It Didn't End Well Last Time, but there's still hope this time.
An editorial in today's New York Times outlines the income inequality that has swept the nation, which is comparable if not greater to that seen during the Robber Baron era:
In 2005, the latest year for which figures are available, the top 1 percent of Americans — whose average income was $1.1 million a year — received 21.8 percent of the nation’s income, their largest share since 1929.
Over all, the top 10 percent of Americans — those making more than about $100,000 a year — collected 48.5 percent, also a share last seen before the Great Depression.
The Times is right on track noting that government policies do matter, like the minimum wage and progressive tax programs. However, the Times fails to address one of the core causes of income inequality - failed NAFTA-like trade policies (PDF) that keep wages flat, weaken labor unions' negotiating power and send high paying quality jobs overseas.
TPM Café has more on income inequality.