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Tax the Super Rich

(1998)

 

 File:CastingoutMoneyChangers.jpg

 

End Poverty, hunger and despair for millions of human beings in America

and throughout the World

Tax the Super Rich and create an Economic Boom in the process

 

The Super Rich are an abomination before God. They are an abomination to any decent society. They are a serious threat to the Nation's international trade relationships. And they are supreme evidence of a dysfunctional social system guaranteeing social destabilization caused by enormous disparities in the distribution of socially produced goods and services. The Super Rich get that way by unconscionable conduct. By using unfair economic advantages over less economically fortunate or less aggressive individuals, the Super Rich are those individuals and families who run monopoly empires, ruling like kings over mass distribution systems such as energy, computers, drugs, weapons, sports, entertainment, communications, any systems or products that have gigantic mass markets. Once an enterprise or an individual reaches the multi-million dollar bracket, further gains become almost automatic. Bank interest payments alone will continually add gigantic amounts of new wealth to these few individuals and families.

Our current legal and business system favors Big Money enterprise over smaller enterprises. Competition gets reduced and eliminated as corporate monopoly players team together to force out competition from smaller enterprises. It's time to put a stop to the social irresponsibility of letting the Super Rich system continue. Putting enormous fortunes into the hands of a privileged few who earn as much as the combined earnings of 90% of American citizens cannot be tolerated. Putting enormous fortunes in the hands of these few Super Rich while millions upon millions of people live in constant threat of starvation is barbaric behavior and totally unconscionable in any civilized society worthy of the name. We must end the Super Rich socially criminal behavior like we ended Al Capone's criminal career. We tax them out of existence. We regain our economic strength by having Congress legislate either an Act of Congress or an Amendment to the Constitution that simply states:

 

1) All U.S. citizen will be taxed at a rate of 100% for any income exceeding one million dollars per year, with no exceptions, no loopholes, no way for any individual to acquire over one million dollars per year.

2) No individual or corporation can hold assets exceeding one million dollars per year or transfer assets exceeding a million dollars per year into foreign bank accounts without the same tax law applying.

3) All taxed income over one million dollars per year is to distributed to Social Security programs, Medicare programs, educational grants, low interest home and business loans to low and moderate income families and individuals, and environmental protection projects.

4) A fund will be established for United Nations and various church and charitable organizations' for bringing food, clothing, shelter, and cooperative community self-sufficiency programs and advisers to the world's desperately poor.

 

Taking this action will only effect the illegitimate prosperity of a very few number of individuals while it will bring the middle-class back into its rightful prominence as the stable economic and social backbone of America. This action will also begin an Economic Boom era for America's economy as the Super Rich are forced to divest their holdings and companies. With divestment mandatory, re-investment will occur and hundreds, if not thousands of new businesses and jobs will be opened up. This action will rightfully gain America new productive members of society as well as opening up huge new markets both within the U.S. and throughout the world. This action will start a worldwide precedent for all nations laboring under the thumbs of about 250 Super Rich individuals who's combined yearly incomes could feed and house the majority of the world's people and allow them the opportunity to rise out of unnecessary poverty and hopelessness. And this action won't stop the benefits of entrepreneurism. There's still plenty of room left for enterprising individuals to prosper with every year with the opportunity to become multi-millionaires.

Society should rightfully honor those individuals who organize economic enterprises that service and enhance our lives. But the economic rewards of entrepreneurial creation must not become ends in themselves or society suffers. A taxation system like this will return us pride in being Good Americans--giving as we receive--just as this taxation system will brings us new days when to be a "millionaire" will really mean something special once again.

 

Just 62 super-rich worth same as half of the world's population

 

Andrew Woodcock

18/01/2016

"Growing inequality means that the world's wealthiest 62 people own as much as the poorest half of the planet's population - some 3.6 billion people - according to a new report from Oxfam.

The richest 1pc - around 73 million out of the world's 7.3 billion people - now own as much as everyone else put together, said the report, which was published ahead of the annual World Economic Forum of global political and business leaders in the Swiss ski resort of Davos.

