California Nightmare: Over Half Of The People Living In The State Wish They Could Leave

This just shows what can happen when you let crazy people run a state for several decades.  In the 1960s and 1970s, the possibility of moving to the west coast was “the California dream” for millions of young Americans, but now “the California dream” has turned into “the California nightmare”.  According to a brand new survey, 53 percent of those living in California are considering leaving the state, and there are certainly lots of reasons to hit the road and never look back.  The cities are massively overcrowded, California has the worst traffic in the western world, drug use and illegal immigration both fuel an astounding amount of crime, tax rates are horrendous and many of the state politicians appear to literally be insane.  And on top of all that, let us not forget the earthquakes, wildfires and landslides that are constantly making headlines all over the world.  Last year was the worst year for wildfires in California history, and these days it seems like the state is hit by some new crisis every few weeks.

But none of those factors are the primary reason why so many people are eager to leave.

According to a brand new survey by Edelman Intelligence, the main reason why so many are considering leaving the state is the high cost of living

A growing number of Californians are contemplating moving from the state — and not due to wildfires or earthquakes but the sky-high cost of living, according to a survey released Wednesday.

The online survey, conducted last month by Edelman Intelligence, found that 53 percent of Californians surveyed are considering fleeing, representing a jump over the 49 percent polled a year ago. The desire to exit the nation’s most populous state was highest among millennials, the survey noted.

Thanks to absolutely ridiculous construction restrictions, it has become increasingly difficult to build new housing units in the state.  But meanwhile, people from all over the world continue to move there because they are attracted by what they see on television.

As a result, the supply of housing has not kept up with demand, and prices have shot through the roof in recent years.  The following numbers come from CNBC

Statewide, the median home value in California was $547,400 at the end of 2018, while the U.S. median home value was $223,900. By comparison, the median home value in New York state stood at $289,000 and $681,500 in New York City; New Jersey was $324,700.

Yes, there are a lot of good paying jobs in California, but you better have a really, really good job to be able to afford mortgage payments on a home worth half a million dollars.

Of course many Californians find themselves greatly stretched financially by out of control housing costs, and so more of them than ever are moving in with roommates.  In fact, one recent report found that the number of married couples in the U.S. that are living with roommates “has doubled since 1995”

The number of married couples living with roommates has doubled since 1995, according to a recent report from real estate site Trulia. About 280,000 married people now live with a roommate — and that’s particularly true in pricey cities like those on the West Coast.

The reason: Housing costs a ton. In Honolulu and Orange Country, Calif., the share of married couples with roommates is between four and five times the national rate. San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and Seattle also have sky high rates of married couples with roomies. Those same cities all have well above average rental and housing costs (Trulia notes that housing costs in all these markets have risen more than 30% since 2009), with residents of uber-pricey San Francisco requiring more than $123,000 in income to live comfortably, one study showed.

In addition to housing costs, many Californians are greatly frustrated by the oppressive levels of taxation in the state.

At this point, the state has the highest marginal tax rate in the entire country

At 12.3 percent, California led the 50 states in 2018 with the highest top marginal tax rate, according to the Federation of Tax Administrators. And that doesn’t include an additional 1-percent surcharge for those Californians with incomes of $1 million or more.

Ouch.

But at least the weather is nice.

Yesterday, I wrote an article entitled “Rats, Public Defecation And Open Drug Use: Our Major Western Cities Are Becoming Uninhabitable Hellholes”, and it sparked something of a firestorm.  More than 1000 comments have already been posted on that article, and a few hearty individuals actually tried to convince the rest of us that life on the west coast is not actually all that bad.

I’m sorry, but if your city has far more intravenous drug users than it does high school students, that is not somewhere that I would want to raise a family

According to a report from the Chronicle, San Francisco now has more intravenous drug users than high school students. San Francisco, which operates 15 high schools, currently has 16,000 students enrolled grades nine through twelve.

By comparison, the northern California city currently has 24,500 “injection drug users.” That is approximately 8,500 more drug users than high school students.

As I mentioned yesterday, the city of San Francisco gave out 5.8 million free syringes to drug users last year.

When you have such widespread drug use, people are going to commit a lot of crime and they are going to do some really weird things.  Just consider the following example

Authorities are searching for a man seen on security footage licking the doorbell of a California home and relieving himself in the family’s yard.

Police have identified the man as Roberto Arroyo, 33, and say that he spent three hours around the Salinas home of Sylvia and Dave Dungan.

The couple had been out of town, during the strange incident, but their children were sleep inside the family’s home. They noticed something amiss when they woke up to multiple alerts from their surveillance system, which notifies the homeowners whenever there is movement near the front door.

A lot of really good people used to live in California, but they left because of stupid stuff like this.

In fact, quite a few of my best friends are people that have moved out of the state within the last 10 years.

Over the past decade we have seen a mass exodus out of California.  And according to Kristin Tate, the author of a new book entitled “How Do I Tax Thee?: A Field Guide to the Great American Rip-Off“, the “upper-middle class” has been moving out of the state faster than anyone else…

The largest socioeconomic segment moving from California is the upper-middle class. The state is home to some of the most burdensome taxes and regulations in the nation. Meanwhile, its social engineering — from green energy to wealth redistribution — have made many working families poorer. As California begins its long decline, the influx outward is picking up in earnest.

Overall, approximately 5 million people have packed up and permanently moved out of California within the last 10 years.

Unfortunately, the entire nation is slowly becoming just like California, and if we don’t turn things around eventually there will be no place left to go.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

$3.5 Trillion A Year: America’s Health Care System Has Become One Of The World’s Largest Money Making Scams

If the U.S. health care system was a country, it would have the fifth largest GDP on the entire planet.  At this point only the United States, China, Japan and Germany have a GDP that is larger than the 3.5 trillion dollar U.S. health care market.  If that sounds obscene to you, that is because it is obscene.  We should want people to be attracted to the health care industry because they truly want to help people that are suffering, but instead the primary reason why people are drawn to the health care industry these days is because of the giant mountains of money that are being made.  Like so many other things in our society, the health care industry is all about the pursuit of the almighty dollar, and that is just wrong.

