"What Sounds Better To You - Guaranteed Basic Income Or Federal Job Guarantee?". That's the headline that Yves Smith posted over at Naked Capitalism last week and it's a reprint of an article by Howie Klein that was originally published over at Down With Tyranny! and it's a take-off on a year old piece in Jacobin magazine, Why We Need a Federal Job Guarantee. And at the beginning you've got basically raw capitalism, an economic system where those with capital basically own the system. It's a neo-feudal system. It's a reinvention of a form of economics and politics that ruled Europe and Asia and South America for millennia.
I want to get into some of the issues that we understand and misunderstand about taxes, money, wealth, and how the very, very morbidly rich in the United States have seized not only virtually complete economic power in this country but also virtually complete political power.
Authoritarian-minded people, the people that John Dean wrote about in his book "Conservatives Without Conscience". There's a small number of authoritarian leaders, there's a large number of authoritarian followers and most of the people who voluntarily and enthusiastically become police officers or members of the military are authoritarian followers. Not all of them, certainly not all of them, but probably well over half.
The countries of the world that have the most stable economies and that suffer from the smallest boom and bust cycles are the countries with the highest tax rates on the very, very wealthy. The reason for that is that the government is functioning essentially as a stabilizer, so capitalist economies, there's just a fundamental truth about them. This is not a knock on capitalism, it's just the way it is.
I've got a question for you. I find this absolutely fascinating. Susan Crawford who wrote the books The Responsive City and Captive Audience, she's a professor at Harvard Law School and over at Wired magazine she's writing about the case of Louisville, Kentucky, or West Louisville specifically.
The tax bill is all about cutting income to the federal government and over a 10-year period the top one percent are going to gain five trillion dollars. The bottom 99 percent are going to lose three and a half trillion dollars. And the remaining one and a half trillion dollars will be added to the national debt.