The Beginning Of The End
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24 Signs Of Economic Decline In America

The United States is in the middle of a devastating long-term economic decline and it is getting really hard to deny it.  Over the past year I have included literally thousands of depressing statistics in my articles about the U.S. economy.  I have done this in order to make an overwhelming case that the U.S. economy is in deep decline and is dying a little bit more every single day.  Until we understand exactly how bad our problems are we will never be willing to accept the solutions.  The truth is that our leaders have absolutely wrecked the greatest economic machine that the world has ever seen.  Most Americans just assume that we will always experience overwhelming prosperity, but that is not anywhere close to the truth.  We are not guaranteed anything.  Our manufacturing base has been gutted, the number of jobs is declining, more Americans are dependent on government handouts than ever before, our dollar is dying and as a nation we are absolutely drowning in debt.  The economists that are trumpeting an “economic recovery” and that are declaring that the U.S. economy will soon be “better than ever” are delusional.  We really are steamrolling toward a complete and total economic collapse and our leaders are doing nothing to stop it.

The following are 24 more signs of economic decline in America.  Hopefully you will not get too depressed as you read them….

#1 On Monday, Standard & Poor’s altered its outlook on U.S. government debt from “stable” to “negative” and warned the U.S. that it could soon lose its AAA rating.  This is yet another sign that the rest of the world is losing faith in the U.S. dollar and in U.S. Treasuries.

#2 China has announced that they are going to be reducing their holdings of U.S. dollars.  In fact, there are persistent rumors that this has already been happening.

#3 Hedge fund manager Dennis Gartman says that “panic dollar selling is setting in” and that the U.S. dollar could be in for a huge decline.

#4 The biggest bond fund in the world, PIMCO, is now shorting U.S. government bonds.

#5 This cruel economy is causing “ghost towns” to appear all across the United States.  There are quite a few counties across the nation that now have home vacancy rates of over 50%.

#6 There are now about 7.25 million less jobs in America than when the recession began back in 2007.

#7 The average American family is having a really tough time right now.  Only 45.4% of Americans had a job during 2010.  The last time the employment level was that low was back in 1983.

#8 Only 66.8% of American men had a job last year.  That was the lowest level that has ever been recorded in all of U.S. history.

#9 According to a new report from the AFL-CIO, the average CEO made 343 times more money than the average American did last year.

#10 Gas prices reached five dollars per gallon at a gas station in Washington, DC on April 19th, 2011.  Could we see $6 gas soon?

#11 Over the past 12 months the average price of gasoline in the United States has gone up by about 30%.

#12 Due to rising fuel prices, American Airlines lost a staggering $436 million during the first quarter of 2011.

#13 U.S. households are now receiving more income from the U.S. government than they are paying to the government in taxes.

#14 Approximately one out of every four dollars that the U.S. government borrows goes to pay the interest on the national debt.

#15 Total home mortgage debt in the United States is now about 5 times larger than it was just 20 years ago.

#16 Total credit card debt in the United States is now more than 8 times larger than it was just 30 years ago.

#17 Average household debt in the United States has now reached a level of 136% of average household income.  In China, average household debt is only 17% of average household income.

#18 The average American now spends approximately 23 percent of his or her income on food and gas.

#19 In a recent survey conducted by Deloitte Consulting, 74 percent of Americans said that they planned to slow down their spending in coming months due to rising prices.

#20 59 percent of all Americans now receive money from the federal government in one form or another.

#21 According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average length of unemployment in the U.S. is now an all-time record 39 weeks.

#22 As the economy continues to collapse, frustration among young people will continue to grow and we will see more seemingly “random acts of violence”.  One shocking example of this happened in the Atlanta area recently.  The following is how a local Atlanta newspaper described the attack….

Roughly two dozen teens, chanting the name of a well-known Atlanta gang, brought mob rule to MARTA early Sunday morning, overwhelming nervous passengers and assaulting two Delta flight attendants.

#23 Some Americans have become so desperate for cash that they are literally popping the gold teeth right out of their mouths and selling them to pawn shops.

#24 As the economy has declined, the American people have been gobbling up larger and larger amounts of antidepressants and other prescription drugs.  In fact, the American people spent 60 billion dollars more on prescription drugs in 2010 than they did in 2005.

  • hojo0710

    One thing that stands out in this crisis is the malevolence of the Federal Reserve System. It created the housing bubble, the bursting of which started the avalanche of deflation that threatens to bury us. The fact that many bankers, brokers, etc., became super rich during the bubble time reflects a pure gift from the people of the United States via the FRS. Down with this toxic enterprise!

