America was built on a promise.  If you worked hard
and didn’t waste what you earned, you could have what
you need to live and enjoy a certain amount of comfort.

But, especially since the 2008 financial panic, it seems
that the promise is no longer being fulfilled.  

About two-thirds of us feel that
income inequality has
increased, while less than a tenth disagree.

There’s less agreement on the cause of the problem—
tax loopholes and other government policies that favor
the rich, a poor job market, the stock market, banks,
greed—but very little disagreement on its effect.  

The rich are getting richer.  The poor are getting poorer.  
And the middle class is disappearing.

What's wrong with that?  Several things:
1.  It's unfair.  Maintaining an even playing field
encourages everyone to do his or her best.
2.  It hurts the entire economy.  Extending current trends
would turn us into something like India--a few very
wealthy people and hoards of very poor people.  
3.  It does away with the solid backbone of the country, the
middle class.

"The extent of and continuing increase in inequality in the
United States greatly concerns me," says Federal Reserve
Janet L. Yellen in a recent speech reported in
Los Angeles Times.  "I think it is appropriate to ask if this
trend is compatible with values rooted in our nation's history,
among them the high value Americans have traditionally
placed on equality of opportunity."

She suggests government spending on social safety-net
programs and education, which help increase economic
mobility.  Also providing incentives for people to "work hard,
save, invest and undertake risk."  

Raising salaries would help--starting with the minimum

Other articles in this website are on the
rich getting richer, the
poor getting poorer, and the middle class vanishing.  

I hope you'll write me at about this
website, especially if you have alternate views and
November 2014
Billie Silvey
An eclectic website about Women, Christianity, History, Culture and
the Arts--and anything else that comes to mind.