Either the Republicans are going to give Democrats virtually everything that they want, or the federal government will shut down at the end of the day on Friday. We have been through this process time after time, and in every single instance the Republicans have always folded like a 20 dollar suit. Unfortunately, it looks like the Democrats are going to win big this time around too. The spending agreement is essentially an updated Obama budget that fully funds Planned Parenthood, that contains no money for a border wall, and that doesn’t reflect any of President Trump’s other important priorities either. On Thursday, the House is expected to pass this horrible bill, and the Senate is expected to take up the matter on Friday. According to Bloomberg, right now this plan would keep the government open through December 22nd…
The House Rules Committee approved a rule setting the bill up for a floor vote Thursday, after which the Senate will have until the end of the day Friday to avoid a partial government shutdown. A formal check of how members would vote on the Dec. 22 deadline came back showing widespread support, said Representative Dennis Ross, a member of the vote-whipping team.
So even if this plan gets through both the House and the Senate, we will be facing another government shutdown deadline in just a few weeks.
And every time one of these deadlines approaches, the Democrats use it as leverage to get what they want. In addition to getting a spending agreement that is extremely lopsided in their favor, many Democrats want to use this current deadline to pass the DREAM Act before the end of 2017. In fact, Kirsten Gillibrand, Kamala Harris, Bernie Sanders, Dick Durbin, Elizabeth Warren and Corey Booker have all said that they will not vote in favor of any spending agreement unless it includes the DREAM Act.
Emboldened by their past successes, Democrats are asking for more than ever this time around. But if we are just going to hand the Democrats whatever they want every time, what is the point of even having elections? In 2016 we gave the Republicans control of the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives, and yet the Democrats just keep winning over and over again. This is deeply infuriating, and grassroots conservatives all over the country are sick and tired of Republicans acting like spineless jellyfish.
Fortunately, we do have a man with a spine in the White House, and it sounds like he has absolutely no intentions of giving in on the DREAM Act. The following comes from NBC News…
“Democrats are really looking at something very dangerous for our country. They are looking at shutting down, they want to have illegal immigrants, in many cases people that we don’t want in our country,” Trump told reporters at the White House. “We don’t want to have that, we want to have a great, beautiful, crime-free country.”
If the Democrats stand firm on their demands, there is a very real possibility that we could have a government shutdown, and federal agencies are already preparing for one. When the government shuts down, it only affects about 13 percent of the federal government, and we don’t actually need most of that 13 percent anyway.
So even though the mainstream media would be totally freaking out, it definitely would not be the end of the world.
If you don’t remember the last government shutdown, the following is a pretty good summary of what would happen that was published by Newsweek…
If the shutdown does occur this weekend, the effects will be felt immediately. All nonessential employees of the federal government will stay home until further notice, and some will stop receiving paychecks. Refunds from the IRS could be delayed, as could the State Department’s passport service. Most air-traffic controllers and Transportation Security Administration security will continue to go to work, but there won’t be as many as them so air-travel will be slower. Members of Congress will have limited staff and won’t be as responsive (well, as responsive as they normally are) to constituents. And after 10 days without a spending bill, federal courts will close.
Obviously it would be a good thing to avoid a government shutdown, but it is exceedingly foolish to give the Democrats whatever they want just to keep things functioning normally.
In case you are wondering, I would definitely vote “no” on the bill that is currently going through the House of Representatives. I will not vote in favor of a spending bill that explodes the size of the national debt, that funds Planned Parenthood and that contains no money for a border wall. I am never going to compromise on my most important principles, and any Republican that caves in and gives the Democrats whatever they want just to avoid a government shutdown should be ashamed of themselves.
Sadly, the Democrats have done a very good job of selling their story to the American people, and at this point most Americans are overwhelmingly in favor of a compromise…
Sixty-three percent say members of Congress should avoid a shutdown at all costs. Only 18 percent of voters surveyed say members should allow a temporary government shutdown if it helps them achieve their policy goals. The remaining 19 percent of voters are undecided.
Of course “compromise” means giving in to the Democrats on virtually every single point. There are many things that the Democrats will never, ever compromise on, and that is why they keep on winning over and over again.
Most Republicans have been compromising for so long that most of them don’t even stand for anything any longer.
It is time to kick out the corrupt professional politicians and replace them with a new generation of leaders that are willing to stand up for us. We will have a chance to do that in 2018, and we must not squander this opportunity.
Michael Snyder is a Republican candidate for Congress in Idaho’s First Congressional District, and you can learn how you can get involved in the campaign on his official website. His new book entitled “Living A Life That Really Matters” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.
The President of France has come up with a very creative way of solving the European debt crisis. On Sunday, a piece authored by French President Francois Hollande suggested that the ultimate solution to the problems currently plaguing Europe would be for every member of the eurozone to transfer all of their sovereignty to a newly created federal government. In other words, it would essentially be a “United States of Europe”. This federal government would have a prime minister, a parliament, a federal budget and a federal treasury. Presumably, the current national governments in Europe would continue to function much like state governments in the U.S. do. In the end, there may be some benefits to such a union – particularly for the weaker members of the eurozone. But at what cost would those benefits come?
