“It’s no use pretending that what has obviously happened has not in fact happened. The upper 1 percent of Americans are now taking in nearly a quarter of the nation’s income every year. In terms of wealth rather than income, the top 1 percent control 40 percent. Their lot in life has improved considerably. Twenty-five years ago, the corresponding figures were 12 percent and 33 percent. One response might be to celebrate the ingenuity and drive that brought good fortune to these people, and to contend that a rising tide lifts all boats. That response would be misguided. While the top 1 percent have seen their incomes rise 18 percent over the past decade, those in the middle have actually seen their incomes fall. For men with only high-school degrees, the decline has been precipitous—12 percent in the last quarter-century alone. All the growth in recent decades—and more—has gone to those at the top. In terms of income equality, America lags behind any country in the old, ossified Europe that President George W. Bush used to deride. Among our closest counterparts are Russia with its oligarchs and Iran. While many of the old centers of inequality in Latin America, such as Brazil, have been striving in recent years, rather successfully, to improve the plight of the poor and reduce gaps in income, America has allowed inequality to grow.”
Archive for December 2nd, 2011
Oh which oh which millionaire should rule?
Net worth of the current crop of candidates:
> Estimated net worth: $190 million – $250 million
> Major accomplishments: Founded Bain Capital, Governor of Massachusetts
Mitt Romney’s net worth is between $190 million and $250 million, according to media reports based on his disclosure of personal finances filed with the Federal Election Commission. The majority of Romney’s wealth comes from Bain Capital, a venture capital firm he co-founded, and a wide range of investments. Romney is, by far, the wealthiest candidate running for president.
> Estimated net worth: $1.3 million – $2.8 million
> Major accomplishments: Congresswoman from Minnesota
Michele Bachmann’s net worth at between $1.3 million and $2.8 million, according to media reports based on her disclosure filing. The Minnesota Congresswoman’s largest assets are a family clinic property in Minnesota and a family farm in Wisconsin. Bachmann also possesses “a wide variety of investment funds,” Politico states. The presidential candidate has at least $350,000 worth of debt, stemming from a mortgage and a business loan.
> Estimated net worth: $2.9 million – $6.6 million
> Major accomplishments: CEO of Godfather’s Pizza
Herman Cain, who was born in Memphis, but grew up in Virginia, is the son of poor parents. His mother was a domestic worker and his father worked as a janitor, barber and chauffeur. Working for Pillsbury, Cain oversaw several hundred Burger Kings in the Philadelphia region. He performed so well that he was promoted to CEO of the Godfather’s pizza chain in 1990. To turn the company around, Cain closed down hundreds of locations, leading the company to a profit. Media reports based on his public financial disclosure to the FEC put Cain’s net worth between $2.9 million and $6.6 million.
> Estimated net worth: $2.25 million – $5 million
> Major accomplishments: Congressman from Texas, Author
Ron Paul’s net worth is between approximately $2.25 million and $5 million, according to OpenSecrets. Trained in obstetrics and gynecology, Dr. Paul started his own practice in the late 1960s, following service in the Air Force. Paul has also written a number of best-selling books, including Liberty Defined, End the Fed, and The Revolution: A Manifesto.
> Estimated net worth: at least $1.1 million
> Major accomplishments: Governor of Texas
Rick Perry is worth at least $1.1 million, according to Forbes. The majority of this wealth has been accumulated while he served in office. Perry’s biggest source of income is his real estate deals. In 2007, Perry made over $800,000 selling land in Texas’ Horseshoe Bay, a lot he had originally purchased in 2001 for approximately $300,000. Controversy has surrounded this deal and others, with critics claiming Perry used political leverage to increase his profits.
John Huntsman was ambassador to Singapore during the early years of the Clinton administration. In 2005, he became the Governor of Utah, serving a full term before being appointed ambassador to China by the Obama administration. Huntsman inherited some of his father’s fortunes and is estimated to have a net worth between $16 million and $71 million. Most of this wealth is in the form of stock in his father’s company.
> Estimated net worth: at least $6.7 million
> Major accomplishments: Speaker of the House
According to the Los Angeles Times, Newt Gingrich has a net worth of at least $6.7 million. This is up from a net worth of somewhere between $873,000 and $2.4 million reported in 2006. The majority of this wealth comes “from a multimillion-dollar ‘promissory note’ from the Gingrich Group, LLC to Gingrich Productions, Inc., entities that are part of Gingrich’s eponymous network of nonprofit and for-profit organizations,” the LA Times writes. That promissory note alone is worth between $5 million and $25 million.
> Estimated net worth: $880,000 – $1.9 million
> Major accomplishments: Senator from Pennsylvania, Fox News commentator
Rick Santorum was a member of the House of Representatives in the early 1990s. He then became a senator from Pennsylvania until 2007. Santorum was a regular contributor to Fox News, a columnist, a consultant to an energy company, and a member of a conservative think-tank in D.C. According to Politico, the former senator’s public financial disclosure lists Santorum’s net worth as being between $880,000 and $1.9 million. According to Pittsburgh-based site Early Returns, most of Santorum’s assets “are tied up in rental properties he owns around the Penn State campus and college savings plans for five of his children.”
Gary E. Johnson
> Estimated net worth: $3 million – $10.5 million
> Major accomplishments: Governor of New Mexico
Born in North Dakota, Gary Johnson founded Big J construction company, which grew to become one of the largest in the state. He became Governor of New Mexico in 1995 and sold the business for a substantial profit in 1999. According to Johnson’s public financial statement, his net worth ranges between $3.5 million and $10.5 million. Johnson’s biggest asset is his home in Taos, N.M., estimated as being worth between $1 million and $5 million.
(from Fox Business)
President Obama has a net worth of around 10.5 million.