Tag Archives: working class

Leveraging new data can help low-income students climb the economic ladder, writes Michael Lawrence Collins.


iStock/erhui1979

The story we tell ourselves about upward income mobility is unraveling. The majority of respondents to a New America survey felt that it is harder than ever to attain a foundational element of the American dream, in which children earn more than their parents. But most respondents still believe another tenet of the American mobility narrative: that going to college creates upward mobility.

While it is true that college graduates do better in our economy than nongrads, earnings from different college degrees vary considerably. For low-income students in particular, not all college degrees are equally valuable. These and other recent […]

The Great Stagnation: Americans stopped moving to find work


From the first, Americans have been on the move in "Great Migrations" for a better life, like those of the last century that saw poor blacks and whites go from the south for higher-paying work in northern cities. But no longer. Starting around 1980, working class Americans have largely stood still, and a primary reason is real estate prices, according to new research.

In a new paper , the University of Chicago’s Peter Ganong and Daniel Shoag say high rent in America’s most economically vibrant areas make these moves a money loser for lower-skilled workers.

Why it matters: Their […]

This is Not Your Parents’ Economy


Illustration: Jonathan Bartlett This is Not Your Parents’ Economy

Inequality is putting the American Dream in peril.

By Rebecca Beyer M elissa Agnew lives in Charlotte, N.C., a city that ranks high on affordability scales. It’s said to be one of the most desirable places to purchase a home, and a top destination for job-seeking college graduates and newlyweds.But Agnew doesn’t own a home or have a college degree. She went through a painful divorce several years ago, and, even though she was working at the time, the city was anything but affordable for her when she suddenly became […]

Robots and AI are going to make social inequality even worse, says new report


Most economists agree that advances in robotics and AI over the next few decades are likely to lead to significant job losses. But what’s less often considered is how these changes could also impact social mobility. A new report from UK charity Sutton Trust explains the danger, noting that unless governments take action, the next wave of automation will dramatically increase inequality within societies, further entrenching the divide between rich and poor.

The are a number of reasons for this, say the report’s authors, including the ability of richer individuals to re-train for new jobs; the rising importance of “soft […]

Why a Major Revolution Is Brewing


I have written many articles on how extremely polarized our politics has become in the last decade. I’ve dedicated several Leading Edge newsletters to the topic. I talked about it at our 2016 Irrational Economic Summit. I even discuss it briefly in my new book, Trump, Brexit, and the Next Civil War , which will be available around mid-August.

I talk about it so much because it’s related to the mega 250-Year Revolution Cycle sweeping over us right now. We’ll feel the effects of this cycle for decades to come… which I detail in my new book.

But today I want […]

How the middle class hoards wealth and opportunity for itself


American society is dominated by an upper-class 20% that ruthlessly protects its own interests When I was growing up, my mother would sometimes threaten my brother and me with electrocution. Well, thats not quite right. In fact, security threats was of lessons in elocution, but we wittily, we guessed renamed them.

Growing up in a very ordinary township simply north of London and attending a very ordinary high school, one of our several linguistic atrocities was failing to pronounce the t in certain words. My mom, who was raised in rural north Wales and left school at 16, did not […]

How the middle class hoards wealth and opportunity for itself


When I was growing up, my mother would sometimes threaten my brother and me with electrocution. Well, that’s not quite right. In fact, the threat was of lessons in elocution, but we – wittily, we thought – renamed them.

Growing up in a very ordinary town just north of London and attending a very ordinary high school, one of our several linguistic atrocities was failing to pronounce the “t” in certain words. My mother, who was raised in rural north Wales and left school at 16, did not want us to find doors closed in a class-sensitive society simply because […]

South Asian Americans & The Politics of Class & Income Inequality

imrs

Sarah Madha shares a one-bedroom space with her mom and four siblings. Although it can be stressful, and for an outsider, seem unimaginable, Madha explains, “We always grew up sharing space, so we managed to make it work.”

Madha, who worked four jobs while in college, accepted that for her to keep moving forward she couldn’t dwell on her situation. Instead, her family has to constantly find ways to make ends meet.

“There isn’t time to have a special crisis about it,” she said, “If you don’t figure it out, you will end up homeless. If you don’t do it, you […]

In search of the elusive American Dream

Illustration: Glen Le Lievre

Recent political shocks – Brexit, Trump and the failure of Theresa May – are prompting much soul-searching and rethinking among the world’s leading economists.

Last week, for instance, Ben Bernanke, former chairman of the US Federal Reserve, gave a speech to a forum of the European Central Bank in which he admitted that "recent political events" had "cast a bright light on some disturbing economic and social trends in the United States".

"Unfortunately, policymakers in recent decades have been slow to address or even to recognise these trends, an error of omission that has helped fuel the voters’ backlash," he said."If […]

This is Not Your Parents’ Economy


Illustration: Jonathan Bartlett Inequality is putting the American Dream in peril.

By Rebecca Beyer

M elissa Agnew lives in Charlotte, N.C., a city that ranks high on affordability scales. It’s said to be one of the most desirable places to purchase a home, and a top destination for job-seeking college graduates and newlyweds.But Agnew doesn’t own a home or have a college degree. She went through a painful divorce several years ago, and, even though she was working at the time, the city was anything but affordable for her when she suddenly became the sole breadwinner for her two […]