Paupers In The Land Our Forefathers Conquered

A long time ago, in an America now far, far away, the majority of the American people owned the land that they live on.  The term “my land” actually meant something back then.  But today that has fundamentally changed.  Now the majority of the American people owe on the land that they live on.  In fact, most of them owe big money to the giant corporate banking interests that control the mortgage industry.  So how did the American people come to be debtors and paupers in the land that our forefathers conquered?  Today when someone says that they “bought a house” what they really mean is that they have signed up for 30 years (or more) of bloated mortgage payments which they care barely afford.  As you will see below, the percentage of residential mortgage debt to total home equity (housing net worth) in the United States continues to rise at a staggering pace.  In fact, thanks to the housing crash, for the first time in American history residential mortgage debt far surpasses the total home equity owned by all Americans.  So what does that mean?  It means that the big corporate banks have more of an interest in America’s homes than we do now.

So how are we getting our land taken from us?

Well, you can thank rampant inflation and the housing bubble.

Back in 1980, the United States was pushing up towards a total of $1 billion in total residential mortgage debt.  It took us over 200 years to get to that point as a nation.

By 1990, the United States approximately doubled that amount and was sitting at about $2 trillion  in total residential mortgage debt.

By the year 2000, the United States had just about $5 trillion in total residential mortgage debt.

By 2008, the United States had over $10 trillion in total residential mortgage debt.

Do you notice a trend?

In just the past 30 years the amount of residential mortgage debt in the United States has increased tenfold.

Meanwhile, thanks to the housing crash, home equity has taken a nosedive.  As you can see from the chart below, total residential mortgage debt in the U.S. now far exceeds total home equity….

So what does this mean?  It means that the banks have more of a financial interest in America’s homes than we do.  It means that we are quickly becoming paupers and debt slaves.

As you can see from the chart below, back in 1945 total home equity as a percentage of home value was extremely high (80%).  Home equity exceeded total residential mortgage debt by about a 4 to 1 margin.  But today total residential mortgage debt exceeds home equity and the situation is rapidly becoming worse….

We were all told to buy into the system and we could live the American Dream.  We were told to get a “good job” with one of the big global corporations and we were told to get a mortgage so that we could build up equity.  Well, that has turned out great for most of us, hasn’t it?

The reality is that the system so many of us trusted is dying.  We are now at the point where the system cannot provide jobs for millions of us anymore.  If unemployment continues to soar as it has, millions more of us will find ourselves destitute and homeless on the continent our forefathers conquered….

So how did all of this happen?

Back in 1913, the U.S. Congress gave control over U.S. currency to the Federal Reserve.  Since that time, the value of the U.S. dollar has slowly been eroded.  $1.00 in 1914 (the year after the Federal Reserve was established) had about the same buying power as $21.59 in 2010.  That means that the U.S. dollar has lost over 95 percent of its purchasing power since then.

So the accumulated wealth that our parents and grandparents hand down to us is being constantly devalued.  The only way to keep up with rising prices on land and on everything else is to go out into the system to get more of the “currency” that is controlled and manipulated by the Federal Reserve and the big corporate banks.  But what most of us don’t realize is that the game is rigged to slowly transfer the wealth of the nation over to them.

The house always wins in the end.

Thanks to the greed and stupidity of the American people, we have accumulated the biggest mountain of debt in the history of the world.  It was a fun party while we were piling up all the debt, but now the bankers have us where they want us.

If only we had listened to those among our founding fathers who warned us about this trap.

For example, the words of Thomas Jefferson in a letter to John Taylor dated May 28th, 1816 ring more true today than they ever have….

And I sincerely believe, with you, that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies; and that the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.

The truth is that the American people are being swindled and most of them don’t even realize it.  The wealth of America is slowly being transferred to the big banks.  All of the interest that we pay month after month after month makes them rich.

The financial system of the United States is broken.  But until the U.S. economy totally collapses most Americans will not realize it.  By then it will be far too late.

FINCA BAYANO

It’s The Economy Stupid – Nearly 80 Percent Of Americans Say They Don’t Trust The Government

Back during Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign, “It’s the economy, stupid” was a phrase that Clinton campaign officials used to keep the focus on the troubled U.S. economy.  The truth is that Americans as a whole care about very few things more than their own economic well being, and by keeping the debate focused on economic issues, Clinton was able to defeat George H. W. Bush.  Nearly 20 years later, that slogan is as true today as it ever has been.  The American people care dearly about their own wallets and bank accounts.  With the economy tanking badly and with unemployment at very high levels, dissatisfaction with the U.S. government is at record highs.  In fact, acccording to a newly released poll byPew Research Center, just 22% of Americans believe that they can trust the government in Washington almost always or most of the time.  Nearly half of the respondents said that the government has a negative effect on their daily lives.  Only 25% of those responding expressed a favorable opinion of Congress, which was the lowest favorable rating for Congress in a quarter century of Pew Research Center surveys.

