Are all millionaires and billionaires the product of the investment industry? It seems many are.
Is this the primary cause of the ever-widening divide between the 1 percent and the 99 percent?
Like Wall Street's Gordon Gecko, investment folk don't create anything but wealth for themselves and similar investors, who are already well-heeled. It's clear the 99 percent exists because the big guys are not producing substance, other than multi-digited portfolio balances for each other.
Conservatives rail about all the freeloaders in our society and point at those receiving Medicaid, food stamps and unemployment benefits, to name just three. There is indeed all kinds of freeloading in America, but the above examples are penny-ante handouts compared to the world of investment and finance keeping the general population in poverty.
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Check out PBS' Moyers & Company "Crony Capitalism," featuring David Stockman, Ronald Reagan's budget director, and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gretchen Morgenson. Stockman says:
"... There have been so many bailouts ... so much abuse and misuse of government power for private ends and private gains. ... We have an entitled class in this country that is far worse than ... the welfare queens that Ronald Reagan cited. We have an entitled class of Wall Street financiers and corporate CEOs who believe the government should do whatever is necessary ... tax relief, tax incentives, tax cuts, loan guarantees, Federal Reserve market intervention and stabilization. Whatever it takes ... to keep the game going and their stock price moving upward."
Conservatives advocate smaller government but thrive on its largesse.