Tags: Oligarchy

Meet the Extreme Super Rich – A List of the 80 People Who Own Half the World

Screen Shot 2015-01-27 at 1.41.05 PMBefore I get into the meat of this post, I want to make it clear that the definition of oligarch, a term I use a lot, does not center solely around money.

Late last year, in the post Inside the Mind of an Oligarch – Sheldon Adelson Proclaims “I Don’t Like Journalism,” I attempted to frame the word oligarch as I use it. I wrote the following:

In a nutshell, while many oligarchs are extremely wealthy (or have access to extreme wealth), not all people with extreme wealth are oligarchs. The term oligarch is reserved for those with extreme wealth who also want to control the political process, policy levers and most other aspects of the lives of the citizenry in a top-down tyrannical and undemocratic manner. They think they know best about pretty much everything, and believe unelected technocrats who share their worldview should be empowered so that they can unilaterally make all of society’s important decisions. The unwashed masses (plebs) in their minds are unnecessary distractions who must to be told what to do. Useless eaters who need to be brainwashed into worshipping the oligarch mindset, or turned into apathetic automatons incapable or unwilling to engage in critical thought. Either outcome is equally acceptable and equally encouraged.

With that out of the way, Five-Thirty-Eight provided the following:

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

As the Middle Class Evaporates, Global Oligarchs Plan Their Escape from the Impoverished Pleb Masses

The middle class has shrunk consistently over the past half-century. Until 2000, the reason was primarily because more Americans moved up the income ladder. But since then, the reason has shifted: There is a greater share of households on the lower rungs of the economic ladder.

– From yesterday’s New York Times article: Middle Class Shrinks Further as More Fall Out Instead of Climbing Up

At a packed session in Davos, former hedge fund director Robert Johnson revealed that worried hedge fund managers were already planning their escapes. “I know hedge fund managers all over the world who are buying airstrips and farms in places like New Zealand because they think they need a getaway,” he said.

– From the Guardian’s article: As Inequality Soars, the Nervous Super Rich are Already Planning Their Escapes

So the other day, President Barack Obama once again demonstrated his contempt for the American public by using his State of the Union address to pejoratively blurt out meaningless phrases such as “but tonight, we turn the page” and: “The verdict is clear. Middle-class economics works. Expanding opportunity works. And these policies will continue to work, as long as politics don’t get in the way.”

Sorry, but why are “we turning the page” tonight? Weren’t you elected over six years ago? Why didn’t you turn the page in 2009?

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

A Billionaire Lectures Serfs in Davos – Claims “America’s Lifestyle Expectations are Far Too High”

Screen Shot 2015-01-21 at 11.46.47 AMIf you listened closely this morning, you could hear humanity vomit as JP Morgan CEO, Jamie Dimon, began to speak at Davos. In what amounted to some of the most egotistical and delusional statements heard at a conference filled with egotistical and delusional participants, Mr. Dimon didn’t disappoint. Here are a couple highlights courtesy of Twitter:

Such shameless insincerity would even make his Best Banker Buddy (BBB) Barry Obama blush. I don’t know about you, but I’m eagerly awaiting Mr. Dimon’s 2028 Presidential run with Chelsea Clinton as running mate.

But I digress. Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse, it has. Enter billionaire Jeff Greene, who’s comments at Davos make Sam Zell look enlightened.

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

What 4th Amendment? Police Across the U.S. Are Using Radars to See Inside People’s Homes

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 11.49.17 AMThe intentional erosion of public privacy is no accident. It’s not merely a simplistically stupid overreaction to the dangerous world we live in either. It is a very deliberate and nefarious plan being intentionally implemented by the American oligarchy; i.e., the super rich and the super powerful. This is precisely why the establishment freaked out about the Edward Snowden revelations, and it is why every single minor event is immediately manipulated into an excuse to give the government and intelligence agencies more power.

While we already know a lot about the NSA’s unconstitutional and fascist policies when it comes to the web, the decimation of the 4th Amendment is also being eagerly practiced at a more local level by police departments across the country. USA Today published a very important article on this topic earlier today. Here are some excerpts:

WASHINGTON — At least 50 U.S. law enforcement agencies have secretly equipped their officers with radar devices that allow them to effectively peer through the walls of houses to see whether anyone is inside, a practice raising new concerns about the extent of government surveillance.

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

Gotta Keep Dancing – Honda Executive Laments “Stupid” Auto Loans Driving U.S. Sales Higher

Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 10.58.01 AMWhen the music stops, in terms of liquidity, things will be complicated. But as long as the music is playing, you’ve got to get up and dance. We’re still dancing.