  • Kay

    I am amazed how most Americans understand things are bad,but are making zero plans to prepare for when things get worse. People of faith saying, well I will just trust God. Let me tell you something, God expects us to see the problems coming and be prepared and help educate and prepare others!

  • Dan Hannok

    Too many people work for government! I swear, approximately 50% of the people from my High School class are either a teacher, paid fire fighter, cop, soldier or work in some other area of government – Local, State or Federal! Is it any wonder why our taxes are so high and why we have so many of them? I am disgusted.

    About 40 years ago, IBM was the largest employer in the world. Now, it’s the US government with 4 million employees and about 90% of all government employees get a pension. State employees also get pensions and other benefits for life. How are we supposed to pay for all of this nonsense that politicians promised so that they could get elected? Answer: WE CAN’T and this is one of the reasons why the Federal government and many State & Local governments are bankrupt with massive deficits and entitlement programs that cannot be paid for. Oh, I almost forgot to mention that less than 20% of those that work in private industry get a pension and that number is shrinking every day as CEO’s and Lawyers have figured out creative ways to take away those benefits!

    The United States has NO INDUSTRIAL POLICY. The New Financial Reform Bill is a joke and an insult to the American People because it does nothing to stop the back room dealings and thievery and fraud that continues to be perpetrated by Wall Street on innocent investors and the American Public. Wall Street controls the White House and Congress. Our politicians no longer care about us and they certainly don’t represent us any more.

    TRUE WEALTH is created by: Mining, Construction, Agriculture and Manufacturing. These primary industries have been over-taxed, over-regulated and chased out of the US by bad government policy and an unfair trade agreement (NAFTA).

    Today? The Financial Epicenter of the US is: Government, Banking/Finance, Insurance and the Defense sector/Military complex (killing industry). However, none of these industries produces anything of value that anyone would want to buy.

    – Why do we need so much government?
    – Why is the Federal Reserve allowed to exist, issue money and charge usury from the citizens (direct violation of US Constitution)?
    – Why is there an income tax on US citizens when there never was one originally and why is it (collectively) approaching 50% & higher?
    – Why are we constantly getting involved in Wars and Foreign entanglements that are incredibly expensive and bankrupting our country? (the Constitution warned about this).
    – Why are our politicians constantly giving away billions of US tax payer dollars to Foreign countries?
    – Who do these lieing politicians think they’re fooling?

    WHEN will the American people wake up and rise up against the government and STOP THIS NONSENSE?

  • morpheus

    And the beat goes on. Most of us don’t have to know the specifics because we can feel somethings just not right. There will come a time when we will be forced to something.

    When you’re ready –


    Read “Common Sense 3.1” at ( )
    We don’t have to live like this anymore. “Spread the News”


  • L C N Funding

    Agent P,

    You are a CEO of an 8 person company !!!

    A U S Steel you are NOT !

  • Kevin

    Clinton, “He is a Democrat, friend of the downtrodden, friend of the working man”. GTFOOH

    1. NAFTA
    2. China Free Trade
    3. Repeal of Glass Steagall

    The first two he did with huge Democrat support, the third he did not need them. 80% of US Senate Democrats voted for China Free Trade which was oh so barely different than the 83% of US Senate Republicans that voted for the same.

    It’s funny to watch the supporters of the left and right argue.

  • xander cross

    All of you that support the rich and disagree with gary, don’t worry, when they finish looting all of us, well, you will learn what enslavement truly is. Just like how many tea party supporters support donald trump. Trump represents the illusion of most americans, rich, arrogant, and greedy, and most of all, use bankrucy as a tool.

  • Afi K. James

    April 23rd, 2011 at 4:51 am
    Tax the rich. Yea I am sure that will solve everything. There are so many nice tax free countries. Now would be the best time for the wealthy to get the hell out of dodge. They will just move and be living fat and happy in the Cayman islands.

    Raising taxes on the nations employers should do the trick of finishing off what is left of our economy.

    More brilliant solutions from the ignorant left.

    Got that right.

  • Owen

    I am convinced that until you understand that this is really a spiritual crisis at its core, you really are not part of the solution.

  • Nick

    Peak oil. enough said

  • Roth E. Barrons


    I recently viewed and interview on This Week In Startups between internet entrepreneurs Jason Calacanis and Joe Essenfeld – the CEO of JIBE.

