Quoting the Wall St. Journal, the wealthiest 1% rake in 21.2% of all income (2005). One lousy filthy rich percent. That leaves a 12.8% reap for the bottom half of earners. Whoa. Fifty percent of all workers in the entire US equals 12.8% of the earned income pie. That's paltry and putrid. So what happened?
Well, if you've felt your pockets lately you know what happened. You've got more plastic than paper, and the global market party keeps on keeping on. Why pay you more when they can just pay you less and let you borrow more? So not only are we broke, we are disempowered.
- Since so few people have so much of the money locked up and do not plan to share, either the masses cut back on their spending, which is the road to universal disaster, or they must borrow and borrow and borrow without end. Not only the grownups.
From the point of view of the big rich, getting young people in debt not only keeps the money coming in but also makes youth timid and obedient. Debt ensures that they won't turn up on the streets to demonstrate for some unwholesome cause. You could almost call it a rule that all people--black people, Hispanic people, white people, trailer trash people, college graduate people--when put in debt pretty much do what they are told.