Guest Post: 5 Things Nobody Tells You About Being Poor

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by John Cheese via The Burning Platform blog,

Being poor is like a game of poker where if you lose, the other players get to screw you. And if you win, the dealer screws you. A bunch of you reading this are among the 45 million “working poor” in America, and if you’re not, you know somebody who is. Like me.
Or 60 percent of all retired NBA players, according to this site.

I’m not blaming anybody but myself for getting into this situation (I was drunk for two straight decades) and I’m not asking for anybody’s sympathy. What I am saying is that people are quick to tell you to pick yourself up by your bootstraps and just stop being poor. What they don’t understand is the series of intricate financial traps that makes that incredibly difficult.

If you’re not poor, that’s awesome. I’m not mad at you, or jealous. Hopefully you’ll never find out that …


#5. You Get Charged for Using Your Own Money



This is the future, where many businesses no longer accept cash as payment. That means you are required to have a checking account to function in the economy. And if you’re poor, that means at some point you’re going to get bank-fucked.

Because having a checking account while poor doesn’t just mean you have to be responsible and good at math — you have to be perfect. Meticulous, flawless record keeping is the difference between surviving and having the bank seize your next paycheck.



Let’s say you’re running late for work and hurriedly stop to get gas, paying with a bank card. In your haste you forget to write the $55 down (gas being $4 a gallon, you know). So while you spent the last week until payday thinking you had $50 in your account to absorb minor purchases, you actually were $5 in the red.

So payday comes. You go to the bank to deposit your check, at which point the bank takes it, sticks it in their pocket and says, “Thank you very much! I’m buying myself a new pair of shoes with that shit!” They then inform you that your account was at -$200 at the moment you deposited your check.
Oh, it gets a lot worse, stock photo woman.


The bank can hit you with a $35 fine for every charge that comes in while you are in minus territory. The bank will not tell you they charged you this money. You will have no idea anything is wrong.

It’s a silent chain reaction in which every charge that comes through during those few days before payday draws the $35 fee. The $8 you spent at the gas station for cigarettes, the $24.99 that automatically comes out for your Internet access … for each, the bank silently zaps out the charge and $35 on top of it, until your next paycheck is gone. Five seconds of oversight gave the bank the right to take away a week’s worth of your labor.

Some of you are saying, “Fine, just tell the bank to go fuck itself. Walk out the door and just do everything by cash or money order.” Ah, but now when you get paid, you have to go somewhere to cash your paycheck — and businesses charge up to $8 to do it. If you’re working in the service industry, congratulations — an hour of your labor just vanished … just so you could use your own money. Some describe this as a “poverty tax.” Others refer to it as a “Because fuck you, that’s why” fee.


The one piece of advice I can offer here is that you’ll be surprised how many businesses will give you some leeway if you just call them and beg. Banks are run by human beings (as of the writing of this article) and if you get a person on the phone you can get them to waive overdraft fees, particularly if it’s a first offense. Even businesses waiting on a payment will give you an extra week or two if you call and explain it. In this economy, they’re so used to people just taking the money and disappearing that they’re happy to hear you’re operating in some kind of good faith.

Otherwise, you’re going to be in a bind. And this is when you’ll find out …

#4. There is an Industry That Profits by Keeping You Poor



Think you’re too smart to ever use one of those shady “payday loan” places? Well, you should know that nobody thinks they’re a good deal. People go there because they’re choosing between which fucking provides the most lube.
Yeah, when you’re done choosing, just stay in that position, buddy.


Say the gas bill is a month past due, and they’re threatening to turn it off (if so, it’s $150 to get it reconnected). Or you’re about to be late on a credit card payment (which would be a fee and a doubling of your interest rate). Or your favorite S&M whip broke, and Whipfest is coming up (entry fee is nonrefundable). That is when you find yourself swallowing your pride and heading to the payday loan place.



A standard 14-day “payday” loan charges $15.50 per $100 borrowed. So a $500 loan ends up being $577.50 (or 1.5 tanks of gas in interest). But if you don’t have it after 14 days, that’s fine — they offer to extend your loan to 180 days. It makes the payments miniscule. Oh, and you’ll be paying back $1,275 at 403.10 percent APR.

Yes, you got fucked, in the name of your financial asshole avoiding the credit card company’s bigger, barbed dick. And it’s a hell of a lot better than going over on your checking account again and starting up their infinite circular fuckatron.


Using this.


All right, let’s say you wised up. You save and cut back. You resist an offer to, say, buy a computer on Best Buy’s finance plan, because you’re too smart to take on more debt. And no monthly cell phone payments for you, oh no. You’re not going to put yourself in a hole again!