    JIBE is a company that is providing users the opportunity to pay a couple bucks to apply for employment.

    The idea is that if you are paying to apply, even if it is pocket change, you are only going to apply to companies that you have the greatest interest in and these companies – knowing you have paid to apply – will have greater interest in you.

    JIBE also provides a plethora of services for its users, such as updates on their application status and suggestions for an increasingly successful application process.

    JIBE can be a useful tool during unemployment crisis.

    Here is JIBE’s website –

    On behalf of The Global FC Zone,

    Crisis to Profit.


  • RM Edaps

    You left out the biggest reason: we have an anti-American, anti-capitalist, socialist/progressive/statist president.

  • Josh

    I’m still young. I still want to look forward to the pleasures of my future. A good paying job, a nice house, big family, accomplishment and peace of mind. I don’t feel like this is going to happen…. I don’t know much about our Government or the REAL truths about whats going on. Its hard to sift through all the lies our leaders are telling us when you want to hear good news so badly. I have school around the corner…iv taken out federal loans like thousands of other students have and are doing. I have no guarantee for any of that money. Its the only thing giving me a future of higher learning. What hope do I have for my future? Even the knowledge I have with the current situation (may not be much), it doesn’t take much to see that this nation is falling apart, fast. I got this vibe that things are going to get bad, real soon. I’m not a conspirator or high ranking financial officer…im just your average American kid trying to live his life. Whats hope is there..?

  • John Davies

    Talking tough against the rich is popular, and envey makes it easy to hate them. But did you know that 50% of Americans at the other end of the economic spectrum don’t pay any taxes at all. The top 10% pay 90% of the cost of running our country. Half of us are getting a free ride. How long do you think that can last?

  • Jasper


  • 007

    New liberal vs conservative cartoon going viral. Very funny and real. Feel free to share it around.

  • Gary2

    John Davies=this is because they have all the money DUH!

  • 007

    Yea Josh, but one thing is certain. They will expect you to repay every cent of your student loan, with interest. Kind of makes you their slave. Even if you have to repay it flipping burgers at McDonalds.

    We have to change course. Every government hand out comes with strings.

    Do you want a future and a career. A chance to live your dreams? Or do you want a cheap government hand out that will enslave you. You are not even selling out. It is more like they are renting you cheap.

    The Republicans today are not the answer. But changing the Republican party is our best hope. A fair chance and an even playing field for all is all anyone can ask or hope. The rest is up to us.

    Abandon the democratic party it is nothing but socialist foolishness.

  • Bill

    U.S. households are now receiving more income from the U.S. government than they are paying to the government in taxes.
    ?? Where is the tax money coming from to pay the extra? Who is paying for the military, economic recovery programs, etc?

  • harvey schwartz

    Not only can you blame the Politicians, you can blame the Labor unions. these people are co-conspiritures of the problem. any answers? break the unions, run the politicians out on a rail. REVIVLE OR REVOLUTION????

  • harvey schwartz

    MATTHEW 6:33


  • kickyroo

    This is why I am set on growing my own food this year. I don’t own a credit card, so I won’t pile on debt. The only things I make payments on are my bills and my rent. I am not indebted to ANYONE, and I like it that way. Don’t spend money you don’t have. Don’t try to live beyond your means. This is where most ppl get lost. They walk through the store and see things they THINK they need, like that 12 dollar bottle of Gain laundry detergent, when they can actually get a cheaper brand for half that price. More than 50% of what ppl buy they don’t really NEED. Everyone should be re-evaluating their expenses. I own my vehicles and would own my own home if I had the money in cash to buy one. I refuse to take out loans for anything, and college anymore is a waste of money you don’t have to be trained for a job that won’t be there when you’re done, and you’ll owe student loans until you’re on your death bed.

  • Harry Johnson

    harvey my boy, you can quit blaming the unions any day now. That horse is dead no matter how many times you kick it. Unions did not run our banks off a cliff, unions did not come running to the government for a handout like the stock and bond salesboys did, unions did not inflate the cost of housing without adding any value like the real estate speculators and salesboys did. The unions have been busted and on the run for 20 years now and you clowns still keep punching on them. If you haven’t noticed the problem is still here. Prices keep rising even when wages have been busted to overseas rates of pennies a day. The problem is the markup and overhead. Salesboy trash keeps raking in commissions for nothing while driving up prices and wrecking the country. Banksters commit outright fraud with their housing securitization and barely a one has gone to jail. It is time to get off your hobby horse, open up your eyes and see the truth. Or better yet quit spreading nonsense to take the focus off your own crimes.


