Now That Universal Basic Income Checks Have Started, The American People Will Go Mad If They Don’t Continue

We crossed a line that should have never been crossed when we sent “stimulus payments” directly to the American people during the very early stages of the COVID pandemic.  Even many Republicans that supported the measure acknowledged that what they were doing was pure socialism, but they defended the payments by insisting that we were in the middle of a major national emergency.  At the time, I warned that once the government started issuing such checks, the American people would always keep demanding more.  When it was announced that the latest round of “stimulus payments” would only be $600 per person, angry activists vandalized Nancy Pelosi’s house.  Of course they got Mitch McConnell’s house too.  In both cases, the vandals made it exceedingly clear that they wanted more government money.

Sadly, it wasn’t just a handful of activists that went ballistic.  Literally millions of enraged Americans posted angry messages on social media that expressed how “insulting” the $600 figure was.

But prior to this pandemic, the U.S. government had never sent out “universal basic income” checks in the entire history of our country.

So you would think that most people should be grateful for an extra $600, but instead there was a tremendous amount of rage.

President Trump wanted the payments raised to $2000 and many Democrats did as well.  But Republicans still had control of the Senate, and Mitch McConnell initially blocked that effort.

But now Democrats will shortly have control of the White House, the Senate and the House of Representatives, and one of the first things they plan to do is to deliver $2,000 checks to the American people

Even while $600 stimulus checks are being deposited in tens of millions of bank accounts, congressional Democrats are laying the groundwork for even greater stimulus payments, which some call “survival checks.” As Senate democratic leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) recently said, “One of the first things that I want to do when our new senators are seated is deliver the $2,000 checks to the American families.” With Democrats preparing to take power in Washington, a critical question will be whether such survival checks will be one-time payments or recur each month “for the duration of the pandemic,” as Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) and others have suggested.

That may pacify the socialist mobs for a month or two, but eventually they will be back for even more payments.

As the voices get angrier and angrier, do you think that anyone in Washington will be willing to stand up and say no?

The incoming Vice-President, Kamala Harris, previously proposed giving out monthly $2,000 checks for the duration of this pandemic

Recurring monthly $2,000 checks would mirror the payments proposed in the “Monthly Economic Crisis Support Act” that Vice President-elect Kamala Harris (D-CA) introduced in the Senate in May 2020.

If you are married with three kids, you would have gotten $10,000 every month under her plan.

Considering where we are as a society today, I think that most Americans would have been very eager to sign up for that.

Of course the price tag for such a plan would be nightmarish.  It would have been approximately $600 billion every month, and that would mean that it would add more than 7 trillion dollars to our national debt over the course of an entire year.

But since we are liquidating the Republic anyway, who really cares?

Harris insisted that her plan would end once the crisis was over.

Other politicians, however, are ready to start giving citizens “universal basic income” checks on a permanent basis starting right now.  For example, Andrew Yang is making this the signature promise of his campaign as he runs for mayor of New York City…

Former 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang has officially started his run to succeed Bill de Blasio as Mayor of New York City with a call for a universal basic income for half-a-million of the city’s poorest residents.

Yang insists that by giving everyone free money every month he can “eradicate poverty” in NYC…

“We can eradicate extreme poverty in New York City,” Yang said. “If you put just a little money in their hands it can actually be what keeps them in their home and, again, avoids them hitting city services that are incredibly expensive.”

That sounds good, but who is he going to tax in order to pay for it?

After all, hundreds of thousands of wealthy people already left the city during 2020.

The truth is that it is a pipe dream, but that pipe dream is going to win him a whole lot of votes.

Benjamin Franklin once made the following statement

“When the people find that they can vote themselves money that will herald the end of the republic.”

Sadly, we have now reached that point.

And this comes at a time when tens of millions of Americans are in desperate need because the real economy continues to implode all around us.

For example, we just learned that Christopher & Banks has gone belly up

Apparel retailer Christopher & Banks, which caters to women over 40, is the latest clothing chain to file for bankruptcy protection amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Minneapolis-based company announced Thursday it filed for Chapter 11 in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of New Jersey. Christopher & Banks said in a news release it “expects to close a significant portion, if not all, of its brick-and-mortar stores.”

Thousands of businesses have been dying every month.  As I discussed the other day, the U.S. has lost more than 110,000 restaurants alone.

And to make sure that most of the businesses that have died can never possibly make a comeback, Joe Biden wants to institute “a national minimum wage of $15 an hour”.

