Thursday, October 27, 2011

Thom Hartmann: The New Gilded Age in America is upon us...

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Occupy Oakland demonstrator - and Iraq War veteran - Scott Olsen is still in a hospital in serious condition with a fractured skull after being hit in the head with a tear gas canister during Tuesday's night police assault on Occupy Oakland. In solidarity - demonstrators returned to the streets last night - and this time police left their military tactics at home. The movement marched to San Francisco across the Bay Bridge - with only a few confrontations with police. There are reports that two individuals were arrested.
Meanwhile - a new report by the Congressional Budget Office this week reminds everyone why they're in the streets to begin with. Looking at income data over the last three decades - most of the new wealth in America has gone straight to the top - to the top 1%. For the lowest 20% of Americans - they only saw a measly increase in income since 1979 - just 18%. For the 60% of Americans in the middle - they saw a modest gain of 40%. But for the top 1% - since Reagan took office - they've seen their incomes go up a whopping 275%. The top 1%'s income has nearly tripled while most everyone else's has been unable to keep up with the rising prices of things like healthcare, gas, food, and college tuition. The new Gilded Age in America is upon us.
But with action in the streets - then the Progressive Era of Teddy Roosevelt who broke up the monopolies - kicked corporations out of politics - and promoted a living wage - may be just around the corner.
(Do you believe a new progressive era is just around the corner? Tell us here.)

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