Monday, January 21, 2019

Up against the truth

Trump's federal shutdown has exposed an unpleasant truth to many federal employees and government contract workers - they are only one missed paycheck away from financial disaster. Those who are described as middle-class have discovered they’re not immune to the harsh reality of living paycheck to paycheck.

The end of the month is less than two weeks away, and those furloughed workers will collectively owe more than $400 million in mortgage and rent payments, to say nothing of utility and day-to-day living bills. But this economic insecurity  is not limited to furloughed federal workers, however. According to a report by Forbes Magazine,  78 percent of all US workers are living paycheck to paycheck. One quarter of workers are financially unable to set aside any money for savings after each pay cycle. Three quarters of workers are in debt, and half of those believe they always will be. Four in ten Americans can’t, according to a new report from the Federal Reserve Board. Those who don’t have the cash on hand say they’d have to cover it by borrowing or selling something.

Financially speaking, millions of people in the US spend their lives on the wage-slave tread-mill, running fast and getting nowhere. You have no savings to speak of, a wallet full of maxed-out credit cards, but more bills coming in the mail every day, yet you need to eat, need to commute to keep a job, need medicine and have to buy clothes and basic necessities plus the rent or mortgage is due. The Trump shutdown has made even professionals like the air traffic controllers face up to this stark reality.

Because it has been this way since we can remember,  it need not always have to be this way. It is time we remembered that, and acted accordingly.

Adapted from here

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