David Rohde

Mitt and the middle class

By David Rohde
February 3, 2012

Mitt Romney’s declaration that he wasn’t concerned about “the very poor” was lampooned by Republicans and Democrats alike this week. But his next statement in a CNN interview is the one that could determine the fate of his candidacy.

America’s good bank

By David Rohde
January 27, 2012

It didn’t take a penny in federal bailout money. It grew throughout the financial crisis. It has consistently garnered top customer service rankings. And Fortune magazine just named it one of the 20 best companies to work for in America. Meet America’s good bank: USAA.

The world according to Romney

By David Rohde
January 20, 2012

Update: Given yesterday’s results in South Carolina, I clearly shouldn’t have called Romney the Republican party’s “presumptive nominee.” For a critical look at a Gingrich administration foreign policy, take a look at this analysis by The Atlantic’s Max Fisher. Here’s my Jan. 20th take on Romney’s foreign policy.

White House: The American middle class is shrinking

By David Rohde
January 13, 2012

In a speech in Washington on Thursday, the chairman of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers said that the American middle class has been shrinking since 1970. Princeton University economist Alan Krueger said the American middle class shrank from 50.3 percent of American households in 1970 to 42.2 percent in 2010. Krueger defined the middle class as households with annual incomes within 50 percent of the national median income. Here is a table presented describing his findings.

Talk to the Taliban

By David Rohde
January 12, 2012

WASHINGTON — As American officials scramble to contain the fallout from an appalling video showing Marines urinating on dead Taliban fighters, news that the Obama administration is carrying out secret negotiations with the Taliban has barely registered on the American political landscape. The lack of interest in the talks – and public outrage at the video – reflects how little Americans apparently care about the conflict, despite its staggering human and fiscal cost.

Yes, we’re creating jobs, but how’s the pay?

By David Rohde
January 5, 2012

Update: The December job numbers released this morning continued the same trend described in yesterday’s column. Of the 200,000 new jobs created last month, 78,000 – or nearly 40 percent — were in transportation, warehousing and retail, sectors known for low pay and seasonal hiring. In a far more positive sign, manufacturing gained 23,000 workers in December after four months of little change. A vast expansion of that trend would benefit the middle class tremendously.

What do we mean by “middle class”?

By David Rohde
December 29, 2011

Update: My apologies. I cited the wrong Census data table when describing my definition of the middle class. A corrected version is below.

The year in review for the American middle class

By David Rohde
December 22, 2011

By almost every measure, 2011 was a lost year for the American middle class. Who is to blame depends on your political view. What follows is an attempt to sum up the major developments and missed opportunities of the year gone by. For me, the following areas represent the most serious perils facing middle class Americans.

In Milwaukee, an evaporating middle class

By David Rohde
December 15, 2011

MILWAUKEE — As Washington and Madison fiddle, this city’s middle class is in slow free fall.

Mr. President and Mr. Speaker, we’re not in Kansas anymore

By David Rohde
December 8, 2011

On Tuesday, Barack Obama declared the debate over how to restore growth, balance, and fairness to the American economy the “defining issue of our time.”