......

      Anarchism is anti-capitalist, and advocates egalitarianism, mutual aid, and reciprocity, and goes back centuries. -- DailyKos User ZhenRen

      by thanatokephaloides on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 11:25:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  inequality (4+ / 0-)

    It's evident that some people are so rich that they can't understand what it means to be poor, how most of us live.   It's time to stop listening to them and start doing something to raise wages for everyone.

  •  There are a few... (6+ / 0-)

    Even the 1% has a few that understand reality.  Bill Gates has spent his money helping the poorest of the poor, primarily by making them healthier so they have a remote chance in life.  Warren Buffet has claimed he needs to be taxed more and understands the divide between those with and those without.  JK Rowling has fallen off the top of several lists because she given so much away to help others.

    They are, however, exception in a small world that worships money.  There will be a revolution at some point, and the 99% will cry "Enough!"  If that can't be done at the ballot box, it will be forced to happen in the streets.  Somewhere will rise a worthy successor to MLK and although there will be some level of violence, it will likely come, as it did before, from those entrenched in the existing society of privilege.  When the dust settles and the fires finally burn out things will be different, and those who worship at the altars of Wall Street will find themselves instead in the prison chapel.  Like it or not, change will come...and it may not be pretty.  

  •  inherited wealth? (7+ / 0-)

    What percentage of the upper 1% came from wealthy families?  What percentage came from poor families?  Does anyone know?  I'd love to know.  Thanks.

  •  O'Leary waiting for his Marie-Antoinette moment (21+ / 0-)

    I'll be honest, I don't know who Kevin O'Leary is. Not watching television has its privileges I guess. But let's assume he's just a proxy for the 1%. The 1% don't just lack humility and demonstrate sociopathic tendencies in their attitudes, they're often intellectually compromised by an economics profession that has added the veneer of science, (actually pseudo-science) to the cult of wealth adulation. To paraphrase Jesus, they know not what they do Father.

    I'm going to be generous and assume that O'Leary like many like-minded individuals of his position in life believes that inequality is the inevitable byproduct of this whirling cosmos of economic laws that are hidden from us, like Adam Smith's invisible hand. They sincerely believe that neoliberal orthodoxy is like the classic physics of Newton, Huygens, Maxwell or Kelvin, and the outcomes are as inevitable as the laws of universal gravitation or the laws of thermodynamics. But they forget that the study of economics used to be called political economy for a reason.

    Even if you believed that inequality was inevitable or good for society at large, or that it was the product of economic laws, it doesn't matter. Politics will only sustain so much inequality. You can only rob the treasury and game the system to your advantage for so long before there will be a political reaction. And that reaction can come in the form of the New Deal, Nordic social democracy or the French Revolution, but make no mistake there will be a reaction and when it comes there will be no wall tall enough, no security apparatus sophisticated enough, no army brutal enough, no political class insulated enough or protected enough by mechanisms of incumbency to withstand the revolt.

    The Kevin O'Learys of the world and their protectors in the GOP and the Democratic Party will one day reap what they have sown. You're beginning to see in various parts of the industrialized world visceral, percolating rage at a system that no longer represents them, or protects their best interest. The Robber Barons of today unlike the Robber Barons of the Gilded Age don't make anything but money and so they will find they are easily discarded when the time comes.

    There is no Ford, Carnegie, Rockefeller or Edison among their number, no one building those things that are indispensable for life or providing upward mobility for the working classes in the countries they live. Today's wealth cult acquired their vast sums speculating in real estate, stocks, bonds, derivatives, commodities or by managing those assets for others. Many inherited vast sums or came from families with long lineages of privilege (both Bill Gates and Warren Buffett were born into money and status, to give only 2 examples.) When the masses decide they want redistribution, there will be redistribution.

    The British had a choice in the 40s, they could maintain their Empire at the cost of their democracy, or they could discard the empire and retain their democracy, they made the right choice. America is quickly arriving at a similar point when she will need to discard the plutocratic elements of society or discard the democratic charade.

    •  This is a very important point. (11+ / 0-)
      The Robber Barons of today unlike the Robber Barons of the Gilded Age don't make anything but money and so they will find they are easily discarded when the time comes.

