The Unequal States of America

Inequality is alive, well, and growing in the U.S. As President Obama indicated in a speech last week, it's a problem the country must address. First, says Eduardo Porter, will need to articulate the problem to build the consensus needed to solve it.

"The good news is that President Obama appears to have decided to devote the rest of his presidency to trying to tackle the forces behind the yawning inequities that have hamstrung social and economic mobility, eroding the living standards of the middle class," writes Porter. "The bad news is that he may not be up to the task."

The problem with the proposals that Obama has so far outlined, he says, is that they're either inadequate or unfeasible in today's political climate. 

"A better strategy might be to articulate — forcefully — the nature of the problem and build a political consensus that would ultimately lead to long-delayed changes to American society," he argues. 

"The United States remains among the richest countries in the world. National income per person trails only that of Norway, Luxembourg, Singapore, Switzerland and Hong Kong. Yet despite its riches, in many areas the United States looks surprisingly, depressingly backward."


Full Story: Inequality in America: The Data Is Sobering

Comments

Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 4th Edition

Thinking about Grad School?

New! 4th Edition of the Planetizen Guide to Graduate Urban Planning Programs just released.
Starting at $24.95

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
City Plate table setting

New Arrival! City Plates

City downtown cores printed on gorgeous decorative collectible porcelain plates.
$50.00

Stay thirsty, urbanists

These sturdy water bottles are eco-friendly and perfect for urbanists on the go.
$19.00