Class Warfare Blog

May 15, 2014

Finally! $1,000,000 per hour Barrier Broken!

We’re Number 1! We’re Number 1! In 2013, four Hedge Fund managers made over two billion dollars in earnings which means each of the four made over $1,000,000 per hour during that year (based upon a 40 hour work week (dubious), 11 paid holidays, and two weeks of vacation (also dubious)). This was done in an up and down market year that showed little gains for investors. And for this achievement, these titans of finance have been granted the lowest federal income tax rate on those earnings by the politicians they bribed. This means they get to keep a great fraction of their earnings than do you or I.

What a country! In an occupation that doesn’t really create anything and is more akin to gambling than anything productive, Hedge Fund managers show what the American Dream really is—prostitution, that is screwing people for money.

Well done Hedge Fund managers, well done!

(I know, I know, sarcasm is unbecoming, but sheesh!)



  1. And now that we’ve won, it’s time to start trickling!

    Haha, just kidding. Two million an hour, here we come! I’ve got twenty that says I get there first. Twenty million, I mean.

    Comment by Ignostic Atheist — May 15, 2014 @ 9:15 am | Reply

    • Damn, I forgot the trickle down!

      As an exercise, try to spend $1 billion on the goods and services you find useful and helpful in your life. I ran out of steam about 1% of the way there. This is the fallacie of trickle down–rich peple cannot spend their money in enough ways to cause an effect. Instead they tend to invest their money in speculative ways as opposed to concrete ways that create jobs and goods and services.

      On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 9:15 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


      Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 9:26 am | Reply

      • I was actually putting some thought into this the other day. It occurred to me that in order to spend such large sums of money responsibly and yet quickly, a bureaucracy would need to be set up to sort out the greatest impacts from the money sinks. Since the government is already in the business of doing this, taxing these people out their nose is the most effective way of getting the money spent.

        Unless they’re using the money to instead buy the government and bring it to a halt, in order for their so-large-it-is-effectively-infinite sum of money to get larger.

        Comment by Ignostic Atheist — May 15, 2014 @ 9:47 am | Reply

        • The simplest form of progressive taxation shouldn’t have a low upper limit. Instead, as people’s incomes get more and more stratospheric, the brackets should go higher and higher. We won’t tolerate inherited political power, why would we tolerate inherited wealth-based political power?

          On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 9:47 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


          Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 9:59 am | Reply

  2. We’ll all get there some day. Like Steinbeck inferred, we’re not part of the low and middle classes, we are just temporarily embarrassed millionaires.

    Yeah right. The tooth fairy, Santa Claus and a moon made of cheese are also real.

    Comment by lbwoodgate — May 15, 2014 @ 9:17 am | Reply

    • Mind boggling, isn’t it? Those guys could afford to give away one milion dollars to a thousand people and still have over a billion left.

      The top dog was at 1.86 million dollars per hour. Hell, if I had $2,000,000, I’d retire right now … again!

      On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 9:17 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


      Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 9:29 am | Reply

  3. What do you think of Picketty’s global wealth tax?

    Comment by Ignostic Atheist — May 15, 2014 @ 10:08 am | Reply

    • Think about how hard it would be to raise income taxes and inheritance taxes in this country and then multiply by a thousand. A global wealth tax (Socialism! Socialism!) is a nonstarter. But this country invented the progressive income tax and we have had higher inheritance taxes in the past, so those are more “doable.” We could also take the chains off of labor unions we have implemented over the last forty years and get some people in position to fight the plutocrats (at least the corporate ones).

      On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 10:08 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


      Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 11:17 am | Reply

  4. If Hillary runs it’ll be interesting to see if the GOP attack Chelsea for being a hedge fund manager.

    Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 10:16 am | Reply

    • What? Bite the hand that feeds them? Not very likely. Both parties are wedded to the money of the rich, which is why we see little criticism of the unruly wealthy from both sides.

      On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 10:16 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


      Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 11:18 am | Reply

      • Figured as much

        Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 11:27 am | Reply

      • But of course they will, if they’ll think of it. Don’t you remember how Paul Ryan attacked Obamacare for the same Medicare cuts he included in his own budget?

        Comment by List of X — May 18, 2014 @ 1:10 am | Reply

  5. I have the solution, though… make all monies invested this way stamp scrip, meaning it looses face value the longer it stays out of the real marketplace.

    Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 10:18 am | Reply

    • Unfortunately, while wealthy people saving scads of money is detrimental to society, the poor need to be encouraged to save money.

      Comment by Ignostic Atheist — May 15, 2014 @ 10:47 am | Reply

      • Ah, but that would be real tender, unaffected. Monies, though, invested in such things as capital markets would be stamp scrip. You’re free to invest, but the longer it stays out of the real marketplace the more value it will lose. This same principle has been experimented on, in the real world, and it worked: The Wörgl Experiment.

        Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 10:53 am | Reply

        • Yep, you brought that to my attention in the past. I am just not in favor of evaporating currencies/scrips. It recalls the practices of banks to place a charge against any bank account which falls below a certain minimum balance. If you were sick or had a catastrophic accident while your account balance were low, the fees would eat you alive because they did not stop at zero and close your account when empty. They kept going and sent you a bill, basically a bill for charging you nonsense fees.

          On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 10:53 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


          Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 11:25 am | Reply

          • But the stamped money would be the “currency” used for capital market investments, for example. Literally, real money would have to be exchanged into this separate, stamped tender. It goes in at one value, dollar for dollar, and can come out dollar for dollar, or less than that in accord to how long its been outside of real circulation.

            Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 11:32 am | Reply

        • You are always such a delight to chat with.

          Could these capital markets survive with stamps costly enough to negate or reverse the wealth accumulation at the top? At a certain point, more money will be retained by taking it out of the system and stashing it. As was discussed up top, actually getting the super wealthy to spend a significant amount of their wealth is a massive chore.

          Comment by Ignostic Atheist — May 15, 2014 @ 11:27 am | Reply

          • I don’t know, i’m sure there’s some very real problems, but i’m also confident in our ability to find solutions. If we were to limited the stamp scrip to just certain investments (exchanging real money for monopoly money which is subject to devaluation over time) then we could target specific, non-productive investment realms.

            Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 11:34 am | Reply

            • I think the goal is to get them to invest in long-term constructive ways instead of the short-term speculative ways popular now. Considering how much money the investment banks are making off of their customers while their customers are making far, far less, I am surprised we haven’t had an investors’ revolt already.

              Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 11:39 am | Reply

              • That is the goal, precisely, and we can target that quite specifically with stamp scrip. Luke, listen to me, you know its the only way….

                Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 11:47 am | Reply

      • The poor need money to save! If we are going to have a “pay as you go” society, then there needs to be a minimum income that provides enough to survive for hard working folks. Raise the minimum wage! Bring back unions! Tax the rich! I am for them all.

        On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 10:47 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


        Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 11:22 am | Reply

        • I’m mixed on unions. They are a solution to a problem, if there is a problem, but they are a problem if there’s not. If you have an employer that pays you well and maintains a safe environment, the only thing unions bring to the table is biting off some of your wage and corruption. Fortunately, not everyone needs to be unionized in order for the benefits to be realized. Unfortunately, people have been conned into believing that by merely being permitted to have a job, their employer is an angel sent from God himself, and that they should consider it a blessing.

          Personally, I would tax the snot out of the top ten percent in order to provide a minimum standard of living: a residence, food, education. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but without the pressure of having to worry about staying alive, the suppressed genius society has to offer can actualize. Greed might have driven the last century’s rapid growth, but this one has the potential to be driven by statistics. Give enough people the opportunity and you’ll get another Einstein.

          Idealism! Woo!

          Comment by Ignostic Atheist — May 15, 2014 @ 11:51 am | Reply

          • Canada has about one-third of its jobs being union jobs and that seems a nice balance point (as did we in the 1960’s, now <10%). A certain defense against unionization of one's workforce is happy workers. Unfortunately the right-wing nuts can't stand happy workers as that is a sign of being soft (and lost profits) hence the problem. Compare Costco with Wal-Mart for example.

            Comment by Steve Ruis — May 18, 2014 @ 8:30 am | Reply

    • That has been suggested before but it is too flaky for me. I prefer a wealth transfer tax. Anytime people exchange capital, there is a tax. It would only be small and would affect the little people only a little (it only comes into play when there is no sales tax) but it certainly would discourage speculation and micro-trading and the like. It should also raise quite a bit of money painlessly.

      On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 10:18 AM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


      Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 11:20 am | Reply

      • Plausible, but i wouldn’t rule out stamp srip entirely. We must, after all, put a real value on money, and this is one very good way of doing that.

        Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 11:29 am | Reply

      • The poor wouldn’t be affected by this… unless they wanted to invest in certain non-productive things, like capital markets.

        Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 11:37 am | Reply

        • I understand. I am just more in favor of a behavior-based system than a time-based system. Do the right thing and you are rewarded. Doing it faster is not an incentive I prefer. In fact I want them to do it slower. Invest and then sit on that investment (as long as it is doing well). Encouraging people to move their money because it is evaporating is in the wrong direction in my humble opinion. (There, I finally had a humble opinion! I knew I could do it!)

          Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 12:00 pm | Reply

          • Ho-ray !

            Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 12:05 pm | Reply

            • Thank you for your support!

              Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 12:11 pm | Reply

              • I’m buying good grace for when the World Cup goes south and you feel the urge (rightly so, i will say) to lampoon my adoptive country 🙂

                Comment by john zande — May 15, 2014 @ 12:19 pm | Reply

                • I am currently reading up on how my country has repeatedly screwed your adoptive country for fun and profit, so there will be no mocking as I am up to my eyeballs in shame at the moment. Look for a post on Milton Friedman and the Chicago Boys soon.

                  On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 12:19 PM, Class Warfare Blog wrote:


                  Comment by Steve Ruis — May 15, 2014 @ 12:23 pm | Reply

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