Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest


1:44 pm - November 6th 2011

by Sunny Hundal    


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This graph, by the Resolution Foundation, backs up the point #occupyLSX have been making, and is endorsed by Ed Miliband today – while the richest 1% have prospered in the UK for the last 30 years the poorest have not seen their incomes grow.

The system is rigged; the economy is broken – and even some Conservatives are reluctantly starting to admit it. When will the media and the rest of the political class?

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Sunny Hundal is editor of LC. Also: on Twitter, at Pickled Politics and Guardian CIF.
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Reader comments


My income is going down but I am happier because I have more time.

Does this mean if you are earning 40k you are in the top 1% of earners in the country? If you are living in London supporting a family 40k will not make you feel like one of the top 1%

Great graph – illustrates the problem really well. My only comment would be on the graph itself – the bottom colour shows all incomes in the bottom 10% (ie from zero to the salary at which 90% of the population earns more). The second colour (the bottom 50%) shows the salary from the median income downwards. Fine.

However, the third colour suggests that those earning in 2010 between ~£20k and ~£40k are the top 10%, whereas actually it should be those earning above ~£40k who are the top 10%. Equally, the top 1% do not earn between £40k and £100k, they earn from £100k upwards, so the wrong region of the graph has been coloured green.

The problem is that shaded regions have been used instead of lines, which causes a problem if you’re talking about salaries earned *above* a certain percentile, rather than below.

Sorry this is quite a tedious bit of pedantry, but I think it does make a difference to the clarity of the graph.

I’m not convinced the y-axis is correct (or if it is, the graph is a little misleading). As far as I understand it, to have an income in the top 10% one must earn above about £44000 per year. The top 10% of earners take 31% of all the income in the UK. There are about 31000000 employees in the UK with an average income of about £26800. This gives a total of £831 billion. If the top 10% of earners take 31% of this, then their average income is about £83000. I think in the graph, the dark brown and light brown are correct. The dark green, however, probably shows the income of those between the 50% and the 90% percentile, not the income range of the top 10%. The light green area should probably be dark green and the light green should extend above the graph (i.e., those in the top 1% today earn above £100k).

It took me so long to check my figures, that I go beaten to it by Rob 🙂

@3,

I was going to make the same comment but you did it for me.

Poorly designed graph. Makes it look like someone on 40k is in the top 1%. Clearly not the case.

This graph is a convincing enough demonstration that inequality has grown, if the data is accurate.

I’m less convinced that it demonstrates that the real standard of living of the majority hasn’t improved (ie, that the bottom X% haven’t benefited at all from the world economic system). £1 now doesn’t buy you the same stuff as an inflation-adjusted £1 in 1975.

@JasonW

I suspect proving that the bottom X% haven’t benefitted from the world economic is probably quite tricky. A few comments though. Firstly, the top earners have clearly (as shown by the graph) captured most of the increase in available income. One might argue that they were the main contributors to economic growth, but I would argue that the rest of the working population must have contributed and to not have benefited particularly seems wrong. Secondly, one of the reasons for the recent financial meltdown was the easy availability of credit, in particular making it available to those who ultimately couldn’t afford to pay it back. This seems to be at least consistent with an argument that the lowest earners were not actually able to afford the kind of lifestyle that they were living (i.e., any increased standard of living was driven by easy credit, rather than £1 going further than it used to). The highest earners subsequently benefited (for a while at least) in two ways. Firstly, people were spending their borrowed money and secondly, they were paying interest on their loans. I guess I would argue that there is at least circumstantial evidence that the lowest earners have not earned the kind of salary that would allow them to easily live the kind of lifestyles that we would (as a society) expect them to be living.

OH yes the fallacy of trickle down.
The rich elites lie a lot. They have no shame.

I don’t think the Resolution Foundation study of the weakening relationship between economic growth and the pay of ordinary workers does make the rather simplistic claims that the OP is claiming. There has been something of a separation between economic growth and income growth of that there is no doubt. However, it has happened almost everywhere no matter which policies a particular government was following. The UK experience is far from unique and far from the worst. German and French workers have done worse than UK workers, and the Nordic Model appears to be clearly the best from the data.

The data is mixed and suggest that UK median wage growth as a share of national income was best in the 1980s. Yet, in the same period the bottom lost ground to the middle. Over the last two decades the UK bottom has gained on the middle and the gap between the middle and the top has grown. The 1% and 99% may be a catchy slogan, but it is mindless simplicity.

