Here are a few sobering statistics for you:
- 46.2 million Americans now living in poverty (US Census Bureau‘s annual report on poverty)–the highest in 52 years. (Source)
- The US has, by far, the most unequal distribution of wealth of any major country on earth. (Source) We rank close to Botswana!
- After accounting for inflation, median wages for men between 30 and 50 dropped 27 percent—to $33,000 a year— from 1969 to 2009, according to an analysis by Michael Greenstone, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology economics professor (Source)
- A smaller share of men have jobs today than at any time since WWII. (Source)
- More than 200,000 public empoyees were laid off in 2010. (Source)
- Lakewood, New Jersey‘s Homeles Tent City (Pictures) is not exactly who you would think you would find as homeless.
- A third of Americans raised in the middle class—defined here as those between the 30th and 70th percentiles of the income distribution—fall out of the middle as adults. (Source)
- Nearly a third of Americans who were part of the middle class as teenagers in the 1970s have fallen out of it as adults. (Source)
- This spring, there were 21.8 million “doubled-up” households across the nation, a 10.7 percent increase from the 19.7 million households in the spring of 2007. (Source: Census Bureau)
- All told, Americans now have roughly $772 billion in outstanding credit card balances. (Source)
- Some 25 major U.S. corporations are paying their CEO’s more money then they give to Uncle Sam. (Source)
- The ratio between the average worker salary and CEO has risen from 263-1 in 2009 to 325-1 just last year. (Source)
And here’s an interesting read on how we got into this mess: The Price of 9/11 by Joseph E. Stiglitz, University Professor at Columbia University, a Nobel laureate in economics. In a few words: thank you George W. Bush and friends.
I’m not sure how much longer things can persist in this way, even get worse, without people in the US rebelling in the streets. This is absolutely not good. Yet the Republican party, in its undying commitment to convince American’s that government is bad, is willing to block all efforts to move forward on jobs.