Comparing Growth of U.S. Family Incomes

Abril 28, 2011

"Comparing the Growth of U.S. Family Incomes" is an infographic by United for a Fair Economy.


This infographic was fact-checked by PolitiFact.

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I think the change really happened in '81

The tax cuts passed in 1981 drastically cut taxes for the wealth (top bracket went from 70% to 50%) while increasing the regressive social security tax by 400% and adding a Medicare tax. By '83 we were in a recession. Then in '87 that top rate was cut from 50% to 28%. What has become clear to me, is that when their tax rates get cut, the wealthy don't create jobs, they take advantage of their lower personal tax rates and take profits.

When the top bracket went up a little in the '90s, we had greater job growth and a great economy. And then came the Bush tax cuts and we still have them today along with a "Great Recession". Everone needs to work on killing the myth that tax cuts for the wealthy result in job growth. It isn't true, it's never been true.

PDF print-ready versions of these infographics?

I'm going to an Occupy Wall St. solidarity rally and general assembly.  I though I'd print out your infographics and take them to hand out, but I don't see a way to download or print them.  Am I missing something obvious?  A PDF version would be great.

Math doesn't add up

There may be a simple explanation for this, but why don't the percentages in this infographic add up to 100%?

These are growth rates. They

These are growth rates. They don't add up to 100% because they are not the share of growth. They are the percentage of growth from a starting point, which is why in some cases the percentage of growth for one quintile was higher than 100%. What that means is that during that period, the income for that quintile more than doubled.

Misleading stats

This is misleading in two ways.  First, the first chart is not adjusted for inflation while the second one is.  If you adjust the first one for inflation they would all be NEGATIVE 50% instead of positive.  Second, if you want to blame the Reagan taxes, you would need to have the cutoff be 1982 when they passed not 1979.  1979-1982 were horrible years that would make the first set ev en worse and the second set better.  These charts actually prove the opposite of what you are stating if you compare apples to apples.  Try being intellectually honest.