    An American Allegory by Tom Keith

    Chapter 1 A Time of Plenty

    One morning long ago, in a place that no longer is, a young lad was awakened by the crowing of a rooster. As he arose from his bed, he heard his name being called.
    “Wake up Diligent Dan,” his mother, Frugal Fay shouted.
    “I was awakened by the crowing of the cock, Mother. For what chore do you summon me?”
    “I need you to hasten to yon henhouse and fetch eggs for breakfast.”
    Diligent Dan made his way toward the henhouse through the near darkness of early dawn. As he passed near the cow barn, he could see the glow of an oil lantern. His father, Laboring Larry had just finished milking their cow. “Good morning, Father. I’m on my way to yon henhouse to fetch eggs.”
    “Do so quickly, Diligent Dan,” said Laboring Larry. “The sun will soon be up, and we must not let a minute of daylight be wasted, for the work needed to be done in the field is great.”
    The man and his son were soon at the house with the milk and eggs. “I’ll need more firewood before supper,” Frugal Fay said as she cooked the eggs.
    “This is market day in the village,” said Laboring Larry as the family sat at breakfast. “We must have the wagon loaded before midday, so the vegetables will be fresh and bring a good price in the market place.”
    “Take this fine garment I have just sewn to market also,” said Frugal Fay. “Perhaps you can trade it for woolen cloth so I can make coats for winter.”
    So began Diligent Dan’s day. It was like so many others that came before and after. There were always early morning and evening chores, with hard work in the field during the hours of daylight. Since this was a market day the family worked hard all morning, and by midday the wagon was loaded with fresh fruits and vegetables, a few young chickens, and a pig just old enough to be weaned. “May I go with you to the village?” Diligent Dan asked his father.
    “Yes you may,” Laboring Larry answered. “It’s time you learned to bargain and trade in the market place. Watch and listen, for someday this farm will be yours, and you will need to be skillful in business.”
    So Diligent Dan watched and listened as Laboring Larry bargained in the market place. Some of the farm produce was sold for money, while some was traded for things the family needed. The fine garment that Frugal Fay had sewn was traded for woolen cloth that she would sew into warm winter coats. When the trading was finished, Laboring Larry took a bag of coins to the village banker. “Add this to my account,” he instructed the banker.
    “Remember this my son,” Laboring Larry told Diligent Dan as they climbed onto the wagon. “If you wish to prosper, you must always sell more than you buy. You saw this very day how the fruits of our labor brought a good price. We were able to pay for the things we needed, and had a little left over to deposit with the village banker.”
    “But why did you give our coins to the banker?” Diligent Dan wanted to know.
    “I have found him to be an honest man. Whenever we have need of the money, the banker will have it ready for us. He will also pay us interest on it.”
    “You mean he will give you back more than you gave him? How can he do that?”
    “The banker lends the money to others who pay him more interest than he pays us,” Laboring Larry explained.
    “Did you ever borrow from him?” Diligent Dan asked.
    “Yes. This wagon you now ride on was bought with a loan from the banker. I knew that this wagon would allow me to carry more goods to market than the old cart I had. Being able to sell more on market day gave me the money to repay the loan quickly. Always remember this lesson, Diligent Dan: Borrow only for things that will increase your ability to earn more money with which to repay the loan.”
    Once back at the farm, Diligent Dan gathered enough firewood for cooking supper. Dead trees and fallen branches from a wooded portion of their land yielded all the firewood the family needed for cooking food and warming their small house. Evening chores and a light supper ended the day that was like so many that had come before and many that would follow. All were filled with hard work, but the farm yielded its crops in season, and the family had plenty.
    In the years that followed, Diligent Dan continued to heed his father’s instruction, and learned all the ways of those who prosper.

