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Old 04-15-2011, 04:26 PM   #106 (permalink)
effin' ineffable

In the Paint
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Toronto
Posts: 30,070

Originally Posted by Benzo View Post
Seriously I make one small quote from Churchill and this is what happens. LX, if it is more profitable for a company to operate outside of Canada it will move, jobs gone, we have to play by the rules that are in place, argue those rules all you want but we exist in a global economy and must compete in it. Forget about the 1% of the rich, who cares it doesn't matter. I do take issue with "people seeing their earning power decline", I would love to see some support of that statement.

Again with the "Harper" has he been in power for 40 years, is it all his fault?
Some of the strongest economies of the last decade have turned their backs on the idea of needing to be part of a global economy. Even if we must participate, we do not need to be ruled by the greediest of corporations. I think Germany provides a good example of that.

As for earning power - here's an article from the Globe from last December, concerning a report from the CCPA. -LINK

The super rich are, in one respect, not that different from ordinary Canadians: they work for their money. It’s just that they’re rewarded at a rate most people only dream of.

The top 0.01 per cent of Canadian income earners, the 2,400 people who earn at least $1.85-million, aren’t just basking in investment income and business profits. Nearly 75 per cent of their income comes from wages, just like the average Canadian, according to a new study from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. The top 1 per cent, the 246,000 Canadians who earn more than $169,000, receive about 67 per cent of their income in wages.

That’s a change from the 1940s, when the rich took 45 per cent of their income from wages, 25 per cent from business profits and the rest from investments, dividends and interest.

“Those at the top actually work more for their money than any generation of the rich going back to the 1920s,” said economist Armine Yalnizyan, the study’s author.

Ms. Yalnizyan said the major trend she identifies is that the wealthiest Canadians are increasing their share of income at a historic pace. Looking back over the past 90 years, income is now concentrated in a way that hasn’t been seen since the 1920s, she said. In the past decade, almost a third of income growth has gone to the richest 1 per cent, she added.

The big picture shows that after the Second World War, Canadian society distributed income in an increasingly level fashion. From 1946 to 1977, she writes, the income share of the richest 1 per cent fell from 14 per cent to 7.7 per cent. That trend was reversed over the past 30 years, as the top 1 per cent regained its 14-per-cent share of Canadian income. Over that time, the richest 0.1 per cent almost tripled their income share and the richest 0.01 per cent increased their share fivefold.

Median incomes, meanwhile, have been stagnant, according to Ms. Yalnizyan.

“You’ve always had these people who’ve got their fingers on something the rest of us don’t. But why are they suddenly worth many multiples of what they were back then?” Ms. Yalnizyan said.

The answer, she said, is not economics. It’s in our culture.

“As a society, we sanction it, by and large, for better and for worse,” she said.

Economist Michael Veall, who teaches at McMaster University, said a few theories try to explain the income shift by focusing on changes in the labour market at the high end, particularly for managers. One view is that corporate governors have allowed CEO salaries to jump because they were climbing elsewhere. Another is that CEOs, known for being superb communicators, are more effective, and thus more valuable, in the digital age because e-mail and the mass media facilitate contact with employees and the public, Prof. Veall said. The same goes for athletes who are more valuable when they can perform for a TV audience of millions rather than a ticket-buying audience of several thousand, he added.

Ms. Yalnizyan said in the long run the trend toward income concentration seems, in her view, politically and economically unsustainable.

“You can’t keep growing an underclass that plays by all the rules, gets a better education, works more and doesn’t get ahead,” she said.
Now the problem is not as serious as in the US, and the top 10 percent have seen increases, but they have worked harder for that. The trends here appear to mirror the US all too much for my liking, with a middle class disappearing. Remember that the stagnancy of median incomes comes with an increase in workloads. I can show a detailed account of the situation in the US. In any case it is very important when the richest one percent take the lions share of the wealth. It was the imbalance of the early part of the last century that brought about the need for trade unions and financial regulations and the funding of social programs, precisely because the inequality was fundamentally unsustainable. And that is what we appear to be in a hurry to return to.

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