Promising people more money is a great way to win elections, but at the end of the day someone always has to pay.

As the U.S. economy continues to come apart at the seams, finding sources of tax revenue will become increasingly difficult.

Perhaps the big tech companies can step up and offer to dramatically enlarge their contributions to the U.S. Treasury.

After all, they were quite instrumental in giving control of the federal government to the Democrats, and so you would think they should be quite willing to help pay for their promises.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

$600 Stimulus Checks Won’t Pull America Out Of This Mess…

Well, it looks like we are going to get $600 stimulus payments from the federal government after all.  Oh goody!  For the millions of Americans that are on the brink of being evicted from their homes, that will be enough for about half a mortgage payment or about half a month of rent.  Many are referring to this as America’s “let them eat cake moment”, and that probably is not too far off target.  As our politicians spend hundreds of billions of dollars on other nonsense, we are supposed to be deeply grateful to them for tossing a few hundred bucks our way.  But the truth is that $600 dollars does not go as far as it once did.  20 years ago, it would have bought more groceries than any of us could have possibly put into a single vehicle, but today it will buy about two carts of food and maybe a tank of gas.

If we are going to go “full Weimar” and destroy any hope of ever getting our national finances under control, we might as well make the checks big enough to smile about.

But while you get a measly $600, the federal government is spending $6,900,000 on a “smart toilet” which can actually recognize a user’s “analprint”…

In his latest report on federal government waste, a project he completes every year, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) highlights $54.7 billion in government spending that he deems wasteful. Among the items noted this year is the creation of a $6.9 million “smart toilet,” which operates with three cameras, one of which can identify a user’s “analprint.”

As explained in The Festivus Report 2020, researchers at Stanford University used $6,973,057 in funds granted through the National Cancer Institute, which is part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to create a so-called “smart toilet.”

Really?

Just when I think that it can’t possibly get any worse, the federal government comes up with even more bizarre ways to waste our tax dollars.

At least if we were only spending what we brought in I could live with that.  But instead, we have been stealing more than $100,000,000 dollars from future generations of Americans every single hour of every single day ever since Barack Obama first entered the White House.

I am not just picking on the Democrats.  At this point most Republicans have abandoned any pretense of fiscal responsibility, and that fact makes me sick to my stomach.

Today, we are 27.5 trillion dollars in debt, and soon it will be 30 trillion dollars.

If we are going to liquidate the nation anyway, let’s give people checks that are so large that they will be dancing in the streets.

Because giving people $600 checks in this economic environment is essentially the equivalent of spitting into Niagara Falls.

Let me try to illustrate what I am talking about.  Right now, there are 12 million U.S. renters that are more than $5,000 behind on their rent and utilities…

The newest data from Moody’s Analytics shows about 12 million renters are now at least $5,850 behind in rent and utilities payments — and eviction protections expire in weeks.

Okay, so let’s assume that all of those people get $600 payments on a timely basis.

In the end, on average they will still be about $5000 behind on their payments, and the start of a new month is right around the corner.

And there are millions of other Americans that are living so close to the edge financially that they have been putting their rent payments on a credit card

There’s been as much as a 70% percent increase from last year in people paying rent on a credit card, according to an analysis by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

“If you’re putting your rent payments on to a credit card, that shows you’re really at risk of eviction,” says Shamus Roller, executive director of the nonprofit National Housing Law Project. “That means you’ve run out of savings; you’ve probably run out of calls to family members to get them to loan you money.”

Yes, $600 will help.

But not much.

For 32-year-old Jo Marie Hernandez, $600 might buy a little bit of time, but what she really needs is a new job

Jo Marie Hernandez doesn’t know how she and her 4-year-old daughter will survive after her unemployment aid lapsed this weekend.

Hernandez, who lives in Olean, New York, is on the brink of losing her home in days after she lost her job as a customer service associate at a gas station in the spring. Enduring prolonged unemployment, she’s struggled to make ends meet and has nothing left in savings to keep her afloat.

I can’t even imagine the emotional pain that she must be going through right now.

When you have a young child and you are about to be thrown out into the streets, nothing else really matters

“I only have $100 left to my name. My whole world is shattered,” says Hernandez, 32, who was forced to put her car up for sale. “We can’t wait a few weeks for help. We’re starving and will be out on the street soon.”

Sadly, there are millions and millions of other Americans that are facing similar scenarios right now.

This is what an economic depression looks like, and economic conditions are going to continue to deteriorate moving forward.