The UK labour share of national income was 65% in 1970 and 60% in 2007. Only Denmark and Japan seen real rises going to labour with small rises in France and Finland. Yet, UK labour captures a higher percentage of national income than Finland or Japan. The UK labour share is only 1% below Sweden and everyone loves Sweden. The left believe powerful unions are the answer to everything. How then does UK labour manage to capture 60% of national income compared to French and German labour only capturing 57% and 55%? A high minimum wage in Australia still sees their labour only capturing 53% of national income.

Labour has been losing out on the fruits of economic growth. However, it is a lot more complicated than just chanting about the 1% and 99%. Moreover, there is no simple explanation why, nor is there an easy button to press to change the direction of travel. Furthermore, is it even possible to have clear dividing lines between labour and capital? I would suggest that millions in this country have a foot in both camps.

http://www.resolutionfoundation.org/media/media/downloads/Painful_Separation_1.pdf

12. Leon Wolfson

@11 – And oh look, the 1% come out to deny the issue.

“Furthermore, is it even possible to have clear dividing lines between labour and capital?”

50% vs 28% for the rich’s tax.

And oh look, the 1% come out to deny the issue.

The 1% and 99% may be a catchy slogan, but it is mindless simplicity….

Sally, I genuinely wonder what you get from your comments here, endlessly reposting the same stuff about elites and fascists and brownshirts whatever the issue. It can’t be very entertaining; is it that you think you’re achieving something?

15. So Much For Subtlety

I am struggling to see what is wrong here. Some people are doing just as well as they ever have. Some other people are doing better. A tiny number of people are doing much better. This is a cause for complaint? Why?

Does everyone else really have to fail for me to succeed?

The point is surely that no one is worse off.

In the meantime you have to ask what sort of figure they are using. Are they looking at income before tax and redistribution? Because, of course, having a lot of rich people paying a lot of tax which is used to spend on welfare for the poor makes a big difference to those poor people. Are they showing us net income after counting all the goodies the State hands out? If not, that’s a little tricky, no?

16. Leon Wolfson

@15 – “I am struggling to see what is wrong here.”

Well sure, 1%ers do. That’s why you’re the enemy.

Leon, the poor have always considered the rich as the enemy yet this is the only time in history the poor are not actually poor, and just about any one can massively increase there income – living standards are good and personal opportunity to change them is on offer to all…

Do you have what it takes to create personal wealth? Is it that you constantly hate “the rich” because you lack the quality’s needed to join them?

“Well sure, 1%ers do. That’s why you’re the enemy.”

Grow up, you sound like a spoilt brat. Try travelling somewhere where there is real poverty and have a whinge to them about how tough you have it.

They may just look and you and think how rich you are and that you must be the enemy.

Oh dear, oh dear.

“while the richest 1% have prospered in the UK for the last 30 years the poorest have not seen their incomes grow.”

This simply is not true. Or at least, you cannot show it from the information being presented. For, if you go look at where the information comes from (and please fix that link, it’s “livingstandards.org,” no hyphen) it is from ASHE at the ONS.

Which is a measure of market pre-tax income only.

It is not a measure of total income. Total income includes the effects of the tax and benefit systems. And, quite rightly, the bottom 10% in market incomes get quite a lot of their income from that benefit system. Quite rightly because that’s what it’s there for. To get money to people who have low market incomes.

There is a reason this is more than just pedantry. Imagine that we had the American welfare system: or even the Hong Kong one, which is essentially to not have a welfare system at all. Or that we had a Swedish welfare system, which takes an awful lot of money from everyone and gives it to the poor so that they’re not so poor any more.

The problem with the above graph is that whichever system we had, zero redistribution or a lot of redistribution, the graph would be exactly the same. Because they’re not measuring how much redistribution there is. So it just isn’t talking about “incomes”. It’ws talking about market incomes before all of tyhe things we do to ameliorate the distribution of market incomes.

Imagine that we raise taxes on the rich qand give the money to the poor. Lots of people around here would like that. The graph would still be exactly the same.

Which is why it’s not a very useful graph to be using.

