05.16.10 Poor Little Rich Folks
A couple of recent posts on Good.is (a truly fabulous blog, worth checking out!) reminded me of just how awful wealthy right-wingers have it in the newly Socialist States of America. Or, rather, just how bad they think they have it and remind us they have it every single day.
You see, that’s what this whole Tea Party phenomenon is about. Thanks to brilliant polling and analysis by the New York Times, we learned last month that only a small portion of the movement consists of crazy-as-a-loon conspiracy theorists howling at the moon and rabid theocrats outraged at the thought that somebody, somewhere might be thinking for themselves. Nope — the movement is dominated by well educated, well heeled cynics who are out to make sure that no portion of their wealth goes to anyone but themselves. Their rage, their outrage comes from their feeling of great injustice that they can’t buy a yacht or a second house or a third SUV.
And that’s the difference between so-called “conservatives” in this country (I hate the term, because “conservative” implies prudence and rationality) and the rest of us. They — the Right-Wing Whiners — wake up every day with an ax to grind about the terrible hand they’ve been dealt. The rest of us wake up fully aware of how lucky we are, how unlucky others are, and how little it costs us to help the unlucky be a little luckier.
And that brings us to Good’s posts:
The first one asks “How Rich Are You?” and points to a lovely little site, globatlrichlist.com. Once there, chose your currency, input your annual income, and see where you rank among the world’s elite. My individual, not-extraordinary (by US standards) personal income puts me in the top 0.91% of the world’s population. Of course, the tool doesn’t compare me to the billions of human beings who have ever lived, nor does it take into account the amount of wealth I already have. How high would I rank then?
There’s not a Right-Wing Whiner out there who would be willing to or interested in taking this test.
The second post reports on a study by the Bureau of Economic Analysis showing that the US tax “burden” is at its lowest level in 60 years: 9.2% of of all personal income. This comes as a surprise to anyone who gets news from the mainstream media, with its commitment to serving the horribly disenfranchised wealthy.
Of course, the right wing won’t be mollified by these statistics, because as long as there is a dime they don’t get to keep — as long as there is a single government program they don’t personally benefit from — the Great Whining Campaign must go on.
It is indeed an awful cross to bear to feel so unfortunate all the time.
Tags: wealthYou can comment below, or link to this permanent URL from your own site.