Inequality Blues

I’ve been arguing for a while (in the “Poverty Ain’t What It Used to Be” series, for example) that the left and the media have a distorted picture of the United States, based on the fact that they reside in large cities that really do have a huge and powerful upper class, a large lower class, and a disappearing middle class. The New York Times … Continue reading Inequality Blues


Thanks to James Pethokoukis and economists Richard V. Burkhauser, Jeff Larrimore, and Kosali I. Simon for tackling the Left’s absurd claims about income stagnation for the middle class. I’ve never understood how the stagnation argument gets any traction, since it’s obviously false. Anyone who has lived in America for the past several decades knows that there has been a tremendous rise in the median family’s standard of … Continue reading Inequality

Thoughts on Equality

A Facebook friend recently posted something sympathetic with Occupy Wall Street and related concerns about inequality. I commented that inequality seems to me utterly irrelevant. If a wealthy person becomes even more wealthy at my expense, I have reason to be upset. If that person thrives without disadvantaging me, however, I see no reason to complain. In fact, it seems to me I should prefer … Continue reading Thoughts on Equality

The Income of the Top 1%

Megan McArdle points out that the income share of the top 1% has declined sharply in the past couple of years: This isn’t surprising. Income inequality increases whenever the economy improves; it decreases during recessions. There is only one known way to decrease inequality—and it’s plainly undesirable. What about the 1940s and 1950s? Liberals are looking back at those decades fondly. They seem to have … Continue reading The Income of the Top 1%