From Walmart to Hershey to Campbell's Soup, America's biggest retailers and manufacturers are warning their shareholders that flat growth is a fact of life because of "consumer bifurcation," which is plutocrat-speak for "everyone is broke except the one percent." The companies' plan for rescuing themselves is to turn themselves into luxury brands targeted at the wealthy.
The share of households in the middle tier of income earners has fallen to 43% from 55% since the 1970s, according to The New York Times.
And those households in the middle tier haven't gotten a raise since 1999.
After adjusting for inflation, US median household income, at $53,657 in 2014, is still 6.5% lower than pre-recession levels in 2007, and 7.2% lower than its peak in 1999, according to the US Census Bureau.
The disappearing middle class is threatening American mega brands
[Hayley Peterson/Business Insider]
Outdoor advertising companies are tapping location data brokers like Placeiq (which aggregates location data leaked by the spying dumpster-fire that is your phone's app ecosystem) and covertly siting Bluetooth and wifi sniffers in public space to gather data on the people who pass near to billboards: "gender, age, race, income, interests, and purchasing habits."
Facebook today confirmed what has long been rumored: Donald Trump hosted a dinner which was not disclosed to the public in October 2019 with Mark Zuckerberg and Peter Thiel, at the White House.
I've written about Up & Go before: that's the worker-owned co-op of home cleaners in New York City that has built a version of the on-demand economy that keeps the convenience but jettisons the predatory capitalists, and as a result, is able to pay its workers $25/hour.
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