In order to keep this giant money machine rolling, the health care industry has to do an enormous amount of marketing.  If you can believe it, a study that was just published found that at least 30 billion dollars a year is spent on such marketing.

Hoping to earn its share of the $3.5 trillion health care market, the medical industry is pouring more money than ever into advertising its products — from high-priced prescriptions to do-it-yourself genetic tests and unapproved stem cell treatments.

Spending on health care marketing nearly doubled from 1997 to 2016, soaring to at least $30 billion a year, according to a study published Tuesday in JAMA.

This marketing takes many different forms, but perhaps the most obnoxious are the television ads that are endlessly hawking various pharmaceutical drugs.  If you watch much television, you certainly can’t miss them.  They always show vibrant, smiling, healthy people participating in various outdoor activities on bright, sunny days, and the inference is that if you want to be like those people you should take their drugs.  And the phrase “ask your doctor” is usually near the end of every ad…

The biggest increase in medical marketing over the past 20 years was in “direct-to-consumer” advertising, including the TV commercials that exhort viewers to “ask your doctor” about a particular drug. Spending on such ads jumped from $2.1 billion in 1997 to nearly $10 billion in 2016, according to the study.

As a result of all those ads, millions of Americans rush out to their doctors to ask about drugs that they do not need for diseases that they do not have.

And on January 1st, dozens of pharmaceutical manufacturers hit Americans with another annual round of massive price increases.

But everyone will just keep taking those drugs, because that is what the doctors are telling them to do.  But what most people never find out is that the pharmaceutical industry goes to great lengths to get those doctors to do what they want.  According to NBC News, the big drug companies are constantly “showering them with free food, drinks and speaking fees, as well as paying for them to travel to conferences”.

It is a legal form of bribery, and it works.

When you go to most doctors, they will only have two solutions to whatever problem you have – drugs or surgery.

And since nobody really likes to get cut open, and since drugs are usually the far less expensive choice, they are usually the preferred option.

Of course if doctors get off the path and start trying to get cute by proposing alternative solutions, they can get in big trouble really fast

Today’s medical doctors are not allowed to give nutritional advice, or the American Medical Association will come shut them down, and even if they were, they don’t know the right things to say, because they weren’t educated that way in medical college. So instead, M.D.s just sling experimental, addictive drugs at symptoms of deeper rooted sicknesses, along with immune-system-destroying antibiotics and carcinogenic vaccines.

That’s why any medicine that wrecks your health is easy to come by, just like junk food in vending machines. The money isn’t made off the “vending” products, the money is made off the sick fools who are repeat offenders and keep going back to the well for more poison – it’s called chronic sick care or symptom management. Fact: Prescription drugs are the fourth leading cause of death in America, even when “taken as directed.”

Switching gears, let’s talk about hospitals for a moment.

When you go to the hospital, it is often during a great time of need.  If you are gravely ill or if an accident has happened and you think you might die, you aren’t thinking about how much your medical care is going to cost.  At that moment you just want help, and that is a perfect opportunity for predators to take advantage of you.

Just consider the example of 24-year-old Nina Dang.  She broke her arm while riding her bicycle in San Francisco, and so she went to the emergency room.

The hospital that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg donated so much money to definitely fixed her arm, but later they broke her bank account when they hit her with a $24,000 bill

A bystander saw her fall and called an ambulance. She was semi-lucid for that ride, awake but unable to answer basic questions about where she lived. Paramedics took her to the emergency room at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital, where doctors X-rayed her arm and took a CT scan of her brain and spine. She left with her arm in a splint, on pain medication, and with a recommendation to follow up with an orthopedist.

A few months later, Dang got a bill for $24,074.50. Premera Blue Cross, her health insurer, would only cover $3,830.79 of that — an amount that it thought was fair for the services provided. That left Dang with $20,243.71 to pay, which the hospital threatened to send to collections in mid-December.

Most Americans assume that if they have “good health insurance” that they are covered if something major happens.

But as Dang found out, you can still be hit with crippling hospital bills even if you have insurance.

Today, medical debt is the number one reason why Americans declare bankruptcy.  Because of the way our system is set up, most families are just one major illness away from financial ruin.

And this kind of thing is not just happening in California.  The median charge for a visit to the emergency room nationally is well over a thousand dollars, and you can be billed up to 30 dollars for a single pill of aspirin during a hospital stay.

Our health care system is deeply broken, and it has been designed to squeeze as much money out of all of us as it possibly can.

Unfortunately, we are stuck with this system for now.  The health care industry is certainly not going to reform itself, and the gridlock in Washington is going to make a political solution impossible for the foreseeable future.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters.  His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News.  From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites.  If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so.  The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

An Inside Look At The Social Decay That Is Eating Away At America Like An Aggressive Form Of Cancer

The character of a nation is a reflection of the character of millions of individual people, and one of the fastest ways to get a sense of the character of individual people is to visit their homes.  It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, and if that is true then a home visit has got to be worth a million.  Sadly, there is a reason why so many Americans that make a living making service calls in other people’s homes absolutely hate their jobs.  Way too often they are confronted with the worst that America has to offer, and many of them end up psychologically scarred for life as a result.  For example, the following is from an article in which Lauren Hough described her time as a cable installer

I’d walk in prepared for anything. There was sobbing, man or woman, didn’t matter. There were the verbal assaults. There were physical threats. To say they were just threats undermines what it feels like to be in someone else’s home, not knowing the territory, where that hallway leads, what’s behind that door, if they have a gun, if they’ll back you into a wall and scream at you. If they’ll stop there. If they’ll call in a complaint no matter what you do. Sure, we were allowed to leave if we felt threatened. We just weren’t always sure we could. In any case, even if we canceled, someone else would always be sent to the same house later. “Irate. Repeat call.” And we’d lose the points we needed to make our numbers.

America wasn’t always like this.

Once upon a time, Americans generally treated one another with kindness, dignity and respect.

But now social decay is spreading like wildfire, and this country is rapidly becoming unrecognizable.

