The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports


March 13, 2013

Class divide seems to be getting worse

The disparity between the “haves” and the “have-nots” (and they’ll never become the haves at this rate) is astonishing. 

I looked through the Sunday Parade issue about what people earn. The people at the lower end aren’t the working poor or the damaged veterans or the homeless people who have lost their homes to the big bankers (often because of big pharma and medical bankruptcies). 

The people at the lower end in the article are those who often chose a less greedy path to success, like schoolteachers. I read an article somewhere recently that wealth deadens the empathy and honesty parts of the brain. In a 2010 experiment by Paul Piff, he found that participants who saw themselves as lower-class, as well as participants who were chosen to act as if they were lower class, thought that a greater share of a person’s salary should be used to support charity. So that brings me to Page 14 of this paper on March 6, when there was an article about 50,000 homeless people in New York City every night, and on Page 15, there was the good news from Wall Street that the Dow hit a record mark.

Very nice for the stock market, but does anyone else see the terrible disparity between the rich and the poor (or terribly affluent and financially challenged)?

So, let’s pretend that some of the giants of industry could actually throw a crumb or two across Wall Street without any major impact to their grandiose lifestyle.

Maybe they could pay an unfair success tax into a fund for the less fortunate. It would make a great difference in many lives.

Wow, that would be an America that I could love again.

Alan Kaplan


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