from Mark Perry at Carpe Diem, Sorry Krugman, Piketty and Stiglitz: Income inequality for individual Americans has been flat for more than 50 years

MP: This is a very important finding that: a) individual income inequality has been flat for more than 50 years, b) it’s only household and family inequality that have risen, and c) the rise in household and family income inequality can be explained by demographic factors, rather than economic reasons. In other words, there has been no increasing concentration of income for individual Americans during the last 50 years as is frequently reported by Krugman, Piketty, Stiglitz, and the media. As I have mentioned before, the “problem” of  rising income inequality might be what Mencken called an “imaginary hobgoblin,” which is certainly keeping the populace and politicians alarmed, and looking for solutions like higher taxes to address what is basically a non-problem.