Average is Over By Tyler Cowen was a thought-provoking book focusing on the shrinking of the middle class in America over the next several decades. Part of this book was tough sledding for me but in the end it was very stimulating in developing some ideas about the future.
An excerpt about forecasts from page 236:
“I (Tyler Cowen) am forecasting a few particular changes, starting with the most obvious and ending with the least obvious.
1. We will raise taxes somewhat, especially on higher earners.
2. We will cut Medicaid for the poor (but not so much Medicaid for the elderly) by growing stingier with eligibility requirements and with reimbursement rates for Medicaid doctors, who will impose queuing on program beneficiaries.
3.The fiscal shortfall will come out of real wages as various cost burdens are shifted to workers through the terms of the employment relationship, including costly mandates.
4. The fiscal shortfall will come out of land rents; in other words, some costs of living will fall as people begin to live in cheaper housing.
5. We’ll also pay off growing debt by spending less of our money on junk and wasteful consumption.”
I urge you to read this if you wish to understand some of our nation’s problems in the future and some theories of how to handle them.