Many on the left are assuming that future stimulus checks will be bigger once Joe Biden gets into the White House.  But every additional dollar that we borrow makes our long-term problems even worse.

Our national debt continues to spiral wildly out of control, the money supply is shooting up at an exponential rate, and we are mired in the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s despite unprecedented government intervention.

This is the big meltdown that everyone has been waiting for, and we are still only in the very early chapters.

So no, $600 stimulus payments won’t actually fix anything.

But hopefully they will ease the suffering slightly as the U.S. economy continues to relentlessly steamroll toward oblivion.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

20 things that you must believe in order to convince yourself that everything is going to turn out okay somehow

Despite everything that we have already been through in 2020, the dominant narrative in our society right now is that everything is going to be just fine once we get past our temporary problems.  So many people that I hear from can’t understand why I am so “negative” about the future, because they are completely convinced that really great days are just around the corner.  As odd as this may sound, we are seeing this sort of wild optimism among both Democrats and Republicans, Christians and atheists, capitalists and communists.  Of course about half the country will have their optimistic hopes for the future brutally crushed by the results of the upcoming election, but we aren’t there yet.  For now, both sides are absolutely convinced that they are going to win, and both sides are envisioning a wonderful new era for our nation in which their values reign triumphant.

If only things were that easy.

The truth is that many of our largest problems have been steadily growing for decades, and they aren’t going to magically disappear just because a particular candidate wins an election.  Our debt levels are absolutely exploding, our economy has plunged into a depression, there is widespread civil unrest in our streets, our nation is more divided than it has ever been in my entire lifetime, and our society is literally coming apart at the seams as just about every form of evil that you can possibly imagine is growing rapidly all around us.

But there are a whole lot of people out there that want to stick their heads in the sand and pretend that everything is going to be just fine.

If you would like to be just like them, the following are 20 things that you must believe in order to convince yourself that everything is going to turn out okay somehow…

#1 “Being 27 trillion dollars in debt is not a problem.  We can go into as much debt as we want, and future generations of Americans won’t mind at all that we are dumping all of our bills on them.”

#2 “The fact that the Federal Reserve creates trillions of dollars out of thin air whenever a major crisis erupts doesn’t really matter.  We can debase the reserve currency of the world as much as we want and the rest of the globe will continue to use it and the inflation rate in this country will never get out of control.”

#3 “Antifa is just an idea, and all of the rioting, looting and violence will somehow magically come to an end after the upcoming election.”

#4 “When I see people smashing windows, setting buildings on fire and shooting at police officers, I just remember to remind myself that those are really just peaceful protesters.”

#5 “It is perfectly okay that a former intern for Joe Biden will moderate the next presidential debate.  He has promised that he will be perfectly neutral, and I believe him.”

#6 “Kamala Harris will never become president if Joe Biden wins the election, because Joe Biden is so strong and vigorous that he could easily make it through two terms.”

#7 “The Democrats would never pack the Supreme Court, because Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are way too decent to ever allow that to happen.”

#8 “Once the election is over, the big social media companies will give us our freedom of speech back because that is the right thing to do.”

#9 “It makes perfect sense that the stock market has soared to record highs while the real economy has plunged into a horrifying depression.  This isn’t a bubble, and stock prices will just keep going up indefinitely.”

#10 “It is perfectly okay that 40 percent of U.S. children are being born outside of marriage.  America can certainly prosper without strong marriages and strong families because so many other great civilizations have shown that it can be done.”

#11 “Even though study after study has shown that antibodies fade very rapidly and that any immunity is very short-lived, a vaccine will save us from this pandemic.”

#12 “Once this virus has been eradicated, they won’t make us wear masks anymore, and they certainly wouldn’t try to force people to take vaccines if they don’t want them.”

#13 “Now that everyone has seen how much chaos this pandemic has caused, evil people would never purposely release more deadly viruses because they wouldn’t want to kick us while we are down.”

#14 “There is no need to worry that our relationships with Russia and China have gone down the tubes, because our military is so strong that nobody would ever dare getting into a military conflict with us.”

#15 “Even though the head of the UN World Food Program is warning that there will be famines of ‘biblical proportions’, I am sure that any food shortages are just temporary and everyone in the world will have plenty of food to eat in 2021 and beyond.”

#16 “More than 60 million Americans have filed new claims for unemployment benefits this year, but most of those jobs will quickly come back, and we are on the verge of the greatest era of economic prosperity in U.S. history.”

