(1 pm. – promoted by ek hornbeck)
While nearly everyone has acknowledged that the so-called Recovery has been pathetic at best, the implication that most people take for granted is that it is still better than the Great Recession.
But is that assumption true?
Take for example a very bottom line measurement – your paycheck.
Median annual household income has fallen more during the recovery than it did during the recession, according to a new study from former Census Bureau officials Gordon Green and John Code. Between December 2007 and June 2009, when the U.S. economy was in recession, incomes declined 3.2 percent. While during the recovery between June 2009 and June 2011 incomes fell 6.7 percent, the study found.
This situation won’t change anytime soon, as 9 in 10 Americans don’t expect to get a raise this year.
That by itself should cast doubt on the assumption that this “recovery” is real, but there are other ways to measure it as well.
Another measurement of the economy is Americans access to Life’s Basic Necessities, such as healthcare, food, and shelter.
Fewer Americans had access to basic life necessities in September. The nation’s Basic Access Index score fell to 81.4 last month — on par with the 81.5 measured in February and March 2009 amid the recession.
In fact, Chinese are struggling less with putting food on their tables and keeping a roof over their heads than Americans. And not by a small margin.
Of course there is always the poverty rate.
“No state had a statistically significant decline in either the number of people in poverty or the poverty rate between 2009 and 2010.” the Census reported.
The overall poverty rate climbed to 15.1 percent, or 46.2 million, up from 14.3 percent in 2009.
Food stamp recipients numbers continue to set record highs, up 8.4% from a year earlier.
Far more people have been added to the food stamp rolls since the start of the “recovery” in early 2009 than were added during the Great Recession.
Since there is no question that the vast majority of the working class have done worse during the so-called recovery, why is this still being considered a recovery at all?
There is an easy answer for that:
According to the latest Global Wealth Report from Credit Suisse, the 29.7 million people in the world with household net worths of $1 million (representing less than 1% of the world’s population) control about $89 trillion of the world’s wealth. That’s up from a share of 35.6% in 2010, and their wealth increased by about $20 trillion, according Credit Suisse.
The wealth of the millionaires grew 29% – about twice as fast as the wealth in the world as a whole, which now has $231 trillion in wealth.
The number of millionaire’s last year increased by 16,000, while millions fell deeper into poverty.
If millionaire’s wealth is growing much faster than the economy, then they must be taking it from people who aren’t millionaire’s, and that includes people who are lucky enough to still have jobs.
Profits per employee have gone up for the second year in a row, according to a study by the financial analysis company Sageworks, suggesting that companies continue to get more out of their employees as they slash their payrolls in an effort to get leaner. The findings also suggest that profits have been rising despite the lack of a corresponding increase in wages.
The media tells us that this isn’t class warfare, but exercising your right to protest wealth inequality is.
Funny how that works.