It was normal. I lived it.

  1. Was reading something earlier about a woman who had 4 part time jobs and died in her car while sleeping between shifts.

  2. Idk if this is the same woman but Maria Fernandez worked at three Dunkin’ Donuts locations, sometimes in the same day. She would often take naps in her car between shifts. She took naps in her car often with the engine running and kept spare fuel in her trunk.

  3. Back when I worked at Walmart I had a coworker with a second job; she worked third shift at Walmart and then days at a convenience store, so after leaving Walmart she’d have been working/out of the house for about 18 hours. One morning driving home she fell asleep at the wheel, ran off the road, and hit a telephone pole. She didn’t survive.

  4. with a high school diploma i can comfortably rent an apartment with three roomates and be able to afford a subscription to disney plus

  5. Both of my grandfathers had 7th grade educations and lived in the Deep South. Both fought in WW2 (one went to Korea as well). My dad's father joined an union and had a family of five, a house and two cars. My mother's father stayed in the military and had a family of three, a house, two cars and a dairy farm. Neither of my grandmothers worked outside the home.

  6. You know the most common language in the world, so you can always emigrate and you will find work everywhere. Check for work in Europe - Scandinavian countries, The Netherlands, Germany, even countires like Chech Republic and Poland are great if you get to live in their biggest cities. Forget shitty healthcare, car centric cities, min wage discrimination in favor of walkable cities where you can talk to normal people and feel safe, take a bike to the park etc, get public healthcare or private one where you pay 100x times less than in US for the same quality, get yourself any corpo or IT job, and work from home (but in fact just sit in european Cafes, each week a different one). If you have your family with you or if you have trouble finding a place to live in the begining, search for jobs that provide housing as a part of relocation package, though you might need experience for that - it's not for entry level positions most of the time. We live in an era where if you know english and either worked in some corpo or IT you can essentialy be a citizen of the world. The pay is usually around 2-3 times lower than in the US but most of the costs (including medical care, education, car maintenance, food, housing), are even lower so it is not a problem at all.

  7. Nah I’d rather be alive for now - if things get really bad day to day for me though I would feel different I think.

  8. Growing up in the late 70s/early 80s my Dad who didn't graduate college (was a dropout) was employed as a union UPS driver. My Mom was a stay at home Mom. We lived comfortably in a nice part of town in a house they owned (with a normal mortgage), 2 cars, dog. I'm not an only child so I had siblings they also supported. We had toys and plenty of food, and played sports and took music lessons and stuff. They bought me a car when I turned 18. All on my Dad's union UPS driver job with no college degree.

  9. I JUST had this conversation with someone ten years younger than me! We were discussing the need for minimum wage to match inflation to get back to this even being semi-feasible, and he looked at me like I was off my rocker when I told him that, when I was a kid, people did support their family on their paycheck from one job. It’s insane how this is so intensely forgotten, as if to say minimum wage jobs belong to the working poor. It was really a fucking eye opener for me.

  10. The Simpson’s is a prime example of the cultural shift on supporting family on a single income. When the Simpsons came out the family was regarded as solidly working class.

  11. When/if I have children, I'll make it a priority to show them around animal parks and zoos and such, so they get to see those creatures before they might go extinct.

  12. Unfathomable to me. No wonder older people are so out of touch today. They have no clue what it’s actually like now.

  13. Yeah anyone who thinks milennials are lazy just think society never changed. It breaks their notion that the world is a meritocracy.

  14. Boomers are largely suffering from the long-term effects of lead poisoning and the related paranoia thanks to aging and developing osteoporosis. Amnesia is the least of their problems.

  15. I always wondered why this was considered a conspiracy. As a teenager of the 90s you couldn’t end any discussion about preparing for adulthood and working without acknowledging it.

  16. A lot of those jobs were in manufacturing and farming and are now done by machines that are more efficient and cheaper over time. The increased productivity and saved labor costs went right into the pockets of the 1%.

