America The Divided: Everyone Knows We Have Problems But There Is Very Little Agreement On Solutions

Argument - Public DomainA house divided against itself will surely fall.  America is more divided today than it has been in decades, and the deep divisions that are tearing us apart continue to get even worse.  In fact, a newly released Rasmussen Reports national survey discovered that 67 percent of voters believe that America is even more divided now than it was four years ago.  We are angry, we are frustrated and we love to fight with one another, but none of this strife and discord is getting us anywhere.  What most Americans can agree on is that we are facing tremendous problems as a nation.  One average of recent polls found that only 26 percent of Americans believe that this country is heading in the right direction and 63.8 percent of Americans believe that this country is heading in the wrong direction.  Unfortunately, there is very little agreement on what the solutions to our problems are.  That is where the division is.  As a nation, we no longer have a shared set of values or principles that provides a foundation for our decisions.  Everyone just kind of does whatever is right in their own eyes, and the result is chaos.  At a minimum, the U.S. Constitution was supposed to bond all of us together, but it has become clear that very few of our lawless politicians have any respect for that document at this point.  And the American people must not have too much respect left for the Constitution either, because they keep sending the very same politicians back to Washington over and over again.  Unless a miracle happens, everyone is going to keep pulling in different directions, and that is going to continue ripping our country to shreds.

The issues that divide us are countless.  The following are just a few examples…

-Illegal Immigration

-Taxes

-Obamacare

-Government Debt

-U.S. Military Intervention In Foreign Countries

-Gay Marriage

-Abortion

-Racial Relations

-Unemployment

-Shipping Our Jobs Overseas

-Cost Of Living/Inflation

-The Gap Between The Wealthy And The Poor

-Social Security/Medicare/Entitlements

-The Size And Role Of Government

-Welfare

-Political Correctness

-Sexual Morality

-Global Warming/Climate Change

-Guns/Gun Control

-Common Core

-Corporate Corruption

-Government Surveillance

-The Emerging Big Brother Police State

-The War On Drugs

-The War On Terror

-U.S. Relationship With Israel

-The Role Of Faith In Society

I could go on and on with this list, but I think that you get the point.

If you pick just about any issue on that list, there are large numbers of Americans that want to take us one way and large numbers of Americans that want to take us exactly in the opposite direction.  In many instances, both sides consider their opponents to be the epitome of evil.

Sadly, the fights that take place among those that are supposed to be on the same side are often even more disturbing.  Some of the most bitter fighting that I have ever witnessed has been between people that should be working together.  In fact, it often seems like a lot of people would rather fight others in their own “movement” than do something constructive.

And actually the establishment loves when we fight with one another.  The more divided that we are, the easier we are to control.

I am often asked if I think that there is any hope for a political solution in this country.

I wish that I could be more optimistic when I answer, but as divided as this country is right now I see absolutely no hope for a political solution on the national level any time soon.

Even though Darth Vader has a higher favorability rating than any 2016 White House contenders, it is inevitable that one of them (with the full backing of the elite) will be our next president.  And even though a few incumbents will be knocked out of Congress in 2014 and 2016, history has shown us that incumbents typically have a victory rate of more than 80 percent in election after election.

We keep sending the same jokers back to D.C. again and again and yet we continue to keep expecting different results.

Are we insane or what?

In a previous article, I noted a whole bunch of other polls and surveys that show how dissatisfied the American people have become with our government…

#1 65 percent of Americans are dissatisfied “with the U.S. system of government and its effectiveness”.  That is the highest level of dissatisfaction that Gallup has ever recorded.

#2 66 percent of Americans are dissatisfied “with the size and power of federal government”.

#3 70 percent of Americans do not have confidence that the government will “make progress on the important problems and issues facing the country in 2014.”

#4 Only 8 percent of Americans believe that Congress is doing a “good” or “excellent” job.

#5 Only 4 percent of Americans believe that it would “change Congress for the worse” if every member was voted out during the next election.

#6 60 percent of Americans report feeling “angry or irritable”.  Two years ago that number was at 50 percent.

