OT alternative wealth statistics

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For those folks constantly touting how the rich get more of a refund cause they make more money, let's see if this ratio makes sense to ya.
Renata
"It is not acceptable that the wealthiest 1 percent of the population owns more wealth than the bottom 95 percent.
That's not America. ... It is not acceptable that the 13,000 wealthiest families in this country earn more income than the bottom twenty million families.
It is not acceptable that the greed of corporate America has resulted in the CEOs of large corporations earning over 500 times what their average worker makes. ... Today, the largest employer in America is not General Motors. It is Wal-Mart, which pays people subsistence wages and minimal benefits. It is now being sued by workers in twenty-eight states because the company is not even paying the overtime it should be paying. ... Now how many of you know that today the American worker is working longer hours by far than the people in any other industrialized country? Today, 40 percent of American workers are working fifty hours a week or more. That's the collapse of the middle class, and we have got to turn that around.
The scandal of our time is that with all the explosion of technology and productivity the average American is not working fewer hours and making more money. We are not down to a thirty-hour week. The middle class is not expanding, and poverty has not been eliminated. On the contrary, it has increased.
Because of the greed of corporate America, real wages in the private sector are 8 percent less than they were thirty years ago. And where has all of that accumulated wealth gone? It has gone to the people on top, who have seen a huge increase in the percentage of wealth and income they receive. ..."
The rest of the article is at: Reprinted from The Progressive: http://www.progressive.org / feb04/sand0204.html
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Well, a couple of quick thoughts, without really taking any sort of position on the issue...

What is the definition of "wealth" for this statement? My guess is that it's liquid assets (stocks, bonds, money in the bank, etc), but not real estate. In general, lower income folk have a greater proportion of their money invested in their home (i.e. real estate) than higher income folk. BTW, according to Merrill Lynch (Pierce Pfenner & Psmith), the wealthiest 1% would include _all_ Americans with a wealth of $1 million or more, so that's not just the Bill Gateses.

This seems a little misleading. The bottom 20 million is ~7.5% of the population, which is roughly equal to the unemployment rate. Making a comparision between a group, any group, which has income and a group which has no income isn't terribly useful.
John
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I would assume that the definition of family here is more than a single individual. Assuming family refers to two individuals, you're talking about 14% of the population. Assuming 3 people yields about 20% and a family size of 4 would be 26% of the population. Quite a bit above the unemployment level.
scott
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snipped-for-privacy@slp53.sl.home (Scott Lurndal) wrote in message

Well if you're going that route, what percentage of the population are "unemployed"-meaning that they have no jobs? This would include most children from 0 to at least 16 and a significant majority of those over 65 (don't forget to add in those "house-spouses" who choose to not be financially employed). This is in addition to those who are actually unemployed. I imagine that is well over your 26%. So back to the previous posters point.
Dave Hall
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Dave Hall writes:

But those are not factored in to unemployment figures. There is some factoring of teenagers (16 to 18?), though I don't think there should be, unless the teenager is no longer in school. And for those drawing unemployment, 39 weeks (max) into that, job or no job, you're off the list.
One thing we can be certain of: unless the limits of any statistical analysis are included in the analysis, the result is inaccurate enough to qualify as bullshit.
Charlie Self "Character is much easier kept than recovered." Thomas Paine
http://hometown.aol.com/charliediy/myhomepage/business.html
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I just read in the paper today that there are ~9 million unemployed folks in this country. This does not include children and retired seniors. Why you would try to include folks who either can't be employed (ain't too many 2 year olds who are being sought for those CEO positions) or are done w/employment is crazy
Renata
On 23 Jan 2004 07:52:31 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@nhsd.k2.pa.us (David Hall) wrote:

smart, not dumb for email
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Read the remarks of whomever I was responding to. When the first poster said that x number of families was about equal to the number of unemployed (by which he meant the number of people not making an income), the next poster wanted to extrapolate families to number of people. That is fine if you also extrapolate the comparitive the same way, thus you need to try to determine the number of people in the population not earning any money. I realise that this is all meaningless drivel as comparisons go, but if you are going to try to compare two things, at least try to keep them comparable. Of course if you like to confuse those you are having discussions with by comparing apples to sea turtles, enjoy!
Dave Hall
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I reread the articles and it must be late. I'm not sure where either of you were going with the comparisons to family size and percentage of unemployment or what kids and retired folks have to do w/ unemployment - since they don't count
I calculate that there are ~150,000,000 folks that want to or should be employed (6% unemployment rate, population of 285 million). Forget gramps and junior.
The statement that strated these shenanigans, " It is not acceptable that the 13,000 wealthiest families in this country earn more income than the bottom twenty million families."
That's 13,000 vs 20,000,000. And, I'd guess those top 13,000 don't have mom and dad going out to be wage earners and contributing toward the total like the bottom 20,000,000 do (with a few of the kids maybe working at Mickey D's too).
Renata
On 24 Jan 2004 17:07:27 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@cs.com (David Hall) wrote:

