There is a popular political slogan in circulation that seems somewhat suspect to me. It is designed to support a political notion that has been around for as long as I can remember. Its current form is expressed as simplistically as possible: 99% and 1%. Those percentages represent the ‘non-wealthy’ and the ‘wealthy’ respectively.

On October 28, 2011, The New York Times published the following taxation statistics:

Income starting at        $11 million

Average                             $31 million

Families                                               14,000

Income starting at        $2 million

Average                             $3.9 million

Families                                               135,000

Income starting at        $386,000

Average                             $717,000

Families                                               1.35 million

Income starting at        $108,000

Average                             $167,000

Families                                               13.2 million

Income starting at        $0

Average                             $36,000

Families                                               132 million

According to the slogan, 99% of Americans are being exploited by 1%. We used to hear stories about big Republican money behind presidential campaigns. Now that the Democratic Party has bigger money than its adversary, most media continues to tell us that the Republican Party seeks the votes of their ‘friends,’ the wealthy. What is overlooked is the fact that individual millionaires (and billionaires) have only one vote each, no more or less than every other voter. Even if we round out the top three figures for families to as many as 2 million families, the rest of the voting population overwhelmingly outnumbers them. No political party can survive against those odds by catering to the wealthy. Party platforms based on financial class rather than fiscal responsibility would be political suicide.

Despite significantly differing incomes, we live in a fundamentally classless society. The current slogan is just another way to express the ageless cliché that the Democratic Party is for the poor and the Republican Party for the rich. I am not in favor of any political party, but generalizations are anathema to me. I cringe at expressions like, ‘the party for the poor,‘ ’real people,’ and ‘fair tax.’ I’m equally at odds with Social Conservatives and Limousine Liberals. Their prejudices clutter the paths of objectivity.

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