#7 53 percent of Americans believe that the Obama administration is “not competent in running the government”.

#8 An all-time low 31 percent of Americans identify themselves as Democrats.

#9 An all-time low 25 percent of Americans identify themselves as Republicans.

#10 An all-time high 42 percent of Americans identify themselves as Independents.

Clearly the American people are sick and tired of politics as usual.

But even if we voted out every single member of Congress, who would we replace them with?

That is where not having a shared set of values and principles comes into play.

Even if we could start from scratch, the new politicians that the American people would send to Congress would not suddenly look like the founding fathers.

That is because we no longer believe in the same values and principles that they did.

Instead, an entirely new Congress would probably end up looking very much like the old Congress did.

I wish that national unity was just as easy as saying something like this: “Come on guys – let’s all just get together and agree to do what is right for the country.”

That sounds really good, but what is right for the country?

In America today, there is very little agreement about what is right and wrong anymore.

And politically, it is hard enough to get a handful of people to agree on much of anything these days, much less the millions upon millions of people that would be required to form a viable political movement.

So no, I don’t believe that there will be a political solution on the national level any time soon.  The government that we have already reflects what is in the hearts of the American people.

Until we start seeing hearts change on a widespread basis, we are not going to see any significant change in Washington.

“I Fear For What’s Coming” – 68 Percent Of Americans Believe The Country Is On The Wrong Track

Family - Photo by Eric WardAre you deeply concerned about the future of America?  Is something in your gut telling you that our system is fundamentally broken and that the mainstream media is not telling you the truth about what is happening?  If so, you are definitely not alone.  Right now, there are millions upon millions of Americans that are absolutely horrified as they watch this nation deteriorate.  In fact, according to an analysis of recent polling data conducted by Real Clear Politics, approximately 68 percent of all Americans believe that the country is on the wrong track and only 23.5 percent of all Americans believe that the country is on the right track.  And of course our problems did not appear just recently.  In fact, many of them are the result of decades of very foolish decisions and they are not going to be fixed easily.  Unfortunately, there is very little consensus among Americans about how to fix any of our problems.  There is more anger, frustration, hatred and division in the United States today than there has been in decades, and there is very little hope that the great storms that are looming on the horizon will be averted.  Those that are wise are preparing for what is coming.  Those that are not are going to be absolutely blindsided by what is rapidly approaching.

Once upon a time, America was the wealthiest nation on the entire globe by a huge margin and it had the largest and most thriving middle class the world had ever seen.  But now America is drowning in the biggest ocean of red ink in the history of the planet and the middle class is being systematically destroyed.

If you read my articles on a regular basis, you already know all of this.  But now there are certain factors that are going to cause the problems of the middle class to greatly accelerate.

For instance, just consider what Obamacare is going to do to millions of American families.

The Foundry recently posted a story that detailed the extreme hardship that Obamacare is going to impose on one middle class family in Sonora, California.  This particular family is very healthy and does not have a history of health problems.  Up until now, they have had a health insurance policy with Anthem Blue Cross Insurance that they have been very happy with.

Back in 2011, this family was paying $389 a month for health insurance.

In 2012, due to changes in California law that figure went up to $499 a month.

Now, this family has just received a letter informing them that their current plan is being canceled and that if they want a new plan it is going to cost them $1,252 a month.

Needless to say, that news did not go over very well with that family.

Just think about it.

Can you come up with an extra $753 a month for health insurance?

Most American families certainly cannot.

Well, Kate Joy and her husband sat down and started trying to figure out how they could squeeze the new health insurance policy into their budget.  It turned out that they would have to cut out a lot of things.  The following is a list of the proposed cuts that they have come up with so far

  • Stop paying the extra payment on my mortgage: $100/month
  • Stop eating out: $150/month
  • Don’t go to the movies: $36/month
  • Switch to getting a haircut every other month: $15/month
  • Stop getting manicures: $40/month
  • Stop monthly charitable donations to Wounded Warrior and Habitat for Humanity: $70/month
  • Stop saving for an annual anniversary getaway: $60/month
  • No Christmas gifts to extended family: $40/month
  • Quit buying beef at the grocery store: $100/month
  • Teeth cleaning only once per year: $30/month
  • Cancel all magazine/newspaper subscriptions: at least $30/month
  • Cut DISH service to cheaper plan: $50/month
  • Cancel land line phone service: $70/month

If they make all of those cuts, it will save the family $791 a month.

