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Middle Class Aided Its Own Decline
Rasmussen Reports ^ | Tuesday, December 27, 2011 | Froma Harrop

Posted on 01/11/2012 12:43:36 AM PST by raygun

This was the Year of the Middle Class -- as in, its falling incomes, loss of job security and anger. The global economic forces fueling the decline, such as foreign competition and computers, have been well reported. But what about cultural factors? Is the middle class going down partly because it stopped acting middle class?

For those who remember the American middle's golden era of 40 years ago -- or see it reconstructed on TV dramas -- the cultural losses are pretty shocking. The middle managers in "Mad Men" returned to orderly homes with tidy children, even as their personal lives spun into chaos. While comfortable, their houses were modest by today's McMansion standards. That's because they were living within their means.

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To: raygun

I have no use for anybody who holds a brief for a class, be it middle or otherwise.

21 posted on 01/11/2012 1:57:46 AM PST by cynwoody
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To: cynwoody

The US went from a net credit nation to a net debit nation.
During the Reagan years, the nation first passed a trillion dollars in debt.

The roots of the current troubles go back to that point. If the American people had shown as much concern about the debt back then, as they do now, it’s quite likely you wouldn’t be sitting on a debt that is quickly heading to 20 trillion dollars.

As I said, that wasn’t a shot against Reagan or the Republicans. That was merely a comment on America’s debt.

22 posted on 01/11/2012 2:02:49 AM PST by Jonty30 (What Islam and secularism have in common is that they are both death cults.)
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To: cynwoody
What's so special 'bout your little special thing, eh?

43,000 marchers — 17,000 World War I veterans, their families, and affiliated groups — who gathered in Washington, D.C., in the spring and summer of 1932 to demand immediate cash-payment redemption of their service certificates where ordered to "clear out" by the President and Commander in Chief at that time.

Then Army Chief of Staff General Douglas MacArthur commanded infantry and cavalry and supported by six tanks drove The Bonus Army marchers (with their wives and children) out of Dodge; their OWS-styled shelters and belongings burned to the ground.

23 posted on 01/11/2012 2:12:07 AM PST by raygun ( DOT html)
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To: raygun

This article is pure propaganda using emotional appeals to a nostalgic period that never existed as recalled.

The middle managers in “Mad Men” were the results of Federal Gov organized centralized agitprop to redirect the energies of returning WWII vets. Levittown, Eisenhower’s interstate highways, etc... all pushed by a Madison Ave and Hollywood filled with WWII Vets at the helms of power...

Eisenhower’s expansion of suburbia was a folly the nation will be suffering from for the next 100+ years. The energies of several generations were misdirected toward exuberant inefficient expansion instead of infill and optimizing existing infrastructure.

The younger part of Gen X, Gen Y and the Millenials will never have the cheap energy inputs needed to maintain even the basic tarmac road system, let alone the rest of the utilities...

Meanwhile, almost every locale the world over in the last 2 decades that copied and mimicked the American Mcmansion suburbia model has resulted or is resulting in extreme property bubbles and the bursting and hangover of massive mis-allocation of RE and infrastructure investments. Iceland, Ireland, UK, Spain, Morocco, all of eastern Europe except Belarus, Turkey, Greece, Cyprus, Lebanon, Syria, Israel, Sauds, UAE, Dubai, Iran, etc etc... going around the globe.

To make my point, this author is an American with normalcy bias in the extreme ... “The consumer products giant Procter & Gamble is now coming out with a cheaper brand of soap for the middle class, The Wall Street Journal reports.” ... this new detergent uses the chemical of the most popular detergent soap of the middle classes of the rest of the world for the last forty years. It also was once the most popular in the US, and is less damaging through non-point source pollution than the current line up of P&G detergents...

BUT THAT DOESN’T FIT his closed mindset.


Old fuddy duddies need to free their minds from the generations of Madison Ave agitprop.

24 posted on 01/11/2012 2:14:27 AM PST by JerseyHighlander
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To: Jonty30

What you said. I’m callin’ a spade a damned jackass, eh?

The middle class can whine all they want. That’s their prerogative (if that’s what they seem want to do).

I know what I posted by some media pundit back 27 Dec 11. What ‘bout what happen NH election? As nearest I can tell my unsophisticate intellect discerns the Romney camp having some loud cheers eminating.

What do I hear from the Paul camp? OH, yes, my ears mistake loud cheers as lament.


I’ll tell you that my lament is that 99.9% of Americans don’t understand what conservativism means. They’re out there in their asparagus fields and wondering why in the hell their fields aren’t getting picked asparagus.

25 posted on 01/11/2012 2:20:45 AM PST by raygun ( DOT html)
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To: raygun

Your mention of Nolan Finlay caused me to look at your profile. We are having a candidates forum at the CMU Library on Saturday. Five GOP candidates for the US Senate will be there (Hoekstra declined the invite). It is being put on by Michigan Tea Parties, so the questions may have relevance for most of us. It runs from 1 until 3.

26 posted on 01/11/2012 2:49:57 AM PST by David Isaac
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To: raygun

What the middle class has done to itself is sort of what the Inuit do with wolves. When there is a wolf in the area, the Inuit will throw a knife, that they used to skin caribou with into the snow.

The smell of blood will attract the attention of the wolf, who will then clean the blood off with his tongue. Often, while cleaning the blood, the wolf cuts his own tongue and his blood mixes with the caribou’s blood and the wolf, having tasted more blood will continue to clean the knife, getting more cut as he goes.

Eventually the wolf bleeds himself to death.

That is what the combination of high taxes, to pay for social programs, and offshoring jobs and manufacturing products, to make them cheap, is doing to the middle class. It is also what the middle class is doing to itself.

27 posted on 01/11/2012 3:10:46 AM PST by Jonty30 (What Islam and secularism have in common is that they are both death cults.)
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To: Jonty30

Government revenues doubled in the 80’s. Reagan wanted to cut the demoncratic congress reneged and blew the budget in the 80’s. Don’t blame Reagan. Learn history instead of spreading leftist lies. Do some research.

28 posted on 01/11/2012 3:15:43 AM PST by central_va ( I won't be reconstructed and I do not give a damn.)
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To: raygun

Thank you for the link from your tagline, Sir.

Cleaver how you kept the link from displaying.

29 posted on 01/11/2012 3:17:04 AM PST by Texas Fossil (Government, even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one)
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To: central_va

Did you actually read what I said?

I said I wasn’t actually blaming Reagan or the Republicans.

Since I have to spell it out, I actually hold the American voter most responsible for it, because politicians ultimately do what the voters want.

If Americans, in full-force back then, had contacted their congressmen and senators, threatening to throw everyone and anyone out who is not voting for responsible spending, you wouldn’t have the debt that exists today£

American democracy, moreso than most, is highly reactive to the electorate. But the electorate must be willing to act.

With great power, comes great responsibility.

30 posted on 01/11/2012 3:25:53 AM PST by Jonty30 (What Islam and secularism have in common is that they are both death cults.)
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To: raygun

Only Romney will be the republican candidate this time. He will be the only possible replacement for Obama. Our focus now has to be turned to congressional races. With the right senate and house this can be salvaged so long as Obama is gone.

31 posted on 01/11/2012 3:33:00 AM PST by muir_redwoods (No wonder this administration favors abortion; everything they have done is an abortion)
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To: raygun


32 posted on 01/11/2012 3:42:48 AM PST by Calusa (The pump don't work cause the vandals took the handles. Quoth Bob Dylan.)
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To: raygun
Froma Harrop is a flaming liberal whose column is syndicated fairly widely in the northeast. This is an interesting take from her and she's almost got it right.

The middle class has participated in its own decline. It marries later (when it marries at all) and those marriages often don't last long. Families are split up and Mom has to work.

Froma can't say any of that, though. And don't misunderstand me, please. I rail on here all the time about the federal debt, spiraling government power and rampant inflation. But crumbling families don't help, either.

33 posted on 01/11/2012 4:22:15 AM PST by BfloGuy (The final outcome of the credit expansion is general impoverishment.)
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To: Jonty30
American democracy, moreso than most, is highly reactive to the electorate."

That is no longer the case; if it ever was. It is no longer a battle being lost here and there, we have lost the war.

If your statement were still true (again if it ever was), the elected would have been pissing in their pants from fear during 2009/2010. What pictures did we see? Nancy Pelosi and her rainbow troupe, carrying a huge/exaggerated gavel, walking straight through the center of Tea Party Patriots, mocking them and daring them to 'just try something'.

If your statement were still true (again if it ever was), the statement we made on 11-02-2010 would have truly changed some things, even if it came to hand to hand combat with the Senate. What did we get? Symbolic votes and then the proverbial 'washing' of their hands after voting.

The fact of the matter is, we are now in a complete tyranny. The only thing that has prevented the actual brutalization of the citizenry is the 2nd amendment but I guarantee, that is coming.

Visualize the scene in Schindler's List when the Nazis went in the ghetto in the dead of night and began systematically shooting the Jews; flashes throughout the complexes were shown on the screen ... representing the firing of the guns. Men, women and children having their brains blown out by the Nazis.

