Good Ol' Day Time Machine
By Bryan Caplan
Tyler Cowen’s critics include many who think he doesn’t go far enough. One says:
it’s clear to anyone who grew up in the 50s that if we’ve havent
stagnated, we’ve regressed…most in my neighborhood had large families
which were able to be supported in reasonable middle class fashion by
one breadwinner who worked in the factories…
almost everyone had large nearly new houses, bought a new car every
couple years, had then modern applicances & furniture, and floor
model TVs & stereos, etc…a few factory workers were able to
afford built in swimming pools…
Another in the EconLog comments remarks:
What we can consume is only part of the equation: in ’73 a median guy
could have looked forward to a stable life in a stable job. No
offshoring, no outsourcing and only a moderate chance of getting fired.
If you happen to agree with this viewpoint, I bring good news. There exists a time machine to take you back to 1950. It’s called a semi-skilled job with the U.S. government. You get a comfortable living, awesome job security, and zero worries about offshoring, outsourcing, or any other plausible disruption.
You may object that a semi-skilled government job is unchallenging and dull, with little room for advancement. And what if you don’t get along with your boss or co-workers? Fair enough. But in 1950, these were the kinds of complaints people were supposed to keep to themselves, and usually did. Hey, no one said time travel was without its risks.