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Americans Are Pissed Off from Being Pissed On

Posted by Larry Doyle on August 16, 2013 9:38 AM |

What do readers think about launching a new means to measure consumer sentiment?

We can continue to measure Consumer Confidence, but I propose we also launch a monthly reading hereby defined as The Pissed Off Indicator.

Why do I sense that so many in our country are pissed off? For the very simple reason that they are sick and tired of being pissed on.

This sense of disgust is not healthy or conducive to growing our economy, but it strikes me as self-evident. I write on this topic today given a steady stream of commentary I have received from regular readers over the last few days. 

In my opinion, The Pissed Off  Indicator would generate a very high reading primarily for the following two reasons:

1. Our representatives are not really working for us. What are they doing? Spending an inordinate amount of time raising money, as mandated by party leaders. Eric Lipton of The New York Times recently addressed this fact:

After the elections in November, Democratic Party leaders gave a PowerPoint presentation urging their freshman members to spend as much as four hours a day making fund-raising calls while in Washington, and an additional hour of “strategic outreach” holding breakfasts or “meet and greets” with possible financial supporters. That adds up to more time than these first-term lawmakers were advised to spend on Congressional business.

It is not just the Dems involved in money grubbing but the Republicans as well, perhaps even more so.

2. Our incomes are not growing while the elites — many of whom work on or around Wall Street —  use their power and influence in a rent seeking fashion. The resulting income inequality in our nation strikes many as so grossly inequitable that it leaves us feeling very pissed off.

Both The Atlantic and Huffington Post address this reality. If a picture paints a thousand words, then this graph (from The Atlantic) on changes in top income distribution and marginal tax rates within countries since 1960 encompasses many volumes.

Other reasons for being so pissed off would certainly include the following:

1. special deals granted to favored groups for dealing with the expected increase in Obamacare premiums.

2. having one’s hours cut so that your employer is not subjected to the Obamacare penalties.

3. a sense that far too many of the games played in our nation — that is, big business — are rigged against ordinary everyday Americans. (Please buy my book if you do not think so … or even if you do)

I will grant you that this pissed off reality is not healthy, but I have no doubt that it is widely prevalent in our nation today. And I write this as an eternal optimist — but not one with my head in the sand.

Let’s do an unscientific polling. On a scale of 0-100 (0 being not pissed off at all, 100 being pissed off to the max) how pissed off are you right now?

Larry Doyle

Please pre-order a copy of my book, In Bed with Wall Street: The Conspiracy Crippling Our Global Economy, that will be published by Palgrave Macmillan on January 7, 2014.

For those reading this via a syndicated outlet or receiving it via e-mail or another delivery, please visit my blog and comment on this piece of ‘sense on cents’.

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I have no business interest with any entity referenced in this commentary. The opinions expressed are my own. I am a proponent of real transparency within our markets so that investor confidence and investor protection can be achieved.

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