Just recently, a congressional report discovered that one of the largest drug companies in the entire nation had shipped “more than 3 million prescription opioids” to a single pharmacy in West Virginia…

In just 10 months, the sixth-largest company in America shipped more than 3 million prescription opioids — nearly 10,000 pills a day on average — to a single pharmacy in a Southern West Virginia town with only 400 residents, according to a congressional report released Wednesday.

McKesson Corp. supplied “massive quantities” of the painkiller hydrocodone to the now-shuttered Sav-Rite Pharmacy in Kermit, even after an employee at the company’s Ohio drug warehouse flagged the suspect pill orders in 2007, the report found. That year, McKesson — ranked 6th in the Fortune 500 — reviewed its customers, including Sav-Rite, and reported to the Drug Enforcement Administration that the purchases were “reasonable,” according to the report.

Of course West Virginia is right at the heart of the horrific opioid crisis that is sweeping the nation.  But what amazes me is that nobody at McKesson Corp. saw anything wrong with pouring millions of highly addictive pills into a very small pharmacy in a town with only 400 residents.

Out on the west coast, drug addicts are shooting up and smoking crack right in front of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

Outside the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in downtown San Francisco, a woman urinates on the sidewalk and smokes a crack pipe.

Inside her purse are about a dozen used heroin needles. She shoots heroin up to 10 times per day, she says.

About 50 yards away, a man injects another woman in the neck with a needle. She puts her thumb in her mouth and blows on it to make her vein more visible. Her right arm is caked with dried blood.

The Ninth Circuit is the country’s largest federal appeals court, and President Trump recently nominated a radical left wing activist to fill a vacancy on it.  And right out in front of the court it literally looks like a third world cesspool.

You may be tempted to think that this is one of the worst neighborhoods in San Francisco, but the truth is that it is actually one of the best

This San Francisco neighborhood is home to the headquarters of Uber, Twitter and Salesforce. But stroll around here, and you’re also likely to find used drug paraphernalia, trash, and human excrement on the sidewalks, and people lying in various states of consciousness.

During 2018, San Francisco citizens filed more than 20,000 complaints about human feces in the streets.  There are words to describe what San Francisco has become, but I am not able to print them in this space.

We like to think that we are an “example” to the rest of the world, but the truth is that they are all laughing at us.  And I had to laugh too when I recently came across this story

A man has been arrested after he drove his pickup truck into a courthouse in Mississippi.

News outlets reported that the Gulfport Police Department said in a news release that 28-year-old Keith Cavalier told officers he intentionally crashed into the Harrison County Courthouse early Saturday because it was the best way to let them know his drug paraphernalia had been stolen.

What in the world is happening to us?

Let’s switch gears for a bit.  Instead of talking about drugs, we’ll talk about sex for a moment.

At one time, if a teacher had sex with a student it was a major national scandal.  But now it is happening so frequently that it is usually not considered to be “newsworthy” anymore.  In fact, during the most recent fiscal year the state of Texas alone “opened 429 cases into inappropriate student-educator relationships”

During fiscal 2017-18, the TEA opened 429 cases into inappropriate student-educator relationships — an approximate 42 percent increase from the prior year, said Doug Phillips, director of educator investigations at TEA, during a Senate Education Committee meeting this week.

“I think we’re just getting a lot more of these reports that maybe would not have been reported in the past,” he said.

But just when you think that nothing could top Texas, Colorado comes along and says “hold my beer”.

After all, nothing says “classy” like a 1,000 person orgy

A POLYAMOROUS events planner has revealed her quest to organize the world’s largest orgy – inviting 1,000 to the marathon sex party.

Pearl Derrier, 29, from Denver, Colorado, goes to orgies at least once a month as one person can’t fulfill her “every physical and emotional need”.

Her partners, boyfriend Dan Patrick, 35, and “homemaker” girlfriend Tomi Tailey, 30, are also happy for her to have casual liaisons with other people at orgies.

The fabric of our society is literally rotting away right in front of our eyes, but most Americans are still in denial about what is happening.

Just like all other major empires throughout human history, we are decaying from within, and we should be deeply alarmed at what we have become.

In his year in review article, Dave Barry made a great point about the current state of American culture

What made this year so awful? We could list many factors, including natural disasters, man-made atrocities, the utter depravity of our national political discourse and the loss of Aretha Franklin. Instead we’ll cite one event that, while minor, epitomizes 2018: the debut of “Dr. Pimple Popper.”

This is a cable-TV reality show featuring high-definition slo-mo closeup videos of a California dermatologist performing seriously disgusting procedures on individuals with zits the size of mature cantaloupes. You might ask, “Who on Earth would voluntarily watch that?” The answer, in 2018, was: MILLIONS OF PEOPLE. That is the state of our culture. We can only imagine what new reality shows lie ahead. We would not rule out “Dr. Butt Wiper,” or “People Blow Their Noses Directly Onto The Camera Lens.”

Sadly, I have a feeling that a show called “Dr. Butt Wiper” would rapidly become one of the most popular television shows in America.

We truly are a nation in decline, and things are getting worse with each passing year.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters.  His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News.  From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites.  If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so.  The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Desperately Poor Teens In America’s Impoverished Inner Cities Are Trading Sex For Food

sad-girl-public-domainWhen people get hungry enough, they will do just about anything for some food.  According to brand new research that was just released this week from Feeding America and the Urban Institute, there are millions of teenagers in America that live in “food insecure” households, and researchers were stunned to learn what some of these teens are willing to do to feed themselves.  Some resort to shoplifting, others deal drugs, and there were a surprising number of participants in the study that actually admitted to trading sex for food.  It wouldn’t be a shock to hear that these kinds of things are going on in an economically-depressed nation such as Venezuela, but this is the United States of America.  We are supposed to be the wealthiest nation on the entire planet.  Sadly, even while the stock market has been soaring in recent years, poverty in America has been on the rise.  For those on the low end of the economic scale, things have gone from bad to worse since the end of the last recession, and millions of children are deeply suffering as a result.

Let’s start with some of the hard numbers.  The following comes directly from the Urban Institute website

An estimated 6.8 million people ages 10 to 17 are food insecure, meaning they don’t have reliable access to enough affordable, nutritious food. Another 2.9 million are very food insecure, and roughly 4 million live in marginally food secure households, where the threat of running out of food is real.

