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America takes notice of gap in incomes
Houston Chronicle) ^ | December 16, 2006 | MATTHEW BENJAMIN

Posted on 12/18/2006 8:53:12 AM PST by GodGunsGuts

...

The portion of national income earned by the top 20 percent of households grew to 50.4 percent last year, up from 45.6 percent 20 years ago; the bottom 60 percent of U.S. households received 26.6 percent, down from 29.9 percent in 1985, according to the Census Bureau.

Meanwhile, average pay for corporate chief executive officers rose to 369 times that of the average worker last year, according to finance professor Kevin Murphy of the University of Southern California; that compares with 131 times in 1993 and 36 times in 1976.

...

(Excerpt) Read more at chron.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: depression; despair; doom; dustbowl; grapesofwrath; iluvwilliegreen; williegreenismyhero; woeisus
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1 posted on 12/18/2006 8:53:15 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
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To: GodGunsGuts

Class envy - It isn't just for breakfast anymore.


2 posted on 12/18/2006 8:54:27 AM PST by dfwgator
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To: GodGunsGuts

So?


3 posted on 12/18/2006 8:54:54 AM PST by RockinRight (Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. He's a Socialist. And unqualified.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

What, no BARF alert?


4 posted on 12/18/2006 8:55:23 AM PST by oh8eleven (RVN '67-'68)
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To: GodGunsGuts

IIRC, these stats were thoroughly debunked in the WSJ Editorial Page last week. Stale wrong "News" alert!


5 posted on 12/18/2006 8:55:32 AM PST by Uncle Miltie (Heads up, people! The Nazis are back. They're more numerous and gearing up with atomic weapons.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

"Most of the concern is among Democrats and independent voters, although a majority of Republicans — 55 percent — also called the situation serious."

___________


So much for a valid poll.


6 posted on 12/18/2006 8:55:36 AM PST by rightinthemiddle (Without the Media, the Left and Islamofacists are Nothing.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

Wonder how much more in taxes Matthew Benjamin wants to pay in order to rectify this horrible injustice.


7 posted on 12/18/2006 8:55:46 AM PST by 3AngelaD (ic.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

Conclusion.........


The bottom 60% needs to work smarter !!!


8 posted on 12/18/2006 8:56:20 AM PST by Jeffrey_D. (Seek first to understand, then to be understood)
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To: maui_hawaii; AmericaUnited; traviskicks; Thunder90; GOPJ; OregonRancher; expat_panama; remember; ...

Unbalanced economy ping.

Now for the good news...

"Corporate profits are at their highest level since 1929"

http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/2006/12/25/8396760/index.htm?postversion=2006121805


9 posted on 12/18/2006 8:56:59 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
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To: Jeffrey_D.

Charlie Rangel has a better idea.


10 posted on 12/18/2006 8:56:59 AM PST by Eric in the Ozarks (BTUs are my Beat.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

This means Pelosi&Co's harping about middle class wages has no traction.


11 posted on 12/18/2006 8:58:16 AM PST by PRND21
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To: GodGunsGuts
Meanwhile, average pay for corporate chief executive officers rose to 369 times that of the average worker last year, according to finance professor Kevin Murphy of the University of Southern California; that compares with 131 times in 1993 and 36 times in 1976.

The Golden Rule: He who has the gold, makes the rules.
12 posted on 12/18/2006 8:58:30 AM PST by Old_Mil (http://www.constitutionparty.com/)
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To: Eric in the Ozarks
"Charlie Rangel has a better idea."


Yea, well I have an idea for Charlie, but Olive said we need to keep it clean !!!

Merry Christmas Olive!!!
13 posted on 12/18/2006 8:58:41 AM PST by Jeffrey_D. (Seek first to understand, then to be understood)
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To: GodGunsGuts

[...The portion of national income earned by the top 20 percent of households grew to 50.4 percent last year, up from 45.6 percent 20 years ago; the bottom 60 percent of U.S. households received 26.6 percent, down from 29.9 percent in 1985, according to the Census Bureau...]

In other words, more people from the lower income portion of this census have moved up to the upper portion, reflecting a stonger gravitation into and upward from the middle class.

Did I read that part correctly, or did I draw conclusions based on what was left out?


