Are We a Managed Democracy...?

5fish

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The elites of society have the politician's ear we do not...


Who really matters in our democracy — the general public, or wealthy elites? That's the topic of a recent study by political scientists Martin Gilens of Princeton and Benjamin Page of Northwestern. The study's gotten lots of attention over the past year, because the authors conclude, basically, that the US is a corrupt oligarchy where ordinary voters barely matter. Or as they put it, "economic elites and organized interest groups play a substantial part in affecting public policy, but the general public has little or no independent influence."

Specifically, if fewer than 20 percent of wealthy Americans supported a policy change, it only happened about 18 percent of the time. But when 80 percent of them were in support, the change ended up happening 45 percent of the time. There's no similar effect for average Americans.


This is an old article but it still holds true today... The richer the rich get the government makes them even richer but do not pay for a social program...


You might call this the Doom Loop of Oligarchy: wealth buys power, which buys more wealth. You can see it playing out over the last two weeks in American politics.

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5fish

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An Old article from the Trumper days...


The moment any segment of the population, left or right, refuses to participate in this illusion, the face of inverted totalitarianism resembles the face of classical totalitarianism, as Julian Assange is experiencing.

Our corporate overlords and militarists prefer the decorum of George W. Bush, Barack Obama and Joe Biden. But they worked closely with Donald Trump and are willing to do so again. What they will not allow are reformers such as Bernie Sanders, who might challenge, however tepidly, their obscene accumulation of wealth and power. This inability to reform, to restore democratic participation and address social inequality, means the inevitable death of the republic. Biden and the Democrats rail against the cultish Republican Party and their threat to democracy, but they too are the problem.
 

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Here is a newer article Democracy vs Plutocracy the earth final days...


But even financial interests fail fully to explain what’s going on. The oligarchs seeking to stamp out US democracy have gone way beyond the point of attending only to their net worth. It’s no longer about money for them. It’s about brute power: about watching the world bow down before them. For this rush of power, they would forfeit the Earth.

All these cases expose the same political vulnerability: the ease with which democracy is crushed by the power of money. We cannot protect the living world, or women’s reproductive rights, or anything else we value until we get the money out of politics, and break up the media empires that make a mockery of informed political consent.
 

5fish

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Here is some more missing money: the wealthiest among us not paying their taxes and not being held accountable... can you say "corruption" This is one of the signs of a society in decline the wealthy not paying their taxes and not going to jail. A sign of Plutocrat rule... It older article but it makes a point... We need to be wealthy to pay upfront and use Tax Farmers to audit the wealthy...



Key Facts. According to the Treasury's report, the top 1% of taxpayers, ranked by income, failed to pay about $163 billion in taxes last year, making up about 28% of total unpaid taxes, while the top 5% evaded about $307 billion, or nearly 53% of the overall sum.

"The United States collects less tax revenue as a percentage of [gross domestic product] than at most points in recent history, in part because owed but uncollected taxes are so significant," the Treasury Department's Natasha Sarin wrote in the report. "These unpaid taxes mean policymakers must choose between rising deficits, lower spending on important priorities, or further tax increase to compensate for lost revenue—which will only be borne by compliant taxpayers."

According to the Treasury's report, the top 1% of taxpayers, ranked by income, failed to pay about $163 billion in taxes last year, making up about 28% of total unpaid taxes, while the top 5% evaded about $307 billion, or nearly 53% of the overall sum.

The total underpayment of about $600 billion would translate to $7 trillion in lost tax revenue over the next decade—a "striking" sum equal to about 3% of GDP, or all the taxes paid by the lowest-earning 90% of taxpayers, the Treasury notes.

The Treasury says the wealthiest Americans account for the bulk of tax evasion because higher-income taxpayers have the financial resources to "tap into the services of accountants and tax preparers who help shield them from bearing their true income tax liability."

It also attributes part of the tax gap to the lack of reporting requirements on "opaque" income sources commonly utilized by high earners, with as much as 55% of noncompliance stemming from partnerships, proprietorship and rental income.
 

5fish

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If you look at the first post the wealthy's taxes have been going down while their wealth has exploded and they still can not pay their taxes...
 

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Here a video about a billionaire and how his wealth gives him undue influence...

 
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