From where I sit, $250,000 a year — the amount President Obama and other Democrats say is top-tier household income — is a substantial amount of money. But I don’t sit in Manhattan or San Francisco, where folks say they can easily blow through that much on rent and child care.
Cost of living disparities are in focus now, and not just in the national tax debate. It’s a big deal for families from expensive places when they apply for college financial aid. People who make, say $60,000 a year in Fort Smith, Ark. — one of the least expensive places in the country, according to Kiplinger.com — have significantly more disposable income than people trying to make it on that much in Manhattan.