The Middle Class In America Is Being Wiped Out – Here Are 60 Facts That Prove It

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The Middle Class In America Is Being Wiped Out - Here Are 60 Facts That Prove It

The middle class in the United States is being systematically destroyed, and nobody is doing much of anything to stop it.  Our incomes are shrinking, our share of the income pie is at an all-time low, our jobs are being sent overseas, debt burdens have soared to unprecedented heights and millions of formerly middle class Americans have fallen into poverty.  America once had the largest and most vibrant middle class that the world has ever seen, but now it is rapidly being shredded.  Unfortunately, this is particularly true for younger Americans.  Today, families that have a head of household that is under the age of 30 have a poverty rate of 37 percent.  That is astounding.  The truth is that there are not enough decent jobs for the hordes of young people that are entering the marketplace each year.  Once upon a time, a college degree was just about a guaranteed ticket to the middle class, but in 2011 more than half of all college graduates under the age of 25 were either unemployed or underemployed.  Sadly, statistics tell us that the younger you are, the less likely you are to have a chance to live “the American Dream”.  Nearly half the country already lives in a household that receives direct financial assistance from the federal government, and that percentage grows with each passing day.  We are rapidly being transformed from a country of middle class citizens into a country of impoverished government dependents.  If dramatic changes are not made, the middle class in America will continue to decline every single year.  What would our society look like if the middle class disappeared entirely at some point?

The following are 60 facts that prove that the middle class in America is being wiped out…

#1 According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the middle class is taking home a smaller share of the overall income pie than has ever been recorded before.

#2 As the middle class shrinks, more Americans than ever have been forced to become dependent on the federal government.  Federal spending on welfare programs has reached nearly a trillion dollars a year, and that does not even count Social Security or Medicare.  Welfare spending is now 16 times larger than when the “war on poverty” began.

#3 Median household income in the U.S. has fallen for four consecutive years.  Overall, it has declined by over $4000 during that time span.

#4 The U.S. economy continues to trade good paying jobs for low paying jobs.  60 percent of the jobs lost during the last recession were mid-wage jobs, but 58 percent of the jobs created since then have been low wage jobs.

#5 The number of Americans living in poverty has increased by more than 15 million since the turn of the century.

#6 The number of Americans on food stamps has grown from 17 million in the year 2000 to more than 47 million today.

#7 Back in the 1970s, about one out of every 50 Americans was on food stamps.  Today, about one out of every 6.5 Americans is on food stamps.

#8 According to the Pew Research Center, 61 percent of all American households were “middle class” back in 1971.  Today, that figure has fallen to 51 percent.

#9 In the United States today, 35 percent of all households live on $35,000 or less each year.

#10 One recent survey discovered that 85 percent of all middle class Americans believe that it is harder to maintain a middle class standard of living today than it was 10 years ago.

#11 62 percent of all middle class Americans say that they have had to reduce household spending over the past year.

#12 According to one survey, 77 percent of all Americans are now living paycheck to paycheck at least part of the time.

#13 In 1989, the debt to income ratio of the average American family was about 58 percent.  Today it is up to 154 percent.

#14 Total U.S. household debt grew from just 1.4 trillion dollars in 1980 to a whopping 13.7 trillion dollars in 2007.  This played a huge role in the financial crisis of 2008, and the problem has still not been solved.

#15 While debt loads for middle class families are going up, the net worth of those same families is going down.  According to the Federal Reserve, the median net worth of families in the United States declined “from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010“.

#16 The percentage of working age Americans with a job has been below 59 percent for 40 months in a row.

#17 Today there are about 3.25 million Americans that say that they want a job but that have not searched for a job in more than a year because they believe that it is so hopeless.

#18 When you total up all working age Americans that do not have a job in America today, it comes to more than 100 million.

#19 The unemployment rate for African-Americans rose dramatically from 13.2 percent in November to 14.0 percent in December.

#20 The unemployment rate for Americans in the 18 to 29 year-old age bracket is 11.5 percent overall.  For African-Americans in that age group, the unemployment rate is now up to 22.1 percent.  Millions of young people believe that the system has totally failed them.

#21 Families that have a head of household under the age of 30 have a poverty rate of 37 percent.

#22 Last year, an astounding 53 percent of all U.S. college graduates under the age of 25 were either unemployed or underemployed.

#23 Today, approximately 25 million American adults are living with their parents.