@Tim

Although you are indeed correct that this graph does not illustrate how much redistribution takes place through taxation and the benefit system, I don’t believe that including this would change what this graph is trying to illustrate. The lower earners would indeed gain and the high earners would lose (so the graph would compress somewhat) but it would still show that, over the last 30 years or so, the top few percent have taken an ever increasing fraction of the total income. This isn’t necessarily wrong but – in my view at least – one would need to then argue that the top few percent today are more capable and competent than they were 30 years ago. Also, one would need to argue that the rest of the population have ultimately benefited from this redistribution of income and – given what we’re going through at the moment – this would seem like a difficult argument to make.

@Tim W – If the argument being made here was only about income distribution and taxation then it would be a fine, acceptable argument. The argument being made here is that a very small corrupt elite has been taking an ever larger share of the nation’s wealth, a point the graph seems to support.

“The argument being made here is that a very small corrupt elite has been taking an ever larger share of the nation’s wealth, a point the graph seems to support.”

No, it certainly doesn’t support that point. For it’s measuring income, not wealth.

And unless you look at how market incomes are redistributed then you can’t even say that anyone at all has been taking a larger portion of the nation’s income.

This is great news, now that I realise im in the same 99% as Ethiopians and Nigerians I can cancel all my charity direct debits.

Trebles all round!

24. Chaise Guevara

@ 23 Dave

Do you actually have any charity direct debits?

Concern and Oxfam, please forgive me for being shy about revealing the amount though.

Ah I get your meaning now, because I questioned something on libcon im obviously a brownshirt corporate master who prefers pissing on the poor as opposed to helping them.

If Ive got that wrong please enlighten me as to the reason behind your, frankly rude questioning.

Concern and Oxfam.

Now could you explain your reasoning behind askign such a rude and personal question.

Im assuming its because Ive criticised a “liberal” and that means im a brownshirt corporate master who could never donate to charity.

Good for you, keep on sniffing your farts and the show of faux concern. people will suffer the same amount but at least we know how intelligent and liberal you are, which is the whole point of this site I suppose

BTW, the ASHE figures don’t include the selfemployed, this is PAYE data only from employment.

That’s 10% of the workforce not being considered right there.

29. Chaise Guevara

@ 25, 26 ,27 Dave

Firstly, thanks for managing to limit yourself to using a mere three posts to say the same thing repeatedly. Did it take that long for you to feel you’d posted something with the appropriate level of scatological aggression?

No, I’m not asking because you criticised a liberal (which liberal, btw?), nor because I think you’re rightwing. I’m asking because it seems unlikely that someone who thinks charity is unnecessary between people in “the same 99%” would actually be inclined to give money in the first place. So it seemed more realistic that you were using the line about charity to make a nonsensical point.

Perhaps you’d care to explain the logic behind your post @23?

@29 –

No need to thank me, my original post didnt come through, and as these are normally instantaneous I thought I had made an error and re-posted twice.

The logic is straight forward. If I am in the same 99% as the rest of the worlds poor, then it wouldn’t be logical for me to give charity donations to someone who is in the same posiiton as me.

Usually with charity those with, give to those without. For example if you and I have 1 loaf of bread each, it wouldnt really be charitable to share mine with you as well as you eating your own, it would be stupid.

I guess my main beef is a load of people who live in a rich, developed nation a nd have never known hunger moaning about how hard done by there are, because some people are richer than them, whereas not too far away people are dying of starvation.

Seems hypocritical to me.

“And unless you look at how market incomes are redistributed then you can’t even say that anyone at all has been taking a larger portion of the nation’s income.”

But you can use the graph to look at the under-lying pre-distribution trend. Which is that top-earners take more of a share than bottom earners. Or in plain english, low paid workers have not benefited, and have been reliant on welfare systems to top up their income. Which you yourself have accepted is the case on numerous occasions.

the issue is whether this is some ‘natural process’, which we have limited control over – relying instead on the goodwill of politicians to design workable tax and welfare systems to boost income (have a guess as to whether this has happened?). Or is this trend the result of factors like the decline of trade union movements, disproportionate concentrations of power, an instiutional structure that limits the ability of shareholders to control executive pay, corporate corruption and abuse of planning systems etc.

@Tim

Although what you’ve said is strictly correct, it’s not quite clear what you’re actually suggesting. Are you really suggesting that if the graph was to show after tax and after benefits income and to include self-employed people, that the trend would disappear (i.e., that over the last 30 years or so the top few percent would not have been getting an increasing fraction of the income). I doubt it. The tax revenues as a fraction of GDP has been reasonably flat for the last 30 years or so and the top rate of tax has actually decreased. The effect may, in fact, be more pronounced.

