Posted On: Saturday - December 29th 2018 9:12PM MST
In Topics:   Global Financial Stupidity  Economics  US Feral Government
... yet still unfortunately living paycheck-to-paycheck:
As a nice tie-in to our previous post on the sad, yet uplifting (to us!), plight of US Feral Gov't workers being off work (who knew?) for a while, we have this: The Philadelphia Inquirer/Daily News bemoans the condition of "our" Feral Gov't families living paycheck-to-paycheck. Yeah, we're all broken up about those family's tax-payer funded budgets.
Feral Gov't workers/shutdown notwithstanding, this living paycheck-to-paycheck lifestyle by all kinds of Americans has been a sore spot for the Peak Stupidity blog. In Credit? Forget it! You got it? You get it!* we bemoaned (lots of bemoaning goin on ..) modern-day Americans' terrible spendthrift ways and the living on credit cards, school-loan money, and other debt that pretty much mirrors what happens with the US Federal budget. The voter's permissiveness in allowing the US Gov't to act in this way is very much like the way a son will follow in the footsteps of his spendthrift Dad, since it's the only way he knows as he grows up.
Beyond the obvious problems that Feral and Private American employees will have due to this lifestyle, it also results in a big dampening of any flames of freedom and pushback against the STATE and Big-Biz. With regards to a specific example of a slightly-outspoken Google employee getting fired, Peak Stupidity wrote (in the posts linked-to):
The closer you are bound to your job via your tight month-to-month budget, the less likely you will quit, speak-out, or even push-back a slight bit, when you are harassed with all the mass stupidity. You are not a free agent if you live like this - you are much more beholden to your employer and must be more of a suck-up, a kiss-ass, whatever it entails, to the dieversity and PC-crap than if you had a year or two's salary put away to find a new job or even a new career and leave the stupidity behind!Now, that doesn't apply very well to Gov. workers anyway, who are not usually the type to WANT any freedom. Therefore, let's get back to the subject of the US Feral Gov't temporarily-laid-off workers, as discussed in the article, with first a quick look at this graph:
(Note: I DO NOT LIKE this graphs due to the y-axis not starting at 0.
That's wrong, but it's the best I've got on short notice.)
With their health benefits and promised pensions (haha, ahahaha!) the gov't workers do pretty well for themselves when compared to employees in private business doing the same jobs, well OK, same job descriptions but actually working most of the day. No, I don't think they'll all see those pensions, but the point is that decently-paid private employees normally save some money in 401K's that the Gov employees have available to spend.
An amazingly-responsible Congressman from Pennsylvania made one comment about the shutdown that's got folks atwittering:
These and other #ShutdownStories took off online after Rep. Scott Perry (R., Pa.) suggested last week that a gap in wages wouldn’t be so bad.Exactly! That's WTF I want to know.
"Who's living that they're not going to make it to the next paycheck?" he asked reporters, adding that most of those impacted would qualify for back pay.
They're not immune to the harsh reality of living paycheck to paycheck, according to dozens of people who responded to a Washington Post inquiry on Twitter.I don't believe it, not when I see the bar/restaurant scene the biggest thing going in the economy (besides our expanding tweet-infrastructure). I do understand the difficulty in trying to live off a the low-pay service jobs that are much of the economy now, but the same people are the ones who frequent the industry. Peak Stupidity's thoughts on the coffee shop scene appear in Thoughts from the Coffee Shop and Starbucks vs. the Viennese Kaffeehaus. Listen, when people are still buying 4 dollar fancy coffees at least once per day, then they are not doing their best to avoid living paycheck-to-paycheck.
They’re millennials, Gen Xers, and baby boomers. They work in big cities and rural towns. They’ve tried to save — but rent, child care, student loans, and medical bills get in the way.
"My husband is a Park Ranger in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and he had to sign his furlough papers," one woman tweeted. "We have a 4 yr. old and a 4-month-old, and we don't know when his next check will come. Mortgage is due, Christmas 2 days away."What you do is not buy anything you don't immediately need until you've saved up for emergencies. Hey, not everyone gets Christmas presents, and this is just one year. We are a spoiled bunch in this country. Hey, go find a camping spot. The park's closed, so who's gonna complain? Sorry, I have no sympathy.
“Broke my lease to accept new fed job for which I have to attend 7 months of training in another state,” wrote another Twitter user who later deleted the tweet. “Training canceled with shutdown. Homeless. Can’t afford short(?)-term housing/have to work full-time for no pay/returning Christmas presents.”Again, there's that Christmas present talk. How much money would I spend on Christmas presents with nothing in the bank. Check out the US Marines' Toys for Tots. Now wait, you're HOMELESS? Bad planning on your part does not constitute
Lest the reader think I'm picking too hard on the Feral employees, the article has many more stories from the private sector. Actually, the next guy is a Professor, so, though not US Gov't, he is most likely supported by California taxpayers to some extent.
Sol Smith, chair of liberal arts at a Southern California college, said he landed his job after earning three degrees. But with four daughters and mounting health-care costs, he said, saving just isn’t possible.In 17 years, including before the kids, you haven't saved up any money? This guy's a Professor, in fact, the Chairman of the Department, so one can see that the financial stupidity goes right up through the PhD level.
“I see no way out,” he wrote in an email to the Post. “I am 40, have built a strong career, have 17 years experience, and if something were to happen to me, my wife and kids would be homeless within a year when my life insurance ran out.”
Nope, Peak Stupidity is in agreement with Representative Scott Perry here. This is no way to live, people! The middle class lifestyle is indeed being slowly wiped out, but you people make it worse by trying to live the lifestyle you are not able to pay for. That seems to be the American way now. That makes our problems even worse, as people are too soft, and in no position, to fight against the changes that are being forced upon us.
* Addendum here