9 Signs That Some Of America’s Long-Term Trends Are Starting To Become Very Serious Short-Term Problems

Ignoring long-term problems can work for a while, but eventually they catch up with you.  Over the years, I have written many articles about alarming long-term trends in our society that desperately needed to be addressed.  Of course the vast majority of those long-term trends never got much attention, because our political system tends to reward politicians that focus on short-term issues.  As a result, many of the long-term trends that I have written about previously have now gotten to a point where they have started to become very serious short-term problems.  In this article, I would like to share 9 examples of this with you.

#1 I have been warning about exploding debt levels for as long as I have been writing about the economy.  Most people know that the U.S. national debt has now crossed the 28 trillion dollar threshold, but hardly anyone is talking about the explosion of corporate debt that we have been witnessing in recent months.  According to the Federal Reserve, total corporate debt in the United States is now up to a whopping 11.2 trillion dollars

Before the pandemic, U.S. companies were borrowing heavily at low interest rates. When Covid-19 lockdowns triggered a recession, they didn’t pull back. They borrowed even more and soon paid even less.

After a brief spike, interest rates on corporate debt plummeted to their lowest level on record, bringing a surge in new bonds. Nonfinancial companies issued $1.7 trillion of bonds in the U.S. last year, nearly $600 billion more than the previous high, according to Dealogic. By the end of March, their total debt stood at $11.2 trillion, according to the Federal Reserve, about half the size of the U.S. economy.

#2 Needless to say, this level of corporate debt is not even close to sustainable, and we are starting to see a lot of prominent names go bankrupt.  In fact, one of the largest mall owners in the entire country officially filed for bankruptcy on Sunday

Washington Prime Group, a major mall owner of more than 100 locations across the United States, filed for bankruptcy, citing pandemic-related shutdowns.

The Columbus, Ohio-based company filed for Chapter 11 late Sunday, saying Covid-19 “created significant challenges” and that the move is “necessary.” Washington Prime secured $100 million in new funding to support its day-to-day operations so it can “continue in the ordinary course without interruption.”

#3 The standard of living in the United States has been going down for a very long time.  Here in 2021, inflation is growing at a much faster rate than wages are, and this is squeezing middle class families like never before.  One of the ways that families are dealing with this is by putting off major purchases, and that is one of the reasons why the average age of the vehicles on our roads has now reached an all-time record high

The average age of vehicles on U.S. roadways rose to a record 12.1 years last year, as lofty prices and improved quality prompt owners to hold on to their cars longer.

It was the first time the average vehicle age rose above 12 years, according to data released Monday by research firm IHS Markit. While the average vehicle age has risen steadily over the last 15 years, the trend accelerated during the coronavirus pandemic partly because of a drop in new-car sales, IHS said.

#4 America’s growing homelessness crisis has accelerated greatly during the pandemic, and the big cities in California are being hit the hardest.  At this point, it is really difficult to navigate through the streets of San Francisco without stumbling over a tent or stepping in human excrement

For a city as opulent as San Francisco, it’s long been jarring to see the extreme poverty of those experiencing homelessness on its streets. If you walk around downtown, tents, makeshift cardboard beds and human excrement can be seen littering the sidewalks. Impoverished people lie on the ground as a blur of highly paid professionals whiz by.

#5 The homelessness crisis is also one of the factors that is fueling the dramatic rise in crime rates that we have been seeing all over the nation.  Once upon a time, millions of eager tourists would flock to Venice Beach, but now the phrase “like hell went to hell” is being used to describe conditions at that once pristine tourist trap…

Year-to-date numbers show that robberies have nearly tripled since the same period last year. Homeless-related robberies are up 260 percent; homeless-related assaults with a deadly weapon is up 118 percent; property crimes and area burglaries are up 85 percent; and grand theft auto is up 74 percent.

According to Embrich, felony arrests are up 68 percent, while misdemeanor arrests have grown by 355 percent. But arrests aren’t enough: Suspects are often released back onto the streets within hours.

#6 The police are the ones that are supposed to protect us from crime and restore order when things get out of control, but now they are leaving public service in record numbers.  After being endlessly demonized by leftist activists and the mainstream media, police officers are either retiring or resigning at a staggering rate….

Police retirements have risen by 45 percent in the past year, with officers opting out of forces across the country amid Black Lives Matter demonstrations that fueled anti-cop rhetoric.

The alarming statistic was revealed by the Police Executive Research Forum on Sunday, with the organization also revealing that resignations rose by 18 percent during the same twelve month period.

#7 Have you noticed that many of our cities are becoming disgustingly filthy?  When I was growing up, I often heard the phrase “cleanliness is next to godliness”, but you never hear anyone use it anymore.  These days, filth and grime are everywhere, and that has resulted in widespread infestations.  Many of our cities now have massive problems with rats and bed bugs, but Chicago is the worst of them all

The Windy City is known for quite a few things: hot dogs, deep dish, baseball. But here’s one thing you probably don’t associate with Chicago: bed bugs. Turns out these tiny hitchhiking pests are quite fond of our city, according to the latest numbers available through Atlanta-based Orkin, a company that specializes in pest control services.

