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Monday, September 12, 2016

Reality Check: Despite Economic Numbers We Are Getting Poorer


Image result for poor americans


If Everything Is So Great, How Come I’m Not Doing So Great?

While the view might be great from the top of the wealth/income pyramid, it takes a special kind of self-serving myopia to ignore the reality that the bottom 95% are not doing so well.
We're ceaselessly told/sold that the U.S. economy is doing phenomenally well in our current slow-growth world -- generating record corporate profits, record highs in the S&P 500 stock index, and historically low unemployment (4.9% in July 2016). 


While GDP growth is somewhat lackluster by historical standards—less than 2% in 2016—it's growth nonetheless. And the rate of consumer-price inflation is hovering around 1%; negligible by historical standards.
But this uniformly positive statistical view of the U.S. economy raises a question among those not in the top 0.1%: If everything’s going so great, how come I’m not?
Whether it's struggling to keep up with the rising cost of living, a 0% return on savings, working longer hours while real wages stagnate, scrimping to pay back education loans, despairing at the abuses of power in our banking and political systems, or lamenting the loss of nourishing social interaction in our increasingly isolated and digital lifestyle — most "regular" people find their own personal experiences to be at odds with the rosy "Everything is awesome!" narrative trumpeted by our media.

The Scorecard
To get a more concrete understanding of this gap, let's establish a scorecard we can individually fill in to make an assessment of just how well we’re doing.

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