Friday, December 09, 2011

Hard Times . . .

THE AMERICAN WAY by Margaret Bourke-White (1937)

IN THE LAND OF PLENTY. There is a fine, sagacious financial site called The Daily Reckoning. One of their majors, Bill Bonner, has a disturbing piece, "By the Numbers: A Closer Look at the Real Wealth of US Households".

Compared to the typical Japanese or European, the typical American is only half as rich. Half the people in the US have less than $53,000 net worth. You can imagine what the bottom 20% have.
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What we take from these figures is that America has a huge and growing class of very poor people…who are bound to be getting more desperate…and more angry…as time goes by. Unless there is genuine growth, they have no way to expand their spending, no way to get good jobs, and no hope of ever getting ahead.

When you put the unemployed together with the under-employed…those with pick up work but no fulltime, stable jobs…the total rises to one of five people in the labor pool.

20%+! And a burgeoning black-market "cash" economy in contraband, financing 'alternative government', like the Crips et al, in the barrios and elsewhere on the US urban landscape. Meanwhile the "justice system" incarcerates at increasing rates to the glee of everybody with a job in that system: the DEA, the FBI and Homeland Security need domestic problems — it's their rice bowl.  Problem is, the GOP has gamed things so that this process is putting more and more stress on American society as time passes. Simply, that cannot continue, no matter what your politics, no matter how much money the Koch Brothers throw at their side of the problem. The resistance of the oligarchy guarantees that, like Bob Marley said, one day, the bottom will drop out — in its own, unique American way.
H/T to Helmut

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