Half of all US workers make less than $30k a year. And that number is probably massaged like all other statistics. But let’s just assume that if you are one of the lower half you never went to college and you are working part time at the low end or on the job training management to get to the high end. Because you can’t afford any of the trappings of normal supposedly middle class working stiffs, you can actually live pretty well on chump change ( technically, “chump change” is the wages you get working, which are barely over welfare wages-hence, you are a chump for working. But, like all ghetto lingo, it has been appropriated ).
On $15k a year I was putting half towards preps ( not even including the books I was buying ). At $10k a year I was pissing and moaning to the boss that I needed LESS hours so I didn’t have to pay the ObammyCare Tax. And I had enough to pay half to the NOL for rent and the other half went to preps ( not just End-O-D-World preps but economic collapse preps, such as stockpiling day to day groceries and pumping up the savings. I still treated myself to the occasional case of rimfire or 303 ammo, or boxes of wool clothing, or whatever, but that was minor ).
But for OVER $30k a year, I make the safe assumption that almost nobody makes that kind of scratch without a college degree. And if you went to college, you probably want a professional job. Which means you have adopted a middle class lifestyle. With all its pitfalls, pratfalls and punishing financial obligations. Tuition loans, a car loan, rent, medical insurance. What you consider the bare minimum. Me, I think food and shelter are minimums, and I don’t delude myself how minimum that gets in both quantity and quality, but most folks have no clue because they were raised in an atmosphere of White People Problems.
Let’s break down the finances. And I’m not even going to approach the higher end of the scale. Just what a relatively frugal middle class worker can afford. That means HALF of the average expense for most things. Not the average cost of a car ( $35k ) but a $16k used vehicle. Not renting a house, but getting a roommate. Half the average cost nationally. $30k a year is $2500 a month. States without income tax are 20% total taxes, but those are few and far between so let’s call withholding taxes a more realistic 25%. After taxes you bring home $1900.
Half the average rent for an apartment is $500. If you are poor making under $30k, you get an apartment with more rooms or rent a trailer to save money, but here you are “rich” and feel entitled so you only must sacrifice and take in a single roommate. Half the utility bill, nothing fancy, nothing is an energy pig, Netflix rather than cable and a slow speed Internet connection ( each pays half ) is a minimum of $150. So subtract $650 from $1900 for $1250. Your college loans will probably be at least $200. Down to $1050. Your car payment, seven years at zero interest on $16k is $190. Say you get a great deal on insurance for “only” $110. Now you are down to $750.
We’ll assume you were smart and bought a rice burner and it never needs repairs and is really good on gas. But like everyone else you must commute a good ways. It isn’t unreasonable to assume $100 in gas a month. Now you are at $650. The cheapest medical insurance is probably $300-$400, but let’s be optimistic and call it “only” $200. $450 left in your paycheck. Even if you never go out to eat, which you will as you must socialize to have friends or get laid, you are still struggling to have much of anything left over of your remaining cash once you go grocery shopping.
But what if you smoke? That job is pretty darn stressful. That definitely eats up a good chunk of your grocery money. But what the hell, right? Smoking suppresses apatite. Yet even if you don’t have any vices, the pocket change you have left is needed for car tires, a small credit card balance, clothing and shoes. How about a darn hobby? You can’t even afford that. Really, nobody can afford to live, not normally, on an amount HALF the workers don’t even make.
This is how quickly the failing banks have gamed the system to debt-enslave most of the population making any decent wages at all. In one single decade, the national debt doubled. The prices of rent has doubled. Health insurance WAY more than doubled. Car prices have doubled ( for crappier cars ). College degrees doubled if they didn’t increase even more ( for far worse standards of education ). Taxes have doubled. And that was ONLY double the “normal” inflation. In good economic times the inflation rate was a paltry 3-4%. The last decade saw 7-10% and look at the mess THAT got us in. Nobody can afford a rather bleak and dismal LOWER middle class lifestyle.
What happens when inflation goes even higher? Obviously, folks can make it on far lower wages. But if the upper half of earners cannot carry the 70% of the economy which is consumption, what do the lower half of workers do to keep the economy running? They don’t. We have obviously lowered wages and raised prices enough that economic contraction is built into the cake, and that is without adding any other emergencies to the equation. You know, like the petrodollar collapse. Or another oil price spike. Or a stock market crash, when the 50% of companies not making a profit now go bankrupt. Who can claim the Good Times ( relatively ) will stay with us forever more? Best to try to insulate yourself from the worst parts of the rising prices and Go Redneck. The middle class is already dead, a zombie. Don’t cling to the illusion.
