Friday, August 24, 2012

Waning Middle Class

Rising corporate profits, declining wages
A big social sciences trust
Researched and concluded, nonplussed:
"Our suburbanite set,
Adjusted for debt
And inflation, is actually bust."

Aaron Task and Henry Blodget of Yahoo! Finance alert us to a study conducted by the Pew Research Center. Pew looked at the data related to income and wealth inequality in the US and determined: the US economy sucks because the middle class is broke. Task and Blodget agree, in their discussion below, that US employers must hire more workers and pay them more, for the good of the economy as a whole. As Henry Ford realized a century ago, well-paid workers can afford to buy things, and their liquidity feeds a rising tide that lifts all boats. Can the private economy, which is sitting on mountains of idle cash, do this on its own without the intervention of our dysfunctional government? I ask you.


  1. Seldom mentioned, not political, but very central to the discussion, is the lack of actual skills amongst a large part of the labor force. More kids are graduating college than ever before, but they have useless degrees in Sociology or Poly-Sci. Meanwhile, it's hard to find qualified people in the trades or engineering (ie, vocations that actually required some effort to learn).

    I know I paint with a broad brush, but I think we agree on a certain level.

  2. I certainly agree that not enough US college students are studying useful skills, in part because there is no sort of skills-based credit underwriting of student loans. Contrast that to Germany, where there is much more emphasis on apprenticeship to learn skills demanded by business.

    I haven't considered this as a source of our middle class malaise, but it makes sense as a contributing factor.


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