'Voodoo Economics Revisited'

by Simon Johnson

"Some people expected Paul Ryan, a rising star within the Republican Party who will become Chairman of the House budget committee in the next Congress, to provide a fiscally responsible anchor to the next round of the deficit debate in the US. Writing in The Financial Times in early November, Ryan suggested, “America is eager for an adult conversation on the threat of debt.” But all indications are that he is just as childishly reckless on fiscal policy as most of his Republican colleagues since Ronald Reagan.

Unfortunately, there is no sign yet that the Democratic leadership is ready for a mature conversation about fiscal consolidation, either. Both parties’ leaders will get there – but only when dragged, kicking and screaming, by the financial markets."

Read article here.

"In 1977, the top 10% of the American population had an income 30 times that of the bottom tenth; the top 1% of the nation owned 33% of the wealth. The richest 5% owned 83% of the personally owned corporate stock. The 100 largest corporations (despite a graduated income tax that misled people into thinking the very rich paid at least 50% in taxes) paid an average of 26.9% in taxes, and the leading oil companies paid 5.8% in taxes (internal revenue service figures for 1974). Indeed, 244 individuals who earned over $200,000 paid no taxes." Howard Zinn "A People's History of the United States"

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