Stewart Acuff

Feb 5

Global Inequality Threatens Us All

We have long said in this space that one of the greatest challenges facing our people, our country and our democracy is our massive gap of income and wealth inequality. We know the transfer of wealth from the middle class, the poor, and our public institutions further squeezes our middle class and further impoverishes those of us who are poor.

Now my friend John Case has sent me a brilliant article that makes the point that global inequality is even more dangerous and destructive than domestic inequality.

The article makes the point that the labor movement has been making for a long time–that unfair trade designed to simply allow corporations to exploit those with the lowest wages is one of the key drivers of global inequality.

The article written by Kathleen Geier looks at the work of economics researcher and expert Branko Milanovic to point out that the United States is the most unequal country in the world. Latin America is the most unequal region in the world, and the Scandinavian countries are the most egalitarian in the world.

Research done by the Economic Policy Institute has shown how the assault in the US has increased inequality for 35 years.

It doesn’t take a lot of research to understand that high levels of unionization have led to more equal economies in Denmark, Sweden, and Norway.

There is hope that progressive governments in Brazil, Chile and others will help lead Latin America to more equality.

In tomorrow’s blog we will drill down on these questions and explore what can be done to reduce inequality.

Photo source: weeklydig on Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

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