Wealth Inequality Is Bad For Everyone

I believe Robert Reich is one of the greatest economists of our age. He is a man who can teach a 5th grader the reality of economics on our every day lives. Robert Reich has spent his entire career sounding the alarm about the threat to democracy caused by income inequality. “Economic inequality in the United States is at its greatest disparity since the 19th century. When the middle class is in decline and median household incomes are dropping, there are fewer possibilities for upward mobility. A stressed middle class is also less willing to share the ladder of opportunity with those below it. For this reason the issue of widening inequality cannot be separated from the problems of poverty and diminishing opportunities for those near the bottom. They are one and the same.”–Robert Reich 5/12/2014 If you are interested in learning more about how the economy works in straight forward no nonsense terms. Please check out YouTube for Robert Reich videos.  D.S. Mitchell

Growing Wealth Inequality: A Danger Sign for Democracy

The two peak years of inequality over past century was 1929 & 2007

The two peak years of economic inequality over the past century was 1929 & 2007

Growing Wealth Inequality: A Danger Sign for Democracy

By D.S. Mitchell and Jones William

Wealth inequality occurs when income and assets are unevenly distributed within a group of people, or society. There are at least three measures of that distribution of wealth. Economic inequality is generally grouped into three categories; pay, income and wealth.

Wealth inequality occurs when income and assets are unevenly distributed

Pay is the amount received from employment only. Based on hourly, weekly, monthly, etc.

1) Pay 

Pay is the amount received from employment only. Pay can be based on an hourly, weekly, monthly or yearly basis. Pay may also include bonuses and benefits. Pay inequality: the difference between individuals’ pay across all 50 states (or within one company).

2) Income 

Income includes all the money received through pay, investments, state benefits, rent, pensions (personal, company, state) and savings. Income is calculated on an individual or household basis. Income inequality, is the disparity of money streams between groups and individuals.

3) Wealth 

Wealth is the total assets of an individual or household. It includes all assets of value: bonds, stocks,  pensions, art, jewelry, boats, planes, automobiles, savings, investments, and real estate. Wealth is a collection of assets minus liabilities. Wealth inequality, is the difference between the valuation of all assets owned by groups or individuals.

All About the Numbers

There is a 5 alarm fire and the middle class is at risk.

We have a 5 alarm fire the middle class is at risk

Dull numbers, boring statistics. Hold on there! The statistical breakdown of wealth in the United States over the last 40 years is startling. Over the last 15 years it is terrifying. The looming crisis predicted by such numbers, sure the hell isn’t boring, but it sure the hell is dangerous. We’ve got a 5 alarm blaze ripping through our society and there seems to be no one willing to speak loudly and persuasively enough to get the attention of  the fire brigade. In other words, government officials.

A Predictable Result

Look at the last 100 years. You can see the pattern. When the wealthiest took home a much smaller  proportion of the total income, as in the years between 1947 and 1980, the nation as a whole grew rapidly  and wages across the spectrum soared. During periods when the wealthiest took home a larger proportion of total income, as between 1918 and 1933 and from 1981 until today, economic growth slowed, median wages stagnated and enormous economic downturns resulted. We are at a critical point in our country’s history.  Economic inequality, in all its forms, has risen dramatically in the United States particularly over the last 40 years.

Unsustainable

Robert Reich advocate for economic equality

Robert Reich advocate for economic equality

We are in the middle of a full-fledged national emergency, and it sure the f isn’t at our southern border. The growing disparity between the have’s and have not’s is potentially the greatest threat to our democracy since the founding of the country. The unprecedented disparity of wealth between the wealthiest people in the United States and the ‘average man’ is unsustainable. “Some income inequality and wealth is inevitable, if not necessary. The real issue is at which point does such disparity become so great that it poses a threat to the three foundation stones of our society: our economy, our ideal of equal opportunity and our democracy.” Robert Reich.

Continue reading