The Rich get a bigger slice of the pie as composed by the total income reported to the IRS on tax returns...
"The income pie grew a lot larger during the last quarter century from 1980 to 2005. It was like replacing a medium-size pie with a big one. As measured by what people put down on their income tax returns, the pie grew by 79% while the population increased by only a third. This means that there was more pie for everyone before slicing it up. That makes comparing the way the pie was sliced in 1980 and 2005 particularly interesting.
The bottom 90% got less share. The top 10% got more. A lot more. Their slice grew from more than a thrid to almost half. (34.6% in 1980 to 48.5% in 2005.) But when we cut their slice of the pie more finely we see that this gross figure is misleading because the slice is not distributated at all evenly among the top 30 million Americans.
For the bottom half of the top 10%, the slice was unchanged (11.5% in 1980 to 11.4%in 2005.) For the next group, those between 95% and 99% on the income ladder, their slice grew somewhat. It increased from 13.2% to 15.3%.
It is when we look at the top 1% that things get really interesting. Their share of the income pie more than doubled, from 10% to 21.8%. Numerically this group is 3 million Americans, but in terms of how much money they make it is hardly a cohesive group. To get to the top 1% in 2005 required an income of $348,400. At the very top, several made more than a billion dollars. It would take someone at the threshhold of the top 1% nearly 3000 years to make a billion dollars. So we will cut this slice even more finely.
First there is the top tenth of 1% or 300,000 Americans. People in this group lived alone or in families of at least $1.7 million/year in 2005. Their slice of the pie more than tripled in size. They earned 3.4% of the 1980 pie and 10.9% of the 2005 pie.
Then let's consider the very best off, the 30,000 Americans... who made at least $9.5 million in 2005. Their slice of the income pie in 2005 was 4X larger than in 1980. They went from 1.3% in 1980 to a tad more than 5%in 2005.
So the vast majority had less pie in 2005 than in 1980. And even among the top 10% with their larger slice, nearly all of the growth went to the top 1%- especially those at the very top who were already rich, yet whose slice of pie grew even fatter...
The average income for the bottom 90% peaked in 1973 at $33,001. This is nearly $4000 MORE per year than this group's average income in 2005. So after a generation of economic growth, over 32 years, the vast majority has to get along on about $75 less per week."
Note from SPTAH: The book is filled with the reasons this wealth has been transferred up the income chain. We, in NE, are given two examples with the recent announcement of special incremental taxation for the new business up here in Blair and another down in Lincoln. Basically what happens is that local governments agree to use the sales or property tax monies from the business, for instance, to pay for the plant or portions thereof. Not only is this a subsidizing of the business by our tax money but also it screws the local schools and other taxing authority out of their normal taxes on such property thus starving the local agencies that depend upon these funds. Read the book...
p.s. "Democracy Now" just had a piece that ties into this book's theme too on baseball and the NY Yankees. The new stadium will cost between 1 billion and 2 billion allegedly w/o use of public funds. However, the truth is that public money has already been used to tear down the old stadium, to replace the parks that were demolished by the clearing for the new stadium, to build parking access including that for VIP's and >300,000,000 in bonds themselves. About 900,000,000 in public money with promises of "investment in jobs" but nothing set aside for this supposed promise. The fact that the bonds used are tax exempt probably has nothing to do with the recent revelation that the property was valued at 6X its real value... Some of the tickets will sell for from $1000 to $2000/seat for ONE game. Some special boxes cost $800,000 with the city government getting great seats and Rudy makig sure his own seat was near the cameras. (He is a great fan and was really genorous with the taxpayer's monies to both NY city teams.) The common Joe has some seats reserved for him @$25/seat but that will undoubtedly go up after just a few years.