As I have said before, Elizabeth Warren is one of the people I find most informative on the economy we have created. This lecture (from January 31, 2008) is very interesting: The Coming Collapse of the Middle Class: higher risks, lower rewards and a shrinking safety net. It is important for us to realize that the decisions we make have consequences. If we allow corruption to grow and grow in the USA we will suffer more and more. If we continue to elect people that give away society wealth to those the pay them to the detriment of society (investment banks, drug companies, “intellectual property” lawyers, retail banks, farmers, trial lawyers, hedge fund managers, trust fund babies, physicians…) that naturally means their is less wealth for the rest of society.
Interesting data. Looking at standard family (Mom, Dad and 2 kids from 1970 to 2005), in inflation adjusted dollars: earnings increased a great deal (due to women working much more) but disposable income decreased. This is because basic expenses increased: health care, housing, transportation… (and this is with assuming employer provided health care – which has really been decreasing in likelihood over time). Those families are also more deeply in debt and reliant on 2 incomes. And if either income producer losses their jobs the economics of the family fail. Which means the family is much more at risk.
It really is great that lectures like this are available to us now.
Related: Elizabeth Warren Webcast On Failure to Fix the System – In the USA 43% Have Less Than $10,000 in Retirement Savings – Failure to Regulate Financial Markets Leads to Predictable Consequences – Lobbyists Keep Tax Off Billion Dollar Private Equities Deals and On For Our Grandchildren