Wealth inequality may be even worse than we thought. Economic surveys estimate that roughly 85 percent of income and wealth gains in the last decade have gone to the wealthiest one-tenth of the top 1 percent.
That’s bad enough. But what if the concentration is even greater?
Visualize the nation’s wealth as an expansive and deep reservoir of fresh water. A small portion of this water provides sustenance to fields and villages downstream, in the form of tax dollars for public services.
In recent years, the water level has declined to a trickle, and the villages below are suffering from water shortages. Everyone is told to tighten their belts and make sacrifices.
Deep below the water surface, however, is a hidden pipe, siphoning vast amounts of water — as much as a third of the whole reservoir — off to a secret pool in the forest.
The rich are swimming while the villagers go thirsty and the fields dry up.
Yes, there are vast pools of privately owned wealth, mostly held by a small segment of super-rich Americans. The wealthiest 400 billionaires have at least as much wealth as 62 percent of the U.S. population — that’s nearly 200 million of us.
What Happened to America’s Wealth?
The Rich Hid It.
In the lap of the world’s richest nation
where wages have stalled to stagnation,
the asse(t)s are stored in
the One Percent hoardin’
the cream off the Guernsey’s lactation.
Mary Boren, 7/4/17