Is the middle class “struggle” self-imposed?
You can look at the macro data and conclude all the negative that is expressed in these quotes. You can see flat incomes and all the rest, but that does not translate into the state of every individual or family and it does not account for the ability, indeed obligation, for people to adjust, to modify behavior, to reset priorities.
At the risk of being labeled paranoid, I see a plot here or perhaps a strategy is a better word. Convince the majority of people, in this case the middle-class, they are victims. Find the appropriate scapegoats, in this case billionaires, the 1%, wealthy, CEOs, Wall Street and convince them government is their salvation to achieve fairness. If you espouse this concept and make glowing promises, you will likely build a constituency to keep you in power.
There can be no doubt now: The U.S. economy is struggling, inequality is on the rise and too many Americans feel uncertain about their future.
On the campaign trail, I have met many of these men and women, who sit at the kitchen table each week, straining to stretch their dollars from shrinking paychecks. Families who can’t save for retirement with near-zero interest rates. Young parents who are being crushed by their student debt. Shop owners who can’t get a loan because their community bank went out of business. By CARLY FIORINA, WSJ 10/27/15
What has low-interest rates to do with saving for retirement? Retirement savings have no business in a savings account anyway. You most certainly can save for retirement. Has Carly followed the stock market since 2008?
I don’t need a television, I want a large flat screen TV and I desire a home theater.
Unless one has limitless financial resources, correctly defining needs, wants and desires and acting accordingly is the key to long-term success in my opinion. It is also my opinion that many, many Americans do not have or do not exercise this type of financial acumen.
The circumstances related above may be real, but they may also reflect something else. They reflect life choices. They reflect in many cases an inability to differentiate between needs, wants and desires. I am not being callous, I am surely not being politically correct, but I am being realistic. If you define needs, wants and desires correctly and do not let them get mixed up in your financial life I am betting the vast majority of middle class families do not fit the above political descriptions.
Who is it that is spending the $700 million on marijuana in Colorado? Not billionaires‼️ But based on age data, it is the group that can’t afford to pay for its own birth control 😰
Who is buying the record 18 million cars being sold on an annual basis?
Disney theme parks across the globe brought in 148,341,000 visitors in 2014, according to attendance data released by the Themed Entertainment Association.
Disney Parks are well represented on the list of 25 most visited theme parks in the world, with nine parks landing in the top 10. Walt Disney World’s four theme parks (water parks excluded) are included in those nine.
With 19,332,000 guests, Magic Kingdom was once again the most visited theme park in the world, seeing a 4 percent increase from 2013 Source: Orlando Sentinel
I recently had some plumbing work done and the plumber’s assistant had a massive tattoo down his right arm. “Mind if I ask what that cost?” I inquired. “$2,000” he replied, “but you should see the one on my chest.” In what world does that fit into any financial need? And remember, somewhere around 17% of Americans have at least one tattoo and about 25% for the under 35 group.
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS: When you see the middle class of this country disappearing, and when you see people you know working two or three jobs trying to cobble together some income and some healthcare, you don’t just shrug your shoulders and say, “That’s the way it is.” You fight to raise the minimum wage to a living wage.
“Cobble together some income?” And exactly what is wrong working two jobs to reach your goals and improve your economic lot? I have had a job since I was twelve, I even had a night job while I was in the army. For most of my working life I had two jobs, which was necessary putting four children through college back in the 1980s, long before we started whining about everything.
The other day I happened to be driving by a middle school as it was letting out. It was a solid middle-class group. I don’t know how the kids found their way home though because virtually every one of them were busy texting or talking on their smart phone (need, want, desire?).
I grew up in a modest, frugal household with all the necessities, but few luxuries. Vacations beyond a few days drive were rare as was eating out except for an occasional Sunday lunch at White Castle. There were no credit cards, no debt, nothing that couldn’t be paid for with real money. Toys (a toy) were reserved for Christmas, birthdays usually brought a new shirt or underwear.
The average size American home has grown from 1500 sf in the 1920s to nearly 2,500 sf along with the higher costs of upkeep. Watch what is in shopping carts as people check out at the supermarket; lots of expensive junk makes up a large portion.
So what does this all mean? It means liars figure and figures don’t give the full story. Is the middle class struggling because of the economy or is it struggling with itself, it’s needs, wants and desires and how to achieve them and how to set priorities?
Photo by Zodar/Shutterstock
The market for lattes and espressos is boiling hot. Sales at Starbucks are up 8 percent over this time last year. Peet’s Coffee & Tea reports sales of the company’s iced coffee offerings have increased by more than 70 percent since the company debuted a new cold brew offering earlier this year. According to market researcher First Research, revenues at coffee shops in the United States increased from $10 billion in 2011 to a projected $12 billion in 2015, an increase of 20 percent in four years. Source: Slate