Do you have adblock enabled?
 
If you can read this, either the style sheet didn't load or you have an older browser that doesn't support style sheets. Try clearing your browser cache and refreshing the page.

(NPR)   Income inequality isn't necessarily a bad thing   (npr.org ) divider line
    More: Interesting, income inequality, healthcare inequality, City University London, Thomas Piketty, Tyler Cowen, Occupy movement, incomes, Graduate Center  
•       •       •

7579 clicks; posted to Main » on 18 May 2014 at 7:23 PM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



114 Comments     (+0 »)
 
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest


Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | » | Newest | Show all

 
2014-05-18 02:14:47 PM  
fark you, subby. you are just a peasant like the rest of us.
 
2014-05-18 03:09:10 PM  
For whom?
 
2014-05-18 03:28:38 PM  
No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.
 
2014-05-18 03:36:44 PM  

TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.


Exactly.
 
2014-05-18 04:02:24 PM  

TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.


This

Russia went from one extreme (Communism) to the next (Oligarchy). We saw both of them fail. We know that both of those are bad for the economy.
 
2014-05-18 04:54:41 PM  
Never going to happen.  The Rich rule and they will always rule as long as they have all the money.  Or while their heads are attached to their bodies.
 
2014-05-18 05:04:35 PM  
Perfect income inequality is impossible and certainly you can make the argument that it is not a desirable state of affairs.  We should not be striving for perfect, but we should be striving for better.  The level of income inequality has become overall detremental to our society and should be addressed.  It has become a problem that can only be resolved by lessening that inequality until an equalibrium of benefit/detrement is acheived.
 
2014-05-18 05:37:12 PM  

MaudlinMutantMollusk: For whom?


No one on Fark, that's for sure.
 
2014-05-18 05:52:54 PM  
High income inequality is a symptom.
 
2014-05-18 06:18:12 PM  

BMFPitt: High income inequality is a symptom.


and i want that disease?
 
2014-05-18 06:18:24 PM  
epmgaa.media.lionheartdms.com

We've already asked this question, and even in an ideal world people want some inequality, just much less.
 
2014-05-18 06:34:09 PM  
A little? No. American-style inequality? Yes.
 
2014-05-18 07:00:13 PM  

TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.


I'm with you but I have one question. Would a significant raise in the minimum wage actually increase the buying power of the poor or would it just be inflationary?
 
2014-05-18 07:03:42 PM  
The problem is: the rest of the world think WE are all 1 percent.
 
2014-05-18 07:17:02 PM  

b2theory: TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.

I'm with you but I have one question. Would a significant raise in the minimum wage actually increase the buying power of the poor or would it just be inflationary?


Poor people spend their money, so if they're making more of it they're putting it right back into the economy.
 
2014-05-18 07:17:15 PM  
radicalunjobbing.files.wordpress.com
 
2014-05-18 07:18:54 PM  

b2theory: TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.

I'm with you but I have one question. Would a significant raise in the minimum wage actually increase the buying power of the poor or would it just be inflationary?


It would be inflationary over the long run, but the inflation lags behind the increase so yes, it would increase buying power.
 
2014-05-18 07:20:39 PM  

b2theory: TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.

I'm with you but I have one question. Would a significant raise in the minimum wage actually increase the buying power of the poor or would it just be inflationary?


There have been studies that say it wouldn't cause much, if any, inflation.  There may be some initial slight price hikes, but competition in the market should drive things back down.  Once one company decides that they're willing to sacrifice some margin to increase market share by undercutting their competitors, the others will have to follow suit.

Plus, a higher minimum wage or a guaranteed minimum income means more people with more money to spend, which will increase sales volume across the board and allow companies to make less on each sale but still maintain, or even increase, total profits.
 
2014-05-18 07:25:20 PM  

TuteTibiImperes: b2theory: TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.

I'm with you but I have one question. Would a significant raise in the minimum wage actually increase the buying power of the poor or would it just be inflationary?

There have been studies that say it wouldn't cause much, if any, inflation.  There may be some initial slight price hikes, but competition in the market should drive things back down.  Once one company decides that they're willing to sacrifice some margin to increase market share by undercutting their competitors, the others will have to follow suit.

