For the last few days I have been considering writing about the state of the economy.I would like to attack it from my point of view. It is highly personal and hope no one will be offended.
Over the past 10 years it seems that the stock market has driven our lives. Even if you are not an investor, it has been the harbinger of both good and bad. The main thing I have against it is the greed of the companies and their stockholders.
The term “down-sizing” was brought about by companies who needed to pare down their bottom lines for the stockholders so they would get a better return on their investments. So millions of jobs have been eliminated and sent over seas where they can made by child labor and not pay a living wage.
Another popular way if doing business is the Holding Company. A group of investors is formed and they acquire a business usually through financing a lot of debt. They go in and sell, or close the unprofitable parts of the business, keep the profitable part for a while, mean time paying interest rates that are higher than a cat’s back to the banks. They usually forecast sales and profit margins that are not attainable. When that happens guess what? They have to go through and eliminate mores jobs and shut down more plants, thus creating a lean and mean operating machine. So basically the American worker pays the price for all this balance sheet magic.
The CEO;s of these companies are always given golden parachutes so that when the company closes, they will leave with millions of dollars for screwing their employees out of their jobs.
And this doesn’t even begin to address the Sub-prime Mortgage mess. But I honestly believe that downsizing started the ball rolling. The trickle down theory just does not work in this day and age. I have yet to benefit from it. If things keep going like this there won’t be anyone here in the states that afford to buy all this stuff made overseas. We can barely afford gas and groceries.
My husband and I have been displaced by the economy. To find work we had to move to Washington where housing is more expensive or should I say was more expensive. We purchased a home two years ago and today it is worth roughly $100,000 dollars less than what we bought it for. We can’t even refinance it as we do not have the $100K to bring to closing. To us this is a nightmare. I am ashamed that we got caught up in this mess, but hindsight is always 20/20.
So pardon me if I don’t feel too sorry for Wall Street or the execs who had been living the dream for so long. I am relatively sure they will all land on their feet. It is the middle class who will pay for all of the pseudo-prosperity of the last 10 years.