Tuesday, January 24, 2006


"People in places once considered remote are increasingly aware of statistics such as these:
  • Transnational corporations have taken control of much of the production and trade in developing countries: For example, 40 percent of the world's coffee is traded by just four companies; the top 30 supermarket chains control almost one-third of worldwide grocery sales.
  • A trade surplus of $1 billion for developing countries in the 1970s turned into an $11 billion deficit by 2001.
  • The income ratio of the one-fifth of the world's population in the wealthiest countries to the one-fifth in the poorest went from 30 to 1 in 1960 to 74 to 1 in 1995.
  • Of the 100 largest economies in the world, 51 are corporations; of those, 47 are U.S.-based.
  • The overall share of federal taxes paid by U.S. corporations is now less than 10 percent, down from 21 percent in 2001 and over 50 percent during World War II; one-third of America's largest and most profitable corporations paid zero taxes -- or actually received credits -- in at least one of the last three years (according to Forbes magazine).
  • Back in 1980 the average American chief executive earned 40 times as much as the average manufacturing employee. For the top tier of American CEOs, the ratio is now 475:1 and would be vastly greater if assets, in addition to income, were taken into account. By way of comparison, the ratio in Britain is 24:1, in France 15:1, in Sweden 13:1.
  • Pre-Civil War slaves received room and board; wages paid by the sweatshops that today serve many U.S. industries will not cover the most basic needs.
From Predictions of an Economic Hit Man

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