Understandably, that family is having a very hard time feeling optimistic about the future right now.  In fact, at the end of the article Kate Joy is quoted as saying the following…

“I fear for what’s coming.”

And of course her family is not the only one that is being absolutely hammered by Obamacare.

In a previous article, I discussed the results of one study which showed that health insurance premiums for men are going to go up by an average of 99 percent under Obamacare and health insurance premiums for women are going to go up by an average of 62 percent under Obamacare.

 

And a different study found that health insurance premiums for healthy 30-year-old men are going to go up by an average of 260 percent under Obamacare.

All of this is going to suck a tremendous amount of “discretionary income” out of the economy.

In addition, millions upon millions of Americans are going to make the choice to go without health insurance altogether.  And considering the level of care that we get in many of these hospitals that is understandable.  For example, the body of 57-year-old Lynne Spalding was recently discovered in a stairwell at San Francisco General Hospital 17 days after she had disappeared from her hospital room.

Those that provide our “health care” don’t care about us as much as they did in the old days.  Instead, the health care industry just wants to get as much money out of us as rapidly as they can and then move on to the next victim.

And of course health care is not the only thing that middle class families have to be concerned about these days.  Our national employment crisis is getting even worse, incomes are shrinking, and Obama is pushing Congress to approve a secret treaty that will ship millions more of our jobs out of the country.

And there are certainly a lot of troubling economic signs as we head toward 2014.  Just consider the following examples…

-Pending home sales in the United States have fallen for five months in a row.

-Machinery giant Caterpillar is reporting negative retail sales growth in every region on the globe.  Historically, the sales growth of Caterpillar has been one of the most important indications of where the economy is headed next.

-Major banks are warning the Federal Reserve that they may have to start charging depositors a fee.  In other words, you may soon have to pay for the “privilege” of putting your money in the bank.

Of course this is just the beginning.  Things are going to get much, much worse in the years ahead as our economy continues to deteriorate.

And as things continue to fall apart, people are going to become a lot more desperate.  To get an idea of what is coming to America, just look at what is happening in Greece.  Some poor people in Greece have become so desperate that they are literally infecting themselves with HIV just so that they can get monthly government payments…

Suicides rose by 17% between 2007 and 2009 and to 25% in 2010, according to unofficial 2010 data (398). The Minister of Health reported a further 40% rise in the first half of 2011 compared with the same period in 2010. Suicide attempts have also increased, particularly among people reporting economic distress (610). Homicide and theft rates have doubled. HIV rates and heroin use have risen significantly, with about half of new HIV infections being self-inflicted to enable people to receive benefits of €700 per month and faster admission on to drug-substitution programmes. Prostitution has also risen, probably as a response to economic hardship. Health care access has declined as hospital budgets have been cut by about 40% (398) and it is estimated that 26 000 public health workers (9100 doctors) will lose their jobs (611). Further cuts are expected as a result of recent negotiations with the IMF and European Central Bank.

If you doubt this, you can find the original report with these findings right here.

A lot of people accuse me of being a “doom and gloomer” for writing articles like this.

A lot of people accuse me of trying to spread worry and fear.

But I do not see it that way at all.

I was recently asked what the number one issue is that has me so worried that it keeps me up at night.

Do you know what my answer was?

“Nothing.”

Nothing that I write about keeps me up at night.

I am not worried about what is coming and I do not believe in giving in to fear.

Rather, I believe that there is hope in understanding what is happening, and I believe that there is hope in getting prepared.

Do you want to know who is going to be totally giving in to worry, fear and despair in the years ahead?