In fact, Chicago ranked no. 1 on the 2021 list, according to Orkin, reclaiming the top spot for the first time since 2017, when it slipped to no. 3, just behind Baltimore and Washington. For the sixth year in a row, Orkin also ranked Chicago the “rattiest” city in America.

#8 I have been writing about the drought in the western half of the country for years, but here in 2021 it is the worst we have ever seen.  As I write this article, an astounding 88 percent of the West is officially in a state of drought…

Lakes at historically low levels, unusually early forest fires, restrictions on water use and now a potentially record heat wave: even before summer’s start the US West is suffering the effects of chronic drought made worse by climate change.

Eighty-eight percent of the West was in a state of drought this week, including the entire states of California, Oregon, Utah and Nevada, according to official data.

#9 When drought gets bad enough, it leads to water shortages, and we will want to watch developments in California very closely.  Water supplies have gotten very tight throughout the state, and officials in Santa Clara County just officially declared “a water shortage emergency”

Santa Clara County is in extreme drought. We can’t afford to wait to act as our water supplies are being threatened locally and across California. We are in an emergency and Valley Water must do everything we can to protect our groundwater resources and ensure we can provide safe, clean water to Santa Clara County residents and businesses.

To better deal with these threats and the emergency they are causing, today my fellow Board Members and I unanimously declared a water shortage emergency condition in Santa Clara County. This declaration, which is among the strongest actions we can take under law, allows Valley Water to work with our retailers, cities and the county to implement regulations and restrictions on the delivery and consumption of water. We also are urging the County of Santa Clara to proclaim a local emergency and join us in underscoring the seriousness of the threats posed by the extreme drought.

Over the past few years, America has been hit by crisis after crisis, and many are yearning for a return to the good old days.  Unfortunately, that simply is not going to happen.

The United States is never going to be like it once was.  Too many things have changed, and our culture has been radically transformed over the past several decades.

Many of the items that I have shared in this article are simply symptoms of much broader cultural problems.  We are a deeply, deeply sick society, and it is getting worse with each passing day.

***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.

Bed Bugs

The United States is currently experiencing a nightmarish epidemic of disgusting blood sucking parasites, and no, I am not talking about our politicians.  There is a full blown bed bug epidemic happening all across America and it just seems to get worse with each passing year. For cities such as New York and Philadelphia which are at the epicenter of the outbreak, bed bugs have become an important political issue.  Once bed bugs become entrenched in an area, virtually everyone is thinking about them.  Bed bugs will not kill you, but they can drive you insane.  Anyone that has ever had big, red welts all over their bodies from bed bug bites knows how terribly frustrating bed bugs can be.  They can be incredibly difficult to get rid of.  So why am I talking about bed bugs when there are hundreds of other important economic issues to talk about right now?  Well, this is just another example of how our country seems to be cursed.  Even the simplest things seem to become major problems for us these days. The reality is that there were almost no bed bugs inside the U.S. between the end of World War II and the 1990s.  But today the number of bed bugs is absolutely exploding.  I remember when I was young my mother would tell me to “sleep tight and don’t let the bed bugs bite”, but I didn’t even know what bed bugs were because I had never seen any.  But today, CBS News says that more than 250 million dollars a year (and rising) is spent fighting bed bugs.

Things have gotten so bad that a “National Bed Bug Summit” was held earlier this year in Washington D.C.

Will we soon have a “war on bed bugs”?

I can just see it now: “You are either with us or you are with the bed bugs”.

So exactly what are bed bugs?

Well, basically bed bugs are small, brown, flat insects that love to suck the blood of animals and humans.  They are commonly found in hospitals, businesses, homes, sofas, mattresses, buses, subways, trains, airplanes, classrooms, retail stores, movie theaters and especially in hotels.

As mentioned above, you will not die from bed bug bites.  But many people have been driven absolutely crazy from constant bed bug bites for weeks or months on end.

One of the worst things about a bed bug infestation is all of the itching that bed bug bites cause.  It can get to a point where it can be absolutely debilitating.

Some people become so traumatized by the fear of having bed bugs crawl all over them and bite them all night that they actually become afraid to go to sleep.  A really bad bed bug infestation can cause panic attacks and even depression.

Right now there are large numbers of New Yorkers that are absolutely obsessed with bed bugs.  The bed bug infestation in the city just seems to get worse and worse.  The following is a quote from a local NBC news station in New York….

New statistics from the city’s Department of Housing, Preservation and Development reveal an epidemic: Manhattanites have been complaining about bed bugs at six times the rate they did in 2005. On Staten Island, the number of complaints has soared 32 times higher than it was five years ago.

Just because you have bed bugs does not mean that you are dirty or unsanitary.  The truth is that some of the finest hotels in the country have bed bugs.

According to The New York Post, bed bugs have even infested the Metropolitan Opera House, the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, the Empire State Building and the United Nations.

I once experienced a problem with bed bugs myself.  Back when I was much younger and barely scraping by financially, I figured I would save a few bucks by buying a used mattress.

That was a huge mistake.

