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You've gotta have fear in your heart ....There’s a cheery new article in the Atlantic about how this country will never ever recover and nobody will ever have jobs again — especially the youth and the “working class,” both of whom have actually been not having jobs while living pathetic wrecked lives for a decade or so before the Great Recession.

It’s hard to pick a representative quote from this long, painful piece. You might want to just bring the bottle to the table next to the computer, because after every other paragraph or so, you’ll be muttering “Jesus fucking christ,” staring at the wall, and taking another drink. (By “you” I mean “me.”) And that’s one of many wounds this Decades-Long Disaster will leave on the corpse of America: Everyone who loses their job or can’t get a job turns into a serious Problem Drinker and also dies long before the few people who still have jobs and houses. So, that’s an upside, maybe? Less social security to pay out! Uh where were we? Right, a quote:

If it persists much longer, this era of high joblessness will likely change the life course and character of a generation of young adults—and quite possibly those of the children behind them as well. It will leave an indelible imprint on many blue-collar white men—and on white culture. It could change the nature of modern marriage, and also cripple marriage as an institution in many communities. It may already be plunging many inner cities into a kind of despair and dysfunction not seen for decades. Ultimately, it is likely to warp our politics, our culture, and the character of our society for years.

Ha ha ha, is this the “white culture” that pig-eyed poopsack Glenn Beck was talking about? Did you know more than half of the white people without college degrees have children “out of wedlock”? This produces kids who tend to be poor, dumb and emotionally unstable forever, while also guaranteeing a pretty shitty life for the (unwed) parents:

But a large body of research shows that one of the worst things for children, in the long run, is an unstable family. By the time the average out-of-wedlock child has reached the age of 5, his or her mother will have had two or three significant relationships with men other than the father, and the child will typically have at least one half sibling. This kind of churning is terrible for children—heightening the risks of mental-health problems, troubles at school, teenage delinquency, and so on—and we’re likely to see more and more of it, the longer this malaise stretches on.

Luckily, there will be no jobs for this new permanent underclass of bastard morons with tattoos on their mouths.

Oh, and something like a third of all young adults now live with their parents, part of a decade-long trend that just jumped another 10% in the two years of this Recession. That’s another fun development, and the number would probably be a lot higher, but so few parents are married and have the money and the house for an adult kid to return to …. uh, and kids who grew up during the “self esteem” educational movement are delusional idiots, one in eighteen think they’re going to be pop stars or Hollywood actors, the rest have no ability to do anything beyond follow simple orders, so they’re completely unequipped for entrepreneurial pursuits or creative jobs. They do, however, generally expect to earn huge amounts of money, even though income is decreasing, and those lucky enough to have jobs at all are mostly earning in the $25K range.

On the other hand, the same issue has a funny article by Liz Phair about some eco-design conference and a NASCAR race. Liz Phair! We guess the record industry wasn’t dead enough for her, so now she’s trying print journalism. [Atlantic article of epic sadness via Metafilter]

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95 COMMENTS

  1. Phew! I was worried this would finally be the post that ended, “So I have to lay you off, Jim.” Anyone looking for a partner for a good land investment?

  2. Okay, so the pic is nice, but why the heck is she in the bathroom with that flag? I mean, a half naked MAN in a bathroom draped in the flag would just be a republican politician. That I would get.

  3. I wouldn’t mind desecrating Liz Phair in a flag… er what is this about?

    US America’s dying middle class? Means more Talibunny grifter doofi. Great.

  4. (Would have been better if she’d been fondling a gun, though.)

    She is, in her left hand. Wait, I don’t think that’s “fondling” the gun….

  5. This is not a problem. All these millions of unemployed people will start blogs, because what the hell else do we have to do all day? And these blogs will make money from advertising for Siemens and whatever forum Michelle Malkin is giving a speech to this week. Then we’ll all just sit at home and read each other’s blogs. And profit! It’s foolproof!

  6. [re=511784]Neilist[/re]: I’d take umbrage at you calling the lovely Liz Phair a hooker. Except that she does it herself in like half her songs. So I guess, kudos.

  7. Wow since when did Wonkette publish multi paragraph articles?

    “Did you know more than half of the white people without college degrees have children “out of wedlock”?” This produces kids who tend to be poor, dumb and emotionally unstable forever

    Nope Wonkeet. It produces the prison guards for the blacks and hispanics that are born out of wedlock. A bada bump.

  8. Dear Wonkette
    In the future would it be possible to use the above picture of the flag wrapped blonde in place of any future pictures of Palin or Malkin? I believe this change would more than make up for the despair caused by the country never recovering.
    Thank you

  9. Luckily, the article ends on a good note where they say that President Palin will cut both the capital gains and “death tax” and make everything fine in doing so– white culture will be saved, parents will be able to live by themselves again after their 40 year old children are able to move out, and everyone under 25 becomes a reality star.