– Chuck Prince, Citigroup CEO, July 2007

We’ve seen this movie before, we know how it ends, and it’s not pretty. But I say that it has longer to run, and we have already paid the price of admission. So we might as well stay to the end. You just keep your eyes on the exit door.

– Tom Webb, Chief Economist at Manheim Consulting, January 2015

The junk being peddled around as auto loans has been well documented here and elsewhere, and links to several articles highlighting this troubling trend will be attached at the end. That said, what is so stunning about what we heard from an executive at one of the world’s biggest car manufacturers, is the willingness to call out the stupidity of what is currently going on. In the process, he shows how completely brain-dead and collectively insane everyone around him is.

Bloomberg reports that:

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

Welcome to the Oligarch Recovery – Majority of Public School Students are in Poverty for First Time in 50 Years

Screen Shot 2015-01-17 at 11.59.09 AM“When they first come in my door in the morning, the first thing I do is an inventory of immediate needs: Did you eat? Are you clean? A big part of my job is making them feel safe,” said Sonya Romero-Smith, a veteran teacher at Lew Wallace Elementary School in Albuquerque. Fourteen of her 18 kindergartners are eligible for free lunches.

She helps them clean up with bathroom wipes and toothbrushes, and she stocks a drawer with clean socks, underwear, pants and shoes.

From the Washington Post article: Majority of U.S. Public School Students are in Poverty

It’s a recovery so lopsided only Timothy Geithner or an oligarch could love it. Since 2008, U.S. economic policy has concentrated on funneling as much money as possible to billionaires, keeping the poor alive and submissive through government programs, and squeezing the middle class to death while at the same time holding out the carrot of hope that things will return to how they were before (they won’t).

The latest evidence of this monumental cultural theft was highlighted yesterday in the Washington Post. Here are a few excerpts:

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

United States of Newspeak – Obama Calls Executive Orders “Presidential Memoranda” to Avoid Scrutiny and Issues Most in History

Screen Shot 2014-12-17 at 11.39.49 AMIf there’s one thing we have learned about Barack Obama, it’s that he is a master of deception and absolutely loves to lie to the public. He seems to enjoy conning the plebs to such a degree, I think he actually receives blasts of dopamine every time he does it. The bigger the lie, the better the rush.

The latest example relates to his issuance of executive orders, or lack thereof, something that Obama Inc. has actively attempted to portray as evidence of his restraint when it comes to executive power. Here are a few examples from a USA Today article published earlier today.

First, from the man himself:

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

The Rent is Too Damn High – Zillow Report Shows Rents Unaffordable in All Top 35 Metro Areas

Screen Shot 2014-12-11 at 10.32.57 AMWhile most of this Zillow article is merely a sales pitch to convince broke and struggling Americans trapped in low paying jobs to buy homes they can’t afford, the small section highlighting how rents are historically unaffordable is pretty interesting. Zillow analyst Meredith Miller notes that:

Renters, on the other hand, continue to struggle. Renters making the national median income and renting the median-priced apartment should expect to pay about 30 percent of their income in rent, compared to roughly 25 percent historically. Of the largest 35 metros areas, Miami, San Francisco, New York, San Jose and Los Angeles have the biggest differences between current and historic rent affordability.

Rents are historically unaffordable in all of the largest 35 metro areas.

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

Welcome to the Recovery – McKinsey Survey Shows 40% of Americans Living Paycheck to Paycheck, Up From 31% in 2012

Screen Shot 2014-12-09 at 11.22.38 AMNothing screams economic recovery like 2 out of every 5 Americans living paycheck to paycheck. Especially when that number has reportedly increased by 33% since 2012.

Perhaps someone should inform these destitute plebs that the stock market is up nearly 45% over the past two years, and after all, nothing says economic success like the 0.01% enriching themselves via fraud and financial engineering.

Here are two of the most sobering findings from the survery:

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.

Wall Street Moves to Put Taxpayers on the Hook for Derivatives Trades

Screen Shot 2014-12-05 at 3.39.28 PMWall Street has for some time attempted to put taxpayers on the hook for its derivatives trades. I highlighted this a year ago in the post: Citigroup Written Legislation Moves Through the House of Representatives. Here’s an excerpt:

Five years after the Wall Street coup of 2008, it appears the U.S. House of Representatives is as bought and paid for as ever. We heard about the Citigroup crafted legislation currently being pushed through Congress back in May when Mother Jones reported on it. Fortunately, they included the following image in their article:

Read the Full Article »

Like this post?
Donate bitcoins: 1LefuVV2eCnW9VKjJGJzgZWa9vHg7Rc3r1


 Follow me on Twitter.