Sunday, October 03, 2010

Less Pie

Give the tea baggers one thing: they are angry. Reading this week's economic news makes me wonder why everyone isn't madder than hell and refusing to take it anymore (Well, everyone except the top 1% or so of the wealthiest Americans). The State Journal reported:
Median household income in Dane County dropped more than 6 percent from 2008 to 2009, falling at a faster rate than the 2.9 percent decrease for the nation, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday. The decrease was even greater in Madison.

That is staggering. In Madison one in five people - 20% - live in poverty. Median household income in Madison dropped more than $4000 - in one year. Meanwhile, the Milwaukee JS reported that Milwaukee now has the 4th worst poverty rate in the US at 27%. The state of Mississippi's poverty rate was 21.6% (according to the same US Census report).

In some ways, the news represents a significant acceleration of a long-term trend. The rich are taking an ever larger share of the wealth and income and the poor and middle class are getting less. The difference however is no longer merely relative. The income loss is absolute.

Not only have the rich and wealthy continued to gobble up hugely increased portions of the pie, but everyone else (basically, everyone you know) is making less in actual dollars and not just a relatively smaller piece of an expanding pie, but less pie period.

The two charts from the always excellent Left Business Observer.

More data:

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