  10. Sorry, man, forget those social factors — did you know that in the late 60s/early 70s a significant percentage of young adults lived, not with their parents, but in colorful VW vans? Seen photos…70 percent of people who came up during the Great Depression (that thrifty bunch), those still alive and driving, sport gleeful “I”m spending my grandkids inheritance!” bumper stickers. 80 percent of Americans believe in angels…

    These bad times, as far as unemployment, haven’t yet matched Reagan’s first term. 14 months in, the rate passed 9 and wouldn’t get back below that until 18 months later. For 10 of those months in a row it exceeded 10 percent. Bad times from March ’82 until September ’83, real bad times from September ’82 until June ’83. March ’82 was 8 months after Ronnie GE got his first tax cut enacted.

    So chuck up, Buckie. Grab a mop!

    Or listen to the GOP and pull yourself up by your bootstraps, kid. Wait kid, come back here. Where’d you get those boots? A kid like you can’t afford those boots, you steal those boots? Turn around, hands on the car, spread ’em! You got any sharps? Joey, pat him down (click). You have the right to remain silent…

  11. I never could figure out what it was about Glen Becks’ appearance that bugged me so much. Until I read “pig eyed poop sack”. That’s it, the man is pig eyed. Great description.

  12. Thanks Ken, but I’ve been drinking since I got the email today that the latest job I was trying for has been filled by someone who is not me. On the plus side, I kicked ass on the census bureau test, so I may be lining up a sweet $18/hr part time job any month now. Happy days!

  13. “It could change the nature of modern marriage, and also cripple marriage as an institution in many communities.”

    Oh please. It’s far less expensive to be married than it is to be single. One rent instead of two, one set of groceries, one set of utilities. Hell, my dude and I got hitched for the tax write-off. It’ll be our eighth Valentine’s in a couple of days.

  14. Had to correct this piece:

    “By the time the average out-of-wedlock child with an IQ in the dull normal range has reached the age of 5, his or her barely literate mother will have had two or three significant and abusive relationships with men other than the father, the child will be beaten regularly for not calling each of them “Daddy” instead of their actual father, and the child will typically have at least one half sibling with ADHD and been taken out of class at school by three different social workers, each desperately hoping some cute police officer or fireman takes them away from this madness. This kind of churning is terrible for children—heightening the risks of mental-health problems, troubles at school, teenage delinquency, and so on—all of which will bankrupt school districts across the nation trying to meet legal requirements to treat all these kids–and we’re likely to see more and more of it, the longer this malaise stretches on.”

    Guys, I’ve been seeing this for YEARS. There is no stopping it. Really.

  15. Do not give up hope, youth of America. Just sing along with Glen Beck, and those silly black muslin socialist will not stand in your way:

    The sun on the meadow is summery warm.
    The stag in the forest runs free.
    But gather together to greet the storm.
    Tomorrow belongs to me.

    The branch of the linden is leafy and green,
    The Rhine gives its gold to the sea.
    But somewhere a glory awaits unseen.
    Tomorrow belongs to me.

    The babe in his cradle is closing his eyes
    The blossom embraces the bee.
    But soon, says a whisper;
    “Arise, arise, Tomorrow belongs to me.”

    Oh Fatherland, Fatherland,
    Show us the sign
    Your children have waited to see.
    The morning will come
    When the world is mine.
    Tomorrow belongs to me!

  16. I want to vote for Liz Phair. Could we compete with the Tea Party by starting a Drunken Sex Party with her as the candidate? She can write notes on my palm all day.

  17. Meh, this all reads just like the Wall Street Journal Economists stuff also out this week. They have been wrong about just about everything for the last 35 years. And in the few times they were right it was for the wrong reasons. Keep in mind these economist hobos missed everything we are now seeing. The real estate bubble itself, to cite one glaring, shiny, obvious instance. They don’t know shit.

  18. [re=511833]AxmxZ[/re]: No kidding. The Moonie Times “conclusively proved” that recessions decrease the divorce rate. Husbands and wives are scared shitless by the prospect of, in addition to the financial burden, the increasing complexity of two non-overlapping work schedules, getting to and from day care, etc.

    Life is so unPhair, also.

  19. the average out-of-wedlock child… Why can’t the author just bring himself to call them bastards. Poor bastards.

    [re=511804]imissopus[/re]: Yeah, whatever happened to Skoalrebel? He’s sort of the poster boy for this generation.

