There is a spirit of somber, a soft unspoken sense of fear and disappointment in most urban cities in America; as millions of people are coping with the reality of a great economic decline in the US. Once a BECON OF HOPE, revered by millions as a place where even a lowly average person can earn enough money to provide a comfortable living for themselves and their family. Nowhere (but amidst the rich and famous, the powerful executives and their established and favored lieutenants) will you see this gleamor of hope. Instead, what you find in cities throughout the US is the sense of fear, a resigned feeling that things will get worse before it gets better, the only unresolved issue being "how much worse?". What plagues the US is spiral web of difficult and hardened residues of different substances that clogs the economic engine of the US, allowing it to move ever slightly. Though it is not dead, there is no question that the US economy has been halted by dynamic and systemic problems caused by decades of neglect and fiscal mismanagement.
The numbers tell the story. The US economy grew at an anemic rate of 1% in the second qtr of 2011, consumer spending make up 70% of the US economy, international trade deficit grew to 53.1 billion in june from $50.8 billion in May, the current account deficit in international transactions for the same period increased by $7.1 billion to $119.3 billion. On the micro level, the manufacturing sector of the US economy continues to decline, output per hour decreased by 2% in the 2nd qtr of this year. When you sum up all the data, basically what you have is a situation where corporate profits continue to make huge gains every quarter because they aren't dependent on US consumers alone. At the same time, job losses continue to pile up. Corporations have had many years to develop clients all over the world and their business strategy does not depend on US consumers alone. Many corporations cater to businesses and wealthy clients, in addition to average consumers. So, corporations and corporate profits are not a good measure of the economic condition in the US. Don't tell that to the people on Wall Street, however, because corporate profit is their bible.
In essence, the problem is that the economy is not well balanced, not in equilibrium as economists would say; and the gross imbalance causes a lot of bad side effects. Making matters worse is a federal government that is simply out of control, and the proof of that is in the HISTORIC downgrade of the US government's debt instruments by Standard's and Poor's. The end result is a further widening of the gap between the rich and the poor. On the latter point, the statistics there are also staggering. The number of Americans that fall in the class of poverty increases steadily. In fact, according to US statistics, at least 50% of Americans will live below the federal poverty line at some point before the age of 65. Currently 13% of Americans live below the poverty line and the number could be higher. Making things bad for the Obama administration is the fact 1 in 4 (25%) of African Americans live BELOW the poverty line. And those that are above the poverty line aren't doing much better. The American people are crying for solutions and are crying for job creation.
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