A Statistical Overview of the 1980s
The following statistics offer a quick but comprehensive overview of all the major trends of the Reagan-Bush era. They include tax cuts, income inequality, corporate lobbying, deficits, debts, economic growth, poverty, welfare, and a comparison of the U.S. to other rich nations.
This whirlwind tour should take about as long as it takes to read a newspaper. It is the compilation of statistics that I wish I had found when I was researching the 80s. Understanding them is crucial because today's Congress is pursuing all the same policies: cutting taxes on the rich, slashing welfare for the poor, and spending more money than it takes in. No voter is informed without knowing the statistical results of these policies.
This website is designed to be read in two ways. The first way -- reading it straight through -- gives a bird's-eye view of the 80s. The second way is to select the links entitled "More," which gives detailed comments on each point and hopefully answers questions and counter-arguments raised by the overview. I highly recommend reading the overview first, since the comments can get somewhat lengthy and digressive. A plain-English summary follows at the end for the statistically impaired. :-)
Events leading to the 80s:
The Rise of the Corporate Special Interest System
The Economic Slowdown of the 70s
The Rise of Supply-Side Economics
Statistics of the 80s:
Wealth and Income Inequality
Budgets and Deficits
Poverty and Welfare
Comparison of U.S. to Other Rich Nations