The Occupy movement did us the valuable service of focusing attention of income inequality and giving rise to the meme of the 1% vs. the 99%. While that is catchy, the reality is that it is what is going on with the top 0.1% that is really telling. The class struggle that is intensifying is no longer between the wealthy and the rest of us, but between the super-wealthy and the rest.
The blog House of Debt highlights preliminary results of an analysis done by UC Berkeley economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman that shows that within the top 1%, it is the top 0.1% that had a rapid rise in wealth and the top 0.01% had an even more spectacular rise. The share of wealth by the top 0.1%-1.0% stayed pretty flat. Not that we should shed any tears for them.
These graphs once more show that it was around 1975 that the rot began, when de-regulation began to be the operational framework that the wealthy used to free themselves from constraints. President Jimmy Carter was one of the better presidents that the US has had and definitely one of the best ex-presidents. But his administration deserves some of the blame for getting the deregulation bandwagon rolling.