Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Wealth Distribution (Redistribution) In the US

Perhaps the most illuminating quote from this post is this: "The negative 301 percent means that a typical family in the bottom quintile receives about $3 in transfer payments for every dollar earned."

But, the competition is tough from this quote: "the middle class, having long been a net contributor to the funding of government, is now a net recipient of government largess."

14 comments:

Jasmine Byrd said...

I find it very troubling that when compared to the recession in 1982, the middle class did not go into a negative and in 2009 it did. To me, the middle class should never be a negative. I don't know exactly what makes this recession different from the ones in the past but it worries me.

Isabel said...

Considering that the United States has had a few tough years since the market crashed, I think that even if it is bad that the middle class is in the negatives we should look at the fact that most of the world is having economic issues right now. Yes, a lot of the population is in the negatives right now, but it is something that I think will balance itself out once measures have been taken with the economic difficulties that the world is finding itself in.

Jake Pearson said...

I understand the argument for having compassion and giving those of a lower class (economically) relief. But, it's difficult for me to discern what exactly is "fair". So many people don't understand that some of the people in the upper class pay more in taxes in one year than many will ever make in their entire lifetime. IDK, I might just be coldhearted. I do not have the exact layout for what taxes specifically fund (in terms of amounts to each government program), however as said in the article those in the middle class and below are actually a net reciever of money from the government. So, if a large portion of that goes to fund programs that require no productivity from anyone, what's the incentive?

Cory Nissen said...

I am actually pretty curious as to why the middle class as just recently gone negative, especially because it wasn't negative in the 1982 recession. Are we really doing so bad that even the middle class needs to get back more than it is actually earning?

Trent said...

Times are different, just because we are in the negative now and were not in 1982 does not mean we are worse off now than then, I believe it is the contrary.

James Davies said...

Interesting table of data. If you take all the data points and plot them, you get a vertical asymptote towards the the lower classes. But the most disturbing thing I find is if I add a bell curve to this data the first standard deviation from the mean has such a heavily sloped redistribution curve. It's quite shocking. The occupy movement blames everything on the top 1%, and I can't blame them for being upset. It sucks to see such wealthy people doing just fine when the bottom 80% are taking handouts. This isnt the country I thought we had. As Jake said, I understand helping the bottom fifth, but the top 80% needs to be putting more in than taking out not vise versa. Soon I can't wait to see Warren Buffet buying things on government issued handouts. That is the monetary system we are headed towards. Goodbye cash.

Mackenzie said...

It's very scary to think that we could ever allow ourselves to be compared to the recession in 1982 much less have a statistic lower...

I'm not saying our economic troubles are worse than that of the great depression, only that it seems we haven't learned as much from the past as I would hope.

Matt Freeman said...

I agree with Jasmine, I feel like the middle class should never be in the negatives. That table was quite shocking to me, as I personally do not feel as if the middle class is doing as poorly as the table indicated (generally speaking of course).

Ian Littlejohn said...

I agree with isabel in that if everyone in the world came together and work as one since not just America is sufforing from this recession we could all work to bring this to an end instead of just focusing on our middle class

Mason Jones said...

The middle class should never be in the negatives. Although im sure it's not a permanent problem but it's still scary to know that the middle class can drop that low.

Eid Alkhaldi said...

I am not fimiliar with the tax regulations in the US. However; I see clearly that people are not taxed in the most effiecnt way, since people who have the most wealth are not taxed with accordance to how much they earn. Maybe if they were taxed more, they will have less incentive to invest.

Pars Tornakian said...

I thought it was very interesting how the change happened quickly, I mean as the article mentions, in 2007 the middle quintile was actually positive. In just 2 years it went negative.

Nick Goldman said...

It's little troubling to me to hear that the middle class is in the negative for the first time since these stats have been kept even after the '82 recession. But the economy seems to be moving in the right direction as of late. I believe that we should always give a little to the lower classes because they are a lot more valuable to a country then what some people realize.

Mike B. said...

I agree with Jasmine comment, highly. Why do things seem to keep getting worse for the middle class?