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Old 09-13-2011, 01:38 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia Area
1,720 posts, read 1,165,827 times
Reputation: 1353

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Quote:
Originally Posted by user_id View Post
Right I keep disputing it. Firstly you've not provide any data that shows that someone could easily afford the things you mentioned on average. Secondly, I contend that there are areas of the country where someone could support a family on 2x minimum wage if you live like they did in the 1950's. Though, it will be a very basic life.


This was a ranching area in the 1950's, today its dramatically different. And this is precisely why the underlying idea you are promoting is fundamentally wrong, namely, communities aren't static. Communities change over time and the shifts can effect the value of the real estate in the community.

And communities don't always get more expensive. A home in the rust-belt is cheaper today (in real terms) than it was in the 1950's when the area had a strong economy.



I'm not sure how these are exclusive. Most Americans own a home and are able to support their families and many households today are still single income. Yet, there are also people that are considerably more wealthy than average.
Tired of reading your nonsense!

Quote:
Originally Posted by wawaweewa
Banks rarely provided seed capital to start large operations. That is true. No bank is going to front millions of dollars that a tech start up needs. However, banks did front low to mid 5 figure amounts for mom and pop operations to get started. That is dead now. Why would they do that when they can borrow at ZIRP, stick it into t-bills and get a guaranteed 3%+ (even if it's only 3% percent). The borrowing are much more stringent now because banks know most Americans are broke. The odds are not in their favor to be paid back.Especially in this environment.

Yes, it is generally a rule that in business one will have some failure before success. Just like most other things, being a good businessman comes through trial and error. That takes time and doing things wrong in order to learn. Great business don't come about because they do everything right the first time.

Of course some people suck at business. In fact, a lot of people aren't cut out for it. ON the other hand, all of the successful small- medium businesses I know were either inherited family owned operations or the proprietor is on his 2nd, 3rd, or 4th try. There are so many variables (those which the owner can control and others he can't) in getting a business to succeed that a lot of good businessman fail. Quite often, in fact.



Right now we have a demand side problem. Not a supply side problem. The problem isn't a lack of quality goods or services. It's a lack of consumer demand.

Starting a business right before the bottom is like trying to win the lottery so that's a moot point. If you're off by a few quarters here or there you could be toast. Just good old variance.




You don't think certain sectors of the US are still "forced"?

Yes, I wasn't forced because I grew up in a solid middle class family. Other didn't. Their only choice that provides a high probability to improve their life is the military. It's not very far from being forced.

Do you think most grunts join out of some patriotic duty ( i realize a small percentage do) or because the military provides outs that they otherwise would not have had? Would you tell an amputee that he chose to cut off his limb? It's more a necessity than a choice.

I admit, I was and still am lucky enough that I don't need to make that "choice".



Just because things were better, doesn't mean they were great. I don't deny that there were folks like yourself. Nevertheless, more opportunity (on average) did exist back then.

During college I worked part time at a warehouse. One of my co workers was a Guyanese who came into the US illegally in 77 or 78 (he later received amnesty under Reagan). He used to tell me how his first job, as an illegal, paid $10.50/hour. In 2006, after he was laid off from a warehouse making 33/hour, we were working for $12/hr. $10.50 in '78 or 12 in 2006. Inflation much?


Yep, I've compiled a very appropriate post for what you describe. The post by Mircea describes this dynamic as well. And GUYnTexas says it ALL!

Originally Posted by workingclasshero:

it doesnt

its becoming harder to afford many things for all people

a personal example...I make about 3 times what my father made at his highest level...and it is tougher for me to make ends meet that it was for him

look at the price of a car...a midsize chevy (say the nova) in 1970 was $2200.....today a midsize chevy is 20k or more

the value of the dollar is in the toilet


Yep!!!!! And going lower. Wait till QE3 LOL!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mircea:

Also the wages aren't there and if you compare that with inflation it just doesn't work.

In 1980, I had an entry level job as a sound engineer with a local independent TV station earning $5.00 per hour. One paycheck paid my rent and utilities and auto insurance and the other 3 paychecks each month were disposable income.

