Krugman and the Social Contract
Krugman puts well what we all know is true:
Detailed estimates from the Congressional Budget Office — which only go up to 2005, but the basic picture surely hasn’t changed — show that between 1979 and 2005 the inflation-adjusted income of families in the middle of the income distribution rose 21 percent. That’s growth, but it’s slow, especially compared with the 100 percent rise in median income over a generation after World War II.
Meanwhile, over the same period, the income of the very rich, the top 100th of 1 percent of the income distribution, rose by 480 percent. No, that isn’t a misprint. In 2005 dollars, the average annual income of that group rose from $4.2 million to $24.3 million.
So do the wealthy look to you like the victims of class warfare?
Krugman makes the point that conservatives and libertarians so studiously ignore: that we do not live in a vacuum, that we all benefit from the society we live in, and therefore have a responsibility to support it through taxes. He quotes Elizabeth Warren, who said, “There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody.”
Read the full article. Hat tip to Ken.