      There is no Ford, Carnegie, Rockefeller or Edison among their number, no one building those things that are indispensable for life or providing upward mobility for the working classes in the countries they live.

      These Masters of the Universe have absolutely no vision for the future apart from the capture and containment of currency. They have nothing to offer future generations except greater exploitation, greater destruction of our shared habitat, greater amounts of poverty and desperation.
      I think many of these high net worth individuals know they are very expendable and easily discarded. And they're scared shitless. I saw a presentation recently about individuals who have a net worth that exceeds 30 million. We have about 65,000 of them in the US. All together their total wealth captured is about 9 trillion. A detail that caught my attention is that well over 50% of these people are over the age of 60.
      I think that may explain the very defensive, conservative and frighted mindset of today's Robber Barons.

      -4.38, -7.64 Voyager 1: proof that what goes up never comes down.

      by pat bunny on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 09:05:17 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  And they did try to sell us their product as such (4+ / 0-)

        Telling us that investing in IRAs, retirement funds, college funds, etc. was indispensable for life or providing (at least ensuring) upward mobility....

        and look how that turned out.  The only thing guaranteed turned out to be more money for them.  Sure, the robber barons of old were greedy, rapacious, and cruel... but at least their products actually worked.  

        Nobody deserves poverty.

        by nominalize on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:05:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Yes their idea of "innovation" these days (4+ / 0-)

        Is creating securities and deriviatives that are based upon bullshit precarious numbers and fraudulent information and then lying when selling the snake oil chits of paper.
        Even Alan Greenspan admitted he failed and had a flaw when he failed to factor in the cheating and lying amoral behavior of men in his ideology of " free"  unregulated markets. Duh, why it took him so long to realize that flaw since anyone who read basic history learned of many catastrophic examples of it to the contrary.

        It's all an illusion and they think they're the smartest people in the room when in reality, it's really easy to be a lying scum bag flim flam shell game con artist...any one can do that.

        Gah...these amoral sociopaths disgust me.

        If you can, help others; if you cannot do that, at least do not harm them. ~ Dalai Lama
        They can't and are unable and definitely unwilling to do that..And they need to be called out on the carpet every time they speak of their ilk and their perceived persecution and/ or  delusional chosen one gawd like status in society.

        Robber baron scumbags...

        Government of, for, and by the wealthy corporate political ruling class elites. Elizabeth Warren Progressive Wing of political spectrum.

        by emal on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:41:54 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Why do pompous assholes (6+ / 0-)

    always look like pompous assholes, even before they open their mouths?

    This man is vile.

  •  Born on 3rd base and think they hit a tripple n/t. (9+ / 0-)
  •  O'Leary might want to check out Louis XVI history (8+ / 0-)

    to see how that income inequality worked out.

    Let's see, Koch Brothers inherit billions, two brothers in South Sudan inherit nothing, seems like a fair race.

  •  What a Billion Looks Like: (7+ / 0-)

    Get up some summer morning, before dawn, in calm weather near a Great Lake or one of the sea coasts. Step into a rowboat and spend a few hours rowing out of sight of land.

    As the early morning breeze begins to stir, you'll little ripples 1 to 2 fingers deep, wavelets about 6" wide or so, covering the surface of the water.

    Stand up, and turn around 360° looking from horizon about 3 miles away, to horizon to horizon.

    The number of little ripples you have seen [give or take various factors] is very approximately one billion.

    Only one.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 08:10:52 PM PST

    •  billions and billions (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thornycuddles, 417els
      Stand up, and turn around 360° looking from horizon about 3 miles away, to horizon to horizon.

      The number of little ripples you have seen [give or take various factors] is very approximately one billion.

      Only one.

      Another way to put it:

      One billion seconds is approximately thirty (30) years.

      Anarchism is anti-capitalist, and advocates egalitarianism, mutual aid, and reciprocity, and goes back centuries. -- DailyKos User ZhenRen

      by thanatokephaloides on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 12:12:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I usually explain it as a hand of poker (13+ / 0-)

    Lets say you're playing poker with Mittens Rmoney - he starts off with $1,000,000, and you start off with $20. You're dealt a Royal Flush, he's dealt a pair of 2s.

