Friday, April 8, 2011

Inequality in America

A great article by Joseph Stiglitz about income and wealth inequality. 

The underlying problem with inequality is not the fact that it continues or that it is not addressed, really. The problem is that it's not seen as a problem or even thought of at all. No one seems to ask what the long-term cause of upper-class tax cuts and benefits are. No one in Washington is pointing out that, after the biggest tax breaks, deregulation, and despite bailouts and corporate profit in the multimillions, we are still struggling economically, are still facing serious unemployment in the private sector, and are still being told that if we just allow money to continue pouring into the pockets of the super-rich then we'll all be better off.

In his most recent budget proposal, Paul Ryan calls for a tax cut of nearly a third for the top wage earners. In an earlier post, I said that if this proposal was really meant to help combat debts and deficits that a tax break makes no sense. In fact, it would be more effective to keep the taxes where they are in order to generate more revenue which can be used to pay off debt. But, once again, we see a plan that overwhelmingly supports the upper class, and fails to acknowledge the upward shift of money, and the continued hoarding of money by the rich and big business.

Does it not make sense to tax those who can afford it? Doesn't it create a lesser Democracy to allow the wealthy a greater and more influential piece of the pie at the expense of those at the working class? And how can those at the bottom hope to retain their own wealth and voice in such an environment?

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