“Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed
Everybody knows that the war is over
Everybody knows the good guys lost
Everybody knows the fight was fixed
The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
That’s how it goes
The finale from Season 3 of the noirish and very downbeat TV show Damages (2010) closes with Leonard Cohen’s ‘Everybody Knows’ sung by Holly Figueroa over the soundtrack, bringing to a close a sorry tale of greed, corruption, and downright evil set in the bright concrete canyons of Manhattan, where life is cheap and the pursuit of wealth by any means a sordid mantra.
A recent study by Emmanuel Saez from the University of California shows that in the United Sates between 2009 and 2010, the first year of the current ‘recovery’ the one percent captured 93% of the growth in national income (The Wall Street Journal, March 6 2012). This is only the most recent manifestation of the growing inequality in America which began during the Reagan presidency, and has seen the top 10 pct of income earners share of national income return to the obscene levels of the years just before The Big Crash in 1929 – the top 10pct of income earners grabbing half of national income – as shown in this graph from The Saez study.