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. Prejudicial attitudes toward them appear to have been mild, and to have derived in part from contention over the damage caused by their work. Poverty was the general rule. Clinging to their traditional occupa- tions long after changed economic conditions of the nation as a whole had made them unprofitable, most of the groups grew poorer as the centuries passed. Among some groups, extreme poverty appears to have led to petty theft as an habitual practice, and this undoubtedly low- ered their social status still further. W e may note, however, that these peoples

wife did not work, and that the two children were a 13-year-old boy and an 8-year-old girl. While it is obvious that many families, perhaps even the majority, do not fit this pattern, the budgets are useful approximations. 3. See Paul Blumberg's Inequality in an Age of Decline (New York: Oxford University Press, 1980) for a sobering assess- ment of changing economic conditions in the United States. 4. Bureau of Labor Statistics, "Autumn 1977 Urban Fam- NOTES TO PAGES 140-180 243 ily Budgets and Comparative Indexes for Selected Urban Areas," News (Washington

—untouched by the hand of government. Legal and political struggles over property rights, regulatory rules, and public investment defined the contours of the oil economy. Evolv- ing in creative tension with each other, law and politics established an ever changing framework of market rules that oil producers and con- sumers relied upon to make economic decisions. These economic rules were renegotiated continually in legislatures, statewide refer- enda, and the courts. Changing economic conditions and political sentiment meant that fundamental questions about the basic struc

their shopping lists, for example, a 314 N A T H A N R O S E N B E R G nonpolluted environment.19 However intrinsically desirable these other things may be, I merely want to insist that their attainment is costly in a variety of ways and that, as a result, the process of making adaptations to changing economic conditions has been subjected to additional and often very expensive constraints. Consider the growth of the large constituency that is now intensely concerned with problems of pollution and the improvement of envi- ronmental quality, a concern which is

interplay among the government, the agricultural industry, and workers persists in a different time and under changed economic conditions. Yet the pentimento of the past can be discerned beneath the colors of the present. The voices of workers carry faint reverberations of earlier days. Cotton work is now mechanized, but the work force in other crops is still drawn from an international pool of marginal workers. Settled Chicanos form the most stable element of the work force, augmented by an underclass of workers who migrate, sleep in the fields on plastic

economic conditions of the 1970s and 1980s on the new black middle class to discover how it fared in this period of recessions, high inflation, and high unemployment. I will also attempt to forecast the prospects of the black middle class from an analysis of societal trends and forces affecting its growth and economic position. It is an irony of history that at the point when blacks developed a viable middle class, economic con- ditions that had been transforming the United States into a middle-class society and had promised unlim- ited growth changed abruptly

. Although the 1960s were unique in some ways, the period was also of a piece with the whole history of youthful social and cultural revolts against the culture of industrial capitalism in this century. Greenwich Village Bohemia, the Flaming Youth of the 1920s, the youthful Com- munists of the 1930s, and the Beatniks of the 1950s were all forerunners of the cultural and political radicals of the 1960s. There is every reason to believe that this historical pattern of youthful revolt will surface again, despite changing economic conditions. One of the most im- portant

diffi cult straits.”20 During the 1980s, Barbara Ehrenreich wrote about sentiments that emerged among the professional middle class in the decades since its dra- matic growth and affl uence in the postwar period—an anxious mix of self- interest and self-loathing fueled by a “fear of falling.”21 Anthropologist Katherine Newman honed in on the immediate aftermath of the economic downturn of the 1980s, revealing how downwardly mobile members of the managerial middle class maintained their faith in meritocratic indi- vidualism, even as changing economic conditions

chapter offers the hypothesis that overre- gulation and distortion of water markets impair the ability of irri- gated agriculture in the semiarid West to respond to changing economic conditions. The second section introduces a working con- cept of maintaining long-run agricultural viability through applica- tion of market incentives; the third section addresses water alloca- tion decisions and economic development as related to long-run adjustments to resource scarcity; the fourth section briefly reviews historic federal policies on supply augmentation, cost recovery