America In Decline: The Soul Crushing Despair Of Lowered Expectations

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Michael Snyder
The Economic Collapse
Wednesday, June 6, 2012

All over America tonight there are people that believe that their lives are over.  When you do everything that you know how to do to get a job and you still can’t get one it can be absolutely soul crushing.  If you have ever been unemployed for an extended period of time you know exactly what I am talking about.  When you have been unemployed for month after month it can be very tempting to totally cut yourself off from society.  Those that are kind will look at you with pity and those that are cruel will treat you as though you are a total loser.  It doesn’t matter that America is in decline and that our economy is not producing nearly enough jobs for everyone anymore.  In our society, one of the primary things that defines our lives is what we do for a living.  Just think about it.  When you are out in a social situation, what is one of the very first things that people ask?  They want to know what you “do”.  Well, if you don’t “do” anything, then you are not part of the club.  But the worst part of being unemployed for many Americans is the relentless pressure from family and friends.  Often they have no idea how hard it is to find a job in this economy – especially if they still have jobs.  Sometimes the pressure becomes too great.  Sadly, we are seeing unemployment break up a lot of marriages in America today.  Things are really hard out there right now.  A very large number of highly educated Americans have taken very low paying service jobs in recent years just so that they can have some money coming in even as they “look for something else”.  Unfortunately, in many cases that “something else” never materializes.  In the past, America was “the land of opportunity” where anything was possible.  But today America has become “the land of lowered expectations” and the worst is yet to come.

We live during a time when “the American Dream” is literally being redefined.  In the old days, just about anyone could get a good job that would pay enough to make it possible to buy a house, buy a nice car and raise a family.

Unfortunately, those days are long gone.  The following is from a recent NPR article….

The town of Lorain, Ohio, used to embody this dream. It was a place where you could get a good job, raise a family and comfortably retire.

“Now you can see what it is. Nothing,” says John Beribak. “The shipyards are gone, the Ford plant is gone, the steel plant is gone.” His voice cracks as he describes the town he’s lived in his whole life.

“I mean, I grew up across the street from the steel plant when there was 15,000 people working there,” he says. “My dad worked there. I worked there when I got out of the Air Force. It’s just sad.”

We live in an economy that is in serious decline.  In this environment no job is safe.  In fact, even Goldman Sachs is laying off workers these days.

Millions of Americans are suffering from deep depression because they can’t find jobs.  Many of them are sitting at home right now blankly starting at their television screens as they wonder why nobody wants to hire them.  Some have been unemployed for years and have sent out thousands upon thousands of resumes.  The following is from a recent article by J.D. Hicks….

I have a brilliant cousin with a $180K Syracuse education working part-time at a department store. She has literally sent out 38,000 resumes in the span of a year to no avail. I have another very bright friend with the kindest heart who is so desperate he has applied for dishwashing jobs and didn’t get them, sending him deeper into depression. I’m sure we all know people like this, or perhaps have even been there ourselves.

Society has trained us to believe that we are worthless without a job. Indeed, we feel worthless when we are unemployed with few prospects of making money. Family, friends, and peers constantly remind us in subtle and not-so-subtle ways that we “need” a job.

Have you ever been unemployed?

How did it make you feel?

How were you treated by your family and friends?

In the old days, a college education was almost a guaranteed ticket to the middle class.

But these days, a college education guarantees you absolutely nothing.

As a recent article by Jed Graham detailed, most young unemployed workers in America today have at least some college education….

For the first time in history, the number of jobless workers age 25 and up who have attended some college now exceeds the ranks of those who settled for a high school diploma or less.

Out of 9 million unemployed in April, 4.7 million had gone to college or graduated and 4.3 million had not, seasonally adjusted Labor Department data show.

Overall, 53 percent of all Americans with a bachelor’s degree under the age of 25 were either unemployed or underemployed last year.

It is tough to tell young college graduates with their whole lives ahead of them that they need to lower their expectations because America is in decline.

So where did all the jobs go?

Well, one place they went is overseas.  Over the past couple of decades, millions upon millions of good jobs have left the United States and have gone over to the other side of the world.

That is why you see gleaming new factories going up all over China even while our once great manufacturing cities are turning into crime-infested warzones.

But as a recent WND article reported, the WTO has a solution.  They plan to replace “Made in China” labels with “Made in the World” labels so that we don’t feel so bad about losing our jobs and our economic infrastructure…

The World Trade Organization is moving closer to eliminating country-of-origin labels and replacing them with “Made in the World” initiative labels because they say we need to “reduce public opposition to free trade” and “re-engineer global governance.”

