If you have a new account but are having problems posting or verifying your account, please email us on [email protected] for help. Thanks :)
Hello all! Please ensure that you are posting a new thread or question in the appropriate forum. The Feedback forum is overwhelmed with questions that are having to be moved elsewhere. If you need help to verify your account contact [email protected]

Death of the Middle Class

  • 17-09-2022 3:21pm
    Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭

    It seems today in Ireland people are either rich or they are struggling.

    Rich people who work in MNCs and big tech roles are very comfortable and competing to buy housing and enjoy the fruits of our GDP.

    But what I see is most younger people are falling into a frustrated left behind category. In Dublin if your single and earn less than 100k you cannot buy a place, at least not a place you would like to live in. So you end up paying 50% of your income to rent, or you are forced to live with parents or house share.

    These topics always go into "upskill to tech" or leave Dublin etc. But lets talk reality. What people living lives in average jobs do

    When I grew up in the 2000s, teachers, nurses, accountants, marketing roles, retail workers, taxi drivers etc etc could all live comfortably. They could own a home, buy a car and go to Spain for 2 weeks in the summer. Plenty had a mobile home down the country for the weekends.

    Now these same people are in bedsits or house shares if they are younger. No hope of getting on the ladder. And its not just Ireland, Canada, Australia and the UK seem to have these problems too.

    So what Im asking is will the regular middle class ever recover their living standards? And what can we do to change things for this category of most working people

    I see plenty of working people having a worse standard of living than unemployed people had 20 years ago

    Perhaps this is the concept of "Elite Overproduction" in action, when everyone has a degree and a profession, professions only give the living standards of unskilled labourers

    Post edited by Beasty on


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,990 ✭✭✭Brussels Sprout

    When I grew up in the 2000s, teachers, nurses, accountants, marketing roles, retail workers, taxi drivers etc etc could all live comfortably. They could own a home, buy a car and go to Spain for 2 weeks in the summer. Plenty had a mobile home down the country for the weekends.

    Not knocking your post in general but that was literally the Celtic-Tiger era. It turns out that a lot of that was fuelled by credit and it blew up spectacularly.

  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    For the record, I should have stated this. I would say people like you, who bought at the tail end of the celtic tiger are the last to have been able to be normal middle class in the old sense of the word.

    Its anyone who qualified after that (minus the 20% or so in STEM) who are screwed and living worse than welfare was in 2004.

    So giving that most people earn somewhere between 30,000 and 50,000. How do we return normal standards of living to those people

  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    If your correct about the arse falling out of tech then thats a relief. Its a lot of rich overseas workers pricing out the formerly comfortable classes. If they go, rents and house prices will fall and 40,000 will once again give a good standard of living

    Actually, if the tech jobs go with their salaries the knock impact would resolve the issues I stated above.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    What you are referring to as "middle class" might be what others would refer to underachieving slackers whose parents had a decent job; such that they assumed life was always going to be handed to them on a plate.

    I mean you are including "taxi driver" and "retail worker" in your definition. Nothing wrong with those positions but I don't think that many would have traditionally categorized them as "middle class" or "professions"

    Traditionally, middle class would have been doctors, solicitors, accountants etc. I'd imagine that those are all still managing to get by

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    I include them because growing up in what I would view as middle class semi d's (Kingswood in Tallaght) I had friends with parents who drove taxis, worked as postmen, worked in tesco etc. They could all have their home, car and a 2 week holiday

    I use the term middle class to mean normal

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Well we understand different meanings of the phrase then.

    The stereotype of Tallaght is not one populated with middle class professionals. How accurate that is can be debated. But it is the first time I have seen that association made

  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    So most people are not middle class?

    Id associate doctors etc as the upper rich class. Normal people like mentioned in my op as middle class. And the poor as being working class

    But do you then think most people are poor?

  • Registered Users Posts: 932 ✭✭✭Notmything

    Another thread, one the same topic, by the same poster.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Working class does not mean "poor". Usually not millionaires, but don't have to be poor. Working class work for a living. Middle class have handier careers and professions. Upper class don't have to work

    (insofar as there are "classes" .... but I speak of the general categorizations)

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    Can we go back to the topic at hand.

