Weath distribution in the US
Various news outlets are discussing the new study comparing
- what IS the distribution of wealth among the US's quintiles (top 20%, next highest 20%, etc.)
- what people THINK the distribution is, and
- what people WANT the distribution to be.
- It IS the case that the top 20% of Americans own 85% of everything; the bottom 40% own basically nothing.
- People THINK that the top 20% own 60% of everything, and that the bottom 40% own at least 10% of the nation's wealth.
- People WANT a world in which the top 20% owns 30-35% of everything and the bottom 40% own 20-25% of the nation's wealth.
The kicker is that these findings remain remarkably consistent whether you ask men or women, Democrats or Republicans, those earning less than $50K or those earning more than $100K. Rich people have the same egalitarian impulses as everyone else -- and the same ignorance about how far the world differs from those impulses.