The Coronacrisis has been a boon for America’s wealthiest dozen, taking their aggregate wealth over the top of a trillion dollars. One think tank refers to them as the “Oligarchic Dozen”:
“The rich get richer” doesn’t even begin to tell the story these days. According to the Institute for Policy Studies, the wealth of the top 12 billionaires in the U.S. recently exploded to more than one trillion dollars — yes, 13 digits…. “This is simply too much economic and political power in the hands of twelve people. From the point of view of a democratic self-governing society, this represents an Oligarchic Dozen….”
Since the pandemic first blew up in the U.S. back in March, the “Oligarchic Dozen” has enjoyed a 40% surge in its combined wealth…. “The total wealth of the Oligarchic Dozen is greater than the GDP of Belgium and Austria combined,” said Omar Ocampo, a researcher for IPS’s program on inequality and the common good. “Meanwhile, tens of millions of Americans are unemployed or living paycheck to paycheck….”
And it’s not just Bezos and the bunch who have seen fortune smile upon them lately. CEO compensation, overall, climbed to its highest level in seven years last year, and it is positioned to rise once again in 2020…. In fact, the pay ratio between chief executives and workers at America’s 350 biggest companies has widened to 320-to-1, the researchers found.
The Buyback Billionaires
These are the Buyback Billionaires, some of the elite whose wealth has been expanded by the deregulation that allowed companies to buy back their own stocks and by the low capital-gains tax that gives the most benefit to those who expand their wealth through stock buybacks — the tax that Trump now wants to lower even more, thus exacerbating the extreme difference between the wealth of the rich and the survival of the rest.
Read the rest here: https://thegreatrecession.info/blog/coronacrisis-creates-trillion-dollar-dozen/