Broad Oak: your emotional support animal

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Cause for outrage: what bankers and traders have done to "the people"

"When floodwaters cover our homes, we expect that FEMA workers with emergency checks and blankets will find us. There is no moral or substantive difference between a hundred-year flood and the near-destruction of the global financial system by speculators immune from consequence. But if you and your spouse both lose your jobs and assets because of an unprecedented economic cataclysm having nothing to do with you, you quickly discover that your society expects you and your children to live malnourished on the streets indefinitely. "

- From "The Sharp, Sudden Decline of America's Middle Class" by Jeff Tietz, Rolling Stone magazine. The article details the harrowing experience of recession victims, many of whom have done "all the right things" and never been unemployed before.

Inequality is starkly worse in the USA than in other "developed" countries, as shown in the graph below (source):

 
 
That uses data from 2010, but according to the official Census it's getting worse:
 
"The Gini Index for the United States in the 2011 ACS (0.475) was significantly higher than in the 2010 ACS (0.469). This increase suggests more income inequality across the country."

2 comments:

Weekend Yachtsman said...

"...many of whom have done "all the right things..."

Except they all decided to live in California.

Sackerson said...

Not quite fair.

1. California is by far the most populous State in the US so you'd expect its probelms to be numerically bigger, too:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by_population

2. If you must be homeless, you probably have a greater chance of surviving in a State with a warmer climate.

3. Homelessness is on the increase in most parts of the USA. In 2008-2009 the biggest percentage increase was in Louisiana:

http://www.endhomelessness.org/library/entry/total-homelessness-by-state-state-of-homelessness-2011