Congratulations. You just did. It turns out …

#3. No Credit Can be Just as Damaging as Bad Credit



On the spectrum of financial responsibility, from “that billionaire who drives an old Dodge Dakota” down to “MC Hammer,” you’d think that the next step up from being overdue on a bunch of bills would be to have no bills at all. Don’t buy it if you can’t afford it, right?

You’ll find out the problem the next time somebody does a credit check — having no credit will stop you from getting a loan or an apartment just as fast as having bad credit. And more importantly, if you have old bad credit due to a bunch of previous fuckups, simply vanishing off the credit map doesn’t do anything to fix it.
It sounds good in theory, though.


It took me six months to find a place to rent after applying for every property that appeared in the paper across five towns. I was denied each time. It was my lack of credit due to years of me and lenders deciding to just stay out of each other’s hair, like those old sitcoms where roommates would draw a line down the middle of the house. I even used a prepaid cell phone where I’d just be buying minutes off the shelf rather than get locked into a contract with all those termination fees and shit. When I needed something big, like a computer upgrade or furniture, I’d wait for a windfall, like a tax return, and pay cash. It’s called financial responsibility, motherfucker!
Now hand over the heroin, bitch!


Nope. It turns out that to a business, a customer with no credit is like a girl giving you the silent treatment — they assume something is wrong.

And everybody checks your credit — if I want to get Direct TV, I have to pay $310 worth of startup fees (the size of your up-front payments/deposits depends on your credit history). Utilities are even more — which means trying to move to a new place costs hundreds of dollars in deposits (remember the $150 to get my gas turned on). If I need a new car, well, let’s just say I need to show up at the dealership with a shoebox full of cash.
The last two kids I bought on the black market virtually wiped out my life savings.


So repairing credit means opening accounts (having a cell phone plan is a good one, having your utilities in your own name — as opposed to the landlord’s — is another) and, you know, making sure to pay your fucking bills on time. And don’t bother trying to shortcut the system by saving the shoebox full of cash, getting a loan, then paying it all off the next month. Length of credit is part of your credit score. They want to know your ability to make steady, long term payments without missing a month or being late

#2. Your Next Expensive Disaster is Always Around the Corner



Shit happens, always at the exact worst time. A tire blows on my car and, without a spare, it instantly becomes a paperweight. There’s $80 for a new tire, $50 for a tow. Now, it’s a good idea to have a separate bank account set up specifically for these situations because they are unavoidable. It’s also a good idea to have a sex slave or two just sitting around in case your balls need shaved. It’s not that fucking simple.
Just a little further, sir. We need to be able to stab your heart with our dicks.


You get the same domino effect with sudden financial disasters as you do with the bank fees. For instance, I worked a shitty service industry job, which meant I got paid by the hour, and didn’t get paid unless I showed up — no paid time off. But I couldn’t physically get to work because of the goddamned flat tire. It’s a rural area, no subway or buses. So it’s double penetration — not just lost work time, but lost time that is spent paying for a tow and a tire. And if I didn’t happen to have that money sitting around, it meant waiting until payday, and missing work until then.

Which meant my next paycheck would be short. By the time I get it fixed and add in the missed work time, that $80 tire just turned into a $250 enema. That’s life in a world with no financial margin for error. It’s like trying to climb out of a dick pit but the ladder is also made of dicks.



Years ago, we bought a house with the help of our in-laws. You know, because owning property is the responsible adult thing to do. The very first fucking night of moving in, we got a massive water leak. I couldn’t just call the landlord — I was the landlord. I couldn’t call a plumber because we didn’t have the $150 to pay the guy, not until payday. So the leak was allowed to run until we could put the money together to pay one. So two weeks later, we hand the guy $150. And then, a week later, the water bill arrives.


You find yourself thinking, “Man, we could get caught up if this bad shit wouldn’t keep happening!” Then it finally hits you that bad shit happens like clockwork. Not because God hates you, but because you’re poor and you’re using cheap shit that breaks. Maybe you don’t pay the $150 for a plumber, but have a handy friend fix it for you for $50. Awesome, you saved $100! Then six months later you have a leak again, because it turns out he fixed it with rubber bands and Fruit Roll-ups.



Everything in a poor person’s life is a cash vampire. My truck has 170,000 miles on it and the MPG is so bad that every time I start it, the ghost of an Indian appears in the passenger seat and cries. About twice a year, something under the hood grinds to a halt or melts — always another $500 on a tow and repairs. And that was the money I was saving to get a more reliable car.

