I just came upon this in The New York Times. If you were pondering why our economy is collapsing, why our industry is collapsing, why it seems like our nation is collapsing mull over the data below.
"The income of the 400 wealthiest Americans swelled in 2006, soaring nearly 23 percent from the previous year, to an average of $263 million, according to data released Thursday by the Internal Revenue Service. Since 1996, this group has nearly doubled its share of all income earned in the United States.
The top 400 paid just more than $18 billion in federal income taxes in 2006, or an average of $45 million, on a record $105 billion in total income — the lowest effective tax rate in the 15 years since the agency began releasing such data."
Chances are, if you're reading this post, your federal tax rate is between 33%-38%. Yet the richest 400 Americans paid just 17%.
In my agency, I am attempting to implement "The OSOR Program." OSOR is One Set of Rules. In too many businesses, in too many crevices of our country, in too many sectors of our economy, there is "free swim" for too many people. Laying people off while staying at The Four Seasons or speedo-ing it out to Cannes for a week of groping--that's not OSOR, and it's not right.
As Karl Malden, the potato-eater priest in "On the Waterfront" said quoting the Bible, "What happens to the least of us, happens to the best of us." And if you don't believe me, print out this post and toss it into your $1,400 trash can.