AskUs: Why does it take two incomes to maintain a household nowadays?

February 25, 2016
Comments (4)
  1. Richard LaForge says:

    You hit it on the nose with that last paragraph. The standard of living was lower back then.

    1. Valannin says:

      Which doesn’t, in any way, contribute to the inflation-adjusted cost discrepancies of tuition, entertainment, and rent. The president of Harvard, Drew Gilpin Faust, made $899,734 last year. The median salary for her peer group is $1,234, 749. You think any college president made a million dollars a year in 1938 (using 2016 dollars)? James Conant, president of Harvard in 1938 made about $125,000 a year using today’s dollars.

      A movie ticket cost less in 1938 because actors and studio heads werent’ demanding exorbitant salaries then, either. Gary Cooper, the highest paid actor of 1938, pulled in $370,000 which translates into about 6 million in today’s dollars. In 2015, Robert Downey Jr was Hollywood’s highest paid actor, pulling in $80 million. He was in ONE movie in all of 2015.

      In 1938, Walt Disney made $95,000 or the equivalent of $1.5 million today. Last year, Bob Iger, the CEO of the Walt Disney company, made $46.5 million.

      “Greed at the top” is at least one the answers to the question posed by this article. The average American pays the equivalent of a day’s pay to see a movie and eat popcorn with his family so that Robert Downey Jr. can buy a jet. A Harvard grad will be in debt for the next 30 years so that their alma mater’s president can amass an $11 million dollar fortune during her 12 year tenure.

  2. Jean-Paul Breyer says:

    Unnecessary needs have appeared over the years and people think that they need to possess these things (i.e : apple phones, brand shoes etc..) just to keep up with flow, have the feeling to belong and not feel left behind….therefore, their income is being used for things other than food or heat…. people seem to forget priorities. If internet & advertising weren’t so envasive in our lives we would be much well off.

  3. demarke says:

    I agree with all the points in the article, but would add that acceptance of dual income family units also results in a dilution of the workforce (you run an economy with one quantity of workers then, effectively, double it, wages are bound not to either not keep up or people begin driving up costs of large-ticket items like homes because they have two incomes now to afford to spend more, or some combination of the two).

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