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CoffeeCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:17 AM
Original message
Economy starting to hit closer to home...
Edited on Sat Jan-24-09 11:18 AM by TwoSparkles
I live in the Midwest, in an area that has been insulated from some of the economic
downturn. The housing bubble wasn't a big burst here, and our unemployment stats
were fairly low.

Now, that all seems to be changing. It's like a snowball, rolling down hill--that
you can't ignore any more.

I've talked with so many friends, neighbors and others who have lost their jobs.
I'm in the suburbs, and to some extent, I think the 'burbs and households with
more than $150,000 combined incomes haven't been as affected as some other
demographics.

This week, a friend who is a VP at a marketing firm was laid off. So was a friend
who is an architect. Another in IT mgmt for a large bank was let go. A friend
who is a pharmacist at a state university was let go--he was axed due to state budget cuts.
A graphic designer for a major publisher was let go too--as the company announced major
layoffs. Two friends who own small, retail businesses (sporting good and gift shop)
are closing. Their income is gone and so are the incomes of the people they employed.

These people are freaking out. These are the people in the large houses, with lots
of credit-card debt. Now, all of these people are spending only on necessities. This
is the group that spent money on granite countertops, patio furniture and routinely
updated their homes with Home Depot projects. They drove a good portion of our
economic engine.

This group is no more important than any other demographic. However, the extent of
the damage stretching into this demographic is becoming more prevalent--in my area of
the country, anyway, because their disposable income is now either gone or being
socked away.

Another concern is that many of these professionals are somewhat stuck. If you're
an architect who is recently laid off, you're not going to find a job as an architect
because no one is hiring them--because those jobs are impacted by the construction
and housing bust. So, these people contemplate moving--but they can't sell their
homes! They are trapped. It's not that they can't get top dollar for their
home. People just aren't buying.

It's very disconcerting to read about an economic crisis, but it's even more
jarring to see it up close and personal.
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:19 AM
Response to Original message
1. the bleeding is terrible -- i feel so bad for people. nt
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blueworld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:31 AM
Response to Original message
2. We're the latest to join the ranks
My spouse lost the job & all benefits yesterday. First the company cut the work week 3 weeks last year. Next, hourly employees were laid off every day for 2 weeks in dribs & drabs. Now it's the salaried employees. I hope I'm not being overly alarmed, but I believe the economy is actually worse off than the MSM is even showing & I'm afraid there's a depression in the works. Well, we pray & go one day at a time. I wish you all the best!
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MadinMo Donating Member (519 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 06:57 PM
Response to Reply #2
9. My sympathies blueworld.
I'm in the same boat --- was told 2 weeks ago my job was eliminated. I am aghast at what COBRA will cost for the family --- $775 a month. While employed I paid about $160 a month for the same insurance. I don't think President Obama can work fast enough to get a health care program in place. But certainly I don't dare NOT have medical insurance with my husband being 56, I'm 55 and we have two 16 year olds.

My husband is a retired teacher so we have income (retirement income) but two incomes barely covered our needs till now. Figure in $775 a month for COBRA and we're cooked.

I'm with you in believing the economy may be worse than the MSM is letting on. Or maybe no one really knows. Certainly it is not going to get better anytime soon.

Here's to hoping we all can keep or obtain some kind of job with decent benefits.
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summer borealis Donating Member (244 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:34 AM
Response to Original message
3. Excellent post ... so revealing
The M$M can't do enough of these stories. (Too bad they never seem to do them at all)
I see 60 Minutes on 1.25 is finally getting around to some substance in a Worthington, Ohio, tale of DHL layoffs.
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DemReadingDU Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 01:22 PM
Response to Reply #3
8. 60 Minutes preview
Edited on Sat Jan-24-09 01:36 PM by DemReadingDU
Scott Pelley talks to Mike O'Machearley, one of thousands of people who lost their jobs in Wilmington, Ohio. The town is one of the epicenters of the economic crisis.
http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=4747825n

edit to add 2 more previews
http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=4750098n

http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=4748093n

Text: Economic Storm Batters Ohio Town
Scott Pelley Reports From An American Town In The Path Of The Economic Storm
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/01/22/60minutes/mai...


It's bad in Ohio. Ohio already has 7.8%+ unemployment rate. This isn't counting those 10,000 jobs to be lost when DHL shuts down this week. Plus there is fallout from GM leaving Dayton, Ohio, and the resulting businesses that are going to be affected from losing both of these two major employers in Ohio.

and here's a video I found in the CBS comments section about the background of DHL
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_HkXuLgt4ak
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Mr Rabble Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:34 AM
Response to Original message
4. There is a saying about this which I found very astute-
"A recession is when your friends are losing their jobs, and it becomes a depression when you lose your job."

This is going to hit everyone, in almost every walk of life.

The thing that is most ominous about this depression is that there is near total agreement among competant analysts that we are much closer to the beginning that the end.

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FedUpWithIt All Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 11:42 AM
Response to Original message
5. My SO who is in construction has been unemployed for over a year.
Since there are NO construction/laborer projects, there is NO work. He was accepted by a local laborers union but they have no work and are not even calling back long time members. Over the past year he has applied at hundreds of jobs. He just started a new job in retail today. We are relieved.

I am sorry about the troubles your friends and neighbors are suffering.



:(
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snappyturtle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 12:00 PM
Response to Original message
6. K&R I hope lots of DUers read this! It scares the hell out of me because
Edited on Sat Jan-24-09 12:02 PM by snappyturtle
I don't see anything that has been done or is proposed to be done that will do anything significant to help not only those you mentioned but the millions of people who have been suffering for many months. I don't see how the banks are going to absorb the tsunami of foreclosed homes on the horizon. Scary times. imho

edit: wording
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-09 12:56 PM
Response to Original message
7. I started counting empty storefronts
on a drive last week. I got up to 20 and realized it was getting depressing so I kept my eyes on the road for the balance of the trip.

That 20 empty storefronts was within 2 miles of my house in the inner city.

This state didn't see the price bubble but it did see overconstruction, mostly of yuppie palaces, and that means anybody who lives in a McMansion will either take a big loss on it or is stuck due to the oversupply of the wrong sort of housing. And yes, these are the people with credit card debt, student loan debt, and car loan debt.

We also haven't seen huge unemployment here. In addition, the state itself is solvent.

However, those empty storefronts attest to the fact that people here are just as frightened about their incomes and have hunkered down and are not spending a dime that they don't absolutely need to spend.

That's the worst part of all this, the fear of not knowing when the axe will fall.

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DemReadingDU Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-25-09 09:19 AM
Response to Original message
10. morning kick
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snappyturtle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-25-09 10:41 AM
Response to Original message
11. Another morning kick!
:kick:
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-25-09 02:09 PM
Response to Original message
12. And this is just the beginning. That's the terrible part about it.
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