Author Topic: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class  (Read 800 times)

creative666

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Silicon Valley is so expensive that people who make $400,000 think they're middle-class

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Middle-class Americans earned about $39,000 to $118,000 in 2016, according to Pew's definition, but middle-class incomes vary at the state and city levels.

http://www.businessinsider.com/middle-class-income-us-city-san-francisco-2018-2

rcjordan

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #1 on: February 22, 2018, 12:12:51 PM »
It's the Big Mac Index disparity but just within the US.

http://www.economist.com/content/big-mac-index

>$39k

I'd say a family of 4 can get by here in northeastern NC on $40k annual family income.  They won't be able to have any real savings or truly disposable income, but they could afford modest food/clothing/shelter/transportation.

With $100k, they could live like barons.  With $200k, they could live like NFFC.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2018, 12:14:44 PM by rcjordan »

Mackin USA

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #2 on: February 22, 2018, 12:28:39 PM »
AND, when you consider taxes, people move...
Mr. Mackin

rcjordan

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #3 on: February 22, 2018, 12:43:59 PM »
>when you consider taxes

Add 'hidden gov fees' 'hidden gov fees & insurance' to that.

Yeah, we have a fairly high state income tax at 7% 5.5%. Annual property taxes at 1%.  NC & municipal sales taxes:  6.75%7.5%.. Gasoline tax: 35cents/gal.  But when you dig into other states' total tax & fees, we come out reasonably well.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2018, 12:46:44 PM by rcjordan »

Mackin USA

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2018, 03:15:48 PM »
>>>we come out reasonably well.

YES WE DO
Mr. Mackin

ergophobe

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2018, 11:17:03 PM »
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Out of more than 250 respondents, 81 with incomes between $10,000 to $399,999 said they were "middle class."

I remember my poli sci prof saying that over 90% of Americans think they're middle class. And by classic definitions, it should be something like one standard deviation each side of the median

littleman

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2018, 05:54:58 AM »
Without getting into specific numbers I could tell you that I've made what would be a good living on a national scale, but I've always only managed to live a modest lifestyle.  I could see how $400k/year could feel middle class here.

ergophobe

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2018, 05:58:59 PM »
feel middle class here.

I think people have an idea of what poverty looks like and what wealth looks like, and those ideas are distorted by media depictions. So until they're choosing who in the house eats and who doesn't, they don't feel poor. And until they hire someone to keep the indoor pool clean, they don't feel rich.

These days, what puts you (and I think most the Americans here) in the upper echelons of society are not visible, large-scale consumption items. It's health insurance, breastfeeding, shopping farmer's markets, sending your kids to college and having retirement savings. If you have all those things, you're likely not part of the "middle class"  in America anymore, though it is possible that you still have a middle-class income.

That is very, very roughly the gist of  this book I'm reading currently
The Sum of Small Things: A Theory of the Aspirational Class (2017)
by Elizabeth Currid-Halkett
http://amzn.to/2F2qXj2

And just recently read most of this:

The Theory of the Leisure Class Kindle Edition (1899)
by Thorstein Veblen 
http://amzn.to/2BMfylC

The latter, by the way, is where the phrase "conspicuous consumption" comes from.

Currid-Haklett pulls together a lot of thoughts I had been having but couldn't quite articulate, such as
- why is wealth associated with working more not less for so many in modern America.
- what is the obsession with food and certain chidl-rearing practices (her chapter on breastfeeding alone is worth the price of the book).

rcjordan

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Re: Silicon Valley people who make $400,000 think they're middle class
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2018, 04:03:26 AM »
>I'd say a family of 4 can get by here in northeastern NC on $40k annual family income.

Bbbzzzztttt! Wrong.

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County: Pasquotank County
Household: 2 adults and 2 children

Annual Family Income   $44,083
Monthly Family Income   $3,674
 $826 for housing
 $454 for child care
 $875 for food
 $439 for transportation
 $566 for health care
 $316 for other essentials
 $197 for taxes and tax credits

http://www.unitedwaync.org/our-money-needs-calculator

<added>
http://nccareers.org/realitycheck/#/areaselect
« Last Edit: March 02, 2018, 04:09:06 AM by rcjordan »