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Old 10-16-2010, 12:58 AM
 
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I thought this was a more balanced assessment of what's happened with America's middle class than many of the posts I see on this board. It talks about how the "high water mark" for the middle class was around 1969 or early 1970s, depending on how you massage the numbers.

The one thing the article don't mention that I think is important: If America had the same divorce rate and out-of-wedlock birth rate it did in 1969, there would be fewer poor people and more middle class and upper middle class people. But I guess it's not politically correct to mention that.

How the Middle Class Is Shrinking - Yahoo! Finance (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/How-the-Middle-Class-Is-usnews-368315621.html?x=0 - broken link)
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Old 10-16-2010, 02:38 AM
 
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its actually a very true point and i never thought about it until you said it.
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Old 10-16-2010, 04:52 AM
 
Location: western East Roman Empire
8,067 posts, read 11,855,218 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysticaltyger View Post


... the "high water mark" for the middle class was around 1969 or early 1970s ...

.... If America had the same divorce rate and out-of-wedlock birth rate it did in 1969, there would be fewer poor people and more middle class and upper middle class people. But I guess it's not politically correct to mention that.
It is not surprising that the peak of the middle class corresponds roughly to peak oil in the US and the first international oil crisis, officially taking the dollar off the gold standard, and the height of the exodus from urban cores to the suburbs.

Of course there are also cultural reasons, deep cultural reasons, for the decline in the middle class, one symptom of which you mention, politically correct or not, and not to mention social policy itself, politically correct or not.

Good Luck!
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Old 10-16-2010, 09:16 AM
 
5,409 posts, read 10,349,597 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysticaltyger View Post
I thought this was a more balanced assessment of what's happened with America's middle class than many of the posts I see on this board. It talks about how the "high water mark" for the middle class was around 1969 or early 1970s, depending on how you massage the numbers.

The one thing the article don't mention that I think is important: If America had the same divorce rate and out-of-wedlock birth rate it did in 1969, there would be fewer poor people and more middle class and upper middle class people. But I guess it's not politically correct to mention that.

How the Middle Class Is Shrinking - Yahoo! Finance (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/How-the-Middle-Class-Is-usnews-368315621.html?x=0 - broken link)
It is not so much a political correctness issue as an agenda skew issue.

If you wish to add factors of the population and demographics -- we have also killed 50 million children (legalized abortion) from the population (Hitler and Mao were just amateurs, huh?), and have let in something like 20 million illegals.

But overall, bale has it about right for the economics numbers -- after US Peak Oil, the choice of following the path of Debt and The Lie (Reaganomics) pretty much sealed our fate.
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Old 10-16-2010, 12:47 PM
 
Location: San Diego California
6,797 posts, read 6,641,250 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bale002 View Post
It is not surprising that the peak of the middle class corresponds roughly to peak oil in the US and the first international oil crisis, officially taking the dollar off the gold standard, and the height of the exodus from urban cores to the suburbs.

Of course there are also cultural reasons, deep cultural reasons, for the decline in the middle class, one symptom of which you mention, politically correct or not, and not to mention social policy itself, politically correct or not.

Good Luck!
Along with increasing prices of oil/energy, we had the beginning of inflation sparked by Nixon's elimination of a gold backed dollar, and the gradual shift of the tax base away from the upper class and onto the working class. Before the do not tax the rich advocates start jumping up and down, let me clarify by saying the total tax burden, which includes Sales Taxes, Property Taxes, Social Security, Building Permit tax, Driver License Tax, Cigarette Tax, Dog License Tax, Federal Unemployment Tax (FUTA), State Unemployment Tax (SUTA), Fishing License Tax, Gasoline Tax (42 cents per gallon), Hunting License Tax, Liquor Tax, Medicare Tax, School Tax, Utility Taxes, Federal Excise Taxes, Telephone Taxes, Watercraft registration Tax, and then there are the indirect taxes, Parking Fees, Court Fines, Traffic Fines, IRS Penalties, etc, etc, etc. All these taxes are disproportional when the differential of income is factored in. Then lets not forget the ever increasing amount of income which now goes to pay interest on the items we must finance for longer and longer periods of time due to inflation. Hell it is really little wonder we are in a recession.
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Old 10-16-2010, 01:05 PM
 
28,740 posts, read 31,393,299 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bale002 View Post
It is not surprising that the peak of the middle class corresponds roughly to peak oil in the US and the first international oil crisis, officially taking the dollar off the gold standard, and the height of the exodus from urban cores to the suburbs.

