USA: Richer Rich, Poorer Poor

In fact, quantitative economic studies (Beatty, 1996; Cassidy, 1995; Frannk & Cook, 1995; Mishel, 1995) have focused on four variables (many more than four have been proposed, but these four have been the most extensively studied). One proposed factor is technology. For example, the argument is that computers raise the productivity of those who can use them and, thus, cause their wages to rise. In contrast, computers displace the jobs of many unskilled workers (mailroom sorters, bank tellers, etc.), thus putting downward pressure on their wages (Cassidy, 1995). Similarly, a second factor discussed is that the rising immigration of unskilled workers into the United States puts downward pressure on the wages of the lower-paid workers because it creates an oversupply of unskilled labor. A third argument is that globalization increase income disparity because corporations can outsource unskilled and semiskilled (and increasingly skilled) labor to countries with lower wage rates, thus again creating an oversupply of lower-skilled labor (Cassidy, 1995). The fourth factor is the declining power of labor unions and the increasing power of large corporations. The argument here is that, during the 1990s, strikers by labor decreased and strikers by capital (abandoning productive enterprises in one region of the country because the return on capital is higher in another) have increased, thus driving up the value of capital and driving down the value of labor. 
What have economic studies found with respect to these four variables? You guessed it. All four are factors contributing to the rising inequality in our society.

- "How To Think Straight About Psychology", by Keith E. Stanovich
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