Sam Pizzigati

Sam Pizzigati edits Too Much, the Institute for Policy Study's online weekly newsletter on excess and inequality.

Articles by this author

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Monday, March 21, 2011 - 1:55pm
CEO Pay Bashing, Tea Party Style
Even hypocrites can sometimes have a point. Take Jim DeMint, for instance, the U.S. senator--and tea party favorite--from South Carolina. Earlier this month, DeMint came out swinging against the defenders of federal funding for public broadcasting. How dare the top execs at public TV and radio take our tax dollars, DeMint roared. These muckety-mucks, he charged, "are making more than the president of the United States."
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Tuesday, January 25, 2011 - 3:19pm
Squeezing Ordinary Citizens from NY to California
Following World War II, the United States produced something the world had never seen: a mass middle class. For the first time, a majority of a major nation's people had real money left over after paying for basic food and shelter.
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Monday, October 25, 2010 - 10:14am
Mapping Global Wealth
Despite our global economic hard times, the world has more than enough wealth to ensure every adult on the planet a significant nest egg. This heartening news comes from the Swiss banking giant Credit Suisse. Its first-ever Global Wealth Report crunches data for over 200 countries and maps the wealth belonging to the world's richest people--and everybody else.
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Tuesday, August 31, 2010 - 8:41am
The August Day Plutocracy Would Love Us to Forget
Ex-Presidents almost always follow a small number of well-worn scripts. Some rush to cash in on their celebrity. Some do charitable good deeds. Some just lie low. Exactly one century ago, on August 31, 1910, we had an ex-President who took a brash and bold leap that took him far beyond these narrowly circumscribed roles. On that day, in the middle of Middle America, a former President — Theodore Roosevelt — essentially called on his fellow citizens to smash the nation’s rich down to democratic size.
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Monday, July 5, 2010 - 9:02am
The Million-Dollar Penny
Every summer, several financial firms competing to get the banking business of the world’s mega millionaires release what amounts to scorecards on global wealth. These data-packed reports tally the current number of our international rich and super-rich, by nation and region.
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Monday, May 24, 2010 - 10:31am
Resurrect the Estate Tax
Dan Duncan died at the end of March. The Houston gas pipeline mogul left behind a spouse, four children, four grandkids, and a fortune worth $9 billion. Duncan, a prominent philanthropist who supported cancer research and the Boy Scouts, left behind another distinction. He was the first American billionaire to ever leave his heirs a tax-free fortune.
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Monday, October 5, 2009 - 10:32am
Getting Past the Smoke and Mirrors
BACK IN THE MIDDLE AGES, shadowy figures known as alchemists claimed that they could turn lead into gold. We have alchemists today who don’t have to fake such miracles. We call them CEOs. Our contemporary power-suited alchemists can turn sinking sales, falling profits, even global economic collapse into personal mega-million-dollar windfalls. They have discovered, in effect, the secret to perpetual income growth.
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Wednesday, June 24, 2009 - 11:03am
What Happened to the Crackdown on Executive Pay?
Last February, amid public anger over millions in bonuses at bailed-out insurance giant AIG , our top national political leaders rushed to express their outrage - and even took some steps to place a lid on over-the-top executive pay. That lid has now come off.
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Tuesday, November 4, 2008 - 9:06am
Ike Wanted to Spread Wealth, Too
Nearly 50 years ago, a famous American gave a speech that advocated spreading the wealth. In some countries, this notable stated, “a few families are fabulously wealthy, contribute far less than they should in taxes, and are indifferent to the poverty of the great masses of the people.” “A country in this situation,” he went on, “is fraught with continual instability.”
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Tuesday, October 21, 2008 - 8:51am
Rewrite Bailout Rules on CEO Pay
Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson has executed two fairly slick about-faces since Congress passed the $700 billion Wall Street bailout two weeks ago. The first makes eminent sense. The second should outrage you. Let's start with Paulson's positive turn. His original bailout plan would have had the Treasury rush to spend billions buying up toxic mortgage-backed securities. His new plan instead will spend the bailout's first $250 billion buying up part-ownership in America's biggest banks.
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