I wonder how much of an impact this may have played in the elections last year:
Income inequality grew significantly in 2005, with the top 1 percent of Americans — those with incomes that year of more than $348,000 — receiving their largest share of national income since 1928, analysis of newly released tax data shows.
The top 10 percent, roughly those earning more than $100,000, also reached a level of income share not seen since before the Depression.
While total reported income in the United States increased almost 9 percent in 2005, the most recent year for which such data is available, average incomes for those in the bottom 90 percent dipped slightly compared with the year before, dropping $172, or 0.6 percent.
The gains went largely to the top 1 percent, whose incomes rose to an average of more than $1.1 million each, an increase of more than $139,000, or about 14 percent.
The new data also shows that the top 300,000 Americans collectively enjoyed almost as much income as the bottom 150 million Americans. Per person, the top group received 440 times as much as the average person in the bottom half earned, nearly doubling the gap from 1980.
The analysis of the data is recent, the impact this has on average Americans is much more immediate and could explain some of the simmering discontent in the voting public. Sure, there are other things to point to- discontent over Iraq, disgust with the policies of this administration, outrage over the rampant corruption and the serial lying, etc.
But economic issues are sort of the foundation, in my mind of thinking. If people are doing well, and are noticing that their own lives are getting better and they have some financial security and a little extra cash to spend, they will, as I see it, put up with a little more. When the vast majority of the American public is feeling the pinch AND having to put up with the aforementioned nonsense, ruling party beware.