Some of that takes place here.
Clearly, my life can actually be boiled down to international politics, the NYT Op-Ed page, travel, food, and music.
Do you need any more of my inane ramblings?
I'm here sometimes, too.
The deprivations of the formerly affluent Nouveau Poor are real enough, but the situation of the already poor suggests that they do not necessarily presage a greener, more harmonious future with a flatter distribution of wealth. There are no data yet on the effects of the recession on measures of inequality, but historically the effect of downturns is to increase, not decrease, class polarization.
The recession of the ’80s transformed the working class into the working poor, as manufacturing jobs fled to the third world, forcing American workers into the low-paying service and retail sector. The current recession is knocking the working poor down another notch — from low-wage employment and inadequate housing toward erratic employment and no housing at all. Comfortable people have long imagined that American poverty is far more luxurious than the third world variety, but the difference is rapidly narrowing.
I love Ehrenreich, and I love her wherever I find her—in this case, over at NYT. Author of “Nickeled and Dimed,” she’s always been one to point out how our current employment system doesn’t really work. Moral of her story: shut the hell up, folks. Just because people layed off from their jobs in financial services are now blogging misery, and most of us are cutting the Starbucks down to a minimum doesn’t mean we’re poor. Poor doesn’t mean giving up imported wine; it means moving into an overcrowded apartment, working three jobs, and running out of grocery money. In all honesty, I may be under-resourced, but I’ll probably never be poor.