An entry level job today pays $8.50 to $10 per hour and even at $10 per hour it takes 2 paychecks to cover the cost of rent, utilities and auto insurance (and don't forget in 1980 $10 -- or two hours of work -- paid for 2 tickets to the cinema show, a tank full of gasoline and something to eat after the movie -- the cost of two movie tickets now is over $20).

GuyNTexas says IT ALL Here!!!!

Originally Posted by GuyNTexas:

No. I'm really disagreeing with .. not missing your point. And those numbers don't tell a very accurate story, and the proof is demonstrated by the drop in net worth of middle income earners as their debt has increased significantly, while earnings have declined relative to inflation.

By most measurable data points, the middle income class has been dying a very slow, incremental death for 4 decades because the costs on high ticket items have increased more rapidly than the either the inflation rate or rates of increases in income. To further compound the problem, average income levels have failed to keep pace with the inflation rate itself. Much of this goes unnoticed because of it's slow incremental nature (like growing old). But if you are old enough, and still maintain your mental faculties, you can't be bull $hted into believing what you are trying to say here.

As just one example, in 1977, I bought a brand new Pontiac Trans Am for $5200. And since it was my first car purchase, I suspect I was clubbed like a baby seal (paid full MSRP), as I simply asked how much, and said OK (later I learned the error of this way to purchase automobiles )

Now today, that car is no longer available, but a comparable car "Chevy Camero SS" is. And a similarly configured model is around $35,000 MSRP. Which is almost double the adjusted for inflation number of $18,700 that Camero should cost relative to the $5200 Trans Am of 1977.

My income back then was 14,000 or just shy of 3 times what the car cost ... if you apply that same formula to the $35,000 Camero today, I'd have to earn roughly $100,000 per year to maintain the same standard (drive the same car) as my $14,000 income provided then. I was not wealthy then .. I was a 20 year old working in a warehouse driving a forklift. And I don't think there are many 6 figure forklift drivers around today ... I would say, the 40-50K range would be the upper limit ... or roughly the same as my $14,000 would be, adjusted for inflation.

This is one example, and almost any big item ... car, house, etc. works out to be the same. Some other items like Healthcare have dramatically exceeded those rates exponentially compared to 1977 where mine was absolutely free and first rate, including dental.

Now, add to this the higher taxes, social security withholding, and medicare ... all of which have exceeded the inflation rate (and don't let anyone BS you into believing it hasn't), means that the net spending power of your income has declined dramatically over the past 30+ years. (See video below she documents ALL this IN DETAIL)

Now around about that same time frame, my step father worked for one of the US Government agencies earning roughly in the 50-60K range, and at the time, that was very good money, but not even close to RICH & Wealthy .... but adjusted for inflation, that comes out to around $200+K now. The house he purchased then at $50,000 appraised for $480,000 in 2004-5 even though the adjusted for inflation value would have only dictated a $155,000 figure ... 3 times the inflation rate!! By the time he retired in the late 90's, his income may have doubled, yet his house increased by 6-8 fold. What does that tell you?

Now if you are following me here ... this is where it gets real hairy ... if you take a Quarter ... 25 cents ... from say 1964 (the last 90% silver Quarter) that 25 cents equates to $1.76 in 2010 value. But guess what? Today's melt value of that sliver quarter is about $3.70 which is again more than double the published inflation rate ....

So what does that all mean? It means very simply, that the value of your money is worth about half of what it's claimed to be worth, even after being adjusted for inflation .... and all it takes is to actually look at the historical costs of items like cars, and houses and health care costs from the late 60's to today, and also the median incomes. You see that the purchasing power has indeed declined. And this is a result of the devaluation of the currency (a hidden tax).

So when it comes to buying power, there has been a continuous decline that doubles the the inflation rates admitted .. which is why the middle class really doesn't exist for all practical purposes today.

There are the ultra wealthy, and the rest. The $250kers are just at the higher end of that rest of us, and they are the last of the upper middle class, and the next in line to fall ... apparently, much to delight of many who think that they are members of the Wealthy Club, and must fall for the sake of everyone.

I suppose this proves that indeed, misery loves company.







YouTube - The Coming Collapse of the Middle Class


Spew your government/bankster propaganda somewhere else. I know guys in their early 70's now and ones who are now deceased with H.S. educations that have pensions the modern public would kill for.