The people that are not getting prepared right now.

Do you want to know who is going to be jumping off the top of tall buildings in the years ahead?

The people that are laughing at articles like this one.

For most adults in America, they primarily define their lives by their jobs, their material possessions and by all of the toys that they have accumulated.  When those things get taken away, we are going to see a national hissy fit that is absolutely unprecedented.

The Republicans are not going to save us from the storm that is coming and neither are the Democrats.

It is coming.

That is why I am urging people to get prepared on an individual basis, a family basis and a community basis.

If you prepare yourself and your family now, you will have a much better chance of surviving the coming storm.  And you will be in much better position to help those that will need your assistance.

If you think back throughout history, most of those that we consider to be the greatest “heroes” emerged during times of great crisis.

Well, another time of great crisis is coming, and this will be a tremendous opportunity for a new generation of heroes to arise.

So do not cower in fear because of what is coming.  Rather, use this time to get prepared for the greatest challenges and the greatest opportunities that you have ever known.

When things are the darkest, that is when the light is needed the most.

Choose to be a light.  America will soon need you greatly.

Does Barack Obama Expect The Upcoming Election To Spark Rampant Civil Unrest?

What is Barack Obama preparing for?  What does Barack Obama actually expect to happen in November?  Does he believe that the upcoming election could actually spark rampant civil unrest inside the United States?  The conditions are certainly ripe for civil unrest in this country.  A multitude of recent polls and surveys have shown that Americans are angrier and more frustrated than ever.  Sadly, we are taking a lot of that anger and frustration out on each other.  America is more divided today than at any other time since the Civil War era.  The left absolutely hates Mitt Romney the Republicans, and the right absolutely hates Barack Obama and the Democrats.  If you doubt this, just surf political blogs for a few hours and read the comments that people leave.  This country is a boiling cauldron of hatred and anger and all it is going to take is just the right “spark” to cause all of this hatred and anger to absolutely explode.  This upcoming election season is likely to be one of the most heated and divisive election seasons in U.S. history, and if there is not a clear winner on election night there is the potential that chaos could be unleashed that would be far, far worse than anything we saw during the Bush/Gore debacle of 2000.

Right now, the polls tell us that this is likely to be a very, very tight election.  If you doubt this, just check out the daily Gallup tracking poll.

As I write this, Obama and Romney are tied at 46 percent.

In 2008, a wave of positive emotion helped Obama secure a solid victory on election night where there was no doubt about the outcome.

But this time there is not going to be the same wave of positive emotion behind Obama, and that means that the election is likely to be much, much closer.

One thing that set off alarm bells for me is when various news stories starting discussing the “legion of lawyers” that Barack Obama was recruiting for this election.  The following is from a recent article in the Huffington Post….

President Barack Obama’s campaign has recruited a legion of lawyers to be on standby for this year’s election as legal disputes surrounding the voting process escalate. Thousands of attorneys and support staffers have agreed to aid in the effort, providing a mass of legal support that appears to be unrivaled by Republicans or precedent.

Did you catch that?

Obama’s “unprecedented” legion of lawyers is definitely getting prepared for something.

In a tightly contested race, would Obama use every legal angle that he possibly could to take the election away from Mitt Romney?

Would Mitt Romney potentially do the same to Obama?

How would the rest of America respond to another huge legal struggle over the presidency?

Let us hope that we never find out the answers to any of those questions.

But fighting in court is not the only avenue that Barack Obama could potentially use to keep his spot in the White House.

There is also the possibility that Barack Obama could use his executive powers to influence the outcome of the election.

This year, Obama has issued a whole series of very strange executive orders.

Many have been wondering what the true purpose of these executive orders really is.

For example, EO 13603 enables Barack Obama to take total control over all food, all energy, all health resources and all transportation resources with the stroke of a pen.

The following is from an article about this executive order by Jim Garrison in the Huffington Post….

