Dream Hoarders: How the American Upper Middle Class Is Leaving Everyone Else in the Dust, Why That Is a Problem, and What to Do About It
America is becoming a class-based society.
It is now conventional wisdom to focus on the wealth of the top 1 percent—especially the top 0.01 percent—and how the ultra-rich are concentrating income and prosperity while incomes for most other Americans are stagnant. But the most important, consequential, and widening gap in American society is between the upper middl
I knew I would hate that Dr. Reeves would call me out for my efforts at gaming the system (529s, property, investments, parenting, university admissions, job referrals/networking) to ensure that my daughter would not fall out of the top quintile, regardless of how many times she might fail, despite our best efforts.
In all fairnes ...more
Some good observations and awful conclusions. I will write more later. But in the meantime I will note that this guy quotes the likes of Charles Murray (of The Bell Curve fame!) and implies that virtually anything people do to help their children is part of a malicious economic game. There's no room in his world for intrinsic values. His view of the world is one in which people only value pursuits insofar as they bring profit, in which people dropping millions to secure legacy ...more
Personally, Richard Reeves’ work was helpful in that it clarified some hard-line facts about th ...more
"The upper middle class is privileged"
The word "privileged" means to have special rights or immunities, often undeserved. But almost on the ver ...more
I think his most persuasive argument is ...more
I mean, yes. “My intuition is that upper middle-class adults would be more supportive of redistributive policies and institutions if they were less certain of where their own children... were going to end up.”
This book does a good job explaining my visceral revulsion about so many things in my current life: low-density suburbs, well-funded public school foundations for individual districts, tax policies that disproportionately benefit the already-privi ...more
Anyway, the idea is that the too 20% should voluntarily give up some of their wealth/privilege/access to those below them on the economic ladder. Fine. I'll follow your lead.
Gripes a lot about legacy college admissions without really providing any examples besides Jared Kushner (I read a book with more examples in 2015) and doesn't like unpaid internships ...more
The upper middle class is defined as the top 20 percent of earners in t ...more
Reeves makes a critical distinction between things like good schools and private music lessons, which are expensive but every parent should wish for, and "dream hoarding" which are opportunities that are necessarily scarce like internships and slots at top colleges. This is a valuable distinction, because otherwise he'd risk offending far too many parents who just want their kid to play the trombone and get A+s and don't see what's wrong with that. Dream hoarding is the real enemy, not just drea ...more
This is a thoughtful book written by a thoughtful economist at Brookings. His argument is that the upper middle class in the USA (defin ...more
I needed the words in this book. All my life, I've needed the words in this book. And now I have them. ...more