#24 According to the Tax Policy Center, the recent fiscal cliff deal will raise taxes more for those making between $30,000 and $200,000 a year than it will for those making between $200,000 and $500,000 a year.

#25 According to a Gallup survey, only 60 percent of all Americans say that they have enough money to live comfortably.

#26 One recent survey found that 63 percent of all Americans believe that the U.S. economic model is broken.

#27 Each year, the average American must work 107 days just to make enough money to pay local, state and federal taxes.

#28 Consumer debt in America has risen by a whopping 1700 percent since 1971.

#29 There are now 20.2 million Americans that spend more than half of their incomes on housing.  That represents a 46 percent increase from 2001.

#30 The average American household spent approximately $4,155 on gasoline during 2011, and electricity bills in the U.S. have risen faster than the overall rate of inflation for five years in a row.

#31 According to USA Today, many Americans have actually seen their water bills triple over the past 12 years.

#32 Health insurance costs have risen by 23 percent since Barack Obama became president. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, health care costs accounted for just 9.5% of all personal consumption back in 1980.  Today they account for approximately 16.3%.

#33 In 1999, 64.1 percent of all Americans were covered by employment-based health insurance.  Today, only 55.1 percent are covered by employment-based health insurance.

#34 According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, 46 percent of all American workers have less than $10,000 saved for retirement, and 29 percent of all American workers have less than $1,000 saved for retirement.

#35 The United States has lost an average of approximately 50,000 manufacturing jobs a month since China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001.

#36 The United States has lost more than 56,000 manufacturing facilities since 2001.

#37 According to the Economic Policy Institute, America is losing half a million jobs to China every single year.

#38 In 2000, there were more than 17 million Americans working in manufacturing, but now there are less than 12 million.

#39 Back in 1950, more than 80 percent of all men in the United States had jobs.  Today, less than 65 percent of all men in the United States have jobs.

#40 Since 2000, U.S. multinational corporations have eliminated 2.9 million jobs in the United States and have added 2.4 million jobs overseas.

#41 According to Professor Alan Blinder of Princeton University, 40 million more U.S. jobs could be sent offshore over the next two decades if current trends continue.

#42 According to one study, between 1969 and 2009 the median wages earned by American men between the ages of 30 and 50 declined by 27 percent after you account for inflation.

#43 At this point, one out of every four American workers has a job that pays $10 an hour or less.  If that sounds like a high figure, that is because it is.  Today, the United States actually has a higher percentage of workers doing low wage work than any other major industrialized nation does.

#44 According to the Pew Research Center, only 23 percent of all American workers believe that they have enough money to get them through retirement.

#45 According to the Economic Policy Institute, the wealthiest one percent of all Americans households on average have 288 times the amount of wealth that the average middle class American family does.

#46 In the United States today, the wealthiest one percent of all Americans have a greater net worth than the bottom 90 percent combined.

#47 According to Forbes, the 400 wealthiest Americans have more wealth than the bottom 150 million Americans combined.

#48 The six heirs of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton have a net worth that is roughly equal to the bottom 30 percent of all Americans combined.

#49 At this point, the poorest 50 percent of all Americans collectively own just 2.5% of all the wealth in the United States.

#50 The United States now ranks 93rd in the world in income inequality.

#51 The average CEO now makes approximately 350 times as much as the average American worker makes.

#52 Corporate profits as a percentage of GDP are at an all-time high.  Meanwhile, wages as a percentage of GDP are near an all-time low.

#53 Today, 40 percent of all Americans have $500 or less in savings.

#54 One recent survey found that 28 percent of all Americans do not have a single penny saved for emergencies.

#55 Shockingly, at this point 48 percent of all Americans are either considered to be “low income” or are living in poverty.

#56 According to one calculation, the number of Americans on food stamps now exceeds the combined populations of “Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming.”

#57 According to the U.S. Census Bureau, an all-time record 49 percent of all Americans live in a home where at least one person receives financial assistance from the federal government.  Back in 1983, that number was less than 30 percent.

#58 According to U.S. Census data, 57 percent of all American children live in a home that is either considered to be “poor” or “low income”.

#59 For the first time ever, more than a million public school students in the United States are homeless.

#60 According to a stunning new Gallup survey, 65 percent of all Americans believe that 2013 will be a year of “economic difficulty”.

