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Thursday, February 24, 2011

The ever widening gap between the rich and poor in America

Numerous authors, political scientists, and intellectuals have been documenting the ever widening gap between the rich and poor in America since the mid 1980s. Although most Americans have been deceived into thinking that all Ronald Reagan did was end the Cold War and do some illegal activities during the Iran Contra Affair, most Americans are ignorant of the fact that Ronald Reagan and a compliant congress began to reverse the great gains the middle class got during the years following World War II. In an era Kevin Phillips refers to as the Great Compression when the wealth accumulated by the upper one percent of Americans after the Great Depression began to be reversed, Ronald Reagan and subsequent presidents and members of congress from both political parties have succeeded in turning America into a plutocracy. 

The independent publication Mother Jones via the Yahoo news blog The Outlook, posted a chilling series of charts that highlights how the gap has turned into a chasm.

The Great Recession and the slump that followed have triggered a jobs crisis that's been making headlines since before President Obama was in office, and that will likely be with us for years. But the American economy is also plagued by a less-noted, but just as serious, problem: Simply put, over the last 30 years, the gap between rich and poor has widened into a chasm.

Gradual developments like this don't typically lend themselves to news coverage. But Mother Jones magazine has crunched the data on inequality, and put together a group of stunning new charts. Taken together, they offer a dramatic visual illustration of who's doing well and who's doing badly in modern America.

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