#17 “The rapid rise in crime rates in cities all over the nation is just temporary.  I am sure that things will go back to normal in 2021.”

#18 “We can ignore the hundreds of earthquakes that are shaking the west coast, because ‘the Big One’ probably won’t happen for thousands of years.”

#19 “The fact that tens of millions of Americans will be mailing in their ballots won’t cause any issues at all.  All of the ballots will be counted quickly, efficiently and accurately, and the American people will remain perfectly calm while we wait for days or even weeks to find out the winner of the presidential election.”

#20 “Even though more than 60 million children have already been aborted, and even though every form of evil that you can possibly imagine is exploding all around us, there will never be any serious consequences for our actions and the greatest days for America are still ahead of us even though we completely refuse to change our ways.”

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

2020 Has Been A “Nightmare Year” For America, And The Economic Fallout Is Just Getting Started

Most of us have never experienced a year that has been as tough as 2020 has been for our nation.  It has just been one major crisis after another, and the month of September has brought us even more trouble.  The worst wildfire season in the history of the state of California has been making headlines day after day, and now the passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg threatens to escalate the political turmoil in this nation to an entirely new level.  Many had such high hopes for 2020, but at this point this year has been such a disaster that USA Today is calling it “an American nightmare”, and it is difficult to argue with their reasoning…

First the pandemic, which divided us, economically devastated us, and has killed nearly 200,000 of us. Then the racial unrest, erupting at the deaths of more Black Americans at the hands of police: George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Rayshard Brooks, Daniel Prude.

Now the extreme weather. For only the second time in history, the National Hurricane Center has moved into the Greek alphabet for storm names. This season’s wildfires are bigger, deadlier and more frequent than in years past. In the West, people can’t breathe.

And now a member of the U.S. Supreme Court has died with about a month and a half to go until we get to election day.

The shocking death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg has stunned the entire country, and I will share my analysis on where things could go from here on The Most Important News later tonight.

In this article, I want to focus on the economic impact that all of this chaos is having.

Since the pandemic first started, more than 60 million Americans have filed new claims for unemployment benefits, and that is a threshold that has never been crossed before in all of our history.

And we have also seen businesses shut down at a pace that is hard to fully grasp.  If you can believe it, more than 160,000 businesses listed on Yelp say “that they have closed”

Yelp on Wednesday released its latest Economic Impact Report, revealing business closures across the U.S. are increasing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic’s economic toll.

As of Aug, 31, 163,735 businesses have indicated on Yelp that they have closed. That’s down from the 180,000 that closed at the very beginning of the pandemic. However, it actually shows a 23% increase in the number of closures since mid-July.

I was most alarmed by that last sentence.

Things were supposed to be getting a lot better by now, but instead we have seen “a 23% increase in the number of closures since mid-July”.

That is not good.

And the percentage of businesses on Yelp that are indicating that their closures are “permanent” just keeps rising

In addition to monitoring closed businesses, Yelp also takes into account the businesses whose closures have become permanent. That number has steadily increased throughout the past six months, now reaching 97,966, representing 60% of closed businesses that won’t be reopening.

So what this means is that none of us should be expecting a return to what we considered to be “normal” prior to 2020.

In fact, it is likely that we will see large numbers of businesses continue to fail in the months ahead.  According to Fox Business, a whopping 40 percent of all U.S. restaurants “could go under within the next six months”…

At least 40% of restaurant operators struggling to stay afloat during the coronavirus pandemic believe their businesses could go under within the next six months if there is no additional stimulus package from the federal government, according to a new survey by the National Restaurant Association.

With one in every six restaurants closed permanently or for the “long term,” the industry is on track to lose $240 billion in sales by the end of the year, according to the National Restaurant Association’s findings on the impact COVID-19 has on the restaurant business.

So what do you think?

Should we bail out the restaurant industry?

By the way, the airline industry really wants a bailout too.

And just about every other industry is looking for government help as well.

The reason why almost everyone has their hands out is because we have plunged into a crippling economic depression, and everyone is starting to realize that there is no end in sight to this downturn.

Of course most average citizens also want another round of “stimulus checks” from the federal government, and we are being told that there is a really good chance that “the economy backslides” if that does not happen…

Lawmakers remain deadlocked over a measure to provide another round of $1,200 checks to most households and more aid to struggling small businesses and unemployed Americans. Most saw the money they received from Congress’s $2.2 trillion CARES Act run dry over the summer.