President Obama’s National Defense Resources Preparedness Executive Order of March 16 does to the country as a whole what the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act did to the Constitution in particular — completely eviscerates any due process or judicial oversight for any action by the Government deemed in the interest of “national security.” Like the NDAA, the new Executive Order puts the government completely above the law, which, in a democracy, is never supposed to happen.

Later in that same article, he detailed some of the extraordinary powers that the executive branch would be given if Barack Obama decided that “national security” required it….

• The Secretary of Defense has power over all water resources;
• The Secretary of Commerce has power over all material services and facilities, including construction materials;
• The Secretary of Transportation has power over all forms of civilian transportation;
• The Secretary of Agriculture has power over food resources and facilities, livestock plant health resources, and the domestic distribution of farm equipment;
• The Secretary of Health and Human Services has power over all health resources;
• The Secretary of Energy has power over all forms of energy.

According to this executive order, a “national emergency” is not even required to activate these powers.  If Barack Obama decides that there is a threat to “national security” (or to his job security) he could activate these powers at any time.

Another executive order, EO 13618, would potentially give Obama power over all communication resources in the United States.

So does that mean that Obama could potentially pull the plug on the Internet during a crisis?

That is a very good question.

Overall, Obama has issued 130 executive orders during his time as president.  The amount of power that he now claims to possess is absolutely mind blowing.

So will he ever actually attempt to use the powers that he has granted himself under these executive orders?

Let’s hope not.

In addition, it appears that the Department of Homeland Security is gearing up for something.

An article posted on RT the other day entitled “DHS gears up for civil unrest prior to presidential elections” detailed some of the purchases that the Department of Homeland Security is looking to make….

The DHS submitted a rushed solicitation to the Federal Business Opportunities site on Wednesday, which is a portal for Federal government procurement requisitions over $25,000. The request gave the potential suppliers only one day to submit their proposals and a 15-day delivery requirement to Alexandria, Virginia.

As the brief explains, “the objective of this effort is to procure riot gear to prepare for the 2012 Democratic and Republican National Conventions, the 2013 Presidential Inauguration and other future similar activities.”

The total amount ordered is about 150 sets of riot helmets, thigh and groin protectors, hard-shell shin guards and other riot gear.

Specifically, DHS is looking to obtain:

– “147 riot helmets” with “adjustable tactical face shield with liquid seal”

– “147 sets of upper body and shoulder protection”

– “152 sets of thigh and groin protection”

– “147 hard-shell shin guards” with “substantial protection from flying debris, non-ballistic weapons, and blows to the leg” and “optimized protective design for severe riot control or tactical situations.”

– “156 forearm protectors”

– “147 pairs of tactical gloves”

The riot gear will be worn by Federal Protective Service agents who are tasked with protecting property, grounds and buildings owned by the federal government.

You can find the DHS solicitation right here.

Also, as I have written about previously, earlier this month FEMA posted a solicitation for a large number of pre-packaged meals.  According to the solicitation, the maximum number of meals that would be provided to FEMA under the contract would be 17.5 million meals.  The following is from the FEMA solicitation document….

As referred to in paragraph (b) of FAR Clause 52.216-22, “Indefinite Quantity” of this contract, the guaranteed contract minimum is 21,000 packaged meals to include the base and option periods.  The contract ceiling amount shall not exceed 17,500,000 packaged meals.

So do those solicitations mean anything special or are they just part of normal government operations?

That is a good question.

But what we do know is that U.S. military personnel are going to be deployed at the Democratic and Republican national conventions in support of U.S. Secret Service personnel.  The following is from a recent Stars and Stripes article….

“During the Democratic/Republican National Conventions, Department of Defense personnel will support the U.S. Secret Service,” a Northern Command spokesman said in an email.

“For operational security reasons we do not discuss the numbers of military personnel and resources that are involved,” U.S. Navy Lt. Cdr. William G. Lewis said. “Additionally, we do not share our operational plans.”

Could the same forces be deployed to quell civil unrest sparked by a controversial election result in November?

Let us hope that this upcoming election season is not as bitter and divisive as many are projecting and let us hope that there is a clear winner in November.