As the number of middle class jobs has steadily declined in recent years, the number of low paying service jobs has increased.

In a previous article, I discussed how approximately one out of every four U.S. workers now makes $10 an hour or less.

Could your family survive on 10 dollars an hour?

Today, you can find hordes of very smart, very talented Americans flipping burgers, waiting tables and welcoming people to Wal-Mart.

Sadly, the United States now has a higher percentage of workers doing low wage work than any other major industrialized nation does.

Perhaps we should applaud our leaders for doing such a great job of destroying the American Dream.

Because so many Americans are working crappy jobs, a very large percentage of them have absolutely no savings to speak of.

According to one survey, 42 percent of all American workers live paycheck to paycheck.

I am constantly encouraging people to save up an “emergency fund” that will enable them to pay their bills for at least 6 months if they suddenly become unemployed.

Unfortunately, for many Americans that is simply not possible.  Way too many families are just barely scraping by from month to month.

Another area of the economy where Americans are facing lowered expectations is in housing.

In the old days, most Americans dreamed of owning their own homes.

But today we are being told that things have changed.  For example, a recent USA Today article was entitled “Home rentals — the new American Dream?“….

Steve and Jodi Jacobson bought their Phoenix-area “dream home” in 2005. They built flagstone steps to the front door. They tiled the kitchen and bathroom. They entertained often, enjoying their mountain views.

“We put our soul into that house,” says Steve Jacobson, 37.

Then, home prices tanked more than 50%. Steve, a software quality assurance engineer, suffered pay cuts. In 2010, foreclosure claimed the home and their $100,000 down payment.

The Jacobsons didn’t lose their desire to live in a single-family home, however. They now rent one, like many other former homeowners displaced by foreclosure.

Is that what we are supposed to tell future generations of Americans?

“Listen Johnny and Suzie, if you work really, really hard at your minimum wage jobs perhaps someday you will be able to rent a home that has been foreclosed by a big, greedy bank”.

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

It is so sad to watch what is happening to this country.

These days many Americans are scratching and clawing and doing everything that they can to make it, but they still find themselves short on money at the end of the month.

Many are turning to debt in an attempt to bridge the gap.  According to CNN, 40 percent of “low- and middle-income households” are using credit cards to pay for basic living expenses.

Overall, U.S. consumers have more than 11 trillion dollars in debt right now.

That is an incredible number.

As the economy has declined, a lot of families have completely given up trying to make it on their own and have turned to the U.S. government for financial help.  Today, an astounding 49.1 percent of all Americans live in a home where at least one person receives government benefits.

Just think about that number for a while.  It is one of the clearest signs that America is in deep, deep decline.

Unfortunately, things are about to get even worse.  The next wave of the financial crisis is unfolding in Europe and we will all be talking about another “major global recession” very soon.

That means that unemployment in the United States is going to get a lot worse.

For the millions upon millions of Americans that are already suffering through the horror of unemployment, that is really bad news.

Posted below is a trailer for a new HBO documentary entitled “Hard Times: Lost on Long Island”.  Please take a few minutes to watch this video, because I think it does a good job of showing the soul crushing despair that many unemployed Americans are going through right now….

So do any of you have any stories of lowered expectations to share?  Please feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below….


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29 Responses to “America In Decline: The Soul Crushing Despair Of Lowered Expectations”

  1. The reason why people are losing their jobs is because the currency has lost its worth. As the worth goes down, this will drive the numerical value through the roof. You will not be able to pay for your residence, because everything else around it will eat you alive. When your local government reassessed your residential commercial property, this is what started the debt-ball rolling.

    hellangone Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 6:21 am

    Didn’t you READ the article, you soulless jerk?

    Jobs are LEAVING because of corporate greed, because things can be CHEAPLY MADE overseas. Because of more and more idiotic “regulations” and “laws” dreamed up by your test tube father, the big bad government bureaucrat.

    Stew in Hell, trash!

  2. ahhh , this story takes me back , oh , the memories..
    october 2008 , the banker shows up on the jobsite and says ” well , your all done , we’ve pulled the plug on your line of credit”.
    lost 3 good employees that week.