  17. A lot of those jobs in textile mills, paper mills, steel mills, shipyards, etc. Also came with lots of exposure to dangerous substances like asbestos and other chemicals. And there were minimal protections.

  18. Steel mills are still hiring and the pay is decent. It's 12 hour shift and the temperature in there always sucks, but the money is nice. (Minimum wage here is $7.25 staring wage in the mill is $22/hr.)

  19. Stolen by Republicans, slowly but steadily, by crushing your unions, raising your taxes while lowering theirs, reducing your benefits while increasing theirs, buying congressmen you can't afford, while distracting you with fear and conflict about god, guns, and gays.

  20. I live in the country on a small apple farm. I bought this place at 30. This was only possible due to having multiple mental illnesses and therefore a steady income from disability which pays better than the whole not having a job from multiple mental illnesses thing. Oh, and I entered the job market during the 2008 Financial Crisis. Go me. How much do I make? Less than minimum wage. Far far lower than a living wage. And if I ever get married, I lose my income. Apparently I'm not allowed to be sick and in love, it's an either or proposition. And how did I afford a house? I have a room mate and I'm over 100 miles from the city. Nobody wanted to live out here, this house was on the market for over a year. It's actually cheaper to pay this mortgage than to pay rent for a small apartment in town. I buy groceries, and my room-mate pays the bills, and we share the mortgage. Without this arrangement, I'd have some serious issues.

  21. I’m hoping I can get on disability, I have both physical and mental disabilities that I’ve been struggling with for 10 years. I used to work in healthcare until my mental and physical health took a huge toll on me. I tried working as a cashier and couldn’t even keep the job. I’m in the hearing stage of my disability case, and I fear if I don’t get help, I won’t be able to keep going. I’m in a long term relationship with a man I love, and I can’t get married either. I’m glad you have something that works out for you and for giving me some hope.

  22. This was back when a main street in any town consisted of a jewelers shop, green grocers, toy stores, shoe stores, hardware stores, gun stores, clothing stores, electronic stores etc...were family owned. Now everything can be found under one roof like Walmart.

  23. I think it was Homer Simpson who said, "I have three kids and no money! Why can't I have no kids and three money?"

  24. I am Gen X and have been going around and around with my father about the fact that there are things that just don't exist anymore. Under the table work, cheap apartments, cheap cars you could fix yourself or super cheap... and there are things required now like a smart phone, internet, a decent credit score. It was mind blowing to him that a lot of jobs run your credit score, something that didn't exist for him at all. Like to get his mortgage they needed proof of income and that was it.

  25. It wasn't stolen. It was a lie. That middle class was largely built on the backs of an underclass of people of color, particularly women of color, who were excluded from even the most basic of services.

  26. While the POC underclass points are valid and true, there is another part of the equation - the fact that America enjoyed a near monopolistic economic advantage after WW2. It was the only major economy that didnt suffer major infrastructure loss from WW2 and didnt spend all its efforts into rebuilding it. It was able to dictate favourable trade and diplomatic deals. This all "trickled down" to the average joe. Once the rest of the world started to catch up, the party was over - around early 2000s although arguably earlier. Also automation and other technological advances destroyed many of these "good" jobs too.

  27. I'll ask what I asked another guy saying the same in the comment section. What you're saying is 100% true a contributor for this, but I'd like to see the numbers for this being run. I don't really know whether I should believe if this is the main factor. I mean just look at housing price. If houses coated now what they used to cost back then (or less because building processes have become more efficient), life would be 1000% better for everyone. And this doesn't depend on black people being abused.

  28. Absolutely true - firstly many Americans were not wage workers before a certain point. White men benefited from lack of competition in the labor market - artificial scarcity so to speak.