“If they don’t” approve another stimulus, “they’re taking a huge risk, says Mark Zandi chief economist of Moody’s Analytics. “The odds are better than even the economy backslides.”

We have already stolen several trillion dollars from future generations of Americans so far this year to fund “stimulus packages”, and so a lot of people figure that it probably wouldn’t make that much of a difference if we stole several trillion more to fund another one.

And the Federal Reserve has been flooding the financial system with so much new money that it makes everything that they have ever done in the past look completely insignificant.

In the process, our authorities are systematically destroying the reserve currency that the entire globe depends upon, but at this point very few people seem to care.

So we continue to steamroll toward economic oblivion, and nobody is even thinking about hitting the brakes.

In the USA Today article that I quoted at the start of this piece, the author stated that it is “impossible to know if the worst is behind us or still lies ahead”…

Many of us are vacillating between horror and disbelief at what can only be described as an American nightmare. Devastation doesn’t cover it. It’s impossible to know if the worst is behind us or still lies ahead.

Of course that is not true at all.  In fact, it is exceeding clear that what is ahead of us is going to be much, much worse than what we have already experienced.

But most Americans don’t want to hear that.

Most of us just want to cling to the belief that someday we will wake up and everything will have returned to normal.

That may happen in fairy tales, but this is real life, and real life simply does not work that way.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  By purchasing the book you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

When It Comes To Economic Suffering, Some Parts Of The U.S. Are Feeling It Far More Than Others

2020 has been a very tough year for the U.S. as a whole, but some portions of the country have been hit much harder than others.  For example, if you live in a rural area that hasn’t seen any civil unrest and that hasn’t been hit very hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, the way that you are living your life now may seem nearly unchanged from the way you were living your life in 2019.  But if you live in an urban area that has experienced endless protests and rioting and that has seen COVID-19 sweep through local neighborhoods like wildfire, your life in 2020 may look radically different from the way it looked in 2019.  Unfortunately, conditions in our largest cities are not likely to improve dramatically any time soon.

But many people that live in rural communities are feeling pretty good about things right now.  Even though more than 52 million Americans have filed new claims for unemployment benefits over the last 18 weeks, the official unemployment rate in many rural counties is still in the single digits.

I know that may be difficult to believe, but that is what the numbers tell us.

Sadly, in many of our largest cities it is a completely different story.  New York City was one of the early epicenters of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, and many of us will never forget watching video footage of the looting that took place in the heart of Manhattan earlier this year.  As a result of all of this chaos, the unemployment rate in the state as a whole is nearly twice the national average

New York’s unemployment rate rose to 20.4% last month, according to state-level data issued Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics that detailed figures for some large metro areas. That’s up from 18.3% in May and 15% in April.

We see a very similar story when we look at the city of Los Angeles.

Thanks to COVID-19 and endless civil unrest, the official unemployment rate in the city is hovering near 20 percent

Los Angeles, the second-largest U.S. city, has seen a similar level of joblessness.

Its unemployment rate recovered slightly in June but remains startlingly high — at 19.5%, versus 20.6% in May, according to data published Friday by California’s Employment Development Department.

Unfortunately, it appears that the COVID-19 pandemic and the violence in our major cities are both going to be with us for the foreseeable future.

Some people think that the civil unrest will disappear if Joe Biden wins in November, but I do not believe that is the case.  Nearly all of the major cities where the violence is happening are controlled by radical Democrats, and those radical Democrats have been completely unable to control the riots.  To the protesters, Republicans and Democrats are both two sides of the same coin and are both responsible for the injustices in our society, and they are not going to give up on their goals just because a moderate Democrat like Joe Biden wins the election.

At this point, millions upon millions of Americans are sticking closer to home these days because of COVID-19 and all the unrest, and this has been particularly devastating for the leisure and hospitality industries

The unemployment rate in the leisure and hospitality industries, including restaurants, soared from 5.7% in February to 39.3% in April, and in June was still at an unprecedented 28.9%. By comparison, the overall unemployment rate is 11.1%, and no other industry comes close to restaurants’ level.

The restaurant industry employed nearly 9.2 million people in June, almost 3 million more than in April but still 25% below where it was in February. Anecdotally, though, restaurant workers—even those who’ve spent decades in the industry—say they’re looking to get out. The line of work that had been stable, geographically flexible, reliable and largely safe for generations is no more, they say.

As I discussed the other day, we have already lost thousands upon thousands of small and independent restaurants, and this “restaurant apocalypse” is only going to get worse with each passing month.

