The Beginning Of The End
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Two More Victims Of The Retail Apocalypse: Family Dollar And Coldwater Creek

Family DollarDid you know that Family Dollar is closing 370 stores? When I learned of this, I was quite stunned. I knew that retailers that serve the middle class were really struggling right now, but I had no idea that things had gotten so bad for low end stores like Family Dollar. In the post-2008 era, dollar stores had generally been one of the few bright spots in the retail industry. As millions of Americans fell out of the middle class, they were looking to stretch their family budgets as far as possible, and dollar stores helped them do that. It would be great if we could say that the reason why Family Dollar is doing so poorly is because average Americans have more money now and have resumed shopping at retailers that target the middle class, but that is not happening. Rather, as you will see later in this article, things just continue to get even worse for Americans at the low end of the income scale.

I was also surprised to learn that Coldwater Creek is closing all of their stores...

Women's clothing retailer Coldwater Creek Inc. on Friday filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy after failing to find a buyer said it plans to close its stores by early summer.

Coldwater Creek joins other retailers to seek protection from creditors in recent months as consumers keep a lid on spending.

The company said it plans to wind down its operations over the coming months and begin going-out-of-business sales in early May, before the traditionally busy Mother's Day weekend.

Coldwater Creek, which has 365 stores and employs about 6,000 people, has five stores in Maryland.

I remember browsing through a Coldwater Creek with my wife and mother-in-law just last year. At the time, my mother-in-law was excited about getting one of their catalogs. But now Coldwater Creek is going out of business, and all that will be left of that store is a big, ugly, empty space.

Of course the fact that a couple of major retailers are closing stores is nothing new. This kind of thing happens year after year.

But what we are witnessing right now is really quite startling. So many retailers are closing so many stores that it is being called a "retail apocalypse". In a previous article entitled "This Is What Employment In America Really Looks Like…", I detailed how major U.S. retailers have already announced the closing of thousands of stores so far this year.  If the economy really was "getting better", this should not be happening.

So why are so many stores closing?

Well, the truth is that it is because the middle class is dying. With each passing day, more Americans lose their place in the middle class and fall into poverty. The following is an excerpt from the story of one man that this has happened to. His recent piece in the Huffington Post was entitled "Next Friday, I'll Be Living In My Car"...

For the past 13 years, I've mostly been doing facility management in several locations across the state. After the position turned into more of a sales role, they laid me off. Since then, I've been looking to find any type of work. I've applied for food stamps, and I'm waiting for that. I'm mostly eating soup from a food pantry.

I've been on several interviews -- second, third, fourth interviews -- and just haven't been able to land a job for whatever reason. I definitely have the qualifications and the experience. Last week, I had a job offer that I thought was secure, and we were talking my work schedule. They decided to call me back and go with an assistant rather than a manager.

For a number of applications, I've dumbed down my resume. I don't even go with a resume sometimes, just because I don't want them to know that I'm educated and have a master's degree. It shoots me in the foot. They don't want me because they don't think I'm going to stay. I don't blame them. I was making six figures at $60-70 an hour. Now, I'm looking for a $10 an hour job.

There are millions upon millions of Americans that can identify with what that man is going through.

Once upon a time, they were living comfortable middle class lifestyles, but now they will take any jobs that they can get.

Just today I came across a statistic that shows the massive shift that is happening in this country. A decade ago, the number of women working outnumbered the number of women on food stamps by more than a 2 to 1 margin. But now the number of women on food stamps actually exceeds the number of women that have jobs.

Wow.

How could things have changed so rapidly over the course of just one decade?

And sadly, things continue to go downhill. Every day in America, more good jobs are being sent out of the country or are being replaced by technology. I really like how James Altucher described this trend the other day...

Technology, outsourcing, a growing temp staffing industry, productivity efficiencies, have all replaced the middle class.

The working class. Most jobs that existed 20 years ago aren’t needed now. Maybe they never were needed. The entire first decade of this century was spent with CEOs in their Park Avenue clubs crying through their cigars, “how are we going to fire all this dead weight?”. 2008 finally gave them the chance. “It was the economy!” they said. The country has been out of a recession since 2009. Four years now. But the jobs have not come back. I asked many of these CEOs: did you just use that as an excuse to fire people, and they would wink and say, “let’s just leave it at that.”

I’m on the board of directors of a temp staffing company with one billion dollars in revenues. I can see it happening across every sector of the economy. Everyone is getting fired. Everyone is toilet paper now.

Flush.

There is so little loyalty in corporate America these days. If you work for a major corporation, you could literally lose your job at any moment. And you can be sure that there is someone above you that is trying to figure out a way to accomplish the tasks that you currently perform much more cheaply and much more efficiently.

Most big corporations don't care if you are personally successful or if you are able to take care of your family. What they want is to get as much out of you as possible for as little money as possible.

This is a big reason why 62 percent of all Americans make $20 or less an hour at this point.

The quality of our jobs is going down, but the cost of living just keeps going up. Just look at what is happening to food prices. For a detailed examination of this, please see my previous article entitled "Why Meat Prices Are Going To Continue Soaring For The Foreseeable Future".

As the middle class slowly dies, less people are able to afford to buy homes. Mortgage originations at major U.S. banks have fallen to a record low, and the percentage of Americans that live in "high-poverty neighborhoods" is rising rapidly...

An estimated 12.4 million Americans live in economically devastated neighborhoods, according to American Community Survey data collected from 2008 to 2012. That's an 11 percent jump from the previous survey, conducted from 2007 to 2011. Even more startling, it's a 72 percent increase in the population of high-poverty neighborhoods since the 2000 Census.

If nothing is done about the long-term trends that are slowly strangling the middle class to death, all of this will just be the beginning.

We will see millions more Americans lose their jobs, millions more Americans lose their homes and millions more Americans living in poverty.

The United States is being fundamentally transformed, and very few people are doing much of anything to stand in the way of this transformation. Decades of incredibly foolish decisions are starting to catch up with us, and unless something dramatic is done right away, all of these problems will soon get much, much worse.

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  • Rodster

    Just a footnote. Dollar Tree Stores have also missed sales expectations. So it’s not just Family Dollar Stores.

    Link below:

    • Adrian

      Thanks, as I was wondering about Dollar Tree, which is in my area.

      • FirstGarden

        They oughta rename it Nickel Tree, cuz that’s what our dollar is gonna be worth before long.

        • Whoopdy Do

          It’s worth a nickel now. The value of the dollar has dropped 95% since the founding of the Federal Reserve in 1914.

          • FirstGarden

            Add to that rising taxes & fees and supporting the lifestyles of bureaucratic royalty, and it’s no wonder my wife & I both work, rent out two rooms, and STILL are way behind on our bills.

            “Green Acres here we come.”

        • Tim

          We’re starting to see a move a way from the dollar by foreign nations (e.g. Russia, China) and if it accelerates, the trinkets that Dollar Tree carries will eventually be $5, $10, or more.

          • FirstGarden

            Yuppers. I was just stating the problem in reverse. Concerned about the dollar? Wait til its no longer the world currency reserve. We ain’t seen nothing yet!!

  • down with the empire

    so you think you’re in bad shape? minimun salary in mexico is 4.50 dollars a day! but don’t think things are cheaper a gallon of gas is 4 dollars now so don’t complain and start living like almost everyone in the world are

    • Kim

      Telling someone that is clearly in bad circumstances not to complain because others have it worse is like telling someone experiencing something good not to rejoice because others have it better.

      It’s hard here for a lot of folks.

      • Adrian

        Great point!

      • Hammerstrike

        True that!

        Also, aren´t things cheapers in Mexico than in the USA?

    • Adrian

      That’s like comparing apples to oranges. The US is experiencing DECLINING economic opportunities and circumstances, while Mexico’s in rising. It obfuscates the issue to argue that people should not complain because somewhere on earth there exist people living in squalor. That really is a non-issue and is an attempt to ignore a serious problem.

      • A Cat That Is Fat

        Some one should kill those rich fat cats like Jamie Diamond Warren Buffett George Soros

        • Adrian

          I’m not for killing anyone, and how would that solve the income inequality problem, which is now institutionalized?

      • Timmy

        What about the 99 cent stores and Kohls Sears and Home Depot. Will they close stores soon?

  • Adrian

    I am very happy there are blogs like this that address these issues about the economy and the shrinking middle class, as the corporate media is so full of wonderful ways to spin bad news I often ask myself (using today’s example) how they could possibly spin 2,000 Americans applying for unemployment benefits as a good thing, or a sign that the economy is doing just great??! I myself have also often worried about my high levels of education and how this could hurt me. Talk about an absolutely surreal experience when you’re told all your life how important education is, and the more education you have, the better your opportunities, only to wonder if numerous master’s degrees may not actually harm you. All I can say is that if this is the case, this society is finished, as we do enough dumbing down as it is.

    • piccadillybabe

      Education has not kept up with the changing world we live in. They are just big corporations trying to make big profits. Could not believe the money these people make at universities these days, i.e. $350K for a student chancellor position. A $40K a year raise is average for these people. It’s not about preparing people for the future at all. It’s an elite club that just wants to keep the ole ball rolling for as along as they can.

      • Hammerstrike

        Education is cultural-marxists teachers making a profit.

        Thankfully, they are rapidly running out of other people´s money.

      • Annette Smith

        It is now all about making money. They are subsidized by the Student Loans. I took college courses the past several years, and I found the teaching to be quite secondary. One accounting instructor would give me the answers to the chapter quizzes. If he has a class with high test scores, that bodes will for him. Teachers cheating to keep their jobs. Yep!

        • piccadillybabe

          Hear that is common these days. Such a disconnect with the real world and education. Yet, they keep throwing more money into the education budget thinking if they pay em more, they will be better teachers. Again, rewarding failure…..

    • VegasBob

      Adrian, based on your blog photo, my guess is that I’m 35 or 40 years older than you are. And you know what, I’m glad I’m retired. I have multiple degrees, one from a “name” school, and I sure wouldn’t want to have to look for a job in this economy.

