Category Archives: Κοινωνικές συνθήκες

Ο θάνατος του νεοφιλελευθερισμού

Σήμερα όμως, οι υπερβολικά πλούσιοι ουσιαστικά δεν φορολογούνται – αφού έχουν τη δυνατότητα να φοροαποφεύγουν νόμιμα, με διάφορους τρόπους. Ο ανώτατος δε φορολογικός συντελεστής του 36,9% επιβάλλεται από ένα σχετικά χαμηλό ύψος εισοδημάτων – της τάξης των 400.000 $. Όπως είπε ο W.Buffett, η γραμματέας του, με μισθό μερικών δεκάδων χιλιάδων δολαρίων, πληρώνει υψηλότερους φόρους, σχετικά με τον ίδιο – τα ετήσια εισοδήματα του οποίου είναι μερικές εκατοντάδες εκατομμύρια.Ολοκληρώνοντας, υπάρχουν δύο ακόμη σημεία, όσον αφορά τις εισοδηματικές ανισότητες, τα οποία θα έπρεπε να αναφέρει κανείς. Το πρώτο είναι η παγκοσμιοποίηση, η οποία είχε σαν αποτέλεσμα τη μείωση των πραγματικών αμοιβών των εργαζομένων με μέση ειδίκευση – για λόγους ανταγωνιστικότητας, με τις αναπτυσσόμενες οικονομίες, με κυριότερο συνήγορο στην Ευρώπη τη Γερμανία.Το δεύτερο είναι η εκρηκτική αύξηση των αμοιβών των ανώτατων διοικητικών στελεχών των επιχειρήσεων. Το 1970 ένας διευθύνων σύμβουλος (CEO) κέρδιζε 39 φορές περισσότερα από το μέσο εργαζόμενο – το 1999 κέρδιζε 1.045 φορές περισσότερα, ενώ σήμερα 1.100 φορές (48,6 εκ. $ ετήσια, κατά μέσον όρο)«. (Β. Βιλιάρδος)

Source: Ο θάνατος του νεοφιλελευθερισμού

New 2015 Wealth Data: US Inequality at Its Ugliest

1. At the Bottom: Of the Half-Billion Poorest Adults in the World, One out of Ten is an American

That seems impossible, with so many extremely poor countries, and it requires a second look at the data, and then a third look. But it’s true. In the world’s poorest decile (bottom 10%), one out of ten are Americans, many of whom are burdened with so much debt that any remnant of tangible wealth is negated. Other nations have high debt, most notably in Europe, but without an excessive burden on their poorest citizens.

Incredibly, then, nearly 50 million of America’s 243 million adults are part of the world’s poorest 10%. In contrast, over 110 million American adults are among the world’s richest 10%.

2. At the Top: The Richest 1/10 of American Adults Have Averaged Over $1 Million Each in New Wealth Since the Recession

Housing rebound? Mostly for the rich, along with their taking of almost all the financial wealth. Total U.S. wealth increased by a stunning 60 percent since 2009, from $54 trillion to $86 trillion, but 3/4 of that massive increase went to the richest 10% of Americans.

The average one-percenter has accumulated $5 MILLION since the recession.

3. In the Middle: The US is the Only Region Where the Middle-Class Does Not Own Its Equivalent Share of Wealth

The North American middle class, as defined by Credit Suisse, and of which the U.S. is by far the largest part, has 39% of the people but only 21 percent of national wealth. Every other region of the world shows the reverse phenomenon, with the middle class owning an oversized portion of national wealth.

The Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report states: “The average wealth of middle-class adults in North America is barely half the average for all adults. In contrast, middle-class wealth per adult in Europe is 130% of the regional average; the middle class in China is three times better off in wealth terms than the country as a whole; and the average wealth of the middle class in both India and Africa is ten times the level of those in the rest of the population.”

4. In the Upper-Middle: For a Full 70% of Americans, Percentage Ownership of National Wealth is One of the Lowest in the World

That’s 70%. Not just the most impoverished, or the poorest half, but a full 70% of us are near the bottom of the world in percentage of wealth ownership. Just 6.9 percent of the wealth is owned by 70% of us. All other reporting nations range between about 13 and 30 percent.