END ( today's related link http://amzn.to/2Fpzaio )
* By the by, all my writing is copyrighted. For the obtuse out there
@Jim. I tried to post twice at the bonus blog in the DIY gun vice post, and they didn’t go through. Previous comments in other posts were no problem. Also, can you disable the Captcha feature over there?ReplyDelete
Remember, you are talking to someone who uses Blogger because I need point and click administration. I have no idea what is going on-I disabled the function that e-mails me when there is a comment posted, and I'm still getting them. Now, what the heck is the "captcha" feature?Delete
When I tried to comment in that post, I didn’t get the usual “your comment will need to be approved by an administrator” message, I just didn’t get anything. Sometimes you don’t always see this message, and the comment still goes through, but not this time.Delete
The Captcha is the feature where you have to prove that you’re not a web bot, usually by having to click on an image that includes various items such as “click on all the images that contain a car”. Don’t worry about that, it’s no biggie, it’s just a mild pain in the ass (that’s what Richard Simmons said, hah! :D ). You don’t have it here, so at one point you must have disabled it.
someone gave me a hint about captcha. told me to skip it and push the 'post comment' button. works like a charm.Delete
There is always something weird going on with Blogger. Always an issue. It usually always clears up, though, thankfully.Delete
"The Captcha is the feature where you have to prove that you’re not a web bot..."Delete
Whenever I have to use that feature I'm always struck by the irony - I have to prove to a robot that I'm not a robot.
Skynet does like competition.Delete
Your other blog ate my comments as well (made over multiple days on two different computers... no I don't have two computers). The worst thing? Those comments were pure gold. They'd have ended world hunger but Lord Bison lost them & now little Durk Durk Mohammed Jihad is going to go hungry tonight. For shameDelete
I think they "new and improved" the newer sites. I better keep this one active until the end. Seems to be nothing but issues there. I would, perhaps, suggest commenting here and referencing there so I don't get confused. Hump stopping world hunger ( more for them, less for us-immigrate to England or Canada if you don't like it in Oilabia ) and especially hump Durk Durk. What has he done for me lately?Delete
Ditto on 7:32 am post. I typed in a long, brilliant comment and it went missing.Delete
Ditto on 7:32 am post. I typed in a long, brilliant comment and it went missing.Delete
I truly apologize. I value comments-Hell, they give me most of my article ideas.Delete
7:32 here. Yep, I learned the hard way, and that’s why I always make drafts now. Every time I post here, or elsewhere, I have a copy of all of my comments. I know it seems anal (again, insert Richard Simmons joke of your choice here 😀 ) but I can’t tell you how many times this has happened to me at various sites. Heck, I’ve even accidentally deleted a few comments myself as an administrator at a different site.Delete
Is it me or are Richard Simmons jokes as rare as blond ones? No sense of humor anymore. I know I get into the bad habit of not saving my long winded comments. And I know it's my fault if they disappear. Why, I should know that a blog site can't be expected to perform basic functions!Delete
Yeah, you’ve long since not been allowed to tell those sorts of jokes anymore Jim, in the presence of what today passes for polite company (That’s pretty much everyone, even including those on what passes for the right wing today). In fact, this is the only place that I feel that I can actually get away with it.Delete
Yes, I find that the drafts are a must. Many times it appears as if your comment has gone through successfully, only to find that it did not. In some cases, I’ve had to post my comments up to 2 or 3 times at this site before they posted. Keep drafts kids for those long comments, you’ll thank me later.
It helps I have no class and enjoy rude and crude humor. Hell, we can't even have Pollack jokes anymore. And those were funny, I don't care who you are. Speaking of, Larry The Cable Guy, Health Inspector is on Amazon Prime.Delete
when we lived in canada ukrainian jokes were the rage- amongst ukrainians. one was -how many polaks does it take to install a light bulb?Delete
answer- three. one to hold the bulb and two to turn the ladder.
ukie style- how many ukrainians does it take to install a light bulb?
answer- eleven- one to hold the bulb and ten to turn the house.
they told a polish joke and then upped it to a ukrainian joke.
that was over 40 years ago.
I hadn't heard that one before :)Delete
Hey Jim. Did you hear the one about the polish coyote that got its leg caught in a trap?Delete
Chewed off 3 legs and still had a leg caught in the trap 😀
Oh, that's just terrible!Delete
I had a vision! The Great Bison coming down out of the hills carrying a stone tablet. I strained to see the words written on it: It said, " Don't Cling to the Illusion". Suddenly! my long time existential crisis was over! Free at last!ReplyDelete
And how else may I be of service?Delete
i thank you also for that 'don't cling'.Delete
it is usual to keep thinking that normalcy will return, but not to realize that 'no middle class' is now the norm.
The deep changes are coming so quick now it is hard to process them all. It's probably normal to just fall back on preconcieved notions, even for those seeking answersDelete
“On $15k a year I was putting half towards preps”ReplyDelete
I gotta say, $15k a year sounds pretty darn good to me. But I’m also the minion that’s been unemployed since 2015, so that probably factors in on my thoughts. If one were to go with your junk land plan, and live within relatively close proximity to work, that’s a comfortable living wage. Of course this assumes no debt and bachelorhood.
Even a room rental situation is far cheaper than an apartment, and can work out well in some cases, if you choose carefully. I had a friend that was always moving every few months (Flaky, and somewhat on the edge of the law in his dealings, so it was necessary). He found some pretty good room rental situations. In one scenario, he rented the entire bottom half of a house (It was a day basement). In another, he rented a converted garage, and in yet another, rented a shed in someone’s backyard. In these situations he always had total privacy, and also avoided the generally unpleasant roommate scenario.
