Article 3 days a go on SFChronicle... kids who don't grasp Algebra the first time around generally don't ever get it, and go on to avoid math at the higher levels.
That's me. Well, I could grasp it, but I didn't ever do any homework thru junior high or high school. Made it tough to pass English, and SocialStudies.
As for the one mil and 70k for 20 years, that's about an average nowadaze.