The Nation: Good News, Bad News

The Census Bureau's new report on Americans' financial condition had the makings of a not terribly funny "good news-bad news" joke. The good news was that last year for the first time the median income of the American family rose above $10,000, to $10,285. The bad news was that inflation had wiped out the gain; in constant dollars the median income was almost exactly the same as in 1970. At the same time, the number of poor in the U.S. (a poor family is defined as a nonfarm family of four with an income of less than $4,137) remained...

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