    Chapter 2 A Foolish Choice

    As Diligent Dan grew in mind and stature, Laboring Larry and Frugal Fay waxed old and their strength waned. So, it came to pass that Laboring Larry and Frugal Fay died and rested with those who had gone before them. Diligent Dan was left alone to do the farm work and trading, but he had learned well the skills that his father had taught him. Therefore, the farm prospered.
    Though he had no fear of hard work, the time came when Diligent Dan said to himself, “Alas, I am all alone and have no heir on whom to bestow all I own. I will take unto myself a wife who will bring forth sons and daughters to be my heirs.” So the next time he took goods to market he looked among the crowd for a young lass of strength and beauty.
    Shrewd Sherman was often in the market place with goods to sell and trade. Diligent Dan remembered that his father had warned him to be careful when trading with Shrewd Sherman for he was sly and skillful in bargaining. On this day, Shrewd Sherman was not alone in his wagon. With him sat a young maiden of beauty and charm.
    “Good day to you, Diligent Dan,” Shrewd Sherman shouted. Come and meet my niece, Silly Susan.”
    “Good day, Silly Susan. I’m Diligent Dan.”
    “Good day,” she replied with a charming smile. “My uncle is showing me the market place.”
    “Silly Susan is the daughter of my dear brother who recently passed from this life,” Shrewd Sherman explained. “Now my own humble abode is graced by her beauty and charm.”
    On the market days that followed, Diligent Dan would always find a reason to draw neigh to Shrewd Sherman’s wagon so he could visit with Silly Susan. He was taken by her beauty and charm, and his love for her overcame him. The day came when Diligent Dan could wait no longer. So he said to Shrewd Sherman, ”Give me your niece to be my wife and I will provide well for her, for my love for her burns within my soul.” So Shrewd Sherman gave Silly Susan to be the wife of Diligent Dan, and he did so gladly, for it relieved him from the burden of guardianship that his dead brother had placed upon him.
    Then it came to pass that Silly Susan conceived and bare a son and his name was Lazy Luke. After a time, Silly Susan conceived again and there was born to her a daughter named Vain Velma. Now Diligent Dan loved Lazy Luke and Vain Velma, and said to Silly Susan, “Behold, my life is full and my soul is joyful because I have heirs on whom to bestow all I own.
    Diligent Dan did not know that Silly Susan was full of guile and deceit for her heart was evil. Nor did he perceive that she felt no love for him, but married him only to take from him all she could.

