TMO Wall Street Robin Hood a No-Show Part I inset“We Petition the Obama Administration to Demand a Wall Street Sales Tax:

Dear President Obama,

The fiscal problems of the United States are largely due to the fact that Wall Street pays no taxes. While working families pay on average 7% in sales tax for the necessities of life, Wall Street speculators pay no tax on a yearly turnover of over $5 quadrillion (5,000 trillion dollars) in derivatives, futures, stocks, bonds, and other securities on U.S. exchanges. A 1% sales tax on this turnover, equally divided between the federal and state governments, largely solves the budget deficit at all levels of government.

We ask you to put the Wall Street Sales Tax squarely on the table, to use the power of your office to mobilize the Congress for this tax, and to fight for the American people against the interests of Wall Street speculators.

Created: Mar 11, 2013”

The dismaying results and conditions are as follows: 1/3,000 of the American population were required for the mere proposition to request the petition to gain the attention of President Barack Obama and the two Houses of Legislation. Out of those 100,000 votes needed, only 1/10 (roughly 11,000) of that already third of the population was even aware or concerned to spend a minute of their lives to lift a finger that would loosen the noose on their livelihoods. This goal was set to be met within the span of a month, from March 11th to April 10th, 2013.

Calculations are based on the average paid tax (7%):

$1,469 for the poor

$2,479 for the working class

$2,967 for the lower middle class

$4,139 for the upper middle class [1]

Wall Street investors are currently granted $5 quadrillion, that’s $5000 trillion in turnover, money that deserves to be taxed for the commodity a modern civilization demands. That money ought to be going back to the national institutions, for development and for provision of opportunities for the swelling lower classes. However, this sum of money — assuming the petition had succeeded, then survived due process through the legislative and executive branches of government, and finally approved to be enacted — would have been a minute step towards a genuine Meritocracy. The tax’s aim is the same as that of the much more effective Millionaire’s Estate Tax: to stop the super rich from abusing everybody else.

Certainly the brokers think they are self-made and deserve the derivatives they are still allowed to attain scot-free. Could they be any more deluded? It’s the height of audacity. “This guy [the proclaimed self-made man] and everything he has “built for himself” was made possible through the cooperative effort of his entire society. His assertion that he built it himself simply ignores the interdependence of his community. I’m sure he sees nothing wrong with calling in police to protect him from robberies, either.” — Vox Rationis

Democracy has failed, and the people who are supposed to be the beacon of the free world have failed it to our utmost lamentation and deprivation, largely due to behavioral economics: “Behavioral economics has for decades been telling us that human beings are not rational actors. We do not make decisions based upon our best interests. We do not make decisions that maximize our economic advantage; we do not choose political candidates who share our concerns” — Vox Rationis

The general will, whose best interests were at stake, remarkably acted on behalf of the private will, without even apprehending and acknowledging it. The fact that there is no regulation on Wall Street nor a taxation on its colossal revenue reveals the true face of our so fancied democracy. It should disabuse us of any notion that we enjoy genuine voting: Wall Street contributes to the campaigns of the running figures in our elections, and We the People have no say in any issues relevant to the economy. “The market is entirely undemocratic and serves the interests of an elect few; it’s private corporations, private banks, private insurance companies, private entrepreneurs, private lawyers, private accountants, private economists, private lobbyists, and private super rich who run the market. The People are at the mercy of the vested interests of a tiny fraction of society.” – Thomas Payne

Meritocratic Democracy is the antidote required to condense the value of the voices heard. Forget the numbers and the popularity contest! The majority has demonstrated the failure of democracy, leaving us with no Customized Education, no Equal Opportunities, no Qualified Universal Suffrage. Democracy is tied down to neocolonialist capitalism, espoused to neoliberal values.

This failed petition — envisaged as a tree that fell in a forest with no spectators, thus left unheard — did serve a purpose, however, that is revealing, once and for all, the mass apathy and lethargy on the part of the people, the sworn defenders of freedom. ”The Declaration of Independence” etched in stone the liberation of the people of America who were subjugated to the whim of king George the third.* Our forefathers knew the devastating effects that unregulated markets had on the general will, hence the motto, “No taxation without representation.” How many people in the modern age recognize this fact, and the atrocious actions taken by the banking cartel that resides within the parameters of Wall Street? This lack of interest is due to the social norms so many have accepted as viable. Where do these norms come from? They are usually derived from the breads and circuses that comprise the programming strewn by the media outlets; and just as the Roman plebian was enthralled by the Gladiators and Chariot races, our modern culture is beguiled by watching the latest television shows, Hollywood movies, and all the other wondrous spectacles the Plutocrats offer us. “Americans spend an average twenty-eight hours per week watching television. They also spend an undetermined number of hours reading periodicals, listening to the radio, and going to the movies … ownership and control of the mass media is highly concentrated. Twenty-three corporations own more than one-half of all the daily newspapers, magazines, movie studios, and radio and television outlets in the United States.” [2]

Hence the blame isn’t entirely upon a flaw of the people’s character, but on the super class of the elite, for their choice of investments, i.e., their paid media coverage. Was any mainstream broadcaster informing the proposal to the public? How many Americans are aware of the suffering endured by the soaring marginalization of inequality? How many are aware of the benefit a Wall Street tax would have on the economy? How many still look up at the skyscrapers of Wall Street and see “success”, feel envious, or think them patron saints? In the end the plutocrats prevailed, by dint of unregulated free-market capitalism: this crude design endures to the detriment of the unconsented, unknowing masses. For whose advantage?

In a future section of this article I will get to the root of why such a petition was bound to fail, and show why democracy, as it stands now, will achieve no radically significant change. Stay tuned!

 

* We are Meritocrats, and as such do not capitalize royal titles.

 

1. Carmen DeNavas-Walt, Robert W. Cleveland, and Bruce H. Webster, Jr. Income in the United States: 2002. Current Population Reports P60-221. Washington, D.C., U.S.

 

2. Race, Class, and Gender in the United States: An Integrated Study, 4th Edition; Paula Rothenburg. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1998) Granted permission from 3rd reference.

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