Mean Household Income 1978-2010 The evil Census Bureau released some economic data which tells us that the rich keep getting richer, the middle class remains stagnant and the poor are even poorer. So while the poorest Americans actually make
September 14, 2011

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Mean Household Income 1978-2010

The evil Census Bureau released some economic data which tells us that the rich keep getting richer, the middle class remains stagnant and the poor are even poorer.

So while the poorest Americans actually make less than they did in 1978, and the middle class has seen its income stagnate, the richest Americans have done far better. And the data in the Census report actually obscures the extent to which the wealthy have gained while everyone else has been stuck in neutral, because it doesn't break out the richest one percent, whose incomes have really soared. Unsurprisingly, the Census Bureau's Gini Index of Income Inequality shows a steady increase in income inequality over the past four decades.
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It's no coincidence that all of this has taken place while the nation's political and media elite favor policy changes that further rig the system against the poor and middle class and behave as though the only tax policy that matters is tax policy that affects the rich. Just as it's no coincidence that elites in both politics and media have financial incentives to favor policies that help the rich at the expense of the rest of the country.

But we need more tax cuts and austerity measures across the board based on what evidence? When I saw The Debate episode in the final season of West Wing back in 2005, it got a lot of attention because it was airing live. Much of Alan Alda's entire economic policy centered around tax cuts, tax cuts and tax cuts. It made me chuckle, but looking back on it now, Lawrence O'Donnell just nailed it. (I couldn't find a longer version of this portion of the episode)

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