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The economic meltdown is taking its toll

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posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:09 AM
As the final industrial power houses keep falling due to the economic meltdown the fate of the American Worker is now in more Jeopardy than ever.

Spending Less, Working Less , Americans are finding themselves working less and spending less and in an economy that is fix on revolving debt, credit and consumerism that is not what the nation needs right now.

In the month of September, 2,269 companies laid-off 50 or more employees. The hardest hit sectors of the economy were the financial industry, the auto industry, the airline industry, the retail industry and construction.

Since the credit crisis hit last summer, the financial industry has shed 300,000 jobs. Goldman Sachs has cut 10 percent of its 32,594-person workforce. The airline industry has cut 36,000 jobs.

As consumers continue to rein in spending the job market is expected to worsen. When Oct. jobs losses are announced Nov. 7, they are expected to exceed 200,000. Unemployment, currently at 6.1 percent, could reach nearly 10 percent by the end of 2009, according to some analysts.

Are we still hearing our president telling that America is doing fine and that we have Plenty of jobs lately?.

I don't think so.

America dependency of goods and services is coming to a stand

In just the last two weeks, the list of companies announcing their intention to cut workers has read like a Who’s Who of corporate America: Merck, Yahoo, General Electric, Xerox, Pratt & Whitney, Goldman Sachs, Whirlpool, Bank of America, Alcoa, Coca-Cola, the Detroit automakers and nearly all the airlines

Why are we still depending on our good for nothing government to help fix the problems in this nation?

Who is working for the American people in our government this days?


[edit on 28-10-2008 by marg6043]

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:12 AM
Out of curiousity, are the brunt of these cuts intended for blue- or white-collar positions?

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:14 AM
I'm a Labour Relations Manager in the automotive industry.

I had to let go another batch of workers yesterday because GM moved the work to a more 'favorable' climate which translates roughly to . . . .

Forget you folks. We can send this over to China or India or Viet Nam and cut our costs even further

They do this all the while they leach from the taxpayers' wallets to save their executive arses.

I'm so angry . . . and scared . . . and defeated . . . and tired . . .

For the first time in my 46 years, I can't see a 'future'.

That's the real toll.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:15 AM
reply to post by GoalPoster

Thank you for your sincere opinion here GoalPoster. It's nice to hear a "human element" in all of this.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:20 AM
You forgot to add that everyday 2,700 America homeowners receives a foreclosure notice.... You don't hear much about that as reporters don't like to go to the tent cities springing up everywhere in the nation.... Makes for bad press don't ya know...

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:26 AM
Had to post in this thread because this is real ladies and genst. I'm out of a job. I was laid off 15 days ago. You know how much work there is for a carpenter in my union right now??? JACK SQUAT. And the lay offs are still rolling too.

i was making a lot more money as well... unemployment MAXES OUT at $450 a week....... i know i can make rent.... but if i want to pay my utilities i had better start hiding snacks around the house now becasue i won't have anyhting left to feed us.... Yes my friends this is the reality of the situation. This is the type of thing that will make an honest man turn criminal. Working men and women with no where to work and mouths to feed??? what would you guys do?

Hopefully that makes it easier to understand why i am a little pissed at the governement...

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:27 AM
reply to post by MOFreemason

Its affecting from the higher levels (no the CEOs with the power in Washington) to the regular worker.

At least the financial workers have the means to move oversea looking for opportunities on the new emerging markets but the industrial worker the service worker is not so lucky.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:35 AM
reply to post by W3RLIED2

I'm retired nowadays but just a couple days ago I I went to my local union hall to visit an friend... It was hard to not to notice not a single job was up on the board...
just people posting ads to sell their tools.... now that's bad when a man has to sell his tools!

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:40 AM
reply to post by DaddyBare

Interesting that in my neck of the woods most of the workers you see along side of the road in constructions are immigrants.

They don't have to put them on the pay rolls and they bring them to work by truck loads in the morning for the constructions sides.

When the electrical company was changing the green boxes in my neighborhood the ones doing the dirty work were all immigrants.

I happen to have one of those boxes in my yard and I approached two of the immigrant workers digging the box out and try to speak to them about their work with the electric company, but none of them wanted to talk.

Even when they were speaking in Spanish and I happen to be Spanish too.

They will not talk.

[edit on 28-10-2008 by marg6043]

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:41 AM
reply to post by DaddyBare

yeah well i won't be selling those, but i think there is 3 jobs that are current and they already have full crews. On top of that theres already 65 people on the out of work list. That may not sound like much but trust me its a lot. Worse still is that 2 of those 3 jobs are going to be done by January and the next real gig isnt until November of 09.... You ever seen a proud union man say he was ready to go scabbin'????

