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today i learned that Bob Cratchit's wages of 15 shillings a week, portrayed as poverty wages in A Christmas Carol, is the equivalent today of £40,000

i am earning less than Bob Cratchit

@electrocutie decades of effective propaganda and destruction of actual leftist movements

@PsyChuan @electrocutie sometimes literally too. see: the pinkertons, the treatment of the black panther party, the 1973 chilean coup, etc.

@PsyChuan one of the comments is really good at qualifying, possibly even to the point of debunking, this and is worth reading in full old.reddit.com/r/AskHistorians

quick summary: scrooge was actually honest and paying fairly and doing everything he was supposed to, the point of xmas carol was he had to go above and beyond that to be saved in a xian sense

@PsyChuan I've always enjoyed the part where Scrooge, the man responsible for Cratchit's pay, chides him for making only 15 shillings a week. Dickens was a real one.

@InternetEh terrible to women, but understood class issues well. gonna invent a time machine and go back and explain intersectionality to him

@PsyChuan Smaug's pile of riches would rank somewhere in the 800s of the "richest people in the world" lists

@PsyChuan that mapping helps a lot!

Going from the link to update that 15 shillings in London to say $80,000 today. In San Francisco or Seattle. With seven kids. At least one of whom needs extra care, and we *know* Scrooge won't be providing any extra health coverage with that $80k.

But also yeah today's bosses are generally behind Scrooge on generosity of spirit.

@PsyChuan i just checked that against the Bank of England's CPI calculator: 15/- per week, in 1843, equates to £39 a year, which is equivalent (in spending power) to just £5067 in 2020 (average inflation of 2.8%).

but a funny thing. if you try 1842, the same £39 is only worth £4510. evidently 1843 was a very deflationary year!

of course, that's CPI - it only covers typical purchases; for rent, we'd have to look at RPI. and the further back the figures go, the less accurate they are.

but it seems reasonable to say that a wage of 15/-pw in 1843 is on a par, give or take, with the basic element of Universal Credit while it was uplifted. a bit less than £100 a week.

and Cratchit would've had to find rent from that too.

@thamesynne the link explains that it's based on the relative wage scales of the time.

@PsyChuan i read the reasoning, several times, but every time it felt more like a bait-and-switch

@PsyChuan by my read of that comment, it's not actually poverty wages, it's the fact that he has 7 children and Scrooge refuses to help him out that is causing the problems? unless I misread something.

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