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January 28, 2014

Katie Pavlich: Let's Take A Look at the Rising Income Equality Between... Washington DC and the Hinterlands It Reigns Over

Obama's going to talk about income inequality a fair amount.

He won't, however, be talking about the rising inequality between the Ruling Class and its various major domos and mandarins and the rest of the country that Washington supposedly "serves."

Since the economic collapse of 2008, Washington D.C. and its surrounding areas have remained nearly untouched. In fact, Washington is booming as the rest of the country continues to suffer. The median household income in Washington D.C. is close to $20,000 higher than the median household income in the United States.

...

The wealth that has turned Washington D.C. into a boomtown, while creating an extreme income gap with the rest of the country, is a direct result of massive government spending.

Supporting charts and quotations at Pavlich's article (linked above). She also mentions this...

As Obama continues his income inequality crusade, here's an important reminder: the gap between rich and poor has grown to its widest since the Great Depression under his leadership.

incomeinequality.png

This last point is explored thoroughly by the awful crazy gun nuts of the Volokh Conspiracy, now annoying the crap out of emotionally volatile progressives on the pages of the Washington Post.

Jim Lindgren writes:

If we want more income equality, should we return to the economy of George W. Bush?

Other things being equal, income equality is better than inequality. But other things are NOT equal. The easiest way to make incomes more equal in the short run is to have a recession.

Much has been made of growing income inequality since 1979, but very little attention has been paid to which of the four presidental administrations preceding Barack Obama increased income equality and which ones reduced it. In short, the two presidents whose terms involved improving income equality were the two George Bushes and the two whose terms were associated with worsening after-tax income equality were Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton. It is probably not an accident that the two presidents in whose administrations the GDP grew the most were the two presidents whose time in office coincided with worsening income equality.

The president under whom the poorest quintile enjoyed the largest increase in after-tax household income was George W. Bush. And the two administrations under whom the richest quintile and richest 1 percent fared the worst were the two Presidents Bush. Among Barack Obama’s four immediate predecessors, the two biggest income equalizers were George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.

Just to be clear, I am not pining for the good old days of the economy of George W. Bush.

But George W. Bush was the most successful of our recent past presidents in achieving very substantial increases in incomes for the poorest quintile (+18.4%), while keeping gains for the richest quintile and richest 1 percent at modest levels. For example, under Bush the Younger, the incomes of the richest 1 percent rose only 6.5 percent in eight years, compared to a staggering 84 percent under Clinton and 91 percent under Reagan.

If you would rather have Bill Clinton’s economy than George W. Bush’s economy – and I definitely would – then as a practical matter you probably don’t care overmuch about income equality.

Again, evidence is amassed at the link itself.

Would anyone prefer George W. Bush's shrinking income inequality, with some but not great income growth, over Reagan's or Clinton's growing income inequality, but with great income growth among all income quintiles?

This jibes with the Margaret Thatcher clip I linked earlier. A rising tide will lift all boats -- some more than others.

A somewhat rising tide may lift those boats in roughly equal ways. But virtually everyone will be poorer than they otherwise could be.

Why support that? Why is that such a terrific goal?

Of course, either of these alternatives is superior to the one The Emperor Obama has blessed us with, an economy in which not only is there barely any income growth, but in which almost all of the meager growth is captured entirely by the richest 1%, as almost none of the lower 99% have experienced any income growth whatsoever, and most have actually fallen backwards.

As a rising tide will lift all boats, so will an incompetent tide scuttle them all.

Thanks to @tsrblike and BB.

That's Racist: @benk84 linked this in the morning dump, but it's really good and I'd like to post it again.


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posted by Ace at 03:50 PM

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