The Limping Middle Class

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Chris, Sep 6, 2011.

  1. Chris
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    Chris Gold Member

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    THE 5 percent of Americans with the highest incomes now account for 37 percent of all consumer purchases, according to the latest research from Moody’s Analytics. That should come as no surprise. Our society has become more and more unequal.

    When so much income goes to the top, the middle class doesn’t have enough purchasing power to keep the economy going without sinking ever more deeply into debt — which, as we’ve seen, ends badly. An economy so dependent on the spending of a few is also prone to great booms and busts. The rich splurge and speculate when their savings are doing well. But when the values of their assets tumble, they pull back. That can lead to wild gyrations. Sound familiar?

    The economy won’t really bounce back until America’s surge toward inequality is reversed. Even if by some miracle President Obama gets support for a second big stimulus while Ben S. Bernanke’s Fed keeps interest rates near zero, neither will do the trick without a middle class capable of spending. Pump-priming works only when a well contains enough water.

    Look back over the last hundred years and you’ll see the pattern. During periods when the very rich took home a much smaller proportion of total income — as in the Great Prosperity between 1947 and 1977 — the nation as a whole grew faster and median wages surged. We created a virtuous cycle in which an ever growing middle class had the ability to consume more goods and services, which created more and better jobs, thereby stoking demand. The rising tide did in fact lift all boats.

    During periods when the very rich took home a larger proportion — as between 1918 and 1933, and in the Great Regression from 1981 to the present day — growth slowed, median wages stagnated and we suffered giant downturns. It’s no mere coincidence that over the last century the top earners’ share of the nation’s total income peaked in 1928 and 2007 — the two years just preceding the biggest downturns.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/04/o...llow-a-strengthening-of-the-middle-class.html
     
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  2. OODA_Loop
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    OODA_Loop Account Terminated

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    I prefer to be self-accountable and limp.
     
  3. Oddball
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    Oddball BANNED Supporting Member

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    Robert Reich....

    Wrong forum....This dreck belongs in the humor section
     
  4. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    I suppose if you worked harder and gained admission "THE 5 percent of Americans with the highest incomes" you wouldn't be posting this sad sack OP.

    Possibly you'd like to swap places with one of the multitudes fighting to get into America....

    ...it is really, really tough being you, huh?
     
  5. bripat9643
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    bripat9643 Diamond Member

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    Your screed has aleady veered off into the bullshit zone. If a rich person purchases a $500,000 Ferarri, and a poor person purchases a $20,000 Nissan Sentra, according to your metric the rich person has purchased 25 times more than the poor person. However, they have both purchased only one car, and the poor person has a perfectly serviceable car. Rich people also purchase things like Lear Jets which can cost the equivalent of hundreds of times the income of the a typical middle class person.

    This metric is pure bullshit.
     
  6. Nic_Driver
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    Nic_Driver Active Member

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    Well written, you can tell by the neo-con responses; attacking the author and attacking the messenger with nothing about the subject which is spot-on.
     
  7. Oddball
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    Oddball BANNED Supporting Member

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    It's classic class warrior drivel, that deserves no better treatment.

    And I'm not a neocon, fuckroast.
     
  8. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    Sociologist Helmut Schoeck’s observation: “Since the end of the Second World War, however, a new ‘ethic’ has come into being, according to which the envious man is perfectly acceptable. Progressively fewer individuals and groups are ashamed of their envy, but instead make out that its existence in their temperaments axiomatically proves the existence of ‘social injustice,’ which must be eliminated for their benefit.” Helmut Schoeck, “Envy: A Theory of Social Behavior,” p. 179
     
  9. BoycottTheday
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    BoycottTheday CEO

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    i think i deserve everything i have, the question is, can someone take it from me and live to enjoy it.
     
  10. PoliticalChic
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    PoliticalChic Diamond Member

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    I'd be pleased if you would entertain the following question:

    How does it harm you if your neighbor earns ten times what you earn?
     

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