  3. Well, well amerikkan debt slaves all bemoan; “This is amerikka. This shouldn’t be happening, I did all the right things. I am entitled ! Fuck it all, I even voted for the Kenyan cocksucker, Barry Seotoro, SS # 042-68-4425.”
    Suck it , you coward bitches. THIS is what happens when women, nlggers, spics and LBGT sexual deviants,and a criminal usa government all controlled by the jew banker pigs, are given a chance to hold the reins. Afterall, we are all equal and evil whitey has had it too good for too long. Let us means test, use affirmative action, allow no down payments for houses, punish veterans for their time away from the “job market” and generally try to make ebverything equal and fair, because YOU are a victim. This nlgger ideology bullshit people get caught up in , believing the lies of jew amerikka.
    Well this evil white Italian/Irish motherfucker has it all: before I sat down here at my desk, I passed through my home theater, (16 seats) and poured a cup off coffee in my granite island kitchen, with 2 Mercedes-Benzs and a 2011 F-150 in my 3 car garage, I smiled to myself and thought,” Crime does pay.” I got mine because I earned it and took what I wanted through my own will and determination. The nature of my racket is none of your business, but I will tell you I asked no one for their permission to do what I have done.”
    But, but… See, see I went to college? That’s it? That is the amerikkan slaves rebuttal to his failure? Everyday must be a waking, dazed nightmare when your only arguement is that you were a good slave and life is not fair. Read some Roman Republic Roman Empire history. You might learn that you must take what you want and as the world changes , the world remains the same.
    Have a nice day , amerikkan debt slaves. I will be at the pool today if you need me with my daughter, sunroof popped on the Mercedes to vent the heat from the sun.

    Equality is Slavery. Debt is Wealth, Travel is Privelege. Slavery is Freedom.

    P.S. You debt slaves MIGHT want to MOVE from the barren northeastern part of amerikka. The elite dont want any neighbors, in case you haven’t figured that out, yet.

    Equality is Slavery. Debt is Wealth. Travel si Privelege. Slavery is Freedom

    Rebelfromtheburg Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 5:28 am

    How do you explain your income and all of your assets? Help us you dick

    Rebelfromtheburg Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 5:28 am

    on your taxes?

    saber Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 6:27 am

    He already admitted that “crime does pay”

    gordy three horses Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 6:53 am

    the only thing you fucking irish are good for, is getting drunk and puking on people’s shoes. so go eat your potatoes and drink away your pay, and you are a stupid mick liar you don’t have any of that shit you say you have.


  5. What this article did NOT touch on at all is the one of the WORST fucking things you can hear when applying for a job and that is:


    Now I never went to college but did pass high school and picked up all of my working knowledge on the job while I was working.

    And for me to hear that I am over-qualified because I have worked maunal labor ditch-digging jobs up to and including office manager and everything in between is even MORE of a blow to freash outta college grad.

    Im willing to work ANY overtime, daily, weekends, holidays, and im also willing to work for less money than most others because I can make-up what I was not getting in overtime pay.

    Im willing to empty the trash, clean the toilets, sweep the floors, or whatever ABOVE AND BEYOND WHAT I WAS HIRED TO DO.

    I am a team player with WORK refrences to back that up and can get along with anyone as a co-worker or a boss.

    what ALL THE LISTED ABOVE QUALITIES get you is an OVER-QUALIFIED rating and if you even get a call-back it is to tell you that and say they went with someone else.


    It is past time for a revolution in this country and ALL the big corporations should be burned to the ground along with EVERY SINGLE GUBBERMINT OUTLET, and ALL of those corrupted people put to death publicly for the next batch of greedy motherfuckers to learn from!

    Spiritof76 Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 5:14 am


    This a catch phrase companies use to keep themselves from being sued for unfair employment practices. What they are really saying is that because of your skill level they can’t afford to hire you, and they need to hire someone less qualified that they can afford. When they use this phrase what they really are saying is “You are over qualified for ANY position because if you were hired you would soon after want a raise in pay.”

  6. Hey spy, dont get mad , get even. amerikka sucks if you play by the rules. wink, wink.

    Spymyeys Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 4:38 am

    getting even is all i live for now, grey.

    and you are SO FUCKING RIGHT in your comments that most people will call you a crook or a liar but when you reach a certain age and your brain-housing-group gets unlocked from its testosterone induced stupidity and you can start to use your head to THINK with, people will know that YOU ARE 110% CORRECT, SIR!

    hammerhead Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 4:59 am

    SPY – if you got the time , start your own business, i’m running 3 right now.
    a cash business , i am sure grey dont report half the cash he takes in , do you think the ice cream shop down the road reports the profits from every hotdog and cone it sells ?
    grey has it right , the .GOV will cornhole ya given the chance.

