Search This Blog

Monday, January 21, 2013

Effects of Inequality

Neither Professor Stiglitz (Inequality is Holding Back the Recovery, Week In Review, January 20, 2013:A1, A6,A7) nor Mr. Davidson (The Great Divergence, Magazine, January 20, 2013: 17-18) focus on the ongoing effects of inequality in our society.

In their book, The Spirit Level, Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett document thourghly the dysfuntional effects of inequality across nations and even between states in the United States.

In unequal societies rich people are sicker than rich people in more egalitarian societies and, of course, poor people in unequal societies are less healthy than poor people in egalitarian societies. The same is true of mental illness. The same is true in terms of people's  happiness, and so on.

Unequal societies are less well off in the things that matter than more equal societies.

We need to put this right.

Sent to New York Times

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There are many reasons for economic inequality within societies. "The single most important driver has been greater inequality in wages and salaries." These causes are often inter-related.
Acknowledged factors that impact economic inequality include:
1. greater inequality in wages and salaries (highly skilled workers earn more than others);
2. wealth concentration;
3. labor markets (globalization; technological changes; and policy reforms);
4. more regressive taxation and
5. tax loopholes and shelters such as tax havens;
6. increasing education costs;
7. computerization and increased technology;
8. racial inequality;
9. the gender pay gap;
10.corporate consolidation and mergers, and