When I first learned that French President Francois Hollande had proposed that the members of the eurozone should create their own version of a federal government, I was quite stunned. But I shouldn’t have been surprised. For the global elite, the answer to just about any problem is more centralization. The following comes from a Bloomberg article that was posted on Sunday…
French President Francois Hollande said that the 19 countries using the euro need their own government complete with a budget and parliament to cooperate better and overcome the Greek crisis.
“Circumstances are leading us to accelerate,” Hollande said in an opinion piece published by the Journal du Dimanche on Sunday. “What threatens us is not too much Europe, but a lack of it.”
So precisely what would “more Europe” look like?
Hollande envisions a central government that has both a parliament and a federal budget…
“I have proposed taking up Jacques Delors’ idea about euro government, with the addition of a specific budget and a parliament to ensure democratic control,” Hollande said.
His remarks touched on what analysts have seen as a major flaw in the euro.
Under the 1992 Treaty of Maastricht, countries which share a common currency must obey rules on borrowing and deficit spending.
But the Greek crisis saw one of the 19 eurozone members notch up successive worsening deficits and amass a mountain of debt. The problems were only addressed by bailouts from the European institutions and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Critics say the problem stems from a lack of centralised control over national fiscal policies, which today are jealously guarded areas of sovereignty.
In addition, this eurozone government would have its own prime minister. In essence, he would be the European version of the president of the United States. The following comes from the Independent…
There would be a eurozone government with its own prime minister, the officials said. This government would have its own budget – separate from the EU budget – to aid and invest in more fragile countries, It would try to harmonise corporation and pay-roll taxes to ensure fair competition in the eurozone.
Of course Hollande is not the only one calling for more centralization. Last month, European Central Bank President Mario Draghi, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem proposed a plan that would create a shared European treasury…
Draghi called for the creation of a shared treasury within 10 years in a joint proposal with politicians including European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and Eurogroup President Jeroen Dijsselbloem last month.
I don’t anticipate that we will see any of these things implemented immediately.
However, what is important is the fact that this is where the European elite plan to take Europe. And when the next great European financial crisis erupts, these proposals will be offered as the “solutions” necessary to end the crisis.
During times of emergency, the elite are often able to push things through that they would never be able to accomplish under normal circumstances. At the moment, it would be extremely difficult to get everyone to agree to a full-blown “United States of Europe”. But if things were to start spinning wildly out of control and people were suddenly desperately clamoring for solutions, the environment would be quite different.
What that time arrives, the key will be to get Germany and France to agree on what a “United States of Europe” should look like. If Germany and France can agree, it is inevitable that most of the other members of the eurozone would ultimately fall in line.
One potential hurdle for the creation of this new government would be the euro. The current treaty agreements concerning the euro are quite complicated and quite restrictive. If Germany and France decided that they did want to create a “United States of Europe”, they might have to create an entirely new currency in order to accomplish that.
I know that sounds kind of crazy right now, but at one time the concept of “the euro” sounded really crazy too.
For the moment, the debt crisis in Europe just continues to get even worse. Greece, Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Spain, Belgium and France are all drowning in debt. Whether or not we see a “Grexit” in the short-term, I fully expect that European bond yields will continue to rise and European stocks will take quite a tumble in the months ahead.
I believe that we are right on the verge of a very significant European financial crisis. In particular, keep on eye on the big banks. Just like in the United States, the “too big to fail” banks in Europe are massively overleveraged and are tremendously exposed to derivatives.
In fact, the bank with the most exposure to derivatives on the entire planet is Deutsche Bank. It has been reported that Deutsche Bank has a whopping 75 trillion dollars worth of exposure to derivatives, their co-CEOs were recently forced to resign, and there are all sorts of rumblings about troubles going on behind the scenes at the bank.
What do you think would happen if the biggest and most important bank in Germany suddenly became the next Lehman Brothers?
That is something to think about.
Meanwhile, the euro continues to fall. For a long time, I have been repeating my prediction that the euro would fall to parity with the U.S. dollar.
One year ago, the EUR/USD was sitting at 1.35.
Today, it has come all the way down to 1.08.
There will be more ups and downs, but we are almost there.
A time of great chaos is coming to Europe, and the eurozone will be deeply shaken.
But whether or not there is a break up of the eurozone in the short-term, in the long-term the goal of the European elite is even more integration and even more centralization.
So even though there will be significant bumps in the road, I fully expect to see the “United States of Europe” that French President Francois Hollande has proposed.
Do you agree?
What do you think the future holds for Europe?