If you feel safe on one, it’s tough to beat a motorcycle as a commute vehicle. A motorcycle might add up to ¼ the cost of a car, if that. If you can bike to work, then all the power to you. But generally in a junk land situation, that won’t be the case.
Actually, that $15k with half to preps was while married to the last wife. Of course, by that time, four years into living out at the BPOD, she hated me with every fiber of her being. So it was all dysfunctional relationship. But you could get that with a more expensive wife :)Delete
"But you could get that with a more expensive wife :)"Delete
I already have.
When I rode my pushy to work I saved so much money it was insane. I was also paying below market rent (there was nothing wrong with my rental either! It was just that I had scored a good thing) & I was raking in the overtime (doubled my pay).Delete
Now I'm earning less and need a car to make the distance, even if it was cycling distance my fellow road users are aggressive on the road to the point of homicidal. One party I was at middle aged middle class people were applauding a guy there that had been arrested for punching a cyclist cooing how they wish they could have joined in
They who cling harder are afraid that which they love most will be taken away. The clear trend is the 90% must give up their cars and the 90% are more pissed about that than losing the Constitution. So now you need to spend more to earn less. I feel ya, dawg!Delete
as to cyclists-- some are so rude, hold up rush hour traffic instead of moving over.Delete
some are polite and don't hog the road, just like the rare school bus drivers who move over to let the train of cars pass when there is a wide space on the road.
would be nice if some of the main streets that are well travelled corridors would have parallel bike roads wide enough for two way riding and a pass lane. easily done in states with flat land.
it has got to be the wave of the future when gas tries to go back to 4 $ per gallon. that almost broke us.
any of you on town councils or with the ear of a town councillor might make the bike road suggestion in the right quarter.
maybe invest in a motor scooter cum bike shop and supply store with a mechanic on call? it is a thought. start very small and expand when people have to give up cars.
what peeves me here, where there are sidewalks, is that the walkways are not kept clear from snow, and, indeed, are often piled with the plowings. people have to walk in traffic. not good.
I've thought that a mobile bike mechanic ( on a bike hauling a small shop on a trailer ) would be a sweet business. Almost no cost and you can undercut the retail guys. Downside-working in the winter.Delete
Yeah, 30k is a high end of the going rate out there in much of former u.s.a. Most folks in my Vegas wasteland scratch dirt with the chickens for half that. There are huge amounts of people stacked up in multiples in houses,apartments,trailers,a car,flat out homeless, that have to make ends meet on part time, pick-up work/day labor, under the table immigrant labor etc. Many are aged out or lack solid skills/smarts to get good work, if even available or offered,(not their falt per se, changed economy-society) This dynamic is going to make things really bad real quick when collapse comes. It will be like imagery on t.v. of hordes of refugees, poor assed anyways, fleeing with nowhere to go and not even carrying their own pot to piss in. Avoid crowds. Thanxs again Jim!ReplyDelete
Vegas would definitely improve with 1/20th the people. But then, so would Elko. The issue is no matter where you are, idiots from elsewhere head towards you. 3rd largest country in the world, with the same economy as the two other more populous ones. We even have bubonic plague just like India. At least most of India and most of China have a more unified culture.Delete
Russia would be improved with 10% more population if they came in the form of Russian-ethnic Christian babies. Actually, all of the Western world would be improved with this in the next 10 years. Healthy, smart, normal kids, in batches of 3-8 per intact family would be great. Moms who stay home and make good kids, pls.Delete
I wonder if they are still offering the baby bonuses like they were.Delete
Jim you are right about so few earning over 30.000 that the Walmart amazon McDonalds economy has to crash soon. My opinion is the Washington elite (dems and republican) are stirring the pot for civil unrest to take place for any reason while Trunp is in office. It is unlikely trump will run in 2020 so it must fail before he is out.ReplyDelete
I don't know how much is the economy and how much is incompetence, but I wonder if Wally and Mickies are operating at a loss like Amazon is. Obammy did his best to stir up unrest. His legacy will be with us forever. Both for breaking the economy through the medical industry and enabling Blacks. It truly is a wonder the center is still holding.Delete
Quick update from DingolandReplyDelete
Just stopped off at my favourite drive through on my way home from a a very tedious drive to pick up my new .22lr blasta (it's got a fricken kangaroo engraved on the receiver... it's a bit of history) but I digress
Stopped in at the drive through because I've got a party to attend & the manager there was telling me he's had to drop prices because everyone is spending less. The ladies who drive nice cars & would buy a $30 bottle of wine are buying $15, the soccer mums from $15 to $10 - $7. Some guys have dropped right down & are no better than wino's. But a certain population are still buying decent stuff, they're on welfare so their cost of living is subsidized
Why, who would have thought jacking up real estate prices would have dropped disposable income! I'm looking forward to banker stew.Delete