From The NY Times, Monday:
The recent economic crisis left the median American family in 2010 with no more wealth than in the early 1990s, erasing almost two decades of accumulated prosperity, the Federal Reserve said Monday.
A hypothetical family richer than half the nation’s families and poorer than the other half had a net worth of $77,300 in 2010, compared with $126,400 in 2007, the Fed said. The crash of housing prices directly accounted for three-quarters of the loss.
Then, from James Carville, on CNN:
To put it bluntly, the middle class in this country has been screwed, blued and tattooed.
Rising health care costs, job insecurity, declining real estate values, massive cuts to public education and public safety (no Mitt, we don’t need fewer police officers, we actually need more of them and yes, the federal government has a large hand in this.)
It is a depressing state of affairs when about two-thirds of our fellow citizens are caught in an economic trap that is wrecking their lives financially and emotionally.
He continues to call out the wealthy, the 1% (thank you, Occupy Wall Street, for this mantra) for their inaction, their carelessness, and their greed that has caused this country to spiral out of control economically. Glad to see some mainstream coverage of this on the web. This iReport on “net worth” has stories from real families about their situations – many are dire. Again, Carville’s words are better than mine. Here, he asks, who is doing something, anything?
Academics: Have you ever heard of the Princeton Center for Middle Class Studies? Not hardly.
The press: There is much more coverage on George Zimmerman’s wife than on the destruction of the middle class in this country.
The lobbyists: Give me a break. When was the last time you heard of a lobbyist for the middle class? The point here is that we are reading the most significant economic story of our time and its effect on the psyche of the people who should know better is minimal.
In the words of Warren Buffett, “There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.”
The big scandal in America is that our middle class is shrinking, and no one seems to care. Maybe someone somewhere somehow should consider doing something else.
Photo: Dr John 2005