For weeks I would wake up with huge red bites all over my legs.

Never, ever again will I buy a used mattress.

Once bed bugs arrive in your home, they can be almost impossible to get rid of without professional help.

Throwing out one piece of furniture or covering your mattress in plastic might help a little bit but it will not solve the problem.

Some adult bed bugs can live for up to 12 months without feeding at all.

Just when you think they are gone they can come out and start feasting again.

Also, bed bugs are great at multiplying.  Female bed bugs can lay up to 5 eggs in a single day and can lay up to 500 eggs during a lifetime.

Perhaps your area of the country does not have a problem with bed bugs yet, but this epidemic is spreading.  Just check out the CBS News video report posted below….

Perhaps you saw in the news recently that some scientists have found that bed bugs are now carrying a “superbug” known as MRSA.

Scientists in Vancouver, Canada say that for the first time ever they have found bed bugs that have methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.  The following is a quote from a recent CTV article about this discovery….

Researchers discovered that a sample of the blood-sucking insects taken from three patients who live in Vancouver’s gritty Downtown Eastside were carrying two types of drug-resistant bacteria.

Co-investigator Dr. Marc Romney, a medical microbiologist at nearby St. Paul’s Hospital, said five bedbugs plucked from the patients or their belongings were carrying MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) or VRE (vancomycin-resistant enterococci). Dubbed superbugs, the bacteria are resistant to many standard antibiotics.

The good news is that these scientists do not have any evidence that bed bugs are spreading MRSA to humans.

Bed bugs are able to be infected by at least 28 different human pathogens, but at least to this point they are not very effective at spreading them.

Let us hope that does not change.

It turns out that MRSA has also been found in our supermarket meat.

For the first time in the United States, scientists have found antibiotic-resistant MRSA in supermarket meat.

According to Business Insider, “scientists at Wayne State University tested 289 raw meat samples from 30 Detroit grocery stores. Six of the samples were infected with the potentially deadly bacteria, including three chicken, two beef and one turkey.”

Yuck!

MRSA is not something you want to mess around with.

This is yet another example of how unsafe our food is becoming.

We like to think of ourselves as so advanced, but we can’t even protect ourselves from annoying little bed bugs and we can’t even keep very serious pathogens out of our food supply.

If you stop and think about all of the gross things in our society it can really stress you out.  For example, the next time you use a soda fountain at a fast food restaurant there is a good chance that you may encounter fecal contamination.  Just check out the following quote from Organic Health….

According to a study published in the January issue of the International Journal of Food Microbiology, nearly half of the 90 beverages from soda fountain machines in one area in Virginia tested positive for coliform bacteria – which could indicate possible fecal contamination.

But getting back to bed bugs, for those dealing with an infestation the number one thing they want to know is what to do about it.

Well, there was one very effective chemical known as “Propoxur”, but it has been banned by the EPA.  It turns out that Propoxur “is a known human carcinogen” and is very dangerous to children.

Some are urging the EPA to reconsider this ban, but so far the EPA has been standing firm.

Meanwhile, the bed bugs continue to multiply and terrorize more Americans.

On one bed bug forum, one woman identified as “avenae” shared a particularly brutal bed bug horror story….

It all started in April, woke up one morning with a red welt on my leg. Never really thought much of it. Then it kept happening, so I thought I had fleas, treated my animals, checked the house for them. Never saw a single flea. Also no one else in my home was being affected. Then I thought maybe I was having an allergic reaction to a new soap I had bought so I stopped using that and nothing changed. Kept realizing I was waking up in the middle of the night scratching my body parts almost raw. The itch was so intense it felt like a million fire ants biting me all over. So I start researching, read up on bed bugs and searched my entire home….nothing. But I seem to be having a sever reaction to the bites.

Mind you I hadn’t traveled, had any visitors, nothing that would have brought these nasty little creatures into my home.

Ever night I wake up, every morning new red welts all over me. One night I thought I’d wear long pants and sock and a long sleeve shirt, only to wake up with bites all over my neck and face! STILL could not find a single bug. It got to the point were I was crying myself to sleep at night and taking sleeping pills just to be able to sleep. Didn’t want to start sleeping on the couch out of fear of them following me out.

Do you have a similar bed bug horror story?

If so, we would love to hear about it.  Please feel free to share your thoughts about bed bugs below….

***UPDATE***

A reader named Emily left the following comment that I think we all should consider the next time we travel….

“I use to work as a Hotel Manager. Trust me when I say, all hotels are infested with bed bugs. It was terrible fighting with the corp. owners of the property; they only weighed your safety against profits and profits always won! We did try to kill the bugs, but nothing really is effective so we rented out infective rooms and if guest complained, we would offer them a discount on the room. It finally got to the point I could not look people in the face so I left. It goes with out saying; I would never stay in a hotel room, period! What can you do if you must travel, I don’t know! It is a fact of life that we must expose our selves to many nasty parasites in the environment and most of the time we survive, but nature is coming up with much more deadly threats all the time and it is no longer an option to be exposed. We need to wake up to these threats.”

The Economic Collapse