Food insecurity takes a tremendous toll on teenagers. Poor nutrition—and the stress of hunger and poverty—can jeopardize their physical and mental health and development and their academic success. But despite the gravity and prevalence of teen food insecurity, we know very little about how these young people experience and cope with hunger.

The researchers already knew that lots of young people were hungry in America.  But what surprised them were the lengths that many of these youngsters said that they would go to in order to get food

Some of the youths said they or someone they know — mostly young men — have turned to shoplifting food, selling drugs or stealing items to sell.

The teens also reported knowing young women who have sold their bodies for food or had sex for money so they could buy food for their families.

Going to jail or failing a class in order to have to attend summer school were also some of the lengths teens went to.

Could you imagine your daughter or your granddaughter exchanging her body for food?

For most of us that is absolutely unthinkable, but the truth is that this is taking place on the streets of America every single day.

And this wasn’t just some blind random phone survey.  The researchers conducted personal interviews with focus groups, and what these kids were willing to admit doing was absolutely astounding.  Here is another excerpt directly out of the report

  • When faced with acute food insecurity, teens in all but two of the communities said that youth engage in criminal behavior, ranging from shoplifting food directly to selling drugs and stealing items to resell for cash. These behaviors were most common among young men in communities with the most limited job options.
  • Teens in all 10 communities and in 13 of the 20 focus groups talked about some youth selling sex for money to pay for food. These themes arose most strongly in high-poverty communities where teens also described sexually coercive environments. Sexual exploitation most commonly took the form of transactional dating relationships with older adults.
  • In a few communities, teens talked about going to jail or failing school (so they could attend summer classes and get school lunch) as viable strategies for ensuring regular meals.

Many of these young people understand that what they are doing is wrong.  Just consider what some of them told the researchers

A girl in Portland, Oregon told researchers: “It’s really like selling yourself. Like you’ll do whatever you need to do to get money or eat.”

Another comment from Portland: “You’re not even dating … they’ll be like … ‘I don’t really love him, but I’m going to do what I have to do.’”

Many prefer to rationalise what they are doing as dating of sorts. A boy in rural North Carolina said: “When you’re selling your body, it’s more in disguise. Like if I had sex with you, you have to buy me dinner tonight … that’s how girls deal with the struggle … That’s better than taking money because if they take money, they will be labeled a prostitute.”

When I read the information in this report, I was stunned.  Yes, I write about our economic decline and the rise in poverty all the time, but I didn’t know that things were this bad.

And the researchers were surprised by what they were hearing as well.  One of them said that the fact that girls are trading their bodies for food “was really shocking to me”, and she believes that things are “just getting worse over time”

“I’ve been doing research in low-income communities for a long time, and I’ve written extensively about the experiences of women in high poverty communities and the risk of sexual exploitation, but this was new,” said Susan Popkin, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute and lead author of the report, Impossible Choices.

“Even for me, who has been paying attention to this and has heard women tell their stories for a long time, the extent to which we were hearing about food being related to this vulnerability was new and shocking to me, and the level of desperation that it implies was really shocking to me. It’s a situation I think is just getting worse over time.”

But aren’t we being told that things are getting better?

Aren’t we being told that our leaders “fixed” the economy?

Of course the truth is that America is mired in a long-term economic decline that stretches back for decades.  With each passing year the middle class gets smaller as a percentage of the population, and poverty continues to grow.  Last year the middle class became a minority of the population for the first time ever, and a lot of formerly middle class Americans are now among those that aren’t sure that they are going to have enough food to eat this month.

Hunger in America is a major crisis and it is growing.  Just because you may live in a comfortable home in a wealthy neighborhood does not mean that this problem is not real.

Tonight there are millions of Americans that do not know where their next meal is going to come from, and they deserve our love and compassion.

The Bitter, Crushing Poverty Of Appalachia Is A Preview Of What Is Coming To The Rest Of The Country

Appalachia - Photo from the Appalachian Regional CommissionWhat do you say to people that have completely lost all hope that things will ever get any better?  The mountains of Appalachia stretch all the way from southern New York to northern Mississippi, and nestled within those mountains are dozens upon dozens of little towns that are so impoverished that they look like they have been through a war.  Thanks to Barack Obama’s relentless assault on the coal industry and the ongoing collapse of our industrial infrastructure, Appalachia has lost millions of good paying jobs over the past several decades.  Today, more than 40 percent of the population is living in poverty in some areas of eastern Kentucky, and addiction to “hillbilly heroin” (Oxycontin) is absolutely out of control throughout the region.  Yes, poverty is on the rise all over America, but it has especially been cruel to those that make the mountains of Appalachia their home.

An article that was published in the Guardian on Thursday profiled the deeply impoverished town of Beattyville in eastern Kentucky.  Life is very hard in Beattyville today, and it seems to be getting harder all the time…

The town’s poverty rate is 44% above the national average. Half of its families live below the poverty line. That includes three-quarters of those with children, with the attendant consequences. More than one-third of teenagers drop out of high school or leave without graduating. Just 5% of residents have college degrees.

Surrounding communities are little better. Beattyville is the capital of Lee County, named after the commander of the Confederate army of Northern Virginia in the civil war, General Robert E Lee.

Five of the 10 poorest counties in the US run in a line through eastern Kentucky and they include Lee County. Life expectancy in the county is among the worst in the US, which is not unconnected to the fact that more than half the population is obese. Men lived an average of just 68.3 years in 2013, a little more than eight years short of the national average. Women lived 76.4 years on average, about five years short of national life expectancy.

Because life can be so bitter in little towns like Beattyville, many have chosen to turn to alcohol and drugs in an attempt to escape reality.  The following description of what life is like in the region today comes from Kevin D. Williamson

Thinking about the future here and its bleak prospects is not much fun at all, so instead of too much black-minded introspection you have the pills and the dope, the morning beers, the endless scratch-off lotto cards, healing meetings up on the hill, the federally funded ritual of trading cases of food-stamp Pepsi for packs of Kentucky’s Best cigarettes and good old hard currency, tall piles of gas-station nachos, the occasional blast of meth, Narcotics Anonymous meetings, petty crime, the draw, the recreational making and surgical unmaking of teenaged mothers, and death: Life expectancies are short — the typical man here dies well over a decade earlier than does a man in Fairfax County, Va. — and they are getting shorter, women’s life expectancy having declined by nearly 1.1 percent from 1987 to 2007.

