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No, Growing Inequality Won’t Solve Itself


#1

No, Growing Inequality Won’t Solve Itself

Sarah van Gelder

Republicans in Congress and President Trump got their big political victory: a tax overhaul that vastly benefits the superrich and corporations at the expense of nearly everyone else.

On one hand, it’s not surprising—GOP leadership had clearly signaled their intent to reward their wealthy donors. On the other hand, it has shocking impacts on children, education, health care, the deficit, and the economy.


#2

This country allows cops to execute people of color in the streets and backyards of America.

America is the Wealthiest country on the planet, yet poverty is growing by leaps and bounds.

Duopoly politicians have enabled the rich to pay less taxes than the poorest of the poor.

Want a remedy to eliminate growing inequality?

Vote Green. Vote Socialist.

Never again support a Democrat or Republican.

We must demand the corruption Stops Now.


#3

My mother one day asked me what my plans were for retirement. I laughed, and she had a perplexed look on her face. I had to explain to her that I would never be in a position to retire. She had watched her mother work until her death, and was the first in our family to enjoy a retirement, benefiting from the New Deal policies. I had to tell her those policies had mostly been reversed, and my generation would be the first to be less well off than their parents.


#4

“enabled the rich to pay less taxes than the poorest of the poor”

The “rich” (top 1% of income earners) pay close to half of all Federal income taxes. The bottom 40% pay nothing. The bottom 20% gets all or part of their payroll taxes refunded to them via the EITC.


#5

The Black white medium is discrepancy is bad but your figures for white median household income at $171,000 are massively wrong.


#6

Here’s statistics.com

65k median income for white on average in 2016. That sounds high but at least it’s probable. 171k is insane and totally negates the op ed because it’s so unlikely. Why is anything else true in the article if the statics are insanely wrong?

39k median house hold income for blacks in 2016 on statistics.com. I believe this is skewed upwards by the higher earners as it is also for whites.


Gee Sarah van Gelder, want to show where you got your figures?


#7

Not surprisingly, this is entirely backwards. The experiment you propose is already in progress. In every nation with peak ‘progressive’ ideas implemented far more widely and deeply than the US, their cultures are shrinking. Nothing is less ‘sustainable’ than public morality and governance… whose combined outcome is fewer and fewer kids.

That, is collapse.


#8

How is it possible to talk about theU.S. political economy, as Gelder does, without using the word or talking directly about capitalism. In addition to using bad numbers, as pointed out by RIS. This is the stuff of children, and it seems that children on the ‘left’ dominate the discussion of the imperial, capitalist, U.S. political economy.

I’d much rather hear from actual kids who are leading in the struggle against mass murder. And their numbers are a lot more sound. Alice in Wonderland Lives!


#9

What is unlikely about a new worth of $171k?


#10

If you’re referring to the author’s figures they may be correct, or close to it. They’re referring to “wealth.” Not median income.

The figures for one’s wealth includes the equity in homes, value of automobiles, 401k’s, savings, etc.


#11

It is true that the rich collectively pay a larger dollar amount of taxes than the poor. DUH!!! They’re RICH!

I don’t know who you are or who you work for, but that is the lamest, dumbest justification for the rich I have aver seen, and as an economist I have seen it many times, along with a number of others. And the last time I looked, the statistics you cite were pretty far off. Allow all of Us the People to participate in the economy and the people in those lower quintiles would pay a larger share and a large absolute amount. Sheesh, this is not complicated.


#12

THANK you. It appears that you are the only person commenting here to recognize that fundamental example of how to lie with statistics (i.e., conflate two very different and only loosely related variables then claim to have proved something).


#13

“In all these cases, a strong sense of shared morality helps combat the natural tendency of wealth and power to concentrate in a few hands.”

How about a strong sense of shared MORALITY? I’m no fan of absolutist views of morality, but the moral stance of some of the people in this society is that of a depraved moron. For all the corruption of the past, this was not always the case.


#14

This is the inevitable result of 4 decades of Milton Friedman economics and Ayn Rand philosophy in action, further exacerbated by ridiculously high “Defense” spending.


#15

She was referring to median Household wealth, not income!


#16

Read the article. The figures are for median Household wealth, not income!


#17

I made no justifications. My stats are accurate. No one is stopping anyone from participating in the economy. You are not an economist.


#18

I wrote that too late at night and lost track of what I intended to write:

How about a strong sense of shared MORTALITY? It appears that the fools running the show have fooled themselves into believing the coming deluge (sic), our chance of avoiding which grows slimmer day by day, will not affect them, but only us.


#19

Another dumb comment from the author. How is “interest” insidious? How else do you expect people to invest? If you’re actually an economist, you’ll know that interest is simply a measure of the price of risk. It’s a way to transfer risk from one individual to another. When you take away interest from the equation, no one has any incentive to lend money, eliminating the opportunity to invest. The only other system is government authoritarian decree, otherwise known as communism, the most evil, maniacal form of government in the history of mankind.


#20

Jim Schmidt - forget it. She’s averaging billionaires and it has nothing to do with average household income.