1975 Sears Catalog

I missed this two-year-old post from Don Boudreax at Cafe Hayek, but it is an excellent two part look at the 1975 Sears catalog aimed at answering the question, "Are we wealthier today?"  Part 1 just browses the catalog; part 2 is really interesting in that he compares the hours of work required today vs. 1975.  One interesting conclusion is that the comparison can be difficult because even some of the best items in 1975 are not as good as the economy models today.  And he does not mention things like reliability.  How often did the TV repair guy come to your house in the early 70's, with his big box of tubes.  My Sony in my bedroom has been operating flawlessly since 1995.  For example:

Sears lowest-priced garage-door opener: 20.1 hours of work required in
1975 (to buy a ¼-horsepower opener); 8.57 hours of work required in
2006 (to buy a ½-horsepower opener; Sears no longer sells garage-door
openers with less than ½-horsepower.)

One Comment

  1. John Galt:

    Which goes back to someone's point a few posts back about "Sam Walton, Great Humanitarian."