The Beginning Of The End
The Beginning Of The End By Michael T. Snyder - Kindle Version

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The Mancession: 16 Signs That This Economic Decline Is Sucking The Life Out Of The American Male

This economic decline has been really hard on everyone, but it has been particularly hard on American men.  During the last recession male employment dropped like a rock and it has not recovered much at all since then.  That is why many referred to the last recession as a "mancession".  Industries where men are disproportionately represented such as construction and manufacturing have really been hit hard in recent years.  In the old days, you could take a high school education down to the local factory and get a job that would enable you to live a middle class lifestyle and support a growing family on just that one income.  Sadly, those days are long gone.  Today, American men live in a world where their labor is not really needed.  Wages are falling because almost any worker can be easily replaced by the vast pool of unemployed American workers that are currently searching for work, and a lot of big companies are shifting labor-intensive jobs overseas where workers only make a small fraction of what they make in the United States.  American workers (especially those without much education) are considered to be expensive liabilities in a world where labor has become a global commodity.  So the percentage of working age American men that have jobs is likely to continue to decline and wages are likely to continue to stagnate as well.

For many men, a long-term bout with unemployment can almost be worse than a major illness.  It can be really hard to feel like a man when you don't have a job.  Men often see themselves as filling the "provider" role, and when they aren't providing for their families self-esteem can fall through the floor.  It is easy to feel worthless when there is no money coming in and your wife and your kids are looking at you with worry every single day.

As you read this, there are millions upon millions of unemployed men sitting at home with a glazed look in their eyes.  When you talk with these men, many of them seem as though the life has been sucked right out of them.

As I wrote about recently, when you cannot find a job month after month after month people start to look at you differently.  Some start to look at you with pity in their eyes, and others start to look at you with disgust in their eyes.

Most Americans don't really understand how much the economy has fundamentally changed, and many of them still believe that it shouldn't be too difficult to find a job in "the greatest economy on earth".

But things have changed.  If you don't have a college education or some highly specialized skills then it is going to be exceedingly difficult to get a good paying job in this economy.

Unfortunately, finding a job is not going to be getting any easier.  Times are hard now, but they are going to be getting a lot harder.

The following are 16 signs that this economic decline is sucking the life out of the American male....

#1 During the last recession, men lost twice as many jobs as women did.

#2 According to the Economic Policy Institute, the "real entry-level hourly wage for men who recently graduated from high school" has declined from $15.64 in 1979 to $11.68 last year.

#3 During the recent economic downturn millions of men saw their family finances get absolutely destroyed.  According to the Federal Reserve, the median net worth of families in the United States declined "from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010".

#4 As you can see from the chart below, in the 1950s there were times when nearly 85 percent of all working age men had a job.  Sadly, that number has stayed below 65 percent since the end of the last recession....

#5 More unemployed fathers than ever are staying at home with the kids.  Over the past decade the number of "stay at home dads" has doubled.

#6 Prior to the recession, women accounted for approximately 45 percent of the workforce.  Now, they account for 49.4 percent of the workforce.

#7 According to one new survey, 23 percent of all small business owners in America have gone for more than a year without pay.  More than half of all small business owners are men.

#8 The decline in manufacturing jobs has had a disproportionate impact on men.  Back in 1940, 23.4% of all American workers had manufacturing jobs.  Today, only 10.4% of all American workers have manufacturing jobs.

#9 More than half of all middle management jobs in America are now held by women.

#10 More than half of all health care jobs in America are now held by women.

#11 American men love to watch television.  But because of harsh economic conditions more families than ever are eliminating cable television service.  According to one survey, a whopping 6.9 million American homes cancelled cable service last year.

#12 According to the New York Times, approximately 57 percent of all Americans that are currently enrolled in college are women.

#13 According to one study, between 1969 and 2009 the median wages earned by American men between the ages of 30 and 50 dropped by 27 percent after you account for inflation.

#14 According to another study, "young, urban, childless women" make more money in America today than young, urban, childless men do.

#15 According to CNN, in the United States today men in the 25 to 34 age bracket are nearly twice as likely to live with their parents as women the same age are....

The number of adult children who live with their parents, especially young males, has soared since the economy started heading south. Among males age 25 to 34, 19% live with their parents today, a 5 percentage point increase from 2005, according to Census data released Thursday. Meanwhile, 10% of women in that age group live at home, up from 8% six years ago.

#16 Our system often treats elderly American men like absolute trash.  Just check out what happened to one elderly veteran up in Montana recently....

