- js reader version
- view hidden posts
- tags and related articles
Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 8:10 AM
In know you hate it, but things are getting better.
Once again, thank you Walter E. Williams. We are so lucky to have you around.
In his Oct. 20, 2002, New York Times Magazine article titled "For Richer: The Disappearing Middle Class," Princeton University economist Professor Paul Krugman wrote, "For the America I grew up in -- the America of the 1950s and 1960s -- was a middle-class society, both in reality and in feel. The vast income and wealth inequalities of the Gilded Age had disappeared. ... Daily experiences confirmed the sense of a fairly equal society. The economic disparities you were conscious of were quite muted."
Krugman's vision of income inequality and the disappearing middle class is an excellent example of the classroom propaganda college professors use to exploit America's immature and inexperienced youth. Let's look at it.
A no-brainer is that, if the middle class has disappeared or is disappearing, it means that America has become or is becoming a nation where there's only the rich and the poor -- like a Third World country. I'd like to see Krugman's evidence.
Krugman sees the '50s and '60s as a time of a "fairly equal society." Even if his observations were factually true, so what? Does it mean that the average person enjoyed a higher standard of living? The fact of business is that the 20th century has been the best ever for all Americans. Cato Institute scholars Stephen Moore and the late Julian Simon document this in "It's Getting Better All the Time." Let's take a small sample of their evidence.
The average life expectancy in 1900 was 47 years. Today, it is 77 and rising. The infant-mortality rate has dropped from one in 10 to one in 150. Americans who're considered poor have routine access to a quality of food, health care, consumer products, entertainment, communications and transportation that even the Vanderbilts, Carnegies and Rockefellers could have only dreamed of.
Rich people have always had servants to spare them the drudgery of having to beat the dust out of rugs; the advent of vacuum cleaners spared the common man of that kind of drudgery. Henry Ford became very rich, but the benefits reaped by the common man by being able to afford an auto trivialized whatever gains were reaped by Ford. Air conditioning and air travel, as late as the '50s, were something for the well-to-do; now, half the poor people have air conditioning and travel by air, and more than half own automobiles. In the 19th century, almost all teen-agers toiled in factories or fields.
Now, nine in 10 attend high school. Today's Americans have three times more leisure time than their great-grandparents did. The price of food relative to wages has plummeted: In the early part of this century, the average American had to work two hours to earn enough to purchase a chicken, compared with 20 minutes today.
College professors, politicians and others whose agenda calls for increased government control over our lives promote the lie that things are getting worse. If we buy into that lie, we'll kill the goose that lays the golden eggs. We might ask ourselves: Why is it that so much of the progress of the past 100 years has originated in America? Moore and Simon provide a simple but compelling answer: "The unique American formula of individual liberty and free enterprise has cultivated risk-taking, experimentation, innovation and scientific exploration on a grand scale that has never occurred anywhere before."
Finally, let's keep in mind that inequality of income is a result, and if we looked at the distribution of productivity, which economists haven't been able to do very well, we might not be surprised by inequality of income. In other words, how surprised would you be if I told you that I know how to play basketball and I try hard, but nobody is willing to equalize incomes by paying me as much as Michael Jordan earns?
Report this post as:
LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
Listed below are the 10 latest comments of 27 posted about this article.
These comments are anonymously submitted by the website visitors.
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 9:33 AM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 10:10 AM
|Well tell me something KPC
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 11:36 AM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 12:32 PM
|Yeah, I guess
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 12:52 PM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 1:02 PM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 1:33 PM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 3:50 PM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 5:08 PM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 5:26 PM
||Friday, Nov. 08, 2002 at 6:52 PM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 12:32 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 1:21 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 1:22 AM
|I love it
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 3:23 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 7:17 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 9:24 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 9:34 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 9:49 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 9:59 AM
|Is KPC in a script with Bush Admirer?
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 10:21 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 10:38 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 11:33 AM
|I apologize, KPC
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 11:46 AM
||Saturday, Nov. 09, 2002 at 12:54 PM
|Oh I don't think so.
||Sunday, Nov. 10, 2002 at 8:14 AM
GUIDE TO REBEL CITY LOS ANGELES AVAILABLE
lausd whistle blower
Help KCET and UCLA identify 60s-70s Chicano images
UCLA Luskin: Casting Youth Justice in a Different Light
Change Links April 2018
Nuclear Shutdown News March 2018
Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018!
Join The Protest Rally in Glendale on April 10, 2018!
Spring 2018 National Immigrant Solidarity Network News Alert!
Anti-Eviction Mapping Project Shows Shocking Eviction Trends in L.A.
Steve Mnuchin video at UCLA released
Actress and Philanthropist Tanna Frederick Hosts Project Save Our Surf Beach Clean Ups
After Being Told He's 'Full of Sh*t' at School Event, Mnuchin Demands UCLA Suppress Video
Resolution of the Rent Strike in Boyle Heights
What Big Brother Knows About You and What You Can Do About It
Step Up As LAPD Chief Charlie Beck Steps Down
Our House Grief Support Center Hosts 9th Annual Run For Hope, April 29
Don’t let this LA County Probation Department overhaul proposal sit on the shelf
Echo Park Residents Sue LA Over Controversial Development
Former Signal Hill police officer pleads guilty in road-rage incident in Irvine
Calif. Police Accused of 'Collusion' With Neo-Nazis After Release of Court Documents
Center for the Study of Political Graphics exhibit on Police Abuse posters
City Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Claiming Pasadena Police Officer Had His Sister Falsely Arre
Professor's Study Highlights Health Risks of Urban Oil Drilling
Claims paid involving Pasadena Police Department 2014 to present
Pasadenans - get your license plate reader records from police
LA Times Homicide Report
More Local News...
Shadowgun Legends Hack and Cheats
What does the Quran Say About Islamic Dress??
Biodiversité ou la nature privatisée
The Market is a Universal Totalitarian Religion
Book Available about Hispanics and US Civil War by National Park Service
The Shortwave Report 04/20/18 Listen Globally!
The Republican 'Prolife' Party Is the Party of War, Execution, and Bear Cub Murder
Paraphysique de la dictature étatique
Book Review: "The New Bonapartists"
The West Must Take the First Steps to Russia
Théorie générale de la révolution ou hommage à feu Mikhaïl Bakounine
The Shortwave Report 04/13/18 Listen Globally!
“Lost in a Dream” Singing Competition Winner to Be Chosen on April 15 for ,000 Prize!
The World Dependent on Central Banks
Ohio Governor Race: Dennis Kucinich & Richard Cordray Run Against Mike DeWine
March 2018 Honduras Coup Again Update
Apologie du zadisme insurrectionnel
ICE contract with license plate reader company
Black Portraiture(S) IV: The Color of Silence...Cuba No...Cambridge Yes
Prohibiting Micro-Second Betting on the Exchanges
Prosecutors treat Muslims harsher than non-Muslims for the same crimes
Amy Goodman interview on cell phone safety
Mesa, Arizona police officer kills unarmed white man
Israeli leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes
Paraphysique de l'autorité
More Breaking News...