Moving forward, some cities may never be the same again.  In Las Vegas, the official unemployment rate recently hit 29 percent, and everyone agrees that tourism will never recover until the pandemic ends.

If this pandemic stretches on for several years, many of those unemployed workers will be forced to abandon the city entirely in order to find work elsewhere.

Sadly, competition for the few good jobs that are available will become increasingly fierce, and this will result in millions of Americans falling out of the middle class.

And we are starting to see some numbers that indicate that this process is already moving along very quickly.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, “24 million Americans say they have little to no chance of being able to pay next month’s rent”.

Just think about that.

We never saw anything like this during the last recession, and the Census Bureau says that things are particular dire for Black and Hispanic renters

This month, nearly 28% of Black renters say they haven’t paid last month’s rent, and about 46% say they have slight or no confidence they’ll be able to pay next month’s rent, according to figures from the Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey. Hispanic renters face similar economic strain: 22% say they missed last month’s rent and 46% fear they won’t make rent next month.

Those numbers are simply eye-popping.  As people increasingly get behind on their bills, the cries for more direct government assistance will become deafening, and it appears that Republicans and Democrats in Congress both want to pass yet another stimulus bill.

Of course that will mean borrowing and spending more gigantic piles of money that we do not currently have, but at this point most Americans do not seem to care that we are literally completely destroying our financial future.

For such a long time, I warned that the next economic downturn would be worse than the last recession, and that has turned out to be precisely correct.

And what we are experiencing right now will pale in comparison to what is eventually coming.

But for most people, the only thing that seems to matter is what is happening here and now.

And at this moment we are seeing tremendous economic suffering in major cities all over the nation, and in an election year very few of our politicians want to be the “bad guy” that says that we can’t hand out “free money” to everyone.

So our currency will continue to be rapidly devalued, our debt levels will continue to explode, and we shall get to see where this relentless march toward socialism takes us.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

“Free Money”: Most Americans Want The Government To Issue More Stimulus Checks

“When the people find that they can vote themselves money that will herald the end of the republic.”  That is a direct quote from Benjamin Franklin, and it has turned out to be quite prophetic.  Today, most of our politicians are socialists whether they accept that label or not, and the American people have come to expect the government “to do something for them” whenever any sort of a crisis comes along.  In response to this COVID-19 pandemic, Congress has borrowed and spent trillions more dollars that we do not have, and most Americans have been quite thrilled to receive their “stimulus checks”.  But of course now a lot of people are insisting that those checks were not enough and they want more.  In fact, one new survey just found that most Americans want the checks to keep coming.  The idea of “free money” is so seductive, but unfortunately most of the population simply does not understand that eventually there is a great price to be paid for throwing “free money” around.

So far, more than 300,000 people across the globe have died during this pandemic.  But during the Spanish Flu pandemic that stretched from 1918 to 1920, somewhere between 50 million and 100 million people died.  During that horrific pandemic, our society did not shut down and the federal government did not borrow and spend giant mountains of money in a desperate attempt to keep the economy afloat.  Instead, our leaders responded with common sense and quiet resolve, and it set the stage for a tremendous economic boom during “the Roaring Twenties”.

Unfortunately, this time around our leaders responded to COVID-19 by locking down nearly the entire country, and that is going to result in the largest GDP collapse in American history

In its latest projections, the CBO sees GDP capsizing 38% on an annualized basis in the second quarter with the 26 million more unemployed Americans than there were at the end of 2019.

The forecasts are roughly in line with Wall Street economists and slightly less dour than the most recent tracking number from the Atlanta Federal Reserve, which sees GDP falling about 42% in the April-to-June period.

Without a doubt, we are now in a very deep economic depression, and the months ahead look very bleak.

But instead of focusing on solutions, many Americans are desperate for the federal government to take care of them.  According to one recent survey, 82 percent of Americans want the government to issue more “stimulus checks”…

A whopping 82% of people feel that the one-time stimulus check of $1,200 is not enough to cover their expenses. They feel that these checks should continue until the lockdown ends.

I have a hard time believing that number is actually that high, but even if you cut that number in half it would still be astounding.

Have we now reached a point where much of the nation is eager to embrace full-blown socialism?

Apparently so, and that is quite discouraging.

But the “free money” that socialists promise is never actually free.

When the Federal Reserve creates trillions of dollars out of thin air and pumps it into the financial system, that is not “free money”.