      • Adrian

        VegasBob, thanks for your post. I am glad you were able to retire and get out of this lousy economy. I think frustration and disillusionment are the two words that many young people would use to describe this economy and our inept political system (which includes both parties).

      • Annette Smith

        Hey, Vegas Bob! We used to live in Vegas for about ten years. We left in 08, before the collapse. We could smell it coming. In June of that year, we went into Ceasar’s Palace at 4 in the a.m., and NO ONE was there! Spookily reminiscent of when 911 hit. We knew then, since no one was coming in to Vegas, that something was up. Glad we made it out of there.

      • Jakob

        I got my “hover-round”……

    • Todd

      Please don’t take this the wrong way, but I always wonder why people who are so smart and diligent as to have earned masters degrees are not actively seeking ways to make their own work and their own companies. I suspect that says something about our educational system (indoctrination vs education).

      • Adrian

        Because not everyone wants to go into business and start their own company. Human beings are complex, having many likes and interests that don’t just boil down to becoming entrepreneurs. People go into fields in which they have talent, and business isn’t the sine quo non of everything.

        • Rusty Brown

          Plus there is all the paper work – tax licences and forms to fill out – just to set up a business, and then endless ongoing government paperwork and endless “regulation” for even the simplest situation.
          I know whereof I speak.
          It’s a big, big disincentive to try to create a small company of any kind.

  • Adrian

    I would like to see some connections and linkages made between the neoliberal mentality of using up people and then throwing them away (which is mentioned in the above article) and how this pervades into our society as a whole, with people treating one another like garbage and the rise of incivility. I am convinced there is a connection between the two concepts, with one having caused the other. I think we that we ignore the linkages between the two concepts at our own peril. How can a society celebrate an economic system that preaches that greed is good, justifying the destruction of the middle class and the poor, the environment, and fact that 45,000 Americans die every year from lack of health insurance, and still pretend to have a civil society of any sort? The two are oxymoronic, and I think many people fail to see the connections here.

    • FirstGarden

      Greed is not liberal nor conservative.
      It’s human.

      • Adrian

        It may be human, but liberals are undeniably less greedy than conservative/reactionaries. Just look at the policies each advocate. And before people jump on me with claims that it’s greedy to tax the wealthy and redistribute income, no, they still remain wealthy. The top tax rate during Eisenhower was 90%. Their income is just being used help a greater number of people than themselves. Yet, there really are no real liberals left in our centers of power today (other than Bernie Sanders), as they have been bought out by the wealthy corporate special interests.

        • VegasBob

          I think your premise is flawed.

          I know a rich liberal (~$6 million) in his mid-70s who has never given a dollar to any charity at any point is his life. That’s right – NOT ONE SINGLE DOLLAR!

          And I know a rich right-winger (~$10 million) who has spent nearly a million dollars over the last 20 years paying for college tuition for the children of friends and relatives who did not have the resources to attend college on their own.

          Just because liberals “advocate” government social programs for the poor or less fortunate doesn’t mean they are not stingy.

          Liberals do not pay for their “generosity” directly out of their own pockets. They pay for their social problems by taxing everybody.

          • Adrian

            You are speaking of anecdotes, while I am speaking of generalizable policy platforms that have been present for centuries. Lastly, liberals are also taxed, so , yes, they do pay for the same policies they advocate when electing people who would w=raise taxes to spend more on social programs. They are not somehow exempt from taxation. I think it is your premise that is flawed.

          • VegasBob

            Adrian, I did not say liberals were not taxed. My exact phrase was “population as a whole” which does include liberals, insofar as I know.

            I simply said (or intended to say) that one’s political views are not a particularly good indicator of generosity or stinginess.

            When’s the last time you opened your wallet and donated $100 to a charity? Any charity? Or even volunteered your time, if you don’t have extra money to donate? If you can’t think of a donation of time or money, then you are probably self-absorbed and stingy, regardless of your political leanings.

            By the way, I’m a liberal myself, starting with working on the McGovern campaign in California in 1972. I certainly don’t support Republicans’ economic lunacy or their neanderthal social policy.

          • Adrian

            This week, actually. I don’t have hardly a nickel to my name, but I gave $ 20 to the state troopers association to help officers and their families. I’ve given money to the needy as well, so I wouldn’t call myself stingy.

          • VegasBob

            Good for you!

            We’re not really on different pages. I’m just not convinced that there is a particularly strong correlation between generosity and political views.

            As for me, I’m retired and spend about a thousand hours a year doing a variety of volunteer work, and every year I “help out” dozens of people, most of whom are on disability, by buying them “things” they need, such as food, clothes, etc.

          • Adrian

            Perhaps there isn’t; I don’t know, but that discussion gets us off the point I was trying to make earlier, which was a link between our neoliberal economic system and our culture of incivility. Many sociologists have already established this link, and I think it is there. My hat’s off to you for spending so much of your time giving back to your community and helping to make this society a good place. What do you think of my idea about the way our society COULD be run, perhaps at some point down the road? I will just briefly highlight the points to save space. We would have nationwide programs of civil service, where every high school grad did 2-4 years of public service that was government-led and sponsored, like an internal public service army: people would go off for basic instruction, sign up for what field they’d like to enter, get some training in it, and then be assigned to some section of the country to begin. It could be construction, environmental reclamation, volunteer work in poor areas, agriculture, forestry, …the limits would be our imagination. It would be an expansion of the WPA and the other New Deal programs. In exchange, the state would pay for a 4 year degree for all who participated. I think this would not only teach people lifelong skills, but inculcate in them a sense of civic pride, responsibility, and duty (other than just military service, as I don’t see killing ppl and destroying things overseas as particularly noble unless it is truly in self-defense, as in WW 2). Our money would be spend on our own country. our infrastructure would be modernized with high speed rail, innovating transportation and more sustainable living. What a great society that would be!

          • VegasBob

            Your idea is pretty good. When Obama took office, I was disappointed that the “stimulus” program wasn’t more like FDR’s WPA. I’d add trade schools to the program – we need people who can actually do QUALITY plumbing, carpentry, equipment repair, landscaping, etc.

            I’ll make three other points that you might think about incorporating into your idea.

            First, a lot of people want to wander off and do their own thing rather than join any kind of group effort – I’m thinking of creative people like artists, sculptors, musicians, actors, theatrical people and so on. Your program should accommodate people who “dance to their own drummer,” so to speak.

            Second, to succeed, any program needs to have the support of about 65% to 70% of the people to be successful in the long run. That’s why Social Security and Medicare are successful – too many rank-and-file Republicans support those programs despite some of their wacko Republican leaders – more on that below.

            Third, I think many of our systems – both in government and the private sector – have become too coercive and too complicated. Figure out how to reach consensus with a large majority of the people and keep it simple. I’ll use two examples. The original Social Security Act of 1935 ran about 50 pages. Even though they didn’t like it, more Republicans voted for the Social Security Act in 1935 than voted against it (House R’s 81 yeas, 15 nays. Senate R’s 16 yeas, 5 nays). On the other hand, The Affordable Care Act runs over 2,200 pages and not one Republican voted for it.

            If you figure out how to accommodate/incorporate all of those points, you should run for elective office. I think you’d win in a landslide.

          • Adrian

            Thanks! I totally agree on the vocational training, and meant to include that as well. Thank you for your kind words, but I have no intension of ever seeking public office. I lack the connections, resources, and live in a red state. I also have been quite disillusioned with the electoral system, seeing both parties really a single, corporate, special interest party that caters to the rich and powerful and ignores everyone else.

          • 68Impala

            Nice gesture but the “state troppers association” you probably gave to is the one of many calling through boiler rooms across the country that cold calls you at home and keeps over 85% of the money in commissions and admin fees. Never give over the phone, be generous but send a check directly to the organization you want to support.

        • FirstGarden

          “It may be human, but liberals are undeniably less greedy than conservative / reactionaries.”

          Undeniably?
          In the Top Ten richest people in congress, SEVEN of them are democrats.

          It is fairly common knowledge that Conservatives give far more to charities.

          Liberalism and Conservatism are value systems, not character traits.

          Do you honestly believe that the liberals are NOT beholden to HUGE special interest groups, Lobbyists, enormous & devious campaign contributions, New World Order-related memberships?

          I repeat, GREED is an equal-opportunity usurper of the human heart. Conservatives & liberals demonize each other, but they are made of the same stuff. Neither is necessarily good or evil.

          I find that many relent before sheer reason, but carry on unchanged, because it’s so much easier to fall into the common ruts of shallow thinking, championed by those who manipulate the masses.

          It’s a lot more fun too, and a lot less work to go along with groupthink and crowd psychology. Like wheel ruts in a hardened, dirt road, it’s all too easy just to slip down therein, than to think free. I took thee for thy better.

          • Adrian

            I see both parties as owned by corporate and special interests; therefore it makes little sense to speak of them in historic terms. I am not so sure conservatives give more to charities, as how would you measure that? I’d be interested in looking at the data, especially if it comes from independent sources. One thing to consider is WHY people give to charities: is it to get tax breaks, or to truly help others? Greed is indeed a human trait, but this brings us away from the point I was making. I’d like to see more articles linking our economic/capitalist greed to the decay of civility in society.

          • FirstGarden

            I’d link you to historian Francis Schaeffer, but then this post could get tied up for hours awaiting approval. His greatest work was, “How Should We Then Live – The Rise and Decline of Western Thought and Culture.”

            Just copy & paste and go to YouTube. Although not left-right political in nature, it’s one of the greatest eye-openers I have ever seen!

            “I am not so sure conservatives give more to charities, as how would you measure that?”

            That’s easy. Charity groups, tax reports, freedom of information act, etc, etc.. well established territory. No one challenges these stats.

            Again, greed is a matter of character, not ideology.

          • Adrian

            Thanks, I will check him out.

          • Mike Smithy

            Liberals are only generous at giving away other people’s money.

            Conservatives More Liberal Givers – RealClearPolitics

          • Adrian

            I addressed this nonsense as well. Tell me exactly how liberals can exempt themselves from taxation (like GE does, for example) and then I will concede your point. Do it not, and you’ve conceded mine.

