I blame Ronald Reagan: He was President of the Screen Actor's Guild union for many years, and then a union-buster when he was President of the US. That was the point that even non-corrupt unions really started declining. Now we are living in an age of stagnant wages but continuing inflation. No wonder working class people in the Midwest are willing to try anything: Compared to 30 years ago, all the wisdom about working at a job and steadily getting raises until you retire with a pension, is no longer true. Instead you work when you can, at steadily crappier jobs for less money. Then you retire when you can't work anymore, and try to get by on Social Security. Eventually, you have to decide if you want cat food or your prescriptions.

It's The Conservative Dream (as opposed to The American Dream). Only it isn't you that is dreaming: It's some rich folks whose ideas of success all depend on lots of other people failing.