The New York Times frequently provides the valuable service of unintentionally tipping the hand of conventional (overclass) ideologies. Applying simple reason to the NYT‘s usual reportorial contortions, it is often possible to find important admissions of core brainwashing stratagems.
And so it is today regarding the core American political insistence that this is a “middle-class” society. Turns out that the experts in charge of managing this untruth are pretty keenly aware of their own bullshit:
“It used to be ‘middle class’ represented everyone, actually or in their aspirations, but now it doesn’t feel as attainable,” said David Madland, managing director of economic policy at the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank with close ties to the Clinton campaign. [emphasis added]
The entirely logical reality is that, in the Times‘ phrasing, “[e]ven if families fall in the middle in income distribution, they cannot afford many of the necessities, much less the luxuries, traditionally associated with being middle class.”
The balance of the story reports on how politicians are now scrambling to coin new ways of refusing to talk realistically about social class while suggesting they actually care about the class fates of ordinary citizens.
But it is official: “Middle class” has always been a diversionary tactic, a way of using aspirations to prevent the truth from surfacing.