And when the federal government borrows and spends trillions of dollars that we do not currently have, that is not “free money”.  In essence, we are stealing that money from future generations of Americans, and what we are doing is beyond criminal.  For much more on that, please see my recent article entitled “Fear Of The Coronavirus Has Absolutely Destroyed America’s Future”.

Whenever a new dollar is introduced into the system, it erodes the value of all dollars that currently exist.  Usually this is a relatively slow process, but now our leaders have gone absolutely nuts and very painful inflation is on the way.

In fact, in some sectors of the economy it is already here

Harold’s Chicken on Broadway in Chicago unleashed a wave of public backlash on social media last weekend after it slapped customers with a COVID-19 surcharge of 26%.

Restaurant manager Jacquelyn Santana told CBS Chicago that food suppliers raised wholesale chicken prices by 26% on Saturday “due to the COVID pandemic.” She said a case of chicken wings that generally cost $60, jumped overnight to $90, forcing the wing shop to pass on the costs.

The cost of living is going to be soaring, and most Americans will not be seeing matching increases in their paychecks.

In fact, more than 36 million American workers no longer have a job at all.

Things are about to get really tough for average American families.  Some are going into more debt in order to get through this crisis, while others are dipping into their retirement savings

MagnifyMoney commissioned a survey of 1,239 Americans who have retirement accounts. Many of the analyses conducted look at responses by the “generation” of the responders. Gen Z is defined as ages 18-23, Millennials are 24-39, Gen X is 40-54, Baby Boomers are 55-74, and the “silent generation” is aged 75+.

The survey shows that 30% of Americans have withdrawn an average of $6,757.20 from their retirement savings from about March 1 through May 1. Another 19% responded that they have not taken money out yet but they plan to do so.

As time goes by, an increasing number of Americans will eventually come to a financial breaking point, and there will be a tremendous amount of pressure on the government “to do something” once again.

And just like we have seen with so many other socialist experiments, the answer will always be more “free money”.

But to see where this ends, just look at Venezuela.  Nearly everyone in the entire country is a “millionaire”, but nearly everyone in the entire country is also living in deep poverty.

Once faith in a currency is destroyed, it is nearly impossible to restore it.

And we are in the process of destroying faith in the reserve currency that the entire world uses.

Unfortunately, our leaders are not listening to people like me.  Instead, they are willing to try just about anything to turn the collapsing U.S. economy around.

At this point, even Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is admitting that this is the worst economic downturn that we have seen “since World War II”

The pair offered a cautious view of the economy, with Mnuchin displaying a more optimistic outlook than Powell, who told the Senate Banking Committee that “the scope and speed of this downturn are without modern precedent and are significantly worse than any recession since World War II.”

Mnuchin noted that he anticipated the economy would recover but said “there is risk of permanent damage” should states wait too long in reopening their economies.

Sadly, things didn’t have to get so bad so soon.

If our leaders had responded rationally to this pandemic, the U.S. economy would still be in relatively decent shape.

But now our economic bubble has burst, and very challenging days are ahead of us.

As our problems mount, a lot of people are going to insist that “free money” is the solution.

Of course it isn’t any sort of a solution at all.  “Free money” is actually economic poison, and the U.S. economy is never going to recover from this.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.

States Are Now Wrestling With The Biggest Budget Crisis They Have Faced In All Of U.S. History

Most U.S. states are seeing tax revenues completely and utterly collapse during this COVID-19 pandemic, and some are already begging the federal government for bailout money.  Because if dramatic intervention does not happen, many states are going to have to start savagely slashing their expenditures, and that could mean unprecedented job losses on the state government level.  Typically, state government bureaucrats make above average salaries and those jobs often come with very nice benefit packages.  Once those jobs have been eliminated, they will not be easy to replace.

The tax revenue numbers that are starting to come in are nothing short of shocking.  Just consider these examples

Georgia is showing a decline of more than $100 million in sales tax, fuel tax and other tax revenue compared with the same period a year ago. Tennessee’s tax revenue is down more than $120 million. Pennsylvania’s is off by more $760 million, and Texas, which also has been hammered by the downturn in oil prices, has seen tax collections plummet by nearly $1 billion.

And New Jersey officials just reported that tax revenue in their state fell a whopping 60 percent during the month of April compared to a year ago.

These are unprecedented figures, and they have created gaping holes in state budgets all over the nation

Colorado faces a gap of nearly a quarter of the state’s general budget. The projected gap in California is more than a fifth of its spending plan and in Oklahoma, a sixth. The governor of Oregon is preparing to cut 17% of her budget. Michigan may have to slash up to a quarter of the money it sends to schools.

