wage/price inflation since 1955

Discussion in 'Politics' started by billwald, Jul 6, 2012.

  1. billwald

    billwald
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    1955 was a good year for working people, yes?
    from http://www.tvhistory.tv/1955 QF.htm

    What Things Cost in 1955:
    Car: $1,950
    Gasoline: 29 cents/gal
    House: $17,500
    Bread: 18 cents/loaf
    Milk: 92 cents/gal
    Postage Stamp: 3 cents
    Stock Market: 488
    Average Annual Salary: $5,000
    Minimum Wage: 75 cents per hour

    ------------------------------------------------

    In 1955 a new car cost about 40% of a year's pay. These days one can buy a nice car for 40% of median pay.

    An hour's pay at minimum wage would buy a little over 2 gallons of gas. These days an hour's work at minimum wage will buy a little over 2 gallons.

    4 loaves of bread cost around an hour at minimum wage. These days 4 loaves cost around an hour at minimum wa 4 time annual is much higher BUT in 1955 a typical house was around 1000 sq. ft.

    A house was about 4 times annual pay. These days (after the recent crash) maybe 8 times annual pay? But in 1955 a typical house was 1000 sq ft, now 3000 sq ft?

    My point - over the decades prices stay about the same for the basics.
     
  2. just-want-peace

    just-want-peace
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    Note also that in '55 the average MPG was mostly in the 8-10 range.

    I had a friend that bought a "Bug" simply because it offered around 18 MPG.
    Today 30MPG is not that unusual.

    In fact I had an '85 Olds diesel that averaged 38 on the "I". Acceleration was awful, but man you could ride forever before needing to re-fuel;+
    and torque was fantastic.
     
  3. billwald

    billwald
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    Didn't GM have problems with that engine?
     
  4. just-want-peace

    just-want-peace
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    Affirmative!

    As I was told, they took a standard gasoline & converted it to a diesel - which was fine for a 100+ k miles or so, but did not stand up as a true diesel should.

    I had many problems with the fuel pump.

    I honestly believe that God led me to buy the extended warranty for this car, as it paid for 3 (IIRC) fuel pumps after the std. warranty expired. (There were a couple replaced under GM warranty.)
     
  5. AresMan

    AresMan
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    One problem is that progress in more efficient methods of producing things should bring prices down. This would enable people to spend less money on essentials and have more to spend on luxuries above essentials. Monetary inflation, tax incentives, and government programs ensure that prices for these things do not come down to benefit the middle and poor classes.

    We must also consider what the banking/credit industry has done to Americans and their level of debt vs. their level of actual ownership. Instead of take the little time necessary to do without, sacrifice, and save to own something, people are falsely led to believe that they have to take loans, get immediate possession of new cars, computers, TV's and so on, and finance everything with interest.
     
  6. billwald

    billwald
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    For the first 25 years after WW2 80% of the net from increased productivity went to the workers. Since then it has gone to the CEOs and other execs. The "middle class" was to superior to mere blue collar grunts to need unions - penny wise, pound foolish.
     
  7. targus

    targus
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    You are jumbling up a lot of thoughts here.

    1. Do you have a source for your 80% of productivity increases going to workers?

    2. If the middle class thought themselves superior to blue collar grunts what does that make blue collar grunts? Since apparently they were not themselves middle class accoring to your claim. Upper class? Lower class?
     

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