    Table stakes, he raises you $500,000. What do you do?

    "All lives end. All hearts get broken. Caring is not an advantage." - Mycroft Holmes

    by Fordmandalay on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 08:12:02 PM PST

  •  What I'd like to see: (8+ / 0-)

    A law, regulation or what ever it takes so that nobody in any organization is compensated more than 75 times than the lowest rate of compensation for anybody in that organization.

  •  I'm so tired of people like O'Leary (6+ / 0-)

    that I now look forward to the day when the masses get fed up and revolt. I hope it comes soon enough to save our environment though.

    "I agree with you, I want to do it, now make me do it!" ~ FDR

    by JC Dufresne on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 08:14:23 PM PST

  •  O'Leary is just a slightly classier version of (8+ / 0-)

    those people who post the links about some friend or relative who supposedly made thousands of dollars a week part time.

    He's making money off selling people the illusion that if they pay him for his advice they'll become successful.

    As the line in the Traffic song goes, "The man in the silk suit has just bought a new car from the profit he made on your dreams."

  •  For O'Leary, Money = Crack or Meth (6+ / 0-)

    A pure addiction

  •  I love that Shark Tank show! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thanatokephaloides

    I see maybe 10 minutes of it on my break, maybe 2, 3 times a month, but it's Capitalism at its finest - somebody with a product or idea taking it directly to the monied that can make it happen.
    Great show!  How 'bout that one where a couple of yahoos had the idea of putting a Coat Check operation in every honky tonk from sea to shining sea?!  No, really!  Maybe the dumbest idea ever.  Still, without ideas where would Elon Musk be?  So, I love my Sharks!
    But an Uber is an Uber, a Filthy is a Filthy. (uber rich and filthy rich)  And, as such, O'Leary's sentiments stretch across the One Percent class.
    Surely Lang wasn't shocked to hear that.

  •  It's the only way he can assuage his shame. (5+ / 0-)

    He actually, sincerely believes what he is saying. I'm convinced of it.

    "Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities" Voltaire.

    by JWK on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 08:30:56 PM PST

  •  Many years ago... (7+ / 0-)

    A young girl was taking the controls of a small airplane. Her father was with her and generally kept things under control. One day he didn't and the plane crashed. The mother was asked "Why did you and your husband let someone so young do something so difficult and dangerous?" Her answer was that the daughter was so thrilled at accomplshing such a difficullt feat that it got her really excited and that, in turn, really inspired her parents.
    My sister pointed out that it really doesn't take much to inspire a kid and that such joy of accomplishment could have been had at far less cost and risk.
    Same thing with inspiring less wealthy people to do better. Do you really need more than two or three million $$$ to encourage people to do better? Isn't that enough to get one cars, yachts, mansions and cool vacations? Why throw 100s of millions on top of that?

  •  begs the eternal question: (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sychotic1, thanatokephaloides

    what's for lunch, anyway?

    bring your own petard.

  •  Everyone as part of the 1% (4+ / 0-)

    Is a mathematical impossibility. Can't happen. And the arrogance of these people to suggest the only thing that makes you successful is the desire and hard work. Really? What if you were born w Downs Syndrome? Do you think that presents a barrier to being wealthy? But then that must mean god hasn't smiled upon you.

  •  omg, what an effing (2+ / 0-)

    waste of oxygen is this guy

    Will trade sig line for beer or for rum and coke, if it is Friday.

    by theBreeze on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 08:50:43 PM PST

  •  They must be smelling the pitchforks and (4+ / 0-)

    ..torches.

    I would if I were them. Greedy fucks are obscene.

    What is so unnerving about the candidacy of Sarah Palin is the degree to which she represents—and her supporters celebrate—the joyful marriage of confidence and ignorance. SAM HARRIS

    by Cpqemp on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 08:52:22 PM PST

  •  Some background on O'Leary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thanatokephaloides

    He honestly did work his way up. Problem is his base was partially elevated before he started: he started his business thanks to a loan and direct advice from his mother who had her own successful garment business.

