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income inequality


  • Originally published 05/21/2013

    George Packer: Celebrating Inequality

    George Packer, a staff writer at The New Yorker, is the author, most recently, of “The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America.”THE Roaring ’20s was the decade when modern celebrity was invented in America. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “Great Gatsby” is full of magazine spreads of tennis players and socialites, popular song lyrics, movie stars, paparazzi, gangsters and sports scandals — machine-made by technology, advertising and public relations. Gatsby, a mysterious bootlegger who makes a meteoric ascent from Midwestern obscurity to the palatial splendor of West Egg, exemplifies one part of the celebrity code: it’s inherently illicit. Fitzgerald intuited that, with the old restraining deities of the 19th century dead and his generation’s faith in man shaken by World War I, celebrities were the new household gods.

  • Originally published 05/15/2013

    At Universities, Too, the Rich Grow Richer

    Ohio State University president E. Gordon Gee at the annual meeting of the American Council on Education in March 2013.Although many Americans believe their universities are places where administrators and faculty members coexist on a fairly equal basis, the reality is that this is far from the case.According to recent surveys by the Chronicle of Higher Education, thirty-five private university presidents and four public university presidents topped $1 million in total earnings during the 2011-2012 fiscal year.

  • Originally published 03/05/2013

    Monica Prasad: Land of Plenty (of Government)

    Monica Prasad, an associate professor of sociology and faculty fellow in the Institute for Policy Research at Northwestern University, is the author of “The Land of Too Much: American Abundance and the Paradox of Poverty.”Why do European countries have lower levels of poverty and inequality than the United States? We used to think this was a result of American anti-government sentiment, which produced a government too small to redistribute income or to attend to the needs of the poor. But over the past three decades scholars have discovered that our government wasn’t as small as we thought. Historians, sociologists and political scientists have all uncovered evidence that points to a surprisingly large governmental presence in the United States throughout the 20th century and even earlier, in some cases surpassing what we find in Western Europe.