Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Deflation, anyone?

Certainly, in terms of wages, it's looking pretty damned deflationary for most - the exception being those on Wall Street. Where I work, we've had no pay cuts yet. We didn't get a pay raise this year, and probably won't receive one the next year. When you're single-income and raising a sizable enough family, that can be bad news - especially when your income level places you right on the border line of qualifying for such things as food stamps. There was a threat at the beginning of the fiscal year to increase our teaching load, which would have amounted to a de facto pay cut - extra workload without a corresponding increase in compensation. So far that threat has not come to fruition (knock on wood). I realize some of my colleagues in other states have been dealing with furloughs and other such nastiness. I do have a really nifty job title, though. Too bad you can't feed a family with a title.

In the meantime, aside from moonlighting and begging the spouse to find some means of supplementing the family income the status quo has come to mean smaller Christmases (not a very big deal to me, though much more so to the spouse), and simply failing to replace major appliances as they break down (all of mine are over ten years old, including vehicles). That is the reality of the shrinking US middle class for you.

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