  •  Another victory for ideology over common sense. (3+ / 0-)

    What world does O'Leary live in?  He really thinks 99% of the world can occupy the same spots now taken by the 1%?  Doesn't he see the process is competitive, that it's not a meritocracy, that no matter how hard you work, how smart and talented you are and how much you sacrifice to join the few at the top, if you don't have a lot of luck or, better yet, the connections you will not make it?  Of course, when the whole world works harder for global capital,  global capitalists celebrate that propagation of the myth.

  •  Capital gains rate is lower than your rate (5+ / 0-)

    A key reason that we have accelerating inequality is that working stiffs pay higher tax rates plus FICA than the super wealthy are paying. Warren Buffett knows this

    The super wealthy are paying the lower capital gains rate. 20%* Too many working stiffs think the rich are paying 39.6%.

    *Note it was only 15% from 2001.20% for singles earning over $400,000 and couples earnings over $450,000.

    * the Tax Policy Center, stating that 24.2% of tax savings went to households in the top one percent of income compared to the share of 8.9% that went to the middle 20 percent.

    So how does the Heritage Foundation spin this? "The Heritage Foundation concludes that the Bush tax cuts led to the rich shouldering more of the income tax burden and the poor shouldering..."

    source: wikipedia Bush Tax Cuts

  •  Can we start eating the rich yet? (3+ / 0-)

    I'm hungry.

    You can lead a Republican to knowledge but no matter how hard you try, you just can't make them think.

    by FisherOfRolando on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 11:09:03 PM PST

    •  eating the rich (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      thornycuddles

      SNARK!

      Can we start eating the rich yet? I'm hungry.
      "You don't want to eat any of those. Ever try to clean one? " -- Alferd Packer, Denver, Colorado

      /SNARK!

      Anarchism is anti-capitalist, and advocates egalitarianism, mutual aid, and reciprocity, and goes back centuries. -- DailyKos User ZhenRen

      by thanatokephaloides on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 12:24:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Behold! The full banality of evil on display! (4+ / 0-)

    When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered -- MLK, Jr.

    by caul on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 02:13:28 AM PST

  •  Why would anyone pay attention (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thornycuddles

    To a creep whose vile utterances are so well known. Can't you find anyone inspiring to write about? Couldn't you highlight something Bill Moyers said recently?

    Ugh

    To thine ownself be true

    by Agathena on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 02:21:17 AM PST

  •  the thing I absolutely hate most about the wealthy (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thornycuddles, wa ma, emal, 417els

    is the limited mental powers that results when one's life has never depended on critical thinking. How are they richer than me when they so shockingly stupid? If there was real competition in our "capitalist" economy this guy would have been someone's lunch a long time ago.

    "I'm not a Kindergarten Cop, I'm a Terminator." - kos

    by cjenk415 on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 02:53:34 AM PST

  •  Here, let me fix this.... (0+ / 0-)
    "They get the motivation to look up to the one percent and say I want to become one of those people. I am going to fight hard to get up to the top."
    "They get the motivation to look up your address and storm your gates. And I want to fight hard to put food on the table and provide shelter for my kids and I will take yours since I have nothing more to lose, and you have so much to lose...."

    There, that is more realistic.

    "Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell." ~ Edward Abbey

    by SaraBeth on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 03:56:38 AM PST

  •  SEND IT ALL TO CHINA! (0+ / 0-)

    That's Kevin's answer for everything. I love how this "man," not even from the States, can dominate the airwaves by telling our American entrepreneurs they need to send all goods to be made in China because, you know, that's the American way. Yes, let's mock how broken and greedy we humans have become.

    Strange but not a stranger.

    by jnww on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:12:24 AM PST

  •  O'Leary displays all the symptoms of addiction. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    emal, Major Kong, tofumagoo

    Badly deluded wealth junkies are a particularly ugly bunch who would greatly improve the landscape by finally "going Galt"-------Maybe they need to be given a little push.

    •  absolutely! (0+ / 0-)

      If you haven't already read it, I highly recommend In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts by Gabor Mate. The book is about addiction and has an interesting section on Conrad Black, the Canadian tycoon and U.S. felon.
      As interventions are designed and set up for addicts by family members, we need interventions for the .01% in the form of very high marginal tax rates.

