|Yes, that seems to be a common theme in discussions of this sort. Wealth gap growing since Reagan.|
My theory on one reason for that phenomena is the entrance of China (and to a lesser extend India) in the global economy. China's entrance into the global economy begins with Deng which is about the same start timeline as Reagan. The affect of 1 billion new low cost laborers in the global workforce depressed wages globally, and loads of the so called "good jobs" in manufacturing in the US vanished as all the manufacturing moves to China (and/or gets automated). So that pushes wages down and explains some of why we haven't had wage growth for God knows how long - supply and demand of labor, not too complicated.
I don't agree that a massive wealth gap has to be stressful for society. Why? If the top 0.1% are making massive paper gains (they they will likely never spend or liquidate) it doesn't make a McDonalds worker worse off.
9 months ago I perhaps had 10x more Bitcoin than you did. Today, I may have 40x more Bitcoin than you have. You're still fine. Why does it cause stress? There are still loads of opportunities for the bottom rung of society to move up, that's more important (the opportunities available) than the snapshot of the wealth comparisons today. Bill Gates dad, Bezos dad, Warren Buffet's dad, they weren't in the 1% of their day. And I don't have any data to back it up, but it does seem more common in the US that when we get these phenomenally wealthy individuals or families, they go out of their way to use their wealth to set up foundations to help out society.
I think there are much bigger issues to be worried about than whether Facebook's share price is $900 (that's bad! Zuckerberg has too much wealth compared to Jow Blow) or $350 (hmmm, I guess that's OK, Zuckerberg's wealth relative to Joe Blow is reasonable).