@Dave

Although your argument that most in the UK are wealthy compared to many in the rest of the world is almost certainly correct, suggesting that the poorest in the UK should not complain because others are worse off than them does not seem like a reasonable argument for why the top few percent should be getting an increasing fraction of the income in the UK.

But on a global view that is what happens, the rich persentage of the world (us) get an increasing percentage of the worlds wealth. If we are unwilling to share what we have with those worse off than us, what motivation is there for those better off than us to share with us.

To me it seems like you have:

man A with no bread
man B with 100 loaves
man C with 1000 loaves.

Whilst man A starves, man B laments that if only he had 550 loaves everything would be fairer. Man C just thinks “Fuck you both”

You forgot that B has the ability and opportunity to bake his own bread but refuses to.

“But you can use the graph to look at the under-lying pre-distribution trend.”

Sure.

“Which is that top-earners take more of a share than bottom earners.”

Indeed, that’s why they’re called top and bottom earners.

“Or in plain english, low paid workers have not benefited,”

Not true. At the actual site they point out that low incomes have increased, only less than higher incomes. but a minor point

“and have been reliant on welfare systems to top up their income.”

Yes.

But this is a very important point indeed. For if you charted exactly the same numbers for Sweden I think you’d find a very similar story. The pre-tax and pre-benefit system inequality of income (well, the Gini is anyway) there is very similar to what it is in the UK.

Let’s, imagine, say that excessive (to your definition) inequality of outcome is a bad thing, something we should change. OK, I might not agree but then let’s look at how we’re going to do that. I think I’d find most lefties saying that Sweden is an example of a society that reaches that post tax/benefit lesser inequality rather well.

Yes?

And they don’t do it by pissing about with inequality of market incomes. They do it by redistribution of market incomes just as unequal as ours.

“the issue is whether this is some ‘natural process’, which we have limited control over ”

I would say so, yes. This is globalisation in action.

“Are you really suggesting that if the graph was to show after tax and after benefits income and to include self-employed people, that the trend would disappear (i.e., that over the last 30 years or so the top few percent would not have been getting an increasing fraction of the income).”

Disappear? No, I’m sure it wouldn’t. But the differences in income would be a lot smaller. From an email to me this morning looking at the ONS figures which include taxes and benefits:

Poorest decile:
pre-tax, pre-benefit income: £3,888
after direct taxes and cash benefits: £8,162
after all taxes and all benefits: £12,816

Richest decile:
pre-tax, pre-benefit income: £100,155
after direct taxes and cash benefits: £76,089
after all taxes and all benefits: £72,934

So the multiple from top to bottom is:
pre-tax, pre-benefit income: 25 times
after direct taxes and cash benefits: 9.3 times
after all taxes and all benefits: 5.7 times

25 times pre tax and benefits, down to 5.7 times after tax and benefits – that’s a hell of a lot of redistribution.

One final thing: I’m deeply, deeply, suspicious of these charts that start in 1975/6. For of course that was when inequality in the UK was at the lowest its ever been. There were also, you might recall, a few economic problems around at that time. It’s possible that there was, just to put the idea forward, too much redistribution at the time?

@34

No, I didn’t

37. Chaise Guevara

@ 30 Dave

“The logic is straight forward. If I am in the same 99% as the rest of the worlds poor, then it wouldn’t be logical for me to give charity donations to someone who is in the same posiiton as me.”

If you’re both in the bottom 99%, you could be in the top 2% while they were in the bottom 1%. How on earth does that mean that you’re in the “same position”? By your “logic”, and I use the term loosely, a starving tramp is on even terms with a affluent person who has a good job and a nice house.

And if you think only those in the top 1% should give to charity (as shown by your logic here), and you’re NOT in the top 1%, why are you offended by the suggestion that you don’t give money to charity when you just said that you giving to charity would be illogical? Make your mind up instead of acting affronted.

“Usually with charity those with, give to those without. For example if you and I have 1 loaf of bread each, it wouldnt really be charitable to share mine with you as well as you eating your own, it would be stupid.”

How is this relevant? Those at the top of the 99% can afford far more bread (or whatever) than those at the bottom.