  •  As a much more enlightened one percenter wrote (0+ / 0-)

    "Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient Causes; and accordingly all Experience hath shewn, that Mankind are more disposed to suffer, while Evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the Forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security."

    Bello ne credite, Americani; quidquid id est, timeo Republicanos et securitatem ferentes.

    by Sura 109 on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 04:45:50 AM PST

  •  Can someone correct me if I'm wrong? (0+ / 0-)

    The Fed has been doing something the last few years they call quantitative easing whereby they add to the money supply. Am I incorrect in thinking that this money is added to the money supply in the form of hand outs to banks? If not, how is money added to the money supply? Somehow I get the feeling that however it's done, the method is weighted to give further advantage to the already massively wealthy.

    •  In a nutshell, that's it (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      bryduck

      The money isn't exactly a handout because the Fed is purchasing bonds, but it functions in almost the same way. The theory is that by increasing the banks' reserves, it will allow those banks to increase lending. However, a good number of banks have chosen to simply sit on the extra cash and earn interest from the Fed (talk about a self-defeating system...).

      "The subjects of every state ought to contribute towards the support of the government, as nearly as possible, in proportion to their respective abilities" - Adam Smith

      by Jesse Douglas on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 09:13:15 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well, it must be the new RW talking pt (0+ / 0-)

    When I tweeted a story entitled "Where the American Dream is Dead and Buried", I got this response:

    the american dream still lives.  The american public schl system just doesn't support it.
    I tweeted back inequality is killing the dream. Then she responds with this:
    no.  Inequality motivates those of us who see it as unjust to define a new reality in which all can succeed.
    This person has a PHD....obviously it is in B**S**
    •  The inherent flaw in her expressed thoughts (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      417els

      is that a reality in which all succeed would be one that erases the inequality she finds so motivating.  After all, if there were no inequality, she would have succeeded, and had no further motivation to 'erase injustice'.

      And, of course, inasmuch as 'the public school system'  doesn't support equality, it's because we allow it to be unequal and dependent upon local tax bases, rather than providing equal resources to all students.  Underfunded schools are decrepit, can only pay poor salaries (thus losing out on better teachers to richer schools), and have no equipment.

      The way to create an equal footing in schooling is to provide equal public schools, not to create even more inequality by funneling public funding to private schools.

    •  Piled Higher and Deeper. nt (0+ / 0-)

      Bello ne credite, Americani; quidquid id est, timeo Republicanos et securitatem ferentes.

      by Sura 109 on Mon Jan 27, 2014 at 02:33:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think the most important crap he said (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Major Kong, 417els, organicus

    is that he has no idea what actually motivates people in the 99%.  How many people do you know wake up in the morning and actually think about being the next billionaire?  You go around and actually ask people, they'll tell you they want security--- A stable, safe home.  Food on the table.  Kids in school and able to pursue opportunities.  A couple of nice things.  

    That is to say, hardly anyone is actually that ambitious.  Most people want a calm, tranquil, or even dull security over the risk and reward of the wolf's den. And we've built an economy that helps those the wolf's den at the expense of the rest of us.  

    The thing is, Mr O'Leary is only human, and we humans have a tendency to assume that we ourselves are normal, and that everyone else is like us... it's a cognitive shortcut or bias that's part of our natural psychology, and it's hard to overcome.  (That's why, for instance, we liberals often try to persuade conservatives with mere reality, because we assume that they, like us, care about reality.  And why conservatives assume that liberals make up their own reality--- conservatives make up theirs, and they figure everyone else does, too.)   This is where empathy comes in--- not only to help us understand  people unlike ourselves, but also to simply understand that there are people unlike ourselves.

    Nobody deserves poverty.

    by nominalize on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 05:15:55 AM PST

  •  'Shark Tank' nauseates me. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bkamr, organicus

    I know it's supposed to be this sort of 'America has Talent' of entrepreneurship, but the title is too appropriate - it's a group of already overly rich greedheads simply trying to find good ideas to take a large slice of the profits of because the capital lending market is so tight that all of these people with good ideas can't get money any other way then to let these greedheads get even more wealthy by skimming away large parts of their business to be.

