RENT IS TOO DAMN HIGH  12:54 pm April 1, 2011

Household Income Short of $68K? Welcome To the New Poverty

by Ken Layne

Sorry, Santa's union was busted by the Koch Bros., and Santa is now David Koch's anal sex slave.Have you been laboring under the delusion that you’re still part of the tiny, rapidly vanishing Middle Class? Happy April Fools Day! A new study proves that a family of four needs $67,920 a year (pre-tax) to survive in America. And that’s basic: no vacations, no fancy dinners, no wine tastings, no fun-box deliveries from Amazon or Zappos or whatever every couple of months to break up the crushing monotony of work and eventual death. You will, however, spend an average of $12,000 a year on car insurance and payments on your crappy mid-sized sedan, because we don’t have much in the way of public transportation in this country. And you’ll spend another $12,000 a year on child care, because we don’t like to provide socialism in these parts, ha ha. Freedom isn’t free, after all.

Not much left after $12,000 a year in rent and utilities, either. Don’t forget to pay $9,000 in taxes on that $67,920! Who do you think you are, General Electric?

The median household income in the United States is $52,029 — nearly $16,000 shy of what it actually costs to keep your head above water if you’ve got a two-income two-child household.

The DC-based nonprofit Wider Opportunities For Women has been compiling the numbers for exactly what it takes to have basic economic security in this country — housing, food, transportation, child care if you have little kids, utilities, and a tiny contribution to savings for your old age — and the numbers are more than triple the ridiculous official poverty levels:

A single worker with two young children needs an annual income of $57,756, or just over $27 an hour, to attain economic stability, and a family with two working parents and two young children needs to earn $67,920 a year, or about $16 an hour per worker.

That compares with the national poverty level of $22,050 for a family of four. The most recent data from the Census Bureau found that 14.3 percent of Americans were living below the poverty line in 2009.

Yes, families of four are most certainly living in abject poverty at $22,050 a year. And they’re still a few paychecks away from disaster at $50,000 or $60,000 a year. Of course there are regional variations here, with big city housing costing the most and energy bills highest where the weather is extreme and the cost of living often being lower where there are, uh, no jobs or schools or anything. As for you single people, the government says anything beyond $10,830 means you’re not in poverty. This new study gives a more realistic number, based on the actual cost of basic shelter and food and electricity and getting to your shitty job if you’re lucky enough to have a shitty job: $30,012 a year. It almost seems like enough until you start paying for groceries and rent ….

If you’re in the top 20% of income earners in this country, you’re doing better with $180,000 in annual income — but not so much better that you feel especially comfortable, and you’re relatively free from the danger of being “rich.” We reserve that special category for the 1% who control 70% of the wealth in this country and have household incomes above $400,000. (And because it’s a day of such mirth and fun, we will not even type the household income levels for the top tenth of a percent.)

So we are now officially living in a country where more than 60% of households are not making enough money for a basic household — the bottom three quintiles of American household income top out at $62,000. [NYT/Wider Opportunities For Women]

 
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{ 212 comments }

V572..whatever April 1, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Wow, thanks Ken. Thought I might have to make it through the weekend without meds or liquor. No worries now!

genxr April 1, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Knowing this, can you even afford it now?

Weenus299 April 1, 2011 at 1:26 pm

Gordon's gin, thank God, is still about $12 a liter here. Bombay, oh Christ, tha'ts $24.

jus_wonderin April 1, 2011 at 1:27 pm

I just wring out a wino on the way home each night.

angryclownspawn April 1, 2011 at 1:28 pm

I'm just going to start making my own bathtub gin.

Andrew Drinker April 1, 2011 at 2:37 pm

Anything to avoid resorting to Four Loko is a good thing.

Swampgas_Man April 1, 2011 at 5:28 pm

Just a word from experience — WASH OUT THE TUB FIRST!

V572..whatever April 1, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Bombay is like 100 proof. Gets you drunk too fast. Your cheaper rotguts like Gilbey's and Gordon's are 80, and you can sustain your drunk longer. Wookies recommends Fleischmann's which I can never find. Vermouth makes all the difference in any case.

freakishlywrong April 1, 2011 at 1:44 pm

And elitist olives. Mmmmmm…gin soaked olives.

Gopherit April 1, 2011 at 1:45 pm

You can always find Fleischmann's. Just find the lowest shelf of your local liquor barn. But what the hell……as long as it takes away the bitter taste of flailing into the wind day after day.

Weenus299 April 1, 2011 at 1:49 pm

Avoid Amsterdam. Too smooth! And weird tasting, although that never stopped me. You can guzzle it right out of the bottle. Which is a bit costly.

Barbara_i April 1, 2011 at 2:13 pm

Can we still afford to clebrate the brown liquors or are we stuck with wine in a box?

Swampgas_Man April 1, 2011 at 5:30 pm

Can anyone recommend a good red, dryer than Manischevitz but still sweet enough to drink alone while weeping over lost jobs and friends? Downfist for anyone advocating Ripple or Thunderbird.

ShaveTheWhales April 1, 2011 at 7:09 pm

Ravenswood zin is pretty good, but it'll still set you back $6-7 a bottle.

