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the shrinking violet

The middle class is shrinking. Yesterday an a PEW report was released that showed that the middle class in the United States is now at 50% of the population; down from 61% in the early 1970’s. The loss has meant that some are getting richer while some are getting poorer; the lower class went from 25% to 30% while the upper class has gone from 14% to 21%.

I see it in my own city.

I can’t walk or drive anywhere now without seeing someone begging, sleeping in the street or trying to wash a windshield of an unsuspecting motorist at a red light.

This is ultimately an unsustainable scenario which breeds frustration, desperation and yes even radicalization. When people don’t have enough to eat and feel disenfranchised they despair.

The way we in the west have been living has not been good for the world. We have been hoarding the wealth and living greatly on the advantage of low wages in third world countries which made our cheap goods. But now even within our own borders we are seeing the effects of poverty. Our own people are falling off the grid.

It’s time for a serious wakeup call and maybe refocus our priorities on what’s important instead of amassing wealth so we can buy more cheap shit that doesn’t make us any happier.


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