The conditions are definitely right for America to be absolutely torn apart if the “perfect controversy” comes rolling along.

At this moment, Americans are incredibly frustrated.  Our economy has been in the dumps for quite a few years, and now it look like another recession is starting.  The patience of the American people is running out.

Over much of the western United States things are so hot and dry right now that just a single spark is often enough to set off a forest fire that can burn for weeks.  Well, the same thing can be said for the political climate in the United States right now.

The American people are so hot and so angry that it would not take much to set off a raging political fire.

Let us hope that cooler heads prevail, because a single spark could set this country ablaze.

Madness: 39 Things That Are Driving Ordinary Americans Absolutely Crazy

Have you noticed that almost everyone seems really angry these days?  Frustration with the government and with most of the other major institutions in our society seems to grow by the day.  According to a brand new ABC News/Washington Post poll, 80 percent of Americans say that they are either dissatisfied or angry with the government.  Americans are deeply divided about what the solutions to our problems are, but what almost everyone can agree on is that our problems are getting worse.  Watching all of the madness that is going on in Washington D.C. and in our state capitals is almost enough to drive anyone absolutely crazy.  Our nation is drowning in an ocean of debt, jobs are being shipped overseas at an alarming rate, thousands of stores are closing, poverty is exploding, greed has become a national pastime and corruption is seemingly everywhere.  The American people are incredibly frustrated because the vast majority of our “leaders” appear to be too incompetent or too corrupt to deal with our problems.

If you visit just about any website on the Internet that deals with politics or the economy and spend some time reading the comments that people leave you will quickly see how angry people are becoming.  A lot of times people have no other outlets for the intense frustration that they are feeling and so they just let it all come out online.  Yes, Americans have always complained about the government, but the madness that we are seeing today is really unprecedented in modern U.S. history.  Something has fundamentally changed.

The U.S. government and most of our other major societal institutions are rapidly losing the faith of the American people.  But society cannot function without trust.

So what is going to happen once all of the trust is gone?

The following are 39 things that are driving ordinary Americans absolutely crazy right now….

#1 According to Newsweek, close to one out of every five American men between the ages of 25 and 54 does not have a job at the moment.  So why is the “greatest economy on earth” unable to provide jobs for nearly 20 percent of the men that are in their prime working years?

#2 Last year, over a million homes were repossessed by financial institutions.  This year a similar number of repossessions is expected.  Sometimes these evictions are absolutely heartbreaking.  Just check out the following excerpt from a recent Newsweek article….

To understand American anger, that roiling storm sometimes dubbed our national “mood,” spend a day with Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart. Since 2006 the unlikely lawman—a tea drinker who listens to Bobby Kennedy speeches on his way to work—has overseen all foreclosures and evictions in the Chicago area, one of the hardest hit nationwide. The process does not always go well. One evictee shot himself in the head, remained conscious, and calmly tried to raise the pistol again as deputies battered the front door.

#3 Companies like Netflix and Chipotle are significantly raising prices.  Meanwhile, Ben Bernanke claims that there is hardly any inflation.  He must not go grocery shopping much.

#4 The government keeps telling us that the economy is improving, and yet more stores keep closing.  The Gap has announced that up to 200 stores will be closed over the next two years.  Perkins has announced that they will be closing 58 restaurants.  Borders has announced that they will be shutting down their remaining 399 stores and that 10,700 employees will lose their jobs.  Yes, the economy is really buzzing right now.

#5 Government services all over the nation are being cut back.  An atmosphere of austerity has descended on the entire country.  For example, Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe says that we may soon have to say goodbye to Saturday mail delivery.

#6 Many broke public school systems are now charging parents lots of money for things that used to be free.  The Wall Street Journal says that one family in Ohio has to shell out over $4,000 a year for basic school activities….

Budget shortfalls have prompted Medina Senior High to impose fees on students who enroll in many academic classes and extracurricular activities. The Dombis had to pay to register their children for basic courses such as Spanish I and Earth Sciences, to get them into graded electives such as band, and to allow them to run cross-country and track. The family’s total tab for a year of public education: $4,446.50.