There's always 2-buck Chuck. It is better than Ripple.

Barbara_i April 1, 2011 at 7:13 pm

Two buck Chuck isn't that bad.

Sophist [غني عن ذلك] April 1, 2011 at 12:59 pm

OK, I'm about ready for some of that class warfare I've been hearing so much about.

Winnie_Cooper April 1, 2011 at 1:12 pm

That article pretty well details the class warfare we've been hearing all about.

WhatTheHeck April 1, 2011 at 1:21 pm

I’ll wage war when I get some class. Until then, I remain a bitch to the corporations. It is what I was meant to do in life.

LeAlbatross April 1, 2011 at 1:39 pm

I'm in.

…as long as somebody can spot me for anything other than half a brick in a sock…

jqheywood April 1, 2011 at 1:50 pm

Rincewind?

LeAlbatross April 1, 2011 at 5:22 pm

Without the luggage. And as angry as Vimes.

CrankyLttlCamperette April 1, 2011 at 12:59 pm

Umm….April Fool's?

Please?

Weenus299 April 1, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Seems like it costs a fuckload more than that. Reminds me I need to start saving for an Okie truck. I think I can find one in a hybrid now.

Pragmatist2 April 1, 2011 at 1:02 pm

When a majority of Americans are below average, we need to redo the math.

DownFist Troll April 1, 2011 at 1:02 pm

This shit is just going to get worse in the coming decade :S

Edit: I've got to question the minds of the business community. How do they expect people to consume products with lowering wages and fewer jobs. The only way capitalism continues to work, at least on paper, Is if money is recycled back down to the people who have to regularly buy stuff, i.e allowing for demand.

Weenus299 April 1, 2011 at 1:28 pm

I know they carry on with their fital part of America and shit, but businessmen are only concerned with making more money with less people. Always have been. I'm tired of them saying otherwise.

Native_of_SL_UT April 1, 2011 at 1:52 pm

Of course they all know that how it works. They just want the "other" guys to go first.

Andrew Drinker April 1, 2011 at 2:40 pm

This is exactly why you're seeing things like advertising going through a shift of focus. What do you think they're trying to say when a Campbell's Chunky soup commercial is trying to convince you that a decent dinner is a can of soup poured over instant mashed potatoes? They even use elitist-looking young'ns in the commercial surrounded by IKEA furniture.

Something strange is afoot in the Circle-K…

schvitzatura April 2, 2011 at 5:56 am

The secret is not to pour the Chunky over the pomme mash, rather, place the soup in the casserole and layer the potato puree over and place under broiler to create a nice carmelized brown crust…

Hachis Parmentier, oooh la la la! Almost like dining in a Michelin 3-star establishment!

For more shits and giggles in modern times:
http://miseryindex2008.blogspot.com/2008/09/schoo

SorosBot April 1, 2011 at 2:43 pm

They'll pay their workers more money; but it will be in special notes called scrip that they can only use at the company store, thus guaranteeing sales.

donner_froh April 1, 2011 at 2:47 pm

Consumer demand in the United States of Amerikkka? That's why Jesus gave us credit bubbles.

Dudleydidwrong April 1, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Immediate gratification. They used to get on the poorz because they didn't plan ahead. Now the business "community" (of fucking selfish cutthroats!) isn't thinking beyond their immediate profit. Tomorrow? Fuck it. In this pyramid scheme of capitalism the ones making money today don't worry about what comes later.

GOPCrusher April 1, 2011 at 4:18 pm

You're seeing the final death throes of the Raygun Revolution. Every other recession has been driven by credit spending by consumers to get out of the ditch, except for this one will caused by credit spending and consumers have come to realize that you can buy stuff if you don't have money.
That and people can't get jobs because the same companies that depend on consumers spending money are now hoarding money instead of hiring consumers.
They have hoisted themselves on their own petard.

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:13 pm

Don't assume they are smart. It's the same kind of short-sighted selfish stupidity which keeps most 3rd world countries poor!

XOhioan April 1, 2011 at 1:02 pm

Are there not credit cards? Are there not overdoses of prescription antidepressants washed down with half a bottle of vodka? Humbug.

Amo_of_Bogio April 1, 2011 at 1:39 pm

Are there no bootstraps? Is there no NASCAR?

schvitzatura April 2, 2011 at 6:04 am

This boy is an XBox meth addict from a deindustrialized Southern Ohio river town. This girl is a YouTube Star wannabe from Modesto, CA. Beware them both,
and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy,
for on his brow I see that written which is Travis Bickle/Tyler Durden/Trenchcoat Mafia, unless the
writing be erased. Deny it.

elviouslyqueer April 1, 2011 at 1:02 pm

Yes, families of four are most certainly living in abject poverty at $22,050 a year. And they’re still a few paychecks away from disaster at $50,000 or $60,000 a year.

The solution to this is obvious. Sell the damn kids into slavery. Or, better yet, harvest their organs one by one. There's cash in them there kidneys, folks. CHOP CHOP.

mourningnmerica April 1, 2011 at 2:03 pm

I've got dibs on "Kash For Kidneys".