smart, not dumb for email
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Let's imagine that a good portion of those 13,000 have created companies that employ large numbers of people. Now, I wouldn't disagree that some of the corporate CEOs are overpaid, but not because of the amount of their compensation, but because their companies just aren't performing. For the ones that perform well, who's to say that they are compensated too much? I liken this to the idea that athletes are paid too much. IMHO, if they generate a certain level of revenue for their team, they have a right to a fair percentage of that revenue. The same would go for a CEO. There are still a few communist countries around. If you think we should emulate their economic model, please suggest one where you'd like to live. The truth is, capitalism isn't a perfect system, but it seems to be the best one going. Some people, because of better opportunites, better preparation, harder work, just plain luck, etc, are going to do better than others. There's a quote on this topic that I happen to agree with. "...there are many things in life that are not fair, that wealthy people can afford and poor people can't. But I don't believe that the Federal Government should take action to try to make these opportunities exactly equal, particularly when there is a moral factor involved.". Who said this? Ronald Reagan? George Bush? Nope. This was said by (are you sitting down?) Jimmy Carter in 1977. I'm nowhere near that 13,000, but I don't feel the need to punish them in order to even things out.
todd

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todd wrote:

I don't either, FWIW. I do think they're greedy bastards though. If I had a $100 million a year job, I'd put in my notice the day I took the job, work out my two weeks, and retire for life. :)
--
Michael McIntyre ---- Silvan < snipped-for-privacy@users.sourceforge.net>
Linux fanatic, and certified Geek; registered Linux user #243621
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1) No one wants to take money away from the wealthy. But they do need to pay their fair share, which is a tad higher than the everyday peon. This idea that their fair share should be exactly equal to the rest of the folks' is ridiculous (they have more expendable income, and take more advatage of the government's largess & services).
2) Yup, CEO's deserve some compensation for the job they do. But the difference between their salary and the folks who work for themhas gotten ridiculous. Capitalism is alive and well in a number of places on this world, but only in this country is the salary difference so skewed. W/out the worker bees, your CEO don't get a lot of normal work done.
Both points in a way are examples where the system has gone to extremes.
Renata
On Sat, 24 Jan 2004 21:00:20 -0600, "todd"

--snip--
--snip--
smart, not dumb for email
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The IRS says the richest 1 percent of taxpayers already pay 34 percent of all income taxes. The top 1 percent of Americans - those who earn more than about $300,000 a year - pay 34 percent, more than a third of all income taxes, and the top 5 percent, those making over $125,000, pay more than half.
-source: ABC News
Let's take a look at that on instant replay: - Richest 1% pay 34% of the income tax - Richest 5% pays 50% of the income tax
Just how much more is required of them to "pay their fair share?"
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Can't be determined from the facts at hand.
In order to answer that question, one needs to know what portion of the income is earned by the top 1% and top 5%. If those groups are earning 34% and 50% of the total income, respectively, then they're paying their fair share now. If they're earning 17% and 25% respectively, then they're paying much *more* than "fair share".
-- Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
How come we choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America?
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Doug Miller responds:

And if they're earning 50% and 66% respectively, they're underpaying.
I don't know where they fall. Does anyone?
Charlie Self "Character is much easier kept than recovered." Thomas Paine
http://hometown.aol.com/charliediy/myhomepage/business.html
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On Sun, 25 Jan 2004 21:24:24 +0000, Charlie Self wrote:

One more try - according to the IRS:
http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-soi/00inrate.pdf
pdf page 10/irs page 15
in 2000 (latest year of this report) the top 1% paid 37.4% of income taxes with 20.8% of income. The top 5% paid 56.3% of income taxes with 35.3% of income. I'm sure gabriel will jump in again and claim that they are all greedy bastards who hide their income in mattresses and other not verifiable schemes as well as doing grab and dash of the poor's food stamps.
-Doug
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In which case it is clear that these groups are already paying _far_more_ than their fair share.
-- Doug Miller (alphageek at milmac dot com)
How come we choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America?
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Well, as 5 or six years ago, the top 5 percent owned over 60 percent of the wealth.
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In rec.woodworking

If you have a point to that statement, I confess that I do not know what it is.
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snipped-for-privacy@nospam.com says...

Well, gee, 60% is greater than 50%. I thought that was obvious, but I apparently overestimated my audience.
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kenR wrote:

;-)
-- Mark
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