Of course there are also cultural reasons, deep cultural reasons, for the decline in the middle class, one symptom of which you mention, politically correct or not, and not to mention social policy itself, politically correct or not.

Good Luck!
Yes, good point on the oil and dollar issues. I somewhat blame the complacency of the middle class for the oil issue. We KNEW by the early 1980s that we needed to get off foreign oil. But what did we do? As soon as the price went down, we bought the biggest gas hogs the bank would lend us money for. That didn't need to happen.
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Old 10-16-2010, 01:15 PM
 
28,740 posts, read 31,393,299 times
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Originally Posted by Philip T View Post
It is not so much a political correctness issue as an agenda skew issue.

If you wish to add factors of the population and demographics -- we have also killed 50 million children (legalized abortion) from the population (Hitler and Mao were just amateurs, huh?), and have let in something like 20 million illegals.

But overall, bale has it about right for the economics numbers -- after US Peak Oil, the choice of following the path of Debt and The Lie (Reaganomics) pretty much sealed our fate.
Political correctness/agenda skew...whatever you wanna call it. Mainstream (libreral) media routinely ignores the impact of divorce and out of wedlock births on the financial fortunes of the poor and middle class and/or acts as if high divorce rates & high out of wedlock birth rates are normal and inevitable. But no need to split hairs, as I see we mostly agree.

I, too am horrified by abortion. That said, I'm not in favor of making it illegal. Conservatives share in (some) of the blame. By focusing so heavily on making abortion illegal, they've lost the opportunity to make it rare. Countries where abortion is illegal don't necessarily have less abortion.

I agree with you and Bale on the debt issue. Problem is, it's like choosing bad vs. worse. Republicans are bad when it comes to running up debts. But Dems are worse...so I vote for the lesser evil. I don't see that Reaganomics was as horrible as some say. Compared the deficits we're running now, it looks positively conservative by comparison. Reagan also didn't cut taxes as much as some think. Sure, rates came down, but lots of tax loopholes were closed to. He also signed off on higher Social Security taxes for invdividuals and (later) on small businesses. He also signed off on a slight bump up in gas taxes (the one tax increase I agree with).
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Old 10-16-2010, 01:18 PM
 
28,740 posts, read 31,393,299 times
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Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
its actually a very true point and i never thought about it until you said it.
That's because the liberal media, conveniently, never point it out.
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Old 10-19-2010, 01:34 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles, Ca
2,884 posts, read 5,402,519 times
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yahoo finance is part of the mainstream media (which I don't believe).

-I think to some degree the media has exaggerated the decline of the middle class (for their own gain of course). So, you'll save more to retire! You need that financial independence! You need to put your money to work in the market, that's how you'll counter the middle class shrinking! (wink, wink)

What these articles don't point out...

Life is more "liberated" since 1969. Women have a million different options that they didn't have in the late 60's. The locked in, leave it to beaver middle class was partly due to the limits of women working. Maybe some people don't want that middle class anymore.

I'd say there's a new "independent living" in the 2000's that mirrors what traditional middle class looked like in the 60's. Why are airlines or restaurants so full if the middle class is dead? They aren't all poor people. And they aren't all the elite 1%. Who's buying all of these iphones, ipads, kindles? The poor? The elite 1%?

-And out of wedlock birth rates are partly from the media pushing untraditional lifestyles on the american public. Who were media role models in the 50's or 60's?

Annette Funicello? Gilligans Island? June Cleaver? Father Knows Best?

Look at just the titles of tv shows. "Father knows best", to "2 and a half men". To Snooki on the Jersey shore. Some of the blame goes to this illegitimate media.
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Old 10-19-2010, 05:41 AM
 
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Just a quick note - divorce rates have been going down since the 1970's. There have been a bunch of stories/articles on it in the last 6 months (because of the Census they talk about these types of things)..

Not to say divorce is unheard of, its still common. But its nowhere near as bad as it was in the 70's.
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