America – just like India, before they became so prosperous.

Andrew Drinker April 1, 2011 at 2:42 pm

The precursor to this is already happening.

unclejeems April 3, 2011 at 12:42 pm

Holy effing Christ.

SorosBot April 1, 2011 at 3:10 pm

No, no, children, I know you're trying to help but believe me, my mind's made up. I've given this long and careful thought. And it's medical experiments for the lot of you…

Lascauxcaveman April 1, 2011 at 1:02 pm

[/checks W-2's]

[/writes another school tuition check]

[/sighs]

Swampgas_Man April 1, 2011 at 5:34 pm

[/looks at W-2's]

[/looks at unemployment check]

[/weeps loudly and openly]

The_Great_Gazoo April 1, 2011 at 1:03 pm

Damn. Think I'll just stick to being a family of one.

Lascauxcaveman April 1, 2011 at 1:12 pm

Much easier to live out of your car that way.

elviouslyqueer April 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Oh, I dunno. A Pontiac Bonneville can sleep six comfortably. Plus there's room enough in the trunk for grandma, grandpa, two dogs, and a goldfish.

The_Great_Gazoo April 2, 2011 at 1:29 am

My grandpa had a '69 Bonneville, the Batman model. He was no Bruce Wayne, though. More of a Sansabelt kind of guy than a Batbelt kind of guy.

Andrew Drinker April 1, 2011 at 2:44 pm

I'm in a family of two – DINKs (Double Income No Kids). We've decided that if it costs $250,000 to raise a child and most families have two, that's $500,000 we can spend on booze between now and when we die. And, fortunately, the more we drink, the less we'll need to spend on it since we'll die earlier!

Hooray!

Lascauxcaveman April 1, 2011 at 6:21 pm

Yes, but! As you and your wife sink down into chronic alcoholic alienation against each other, you need a kid (on your side) when it comes to booze induced rage-tantrums. And if you have two kids, she'll have one in her corner, too, to make even more fun.

Financial Solution: buy cheaper booze and live in the cheapest housing available (singlewide).

Negropolis April 1, 2011 at 11:57 pm

A win/win! My brother and mom and myself would always do this. We'd get two in agreement to win arguments; didn't matter which two or if we disagreed in other arguments. Yeah, we were a dysfunctional family; what's it to you, hengh?

SexySmurf April 1, 2011 at 1:03 pm

What does this have to do with abortion?

Limeylizzie April 1, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Seems like an advertisement for them.

Lionel[redacted]Esq April 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

If people hadn't aborted all those babies, they would have to work hard enough that they would earn enough to qualify for Republican Tax Breaks. But, no, they decided to be lazy.

freakishlywrong April 1, 2011 at 1:03 pm

Happy Friday! I'm dollars above poverty! Where my food stamps at? Can I use them to purchase boxes of wine?

jus_wonderin April 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

I am saving up for an abortion. They take Green Stamps too.

Mumbletypeg April 1, 2011 at 1:45 pm

Am I the only one who still remembers a little jingle from their circa-70s tv ads?

"S&H Green Stamps — for life's extra pleasures" ♫♪

HA! — "extra pleasures" — ha.

Weenus299 April 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm

Try WIC.

CapeClod April 1, 2011 at 1:04 pm

Glad that I chose not to raise two rug rats. The little bastards would have bankrupt me.

caitifty April 1, 2011 at 3:57 pm

I'm more and more glad I got that vasectomy while my health insurance covered it..

nounverb911 April 1, 2011 at 1:05 pm

And to think that I could be just like those hedge fund managers featured on the "Today Show" today if I earned just a mere $1.5B more than I did last year.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/04/01/us-hedg

Lascauxcaveman April 1, 2011 at 1:13 pm

And we can all rest assured, Sarah Palin is making out all right.

Ducksworthy April 1, 2011 at 1:24 pm

But you have to take into account how much smarter they are than you, not to mention their moral superiority.

unclejeems April 3, 2011 at 12:45 pm

"Earn"?

Lascauxcaveman April 1, 2011 at 1:06 pm

Forgot to read all the way through the article; my family of four is *above* the median income!

[/feeling flush again]

emmelemm April 1, 2011 at 2:28 pm

Hey, can I borrow some money?

Just kidding, I am a single person and make somewhat above the study's "bottom line" for a single person. Of course, I also live in an outrageously priced metropolitan area. Still, wine with my hobo beans tonight!!!

BlueStateLibel April 1, 2011 at 1:07 pm

"As for you single people, the government says anything beyond $10,830 means you’re not in poverty." This is why I stopped taking anything seriously from our government a long, long time ago. Warren Buffett said it best, "There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning."

__kth__ April 1, 2011 at 1:43 pm

That's only because the Koch party hasn't fully implemented its program. When everyone who doesn't have a master's degree is working in a factory town, pop. 10,000, and the classrooms are like the churches in the film Mosquito Coast (i.e., teacher isn't actually there but just on a screen, class monitored by minimum-wage bouncer), then $200/wk will be plenty for a single person.