Pensions, not 401K's, and had paid medical before 65. And I mean 90% paid.

These men raised families with wives who did not work and with few exceptions a minimum of 3 kids. Three is considered a lot now for the expense of raising a kid to adulthood.

This country is going down the tube in a BIG way.

People spewing garbage like you trying to placate the clueless don't help.
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Old 09-14-2011, 12:59 PM
 
Location: Conejo Valley, CA
12,470 posts, read 18,188,668 times
Reputation: 4343
Quote:
Originally Posted by CK78 View Post
Tired of reading your nonsense!
Then by all means, stop reading it.
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Old 09-21-2011, 12:39 AM
 
77 posts, read 132,242 times
Reputation: 48
The problem is ... our standard of living has increased a lot faster than our incomes could keep up with. "Keeping Up with Jones" theory.

We want the new sedan / convertible. The new playstation, the $30 dollar a Month/ Smartphone + Service, the New Apple MAC.

Consumerism has risen to a great extent where we need these "toys" as you will. People will say "Well I need my PDA or my iPhone to handle business calls" .. (Make excuses) Yes it increases productivity, but it eats away at our wallets. I think the average american is not trained to say "NO" to disposable consumer items.
Before I had my Android Phone, I was perfectly fine. When I got that phone... well let's just say, I can't ever switch to a normal phone again. We all "give-in" to this stuff. It's Consumerism at its best.


For example, I wanted to buy a New Mac. As much as I could charge it up my credit. I decided to say "NO" and I can't afford to buy a 2000 dollar computer (while in college) Maybe next semester when I save more money. I am not going to lie it is VERY tempting to charge up my credit account.
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Old 09-23-2011, 12:05 PM
 
Location: San Diego California
6,797 posts, read 6,624,776 times
Reputation: 5180
Quote:
Originally Posted by az461 View Post
The problem is ... our standard of living has increased a lot faster than our incomes could keep up with. "Keeping Up with Jones" theory.

We want the new sedan / convertible. The new playstation, the $30 dollar a Month/ Smartphone + Service, the New Apple MAC.

Consumerism has risen to a great extent where we need these "toys" as you will. People will say "Well I need my PDA or my iPhone to handle business calls" .. (Make excuses) Yes it increases productivity, but it eats away at our wallets. I think the average american is not trained to say "NO" to disposable consumer items.
Before I had my Android Phone, I was perfectly fine. When I got that phone... well let's just say, I can't ever switch to a normal phone again. We all "give-in" to this stuff. It's Consumerism at its best.


For example, I wanted to buy a New Mac. As much as I could charge it up my credit. I decided to say "NO" and I can't afford to buy a 2000 dollar computer (while in college) Maybe next semester when I save more money. I am not going to lie it is VERY tempting to charge up my credit account.

I think you are equating owning stuff with standard of living.
While it is true that the average person owns more gadgetry than in the past, it is more than offset by the lack of service we endure now and the amount of freedom we have lost.

It would amaze people of today to go back to the 50's and see the levels of service related luxury and freedoms people of that time enjoyed.
Today grocery stores want you to be your own checker, in the 50's it was common for grocers to give you things free for shopping with them and even deliver your groceries to your door.
Milk and Bread was commonly delivered fresh to your door every morning.
When you pulled into a gas station, the attendant called you sir, filled your tank, checked your fluid levels, checked your tire pressures, cleaned your windshield and gave you stamps redeemable for merchandise!
Banks gave you toasters and other appliances for opening an account.
Mechanics picked up your car and delivered it when it was serviced, which by the way, usually included a wash and vacuum.
At Christmas all the stores gave complementary gift wrapping.
Doctors, made house calls. Insurance agents came to your home and dealt personally with you when you had a claim or needed a policy.
So yes today we have more gadgetry, but we live in a world of little or no service, and what little service you do receive is usually poor.
On top of that, there are millions of laws, rules, regulation, and statutes that exist today which restrict your freedoms that did not exist at that time.
It all figures into your "standard of living".
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Old 09-23-2011, 12:18 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia Area
1,720 posts, read 1,165,827 times
Reputation: 1353
Quote:
Originally Posted by az461 View Post
The problem is ... our standard of living has increased a lot faster than our incomes could keep up with. "Keeping Up with Jones" theory.

