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A good article, particularly for readers who are new to the inequality debate.
A good article.
Was feeling putting Mark Warner out of a job as my home state U.S. senator was pretty hopeless, until I saw this:
Sounds pretty bad for Warner (for McAuliffe more so). That's good, because I don't like their policies or their politics.
An excellent article debunking the pay gap myth.
The crux of the argument:
Interesting introductory article to the Pauls and their different approaches to Republican/libertarian integration.
Nicely written summary of why the inequality issue is dumb.
I thought this was a great paragraph:
If I had a nickel for every time some idiot used that "top 1 percent" line, I'd be in the top 1 percent.
This article came out today from the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, a left-wing think tank that reports on income inequality issues. It reports the findings of the Census Bureau's Income and Poverty in the United States: 2013 that came out earlier this month. It is packed with lies.
For example, the author Robert Lynch states this:
There are four measures in the report to do with annual household income inequality: (1) Gini index; (2) Mean logarithmic deviation of income; (3) Theil index; and (4) three Atkinson indexes. Mr. Lynch knows this--he explains these four measures in the paragraph prior to the two cited above. He also adds a fifth measure that the report includes separate from the other four: Household Income percentile ratios. Why did he add this one? Well, let's see.
Let's look at Mr. Lynch's assertion, "By every measure, income inequality in 2013 was higher than in previous years or equally as high as has ever been reported by the Census bureau since it started collecting these data in 1967." Actually, by every measure (except the fifth one he added), household income inequality in 2013 was lower than in 2012 and 2011! Gini was 0.476 in 2013 (0.477 in 2011 and 2012). MLDI was 0.578 (0.586 in 2012 and 0.585 in 2011). Theil was 0.415 (0.423 in 2012 and 0.422 in 2011). And Atkinson was lower in 2013 than in both 2011 and 2012 for all three indexes. The only measure which he can cite that supports his assertion is the measure that he added, that is not included as a "summary measure": the 90/10 ratio. Funny how that's the principal one that he illustrates with an example (the other one was the Gini, which had the most modest decline of the report's summary measures). If he exampled the data of any of the others, people wouldn't need to look at the report (as I did) to conclude he was a liar and stop reading.
Of course, in his defense he would say that the decreases in these measures are "small" or "not statistically significant". They are small, but no smaller than the typical change in these measures year-by-year. It is not like these measures have had steady increases and then just plateaued. They went down. All of them.
Actually, most Americans have experienced an increase in their earnings. Changes in society-wide averages don't reflect this because of a dynamic-slope effect: the composition of people in the average changes. And how can women have suffered disproportionately if there is a "reported improvement in the female-to-male earnings ratio, from 77 cents on the dollar in 2012 to 78 cents last year", as Lynch says earlier in his article? And how can "children" and "people of color" have suffered disproportionately if Lynch reports earlier in his article that "Almost the entire decline in poverty is attributable to a reduction in the poverty of children under the age of 18 alongside a reduction in the poverty rate of Hispanics."
The WCEG's mis-reporting of the facts is not just typical left-wing spin. It is lying.
The linked article was in the Washington Times yesterday.
This article caught my eye.
The author frames the situation well in the opening sentence:
The mean-income-is-higher-than-the-median is a well-known theoretical explanation for redistribution in public choice circles, but is also known as being simplistic. McElwee goes on to cite some pretty obscure reasons why the bottom half don't soak the top half:
Which brings us to the number one reason that the median voter, and people below the median, don't try to soak the rich. Morality.
No matter if their morality is deontological (taking from others is inherently bad) or utilitarian (taking from others produces bad results generally), enough people know that redistribution is wrong to counter-balance the median voter theorem whereby more people are below the average income than above it. If you consider that the self-interested voter hypothesis (whereby people vote instrumentally to enrich themselves) is widely discredited, it becomes clear that redistribution, at least the more naked forms of it, has little chance even in societies with great disparities in annual income.
Actually it is not that surprising that McElwee misses the moral angle, given the fact that he is advocating straight bare-naked redistribution. Such an idea may be theoretically interesting to public choice students (where it is referred to as "redistribution as taking"), but reflects the morality of a child who has yet to learn not to steal.
Another reason he misses is the golden-egg effect. Give voters credit for seeing beyond the immediate future. They have some sense that rich people will leave, or stop taking risks, or just work less if half their money is taxed to fund giveaways to people simply based on annual income. To continue to be able to tax the rich to fund important or justifiable programs is a reason not to kill the goose to just take the eggs once at a higher rate.
Some new criticisms of Piketty.
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