          • Mike Smithy

            Numerous surveys conclude that conservatives give a higher percentage of their post tax income to charitable causes than liberals. Liberals promote the notion of charity through governmental programs such as food stamps, EITC, Section 8 housing subsidies etc. Therefore the notion of entitlements has contributed greatly to our $17 Trillion dollar national debt and has created a generational plantation class. Where is the compassion in that? I would argue that responsible charities are much more effective and efficient at dealing with those that need a “hand-up” verses the governmental practice of never ending “hand-outs”. What say you?

          • Adrian

            They give to churchs, which are cherities, because they attend church in higher numbers. What about organizations like Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, Amnesty International, Doctors without Borders, etc.? While some conservatives may give to these, many do not as they are directly opposed to their purpose (they scoff at saving the environment, labeling any who think this way ‘tree huggers’. They are pro-corporate, don’t mind pollution, and are backward when it comes to accepting the science of climate change and evolution). It’s really impossible to answer this question of who gives more to charities. I do know this: red states receive far more government welfare benefits than do blue states. That is a fact you can look up easily on the internet. My point, however, is this: I see a connection between growing incivility in our society and the economic system that uses up people and spites them out, seeing them as cogs. In fact, Michael addresses this indirectly in this very article above if you read it carefully.

          • Mike Smithy

            You are so misguided on so many levels that it is difficult to know where to begin. Fist of all, your original premise is that since liberals pay some taxes they are somehow entitled to run up the national debt to obtain entitlements that future generations will have to pay for. Just exactly who is paying for the deficit pursuant to the entitlement outlay? Answer: Your children, grand children and great grandchildren. Where is the compassion in generational theft? In addition, where is your evidence that conservatives are pro corporate? Under President Zero’s watch, his QE infinity programs have done more to line the pockets of Wall Street fat cats than any President in history. Lastly, the only science that supports so called “Climate Change” is VooDoo scientific at best. I can point you to numerous well respected climatologists that have debunked it. You should wise up and get a grasp on reality.

          • Adrian

            First, it isn’t just liberals running up the national debt. Last time I checked, we spend more on our military than any other country on earth, and that comes with a hefty price tag. So there’s that problem with your simplistic logic. 2) Social expenditures don’t just benefit liberals, hence the term SOCIAL expenditures. This funds public goods, things like roads, bridges, airports, schools, hospitals…you know, the stuff we all use, not just liberals. 3) My claim that liberals pay taxes was in response to some claiming that “liberals spend and the rest of society pays for it.” Nope, liberals pay for it too, as they are taxpayers just like conservatives, atheists, and the apolitical. 4) Yes, I know who is paying for the debt, which is why I think we need to get our priorities straight by RAISING taxes on the rich and cutting defense expenditures. You know, we do have a growing income inequality problem DESPITE over a decade of historically low tax rates, and some corporations pay no income taxes. Before whining about the debt, take those things into consideration, as it makes you more credible. 5) Do I think Conservatives like dirty water and air? As long as they don’t have to breath or drink it, considering they doubt scientific evidence for climate change and didn’t seem to mind when Bush raised the allowable levels of arsenic in drinking water to help the coal industry. What you say about climate change is so laughable that all I can conclude is that you are so ill-educated you simply do not understand what science is, how it works, and what evidence is compared to opinions. I refuse to waste time arguing with a vegetable.

          • Mike Smithy

            Why do you insist that soaking the rich via draconian taxes will level the playing field? Does a wealthy person benefit more from a strong national defense than a poor person. Does a wealthy person drive on the public roadways more than a poor person? Does a wealthy person have more children attending public schools than a poor person? Answer: No. The richest 1% are already paying 30% of annual tax revenues. It would appear that you suffer from class envy and assume that the wealthy have money because they somehow stole it. As a consolation, I can agree with your point on military spending and the need for austerity. We can no longer afford to be the world’s police force.

          • Gay Veteran

            The richest 1% (actually the richest 0.1%) rule this country.

          • GSOB

            GE is in league with the nuclear power / weapons industry.

            The US version of TEPCO.

          • Zen

            Nobody gives to charity to gain tax breaks because they don’t gain anything. If you are in a 30% tax bracket and you give $10,000 to charity, you are not required to pay the $3,000 in taxes for $10,000 worth of income in the year that you gave the charitable
            donation. You would go broke really quick trying to gain $3,000 in tax breaks by giving $10,000 away. You are so blinded by your ideologically warped beliefs that you are unable to see the forest through the trees my friend.

          • Adrian

            If you say so. Many people give to charity for tax breaks. What are my ideologically warped beliefs? Here’s the irony: I posted here about the growing incivility in our culture and connect it to our neoliberal economic system and you people are proving my point with every post. I love it.

          • Mike Smithy

            Perhaps your perception of “Incivility” is that you are frustrated by logic and cannot support your arguments when refuted by reality and facts. I love it more.

          • Adrian

            What facts were presented that refuted anything I said, lol?

          • Mike Smithy

            Do I really need to take you to school again? OK, try to concentrate and answer the original question? Who is ultimately going to have to pay the bill on the runaway national debt which has doubled during President Zero’s administration?

          • K2

            Do people in the 30% tax bracket give ten thousand to charity?

          • Zen

            It’s an example. There really isn’t a 30% tax bracket in our tax code right now, but I wanted some even numbers for my example. The closest current tax brackets are 28% and 33%. A single filer in the 28% tax bracket would pay 28% of their income for all income made between $87,851 and $183,250. I think some people making this kind of money can and do give $10,000 to charity in a given year.

            So in this case if you are in a 28% tax bracket and you give $10,000 to charity, you are not required to pay the $2,800 in taxes for $10,000 worth of income in the year that you gave the charitable donation. You would go broke really quick trying to gain $2,800 in tax breaks by giving $10,000 away

          • K2

            Yes. The reason i asked you was i dint believe it myself when you used that example the first time.

          • K2

            Usually its people in even higher income brackets than that, that save significantly through tax breaks on the amount they give to charity.

          • Zenithod

            The top tax bracket is 39.6% for income for single filers making over $400,000/yr and married filers making over $450,000/yr. There is no significant savings by giving to charity for anyone. For individuals making over $400,000/yr, they get a 39.6% tax break on charitable donations. So if they give $10,000 they get a $3,960 tax break and if they give $1,000,000 they get a $396,000 tax break. The point is that no matter how much you give, you only get a tax break worth a relitively small portion of the donation. You always give way more than you get. The only reason for giving is because you feel like being generous to a particular charitable cause. Nobody does it to gain money, because you can’t gain money giving to charity.

          • K2

            1) I am not from the states so my knowledge about all these is not so indepth. But anyway thanks for the info.

            2) I never implied that people give/dont give to charity to get tax breaks. My earlier question was just a question. The only point i implied (through my second comment ) was tax breaks help soften the blow for rich people who give to charity. Even though they are rich, money saved is money saved.

            3) Another thing i want to to ask you is, what about companies/organisations? How is the tax savings on charity system for them?

          • Zen

            Same thing as an individual. There are lots of different types of companies, which fall under different tax codes, but the same concept applies.

            It does soften the blow when you get a tax break, but you have to look at it like they are giving there money away for a good cause. They don’t get to spend that money on themselves, why should they have to pay taxes on it? It would be a huge disencentive to require people to pay taxes on their charitable donations. Also, the Government grants charity status for certain things and it is only those things where the tax breaks can occur. Causes include lots and lots of things, like churches, homeless shelters, the arts, lots of school related groups, environmental groups, etc. etc. These type of things are considered beneficial to the public interest. It is considered a good investment on the governments part to not collect taxes on these funds, because of the benefit that is provided to society as a whole. The groups also have to be non-profit and generally have lots of volunteers that get the work done for a fraction of the cost of a similar for profit organization or a government program, so the money goes a long way.

          • K2

            I am not against tax breaks on charity.

          • K2

            Its just that conservatives point out that they give more to charity than liberals without mentioning what kind of charities they are. Not all charities are ‘non ideological’.

          • Zen

            Well, I don’t know about that, I think most people who part with their money, tend to give to a cause that they feel is in conjunction with their belief system. It does’t matter if it is religion, art, hunger, environmental, education, etc. They do it because they have a strong emotional belief in trying to better whatever it is they are supporting with there money.

            As to why conservatives tend to give more, I have no idea. Maybe it’s because they don’t tend to like big government, so they put their money where there mouth is and support their causes in a private sector kind of way. Maybe.

          • K2

            ”They do it because they have a strong emotional belief in trying to better whatever it is they are supporting with there money”.

            True, sometimes regardless of whether its factually right or wrong.

          • K2

            ”As to why conservatives tend to give more, I have no idea. Maybe it’s because they don’t tend to like big government, so they put their money where there mouth is and support their causes in a private sector kind of way. Maybe.”

            Maybe, or they like a small,weak government that doesnt come in the way of them, when they want to push their ideology on others.

          • zen

            Well, I was definitely on board with your first two statements, but the last one is a bit hard to swallow. I used to feel much like you do, but about the other side. There is just as much evil on both sides of the isle and just as much good. Neither side has all the answers or causes all the problems. The biggest problem this country has is that the two sides are so bitter towards each other.

            For the record, when I ask conservatives why they don’t like big government, usually it is simply because of what a big government can do if it turns evil. Think Germany pre & post Hitler, or the Soviet Union pre and post Stalin except with todays technology to keep an eye on everywhere you go, everything you buy, do, say, & write. If they don’t like it, you disappear in the middle of the night. If that sounds extreme, it’s not. It has happened before and is happening right now in other parts of the world. If you think it can’t happen here, then there is a very good chance it will.

          • K2

            Conservatives blindly think big govt is evil without realising what will happen if the govt is small and weak. They need to look at afghanistan/somalia/rwand where a govt doesnt exist outside two or three major cities.

            Already most laws are framed with the influence of corporations and banks inspite of the govt being big. But atleast the avg consumer/people have some shot to protect their turf. But If it is small, what little protections the consumer has from them, will be even weakened.

            When corporations are big, govt needs to be big.

            I never implied liberals have no faults of their own.

