Though most Americans don’t realize it, for the past three decades real wages in the United States have not risen. In 2007 the hourly wage of the average American worker, adjusted for inflation, was lower than in 1972.
What caused this prolonged wage stagnation? Most observers acknowledge the role played by economic globalization, in the form of outsourcing and intense competition from abroad. But two other powerful factors figure in the...
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Frank Stricker, professor of history, labor studies, and interdisciplinary studies at California State University, Dominguez Hills, is the author of Why America Lost the War on Poverty—and How to Win It (University of North Carolina Press, 2007).