Please feel free to join the discussion by posting a comment below…
When it comes to taking a chainsaw to the future of America, nobody seems more eager than Barack Obama. Despite the fact that the U.S. national debt is on pace to approximately double during his eight years in the White House, he has just proposed a budget that would take government spending to crazy new heights. When Barack Obama took the oath of office, the U.S. national debt was 10.6 trillion dollars. Today, it has surpassed the 18 trillion dollar mark. And even though we are being told that “deficits are going down”, the truth is that the U.S. national debt increased by more than a trillion dollars in fiscal 2014. But that isn’t good enough for Obama. He says that we need to come out of this period of “mindless austerity” and steal money from our children and our grandchildren even faster. In addition, Obama wants to raise taxes again. His budget calls for 2 trillion dollars in tax increases over the next decade. He always touts these tax increases as “tax hikes on the rich”, but somehow they almost always seem to end up hitting the middle class too. But whether or not Congress ever adopts Obama’s new budget is not really the issue. The reality of the matter is that the “tax and spend Democrats” and the “tax and spend Republicans” are both responsible for getting us into this mess. Future generations of Americans are already facing the largest mountain of debt in the history of the planet, and both parties want to make this mountain of debt even higher. The only disagreement is about how fast it should happen. It is a national disgrace, but most Americans have come to accept this as “normal”. If our children and our grandchildren get the opportunity, they will curse us for what we have done to them.
All debt destroys.
All debt enslaves.
And when you are talking about an 18 trillion dollar debt, you are talking about an amount of money that is almost unimaginable.
If our national debt was reduced to a stack of one dollar bills, it would circle our planet at the equator 45 times.
How could we have done such a thing?
Thomas Jefferson once said that “the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.” He correctly understood that government debt is stealing. We are financially raping our children, our grandchildren and all future generations of Americans. It is an incredibly wicked thing to do.
But instead of men like Thomas Jefferson running our country, we have men like Barack Obama running it.
And to Barack Obama, running up a trillion dollars of debt a year is “mindless austerity”…
“I want to work with Congress to replace mindless austerity with smart investments that strengthen America,” Obama said in a speech at the Department of Homeland Security. “I’m not going to accept a budget that locks in sequestration going forward. It would be bad for our security, and bad for our growth.”
Yes, if we steal money from future generations it will artificially inflate our current standard of living and make our economy look temporarily better than it should be.
But it is morally wrong to do this, and our current crop of politicians have no intentions of ever bringing the debt party to an end.
Even with the ridiculously optimistic economic assumptions that are used in Obama’s new budget, the federal budget is never projected to balance within the next decade. Instead, Obama’s budget projects that the national debt will rise from 18.1 trillion dollars right now to 26.2 trillion dollars in 2025.
Of course it would greatly help if the federal government actually spent our money wisely. But instead, the feds often waste our hard-earned tax dollars in some of the most bizarre ways imaginable. The following is just one example…
The U.S. federal government has prompted controversy after spending over $33,000 on a study to find out whether same-sex couples live closer to tobacco shops than heterosexuals.
The large sum was spent on a study by the National Institutes of Health entitled, ‘Relationship Between Tobacco Retailer Density and Sexual Minority Couples.’
Thanks to this kind of insane spending, our debt is completely and totally out of control.
While Barack Obama has been in the White House, the U.S. national debt has increased by $84,266 per full-time private sector worker. Anyone that believes that this kind of debt accumulation is sustainable is absolutely delusional.
The only reason why our house of cards has not completely collapsed already is because the rest of the world has been willing to lend us gigantic piles of money at artificially low interest rates.
In December, the average rate of interest on the government’s marketable debt was 2.013 percent. But in the past, interest rates have been much higher than that. For example, in January 2000 the average rate of interest on the government’s marketable debt was 6.620 percent. If we returned to that level today, we would be paying well over a trillion dollars a year just in interest on the national debt.
And the issue isn’t just the more than one trillion dollars in new debt that we are accumulating every 12 months.
As I have discussed previously, the U.S. government has more than seven trillion dollars of debt that must be “rolled over” each year. In other words, the federal government must issue more than seven trillion dollars of new debt just to pay off old debts that are coming due.
If something were to happen which would cause the rest of the planet to either be unwilling or unable to lend us trillions of dollars at ridiculously low interest rates all of a sudden, the game would be over.
We were handed the keys to the greatest and most prosperous economy in the history of the planet, and our greed has totally wrecked it.
We were wealthy beyond imagination, but that was never good enough for us. We always had to have more.
And now we are hurtling toward financial oblivion, and we have a man in the White House that wants us to go into debt even faster.