So why are the American people so angry and frustrated with their government?

It’s the economy, stupid.

Millions of Americans have lost their jobs and their homes, and millions more Americans are on the verge of losing their jobs and homes.

There are approximately 5.5 unemployed Americans for every job opening.  RealtyTrac projects that there will be 4.5 million home foreclosures in 2010.  The economic nightmare just keeps going from bad to worse.

The result is a massive horde of pissed off American voters.

As long as Americans are fat and happy and their wallets are full, most of them really could care less how involved the government is in their lives.  But when things go bad economically, all of a sudden the government becomes a major annoyance.

And this is not a Republican v. Democrat thing either.  The truth is that both parties have been radically expanding the size of the U.S. government for decades.  Both parties have been spending taxpayer money like there is no tomorrow.  Both parties have mortgaged the future of America to please their constituents.  Now average Americans from both parties are alarmed at how large the government has become and how badly it is screwing things up.  Just consider the following quote from USAToday.com….

“The government’s been lying to people for years. Politicians make promises to get elected, and when they get elected, they don’t follow through,” says Cindy Wanto, 57, a registered Democrat from Pennsylvania who joined several thousand for a rally in Washington on April 15 — the tax filing deadline. “There’s too much government in my business. It was a problem before Obama, but he’s certainly not helping fix it.”

If he wants to get re-elected, the best thing that Barack Obama could do to get votes would be to get the U.S. government to spend as much money as humanly possible in a last ditch attempt to stimulate the U.S. economy with a flood of paper money.  That might work just long enough to get re-elected and buy himself another four years in the White House.  Of course that strategy would also likely create hyperinflation and would make the long-term financial problems of the U.S. government far, far worse.

But unless the American people start feeling a lot better about the economy, they are not going to look too kindly on anyone who is currently holding office either in 2010 or in 2012.

Meanwhile, playing politics is more profitable than it ever has been.

Barack Obama and his wife Michelle raked in a cool 5.5 million dollars in 2009.

Sarah Palin has earned approximately 12 million dollars since last July.

According to Forbes magazine, Glenn Beck made 32 million dollars in the 12 months ending March 1st.

Politicians may not be very popular these days, but it sure is a profitable racket if you can get into the club.

Republicans make a ton of money convincing millions of Americans that the Democrats are the cause of all the problems that they are experiencing.  Democrats make a ton of money convincing millions of Americans that that Republicans are the cause of all the problems that they are experiencing.  Meanwhile, both parties continue to pile up the biggest mountain of debt in the history of the world and continue to sell out the future of our children and our grandchildren.

Neither party seems interested in addressing the root causes of our national financial nightmare.  Instead, politicians from both parties seem to think that they can keep making all kinds of promises to get elected and then never delivering on them.

Well, the American people are starting to wake up to all of this nonsense.  Tens of millions of Americans are experiencing extreme financial pain and they are looking for answers.

Unfortunately, the U.S. economy is going to get a whole lot worse, and very few of the politicians in Washington have the guts to tell the American people the truth.

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If The U.S. Economy Goes Into The Toilet Will It Result In A Complete And Total Collapse Of Society?

If the United States experiences a horrifying economic collapse (and it most definitely will), will that cause a complete and total collapse of society?  Will we experience crime, violence, riots and social unrest on a scale that is unprecedented in U.S. history?  Before you dismiss such notions as utter foolishness dreamed up by a few bloggers with too much time on their hands, perhaps you should consider what one of the biggest credit rating organizations in the world is saying.  According to a report on sovereign debt by Moody’s, the world’s five biggest AAA-rated countries (including the United States) are all at risk of soaring debt costs and will have to implement austerity plans that threaten “social cohesion”.  In case you are wondering what happens when “social cohesion” starts to break down due to economic factors, just check out the recent examples in Iceland and Greece.  If even Moody’s is warning that there is a realistic possibility that “social cohesion” in the United States may break down due to economic factors, perhaps we should all start listening.

