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Lloyd Blankfein is very concerned about income inequality. With his face reflecting both worry and perplexity, he recently called inequality “very destabilizing.”
Lloyd’s concern doesn’t come from the perspective of one experiencing inequality from the bottom of the income ladder – he’s certainly not an Occupy Wall Street sort of guy. In fact, he is Wall Street. A chief croupier of the financial gambling house Goldman Sachs, Blankfein raked in a stunning paycheck of $23 million for his wheeling and dealing last year. Overall, he’s literally become a gold man, having sacked up a personal fortune of nearly half-a-billion bucks during his years at Goldman – a tenure that included him grabbing a $13 billion bailout for the bank from us taxpayers in 2008.
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But in a June 13 interview on CBS, Blankfein wrinkled his brow and uttered a very un-Wall Street, populist-like thought: “Too much of the [wealth] of the country has gone to too few people,” he said, adding that when that happens, “you’ll have an unstable society,”
Well, golly Pitchfork Lloyd, yes we will. And don’t look down now from your gilded perch way up there with the 1-percenters, but we already do. In the past 30 years, power elites (including you) drastically increased your share of America’s income by taking income from the middle class and the poor. Did you think we wouldn’t notice?
It’s awfully sweet of a Wall Street baron to express concern about inequality and instability, but how about doing something about it? You could turn your battalions of lobbyists and PR agents loose to develop a national jobs program, hike wages, bulk-up Social Security, and… hey, here’s a good one: Pass that little Robin Hood tax on computerized, high-speed Wall Street speculators to replenish our public treasury so we can reinvest in America. Don’t just worry, do something!
“CEO Of One Of The World’s Largest Banks: Income Inequality Is ‘Destabilizing,'” www.thinkprogress.org, June 13, 2014.
“Goldman CEO Blankfein To Earn $23 Million in 2013,” www.wsj.com, January 30, 2014.