14 posted on 12/18/2006 8:59:02 AM PST by Tenacious 1 (No to nitwit jesters with a predisposition of self importance and unqualified political opinions!)
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To: GodGunsGuts

Funny that these little diatribes always choose to compare the income of CEOs with average workers. CEO is of course a hated term for a hated man - the boss. And after Ken Lay and a series of high profile financial fraud cases it is somewhat synonymous with "crook".

I'd like the article re-written using these other overpaid individuals:

NBA Player salaries have risen 245% faster than average workers.

First tier Hollywood Stars have seen income increase 330% faster than average workers.

Successful World Tour of Poker players have seen income rise 1034% faster than average workers.

Thankfully in our country it still means something to work hard and achieve things. Whether in the realm of tossing a little ball through a hoop, pretending to have emotions and faking sex, or being a really good poker player. Given the huge premium paid to "the best" at these trivial pursuits the fact that a CEO (most of whom have advanced degrees and years of experience unlike those listed above) who runs a company that likely provides essential goods and services is paid a premium upsets me not at all.


15 posted on 12/18/2006 9:00:59 AM PST by Jack Black
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To: rightinthemiddle

Sounds like the Democrats should have let the Social Security reforms pass....so the lower income people could have benefitted from the stock market.....but NOOOOOOOOOO


16 posted on 12/18/2006 9:01:05 AM PST by Youngman442002
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To: dfwgator

And by the way the bottom 50% of wage earners in the US pay only 3% of all taxes.


17 posted on 12/18/2006 9:01:26 AM PST by Ouderkirk (America won't win another war until the 1960's flower children are pushing up petunias.)
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To: Brad Cloven
"IIRC, these stats were thoroughly debunked in the WSJ Editorial Page last week. Stale wrong "News" alert!"



More Junk Science..........


WATER IS DANGEROUS

A student at Eagle Rock Junior High won first prize at the Greater Idaho Falls Science Fair, April 26. He was attempting to show how conditioned we have become to alarmists practicing junk science and spreading fear of everything in our environment. In his project he urged people to sign a petition demanding strict control or total elimination of the chemical "dihydrogen monoxide."

And for plenty of good reasons, since:

* it can cause excessive sweating and vomiting
* it is a major component in acid rain
* it can cause severe burns in its gaseous state
* accidental inhalation can kill you
* it contributes to erosion
* it decreases effectiveness of automobile brakes
* it has been found in tumors of terminal cancer patients

He asked 50 people if they supported a ban of the chemical.

* Forty-three (43) said yes,
* six (6) were undecided,
* and only one (1) knew that the chemical was water.

The title of his prize winning project was, "How Gullible Are We?"
He feels the conclusion is obvious.
18 posted on 12/18/2006 9:02:32 AM PST by Jeffrey_D. (Seek first to understand, then to be understood)
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To: GodGunsGuts

This is one of the most liberally-biased articles I've ever seen.


19 posted on 12/18/2006 9:02:32 AM PST by rightinthemiddle (Without the Media, the Left and Islamofacists are Nothing.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

Sounds like incentive to work hard, study hard, and do better for you and your family.


20 posted on 12/18/2006 9:03:13 AM PST by theDentist (Qwerty ergo typo : I type, therefore I misspelll.)
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To: GodGunsGuts
..don't cha just love it when they throw numbers around...
sounds like Calypso Louis and his mothership and time machine.

Doogle
21 posted on 12/18/2006 9:03:13 AM PST by Doogle (USAF 68-73...although it's been said many times many ways Merry Christmas tooooo you)
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To: GodGunsGuts; Brad Cloven

The lower line in the graph shows that the amount of income Messrs. Piketty and Saez attribute to the top 1% accounted for 10.6% of personal income in 2004. That 10.6% figure looks much higher than it was in 1980. Yet most of that increase was, as they explained, "concentrated in two years, 1987 and 1988, just after the Tax Reform Act of 1986." As Mr. Saez added, "It seems clear that the sharp, and unprecedented, increase in incomes from 1986 to 1988 is related to the large decrease in marginal tax rates that happened exactly during those years.".....

