This year is looking like a real battle ground for income inequality in the USA. It will also be a two-ring circus of very different perspectives on how to close the gap on rampant income inequality.
While one side wants to solve the inequality problem by adding more taxes on top of the current taxes, the other side wants to cut taxes while maintaining spending levels and sending the country deeper into debt.
While one side thinks people need to be shown the way, the other side thinks people should find their own way.
Universal basic income or kill off food stamps. Free college education or more crushing personal loan debt. The list goes on and on…
Two very different perspectives and plans to attack this income inequality problem.
But… could they both be wrong?
Income inequality does not have a simple one (or even two) dimensional solution. You can’t just throw money at the problem. This has been tried and failed. You can’t just give everyone a free college education. Teachers and schools want to be paid. You can’t just wish income inequality away. It’s too big a problem.
It took generations to get to the terrible spot we are at now and it will take generations to make any real changes.
Unprecedented homelessness numbers, huge higher-education debt, too many people just not a productive part of the economy. And in the meantime good jobs go unfilled. The kind of jobs that can help people up the income ladder.
In the 1940s we fought a good war that saved millions from a terrible future. In the 1950s we increasingly industrialized the economy and moved millions of Americans firmly into the middle class. In the 1960s we sent men to the moon. In the 1970s we made great strides in cleaning up our waterways and improving the environment. In the 1980s we became a dominant technology force in the world. In the 1990s the Soviet Union’s grip on eastern Europe came to an end and hundreds of millions of people were truly free for the first time. In the 2000s we built then crashed then recovered the economy. In the 2010s we put a record number (22.6 Million) of people into jobs.
What will the 2020s be known for?