21 Reasons Why The So-Called Recovery Is A Joke For Most Americans

Yes, U.S. GDP is growing and corporate profits are beating expectations across the board. Companies are flush with cash, and banks are confident again. It’s surely a recovery… for them.

Yet many Americans are experiencing more hardship than they’ve ever known. In addition, some of America’s most severe long-term economic problems are getting worse.

That’s why for most Americans the rebound in GDP is meaningless and the economy isn’t recovering.

THE AMERICAN NIGHTMARE: 24% of laid off workers say they have fallen into a lower social class (generally middle class to poverty)

THE AMERICAN NIGHTMARE: 24% of laid off workers say they have fallen into a lower social class (generally middle class to poverty)

Source: Pew

A DYING MIDDLE CLASS: America’s upper class has shrunk 5% since 2008. Our middle class has shrunk 6%. Our lower class has SWELLED by 16%.

A DYING MIDDLE CLASS: America's upper class has shrunk 5% since 2008. Our middle class has shrunk 6%. Our lower class has SWELLED by 16%.

Source: Pew

THERE”S MORE THAN SIMPLY THE JOBLESS: In addition to masses of unemployed, 1/3 of Americans suffer from under-employment.

THERE"S MORE THAN SIMPLY THE JOBLESS: In addition to masses of unemployed, 1/3 of Americans suffer from under-employment.

Source: Pew

GOING NOWHERE: At the current rate of job creation, it will take 31 months to reach historical average levels of unemployment.

GOING NOWHERE: At the current rate of job creation, it will take 31 months to reach historical average levels of unemployment.

The rate of decline for the U.S. unemployed population from April to June was 318,500 per month, 14.6 million Americans were reported as ‘unemployed’ as of the Department of Labor’s June 2010 report.Our figure doesn’t even including the millions of people who have dropped out of the DOL’s unemployment calculation, such as people who have simply given up looking for work.

Source: The Money Game

STILL BLEEDING: There have been over 54 mass layoffs per day in 2010.

STILL BLEEDING: There have been over 54 mass layoffs per day in 2010.

Monthly mass layoff numbers are from establishments which have at least 50 initial claims for unemployment insurance (UI) filed against them during a 5-week period. From January 2010 to May 2010, there have been 8,227 mass lay-off events in the U.S. according to the Department of Labor Statistics.Source: The Money Game

ARTIFICIAL: The entire consumer spending rebound can be explained by government spending

DESPERATE: The U.S. has extended jobless benefits…. seven times.

DESPERATE: The U.S. has extended jobless benefits.... seven times.

“Congress moved to extend jobless benefits seven times, as has been the case over the past two years, at a time when almost half of the ranks of the unemployed have been looking for at least a half year.”Source: David Rosenberg

CENTRALIZED: In 2010, the government spent 44 cents for each dollar of GDP. Before the crisis, it spent only 35 cents per GDP-dollar.

DEPLETED: A staggering 43 percent of Americans have less than $10,000 saved up for retirement.

DEPLETED: A staggering 43 percent of Americans have less than $10,000 saved up for retirement.

Source: Michael Snyder, Employment Benefit Research Institute via CNN

UNEQUAL: The average federal worker now earns 60% more than the average worker in the private sector.

UNEQUAL: The average federal worker now earns 60% more than the average worker in the private sector.

Source: Michael Snyder,  USA Today

POINTLESS: The average time needed to find a job has risen to a record 35.2 weeks.

POINTLESS: The average time needed to find a job has risen to a record 35.2 weeks.

Source: BLS

HUNGRY: Over 40 million Americans are on food stamps, a record, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture expects 43 million in 2011.

HUNGRY: Over 40 million Americans are on food stamps, a record, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture expects 43 million in 2011.

Source: Boston Globe

SHAMEFUL: 1 in 5 American children will live below the poverty line in 2010, a 20-year record.

SHAMEFUL: 1 in 5 American children will live below the poverty line in 2010, a 20-year record.

Image: Claus Rebler on flickr

Source: Foundation for Child Development via CNN

IDLE: Banks still aren’t lending to help grow the economy

PRECARIOUS: Despite massive efforts to support housing, there’s still a massive overhang of homes

PRECARIOUS: Despite massive efforts to support housing, there's still a massive overhang of homes

Source: Goldman Sachs via Paul Kedrosky

FAR FROM OVER: U.S. banks repossessed nearly 258,000 homes in the first quarter of 2010, a 35% jump from the first quarter of 2009

CHRONIC: Goldman Sachs projects debt to explode higher… out to 2020.

CHRONIC: Goldman Sachs projects debt to explode higher... out to 2020.

Source: Goldman Sachs

SAD: The U.S. government is so broke that it’s asking for donations

SAD: The U.S. government is so broke that it's asking for donations

Source: Pay.gov

RIDICULOUS: In 2010 the U.S. government is expected to issue almost as much new debt as all other governments, around the world, combined

RIDICULOUS: In 2010 the U.S. government is expected to issue almost as much new debt as all other governments, around the world, combined

Image: mrkumm via Flickr

Source: Forbes

BEGGARED: In February, there were 5.5 unemployed Americans for every job opening

BEGGARED: In February, there were 5.5 unemployed Americans for every job opening

Image: Flickr User H Dragon (http://www.flickr.com/photos/hllewellyn/2281837286/)

Source: Michael Snyder, BLS

HOPELESS: According to a National Foundation for Credit Counseling survey, only 58% of those in “Generation Y” pay their monthly bills on time

HOPELESS: According to a National Foundation for Credit Counseling survey, only 58% of those in "Generation Y" pay their monthly bills on time

Source: Michael Snyder, USA Today