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Stories Of Economic Despair From America’s Worst Economic Downturn Since The Great Depression Of The 1930s

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The economic pain that we are witnessing right now is far greater than anything that we witnessed during the last recession.  U.S. GDP declined by 32.9 percent on an annualized basis last quarter, more than 100,000 businesses have permanently shut down since the COVID-19 pandemic first hit the United States, and more than 54 million Americans have filed new claims for unemployment benefits over the last 19 weeks.  Up until just recently, a $600 weekly unemployment “supplement” and a federal moratorium that prevented many evictions had helped to ease the suffering for millions of American families, but both of those measures have now expired.  As a result, a tremendous amount of economic pain which had previously been deferred will now come rushing back with a vengeance.  Millions of American families are no longer going to be able to pay their bills, and experts are warning that we could soon see an “eviction crisis” that is absolutely unprecedented in American history.

48-year-old Thomas Darnell of West Point, Mississippi never thought that he would be in this position.  He had been a factory worker for over 20 years until he lost his job in May, and since then he hasn’t been able to find another.  And then on top of everything else, everyone in his house caught COVID-19…

First, he was furloughed for three weeks in April and then laid off in May. Then things got worse: His entire household of seven, including himself, his wife, three kids and daughter-in-law, along with his baby grandson, contracted coronavirus after they saw their immediate family over the Independence Day weekend.

“I’m tired and shaky. Even after a few weeks, I’m still trying to recover,” Darnell says, who has since been cleared of the virus but still has lingering symptoms.

He is concerned that employers will be scared away by his recent illness, and he is becoming desperate because he is running out of money.

With no health insurance and no paychecks coming in, Darnell and his wife have gotten to the point where they have to make a choice between buying insulin or buying groceries

He can’t afford health insurance, which has added to his anxiety because he and his wife are both diabetic, he says. Like Bolei, Darnell and his wife have been forced to make a grueling decision between either paying for their medications or keeping food on the table.

“Do we buy insulin or groceries? It’s a hard juggle,” Darnell says. “I’m willing to make less money and start working again to get health insurance, but no one is hiring.”

The weekly $600 unemployment supplements from the federal government had helped to keep them going for a while, but now those payments have ended, and the immediate future is looking quite bleak.

In Richmond, Virginia, a mother of eight named Shamika Rollins wasn’t sure how she was going to make it when her hours as a home health aid were reduced.  Unpaid bills started piling up, and then she got an eviction notice a few weeks ago.  The following comes from CBS News

Shamika Rollins’ eight children share two bedrooms in Richmond, Virginia. But she’s worried about losing their home after she says she received an eviction notice in June.

“First thing, I panic, and then next thing, I look, and I’m like, I got my kids. And it’s like, okay, now you gotta figure this out,” she told CBS News correspondent Adriana Diaz.

If a miracle does not happen, Rollins and her eight children will soon be out in the street, and this is causing her to have “a lot of sleepless nights”

“I have a lot of sleepless nights,” Rollins said. “My mind is constantly racing, you know, what’s your next move?”

Sadly, there are millions of other Americans in the exact same position.

In fact, experts are projecting that up to 40 million Americans could be evicted from their homes during this pandemic.

Many small business owners are also facing heartbreaking choices during this downturn.  A restaurant owner in Delaware named Alex Heidenberger “hasn’t paid the mortgage on his home the past four months” as he desperately tries to keep his once profitable restaurants alive…

Heidenberger, who typically draws about $20,000 a month in profit from the restaurant, now receives nothing. He says he hasn’t paid the mortgage on his home the past four months. He served lifeguard duty for a couple of weeks, mostly to help a beach crew depleted by COVID-19 quarantines but also to make some cash.

“I’m working harder than I have ever worked in my life,” he says, adding that he puts in about 80 hours a week at the two restaurants. Yet, “I have no money… This is all I think about. I don’t sleep.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the restaurant industry particularly hard.  Americans are not eating out as regularly as they once did because of the virus, and it is probably going to remain that way for the foreseeable future.

