I often do posts ridiculing the idea that living standards have not risen since the 1960s. I remember the 1960s, and living standards were obviously lower then. Studies show a dramatic decline in poverty level consumption since the 1960s.
The NYT has a new article that suggests poverty in America hasn’t changed since about 1967. I almost laughed out loud when I saw the picture they choose to accompany the article:
Finally someone has found a way to make my point. Today NYC spends $19,770 per pupil, the highest in the country among the top-100 system. And although New York wastes plenty of money (why not hire people at $80,000 to teach 5 students apiece in their homes?) at least they get something for this money. Here’s a random picture of a modern NYC school, pulled off the internet:
That’s more like the 21st century.
Today America’s poor and very rich have far higher living standards than during the 1960s. The middle class is moderately better off. Inequality is a problem, but it should be far down on our list—well below the arrest of 800,000 people last year for marijuana possession, or mass unemployment, or global warming.
Paul Krugman and I were both young during the 1960s. Whenever you are young it’s going to seem like a Golden Age. You have to look past those memories, and think about the reality. My dad had fond memories of WWII.
PS. My “teaching in homes” idea was sarcasm, so don’t bother explaining why it wouldn’t work.