#7 The Federal Reserve gets to give out tens of billions of dollars of nearly interest-free loans to their bankster friends while tens of millions of American families desperately try to survive an economic downturn that was caused by those same banksters.

#8 We have gotten ourselves into a position where we are in so much debt to China that we have to constantly be concerned about how they feel about our financial status.  Earlier this week, one top Chinese official urged the U.S. government to do something to boost confidence in the U.S. dollar and in U.S. government debt….

“We hope the U.S. government will take responsible policies and measures to boost global financial market confidence and respect and protect the interests of investors.”

#9 The national debt continues to spiral out of control and our politicians seem unwilling to do anything serious about it.  If you combine all sources of income, it is estimated that LeBron James makes about 42 million dollars a year.  If he continued to make money at that rate, it would take him 23,809 years to make a trillion dollars.  Yet our politicians see no problem with running trillion dollar deficits year after year.

#10 Unless our politicians do something dramatic, the federal government is headed straight toward financial hell.  It is being projected that the U.S. national debt will hit 344% of GDP by the year 2050 if we continue on our current course.

#11 It is not just the federal government that is broke.  Right now, there are a lot of state and local governments that are teetering on the brink of financial disaster.  Moody’s has announced that it will be reviewing, and possibly downgrading, the credit ratings of Maryland, New Mexico, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia.  The city of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania is such a financial mess that nobody really has any idea how to fix their problems.

#12 All over the United States, highways, water treatment plants, libraries, parking meters, airports and power plants are being sold off (much of the time to foreigners) in order to plug short-term holes in state and local budgets.

#13 The combination of federal government spending, state government spending and local government spending now accounts for a larger share of U.S. GDP than at any other time in our history.

#14 Police all over America have been shutting down lemonade stands run by little children.  At least one police chief in Wisconsin was good enough to apologize when it happened in his area.  It is too bad that there aren’t more police out there that have a little common sense.

#15 The U.S. housing crash shows no signs of abating.  Real estate construction is absolutely dead.  In fact, right now we are on track for the lowest number of total housing completions that the U.S. government has ever recorded in a single year.

#16 In June, sales of previously-owned homes in the United States declined to a seven month low.  Without good jobs, the American people cannot afford to buy homes.  Many of those that do have good incomes are being turned down by mortgage lenders.

#17 The supply of existing homes for sale continues to go up.  That means that it is going to get even harder for average Americans to sell their homes.

#18 The value of U.S. homes has fallen by a total of approximately 6.6 trillion dollars since the peak of the housing market.

#19 It isn’t just banks that are kicking people out of their homes.  All over the country, homeowners’ associations are aggressively using their powers to boot American families out on to the streets.

#20 Instead of being used by families, all over the country thousands of foreclosed homes are rapidly filling up with mold.

#21 Really bizarre thefts are being reported all over the United States right now.  For example, it was just reported that some crooks in Pennsylvania ripped up and hauled away about 100,000 pounds of train track.

#22 Authorities continue to insist that violent crime is going down, and yet the number of police officers killed by gunfire is on pace to easily set another all-time record for the second year in a row.

#23 One recent study found that approximately 47 percent of all meat and poultry in the United States “is contaminated with antibiotic-resistant Staph“.

#24 The health insurance companies keep jacking up rates on all of us, and yet they also continue to report record breaking profits.

#25 The Obama administration is now using “mystery shoppers” to spy on doctors.  The following is from a report in the New York Times….

Alarmed by a shortage of primary care doctors, Obama administration officials are recruiting a team of “mystery shoppers” to pose as patients, call doctors’ offices and request appointments to see how difficult it is for people to get care when they need it.

#26 Corruption appears to be rampant on every level of American society today.  For example, one NYU professor recently discovered that 20 percent of his students were blatantly cheating on assignments.

