Scott Winship is the Walter B. Wriston Fellow at the Manhattan Institute. Previously a fellow at the Brookings Institution, his areas of expertise include living standards and economic mobility, inequality, and insecurity. Earlier in his career, Winship was research manager of the Economic Mobility Project of The Pew Charitable Trusts and a senior policy advisor at Third Way. His research has been published in National Affairs, National Review, The Wilson Quarterly, Breakthrough Journal, and Real Clear Markets, among other outlets.
More About Scott Winship
Is it true that the rich have devoured the American economy, that they have conquered it, or that the rich aren't just grabbing a bigger slice of the income piethey're taking all of it?
Edward Conard and Scott Winship are contributors to this primer on inequality. See Conard's here.<br />
Inequality moderates do not assume that trends in annual earnings inequality must follow, say, trends in wealth inequality. We can concede that the ratio of household income between the middle and bottom fifth rose during, say, the 1980s, but then we might emphasize that it has not grown much or at all since then.
It remains true that we will not know whether todays children will finally experience diminished mobility, and if they do, it, of course, remains possible that rising income inequality will be to blame. But the Great Gatsby Curve is of practically no use in assessing whether this fate will befall us.
Contrary to claims that rising income inequality has hurt economic opportunity, evidence of a link between the two is weak.