    Chapter 3 The Decline

    From the faint light of early morning until the darkness of evening, Diligent Dan did not cease from working, nor did he rest from his labors save for a few hours sleep during the darkness of night. “I promised Shrewd Sherman that I would provide well for his niece,” he would often say to himself, as his body grew weary and his bones ached. “Now I must work even harder to provide all that is needed for Lazy Luke and Vain Velma.”
    As the years passed, there came a day when Diligent Dan said to Silly Susan, “Behold how much your son Lazy Luke has grown. He must begin to work with me in the field. He will soon be a man and will need to know the skills of farming.”
    “Not so, my husband,” Silly Susan objected. “My son is the heir of a prosperous farmer. He deserves to take his place among the leaders of the village. The work of a field hand is beneath his station in life.”
    “So what would you have him do to make for himself a place among the leaders of the village?”
    “Lazy Luke and Vain Velma must meet the children of those in high places and learn all their ways so they can make friends of them,” replied Silly Susan.
    Diligent Dan did not agree with the words Silly Susan had spoken, but he was much too tired to argue. “So be it,” he said. “On the morrow, my work does not require the use of my horse and wagon. I will make them ready, and you can take Lazy Luke and Vain Velma to the village.”
    “Will you never learn, my husband? The children of those in high places would never make friends with Lazy Luke and Vain Velma if they saw them ride into the village in a farm wagon drawn by a plow horse. First you must buy for us a fine carriage and a handsome horse to draw it.”
    “Such a purchase would require more money than I have,” Diligent Dan explained. “I will need several years to save that much.”
    “My patience wears thin, Diligent Dan,” Silly Susan shouted. “Lazy Luke and Vain Velma must have these advantages now, lest the time of opportunity pass them by. You have good standing with the village banker. Borrow from him and buy us a fine carriage and a handsome horse to draw it.”
    The next day Diligent Dan stood before the banker and asked for the loan.
    “Diligent Dan, surely you remember that your father taught you to borrow only for things that would increase your ability to earn money with which to repay the debt,” the banker reminded him.
    “I remember well,” Diligent Dan answered. “But my father did not know Silly Susan. Her nagging vexes my soul, and peace is far from me. I must buy her a fine carriage and a handsome horse to draw it. Then perhaps she will cease her grumbling.”
    So the agreement was made, and Diligent Dan soon found a fine carriage with a handsome horse to draw it, and bought both with borrowed money.
    Not many days had passed when Diligent Dan was awakened from a sound sleep by the voice of Silly Susan. “Hark, I hear music, and it seems to be from the wooded portion of our land from whence you gather firewood. I think sojourners may have encamped there.”
    “Worry not,” Diligent Dan replied. “They can do but little harm in one night. I will suffer them to stay until morning. Then I will evict them.”
    The next morning when Diligent Dan returned from milking the cow, he said to Silly Susan, “Behold there is now sufficient light to see the wooded land. Near the stream that flows through the woods there is a wagon of the kind used by sojourners. I will go quickly and expel them from our land.”
    “To expel them hastily could be foolish,” objected Silly Susan. “First inquire of them as to their willingness to work. Housework is burdensome to me and it is hard for you to keep up with all that must be done in the field.”
    “If Lazy Luke and Vain Velma would work as I did when I was a youth, there would be no need for hirelings,” said Diligent Dan.
    “It is far more important for Lazy Luke and Vain Velma to strive toward taking their rightful place among the leaders of the village than to do the work of field hands and chambermaids,” said Silly Susan. “Bargain with the sojourners to do this work, and offer them a small portion of the crops as pay.”
    So it was that Diligent Dan allowed the sojourners to remain on the farm. The woman sojourner did housework, while the man sojourner worked in the field. After some time had passed, Diligent Dan returned from a day of bargaining and trading in the village. “You did not bring to me all the things I requested from the market place,” said Silly Susan.
    “After giving a portion of the farm’s yield to the sojourners, the goods I had left were not sufficient to trade for all you requested,” said Diligent Dan. “Also, I had naught to give the banker. I fear he will seize your fine carriage and the handsome horse I bought to draw it.”
    “You must not permit such a thing,” said Silly Susan. “Alas, heed my advice for I know what you must do. There is in the village a man who buys land. Bargain with him and sell a small portion of the farm that is by the road. Surely the price thereof will be sufficient to pay all that is due the banker. Then I shall be able to keep my fine carriage and the handsome horse you bought draw it.”
    So it was that Diligent Dan sold a small portion of the farm. Then it came to pass as the months of winter drew nigh that Silly Susan said to Diligent Dan, “Behold the turning of the leaves and the chill in the air. Winter draws nigh and, lo, the sojourners sleep in a wagon and have not a warm place to abide.”
    “What would you have me do?” answered Diligent Dan. “There is not room in our small house for these strangers.”
    “You have a barn in which you store grain from the field. It is never full, so ample room remains for the sojourners to sleep therein. Let them gather stones from the stream and build a place for fire by which they can be warmed and cook food.”
    Diligent Dan did as Silly Susan said, and the sojourners dwelled in the grain barn from that day forward. Then there came a day when Diligent Dan said to Silly Susan, “The time of harvest is not yet, but our store of grain is low. What remains is not sufficient to feed the horses and the cow and still have what we need to grind into meal for our own table.”
    “How could such a thing happen?” Silly Susan asked. “Always before there was plenty of grain with some left over.”
    “We could not harvest from the small portion of land I sold to pay the banker. The horse I bought to draw your fine carriage had to be fed. The sojourners fed their horse from the grain barn and also ground meal for their table. Now we have insufficient grain to last until harvest.”
    “Must I always be the one to solve your problems?” Silly Susan asked sternly. “You must sell the cow. Then with one less animal to feed, the grain you have will last until harvest.”
    “What will we do for milk, butter, and cheese?” asked Diligent Dan.
    “Buy those things in the market place. That will be better anyway, for I have long since grown weary of the churning of butter and the making of cheese.”
    So, Diligent Dan sold the cow, and from that day forward he bought milk, butter, and cheese from the market place. He also needed to buy firewood because the dead trees and fallen limbs were no longer sufficient for the family and the sojourners. With less land for growing crops, more people to feed, and the need to buy more things from the market place, the farm could no longer produce all that was needed for trading. Therefore, from time to time it was necessary for Diligent Dan to borrow more from the banker, so his debt grew and grew.
    One morning Diligent Dan noticed that the sojourners wagon was gone. Their belongings were missing from the grain barn, as was much of the grain. “Silly Susan,” he shouted. “The sojourners have stolen our grain and fled.”
    “That is a very bad thing,” said Silly Susan. “For now I will be burdened with all that housework.”
    Diligent Dan tried to work even harder than he had before to repay the debt that Silly Susan had forced upon him, and to replenish what had been stolen by the sojourners. One hot day as the scorching sun beat down on him, he was walking behind his plow when he felt a sudden weakness come over him. His legs gave way, and Diligent Dan fell to the ground and gave up the ghost with his hands still on the plow.

