Thursday, March 16, 2017

Greed at Top Unabated


Greed is an economic fractal, a pattern that repeats at varying levels of perspective.  MarketWatch reported on the long term growth in Wall Street bonuses.

Since 1985, Wall Street bonuses have soared 890%, seven times the rise in the federal minimum wage.
MIT Economist Peter Temin captured America's middle class decline:

...the incomes of goods-producing workers have been flat since the mid-1970s.

“We have a fractured society,” says Temin. “The middle class is vanishing.”
Oddly, President George W. Bush's administration lectured the world that democracy required a rising middle class.  His years in office were marked by the rise of private equity underwriters, whose business model sent middle class jobs overseas and prioritized PEU fees/profits.  The Bush years saw much greed induced financial behavior.  That recklessness carried few consequences after the crisis hit.  

W. recently resurfaced as a "folksy wise man," which is only appropriate in that he had no role in the proliferation of greed the last eight years.  Bush does bear responsibility for the growing plight of the middle class during his two terms in office.  

I have seen so many people -- particularly those in their 50s - 70s -- taken apart by what has happened in their industry as greed has hollowed out the economy. These are people took pride in their jobs and held themselves to this invisible standard that we all just took for granted, but is being wiped out.
President Donald Trump refilled the D.C. Swamp with the PEU/Wall Street bonus class.  They will take care of their own.  As for the rest of us?  Sorry.  They've trained us for three or four decades to accept our lot.