The Great Experiment in Human Misery Continues


Posted by Bob Lord

New data is in on our great experiment: How much wealth and how much income can we jam into the top 1% before the bottom 90% explodes?

Apparently, quite a bit. As the New York Times reports

Incomes rose more than 11 percent for the top 1 percent of earners during the economic recovery, but not at all for everybody else, according to new data.

The numbers, produced by Emmanuel Saez, an economist at the University of California, Berkeley, show overall income growing by just 1.7 percent over the period. But there was a wide gap between the top 1 percent, whose earnings rose by 11.2 percent, and the other 99 percent, whose earnings declined by 0.4 percent.

So, I wonder, should we be more concerned about the ability of the top 1% to withstand a tax increase, or the ability of those at or near the bottom being able to withstand a shredding of the social safety net? 

Well, for the sake of the experiment, let's spare the "job creators" from further tax increases and cut back on the handouts we give to the "takers" (aka the 47%). As far as I'm concerned, the sooner we get to the end of the experiment — i.e., the explosion — the better.