A New Middle-Class Compact

June 14th, 2007

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Earlier this year, we released a paper called The New Rules Economy, in which we argued that middle class anxiety is rooted in the uncertainty of change.

And by change, we really mean the broad structural changes that our occurring in our economy due to advances in technology and accelerating globalization. In our narrative, we see the middle class as being forced to figure out, cope, and prosper on their own amidst these vast changes. Conservatives tell the middle class not to worry and that they should put their faith in the markets to sort out winners and losers. Many progressives tell them the opposite – to worry. They warn them of the dire consequences of change and promise to turn back the clock or cushion the blow.

Today, we released a strategy memo, A New Middle Class Compact, that offers a series of ideas that address change and help average people succeed. This memo, based on our New Rules narrative, is about steering change and not being steered by it. It is about making globalization work for America and Americans.

The ideas in this compact are intentionally medium-sized, because we sought to create an agenda that progressives could unite behind in Congress and realistically have a chance to move forward in the near term. We also wanted the ideas to be illustrative of the narrative and framework that we propose. We hope you’ll take a look.