“I guess my main beef is a load of people who live in a rich, developed nation a nd have never known hunger moaning about how hard done by there are, because some people are richer than them, whereas not too far away people are dying of starvation.”

If the complaint is “I deserve a 32 inch flatscreen too!” then I agree with you. But there are essentials other than hunger. Like having a roof over your head, for example. Or being able to give your kids a decent start in life.

Tim@22 – An ever increasing share of income would imply an ever increasing share of wealth. Also, once you consider that tax changes that have gone on in the it’s obvious that the growth of the income of the 1% had little to do with the tax system.

” I’m deeply, deeply, suspicious of these charts that start in 1975/6″

It’s a fair point, but how accurate and useful do you think older stats would be?

@37 – Yes this is the point, the whole idea is stupid. If your in 1% your the enemy, if you earn slightly less and are in position 99% you’re “one of us”.

that makes no fucking sense whatsoever

Seems everyones looking at the percentage above to pass something down the chain, whilst neglecting the fact that they are pretty high up the ladder themselves.

Anyway, im not as eloquent as you nor Is mny wit as cutting, so fot that reason Im out.

“but how accurate and useful do you think older stats would be?”

Dunno: Ashe only goes back to 2004. Before that it’s the New Earnings Survey back to 1970 (which would be a decent enough place to start, at the beginning of the statistical method). I assume from the name that there was an “Earnings Survey” which predated the “New Earnings Survey”. but don’t actually know.

42. Chaise Guevara

@ 40 Dave

“Yes this is the point, the whole idea is stupid. If your in 1% your the enemy, if you earn slightly less and are in position 99% you’re “one of us”.

that makes no fucking sense whatsoever”

I think it does, just not in the absolutest terms of “we are equal, you and I”. The point behind the 99% thing is to convince people that nearly everyone is being shafted by a small, powerful minority – that low- and middle-earners have shared interests, up to a point, and therefore have a reason to work together. I think it’s an attempt to counteract the rhetoric about the “squeezed middle”.

“Seems everyones looking at the percentage above to pass something down the chain, whilst neglecting the fact that they are pretty high up the ladder themselves”

Fair point.

@Tim

I don’t disagree with your numbers. They’re largely consistent with what I’ve looked up. The issue is still, however, the trend with time rather than the absolute values today. There is lots of evidence to suggest that over the last 30 years, the top few percent have been getting an increasing fraction of the net income. Whether or not this is a good thing, a bad thing, or neither is another issue. I would certainly argue that a completely equal income distribution would be bad thing as would a very unequal income distribution. It therefore seems worth considering what an optimal income distribution might be, even if it isn’t actually possible to determine it definitively.

44. Leon Wolfson

@17 – I’m not poor? Oh fuck you, 1%er. No, I’m very poor. I struggle to afford rent, utilities and food. Actually, I CAN’T afford all three, and the heating will be off this winter. This is your ideal world, of course, you’re fine, the poor are nothing to you.

“Just about any one can massively increase there income”

In reality, the UK has terrible social mobility

And this government have DIRECTLY lost me 4 jobs now with their policies against my industry. A high tech, low-impact new media industry. PURE ideological hated…much the same as yours against the poor.

@18 – I am living somewhere with real poverty. London.

@35 – Inflation has hit the poor FAR harder than the rich, given the far faster rise of the price of utilities and food lately and the long-term rise of rents well above inflation. But hey, they’re only the poor, screw em.

And it starts in the mid 70’s for a reason – that’s when the right managed to turn around the increasing levels of fairness in income distribution. The last time things were this imbalanced, we were having an economic disaster as well.

Gee, maybe there’s a link!

It’s kinda cute that 15, 17, 19 and the rest are trying to quibble and muddy the waters about this, basically missing the point, deliberately it seems.

Never mind all the flummery consumer rubbish that is used to lure and bedazzle simple folk, the simple point is this:

Money = Power

“according to a new global wealth report from Credit Suisse … A mere 0.5% of the world’s population owns an eye-popping 38.5% of its total wealth.”

http://www.businessinsider.com/charts-facts-about-global-wealth-2011-10

The simple result of this gross disparity is that a small number of people hold the whip hand and can manipulate and control all the rest of us. That’s the problem.

“It therefore seems worth considering what an optimal income distribution might be, even if it isn’t actually possible to determine it definitively.”

