Remember when you could vacation in Canada and because of the dollar’s superior exchange rate, get 10-20 percent off on everything you spent money on? Well, that hasn’t been the case for several years now. Furthermore, it was just announced that the average net worth of Canadians is now greater than that of Americans.
Since one’s real estate is the primary factor in measuring net worth and American real estate values have plummeted far more than Canadian values, we’re not as rich as they are.
So, once again the question enters my mind, am I doing as well as I was a year ago, four years ago, eight years ago, etc. Well, the answers remain the same. No, I’m not and the reasons are mainly due to the actions of corporate and government misbehavior. The big banks and Wall Street have effectively wiped out 40% of my property values, they have continued to ship millions of my neighbor’s jobs overseas, the size of the middle-class continues to decline and middle-class income is 40% less than what it was in the 1980s.
The Federal Reserve, attempting to spur economic growth during the Bush years, has lowered interest rates to the point where my CDs don’t earn enough interest to buy the tissues necessary to wipe away my tears. The GOP in Ohio has my pension, which has failed to keep up with inflation, under constant attack. The lack of effective healthcare legislation has ensured the cost of medical care will continue to skyrocket. The tax laws continue to favor the wealthy. The power of my vote is under constant attack from those few extremely wealthy Americans who are behind the Super PACs that now dominate American politics. The GOP-Ryan-Romney budget plan would take away my Medicare protections and replace it with a coupon/voucher that may meet my medical needs if I’m never required to purchase Depends in bulk.
So, the answer for any politician or pundit who should ask me if I’m better off today is, HELL NO! And I certainly don’t see anything coming out of the insane right-wing that rules the GOP these days promising enough to make me change my mind. I don’t see much coming from the left or the middle either. But, I know in which arena my best hopes lie and it isn’t on the right.
This is the third time I’ve written on this theme. Click HERE for my earlier rants.