    Chapter 4 The Fall

    Silly Susan sat sobbing before the banker. “What will I do if you take my farm?” she asked. “My children and I have no one that will take us in, nor do we have skills by which we could earn our living. Show us mercy and let us stay on the land. A time will come when we will be able to start repaying what we owe.”
    “Your sorrow is of your own making, Silly Susan,” the banker replied. “Your husband was an honorable man, and it is only for his sake that I will show mercy and deal kindly with you.”
    “Will you then let us keep the farm and not take it from us?”
    “I can not do as you ask, Silly Susan,” said the banker. “The money I lent to you was not my own. It belongs to those who trusted me to invest it wisely. I must seize the land for their sake. I have hired a husbandman to oversee the work, sell the crops, and return to me a portion of the money received. The husbandman will dwell in the house, but I have instructed him to let you and your children abide in the grain barn where the sojourners dwelled.”
    “That barn is not a fitting place for the rightful heirs to the farm, but we have no other place to go,” said Silly Susan. “Will the husbandman also provide food for our table?”
    “To eat, you must work,” the banker said. “If you will do all the work assigned to you by the husbandman, he will see that your table is not left bare.”
    So Silly Susan, Lazy Luke, and Vain Velma made their bed on the floor of the grain barn. From the faint light of early morning until the darkness of evening, they were not allowed to cease from working, nor did the husbandman permit them rest from their labors save for a few hours sleep during the darkness of night. Their food was from the portion of the crops that were not fit to be sold in the market place. That which was damaged, wilted, partly rotted, or half eaten by worms was all that came to their table.
    So was their lot for all the remaining days of their lives. This was fair and just. They deserved no better, for they had brought about the dreadful demise of Diligent Dan.

    The farm: The United States
    The village with its market and banker: The global economy
    Laboring Larry and Frugal Fay: Founders of America and others up through the first half of the 20th century.
    Diligent Dan: Hard working Americans who continue to honor traditional values of work and thrift.
    Silly Susan: Politicians who forced America into foolish policies that resulted in trade deficits and budget deficits
    Lazy Luke and Vain Velma: Non producers: Speculators, career welfare recipients, criminals, and other parasites.
    The sojourners: Cheap labor by illegal aliens and other sources – Demonstrates the high cost of cheap labor through crime and the burden on social services.
    Market purchases exceed sales: Trade deficit – Eliminates jobs, and
    reduces tax revenue.
    Family spending exceeds farm income: Budget deficit – Forces the government to borrow and pay interest.
    Money borrowed from the banker: National debt A burden on future generations.
    Selling a parcel of the farmland: Foreign investment – In the short term it brings in cash, but in the long term (if it is not balanced by American investment in foreign countries) it drains the economy by paying profits to investors outside the country. Dependence on foreign investment can lead to a loss of national sovereignty.
    Selling the cow: Outsourcing production – In the short term it can decrease production cost, but in the long term it slows the economy by eliminating American jobs and thereby reducing GDP, consumption, and tax revenue. It also drains money from the economy, sending it to foreign countries.
    Loosing the farm: Loss of American sovereignty – It is already happening. The trade deficit causes billions of American dollars to flow to the countries that hate us most – China and the oil-rich Muslim countries. We must borrow those dollars back to make up the budget deficit. Our adversaries have the power to shut down our government just by cutting off our credit.

  • Joe

    Should one desire to boil our problems down to the basic cause, just look at the average American voter; Those of us who vote, that is. Too many are too ignorant or too lazy to make an intelligent decision regarding who to vote for. We can see the results of this phenomena by looking at the clowns that we ship off to DC and other political positions through out the Republic.

  • SmokeDogg

    I grew up in Camden NJ where this kind of decay is normal. Up until 10 years ago, I truly though a lot more Americans lived like that until I got out and saw how the rest of America lived on their credit card giving them an inflated looking lifestyle, when they were making Camden NJ wages.

    Without that Credit Card and Home equity of yours, I say Welcome to Camden.

