In toto the charts show that the middle class is declining in wealth and influence, but the author is interpreting that as the "1%" gaining a disproportionate amount of wealth and influence. Naturally, the author assumes that it is the government's job to fix this problem but actually, it is the government that caused the problem.
Hint: if you have trouble following the Wonk-speak, note that Joseph Stiglitz is mentioned prominently. He is the leading modern-day Marxist economist. Your guess about the solution the author is steering you to is correct.
Yea its pretty clear the agenda when toward the end he notes surprisingly support for a redistribution of wealth has fallen in the last 3 decades and then says its not a very encouraging conclusion. There is an answer to all of this. a flat tax with no write offs on the amount earned above poverty level. then you will know exactly how much tax everyone pays. no surprises etc.. I do also find it odd that I have yet to see one of these economists address the fact that the USA imports through immigration 1-2 million people a year and the vast majority of them are poor which will certainly increase income inequality over time.
@sociald the real problem is they dilute the labor pool and suppress wages for everyone else. The employers pay so little they can't even afford a car, and they live 4 and 5 to an apartment. I've seen this with my own eyes, but hey that's capitalism.
I don't think believing we need a living wage in America is such a terrible concept. especially considering the taxpayers are the ones subsidizing the wages of these workers that the greedy refuse to pay the living wage. Anyone who thinks having 1% of people having most of the wealth while the 99% live in or are near poverty is fine have been brainwashed by the very people who want to keep us there so they can get richer.
The United States has the greatest income inequality than any other industrialize nation and sadly it's usually the ones near the bottom that sprout out the power elite agenda. According to the chart in the article the South has the least chance for social mobility but how do they vote, republican every time.
It's rooted in personal and family values, something no amount of legislation can correct. Only the judicial branch, family courts, can address generational poverty on a case by case basis. After cutting all poverty entitlements, we should use family courts to compel extended families and relatives to network with their kin and help each other better -- like our immigrant ancestors-- or face stiff surtaxes and penalty fines.
What is happening that many Americans either fail to recognize or deliberately ignore is the fact that the standard of living for a huge segment of the population has been sliding downhill for the last decade.
There seem to be one train of thought - you've worked hard and you're successful and those damn poor people are coming after your money. There are several holes in this theory, however; the first being that the standard of living for people on welfare hasn't really changed all that much. Now before you start saying "but there are more of them", let me address the fact that we do have more people receiving food stamps, but overall welfare (as in total assistance living) has dropped due to changes in federal and local programs.
Now let's look at the other welfare program...foreign aid. That one gets very little negative attention. Ever wonder why? Follow the money.
For example - Israel will receive 3.1 billion dollars in military "aid" alone. What do you think Israel does with 3.1 billion dollars in military "aid". They have a booming economy. They can afford to pay their soldiers. But they love things like tanks and airplanes and weapons and who do you think they buy these things from. Any guesses?
Now, let's say you're a millionaire investor. Let's say your stock portfolio is stuffed with shares of Grumman and General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin, you're making money hand over fist at the expense of the American taxpayer. In other words, a sh*tload of money is being sucked out of your pocket to support a scheme that eventually leaves YOU broke while the 1% have it all.
This is just a small sample of how we're being duped. Why do you think the focus is being put on "the poor"? Really? The poor are doing this to us? Wake up!! The government, hand-in-hand with the wealthiest of wealthy are draining us dry as if we'd volunteered to give blood and someone forgot to take out the needle. We're getting weaker as we support this game of big money manipulation and all we can do is look to Ayn Rand for answers.
Yes, there is an incredible redistribution of wealth. You worked hard and it's being taken away from you and moved offshore so fast all you feel is the wind passing by. It's not the poor taking your money away. It is those much richer and much more powerful than you. Our money is leaving the United States, never to be seen again. Eventually, if we don't stop it, all of US (and there are no one percenters on this site) will be left with a shell of a country that isn't worth the powder and lead to blow it to hell.
I notice quite a few news stories lately about all of the wonderful politicians out there who want to dedicate their efforts to "reducing the widening gap between the rich and the poor." Spare me. Most of the politicians want to address this problem by taking from the rich and giving to the poor. Well, since there are more people who consider themselves poor than rich, that would sure work at the ballot box. The answer here is to address the gap between "will work hard" and "won't work hard"; the gap between achievement and non-achievement; the gap between "paid attention in school" and "didn't pay attention in school"; the gap between good choices and bad choices. Poverty is a behavioral disorder .. a mental disease. You don't cure poverty by punishing the sane.
"You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot help the small men by tearing down the big men. You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling down the wage payer. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatreds. You cannot establish security on borrowed money. You cannot build character and courage by taking away man's initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves". William J. H. Boetcker,