President pushing false message of class warfare?
Inside myths of inequality
- Duration 3:55
- Date Oct 27, 2012
Inside myths of inequality
Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
President Obama has been trying to drive home the class warfare message during some of his campaign speeches.
Governor running has -- perspective.
That says if we cut taxes.
-- towards the wealthy and roll back regulations that.
Will be better off it is not possible to come up -- enough deductions and loopholes that only affect.
High income individuals to avoid either raising the deficit.
-- the middle class it's.
So so much worse off are the middle and the lower classes today compared to ten years ago joining us now.
He's American Enterprise Institute senior fellow Kevin -- he's also an advisor for the Romney campaign good morning Kevin.
-- -- -- has gone I scored well so let's talk about the did bottom of the poorest people here in the United States there's a feeling.
That the lowest off court trial of our country that things have gotten much worse for them but you say that that's not necessarily the whole picture.
Yeah that's right we just finished today -- study that looks at what's been going on to welfare for everybody in the income distribution and it's really a good news study did the fact is.
That the president and Elizabeth Warren and the Democrats have been trying to divide us with very misleading statistics that really attack America.
And don't characterize the system that we've built.
And the way to do that is they talk about income inequality but their definition of income -- just income before taxes before transfers before the safety net.
-- throwing out all of the things that society built to protect poor people what we did is we put all those things back in and said -- what's been going on once you account for all that.
And the good news is that the welfare of people in the bottom has actually been going up -- about the same rate as the welfare of people at the top if you measure that by consumption and we -- sure.
Just full screen that in the illustrated that's -- for the lowest.
The poorest people that it there.
In come went up by 14% much like the top fifth of the country also up by 40% from what some economists would argue it certainly -- on the left would say.
Kevin is it incumbent doesn't exactly translate to wealth.
In this country and as you know on and so many economists and in the past couple of years -- point out that now the top 1%.
Of our country.
Has more wealth accumulated in the bottom 90%.
Of America is that -- workable model.
Yet there you know there definitely is a bigger difference in wealth but in the end if you're worried about the welfare of middle class people and poor people and I think you really want to focus and in honest their consumption you know Howard they do -- do they have enough food on the table or their houses looking okay.
And what you really like to do if you're gonna ask yourself the question you know how how are Americans still in his walk another house look around and -- sort of see see what kind of stuff they have and what kind of things that they consume and that's really what we're able to do in our study which -- on this really cool database that the Department of Energy has where they survey people about everything about their homes.
And we found that there's been a big increase over the last decade and the percentage of Americans even those below below the poverty line.
That have larger houses with six or more rooms that -- air conditioning that have a washer and dryer had to have a computer you know fully -- 75% or so of Americans below the poverty line now have a cellphone.
And about a third of them have access to the Internet through it and so the notion that we've got to society that's not delivering it all for anybody.
As society -- only there for the very very top.
It's really false like the data show that did Americans even in this very very difficult time having getting a little bit better off every year.
And the reason they've been doing that is that we've got the safety net that we know for sure need to defend.
But we need to have a debate about what the true data say -- and so what the Democrats are doing is they're pointing to the change in income.
Without -- all accounting for the safety net if you're gonna say is this a fair society should evaluate the safety net to that's what we're saying.
Right so it sounds like the safety net is working but we need to talk about how we want that to -- -- can't -- that.
From the American enterprises to thanks so much for coming into perspective.