Month: August 2011

  • No posts on Inequalities this week

    This week Inequalities Blog is on holiday (for the first time since it was set up a year ago!). But we’ll be back into our regular cycle of posts from next week, starting on Tuesday 6th September. Ben & Brendan

  • Most American Households Have Tight Budgets

    Congressional Republicans who favor raising taxes on the rich to reduce the deficit are harder to find these days than salad at a state fair. One argument that is commonly made is that we cannot expect the rich to pay more until the more than half of all Americans that do not pay any income […]

  • How generational inequality helped set England’s cities alight

    In a guest post, Craig Berry argues that we need to look at intergenerational relations – including the capture of wealth by the baby boomers – to truly understand the London riots. England’s riots expose an inconvenient truth: Britain has become a highly unequal society in terms of wealth. As Zoe Williamshas argued, ‘this is what happens when people don’t have […]

  • It Starts with the Bank and Ends in the ER

    How do economic downturns affect population health? In several groundbreaking papers Chris Ruhm showed that some health outcomes actually improved during the recessions of the previous three decades: people smoked and drank less, they stayed off the roads leading to fewer accidents, and the smokestacks from some factories stopped, lowering air pollution and perhaps lung […]

  • Does money buy happiness?

    Whenever research questions are embroiled in personal debates about the way to live a good life, then you know that you’re about to witness a scrap. And if that wasn’t enough for a robust fight, then the money-happiness link speaks to grander questions about whether we should give up on our chase of GDP growth […]

  • Does Income Inequality Cause Poor Health?

    Paul Kelleher caught some flack for a blog post last week in which he approvingly cited a 2003 study by Angus Deaton and Darren Lubotsky (DL) that supposedly refutes the idea that income inequality causes poor health. I was curious. Paul sent me the original paper, a 2009 published critique by Ash and Robinson (AR), […]

  • Riots and the endless chatter

    It’s hard to write about anything else today. The papers full of images of buildings and cars burning, reports of looting scattered across London and in other cities besides, police and blue tape everywhere. Last night I saw youths – kids, really – wheeling bicycles out of a smashed-in bike shop, a buzz of excitement […]

  • New York City Wants to Solve Poverty, Will it Work?

    Anti-poverty successes are celebrated nationally, but how quickly we forget the failures. Does anybody remember the New York City conditional cash transfer program for poor families, Opportunity NYC? The program, which supporters hoped would help to change the behaviors of poor families and curb the transmission of poverty from parents to children, was quietly shelved […]

  • National Salary Insurance – the wrong solution to the right problem

    It’s become fashionable among the British left to describe social security as broken – a cornerstone of the original welfare state that not only has lost its political support, but now actively causes worklessness and ‘dependency’.  In a revealing sign of the Labour Party’s direction of travel, the most influential and well-connected think-tank on the […]