The New York Times has a fascinating article titled “The American Middle Class Is No Longer the World’s Richest.(http://nyti.ms/1juH6YE) It points out that average per capita income in the United States continues to lead the world but that average conceals the fact that the rich have become very much richer while the rest of the country has become poorer. Both the middle class and the poor have fallen behind compared to similar groups in other countries such as Canada.
The article attributes the decline three causes. American education has deteriorated. Income inequality has increased in the United States. Government here does less to help the middle-class and poor than governments in other countries. Interestingly, on point one, Americans in their 50’s are better educated than their foreign peers; the same is not true for Americans in their 20’s. It is a sad commentary.