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Economic mobility: Are you better off than your parent(s)?


Marka Ragnos
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Economic mobility: Are you better off than your parent(s)?  

36 members have voted

  1. 1. Economic mobility: Are you better off than your parent(s)?

    • Yes. I am probably economically better off than my parents.
      17
    • No. I am probably in an economically worse situation off than my parents.
      14
    • It's complicated. Explain below ...
      5


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Obviously this is an enormously complicated subject, and answers can be hard to determine. Please do illiminate and unpack your stories below!

Anonymous poll.

This thread was inspired by the discussions that broached this topic on the General Chat.

Edited by Plastic Man
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I am. I'm 60. But my child isn't.

This is something I feel like we hear a lot these days. There's a whole new generation here in the States who have it worse off -- or at least, that's been reported. Here is one of countless examples of these kind of stories:

Millennials: $2,000 Poorer Than Their Parents Were at the Same Age

More young people are living in poverty and fewer have jobs compared their parents' generation, the Baby Boomers, in 1980.

Edited by Plastic Man
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I am. I'm 60. But my child isn't.

This is something I feel like we hear a lot these days. There's a whole new generation here in the States who have it worse off -- or at least, that's been reported. Here is one of countless examples of these kind of stories:

Millennials: $2,000 Poorer Than Their Parents Were at the Same Age

More young people are living in poverty and fewer have jobs compared their parents' generation, the Baby Boomers, in 1980.

And yet the world is richer. The money simply gravitates to fewer pockets. Inequality is on the rise. Something will break eventually. The world as we see it might change, peoples anger at seeing their children lose hope , will trigger this. Hopefully then, things might improve.

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Complicated one. I'm almost 30 and I earn probably close to what my parents earn combined except that they own their own home and i'm not sure if i'll ever be in a position to do that whilst living in London.

1 bedroom flats in decrepit old Victorian houses go on the market for £300-400k!

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Yes, certainly, at this stage in my life. At the same age my parents had three young children, I have none. Also myself and my partner have had a better education, which has given us the opportunity to earn more than them.

But due to property booms, they were mortgage free by their mid 40s. That's a pipe dream for me, I'll be nearly 60. Unless something dramatic happens.

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I earn roughly the same they did when they were working but they own their flat in central Stockholm (bought early 80s) and a summerhouse in the Stockholm archipelago (bought by my grandparents in the 50s). Those two combined are worth roughly a million quid. My house (twice the size) out in the sticks in the south is worth about a 10th of that. (But a very small mortgage)

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My missus and I are massively better off than our parents were, but that's not surprising.

We had working class parents that lived through the 30s depression and the Second World War. Whereas we grew up in the postwar welfare state, with free healthcare and university education. We had fairly secure professional jobs, and were able to buy our own house at at time when it was affordable.

By contrast, our kids have struggled. Low paid, insecure jobs, debt, and rented accommodation.

100 years of British social history in a nutshell.

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Just my wages...

My actual mom and dad, yes by a distance

My dad and his second wife, yes by even more

My mom and her second husband, yes

My mom and her third husband no

I also earn more than my girlfriends dad and second wife put together

Me and my missus as a partnership don't earn as much as my moms third husband or her moms second husband

I get this working class council estate thing where generation after generation stay there (my brothers still there) but I was getting the **** out

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You ain't even joking, there's probably around 80 people on my moms side and 50 on my dads and growing by the year, the missus family is slightly smaller but her mom was one of five too

I'd say divorce followed on from my grandparents, second nature, my moms one of five sisters, all five are divorced, two of them twice

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My parents were and are quite well off, but **** idiots with their money, they have been declared bankrupt once. Also never really saw a penny growing up. Me and my wife are in pretty good jobs and our daughter is grown up so we have a fair bit of disposable income. So would say that we are about the same as my parents. 

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Adjusted for inflation (using an inflation calculator), I'm a little surprised and not surprised to learn that at age 49 -- is this old codger status? -- that I earn a little LESS than my parents at the their peak working-class earning power (which was around 1993).

My father left school at 14 in Brum and came to America in his 20s. He landed a series of good union jobs at just about the apex of American industrial might. My mom was a nurse for the veteran's administration and ended up out-earning my father though it took years. These were terrific, union-made jobs. They've vanished in the States. Like Mooney's, my parents grew up in the Great Depression. Dad had rationing, etc.

But both my wife and I work full-time and, barring death or serious illness, have many years of earning ahead of us. 

The big difference between my parents' lives and mine is that we don't feel we can afford more than our one child, and it's taken many more years to buy property. We've both had to work desperately hard to get where we are and that's STILL with great amounts of education. When I used to read a lot of Marxism (Gramsci, etc.), this education would be considered a form of capital, and I think that's true. We have more options than mom and dad did. (My wife came from extreme poverty but got scholarships to an Ivy League school, which changed her life.) Life is good now. Yet I think the thing that defines us a children of the era is that it has taken so long to get to this point, and I do sometimes "look back in anger," if I morbidly reflect on all the toil involved.

Edited by Plastic Man
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Difficult to compare, but at my age (36) I think I earn a lot more than my parents did at the same age. However, they were married and had me, while I am single with no dependants.

My parents, as they have got older, their financial position has improved considerably.A result of a life time of hard work no doubt. 

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I'm quite a bit worse off, but that's mainly because I'm comparatively lazy and lacking in self-confidence compared to my old man, who despite not going to uni or getting particularly great O-levels scrapped his way up to a relatively high ranking position at the Beeb.  I doubt many non-graduates could get a job like that in this day and age.  I'm genuinely just happy with my lot at the moment, neither struggling or succeeding and I don't have any kids to support. 

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