We want the new sedan / convertible. The new playstation, the $30 dollar a Month/ Smartphone + Service, the New Apple MAC.

Consumerism has risen to a great extent where we need these "toys" as you will. People will say "Well I need my PDA or my iPhone to handle business calls" .. (Make excuses) Yes it increases productivity, but it eats away at our wallets. I think the average american is not trained to say "NO" to disposable consumer items.
Before I had my Android Phone, I was perfectly fine. When I got that phone... well let's just say, I can't ever switch to a normal phone again. We all "give-in" to this stuff. It's Consumerism at its best.


For example, I wanted to buy a New Mac. As much as I could charge it up my credit. I decided to say "NO" and I can't afford to buy a 2000 dollar computer (while in college) Maybe next semester when I save more money. I am not going to lie it is VERY tempting to charge up my credit account.
Medical and dental used to be fully payed for by an employer.

Friend of mine retired almost exactly 10 years ago. Said when he retired his medical was $40.00 a month. Today he pays $400.00 a month.

Fiat currency always fails in the end. The Fed IS Private.

Educate yourself. Stop being a tool.
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Old 09-23-2011, 12:29 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia Area
1,720 posts, read 1,165,827 times
Reputation: 1353
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimhcom View Post
I think you are equating owning stuff with standard of living.
While it is true that the average person owns more gadgetry than in the past, it is more than offset by the lack of service we endure now and the amount of freedom we have lost.

It would amaze people of today to go back to the 50's and see the levels of service related luxury and freedoms people of that time enjoyed.
Today grocery stores want you to be your own checker, in the 50's it was common for grocers to give you things free for shopping with them and even deliver your groceries to your door.
Milk and Bread was commonly delivered fresh to your door every morning.
When you pulled into a gas station, the attendant called you sir, filled your tank, checked your fluid levels, checked your tire pressures, cleaned your windshield and gave you stamps redeemable for merchandise!
Banks gave you toasters and other appliances for opening an account.
Mechanics picked up your car and delivered it when it was serviced, which by the way, usually included a wash and vacuum.
At Christmas all the stores gave complementary gift wrapping.
Doctors, made house calls. Insurance agents came to your home and dealt personally with you when you had a claim or needed a policy.
So yes today we have more gadgetry, but we live in a world of little or no service, and what little service you do receive is usually poor.
On top of that, there are millions of laws, rules, regulation, and statutes that exist today which restrict your freedoms that did not exist at that time.
It all figures into your "standard of living".
THIS^^^ Thank goodness people like you are around to set people straight.

My Grandfather was a doctor. Made house calls, drove his car using his gas for $5.00.

Now it's $20.00 co-pay JUST TO WALK IN THE OFFICE, on top of what I pay in insurance, to see the doctor for, let's see.... Last time I was there, literally 3 minutes.

Cost of apartments and housing is also disgraceful. Not to mention automobiles. People used to finance an automobile for 1 year or two years, three tops, for a modest amount. Now it's $200-300 a month for a modest car for 5 years.

Not me though. My car has been payed off for four years and will be driven until it can't be driven anymore. Than I'll get a safe used one.

If the country even still exists at that point. And yes I'm serious about that. At least in the form, financially, we think is normal now.
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Old 09-23-2011, 06:07 PM
 
5,748 posts, read 11,155,689 times
Reputation: 4504
Quote:
Originally Posted by CK78 View Post
Not me though. My car has been payed off for four years and will be driven until it can't be driven anymore. Than I'll get a safe used one.
Drive defensively. Last night a kid in an SUV totaled my 12-year-old sedan because he was distracted and pulled into my lane, trapping my car between his vehicle and a raised concrete median and leaving me nowhere to go. The entire passenger side of my car is demolished and repairs will far exceed the blue book on the vehicle. It's a near luxury model commonly found in the used market (at least in the condition I would require), and replacing it with a new model is going to cost a small fortune. I'm basically screwed.

Moral of the story: Hope for the best, but plan for the worst. It's a war zone out there.

Last edited by formercalifornian; 09-23-2011 at 07:19 PM..
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