5. The Big Picture: Only Kazakhstan, Libya, Russia, and Ukraine Have Worse Wealth Inequality than the United States

That’s among countries with at least a million adults (see details for a discussion of the outlier Denmark). The global Gini is also higher, at .91, reflecting the dramatically greater disparity between nations rather than within them.

The UK’s Dystopian New ‘Advertising Eyes’ Stare Right into Your Soul | VICE | United Kingdom

The new rulers of the world don’t want our blood, our toil, or even our money. They just want our attention. And the internet isn’t enough; there’s always the chance, however small, that you might turn off your computer and go outside. So now they’ve followed you, and erected a monstrous million-pound eye of evil above the centre of our second city, in the desperate hope that it might get you to buy a sandwich.

Source: The UK’s Dystopian New ‘Advertising Eyes’ Stare Right into Your Soul | VICE | United Kingdom

Giant advertising screens to scan public at station – BBC News

New giant advertising screens shaped like human eyes are being installed at Birmingham’s New Street Station.The three screens, which are made up of hundreds of tiny television screens, will survey passengers before picking out which adverts to display.One of the screens, which is currently being tested, will be the biggest city centre screen in the UK.James Harrison, from operators Signature Outdoor, said the screens were unique.Work at New Street is due to finish next month, with the station fully reopening on 20 September and Grand Central shopping centre on 24 September.

Source: Giant advertising screens to scan public at station – BBC News

Ισπανία: Πενήντα κλίκ απόγνωσης, περιμένοντας την έξωση… | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα

Στην Ισπανία, λίγα θεάματα φοβίζουν τους ανθρώπους τόσο όσο η θέα των αστυνομικών από το ματάκι της πόρτας. Όταν μία ακόμη έξωση είναι προ των πυλών, η αστυνομία θα έρθει τα χαράματα, θα αποκλείσει την περιοχή κι αν ο ένοικος δεν ανοίξει την πόρτα για να φύγει οικειοθελώς… οι αστυνομικοί θα την σπάσουν. Ένας φωτογράφος, ο Andres Kudacki ξεκίνησε να φωτογραφίζει τις εξώσεις στην Ισπανία το 2012 για το Associated Press κι επί 3 χρόνια προσπαθεί μέσα από τον φακό του να πει την βαθύτερη ιστορία πίσω από την οικονομική κρίση στην Ισπανία.

Source: Ισπανία: Πενήντα κλίκ απόγνωσης, περιμένοντας την έξωση… | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα

Greece Surrendered, But The Real Defeat Was For Europe

In a recent article on the Greek crisis, I argued that a much bigger game was being played out in Europe over Greece – and the name of that game was deterrence. In plain English, make the terms of any deal with any rebellious, indebted, government in Europe so tough – almost unacceptable – that nobody in their right mind would ever dare challenge the status quo ever again. And while one is at it, make sure that everybody else understands that the terms of the agreement – like the one recently foisted on the Greeks – is seen for what it is: unconditional surrender.

For that is what the Greek Prime Minister recently did. Surrender. But all this, I would insist, has a purpose. As another commentator recently pointed out, the current agreement might be very hard on the Greeks. But as Jacob Wittgenstein of the Peterson Institute in Washington went on to point out, it will “ultimately result in it being harder for Syriza-like parties to be electable” in any other European country. In the longer term, “the political spill-over from Greece” will be “pro-centrist”. Spain and Italy may have been saved from the left.

via Greece Surrendered, But The Real Defeat Was For Europe.

Europe as a republic: the story of Europe in the twenty first century | openDemocracy

We are living in a formal European governance system, which has lost the essential function of a political system, which is providing the public good. The buzzwords with which the current euro-crisis is negotiated are: governance, federation, integration, structural reforms, growth, competitiveness, subsidiarity. None of these words is clear; none of these words is warm; none of these words contains any normative grounding; none of these words creates a vision for Europe or unites its citizens behind a common good and a common goal, as they are all formal organisational principles.

via Europe as a republic: the story of Europe in the twenty first century | openDemocracy.

Europe’s private debt funds enter public eye – FT.com

life assurers were investing like banks, and their experiment was not far off what today would be called direct lending.