  7. The answer is , some of us aren’t going to survive.
    6 years ago hit me hard 60 k loss on a home, divorce, I closed the doors on my business. All because I did fall for it, I was a good debt slave.
    I have settled nearly 50 k in debt for about 10 cents on the dollar. The ones that don’t settle, well I just tell them to get in line and when I hit the lottery I will be in touch. It’s funny, the phone hardly ever rings anymore. LOL
    I Moved back to an area of the country where the money is in the OIL machine and have never been better.
    We now pay CASH for all we have and keep the guns fully loaded and at the ready.
    Have a couple acres in the piney woods and will shoot anything or anyone that crosses the fence line with intent to do us harm.
    I personally welcome this change. It has allowed me to come to my own aid and grow as a husband,father and man.
    This country is MY country, I will defend it, I will protect my own, I will protect my community of fellows and their fammilies.
    The answer is, some of us AREN’T going to survive.
    The question is, are YOU ready.
    Join your local militia, there you will find people with skill and knowledge to share. When the black coats come for your guns, have the guts and heart to use them.
    There is a gun for every man,woman and child in this country. last year over 14 million hunting licences were sold. If those hunters were trained in the art of fire and move, escape and evade and the simplest of tactics and had but 100 rounds each, those tyranical bastards don’t stand a chance.
    I do not condone violence but I will meet force with force and tact with tact.

    Vengeance Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 5:32 am

    Also digging-in (literally) in the great state of Oregon for what IS still to come. No time.. no time…

    Imrightyakn0w Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 7:58 am

    I received my annual tax assessment on my home from the County Tax Assessors office and it read like this. In 2008 my house was assessed at $182,000 value. Now it is being assessed at $114,900 in assessed value. $114,900 is what we paid for it! So, we now have lost value of roughly $70,000 in 4 years! Of course, I don’t put much stock in assessed values by the county because a number of factors weigh into it, but you get the picture.

  8. I have a story to share. I was fired in November of 2008 after seeking a better job than the one I had. I needed to expand my horizons and pad my resume. Tech support over the phone is not an ideal job, but in some communities, it is a growth industry and in our community it is one of the better jobs people can get for the wages they pay. The problem with tech support jobs or any kind of customer service job on the phone is that eventually everybody burns out. High turnover rates and nickel and dime wage increases are often common. People never retire from these kinds of positions. These types of jobs are a microcosm of our entire economy. That is that they are a revolving door. There will always be someone there to fill the seat and pay state and federal taxes, and it doesn’t matter who it is, just that there is someone there to fill the seat. After I was fired I decided I didn’t need to get back into the workforce and here’s why. We came to realize that with our two incomes putting us into the 25% tax bracket we weren’t really getting any further ahead. We had debt at the time and were paying off that debt quickly, but needed the after tax income to pay that debt so we couldn’t max our retirement accounts or anything like that. Well, we refinanced our home and a car we bought for our daughter for college at 5% interest and saved $730 a month right there! We paid off the rest of our debt and haven’t gone back into debt since. Paying off the rest of our debt saved us another $400 a month. Our income went from $90,000 to $60,000 so we went to a lower tax bracket, and our taxes have gone down. We have received a refund from the government the last two years of $7,000! We used to break even with them. When I was working it took me 3.5 months to gross $7,000. Now that we are debt free and have received about $700 a month in raises since I was laid off, combined with the money we have saved in paying off and refinancing debt, my income has been replaced! If I went back to work now, I could max out my IRA and hide money from the taxman! If you play it right in this economy you can come out smelling like a rose. To summarize, I would say, get out of debt or refinance your debt for a lower payment, don’t buy things you don’t need, ensure you are getting all your tax deductions and don’t treat your tax refund like a savings account, ensure you get that money every month. One more thing, if we can’t fix the debt system with a sound money system then FIX THE DAMN TAX CODE!!!!

