I have been giving this budget deficit some serious thought. It has occurred to me that every single penny of every single thing we do and make and produce is labor. There is not one thing that we do or make or own that the cost of it is not comprised entirely of labor.
If you think that I am wrong in this idea please tell me.
A few examples. A suit. Someone produces the seeds to grow the cotton, he is paid, someone else plants the seeds and tends the plants, he/she is paid. The cotton is picked, spun, woven into cloth, cut by a tailor, driven to a store, sold by a sales person. The buttons are made from plastic that is produced by people who drill wells and pump oil which is then made into plastic for the buttons. The oil drills are made by men in factories from iron ore that is dug from the ground and smelted to make steel for the machines. Every cent of the value in all of that comes from work or our labor. And on and on. It is the same for everything, cars, food, you name it. 100% of every single thing or service is labor, one way or another.
So, if we have a deficit, the answer is really, really simple - we are paying too much for labor. If everyone were paid, say 10% less than we are, there would be no deficit. The budget would balance!
However, I don't think this is the way to go. The average American worker earns $40,000 a year and, on the average, he/she works hard for it. On the other hand there are people making, not earning, tens of millions of dollars a year. There is no way possible that someone can work hard enough to earn, or add that much value, to anything. I think that is where we need to start. The CEO of Wells Fargo Bank made $53 Million Dollars last year, a jumped up bank manager! Tiger Woods makes $100 million a year, playing golf! Wall street thieves pay themselves billions in bonuses for "Doing a good job"! (That would be robbing the country and the world blind - and then taking more of our money to 'bail themselves out'. Then the next year paying themselves even more in bonuses than they did the year the country went broke!) These are the people that are soaking us. The top 1% of Americans take home 26% of all the money earned in the US! In 1970 the top 1% took home 8% of all the money earned in the US - do you see a trend here?.
It seems to me this is where the problem lies. The average worker is doing his part, he works, he adds value. Bankers, Wall Street types, CEO's of huge business, executive Officers etc. etc are the problem. Their Greed is beyond all bounds - I ask you, $53 Million dollars a year for a bank manager! How to stop it I don't know, but one way is to tax them.
First they should be paying Social Security Taxes on ALL of their "earnings". I know they won't be needing any Soc. Sec., but I have to pay it on ALL of my earnings, why shouldn't they?
Once someone reaches a certain level of income, taxes need to go way way up. If the average American earns $40,000 what is a good salary for a CEO? how about ten times the pay of his average worker? Hey, $400,000 - the same as the President of the USA! A much harder more stressful job than counting money and then deciding how much of it to take! (In 1970 CEO's on average, were paid 50 times more than their average worker was paid. Yes I agree, way too much. But, in 2010 CEO's were paid, on average, 500 times what their average worker was paid!!! And the CEO of Wells Fargo was paid 1,300 times what the average worker earns!!! Now if his salary was a more reasonable 10 times the average pay, or $400,000, the same as the President of the USA, that would leave enough money, just from his pay cut, to pay an additional 1290 people!! From one mans pay, from one company, and each company has dozens to hundreds of these overpaid sharks. It would not take long to have full employment in the US and a balanced budget. I'm not even suggesting getting rid of them, just that they should be paid a reasonable amount. And $53 million dollars is NOT reasonable, or in any way justified for what he does.
OK, it ain' gonna happen, they are going to keep on stealing our money, keep on telling us they need more and more fees etc, asking for bailouts from the Govt and then when they get it give themselves even bigger bonuses!!
So what to do? Tax them. They are stealing from us, you and me and America as a whole, so just take it right back. Once you get to half a million a year you should start paying at least 90% of any additional "Earnings" in tax. At a million jump it up to 95% and at 2 million 98 or 99%. Hey even at those rates the Wells Fargo CEO would take home around $1.6 million! And Tiger Woods would get around $2.6 million! Not too shabby for playing golf!! And America would be back in the black. Social Security and Medicare for our elderly would be safe. Good for everyone.
What did I hear, the rich won't be able to spend that money to make jobs and get us on the road to recovery - have you noticed them spending us out of this recession? No, I didn't think so. In fact the more money they steal from us the worse the recession gets. Let us, the workers spend it. Same effect. In fact even better, we'll spend it on TV's, food, movies, restaurants, clothes, cars, the stuff workers make. Not on $100 million dollar Van Gogh paintings for the board room wall, big diamonds from Africa for the little lady, First Class air seats so they can go all over the world and spend money in French restaurants and for houses in London, Sydney, Paris, Rome and a private Island in the Caribbean or the South Seas.
No, they are living the good life, way, way better than any of us could ever hope for, and they are doing it at our expense, with our money, money that we made with our hard work and they took from us.
I don't even have a problem with people getting rich, working hard, even buying lottery tickets, we all hope to get rich, but there is a limit, and you have reached that limit and gone way beyond it when you take $53 million or $100 million or more! There are people making 1 billion dollars a year! And probably paying less tax than you do! Certainly paying less tax percentage wise than you do. The top 1% of American "Earners" pay 16% of their "Earnings" in tax! Way less than you and I do!! AND, we just voted for them to continue to get the 4% tax break that George Bush gave them 10 years ago! How about them apples. They MUST be laughing at us for that. Even George Bush knew we couldn't afford for it to go on forever, that's why he only made it for 10 years.
That 4% extra tax alone that they would be paying now would have taken care of Medicare for at least 75 years.
Well I gotta go. Straighten me out.