The top line in the graph shows how much of the top 1%'s income came from business profits. In 1981, only 7.8% of the income attributed to the top 1% came from business, because, as Mr. Saez explained, "the standard C-corporation form was more advantageous for high-income individual owners because the top individual tax rate was much higher than the corporate tax rate and taxes on capital gains were relatively low." More businesses began to file under the individual tax when individual tax rates came down in 1983. This trend became a stampede in 1987-1988 when the business share of top percentile income suddenly increased by 10 percentage points. The business share increased again in recent years, accounting for 28.4% of the top 1%'s income in 2004.

As was well-documented years ago by economists Roger Gordon and Joel Slemrod, a great deal of the apparent increase in reported high incomes has been due to "tax shifting." That is, lower individual tax rates induced thousands of businesses to shift from filing under the corporate tax system to filing under the individual tax system, often as limited liability companies or Subchapter S corporations.

The Top 1% . . . of What?

22 posted on 12/18/2006 9:06:36 AM PST by Toddsterpatriot (If you agree with EPI, you're not a conservative!)
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To: GodGunsGuts; All

Anyone want to set this idiot straight...

mbenjamin2@bloomberg.net


23 posted on 12/18/2006 9:07:27 AM PST by eleni121 ( + En Touto Nika! By this sign conquer! + Constantine the Great))
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To: Jeffrey_D.

This is especially so since their jobs are increasingly being sent to places like Red China.


24 posted on 12/18/2006 9:07:58 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
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To: GodGunsGuts
I find the avg CEO at 369 times to be odd, for a $20,000 worker that would mean his boss makes $8million. That, I do not believe.
25 posted on 12/18/2006 9:08:17 AM PST by SF Republican
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To: GodGunsGuts

"Americans overwhelmingly say the growing gap between rich and poor has become a serious national concern, a sentiment that may bolster Democrats' plans to narrow the income divide when they take control of Congress."

"A month after Republicans lost their majority in Congress, poll respondents generally expressed optimism about the economy, with about three in five saying it's doing well. "

"Still, anxiety about the growing rich-poor divide unites Americans, crossing income and political divisions."

"Democrats are considering proposals to shrink the income gap, such as boosting the minimum wage, scrutinizing executive pay, increasing tax credits available to the poor, and making health care and higher education more affordable."

ELECTIONS HAVE CONSEQUENCES...ELECT SOCIALISTS, YOU GET SOCIALISM.


26 posted on 12/18/2006 9:09:31 AM PST by rightinthemiddle (Without the Media, the Left and Islamofacists are Nothing.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

"A month after Republicans lost their majority in Congress, poll respondents generally expressed optimism about the economy..."

_______

The Media at work! The Democrats have saved the day BEFORE they take control. It's a Miracle!


27 posted on 12/18/2006 9:11:24 AM PST by rightinthemiddle (Without the Media, the Left and Islamofacists are Nothing.)
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To: rightinthemiddle
""Americans overwhelmingly say the growing gap between rich and poor has become a serious national concern, a sentiment that may bolster Democrats' plans to narrow the income divide when they take control of Congress.""


What these idiots just don't get is that in not tooo many years, the "Dreaded Gap" will be right back.......

for reasons understood by FReepers!
28 posted on 12/18/2006 9:12:55 AM PST by Jeffrey_D. (Seek first to understand, then to be understood)
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To: Jack Black
Funny that these little diatribes always choose to compare the income of CEOs with average workers.

I'm with you on this....it's a stupid comparison...the level of responsibility to the company is totally differnent between the two positions.

29 posted on 12/18/2006 9:14:00 AM PST by Mopp4
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To: dfwgator

I don't look at it from the class envy perspective. I look at from the perspective that our economy is not experiencing a broad-based recovery. The people in finance and Wall Street are doing just great. Unfortunately, the middle class seems to be barely holding its own in the wage arbitrage battle going on with places Red China.


30 posted on 12/18/2006 9:14:48 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
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To: Jeffrey_D.

Class envy. Jealousy. Class warfare.

This is how Communists and Socialists have taken control throughout history.

Now, capitalists have become the despised elite "royalty." The difference is, most of them earned it.


31 posted on 12/18/2006 9:18:10 AM PST by rightinthemiddle (Without the Media, the Left and Islamofacists are Nothing.)
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To: GodGunsGuts
Unfortunately, the middle class seems to be barely holding its own in the wage arbitrage battle going on with places Red China.

Did your "professor" tell you that? You never responded to my substantive refutation of his drivel. I wonder why? LOL!

