http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_middle_class and most other sites seem to picture the population as a bell curve and middle class is defined as 20 or 25 percentiles either side of the median family or individual income. Does anyone agree? This sounds goofy to me. It might be reasonable if most everyone was doing OK but what if most everyone is NOT doing OK? I propose that "not OK" is the historical norm. During the "Great Depression" the admitted unemployment was 25%. Under those conditions was the median income +/- 20 percentiles "middle class? Or during the Greek and Roman eras half the population were slaves. The median family might a slave family. Were they "middle class?" All you working people who consider yourselves middle class. If your pay was cut by $10/hour would you still be middle class? If the median family's wages were also cut by $10/hour and prices stayed the same or rose . . . the median family +/- 10 percentiles would still be the same group of families. Or is (should be) "middle class" be determined by social status? (Does anyone deny that social status exists in the US?) If middle class is defined as management and professional people, are you still middle class? Which economic or social group should be classified as working class? Poverty class? IF all political discourse is to be about taxes on the middle class, the poor class, and the rich class should we not all have the same general idea of what the words mean?