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Workers just earn $.12 more now than in 1972

Workers just earn $.12 more now than in 1972

An article by Jing Pan

March 2, 2023·5 min read

Persistent inflation is still making headline this year. But price levels have long been rising in this country — eroding the real wage of working Americans.

According to CNBC, American workers were earning an average of $27.45 per hour in June of 2022. Back in 1972, the same workers made an average of $3.88 an hour.

That’s serious wage growth right?

Not so fast. Those numbers are nominal wages that haven’t taken into account inflation.

When adjusted for inflation, American workers are earning just 12 cents more today than they did in 1972.

In other words, real wages — wages in terms of the number of goods and services that can be bought — have essentially been stagnant for 50 years.

“When the average American is not seeing his or her living standards increase over a period of decades, that’s something that should concern us all,” Harry Holzer, professor of public policy at Georgetown University, told CNBC last year

Fast forward to December of 2022, the average hourly earnings went up slightly to $28.07, according to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics data. And while the inflation rate has decreased to 6.5% from 7.1% in November, it is still much higher than the Fed’s target rate of approximately 2%.

My input: During that same time frame inflation adjusted GDP more than tripled. My question is who benefited from the increased economic growth?

Belief Systems revisited

Belief Systems revisited

About three years ago I submitted a post on this topic. My belief system programming was produced and directed by my mom, a devoted Roman Catholic. As I understand it her mom, a Southern Bell, was a convert at some point in her life. Mom insured that I attended mass every week and was enrolled in a catholic school for my first ten years in Dayton, OH, Newburg, NY, Colorado Springs, and Ottawa Canada. I attended catechism class for each of those ten years and was taught that the Catholic Church was the one true church and the only path to a wonderful afterlife. The Pope was our leader and infallible when it came to matters of faith. Protestants (the protestors) were misguided and should be encouraged to return to one true faith. I was so well programmed that I continued to attend mass through my last two years of high school and four years at university. I even required my first wife to attend catholic lessons prior to our marriage in the church.

While I did question certain puzzling aspects of church history and rules that seemed not to be part of scripture I was told that “Faith” alone would overcome any doubts. It was only later that I understood that “Faith”, especially fervent faith, can overcome evidence and facts. Why are there so many different belief systems with all of them populated by devotees that are positive that their path to the afterlife is either the only one or if not, by far the best? Is it possible for all of them to be valid?

In an effort to ferret out the truth, I began my research. I attended several other church services, and read the Book of Mormon and the Koran. I read about the inquisition and the dalliances (and atrocities) of several popes in history. I learned of the Council of Nicene and the process that Emperor Constantine directed to determine what books make into the Scriptures we have today. I wondered how they could know for sure that these represented the “Word” of the creator.

I wondered why an all-powerful God would need to create humans to worship him/her. Did God have sex or need it? If there were entities on other worlds do we share the same God? Is the God of our Galaxy the same as the one in other Galaxies? Is the God of our Universe the same as the God of other Universes? Is it possible that the gods of the Romans, Greeks, Norse, Mayans, etc., etc., were not myths (they were real to them)? Is it possible that we do not know the truth?

One of the basic tenants on which our country was founded on freedom of religion (you are entitled to your beliefs). Bout half of the founding fathers were Deists. I am convinced that their intent was that the USA was to be a secular refuge, open to all beliefs (even non-beliefs). That is my position on the topic.

As for my belief, I do my best to resist believing. I prefer experience and evidence-based facts (as best we are to ascertain). I have no idea what happens when we die, but there is plenty of anecdotal evidence that something does exist after death (or near death). I am excited to find out when my time comes.

Nannie Helen Burroughs

This was passed along to me via Facebook:

Nannie Helen Burroughs

Around 1880, Nannie Helen Burroughs was born to a formerly enslaved couple living in Orange, Virginia. Her father died when she was young, and she and her mother relocated to Washington, DC. Burroughs excelled in school and graduated with honors from M Street High School (now Paul Laurence Dunbar High School). Despite her academic achievements, Burroughs was turned down for a Washington D.C. public school teaching position. Some historians speculate that the elite Black community discriminated against Burroughs because she had darker skin. Undeterred, Burroughs decided to open her own school to educate and train poor, working African American women.
Burroughs proposed her school initiative to the National Baptist Convention (NBC). In response, the organization purchased six acres of land in Northeast Washington, D.C. Now Burroughs needed money to construct the school. She did not, however, have unanimous support. Civil rights leader Booker T. Washington did not believe African Americans would donate money to found the school. But Burroughs did not want to rely on money from wealthy white donors. Relying on small donations from Black women and children from the community, Burroughs managed to raise enough money to open the National Training School for Women and Girls.

Even though some people disagreed with teaching women skills other than domestic work, the school was popular in the first half of the 20th century. The school originally operated out of a small farm house. In 1928, a larger building named Trades Hall was constructed. The hall housed twelve classrooms, three offices, an assembly area and a print shop.

In addition to founding the National Training School for Women and Girls, Burroughs also advocated for greater civil rights for African Americans and women. At the time, Black women had few career choices. Many did domestic work like cooking and cleaning. Burroughs believed women should have the opportunity to receive an education and job training. She wrote about the need for Black and white women to work together to achieve the right to vote. She believed suffrage for African American women was crucial to protect their interests in an often discriminatory society.

Burroughs died in May 1961. She never married and she devoted her life to the education of Black women. In 1964, the school was renamed the Nannie Helen Burroughs School in her honor. Burroughs defied societal restrictions placed on her gender and race and her work foreshadowed the main principles of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and 1970s. The Trades Hall, now a National Historic Landmark, is the last physical legacy of her lifelong pursuit for worldwide racial and gender equality.

To learn more visit:…/africanamericanheri…/education.htm