Wednesday, March 15, 2017

"Coming Apart" author at Vanderbilt

Vanderbilt's Adam Smith Society (Free Markets, Open Minds), hosted Charles Murray at Vanderbilt yesterday who gave a talk on his book, Coming Apart, in which he documents the bifurcation of US white males aged 30-49, into a "cognitive elite," and an underclass that is much worse off:
Less than a third of its children grow up in households that include both biological parents. The men claim physical disability at astounding rates and are less likely to hold down jobs than in the past. Churchgoing among the white working class has declined, eroding the social capital that organized religion once provided.

Murray's thesis closely parallels that of Tyler Cowen's The Complacent Class, as evidenced in The New Segregation video.


  1. Single momhood, the welfare state and the dumbing down of America have created the perfect storm.

  2. Class disintegration and how we maintain the middle class is going to be a huge evolving issue to tackle in the immediate future. The article linked touches on many of the social culture erosion that has been taking place for decades. Outside of race simply when looking at class it makes me think of the wage gap. We have an accelrating gap currently that is going to continue to hurt the middle class and lower middle class.

    Also we have to consider what the jobs outlook is going to be like in the future as we see technologies like the self driving cars, drones, automation, and artificial intelligence being commercially used more frequently. Skills growth to perform service and interaction with the next generation of jobs is critical. IBM has even began marketing the term "New Collar Jobs" indicating this shift.

    How we train and support the middle class and deal with the class erosion is quite important to overall economic health to drive sectors such as retail spending.