Oxfam said urgent action was needed to tackle the "inequality crisis" and called on world leaders to take action to crack down on tax-dodging by the rich, which denies governments in the developing world billions of dollars a year that could be used on health, education and anti-poverty measures.

British Prime Minister David Cameron promised in a speech in Davos three years ago to get tough on corporate tax avoidance.

But Oxfam said that promised measures to increase transparency in British Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies, such as the Cayman Islands and British Virgin Islands, have not yet been implemented.

While the UK has made good on Mr Cameron's promise to introduce public registers of companies' owners, only one overseas territory - Montserrat - has followed suit.

The report found that the gap between rich and poor had widened "dramatically" over the past 12 months.

As recently as 2010, the combined wealth of the 388 richest people equalled that of the poorest half of the world, but that number has since plummeted to 80 last year and just 62 of the richest now.

The total wealth of the poorest half of the world fell by one trillion dollars (900m) since 2010, even though the actual number of people in this group rose by 400 million, said the report, which is entitled 'An Economy for the 1%'.

Meanwhile, the wealth of the super-rich 62 rose by more than half a trillion dollars over the same period to $1.76trn. This equates to an average of around 26bn for each of the 62, who include just nine women.

Although the number of people living in extreme poverty halved between 1990 and 2010 globally, the average annual income of the poorest 10pc has increased by less than three dollars (2.60) a year over the past 25 years.

Oxfam said action on tax should form part of a three-pronged approach, alongside increased investment in public services and action to boost the income of the lowest-paid."

--Irish Independent

 

Below is reprinted an open letter to Bill Gates by Ralph Nader written in 1998.

With amazing restraint Nader says what Gates needs to hear. We must take legislative action to make sure Gates and the Super Rich get the message. Literally millions of lives are at stake. But recently this year, 2006, the surprise of surprises happens: Bill Gates gets the message! He and his wife form the Gates Foundation with a public goal of divesting the majority of the Gates wealth in support of humanitarian aid causes. Then, Warren Buffett, the second richest man in America, follows the Gates example and also agrees to divest most his wealth in support of the Gates Foundation good cause efforts. It's enough to make you think people really can change! Now what do I do with my harsh criticism of billionaires?

 

Nader Sends Public letter to Billionaire Bill Gates About Wealth Disparities

 

July 27, 1998

 

"Mr. William H. Gates

Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

Microsoft Corporation

1 Microsoft Way

Redmond, WA 98052

Dear Mr. Gates:

An astonishing calculation comes from Professor Edward Wolff of New York University and presents an important opportunity for you. Professor Wolff, a wealth economics specialist, estimated that your net wealth is greater than the combined net worth of the poorest 40 percent of Americans (106 million people). That includes their home equity, pensions, mutual funds and 401(k) plans, but excludes their personal cars.

When Professor Wolff made his analysis, your net worth was only $40 billion. Now, according to the latest Forbes listing of billionaires, your assets exceed $51 billion and that may be outdated, given the most recent surge in Microsoft stock. So it is fair to assume that the mostly secondhand cars of these 106 million Americans can now be included and then some.

All this wealth makes you the world's number one working rich person. Apart from the more than medieval size gap between your wealth and theirs, it is more than a little worrisome that tens of millions of Americans have so little net property worth, some after a lifetime of labor. As Jeff Gates, author of the new book - The Ownership Solution - says: "Capitalism is very good at creating capital but terrible at creating capitalists."

The United States now has the sharpest wealth disparity of any western nation. The wealth of the top one percent is greater than that of the bottom ninety percent of Americans. As author Gates observes: "The implications attending inaction are staggering fiscally, socially, politically and even environmentally." If you knew the range of Gates' experience in Washington and the business community, you would conclude that his normative conclusion was not "a random thought."

As might be expected, on a worldwide plane, wealth disparities are staggering. According to the United Nations Development Program, the assets of the world's 358 billionaires were greater than the combined incomes of countries with 45 percent of the world's people (about 3 billion human beings)!