Do you think that is an alarmist headline? Well, I am not the one saying this. Law enforcement authorities all over the country are telling citizens that they can no longer deal with all the crime and that people need to lock their doors and prepare to defend their families. Just recently, the city attorney of San Bernardino, California told citizens to “lock their doors and load their guns” because there is not enough money to pay for adequate police protection any longer. The murder rate in San Bernardino is up 50 percent this year, but the city is dealing with bankruptcy and has been forced to lay off 80 police officers. But San Bernardino is not the only city dealing with this kind of a thing. In Oakland, burglaries are up 43 percent so far this year, and to say that there is a “crime wave” going on in Oakland would be a massive understatement. If you can believe it, in Oakland “more than 11,000 homes, cars or businesses have been broken into so far this year – translating to about 33 burglaries a day.” Sadly, there simply are not enough police to keep up with it all. Due to budget cuts, it is being projected that by February the size of the police force in Oakland will be about 25 percent smaller than it was back in 2008. But what is happening in Detroit is perhaps even more frightening. Today there are about 1,000 fewer police officers in Detroit than there was a decade ago. But crime just continues to rise. So now even the police are telling people to “enter Detroit at your own risk“. With very little police protection, an increasing number of citizens are taking matters into their own hands. As I noted in a previous article, justifiable homicide in the city of Detroit increased by 79 percent in 2011, and the rate of self-defense killings in Detroit is approximately 2200 percent above the national average. But don’t laugh at what is happening in cities like San Bernardino, Oakland and Detroit. What is happening in those cities will be coming to your community soon enough.
From coast to coast, criminals are becoming increasingly bold and increasingly desperate. My sister lives near a large city in the middle part of the country, and a house across the street from the one her family just moved into was recently vandalized. The criminals took all of the exposed copper pipe and copper wire that could be accessed easily.
Other criminals have become very focused on gold because it has soared in value and it is easy to resell. For example, there have been more than 250 gold chain robberies in Stockton, California just since the month of April. According to the CBS News affiliate in Sacramento, criminals are just ripping these chains right off of the necks of unsuspecting citizens, and many of the victims that have tried to resist have ended up getting hurt. Normally the criminals sell off the jewelry within 24 hours, so solving these crimes is a real challenge…
Most victims of the robberies are female (65 percent), and 44 percent of victims are age 50 or older, the data showed. The most common time of day for the crimes were between 12 and 5 p.m., though this only accounts for about a third of the crime.
Parino said robbers took even police by surprise initially.
“When [criminals] do these crimes, they normally get rid of the items within 24 hours,” he said.
That’s why police are now checking up on secondhand stores and pawn shops on a weekly basis.
Many dismiss reports such as these as “anomalies”, but how many “anomalies” do we need before we finally admit that we have a widespread problem in our society?
Personally, there are many major U.S. cities that I would not want to be living right in the middle of right now.
Just take a look at Chicago. It has become one of the deadliest major cities on the entire globe. In recent years we have seen massive cuts to the police budget coupled with a dramatic increase in gang activity in Chicago.
The murder rate in Chicago is way up this year and the police force is massively outnumbered.
As I have written about previously, there are only about 200 police officers assigned to Chicago’s Gang Enforcement Unit. It is their job to handle the estimated 100,000 gang members living in the city.
How would you like to be outnumbered 100,000 to 200?
When things really hit the fan, Chicago is going to be a complete and utter nightmare.
And sometimes we get a peek into how people will behave when things break down. Just look at what happened during the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
If you can believe it, some criminals actually took advantage of the Thanksgiving holiday to loot homes in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Queens. That was the neighborhood where approximately 100 homes burned down. The suffering of the residents of that neighborhood made headlines all over the nation. But that has not stopped criminals from moving in and taking advantage of their vulnerability…
Cops told the victims burglaries are on the rise in Breezy Point.
There were 14 home break-ins from Nov. 12 to Nov. 18, compared with none a year before.
And in the 28 days before that, there were 48 burglaries. Only four break-ins were reported in that time period the year before.
In the days after Sandy, some of the hardest-hit areas were plagued with store looting, home burglaries, street muggings and other crimes.
There are some very sick people out there. These days you simply do not know who you can trust. The person you meet on the street may be perfectly fine or they may be a total sicko. It is so hard to tell. But without a doubt there are a lot of sickos out there. Just check out what authorities in Pennsylvania found recently…
Animal welfare workers say 11 puppies were found dead and skinned near an eastern Pennsylvania park.
Sadly, authorities in that area had come across another similar incident recently…
The discovery is second disturbing incident in the county in less than a week. About 20 miles away in Lynn Township police say a dog was discovered skinned and cooked.
Who would do such things?
What in the world is happening to this country?
Things are changing, and this is just the tip of the iceberg. As conditions shift, we are all going to have to carefully evaluate what is necessary to protect our families. Don’t ignore all of the warning signs. Sticking our heads in the sand and pretending that everything is going to be okay is not going to help anything.
So what do all of you think about all of this? Please feel free to post a comment with your opinion below…
If you plan on visiting Detroit any time soon, the police have a message for you: “Enter Detroit at your own risk”. That ominous message was actually emblazoned across the top of a flyer that the Detroit Police Officer Association was passing out prior to a rally on Saturday. The flyer pointed out that Detroit is the most violent city in the nation and that more homicides are committed in Detroit than anywhere else. Meanwhile, the number of police officers in Detroit has been steadily decreasing. There are more murders in Detroit today than there were a decade ago, but the number of police officers in the city has decreased by about 1,000 over that time period. The remaining police officers are overworked and incredibly frustrated. But Detroit is far from alone. All over the nation there are major cities that are reporting a spike in crime even as police budgets are being slashed. Sadly, this is just the beginning. As the economy gets even worse, budget cuts will become even more severe and crime will become an even bigger problem.
