another wealthy minority, "the next richest 9%". Let's now find out how that group fares economically. You may be stunned to learn that:


As unbelievable as it sounds, there are two minority groups, not just one, that own more assets than the bottom 90%. These two statistics alone should leave little doubt that the bulk of the wealth in America is owned by a very small minority of super rich individuals. This reality contrasts so drastically with the "equal opportunity", "equal prosperity" concepts fed to the bottom 90% and the world at large, that statistics such as these have had to be suppressed. Again, there is no misprint. The only deceit involved is that the bottom 90% have been purposely kept in the dark about wealth distribution realities.

(Part 4) Hidden Permanent Prosperity For The Rich

If you were unaware of the severity of wealth distribution inequities, then you are probably in for an even bigger surprise to learn that the rate, at which the economic elite are getting richer, is simply astounding.
Statistics published in Forbes magazine's annual survey of America's billionaires expose this little known but shocking reality.
In 1982 there were 13 billionaires; in 1983....15; in 1984....12; in 1985....13; in 1986....26; in 1987....49. Note carefully that prior to 1986 the number of American billionaires had averaged around 13. Then the Reagan administration drastically altered the wealth distribution patterns by introducing new tax legislation favoring the top 1%. In 1986 the number of billionaires DOUBLED, and by 1987 the number of billionaires had virtually QUADRUPLED to 49!! By 1988, there were 68 individuals or families that each had net wealth in excess of $1,000,000,000. By 1989, the number had risen precipitously to 82. And by 1990, the Forbes survey reported the staggering total of 99!! {B3} With favorable tax laws in place, the super rich can enjoy bonanza years even during recessions!! The tax laws that allowed this to happen are still in place, and will remain in place till enough people get sufficiently concerned to insist that they be changed. What should cause the American people to sit up and take notice, once and for all, is the fact that this explosion of wealth took place during a period when:
It should not take an Einstein to observe that equal opportunity, and equitable prosperity is an outright hoax for all but a small minority. Unlike Britain, France, and Germany which can point to their Feudal pasts to explain their existing wealth distribution inequities, America can point to no such excuse! The American economic elite have established Feudal wealth distribution inequities equal to, and even surpassing their European counterparts (the monarchs and the landed aristocracy), in just 200 years!!
We have been brainwashed into believing that the super rich are so few in number that they and their wealth can be safely ignored. In reality, they directly and significantly affect everyone else's standard of living, and will continue to do so as long as their power and influence remain unrecognized, and unchallenged. This explosion of wealth for America's super rich has immense significance not only for society as a whole, but especially for the bottom 90%.
Many of those in the bottom 90% who accepted pay cuts and decreases to their employment benefits, did so because they had been led to believe that everyone else was also feeling the pinch. Nothing could be further from the truth.
What is being successfully hidden from public awareness is the fact that the widening gap between the haves and the have-nots is an ongoing process, and one which is running even now at full throttle. The extent to which the bottom 90% are being successfully deceived can be made more obvious by noting just how the current economic bad times are affecting American billionaires.
A good example, but not necessarily a typical one, is Sam Walton and family, who increased their wealth by $2,300,000,000 (from $6.7 billion to approximately $9 billion), in a twelve month period, from the time Fortune magazine took their 1988 survey, to the time they took their 1989 survey. For those who believe that the rich pay high taxes, Sam's pre-tax profits had to have been considerably higher than $2.3 billion. Even a 25% tax rate would put his pre-tax profits in excess of $3,000,000,000 for a 12 month period!!!
If you think that movie theater prices are exorbitant, or feel that "pay TV" prices are unreasonable, then perhaps you ought to have a word with Mr. Sumner Murray Redstone whose fortune increased by $1,480,000,000 (from $1.4 billion to a hair under $3 billion) in the same twelve month period. His name surfaces attached to entities like Twentieth Century Fox, Columbia Pictures, MGM/United Artists, or "pay TV" entities such as Showtime, The Movie Channel, and MTV. Fortune magazine's own comment was: "That's a compound annual rate of return of about 132%".
Or perhaps you would liked to have purchased a cellular telephone, but found them too expensive? Try talking Mr. John Werner Kluge into taking less profit. After all, his wealth increased by a cool $2,000,000,000 ($2 Billion) just last year.{B4}
For those unused to thinking in terms of hundreds of millions, not to speak of billions, let's take a moment to digest the significance of this magnitude of wealth.
To begin with, a simple 10 percent interest on just one billion dollars amounts to $100,000,000 (one hundred million dollars) in interest alone per year. From a working person's perspective, it would take 100 lifetimes, (of 40 working years each), for a person earning $25,000 per year to earn the amount of income each of our billionaires can earn in interest, per billion, per year. (without lifting a finger) Who pays for these previously mentioned profits? You of course, through an unnecessarily high cost of living (high cost of goods and services, high bank interest rates and inflated real estate prices, etc.).
It is worth keeping in mind that before families like the Carnegies, Rockefellers, Morgans, Vanderbilts, and others of similar ilk used PR campaigns and some supposedly philanthropic donations to help convince Americans of their social nobility, they were commonly known as "robber barons". Consequently, it should come as no surprise that in recognition of the widespread use of tax-deductible methods of purchasing civic respectability, Ralph Waldo Emerson defined a philanthropist as a man who gives away what he should be giving back.
In short, fantastic wealth is being generated virtually all the time, but the bulk of it is being skimmed off by the wealthy while the working class are kept on a relatively minimum standard of living to help fuel the illusion of ongoing hard-times.
To avoid showing the rest of the nation the amount of money they have managed to amass, and to further avoid paying taxes, some of their corporations are registered in out of the way playboy tax havens like the Bahamas. In addition, they keep much of their money in specially numbered secret bank accounts (no questions asked, no information given), in countries such as the Bahamas, Switzerland, or Liechtenstein, whose banking communities have grown fat by obligingly taking on the role of laundering and safely storing secret treasures for some of the world's wealthiest thieves and criminals. In fact, the August 21 1989 issue of Insight magazine fully exposed just how cheaply and easily a money laundering network can be set up.{B5} People who work from nine to five everyday don't have the time to waste thinking about the activities of these jet setters and playboys. Because of economic segregation, most nine to fivers have never even met such a person. Quite often the elite have their own jets, and seek obscurity behind tinted limousine windows. For the most part, the elite who rule America from behind the scenes, purposely go out of their way to maintain extremely low profiles. Why? Because neither their fortunes nor their business transactions would stand up well to public scrutiny.
Media owners, who belong to the richest echelons of our society, cooperate with their peers to ensure that their profiles remain as low as they wish. Laws that were supposedly enacted to protect the privacy of individuals, have certainly served the purpose of keeping the general public largely ignorant of the shocking realities of wealth distribution inequities. In effect, the economic elite are effectively making fools of 90% of society's so-called equals. Not surprisingly, their lobbying power has ensured that inheritance laws allow fortunes to remain virtually intact from generation to generation.

(Part 5) Subsistence for the Working Class

The old Feudal system based on economic and social class discrimination, which was supposedly left behind centuries ago, has in fact not gone away. It has only been made to appear as if it had. For example, from poor humble beginnings in servile poverty, the feudal
{B3} "The World's Billionaires" Forbes (Jul 23 1990): p121
{B4} "Billionaires" Forbes (Oct 23 1989): p164, p152
{B5} "Drug Money Soils Clean Hands" Insight (Aug 21 1989): p14