In Massachusetts, a restaurant owner named John Pepper once had eight thriving locations, but at this point only two of them remain open

John Pepper used a PPP loan to pay employees and reopen four of his eight Boloco restaurants when Massachusetts lifted its shutdown order in early May. But with the money spent and business at the restaurants down as much as 70%, Pepper had to again close two locations. The staff of 125 he had before the virus outbreak is down to 50.

“A lot of this is out of our hands at this point,” Pepper says. “At this moment, I don’t see getting my full payroll back.”

Overall, we are facing a “restaurant apocalypse” in the U.S. that is unprecedented in size and scope.

According to one estimate, we could lose more than a third of all of our restaurants by the end of this calendar year

As many as 231,000 of the nation’s roughly 660,000 eateries will likely shut down this year, according to an estimate from restaurant consultancy Aaron Allen & Associates provided to Bloomberg News. This will bring the industry’s steady growth to a halt and mark the first time in two decades that U.S. restaurant counts don’t climb. Restaurants have already shed millions of jobs this year, economic data show.

What we are watching is truly horrifying.  So many hopes and dreams went into each one of those restaurants that are shutting down, and countless restaurant owners are going to be completely financially ruined by all of this.

For other Americans, this economic downturn has put their very lives at risk.  In Colorado, 70-year-old Catherine Azar was already dealing with heart problems and diabetes, and now she is in danger of being thrown out into the street

“It’s hard for me to conceive of someone being willing to put another person out in the street in the middle of a deadly pandemic, and I’m high risk. I’m 70. I have heart issues and I’m diabetic,” Azar said.

Rollins and Azar are just two of the 43 million Americans at risk of eviction in the coming months. For context, about 1 million Americans were evicted in 2010, the year after the Great Recession.

How long do you think that a 70-year-old woman with heart problems and diabetes would last on the street or in a shelter?

And as millions upon millions of Americans get evicted during the months ahead, the shelters are all going to fill up really fast.

America simply was not prepared for an economic downturn of this nature, and the truth is that much bigger challenges are still ahead.

So please do not look down on anyone that needs help right now, because soon you may find yourself in the exact same position.


10 Comments on "Stories Of Economic Despair From America’s Worst Economic Downturn Since The Great Depression Of The 1930s"

  1. makati1 on Thu, 6th Aug 2020 12:15 am 

    The ‘despair’ is only beginning for the 1st world. This diaper faced lock-down is only the beginning. Adjust!

  2. Abraham van Helsing on Thu, 6th Aug 2020 4:50 am 

    Potentially bad news for Donnie coming up:

    “REVEALED: Deutsche Bank hands over Donald Trump’s financial records to NYC prosecutors as state attorney general says she will make a ‘major national announcement’ today”

  3. Abraham van Helsing on Thu, 6th Aug 2020 6:03 am 

    A couple of decades after the US, a corona-internet-enabled white flight has arrived in England too:

    “Escape to the country! Estate agents see a 125% increase in people looking to relocate to villages amid the coronavirus work from home boom as the top rural hot spots being targeted by city dwellers are revealed”

    Not that the DailyMail will interpret things like that.

  4. Davy on Thu, 6th Aug 2020 6:09 am 

    Beirut’s port explosion is a significant happening regardless of foul play or not. The port supplies 80% of Lebanon’s needs. This will dramatically impact Hezbollah as well as the Lebanese nation. Lebanon was already in a spiral down over currency crisis then Covid. Now we will see the affects of vital supplies being limited by this accident. This is a small enough country to be assisted so its failure will likely be absorbed into the wider economic output of the region without a domino effect.

    The key question I would pose would be was a fire started to appear accidental but instead was a plan to devastate vital Hezbollah supply infrastructure? The dangerous impounded cargo might have been found out and a plan hatched to cause destruction making it appear as an accident. Foul play or not this is going to dramatically affect Hezbollah’s ability to supply its people who are the strength of its resistance to Israel. I don’t know if military hardware for Hezbollah came through this port but it is clear vital consumables and infrastructure supplies did.

