Growing up in the U.K., Richard Reeves’ family was keenly aware of their class status. They worked not only to transcend economic class, but social class as well.
When Reeves moved to the United States, he says he saw the same class differences, but he observed that class was actively ignored. It wasn’t until the Occupy Wall Street movement that large swaths of the American public began calling out the ultra-rich for reproducing social inequality in this country.
While the top one percent may be leading the charge of inequality, Reeves says it’s the upper middle class that’s more actively keeping people down in America. To address America’s widening inequality, Reeves, a senior fellow in economic studies at the Brookings Institution, wrote Dream Hoarders: How the American Upper Middle Class Is Leaving Everyone Else in the Dust, Why That Is a Problem, and What To Do About It. Reeves joins Worldview for a discussion and to answer listener calls.
To get a sense how Reeves sees the upper middle class keeping the rest of America down, the Brookings Institution brings us this interactive simulation.