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income inequality

Want to Climb the Income Ladder? Skip the Southeast and Dodge the Midwest

by: Nick Hudson

Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 09:00 AM CDT

When it comes to climbing the income ladder, where you grow up may matter a lot.

In San Francisco and Seattle, a child raised in the bottom 20 percent of income earners has better than a 1 in 10 chance of ending up in the top 20 percent of income earners as an adult. In Memphis, Tennessee, by contrast, only one fortunate child out of every 38 becomes a top-earner as an adult.

You are significantly more likely to remain poor if you are raised poor in the Southeast or the industrial Midwest than if you are raised poor in another area of the United States.

Why the geographic difference in income mobility? Find out below the fold.

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Corporate Profits Under 'Socialist' Obama Double Reagan's -Middle Class Under Siege (VIDEO)

by: egberto

Sun Feb 17, 2013 at 00:48 PM CST

The middle class remains under siege as we continue the corporate pilfering of America. Yet the big news promoted by the mainstream media is the resignation of a pope, a disabled carnival cruise liner, the McCarthy like behavior of Senators denying a qualified veteran timely confirmation, and other frivolities. None of these stories are of immediate material value to the middle class. Yet, they were the biggest stories of the week in an economy not working for the middle class sans the President's State of The Union address that broke down into the ineptitude of a rebuttal speech; a speech that was nothing more than a rehash of rejected policies and values and a Twitter/Facebook deflecting moment.

Today America wakes up to a very depressing news story to 99% of Americans.


U.S. corporations' after-tax profits have grown by 171 percent under Obama, more than under any president since World War II, and are now at their highest level relative to the size of the economy since the government began keeping records in 1947, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Profits are more than twice as high as their peak during President Ronald Reagan's administration and more than 50 percent greater than during the late-1990s Internet boom, measured by the size of the economy.

It is a mathematical fact that if the wealthy's income and wealth is growing at a faster rate than the wealth and income of the middle class in a virtually closed world economy, then it is being done at the expense of the middle class. In other words, the middle class is being robbed. The middle class is being pilfered. It has nothing to do with the wealthy being bad people. It is that politicians have created bad policy that have allowed an economic system of selected haves and "have nots" based on who has access to capital.

Governmental policy has allowed the hoarding of capital after the New Deal since the inception Reagan's supply side economics. No one needs to guess what has occurred. It is found readily in the charts. Now that the hoarding of capital has reached an unsustainable rate, many on the Right would have citizens believe the country is broke and that even more sacrifices are required of the middle class. This is a false premise. America is not broke. It is being pilfered from within.

This week President Obama called for an increase in the minimum wage from the poverty wage of $7.25 that would be a very small measure to raise many out of poverty as well as begin a minute march out of income inequality. Many on the Right insist on the fallacy that this would cost jobs when facts says otherwise. The media must be held accountable when they give plausibility to the verifiable lie stated by those on the right about the minimum wage causing job losses in the aggregate. In fact the increase in the minimum wage is also stimulative to the economy.

Ezra Klein showed an important graph that is not seen much on the news. He delivered a powerful piece on wages and the minimum wage.

Ezra Klein: If the Republicans don't like the minimum wage as a policy... They need an alternative... Because the market isn't fixing this on its own. And this graph isn't only about economics. This graph is about politics too. You can't have that blue line go down for much longer before people decide it is time to go to the ballot box and do something big to stop it.

His final statement has two purposes. Firstly, it is the acknowledgement that America's crony market will not fix the wage problem. Secondly, the masses will ultimately revolt if change does not occur through policy.

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The Triumph of Bad Ideas

by: egberto

Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 01:22 PM CST

On January 6th Paul Krugman wrote a piece (The Big Fail) every Right Wing politician and every myth based economist should read. It was expected that at this year's American Economic Association meeting, that they would be discussing about the success of the slump ending. Instead, they are still talking about the ongoing slump.

This should have been expected given the nature of the corrupt fiscal policy of the United States and every "capitalist free market" country in the world. Could it be that this chart would be forgotten? What cannot be absolved is that these policies have decimated the middle class.

Paul Krugman ponders why:

It's tempting to argue that the economic failures of recent years prove that economists don't have the answers. But the truth is actually worse: in reality, standard economics offered good answers, but political leaders - and all too many economists - chose to forget or ignore what they should have known.

The reality is that the purity of science has been corrupted by scientists as hired guns, (e.g., climate change deniers). When companies can purchase scientist that can overtly deny the obvious verifiable failure of drugs, technologies, and the bad outcomes of their products, how can one expect economists to not suffer an even more perverse faith, given the inexactness of that "science".

The failure of the world's economy was man made. It was a fraud by the financial titans on the middle class and the poor. It was the middle class and the poor (we the people) that ultimately rescued them with the creation of money to make them whole. When these titans needed rescue they were happy to accept a Keynesian approach to inflate the financial sector via the resources of the government. Of course they do not want the middle class "sector" inflated with public dollars to repair and create infrastructure, education capital, and future energy paradigms. That would mean the people dictating the economy as oppose to them holding the economy hostage to extort cheap labor.

It is not enough for them that the austerity they are seeking has failed in every major country in the world that has implemented it. Paul Krugman illustrates this brilliantly:

But it all went wrong in 2010. The crisis in Greece was taken, wrongly, as a sign that all governments had better slash spending and deficits right away. Austerity became the order of the day, and supposed experts who should have known better cheered the process on, while the warnings of some (but not enough) economists that austerity would derail recovery were ignored. For example, the president of the European Central Bank confidently asserted that "the idea that austerity measures could trigger stagnation is incorrect."

Well, someone was incorrect, all right.

Exactly. The fact that the evidence is staring everyone in the face does not seem to be enough to derail those that continue to have bad ideas. Why is that? There is a media out there that gives both sides and sometimes more so the side of the Right equal plausibility. Paul Krugman should be a constant on every network. After all, his prognostications have been mostly correct. He ends his article with a prescient statement.

The truth is that we've just experienced a colossal failure of economic policy - and far too many of those responsible for that failure both retain power and refuse to learn from experience.

What should be added is that when McCain, McConnell, & Gingrich can be the voices that the media continuously reach out to in order to discuss what ails our country, we have a problem. When economists like Paul Krugman, Joseph Stiglitz, and Richard Wolff, the folks that have been continuously correct, are the voices of authority we hear from, we will have the possibility of stemming the economic decline of America's middle class.

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