CrankyLttlCamperette April 1, 2011 at 3:14 pm

"That's only because the Koch party hasn't fully implemented its program pogrom."

/fixed

neiltheblaze April 1, 2011 at 1:07 pm

America – Land of the Wage Slave!

KenLayIsAlive April 1, 2011 at 1:10 pm

And yet the Koch Bros. are simply adamant about remove the "Wage" part of that equation.

Negropolis April 2, 2011 at 12:00 am

Wages is Soshullism!

Swampgas_Man April 1, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Wages? What are these 'Wages" you speak of?

comptoneffect April 1, 2011 at 1:08 pm

"Don’t forget to pay $9,000 in taxes on that $67,920!"

What are you bitching about? Someone’s got to cover the cost of the Koch brothers’ tax write offs this year.

nounverb911 April 1, 2011 at 1:19 pm

Just write the check and send it directly to GE.

SexySmurf April 1, 2011 at 1:08 pm

America: Like Mexico, but with more people who hate Mexicans.

user-of-owls April 1, 2011 at 1:27 pm

We should adopt that motto and scrap all the fucking "In God blah, blah" shit.

horsedreamer_1 April 1, 2011 at 1:29 pm

Today, we are all Ejercito Zapatista de Liberacion Nacional.

fuflans April 1, 2011 at 1:58 pm

you are on a roll today.

randcoolcatdaddy April 1, 2011 at 1:11 pm

"Yes, families of four are most certainly living in abject poverty at $22,050 a year."

Heck … a single person without a crack or heroin habit is in poverty at $22K a year..

Jerri April 1, 2011 at 1:11 pm

This is sad, but I kind of love these studies because if my household ever brought in $60,000-odd dollars a year we'd be celebrating like fucking millionaires who just won the lottery, what with the being able to go to the grocery store every week and get a little more than the bare minimum to get us through to the next grocery store trip, and other such luxuries.

Edited to add: Good thing everyone's busting up unions, cutting taxes for the rich, and laying everyone off. That ought to help American families.

ProgressiveInga April 1, 2011 at 1:11 pm

And the poors keep voting for republicans who look out for the rich. Ain't it 'bout time for the shit to start trickling up?

Gopherit April 1, 2011 at 1:55 pm

That's the thing about the poor in the US. They don't vote in their own self interest because it's about wanting to be the one doing the trickling. It's why the redneck retirement system that is the lottery does so well. As long as we're a culture of Me, we're going to have this kind of fucked up situation.

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 9:29 pm

The really poor don't vote.

baconzgood April 1, 2011 at 1:11 pm

I know how to make alot of these poor people go away. We'll lower the "poverty level" from $22,050 to $12,850. Now there are fewer "poor" people.

See fixed.

comptoneffect April 1, 2011 at 1:17 pm

I got a sneaky suspicion that your solution is remarkably similar to the approach used by the government to calculate the poverty level.

Ducksworthy April 1, 2011 at 1:21 pm

Let them eat ketchup.

comptoneffect April 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Hey, it's a vegetable.

baconzgood April 1, 2011 at 1:28 pm

I loved how Ronny said that while tons and tons of cabbage was rotting in government warehouses.

horsedreamer_1 April 1, 2011 at 1:30 pm

I miss that, still, from being in Romania (going on, already, seven years ago): Mc Donald's Mc Chicken (Mc Pui??) sandwiches came with cabbage, in lieu of lettuce. Delicious!

BarryOPotter April 1, 2011 at 2:13 pm

"Hey, it's a vegetable with more than a full's day serving of high fructose corn syrup for your nutritional needs/wants…"

/Truthied.

GOPCrusher April 1, 2011 at 4:41 pm

It's the same way the government claims unemployment is going down, when everyone you know is still standing in the soup lines. If you don't give people a unemployment check anymore, they aren't unemployed.

Swampgas_Man April 1, 2011 at 5:41 pm

See, I thought that "Umemployment is down" BS was about the new applications for UC. And since anyone who CAN be canned has already BEEN canned, there's no "new" applications.

KeepFnThatChicken April 1, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Doable, since most two-parent non-gay-or-divorced families are working four minimum-wage jobs. That's a little over 60k per household*. They can fuck for the remainder. Easy street, AND getting laid!

* pre-withholdings

EdFlintstone April 1, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Poverty will be our biggest growth industry after these republican governors are done.

weejee April 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

ha ha… freedom isn’t free, after all

♪♫ Freedom's just another word for nothin left to lose ♫♪

user-of-owls April 1, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Things would have turned out very, very differently if we'd elected Alvin Greene.

Native_of_SL_UT April 1, 2011 at 2:00 pm

I still can't help but think that we all would have been much better off if Pat Paulson had won at least once.

sezme April 1, 2011 at 2:32 pm

Not to mention that nobody except Basil Marceaux seems prepared to do a damn thing about traffic stop slavery.

user-of-owls April 1, 2011 at 2:50 pm

A blight upon the land.

Andrew Drinker April 1, 2011 at 2:54 pm

Just to reminisce fully:

"I’m Basil Marceaux.com, your Republican candidate for governor.

