It must be really annoying working for somewhere like the Resolution Foundation . One is tasked with producing an everlasting series of reports insisting that we’re all being done down by Capitalism, Neoliberalism and The Man. Only to find that the numbers don’t actually work that way. Today’s shocker is about how inequality continues to increase. Showing, again, how we’re all being done down by The Man, Neoliberalism, Capitalism and no doubt Austerity too. Except, you know, that’s not really what the numbers are showing:

Britain’s poorest 30% of households saw an end to their post financial crash recovery last year as inflation and cuts to in-work benefits outweighed wage rises to leave them as much as £150 worse off.

The Resolution Foundation, an independent thinktank, said its audit of income and poverty levels for 2017-2018 found that income growth slowed for all households last year.

However, the lowest 30% of households found their incomes going backwards by between £50 and £150, widening the gap with middle and higher-income earners, who saw a modest rise in their living standards once benefit changes were taken into account.

That’s annual incomes there. Meaning that in percentage terms:

The thinktank said the drop in incomes for the poorest was modest at 0.3% but the impact was greater after a weak recovery in wages over the previous decade. A typical middle-income household saw a rise of only 0.9%,

At these sorts of levels, looking at the population, this is a rounding error. 0.3%? We’re talking about perhaps the impact of a change in booze and tabs taxes, that sort of level. And if this is that oppression of the poor by the system then we’ve really not much to worry about, do we?

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And the problem with income inequality in the first place is? If everyone else in town got fabulously wealthy, if they razed their McMansions and built full mansions, instantly my share of paying for government grade school and the Community Gardens would decrease. And eventually I would find all sorts of ways to do odd jobs and consulting for my rich neighbors, who would pay a lot for the convenience of buying locally.


The rise in the income level of the poorest half of workers up until 2002 looks wrong. The index was 77 in 96-97, rising to 100 in 02-03. That’s a 29%+ real rise over 6 years – that just does not happen in so called advanced economies where 3% growth is considered rather good indeed. The Resolution Foundation have boobed here imv. Maybe they just can’t look at a graph and smell the shitty sections of it if it doesn’t fit their theory that the modern world is indescribably schit and unequal. Funny how things went bad for the poor… Read more »