  •  Thomas James Perkins is responsible for killing (0+ / 0-)

    someone with his yacht.

    In 1996, Perkins was convicted in France of involuntary manslaughter arising from a yacht-racing collision, forcing him to pay a $10,000 fine.
    I'm curious about Thomas James Perkin's background and family.  The Wiki link says he went to MIT and then Harvard (EECS then MBA), but that is as far back as it goes.  No family before that.  

    There seems to have been some Perkins brothers in Boston  (James, Thomas, and Charles) who were in business in early America.  

    About that group of Perkins' I found this:

    In 1815 the brothers, still retaining their keen spirit of business adventure, opened a Mediterranean office to buy Turkish opium for resale in China. Neither were concerned with the morality of selling slaves or opium. All that mattered to them was that what they traded should make money for the firm. Thomas's minister, William Ellery Channing, did not appreciate merchants much, even those in his congregation, and later condemned the business of slavery. "I see not how men absorbed in business," Channing wrote in 1834, "can accomplish the great end of life. That end is to strengthen, to extend and keep in invigorating action, the principles of love to God and to our fellow creatures."
    Anyone know anything about the contemporary Perkin's family?  I'd be curious to know if he's a self-made, sociopathic creep, or if was born into an old money, sociopathic family that made their money from the slave and drug trade.

    Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

    by bkamr on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 06:10:18 AM PST

  •  Question: What percent can be in the top 1%? (0+ / 0-)

    Answer: only 1%, no matter how hard everyone else tries.

  •  Obey Uncle Sugar (0+ / 0-)

    Republicans worship Uncle Sugar because Uncle Sugar thinks he is a deity.

  •  I'm practically speechless (0+ / 0-)

    Not so much that he believes this crap, but that he actually had the gall to say it out loud.

    He's talking about families who have to decide which of their children live and which die, because they can't afford to feed everyone. People who have to weigh the dangers of dehydration and dysentery every time they get thirsty. And he thinks that the problem is that they're simply not motivated enough?!?!

    "The subjects of every state ought to contribute towards the support of the government, as nearly as possible, in proportion to their respective abilities" - Adam Smith

    by Jesse Douglas on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 09:00:06 AM PST

  •  Laughing all the way to the bank! (0+ / 0-)

    Millionaire investor and star of Shark Tank Kevin O’Leary is laughing his way all the way to the bank.  His mind is so twisted that he has no conscience left.  Typical of the lunatic world of the wealthy elite!
    They say, here, let me slap you around harder, it is good for you, and you like it!
    One of these days... pay backs are a b__!

  •  What harm could come of poor wanting to be rich? (0+ / 0-)

    O'Leary says wealth redistribution is never going to happen, yet believes it is healthy for the poor to want desperately to be rich. Because to go from poor with no opportunity, one has to have a strong, desperate desire to better one's situation. If opportunities like education are not given, some people find a way to improve their economic status through drug dealing, arms dealing, human trafficking, and piracy. Ambitious people create their own paths when none are available.

    And history is replete with examples of involuntary wealth redistribution by wealthy people who, like O'Leary, are too gluttonous and gleeful and heartless to support voluntary redistribution of even a fraction of their excess wealth to help others meet the basic needs of survival.

    He should also study Maslow's hierarchy of needs. People who cannot eat will first invest their energy toward finding the next meal for their families before trying to tackle bigger desires like getting rich.

    The ignorance of history, sociology, and medical science his starements reveal is appapling.

    When early man spent all his time working for survival, innovation was slow. As modest innovations like farming implements decreased the amount of time required for survival and allowed more leisure time, man began to innovate and advance much faster. Today, many people are back to spending every moment just trying to survive. Plus, lack of nutrition in childhood or lack of medical care hurts one's chances of ever reaching the 1%.

    And when people are starving and cannot meet that most basic need, and their children suffer, the unfairness of knowing some people dine on steak and lobster every night or buy a bottle of champaign or a mushroom for what it would cost to feed their family for a few months, they get justifiably angry.

    So O'Leary can keep imagining wealth redistribution will never happen, but he need only look to history to see how foolish his belief is.

