Comments on: A mandate to help the middle class http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/ Thu, 21 Jul 2016 07:57:19 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.5 By: jambrytay http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/#comment-67296 Tue, 27 Nov 2012 22:45:48 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/?p=15733#comment-67296 Looking at household income is silly? Is it silly because the data shows fewer households are in the lower and middle income groups and more households are in the upper income group vs. 40 years ago?

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By: Sanity-Monger http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/#comment-67279 Tue, 27 Nov 2012 13:17:42 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/?p=15733#comment-67279 “fewer middle and lower income households over time” — middle is the middle and lower is the lower, so this statement makes no sense. But let’s just say that I get what you’re saying.

Median household income in 1973 was $10500 (http://www2.census.gov/prod2/popscan/p6 0-096.pdf). I recall that when I went to state university in 1975 tuition was $300/semester (yes, that’s right $300). At $600/year, it took about 5% of a median family’s income to send their child to a state university. If we say $10,000 for tuition today (and I think that’s probably low), a family would need an income of $200,000 to be able to send their child to university with the same budgetary pinch. Not to mention that the value of the degree received from a state university was considerably more back then.

This is just one example of how things have changed for the middle class. Looking only at household income is just plain silly.

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By: jambrytay http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/#comment-67276 Mon, 26 Nov 2012 21:59:43 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/?p=15733#comment-67276 Read further down below the section you cited. I’ve got an income study based on US Census household income data. Data shows more upper income households and fewer middle and lower income households over time. Looks like a positive development to me.

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By: Sanity-Monger http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/#comment-67274 Mon, 26 Nov 2012 21:06:13 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/?p=15733#comment-67274 jambrytay — from your link (which is broken BTW): “The truth is that a family today can live on one income just as they did back then, but that family would have to be willing to live the way folks did in 1960.” Firstly, we should not confuse income with standard of living. Secondly, why 1960? Standard of living skyrocketed through the 60’s, peaking in ~1973. 1960 completely bypasses the gains made through the Great Society programs (Medicare for instance). I remember, I was there. What income would it take to obtain the same access to health care and old age income security that a family had in 1973 (when it would have been unimaginable to discuss privatizing the Social Security system)? What income would it take to obtain the same quality of education, and the same opportunities such education would afford, as in 1973 (the GI bill was still solidly in place in 1973)?

The reality is that the “middle class” (admittedly a mushy term) has traded security and opportunity for cheap crap for about 30 years now. That is why we feel that we are losing ground even though we have more cars in the garage and more devices than we can keep track of.

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By: jambrytay http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/#comment-67270 Mon, 26 Nov 2012 20:08:11 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/?p=15733#comment-67270 This ‘sorry shape’ of the middle class rhetoric gets repeated so much, it’s accepted as common knowledge.

Based on a 40+ year study of household income data from the US Census, the losses in numbers of middle class households has been offset by an increase in the number of upper income households (the number of lower income households has held constant).

Middle class households are becoming upper income households. This is a problem?

http://unrepentantcapitalist.blogspot.co m/2010/08/act-one.html

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By: EthicsIntl http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/#comment-67269 Mon, 26 Nov 2012 16:21:30 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/?p=15733#comment-67269 How correct you are my friend ‘Sanity-Monger’.

Alas, the middle class (the basic fabric of any society) has been replaced by mega-multinational corporations and with the blessings of our crony Supreme Court (corporations are now individual citizens).

And you are also right, no matter who gets elected, they have all been bought out, it is like selling their own mother.

It is high time for a revolution.

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By: Sanity-Monger http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2012/11/25/a-mandate-to-help-the-middle-class/#comment-67264 Mon, 26 Nov 2012 13:43:08 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/?p=15733#comment-67264 Hmmm, I wonder at the thickness of the bubble you live in, Mr. Podesta. “Voters knew they could trust the president to preserve and strengthen the social safety net — including Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security” — nope, we don’t trust him to do this any further than we can throw him. He CAMPAIGNED on the need to cut Social Security. No, we trudged to the polls and held our noses and voted for the guy who is less likely to completely decimate the social safety net. Unlike his opponent, he’s the guy who I believe at least understands the importance of a strong middle class, but alas he operates in a system that can no longer serve that goal. Obama does not have to run for re-election, but other Dems do, and they will need the campaign contributions of the contemptuous rich just as much as he did.

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