Plus, a higher minimum wage or a guaranteed minimum income means more people with more money to spend, which will increase sales volume across the board and allow companies to make less on each sale but still maintain, or even increase, total profits.


I am very much in favor of raising the minimum wage. My worry is that their buying power would immediately be sucked up by rent hikes.
 
2014-05-18 07:25:28 PM  

TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.


HEY! Be careful throwing logic and reason around here! Someone can get hurt!
 
2014-05-18 07:27:51 PM  
A Study by Judge Elihu Smails
 
2014-05-18 07:31:05 PM  

b2theory: TuteTibiImperes: b2theory: TuteTibiImperes: No one is seriously suggesting a conversion to communism where everyone is completely economically equal (not that such was even the case when countries have tried to go down that route).  The argument is that the current level of inequality is damaging both to a large number of people and to the economy as a whole, and should be reduced.

A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.  Much higher taxes on upper income brackets (as well as on capital gains) combined with higher minimum wages and either a negative income tax or guaranteed minimum income would help towards that goal.

Things would be better if the spread was reduced, but not completely eliminated.

I'm with you but I have one question. Would a significant raise in the minimum wage actually increase the buying power of the poor or would it just be inflationary?

There have been studies that say it wouldn't cause much, if any, inflation.  There may be some initial slight price hikes, but competition in the market should drive things back down.  Once one company decides that they're willing to sacrifice some margin to increase market share by undercutting their competitors, the others will have to follow suit.

Plus, a higher minimum wage or a guaranteed minimum income means more people with more money to spend, which will increase sales volume across the board and allow companies to make less on each sale but still maintain, or even increase, total profits.

I am very much in favor of raising the minimum wage. My worry is that their buying power would immediately be sucked up by rent hikes.


The minimum wage doesn't control the rental market.  That being said, I wouldn't be against increased rent control measures, including a system to mandate all landlords who rent above a certain number of properties to make available a certain percentage of those properties for low income renters, with government controlled ceilings on allowable rent.
 
2014-05-18 07:43:30 PM  
"That's an idea as old as America's beginnings, says Freeman. The founders, he says, thought broad ownership of land, a capital asset, was very important."
...Of course, they also believed that owning other humans was okay, and you had a right to your say as long as you were a landowning white man.  And that once we cleared these native squatters off the land, you could claim your share, on which they would tax you.
 
2014-05-18 07:47:45 PM  
Income inequity as a battle call has always puzzled me. Someone please explain to me why a night watchman guarding an abandoned factory against a fire is supposed to be paid the same as a back-break worker like a roofer? Do they mean income inequity of the workers in this country that are doing the exact same work as workers in another country? Inequity between states doing the same job?
 
2014-05-18 07:48:34 PM  

Billy Liar: Of course, they also believed that owning other humans was okay, and you had a right to your say as long as you were a landowning white man.  And that once we cleared these native squatters off the land, you could claim your share, on which they would tax you.


So because the founding fathers were wrong on some things mean they were wrong on all things? Is this what you are arguing?
 
2014-05-18 07:48:49 PM  
Excessive inequality would lead to problems. Rigging the system can create that excess. For example, managing to twist the progressive tax system until the well off pay less than the lesser classes.
 
2014-05-18 07:50:39 PM  

tkwasny: Someone please explain to me why a night watchman guarding an abandoned factory against a fire is supposed to be paid the same as a back-break worker like a roofer?


The biggest reason is the more wealthy one is, the better chance that person can pay off politicians for laws that skew the market place playing field.
 
2014-05-18 07:52:34 PM  
I like income inequality.  It makes my money more valuable.
 
2014-05-18 07:54:33 PM  

nmrsnr: [epmgaa.media.lionheartdms.com image 720x540]

We've already asked this question, and even in an ideal world people want some inequality, just much less.


The '4th highest 20%'? Who made that stupid chart, a redditor?
 
2014-05-18 07:54:34 PM  
It would be good if we weren't on par with shiatty third world nations, for starters.
 
2014-05-18 08:01:04 PM  
It's definitely harmful for the economy to have these rich people.  Most of them stay rich by hoarding their wealth away.  In America alone that's perhaps 15-20% of the wealth that is not being given back into the economy.
 