I’d like to recall all permit and registration for guns. Everyone carry guns. If you kill someone. No. You get murdered then you go to jail!

And, uh, I like to plant grass or vegetation across the state or any vacant lot and sell it for gas. So we can use it for our expenses.

Also I’m going to remove all gold fringe flags from the state and apply the real flag with three stripes.

I also want to stop traffic stops. Set it up like the Supreme Court rule in Knowles vs. Iowa . Can’t find an innocent car, you can’t look.

I want you’s all to vote for Basil Marceuax. I want you to say I pledge allegiance to the Republic, in the morning when you come out and we all pray to God and say Amen. And everyone have a nice day. And I’ll see y’all at the polls!

Thank you. Have a nice day."

Negropolis April 2, 2011 at 12:02 am

I'm still horrified that I truly believe that Alvin Greene would have been an improvement over DeMint.

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 9:31 pm

Of course he would have been! He's had a lot of useful experiences in life. Certainly more than DeMint.

Limeylizzie April 1, 2011 at 1:15 pm

No kids, no car.

V572..whatever April 1, 2011 at 1:16 pm

Go for the trifecta and ditch the spouse. Then it's all yours! Plus half of his.

Limeylizzie April 1, 2011 at 1:24 pm

He has 3 grown children who ,I suspect ,will put me out on the street when he dies, so they can snag all his wealth.

BarryOPotter April 1, 2011 at 2:22 pm

I suspect ,will put me out on the street

Don't let those bastards pimp you out! Have you thought about Facebook escort services?

prommie April 1, 2011 at 4:20 pm

They move fast, in these situations. Watch out for them, no matter how nice they might act. You saw what happened to Anna Nicole. . .

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:14 pm

Save up now, retire to Thailand or Guyana.

freakishlywrong April 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

No kids, ten year old Honda, shithole, dead end jawb + awful pay and no raise for four years = freakishlysad.

CapeClod April 1, 2011 at 1:40 pm

Holy shit. We are the same person.

freakishlywrong April 1, 2011 at 1:49 pm

We surround Them.

emmelemm April 1, 2011 at 2:33 pm

No kids, 15 year old Toyota, non-shithole but tiny abode, dead end jawb/awful pay/no raise in at least four years…

but I still have a job, and some form of health insurance, so I am ahead of the game, bitches!!!

SorosBot April 1, 2011 at 2:07 pm

No spawn, car, single, and very happy for it; I make decent money but have no idea how someone could afford to raise a kid on my salary.

TNJedClampett April 1, 2011 at 2:40 pm

Officially living in my pickup truck for the last five weeks. All in all, it's no more unsustainable than the lifestyle i've led for the previous 43 yrs….

prommie April 1, 2011 at 4:18 pm

Dual Income No Kids = DINKS

Swampgas_Man April 1, 2011 at 5:43 pm

No car, no kids, no spouse.

No job, either.

Redhead April 1, 2011 at 1:15 pm

Sounds pretty accurate.

Winnie_Cooper April 1, 2011 at 1:16 pm

Based on many of those numbers, I'm doing okay. However, if you deduct my student loan payments from my income, I would qualify for food stamps.

*high five*

PsycWench April 1, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Well, maybe it's good that you don't, b/c I have relatives that would post on Facebook anything they saw you buy with those food stamps that didn't meet their stamp of approval. You bought butter? You don't need butter! Use bacon grease like a poor person oughta!

undeterredbyreality April 1, 2011 at 2:04 pm

Bacon? You don't need no stinkin' bacon! Eat pork rinds instead.

Andrew Drinker April 1, 2011 at 3:01 pm
Winnie_Cooper April 1, 2011 at 3:42 pm

The EBT cards are pretty prevalent in my neighborhood, so I could probably use them with relatively little judgment from others. I would not be able to tell my parents, though. Absolute chaos would ensue from that discussion.

Schmannnity April 1, 2011 at 1:16 pm

$67,920? At minimum wage, that's only 9368 hours per year. Get busy people, the richest need a tax cut.

Lionel[redacted]Esq April 1, 2011 at 1:16 pm

Well, thank God that the Republicans and the Tea Party are working so hard to help the poor and middle class, and make the rich pay their fair share.

crybabyboehner April 1, 2011 at 1:16 pm

We don't have much in the way of public transportation …
There you go again, thinking only of yourself.
Did you ever stop to consider what would happen to BP and Exxon and Goodyear if we had any more of this "public transportation" ?
Didn't think so.

aguacatero April 1, 2011 at 1:20 pm

I want my country back:

Even the most luxury-loving of the Framers — say, Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, with his love of expensive sweets and bubblebaths imported from France — could have easily made do on $67,919/year!

Radiotherapy April 1, 2011 at 1:46 pm

The slaves and parceled out land grants didn't hurt the bottom line.

