Saturday, July 10, 2010

It's the income inequality, stupid

I'm not an economics wonk but this seems so obvious that you have to wonder why the geniuses who set policy don't get it, or at least don't take some action, any action at all, to counteract it. I mean really. It's so clearly about income inequality.
The gap between the wealthiest Americans and middle- and working-class Americans has more than tripled in the past three decades, according to a June 25 report by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
Robert Reich puts it in more context. After decades of narrowing the income gap, the policy swung in favor of the wealthy again and we have this:
By 2007 the richest 1 percent were back to where they were in 1928—with 23.5 percent of the total.

Each of America's two biggest economic crashes occurred in the year immediately following these twin peaks—in 1929 and 2008. This is no mere coincidence. When most of the gains from economic growth go to a small sliver of Americans at the top, the rest don't have enough purchasing power to buy what the economy is capable of producing.
Again, so obvious, so why isn't it being addressed in some practical manner?

Meanwhile, via John Cole and interesting piece by James K. Galbraith that does a step by step analysis of how the 2008 meltdown happened that is simple enough for a tea party conservative to understand. Not that you'll ever get them to accept the facts. Their capacity for denial appears to have no limit.

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Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

Transcendental denialism - they even deny the denial.

12:39:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

LOL Fogg. You have such a way with words. Perfect definition.

1:05:00 PM  
Blogger J said...

If only we could have the luxury of other countries where everyone was poor...

1:19:00 PM  
Anonymous Too Much editor said...

Our most truly stunning income gap may be between today's awesomely affluent and their counterparts a half-century ago.

In 2007, the latest year with IRS stats available, America's 400 highest-earning taxpayers collected an average $344.8 million each in income. They paid 16.6 percent of that, after exploiting all the loopholes they could find, in federal income taxes.

In 1955, the top 400 collected on average, in 2007 inflation-adjusted dollars, just $12.8 million. They paid, after exploiting all available loopholes, 51.2 percent of that in taxes.

6:24:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Yet the wealthy and their useful fools in the working class scream bloody murder about a couple percent rise that will cost them a few thousands bucks in additional taxes now. Greedy sociopaths are ruining this country.

10:14:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

BTW, Great website Too Much.

10:16:00 AM  

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