Chart of the Day: Being Rich in America is a Pretty Good Gig

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This will come as no surprise to any of you at this point — I hope — but it never hurts to see it again. The combination of the 1997 capital gains tax cut, the 2001 Bush tax cut, and the 2003 Bush tax cut has been fantastically beneficial to the richest of the rich in America. Most of us ordinary schlubs have seen our tax rates go down about three percentage points over the past decade or so. The rich have seen them go down about seven percentage points. And the super-duper rich? Their taxes have gone down nearly ten percentage points.

It’s pretty nice having a bought-and-paid-for Congress, isn’t it?

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

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