Limeylizzie April 1, 2011 at 3:05 pm

Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
Is that a real name, if it is it's fabulous! think I will name my next cat Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, after one of my current two passes on.

carolinaswamp April 1, 2011 at 5:00 pm

Charles Cotesworth Pinckney was all too real, a delegate to the Constitutional Convention and the benevolent owner of hundreds of people who had flocked to him asking to be taken under his kindly wing and allowed to perish of malaria in the rice fields of his many plantations. Most articles on Pinckney also include the word "oligarch" somewhere in the text.

Ducksworthy April 1, 2011 at 1:20 pm

I think I'll join the Tea Baggers in demanding liberty for the Asia Paper Company and Koch Industries. Only I'm going to be explicit about who it is I'm supporting.

JustPixelz April 1, 2011 at 1:20 pm

Stop your griping! With a little pluck and a contract with TLC for a taxpayer-subsidized reality show, a coupla book deals and some bendy straws, anyone can become inexplicably wealthy.

JackDempsey1 April 1, 2011 at 1:21 pm

There are a lot of facts, figures, and number thingys here for a wonkette post.
Where are the monthly budget entries for porn?

EdFlintstone April 1, 2011 at 1:22 pm

Hey yesterday's trailer trash is today's nouveau middle class. It's why I'm investing in tarps, grule, spam and pitchforks. The republicans are stepping up with some solutions by loosening child labor laws, time for those preteens to quit slacking.

Polythene_Pam April 1, 2011 at 2:11 pm

Looking through the 'helpwanted' ads right now, to see if any of the local mills or coal mines are hiring 9 year olds.

SayItWithWookies April 1, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Such whiners these Americans are — the LORD gave you two kidneys for a reason, people!

fuflans April 1, 2011 at 2:00 pm

mine are both active working on the alcohol.

MarshallBanana April 1, 2011 at 2:34 pm

You got two of them? Awww, man! I got gypped!

(No, really.)

ApplesauceRobot April 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

Ah, the new America. For the rich it's cheap and easy. Just like my sister.

crybabyboehner April 1, 2011 at 1:26 pm

You might want something a little more assertive. Ripple red has a bold fruity nose, with hints of paint shellac.

jus_wonderin April 1, 2011 at 1:31 pm

An example of what we do in our family is like when the mistress wanted a boob job, I told her that she should learn to sacrifice. So, we got one boob done. And then will get the next one next year.

I told her we all have to do our part. Pull our loads, so to speak.

horsedreamer_1 April 1, 2011 at 1:31 pm

Exactly. Me? I'm on the Night Train…

horsedreamer_1 April 1, 2011 at 1:32 pm

If I were married, & if my wife made as much as I do (between two jobs, one full-time, one part-time), we'd be sitting pretty.

WhatTheHeck April 1, 2011 at 1:35 pm

…no wine tastings…

Mr Gloomy-pants Ken, I’ll have you know the street people around here have wine tastings every evening. Its just I can't tell if they are drinking red or white as the bottle is in a brown paper bag. Other than that, they are living the American dream.They want to be in America. Everything free in America.

baconzgood April 1, 2011 at 1:38 pm

Middle Class? No I'm not familiar….You must me thinking of that singer that choked on a sandwich. I think she was in The Mammas & The Pappas.

prommie April 1, 2011 at 1:39 pm

I knows I am gonna get a big giant "oh, boo hoo, you poor thing you" for this one, but fuck all ya'all, I'm gonna say it anyway. My two-income family of four has 3 cars, one of the four being a collegiate student. I recently added it all up, we was paying $9,000 a year in insurance, payments of $560 a month for the economy car, and $800 a month for the nice car, and gasoline to the tune of $900 a month, yes indeedy, gasoline, $900 a month (combined commuting of 200 miles a day).

Whats that, something north of $34,000 a year in automobile expenses?

Yes indeedy, more than $34,000 a year in automobile expenses.

My father's first house cost $8,000.00

But there hasn't been any inflation, of course, because the cars and gas and insurance all have increased hedonic value, dontcha know!

sezme April 1, 2011 at 2:35 pm

Well sir, you're pretty much keeping Detroit and BP in business single-handedly!

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:03 pm

Slavery to the automobile.

OC_3300X_Serf April 1, 2011 at 1:39 pm

…but if you are a Corporation, that $67,920 pre-tax turns into $4,228,449 post-tax.

LeAlbatross April 1, 2011 at 1:40 pm

Because they own the plants/workers making the goods.

JoshuaNorton April 1, 2011 at 1:40 pm

What's really ironic is that the toothless Rascal-riding teatards think "tax cuts for the rich" means them if their lucky to be making $25,000 a year.

Their idea of a diverse portfolio is a combination of scratchers and quick picks.

How's that "Vote Republican" thingy working out for ya?

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:05 pm

Their preachers are telling them "you could be Raptured any minute now!

Ken Layne April 1, 2011 at 1:42 pm

No kidding. When my household had a brush with good incomes a couple of years ago, I was wondering why it didn't actually *cover expenses.* If I just gave up wine and books and locked the kids in the garage all day instead of paying $1,200 a month in daycare ….

emmelemm April 1, 2011 at 2:36 pm

Actually, locking the kids in the garage all day would probably eventually lead to CPS being called, kids taken away, housed and paid for by someone else = #WINNING!