Many of you that are reading this article know exactly what Williamson is talking about, because you are living in one of those communities.  It can be absolutely soul crushing to look into the hollow eyes of those that have long since given up on life day after day.  There are some communities in America where you can feel the bitterness the moment that you drive into them.  It is almost as if all of the life has been sucked out of the entire town.  If you have ever experienced this, you know what I mean.

If there is hope, most people can endure just about anything.  But when there is no hope, that is when deep depression sets in.  And for many of those living in Appalachia, hope has long since departed.  Just consider the words of long-time Beattyville resident Ed Courier

“It’s bad. I don’t think rural America has a future,” said Courier. “The advantage rural areas had in the past of cheap labour is gone. We used to have a lot of little factories in this area but they’ve gone to Mexico or China. In rural areas housing is cheap but everything else costs more. Utility rates are higher. Food and transport are higher. Management doesn’t want to live in rural areas. Education is horrible here. This is a third-world county. My kids grew up here until they were eight or nine, then they went to school in Louisville [a 145-mile drive away]. I wouldn’t send them to school here.”

Sadly, what has already happened in Appalachia is slowly happening to the rest of the country as well.  There is a chronic lack of good jobs, poverty is exploding, and more Americans than ever are giving into depression.

As economic conditions continue to deteriorate, people are starting to become more desperate.  In many large cities, crime rates are already up by double digit percentages in 2015, and the thin veneer of civilization that we all take for granted is beginning to disappear.  For example, down in Tampa it is being reported that there is an epidemic of house squatting going on right now…

Crooks find empty houses all over Tampa Bay and make themselves at home. And now, 8 On Your Side uncovered training manuals on the internet. They teach how to get away with squatting.

The handbooks are brazen. A pamphlet for sale on Amazon for $61.20. An entry on Wiki-How entices tells squatters how to “take a whole house from someone if you’re willing to take the risk.”

It points out the best areas to squat and even advises to spruce up the home to throw off suspicious neighbors.

And a tragic incident that just happened in Indianapolis really touched my heart.  The following comes from ABC News

A family in Indianapolis was torn apart when Amanda Blackburn, 28, died after being shot in the head by a mystery gunman.

Her husband, Pastor Davey Blackburn, returned to their home from the gym Tuesday and found his home broken into and his wife on the ground, officials said.

She died Wednesday, 12 weeks pregnant.

The couple, who have a child, appeared to be madly in love, posting YouTube videos on the way to a “romantic getaway” in Chicago and Amanda even offering marriage advice: “You can lead your wife best, by just being a really, really good Godly example to her.”

Please pray for Pastor Davey.

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

Meanwhile, there are more signs that this new economic downturn that we are experiencing is about to get even worse…

-Four large U.S. energy companies with combined debt of 4.8 billion dollars have been warned that they are all on the verge of totally collapsing and falling into bankruptcy.

-Unfortunately for all energy companies, the price of oil is not likely to go up significantly any time soon.  The amount of oil being stored offshore has approximately doubled from earlier this year, and more supertankers full of unsold oil are joining the party almost every day

While the crude oil tanker backlog in Houston reaches an almost unprecedented 39 (with combined capacity of 28.4 million barrels), as The FT reports that from China to the Gulf of Mexico, the growing flotilla of stationary supertankers is evidence that the oil price crash may still have further to run, as more than 100m barrels of crude oil and heavy fuels are being held on ships at sea (as the year-long supply glut fills up available storage on land).

-The amount of goods being shipped by rail, freight and air inside the United States continues to decline.  For the month of October, the Cass Shipping Index was down 5.3 percent on a year over year basis.

-And it also looks like a new housing crisis is beginning to emerge.  From September to October, the number of newly initiated foreclosures in the United States rose by 12 percent.

-Of course the elite understand what is happening, and they are working hard to get prepared.  According to Bloomberg, global central banks are buying up gold “at a near-record pace”…

Central banks and other institutions boosted gold purchases to the second-highest level on record in the quarter to September as countries including China and Russia sought to diversify their foreign-exchange reserves.

Net purchases were 175 metric tons, nearing the record 179.5 tons in the same quarter a year earlier, and up from 127.9 tons in the preceding three-month period, the World Gold Council said in a report on Thursday. Still, over the first nine months central banks’ net purchases dropped 6.7 percent to 425.8 tons, according to the council.

When you add these items to the list that I shared with you yesterday, a very disturbing picture begins to develop.

We are clearly heading into an extremely difficult economic period, and that means that the suffering in Appalachia and elsewhere in America is about to get even worse.

Civil Unrest Has Begun In Baltimore And This Is Only Just The Start Of Something MUCH Bigger

Baltimore Riots - YouTube ScreenshotOn Saturday night, the city of Baltimore resembled a warzone as protests over the death of Freddie Gray turned wildly violent.  One eyewitness reported watching the streets around him and his friend “turn into madness” as they left a baseball game between the Boston Red Sox and the Baltimore Orioles.  Car windows were smashed, stores were robbed, chairs were thrown and large numbers of random bystanders were attacked.  One prominent Democrat claims that those committing the violence were “mainly from out of town“, but how would he know that?  Today, there are approximately 2.7 million people living in the Baltimore metropolitan area.  It is an area that has been known for poverty, crime and drugs for many years, and as racial tensions continue to increase in this country it is a powder keg that could erupt at literally any time.  We got a preview of what can happen on Saturday night.  If this is how people will act while economic conditions are still relatively stable in this country, what in the world is going to happen when things really start falling apart?

On Saturday, April 11th, I delivered a presentation down in Dallas, Texas in which I warned about the rioting and civil unrest that are soon coming to this nation.  On slide number 145 of the presentation, I specifically named the city of Baltimore as one of the cities where this would happen.  But I had no idea that the rioting in Baltimore would begin so quickly.  And the violence that we saw on Saturday night was at a level that was quite shocking.  The following is how the Daily Mail described some of the chaos that ensued…

Local news captured live footage of a man throwing a flaming trash can at the police line.

