The author’s reference to Pac Man is a great way to look at wealth distribution in the United States.
When NobodyisFlyingthePlane, the wealthiest few (artfully shown in yellow on the author’s pie chart) run around gobbling up the rest of us. As with most skilled Pac Man players, the Government Ghosties are no trouble at all as they float around, unable to limit and control the runaway accretion of wealth in the skilled hands of a few players in the American arcade.
Who Owns What In America?
Imagine lining up everyone in America according to what they own, starting with those who own nothing and continuing down the line to those who own a lot. Now divide that line of people into five equally long segments. Each segment would include 20% of the total population, or about 61.7 million people. Next, add up the total amount of what everyone owns in each segment. The result is represented by the pie chart below. The whole pie represents the total wealth in America. The size of each slice represent the ratio of how much each segment owns of America’s wealth. The slice of ownership for the poor and working poor are barely visible. 80% of all Americans own just 15.6% of America’s wealth.
The number of people who slipped into poverty in 2010 is an all time high of 46.2 million, so the poorest 20%…
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