If we consider the long term, it’s clear America’s economy and society have been declining for the average household for 50 years.
What if the “prosperity” of the past 50 years is mostly a statistical mirage for the bottom 80% of households? What if whatever real gains (adjusted for real-world loss of purchasing power) accrued only to the top of the wealth-power pyramid, those closest to financial and political power? What if the U.S. economy and society shifted from “everybody wins” to “winner takes all” or at best, “winner take most”?
The keys to understanding the concealed crisis of decline are purchasing power relative to wages/earnings–how many goods and services can wages buy? For the average American household, wages have risen modestly while the purchasing power of those wages has plummeted.
Furthermore, the quality of goods and services has in many cases declined sharply, so that even if prices have dropped, what you get for your money has fallen even further, effectively reducing the purchasing power of your wages….