Ah, but we do have to determine just that. Otherwise either side has a let out.

Either “inequality should be less” or “inequality doesn’t matter” are viable campaigning positions unless we define what level of inequality is too much or too little.

” I’m not poor? Oh fuck you, 1%er. No, I’m very poor. I struggle to afford rent, utilities and food. Actually, I CAN’T afford all three, and the heating will be off this winter. This is your ideal world, of course, you’re fine, the poor are nothing to you.”

No your not poor, the standard of living in this country is amazing ( take a trip around the world do some learning) the “1%” get there results from the exact system you use, they just apply them selves differently, unlike you they do not have a chronic obsession with equality of outcome.

“And this government have DIRECTLY lost me 4 jobs now with their policies against my industry. A high tech, low-impact new media industry. PURE ideological hated…much the same as yours against the poor.”

I do not hate the poor, I hate Your self defeating toxic attitude, you come across as completely unemployable and what’s even worse is that after losing jobs at the hands of government policies you completely support taxation policies that would costs thousands of people there jobs, but that’s fine as you perceive them to be “the 1%” or just about any one doing better than you.

Perhaps your misguided when it comes to those you attack, the rich have not cost you a job neither has a financial crisis, your “1%” seems to be the government..

48. Leon Wolfson

@47 – “No your not poor”

Ah, right, so the very real prospect of the University fee hikes leaving me without a job or prospects, and needing to move halfway up the country to find an affordable rent just for eating and shelter is “rich”. When I’ll move away from ANY chance of a job which will ever pay more than minimum wage on my skillset, since I need to be near a reasonable sized town, at least, and that won’t be affordable without getting the job first (you hard right wingers LOVE your catch-22’s…and no, I can’t afford to move repeatedly!)

1%er. I’m in the lowest 3% of this country’s income. I’d make more sitting on my ass from benefits. And you keep on spitting on me.

“what’s even worse is that after losing jobs at the hands of government policies you completely support taxation policies that would costs thousands of people there jobs,”

I lost them because the government REFUSED to tax and subsidise, for something which would have returned, at a minimum, 5:1. Because the government has excluded highly skilled workers. Because a Tory MP decided it’d be “fun” to have a go at a company for investing in “evil games”.

So once more you’re spitting at me. Moreover, austerity is killing jobs. You, not I, are the one crushing more people into poverty. And then supporting the government in making life harder and harder for the people they’ve flung out of work to suit their ideological goals…

You and your 1%ers are the enemy. Plain and simple.

“Ah, right, so the very real prospect of the University fee hikes leaving me without a job or prospects”

Just because a person starves to death whilst locked in a super market does not mean there was no food at hand – Personally I do not weigh up my economic prospects solely on the price I can get for exchanging my labour whilst employed – its based on the structure and the opportunity’s of the economy as a hole – we are Rich & living standards are the best they have ever been.

” 1%er. I’m in the lowest 3% of this country’s income. I’d make more sitting on my ass from benefits. And you keep on spitting on me.”

And you would make even more by thinking out side of the box you have been taught.

“I lost them because the government REFUSED to tax and subsidise, for something which would have returned, at a minimum, 5:1. Because the government has excluded highly skilled workers. Because a Tory MP decided it’d be “fun” to have a go at a company for investing in “evil games”.”

No one here is responsible for that, perhaps at this moment you should acknowledged and be grateful to all the private investors of this world as you understand what a mess the government makes of it, imagine how many opportunity’s would never be explored if it were left to just government financing

“So once more you’re spitting at me. Moreover, austerity is killing jobs. You, not I, are the one crushing more people into poverty. And then supporting the government in making life harder and harder for the people they’ve flung out of work to suit their ideological goals…”

I am crushing people into poverty and supporting government in making life harder? Hows that? I guess I crush by providing jobs and support the government by never having voted in my life..I do not give a shit what the government do I long ago lost faith in that organization and took the world for what it is, they are not for you, you have to be for you.

Ironically the only reason I ever appeared on this site to start with was due to hatred filled financially illiterate fools such as your self supporting the government in making life harder for a substantial amount of people by crushing them with a dysfunctional tax.

50. Leon Wolfson

@49 – It’s illegal to steal food. And no, it is most certainly not the peak we had before the recession. Before austerity strangled any possible recovery, while the Tories work to wreck this country.

