TIME magazine published a small article, written by Justin Worland, on their blog, promoting “Living on a Dollar a Day” in which they showed 13 pictures of human beings around the world who live with $1 – sometimes less – a day.
This supports the research in the fields of social and economic disparity that conclude the world is a little bit more unfair and unequal – every day that passes.
In a world that is seamlessly socially connected – twenty-four hours a day – the fact that, economically, there exists such an inequality is just shocking. The fact that so much protest and revolution are arising nowadays is just an example that people are finally realizing the depth of the situation in which we are now and that the situation is here to stay.
In an article for The New York Times on the topic, mostly reviewing Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the Twenty-First Century“, Eduardo Porter reaches a similar conclusion:
Mr. Piketty doubts that the enormous remuneration of top executives and financiers in the United States — enhanced by the decline of top income tax rates since the 1980s — really reflects their contributions. What’s more, he points out, inherited inequality has been lower in the United States mainly because its population has grown so fast — from three million at the time of independence to 300 million today — driving a vast economic expansion.
But this population boom will not repeat itself. The share of national income absorbed by corporate profits, a major component of capital’s share, is already rising sharply.
If anything, this means future inequality in the United States will be driven by two forces. A growing share of national income will go to the owners of capital. Of the remaining labor income, a growing share will also go to the top executives and highly compensated stars at the pinnacle of the earnings scale.
What this basically means is that most of today’s capital currents, in the future, are going to be directed to the same people as they are now. The middle-class is going to have difficulty breaking that chain which in turn is going to obliterate it as we know it today…which in turn will create an even larger lower-class and increasing disparity.
Research about the topic is widely available and there’s even a documentary about it but it doesn’t look like anything is changing – or maybe I just don’t see it.
(Image: Living on a Dollar a Day, Thomas A. Nazario)