Dear Commons Community,
The 2000s was the worst decade in modern history for the American middle class. That, according to a study released yesterday by the nonpartisan Pew Research Center. Highlights of the study include:
- the portion of the nation’s income earned by people making anywhere from $39,000 to $118,000 is at the lowest level since World War 2.
- In each decade since the end of World War II to 2000 mean family income had increased … but the decade from 2000 to 2010 shows a vastly different story. Mean family income decreased across the board. It was a lost decade.”
- 85% of middle class Americans say it’s harder to maintain their lifestyle as opposed to a decade ago.
- In 1970, the upper income took home 29% of the nation’s income, middle income earners 62%
- In 2006, upper income earners took home 46% of the nation’s income while middle income earners decreased to 45% of the nation’s income
One of the more telling findings was that blame for the middle-class decline is attributed to a number of political institutions and individuals. See barchart above.