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“The economy looks to be on a roll, if recent releases of economic indicators are anything to go by. The unemployment rate is near a 50-year low. Job growth has been averaging over 200,000 per month. Inflation-adjusted median household income has been climbing sharply for the past three years.
The numbers suggest that the Great Recession is finally behind us. But some people aren’t feeling it, especially if they happen to be in the middle class. Indeed, recent reports have suggested some lingering middle malaise may reflect an urban versus rural divide, or a split of superstar cities versus everyone else. What if the Great Recession did not just affect some areas of the country worse than others, it also affected the middle class differently than the top or bottom in those areas?…
While wages are up for everyone, the gains have been far from equal. It is not too surprising that wage growth was highest in the top quintile—this element of economic polarization is now well known. Wage growth was also reasonably robust at the bottom, above 6 percent, as several minimum wage increases at the national and state levels took effect. However, wage growth in the middle quintiles, especially the second and third, was much weaker. The result is that wages at the bottom and middle have been pushed closer together, while wages at the top have pulled away from everyone else.”
JJ Editor's Daily Picks
"My fellow progressives actually doubt if I'm still a Democrat just because I won't accept Nicolas Maduro's tyrannic regime in my home of Venezuela."
"One of the particular characteristics of the Trump presidency is the way Trump consistently creates drama – some by design, some not – that makes it hard to see the broader outline of events."
"Israel’s Eurovision entry barely made a dent on the scoreboard but there’s no doubt that the Jewish State was the real winner of the Eurovision Song Content 2019."
"The Saturday Night Live Finale Was a Mishmash of Everything It Needs to Fix: The send-off to Season 44 might end up functioning as a send-off to a particularly toothless era for the show."
"The biggest challenge in measuring real compensation and Americans’ well-being is the extraordinary growth in new products that have brought new benefits not captured in any government consumer price metric."
"...we’ve grown wary of the so-called attention economy, which, in the name of corporate profits, exploits our psychological vulnerabilities in ways that corrode social life, diminish privacy, weaken civic cohesion..."
"Regardless of how healthfully we live or how much medical care we receive, we will all die. Yet, understanding this intellectually is vastly different from truly feeling it; raw confrontation with our own mortality is frightening."
"Power, although hard to handle, is greatly desired. There is no person or group or sect or party or mob that doesn’t want power, convinced that it would know how to use it as no one ever has before."
"It turns out that feminism and faith both have high expectations of husbands and fathers, if for very different ideological reasons, and that both result in higher-quality marriages for women."
"We live in an age of radical diets: Paleo, vegan, low-glycemic, low-carb, low-fat, high fat (keto). Which one’s best for maintaining a healthy weight?"
"During a military mission, whether in peace or in war, if a pilot or soldier can’t identify an object, they have a serious problem: How should they react, without knowing if it is neutral, friendly or threatening? "
"The Germans, the Jews and the Poles Are on the Battlefield Again: The Poles see themselves as the ultimate victims, the Germans repent and pass anti-BDS resolutions, and Israel speaks in two voices..."