In many areas of the country, police have become little more than report takers. If you report a crime that is not considered “high priority”, you will be lucky to get an officer to come out a few hours later to fill out a report.
In cities such as Detroit, criminals are becoming much bolder and are openly mocking the police. For example, according to a recent WND article, one gang has literally taken over a convenience store in Detroit and the police literally seem powerless to do anything about it….
Even the old-timers in Detroit never have seen anything like this: A mob of 40 black people moved into a convenience store and will not leave.
They say they now own it. They eat. Smoke. Cuss. Threaten. Spit. Rob. Sell drugs. All on video.
Police, ministers, neighbors, the store owner and just about everyone else seems powerless to stop them.
“It’s a Bad Crew gas station,” said one of the mob to the local Fox affiliate. “If you don’t know what that is, I can’t even tell you.”
The owner calls police, but nothing happens. The police “come here and then they leave. Two minutes later they (the mob) are back.”
What in the world has happened to Detroit?
Once upon a time it was one of the greatest cities in the entire world.
Now it has become a war zone.
As I wrote about a while back, justifiable homicide in the city of Detroit rose by 79 percent in 2011, and the rate of self-defense killings in Detroit is now about 2200 percent above the national average.
But like I said, Detroit is far from alone.
In some ways, what is happening in Chicago is even more frightening.
Many areas of Chicago have essentially been completely taken over by the gangs. Violent crime has dramatically increased in Chicago so far this year, and nobody seems to know what to do about it.
A USA Today article from last week entitled “Murders in Chicago: What can stop the bloodbath?” painted a very grim picture about what is going on in the city right now….
Driven by gangs, drugs and guns, the bloodshed in President Obama’s adopted hometown has resulted in a body count that exceeds the 312 murders this year in New York and 212 in Los Angeles, cities with populations dwarfing that of the Windy City. The toll here is up 25% from 2011: 391 through Sept. 23.
CBS News reporter Walter Jacobson recently sat down with some young gang members in Chicago and asked them some direct questions. Many of the answers that he got to those questions were quite frightening….
“There’s no solution to the violence,” one gang member tells him. “Killing, killing is the solution.”
When Jacobson asked them how they survive, the following was one of the responses that he received….
“Rob, steal and kill. That’s the only way. We didn’t grow up in Beverly Hills. We don’t get it handed to us”
But what are the police supposed to do about it?
As I noted in another article, there are approximately 200 police officers assigned to Chicago’s Gang Enforcement Unit to deal with an estimated 100,000 gang members.
How would you like to be outnumbered 500 to 1?
And the number of gang members in Chicago grows with each passing day.
The violence in Chicago has gotten so bad that it is making headlines all over the globe. For example, the following is a brief excerpt from an article about the violence in Chicago that appeared in the Telegraph….
“This is a block-to-block war here, a different dynasty on every street,” said a dreadlocked young man heavily inked in gang tattoos who calls himself “Killer”.
“All the black brothers just want to get rich, but we got no jobs and no hope. We want the violence to stop but you ain’t safe if you ain’t got your pistol with you. Too many friends, too many men are being killed. We don’t even cry at funerals no -more. Nobody expects to live past 21 here.”
When young people lose all hope for a better future they become very desperate.
And very desperate people are capable of just about anything.
Sadly, this is just the beginning.
The other day we learned that the number of Americans on food stamps has hit another brand new record high.
Nearly 47 million Americans are on food stamps at this point, and overall more than 100 million Americans are enrolled in at least one welfare program run by the federal government.
But what happens someday if the federal government is forced to cut back significantly on those programs or if food prices increase so much that people can’t buy nearly enough food to eat with their food stamps?
When people get really hungry they will do some crazy things.
But the mayor of Costa Mesa, California says that he has an answer to this problem. He has proposed reducing the homeless population of Costa Mesa by putting all soup kitchens in the city out of business….
The mayor of Costa Mesa proposed to get rid of soup kitchens to deal with the area’s homeless problem at a city council meeting on Tuesday.
“My belief is that if we manage to put the soup kitchen out of business that will go a long way to addressing the attractiveness in our city that’s creating a huge negative impact,” Eric Bever said.
Unfortunately, we are going to see a lot more of this kind of thing in the years ahead. The number of people that are really hurting is going to continue to increase, and the efforts to remove them from “respectable” areas is going to become more forceful.
Already we have seen feeding the homeless being banned in major cities all over the country.
But no rules, regulations or laws are going to be able to prevent what is coming in the years ahead. I believe that eventually we are going to see “flash mobs” of poor Americans storm into wealthy neighborhoods and take whatever they want.
Those doing the looting will justify it by saying that they are just taking from the rich and giving to the poor like “‘Robin Hood” did, but most other Americans will see it as more evidence that society is breaking down.