    Imrightyakn0w Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 6:08 am

    To continue, having a job isn’t always the healthy! There are several things I don’t miss. 1. Driving to and from work and buying gasoline to fuel my vehicle every two weeks which saves about $120.00 a month. 2. The fast food cravings: Always stopping at some fast food establishment because it is more convenient than actually taking the time to make a home made lunch or dinner because you are always either mentally or physically tired. That saves about $150 to $200 a month. We cook 95% of our meals at home now. 3. I don’t miss the politics of work. I hated politics at work, still do, and I don’t miss that one bit. 4. I don’t miss the feeling of constantly being on a treadmill, going to work, coming home, eating, watching TV, going to bed, getting up and doing it all over again the next day, and the costs associated with that feeling. Costs like the impulse buying or the feeling that I need to buy something to make me feel better because of the treadmill I have been on. I don’t miss looking at my pay stub and realizing that with our two incomes most of mine was going to pay taxes when you combine the two incomes. I don’t miss the debt I created since I am now debt free. In fact, there really isn’t too much about work I can honestly say I miss. If I decide to get back into the workforce, I will be safeguarding against the churning that causes many people that work for a living to do things they shouldn’t. If I decide to get back in.

    Imrightyakn0w Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 7:13 am

    One more thing I don’t miss about working is the sheer desperation I see every day on the faces of the people clamoring for a $30,000 a year job or lining up for jobs that pay even less and watching as they slowly sink into despair. They didn’t realize what they were getting themselves into. Basically, debt servitude to the government! A lifetime of being underpaid, unappreciated, overtaxed, and burdened with debt because their incomes can’t support their lifestyles or they supplement their incomes with credit cards to get what they want because their incomes aren’t high enough to afford to pay cash.

    Imrightyakn0w Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 7:16 am

    But the government loves them because they are in that sweet spot. They can’t afford to max out their retirement, they have debt so they need the after tax income to pay for their debts and their income is just high enough that they will pay about $400 a month or so in federal income taxes. The government has them right where they want them, good little debt slaves, brought to you by companies that refuse to pay a real living wage and by a government that refuses to tax people fairly or come up with a tax system that would be more equitable like a VAT or consumption tax to replace this silly income tax!

    Imrightyakn0w Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 7:29 am

    They pay $400 to $600 a month in taxes, money they could be using to pay back their student loans!

  9. How to rescue the economy:

    Patriotic retirement:

    There are about 40 million people over 50 in the work force;

    pay them $1 million a piece severance with stipulations:

    1) They leave their jobs. Forty million job openings – Unemployment fixed.

    2) They buy NEW American cars. Forty million cars ordered – Auto Industry fixed.

    3) They either buy a house or pay off their mortgage- Housing Crisis fixed.

    All this and it’s still cheaper than the “bailout”.

  10. This is the result of politicians and the precious Democratic and Republican parties giving away the store. Government owns a lot of stock and they make more money by outsourcing and offshoring good jobs. They don’t care about you AT ALL. It’s all greed. And they raise your taxes.

    Now we have to compete with China and while our standard of living goes down A LOT theirs goes up A LITTLE. That’s globalism in a sentence. What we have for an economy is fake as we are borrowing trillions. Borrowing from our children is unconscionable but the politicians love it.

    I hope our children realize what is going on, and are not dumbed down or blinded by propaganda, and END THE FED and START OVER.

    Imrightyakn0w Reply:
    June 6th, 2012 at 6:45 am

    I watched a great documentary on Free Speech TV called “A Dollar A Day”, about China and their sweat shop labor force. The employees working in those assembly lines and factories are monitored like chickens in a box! Their kids go to school a week at a time and go home on weekends! The kids were all being washed by their handlers at the school and rinsed off with a hose like an assembly line, one after the other. The Chinese economy might be doing well, but at what cost? Their people are treated like worker bees or chickens in a box, their factories are polluting their skies, and they have population control. When you actually see how the Chinese operate it’s depressing.

  11. most people i see out of a job have the brains of a gnat, are cronic drug addicts, lack any useful skill. since when is having a job a factor of you surviving. i raise my own food, make my own clothes, hunt, fish, trap, act as a guide for you dumb ass white city people. take away your nanny state and you dumb asses will die because you do not know how to take care of your selves. instead of going to college for four years or more just to get a worthless degree, and winding up thousands and thousands of dollars in debt, why not try living in the wilderness for that amount of time,completely on your own.

  12. go out and slave away eight hours or more a day just to receive some paper that becomes more worthless every day. i don’t feel one bit sorry for these brainwashed retards. i say cull the herd and get rid of these useless eaters.

  13. i like that part with the woman that has a sign on her back that reads experienced executive administrative assistant wanting a job. fifty dollar words for a ten cent line, the sign should read expert blow job giver, paper pusher and coffee maker wants job. people go to college just to get a degree in worthless shit like that. no wonder she can’t find work.

  14. that is what they want for us here in this country too.

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