04 April 2014

Decimation of the American Middle Class

The following unusually well-written comment from a Yahoo Finance (4/4/2014) reader sums up the plight of the American middle class.  In a few paragraphs, the piece succinctly outlines what happened to the middle class during the mini-depression of 2008.

My spouse leaves for work at 7:00am and returns at 8:00pm. He is on call 24/7. Most nights the calls stop by 11:00pm. Some times they last all night.

During the recession, companies did a lot of cutting from the top of the income scale. The remaining people were so scared, they were willing to do anything to keep their jobs...now these "emergency" measures are the new norm, for salaried workers who were asked to take up the slack. 

There is no such thing as the 40 hour work week for people on salaries...the new normal starts at 60 hours and goes up from there. (Unless you work for the govt. )

Do not get me wrong, after a period of unemployment, we are still grateful just have a job and an income, even if it is about half of what it was a decade ago.

As it turns out the Recession was a gift to businesses. They were able to do in one fell swoop what they had been doing by degrees for several decades....which was to drastically cut the wages of middle and upper income earners...a few months operating near the red, have now been followed by five years of record profits.

No comments: