ERIC Number: ED123270
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1974-Nov-28
Income Distribution Policy in the United States [and] Discussion Paper.
Okner, Benjamin A.; Rivlin, Alice M.
The focus of this paper is inequality - primarily, income - inequality - in the United States and the historical-political context in which policies that affect inequality are being discussed. The first section gives a brief description of recent trends in the distribution of income in the United States, a picture whose most remarkable feature is the absence of change. The second section discusses the role of government in mitigating inequality and attempts to explain why the substantial increases in government programs, especially transfer programs, have not done more to change the distribution of income. The third section addresses another puzzling issue: why the equalization in educational attainment that occurred in recent years has not made the distribution of income more equal. The final section describes the current debate over equalization policies, the role of academic research in that debate, and some major choices among strategies for reducing inequality in the future. Discussants' comments on this paper are attached. One of the points made here is that, unless the whole life cycle of income and the transitory variation in time spent at work are taken into account the annual income distribution exaggerates substantially the more basic, persistent features of the existing income inequality in our society. Other issues addressed include the effects of education on income distribution, and notions of egalitarianism. (Author/AM)
Descriptors: Conference Reports, Economic Climate, Economic Factors, Educational Economics, Educational Finance, Educational Opportunities, Equal Education, Federal Programs, Formal Criticism, Government Role, Higher Education, Historiography, Income, Policy Formation, Public Policy, Resource Allocation, Social Mobility, Social Status, Social Structure, Social Systems, Socioeconomic Influences
Not available separately; See ED 117 259
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, Paris (France).
Identifiers - Location: United States