Of course, an understanding of the growing economic divide has, on its own, limited value. As public scholars, our mission is to inspire change. So we do more in the new Billionaire Bonanza than tally up America’s grandest fortunes. We offer a host of solutions that would get the nation off the path we’re on and toward greater equality and fairness.
This report comes as Congress considers passing the Trump tax cuts, a plan that would surely increase the wealth divide. It also comes in the wake of the Paradise Papers, a sensational new release of documents that showcases the pervasive impact of offshore tax shelters on America’s wealthiest households and corporations.
We know for sure that the numbers we publish in our report understate the wealth of those at the top since money hiding in tax shelters is, by its nature, hidden. We’re hoping that our report will inspire activists, academics, lawmakers, and citizens to work for change.