More money for wine that way…

Steverino247 April 1, 2011 at 2:52 pm

Now, consider that my wife can't work and can't make SS understand why and my job and retirement have become politcal footballs, that my younger son depends on SS due to his being totally disabled thanks to W's Big Iraq Adventure, that his older brother no longer has health insurance for himself and my grandson (makes too much to qualify, etc.) and we've got good times ahead for the Friends of Steverino247.

Fortunately, I know how to make revolutions work.

anniegetyerfun April 1, 2011 at 1:45 pm

12K for housing? I pay double that in interest alone, and I make less than 68K. I… well, happy Friday everyone! Yay!

ChuckieJesus April 1, 2011 at 1:46 pm

There's a reason why they haven't changed the income guidelines for poverty since 1972 or whatever: Americans react poorly to being OVERTLY screwed.

Ducksworthy April 1, 2011 at 1:48 pm

Quite right too. They prefer to be screwed while lubed up on Fux Noise and Santorum.

freakishlywrong April 1, 2011 at 1:47 pm

Jerri..y'know, "shared sacrifice" and all. (That rot).

Radiotherapy April 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm

We still have something money can't buy…UPFISTS for everybody!

genxr April 1, 2011 at 1:58 pm

I don't care too much for money
Money can't buy me snark

Radiotherapy April 1, 2011 at 1:59 pm

How are these "poor" people going to buy the quintessential American staples of guns and ammo?

GunToting[Redacted] April 1, 2011 at 2:44 pm

Won't SOMEBODY think of the domestic terrorists?!?

schvitzatura April 2, 2011 at 6:19 am

They are being made now, in the lovely little town of Darra Adam Khel, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (North-West Frontier Province):
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x1gizg_vice-trav

As long as the wack pastor guy in FL does not burn any more Q'urans, Billy Bob might still be able to pick up a "hand-crafted" AK-4x knock-off at a drive-in flea market.

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:15 pm

Steal them while in the Army

stanpan April 1, 2011 at 2:03 pm

If I had the smarts, I'd develop a video game which featured trundling rich turds like the Koch brothers off to the guillotine. Maybe call it "Reign O' Terror".
I'd sell a shit-load of copies and use the profit to make mischief against said rich turds.
Or else retire to a private island and live like a James Bond villain.

BklynIlluminati April 1, 2011 at 2:05 pm

I always knew that a Victorian/Charles Dickens era was going to make a comeback. I got my fingerless gloves and newsie hat all ready to go panhandling and reading a mournful look to use after i get called a street urchin

DashboardBuddha April 1, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Shit! We are heading there and we don't even don't have the ability to fall back on selling papers on the street after we've been laid off. Paper newspapers? hahahhahahah

BarryOPotter April 1, 2011 at 2:43 pm

don't have the ability to fall back on selling papers on the street

BklynIlluminati, you're screwed. More.

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:08 pm

Selling apples, etc., on the sidewalk is probably against zoning laws most places and might get you free room and board in jail!

SudsMcKenzie April 1, 2011 at 2:07 pm

[Redacted]

undeterredbyreality April 1, 2011 at 2:11 pm

'Bout six months ago I was paying my cable bill and the news was on about Obama's plan to increase taxes on those making more than $250K a year. (This was before the Dems caved on that.) The lady taking my money made some shitass comment about how Obama's gonna raise her taxes. I said "Comcast is paying you $250,000 to sit here & take my money? Where do I apply?"

PS–I no longer have cable.

fuflans April 1, 2011 at 2:13 pm

time for more clash.

not that Dewey April 1, 2011 at 2:16 pm

(ex-)Mayor Richie J Daley used a similar gambit to redefine homelessness in such a way that Chicago ended up with only like 3 homeless people.

SorosBot April 1, 2011 at 2:39 pm

It's not a box, it's a home.

Gorillionaire April 1, 2011 at 2:16 pm

Don't worry, pretty soon Ben Stein will be on the tv talk shows to remind us that having a working telephone and 1984 Accord would be "the good life" in a third world shithole country, so hey everything is, fine?

Steverino247 April 1, 2011 at 2:58 pm

That's OK. Ben Stein is still too stupid to understand why Nixon resigned.

(For those who need an explanation: BS was the young kid with the "say it ain't so" look on his face standing in the back of the room when Nixon gave his farewell to the staff speech. If you didn't know why Nixon resigned in 1974, you're too fucking stupid to be allowed out in public.)

Dudleydidwrong April 1, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Ben Stein: Montgomery Blair High School's gift of shit to the world.

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:17 pm

Actually, most urban people here in China have cell phones and lots have electric scooters. Public transport is increasing — Kunming is building a new subway!

JoshuaNorton April 1, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Weep for poor Sean Duffy (R-WI) who's boo-hooing that he can't make it on his Congressional salary of $174,000 a year.

Someone needs to start a food and clothing drive for his family. They desperately need the basic amenities like oyster forks and pate and have to make-do with last year's Versace.