The Beginning Of The End - The New Novel About The Future Of America By Michael T. Snyder
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  • A Dodgy Bloke

    It used to be during the 1950’s and 1960’s a kid out of high
    school could go work for a steel mill, a car plant or some other form of
    manufacturing. Where I live the big
    employers at time were Gates Rubber and Samsonite. You
    made a decent wage could buy a house a car and make the climb into the middle
    class. Today Gates and Samsonite are
    long gone. A kid coming out of high school providing they
    graduate high school now has to acquire a skill, they need to know math, how to write and how
    to communicate. Anybody who has spent any
    time with a teen something especially from a single parent home knows most don’t
    have these skills. There are jobs out
    there but they require advanced degrees that are heavy in math, and you need
    the ability to communicate. The death
    of the middle class like the rising violence in our society is a symptom of a
    much bigger much more complex global issue.

  • The problem is we are being bled dry by nations with labor wages much lower than our own. Our companies have fled our shores. There is a war going on that involves economics on a world wide level. Those that are the poorest nations can out compete us. Until this currency problem is addressed, we will not be able to compete with these countries.
    In order for us to survive, we have to change the rules. China and India have to be prevented from conquering us economically. It has gone on for a long time now without any action on the part of our leaders to prevent it.
    Well the time has come when decisive leadership in this area is the only thing that will save this country’s finances.
    We have to find a way to compete with the world.
    It did not happen over night. It will not be solved over night. But until we solve this very serious problem it will only get worse.
    The key here is balance. In the 50s, 60s, and 70s, wages were negotiated, jobs were negotiated with companies. In the 80s, the negotiations ended with the end of organized labor and Reagan. This is part of the results.
    We have to return to a reasonable balance and reasonable guarantees that our jobs will not be shipped overseas.

    That means the very people that have done this have to realize it didn’t work and that they are the ones that will eventually lose everything they have gained.
    It means these people in charge of our government have to set up game rules to the advantage of the middle class. Otherwise there will be no one left to pay taxes.
    There is a story of a city-state king conquered by Alexander the Great. Alexander brought the former king before him.
    Alexander said: “I have conquered your city, your women are being raped, your city is being pillaged. What say you?”
    The older wise King answered with a question: “This is no longer my city it is yours, who’s city is being plundered and raped?”
    Alexander thought a moment. There was silence in the room. Then he ordered all pillaging and raping stopped.
    Alexander liked the former king. When he moved on to conquer another city, he put the former king in charge of the city again as his representative.
    We are at that point in time.
    It is time to bring balance back into the equation. The people that have conquered the Unions now find themselves in the unenviable position of picking up the pieces as the country has gone bankrupt. The Unions are no longer there to bring balance back into the equation. So they better find a way to bring that balance back, before it costs them everything they own.

  • El Pollo de Oro

    “We have got to stop sending jobs overseas.”—Ross Perot in 1992

    When I was growing up back in the day, there were different paths to a middle class life. Blue-collar workers could go
    to trade school and earn a good living as construction workers, bricklayers, electricians, plumbers, etc. White-collar workers could go to college and earn a good living as doctors, attorneys, architects, computer programmers, etc. But that was before the poison of globalism turned the former USA into The Banana Republic of America, a Third World cesspool where bailed-out banksters and corporate criminals have formed a fascist alliance with government criminals and the middle class is being wiped out. Thanks to corporatists and their Democrap and Republi-Con conspirators, the BRA is becoming more and more of a banana republic with each passing day. So what will a post-middle class America look like? It won’t be pretty. Just take a look at Honduras, Venezuela or Papua New Guinea if you want to find out how dangerous a banana republic can be. It’s no fun when your wife or daughter is kidnapped for ransom by desperate gangs of thugs and you don’t dare call the cops because you know the cops are in cahoots with them.

    “We can expect a continuous and dangerous march towards
    corporatism and even fascism with even more loss of our liberties. Prosperity for our large middle class, though, will become an abstract dream.”—Ron Paul

    “The fiscal cliff? How about the bottomless pit!”—Gerald Celente

    “The globalists take the money they suck and move it to a Third World hellpit to sell us junk back to dig the hole deeper. They’re waging economic war against us.”—Alex Jones

    “The dollar isn’t just going to go down. It’s going to collapse.” –Peter Schiff

    “The white power structure, at least the Northeastern part, hopes having a black man as president will save the empire.” —Ishmael Reed

    “There’s no economic recovery. There’s not going to be one. I suspect that during these next four years, we’re going to see real problems with the dollar. We’re going to see probably, finally the inflation break loose, and they don’t have any policies to deal with that.”—Dr. Paul Craig Roberts

    But many Americans continue to swallow the poison of globalism. The race to the bottom continues, and the future will be violent, ugly, dangerous and unstable in this Third World horror movie called The Banana Republic of America.

