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The Corporate Debt to Society: $10,000 Per Household, Per Year


The Corporate Debt to Society: $10,000 Per Household, Per Year

Paul Buchheit

That estimate is based on facts, not the conservative-style emotion that might deny the responsibility for any debt to the American people. Wealth redistribution to big business has occurred in a variety of ways to be explained below. And there's some precedent for paying Americans for the use of their commonly-held resources. The Alaska Permanent Fund has been in effect, and widely popular, for over thirty years.


The government of the United States is hopelessly corrupt and the creation of capitalism as an economic paradigm is a guarantee that all American citizens should expect is a dry corn cob inserted for effect.

George Herbert Walker Bush told the world he was instituting a “new world order” and we’re now in the thick of it. US government conduct is, now, best understood as the “domestic enemy” in the oath of military servicemen and women. US government is so corrupt it has instituted a law allowing failing banks and crooked bankers to legally steal depositor money to cover their casino recklessness. Don’t cry about your loss either. It’s your fault for being so naive you would trust strangers to protect what you need to survive under an economic matrix you will never be able to explain or understand.

We’re on our own. Don’t expect any help from the most corrupt government in the history of the United States.


I appreciate the author’s approach on this important topic. Having worked in the education “industry” concerning environmental matters, I can attest directly to many of his points.

To the discussion I would like to add that as automation and globalization have dramatically altered the employment landscape (and there are good aspects to both) there is a tremendous lag to the development of the safeguarding of dignity of the people. We need to develop jobs that do not further desecrate the environment nor the people. These jobs need to nourish and repair both. Externalities in our economics need to be expunged so that better decisions are made from the start.


Put another way, let’s compare how much the world collectively “owes” and where all the wealth is.

The Economist Debt Clock puts world gov’t debt at over $55trillion. Underestimated, probably, but we’ll take the banksters at their word.

Wealth= assets - liabilities

Since the consensus of total world “wealth” is $200trillion, and the 1% hold about 50% of that, ergo, the 1% could pay off the entire world debt and still have $50 trillion left. That’s right, they could still have 25% of the world’s wealth left after simply cancelling all world debt.

So the US-centric 0.01% needs to start WW3 with Russia and the BRICS+ WHY?

And just think of how many poor among the US public could be fed, housed, clothed and be given free healthcare if even HALF the Pentagon/Homeland Security/NSA-spy-apparatus over $1billion per year was spent on social programs rather than on bombing the rest of the world into submission. The rest of the world IN TOTAL spends half what the US does.

Ya, they hate you because of your freedoms.


Surly you cannot talk bad about all these high paying jobs created by the "Job Creators)…sarcasm…


Dosent matter who you vote for …they all lie like hell to get elected and then spend the rest of their term lie-ing to us daily…Once in they only serve the money not the people.


" The quadrillion-dollar trading capacity of the financial industry was made possible by government-funded Internet technology"

Love it when people trott out the govt funded internet thing. If it was after the govt the whole thing would still be used to communicate between missile sites and military bases. The only reason it took off is because the private industry took over and laid all the cables and built all the software and servers.


Please consider the wider effect, on the world as a whole.

The corporate debt is not owed simply to Americans, as the harms are world wide. (Also pretty much the whole defense budget is for the protection of corporate interests, not civilian)

Aside from the difficulty involved with determining which corporations cause which specific harms, I’m concerned with the fixed notion that any system providing a basic income must be restricted to a particular governmental unit, as opposed to globally.

National systems would provide many of the expected benefits of a BI system, for those citizens, but would effectively worsen the situation for a large portion of humans living in countries without sufficient revenue, not only by comparison, but holding on to even their land, against a more prosperous first world would be difficult.

However, if sovereign debt were required to be backed by Commons shares, the shares could be distributed to each adult human for deposit in trust at a local bank, directly earning the interest.

Each state would still have the points you illuminate to restructure taxation to make the interest payments.

Each nation, state, municipality, would have access to the value of it’s citizens shares, at a sustainable interest.

So by example; Tuvalu could borrow the shares of it’s 9,876 citizens, and with that equivalent of $9.9 B, in debt, and in treasury, develop a financial plan to increase revenue to make the $119 M in interest payments that provides a basic income for its citizens, which increases revenue.

As you note, the debt is clearly owed, but for providing a truly universal basic income, the system must be universal, and universally equal.

Thanks so much for this work.


Where in the article does Buccheit blame anything on Romney? Where in the article is Buccheit being inaccurate?


I love Buccheit’s analyses. They’re a great resource. I am not always comfortable with his recommendations, however. The American Permanent Fund is an example.

We need to remember that The Alaska Permanent Fund is tied directly to resource exploitation. This results in Alaskans becoming partially dependent on resource extraction and exploitation that may not be in the best interest of mitigating the environmental impact of that industry. (Montana, for example, is dependent on its coal severance tax to maintain its budget surplus, fund infrastructure improvement, spur economic development, among other things.) Tying a national permanent fund in any way to resource exploitation would be counterproductive to American efforts to mitigate anthropogenic influence on climate change.

I am also suspect of an American Permanent Fund created, managed and administered by a ruling class that, as it’s been shown, acts primarily according to the desires of corporate persons rather than the needs of working class taxpayers and the poor. Any impact on corporate persons due to APF participation is too easily passed on to average taxpayers. A $5,000 dollar bonus once a year could be easily eaten up by regressive taxation and increases to the cost of living imposed by markets involved in APF funding. The benefits of an APF could be easily manipulated, as it’s been done with other social programs, so the neediest among us would, still, not be getting the help they require. I don’t believe creating another government superstructure bureaucracy to be raided by opportunists and exploited by corporatists is the answer.

I think a better path to ensure that benefits of our national productivity are more equitably shared, in a way that would spur economic activity that sustains growth, maintain taxpayer supported social programs, and incentivize social responsibility within all markets, begins with a federally mandated minimum wage that is tied to both GDP and inflation. See John Schmitt/CEPR here. (Small PDF)

It would be just a start, of course. Income taxes need to be more progressive. Corporate taxes need to be adjusted. Corporate practices need to be more strictly regulated. Government devotion to militarism and economic imperialism must be curtailed. We need to change our healthcare system. But putting more money directly into the pockets of people who drive the day-to-day economy…in every paycheck…initiates a shift in power back toward the average American worker and provides capital necessary to sustain government funded social welfare programs.