Salt Lakers have better chance of moving up economic ladder than others, study says

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  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 11:54 a.m.

    If one looks at the map of it, the upper midwest, parts of the west (including Utah) and the northeast did the best, while the south did the worst. Even worse for the south is the fact that the southern states are the poorest to begin with so the difference between bottom 20% and top 20% is less than it'd be in the more prosperous states so it should be easier in the south to pull it off.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 24, 2013 11:01 a.m.

    LA Mormon nailed it. I grew up relatively poor on the near Salt Lake westside. I was helped by two wonderful parents. I never wanted for necessities or family. Moreover I had the opportunity to attend a world class university - the U - when tuition rates were moderate. Low cost higher education needs to be present as a moderating influence.

  • My2Cents Taylorsville, UT
    July 24, 2013 4:06 a.m.

    I've never thought of poverty of having many levels but Utah has figured it out somehow. I'd like to know what they mean by move up the ladder? Its not to prosperity or independence or having a above average income for someone who earned a college study degree.

    Utah has devised a plan where minimum wage is excessive income depriving business profits. Utah has figured out how to convert welfare as incomes to elevate the standards of living in poverty. Its the level of welfare that is skewing working incomes, they have converted welfare to jobs. They had to, welfare pays more than americans who are limited to $980/mo job income. Moving up the economic ladder in Utah means going on welfare giving cost of living raises. I think Utah is the only welfare system in the country who's welfare system is an international line of credit funded by Utah taxpayers.

    I don't know where Utah is getting money to fund welfare, but its not from state tax commission. The real living conditions in Utah is more comparable to the 1930-1940 years of depression and recession that had a higher standard of living.

  • LA Mormon West Valley, UT
    July 23, 2013 9:41 a.m.

    This nation and its people have forgotten what created the modern middle class and economic opportunity for all. During and immediately after World War II the taxes on high income earners was nearly 100%. During World War II the top tax rate was 94%. During the 1950's when the Interstate Freeway System were built the top tax rate was slightly lower at 92% under Dwight Eisenhower. The tax rate during the era of the Greatest Economic expansion in World History never dipped below 50% on the highest wage earners.

    However America including Utah fundamentally changed after 1980. Utah used to fund its schools well before 1980. We no longer do. The United States used to tax high wage earners more. Now the Super Rich pay the lowest tax rates in the history of the country. Do you want to know why there is less opportunity and less mobility. Well America has changed the laws and the rules to favor the rich. They have tremendous opportunities and mobility now. More than ever. The average American? Not so much.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    July 23, 2013 8:53 a.m.


    You are wrong. There are millions of unfilled, high-paying jobs out there right now. I have had a position at my company open for 18 sits unfilled to this day. Why? Because we can't find anyone with the skills and education needed to fill it.

    To be blunt, the idea that there are no good jobs out there is an excuse made by lazy people. Get up, get educated (in the right field), and you will find that there is a great deal of opportunity.

  • embarrassed Utahn! Salt Lake City, UT
    July 23, 2013 7:36 a.m.

    I love it when people tout their religiosity and then bash others in the same paragraph.

    Utah has more than its share of nepotism, cronyism, and discrimination against minorities and women in my opinion.
    If you belong to the majority group you have a much improved chance for economic success. It's no wonder network marketing "careers" are so popular in Utah.

  • Kaotic USA, UT
    July 23, 2013 7:25 a.m.

    @ DN Subscriber, most people I know are working two jobs while trying to support a family, not living off welfare or staying home. That includes Hispanics, white people and all others. I think you're too quick to label people. The economy is still a train wreck and good paying jobs with benefits are just not out there anymore. That is because of greed. Most Americans and Utahans are not lazy and will do what is necessary to support their families. If the greed and unequal distribution of wealth continues, then there will be no middle class, which is what the top dogs want. If the middle class ceases to exist then this country will cease to exist as it now and as it has been the last 237 years. We will just slide into third world status with a two class society. Obama didn't create this mess, he just inherited it. It was created by his predecessor and nobody on the other side will work with him in Washington to change what is broke.

  • samhill Salt Lake City, UT
    July 22, 2013 10:21 p.m.

    "'We know that the context is that we have incredible inequality of wealth and income in our country,' Perlich said. 'That's a given.'"


    I wonder if they will include the incredible per capita income income inequality that keeps growing between the private vs. public sectors.

    There is a very good reason that the D.C. area has six of the nation’s ten wealthiest counties. They all have median annual household incomes of between $93,000 and $117,000 and an unemployment rate of only 5.5%, more than 2% below the national average and one of the lowest in the country. Not at all surprising considering that local federal spending has doubled over the past decade.

    Of course, considering that the Federal Government can coercively extract taxes despite its increasing incompetence, as exemplified so well by the IRS, the agency designated to take the taxes, the avalanche of money flowing to the area is perfectly predictable.

    Power corrupts. And absolute power, the type desired so much by Obama (as demonstrated by his unconstitutional executive orders during what he dishonestly called a Senatorial recess, for one example), corrupts absolutely.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    July 22, 2013 9:48 p.m.

    re:DN Subscriber

    From the study:
    "Mortgage interest deductions are also positively related to intergenerational mobility. Finally, we find significant positive correlations between state EITC policy and intergenerational mobility.

    "We find that both the level and progressivity of CZ (communting zone) tax expenditures are positively correlated with higher levels of intergenerational mobility.

    Overall, these results suggest that tax expenditures aimed at low-income taxpayers can have significant impacts on economic opportunity. Hence, the short-term fiscal gains from reducing such expenditures must be weighed against the potentially large long-term costs of reduced income growth for low income individuals."

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    July 22, 2013 9:32 p.m.

    Successful upward mobility does NOT result from massive government spending on "job training" or handouts, or employer mandates, or "affirmative action" quotas.

    Upward mobility comes from hard work, a work ethic instilled by parents and neighbors and schools. A strong family that values education, and demands that kids attend and study, and succeed. From children being born into a family that includes a mother and father, where a parent works to support them, not where they enjoy the benefits of the welfare plantation while no one ever gets up to go to a job. And that children come from parents who delayed marriage until they could support themselves, and delayed child bearing until they could support the children. Strong religious values also encourage success.

    One could argue that other demographic factors are strongly correlated, not because the factors are causation.

    The thing most destructive to upward mobility is to take for the hard working "makers" and redistribute their earnings to the lazy but greedy "takers."