Everyone should remember that economics is a social science and NOT a natural science. That means that the laws, theories and empirics of economics are not perfect and that they are adjusted frequently to accommodate reality. Theory helps us to understand the world, but it does not explain everything.
Thus, let me be the first to proudly exclaim once again that the US should shift to a new golf-style scoring system for economic indicators. By using a golf-style system, one that places more value on low figures and tallies, the United States could once again begin moving in positive trajectories for a number of indicators including the size of our middle class.
Sure there numerous reasons why the middle class is shrinking ranging from a bifurcation and orientation of urban markets toward producer and consumer services to a restructuring of manufacturing supply chains due to international competition, but all those things can be negated with a new scoring system.
The model is simple and has been promoted by the majority of economists for years as a alternative to their current preference of simply sticking their hands up in the air while looking bewildered and exclaiming how they “don’t know” and “just want a nice tenured professorship”. It is defined as:
MaxP = 1/x * r - Stw
Where MaxP is the Max performance, x is the economic indicator, r is the rate of inflation and Stw is the score of Tiger Woods.
In non-technical terms, the model tells us that the maximum performance of the US economy is measured by the inverse of the economic indicator (i.e. size of middle class) times the rate of inflation minus the score of Tiger Woods at his current golf tournament.
What this means is that the US economy would perform better if 1) our economy is performing poorly and negative measures are large and 2) if Tiger Woods is shooting well.
So, don’t fret about the shrinking of the middle class; just join the push to adopt golf-style economic scoring. FYI - the official name is the Hooton-Woods Model.