Social mobility is increasing but people are unhappy about this for some reason


This an extremely puzzling complaint:

More people are moving down, rather than up, the social ladder as the number of middle-class managerial and professional jobs shrinks, according to an Oxford University study.

The experience of upward mobility – defined as a person ending up in an occupation of higher status than their father – has become less common in the past four decades, the study says, leaving children of those who benefited from it with worse prospects than their parents had.

Dr John Goldthorpe, a co-author of the study and Oxford sociologist, said: “For the first time in a long time, we have got a generation coming through education and into the jobs market whose chances of social advancement are not better than their parents, they are worse.”

Social class is not an absolute matter, it is a relative matter. Who is on top can change along with the structure of society: we've had versions where it's the very religious that are on top, where the good warriors are, where those with lots of land are and so on. But while which class it is has changed it's always been entirely obvious that they're of a "higher" class than the others. A relative matter rather than an absolute one.

Given this it is therefore also obviously true that if we've an increase in downward social mobility we must also be seeing an increase in upward social mobility. Because that social class thing is a relative, not an absolute, matter. And normally people cheer, or at least people like The Guardian cheer, when there's an increase in upward social mobility.

Can't think why they're not here.