The news channels are full of politicians talking about “class warfare” an with the wages frozen for most of the middle class, as it has been for years, the middle class seems to be losing this warfare. With the country in the worst financial shape since the 1930s, why would the top 2 % of people who have gained their wealth in our country resist paying more taxes to help their source, their country. They have enjoyed tax breaks for the past ten years. Our military men have sacrificed life and limb to protect them and us so they could make more money. The same kind of sacrifice is not unrealistically expected from those top earners. We each give of our talents and abilities as we are able. So, what makes this class divide and what makes this feel like the “have and the have-nots?”
In the last several decades the economic benefits have changed dramatically. There have been shifts in social norm; the top wage performers are being paid much better than merely good and benefiting from not only lower taxes but they are wielding disproportionate political power. Lobbyist are paying for control of the political system instead of our vote. The middle class has been squeezed out being viable.
Here is what some research suggest. College graduates and high school graduates had similar family structure. There is a huge difference today in the mores of a college graduate and a high school graduate. For example, college grads are less likely to smoke, less likely to be obese, or have children out of wedlock. Some research suggest college grads have a much bigger friendship network. We live in a polarized society. Now we learn that inequality has color, it can be red or blue. Here is how it is defined by David Brooks, Syndicated columnist.
“Blue, which is the inequality that has been in the news lately and exemplified by the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement. He says this is the inequality experienced in places like New York, San Francisco, Chicago and Los Angeles…basically, major metropolitan areas. In this case, inequality refers to the difference between the top 1% and the bottom 99%.
Here is the breakdown of the top 1% earners which David Brooks says authoritative research shows:
“roughly 31% started or manage non-financial businesses;16 % are doctors 14% are finance;8% are lawyers;5% are engineers and about 2% are in sports, entertainment or the media.”
“Red, which is the inequality experienced in small towns like Scranton and others like it. In the case, the inequality experienced is “between those with a college degree and those without.”
Brooks says the red inequalities is not centered around the 1% and the bottom 99%, it is between those who have a college degree and those without it. He says this is where the biggest problem lies with the tens of millions of Americans who have dropped out of high school or college.
The bottom line is income inequality hurts the nation with wealth concentrated with the few and it strikes at the heart of our cherished ideal of “upward mobility.”
Stuart Schneiderman had this to say about David Brook’s red and blue inequality, in an article entitled -“Had Enough Therapy?”
“Brooks does not care about the 1%. He does not see the extreme wealth concentrated at the top as the root cause of our social malaise.
He seems, reasonably to be more concerned with what is happening to the American middle class. But he does not seem to understand that policies that divide the nation between the rich and the rest are directly responsible for reducing the middle class.”
Is the focus on red and blue inequality wrong? Congress seems to be standing in the door of progress and refusing to work toward real solutions for all of the American people. The people are not interested in what the color of the inequality is-We don’t have time for this-people are hurting; we want solutions from the people we voted in office to address the problems of the people of America.