Tag Archives: Economic inequality


A picture of income disparity

Vertical scale = per capita income Horizontal scale = population segments

This chart was published in Mother Jones to make some point or another about the shame of income disparity in America.  The chart is taken from a book titled “The Haves and the Have-Nots,” by the World Bank economist Branko Milanovic. I don’t know why Milanovic selected these countries and can only surmise it was because they were the three fastest growing major economies in the world over some recent time frame.

What the chart says to me is (1) the poorest group in the U.S. is infinitely better off than the poorest group in the other nations, (2) income disparity is the least in the U. S.  This is apparent all along the scale from the most impoverished to the wealthiest as shown by the relative flatness of the U.S. curve, (3) whatever faults the American economic system may have, they are insignificant when compared to the other systems because every group is better off in America, particularly the lower income ones.  Mother Jones picked a rose and called it a thorn.

China is a socialist country; India is not; Brazil is somewhere in between.  Nevertheless, the chart is a good illustration of the superiority of an economic system that incentivizes individual entrepreneurialism and protects the rewards for success with a healthy respect for property rights.  It’s a fact of life that equal treatment is bound to produce unequal results because people are not equal.  The capitalistic system gets the best from the best; socialism does not.  And if China can be taken as an example, socialism doesn’t reduce income disparity either.


We are in a bit of a flippant mood this morning so take this post with a grain of salt.  To say “take it with a grain of salt” is an old expression meaning [wikipedia data unavailable pending new law (WDUPNL)].  The expression originated when [WDUPNL].

According to a radio report, 35% of Americans are fat enough to be declared obese.  To understand the significance of any study like that , it helps to know something about the organization that conducted it.  What we found is [WDUPNL].

Okay, we don’t need Wikipedia to make our point.  The old argument from the left that heartless Republicans were responsible for a nation full of starving kids has lost its punch.  It loses its credibility when you are surrounded with all those roly pollies.  Drop the starving kids.  Go to income inequality.

Income inequality has been the theme of socialist causes down through the ages.  To substantiate that assertion we refer you to [WDUDPNL].

The obesity study is real.  So is the unavailability of the world’s best known reference source, Wikipedia.  The Wiki shutdown is a one day self-imposed action by the online encyclopedia in protest to two bills in Congress that would regulate internet content.  The bills are intended to stop piracy of intellectual property like music and video (movies).  To that extent the intent is good.  But we take the stated intent with another one of those grains of salt.  And as far as unintended consequences go, we know that is one of those things Congress does very well.  Dare we call it soft censorship?