Well you just did.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:43 AM
I'm glad I'm not smart enough to play the stock market.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 08:55 AM
reply to post by marg6043

I can clear that up a little... see a lot of those labor (Unskilled) jobs go out to subcontractors they do not have to pay scale therefore are cheaper than doing it in house.... when I worked for the phone company they laid all the new cables and set all the man holes... all we had to do was follow behind and connect the wires... Working for a phone company is a rather cushy job most of the time...See you only need a licensed journeyman to make the final connections, anyone can do the rest...

kind of on a darker note these sub's charge by the foot laid not per job so you do see a lot of abuse... rather than just drop ten feet of wire to make the hook up to your house a lot of these guys will bury a hundred foot spool in your yard... that charge ends up going to you in the end...

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 09:03 AM

Originally posted by W3RLIED2
reply to post by DaddyBare

yeah well i won't be selling those, but i think there is 3 jobs that are current and they already have full crews. On top of that theres already 65 people on the out of work list. That may not sound like much but trust me its a lot. Worse still is that 2 of those 3 jobs are going to be done by January and the next real gig isnt until November of 09.... You ever seen a proud union man say he was ready to go scabbin'????

Well you just did.

Not to sounds disrespectful or anything , but i have always seen unions shoot themselves in the foot by demanding to high of rates and setting the rules of the union before the customer..

I work with union workers all the time and do the exact same work, and the union guys make 2-3 times what I make for the same work. And we as a company try to avoid venues with unions as they hamper our productivity and the bottom line.. I can totally see why your union isn't getting work, people are cutting back everywhere and there looking at the bottom line.

Don't get me wrong, unions are a good idea but in general, as a client I see why there are bad when they get out of control.

As for scabbing, i say do what you need to do to make ends meet were in trying times and from what you have said you wont be the only guy scabbing.. sound like you will be in the majority.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 09:08 AM
There hasn't been a credit card I haven't liked or a loan deal I haven't jumped at or at least thought about jumping on. I for one want to admit my contributing role to this meltdown fiasco. As much as I want to blame the government for it, I also have to look in the mirror and realize that I helped create the problem. Anyone care to join me?

Instead of putting it on credit, I should have payed cash.

Instead of buying BS stuff on credit I should have saved and invested.

I spent countless money at casinos, money that I didn't have. Oh how I loved credit. Now I have seen the light and realize that credit is good if used in moderation. But before this meltdown I never stopped to think what moderation was. Now I have a better understanding.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 09:32 AM
Consumer Confidence in U.S. Plunged to Record Low (Update1)

By Shobhana Chandra

Oct. 28 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. consumer confidence fell to the lowest level on record in October as stocks plunged and banks shut off credit, raising the risk spending will tumble.

The Conference Board's confidence index decreased to 38, less than forecast and the lowest reading since monthly records began in 1967, the New York-based research group said today. A separate report showed home values continued to drop in August.

Household wealth has evaporated as the Standard & Poor's 500 index verged on its worst one-month loss in 70 years, home equity shrank and job losses mounted. The dimming outlook signals consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the economy, will deteriorate further, deepening the U.S. slump.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 09:39 AM
The bottom line on all of this is that I'm just plain old scared now.

Having been the one sitting across the table to tell people that their jobs are gone and not coming back has given me great insight into how it affects people.

The dull realization of it is that eventually, and probably sooner than later, I will be the one sitting across the table having my job taken away by the same corporate elite that stole so many others.

Awaiting that and watching our tax dollars going to those same elite while they collect their hundreds of millions in annual compensation fills me with the greatest degree of contempt for those responsible for what is going on in our economy today.

Some . . . a lot of that contempt is very inwardly focused, too. As one poster stated, I too have to accept the fact that I am in the position that I am because I bought in to the live now, pay later lifestyle.

A five years ago, I had money in the bank, a boat, a car, a house, vacations . . . all the trappings of a pretty comfortable lifestyle. It was all built on the idea that I'd always have this job, I'd always get those annual 'merit increases' to start saving and paying down more. But, I've not had a wage increase in those five years. The paydown of debt hasn't gone as planned. It has gone from living comfortably to just getting by.

The last straw came in August when the boat took a crapper. The plan was to fix and sell it. But the bill was way more than I could afford and the sale fell through as the buyer also lost their job. Now the repair shop has 'repoed' the boat and tacked on legal, seizure, storage cost and the like to the tune of nearly $5000.

For the first time in my 46 years, I'm going to 'lose' something . . . have something taken away because I can't pay my bills. It isn't that I don't want to pay . . . I can't pay.

My investments are basically worthless and my pension that I've contributed to weekly over the past twelve years has lost half of its value . . . poof . . . gone . . . vaporized into that mythical 'faith based' air upon which our current system is built.

The reality is . . . I'm the average . . . the norm . . . the 'Joe Six Pack' who has been out there living the dream as advertised . . . I am one of millions in the same predicament.

This isn't a woe is me thing . . . I realize I got into this mess, and will somehow come out of it with at best a place to live and reliable transportation that will get me here and there while I look for a job.