32 posted on 12/18/2006 9:20:54 AM PST by Toddsterpatriot (If you agree with EPI, you're not a conservative!)
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To: GodGunsGuts

Here we go...take more from the good decision makers and give it to the lousy decision makers. Eliminating accountability for one's actions....wonderful people those libs are.


33 posted on 12/18/2006 9:21:01 AM PST by Archie Bunker on steroids (We'll stay out of your bedrooms, if you stay out of our children's classrooms.)
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To: Brad Cloven

the amazing thing about his (Alan reynolds in WSJ) was in that set of stats(who knows if they're the same ones?) that social security income amounts to almost 15% of allhousehold income, but it doesn't count(i.e. "makes the denominator smaller" in his terms). I always say A- Rod and myself average $12.5 million annually.


34 posted on 12/18/2006 9:21:06 AM PST by gusopol3
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To: Jeffrey_D.

In a free economy, the gap is simply a function of the gap in ambition. Some paths simply are more lucrative than others, and in this country, people have the freedom to choose their path. Some paths lead to riches, others, not.

Other countries try to limit this, by limiting educational opportunities, and impose strict controls and what companies can do. They look at it as balancing freedom for security.

But the lessons of history clearly show, that those who trade freedom for security, in the end, get neither.


35 posted on 12/18/2006 9:21:12 AM PST by dfwgator
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To: Toddsterpatriot

Thanks for the cite and support.


36 posted on 12/18/2006 9:24:20 AM PST by Uncle Miltie (Heads up, people! The Nazis are back. They're more numerous and gearing up with atomic weapons.)
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To: Brad Cloven

We need to stick together to refute the doomer idiots.


37 posted on 12/18/2006 9:26:36 AM PST by Toddsterpatriot (If you agree with EPI, you're not a conservative!)
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To: dfwgator

"In a free economy, the gap is simply a function of the gap in ambition. Some paths simply are more lucrative than others, and in this country, people have the freedom to choose their path. Some paths lead to riches, others, not."


I could not agree more, Like I said earlier, "The bottom 60% need to work smarter."


38 posted on 12/18/2006 9:28:31 AM PST by Jeffrey_D. (Seek first to understand, then to be understood)
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To: GodGunsGuts; Brad Cloven; Jeffrey_D.; Toddsterpatriot; Mase; 1rudeboy; winodog; Alia; nopardons
The confusion here is because nobody's reading the article that Guns has posted for us.  

This article is not about what's happening with how income is proportioned among the deserving and the undeserving.  This article is reporting the results of a poll of what people think of how America's income is being handed out.  What they're saying is that most people (especially Democrats) think rich people get too much and that maybe the federal government should save us.

Guns appears to not only agree with the idea of having the feds seize and redistribute everyone's wages, but he also seems to agree that the Houston Chronicle is telling the truth about what our thinking on incomes is, and that there's no need to bother going to all the trouble of looking at the actual income tallies themselves.

Now that's what I call scientific method!

39 posted on 12/18/2006 9:32:38 AM PST by expat_panama
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To: GodGunsGuts

I love this bandwagon. The communists are about again. The economy isn't in stasis and all economic locals are not the same. These numbers tell you absolutely nothing about what is really going on or even that something is wrong. I do think executives are overpaid but in a free nation their wages are determined by the companies that employ them. Wages are not set in a vacuum. Negotiations take place and since these "guys" are often master negotiators they reap the benefits of their positions.

I think entertainers are paid too much also but as long as they aren't being paid out of the tax payers coffers then why should I care? If the people at the bottom were to worry more about making themselves a valuable commodity rather than getting drunk on themselves as human beings they'd move up the ladder faster. It is frustrating and there are a lot of unnecessary barriers to success but that is life and you can either wait for someone to lift you over those barriers or you can go around them and over them any way you can.

I'd like to see it estimated how many people are employed or receive benefit from those in the top 20%. Quoting averages makes it appear to the layman that those in that economic bracket got there in some nefarious way. That the top 20% pay 80% of taxes, well we don't need to go there.


40 posted on 12/18/2006 9:33:11 AM PST by Maelstorm (Sentimentality has been confused with righteousness.)
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To: expat_panama
Gigi does have less of a chance of being refuted when he posts about feelings than when he posts about facts.

Did you see my takedown of his "professor"? Of course he didn't respond. He'd need to use facts and they're a bit thin on the ground on his goldbug websites.

