If You’re a Working Person, Good Luck!

Larry 'n NassauHere’s a quote I found online by the CEO of Goldman Sachs, Lloyd Blankfein. It speaks volumes about the reality of life for today’s working-class American:

“This country does a great job of creating wealth, but not a great [job] of distributing it.”

To expound on just what Mr. Blankfein is eluding to check out these very clear facts about life in America for those who are fortunate enough to even have a job.

  • From 1978 to 2011, CEO compensation increased more than 725%.
  • From 1978 to 2011, worker compensation grew by 5.7%.
  • Since 1978 CEO compensation has grown 127 times greater than work compensation.
  • In 2010 CEO salaries grew 28%
  • In 2011 CEO salaries grew 15%
  • In 1978 CEOs took home 26.5 times what workers earned.
  • In 2013 CEOs take home 206 times what workers earn.
  • CEOs of large corporations often get huge “golden parachute” payoffs if their companies fail. Workers get nothing.
  • Worker wages are not tied to productivity. Productivity has skyrocketed but wages haven’t. American workers are producing more and getting paid less.
  • Income disparity (inequality in earnings) in America is close to record levels.
  • Income disparity has left 95% of Americans further in debt than they’ve ever been.

These facts, taken from a variety of sources, simply leave me shaking my head in wonder. Wondering how the American worker continues to vote for politicians who have permitted this to become reality in America. I heard one TV commentator state that given all this a parent can no longer say to their child, “Study and work hard and you can become whatever you want. You can someday live in that big home on the hill.” Something has to be done to break this reality. Government is the only entity with the power to do it and both parties that now make up the most unaccomplished congress in the nation’s history aren’t about to use that power for fear the super wealthy and powerful will withdraw their reelection support.

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