A group of roughly 100 protesters broke out a window of a department store with a chair they got at a restaurant across the street at The Gallery, a downtown shopping mall.

The same group broke the windows of restaurants including a Subway sandwich shop near Camden Yards, tossing chairs and tables through the glass.

Protesters also engaged with a group of Orioles fans at Slider’s Bar and Grille and began fighting with patrons.

This kind of thing is not supposed to happen in America.

But it is happening.  Ferguson set the precedent, and now this is going to spread all over the country.

You can see some excellent photographs of the chaos that happened in Baltimore right here, and in the video posted below several young thugs smash out the front window of a police cruiser as dozens of onlookers cheer them on…

I also want to share with you another video, but I need to warn you about it first.  This YouTube video strings together a bunch of clips of some of the worst of the violence, but it also contains some very graphic language.  So please don’t let any young children watch this.  I felt that it was important to share this because we need to really understand what is happening to our cities.  America is changing, and not for the better.  This is what social decay looks like…

Are you starting to get the picture?

Things were so bad outside of the stadium where the Baltimore Orioles play that some of the Orioles actually thought about spending the night inside the clubhouse.

One of the things that is being ignored by many in the mainstream media is that fact that one of the key organizers of the Baltimore protests is a former national chairman of the New Black Panther Party named Malik Shabazz.  These days, he is the president of an organization known as “Black Lawyers for Justice”, but he is definitely still up to his old tricks.  The following is an excerpt from an article about the Baltimore riots in the New York Times

There, Malik Shabazz, president of Black Lawyers for Justice, a Washington, D.C.-based group that called for the demonstration and advertised it on social media, told the crowd that he would release them in an hour, adding: “Shut it down if you want to! Shut it down!

Mr. Shabazz said in a later interview that his rhetoric was intended only to encourage civil disobedience — not violence — but added that he was “not surprised” by the scattered angry outbursts because people here “haven’t received justice.”

If you are marching for “justice”, you don’t throw objects at random bystanders, loot stores or attack vehicles that are just driving through the area.  But all of those things happened on Saturday night.  The following is how an eyewitness described one of the most harrowing attacks…

The crowd of protesters then stopped a blue station wagon carrying a white family as they tried to drive past Pickles, Bullpen and Sliders along a narrow one-way stretch between the bars and the main road. As a horde of them smashed their open and closed fists on the hood of the car—while impeding them by standing in front of them—the driver backed up on the one way pass in a desperate attempt to get out of dodge. Then, stopped on the other side with nowhere to go, protesters ripped open the passenger door of the car and began reaching around inside the vehicle. As hundreds of people looked on, including several police officers who didn’t engage the violent protesters, the white woman in the front seat—middle-aged and a little heavyset with dark hair—was visibly terrified. The group of black men who ripped open the car door suddenly realized they were separated from the larger group of protesters and abandoned their quest to seemingly either carjack the station wagon or rob the people inside in front of hundreds, driving out of the one-way street back onto the main road and presumably out of dodge.

Of course all of this did not just erupt out of a vacuum.  Racial tensions on all sides have been stirred up by the mainstream media, by our politicians, and by other prominent national leaders for years.  At this point, even pastors are inflaming the tensions

Activist Jamal Bryant, pastor of Empowerment Temple AME Church, told his congregation Sunday that “somebody is going to have to pay” for Gray’s death, the Associated Press reported.

If “you’re black in America, your life is always under threat,” Bryant said.

Why can’t we all just learn to love one another, forgive one another, and peacefully come up with some solutions that are going to work for all of us?

Sadly, all of this hate and anger is just another sign of the social decay that is eating away at the foundations of our society like a cancer.

And if people are willing to act like this when our economy is still relatively stable and things are still relatively good in this nation, what are they going to do when they don’t have any money in their pockets and they don’t know where their next meal is going to come from?

What we witnessed in Baltimore on Saturday night is just the beginning.

Much worse is coming, and eventually we are going to see tremendous civil unrest and rioting all over this nation.

So what do you think about all of this?  Please feel free to share your opinion by posting a comment below…

It Is Becoming Clear – We Are NOT Prepared For An Ebola Pandemic

Ebola Symptoms - CDCThe United States is woefully unprepared for an Ebola outbreak.  If a pandemic were to erupt, the very limited number of hospital labs and isolation units that we currently have would be rapidly overwhelmed.  Yes, we may be able to provide “state of the art care” for a handful of people, but if thousands (or millions) of Americans get the virus you can forget about it.  Our health industry is already stretched incredibly thin, and we simply do not have the resources to handle a tsunami of high risk Ebola patients.  And of course conventional medicine does not have a cure for Ebola anyway.  The “experimental drug” that is being used on the two American health professionals with the disease seems to be helping them, but even if it does turn out to be safe and even if it is approved for the general public it will still be a long time before there is ever enough of the drug for everyone.  So let us hope that we do not see a full-blown Ebola pandemic in this country.  Because if we do, we could potentially see millions of people die.

On Wednesday we learned that the global Ebola death toll has increased to 932.  As you can see from this article, cases of Ebola are now spreading at an exponential rate.  If you project how many cases we could be looking at in just a few months if Ebola keeps spreading at the same pace, it becomes quite frightening.

And it does appear that Ebola has now spread to more countries.  A man in Saudi Arabia that was being tested for Ebola has now died.  And a Liberian man has died of the Ebola virus in Morocco.

In the United States, the CDC is refusing to tell the media the locations of the people that have been tested for Ebola in this country.  But we do know that the CDC has told Time Magazine that it has received “several dozen calls” regarding “people who are ill after traveling in Africa”.

If you get Ebola, there is a very good chance that you are going to die.  The mortality rate during this current outbreak is over 50 percent.  It is a killer that is both silent and brutally efficient.

But what makes Ebola so dangerous is that you can be carrying it around for up to three weeks before you ever know that you have it.  In fact, one doctor that has been working on the front lines fighting this disease says that Ebola victims can “look quite fit and healthy and can be walking around until shortly before their deaths“.

