Seeking a roadmap for the new American Middle Class

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Over the past few months, Starbucks, CVS, and Walmart announced higher wages and a range of other benefits like paid parental leave and stock options. Despite what the brands say in their press releases, the changes probably had little to do with the Republican corporate tax cuts, but they do reflect a broader economic prosperity, complete with a tightening a labor market. In the past couple of years, real wages hit their highest levels ever, and even the lowest-paid workers started getting raises. As Matt Yglesias wrote at Vox, “for the first time in a long time, the underlying labor market is really healthy.”

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Life as a Teenager in 1994, 2014, and 2034 – What a difference a generation makes! – Part One

Futurist Thomas Frey: How quickly we forget. Events of 20 years ago seem like a distant memory, but 1994 was the year when Nelson Mandela was elected President of South Africa, O.J. Simpson was arrested for killing his wife, huge massacres were happening in Rwanda and Sarajevo, and China got its first connection to the Internet.

 

 

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How technology hurts the middle class

Robot arms weld a vehicle on the assembly line at a General Motors plant.

Since the Great Recession ended four years ago, American workers’ productivity has risen. But, in the U.S. there are two million fewer jobs than before the downturn. The unemployment rate is stuck at levels not seen since the early 1990s and the proportion of adults who are working is four percentage points off its peak in 2000.

 

 

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49% of middle-class workers will be poor in retirement

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To maintain living standards into old age we need roughly 20 times our annual income in financial wealth.

In 2010, 75 percent of Americans nearing retirement age had less than $30,000 in their retirement accounts. Downward mobility in retirement is a looming reality for both middle and higher-income workers. Forty-nine percent of middle-class workers will be poor or near poor in retirement, living on a food budget of about $5 a day.

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Kids too dependent on parents say scientists

Meltdown

Why do American children depend on their parents to do things for them that they are capable of doing for themselves?

Elinor Ochs, an anthropologist at the University of California, Los Angeles and her colleagues, have studied family life as far away as Samoa and the Peruvian Amazon region, but for the last decade they have focused on a society closer to home: the American middle class.

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America’s middle class families eat more fast food than poor families: study

fast food

Researchers say the new study throws into doubt previous claims that fast food restaurants were the primary cause of obesity.

Middle class families in the U.S. eat more fast food than less-healthy poor ones, according to a new study from the University of California, Davis.

 

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