If you were to dollar cost average the wages Americans earned from 1968 to the present, adjusting for inflation and the Federal Reserve's devaluation of the dollar in that time, you would find that nearly 40% of all Americans who earn a minimum wage or less in 2013, earn much less than someone who made a minimum wage income 45 years ago.
Back in 1968, the minimum wage in the United States was $1.60 an hour. That sounds very small, but after you account for inflation a very different picture emerges. Using the inflation calculator that the Bureau of Labor Statistics provides, $1.60 in 1968 is equivalent to $10.74 today.
And of course the official government inflation numbers have been heavily manipulated to make inflation look much lower than it actually is, so the number for today should actually be substantially higher than $10.74, but for purposes of this article we will use $10.74. If you were to work a full-time job at $10.74 an hour for a full year (with two weeks off for vacation), you would make about $21,480 for the year.
That isn't a lot of money, but according to the Social Security Administration, 40.28% of all workers make less than $20,000 a year in America today. - Economic Collapse Blog
So if you wondered why 4 out of 5 Americans now live in poverty, are jobless, or receive some form of welfare assistance, all you have to do is look at the Federal Reserve and Federal government, and realize that all problems in our economic lives lay at the feet of these two entities.