Does it feel like we work our butt off, to afford a house that we don’t even get time to be home and enjoy? We’re doing more work for the same, or less pay and benefit? OK, yes I can be VERY cynical. And yes, I think this all stems from unrealistic expectations.
All of the journalism groups are covering the plight of the middle class in the US, as it’s an important topic this election cycle. People are working harder, and getting less. Students go into major debt before they even start working, racking up students loans because it’s considered “Good Debt”. Just like mortgages are good debt, unless you are buying a million dollar house on a salary of $20,000 a year. I guess it’s human nature to blindly believe that we can achieve so much. And human nature for bankers to inflate those dreams, because they can make money off of the false ideas. I’m convinced, if you can make money off an idea, the Republicans will ensure it’s legalized and tax exempt. For that reason I’m happy someone has decided to get them back, an atheist has offered pet insurance, he will take care of your pets after the apocalypse (but cancelled the service due to low subscriptions).
Why is our society moving in this direction? A natural development from our desire to pay less for everything, and someone else’s ability to do our work for less money. But those in power, i.e. the wealthy, are able to insulate themselves from this augmentation. I just wonder how much they actually influence this natural development for the 99%. We have to wonder why the cost of education is rising so fast, 2-3 percent more than inflation according to Ronald Ehrenberg at Cornell University. It’s supply and demand, people want to go to the top universities, and so they can charge more. They use those funds to improve the university, to maintain it’s status as a top university. And people are willing to go into significant debt to get a degree from these universities, even if they cannot pay back the loan. An article on Yahoo Finance reports the outstanding debt on student loans is at $1 trillion, and states that neither Romney or Obama’s plans for helping students will have much impact. Because people are willing to dig in that deep, not realizing the challenge of paying for the debt after college, especially if you don’t get a job right away.
My goal is to save up in advance to buy things, and limit my debt. It’s the same as making monthly payments, just that I make the payments before I enjoy the item of interest instead of after. And I spend less overall.