  20. [re=511788]Jim Newell[/re]: I think we found the truth about Juli and her supposed “new gig” at Vanity Fair. You just had to let her go, didn’t you?

  21. I don’t get it. Is this article about Nobama’s plan to destroy the American Dream (tax cuts for rich people)? What does that have to do the married gays and their out-of-wedlock children? Too many words .. head hurts …

  22. Did anyone read his positive proposal at the end? It’s one paragraph:

    Solutions must include measures to bolster the economy in the short term, and to clear the way for faster long-term growth; to support the jobless today, and to ensure that we are creating the kinds of jobs (and the kinds of skills within the population) that can allow for a more broadly shared prosperity in the future. A few of the solutions—like more-aggressive support for the unemployed, and employer tax credits or other subsidies to get people back to work faster….

    And let us rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic.

  23. [re=511827]MilwaukeeKent[/re]: “These bad times, as far as unemployment, haven’t yet matched Reagan’s first term.” Shadowstats.com is putting unemployement at over 20%.

    The SGS Alternate Unemployment Rate reflects current unemployment reporting methodology adjusted for SGS-estimated long-term discouraged workers, who were defined out of official existence in 1994. That estimate is added to the BLS estimate of U-6 unemployment, which includes short-term discouraged workers.

  24. delusional idiots

    Oh, for Chrissakes, Ken. Are you telling me the USofA will be destroyed from within by delusional idiots?
    On the bright side, how difficult can it be to herd these people around.
    Oh wait, so that’s what the republicans have been doing all these years.
    Never mind. We’re fucked, like you said.

  25. It puts me in mind of John Stewart’s response to Sarah Palin’s speech at the big Teabagger Party. Something along the lines of “her platform is ‘abandon all hope that things will ever change.'”

  26. [re=511861]lightninglouie[/re]: Even Gil Scott-Heron can’t redeem that article.

    (a) she’s going to a NASCAR event, and
    (b) “Thank God I’m driving a Prius, I think. If I do get stranded, I can learn automotive terms in Spanish while I wait to die.”

    Of course! ‘Cause naturally everyone in NM and AZ sits around gettin cars fixed, learnin Spanish, waitin to die, even the ones who USED TO LIVE IN FUCKING CHICAGO; THAT’S WHY WE CAME HERE. Stupid.

  27. [re=511838]Lionel Hutz Esq.[/re]: I’ve watched a clip of that song a lot over the past year because it’s kind of a catchy song and a pretty powerful scene. Sadly, most of the people posting comments about the song seem to see the Brown Shirts as members of ACORN. Also sadly, because I watch it, YouTube is now suggesting that I also watch clips by modern day Nazis. I hate Illinois Nazis.

    Oh, and Sully has been using the header “Tomorrow Belongs to Her” for all of his Palin posts lately

  28. [re=511856]Paul Tardy[/re]: Okay, so either the Reagan figures did include the “shadow facts” or the shadow facts were left out only from 1994 (Clinton)through 2008 (Bush II). You seem to be making the second argument. Point is the 10 percent figure is the psychological breaking point that,for instance, sent Reagan’s approval rating to a dismal 35 percent for January of 1983.

    Either way, the golden shower of trickle-down, like a three-way, never lived up to it’s fantasy promise. The same article could have been written during the Great Depression, the end of WWII or a few dozen times during the 19th century. Things get better. We as a people pull our ass out of the campfire somehow. History lurches forward. You believe your lies, I’ll believe mine.

  29. all men were left with an elevated risk of dying in each year following their episode of unemployment, for the rest of their lives. And so, the younger the worker, the more pronounced the effect on his lifespan: the lives of workers who had lost their job at 30, Von Wachter and Sullivan found, were shorter than those who had lost their job at 50 or 55—and more than a year and a half shorter than those who’d never lost their job at all.

    That’s great news. According to the paragraph above, I should’ve been dead about fifteen years ago — and my lifespan should’ve decreased about two years for every year after that. So every year after ten years before I was born is just gravy.

  30. I think the significant thing is how disproportionately this recession is effecting the various classes. “The highest group, with household incomes of $150,000 or more, had an unemployment rate during that quarter of 3.2 percent. The next highest, with incomes of $100,000 to 149,999, had an unemployment rate of 4 percent. Contrast those figures with the unemployment rate of the lowest group, which had annual household incomes of $12,499 or less. The unemployment rate of that group during the fourth quarter of last year was a staggering 30.8 percent. That’s more than five points higher than the overall jobless rate at the height of the Depression.”