I've started stockpiling food so my partner and kids have something to eat at least in the short term, but I wonder what happens when that runs out. How will I keep the house heated, the lights lit, the car fuelled?

Knowing that the job loss is coming is a tacit confirmation that things will get worse and that fills me with the greatest dread imaginable.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 10:31 AM
As scary as things are, I feel fortunate that I know how to handle economic pinches. Living in a high cost of living area most of my life without the income to match, I've always had to accept not having access to the "American Dream" lifestyle: still no house/mortgage at age 40, most of my furniture is second hand or things I've had for years, my wardrobe collection is the basic T-shirts and jeans with a few "nice" things to piece together. Although I do have a few luxury-type gadgets, they are all paid for. I've got no pension/retirement plan due to living paycheck to paycheck and frequently changing jobs due to frustrations I won't get into here and now. I do have a small amount of debt - smaller than many others I know, but still too much for me (any debt is too much for me).
But I'm OK so far. I know how to live cheap when I need to, and I can willingly do without if I must (I just wonder about my husband, though). And I'm still looking forward. Looking forward to moving out of this area to cheaper digs for one. I feel a strong tug to get back to a simpler, leaner, more self-sufficient life.

This is a little of what is on my mind lately, it may be redundant to some, but I hope it can spark some inspiration.
And so, I'll lend a few findings from my own path in life:
Rice and beans together make a complete protein - and both can be gotten in bulk relatively cheap.
I've been googling "homesteading" and "Urban suburban homesteading" and getting a lot of info on frugal living and self-sufficiency. As independent as that lifestyle is, there is still a strong community in homesteading who cooperate and help each other continue. Something to learn there.
your local library has a great many resources, and can lead you to a great many more resources - just talk to a librarian.
utilize your community and social services, such as your local employment center. most if not all states have them - just look it up through your local Dept. of Labor website.
Either of the previous two options can possibly lead you to a career counselor who may be able to help you translate your skills and experience into related work.
The medical and care fields are still going strong.
A Commercial Driver's License of a Class B or higher, with either Hazmat or Passenger endorsements is a valuable thing to have in a declining job market - there are always people looking for drivers.

Just a few things.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 10:32 AM
Years ago I learned that just because I was poor did not mean that I had to live poorly... consequently someone with that knowledge will fare better in the coming years than those who have been spoiled and expect to have it all.

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 10:39 AM

Originally posted by W3RLIED2
You ever seen a proud union man say he was ready to go scabbin'????

Well you just did.

There is no such thing as 'pride' where feeding & caring for you family goes. We had a massive Boeing mchinist strike happen up here that looks like its about to be resolved. Honestly, I sat here dumbfounded that Boeing even bothered to deal with the union during the strike. Considering that they would have had absolutely no problem filling every position that struck, IMO the unionized machinists were damned lucky that they even have jobs waiting for them.

That's probably the #1 reason I have no use for unions. It's one of the world's biggest pyramid schemes and shams. You've got a handfull of union bosses who party it up with the company brass and keep their personal hand out for money until they feel their pockets are full enough and then they work out a marginal at best "compromise", sell it like it's the second coming of Christ to their members, and declare victory... all while the corporate suits are sitting in their offices chuckling about it. Add to it the fact that they liberally pad politicians pockets with union funds and is it really any wonder that many of us despise unions? (and please don't think I despise the union workers. I do not. I think you're either misguided (if you're staunchly pro-union) or essentially forced into compliance in states that allow mandatory union membership, but I respect the hell out of the work you do for the most part.)

posted on Oct, 28 2008 @ 10:39 AM

Originally posted by W3RLIED2
reply to post by DaddyBare

You ever seen a proud union man say he was ready to go scabbin'????

Well you just did.

Actually hun in these times when the union can not provide a job for you it is perfectly legal and within union laws for you to go and get a non union job.
My husbands company is in the national laborers union, they flat out told his crews that because of the times and lack of work avalable that is WAS within their rights to go outside the union. Simply because NOT doing so would cause them to go hungry lose their homes cars etc.
His company has had to repeatedly lay of his crews and luckily they are a VERY family oriented company and they have set a schedual of likely times for lay offs weeks ahead of time when possible , so they know whats coming. During these times many of them have done non union jobs and the union isnt "paying" attention to who is doing what, simply because if they did and held them accountable these poor guys would be on the streets with their wife and kids within 2 weeks. (California is by far the worst place to live as far as cost of living goes).
Take a rep aside quietly and ask him if your union is holding to these unwritten standards as many are now doing so. Let him know that if you do not step out and get a job you will not have money to feed your family etc. some have actually joined forces with county or city persons that are supplying food stuffs etc to families.
Good luck to you and dont ever think you have to stick to a union that cant help you provide for your family. None of them are going to stick their necks to the chopping block and hold you or anyone else accountale for taking care of your own.
Like the head rep here said" if we do that we might as well close the doors right now, because everyone will leave the unions enmass". and i wont have a job either (insert laugh here)

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