    Many of the people in White Middle America would be:

    – Living in shacks
    – Taking the bus
    – Having baby daddy selling rock
    – Kidnapping people
    – Hijacking buses
    – Working a min wage job in the day while tricking cooch at night
    – Selling dope in the day and packs boxes for poop pay 3rd shift
    – Hollering at their kids to make sure they wear shoes so they wont walk outside and step on a hypodermic needle
    – Looking over their sholuders so they wont get robbed
    – Always be alert just in case someone wanted to fight you for whatever reason
    – Making sure gang members dont recruit your kids
    – Making sure your daughter doesnt become sex trafficked
    – Living with Roaches mice and rats in your home, the hospitals, restaurants, and the schools, and there’s nothing you can do about it because everybody has them and will always spread.
    – Passed over for Immigrants on Jobs

    Without their credit cards, retirement plans, and Home Equity.

  • Ames Tiedeman

    Lower taxes? Higher taxes? Does anyone actually think being plus or minus 5% on taxes will make a lick of difference for the U.S. economy at this stage in the game? The economy will never again work the way we all want it to work with the current account deficit at 6 or 7 percent of GDP. You cannot get unemployment even under 6% without a credit bubble, with a current account deficit as large as ours. We have not had a trade surplus since 1974. We have been in decline for 40 years and this decline has only accelerated in recent years. We closed 55,000 plants in the United States since 1980. Your politicians won’t tell you this because some of them fed you the false promise of free trade. Others don’t want to admit NAFTA has been a complete failure for America. Great for Mexico as that giant “sucking sound” Ross Perot predicted has materialized. Clinton and Gore promised the American people ever bigger trade surpluses with Mexico and ten’s of thousands of new high paying jobs. Just pass NAFTA they exclaimed! Quite laughable, really. We have gone from a trade surplus of a few billion a year to a trade deficit nearing 100 billion per annum with Mexico. What is equally as laughable or insulting is the trade deal Obama has just signed with Columbia. Do we make anything they can afford? Of course not. Columbia will simply become a new launch pad to make textiles and sell them into America. How about the trade deal Obama signed with South Korea? This is an interesting one. Within the bill on the U.S. side is a provision to provide worker training for displaced Americans. So we are now so stupid that we are signing trade deals that we know will diminish the U.S. labor force. The insanity is just that! Does anyone think the South Koreans would agree to a trade deal if they were not sure to win? Does Obama understand that the South Koreans are fierce nationalists who will never let America win a trade contest? Did my ancestors lead pre-Revolutionary War skirmishes against the British at Lexington and Concord in 1775 and early 1776 only to have America end up how it is today? My blood has been on this land since 1635. How many of my ancestors ever dreamed that America would be so deep in debt and short in ideas? Would any of them ever have thought that such mediocre men would one day be leading this nation? America has done a terrific job of creating a low employment and low wage society, for millions. Quite sad indeed. No civilization has succeeded by consuming more than it produces. We must massively restructure. Until America decides to produce what it consumes you can forget about any long term economic recovery. The financial games all failed. The credit bubble is gone and now the U.S. economy is exposed as the biggest joke of all time. Credit bubbles have a way of masking the real issues. How do we fix the American economy? Start by making every American who has received a Nobel Prize in economics return the award. Why? because they were either 100% wrong or their work proved to be of no benefit to the American economy. Next, round up every economist who advised Nixon that if America left the gold standard and moved the world to a floating currency regime; that America would never, ever, run a current account deficit. And I am very sorry to inform everyone that this would include the late and great Milton Friedman. Sorry Milton, you were dead wrong too! Next, leave the WTO, end NAFTA, and go about setting up country-by-country trade deals that are realistic based on where America stands today. It is not 1955 anymore. The world has either matched us or surpassed us in industry after industry. We have literally become an emerging economy is some industries as we have faltered so badly. Next, move to a flat tax, and end all farm subsidies. Cancel most government social programs like food stamps and deport 100% of the people living in America illegally. Make it a high crime to employ anyone not here legally. Finally, for major industries such as steel and automobiles, move to a must-be-made-in-America policy. No longer allow imports of products in specific industries. They must all be made in America. We must employ our people. We can no longer employ the world via our consumption as so many Americans remain unemployed. We must use our 50 state union to our advantage. We must promote massive trade between the states. We must socialize CAPITALISM to avoid becoming a socialist state! We must reinvigorate the American people. We must manufacture. And who running for office can lead America on this grand and pious endeavor? Who running for office today has the passion of a General MacArthur or the skill of a Chester Nimitz? Who has the energy of a Teddy Roosevelt? The men who command the attention of the electorate in this age of mediocre ambition are all too small to make a difference…

  • mike

    obaba and biden have been bad news in last 4 years like it or not.

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