Sunday, December 12, 2010

Income Inequality in the United States

Following up on the recent filibuster by Bernie Sanders (Sen. VT-I) on the tax breaks given to the ultra-rich on inheritance and estate tax, I researched income inequality in the United States, and found some pretty interesting stuff on the income inequality here. Its really kinda sad. Some say that income inequality drives innovation, hard-work, and efficient work. I personally think it attributes to many sad factors in society, and the widespread idea that workers don't really deserve to share in national productivity gains because it's management that's really responsible for them.

Here is a graph on how much of the income the ultra-rich (the top 1% of all income earners) control.
Percent on the left, by year from 1917 to 2005, Top 1%(blue), top .1%(pink) and top .01%(yellow)

So basically, the 1920's could be comparable to the 1995-2008 era, a rather large increase of wealth into the hands of a small portion of the population. While the GDP per capita of the whole nation rose, it was normally by a large amount of wealth into less hands. The increase of wealth in the past few decades have been mostly into the hands of the few. This graph shows that since the Reagan era, there have mostly been gains in the wealthiest percent of the nation.

I don't know if the recent tax breaks, which lose potentially 700 billion in revenue by lowering estate taxes on the top .3 percent of our nation, can help this situation at all. 

What do you guys think?

23 comments:

  1. But it's gonna start trickling down any day now. Right? Right?! I agree fully, when are people going to stop voting against their own best interests? Sadly, probably never, because the family values flock is too goddamn dumb to recognize how they are being fleeced by disingenuous opportunistic politicians.

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  2. Though I agree with what you say, at least it's much more equal than some other countries like India and China. I do think that it should be more equal, but I also do think that part of the higher increase for wealthy people is because they know how to utilize their money better (of course there are exceptions). Being in the middle class, I do feel the frustration too.

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  3. people vote against their best interests because they're sucked into what "they" want us to believe. The rich have power and they run things regardless of what any of us think, they will have us believe what they want us to and they will not give up that power. Would You?

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  4. More tax to the rich ! That should be fair

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  5. We are quickly becoming a Plutocracy

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  6. There's no middle class anymore. In a few years you're either going to be rich or living paycheck to paycheck.

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  7. imo this is expected because of the mass exodus of middle class jobs.

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  8. yeah what the ol' springgyb said

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  9. we already are a plutocracy.

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  10. I think it will only get worse...

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  11. it's same all around the world i think

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  12. the last graph of the money distribution is ridiculous

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  13. welcome to democracy my friend...

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  14. u should look up the living at home with parents one. ill find it later.

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  15. The ideology of rewarding the most innovative and able but at the same time killing off everyone on the opposite end of the spectrum. It is difficult even figure out which ideology to support.

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  16. If you don't like our ass-backwards financial systems you can just get out

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