“And you would make even more by thinking out side of the box you have been taught.”

How, precisely, do I get money from companies which have gone bust to pay off only their big investors, using clever tricks to ensure that contractors never see a penny of their money? Three times in four years, in this country. And two in foreign countries.

What the law said doesn’t matter, there was nothing LEFT. And yet, in two cases, the companies continue. Because, of course, the assets were controlled by a different company who have hired new contractors to work to the bone and repeat the cycle.

Oh, and there are no jobs. Your kind are ENSURING via austerity there will be even less jobs. This suits you just fine, of course.

“No one here is responsible for that”

You are. You support those policies. You, *personally*, are my enemy. There are no abstractions in politics. If you support a policy which cuts me, you have cut me.

“be grateful to all the private investors”

Why? What have they done for me? They’ve cooperated to asset-strip the 99%, and to repeatedly screw me over. The University work is the *only* substantial work I’ve had in years which has actually paid me promptly and on time.

“Ironically the only reason I ever appeared on this site to start with was due to hatred filled financially illiterate fools such as your self ”

Yes, you came when the right called to troll this site and destroy discussion. You’re 1% scum. You need to be taxed *properly*, as in the Nordic model, and we need an infusion from the IRS into HMRC, and jail sentences for your kind when you’re found to have broken tax law, rather than laughable fines.

Leon Wolfson,

You sound like a very disturbed person. You seem incapable of conducting a reasonable discussion without immediately launching into hate-filled invective. On another thread yesterday, you called me a ‘neo-fascist anti-semite’ for disagreeing with you about who started the 1967 Israel-Arab war. And here I find you denouncing anyone who disagrees with you as ‘the enemy’, ‘1% scum’ and a ‘hater’. Can I please appeal to your conscience to stop talking, for the sake of all leftwingers and progressives? Because you are making our cause look stupid, ugly, misinformed and puerile. If your online persona is any indication of your real personality, perhaps the reason you can’t get a job and afford to turn the heating on is that you’re so evidently an angry, resentful, arrogant young man who’s unable to see the other side of any issue, and who thinks the whole world is a conspiracy against him. Please, stop acting up to all the right’s stereotypes of us. Every word you speak militates against the causes you’re trying to support.

51. Matt Hill

Leon Wolfson,

” You sound like a very disturbed person. ”

You are not the first to notice. Be prepared to be accused of being a far right winger, National Socialist, one of the 1% etc. I think he needs treatment or something to help calm him down.

53. Leon Wolfson

@51 – And the old hard right trick of calling anyone who disagrees mentally ill. Gee, that didn’t take long. You made an explicit call to bomb Dimona. If you did not mean do to so, then you should not have done so.

“Can I please appeal to your conscience to stop talking, for the sake of all leftwingers and progressives?”

This means I’m scoring very good points off you. That I am doing the right thing, that you need to use a false appeal to authority to try and silence me, rather than actual arguments. You would have me betray the left, of course.

“perhaps the reason you can’t get a job and afford to turn the heating on is that you’re so evidently an angry, resentful, arrogant young man”

And you resort to attacks on my personality, right, rather than my political allegiance. Again, entirely typical. There are four people who live here. We ALL struggle, and are quite different people in different fields. Congratulations, you just slurred them as well.

“Every word you speak militates against the causes you’re trying to support.”

You’re positioning yourself with those who would silence dissent because you don’t like the message it’s giving, to revise history to suit your aims and goals and to freely call for military strikes in complete contravention of international law (once more: non-signatories are entitled to develop nuclear weapons, signatories are NOT!)

That’s of the left? Well, then no, I’m not a left winger in the same sense as you. And the left has a sickness it needs to expel.

54. Leon Wolfson

@52 – And you “need” to be in jail for tax offences. Your point? Of course the hard right see me as a thread, because I point out your cherished illusions are mist on the wind. That what you do really DOES hurt people directly. Seen it before. Seen it all before.

Seen the boot of someone who thought that sort of thing need to be done in action as it hit me, too.

You’re accusing me of ad hominem attacks? You’ve done absolutely nothing but abuse everyone you disagree with. I won’t be engaging with you any further. And no, this isn’t some crypto-fascist attempt to silence you. If I were really of the right wing, I would encourage you to keep speaking all day, for the more you do so, the more you discredit your cause. You really ought to take and deep breath and calm down. Try taking up drinking. Or yoga. Or anger management. Or just silence.

