But in the US, Americans are also complaining about the same trend. Take if from political economist Robert Kuttner who recently said that:
For three decades, the [American] economy has increasingly become more unequal and more precarious for ordinary people. During the same period, risks that used to be absorbed by large, stable employers or social programs have been transferred back to individuals and families.Sounds familiar?
Meanwhile, the financial economy has become steadily more speculative and corrupt, as insiders, often with severe conflicts of interest, extract wealth from the real economy. The dot-com bust of 2000-2001 was the result of those conflicts -- accountants who were supposedly guardians of honest books colluded with management to pump up stock values and deceive investors; stock "analysts" compensated on the basis of their success in duping the dumb money.
In the case of the Philippines, the supposed rising inequality could be due to the emergence of new growth drivers that are essentially urban-based: outsourcing, electronics, construction, real estate. Inequality however could also be “good” especially if its temporary. Let’s face it, any surge in economic growth usually starts from certain sectors of the economy (say certain sectors in manufacturing and services) before others catch up through demand linkages. We have yet to see whether or not this pattern will eventually manifest in the Philippine context, now that we started to have decent economic growth rates (5-7 percent).
I’m crossing my fingers.