Yet Another Reason to Believe That Income Inequality Has Skyrocketed Recently

Here’s another reason I think the rise of income inequality is real. If income inequality had stayed about the same over the past few decades, then you’d expect wealth inequality to stay roughly the same too. But that’s not what’s happened:

Measurement of wealth has its own problems, but it doesn’t suffer from possible tax changes that might mask its actual value. And since this is presented as a multiple of median wealth, issues of the proper inflation rate don’t come into play. Nor does non-cash income.

In just three decades, the wealth of the top 1 percent has nearly tripled compared to the median. This is consistent with a considerable increase in income compared to the median. It is not consistent with the idea that the income of the top 1 percent hasn’t changed, but only seems like it has. One way or another, all this extra wealth came from real income.

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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