Warren C. Bodeker is an 89 year old World War II Army Airborne combat veteran and war hero, living in Montana, who is being thrown off of his own land and thrown out of his own house, by Montana Federal Bankruptcy Trustee, Christy Brandon, with the approval of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Montana. And to make matters worse, Warren’s wife Lorna just died of cancer this past year, and is buried there on their land, right next to the house. Warren had planned to live there till he died and then be buried right next to his wife, there on their property at 11 Freedom Lane, in the town of Plains, Montana, but now, not only is he being forced off his land, he is being forced to exhume his wife’s body and take her with him.

As the ability of men (and women) to take care of their families continues to decline, the middle class continues to shrink rapidly.

Most Americans continue to expect our economy to be able to bounce back to where it was before, but the truth is that the U.S. economy is in the midst of a long-term decline.

We are heading for an absolute economic nightmare, and we desperately need to come together as a nation and find some real solutions.

Unfortunately, our nation is becoming more divided than ever, and most of our politicians are proposing that we continue to do the exact same things that got us into this mess.

So what do all of you think about "the mancession" and what this economic decline is doing to the American male?  Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below....

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  • greg

    Quit sniveling. Acquire a skill that means something in todays market. A good linux admin can command 70-80K annually in Nashville, TN.; more on the coasts. Linux is a self taught skill. Most colleges don’t even offer it. There are numerous opportunities for education even if you’re broke.

  • Owen

    Read your comments, felt the pain, but remember this: You always get more of what you subsidize. We have been subsidizing women’s education and employment for several decades now, hence this outcome. The good news is this will not last much longer(we can’t afford it). The bad news is we are not going to like what is replacing what our world once was. Read your Bible, as only born again Christians can look confidently to the future.

  • Louise in MO

    One reason that businesses are hiring women rather than men is because they PAY women less than men. This fact was most recently discussed in the media. After working 40 years, I know it’s true!

  • Brooks Newmark

    THIS ARTICLE SUCKS!!!!!

    Becoming a man starts when you’re young. Roughing it on the playground, sports, outdoor activities, scouts, “tackle football”, hockey hoops, baseball, fishing, hunting, helping out around the house with chores, pulling weeds, taking out the trash, cleaning the garage, learning how to fix things, working with machines/tools.. getting dirty, being polite and humble, looking people in the eye, firm handshakes, kindness to children, respecting the elderly, respecting and being kind to everyone, learning how to tie a tie, dress appropriately for a formal occasion, use proper social graces, shine your shoes, press your shirt and pants, learn proper etiquette at a country club, how to play golf…by the rules, how to NEVER complain about ANYTHING or make EXCUSES about ANYTHING..including unemployment. No reason you can’t start your own thing to make money in a pinch…keep fighting…stay humble, resourceful..open minded..and healthy…pray…get closer to the LORD…READ the BIBLE…Listen to the HOLY SPIRIT move you…NEVER GIVE UP OR GIVE IN to the temptation to complain and whine…actually go volunteer to help someone less fortunate than you…someone with cancer…a child who was abandoned…mentally disabled…a senior living alone in a rest home…reach out to the homeless guy on the street and tell him the LORD LOVES him…take him to the grocery store and buy him some food..take him to the YMCA or The Salvation Army…help him clean himself up…give away some things you don’t use or don’t need anymore to someone or some organization that could use it…SMILE ALOT…COMPLIMENT other PEOPLE…WAKE UP AND BE A MAN>>>SLAP YOURSELF INTO ACTION>>>>>MANNNNN UPPPPPP!!!!!

    • mondobeyondo

      Sadly, it seems like more girls than boys are picking up those traits these days. And therein lies the problem. Have you seen girls on a playground? Those young ladies can be VICIOUS!

  • FxP

    The truth is that Men are been displaced from the blue collar workforce not because of Women; but because of OUR nation’s ever shrinking manufacturing and construction work sector. We are becoming a nation of services (hence the trade deficit). Women are great at the servicing department for example: real estate, lawyers, doctors, nurses, customer service, etc. (no physical strength need it).

    The goal of the world economy “engine” (one piston goes up and we go down) is to crush our nation until we are so desperate that we will work for cents an hour giving up our human rights. Then we will become the manufacturing beacon of the world again to be paid with our environmental degradation.

    Run to the hills and grow your own food for your family survival. Is the only way. Good luck.

  • Brad V

    Michael

    Do you know of path I can take to assist Mr. Bodeker? His is a true heart-breaking story.

    • Michael

      Brad:

      I am afraid I don’t have that information.

      Does anyone else out there know?

      Michael

  • Gary2

    reading many of the low information comments from conservatives it is obvious the conservative movement is at war with women. We will be exploiting that in the extreme in this coming election. Conservatives are going down.

  • Brooks Newmark

    Thanks Gary2 …yeah for Gary..Gary is sooo smart….sooo clever….terrific and thoughtful insight shared..high thinking Gary…preach it Gary! Gary 2 for President!! Way to go Gary…you tell all those conservatives how stupid they are…how all those misguided conservatives just want to start a war against women..sure Gary..makes sense to me that a bunch of fun loving heterosexual family oriented guys that have been married to The same woman for years must really have it in for women…Happy 30th Anniversary Honey!!! By the way Honey…We are officially at War!!! Come on now Gary…wake up!!!!

