It's no secret that the gap between the rich and the middle class has grown over the last decade. The rich are getting very, very rich while the poor and middle class are–while not worse off–certainly no better. (Depending on your time frame, however, the poor actually are doing worse.)
This graph shows the average annual income of the top one percent earners in 2005 was more than $1 million, while the middle 60 percent is just above $50,000 per year. That compares with the $500,000 the top one percent earned just ten years before, versus an average income of just below $50,000 for the middle 60 percent. In other words, while the top one percent doubled their income, the middle 60 percent only modestly improved.
More striking is that the average income of the bottom 20 percent seems not to have moved in the last 25 years. Factor in inflation, and the bottom 20 percent is doing much worse. (Women too, it seems, haven't done well. But instead of making less, they're just staying home. And ...1