2014-05-18 08:06:18 PM  
Why has NPR turned into a Derp factory like Fox News?
 
2014-05-18 08:07:49 PM  

real_headhoncho: Never going to happen.  The Rich rule and they will always rule as long as they have all the money.  Or while their heads are attached to their bodies.


I vote for (B)
 
2014-05-18 08:13:12 PM  
TuteTibiImperes:
A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.

I don't understand why you would want to make it difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth - if done legally & ethically. What the Steve Jobs or others of the world have done. Or, when you design this system, would you go after the pro athletes who get contracts of $100 million? Would you forbid the U2s or Michael Jackson's of the world to profit from their creations - or at least put limits on how much they could make? Who would control any excess earnings?
It's a slippery slope
 
2014-05-18 08:21:55 PM  

some_beer_drinker: [radicalunjobbing.files.wordpress.com image 452x433]


Right...right.  Maybe work justifies your right to exist...or maybe...hear me out on this...maybe nobody's made a technological breakthrough to support everyone so in the meantime we have to trade what we have for stuff we want.
 
2014-05-18 08:27:19 PM  
Wrong tab ask me.
 
2014-05-18 08:33:03 PM  

mr lawson: Billy Liar: Of course, they also believed that owning other humans was okay, and you had a right to your say as long as you were a landowning white man.  And that once we cleared these native squatters off the land, you could claim your share, on which they would tax you.

So because the founding fathers were wrong on some things mean they were wrong on all things? Is this what you are arguing?


No more than because they got some things right that they should get a pass on everything else.
 
2014-05-18 08:33:31 PM  
Income inequality or wealth inequality? A 70% income tax is less scary to the super rich than a 30% "excessive wealth" tax.
 
2014-05-18 08:36:24 PM  

Abox: Right...right. Maybe work justifies your right to exist...or maybe...hear me out on this...maybe nobody's made a technological breakthrough to support everyone so in the meantime we have to trade what we have for stuff we want.


Oh the technology is here and has been for about 4 decades. The trouble is the people who made it wanted to make money from it (this is a completely reasonable thing to want, not blaming them for that) then got rich (again, reasonable), THEN with their massive fortunes paid off Congress to make laws so their stuff remained their stuff forever and everyone had to pay them in perpetuity (this is where things get bad).

The rich own the government, make the laws, and now have the TREASURY ITSELF in their back pocket. It's not a technology issue, it's a political one.
 
2014-05-18 08:39:10 PM  

cwheelie: TuteTibiImperes:
A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.

I don't understand why you would want to make it difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth - if done legally & ethically. What the Steve Jobs or others of the world have done. Or, when you design this system, would you go after the pro athletes who get contracts of $100 million? Would you forbid the U2s or Michael Jackson's of the world to profit from their creations - or at least put limits on how much they could make? Who would control any excess earnings?
It's a slippery slope


I'm not suggesting an arbitrary cap on earnings, just revamp of the tax brackets with some new ones added.  Right now we cap out at 39.6% for income above $401,000 per year.

I'd suggest changing the code so that all capital gains (short and long term) are taxed as ordinary income according to the same brackets as any profits from those gains would put you into that year (with very limited exceptions for retirement accounts and college savings plans, but with reasonable caps on tax-free income for those as well, say anything over $100,000/year is taxed on retirement, and anything above $50,000/year is taxed for college savings plans).

I'd change the current marginal rates to raise them on income levels above $100,000, and add new ones to the top, for example:

Income above $500,000/year is taxed at 50%
Income above $750,000/year is taxed at 70%
Income above $1,000,000/year is taxed at 80%
Income above $2,000,000/year is taxed at 90%
etc

It doesn't stifle people trying to earn more, as the marginal rates only effect income above those brackets, but that, combined with changes to inheritance and corporate taxes, would help prevent the development of plutocracy.  Plus, it would create funds to help pay for a guaranteed minimum income or negative income tax for the less fortunate.
 
2014-05-18 08:40:26 PM  
Well sure. Obviously some people are winners in that divide. So fark you, I got mine?
 
2014-05-18 08:47:36 PM  
SOME amount of a lot of things are good.
That doesn't mean that if a certain amount of something is good, that a whole lot more of it would be better.
 
