1. “Except for the rich, the incomes of Americans have stagnated for years!” A rallying cry the Leftists, and the statistics-challenges. Or, am I being redundant? a. Seems easy enough to nail down the statistical proof, one way or another, eh? Gosh- what am I saying?... if it wasn’t easy, the Lefties wouldn’t be involved in the first place. 2. The charge is that there has been very little change in the average real income of American households over a period of decades. And there is proof of that: income adjusted for inflation rose by only 6% from 1969 to 1999…stagnation? There it is: simple proof for the simple mi… never mind. a. You see, it is also true that the average real income per person rose by 51% over that same period!!! http://www.census.gov/prod/3/98pubs/p23-196.pdf b. The explanation? Changes in the average number of persons per household was declining over that period! It also varies with racial and ethnic groups and with income brackets. c. Income comparisons using household statistics are far less reliable indicators of standard of living than individual income data. 3. Let’s be clear: the broadest and most accurate measure of living standard is real per capita consumption. That measure soared by 74% from 1980 to 2004. U.S. Department of Commerce. Bureau of Economic Analysis a. A study of table 7.1 would show that between 1973 and 2004, it doubled. And between 1929 and 2004, real per capita consumption by American workers increased five fold. The fastest growth periods were 1983-1990 and 1992-2004, known as the Reagan boom. 4. As one can see, the hand-wringers of the Left have a golden opportunity to mislead those unwilling- or unable- to do their own research and analysis…and they do. a. “While the incomes of most American households have remained stubbornly flat over the past three decades,… An analysis of household income from 1969 to 1996 showed…” From Barbara Vobejda in the Washington Post.