The latest poll done by Associated Press-GfK finds that 46 percent of those surveyed suffer a great deal from debt-related stress. Compared to last year, the economy has done a big turn-around, but it “just doesn’t feel much like a recovery.”
Why? The unemployment rate is still at 9.9 percent, and what few new jobs that come along come with very stiff competition. Those that are working are earning less as pay rates shrivel, and very few can now qualify for a loan. Still, there are a few suckers in the bunch: 20 percent say the economy is good.
For the third month in a row, 1.2 million people will run out of unemployment insurance benefits. It seems that Congress can’t muster enough votes to agree to extend the federal unemployment benefit extensions until the end of the year, so each month they dicker and deal and cut and chop away until it’s time for break. Congress breaks, the states scramble to deal with the sudden halt, and the media fails to report the mess in time for any of those 1.2 million to prepare for their income to come to a screeching halt. This time, Congress is not scheduled to return until June 7. Three strikes and you’re out.
Sure, there is an infinite number of things happening to up stress levels in just about everyone. But, when it comes right down to it, if you lose the ability to purchase food and keep a roof over your head, not much else matters.
We don’t need to see a poll on that.