Monday, September 08, 2008

Digital and Income Divide

Interesting NYT article on why America is becoming less Republican. Author David Frum writes :

As America becomes more unequal, it also becomes less Republican. The trends we have dismissed are ending by devouring us.

He talks about how inequality and home is directly proportional to equality between nations - they both rise or fall together.

The family revolution coincided with another: a great shift from a national to a planetary division of labor. Inequality within nations is rising in large part because inequality is declining among nations. A generation ago, even a poor American was still better off than most people in China. Today the lifestyles of middle-class Chinese increasingly approximate those of middle-class Americans, while the lifestyles of upper and lower America increasingly diverge. Less-skilled Americans now face hundreds of millions of new wage competitors, while highly skilled Americans can sell their services in a worldwide market.

A much older article corroborates this point of view as far as what is happening in India - those on the right side of the digital divide now have lifestyles comparable to their peers in America but those on the wrong side are seeing their fortunes slider further south. The warnings about the widening income gap and its catastrophic consequences continue to this day.

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