[ExI] Middle Class Doomed?
anders at aleph.se
Mon Sep 30 20:17:16 UTC 2013
On 2013-09-30 15:02, Eugen Leitl wrote:
> On Mon, Sep 30, 2013 at 07:29:34AM -0600, Kelly Anderson wrote:
>> I believe that incomes almost always follow a power curve, with a few
> Depends on the country. It's not a natural law.
Whether it is a natural law is a good question, actually. It is not just
that power-law tails are found in all industrialised economies, but they
seem to follow robustly from a lot of models too (e.g.
http://arxiv.org/abs/condmat/0002374 ). One can of course quibble about
whether it is really power law, lognormal or stretched exponential:
http://arxiv.org/abs/1304.0212 - but the effect is the same.
Different countries have different exponents, so clearly the shape can
be affected. But I suspect the overall wealth condensation effect is
just due to the skew distribution of human ability and the
winner-take-all properties of human attention: give everybody an equal
amount of wealth, and very soon they will have given some of it to a few
superstars who produce something everybody wants.
Dr Anders Sandberg
Future of Humanity Institute
Oxford Martin School
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