It would be easy for any top executive of a fortune 500 company to take advantage of the way our economy favors the ultra rich. But Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes believes that the issue of income inequality in our country is one that needs to be addressed by those who benefit from this “rigged system” the most.
With his new book, “Fair Shot”, Chris Hughes makes no bones about how both he and his peers need to be proactive in spreading awareness to the economic divide their businesses helped to create in our country.
“I think frustration with the way our economy is working has been building for decades,” explains Hughes, “social media might make it possible for people to talk about it and organize but I think the trend is much bigger. I think the same forces that have given rise to Facebook, Google, Amazon, and so many of these internet companies are the same ones that are making it harder for everyone else to make ends meet. I think the leaders of those companies have the responsibility to talk about that more.”
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Can a tech giant help to solve income inequality?
Hughes has been crusading on the issue of income inequality for a while now and feels as though the solution is right under our noses. He is proposing a plan to give all working Americans who make fifty thousand dollars or less a check for five-hundred dollars to help alleviate their financial woes.
By taxing the top one percenters like himself a percentage of the money they make over two-hundred and fifty thousand dollars they make a year, Hughes believes this program will have no trouble finding funding.
“Sometimes the best solution is the simplest,” he says, “we actually already have an enormous cash program in our country called the Earned Income Tax Credit. This would just expand it. We have a lot of research that shows that when you provide working people with cash, more often than not they use it responsibly for themselves or their family. What it does is it provides a kind of foundation. A heartbeat and a background that enables people to have something to rely on.”
Hughes went on to explain that by enacting this program, we would be able to take twenty million people out of poverty overnight.
With all of this talk, it kind of sounds like Chris Hughes might be running for Congress? When I asked him about it he shrugged it off with a laugh. “No, no, no! that is not in my future,” he said adding, “I do feel strongly about the issue of income inequality, however, and I do want other people across the board, either one percenters or other people having a hard time making ends meet, to be excited. There is a lot of evidence that suggests that this could be the most powerful way to combat income equality.”