In the wake of Justin Trudeau's trip to Davos, Gerry Caplan assembles -- you'll excuse the pun -- a wealth of data on inequality in Canada and around the world:
The average full-time Canadian worker in 2014 was paid $48,636. The average minimum wage worker got $22,010. By contrast, the average top-100 CEOs had earned the average worker’s pay by 12:18 p.m. on Jan. 4, 2016 – the second paid day of the year – and the average minimum-wage worker’s pay by 2:07 p.m. on New Year’s Day itself.
In 2008, the top 100 CEOs in Canada made on average $7.3-million – 174 times more than the average full-time wage earner. By 2014, Canada’s top 100 CEOs were taking home on average $8.96-million, or 184 times the average worker.
What has happened in Canada has happened almost everywhere:
According to An Economy for the 1 per cent: How Privilege and Power in the Economy Drive Extreme Inequality and How This Can Be Stopped, the poorest half of the world’s population have seen their wealth drop by one trillion dollars, or 41 per cent, since 2010 while the richest 62 people have seen their wealth increase by half a trillion dollars. How can they even count it?Five years ago, 388 people owned as much wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population. Now, it’s 62 people who own as much as 3.5 billion of their fellow citizens. This tiny band could fit onto a single bus, as Oxfam says, though I’m guessing super-plutocrats don’t use buses that much.In 2015 five Canadians held the same amount of wealth as the bottom 30 per cent of Canadians, say 11 million people. The total wealth of Canada’s top five billionaires was $55-billion, the exact same amount – $55-billion – held by the bottom 30 per cent.The wealth of those five richest Canadians has risen by $16.9-billion since 2010 – a 44-per-cent increase. Yet the bottom 10 per cent in Canada make only $2.30 more a day than they did 25 years ago.
One wonders why Canadians haven't taken to the streets. And one wonders how long it will be before they do take to the streets.