Monsieur_Grumpe April 1, 2011 at 2:23 pm

Maine is passing some legislation that should allow her to work 12 hours shifts 7 days a week. Whoopie!
http://www.pressherald.com/opinion/dont-weaken-ch

not that Dewey April 1, 2011 at 2:33 pm

Woo hoo! We're gonna be rich!

But, wait — Maine has jobs?

fuflans April 1, 2011 at 2:23 pm

but good news! this job posting is available:

Make $10.00 for 10 minutes (1st 50) . Arrive at Rossi Furniture at 9:30 am sharp and stand in line for a TV commercial. The first 50 will receive the $10.00.

'merica is back!!

user-of-owls April 1, 2011 at 2:31 pm

My name is Ken, king of kings: Look on my words, ye Hobos, and despair!

mesothet April 1, 2011 at 2:32 pm

♪♫ I'm a… maaaaaan of means by no means ♫♪
♫♪ King of the Road ♪♫

Hey! That's my spot! Find your own freeway overpass!

mesothet April 1, 2011 at 2:33 pm

Hooker at CPAC?

SorosBot April 1, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Are we sure about that part?

donner_froh April 1, 2011 at 2:41 pm

"the bottom three quintiles of American household income top out at $62,000"

When I was a kid my parents told me to stay out of quintiles because bad things happen in them. If only I had listened to them I might have some money now.

donner_froh April 1, 2011 at 2:56 pm

I like Richard's Wild Irish Rose for most occasions. It pairs well with insane rage, pointless brawls and a quick but painful death.

Steverino247 April 1, 2011 at 2:59 pm

Can her hand reach all the way into a 75mm shell?

SorosBot April 1, 2011 at 3:06 pm

Or can do a good job climbing in a chiminy?

not that Dewey April 1, 2011 at 3:39 pm

Finish your Fruity Pebbles. As soon as Dora is over, it's back to the munitions factory!

GOPCrusher April 1, 2011 at 3:13 pm

I have to wonder how much longer India will have consumers, since they tend to kill the CEO of a company for closing the plant.
They haven't learned to suffer in silence like us Americans.

MistaEko April 1, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Keepin your head above water!
Makin a wave when you can!

owhatever April 1, 2011 at 3:25 pm

Dang. I don't make enough money to be poor. Fight the death tax.

ChurchofRealism April 1, 2011 at 3:31 pm

Now imagine you are a one income family with two kids on the Autism spectrum who are not covered by your employer's health insurance. America, fuck yeah….

Dudleydidwrong April 1, 2011 at 3:46 pm

Some financial guy asked me if I had a plan for retirement. I said that I was investing all my income in PowerBall and MegaMillions and hoped that I would win something. He looked startled and said, superciliously, "Hope is not a plan!" So I shot him. I just hope that his family had a plan.

MadBrahms April 1, 2011 at 4:11 pm

Whee! And in Scott Walker's America, you're now ineligible for state health care unless your family income is below 22,000. It used to be 37, but you know, things are so *cheap* these days, and there are plenty of chickens in Wisconsin to barter for care.

zhubajie April 3, 2011 at 10:18 pm

Benny Hinn will HEAL you when you touch the TV set!

prommie April 1, 2011 at 4:23 pm

Do they still make T.J. Swann? It came in 3 flavors, Mellow Days, Easy Nights, and for when you really want to party, "Steppin' Out"

Walkinwiddaking April 1, 2011 at 4:33 pm

Why does the Wonkette always take the negative side when it comes to all things economic?

Take this for example: http://money.cnn.com/2011/04/01/news/economy/hedg

I remember a few months back when MSNBC ran an ad for Morning Joe and near the end there's a clip of that dick saying something along the lines of, "class warfare has never worked as an issue in this country." Haven't seen that ad lately.

SorosBot April 1, 2011 at 4:42 pm

Gah, where's Robin Hood when we need him?

Walkinwiddaking April 1, 2011 at 5:33 pm

Tis off in far Sherwood licking his wounds.

jakesnider April 1, 2011 at 4:42 pm

don't forget drug and alcohol costs. gotta cope somehow

Neoyorquino April 1, 2011 at 6:42 pm

"When the middle class identifies with the poor, that is when reform happens in America" (via somebody on Reddit . . . not that I ever visit other websites).

sportshort April 1, 2011 at 7:15 pm

You woke me up out of a good hangover to read this shit? I saw my fucking shadow and now we're gonna have twelve more years of bad luck. Damn you.

PublicLuxury April 1, 2011 at 9:26 pm

We are offiicially a Banana Republic. Let's all join hands and refuse to let go until the top has been toppled.

Negropolis April 1, 2011 at 11:41 pm

That alt text is just plain inappropriate…appropriately so, though.

Negropolis April 2, 2011 at 12:09 am

In other news, blood and sperm bank deposits are going through the roof; a sticky, slimey roof.

denverite April 2, 2011 at 5:03 am

It's expensive to be poor. Truer words were never spoken.

user-of-owls April 1, 2011 at 2:27 pm

And Trotskyite popinjays. Mmmm…gin-soaked Trotskyite popinjays.

V572..whatever April 1, 2011 at 6:45 pm

Enghngh, he's dying, probably. Therefore you get an upfist!

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