My son, who is a Global Supply Chain Solutions major at our local SUNY college, and I had a discussion about the economy the other day and he made what I thought was an excellent point. While it is a given that the US economy has become global in nature, he brought up the thought that as a result of this globalization the standard of living throughout the world has become more unified and that the higher standard of living that the middle class here has taken for granted may no longer be a reality. For example, it used to be a given that our children would graduate high school and then continue on to a four year school; however, the reality is that more students are choosing to go to community college first due to the costs of higher education. The idea of a stay-at-home mom is a distant memory--our kids have become latch key kids. Homeownership, once considered to be the American dream, has been put on hold as more and more young people either choose to rent or, in extreme cases, live with their parents. There are many other examples of things that used to be a given that are now the ideal. Conversely, the standard of living among developing countries is steadily improving. The Chinese are putting their bikes away in favor of cars. Sales of technology goods are at an all-time high as the Chinese people have more disposable income than in years past. I find it ironic that we are returning to the basics while the Chinese are pursuing their own version of the American dream. Any thoughts?