Or if you will not listen to Moody’s, then perhaps you will listen to the man who has been called the top trends researcher in the entire world.  Gerald Celente is the CEO of Trends Research Institute, and he is convinced that we are heading into what he calls “The Greatest Depression”.  The picture that he paints of the future of America is extremely alarming and extremely sobering.  It would be easy to dismiss his forecasts as just the ramblings of another useless “talking head”, but unfortunately Celente has been dead-on accurate time after time after time in the past.  Considering his exemplary track record, what Celente says is coming next for America is incredibly frightening….

At this point you may be tempted to think that America has been through extremely tough economic times before (The Great Depression for example) and came through them okay.

So what is so different now?

Well, the truth is that the character of the American people is dramatically different.  At the time of the Great Depression, the American people were tough, self-sufficient people who knew how to live off the land.  Today, most Americans are weak, spoiled little children who will throw a temper tantrum whenever anyone tries to take their toys away.  The character of the American people has been decaying for decades, and there is no way that the current crop of Americans has any chance of weathering a horrible economic depression the way Americans back in the 1930s did.

Already we are seeing early signs of what the rest of America could soon be like.  The city of Detroit is a rotting, crime-ridden war zone that has a “real” unemployment rate of somewhere around 40 to 50 percent.  The state of California has become a cesspool of gang violence, rampant unemployment, rising foreclosures, unchecked drug dealing, and depressing economic decline.  Even in New York City we are seeing early signs of what is ahead.  Residents are quite alarmed about the dramatic rise in violent crime that is happening throughout the city.  Many New Yorkers were convinced that the days of “The Rotten Apple” were behind them, but economic problems are going to cause an increase in crime in just about any city.

But it just isn’t crime that is on the rise.  Millions of normal, law-abiding Americans are angry.  This anger is coming out in various ways – including the Tea Party protests that are sweeping the nation.  The majority of the American people are frankly disgusted with the government, and the approval ratings for both major parties continue to hover around record lows.  As things continue to get worse for the U.S. economy, the anger of the American people is going to continue to rise.

All of this is causing many in the U.S. government to view “troublemakers” inside the United States as one of the greatest threats to national security.  In fact, according to FBI Director Robert Mueller, “homegrown terrorists” represent as big a threat as al-Qaeda.

As big a threat as al-Qaeda?

For a top U.S. government official to come right out and make a statement like that is absolutely mind blowing.

Not only that, but now former U.S. President Bill Clinton is comparing Tea Party members to Timothy McVeigh.

Considering the fact that Timothy McVeigh received the death penalty, that is a very frightening parallel for Clinton to draw.

Does Clinton actually believe that Tea Party protesters should receive the same treatment as McVeigh?

Even more alarming is new legislation being pushed in the U.S. Senate.  A new bill introduced by Senators John McCain and Joe Lieberman would allow the U.S. military to round up large numbers of Americans and detain them indefinitely without a trial if they “pose a threat” or if they have “potential intelligence value” or for any other reason the President of the United States “considers appropriate”.

The reality is that as “necessary” as bills like that may seem to many as we edge ever closer to the breakdown of society, the reality is that the United States is quickly becoming just like so many of the other horrific totalitarian regimes that we have seen rise throughout the 20th and 21st centuries.

In fact a time may soon be coming when authorities in the U.S. may soon be able to legally utter this bone chilling phrase: “Your Papers Please!”  Lawmakers in Washington D.C. working to create a new immigration “reform” bill have decided on a way to prevent employers from hiring illegal immigrants: a national biometric identification card that all American workers would be required to obtain.

Can you imagine being forced to carry around a national identification card?

Or worse?

A startup company developing “chipless RFID ink” has already tested its product on cattle and laboratory rats.

Could one day we all be required to sport an “RFID tatoo” to prove our identity to authorities?

Let’s hope not.

But many of us never thought that the day would come when we would see things such as the Patriot Act, “no fly” lists, the NSA’s warrantless wiretapping program, DNA databases, Guantanamo Bay or full-body scanners at airports that reveal the graphic details of our naked bodies either.

America is quickly changing.  The next Great Depression is coming, and society is not going to be able to handle it.  How the U.S. government (and governments around the world) handle the coming social problems is going to be very interesting to watch.  Let’s hope that all of this does not degenerate into the absolute societal nightmare that many are projecting that it could be.

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$4.00 A Gallon Gasoline By The End Of 2010? How In The World Are Average Americans Going To Make Ends Meet If This Keeps Up?

