不平等性的代价

纽约—美国喜欢自称希望之地,其他人基本上也这么想。但是,尽管我们可以想起一大把自力更生登上社会顶层的美国人,真正有意义的却是统计数字:一个人的发迹在多大程度上要取决于父母亲的收入和教育?

如今,统计数字显示,美国梦只是一个传说。论机会平等,美国还不如欧洲——其实是不如任何有该数字可考的发达工业化国家。

此乃美国不平等程度为发达国家之最的原因之一,且差距还在不断拉大。在2009—2010年的“复苏”中,收入最高的1%美国人获得了93%的收入增长量。其他不平等性指标——比如财富、健康和寿命预期——有过之而无不足。显而易见的趋势是收入和财富向顶层集中、中产阶级被掏空,而底层日益贫穷。

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