And without a doubt our society is starting to break down. What we are seeing in Detroit and Chicago right now is just the tip of the iceberg.
Things are going to become much, much worse.
Why does the state of California seem to be so incredibly hopeless? These days California can’t seem to do anything right, and if you live in California things just got a whole lot worse. Governor Brown has announced that the state budget deficit for this year is going to be much larger than projected, that more government services are going to be cut and that voters are going to vote on another round of tax increases in November. Meanwhile, unemployment is sitting at 11 percent and extended federal unemployment benefits for workers in the state are ending. Because California is one of the worst places in the nation to conduct business, there has been a steady flow of companies leaving the state. Those companies have taken a whole lot of good jobs with them. Due to the lack of jobs and a steady stream of impoverished immigrants coming in from Mexico and other countries, poverty in the state has exploded and crime is rapidly increasing. California may be the land of “endless sunshine”, but for the California economy there are only dark clouds on the horizon. The state is coming apart at the seams and there is not much hope that things are going to turn around any time soon.
These days, California is very similar to Greece in many ways.
Just like Greece, California has had round after round of “austerity” and yet still cannot seem to balance the budget.
Even after all of the cuts that have been implemented in recent years, the California budget deficit is still going to be far larger than originally projected this year. The following is from the Los Angeles Times….
Gov. Jerry Brown announced on Saturday that the state’s deficit has ballooned to $16 billion, a huge increase over his $9.2-billion estimate in January.
The bigger deficit is a significant setback for California, which has struggled to turn the page on a devastating budget crisis. Brown, who announced the deficit on YouTube, is expected to outline his full budget proposal on Monday in Sacramento.
“This means we will have to go much further, and make cuts far greater, than I asked for at the beginning of the year,” Brown said in the video.
During his remarks on YouTube, Governor Brown stated that California is “still recovering from the worst recession since the 1930s” and he stressed that hard choices are ahead.
But the California state government has already cut back in so many places. For example, back in the late 1970s the state of California was number one in per-pupil spending on education, but now California has fallen to 48th place.
Unfortunately, Governor Brown does not believe that budget cuts alone will solve the problem.
So you know what that means.
The tax increases that California voters will be voting on in November were outlined in a recent Bloomberg article….
Brown this week submitted more than 1.5 million signatures to place the tax measure on the ballot. It would temporarily raise the state sales tax, already the highest in the U.S., to 7.5 percent from 7.25 percent. It would also boost rates on income starting at $250,000. The 10.3 percent levy on those making $1 million or more would rise to 13.3 percent, the most of any state.
Get ready to fire up the moving vans.
The rest of the California economy may be falling apart, but moving companies will continue to do very well.
As I have written about previously, California has already experienced a net loss of approximately four million residents to other states over the past 20 years.
If the top rate on those making a million dollars or more a year hits 13.3 percent you will see a lot more wealthy people leave.
And thousands of businesses have left California in recent years as well. Sadly, one survey found that CEOs ranked California as the worst place in the United States to do business for seven years in a row.
You would think that the state legislature would get the message.
Unfortunately they have not.
California absolutely suffocates businesses with rules and regulations and it gets worse with each passing year.
So lots of good jobs continue to leave the state.
As mentioned earlier, the official rate of unemployment in California is sitting at 11 percent. That is almost 3 points higher than for the nation as a whole.
Of course the “official” numbers greatly understate the true scope of the unemployment problem, but for more on that you can check out this article.
However you want to look at it, the reality is that California has a massive unemployment problem.
Sadly, a whole bunch of unemployed workers in California are about to lose their unemployment benefits.
On Saturday, more than 200,000 unemployed Americans were dumped off the unemployment rolls. Close to half of them live in California.
Instead of 99 weeks, unemployed workers in California will now only be able to collect unemployment benefits for a maximum of 79 weeks.
It is estimated that a total of 93,000 people in California have suddenly lost their benefits as a result of this change.
Unfortunately, the truth is that the employment picture in California is not really getting any better. It is still incredibly difficult to find a decent job.
Unless you are “connected”, it can be a horribly frustrating experience trying to find a new job in this economic environment.
But if you are truly desperate, there are some folks out there who are always hiring.
These days, “national security” is quite a growth industry. For example, if you are currently unemployed you can always apply to work as an Internment/Resettlement Specialist for the national guard.
While the economy is going to pot, you can get paid to lock up other Americans that are protesting about the state of our country.
Doesn’t that sound fun?
But seriously, if you live in California right now you probably don’t need anyone else to tell you how bad things are.
You probably already know that the number of children living in poverty in the state of California has increased by 30 percent since 2007.
California is rapidly changing, and not for the better.
But it is not just the economy that is falling apart in California. The truth is that there are a whole host of good reasons to move away from California. The traffic is nightmarish, crime is on the rise, the gangs are bigger and more active than ever before, millions of illegal immigrants have poured into the state, and the control freak politicians become more insane with each passing year.
Plus there is the constant threat that your home will be destroyed by a mudslide, a wildfire or an earthquake.
