A recent MIT article tells that America is becoming a Third World Country. Economically the USA is falling apart in many areas. The Low Paid Life is a dangerous one many social and psychological maladies emerge from low pay.
Stress, pressure, terror, and addiction. Not to mention suicide.
The Vineland-Millville NJ area is considered one of the top economically depressed areas in the Country. Foreclosures and low pay are at the highest rate.
Results: 1. Many people in South Jersey make $15,000 or $20,000. The Suicide and addiction rate is quite high. People on disability, usually $18,000 a year or less.
These people with in the first seven days of the month head to the slum liqueur store and drink to inebriation. 50 to 75 people congregate on the Rail Road tracks and load up of Night Train and Thunderbird wine. A Sociologist states, since these people have no sense of purpose or economic power, they drink. It is proven in a Lab that rats who where ignored went to a feeder to get stoned, those rats who where played with and treated better didn’t go to the feeder with booze. When the ignored rats had attention and something to do they drank alcohol seldom. The rats who drank where determined to have been damaged because they had no sense of purpose.
2. In an attempt to revive the Community Milville, N.J. tried to start and artist colony. Glasstown Arts District. Millvile, once an industrial town, has lost its Industrial base. Being an Economically depressed area, the town died a bit. Then the Race Track and Arts Colony came along. The Track did nothing to revive the economy, and the Arts District failed. Most Stores remain empty, the District looks barren and unkempt. The town has actually died twice. They never moved toward sustainability or eliminating poverty. The Social problems make the town unattractive. Many empty stores and boarded up homes. The Low Paid Life prevents economic stimulation. It takes money to make money, how can a economically depressed area revive with out disposable income and a living wage? Many towns like Milville has died twice.
3. Vineland NJ also has many empty stores and high crime. a good deal of the population lives on welfare. The Homeless situation even seeps into Middle Class neighborhoods. The Amish Market has failed. The Malls and Shopping has increased. South Jersey has a 3% tax rate, so shopping is cheap. In Atlantic County, The influx of Korean, Vietnamese, and Mexican immigrants help to stimulate the economy, but it is not good enough.
4. In Atlantic City and County foreclosures are rampant, the homeless shelters are full. Pets go abandoned and fill parking lots. One could see the sad look of abandonment in their eyes.
Most of the Sports teams have gone in to bankruptcy, and with Casino closures, there is only low pay work. People at age 30 and up are falling through the cracks.
Mike Spinosa (MS:Business Syracuse) is a former executive who was making at one time $600 a week. He now makes $20,000 a year in another occupation.
“I am having such difficulties. I had to pay $4,000 this year in auto repairs. With out a car in South Jersey you may as well be dead. $2,000 a year for fuel bills, Then I have to live out of my car at times. I help my mother pay $5,000 a year in taxes. I make $20,000 a year. I never dreamed life would be this way. If I where married, we would be dumpster divers”
Another story, I work near a crisis center. The Center calls ambulances a few times a week, people are feeling the stress and pressure are horrified and their low pay. They threaten to kill them selves. I spent 45 serious minutes talking a low paid worker down. She was upset and about to have a break down. I spoke to her and help to comfort and gave some ideas and options. One has no idea what this is like when people are freaking out because their quality of life has no quality in life because it is just about just survival. Surviving is not living, not is the inability to stimulate the economy also.
Bill Reid, Economist, (Rutgers University) says. “What is happening is economic terrorism from Washington DC and Trenton, and other States are going through this.
Kids today will out live their money because of the nature of 21 Century economics, we are on a 20 Century economics model. Look at Franklin county Mass, like other places, industrial abandonment, and heroine runs like water. These kids through out America know they have no future.”
I asked: “Can people live on $12,000? or $20,000 a year. Some advocates for a UBI say that is feasible?”
Reid Responded: “That is freaking insane. It is like having nothing. It won’t perpetuate a Sustainable Community, A Social Economy. A Living wage stimulates the economy. It would perpetuate a Social Economy because people would be empowered, self reliant, and free to be business people and use their talants and skills. Programs like Meaningful Jobs, Small Business Administration, a Livable Universal Income. Policy that perpetuate a Sustainable Community and Social Economy is the only answer”
Bill said, “It is wonderful to be an academic intellectual and preach the Anti Poverty gospel among peers in New York, Paris, and London. If you a comfortable liberal professor your not looking at the big picture. They should leave their intellectual perches and live the lives most people do. They have to understand it is not just about a UBI, but either positive or negative sociological and psychological factors. The best of intentions can be the pavement to hell. Look at the AHCA failure. We have to get rid of that “It is better than nothing mentality”.