My good friend Padraig Clancy sends me this link to John Elfreth Watkins, Jr.’s predictions of the future 100 years hence. Mr. Watkins made these predictions in the Ladies’ Home Journal – in 1900. Quite interesting!
Steve Landsburg rightly takes Paul Krugman to task for his (Krugman’s) ex cathedra policy pronouncements. (And where was it – I’m too busy now to look – that Dr. Krugman himself, years ago, brilliantly took to task those who naively proposed to improve the lot of foreign sweatshop workers through mere diktat?) UPDATE: I thank Grieve Chelwa for finding the March 1997 Slate article in which Krugman praises market-driven sweatshops. Take note especially of the subtitle to the article (which, it must be said, might have been composed, not by Krugman, but by Slate‘s staff): “Bad jobs at bad wages are better than no jobs at all.”
Mark Perry has more on America’s disappearing middle-class. Here’s a slice:
America’s “middle-class” did start largely disappearing in the 1970s, but it was because they were moving up to a higher-income category, not down into a lower-income category. And that movement was so significant that between 1967 and 2009, the share of American families earning incomes above $75,000 more than doubled, from 16.3% to 39.1%. On the previous CD post, Ken commented that although “Many prominent people like Paul Krugman claim that the middle class has been in decline since the 1970s, that assertion is incredibly and verifiably wrong.” And according to the percent distribution of family income data by income level (in constant dollars) in Table 696 from the Census Bureau, I think Ken is exactly right.