Even though presidential elections are over a year away, politicians are enjoying a huge audience of (hopefully) voting citizens. One of the most important issues we face right now is income inequality. We must listen to both sides and select an individual who will address and set financial policy changes for the good of the people rather than the pockets of the “fat cats” residing within the proverbial one percent.
I struggle to understand how varied the messages are about achieving some sort of income balance because the rhetoric isn’t matching the facts.
FACT: “The Chief Executive Officers of the top 350 American corporations were paid 331 times more money than the average U.S. Worker. Those executives made an average of $11.7 million dollars compared to the average worker who earned $35,239.” That statistic is from April 15, 2013 – and the income inequality has risen steadily since then. Yet the tax rates (taxes paid by our citizens to the federal government) are astoundingly unequal: the richest one percent pays 5.6% in taxes while the average income earner (you!) pays about 13%.
Numbers don’t lie – income inequality “has turned the U.S. government into a protection racket for the wealthy.” And the wealthy, in turn, donate funds that support the politicians that write the laws that continue to give the wealthy and their large corporations’ financial breaks. Citizens must get smarter about money issues so that we can vote to reform the status quo. Income inequality is real – the rich are getting richer day after day, and they are quite content to keep it that way. It doesn’t matter which political party takes this ball and runs with it! My vote will be with the candidate that shows interest in making real changes for you and me.
By Signe Lambertsen