Income Inequality

A lot of debate recently has been focused on the growing income gap in the United States. I am not that peeved by income inequality. Incomes at the top will rise as economies grow and companies become truly global. I am far more concerned if the equality pie is not helping the bottom 10% at all. In my opinion, better to earn 10,000 if the top is earning 1,000,000 than to earn 4,000 if the top is earning 15,000. There’s more for everyone to go around, even if the slice is smaller. I would measure economic progress by how much the income of the bottom 10% is rising. However, recent research suggests people might not be happier in the more-for-everyone scenario.

Steven Pinker had a great quote in the book How the Mind Works: A society can be fair, free or equal, but not all three. Income inequality strikes at the balance between being fair and being equal. I would propose taxing death more heavily so that funds cannot be easily transferred from one generation to the next. This could help make the country a better meritocracy.

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