And what is truly frightening is that this new economic depression in only a couple of months old.

What will things look like once we get several more months down the road?

Already, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says that things are so bad in his state that a 61 billion dollar federal bailout is needed

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said his state needs $61 billion in federal support “or we will wind up aggravating the situation” by forcing cuts to local governments.

“You know who local governments are? That’s police, firefighters. You want me to cut hospitals? Hospitals are the nurses and the doctors who just got us through this and everyone celebrates as heroes. If you don’t fund the state, that’s who you’re cutting in terms of finances.”

Of course we have entered a time when literally everyone is going to be begging the federal government for money.

And as I discussed yesterday, all of the reckless borrowing and spending the federal government has been doing is going to absolutely wreck the value of our currency.

But most of our politicians are not really concerned about the value of the U.S. dollar at this point.  They just want to to rev up the cash machine and try to patch up our sinking ship.

Another thing to keep a close eye on is the fact that public pension plans all over the country are headed for major problems.  In fact, U.S. public pension plans just had the worst quarter ever recorded

Public pension plans lost a median 13.2% in the three months ended March 31, according to Wilshire Trust Universe Comparison Service data released Tuesday, slightly more than in the fourth quarter of 2008. March’s stock market plummet led to the biggest one-quarter drop in the 40 years the firm has been tracking.

“It was a horrible quarter for all public funds,” said Chicago Teachers’ Pension Fund Investment Chief Angela Miller-May.

This was already an emerging crisis even before COVID-19 came along, and now a lot of these plans are going to be in very, very serious trouble.

This is one of the reasons why authorities are so desperate to prop up the stock market.  Pension plans have poured so much money into stocks in recent years, and that worked out just fine during the boom years.

But now that a new economic depression has arrived, it is going to turn out to be a catastrophic strategy.

Meanwhile, we continue to get more bad economic news with each passing day.  On Wednesday, we learned that Steak ‘n Shake will be permanently shutting down more than 50 locations

The restaurant Steak ‘n Shake has announced the decision to permanently close at least 51 of its restaurant locations nationwide. The move comes amid growing worry about the COVID-19 outbreak and its damage on the company’s financial future.

Biglari Holdings Inc. announced in its first quarter report that Steak ‘n Shake’s revenue has drop $59 million compared to the same time last year because of a decrease in demand.

For those keeping score at home, these are more jobs that are never, ever coming back.

But I certainly can’t blame Steak ‘n Shake for shutting down restaurants.  Social distancing restrictions will remain in effect in some areas of the country for many months to come, and fear of the coronavirus will keep many customers away long after all of the restrictions have finally been lifted.

Certain industries are just going to have to accept the fact that we have entered a new economic reality, and business models are going to have to fundamentally change.  For example, the International Air Transport Association is already projecting lower levels of air travel for at least the next five years

Demand for air travel will lag behind pre-coronavirus forecasts for at least five more years, according to the latest projections from the International Air Transport Association.

Global traffic, or the number of passengers carried times the distance flown, will still be about 10% below original estimates in 2025, Brian Pearce, the trade group’s chief economist, said in a media briefing Wednesday.

I was stunned when I first read that.

But this is how fast an economic death spiral can happen.  Fear of the coronavirus has paralyzed economic demand, and this is causing businesses all over America to fail.

As more businesses fail, that creates even more economic fear, and lenders get even tighter with their money.

Hopefully we can break out of this cycle of fear eventually, but of course this “perfect storm” that we are now facing is still only in the very early chapters.

At some point this coronavirus pandemic will fade, but there will be no running away from the consequences of decades of exceedingly foolish decisions.

Those decisions set the stage for the greatest economic crisis in our history, and now we are starting to watch that crisis play out right in front of our eyes on a daily basis.

About the Author: I am a voice crying out for change in a society that generally seems content to stay asleep. My name is Michael Snyder and I am the publisher of The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe. I have written four books that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned) By purchasing those books you help to support my work. I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but due to government regulations I need those that republish my articles to include this “About the Author” section with each article. In order to comply with those government regulations, I need to tell you that the controversial opinions in this article are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of the websites where my work is republished. The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions. Those responding to this article by making comments are solely responsible for their viewpoints, and those viewpoints do not necessarily represent the viewpoints of Michael Snyder or the operators of the websites where my work is republished. I encourage you to follow me on social media on Facebook and Twitter, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with all many people as we possibly can.