Things have taken a turn for the worse. In recent months, economic activity has been dropping all over the nation, and that decline appears to be accelerating. We just learned that gross domestic income has now fallen for two quarters in a row, and the Conference Board’s index of leading economic indicators has now been plummeting for 13 consecutive months. Unfortunately, when economic conditions deteriorate it is the people at the low end of the economic pyramid that get hit the hardest.
Thanks to our rapidly rising cost of living, we are seeing a dramatic explosion in the number of “working homeless” that are living out of their vehicles on a daily basis even though they are currently employed.
In particular, the RV “communities” that are springing up from coast to coast are starting to get quite a bit of attention…
The owner of a party bus company, Rikers Island prison guards and an Amazon worker are just some of the eclectic bunch who have formed a community of ‘working homeless’ people living out of RVs in the Astoria section of Queens, New York.
Similar communities have formed across the US from New England to California where people have chosen a nomadic lifestyle amid a national cost of living crisis.
Most of these people get up and go to work in the morning.
In fact, the Daily Mail spoke to one man that actually “works for a New York City hospital”…
Resident Paul Reevers described himself as ‘working homeless.’ He said that he has a job but the rent went up too high and he could not longer to afford a an apartment.
Reevers, who works for a New York City hospital, said that he took out a loan and bought his RV.
If you work at a hospital, you should be able to afford a place to live.
But this is our country now.
Insider Monkey, a finance website, revealed a list of the top 30 cities worldwide with the highest homeless population. Notably, a handful of the US cities on the list are governed by progressive leadership, which may not surprise readers. While it is evident that some unfortunate individuals are facing homelessness, a trend exacerbated by recent inflationary pressures and a drug addiction crisis, some liberal policies have enabled others to sustain their nomadic lifestyles with taxpayer funds.
Insider Monkey found New York City is number 5 on the list, with a homeless population of about 69,000. Next is Chicago, at number 7 with 65,611. Washington, DC, is number 8 with 57,416, Los Angeles number 13 with 41,980, and San Fransisco number 14 with 38,000.
No matter what you or I are facing right now, at least we aren’t sleeping in the streets.
So we should count our blessings.
Hunger is also rapidly growing all over America. Right now, record numbers of people are coming for help at one food bank in the Seattle area…
Since March, the food bank has broken its record three times for the highest number of people served in a day since 2019, when the organization started allowing three visits a month. More and more, people like Jones who haven’t been to the food bank in years, are showing up, Christian said.
“That’s hard on them; they felt they had moved above the poverty line, got some stability but, ‘Here it is 2023 and here I am back in the food line asking strangers for help,’” Christian said.
And in Boston, the line for food on one recent weekend morning “stretched the length of two football fields”…
The line outside Boston’s American Red Cross Food Pantry on a recent Saturday morning stretched the length of two football fields.
The number of people filing into the red-brick industrial-zone warehouse on some days now exceeds the worst periods of the pandemic economic crisis and in April it had the second highest monthly traffic since it opened in 1982, according to David Andre, the director.
We are witnessing so much suffering all over the country right now.
And there are so many more people that are living right on the edge of disaster.
According to one recent survey, approximately 38.5 percent of U.S. adults experienced “some form of difficulty in covering expenses between April 26 and May 8”…
A large swath of American consumers are facing financial hardship as they grapple with elevated living costs, record-high credit card use, and two years of negative real wage growth. This perfect storm could decimate financially fragile households in the next downturn.
As many as 89.1 million American adults (or about 38.5%) were found to experience some form of difficulty in covering expenses between April 26 and May 8, according to Bloomberg, citing new data from the Household Pulse Survey. This is up from 34.4% in 2022 and 26.7% during the same period in 2021.
Of course this is just the beginning.
As I keep warning my readers, things will eventually get much worse.
One thing to watch for this week is whether or not the debt ceiling deal is able to get through Congress.
Kevin McCarthy is confident that he has the votes that he needs to get the deal through the House, but some conservative Republicans are pledging to do all they can to stop it…
Elsewhere within his party, Rep. Chip Roy from Texas called the agreement a ‘turd-sandwich’ and said he had spoken to a number of his colleagues who were not intending to vote on the agreement.
Rep. Ralph Norman, a member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus from South Carolina, called the deal ‘insanity’ and said he was ‘not gonna vote to bankrupt our country’.
If the debt ceiling deal is defeated, I will be quite impressed.
But it would also throw our economy into a tremendous amount of short-term chaos.
It will be very interesting to watch and see what happens.
In any event, whatever happens in Washington is not going to fundamentally alter our long-term trajectory, and that means that much more suffering is coming in the days ahead.