          • K2

            Or morally right or wrong.

        • FortuneSeek3rz

          Sorry but this is simply wrong.

          • Adrian

            Darn, I was hoping to see some evidence where you could prove me wrong, but methinks I doth expect too much.

          • FortuneSeek3rz

            What if I could prove it, would you believe then?

          • Adrian

            If the evidence comes from independent sources (e.g. federal agencies) and not some place like Fox news or the Heritage Foundation.

          • Richard

            Rothschield said if he (Banksters) controls the nations money, he cares not who makes the laws. Why? Because he the(Banksters) owns the lawmakers ie. Congress. Taxes in the U.S. only bring in a small portion of the money needed keep Government going each year. The majority of income to operate the Government is printed out of thin air in the form of computer digits called Treasury DEBT that accrues to the citizens of the U.S. Taxes are simply a means of Control over the otherwise Useless Eaters ie. you & me. So, your argument, who is more greedy or generous in our Government of whores is really meaningless, as they haven’t had the best interests of the People of this land at heart for many years now.

          • Adrian

            I agree, I didn’t want to get sidetracked on that argument, as it detracts from my larger point about the connection between neoliberalism and incivility. Since the gvt does not have our best interests at stake, it is our responsibility to fix that, for they govern in our name. The problem is the propaganda that confuse the issues and keep people participating in a broken system. I think more ppl would willingly pay taxes if they saw direct benefits (lower crime, modern infrastructure, social services that all could use, etc.) Our $ 17 trillion debt is unsustainable, for sure.

          • FirstGarden

            So thou too hath the Elizabethan tongue. Good show, laddy. :-)

        • Reid sucks

          Wow. This is perhaps the most ignorant post I have read this year. Dr. Arthur Brooks of Syracuse Univ. deals with this issue completely in his book, Who Really Cares. Not that you would have the intellectual honesty, as a hypocrite leftist, to read it

          • Adrian

            Being personally attacked on boards such as these is nothing new, and speaks to the levels of incivility I write about. Imagine how much time you waste personally attacking someone whom you disagree with instead of presenting evidence to show where I am wrong and you are right. Just food for thought.

          • GSOB

            Almonds and pistachios are the only nuts mentioned in the Bible

        • Drud

          This whole thread is a long, detailed discussion based upon an entirely faulty premise. This happens WAY too often in the MSM and apparently here as well. An INDIVIDUAL is greedy, GROUPS do not have the capacity for such traits. The whole idea of lumping people together and labeling them, or measuring their greed levels according to silly letters next to their name, whether in historical or current context is absurd and it a HUGE part of the underlying problems we have in society. We were once a cohesive society of strong individuals, now we are an incredibly fractured society of groups. Why no discussion of this real issue, but people will go on for hours vehemently (and mindlessly) speaking about their particular group and others??????

          • Adrian

            Great points, you are correct. I got drawn off my original topic and shouldn’t have taken the bait, as it were.

      • Bunkerville = Bunker Hill

        Good point. Which, if you follow the trail, leads exactly back to the conservative equation, which is the only side that actually recognizes this trait.

      • GSOB

        True, with the exception of Jesus -
        He is not greedy.

        Just the opposite.

        Jesus Christ is very generous.

    • old fart

      Civilation is only skin deep

    • Hardyunproud

      Superiority complex…some ones think have helped some one others letting see them something can not afford now but later perhaps if continue hard work the “system” will award them later…rational self blinding…prhps…

    • Gay Veteran

      neo-liberalism and neo-conservatism, welcome to h ell on Earth

      • aghast

        TROLL ALERT!
        TROLL ALERT!

        THIS GUY IS ONLY HERE TO CAUSE TROUBLE.

        • Gay Veteran

          guess I have a stalker troll following me

          • aghast

            We don’t follow you. You follow us and are here to deliberately cause disruption. Anyone with eyes in their head can see your game.

          • Gay Veteran

            we? which of your personalities is writing the posts?

          • aghast

            Clever quip. I’ve never seen anyone work so hard to destroy themself. Even if I DID have multi personalities, none of them would be demons. Do your demons have names?

          • Gay Veteran

            yes. aghast

          • aghast

            Demons don’t tell you to repent of evil and turn to God. Aghast does.

          • Gay Veteran

            aghAZt is a pharisee

    • davidmpark

      Ah, the old Alinsky tactic: throw out a projected accusation and demand the accused to justify themselves. If it can’t be taken to court; just a waste of time.

      And by the way, we are reversing all that progressivism out here in Utah. We don’t need to answer invalid charges and implausible accusations, all we need to do is defeat your lot and live well. And if we are halted more and with no redress of our grievances, then the good Lord will deal with it on our behalf (D&C 101:76-05).

      You folks already lost; just don’t know it yet.

      • Adrian

        Really? I was simply making a connection that I see and asking for people to comment, give their take, and perhaps engage in something called critical thinking Here is another angry, nasty post with attacking me for my daring to ask thoughtful questions. Utah, that explains a lot; that’s one state I wouldn’t want to visit, as I see it as a time machine going back to the 12th century in terms of political openness. If you people are unable to think and address the points I make, please just refrain from posting. This is getting ridiculous…

        • davidmpark

          Whatever. Deal with it.

          • Adrian

            I deal with such no-brain people on here constantly. What would be refreshing instead of the kindergartern-esque name-calling I would actually run across adults who could hold their own in a serious discussion about such civic topics, but your inability to do so speaks to your limited intellect. Utah is the PERFECT place for you and others like you -far removed from the rest of society.

          • Drud

            You seem to spend a great deal of time with the “no-brains” on here, despite their constant, malicious and totally undeserved ad-hominem onslaughts against you. What exactly keeps bringing you back?

          • Adrian

            LOL, great question! Let’s just say I am working on this problem!

          • davidmpark

            Can’t stop with the Alinsky tactics, huh? Those don’t work anymore. Don’t give a #$%& what you say or call me. Results are what counts now.

            And from what I’m reading, you and yours have failed humanity, and are very, very afraid. :)

  • JSB

    Very sad commentary on reality.

  • Donald Wilson

    The government and the corporations don’t give care about the citizenry. Big shot politicos only care about lining their pockets with more cash and the CEOs only care about the bottom line. Of course this is beginning to backfire, the auto manufacturers and other conglomerates are beginning to see and feel the results of the deindustrialization of America. To be truthful I really could careless about our government or the conglomerates they are reaping what they have sowed. The end…

    Bravo Two Zero out

  • FirstGarden

    Here in Hell-a, shuttered stores can be seen at every turn, even on major streets. That eerie woebegone feeling echoes thru these hollow storefronts. One buffet place near our home closed down several years ago. To this day it remains vacant. It’s in a wealthy, middle class town, too.

    Across the street a Ralph’s supermarket closed down. It’s been there since 1950!!
    A huge Thrift Store now takes its place. Everywhere around are job losses, replaced by moderate-wage, non-white workers, and taxes growing like out-of-control weeds in a withering, once-thriving garden.

    • sonofseawolf

      Hi
      Nice intel report we should all give sitreps about whats happening nearby our areas.

      Ty

      protect yourself at all times 14/5

  • Bob56

    If people would keep all of this in mind during the next election cycle and send all these clowns home that are presently in DC, then there’s a chance things could get turned around with a NEW crop of leaders. Unfortunately 95% of this useless humanity that we call our so called political leaders from BOTH parties will be re-elected by a good majority come this fall.

    • Adrian

      No way. Both parties are owned, and whoever runs gets coopted by the money in politics from the special interest. I lost faith in our “democratic” elections years ago and see them as the shams they are.

      • FirstGarden

        True.

    • FirstGarden

      I appreciate your sentiment. But if we send all these clowns home, new clowns will take their place. That’s just the nature of the circus.

      • John

        What is your point? Think about how little leverage members of congress would have if they were voted out during every election cycle? Less power that way then being entrenched like a tick on a dog and having influence and power for 20 plus years. There is power in taking power away from them. More than most realize.

        • FirstGarden

          Please understand, I didn’t say we SHOULDN’T throw out the bums. We should. At least the fresh bums might not be so well connected, as are the current career-criminals, in what was once called civil “service” — positions of trust given to elected officials. Not this high-level group orgy of money, percs & power.

          In this late age, cleaning house is only a partial solution, as good leaders and statesmen are very hard to come by. They are virtually extinct. Real change involves a moral transformation of society, community by community, from the grass roots level, because the whole Plutocratic-crony system is now corrupt. And they are a reflection of the condition of society at large.

  • Tim

    The economy is booming here in the upstate of South Carolina. Companies are making big investments in this area and creating a lot of jobs. BMW Manufacturing (about 30 minutes from where I live) recently announced that it is expanding, which is creating a lot of jobs. (That’s good work if you can get it as those are high-paying jobs.) New subdivisions are going up. There is also a lot of commercial development happening. Cabela’s, for example, just opened a new store here. There was a picture in the newspaper that was taken on the day Cabela’s opened, and there was a horde of people in the parking lot waiting for the doors to open. They evidently have money to spend. Publix grocery stores is expanding into North Carolina. (I work for an inventory control company, and I work at the Publix stores in this area.) We’ll see how long all this lasts. I suspect that it won’t last long.

    • BroccoliSoupTown

      I’m in NC and there are two publixes being built in my area. Not sure why when there are so many other grocery stores around here that are struggling. Several have already closed.

    • Max

      Hi Tim,

      Shoot me an email too please.
      As i told cowman, I am in South Florida but soon will be out of here. Ex military Air Force honorably discharged.

      maxmarketing2004

      at

      yahoo

      Thanks

  • Jodi

    I was stunned to see Family Dollar was closing a bunch of stores too. It must be really bad if a dollar store needs to close a bunch of their stores.

  • K

    Yes, I would indeed consider this a very negative economic sign. Add to this Dollar General, while still making a profit, is considered to be underperforming. These are the stores, many of us thought would be the last to go.

    • Kim

      How are u doing k? We should exchange emails. If days go by with no articles, I don’t hear from posters here and believe or not, I get worried. I’m a worry wart. Hope you’re well.