Hell, even my own body does it to me. I lost my last job because of chronic back pain, losing my health insurance in the process. Which means I can’t treat my chronic back pain. Can’t afford to get dentist check-ups, so more expensive problems are allowed to grow and fester. And so on.

#1. You’re Always in Survival Mode



There’s a phrase in the working world that drives me crazy. One guy says, “The money’s not great, but I love my job.” And somebody responds, “Hey, happiness is all that really matters.”

To be clear, that’s probably true for people at a certain level of income. If you aren’t struggling to pay the bills, then happiness is indeed a pretty damn awesome extra. But you know those movies like American Beauty, about the guy with the unfulfilling career who abandons it to live life to its fullest? Yeah, don’t forget that after quitting their jobs they still come home to houses that look like this:



But down here, at this level, you take what you can fucking get. Fantasies about holding out for that dream job will ruin you.

For instance, long before reading to this part, some helpful commenter has surely skipped down and chimed in with, “Why don’t you just get a job, you lazy fuck!” Wait, did you think I was unemployed? Hell no, it’s been years since I was out of work for any long period of time. I’ve always had jobs. Shitty, shitty jobs.

A huge chunk of this economy runs on shitty jobs now. Recently, McDonald’s held a job fair with 50,000 openings. They got more than 1,000,000 applications. Tens of millions of you will wind up in one of these jobs, it’s sheer math.



These service jobs pay hourly, they give you little or nothing in terms of benefits and there is nothing in the way of security even from week to week — your hours could get cut at any time, for any reason. Sure, you can take a second part-time job. Though, that’s assuming you can find one that works around your primary job’s schedule — just mentioning that you have another job in an interview is often enough to stop that interview mid-sentence. Why hire you when there are 30 guys in line behind you with completely free schedules?

So in answer to the inevitable, “You need to dream bigger, and strive forth to get a new career for yourself!” Hey, I totally agree. But now we’re back in the Catch-22 poverty fuck gauntlet. Once you’re in this tier of jobs, getting out isn’t just hard, it’s expensive.

Sure, you can take classes at night at a community college or something. Maybe you’ll even get financial aid or loans to pay for your books or tuition. What they will not pay for is the time you missed at work while you were in classes or for a babysitter or for transportation. And you sure as fuck better be certain that you have some kind of aptitude for whatever you’re studying (which, by the way, you won’t know until you’ve spent a year or two studying it) because that’s the only chance you’re going to get.



You can do it the old-fashioned way, by working your way up the corporate ladder from within whatever shitty job you have. But that is also expensive because promotions often require you to move. I got offered a promotion at my shitty service job (washing semi trucks with high-pressure hoses, the job that eventually destroyed my back) that would have required me to move several hours away. And moving costs money — remember what I said about the cost of getting utilities turned on? And how landlords check your credit?

And then there are the intangible costs. I would be abandoning my children, for instance — I share custody with my ex-wife, who obviously was not going to be moving with me. How many visits would I get in before my car broke down? And moving away from friends and family also comes with a cost — think of the favors you do for each other (i.e. the friend/brother/uncle willing to fix the truck for free, because you helped paint his porch, etc).
Rounding each other’s fros.


It’s not impossible, but it’s taking a huge risk. And if the new job doesn’t work out after you bet all of your chips, you’re triple fucked. And at that point the world will wag its finger at you and tell you how irresponsible it was to move when you were so poor. “Ha, you poor people are always doing stupid shit like that!”

And on and on. People do get out of this situation — I got paid to write this, for instance. All I’m saying is that the journey is something like trying to go from the Earth to the Moon. By letting them launch a Saturn V rocket directly into your butthole.

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Buzzworthy's picture

This article is f-u-c-k-e-d!

fonzannoon's picture

Holy shit this was funny,

I was going to go with a John Cheesepope joke but this guy deserves a medal

francis_sawyer's picture



Not it fucking isn't [FUNNY]... I'm sorry, but it's only funny to cheesepope sychophants...

Instead ~ it's a tragedy... It's a classic example of them 'lording over you' & then rubbing it in your faces to remind you how fucked you are that they're, for the moment, in control of your destiny & humanity...

fonzannoon's picture

I know Francis I know. It's a way to make people laugh about the boot stomping on their face. I just found it funny.