    “Beirut Blast Wrap-up”

    “In 2013 Lebanese authorities arrested a ship (pdf) that had been abandoned by its owner: On 23/9/2013, m/v Rhosus, flying the Moldovian flag, sailed from Batumi Port, Georgia heading to Biera in Mozambique carrying 2,750 tons of Ammonium Nitrate in bulk…”Nitroprill HD” is a knock-off product of the trademarked Nitropril, a premium grade porous prilled ammonium nitrate manufactured and sold by the Orica Mining Services in Australia. It is used as a commercial explosive in mining and quarrying… Lebanon’s LBCI-TV reported on August 5 that, according to preliminary information, the fire that set off the explosion was started accidentally by welders who were closing off a gap that allowed unauthorized entry into the warehouse. LBCI said sparks from a welder’s torch are thought to have ignited fireworks stored in a warehouse, which in turn detonated the nearby cargo of ammonium nitrate that had been unloaded from the MV Rhosus years earlier… the initial fire caused by welding. It burns a while and then sets off fireworks in a first explosion. This takes the roof off the warehouse. A few minutes later the fireworks cause the huge explosion of the ammonium nitrate.”

  5. Abraham van Helsing on Thu, 6th Aug 2020 7:26 am 

    The humiliation of Western history

    From the NYT to British schools, powerful institutions are waging war on the past.

    Silver up 6% in just 10 hours:

    Euro up 7 cents in just 30 days:

    “The Nightmare Scenario For The World”

    N.B. I do not share most of the concerns, self-serving gold trader Egon von Greyerz has about paper money. 2% inflation per year are harmless, even if that means that over a century the dollar loses 95% against gold. For Joe Sixpack, who lives from paycheck to paycheck, that doesn’t matter at all. For him counts that money will have the same value in a couple of months time and that his wage is inflation-corrected.

  6. Abraham van Helsing on Thu, 6th Aug 2020 7:59 am 

    OMG, how to bring this to dunkan?!


    Only 17% of Syrian women have jobs 5 years after moving to the country.

    B-b-but isn’t diversity our strength?

    Uh, no, it is our demise.

  7. print baby print on Thu, 6th Aug 2020 4:17 pm 

    Mak it seems to me your dream come true . To watch USA desintegrating.

  8. Abraham van Helsing on Fri, 7th Aug 2020 7:41 am 

    Are you ready for the second wave?

    “The beaches are already full! Brits are urged to stay away from packed sands as tens of thousands of Brits stream to the coast and the nation braces for its hottest day EVER with temperatures set to rocket to 102F”

    Beaches in Europe: one giant super spreader event.

  9. Chrome Mags on Sat, 8th Aug 2020 11:09 pm 

    Think of it this way:
    Everything so far has frontloaded the problems destined to crescendo, such as
    Loan Defaults,
    Evicted renters,
    Homeless #’s escalating,
    Loss of health insurance from job losses,
    Utilities shut off,
    Going hungry or even starving,
    This Fall & especially Winter will be dismal for millions of Americans.
    Try to lock in whatever source of income you can because phase III vaccine trials will last for many more months, maybe even till January of 2021.

    2020 will be a year to remember & forget…My advice is the same as Belushi’s in Animal House, “Start drinking heavily.”

  10. i think i broke supertard bochen777 im so sorly supertard bochen777 please come back i wont say no more about u on Sat, 8th Aug 2020 11:14 pm 

    america have a big problem and supertard bochen777 knows how to fix it which is to put muzzies to work making cheap goods. but does supertard bochen777 use this opportunity as a teachable moment and tell us how we harvest our muzzies?

    nope, supertard bochen777 said sex with white women

    thanks for the advice supertard bochen777, guess we’re doomed to be under the thumb of CCP because you miseducated us

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