The Coming Collapse of the Middle Class

The Coming Collapse of the Middle Class

57 mins…

Any chance of a synopsis handy GB! :open_mouth:

  1. Middle class.

  2. Collapse.

  3. The end.

Isn’t ‘step 3’ always “profit!”?

  1. Buy house

  2. ???

  3. Profit!

  1. is “Sit on your Arse.”

I think a screen grab of this may have popped up previously on the pin, but anyhoo, here’s a clip explaining what phase 2 is, or isn’t…

Sounds like the business plan of the Underpants Gnomes, South Park (Season 2, Ep 17): … The_Gnomes

[Edit: Initforadime is also a fan!/]

Yoink! :laughing:

Good Find GB.

Just finished watching it.

A few interesting points raised, some applicable to here. Put this toghether with DMcW’s “Wonder Bra” model and it paints a scary picture for Ireland.

Certainly, saying that to be in the US middle class now requires 2 incomes and that the 2 income model doubles the statical risk of missing a payment or defaulting on a loan because rather than one earner with “52 pay cheques” a year you now need 2 earners with 104 in order to meet the commitments undertaken. The statistical risk of losing a job or a medical issue arising is, obviously, then greater (without factoring in higher job volatility)

Rather worrying to end on the comment that a child in the US is more likely to be a house filing for bankruptcy than one filing for divorce.

Blue Horseshoe

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The “two-income trap,” described

The “two-income trap,” as described by Warren, really consists of three partially separate phenomena that have arisen as families have come to rely on two working adults to make ends meet:

  • The addition of a second earner means, in practice, a big increase in household fixed expenses for things like child care and commuting.
  • Much of the money that American second earners bring in has been gobbled up, in practice, by zero-sum competition for educational opportunities expressed as either skyrocketed prices for houses in good school districts or escalating tuition at public universities.
  • Last, while the addition of the second earner has not brought in much gain, it has created an increase in downside risk by eliminating an implicit insurance policy that families used to rely on.

This last point is really the key to Warren’s specific argument about bankruptcy, though it’s the first two that would drive her larger interest in politics. Bad things have always happened to families from time to time. In a traditional two-parent, one-earner family, there was always the possibility that mom could step up and help out when trouble arose.


The slump in wages comes despite rising productivity, with 2022 showing the biggest gap between real labour productivity growth and real wage growth in high-income countries since 1999, according to the report.

Since this thread was started the destruction of the middle class became a more widespread phenomenon across the OECD. It is no longer just an American thing.


Below is Australia centric but relevant

“Here we are with still-exorbitant house prices, virtually stagnant wages and suddenly, brutally higher interest rates. Making the mortgage was super tough in the later ’80s and early ’90s”.

“It is now equally tough, at best”, Pedersen-McKinnon concludes.

I’ll go one further. Today’s generation of mortgage holders has the worst of all worlds: high house prices relative to incomes, high rates, and the worst mortgage affordability on record.

The deposit required is also much higher reflecting the extreme price appreciation relative to wages.

This is something I’ve been thinking about recently after a conversation with the father in law, he’s in his 80’s now but retired in his 60’s. He did well in his career and has enjoyed his retirement and good luck to him but we got to talking about work and the kids and I think the one thing he and a lot of people can’t comprehend is the greatest betrayl of the middles class over the last 50 years is that it now requires 2 incomes to buy and afford housing, this has huge knock on consequences for the middle classes:

  1. Childcare costs (execpt for the lucky few who have grandparents closeby, we don’t) are higely expensive and stopping people have more than 1/2 kids.
  2. the busyness of modern life is off the scale with 2 parents running around frantically to plug holes which doesnt help stress levels.
    3 with large mortgages and chilcdare a lot of people have little to no dispoable income which doesnt help the economy much
    4 our kids unless and perhaps even despite getting parental help may not be able to afford housing

I’m suprised people are not more angry because cost of living is rising and services across the board are terrible, but a lot of intelligent people are tuned out, more concerned with BS than real problems in this country.

Hey ho my 2 cents, our media hasn’t helped. they avoid any criticism of the sitting gov and focus solely on SF being the boogieman…


“The State shall, therefore, endeavour to ensure that mothers shall not be obliged by economic necessity to engage in labour to the neglect of their duties in the home.”

Ever since it became an economic necessity for 2 salaries to afford a home, under Bertie’s watch, the State has been in derogation of it’s constitutional obligation. This has been reinforced by the actions of subsequent governments. Their answer now to their abject failure is to ask us to change the constitution to fit the situation instead, all under the pretence of women’s equality and a right to housing (instead of the current constitutional right to property). We should tell 'em to eff off, and insist they do their job instead.


Very well put in so little words.

High house prices are a desired outcome of our political leadership.

By pricing young native Irish people out of the housing market you create a disincentive to start a family. Meanwhile the government has no problem letting massive amounts of completely alien Muslim and African men into the country. We’re now in the perverse situation where young Irish taxpayers who can’t afford a gaff subsidizing parasites from all over the world welfare payments and free gaffs.

It’s all very much on purpose, and all by design.


Another plantation. This one facilitated by psychological warfare.