    **Electing Republicans to the government is like hiring pyromaniacs as firemen. They all just want to see everything burn to the ground.**

    by CatM on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 09:51:31 AM PST

  •  Income Inequality - O'Leary (0+ / 0-)

    O'Leary is truly crazy-ass insane!

  •  I Agree - This Is Fantastic; It's Also Incredible! (0+ / 0-)

    But only in the original senses of the words:

    1. Existing in or constructed from fantasy; of or relating to fantasy; fanciful.

    2. Not believable; implausible; seemingly only possible in fantasy.

    3. Resembling fantasies in irregularity, caprice, or eccentricity; irregular; grotesque.

    From Latin incrēdibilis (“that cannot be believed”), from in- (“not”) + crēdibilis (“worthy of belief”), from crēdō (“believe”).

    Too implausible to be credible; beyond belief; unbelievable.

    And why not throw in fabulous as well:
    1. of or relating to fable, myth or legend.

    2. characteristic of fables; marvelous, extraordinary, incredible, unbelievable, absurd, extreme, or exaggerated.

    3. fictional or not believable; made up.

    4. known for telling fables or falsehoods; unreliable.

  •  He's just obsessed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    organicus

    It hardly matters what your obsession is, if it is left unchecked it will go to absurd lengths and cause a lot of trouble.  And if your obsession is vacuuming up all the wealth in the world, no one else is safe.  In my charmless little apartment, with the few things I have, I am wealthier than O'Leary, or the Koch brothers, or any number of other epic financial barracudas, because I have ENOUGH.  I have no desire to monopolize anything, and would be tickled if no one had less than I do.

    A mind is a terrible thing to close.

    by alliwant on Sun Jan 26, 2014 at 12:26:02 PM PST

  •  He'a winning. (0+ / 0-)

    And he's winning because humans will always find things to devalue others over, even if they're irrational. If a person does something you consider wrong, that's one thing, But wealth inequality is basically built upon people being born something wrong, and poor people "born the right way" flocking to defend anyone rich against poor people "born the wrong way"

    Whether the prejudice is race, gender, religion, nationality, ect, poor people will always fight and die to protect the rich people they think were born the right way afainst other poor people born the "wrong way"

  •  I know this is far out but (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Azubia, Homer177

    after reading some of this Dairy, I started reading various news stories and the thought occurred to me, "Rich people really need us".

    Why you ask? I just started thinking about our civilization becoming increasingly technology dependent.

    Think of the mounds and mounds of research just in the medical field alone. Not to mention the other areas of our lives. Construction alone is more and more precise with tools requiring trained people to operate them, much less do the programming.

    What would that wealth be to the rich if there was a natural disaster. They would have to "Trade" dearly for a loaf of bread. They need us as much as we need them and until we get people to realize that, the gap will increase.

  •  THE TALIBAN HAVE THE RIGHT IDEA (0+ / 0-)

    I would like to see an all-out class war. Instead of going into theaters & malls and killing innocent regular folks, these gun-toting avengers should be knocking off the filthy rich greedy bastards that are destroying the fabric of this country. Would you mourn Kevin O'Leary after what he said? Not me!!!!

    In fact, the poor, sick, homeless and destitute have nothing to lose. I say: Arm them and let them rid society of the vermin like Koch Bros., Sheldon Addelson & Kevin O. These rich cretins are relishing the misery of the lower class. If one of us "working class folks" is forced to sell their home, these leeches go in and buy the property for pennies on the dollar and then make profit on the misery of others. You can't put a sick dying man in prison, so what does he have to lose? Why not knock off a few rich scumbags before you go?

    They might not be so smug if they have to fear that the guy standing on the corner when they drive by in their fancy limos might pull out a gun and blow their rich greedy head clean off. Too bad we didn't have suicide bombers that could walk into the rich guy's Corporate Headquarters and level the place. Put the fear of God in these cruel, heartless, greedy pig-men.

  •  A little off on his math (0+ / 0-)
    They get the motivation to look up to the one percent and say I want to become one of those people.
    That isn't the top 1% its the top 0.000001214%

    New Plan: Obamacare Old Plan: Nobodycares

    by groupw on Mon Jan 27, 2014 at 10:24:24 AM PST

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