41 posted on 12/18/2006 9:36:20 AM PST by Toddsterpatriot (If you agree with EPI, you're not a conservative!)
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To: GodGunsGuts
Why am I not surprised that you posted this tripe?

The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis took a longer perspective in the August issue of its "National Economic Trends." Michael Pakko used a graph to show that, "labor's share of income has averaged 70.5 percent (of national income) over the past 50 years and has remained within a narrow range of that average."

Real wages for all workers have been increasing regardless of what their portion of the national income may or may not be. The fact that CEO income has been increasing tells us only that there is a supply issue. Must be a tough and demanding job.

42 posted on 12/18/2006 9:36:50 AM PST by Mase (Save me from the people who would save me from myself!)
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To: GodGunsGuts

I'm a Republican who believes that conservatives SHOULD be concerned about income disparity, and I also believe that the 1990s were terrible for growing disparity, but this report says NOTHING! But what does this data show? That households were less likely to have multiple incomes, as single-parent households and never-marrieds became more prevalent? That massive numbers of low-income, illegal immigrants have weighed down the median incomes of the lower middle classes?

And if there is a problem, whose policies should be blamed? Reagan's conservativism? Clinton's liberalism? Bush's wishy-washiness?

That the 2nd tier (20-40%) held steady seems to disprove to me the notion that there was a crisis with a growing economic oligarchy. That the amount of wealth has grown so much since 1985 certainly disproves the notion that the lower 60% have seen their conditions worsen.


43 posted on 12/18/2006 9:37:13 AM PST by dangus (Pope calls Islam violent; Millions of Moslems demonstrate)
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To: GodGunsGuts
Unfortunately, the middle class seems to be barely holding its own in the wage arbitrage battle going on with places Red China.

Yeah, as this chart clearly shows, the middle class has been getting killed by all that arbitrage. LOL! Do you even know what the word means? I believe that you'll believe just about anything.


44 posted on 12/18/2006 9:45:10 AM PST by Mase (Save me from the people who would save me from myself!)
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To: Toddsterpatriot
Your article may explain some of the gains in the top 1%, but the problem with your article is it does not address what's been happening across the board. As you can see from the following graph, income gains have been declining in all income brackets, and this is especially so in the middle and lower classes. I contend this is so because they are locked in a losing labor arbitrage battle with places like Red China:


45 posted on 12/18/2006 9:51:03 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
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To: Toddsterpatriot
Or his response to me earlier (on the ridiculous 90% of our cash flow is from debt" article...

You are right, I would have to go look it up. And, of course, I could go look it up. But it wouldn't change anything...

In other words. "I don't know what I'm talking about, and no I won't look up the facts, because facts won't change my mind."

46 posted on 12/18/2006 9:58:53 AM PST by Fan of Fiat
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To: GodGunsGuts
income gains have been declining in all income brackets,

Slower gains are still gains. Are you surprised that gains are lower than they were after WWII ended? Are you surprised that gains at the lower end (high school dropouts, high school grads with no college) are lower in our modern economy than they were before. Haven't you heard that college is more important than it used to be?

47 posted on 12/18/2006 10:03:46 AM PST by Toddsterpatriot (If you agree with EPI, you're not a conservative!)
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To: Fan of Fiat
In other words. "I don't know what I'm talking about, and no I won't look up the facts, because facts won't change my mind."

I almost feel sorry for him. If he did some research, he'd realize how wrong he has been. And if he couldn't be miserable, what would he do for fun?

48 posted on 12/18/2006 10:08:22 AM PST by Toddsterpatriot (If you agree with EPI, you're not a conservative!)
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To: dangus
...conservatives SHOULD be concerned about income disparity...

If you got questions, the numbers are available to all for the asking.  

Trends on multiple family incomes.

massive numbers of low-income, illegal immigrants

median incomes of the lower middle classes...

...a growing economic oligarchy

Bear in mind that all this "income disparity" talk may start out as a nut's & bolts issue, but it goes real quick into feeling and faith mode like some kind of goofy global warming quarrel. More on that here.

49 posted on 12/18/2006 10:09:05 AM PST by expat_panama
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To: Mase

I certainly don't believe anything coming from you.


50 posted on 12/18/2006 10:13:21 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
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