#27 Thanks to insane tax loopholes, a substantial percentage of the billions of dollars of income that hedge fund managers make is only taxed at a maximum rate of 15 percent.  Meanwhile, middle class American families are being absolutely hammered with taxes.

#28 The “too big to fail” banks now control 77 percent of all of the banking assets in the country.

#29 In 2010, the United States had the worst current account balance in the world.  The U.S. had a current account balance of negative 561 billion dollars for 2010.  No other nation had a negative current account balance that even exceeded 70 billion dollars.  The amount of wealth leaving our country and being transferred to the rest of the world is absolutely mind blowing.

#30 One recent poll found that 72 percent of Americans believe that we are involved in too many wars.  But the Obama administration seems to think that we should be “the police of the world” and they just keep getting the U.S. military involved in more conflicts.

#31 Startling revelations are starting to come out about a scandal so big that it could shake up Washington D.C. for years to come.  Apparently, ATF agents were ordered to get thousands of guns into the hands of the Mexican drug cartels and they were also apparently ordered not to follow those guns to see where they ended up.

#32 The top 5 percent of all income earners in America account for almost as much consumer spending as the bottom 80 percent of all income earners.

#33 The number of Americans that are going to food pantries and soup kitchens has increased by 46% since 2006.  But instead of being treated with kindness, many communities are treating the growing ranks of the poor as “outcasts” or criminals.

#34 Despite the promises of our politicians, globalism is absolutely shredding the American economy.  According to Forbes, the United States has been losing an average of 50,000 manufacturing jobs per month since China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001.

#35 There are no signs that our rampant unemployment problem is going to end any time soon.  In fact, right now it takes the average unemployed worker about 40 weeks to find a new job.

#36 The vast majority of U.S. consumers are tapped out at this point.  Just consider the following quote from the New York Times….

The auto industry is on pace to sell 28 percent fewer new vehicles this year than it did 10 years ago — and 10 years ago was 2001, when the country was in recession. Sales of ovens and stoves are on pace to be at their lowest level since 1992. Home sales over the past year have fallen back to their lowest point since the crisis began.

#37 Right now in Congress there is a proposal to change the way that inflation is calculated.  According to The Senior Citizens League, this change would cause the average retiree to lose out on $18,000 in Social Security benefits over a 25 year period.

#38 Our tax system is fundamentally unjust.  Just look at the example of General Electric.  G.E. is a favorite of the Obama administration and somehow they get away with not paying taxes year after year. Just check out what the New York Times claims G.E. got away with in 2010….

The company reported worldwide profits of $14.2 billion, and said $5.1 billion of the total came from its operations in the United States.

Its American tax bill? None. In fact, G.E. claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.

#39 The TSA continues to abuse U.S. travelers in some of the most bizarre ways imaginable.  For example, one 95-year-old grandmother in a wheelchair that is dying from cancer was asked to remove her adult diaper so that TSA “officials” could feel her up properly.  In what kind of a society does this type of thing go on?

No wonder the American people are losing faith.  It is hard to keep believing when you see rampant corruption and decay everywhere you look.

But mostly, the American people want to be able to take care of their families.

The American people are not going to start feeling better about things until there are plenty of good jobs to go around.  If people cannot pay their mortgages and provide for their families then they are not going to be content no matter what our politicians tell them.

Unfortunately, the “new normal” is going to be a lot different from what the “old normal” was.  The United States is a declining power.  Every month our nation is bleeding more jobs, more factories and more wealth.  Every month our debt problems on the federal, state and local levels get even worse.  We have been living far beyond our means for decades, and we are rapidly getting to the point where that simply will not be possible anymore.

The long-term trends that have gotten us to this point have taken decades to develop.  There is no “quick fix” that some politician is going to bring in that is going to create some kind of miracle.

We are now starting to pay the price for decades of bad decisions.  As the consequences of our decisions become more apparent, the American people are going to get angrier and angrier.

Unless something very dramatic happens, we are heading for a very ugly chapter in American history.

Let us hope for the best, but let us also prepare for the worst.

The Economic Collapse