If This Southern California Mansion Could Speak . . .

. . we would have a fascinating, first-hand history of the roller-coaster first century of the modern federal income tax. Industrialist Frederick Peabody started building this manse of his dreams in 1913, the same year the federal income tax started biting into the nation’s highest incomes.

Election 2012 and Our Sensible Super Rich

We’ll never know exactly how much America’s super rich pumped into the 2012 elections. Hundreds of millions in “dark money” — contributions laundered through hyper-politicized nonprofits like the U.S. Chamber of […]

Joe the Plumber, We Miss You!

Americans haven't heard much at all from Joe the Plumber this election cycle. A shame. Without his rants against sharing the wealth, no one's bothering to debate how desperately America really needs to be sharing. And how desperate has our maldistribution of wealth become?

Teacher Bashing: The Inequality Psychology

In any society where wealth and income concentrate overwhelmingly at the top, the affluent will almost always come to sneer at public services and the men and women who provide them. In Chicago, those men and women have pushed back.

Who’s Really Winning the Smartphone Wars?

In our current economic and political environment, we're letting top corporate executives expropriate our public 'property' for private gain. The resulting rewards, for both corporations and their CEOs, can be immense, as the recent Apple patent triumph over Samsung so amazingly demonstrates.

Mitt’s Offshore Shenanigans: The Bigger Story

All those official government stats on the maldistribution of wealth in the United States — and the world — vastly understate the actual extent of our contemporary inequality, says a blockbuster new study on global tax havens.

The Tiny Tax that Terrifies Wall Street

Robin Hood would not be happy if he happened upon our incredibly top-heavy modern world. But the new campaign to levy a tax on speculative trading would most likely have him breaking out in smiles.

Magic Act Making the Super Rich Disappear

The Federal Reserve has once again counted up America's personal wealth — and omitted the nation's 400 richest from the final tally. But the new figures, even with that omission, show a divide still deepening.

Our Top 400 A Little Historical Perspective

All those millions that America's billionaires are pouring into super PACs, where do they come from? We can trace a huge chunk of that political cash to the truly massive tax cuts our richest now enjoy. How massive? Over $25 billion a year -- for our most affluent 400 -- massive enough for you?

The Most Surprising Nay on Pay Yet

A perfectly respectable business panel is urging corporate boards to ditch the ridiculous rationalizations for CEO pay excess and narrow the gargantuan corporate pay gap. Step one: end CEO stock options.

Facebook and Tahrir Square Revisited

Facebook's initial public offering last week 'offered' the world another double dose of windfalls and greed. But Egypt's elections this week may bring an IPO of a different sort, the 'initial public offering' of an antidote to avarice.

Will CEO Pay Excess Outlast Our Shareholder Spring

A string of surprising 'say on pay' votes has some executive pay critics sensing an impending revolution in corporate boardrooms. But that 'revolution' won't amount to much until mainstream CEO pay reformers start factoring worker pay into the corporate compensation equation.

The Pothole in Our Political Psyche

Even rich people sooner or later have to drive over bridges. So why aren't the wealthy screaming about America's inadequate — and increasingly unsafe — basic infrastructure?

The Obama Tax Plan A Test for America

Can democracy, one top political scientist asked last week, 'function effectively in a society marked by vast economic inequality'? The fate of the modest new White House bid to tax our rich may tell the tale.
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