    • Hangdog

      The forecasters you quote are respectable. I follow them, along with Micheal and look forward to their next commentary.
      I look back to Peter Schiffs spot on forecast of 2008. I listen to him carefully now. Although the short term forecast is not for the faint of heart.

  • Bye bye to my piece of the American pie…

  • levotb

    Michael avoids the obvious reason for our demise–IMMIGRATION, both legal and illegal. He doesn’t even mention the word, much less the numbers. I estimate the illegal alien population in America to be between 40 and 60 million. 10 million illegals are working for a paycheck in America, millions more work under the table. Hundreds of thousands–perhaps a million or more–illegals have knocked out American small business owners, having long since taken over their businesses. If these millions of illegals were forced to leave the U.S., employment and wages would rise considerably and we’d save billions by keeping U.S. dollars here.

    • 2Gary2

      you are correct. we need zero low skill immigration.

  • RU3

    How about 98% of all Americans are living in mounting debt which is rising!

  • 2Gary2

    Tax the rich and spread the wealth. People spending creates jobs, not tax cuts for the rich.


      There is no way to tax the rich when they control the money supply and Washington.You are being decieved.Taxes are paid by everyone but the wealthy.They can just leave whenever they want or just find ways around paying taxes leaving us all with a deficit which leads to money printing which leads to higher prices for goods we need to buy on top of more taxes.Its time for a tax revolt.We need to starve the beast.



  • Yes, it’s time to scrap the constitution, the rule of law and take away the guns. After all, those angry, starving, homeless, jobless, rioting, armed citizens might use the law to go after
    the real criminals: those who planned and then used the 9/11 inside job to shred the constitution, loot the US via the eternal war on terror, underwritten by China, who is now buying up the
    US lock, stock, and barrel; and go after the bankers who impoverished them via the toxic mortgage/LIBOR fraud scams.

  • A Dodgy Bloke

    I know this is off topic but I think this guys hit’s it out of the park with what’s wrong with kids. Any regular reader of Drudge would have seen it. If you haven’t it’s well worth a read.

  • Well, bye bye to my slice of the “American pie”…. Not even enough crumbs left to go around…

  • 13hawks


  • Tim

    While the causes of the decline of the middle class are historical accidents, the consequences of the decline of the middle class have been anticipated by the doctrine of anacyclosis.

  • Birger_Skruddusvingen

    “The truth is that there are not enough decent jobs for the hordes of young people that are entering the marketplace each year.”

    Well, then it’s a good thing that you have virtually no (legal or illegal) immigration to add to the population/problems.
    Oh, wait a minute…

  • brux

    Interesting stuff telling me stuff I already knew yet again … and ain’t it so funny that in the current political atmosphere the only think that will solve this is shunned like poison … well, that’s if anything will solve this.

    Incentives have to be aligned. The rich have a responsiblity to this country they are shirking, and the class warfare aspect of this is not even talked about by Alex Jones and his Libertarian bunch because y’all are too busy supporting the very forces that bringing the country down, the corporations and money.

    All Libertarianism is the a quicker way to bring about the Republican plan to privatize everything, and that is going on the wrong direction, we need more public works, and when the rich are not investing and creating jobs here, guess what, their responsibility to pay taxes has to go way up.

  • Kathy Mayo

    This is exactly what the very wealthy want! Only rich & poor! just like all the 3rd world nations. It’s disgusting & disgraceful!!

  • Ruth

    students are.homeless… but they all phones!

  • As a young child who listened to the radio in the 70’s, I saw this and everything else coming and wisely chose against bringing more humans to this planet. Most people, child or adult, don’t have the intelligent/intuitive capacity to forecast and therefore allow the landslide to engulf them. It’s your children who will suffer, not mine. Most of you still haven’t even noticed Geoegineering, the biggest threat going on over the last several decades. You’ve got a hell of a lot more to worry about than the economy. The intelligent are preparing for sustainable survival, not for paying bills.