Twenty-two years ago, Bill Moyers started documenting the story of two ordinary families in Milwaukee, Wisconsin -- families whose breadwinners had lost well-paying factory jobs. Relying on the belief that hard work is the key to a good living and better life, the Stanleys and the Neumanns, like millions of others, went about pursuing the American dream. But as they found other jobs, got re-trained, and worked any time and overtime, they still found themselves on a downward slope, working harder and longer for less pay and fewer benefits, facing devastating challenges and difficult choices.
Bill Moyers revisits his reports on the Stanleys and Neumanns – whose stories Bill updates on the July 9 Frontline report “Two American Families.” He also talks with the authors of two important books about how the changing nature of the economy is affecting everyone: Barbara Miner, a public education advocate who’s been following the decline of her own Milwaukee hometown for nearly 40 years; and author, activist and playwright Barbara Garson, who’s published a number of books about the changing lives of working Americans. Her most recent is Down the Up Escalator: How the 99% Live in the Great Recession.
Moyers & Company: Surviving the New American Economy, Friday at 9 p.m. on PBS 6.