  29. The middle class doesn't exist. It was a creation by the capitalist class, to give a group of slightly better off proletarians the illusion of wealth, when their relation to power and capital remained essentially the same. One of the biggest parts necessary to maintain this illusion was the service industry. The closest thing to the concept of the middle class is the petite bourgeoisie but even then that's something entirely different. And yeah, that service industry necessary to maintain the illusion of being different from normal poors was (and is) primarily built off of the backs of women and people of color

  30. I hear this occasionally, I know it happened. I just can't wrap my head around it. If you wanted to go to college to do even better back then, I know the local college here was roughly 80 bucks a semester full-time. It's truly wild the sense of entitlement boomers have as if they earned this prosperity that was dropped in their laps.

  31. It's a combination. The US, both before and especially after the war, had half of the industrial capacity of the world, so there was lots of money to buy off a large working/middle class, which of course didn't include POC or women independent of their husbands. Industrial power returned to Europe and came to Asia and the US's ruling class didn't have domination quite so easy, and, in the face of 70s instability, a big chunk of it took back the share of the economy they'd let the middle class have.

  32. The very short simplistic answer is one time deal. America was the only industrial nation not bombed to rubble after ww2, so had an export demand to fill the world with production. Additionally, since many of those ruined nations were bankrupted by the war, they had to borrow money from the US to give right back for that production.

  33. Whatever they give us, they give it to stop us rebelling and cutting off their heads. But it's not given graciously, they will chip away at it over and over, they will demonize those who need help, and they will test how far they can push us until we rebel all over again, at which point they can appease us with minor token gestures.

  34. As a person born in 2002, I cannot wrap my head around this at all. I feel like it's a lie. I know it isn't, but it just seems like such a fantasy.

  35. It’s both. Prices are higher because of inflation and price-gouging, income is lower because it isn’t adjusted for inflation or price-gouging.

  36. To be clear, that was a result of a perfect storm of low organic composition of capital, many wealthy net-importer trade partners devistated by war, a vast periphery that could be hyperexploited, a recent history of intense class struggle and a vast geopolitical rival offering a clear and appealing alternative that meant revolution was always very much on the table...

  37. The working conditions in USSR were ahead of its time, forced US capitalists to treat their workers well. Loss of those achievements (like housing, healthcare and higher education as a human rights) was a tragedy for workers worldwide.

  38. I agree it put much-needed pressure on US business to forestall a revolution. I disagree that life in the USSR was all-that-good (a controversial statement here, I know).

  39. My mom’s parents were divorced, but he supported my grandmother, their five kids, two households, a new wife, a boat, a camper, and vacations for those five kids, all on a blue-collar salary. In California. He never attended a day of college.

  40. I'm in my forties and my dad did it on a blue collar union wage in the 1980's. My mom had an under the table cash side hustle, but that was basically it. They were able to rent a house (not an apartment) until they saved enough to buy a house of their own and now it's worth over a million dollars.

  41. Jesus Christ, over a million? My parent's house isn't worth quite that much, and they have what's practically a mansion near Boston.

  42. This is such a wild thing to point out because it's the assholes who lived this working any job puts you in the middle class fantasy life who have been consistently voting against their self interests for the last 40 years that's made sure the next generation will never have that quality of life.

  43. Most people know it. I’m from the 70s but I got into computers very young. I had a Commodore 64 etc. ran a bbs all through high school. Graduated in 94.

  44. Times change, now everyone has a "high school education" therefore that is not a big deal. Back then it was something of an achievement.

  45. I'm from a developing country and my grandfather also worked a minimum wage job and could support 5 kids and a stay at home wife. The only difference is that he didn't own a car.

  46. Nothing was stolen from you. The previous generation was exploiting other countries to make such standard of living possible in the US for the boomers. Thats how the life is for 95% of people in the world. America is not special any more, better get used to it.

  47. I think the downvoters have missed your point. I agree that their generation benefited greatly from decades of US capitalism. The same system that benefitted them does not benefit further generations, largely from inherent capitalism greed.