    This is scary town. Revolutions happen with this kind of disparity. And, crazily, the Republicans and the tea baggers have their finger on that pulse. We’re going to get a far right dictatorship out of this.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/searchG/?cx=partner-pub-3264687723376607%3Atlvacw-gkue&cof=FORID%3A11&ie=ISO-8859-1&q=unemployment&sa.x=17&sa.y=8&sa=Search#1427

  31. As a proud college drop-out (I didn’t waste my fucking time) I can honestly say that all of what I just read is total flag-waving, sensational bullshit. Who hasn’t met someone with a graduate degree from only one of the most prestigious schools and realized within 30 seconds that they’re a fucking retard?

    The making less money thing is bullshit too, as is the “out of wedlock” kid having… That part is totally racial… I mean, socio-economic…ish

    Anyway, to everyone who is in massive debt from getting their “education,” congrats, you wasted a bunch of time for no reason. Well done. Fuck yourself. Praise Jesus.

  32. [re=511788]Jim Newell[/re]: Invest in land Jim. They don’t make any more of it, except in Dubai and it always goes up in value, except once in a while.

  33. @JeffGoldblum: Perhaps if you had finished college, you would understand what is wrong with what you just said. But if you really want to play the insulting overgeneralization game, I’ll just mention that all the college dropouts I’ve known are indolent and self-absorbed, working menial jobs to pay the rent on their trailer and buy enough beer for breakfast. So have fun with that.

  34. Paul Tardy says at 10:02 pm, ““Did you know more than half of the white people without college degrees have children “out of wedlock”?” This produces kids who tend to be poor, dumb and emotionally unstable forever

    Nope Wonkeet. It produces the prison guards for the blacks and hispanics that are born out of wedlock. A bada bump.”

    If that isn’t gospel!!!

  35. [re=511876]JeffGoldblum[/re]: Time and money spent in grad school wasn’t wasted for “no reason”. It was for a very good reason – to delay entry into the non-workforce.

  36. “I’ve never been to a NASCAR race. I picture a bunch of rednecks dousing themselves with beer and slapping their wives on the ass.”

    How imaginative … just like her songs of the last 10 years.

  37. [re=511876]JeffGoldblum[/re]: Yeah, there was a definite whiff of racial pearl-clutching. “Why, if this keeps up, the whites will be as bad as the coloreds!”

  38. [re=511935]qwerty42[/re]: How can you scrounge up enough Allergy Relief-D to start a meth factory when the little prick behind the CVS counter won’t even sell you a 10-pack because “You’ve reached your limit for ze month!!”

    Why does the government hate entrepreneurs?

  39. Watching the country from my tiny perch, most of this article is crap. Circle of friends and family, with average education (mix of college and non-college0, looks and ability, is running about 4% unemployment. NOT a quantative measure, but still interesting. OTOH, friends over 50 who’ve lost their jobs in the past 18 months? Only one has successfully found work. The others are “consulting”.

  40. I think the Atlantic is exaggerating. None of these problems are ones that can’t be fixed without a nice, big capital gains tax cut. Ending the death tax and privatizing medicare would also help.

  41. I think the Atlantic is exaggerating. Excess global production could easily be trimmed down by a land war in Asia. Something like the Great Patriotic War, but with ten times as many people, a bit more dim sum and nuclear weapons.

  42. [re=511887]Naked Bunny with a Whip[/re]: Whoa…did he hit a nerve?…we’re all fucked, you know it, and fingers, as you also know, are for eating whipped cream off, not pointing…just so I don’t have to be disappointed in you, my idol in this disfunctional discussion grope…

  43. That’s a funny thing you said about Liz Phair’s role in the destruction of the music industry and her new goal of suffocating print journalism with a pillow. But to me she can do no wrong. Ever.

  44. [re=511872]MilwaukeeKent[/re]: Three-ways don’t live up to their fantasy promise? Shit, thats basically the only realistic hope we have left, three-ways.

  45. Given the dire predictions for the future and the average middle class citizen’s present economic struggles… Couldn’t you have used a smaller flag?

  46. So long as the local supermarket will accept my Hobo Beans coupons, Sterno remains cheap and I can sleep under a bridge at night, I don’t give a rat’s ass.

  47. How ironic to illustrate a blog about unemployment with a photo of a woman who grew up on Chicago’s North Shore in one of its wealthiest suburbs! When Liz wanted to record her first album, she didn’t approach labels; she just paid for it herself, or Daddy did, anyway. Being a Trustafarian, she can afford to freelance as a writer or perform any other artistic pantomime. Her photo is improperly cropped, too; what you can’t see is that she is sitting on the backs of the working class.

  48. Proof positive that if a man wriggles his penis in excretement, no bastards will be born to further fluck up the good ole’ USA’s economy. Get busy tappin’ the doo-doo gay dudes.

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