2014-05-18 08:48:59 PM  

TuteTibiImperes: Income above $500,000/year is taxed at 50%
Income above $750,000/year is taxed at 70%
Income above $1,000,000/year is taxed at 80%
Income above $2,000,000/year is taxed at 90%
etc


So the first person is taking home $225,000, the second $200,000, and the third also makes $200,00.
 
2014-05-18 08:52:23 PM  

jaylectricity: TuteTibiImperes: Income above $500,000/year is taxed at 50%
Income above $750,000/year is taxed at 70%
Income above $1,000,000/year is taxed at 80%
Income above $2,000,000/year is taxed at 90%
etc

So the first person is taking home $225,000, the second $200,000, and the third also makes $200,00.


You aren't that dumb surely now?

Not that the suggestion of 90% tax rates has any real merit but surely no-one at this point doesn't understand how tax rates work..
 
2014-05-18 08:52:25 PM  

jaylectricity: TuteTibiImperes: Income above $500,000/year is taxed at 50%
Income above $750,000/year is taxed at 70%
Income above $1,000,000/year is taxed at 80%
Income above $2,000,000/year is taxed at 90%
etc

So the first person is taking home $225,000, the second $200,000, and the third also makes $200,00.


No, they're marginal rates, just like our tax system works now.  Only the income above each tier is taxed at that rate.
 
2014-05-18 08:54:12 PM  
Actually, I didn't notice the first two words. I was just pointing out that that your ratios don't work out because why would you ever try to earn $500,000 over the income tier?
 
2014-05-18 08:54:43 PM  

cwheelie: TuteTibiImperes:
A good system would be one in which it becomes increasingly difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth as well as to become completely destitute.

I don't understand why you would want to make it difficult to amass a huge amount of wealth - if done legally & ethically. What the Steve Jobs or others of the world have done. Or, when you design this system, would you go after the pro athletes who get contracts of $100 million? Would you forbid the U2s or Michael Jackson's of the world to profit from their creations - or at least put limits on how much they could make? Who would control any excess earnings?
It's a slippery slope


FTFA: "Cowen thinks the big rise in incomes at the top in the U.S. is coming mostly for the right reasons."

Apparently, neither you nor Cowen has read even a summary of Piketty's book.  What it shows is that the rate of return on passive investment always outpaces productivity.  That results in the rich getting richer just from investing their current riches.  They don't need to work to get rich, and that's exactly what's been happening in the U.S. for 45 years, since the minimum wage peaked in terms of real purchasing power.
 
2014-05-18 08:54:59 PM  
Or maybe I'm still drunk from last night.
 
2014-05-18 08:59:06 PM  

ajgeek: Abox: Right...right. Maybe work justifies your right to exist...or maybe...hear me out on this...maybe nobody's made a technological breakthrough to support everyone so in the meantime we have to trade what we have for stuff we want.

Oh the technology is here and has been for about 4 decades. The trouble is the people who made it wanted to make money from it (this is a completely reasonable thing to want, not blaming them for that) then got rich (again, reasonable), THEN with their massive fortunes paid off Congress to make laws so their stuff remained their stuff forever and everyone had to pay them in perpetuity (this is where things get bad).

The rich own the government, make the laws, and now have the TREASURY ITSELF in their back pocket. It's not a technology issue, it's a political one.


Is that right?  I don't know anyone over there but I've been able trade my skills for stuff I want without much hullabaloo.
 
2014-05-18 08:59:19 PM  

duckpoopy: The '4th highest 20%'? Who made that stupid chart, a redditor?


The use of quintiles is a well established practice in economics and other fields.

tkwasny: . Someone please explain to me why a night watchman guarding an abandoned factory against a fire is supposed to be paid the same as a back-break worker like a roofer


No one is saying that. Only that when incomes become too disparate you end up with some serious problems.
 
Displayed 50 of 114 comments


Oldest | « | 1 | 2 | 3 | » | Newest | Show all


View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

This thread is archived, and closed to new comments.

Continue Farking
Submit a Link »
On Twitter






In Other Media


  1. Links are submitted by members of the Fark community.

  2. When community members submit a link, they also write a custom headline for the story.

  3. Other Farkers comment on the links. This is the number of comments. Click here to read them.

  4. Click here to submit a link.

Report