When he was about 5 years old, my grandson Billy was attending a baseball game when he noticed a team mother nearby enjoying an ice cream cone. Not shy, he walked up to her and asked politely “Do you share?” She looked down, smiled, said nothing and continued to lick her ice cream.
That reaction to a child’s interest in sharing ice cream echoes current economic reality. The US Economic Policy Institute (EPI) published a report in 2018 that compiled income trends from 1917-2015.
Based on their assembled data, authors Estelle Sommeiller and Mark Price in their study titled The New Gilded Age: Income Inequality in the U.S. by State, Metropolitan Area, and County, reported that the total income share of the top 1% of all Americans varied from about 25% around 1930 to a low of less than 10% about 1970.
Since then, the income share of the top 1% rose to 21% in 2015, the last date of their data. Expressed in dollars, in 2015, the average yearly income of the top 1% of Americans was more than $1.3 million and that of the remaining 99% was about $50,000 annually.
A 2015 study by the US Economic Polic …