America: Still the Land of Opportunity for All

If we’ve learned one thing from the demonstrations and riots that followed the death of George Floyd in police custody, it’s that Americans, particularly younger Americans, don’t appreciate the great history of their country.

It’s been a team effort to get into this situation. Teachers, schools, universities, even former first lady Michelle Obama, who said in a commencement speech earlier this year: “For too many people in this country, no matter how hard they work, there are structural barriers working against them that just make the road longer and rockier.

Behind the wheel in this 1911 photograph is C.J. Walker, the first woman to become a self-made millionaire in the United States. The daughter of former slaves, she got her start working in a barber shop and eventually founded her own hair-care products company. (Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

The Mythology and Mathematics of Income Disparity

By Granddad – Re-Blogged From iPatriot

There are those who tell us that all of the benefits of tax cuts and the wealth created by our booming economy goes to the very rich; that the “one percent” has taken it all, leaving the middle class and poor behind. We are told that disparity of income and wealth, the distance between rich and poor, is at record levels, and this is a threat to our democracy. We are also often told that income disparity results from the greed and avarice inherent in a capitalist society.

This mythology is difficult to reconcile with history or arithmetic. In real dollars, the four wealthiest men early in the twentieth century, Rockefeller, Vanderbilt, Carnegie, and Ford were as rich as any today. Meanwhile, only the very rich had indoor plumbing and carriages, labor had no union bargaining power, consumers had no protection against monopolies, farmers had no electricity or tractors and the government proffered no welfare benefits or other income transfers. In earlier times kings and queens and their retinue controlled all wealth.  In ancient Rome, there were only landed patricians, plebes, and slaves. The patricians, one hundred families, less than two percent of the population ruled the Roman Empire and controlled virtually all the wealth for over two centuries. In the Roman Republic, fifteen percent of the population was enslaved.

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Roadmap to Improve Lives, End Poverty

Re-Blogged From Competitive Enterprise Institute

Real Questions and Answers in the Poverty and Inequality Debate

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