Gas prices are on the rise again.  In many areas of the U.S. gas prices are already hovering around $3.00 a gallon.  In fact there are some areas where people are paying as much as $3.50 a gallon, and many experts are predicting that gasoline could hit $4.00 a gallon by the end of 2010.  If this nonsense keeps up, how in the world is the average American family supposed to make ends meet?  Not only is filling up our tanks going to cost a lot more, but the price of gasoline factors into so many other things.  The U.S. economy just cannot handle a major increase in transportation costs at this point.  These increasing gasoline prices come at a time when U.S. consumers are already stretched to the max.

But it isn’t just gasoline prices that are going up.  The price of food is really starting to rise as well.  Rising demand and reduced supply drove supermarket prices for 16 basic foods up 6.2% in the first quarter of 2010.

Now, for those Americans who are independently wealthy, a large increase in gasoline and food prices might not mean much.

But for the rest of us who are trying to get our incomes to stretch as far as possible each month, it means a whole lot.

In fact, a record number of working Americans are finding that their paychecks are just not making it and are turning to government assistance programs such as food stamps just to make it.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, approximately 39.4 million Americans, a new all-time record, received food stamps in January.  This was up 22% from a year earlier.  In fact, the number of Americans on food stamps has hit all-time records for 14 consecutive months.

New all-time records for 14 months in a row?

How in the world can anyone claim that the U.S. economy is in good shape?

And it is just not people who are out of work or who are lazy who are applying for food stamps.  The truth is that a lot of hard working Americans who are doing everything they can to better themselves find themselves out of alternatives these days.

Some of those hard working Americans are readers of this site.  One of them recently left a comment that is very timely….

There are people on food stamps now, that you would never think they were. For example myself, I just went on food stamps last month. I am not a welfare mom, unemployed or declaring bankruptcy, I am educated and working as hard as I can to make ends meet.

I hold a Masters degree, and a part time job. I make minimum wage and if I were scheduled 40 hours a week my pay would just cover my expenses. Problem is, with retail the number of hours changes from week to week, and it hasn’t been near 40 since Christmas. Luckily I planned ahead and put money aside if I couldn’t find a job right out of school, or if I found one and lost it with today’s economy. I have been able to cover the bills my paycheck doesn’t, but the thing is, my savings has gotten low to that.

I honestly really didn’t want to go on food stamps, I just can’t find another job. Let that be a full time position, or even another part time one. I’m applying to everything I’m qualified for, remotely qualified for, and even over qualified for. But there really are that few of jobs out there.

I haven’t really told anyone I’m on food stamps, a good portion of my old friends are still in school and don’t understand why I can’t find a “real” job. Luckily at my new job there’s a whole store of people who know exactly what I’m going through and would never think of judging me for how much I make or where I live.

There are other people too. Once at work a mother with three kids came in, she had never used food stamps before and had no idea what to do at the register. She almost came to tears trying to explain she really didn’t want to use them, but her husband lost his job, and all that was left for the family was her part time job, and she was so ashamed they had them.

People really have no idea how many of their neighbors are on food stamps.

—-

Millions of Americans have done everything that the system has told them to do, and now the system is letting them down.

Why?

Because the system is failing.

The middle class is slowly being squeezed out of existence, and the years ahead are going to be very painful.

Already, it is getting extremely hard to live a middle class lifestyle.

If you haven’t read “It’s Impossible to Get By In the US” by Graham Summers of Phoenix Capital Research, you really need to.  In his article, Summers analyzes the expenses of a typical family making the median U.S. household income of $50,300 (he was using 2008 figures).  According to Summers, if a family making that much did everything right financially, they would maybe have a couple hundred bucks at the end of the month for discretionary spending.  But if they overpaid for their house or had any consumer debt then according to his calculations the typical American family would be operating in the red.

The truth is that the day is fast approaching when it will not be possible for the average American family to make it from month to month.

Even now record numbers of American families are failing financially.

In March 2010, there were 158,000 bankruptcy filings.  That was up 19% from March 2009’s number, and it was also up 35% from February 2010’s number.

Things are getting scary out there.

But if all of that wasn’t bad enough, now state and local governments across the United States are either implementing or are considering substantial tax increases.  State and local governments all over the U.S. are facing unprecedented shortfalls, and they are looking for new sources of revenue.  But you just can’t get blood out of a stone.  Unfortunately, they are likely to keep finding ways to impose new taxes on us anyway.

So is there any good news?

No, not really.

