Interesting piece by Reihan Salam today on the relationship of economic mobility and economic inequality. (HT: TightWind) You may remember the New York Times story on economic mobility from last week. It had a great interactive graphic for seeing movement by geographic region. While the mobility of some regions, like North Dakota, make sense, a big surprise was how well the Salt Lake area did. The big question is if Utah is as mobile as Denmark or Norway but appear to have so much greater inequity. Paul Krugman has suggested that the deindustrialization of America, especially cities, is the cause. Salam piece tries to go through the evidence and analyze it. One thing he brings up that isn’t discussed enough is how well integrated a community is as being key to mobility.
I’ve long thought that not enough politicians focus in on integration in our country. It was discussed relative to schools during the civil rights era but I think for an egalitarian society to flourish people have to mix with everyone else. That’s something that just isn’t being incentivized enough with our structures. Anyway, read the article. It’s fairly short.