How many of our problems are caused by government, and by which kind of government? Take a little quiz…. (More)

President Ronald Reagan famously said, “Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem.”

What Reagan didn’t say is which party in government is the problem. His line is so familiar that it has come to be seen as ‘the truth’ by many of “We the People.” This quiz is designed to help you decide, based on information and facts, if you’d like to be more specific about which party is your problem.

For the sake of this quiz, you agree as a player that telling the truth matters and that facts matter. A good story may feel good but if it is lie, you’ve been conned. The real question is, “If facts matter, can you change your mind?”

The topic of tonight’s quiz is Income Inequality

Joseph Stiglitz spoke at the Commonwealth Club of California on June 12, 2012. Stiglitz was speaking on his new book The Price of Inequality: How Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future.

1. What percentage of income do the top 1% earn?

____ 10%

____ 15%

____ 20%

____ 25%

the answer

2. What percentage of America’s wealth do the top 1% control?

____ 20%

____ 30%

____ 40%

____ 50%

the answer

3. Which of the following countries does America’s income equality most resemble? (check all that apply)

____ Sweden

____ Germany

____ Russia

____ England

____ Iran

the answer

4. Growing income inequality is the flip side of shrinking opportunity.

____ True

____ False

5. Average CEO pay at the largest American companies grew how much in 2011?

____ 3%

____ 4%

____ 5%

____ 6%

the answer

6. Average worker pay grew by how much in 2011?

____ 1.3%

____ 1.8%

____ 2.3%

____ 2.8%

the answer

7. The average Fortune 500 CEO makes how many times more than the average worker?

____ 165

____ 275

____ 380

____ 450

the answer

Why does income inequality matter and why should we all care about it? Rather than turning this into a question, I give you a TED talk by Richard Wilkinson titled, “How economic inequality harms societies.”

For those of you who prefer to read rather than watch, The Equality Trust has wonderful data and evidence for why more equal societies are better for everyone.