The United States is heading for a complete economic collapse and everyone is going to feel the pain one way or another.

Just make sure that you and your family are as prepared as possible for the years ahead.

“The way to crush the bourgeoisie is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation.”
-Vladimir Lenin

My New Book - The Beginning Of The End

12 Reasons Why Millions Of Americans Are Incredibly Angry About The State Of The U.S. Economy

We have reached a very interesting turning point in American history.  More than at any other point in modern times, Americans are deeply angry about the state of the economy.  In fact, it is no stretch to say that millions of U.S. citizens are hopping mad about the economic situation.  Most of them don’t know exactly what is wrong, and even fewer of them have any idea about how to go about fixing things, but they do know one thing.  They know that they are mad.  As Americans, we were raised with the belief that our overwhelmingly powerful economic machine would always provide good jobs and prosperity for all of us as long as we worked hard.  But we have come to learn that is not true.  We have come to learn that our politicians and our leaders have squandered the great inheritance that our forefathers left for us.  We have come to learn that the financial future of our nation is beyond bleak.  We have come to learn that our government has piled up the biggest mountain of debt in the history of the world.  Now the foolish decisions of the past several decades are catching up with us.  The U.S. economy is experiencing structural failure, and the American people are angry.  They want answers.  They want someone to fix things.  They want things to go back to the way they used to be.

But that isn’t going to happen.  Once the American people truly start realizing that, the anger that will erupt will dwarf what we are seeing now.

Not that they are aren’t already incredibly steamed.  The following are 12 reasons why many Americans are absolutely furious about the state of the U.S. economy….

#1) There simply are not enough jobs for everyone.  The number of unemployed Americans per job opening has started to increase again, hitting 5.5 in February.  Even many of those who are able to get some work find themselves only able to obtain part-time employment.  Gallup’s underemployment measure hit 20.0% on March 15th.  This was up from 19.7% two weeks earlier and 19.5% at the start of the year.

#2) More Americans than ever find themselves having to rely on the U.S. government just to survive.  According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, about 39.4 million Americans, a new all-time record, received food stamps in January.  This was up 22% from a year earlier.  In fact, the number of Americans on food stamps has hit all-time records for 14 consecutive months.

#3) Foreclosures continue to set records across the United States.  RealtyTrac, the California-based authority on property trends and valuations, projects that there will be 4.5 million home foreclosures before the end of this year.  If you figure 4 people per household, that is another 18 million people that will be forced out of their homes.

#4) As unemployment and foreclosures continue to soar, “tent slums” have started popping up all over the United States.  Is this why our founding fathers fought and died?  So we could all live in “tent slums” as the big fat cats on Wall Street roll around in their bailout cash?

#5) But even with all of these economic problems, the price of food is going up.  Rising demand and reduced supply drove supermarket prices for 16 basic foods up 6.2% in the first quarter of 2010.

#6) Due to the exploding government debt, the American people are going to be confronted with some tough choices.  According to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, the United States will soon have to make difficult choices between higher taxes and reduced social spending.  Either alternative will slow down the U.S. economy.

#7) Meanwhile, corruption in the financial system is running rampant.  The CEOs of bailed-out regional banks are actually getting big raises.  The guy who helped bring down AIG is going to get off scott-free and will be able to keep the millions in profits that he made in the process.

#8) But the biggest fraud is being committed by the boys at the top of the food chain.  A whistle blower has come forward with “smoking gun” evidence of price manipulation by major financial institutions in the precious metals markets.  The scope of this fraud is in the trillions of dollars.  The American people can’t stomach much more of this type of thing.

#9) Almost all financial experts agree that the era of super cheap money is over and that interest rates are about to rise significantly.  This is going to make it much more expensive for most Americans to borrow money to buy a home, to buy a car, to buy things with their credit cards or to borrow money for education.  Those who already have adjustable loans are going to find a much larger portion of their income going to pay interest.  Needless to say, this is going to cause the U.S. economy to experience a significant slowdown.

#10) One of the biggest things that the American people are upset about is the “health care reform” bill that was just rammed down their throats.  It turns out that “health care reform” is actually going to be the biggest tax increase in American history.  Not only that, but because of taxes and mandates imposed upon health insurance companies by the legislation, health insurance premiums are also about to increase substantially.  So where will the average American family get the money to pay for these increases?