So the person sitting next to you at work or that you walk past in the supermarket could have the virus.

You just never know.

And there is a lot of misinformation about Ebola out there right now.  There are a lot of people claiming that it “does not spread easily” and that you basically have to exchange bodily fluids with someone in order to get it.

Unfortunately, that does not appear to be the truth.  As Mike Adams of Natural News has pointed out, the Public Health Agency of Canada says that Ebola “can survive in liquid or dried material for several days“…

Even worse, Ebola is a strong survivor outside a host. Here’s what the Public Health Agency of Canada says:

SURVIVAL OUTSIDE HOST: The virus can survive in liquid or dried material for a number of days. Infectivity is found to be stable at room temperature or at 4 C for several days, and indefinitely stable at -70 C. Infectivity can be preserved by lyophilisation.

This clearly states that Ebola viruses can survive for several days on common objects such as door knobs or household surfaces. If an infected Ebola victim runs around touching such common objects after cleaning blood or mucous from his nose, another innocent victim can easily infect himself by touching the same objects and then eating some food that places the virus in his mouth.

And an Ebola study conducted back in 2012 showed that Ebola could be transmitted between pigs and monkeys that did not have physical contact with one another

When news broke that the Ebola virus had resurfaced in Uganda, investigators in Canada were making headlines of their own with research indicating the deadly virus may spread between species, through the air.

The team, comprised of researchers from the National Centre for Foreign Animal Disease, the University of Manitoba, and the Public Health Agency of Canada, observed transmission of Ebola from pigs to monkeys. They first inoculated a number of piglets with the Zaire strain of the Ebola virus. Ebola-Zaire is the deadliest strain, with mortality rates up to 90 percent. The piglets were then placed in a room with four cynomolgus macaques, a species of monkey commonly used in laboratories. The animals were separated by wire cages to prevent direct contact between the species.

Within a few days, the inoculated piglets showed clinical signs of infection indicative of Ebola infection. In pigs, Ebola generally causes respiratory illness and increased temperature. Nine days after infection, all piglets appeared to have recovered from the disease.

Within eight days of exposure, two of the four monkeys showed signs of Ebola infection. Four days later, the remaining two monkeys were sick too. It is possible that the first two monkeys infected the other two, but transmission between non-human primates has never before been observed in a lab setting.

If Ebola truly is “not something that is easily transmitted”, then how in the world have more than 100 health workers been infected so far?

Were they not being careful?

And if you think that our “advanced technology” is going to keep health workers from getting Ebola in this country, you might want to think again.

As Mike Adams pointed out in a different article, we can’t even stop the spread of “superbugs” such as MRSA in our own hospitals…

How can U.S. health authorities claim there is zero risk from Ebola patients being treated in U.S. hospitals when those same hospitals can’t control superbug infections? “Many hospitals are poorly prepared to contain any pathogen. That’s why at least 75,000 people a year die from hospital infections. If hospitals can’t stop common infections like MRSA, C. diff and VRE, they can’t handle Ebola.”

Yes, the United States has a far superior health system when compared to nations such as Liberia and Sierra Leone.

But it does have limitations.

Earlier today, I was reading something supposedly written by someone who works in a hospital laboratory.  I wanted to share three quotes that I found particularly sobering…

#1 “Even in the United States, out of all the various hospitals I have worked at, there is no hope of containing anything like this. One of the largest hospitals I worked at only had two reverse flow isolation rooms. TWO, let that sink in for a minute.”

#2 “Patients only show up to the hospital when they go symptomatic. So by the time they get there, they’ve already infected their entire family, their work group, and anyone they got within a few feet of on the way to the hospital. When they get there the ER nurses would treat it either like Flu, or Sepsis. But the whole time the patient is infecting all of them. And all of them, in turn, begin to infect everyone else in the exact same way. If this is as virulent as the WHO thinks it might be, by the time people realize what is going on, there will be more sick people than there would be beds available at every hospital in the US combined.”

#3 “So don’t expect miracles from front line hospital staff, we don’t have the tools, and we certainly do not have the manpower. Ask anyone in the medical field how much overtime they could work if they felt like it, don’t even get me started on how thinly stretched people in the industry are. Though I suppose if this does turn into something, that will become apparent very, very fast.”

There is no way in the world that our medical professionals are going to be able to handle a full-blown Ebola pandemic.

Therefore, if one does break out, you are going to need to be prepared to stay at home as much as possible.

That means that you will need enough food and supplies to last for at least a couple of months, and it could potentially be a lot longer than that.

Just think about it.  If Ebola is spreading, you certainly would not want to go to places such as grocery stores that large numbers of people circulate through every day.  But if you do not have any food, eventually you would be forced to leave your home.  And that decision could end up costing you dearly.

Hopefully this crisis will blow over and we won’t have to worry about any of this.  But if Ebola does start sweeping across America, the key will be to isolate yourself and your family as much as you can.

For now, our top officials are making it sound like we have nothing to worry about.

For example, the head of the CDC told CBS News that “we can stop it” and that the spread of the Ebola virus will probably not reach this country…

The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that he is confident that the Ebola outbreak in West Africa can be stopped and likely won’t reach the U.S.

“The plain fact is, we can stop it. We can stop it from spreading in hospitals and we can stop it in Africa [which] is really the source of the epidemic and where we’re surging our response so that we can control it there,” Tom Frieden said in an interview Sunday.

And Barack Obama says that Ebola is “not something that is easily transmitted” and that everything is under control…

Personally, I am going to file away those quotes for future reference.

Let us hope that they are right.

Let us hope that we don’t have anything to be concerned about.

But with each passing day this Ebola outbreak is getting even worse, and if it continues to grow at an exponential rate it won’t be too long before the entire world is facing an absolutely horrific health crisis.

