Someone asked me today how inequality in South Africa compared with that in the United States.* I don’t know if they were trying to make the point that Nelson Mandela had failed to achieve an egalitarian paradise, which would have been a pretty daft point to score.
To answer the question, income appears to be more [...]
I have already commented on Boris Johnson’s Margaret Thatcher lecture here, here and in The Independent on Sunday today, where I say his mischievous identification with the right wing of the Conservative Party has harmed his chances of winning the leadership.
Or, as I put it, Theresa May has just come a little closer to being [...]
If you funnel more high incomes through a progressive income tax system (of the sort we we have in Britain) you will see those on higher incomes paying a higher share of the total take. It doesn’t mean, as some newspapers imply, that the very wealthiest have been bashed like pinatas by a rich-hating state.
Fair to say that there has been some customer resistance to the idea that disposable incomes have become more equally distributed since David Cameron became Prime Minister, which he claimed in the House of Commons yesterday and about which I wrote for Independent Voices and here.
Commenters below the line simply refuse to believe the evidence. [...]
I have a comment on Prime Minister’s Questions at Independent Voices, which I repeat here so that you can see the graph, of inequality, as measured by the Gini coefficient, from 1977 to 2011/12.
Cameron made a good defence of the Government’s record, for once. He was ably assisted by four supporters: Ed Miliband; John Cryer, [...]
Figures on the inequality of wealth are harder to come by than those on the inequality of income. I recently commented on a welcome new official series, the Wealth and Assets Survey, which suggested that – contrary to popular myth – there had been no big change in the distribution of wealth since the 1980s. On the [...]
It’s not often ministers use the word “quintile”, and probably even rarer that they use the phrase “quintile group” correctly.
“To ensure fairness, we are making sure that those with the broadest shoulders bear the greatest burden.” George Osborne, in his email to supporters after the Spending Round.
Only just; only by a whisker of a tenth of one per cent, a figure that is bound to be revised. Here is the Chart of Everything from [...]
I didn’t have time to comment on Tony Blair’s interview with Rachel Sylvester and Alice Thomson in yesterday’s Times (pay wall). First, there was an update on the growing Blair staff, now 200 people in his foundations and companies. For the haters, this is Blair Inc, a secretive network of byzantine money and power. For [...]
“In Britain and America, inequality is now back to Gatsby-esque levels.” So wrote Aditya Chakrabortty, Guardian economics leader-writer, yesterday. It is just not true. I don’t know as much about America, but it certainly isn’t true about Britain.
It is a popular myth of anti-Labour propaganda: that the gap between rich and poor expanded greatly under Tony [...]
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