All these chasms are widening against a background of modern and accelerating technology, declining trade barriers, mobility of capital, medical advances and presumably a greater awareness of what history's most tragic mistakes, avarice, monopolies and cruelties can produce.

As one illustration, last year, more people in the world died (nearly six million) from Tuberculosis and Malaria than in any previous year. The growth in gross global GNP and capability did not stop these diseases of poverty from their mass destruction. Concentration of power and wealth and the gross insensitivity of economic and political leadership had a good deal to do with these preventable casualties.

There is obviously a problem of distributive justice that has not been given the attention it deserves by the leaders of global capitalism. I saw a T-Shirt being distributed at a conference recently with the message: "A Rising Tide Lifts All Yachts." A telling phrase for our times.

Warren Buffett, possibly the world's number two working rich person with assets exceeding $33 billion, is your dear friend and fellow card player. Let me suggest that you team up with him to sponsor, plan and lead a conference of billionaires and multi- billionaires on the subject of National and Global Wealth Disparities and What to Do About It. The quantity, quality and distributional dimensions of economic output will drive participants to come to grips with the fundamental purposes of economic systems and their economic indicators.

With the dual sweep of the Gates-Buffett hands, the serious and consequential plight of humanity would become a matter of high alert for those business colleagues and acquaintances of yours who aspire to move from success to significance.

During our brief meeting earlier this year at the Time-Warner 75th anniversary dinner in New York, you replied that you were open to communication (by E- Mail, you smilingly suggested). I look forward to your response.

Sincerely,

Ralph Nader

P.O. Box 19312

Washington, D.C. 20036"

 

Bill Gates may be listening, at least with one ear. He is giving away millions and says he will give all away except enough to support his family. We'll see, so far Gates donations are far less than the Christian tithe of 10% of income and may only mainly p.r. window dressing and tax avoidance tactics. And poor Nader, running for President on the Green Party ticket, forgot his ethical stance and became one of the pols ending up putting George Bush in office by taking just enough votes away from the Democratic contender to win.

2012 Update: Tax havens: Super-rich 'hiding' at least $21tn

A global super-rich elite had at least $21 trillion (13tn) hidden in secret tax havens by the end of 2010, according to a major study.

The figure is equivalent to the size of the US and Japanese economies combined. The Price of Offshore Revisited was written by James Henry, a former chief economist at the consultancy McKinsey, and commissioned by the Tax Justice Network. He said $21tn is a conservative figure and the true scale could be $32tn. A trillion is 1,000 billion.

Mr. Henry used data from the Bank of International Settlements, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and national governments. His study deals only with financial wealth deposited in bank and investment accounts, and not other assets such as property and yachts. The report comes amid growing public and political concern about tax avoidance and evasion. Some authorities, including in Germany, have even paid for information on alleged tax evaders stolen from banks. The group that commissioned the report, Tax Justice Network, campaigns against tax havens.

Mr. Henry said that the super-rich move money around the globe through an "industrious bevy of professional enablers in private banking, legal, accounting and investment industries. "The lost tax revenues implied by our estimates is huge. It is large enough to make a significant difference to the finances of many countries. "From another angle, this study is really good news. The world has just located a huge pile of financial wealth that might be called upon to contribute to the solution of our most pressing global problems," he said.

'Huge black hole'

The report highlights the impact on the balance sheets of 139 developing countries of money held in tax havens that is put beyond the reach of local tax authorities. Mr. Henry estimates that since the 1970s, the richest citizens of these 139 countries had amassed $7.3tn to $9.3tn of "unrecorded offshore wealth" by 2010. Private wealth held offshore represents "a huge black hole in the world economy," Mr. Henry said.

Other findings in the report include:

At the end of 2010, the 50 leading private banks alone collectively managed more than $12.1tn in cross-border invested assets for private clients The three private banks handling the most assets offshore are UBS, Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs. Less than 100,000 people worldwide own about $9.8tn of the wealth held offshore.

 

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