United States of inequality – Inequality – Salon.com

5 Jun

As we wait for the results of the Wisconsin recall election, a refresher course on what the struggle over the future direction of the United States is really about might be in order. Fortunately (or depressingly) the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality has put together a new package of easy-to-digest “educational materials on trends in inequality” that pound the message home. The gist: the United States is becoming more unequal every which way you can imagine.

Between 2009 and 2011, the press release for the project notes, “media mentions of the phrase ‘income inequality’ increased by over 250 percent.” But changing trends in income distribution are only one part of the vast distortions rippling through American society. The slides now available for perusal at http://www.inequality.com are divided into 14 categories: debt, education, employment, family, gender, health, immigration, income, mobility, politics, poverty, race, violent crime, and wealth.

The most obvious insight gleanable from the charts is that class background matters. If you are poor, you are more likely to be in debt and have health problems, and less likely to get a quality education or have your priorities reflected in politics. Of course, that’s always been true, not just in the U.S., but everywhere.

via United States of inequality – Inequality – Salon.com.

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