  48. My Jewish father has a high school education and retired before he was 65 with a few millions in the bank. By the end of the career the only people he really hired had MBAs, selling clinical diagnostic testing. He started out in the south side of Chicago in the 50’s. During the race riots in the south side (60’s) the neighborhood become too unsafe to live in and my grandpa took on 3 jobs so that the family could live there.

  49. A more accurate statement is that it was built on the back of sexist and racist policy and a level of environmental exploitation that isn't permissible anymore

  50. Good point about the environmental exploitation. I don't know if I'm picturing it right, but is it fair to say that 1950s America was still a slightly wild land where corporations needed all the help they could get exploiting the natural resources.. and so were willing to pay quite highly for that help to average workers?

  51. I mean no not really. That was a phenomenon that occurred due to war profits. A college education is necessary for a good work life and therefore good wealth since the renaissance.

  52. To be accurate, the people who were able to do this were doing it off of the back of stolen labor of black and brown people, and lived in neighborhoods with housing covenants excluding black people from living there.

  53. Stop talking about change and do so.e change. Did none of you study early 20th century America is school?

  54. No it wasn't. People now need to support a family, a house where everyone has their own bedroom, a TV in each bedroom, an iPhone for every family member, a PC for everyone, at least two cars and a variety of food that would be unheard of in the 50s. Women were supposed to stay at home which makes labor more scarce and therefore more expensive. People of color and Asians were not usually employed in blue collar jobs and if they were earned much less than the "average American". Kids were supposed to pull their own weight whenever they could. Computers and the internet did not exist so a lot of work was done by hand.

  55. with I think four college degrees between the five of us, we could afford a nice big tent to live in!

  56. We live in a neighborhood that could at one time be considered blue collar. I know this because all of my retired neighbors worked in irrigation, construction, or as teachers...while we needed two incomes to buy into here. The other new person owns his own well established business.

  57. The irony is that old people seem to think they've had it hard. I don't think this was normal though. They had the easiest generation in human history but I feel that they were just borrowing piles of cash from future generations.

  58. That type of life was never really sustainable any way. It was only because of the way the U.S had treated and warred with other nations putting them under the U.S boot that they were able to give the citizens a better life than what the rest of the world experiences. If we levelled all persons all over the world quality of life to the average quality of life I don't things would be as good as in the 70s , medical and technological advancements have made things better along with new knowledge. Although I might be underestimating the levelling of the extremely wealthy

  59. This is really sad, but a significant part of it came from women entering the labor force, saturating the market, and reducing the value of labor. Women could all stop working, go home "to the kitchen" en masse as a weird circular protest, and wages would have to rise to accommodate. Also companies would suddenly find a way to make maternity leave and flex work feasible.

  60. For all of the people bitching in America: they probably would not want to be slave labor making Iphones overseas.

  61. That's not normal. 1 salary shouldn't be able to support 5 people. They were overpaid. Now it's the opposite, 1 salary can't even support 1 person. It should be balanced. 1 salary supports 1-2 people.

  62. okay so.. unpopular opinion coming buuuuuut... GOOD.... someone with a high school education popping out 5 kids means they will probably end up with 10-15 people who have a high school education at best... at a time in history where science denial is causing extreme issues that directly impact the wellbeing of the planet and it's people... I AM GLAD you cannot survive on a high school education anymore. We need more smart people on the planet, not more people that will chug horse dewormer, try to find the edge of the planet and ignore climate change....

  63. And all the brilliant people that can't contribute to the real problems because of the circumstances of their birth? Because they were born into a system that cuts their potential off at the knees so that more meat can be fed to the meat grinder?

  64. Yeah y’all could do that cos of imperialism. Settle down no one else around the world rly cares that living standards in US are declining

  65. I can’t wait for all baby boomers to be dead. I feel bad saying this as my parents are baby boomers. But with boomers gone, and the Gen X’s too senile to Karen about, the world will be a better place. I’m ready for millennials to run this country.

  66. All my millennial peers are corporate managers now. Do you really think they'll vote against capitalism?

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