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Middle class gains called ‘fiction’

In the Jan. 22, 2020 edition of the Bandera Bulletin, I read a letter about middle class gains under the Trump economy. It’s fiction. Scratch the surface of the letter’s claims and you will quickly find a very different scenario.

First of all, just looking at the low unemployment rate paints a false picture.

According to the Brookings Institution on Dec. 2, 2019, 44% of U.S. workers are employed in low wage jobs that pay just $18,000 a year. CBS News Money Watch reported on Dec. 2, 2019 that almost half of U.S. workers between 18 and 64 are employed in these jobs.

The jobs represent “between one-third to two-thirds of all jobs” in American metropolitan areas. Their median hourly wage is $10.22 an hour – slightly above the federal minimum wage of $7.25 an hour.

They don’t offer wages and benefits that allow Americans to get ahead.

As far as the booming stock market goes, just 52% of Americans own stocks.

Many of them enjoyed gains between 2010 and 2020, a very prosperous decade, according to the Standard & Poor’s 500 stock index. But that leaves out 48% of the population.

I’m a middle-class taxpayer, but under Trump’s tax plan I pay $6,000 a year in taxes compared to the $1,100 to $3,000 I paid before it went into effect.

It’s not because I don’t have a tax consultant.

Jodie Sinclair