56. Leon Wolfson

“Try…. “spending cash you need for food on X”.”

So…no real concept of what it’s like to be actually poor. Yea, about what In expected at this point. It’s taken some dedicated posting by you to get where you are, people who are NOT government MP’s or Scientologists get the benefit of the doubt with me, to begin with, it wasn’t a view I formed overnight…

Funny how SMFS is making more sense than you when it comes to foreign policy though. In which I am not and never have been a dove. (But I’m willing to them put aside, barring active hatred, for domestic issues).

So…no real concept of what it’s like to be actually poor.

I think a broadband connection disqualifies us all.

@Tim Worstall “One final thing: I’m deeply, deeply, suspicious of these charts that start in 1975/6”

How about the research institute you work with spends some time looking into the data on this and publishes something on income and wealth trends by decile over the last 50/60 years?

I agree with your criticism of the above chart to an extent, but given certain qualifications the graph still presents *an* interesting picture, how about you present an alternative picture?

Not to be rude, but if it’s worth spending time criticising a blog post, surely it’s worthy of some research time? Perhaps you have published something on this – if so, why not point us to it?

“Not to be rude, but if it’s worth spending time criticising a blog post, surely it’s worthy of some research time? Perhaps you have published something on this – if so, why not point us to it?”

Sadly, as I continually remind people, I am not an economist. I most certainly do not have the research skills to produce such work.

60. Leon Wolfson

@57 – I pay £3/month for mine (a fifth share of the price). Sure, please argue that this makes me rich.

@59 – Dodge! No, the institute. Not you.

And I’m not an economic researcher, but I could easily do that comparison had I the time and access to do so. It’s a simple exercise…


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Simon Leach

    Rich prosper … While we stagnate http://t.co/Fa3t8kVg

  2. occupybristol

    How the UK 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/CMuSYcH7 #occupylsx #occupybristol #ows #occupytogether

  3. t0p

    How the UK 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/CMuSYcH7 #occupylsx #occupybristol #ows #occupytogether

  4. Mark Williams

    How the UK 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/CMuSYcH7 #occupylsx #occupybristol #ows #occupytogether

  5. Joe Scofield

    How the UK 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/CMuSYcH7 #occupylsx #occupybristol #ows #occupytogether

  6. Katherine

    The graph that illustrates @occupyLSX's point – how the 1% have prospered over last 30 yrs, not the rest http://t.co/hENVojhm

  7. Paul Krishnamurty

    @StephenNolan @bbc5live Indy article by @Ed_Miliband is right to use 99% vs 1% figure, as graph shows #ows #occupyLSX http://t.co/G3ibgs0o

  8. Paul Krishnamurty

    @BBCPolitics In hours of #bbc #itv #sky #occupy coverage, can't recall one recognition that 1% v 99% figures are fair. http://t.co/G3ibgs0o

  9. Tim Martin

    Interesting graph: RT @libcon: Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/BjaSig67

  10. Shivam

    @GNReaders The protest it self is for a very a good cause especially the UK ones as this graph shows http://t.co/J017rYeK.

  11. Shivam

    Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/5DaPojuE via @libcon

  12. Gulf News Your Turn

    @GNReaders The protest it self is for a very a good cause especially the UK ones as this graph shows http://t.co/J017rYeK.

  13. Using bad numbers

    […] From Sunny. […]

  14. Nick H.

    Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/gWicrhQ4

  15. JP

    Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/EwO1dNxx via @libcon

  16. Noxi

    RT @libcon: Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/RnDSFbWZ

  17. Noxi

    RT @libcon: Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/COSvkk9j

  18. Jane

    RT @libcon: Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/COSvkk9j

  19. Montgomery

    RT @libcon: Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/COSvkk9j

  20. Warren Draper

    Interesting graph about UK inequity; although globally speaking if you're on £22k + pa you ARE in the 1%!.. http://t.co/dWZ1SDaT via @libcon

  21. 1ofbristolnoborders

    RT @libcon: Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/RnDSFbWZ

  22. Robert CP

    Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/gWicrhQ4

  23. Fiona Radic

    RT @libcon: Graph: How the 1% have prospered, not the rest http://t.co/COSvkk9j

  24. Tony Hughes

    @pobbyboy a reality check http://t.co/Vj0JVUsi





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