I am surprised and disturbed by the ever increasing wealth disparity in this country, as everyone should be – all 100 percent of us. I would like to believe in a humanity that understands that none of us are separate from one another nor separate from the global environment that we engage in for all of our collective human needs. The top 100th of 1 percent makes over $27,000,000 a year while the bottom 90 percent of Americans make, on average, just over $30,000. The current rate of change, at 120 percent, in regards to economic disparity of income is equally shocking. If, none of us are separate, how can any of us rationalize the current wealth disparity?
As many as 100,000 middle-class Americans have been protesting, for the last 12 days, in Wisconsin to demand their rights as employees and maintain their collective voice against the enormous economic strength of corporate employers. Perhaps this is the moment of inequity that causes the middle class to protest en masse around the country. Perhaps the water got a little too hot a little too quickly and now the middle class is jumping out of the pot. When 100,000 people in Wisconsin protest it makes headline news. No doubt it is dramatic and historic but the spin, that this is only about union wages, still works.
When there are protests in all 50 states, when the majority of Americans decide collectively that this inequity cannot continue, when 200 million Americans jump at once, the world will notice and all the instability and inequity will fall.
Twenty-seven million dollars, after all, is a very precarious stack of money.
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The Aspen Institute will for the first time in its history contribute to the affordable housing inventory by offering to buy housing credits for its new Herbert Bayer center.