It's coming here and it will be assisted and expedited by even those we voted in; in order to save their own skins and their families they will turn a blind eye. In fact, it's already happening in spotty areas around the nation. Gestapo type tactics, storming into citizen's homes, many times simply on a 'suspicion' and certainly not hard evidence. People being shot in their own homes and what do we get...a big yawn.

The electorate has been acting. I've been screaming since the early 90's; horrified at how fast the Reagan philosophy was swept under the rug by that bastard GHWB and the following elected Congress'. a fly trapped in the spider's web, we will soon meet our fate.

Romney? Newt? ... Big government. concentrate on the Senate? How do we do that when the electorate is so stupid they voted McCain back in (just an example). We can't fight the ignorance and stupidity or the philosophy of 'go along to get along'.

The 'pockets' of freedom and liberty that exist, and there are still some, are under complete assault with lawsuits and leftists/Marxists moving into those areas and like locusts, destroying all.

The war is lost...the nation as a whole just doesn't believe it yet.

34 posted on 01/11/2012 4:22:45 AM PST by Outlaw Woman ( Hello, Hello...Remember me...I'm everything you can't control...)
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To: raygun

Almost. We get the government most of us deserve.

35 posted on 01/11/2012 4:38:04 AM PST by freedomfiter2 (Brutal acts of commission and yawning acts of omission both strengthen the hand of the devil.)
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To: cynwoody

true dat :=(

36 posted on 01/11/2012 4:52:29 AM PST by silverleaf (Common sense is not so common- Voltaire)
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To: raygun

The conversation between hubby and me has been along similar lines.
How long will the country survive when you all you truly count on is for large masses of americans to routinely make the wrong choice.
It wasn’t just Romney’s win that was discouraging...Ron Paul’s huge support is downright insane.

This is why Santorum has been so appealing to us.
He isn’t just addressing the problems with the economy - he is also talking about the root of the problem, the unraveling of the family.

Weak families = weak nation.
poor values = decline.

The money quote from the article....

“Many middle-class parents of the ‘50s and ‘60s well remembered the privations of the Great Depression. Thus, they raised their children to be survivors in an uncertain world, not as princes and princesses who can do no wrong”

37 posted on 01/11/2012 5:10:53 AM PST by Scotswife
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To: raygun

We handicap ourselves by embracing materialism too much. We end up thinking and speaking in economic rather than civilizational terms, which isn’t enough to move people whose problems are at the deepest level, more civilizational than economic. (Sorry I can’t elaborate right now.) My working hypothesis, anyway.

38 posted on 01/11/2012 5:55:03 AM PST by Mmmike
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To: raygun
"WE ARE INDOMITABLE if we have a common vision."

We do not share a common vision. There are those in the conservative ranks who are for a vision of capitalism that others claim is crony capitalism. There are those for a strong national defense that others claim is a form of empire building. There are those who are focused on a smaller government, while others just want a better run government. There are still conservatives who refuse to vote for another conservative if his/her brand of Christianity isn't sufficiently close to their own. There are ideological conservatives and pragmatic conservatives. About the only thing that unites us is our respect for the 2nd Amendment.

Even on FR there is no real attempt made to try and define a common ground. Most threads degrade into shouting matches, name calling, and illogical and non-fact-based editorializing.

What we are seeing in the Republican primaries is a reflection of what we see here on FR: a complete lack of cohesiveness around a central and unifying conservative vision. Maybe such a vision is impossible.

Maybe we need someone with the charisma of a Reagan to unite us. Reagan did a lot of things that we now would consider anathema in a conservative candidate. He got a pass because we believed in him and thought he was doing the best he could given the congress he had. There is no similar level of trust in any of the current Republican candidates. Everyone of them is fatally flawed in the eyes of some large percentage of conservatives. Even Palin is looked down upon by a large minority of Freepers.

39 posted on 01/11/2012 7:39:52 AM PST by who_would_fardels_bear
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To: Outlaw Woman
I've been screaming since the early 90's; horrified at how fast the Reagan philosophy was swept under the rug by that bastard GHWB and the following elected Congress...

Reagan opened the door with his twin Wars on Crime and Drugs. I'm sure he thought he was re-empowering the good citizens of America, but it turned out he was handing statists the powerful tools of tyranny they had long dreamed of. GWB finished us off with the War on Terror and the Patriot Act, but there is no excuse for him - he and his circle knew exactly where those policies would lead.

40 posted on 01/11/2012 8:05:48 AM PST by Mr. Jeeves (CTRL-GALT-DELETE)
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