    For average income people, for normal people in normal jobs. Will living standards ever recover to pre 2008 and what can we do to make this happen in terms of government policies

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Step 1 is not to be sitting on your hole waiting for the government to do it for you.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Still, it's a fair stretch to be lumping in retail workers and postmen with doctors and accountants in terms of expected earnings

    I'm not saying anything bad about them - just being realistic

  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    Again, Im referring to normal people, working hard with degrees etc making 30,000 - 50,000 a year, paying half in rent.

    Either market based, or government policy or whatever. These are average joe hard working people. What can be done to make life liveable for this cohort again?

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Someone on 30k with a degree is either early career (and still really learning), extremely unlucky in their choices, coasting through life (which there is nothing wrong with), or picked a silly "degree".

    If all else fails -> #onlyfans

  • Registered Users Posts: 700 ✭✭✭dontmindme

  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    Ok so your taking the upskill etc boot stram line

    I specifically said the question Im asking here is what can be done to return a normal standard of living to this majority income cohort earning, lets say 35,000 not 30,000 because thats the rate the higher income tax rates and HAP limits cut off.

    What can be done to go back to the time that average incomes had the lifestyle associated with normal living standards of a home, a car and a 2 week holiday

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    To provide the structure for the economy to allow you to prosper. That is there

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,773 ✭✭✭acequion

    I think you have started a very interesting thread Op and I think you're right. Many years ago and certainly prior to the Celtic Tiger when in fact Ireland wasn't a rich country but house prices were reasonable, middle class people like teachers, nurses, guards, clerical workers etc, in fact those in secure employment, were able to afford a decent standard of living including the young and single. Like you said, they had the house, the car, the holiday. Granted expectations weren't hugely high like they are today and people were very happy living modestly but comfortably. Now those starting out in said professions have a bleak future. I would also categorise people such as doctors, solicitors, ie those with their own practice or business, in a higher bracket.

  • Registered Users Posts: 161 ✭✭Housing99

    then they have failed as in the current economy most people dont prosper

  • Advertisement
  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Therein lies the confusion. The proverbial flat-scree-TV-salesman on great commission in the mid 2000's might have considered himself "middle class" but that was a misunderstanding in his own head. It was a transitory blip where he was able to make hay. There was no logical basis to any expectation that that should continue

  • Registered Users Posts: 404 ✭✭Kurooi

    I think what we are seeing is lockdowns coupled with inflation making apparent a long running trend of growing gap between the ultra rich and everybody else. High achievers with experience and/or papers used to have the comfortable life. Now it takes that just to make a basic living.

    And there are people still in this 'upper middle' or 'upper' class who are proud, not worried about their future. Zero foresight, at current trend you're next. give it 10 years and doctors, IT, lawyers will be poor by current standards.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    No they haven't. The system is there for you to prosper. You have to do it yourself though.

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,872 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    Your "normal standards" are based off some very small window of time in the 2000's. Which bore no resemblance to Ireland pre-1995

    Back then, all that your Tallaght neighbours had for entertainment was joyriding robbed cars and heroin. No 2-week holidays off to Santa Ponsa in those days. A few weeks holidays up the the 'Joy if they were caught with their robbed cars would have been the extent of it

  • Registered Users Posts: 17,981 ✭✭✭✭namloc1980

    A lot of that was fuelled by personal borrowings and cheap credit e.g. the shopping weekends in NYC. Household debt today is less than half what it was in the Celtic Tiger era.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,925 ✭✭✭thomas 123

    Not long ago one person could go out and work and another could stay at home and mind the kids and still get by, have a mortgage etc. Amazing how things change in 20 years.

  • Registered Users Posts: 14,435 ✭✭✭✭Fr Tod Umptious

    And people like me will be out of a job.

    And I'll be looking for the dole.

    The resolution to the housing issue is not hoping a strong value added industry tanks.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,324 ✭✭✭Shebean

    The middle class is now made up of a lot of working class. They don't like to use 'working class' so they set it up that everyone is middle class. It's PR.

    If you're not a professional or management you are not middle class IMO.

    Yep. Now you need to be both working and living out in the sticks for a chance.

    This is no accident. Its by design.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,925 ✭✭✭thomas 123

    You cant live out in the sticks though - since planning wont allow it.

  • Advertisement
  • Administrators, Social & Fun Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 73,415 Admin ✭✭✭✭✭Beasty

    The OP was warned last time that another thread like this would result in a permanent forum ban

    Thread closed and OP banned

This discussion has been closed.