Then as now low yields on government bonds pushed investors with long-term liabilities to look for returns in recherché forms of credit where they would not mind the lack of liquidity. It included private corporate debt. Over the years this market became much bigger in the US.

In Europe, where banks have historically financed almost all corporate investment, it did not. That is changing.

A private debt market is maturing in the region, fed by a continuing retreat by banks from loans to small and middle-market companies, under the pressure of tougher capital rules. Regulators are catching up.

via Europe’s private debt funds enter public eye – FT.com.

Global HR research – Randstad | Randstad Holding

Randstad Workmonitor

As part of our global HR research, the Workmonitor survey covers 32 countries around the world, encompassing Europe, the Americas and Asia Pacific. The Randstad Workmonitor is published four times a year, making both local and global trends in mobility, job satisfaction and motivation regularly available.

via Global HR research – Randstad | Randstad Holding.

Δεύτεροι παγκοσμίως στον φόβο απώλειας εργασίας | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα

Το 75% των Ελλήνων αναμένει ότι η οικονομική κατάσταση θα επιδεινωθεί το 2014, σύμφωνα με έρευνα της Randstad Hellas για τις προσδοκίες των εργαζομένων. Οι Έλληνες εμφανίζονται ως οι λιγότερο αισιόδοξοι για την οικονομική κατάσταση της χώρας στο σύνολο των 32 χωρών που συμμετείχαν στην έρευνα. Επίσης, οι μισοί από τους ερωτηθέντες φοβούνται ότι θα χάσουν την εργασία τους. Είναι χαρακτηριστικό ότι η χώρα μας έχει το υψηλότερο επίπεδο φόβου απώλειας εργασίας στην Ευρώπη και τον δεύτερο παγκοσμίως μετά από την Ινδία.

Παρόμοια είναι τα ευρήματα και για άλλες χώρες της νότιας Ευρώπης που δεν βλέπουν σαφείς ενδείξεις ανάκαμψης (65%).

via Δεύτεροι παγκοσμίως στον φόβο απώλειας εργασίας | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα.

Severe labour exploitation: workers moving within or into the European Union | European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Severe labour exploitation: workers moving within or into the European Union

via Severe labour exploitation: workers moving within or into the European Union | European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights.

▶ The War On Democracy (John Pilger’s documentary) – YouTube

▶ The War On Democracy (John Pilger’s documentary) – YouTube.

▶ Evo Morales in his own words – YouTube

▶ Evo Morales in his own words – YouTube.

Η βιομηχανία της διαφήμισης σαρώνει τον εγκέφαλό μας | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα

Φαίνεται ότι το νευρολογικό μάρκετινγκ (neuromarketing) , είναι μία επιχείρηση αιχμής καθώς τα οικονομικά μερίδια από πιθανούς πελάτες του διαφημιστικού και επιχειρηματικού κόσμου είναι υψηλά.

Στην οθόνη εμφανίζονται διαφορετικές έγχρωμες γραμμές, που ξεκινούν να συστρέφονται κατά μήκος της οθόνης. Στη συνέχεια, προβάλλονται μικρές ταινίες στις οποίες ο εγκέφαλος αποκρίνεται με εγκεφαλικά κύματα που μετατρέπονται σε γραφικές παραστάσεις. Αυτά μεταφράζονται στους δείκτες της προσοχής, του συναισθήματος και της μνήμης. Ο αλγόριθμοι χρησιμοποιούνται για την μέτρηση των σκηνών που σου αρέσουν περισσότερο.

via Η βιομηχανία της διαφήμισης σαρώνει τον εγκέφαλό μας | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα.

Socialist Register

he Socialist Register was founded by Ralph Miliband and John Saville in 1964 as ‘an annual survey of movements and ideas’ from the standpoint of the independent new left. It is currently edited by Leo Panitch and Greg Albo, assisted by an editorial collective of eminent scholars in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas. Each volume is focused on a topical theme and characterized by the inclusion of relatively long, sustained analyses which cut across intellectual disciplines and geographical boundaries.

The Socialist Register is published annually in October. The complete digital archive of 50 volumes published in English, as well as 3 volumes translated into Spanish, is available here. To order or subscribe now click here.

via Socialist Register.

