Wednesday, February 05, 2014

Inequality


Time to Talk About Inequality

It isn't just a social issue—it's putting the future of the U.S. economy in peril

Larry Downing / Reuters

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers his State of the Union speech on Capitol Hill in Washington January 28, 2014.

Economic growth is up. Unemployment is down. The housing market is in recovery. So why didn't President Obama's State of the Union speech strike a more economically triumphant tone? In a word, inequality. It's bad, and it's going to get worse. The forces of globalization and technology tend to wipe out middle-income jobs and favor those at the very top of the socioeconomic ladder. A new McKinsey Global Institute study found that 230 million white collar jobs, representing some $9 trillion in income, will be transformed or even eliminated by computers in the next decade. As Eric Schmidt, the former CEO of Google, put it recently at the World Economic Forum in Davos, "We're in a race between computers and people--and we need to make sure the people win."/.../

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