      • K

        Kim you are a very kind person. I am fine. Hopefully we had the last snow of winter yesterday. I do not do social media, so I know of no safe way to exchange emails,let me know if you do.

        • Kim

          Me either, on both counts. Glad you’re doing ok. :-)

  • Saintmatty

    Thought the Economic Collapse blog suffered a collapse

    • GSOB

      Me too… The Truthwins did too.
      I was wondering if it would stay down forever.

    • Jodi

      Me too, I was sad when it was down. I love this blog.

      • ShaneEasterigg321

        Leah . even though Kelly `s storry is astonishing…
        on sunday I got a brand new Renault 5 from having earned $6891 this-last/five
        weeks and-in excess of, 10-k last-month . it’s definitly the most-financially
        rewarding I have ever done . I began this 7-months ago and straight away earned
        at least $84, per-hr . why not check here F­i­s­c­a­l­p­o­s­t­.­C­O­M­

    • Cynical Guy 42

      The end of The American Dream blog was also down yesterday. Go figure.

      • Hammerstrike

        All 3 websites, was it a hacker?

    • FirstGarden

      Ha ha ha..

    • seth datta

      One day, FedGov will shut down all free speech permanently. Actually, it will be more of a global thing by the central banking cartel.

      Btw, there is no free speech. In the UK, my internet router gets shut down for days at a time if I make too many comments about certain banking cartel members. Its a crude form of behavioural control – since most activities, including banking, are increasingly becoming internetised, you need the internet and thus will not criticize the tyrannical oppressors. I would name them, but most of my comments get deleted and this one may too.

      The State (central banking cartel) wants to replace G-d. They can get stuffed.

      • Hammerstrike

        Carrington Event, then.

      • K2

        It will be wiser if you dont do such things again. Its not difficult for them to find out what your ethnic group is as you have mentioned it while applying for an internet connection, and destroy its image/reputation in the media. Because most of the media is controlled by them too.

        This is just an advice. What you do is ultimately your decision.

      • wdg

        My computer has been shut down for a week on several occasions and frequently attacked because I too speak out on the role that the International Criminal Banking Syndicate is playing in the destruction of all western nations in a quest for global control and a New World Order. This is not happening by accident but by design and this is not the time to remain silent in the face of the greatest threat to humanity that ever existed. We are already serfs so the battle will be long and hard-fought..but truth and goodness will ultimately triumph over evil.

        “If you will not fight for right when you can easily win without blood shed; if you will not fight when your victory is sure and not too costly; you may come to the moment when you will have to fight with all the odds against you and only a precarious chance of survival. There may even be a worse case. You may have to fight when there is no hope of victory, because it is better to perish than to live as slaves.”― Winston Churchill

        • Joe Byrne

          hehehe. Yea, right. And I have a bridge to sell you too.

          • Hard Boiled

            says someone with a gun in each hand.

          • JW Appling

            We call them posers.

    • paul p

      banks will collpase by 2012. oh wait,,they didnt.prepare for the 2024 collapse. its coming , like others predict i say between today and next 85 years,its coming.maybe 89 years !!!!

      • Chad

        Fools mock…but they shall mourn!

      • Karie

        Persons, like Paul P will be the first to be begging in the streets for food and water. I hope they will also be carrying a sign that says. Sorry, I was a skeptic… please have mercy!!

        • paul p

          very true. didnt meant to offend or mock, more just sick of the way things are,,and want re-set to happen sooner than later. thats alll. i agree with u and chad. nice weekend to u all!

        • Hammerstrike

          Or rather, they will demand that others share their food supplies and snitch to the authorities on anyone they believe to be a prepper or dissident.

        • Pete

          Paul P is only making fun of bad forecasts and unapologetic doomsday prognosticators. Its GOOD to poke fun at their wildly inaccurate predictions, and it is FOOLISH to attack Paul P for pointing them out, because in doing so you are defending doom-and-gloom alarmists who profit from your fear. Like James Turk.

      • Drud

        For months during 1939, and perhaps long before, all throughout Poland, there were rumors that the Nazis were planning an invasion. Thousands fled, but millions did nothing. It was all just rumors and whispers and fear-mongering and doom-saying . . . until it was real.

      • Pete

        Don’t forget…James Turk predicts undeniable signs of hyperinflation by the end of 2010, and silver price to $35/oz by the end of 2008.

      • JULIA Dunkee III

        I geuss you slept through 2008-2009 and are on heavy duty Pyschotropics. That or have a nice big trust fund.

  • Charles

    A guy I knew in High School is a manager at a Family Dollar in WV. He already has a lot of stress. Praying hard for God to show mercy.

    • K2

      Tell him that worrying will bring him nothing :)

      Working and saving will.

      • exTargeteer

        I imagine that those ARE his two biggest worries…but since it’s easier to just smile and say don’t worry…

  • old fart

    Welcome to the age of Automation, We are leaving the age of industry where workers were of value and entering the world of surplus people along with a crooked government who is taking everything that is not nailed down. We have so many regulators and regulations that have made business almost impossible to operate at a profit so the smarter ones leave the US and the smaller ones to go bankrupt. I gaurentee there is no easy solution to the current economic slide and the current government is incapable of handling any of our problems, Their main concern is raising monies for upcoming elections and padding their own pockets at our expense.

    • Gay Veteran

      “…so the smarter ones leave the US….”

      due primarily to near slave labor wages abroad and NO environmental laws/regulations

      • aghast

        The smarter ones leave Sodom.

        • Gay Veteran

          isn’t it time for mommy to feed you

          • aghast

            No. Most of us got past the sucking stage decades ago. What happened to you?

          • Gay Veteran

            most of us did indeed, including myself.
            too bad about you, now wipe the milk off your chin

          • aghast

            It matters not how much meat prices go up. You’ll always have plenty in your mouth.

          • Gay Veteran

            just like your entire family

          • aghast

            That was weak. Can’t you do better than that?

          • Gay Veteran

            the stooped is strong with this one

          • aghast

            How does a gay guy get past the sucking stage? Did you repent?

          • Gay Veteran

            you should ask your father, if you know who he is

  • FirstGarden

    Well, Michael is gonna get an avalanche of comments today. Pent up frustration in us all, needing to vent. Grrrrrrrrr

  • FirstGarden

    The dollar store of the future:
    The 99-Dollar store.
    No item over $99.
    Bring a wheelbarrow to carry your money, folks.

  • Paul

    Michael,
    Glad to see you posted another article. I tried to view your site yesterday but could not. I had no problem visiting other sites. For a moment I was concerned the government censored your website. Sadly, it would not surprise me if that happened eventually.

  • piccadillybabe

    Dollar Tree is one of my favorite stores and some of them even sell groceries. Hopefully, the Dollar Tree will continue because there is a lot of savings in a store like that. The big grocery stores in the area will not allow some of them to sell groceries as it cuts into their business if they are located close by. What are those 37 items you most need when the SHTF? I like reading Huffington Post but their website is always crashing. I even had issues with this this website in the last day or 2. Wasup with that? Another issue that is possibly looming that could affect food or lack thereof is that many scientists now feel we are going into “global cooling,” i.e. mini ice age. Many are saying Putin is trying to annex the Ukraine for something as basic as food production. If we are going into another ice age, Russia will need that advantage for its economic survival. When it comes down to it, being able to produce our own with the aid of a small greenhouse may be paramount to survival. Don’t know if any of you listen to Dave Hodges but his take on what is happening is pretty interesting. Some of it is on YouTube and his website. Worth a listen.

  • sonofseawolf

    Hi Michael and ec bloggers,
    Lol
    you really didn’t think that equality meant you are all going to be able to keep what post-ww2 Americans had did you.
    Oh no, equality means working 12 hours a day in a sweatshop for 50 cents a day like the third worlders do, in a polluted environment, surrounded by a billion other sharecroppers.
    Best thing you can do is oppose migration.
    I see that is the fastest way they are dividing you’re wealth.
    protect yourself at all times 14/5

  • http://waltersthinking.blogspot.com/ Walter Ruggieri

    I am surprised to hear this. I thought the dollar stores were the bright spot of the economy? They were when the bottom fell out of the market five years ago. Now even the “bottom” stores are falling apart. How can Wall Street not see this?

  • Saintmatty

    They were not a “real” dollar store. They were a rip-off dollar store located in mostly poor neighborhoods to fleece the poor that don’t have transportation to get to the lower priced markets. Dollar General can go bye bye too. Keep the true Dollartree stores.

  • Mondobeyondo

    It’s very surprising (but then again, not that surprising) that even the dollar stores are having a tough time. The DOLLAR stores!! So you can imagine how Wal-Mart and Tar-zhay, I mean Target, are doing.

    Things are nowhere near as well as certain people (oh, like Diane Sawyer with her ABC News “America Strong!” pieces – among many others of the “beautiful people” behind local and national news sets) would have you believe. Not at all. People are hurting and struggling out there.

    • godozo

      The stores are struggling in multiple ways. Tar-zhay has cheapened its blue jean offering so badly that I’ve torn through the three newest ones I bought – two in the back seats, one tore in front when I went down to pick up some mail, and another tore near the zipper. I’m preparing to check out Menards and Lowes, but I’m being a bit more cautious about what to hope for….

      • Richard

        I knew Target was going down a about 5 years back when they would not allow Salvation Army bell ringers in front of their stores at Christmas. I was thru with them then and was not surprised to learn recently of the theft of their customer personal info data and now as you say cheap quality merchandise. It is always the beginning of the end for a person, company or nation when they begin to cut Almighty God out of their life.

        • Annette Smith

          Your sentiments are shared, my friend! Kick God out, and the rest is downhill.

        • exTargeteer

          I worked there during that time, and the reason they denied Salvation Army is because customer suveys told them that they (the CUSTOMERS) said they did not want to be solicited at the front doors at any time. So they (Target) removed the one and only exception to the no solicitation policy, the Salvation Army, who then proceeded to go any an anti-Target media smear campaign, lying about Targets support for veterans and charities, and conveniently ignoring the millions that Target annually donates to those groups. Conveniently ignoring the rather substantial percentage of the donations that go towards paying staff and not donations to the needy, as advertised by them. And lastly ignoring the fact that it was Target’s customers that requested the enforcement of non-solicitation when they were asked about it, not a random God -hating corporate board of directors. The behaviour of the Salvation Army during this hate campaign was appalling, and they were clearly never held accountable for their tactics, attempting to strong-arm private business owners into letting them solicit donations from people who had requested their removal from the property.

