With wages dropping across substantial portions of the population over the last 40 years, how can we expect families (smaller and less tight knit than ever before, by the way) to have the same level of resources they once did? Look at the chart. The money that lower income survivors had a generation or two ago, does not exist any more.
Overall, the funeral service establishment does not recognize these economic realities.
Thank you Paul Krugman for the heads up!