Changes in NYC & U.S. Median Earnings and Income: The Generational War Has Been Going On For Decades

I was surprised to read an article in which the New York Times, of all publications, broke Omerta with regard to generational trends in society.

For Americans under the age of 40, the 21st century has resembled one long recession.  I realize that may sound like an exaggeration, given that the economy has now been growing for almost a decade. But the truth is that younger Americans have not benefited much…This loss of dynamism hurts millennials and the younger Generation Z, even as baby boomers are often doing O.K. Because the layoff rate has declined since 2000, most older workers have been able to hold on to their jobs. For those who are retired, their income — through a combination of Social Security and 401(k)’s — still outpaces inflation on average.

The Times included a couple of charts, which I’ll show below, along with a bunch more of my own.  But two comments on the article are worth noting up front.

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New York City’s Exploding Home Health Care Employment, Etc

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released re-benchmarked annual average Current Employment Survey data, for 2018 and earlier years, a week ago.  In past years, I’ve used this data source to document the trend in local government employment for New York City as compared with the Rest of New York State, something I will summarize briefly at the end of this post.  There is, however, a far more spectacular trend.  New York City’s private employment in the Home Health Care industry has apparently gone exponential.

NYC Home Health Care1

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America’s Debts: 2018 Could Have Been Worse but 2028 Almost Certainly Will Be

In March 2018 I wrote the following:

To be fair to President Trump, soaring federal debt doesn’t have to mean total U.S. debt soars as well.  After all, nothing pushes up debt as a percent of GDP more than a deep recession, which reduces GDP and causes federal tax revenues to plunge and social service costs to soar…Following the Trump tax cuts, it is possible that households and businesses could use the additional money floating around as the federal government goes broke to reduce their own debts, and to buy up all those extra U.S. Treasury bills and bonds. Remember “we owe it all to ourselves?”   But that’s not the way to bet.

I’m glad I didn’t take that bet.  For now.

Federal Reserve Z1 data was related for 2018 on March 7, and thanks to another future selling, anti-America (as a collective) Republican President, the federal debt indeed has begun to soar again.  Business debt is also soaring, even as investment in the United States remains low, as the executive/financial class pillages American business to buy back stock and inflate executive pay, while pillaging the future of the companies they work foragainst.   Following The Donald’s private-sector example.

But total U.S. credit market debt did not soar.  By not buying houses at inflated prices and saving rather than borrowing, screwed later-born generations are desperately trying to secure their own futures.  Even as those in control of our public and private institutions continue to sell their collective future out from under them, cashing in whatever is left. As a result their savings, placed with these institutions, are likely to go “poof” eventually.  And buying a house is an even worse bet.

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The Amazon HQ2 Deal and New York’s Falling Tax Revenues: The Unsaid

In the past few weeks a sharp decrease in New York City and New York State income tax revenues, and the decision of Amazon to not locate half its H2Q in Long Island City, Queens, have been very much in the news.  Many people have said and written many things about them.  Here is what has not been said.

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Social Security: The Democrats Join Generation Greed’s Theft of the Future From Less Well Off Later-Born Generations

Approximately eight years ago, I was outraged by a Republican proposal to address the oncoming insolvency of Social Security by cutting benefits, as Ben Smith, then at Politico but now at Buzzfeed, noted at the time.

https://www.politico.com/blogs/ben-smith/2011/04/generation-greed-034703

It wasn’t that benefit cuts were proposed per se that outraged me. I am well aware that as a result of decades of self-serving actions by Generation Greed, the majority of whom voted Republican at the federal level to get one tax cut after another but also demanded even more benefits for themselves, people my age and younger would, on average, end up much worse off in old age, as the federal, state and local governments go broke. Worse off compared with what the “tax cut” “government shutdown” generations promised themselves but refused to pay for.  After all, our benefits have already been cut as part of the deal to “Save Social Security!” in 1983.  As a result those born in 1937 had a “full retirement age” of 65, compared with 67 for those my age and older, with retirement ages in between for those born in years in between.  Which really means that no matter when you start collecting between age 62 and 70, you will get less in monthly benefits than those in earlier generations who retired at the same time.

No, what outraged me is that the generations whose short-sighted, self-serving, entitled and hypocritical choices put us in this situation were proposed to be exempted from any and all of the sacrifices that their own choices have caused. As I said at the time:

I already know Paul Ryan and the Republicans are a fraud because no sacrifices will be imposed, and no changes will be required, for those age 55 and older. Which means those born in 1956 or earlier. Which means those who were 17 in 1973, the year wages peaked for most American workers. The richest generations in American history, the first to leave those coming after worse off in the private sector, the ones that created all those deficits and debts and unfunded pension obligations in the public sector, the ones who wanted more senior spending and less in taxes, Generation Greed, gives back nothing. And there is a barely an acknowledgement of what this means in a moral sense.

Eight years later, it is the Democrats who are making proposals with regard to the upcoming insolvency of Social Security.  So things must be different, right?

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Here Comes Freedom: A Super Bowl Post

In the Generation Greed era, the “what about my needs!” era, we are left to wonder if there are any prominent people left to admire.  Between the self-dealing and cynical games playing that dominate all levels of government, the scandals and deceit in business, the break-up of families (or their failure to form to begin with), the victimization of children by the clergy, the victimization of women exposed by the #MeToo movement, and the carrying on by many of those in the entertainment business, no wonder the overall trend in society is what it is.

Recently, however, I saw a video on YouTube about a professional athlete I admired as a teenager back in the 1970s.  Now near the end of his life, it appears he remained my kind of guy throughout it – in contrast with the majority of his contemporaries. After a month of trying to avoid the national news, with its incessant identity politics as a smokescreen for ever-increasing generational inequity, and having watched the Netflix Fyre Festival documentary, with its evidence of what many people believe constitutes a life well-lived, it was nice to watch the video linked below.  He was an NFL football player, and in this Super Bowl week I recommend it.

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