#11) In addition, the new health care law that was supposed to give all of us much better health care is actually going to force the cancellation of at least 60 doctor-owned hospitals that were scheduled to be opened according to the executive director of Physician Hospitals of America.  Why?  Well, it turns out that the new law singles out physician-owned hospitals, making new physician-owned projects ineligible to receive payments for Medicare and Medicaid patients.

#12) The reality is that Americans are increasingly becoming disenchanted with the lack of leadership in both political parties.  Approval ratings for leaders in both parties are extremely low, and anger at politicians is at an all-time high.  The Tea Party movement is just one symptom of the seething anger many Americans are feeling.  While many Americans are gathering together at large protest rallies to demonstrate against the policies of the government, others are expressing their displeasure on blogs and websites.  There has never been a moment in modern times when Americans have been so disenchanted with their political leadership.

This anger is not going to go away.  It could be soothed a bit if the U.S. economy was fully fixed and things went back to the way they used to be.  But as noted previously, that just is not going to happen.  Harder times are ahead.  Americans are going to get angrier and angrier.

But there is not much that can be done to prevent that anger.  The politicians who are in office when things really hit the fan are going to take the brunt of the anger, but it won’t be their fault.  The truth is that this economic collapse has been building for decades.  The American people are just not going to understand that the financial system cannot be fixed overnight.

Dark times are coming.  It is not going to be pretty.  There is going to be a lot of anger and a lot of hate.  But all of these economic problems could be seen well ahead of time and there have been those who have been screaming and yelling about them for decades.

But very few people wanted to listen.

Austin Coins

Was The Economic Nightmare We Are About To Experience Foreseeable By Anyone With Half A Brain?

Has the economic nightmare that America is now entering been completely and totally foreseeable to anyone who was willing to look at the facts objectively?  Has the generation now running the United States recklessly destroyed the financial future of us all?  Will future generations look back and curse those who lived at this time for saddling them with so much debt?  When it comes to the financial condition of this country, most people want to make it into a Republican/Democrat thing, but the truth is that both parties have done a miserable job of managing the nation’s finances.  It would have been very helpful if at least one of the political parties had been the least bit interested in getting America’s financial house in order, but that was not the case.  Instead, both Republicans and Democrats worked together to pile up the biggest mountain of debt in the history of the world.  They worked together to build a “global economy” that shipped a huge percentage of our manufacturing overseas.  They worked together to build a system that highly favors the biggest corporations and the international banking elite.  Now American stands on the precipice of a devastating economic collapse, and many of our politicians seem actually shocked about what is happening.

But they shouldn’t be.  All of this has been building for a long, long time.  All of this was avoidable.  The fact that the economic problems of the United States have been so clearly foreseeable and yet nothing was done to stop them has a lot of people very, very upset.  Among those who are extremely upset are some of our readers…..

Suetonious:

How long has this been obvious? Certainly was obvious to me even in the 80’s. The demographics just weren’t there to support my generation. But I knew implicitly that we would be the ones stuck with the bill – with the scumbags in DC turning around, right about now, to tell us with feigned shock – “Gee, there’s no money for you guys! How did that happen?”

I could lay all the blame on these criminals, and most of it DOES lay with them. However, I have also directly and constantly experienced wilful obtuseness and ignorance on the part of Americans, with their fingers in their ears and their tongues flapping about with “LaLaLaLaLa” – every time anyone tries to point out the blatantly obvious regarding the financial End Game.

Americans are about to get what they have denied as impossible because it was not pleasant. Now there’s some real good thinkin’. Hope they get a clue in a hurry. Americans may be decent people – but that don’t count for much when it’s coupled with voluntary pig-ignorance.

Steve:

So many people missing the point…

There are no GOOD jobs out there. People work for money not for jelly beans. Young people are “lazy” because they don’t want to flip burgers for minimum wage or less? Are you Kidding? What percentage of people over 35 are willing to do this? The kid that made my BigMac today looked to be all of 14 so I’m guessing not too many. It’s about the money people! The generation that came before us is the one responsible for rampant inflation, the trade deficit, and the general dismantling of a once great nation and the so called family unit. YOU have left us with NOTHING! YOU have sold our birth right to the highest bidder. YOU have made us the future slaves of Chinese overlords. YOU are the people unwilling to hire the young at a wage they can actually live on.

If you are over 50 and you are reading this have the decency to feel shame for what you’ve done to your children and grandchildren. We are certainly ashamed of YOU!