      • Tom

        Try Costco. They have good quality jeans at a low price

        • 68Impala

          Agree, shirts, socks sneakers too.

    • Hammerstrike

      That leaves them on the defense, not good.

      It is time they get mad, really mad.

    • laura m.

      Family dollar is too pricy, people say they quit shopping there several years back. I shop dollar gen. for household stuff. Dollar tree used to have good stuff, now it’s all crap. The crap marts (wally world and KMart) I seldom go to as prices got higher, and at par with other stores . Kmart needs to shut down more than ever. Academy Sports and outdoors can outfit the whole family great prices (no I’m not an employee), as for Coldwater creek too pricey as Target is getting pricey on items too, less sales. JCP has gone downhill some, don’t hardly go there. Belks and Kohl’s is ok. Friend quit sales at Dillards, says biz way down. Reporting from s.e. alabama…

      • piccadillybabe

        Very little is $1 at Family Dollar. I still like Dollar Tree although I sense their managers are under a lot of stress as they are the ones at the check out now. Maybe they have to stock shelves also. Typical, they cut back on the minimum wage earners who do the bulk of the work and keep the place running and give the CEOs $$$ million dollar bonuses/raises so they can be on their yachts. Why is the general public not in an uproar over all this??? Welfare keeps people fat, clothed, housed and entertained. Many of the malls now days are in the middle of federally funded subsidized housing and poor neighborhoods. Welfare and social security is keeping our nation going.

      • Annette Smith

        Walmart is having a bad time. Penney’s is having a bad time. Kmart is closing in our town. We have a Hobby Lobby, which is stunningly beautiful inside, and I love their sales. I also like the fact that they are a Christian company and aren’t afraid of others. They will step up for what they believe in. I have to support that. That is integrity. They also treat their employees well. Staple is still open, Office Depot is closed. Home Goods is coming and will soon be open here. Many stores are closing. We drive around and count the ones that are gone. There is a lot of factory work here. Distribution centers, too. We are also 2 hours outsie of D.C. and we have one big gov office here. Hopefully, they will move more out here.

    • meslippery

      Rich kids of instagram are ok

      • JULIA Dunkee III

        Well yes and no. When they go from the fancy cars to the hot restaurant club these days you can see the fear of the proles in their eyes.
        Smart parents would send them outside USA.

  • Mondobeyondo

    There are also rumors that a chain called “99¢ Only” (the ones with the red and blue color scheme) is having some financial issues as well. And the “dollar menu” at McDonald’s may be history too, due to the rising cost of beef.

    We’ve gone from the 5 and dime, to the 99 cent store, to.,.. maybe the $5.00 store.

    • mmercier0921

      I regularly shop at a “five below” store.

  • jakartaman

    This is just more negative news which goes against what our president said – Things have turned around. Obamacare is working great – Unemployment is ging down. I feel better already.

    • libswillalwayssucktheobamacock

      lmao

  • alan

    We borrowed too much for all kinds of things and now we can’t get out of it. Its a slow motion slide downward. The best out come I feel is we look like eastern Europe in 15 years. Pretty much go to work and make enough to eat and thats it. I only hope no one yells fire on the way down!

  • Mary

    I thought stores like Dollar General would really thrive starting about 7 years ago. I can say we have a local DG & it used to be fantastic. Now if I go in on the first day of their sale & there is no coffee for sale on the shelves, I ask & they say come back in a few days, maybe they’ll have more off the truck by then. They’ve gotten too full of t hemselves & they will suffer for it. As will we, those with little to no spending money. We used to middle class self-employed people. We’re very very quickly moving into poverty and deep debt. Thanks for all the jobs.

  • Gay Veteran

    and how many unwanted babies have YOU adopted?

    • boyd

      nice try Gay Veteran. don’t try to kill the messengers

      • Gay Veteran

        ???

    • aghast

      ALERT! ALERT! The troll from hell has arrived. Don’t feed him.

      • Gay Veteran

        that’s funny coming from a troll who never has anything intelligent to say about the topic at hand

        • aghast

          One day I came home, walked into my house, and a stranger was in it. He was ransacking the place and had helped himself to the food in the fridge. Suddenly he saw me, pointed his finger at me and cried out, “Burglar!!”

          • Gay Veteran

            you REALLY need to stop huffing paint

          • aghast

            Wha?? I’ve never seen such an obsession with strange things goes into one’s mouth.
            Get help.

          • Gay Veteran

            oh noes, the aghAZt troll is back

          • aghast

            Call others trolls to hide the fact that you are one. A low & dirty trick, but the forum is not falling for it anymore.

          • Gay Veteran

            you must be looking into a mirror, aghAZt

          • aghast

            You DON’T look in the mirror. Cuz if you REALLY looked, and suddenly saw a cutaway view of your inner being, you’d be repenting your heart out before God.

          • Gay Veteran

            yep, another pharisee

          • aghast

            Tell that to the JUDGE.

          • Gay Veteran

            yawn

          • aghast

            Yawn? I guess it’s natural for you to open wide that mouth, considering all that goes into it.

          • Gay Veteran

            what you say, fe cal mouth

          • aghast

            This really isn’t fair to you.
            It’s two against one..
            You vs. me….
            and your conscience.

          • Gay Veteran

            more me vs. your multiple personalities

    • davidmpark

      And how many children of men died on your watch?

      • Gay Veteran

        “watch”?

      • aghast

        He can’t grasp it, David. It’s way over his head. Or hers.

      • Gay Veteran

        I’m not on “watch”. Are you?

        • davidmpark

          Yes, I am. I’ve done everything possible to save the unborn. Especially convincing scared unwed mothers to LDS Family Services for help with personal issues, employment, or adoption if they so choose. I’ve done my small part to save 8 unborn lives.

          And my precious wife back in high school fished an abandoned baby out of the toilet; saved that baby boy’s life.

          There’s action behind my rantings.

          • Gay Veteran

            “…I’ve done everything possible to save the unborn…..”

            so you adopted one

          • davidmpark

            How many times have I mentioned I’m caregiver to my disabled wife and 3 kids? How is adoption possible in this circumstance? Hm?

            Your premise is flawed and your argument invalid in our circumstance.

            Would you kindly state how many you’ve saved? How many you’ve allowed to die? So far, I’ve proven myself… and from what you post, I know what kind of person you proved to be.

          • Gay Veteran

            “…caregiver to my disabled wife and 3 kids….”

            Quite a burden. And yet you feel entitled to impose burdens on OTHERS. So we know what kind of person you are too.

          • davidmpark

            Burdens?!

            Other human beings, in your view, are burdens?!

            That is twisted. Seriously sick and twisted. For normal folks, that’s called responsibility and furthering the human race. For you it’s a hindrance? How inhumane.

            I’m so glad I and others are fighting against your ideology to defeat it.

  • Orac4Prez

    The days of big business just laying off people is fast ending. I’ve seen companies that have outsourced everything. For a while the board and the few employees made plenty of money. But what has happened is that loyal employees, and other no longer buy the products. Customers now see their favourite brand as another cheap Chinese / Bangladeshi (…whatever) item. The quality is usually inferior to the original locally produced item so any incentive to buy is gone. So people just buy the cheapest items that will fit their needs.Good bye economy, and soon rich folks jobs as well. Then we’ll have a depression!

  • kim

    This is the must overused bible verse and does not apply. I do not understand why you can’t see this. Why don’t you ask people in the 3rd world what they think of America’s decline. For goodness sakes people live life and have no idea when something terrible is about to happen. What does that prove?

    • GSOB

      Is the Bible still the best-selling book in the world?

      Yes, indeed!

  • ian

    oh well…..meanwhile hundreds of new stores are opening that provide better products. Get over it.

    • Albert8184

      Name them.

  • GSOB

    Flea Markets.

  • jo6pac

    “It would be great if we could say that the reason why Family Dollar is doing so poorly is because average Americans have more money now”
    Says it all right there, how sad for all of us on Main Street and it’s not only in Amerika but Main Streets everywhere.

  • Frank Bell

    Why is the book “Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think” from Peter H. Diamandis a bestseller?

    Why are there two different views regarding our future that differ so much?

    I quote:

    “We will soon be able to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man,
    woman and child on the planet. Abundance for all is within our grasp.
    This bold, contrarian view, backed up by exhaustive research, introduces
    our near-term future, where exponentially growing technologies and
    three other powerful forces are conspiring to better the lives of
    billions. An antidote to pessimism by tech entrepreneur turned
    philanthropist, Peter H. Diamandis and award-winning science writer
    Steven Kotler.”

    Wow, what is actually going wrong?

    I don’t get it.

  • davidmpark

    I’m seeing something different. Stores around here are going specialty/nationalist “mom and pop” businesses. Not just retail, but services and small-scale manufacturers also. Catering to specific markets and keeping overhead tight and specific seems to work. For example, there’s a strip mall here that now only cater to Polynesian culture that includes tailors, lawyers, markets, restaurants, and such. A few blocks down the Vietnamese strip mall does the same, followed by the Cantonese strip mall, the Seattle folks have some stores and a outdoor cafe, the New Yorker’s have their own city blocks, and so on… and I’m loving this! Best part: all of the stores are less expensive than the chain stores!! Our tight budget is much easier to manage.

    I know many say we need a multicultural, non-segregated, diversity-laden, blah, blah, blah… I’m finding that good fences make good neighbors. And the lassie-faire leaning sentiments among them along with the live-and-let-live attitude in their service is a great relief. I can go from store to store without any us/them problems at all. And they all speak English (and are all legal) – so that’s cool!

