Darkside of the sun: U.S. middle class down in 2nd quarter to 31 people

By Mike Corrigan

BN Columnist

The earning power of the U.S. middle class has fallen behind its counterpart in Canada for the first time. Despite the fact that Canadians must pay higher taxes to support universal, state-sponsored health care, the Canadian middle class worker now averages a higher real income, after taxes, than does the American middle class worker, who, after taxes, very likely still must pay for his health insurance and at least some of his health care!

Over the past 15 years, the former large income disparity in America’s favor, has narrowed and finally jumped the border, a recent New York Times study showed. As well, income inequality has continued to balloon in the United States since 2008, continuing a trend that started in the late 1970s.

Reaction from the two political parties was predictable: ineffectual dithering by both sides. “This is an outrage,” whimpered practically-comatose U.S. Senate Majority Leader Henry Reid. “I have spoken with the president about possibly annexing Canada, and then taxing the Canadians more than we tax our own people. Pretty cheeky of Canada to think they can get away with this.”

House Majority Leader John Boehner stopped sucking on his lemon long enough to observe, “At last, our program to create a poor-paying job for every American who formerly had a good job with benefits appears to be bearing fruit. But we aren't there yet. The ultimate goal, of course, is for our American middle class workers to receive no pay at all. Why should businesses have to pay their workers, anyway? That just cuts into profits. To think of all the rich, having to pay taxes when they earned their money! The humanity!” Then he burst into tears, as usual.

Thanks to generous tax structures, America’s Forbes Four Hundred — 400 people! — now wallow in as much wealth as the bottom 60% of households in the United States — more than 200 million people! Now, even Canada’s bottom one-fifth of earners are richer than their counterparts in the United States.

Sensing danger in this toxic situation, Canadian Prime Minister Steven Harper has asked Parliament to erect a fence along the three thousand mile border with the United States to, as he said, “keep the illegals out of this, the greatest country on earth.” He said Canada is now prepared to turn away even the busloads of U.S. senior citizens traveling north in order to buy their prescriptions at a fair price. In a typical gesture of international cooperation and anti-democratic action, the U.S. government may offer the Canadians military aid. Seal teams at border crossings will shoot any private vanloads of senior American “tourists” attempting to access the benefits of an actual functioning pharmaceuticals program.

In related news, President Obama yesterday announced the cancellation of this year’s Hunger Games. “The Games were a lot of fun, instilled real initiative in our younger folks, but such events give people the wrong idea,” the president said. “As all Americans know, there is no hunger in this great country, unemployment is virtually non-existent, business is booming in this great country and everything is great. Anyone who is not ‘on message’ with us on this issue will face deportation under the Alien and Sedition Acts, along with the millions of other people who do not belong in this great country. Did I mention this is a great country? Well, it is.”

Asked for a Republican response, or at least a sign of brainwave activity, the Senate Minority Caucus responded, “All this good economic news is not to the president’s credit, but to the credit of the real Americans of this great country, hard-working entrepreneurs who have dreamed up ways to sell things to people who don’t really need anything but somehow manage to buy stuff out of pure patriotic spirit, despite the fact that we’ve almost successfully eliminated the wage-earning class in this great country. Really, how do people do it? Obamacare! Benghazi! Boo!”

Mike Corrigan lives in the great city of Lewiston.

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