One of these days the “big one” will hit California.
You do not want to be there when that happens.
But if you decide that you do want to move from California, what is the best state to move to?
That is a very good question.
The truth is that economic conditions are horrible in most of the country and are rapidly getting a whole lot worse.
According to one poll, 30 percent of all Americans described the condition of the economy as “good” back in February but only 20 percent do now.
When we enter the next major economic downturn, unemployment is going to go higher everywhere in the nation.
There will be small pockets where jobs are still plentiful (where the oil industry is strong for example) but almost everywhere else will be really hurting.
So what do all of you think?
For people looking to move away from California, where should they go?
Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below….
What happens when debt-fueled false prosperity disappears? Just look at Spain. The 4th largest economy in the eurozone was riding high during the boom years, but now the Spanish economy is collapsing with no end in sight. When a debt bubble gets interrupted, the consequences can be rather chaotic. Just like we saw in Greece, austerity is causing the economy to slow down in Spain. But when the economy slows down, tax revenues fall and that makes it even more difficult to meet budget targets. So even more austerity measures are needed to keep debt under control and the cycle just keeps going. Unfortunately, even with all of the recently implemented austerity measures the Spanish government is still not even close to a balanced budget. Meanwhile, the housing market in Spain is crashing and unemployment is already above 24 percent. The Spanish banking system is a giant, unregulated mess that is on the verge of a massive implosion, and the Spanish stock market has been declining rapidly. The Spanish government is going to need a massive bailout and so will the entire Spanish banking system. But that is going to be a huge problem, because the Spanish economy is almost 5 times as large as the Greek economy. When the Spanish financial system collapses, the entire globe is going to feel the pain and there will be no easy solution.
So just how bad are things in Spain at this point?
The following are 22 signs that the collapsing Spanish economy is heading into a great depression….
#1 The unemployment rate in Spain has reached 24.4 percent – a new all-time record high. Back in April 2007, the unemployment rate in Spain was only 7.9 percent.
#2 The unemployment rate in Spain is now higher than the U.S. unemployment rate was during any point during the Great Depression of the 1930s.
#3 According to CNBC, some analysts are projecting that the unemployment rate in Spain is going to go above 30 percent.
#4 The unemployment rate for those under the age of 25 in Spain is now a whopping 52 percent.
#5 There are more than 47 million people living in Spain today. Only about 17 million of them have jobs.
#6 Retail sales in Spain have declined for 21 months in a row.
#7 The Bank of Spain has officially confirmed that Spain has already entered another recession.
#8 Last week, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services slashed Spain’s credit rating from A to BBB+.
#9 The yield on 10-year Spanish bonds is up around 6 percent again. That is considered to be very dangerous territory.
#10 Two of Spain’s biggest banks have announced that they are going to stop increasing their holdings of Spanish government debt.
#11 Of all the loans held by Spanish banks, 8.15 percent are considered to be “bad loans”.
#12 The total value of all bad loans in Spain is equivalent to approximately 13 percent of Spanish GDP.
#13 Of all real estate assets held by Spanish banks, more than 50 percent of them are considered to be “troubled” by the Spanish government.
#14 That total amount of money loaned out by Spanish banks is equivalent to approximately 170 percent of Spanish GDP.
#15 Home prices in Spain fell by 11.2 percent last year, and the number of property repossessions in Spain rose by a staggering 32 percent during 2011.
#16 Spanish housing prices are now down 25 percent from the peak of the housing market and Citibank’s Willem Buiter expects the eventual decline to be somewhere around 60 percent.
#17 It is being projected the the economy of Spain will shrink by 1.7 percent this year, although there are some analysts that feel that projection is way too optimistic.
#18 The Spanish government has announced a ban on all cash transactions larger than 2,500 euros.
#19 One key Spanish stock index has already fallen by more than 19 percent so far this year.
#20 The Spanish government recently admitted that its 2011 budget deficit was much larger than originally projected and that it probably will not meet its budget targets for 2012 either.
#21 Spain’s debt to GDP ratio is projected to rise by more than 11 percent during 2012.
#22 Worldwide exposure to Spanish debt is estimated to be well over a trillion euros.
Spain is going down the exact same road that Greece went down.
Greece is already suffering through a great depression and now Spain is joining them. The following is from a recent BBC article….
“In Spain today, a cycle similar to Greece is starting to develop,” said HSBC chief economist Stephen King.
“The recession is so deep that when you take one step forward on austerity, it takes you two steps back.”
In Spain right now there is a lot of fear and panic about the economy. In many areas, it seems like absolutely nobody is hiring right now. The following is from a recent USA Today article….
“The situation is very bad. There’s no work,” said Enrique Sebastian, a 48-year-old unemployed surgery room assistant as he left one of Madrid’s unemployment offices. “The only future I see is one with wages of €400 ($530) a month for eight-hour days. And that’s if you can find it.”