    And what has led to this is comprised of a lot of factors, including that a lot of folks are fighting for deregulation, lower local taxes, and more responsible law enforcement and citizenry. And for those areas that are run down, I and some like-minded neighbors are calling for a lifting of hard-core zoning regs to allow these areas to transition from retail into industrial or agricultural easier; and the politicos are listening!

    I think the collapse is in retreat here!

  • FortuneSeek3rz

    I’m going to avoid Wal Mart when I can and start frequenting Family Dollar or Dollar General.

  • Reid is the oppressor

    On the plus side, travel agencies dedicated to providing uber-luxe vacations for Michelle-Marie Antoinette Obama and her cronies are hiring like mad!!!

  • Reid is the oppressor

    So… when does just ONE Hollywierd Learjet leftist opens up just ONE room in just ONE of her zillion room mansions to just ONE of the 48 freaking MILLION Obungler has on food stamps.

  • El mico

    I asked JC for a job, no answer. As usual.

    • dadelaw

      I’m with you all the way, El Mico. But this is a ‘religious blog’ where everyone from the blogmaster on down is carried away by the charms of a supreme being that allows this dreadful state of economic affairs. You may as well howl at the moon… God knows (pun intended) what drivel I get back here….

      • Darin

        How did we get from the decline of the middle class to bashing Christians? Couldn’t help yourselves could you?

        • El mico

          It’s not Christian bashing, it’s just realism. Plus I was getting withdrawal symptoms cause this blog was down.

      • FirstGarden

        It’s amazing. Man loves free will. Man exercises free will. Man reaps what he sows. Man blames God.

        • GSOB

          The Bible, the world’s best-selling book, is also the world’s most shoplifted book.

      • exTargeteer

        Didnt realize, this was the first thing i read here. Thank you for the warning and…I’m out.

    • aghast

      Try giving your life to Him. He’s Messiah, the son of God, not Santa Clause.

      • El mico

        No way.
        The average commentator on this blog would think themselves a libertarian, correct me if I’m wrong. That means you like to think of yourselves free, able to do and think as you please. Yet those who believe in god freely submit themselves to the control of a book that has admittedly some good tales of morality in it but has been rewritten, translated and rewritten again to suit the political agenda of kings and governments for hundreds of years. How do you control vast empires with a small army, tell them god is watching. (Can anyone say en ess ay) You believe in god because they want you too. Truely free people believe in themselves. If you are here at this site your eyes are open but now it’s time for your mind to see.

        • aghast

          You are young and inexperienced. You should search the matter out rather than just buying into others’ talking points. You did not come up with this line about religion and the Bible “being tools of gov’t propaganda.”
          That’s gotten around a lot lately.

          It’s not submitting to the control of a book. It’s not mere submission to the Word of God. It’s submission to the God of the Word.

          “If you are here at this site
          your eyes are open but now it’s time for your mind to see.

          “You believe in god because they want you too.”

          How could you make such a judgement? You don’t know why I believe in God. You don’t know my journey. “They” have nothing to do with my beliefs. I know WHAT I believe, and I know WHY I believe it.

          If you really saw reality – the God of the Universe – you would not talk like this.

          Why should I believe you instead of holy scripture? You’re on dangerous ground.

          • El mico

            I wouldn’t call in my forties, young.
            The west in dominated by Judeo-Christian fundamentalism. The “word of god” is part of the very fabric of our society, like it or not. The ten commandments are the basis of our laws, I’m ok with that as they are basic commonsense. You are a Christian because there was no other choice for you. You’re path to god was chosen long before you even knew. If you had a choice, why didn’t you chose Judaism or Islam? After all they all follow the same god. Or Buddhism. Not acceptable choices in the west, are they?
            To believe in god, is to bury your head in the sand. It restricts your ability to seek out new ideas and listen to other points of view. God is a disability.
            Holy scripture was written by man with no more but probably less insight than you or me. So why is my opinion wrong? Conform and obey.

          • GSOB

            The Bible was written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit by over 40 different authors from all walks of life: shepherds, farmers, tent-makers, physicians, fishermen, priests, philosophers and kings.

            Despite these differences in occupation and the span of years it took to write it, the Bible is an extremely cohesive and unified book.

          • K2

            To believe in god is to bury your head in the sand?

            By this do you mean ‘To believe in religion is to bury your head in the sand?’

            Because not all people follow/believe in religion yet they believe in god.

        • GSOB

          John 11:35: “Jesus wept.”

          • El mico

            So he should, he’s doing a pretty crap job.

          • GSOB

            The Bible was printed in 1454 A.D. by Johannes Gutenberg who invented the “type mold” for the printing press.

            It was the first book ever printed.

          • El mico

            So before that it was word of mouth, scratched in dirt rewritten by some monks to please their king or corrupt pope. The king James bible is just Chinese whispers.

          • GSOB

            It is the only book that reveals the origin, mission and destiny of man.

            It is the textbook on salvation.

        • Adrian

          Bravo!

        • GSOB

          The first Bible printed in this country was in the Indian language in 1663.

          • El mico

            Ah, missionaries. That’s a whole other discussion. Well you are very informative.
            Anyhoo, here in Australia, it’s way past my bedtime. It’s been fun.

          • GSOB

            Colorado… out…

  • El mico

    Dude in huffpost article said he was on six figures. Why is he now broke? The whole problem boils down to living within your means, this goes for the individual and government.
    I’m from single income household by choice, I’ve been a stay at home dad for nearly two years now. We’ve been able to do this by reducing our living cost, even with a new member of the family. Our lifestyle hasn’t suffered either. We have no debt. If I can’t afford something, I wait until I can.

    • Always tomorrow

      I like your style. I do exactly the same thing. Spending less takes planning not luck. Bad things happen to everyone but the bad impacts can be lessened by good planning.

    • BroccoliSoupTown

      I agree to a point. A lot of bankruptcies and foreclosures could have been completely avoided if more Americans lived within (or ideally, below) their means and had a year’s worth of expenses saved up. But, I know people who have been out of work for over a year. What do they do then? I myself was unemployed for 8 months in 2009, and even then I could only get a part-time job paying $600 a month with no benefits and my position was cut 6 months after hire. People stuck in those types of situations will inevitably run out of resources no matter how much prepping they did beforehand. I’m a stay-at-home mom now, but if I had to I would not be able to get hired when there are literally 100+ applicants for every open position in my industry across the whole state.

  • CharlesH

    Michael – I almost went into withdrawal when I couldn’t access this website – thankfully – you’re up and running. About this article – I see so much business and personal greed today and believe that has a LOT to do with today’s situation. Everyone wants more and more for less and less. Full steam ahead regardless of the consequences. Really sad.

  • kathym2

    I am terrified I will never get another job again. This is nuts. These corporations forget that if we are all laid off and broke then who will buy their products? The wealthy arent the ones buying, it is we the little guy.

  • DJohn1

    As we sit, Family Dollar is opening a new store in Huber heights, Ohio. This is the third one within 5 miles of each other.
    I have been in all three dollar stores in the area. There are two General Dollars and two Dollar Trees within 5 miles of one another.
    Didn’t really like the prices at Family Dollar.
    Dollar Tree is my favorite because of cheap prices on everything they sell.
    The problem being that when they run out, they often never stock an item again.
    Dollar General has prices but no where near what the Dollar Tree has.
    The major stores will go broke in the next few years because they are acting like things are normal.
    Things are not normal.
    The bottom line is how cheap you can make the price and keep the quality at a reasonable level to bring people back into your store.
    Those that do not will not be around much longer.

  • max

    Hi cowman, shoot me an email please.
    I am in South Florida, and shortly I think I will be out of here. I will come to Texas. Ex military- Air Force. Honorably discharged.
    My email is
    maxmarketing2004 at
    yahoo

    thank you!

  • jsmith

    Yes, what happened Michael? For a moment there I thought the professor O. had droned you. Anyways, went to the market yesterday and I can see it on peoples faces their disgust at the rising prices. I even mentioned to one of the workers stocking vegetables that the prices were going up, and he mentioned that they were going to get worse for the summer!

  • horse777res

    There’s always free cheese in a mouse trap!!!!!!!

  • bobcat

    I never cease to be amazed at people who have been kicked in the teeth by the oligarchs turn around and defend them should anyone speak ill of them. These oligarchs have cannibalized this country. Yet, there are people living paycheck to paycheck, who might be the next ones living out of their cars, willingly hauling water for the very people who have ruined their prospects.

  • Priszilla

    Those dollar shops are not a sustainable business. People can get rich by trading, but trading does not create wealth. Wealth is created by creating something out of nothing.
    Like energy out of sun, or food out of plants that grow by themselves, or stones out of rock, and then constructing long-lasting homes.

    Everything else is just transferring wealth from many to few.

  • Killer Virus

    I think a lot of the closings have to do with the way people shop as well. Times are changing. I only shop online because it’s convenient, cheaper, and I don’t have to deal with annoying people.

  • XSANDIEGOCA

    Obama says Happy Days are Here Again! Well, you will excuse me if I forego the Party Hat and Horns. A man who was making 50/hr and is begging for a 10/hr job is not a happy camper. Debts he was able to service before are not being serviced now. There is a lot of pain out there. A lot! Reminds me of this Depression Era Billboard.

  • jrex918

    the venus project everyone lol the venus project; its our only way out of this mess

    • aghast

      I heard it was coloring Easter eggs.

  • GSOB

    Out of what TJ Ringer has written, having come to the end of reading it, your first impulse John, was to make light of the reference to

    history, narrated from the Divine word….

    It is not due to any lack of evidence, unfortunately – that makes people subject to the wrath of God. No. It is unbelief, despite the evidence.

    The judgment is towards ‘scoffers’. (Biblically speaking)

    So, let’s define scoffers:

    Jude 1:17-19.

    Jude tells us they, ‘scoffers’, are not indwelt with the Holy Spirit.

    He compares them to those who the Apostles of our Lord Jesus had spoken of previously.

    Peter and Jude are referring to the same lot of people, so we know that the scoffers Peter mentions are also without the Holy Spirit.

    The Greek word used by both Peter and Jude for scoffer as well as mocker is “empaiktēs”, and this Greek word comes from a root word that means – to deceive.

