A canard among both libertarians and defenders of the American economic system is that it’s not really that the middle class is dying out, but just that people are making more money, and so aren’t included in statistics regarding the middle class anymore. For example, a 2019 article from the Mises Institute argues that:
Indeed, it looks like many of them moved up into the over-$100,000 income category because the size of that group more than doubled from 12.3 percent of households in 1968 to 30.4 percent of households in 2018. (All of these categories are measured in constant 2018 dollars.)
Breaking out the categories further, we find that the under-$35,000 category fell from 34 percent of households in 1970, to 27.9 percent of households in 2018. The middle categories, from $35,000 to $100,000 were largely flat while the over-$100,000 category more than doubled. The middle-income group isn’t disappearing any time soon, but we do find significant growth in the number of households entering the highest-income levels. Those households have to come from somewhere, any many are coming from the middle class. Contrary to the narrative that the middle class is becoming impoverished, this suggests the middle class is actually getting richer.
Well, maybe that was true at one point, or at least true in part. But a new article from Michael Snyder at “The Most Important News” shows that now, with inflation raging and the economy looking weak, the middle class is shrinking and it’s not because those formerly in it are “actually getting richer.” In his words:
Inflation is systematically destroying our standard of living, and the middle class is shrinking a little bit more with each passing day. The Social Security Administration just released wage statistics for 2021, and the numbers that they have given us are quite stunning. As you will see below, half of all American workers made less than $3,133 a month last year. Once upon a time, you could live a very comfortable middle class lifestyle on $3,133 a month. But thanks to inflation, such a wage now puts you just barely above the poverty level. The decisions that our leaders have been making are absolutely eviscerating the middle class, and that should deeply trouble all of us.
You can find the new Social Security Administration wage report right here. The following are some statistics that I pulled out of the report…
-More than 30 percent of all American workers made less than $20,000 last year.
-More than 41 percent of all American workers made less than $30,000 last year.
-More than 52 percent of all American workers made less than $40,000 last year.
-More than 62 percent of all American workers made less than $50,000 last year.
These numbers tell us that most Americans are just barely scraping by
So while those with an interest in defending the system, whether libertarians supporting a vaguely defined and in reality non-existent “free market,” or elite oligarchs wanting to further the perception that everyone is doing well to hold onto power, might want you to think the middle class is getting richer rather than being squeezed into non-existence, Snyder’s selected data shows that the reality of the situation looks far darker, far different.
By: Gen Z Conservative
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