But Spain is just at the beginning of a downward spiral. Just wait until they have been through a few years of economic depression. Once that happens, millions of people begin to lose all hope. A recent Reuters article discussed the epidemic of suicides that is happening in Greece right now….
On Monday, a 38-year-old geology lecturer hanged himself from a lamp post in Athens and on the same day a 35-year-old priest jumped to his death off his balcony in northern Greece. On Wednesday, a 23-year-old student shot himself in the head.
In a country that has had one of the lowest suicide rates in the world, a surge in the number of suicides in the wake of an economic crisis has shocked and gripped the Mediterranean nation – and its media – before a May 6 election.
And you know what?
The nightmares that we are seeing unfold in Spain and Greece right now are just a preview of what is coming to most of the rest of the world.
The next wave of the economic crisis will soon envelop the United States, Japan and the rest of Europe.
When it strikes, the pain will be immense.
But it won’t be the end – it will only be just the beginning.
The global financial system is starting to crumble.
You better get ready.
Today budget cutters are on the rampage from coast to coast and often one of their first targets is public school teachers. What we have witnessed recently in Wisconsin is just one example of this. The truth is that you do not want to become a teacher if you want to have financial security in America today. Teacher salaries are being slashed from sea to shining sea. But to a certain extent the teachers that are having their wages cut are the fortunate ones. There are thousands upon thousands of teachers that have already been laid off, and there are tens of thousands more that are about to be laid off. It is absolutely brutal out there right now. So if you are thinking about becoming a teacher you might want to think twice. Not that there are a whole lot of other jobs that are more secure right now. The truth is that there is no such thing as a “safe job” in America today.
It is very unfortunate that what is going on right now is going to scare so many young people away from becoming a teacher because the next generation could definitely use some quality teachers.
But the truth is that it is getting really hard to honestly recommend that anyone become a teacher at this point. Just consider some of the following news stories that we have seen around the nation recently….
#1 In Providence, Rhode Island the school district plans to send out dismissal notices to every single one of its 1,926 teachers.
#2 Michigan has just approved a plan to shut down nearly half of the public schools in Detroit. Under the plan, 70 schools will be closed and 72 will continue operating.
#3 In New Jersey, Governor Chris Christie has laid off thousands of teachers and he cut a billion dollars from the state education budget.
#4 Bills in Wisconsin, Ohio, Tennessee, Indiana and Idaho would either significantly alter or completely take away the collective bargaining rights of public school teachers.
#5 The eyes of the whole country are on Wisconsin right now. Teachers there are very alarmed about the $900 million in cuts to school funding over the next two years that are being proposed.
#6 Clay Robison, a spokesman for the Texas State Teachers Association, recently said that his organization is projecting that 100,000 school employees in the state of Texas could lose their jobs.
#7 The current plan is for more than 4,500 New York City school teachers to be laid off after this current school years ends. This will be the most significant teacher layoffs in New York since the 1970s.
#8 In Los Angeles, more than 5,000 teachers will be receiving preliminary layoff notices due to budget cuts.
#9 Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval is being deeply criticized for the teacher pay cuts that he is proposing.
#10 StudentsFirst.org is projecting that 161,000 teachers across the United States are in danger of losing their jobs this year alone.
So in light of the facts above, should we advise any of our young people to try to become a teacher?
The worst thing about all this for young teachers is that in many areas of the country there is a rule that says the last teachers hired are the first ones that get laid off.
That is another huge incentive for young people not to choose teaching as a profession.
So why are so many teacher layoffs happening?
Well, the truth is that most of our state and local governments are very deep in debt and have run out of money.
State and local government debt has reached at an all-time high of 22 percent of U.S. GDP, and hordes of state and local governments are teetering on the brink of insolvency at this point.
When there is no more money, the cuts have to come from somewhere. It is just really unfortunate that so many teachers are going to be put out onto the street.
People that have gone into the teaching profession have all spent a lot of time and money to get the education that they need to teach. If they are told that they can’t do that anymore, what are they supposed to do?
Most of the time when teachers are forced out of the profession they end up having to take jobs that pay much less. In this economy, many ex-teachers will not be able to find jobs at all. Today, one out of every seven Americans is on food stamps, and sadly many teachers may soon be joining them.
So why don’t we just raise taxes so that all of these teachers can keep their jobs? Well, the truth is that middle class Americans are already being taxed into oblivion. When you add up the dozens and dozens of different taxes that Americans pay each year the overall tax burden is absolutely frightening. There is only so much that you can squeeze out of the American people.
No, the truth is that the American people are taxed way too much already, and the big corporations and the ultra-wealthy have become experts at avoiding taxation. Our current tax system needs to be completely scrapped and replaced with something entirely new.
If our state and local governments had not been so addicted to debt, and if our economy had been managed correctly and if about a hundred other things had been done differently we would not be having these problems.
But here we are.
Unfortunately, there does not seem to be any easy answers.
Or are there some solutions that most of us have been overlooking? What do you all think? What should be done about all of the teacher layoffs that are taking place all over the country? Please feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts below….