    Once again we are confronted with another attempt by Satan to deceive the masses.

    By encouraging the scoffers to promote his lies and deceit he gains ground among the biblically illiterate while mocking God’s promises and attempting to destroy the faith of the people who make up the true body of Christ.

  • GSOB

    “The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.”

  • daniel1154

    This is mostly because of on line shopping.

  • JailBanksters

    My only question is: Why hasn’t it crashed already?
    Pundits have been “Banking” on crash every month since 2008, and it’s still going. It’s no closer to a crash, nor is it further away, it’s in stasis.

    • Scared Economist

      The fall of the Roman Empire didn’t happen in a few years either. It took about 200 years. I’d say our economic collapse is right on schedule. It’s a series of decline– not one giant crash. Thirty years from now we won’t recognize what has become the norm.

    • Mal Reynolds

      It will work until it doesn’t. Complex systems break suddenly. BTW in my customer base things are getting worse …. lots of customers looking to save $ … I have been unable to raise my labor rate since 2007 I have no pricing power. My conclusion …. go long on rope.

  • sonofseawolf

    Ty 4 reply Sigmund pinko Freud,
    Lol
    Depends on who you ask.
    but at least I don’t live in LA.
    Lol
    14/5

  • Hammerstrike

    This is not because of people falling out of the middle-class but falling from poor to really poor.

  • MrMcGufFfin

    F the class system. I tire of talking Marx.

    The only thing that need be said is employed or unemployed. If employment is low, great….no one cares, but, we experience exponential growth of the public sector. If unemployment is high, our Country is suffering from an economic firewall of political impasse.
    Today the US public sector is the third largest econmy in the World; its employer is…YOU! Guess what? Our employees are saying F/You, we want more…and buddy, you gone pay_or else!

    Add in the “Global Economy”? Look around. The ‘most’(the Public Sector and Uber Riche) secure have been tinkering to undo not ‘a’ business but entire economies for ONE purpose…Global Government. Who is gonna pay for this one size fit all? We are…NOT!

    Should one get caught in the tidal surge economic peril, tough sh3it…says our Career Political sellouts; these Career public servants get theirs just like the hierarchy of old. You? You/we get indentured servitude. F that. Throw all these career public servants out on their ear. The fact is that we are not a gd’d global village. Democracy cannot be spread by sword; it is spread by peace, and should ANY pissant’ Tyrant or religious fanatic interrupt that peace, they get the warhead right up the wazoo……period.

  • Sandbagger

    I used to shop Coldwater Creek and still receive their catalog. In fact, I just threw it into the recycle bin when I saw a T-SHIRT going for $49. It’s a thin piece of cotton. (Though beautifully colored.)

    I expect Eddie Bauer to be on the chopping block soon, too. They used to be my go-to store.

    Many clothing stores are out of my league, and apparently out of a lot of former middle class women.

  • BeenThere

    There seems to be a common pattern here of people earning $60-$70/hr for years who are suddenly destitute when they loose their big money jobs. This begs the question what did they do with all that money. Did they not put any aside for a rainy day. Did they think they could keep earning the big bucks right up to til they are 85 then die suddenly and never need to have any savings?

  • Gay Veteran

    aghast, is that you? another one of your personalities showing up?

    • aghast

      Most of your posts are sorry. But that one was funny.

    • aghast

      Actually it wasn’t my post. I couldn’t have come up with a post like that. I thought that line about mommy’s basement was pretty good.

  • Gay Veteran

    sorry, I’m not interested in your mouth

    • aghast

      Then whose mouth ARE you interested in?

  • Adrian

    America has rejected Jesus? Are you kidding me? A politician can’t be elected president (or to any office, for that matter) unless they proclaim hey are Christians. In the South there is a church on every street corner. The religious lobby is so strong it actually fights to get equal time teaching their own non-scientific version of creation. Compared to Europe, the U.S. is THE ultimate religious state. I’m not sure what planet you are living on…

  • GSOB

    Last Days. In the biblical scheme, the Lord Jesus Christ is the focal point of history. His coming divides history into two parts.

    The Old Testament era served as the “former days” (Mal. 3:4) that gave way to the “last days,” the times initiated by Christ’s coming: “God, who at various times and in different ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets has in these last days spoken to us by His Son” (Heb. 1:1-2).

    The last days are initiated by the appearance of the Son
    (Heb. 1:2; 1 Pet. 1:20) to effect redemption (Heb. 9:26) and by His pouring out of the Spirit (Acts 2:16, 17, 24; cf. Isa. 32:15; Zech. 12:10).

    The “ends of the ages” comes during the apostolic era (1 Cor. 10:11). These will run until “the last day,” when the Resurrection and Final Judgment occur to end history (John 6:39; 11:24; 12:48).

    Because the last days have been with us since the first century coming of Christ, no days are to follow them except for “the last day.” Consequently, no Millennium will introduce another grand redemptive era in man’s history.

  • Tom Wolff

    I came across your article and I’m truly perplexed. Family Dollar just BUILT and opened a new store just up the street from me. This isn’t a remodel job, I’m talking about a brand new structure, from the dirt up. Makes me wonder what they are up to …

  • John

    One indicator that I don’t think many have noticed is, the number of silver coins, all denominations(including silver dollars, pre/post 1957) that are coming out of hiding. This, one would think are our elderly, to pay for their scripts. There is not a week that goes by that I don’t find them and are now asking for half and silver dollars. Just another indicator that people are being forced to do whatever they can to get by.
    Food is the other shoe to drop. Less disposable income, more bargain shopping. The number of different “Dollar” stores is growing faster than restaurants. So it would be reasonable to expect( competition + an over extension of capital into buildings would = a curtailing of stores for a maximization for shareholders).

  • Thomas J.Stratford

    Here in West Florida over the last year Family dollar was building stores all over the place. They over saturated the area, and with many other retailers such as Wal Mart already heave in the region Family dollar lost out.

  • Howard

    There actually are quite a few middle and upper middle class jobs out there but unfortunately they are in the trades and not the type of work you can brag about with family when home for thanksgiving.

    Plumber, HVAC, electrician, auto mechanic. arborist. Middle class if you work for someone. Upper middle class if you have your own business.

    Hands on jobs that require knowledge, thought and on site skills cannot be outsourced but unfortunately are very lightly regarded in current society and because of the physical demands usually end by 60 years old unless you own the business.

  • Brother Tim

    We are living in the last days of this evil system. I’m hoping people are preparing spiritually, financially and storing as many things as we can. Even if the system don’t collapse for 10 years prices of all the things we need will continue to go up. We living under evil people with no soul.

  • Bruce

    Once again as per usual a good article has been reduced to argumenative comments about religion! I thought this as an economic collapse site??????

  • tacoma

    20 years ago, in 1994, America was at the height of empire. Its economy was by far the biggest, the best and its advanced technologies the mightiest. The USSR has recently collapsed, and China was abandoning economic Communism. The US dollar WAS gold. America was rolling out the Internet like no tomorrow, preparing to conquer the next few decades.

    Today, USA is like the USSR before collapse. What happened? Simple. The country gone nuts with runaway consumerism financed by debt, gone stupid with its education, its political leadership soaked in hubris and ideological wars, and the big corporate master took over the country where they operate with one and only one bottomline.

    In short, this is the US version of the USSR in 1988. The only fix is to do what the USSR did. Don’t laugh. Today, president Putin is admired by the world, and he runs a country on a surge where a dumb Obama dares not to touch, less bully. As to the US dollar, well, where would it be without the mighty Yuan.

    Who allowed this to happen? The middle class. In a democracy, you get what you deserve.

  • Joe Byrne

    “There are millions upon millions of Americans that can identify with what that man is going through.” Ah, source? Yea, I didn’t think so. So basically what you are complaining about are corporations. The big, bad, corporation who for decades have had to cow-tow to the unions who demanded unskilled and un-reliable people make 20 times what a non-union (think skilled and reliable) make. Oh yea, and we want free health care (where have we heard THAT recently?) and 2 months PAID vacations, and 2 times COLA raises every year, and on and on and on. Oh, you can’t afford us? Then you people are mean! You are killing the middle class! You are the problem!!! Ah, no. The unions are the problem. They and government who is supported mostly by the unions. Do a little research and you just might learn something. :( I’ll bet you were educated by the public “school” system too, right? All your teachers are union as well….see?

  • http://barefootblogger.siterubix.com Bryn

    When the middle class is entirely gone then we have well and truly come to the end of that road to serfdom…we’ve reached it. I wish it isn’t so and all this time I was glad they were able to kick that can down the road time and again because at least it meant a sense of normalcy. Now, it looks like the center won’t hold anymore.

  • cpgone

    FD is pathetic. Dollar tree taking market share.

  • Jean Bush

    Unbelievable; the guy calls people toilet paper now and they insert a Charmin ad!

  • ZombieApocMan

    Recently in my old neighborhood they built a Family Dollar Not to long after Dollar General went up down the street. I see both of these stores closing in less than 2 yrs. They can’t compete w/ Walmart down the road. And overbuilding is the companies fault for trying to expand in a market that is not there. This store opened and every day drive by only the employees car was there with an occasional shopper. Supposedly Family dollar has a beef w/ the ppl that own Dollar General so wherever DG builds they build a FD store to compete. Horrible business practice if this is true. These 2 stores will be nothing but more empty retail space this yr or next.

  • Roland Petit

    I can’t understand how Dollar Tree can maintain the dollar price point as the value of the dollar decrepitates.

  • Hard Boiled

    I thank GOD my hubby is a truck driver. they havent figured out how to downsize them yet. the less people they have. the less revenue they will make when they cant get the loads delivered. However one thing people better remember when Obama tries to get fuel to cost $8/gal, only the rich will be able to get anything delivered, and the trucks will stop. how will you get groceries if the trucks cant get to the market from the farm? Its coming, its only a matter of when.

    • JW Appling

      Unless he plans on retiring in the next ten years he better start training for a new job because these self driving cars google is developing will replace heavy trucks first because their ability to drive 24/7 with out a break (other than maintenance) Will make up for the extra cost.

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