What Are We Really Saying When We Say We’re In The Middle?

We’re talking about the middle of the most powerful region in the Earth which contains almost 90% of the population.

However, almost half of that population (42% of people who have an IQ of 80 or more) live in the top 25%. I’m sure that they have something to do with it. In America, nearly 30% of the people live in the top ten percent, with approximately 22% in the top 1%. And that is the key: the top 1% of the population has almost one-fifth of total national income. What you’re telling me is that, if people are happy being in the middle, they have no reason to be in the middle.

If I want to know what the problem is, I can find out by looking at the data itself: which countries are most unequal?  There are a few of them I’m aware of, and I’ll give you the big three:

South Africa is almost half-way between being half-way on the left side of the chart, and the bottom. They’re about 20% in the poorest, and almost the same as the UK-United States, if you can get over the big difference in income per head-of-population.

The United States is at the other end, having the biggest gap between the lower and higher income.

Here’s the same list, but showing the total amount of income per man-day in each country-country group (not total income):

The total income is almost exactly the same, though in the US, the difference between the lower tier and the top tier is about 10:1.

Now, if the countries that I’ve listed have a very low median income, then the upper tier won’t suffer as much as those countries with a more equal share of the population. But, the upper tier have incomes in the billions of dollars per year. The US income per man-day is nearly the size of the entire national budget, though with the top 1% having nearly as much as the bottom 90%.

So, we can infer that at the “middle”, the upper tier can get away with a lot of things as the lower tier doesn’t have as much to worry about.

So, who are the wealthy? If they had an income where half of the income was consumed by the top 10% and 50% was consumed by the other 95%, then if all the people in the US were sitting around with $50,000, the total money in the country (that had been created through production) would be about half of that… The middle tier is very well off, as the rest just have to work harder to survive.

You will have to bear in mind that I’m a little less concerned about a lot of the data for South Africa, or that other parts of the world tend to have a higher median income than the “producers” (US, UK, Australia, Canada-Canada).

Let’s get to the data-analysis.

As a first step, we’re going to find out exactly which countries come next:

Next, let’s look at the data.

Let’s take this graph to the extreme. What happens when you do this for the countries on the left-hand side of the chart, which are also the countries that the US is the largest consumer of?

As you can see, it’s not very flattering. What are we really saying here?

We were talking about how the “middle” of the world had a higher than average income… we were looking at these numbers to support that idea (we already knew it). Now, take a look at this graph.

So, what we’re really talking about here is the countries that are right in the middle of the world, and the countries that are really rich: countries with a million people and more in them.