32 Facts That Show How Men Are Being Systematically Emasculated In America Today

32 Facts That Show How Men Are Being Systematically Emasculated In America TodayWhat is wrong with men in America?  Why isn’t our country producing lots of strong, independent, hard working men of character like it once did?  Well, many believe that it starts at a very young age.  When compared with girls, boys in the United States get lower grades, they are much more likely to get into trouble at school and they are much more likely to be put on behavior-modifying drugs.  When it comes time to pursue a higher education, most of our young men are ill-prepared to do that.  Today, nearly 60 percent of the students enrolled at U.S. colleges are women.  And of course it has become much more difficult for men to find good jobs.  In fact, less than 65 percent of all men have a job right now.  Without a good job, a man is not considered to be “marriage material”, but a large percentage of our young men don’t want to get married anyway.  Society has told them that it is okay to be a “slacker”.  Today, far too many of our young men are far more interested in their various addictions (beer, drugs, sex, video games, gambling, etc.) than they are in starting a family.  But the truth is that men are far more happy when they have a purpose.  When men are raising families, starting businesses or doing something to transform society they feel fulfilled.

Sadly, the message that our young men are getting from our television shows and our movies is that men are idiots.  Instead of being portrayed as leaders that are eager to get married and raise strong families, young men are often being portrayed as passive slackers that love to party and chase women.

Start paying attention to how men are portrayed in the media.  In particular, pay attention to how they are portrayed in our commercials.  Our boys and young men are exposed to thousands upon thousands of hours of this “programming”, and it has a dramatic affect on them.

Our system beats up our boys and young men so badly that only a relatively small percentage of them emerge into adulthood as strong, independent young men that are able to take care of themselves and start families of their own.

In America today, the percentage of men in prison is at an all-time high, the percentage of men with a job is near an all-time low and the percentage of children living without a father is at an all-time high.

Do we have a crisis on our hands?

Yes, we most definitely have a crisis on our hands.

The following are 32 facts that show how men are being systematically emasculated in America today…

#1 The labor participation rate for men has been steadily declining over the years…

In the 1950s, nearly every man in his prime working years was in the labor force, a category that includes both those who are employed and those actively applying for jobs. The “participation rate” for men ages 25 to 54 stood at 97.7% in early 1956, but drifted downward to a post-war record low of 88.4% at the end of 2012.  (It ticked up very slightly at the start of this year to 88.6%.)

So where have all the men workers gone?

Some went into prison. Others are on disability. And still others can’t find jobs and have simply given up looking.

#2 Back in 1950, more than 80 percent of all men in the United States had jobs.  Today, less than 65 percent of all men in the United States have jobs.  The chart posted below illustrates this stunning decline…

Men - Employment-Population Ratio

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

#4 According to Time Magazine, unemployed men are significantly more likely to get divorced than employed men are.

#5 According to the Economic Policy Institute, the “real entry-level hourly wage for men who recently graduated from high school” has declined from $15.64 in 1979 to $11.68 today.

#6 Between 1969 and 2009 the median wages earned by American men between the ages of 30 and 50 dropped by 27 percent after you account for inflation.

#7 Thanks to government policies which are killing off small businesses in America, the percentage of self-employed Americans is at an all-time low today.  This has had a disproportionate impact on men.

#8 In 1982, 1.9 percent of all men were receiving disability benefits.  Today, 3.1 percent of all men are receiving disability benefits.

#9 According to one very surprising study, “young, urban, childless women” make more money in America today than young, urban, childless men do.

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

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

#12 The United States has the highest incarceration rate on the entire globe by a very wide margin.  Overall, the U.S. has approximately 25 percent of the entire global prison population even though it only has 5 percent of the total global population.  Men make up the vast majority of those that we are holding in our prisons.

#13 Incarceration rates for men in America have been steadily increasing over time.  The following is from a recent CNN article

Looking at those born just after World War II, some 1.2% of white men and 9% of black men had been to prison by 2004, according to Bruce Western, a Harvard sociology professor. But looking at those born 30 years later, some 3.3% of white men and 20.7% of black men had been to prison.

#14 According to the Pew Research Center, only 51 percent of all American adults are currently married.  Back in 1960, 72 percent of all adults in the United States were married.

#15 Males account for approximately 70 percent of all Ds and Fs in U.S. public schools.

#16 About two-thirds of all students in “special education programs” are boys.

#17 The average American girl spends 5 hours a week playing video games.  The average American boy spends 13 hours a week playing video games.

#18 The average young American will spend 10,000 hours playing video games before the age of 21.

#19 One study discovered that 88 percent of all Americans between the ages of 8 and 18 play video games, and that video game addiction is approximately four times as common among boys as it is among girls.

#20 In 2011, SAT scores for young men were the worst that they had been in 40 years.

#21 According to the New York Times, approximately 57 percent of all young people enrolled at U.S. colleges are women.  That means that only 43 percent are men.

#22 It is being projected that women will earn 60 percent of all Bachelor’s degrees from U.S. universities by the year 2016.

#23 Once in college, women are much more likely to complete their education and get a degree…

Women born in 1975 were roughly 17% more likely than their male counterparts to attend college and nearly 23% more likely to complete a four-year degree, according to data in Wayward Sons.

#24 Young men are nearly twice as likely to live with their parents as young women the same age are.

#25 Back in 1950, 78 percent of all households in the United States contained a married couple.  Today, that number has declined to 48 percent.

#26 The marriage rate in the United States has fallen to an all-time low.  Right now it is sitting at a yearly rate of 6.8 marriages per 1000 people.

#27 Today, an all-time low 44.2 percent of Americans between the ages of 25 and 34 are married.

#28 The U.S. family is rapidly breaking down.  100 years ago, 4.52 were living in the average U.S. household, but now the average U.S. household only consists of 2.59 people.

#29 At this point, approximately one out of every three children in America lives in a home without a father.

#30 The United States produces more pornography than any other nation in the world.  Men consume far more of that pornography than women do.

#31 An astounding 30 percent of all Internet traffic now goes to pornography websites, and one survey found that 25 percent of all employees that have Internet access visit sex websites while they are at work.

#32 In the United States today, political correctness reigns, and any reference to the male gender is being stamped out of our language.  For example, all over the country the term “manhole” is being replaced with the terms “utility hole” or “maintenance hole”.

So what do you think?

Do you believe that men are being systematically emasculated in America today?

Please feel free to share what you think by posting a comment below…

The Economic Collapse