Well, when you can't make a living as an uneducated lout then the only solution is to go out and get an education or become a service industry flunky.
Trust me, I worked as a "service level flunky" and it got old, really quick, so I went back to college and became a potentially better worker.
The problem with American society today is that is is
changing, and to get ahead you really have
to get a better than high-school education. How is this a problem? Well, typically poor schools in relation to the other industrialized nations and the lack of motivation by society to get everyone into higher education (and make them qualified and prepared enough to keep it as HIGHER education and not Jr. college level) is what holds people back.
So, since everyone doesn't want to go (more school, hell no!) or doesn't realize the benefits of a college education we end up with labor unions extorting more money from businesses and and a large income gap from the people who make businesses run (white collar workers) and those who cut the grass around said businesses (blue collar workers). Of course this is a grossly over-simplified example, but convey's the point hopefully.
A business looking for a way to lower costs and increase profit is not a bad thing, remember businesses are around to MAKE MONEY, their one golden-rule, just because society won't adapt to the changing conditions isn't the fault of the businesses, but of the people who make up the society.
Society is slow changing to reflect the change in business, but will it be fast enough? Who knows.. In the mean time, as the demand for goods stays constant and the earning potentiasl goes down we all see a lowering of prices from increased competition, or maybe that's just me since I now make more due to college education, than I did as a service inductry flunky. :D