Wealth Distribution | The Wealth Report 2014

The number of UHNWIs across the world has ballooned by 59% since 2003, more than doubling in the Middle East, Latin America, Australasia and Africa.

The number of centamillionaires – those with US$100m in net assets – has risen by 62%, while the tally of billionaires has climbed by 80% to 1,682, according to WealthInsight, a leading wealth intelligence firm.

While UHNWI numbers in North America and Europe remain slightly below the levels seen back in 2007, these regions saw the strongest rates of growth last year.

An additional 1,500 individuals boosted their net value beyond US$30m in North America during2013, a 3.5% rise.

via Wealth Distribution | The Wealth Report 2014.

Μόλις τέσσερις χώρες συγκεντρώνουν τα 2/3 του πλούτου της ΕΕ | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα

Μεγάλη ανισότητα ανάμεσα στις χώρες της ΕΕ σε ό,τι αφορά τον πλούτο των νοικοκυριών καταγράφει έρευνα της ελβετικής ιδιωτικής τράπεζας Julius Baer για το 2013. Συγκεκριμένα η καθαρή περιουσία των νοικοκυριών μειώθηκε κατά 28% στην Ισπανία και 23% στην Ελλάδα από το 2007 ενώ την ίδια ώρα αυξήθηκε κατά 68% στην Ελβετία και 18% στη Γερμανία.

via Μόλις τέσσερις χώρες συγκεντρώνουν τα 2/3 του πλούτου της ΕΕ | TVXS – TV Χωρίς Σύνορα.

New challenges by 2045: Environmental warfare, drone crime, mass surveillance — RT News

What challenges could we face by 2045? A UK military think tank predicts there may be significant climate change affects, intensified spying, corporate armies, sophisticated weapons allowing targeting by DNA, and terrorists synthesizing new fatal viruses.

“Widespread and challenging implications for defense and security will almost certainly be generated by this increasingly connected world, with its rapidly advancing technology and evolving societies,” the document prepared for the British Defense Ministry says.

Within the next 30 years the world population may surpass 9 billion, which combined with technological progress and a range of other factors, will significantly change the world and result in new threats, according to the fifth edition of Global Strategic Trends by the Development, Concepts and Doctrine Centre (DCDC).

via New challenges by 2045: Environmental warfare, drone crime, mass surveillance — RT News.

DARPA Brain Chips to Implant False Memories | Global Research

Former DARPA director and now Google executive Regina Dugan told an audience at the All Things D11 Conference last year that the tech giant was working on a microchip inside a pill that users would swallow daily in order to turn their entire body into a broadcast signal for identification purposes.When Dugan was asked by the moderator, “Does Google now know everything I do and everywhere I go because let’s face it….you’re from Google,” she responded by laughing and saying he should just swallow the pill.

via DARPA Brain Chips to Implant False Memories | Global Research.

Thomas Piketty: The Market and Private Property Should Be the Slaves of Democracy

Well I guess I have particular sympathy for people born in the 1970s and for them wealth is going to have a different structure than for the baby boom core. Namely we see in recent decades a return of the relative importance of wealth as compared to income which we didn’t have for the baby boom core. And the reason is that until WWI we lived in societies that I call in the book patrimonial societies, where the total quantity of wealth was very large with respect to income. So typically the ratio of total wealth to income was about six to seven years. Then this dropped tremendously to about two/three years in the 1950s and this has been going upward again particularly in European countries and in Japan back to five/six years of national income today. And what this means is that for the post war baby boom core there was relatively little to inherit from the past.This was because of the destruction, the inflation and taxation due to the financing of the war which reduced the quantity of private wealth that was to be transmitted in the ’50s,’60s. Now we are back a relative importance of wealth that is going in the direction of pre World War I societies with lower concentration of wealth. You know, it’s important to emphasize that today there is a middle class in wealth that did not exist one century ago. So having a lot of wealth per se is certainly not bad. If you have the middle class and if you have an equal sharing or at least a spreading of wealth then it is better to have more wealth than to have only debt. So it’s all a matter of whether we manage to make the middle class in wealth expand rather than shrinking which is what we’ve had unfortunately in the recent decades.

via Thomas Piketty: The Market and Private Property Should Be the Slaves of Democracy.