September 19, 2012 |
Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates' initiative to get billionaires to pledge at least half their wealth to charity signed on 11 new families with a variety of causes and interests. They causes they support include medical research, science museums, "Canadianism" and the legalization of marijuana. The list of billionaires joining the Giving Pledge initiative includes Intel Corp. co-founder Gordon Moore and his wife, Betty; Progressive Corp. Chairman Peter B. Lewis; and Netflix Inc. Chief Executive Reed Hastings and his wife, Patty Quillin; according to a statement Tuesday from the campaign.
September 11, 2012 |
The rich aren't just getting richer. They're getting a lot richer. And you're getting poorer. The wealth gap between the richest Americans and the typical family more than doubled over the past 50 years, according to the Economic Policy Institute. It found that the top 1% had 125 times the net worth of the median household as of 1962. But by 2010, the disparity reached 288 times. The institute cited two trends: More wealth finding its way to the high end of the demographic spectrum, while people in the middle class were seeing their cash grow more scarce.
September 1, 2012 |
Hal David, the renowned pop music lyricist whose prolific collaboration with composer Burt Bacharachproduced a wealth of enduringly memorable hits in the 1960s and early '70s, including “Walk on By,” “What the World Needs Now Is Love” and “Raindrops Keep Fallin' on My Head,” died Saturday in Los Angeles. He was 91. David died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center of complications from a stroke, announced his wife, Eunice. Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., David wrote a number of hit songs with other collaborators before teaming with Bacharach in 1956.
August 25, 2012 |
John "Sly" Sylvester, a radio commentator and Democratic operative in Madison, Wis., was dining at a Mexican restaurant in Washington with then-Wisconsin Sen. Russ Feingold about 20 years ago when a young Paul Ryan walked up. "He was our waiter," Sylvester said. Feingold knew Ryan's late father and, as they chatted, Ryan "said he even used to listen to my show when he was a kid," Sylvester recalled. Examples like that have helped Ryan, soon-to-be the GOP's vice presidential nominee, burnish his credentials as a youthful working-class guy. "I don't know about you, but when I was growing up, when I was flipping burgers at McDonald's, when I was standing in front of that big Hobart machine washing dishes, or waiting tables, I never thought of myself as stuck in some station in life," Ryan recently told a crowd at a high school in suburban Denver.
August 22, 2012 |
The vast majority of middle-class Americans say their financial well-being has been crimped over the last 10 years by sagging home values and dreary job prospects, according to a new survey. About 85% of middle-class people say it's tougher now than a decade ago to maintain their living standards, according to the Pew Research Center report. “Since 2000, the middle class has shrunk in size, fallen backward in income and wealth, and shed some - but by no means all - of its characteristic faith in the future,” the report states.
August 21, 2012 |
At this point, nearly 30 years into its life span, the "Super Mario Bros. " brand is to Nintendo what "Toy Story" is to Pixar: familiar characters in new settings, with rules that have long been writ. It is, after all, a series dedicated to consistency, where each new adventure contains a haplessly dogged Italian plumber, a kidnapped princess, bouncing mushroom-shaped monsters and rhythmically inclined turtles. Yet for all the tradition at play here, the "New Super Mario Bros.
July 25, 2012 |
So the contending Dodgers just decided to fill a hole in the middle of the season with $38 million and an underachieving former star whose biggest swings involve his mood. Sound like anyone else you know? Hey, if this sort of thing works for the New York Yankees, who have won five World Series since the Dodgers last won one, then it works for me. The trade for Miami Marlins infielder Hanley Ramirez marks the first true indication of the new owners' vision for the Dodgers, and it's Empire State high.
July 24, 2012 |
Singer Mariah Carey finally validated weeks of rumors that she'd be joining Fox's long-running "American Idol" talent competition show when she revealed to reporters by speakerphone at the Television Critics Assn. press tour Monday morning that a deal had been finalized. So what does this mean for the show that has already seen six judges, including Aerosmith's Steven Tyler and multitasking pop diva Jennifer Lopez, vacate their posts over the years? With Carey aboard, “Idol” scored itself a wealth of credibility for its 12th season, a particular credibility it's lacked from Day 1, by doing something incredibly simple: hiring a singer widely recognized for her singing.
July 10, 2012 |
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. -- Mitt Romney has taken some heat in recent days from President Obama and Democrats for releasing just one year of tax returns, but some of his supporters clearly see that criticism as an attack on his wealth. During an interview Monday with New Hampshire's largest television station, WMUR-9, President Obama said when a candidate was running for president it was important “that the American people know who you are and what you've done and that you're an open book.
June 14, 2012 |
The current debate about rich and poor - the 1% vs. the 99% - is a bit misleading, because the evidence usually is data about income, not wealth. Looking at wealth would make the comparison even starker. There are some nice deals to be had in the income tax code these days, but most wealth accumulates and passes from generation to generation with no tax at all. Warren Buffett (who has selflessly taken on the role of all-purpose tape measure in these matters) is worth $45 billion or so. Do you think that all of that $45 billion, or even most of it, has appeared on any Form 1040 on its way to the cookie jar?