Chapter 11

Breaking Out of the Middle Class

Please don't take offense at what I write in this chapter. I know many of you have spent your whole life trying to get to the middle class, and I am about to tell you it is the wrong goal. Have an open mind. I am going to write an entire book on this topic one day—but for now, let's just think about breaking out of what I call the “middle-class mentality.” I believe I can make the case that the middle class is the group hurt most by its members' thinking and actions—leaving themselves to be the most susceptible to insecurity and pain. Although this is a group that many people aspire to be a part of, it's also the group that seems the most trapped, manipulated, and at risk. Is the middle class really as good a status as you've been made to believe? Do you even know what it means to be middle class or what puts a person in this group? Before you make a decision about where you are going or the group you're striving to belong to, it would be wise to inspect the statistics of that group.

The Incomes of the Middle Class

Reports from Wikipedia and the 2008 Census suggest that the middle-class income range is somewhere between $35,000 to $50,000 per year. Read another set of studies, and these figures are between $22,000 and $65,000 per year. It's no secret that it would be extremely difficult to live on either of these income levels in an urban area like New York or LA—much less feel financially secure. This experience is not what most people ...

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