[A-List] Fwd: Hiram Lee: Collapse of the Standard of Living in the USA

Suzanne de Kuyper suzannedk at gmail.com
Wed Apr 28 03:33:05 MDT 2010

The middle class is being systematicly removed and the lower class is
being systematicly destroyed as well.  There is not a chance things
will get better.  Since this government has three hundred million
people to restructure this realignment will take at least ten years.
Probably thrice as long.  This is no oops-we-made-a-mistake time.
The Military laws were already changed a year or more ago to address
the growing dangers of violent responses in American people.  Mass use
of drugs will be used as well.
under Military Laws already in place for more than four years.
Accidents of Greed?  Not this government.    Time to get real.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Global Research E-Newsletter <crgeditor at yahoo.com>
Date: Tue, Apr 27, 2010 at 4:00 PM
Subject: Hiram Lee: Collapse of the Standard of Living in the USA
To: suzannedk at gmail.com

Collapse of the Standard of Living in the USA
Studies Reveal Declining Living Standards and Increasing Anger

By Hiram Lee

URL of this article: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=18829

Global Research, April 24, 2010
World Socialist Web Site - 2010-04-23

A series of recent studies conducted by the Pew Research Center shed
new light on the scope of the economic crisis in the US and the level
of hostility the majority of the American population holds for the US

Released in March, before the passage of the Obama administration’s
health care legislation, a survey entitled “Health Care Reform—Can’t
Live With It, or Without It” indicates that 92 percent of Americans
give the national economy a negative rating. No fewer than 70 percent
of the respondents report having suffered job-related and financial
problems in the past year, an increase from 59 percent the year
before. Fifty-four percent report someone in their home has been
without a job and looking for work in the past year, up from 39
percent in 2009.

The poll saw an aggravation of conditions in every area of economic
life studied the year before. Increasing numbers of people are
reporting difficulty receiving or affording medical care (26 percent)
or paying their rent or mortgage payments (24 percent). More Americans
faced problems with collections and credit agencies (21 percent), or
had mortgages, loans or credit card applications denied (19 percent).

As could be expected, the poorest Americans are suffering the most.
Some 44 percent of those making $30,000 per year or less report
difficulty obtaining medical care, compared to 11 percent of those
making $75,000 per year or more. A similar gap can be found in the
category of rents and mortgages, with 37 percent of those making
$30,000 or less reporting difficulty making rent or mortgage payments,
compared to 11 percent of those making $75,000 or more. However, the
percentage of those facing difficulties paying rent has increased
dramatically for both groups since 2009.

Large numbers of workers polled in the study say they have little
confidence in job security and prospects for the future, with almost
half (49 percent) saying it is “very or somewhat likely” they will
suffer “job-related financial stress” in the next year. Twenty-five
percent of workers say they expect to be forced to take a pay cut this
year, while 24 percent expect to be laid off.

The Pew survey found that 85 percent of Americans reported difficulty
finding jobs in their communities. This and other statistics revealing
the increasingly dismal employment opportunities facing millions of
Americans are provided context in another study released this month by
the Pew Economic Policy Group.

“A Year or More: The High Cost of Long-Term Unemployment” reports that
no fewer than 44 percent of unemployed Americans met or exceeded the
standard measure of long-term unemployment (six months or more) in
March 2010. This marks the highest rate for long-term unemployment
levels since World War II.

In addition to this, the Pew study reports that “23 percent of the
nearly 15 million Americans who are unemployed have been jobless for a
year or more.” This translates to 3.4 million people, “roughly
equivalent,” the study points out, “to the population of the state of

These alarming numbers should be considered along with findings in
another recent Pew research study entitled “The People and Their
Government,” released April 18. This report finds that “by almost
every conceivable measure Americans are less positive and more
critical of government these days.”

Only 22 percent of Americans say their government can be trusted,
according to the new survey. The report puts this among the lowest
measures of trust in the government in half a century.

The study also shows across-the-board declines in approval ratings for
numerous federal agencies, including the Department of Education, the
Food and Drug Administration, the Social Security Administration, the
Environmental Protection Agency, and the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention. Forty-three percent say the government has a negative
effect on their daily life, up from 31 percent in 1997.

While approval ratings for the government are remarkably low, with 65
percent saying the federal government and congress have a negative
impact “on the way things are going in the country,” the approval
ratings for other major institutions are as low or lower. Sixty-nine
percent of those surveyed say banks and other financial institutions
have a negative impact on the way things are going in the country,
while 64 percent say “large corporations” have a negative impact. Some
57 percent say the national news media has a negative impact, while 49
percent say labor unions have such an impact.

The report states that “more than six-in-ten (62%) say it is a major
problem that government policies unfairly benefit some groups while
nearly as many (56%) say that government does not do enough to help
average Americans.”

Taken as a whole, the Pew studies from March and April offer
additional insight into the growing social misery under conditions of
the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, and the outrage
it is generating.

Wide layers of the population, who have seen trillions of dollars
funneled from the public treasury into the coffers of Wall Street
executives while their own living standards have been assaulted, their
jobs slashed, their children’s schools closed, and vital social
programs such as Medicare cut by billions of dollars, have no faith in
the US government to secure their most basic social needs.

The corporate-controlled news media, along with the major institutions
overseeing the nation’s educational needs and basic food and medical
resources, are considered corrupt and untrustworthy, contributing to
the suffering of millions.

President Barack Obama, continuing to pose as a populist man of the
people when he finds it necessary or beneficial, stands exposed as the
chief representative of the interests of the American ruling elite and
the standard bearer in the assault on the working class.

The restructuring of society taking place, in the direct interests of
the corporate-financial elite and at the expense of the working
population, is not occurring unnoticed. The American and international
working class will inevitably find itself drawn into struggle against
the present, untenable form of social organization.

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