DavidB:

Wake up – it’s not bloody marxists – it’s your own financial, industrial and political leaders that have caused this mess and you all sat back and revelled in it. For years, America has lived high on the benefits of globalisation (heaps of cheap imports) while not realising that there is a price to pay. That price is the wholesale export of your manufacturing to Asia and Mexico – along with the jobs. These have largely been replaced by low wage service jobs. The only alternative in order to maintain your standard of living has been to resort to debt – hence the credit crunch. The credit crunch is only a symptom.

As a non American – I can only wonder at how you spend more than the rest of the world combined on defence while your economy and financial stability collapses around you.

Dan:

It is clear that it is a combination of many things that have brought us to this point in US. Illegal immigration, huge government intrusion, over-regulation, health care costs, frivolous litigation, etc., I can understand why companies move overseas. Ridiculous taxation, regulation, intrusion, health care mandates, loss of freedom, etc. Just some of the things contributing to US economic trouble.

Get govt. out of the way and private sector would fix most of the problem and most Americans would benefit from the fix. Those left out of the prosperity of America, usually want to be left out. There are exceptions, and injustice it out there. But it isn’t Govt. that should deal with the social ills of our world. Where is the Church?

Lunatic Fringe:

From the edge, a brief explanation…

Anyway that’s the problem. USA debt has the same problem. At 100% debt to GDP, the Fed manufactures money out of debt. The problem is supply. When the world’s greatest economy starts to crater it takes the collective action of every nation in the world to prop us up. So far, Japan, China, and Great Britain have done so. If their economies continue to deteriorate, they won’t be able to. Japan and China are in a death dance with us. To save their existing treasury investments they must continue to invest in us or lose what is on deposit. The USA has an ungodly pipeline debt of 60 trillion coming due and payable in the form of Social Security and Medicare payments. California it seems, is a petri dish, a sneak preview of our coming collapse.

That’s why expressing debt to GDP is really a pretty antiquated way of seeing the problem, although that has been a universally accepted practice. Can we survive at 125% or 150% debt to GDP? Sure. As long as the Fed isn’t audited.

If that audit ever occurs, and TRUST ME IT NEVER WILL, the world will suffer a complete and total collapse. What we don’t know, it seems, isn’t hurting us yet.

Cat Callahan:

One thing that is not allowed is for people to wipe the slate clean and begin again. The republican congress enacted DRACONIAN bankruptcy legislation so that if you declare bankruptcy, your creditors can still come after you indefinitely for collect! Check it out! My husband and I are physically disabled and my husband has a fatal illness. My parents had left a small inheritance for our medical expenses. It is now confiscated before I have even ‘inherited’ it! They want us to have a good life? Bolderdash! Or they wouldn’t allow medical bills that bankrupt the average working person./ Try finding a could where the husband works 2 jobs and the wife three, who live frugally, and still can not pay off medical bills. If I get sick again, I think I will just welcome death.

Rick:

I’m back in school myself working on an associates degree because my “hard-working” and “genius” parents knew exactly what career I was going into. Then, when that didn’t pan out and I wouldn’t continue taking their marching orders, they threw me out on the street to fend for myself. I did that successfully for three years and put up with all their bitching and abuse about not working “hard enough” or “expecting other people to take care of me.”

Fortunately, I discovered that I have a great aunt and uncle who have been letting me live with them and go back to school. I’ve got a decent part time job at the school, but I am barely making enough money to pay rent to them. My advice is don’t give up and don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends. I would probably be living in a card board box if not for my aunt and uncle helping me.

For all those people saying why can’t you get 3 or 4 jobs to support yourself, I hate to break it to you, but employers are not going to hire someone who is working at another place and plan their schedule around them. They are only going to hire employees that are available 24/7 and not have to pay them above minimum wage.

This is the major crisis of our times right now. Instead of blaming and bickering, let’s do what we can to help everyone out.

JM Bullion

Has The State Of California Become The Epicenter Of The Economic Collapse Of America?

Once upon a time, California was the state that everyone wanted to move to.  The endless sunshine, the gorgeous weather, the beaches, the lure of Hollywood and a booming economy made it extremely attractive to millions of Americans who wanted to fulfill their “California dreams”.  But those days are long gone.  Now, the state of California has become an economic nightmare.  In fact, many would argue that California has now become the epicenter of the economic collapse of the United States.  Everything that once made California great is now being swamped by a tidal wave of unemployment, foreclosures, crime, budget cuts, traffic, taxes and natural disasters.  There is a reason why every year now many more people leave the state of California than move into it.  The state of California is suffering a slow economic death, and if something is not done it could end up being one of the biggest financial disasters in history.