  • kalord

    ILL SAY IT ONCE AGAIN. IT IS BECAUSE OF THE EPIDEMIC OF AUTISM WHICH EFFECTS MEN TO WOMEN 4 TO 1. MORE IN MY OPINION. IT RUINS YOUR ABILITY TO PROPERLY PLAN, ORGANIZE, MEMORIZE SHORT TERM AND MULTITASK ETC. ETC.

  • http://bluescholarblog.wordpress.com/ Jeremiah W. Pinkard

    It’s a woman’s world alright. This mancession has made women the majority of the workforce in this nation for the first time ever. More than 50% of all middle managers are now women. The glass ceiling is going to break, and when it does it will rain down a torrent of razor sharp shards on the hapless men below. As they scurry around for shelter they will find none as their crab pot mentality will prevent any of them from escaping.The pointy fragments will eviscerate their dreams, and their flesh alike as they slowly drown in a sea of debt.

    The age of men has ended and the age of women has begun. The female of the species is simply better suited to thrive in our post industrial society. Unfortunately for men they have had their boots on the necks of women for far too long, and the women are starkly aware of this fact. Shoulder pads in the 80s were just the beginning. As your girlfriend shakes her vibrator at you and says “I don’t need you. I’ve got my man.” you should be worried. Just like in the economy you can be replaced.

  • Jim C

    WOW! What anger and self-righteousness. You people think everything is a stationary target — that people, and therefore human issues don’t change. They change by the hour. Male chauvanist? Really? Fact is, most people in this mess work as a team. Only one person I saw above understands that women are doing better in this job market because they can do most any job as well as their male counterparts — but they have been doing it for 30% less pay for ever. Now we will have equal pay for equal work between men and women, but no woman is getting a raise. For example: a job in 2008 at ACME Co. pays $80k to men and $60k to women. Starting in 2009, company’s start losing money seriously. They look to cut. Who gets axed first. The executive in charge of the cuts will have spreadsheets grouped by positions, not by sexes. I guarantee that executive doesn’t give a rat’s butt about anything on the left half of the spreadsheet. That executive, man or woman, will find the one and only column they care about — total compensation. And they will start cutting their. Exceptional male ($80k) performers will be kept if the crisis allows, but the pattern will be to remove the highest paid employees and reduce the pay for that position by, in this case, 25%. Now, human beings being adaptable critters, swallow hard, bang their heads against the wall for a year or so (the unemployed man, as well as his still employed spouse, because, after all, they’re still trying to live on a lot less money as a household) and then they accept that the $80K rate is gone forever. Now they’d be thrilled if the man could get a gig at $50K, because $100k total household looks like a million dollars at this point.

    Neither side really knows how to deal with this change. Women have judged women MUCH harder than any man ever has. Men’s crimes tend to be of indifference to their counterparts rather than overt persecution. Unemployed men look at their wives and believe they see deep disappointment mixed with the fear and frustration. Anyone, man or woman, who has not been in this unemployment situation in the last 3 years, really needs to just shut up, open their eyes and stop embarrassing themselves with cliche “fixes” for the people who have lost their 401k’s, their kids’ college funds, their emergency savings, their hopes to ever retire, and possibly their marriages to a world that changes faster than new answers can be found for today’s new questions.

  • Jennifer

    Everyone knows the workplace has gotten worse and worse the more women go into it. It’s turned into a petty, worthless exercise in games. More like an 8 hour bridal shower. Work sucks now because women are too sensitive and no one can say ANYTHING without getting in trouble.

  • Rich Daddy

    The only solution to our mess as Americans is that we need to take our country back! We need to dig deep into our hearts and minds and live our life like we did when our country was founded. There is too much belly aching and blaming of others. When the true problem is us. We live in a country that is founded on a Free Enterprise system. That means we all have the opportunity to create wealth and help others do the same. Capitalism should be given a true chance to operate at it’s full potential. No bail outs of failing business! We should ALL oppose bank bail outs. Let the failing company fail, and the succeeding ones take the lead. All of that is controlled by the people, not the government. But, it looks like we all need to hit rock bottom before we do anything. If that’s the case, then let it be. We will find our true selves in our moments of great disappointment.

  • john bello

    hey michael, I am writing a paper on this topic can I cite you as a source, first and last name please.

    john bello

    • Michael

      John:

      My name is Michael Snyder

      Michael

  • Kommunist

    They’ll blame women, they’ll blame blacks, they’ll blame anyone but the bosses and their state puppets. Wake up workers.

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