Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Occupy's Inequality Push Misses Real Problem: Per Capita Income Has Fallen Over Five Years

At Investor's Business Daily, "Inequality? Real Issue Is Falling Real Income For All":
As long as a rising economic tide kept incomes afloat, concerns about inequality rarely surfaced for long.

Only after four years in which income disparities actually narrowed a bit — typical of recessions — did last year's emergence of Occupy Wall Street make inequality a big political issue.

But, as the movement's "We are the 99%" slogan comprising almost everyone suggests, what really has people upset is the fact that everyone's slice of the pie, on average, has gotten a bit smaller.

The nation has now gone through a five-year stretch in which real per capita disposable income has shrunk, the first time that's happened since the demobilization after World War II.

Disposable per capita income equaled $37,000 at the end of November vs. an inflation-adjusted $37,060 in September 2006, Commerce Department data show.

The long drought largely reflects 2008-09 income declines, but real per capita disposable income also fell 0.9% in the 12 months through November.

Official data show that the U.S. economy finally recouped recessionary losses in the third quarter of 2011, eclipsing the prior GDP peak at the end of 2007. But those statistics, while marking a postwar record for futility, still paint too bright of a picture.
Continue reading.

Actually, there could be something here politically for either party. But given that Barack Hussein's going to run a class-warfare campaign, the GOP nominee will do right by boning up on these statistics.