The economic crisis of the past several years has hit California so incredibly hard that it is hard to describe.  According to the U.S. Labor Department, the unemployment picture in the state continues to deteriorate, with an overall unemployment rate of 12.5 percent in January.

12.5 percent may not sound that bad, but the truth is that the situation in many of the urban areas is much worse.  There are now 8 counties in the state of California that have unemployment rates of over 20 percent.

In this economic environment, not even teachers are safe.  Just last week, the state of California handed pink slips to nearly 22,000 teachers across the state.

It is hard to even convey how bad things are in California right now.  California has always been a “boom or bust” state, but what is happening now is really unprecedented.

In fact, the number of people now unemployed in California is equivalent to the populations of Nevada, New Hampshire and Vermont combined.

Businesses are shutting down at an alarming rate.  For example, in the area around Sacramento, California there is one closed business for every six that are still open.

Just think about that.

One out of every seven businesses has already shut down.

And unfortunately things are going to get even worse.

But that is the last thing that people in California want to hear about now.

All of these economic problems are playing havoc with the state budget as well.  At this point the state of California is essentially dead broke.  Yet they have to keep borrowing more and more money because revenues have fallen off so sharply.  Basically what California is doing is they are piling up the biggest mountain of debt that any U.S. state has ever accumulated, and there is no hope that they will be able to do anything about it any time soon.

The following is how Ralph E. Stone of the Fog City Journal recently described the California government’s colossal financial problems….

How bad is the problem? Consider that California has a $20.7 billion deficit in the general fund budget over the next 16 months. California owes $8.8 billion in short-term loans that have to be paid off by June, and over $120 billion in outstanding bonds and interest that will be paid over decades. The state’s pension fund, CalPers, has $16.3 billion more in liabilities than assets, plus California also faces a $51.8 billion expense for the health and dental benefits of state retirees and future retirees.

So what can the state of California do?  Well, they can either raise taxes or they can cut spending.  Considering the fact that taxes are already at an incredibly oppressive level in the state, that is not a great option.  Not that they won’t try to suck more money out of the taxpayers anyway.

What California should be trying to do is to cut spending, but the very deep cuts that have been made already have not made that much progress.

Bob Herbert of the New York Times recently described California’s massive budget problems this way….

California has cut billions of dollars from its education system, including its renowned network of public colleges and universities. Many thousands of teachers have been let go. Budget officials travel the state with a glazed look in their eyes, having tried everything they can think of to balance the state budget. And still the deficits persist.

But it is not just California’s government that is experiencing a financial crisis of unprecedented magnitude.

California’s overstretched health care system is also on the verge of collapse.  Dozens of California hospitals and emergency rooms have shut down over the last decade.

Why?

The reality is that many hospitals and emergency rooms simply could not afford to stay open as they were endlessly swamped with immigrants and poor and homeless who were not able to pay for the services they were getting.

As a result of these hospital and emergency room closings, the remainder of the health care system in the state of California is now beyond overloaded.  This had led to brutally long waits, diverted ambulances and even unnecessary patient deaths.

And the number of Californians who are unable to pay for their emergency care is only increasing.

According to one new study, approximately 1 in 4 Californians under the age 65 had absolutely no health insurance last year.

But perhaps now that Barack Obama’s health care scheme has passed, maybe the cost of caring for everyone in California will be taken care of by the American taxpayers.

Thanks Obama.

The high unemployment rate and the cuts to the budget in California have also created an environment where crime and gang activity can flourish.  Not that crime and gangs were not gigantic problems before.  But now thousands upon thousands of young men who can’t or won’t find jobs have nothing better to do than sell drugs and terrorize entire neighborhoods.

In fact, there are many areas of California where you just do not go out of your home at night.

Then there are the devastating droughts, the thousands of wildfires, the endless earthquakes, and the crippling mudslides which California now experiences almost every single year.

No wonder so many people are flocking to leave the state.

But what happens in California eventually spreads to the rest of the United States.

Keep in mind that 13 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product comes from the state of California.

Counted by itself, California would be the 5th largest economy in the entire world.

So to think that these problems can be isolated to California is complete fantasy.

In fact, there are some areas in the United States, such as Detroit, that are just as bad as anything that is going on in California.

So the reality is that this is a national economic cancer that is spreading rapidly.

The economic nightmare that people in California and Michigan are experiencing will be coming to your area sooner or later.

Are you ready for that?

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