Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Never the twain shall meet

The divide between rich and poor is greater than at any time since the Second World War, according to the Government’s own report into inequality."people's occupational and economic destinations in early adulthood depend to an important degree on their origins".

Britain remains a nation riven by class “from cradle to grave”.

Social mobility measured by both income and profession is low, with signs that the class divide now opens up among children as young as 3 yr old . Differences in educational attainment among pre-school children are so stark that researchers believe that each extra £100 a month in household earnings when children are very young is worth a month of cognitive development.

Increasing inequality meant that by 2007-08 it had reached its highest level in the years since figures began in 1961. But comparison with measures based on tax records suggests that this is the highest level of income inequality since soon after the Second World War.

The Guardian article desscribes how the richest 10% of the population are more than 100 times as wealthy as the poorest 10% of society.The household wealth of the top 10% of the population stands at £853,000 and more – over 100 times higher than the wealth of the poorest 10%, which is £8,800 or below (a sum including cars and other possessions).When the highest-paid workers, such as bankers and chief executives, are put into the equation, the division in wealth is even more stark, with individuals in the top 1% of the population each possessing total household wealth of £2.6m or more.

The lowest 10 per cent aged 55 to 64 has houses, pension rights and other money worth less than £28,000. The richest 10 per cent have more than £1.3 million.

"The evidence we have looked at shows the long arm of people's origins in shaping their life chances, stretching through life stages, literally from cradle to grave. Differences in wealth in particular are associated with opportunities such as the ability to buy houses in the catchment areas of the best schools or to afford private education, with advantages for children that continue through and beyond education. At the other end of life, wealth levels are associated with stark differences in life expectancy after 50," the report states.

The panel says the government is a "very long way" from fulfilling its vision, set out in 2001, that "within 10 to 20 years no one should be seriously disadvantaged by where they live".

Yet another all rather predictable failure of reformism to rectify inherent problems of the capitalist system !!

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