Francis you me and Kito have been in the liferaft for a while now. Kito convinced himself a few hours ago that the water was safe to drink and after downing a few liters he is now outside the raft high fiving a few mako's. I am now conversing with several people who are not actually in the raft and I am having a great time. In a few minutes I too will drink a ton of salt water and see what kito is up to. I hope you make it until help comes.

francis_sawyer's picture

Son, we live in a world that has walls, and those walls have to be guarded by men with [MONEY PRINTING MACHINES THAT THEY USE TO PRINT MONEY FOR THEMSELVES & THEIR TRIBE MEMBERS]... Who's gonna do it? You? You, Lt. Weinberg?... [WE ALL KNOW WHOSE SIDE WEINBERG IS ON]... I have a greater responsibility than you could possibly fathom... You [MOCKINGLY] weep for Poor, and you curse the [francis-sawyers OF THE WORLD THAT POINT OUT TRUTH]... You have that luxury... You have the luxury of not knowing what I know... That [THE DREGS OF SOCIETY, AS YOU VIEW THEM], while tragic, [ARE THE RESULT OF IMPOSSIBLE MATHEMATICAL ASYMMETRY]... And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you [ENDEAVORS TO EXPOSE THAT ASYMMETRY AMIDST A BARRAGE OF CRITICISM]... You don't want the TRUTH because deep down in places you don't talk about at parties, you WANT me on that wall, you NEED me on that wall... I use words like TRUTH, ASYMMETRY, & OPPRESSION... I use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something... You use them as a punchline... I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom & truth I express, and then questions the manner in which I publish it... I would rather you just said thank you, and went on your way... Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a weapon, and stand a post [& DON'T HIDE BEHIND A JUNK BUTTON]... Either way, I don't give a damn what you think you are entitled to, your comic opinion of what the truly oppressed think or feel, or your mockery thereto...

Harry Dong's picture

Where do I sign up?

Oh wait a minute. I did that once already.


JJ McApe's picture

#1. You’re Always in Survival Mode

If you ask me thats a good thing. Never take anything for granted. And be thankful for what you already have.


Oleander's picture

In an instant you realize how fucked you are when your kid suddenly needs something that medical  insurance will not cover. 

DCFusor's picture

The trouble with being poor, is that it takes all your time.  I found that out when I skipped the beltway bandit burnout scene in DC to move down here and homestead.  Sure, you can get by - but it takes all your time - you fix everything that breaks yourself.  You spend a lot of time looking for something cheap enough to afford.

You do with hand tools (shovel...) to even do things like cut your driveway out of the mountain, becuase you can't afford to rent a bobcat or backhoe.  You can't afford a tiller, so you dig your garden by hand.  You can't afford a carpenter (and hell, the materials) so you slowly build your home by hand with stuff people toss out and the little you can buy.  You do without almost everything most idiots think they "need" - you find out you don't "need" much of anything but food and shelter - and damn little of that.

I spent a year living in a friend's barn (they had a tiny house and no room) till I got on my feet again.  At least the horse laughed at my jokes.  I built a tiny room out of styrofoam and heated it with the same single burner I used for cooking.  That's about what you *need* - one can of something a day to eat, just put it in the pot with the rest of whatever.  Hard on your lower GI tract to eat so little, but I lived.

After that, the next time I got "rich" (started a product design consultancy that made the 3 of us millions apiece) - I had the right habits, though, and managed to hang on to it instead of wasting it on fast cars, meals out, "hookers and blow" (I skipped the hookers, it was too easy to get laid free, or mostly free), so it had advantages I suppose.


Imminent Crucible's picture

"The trouble with being poor is that it takes all your time"

Truer words were never spoken.

Umh's picture

The reason most poor people are poor is just being unable to make good judgement calls. Do you think the government should do it for them?

sus sapientiae's picture

Calling bullshit on the false dichotomy.  Flawed starting point, leads to flawed questions, which in turn leads to meaningless answers...

ebworthen's picture

Were you extending your pinky when you thought that?

Diogenes's picture

Did you even read the article? Go get a job washing dishes and live on what you make. Then get back to me in a year.

q99x2's picture

The Art History book is $140.

If you can afford to go to college you don't need to work.

Barnaby's picture

If you buy a man a blowjob, he'll be happy for a day.
If you teach a man to earn plentiful blowjobs over a four-year period, he'll be happy for the rest of his life.

Much more to college than the books, a worthwhile investment even at today's prices.

Steve in Greensboro's picture

I know this essay is supposed to be funny, but with all due respect it is just stupid.

Try being poor in India where being poor means living in the street -- eating (when you can beg some food off of someone), sleeping and evacuating your bowels in the street -- right next to a half a billion of your closest and brokest personal friends.  An Indian immigrant said he realized he wanted to become an American when he realized that in America the poorest people are also the fattest.

In America, you only have to do two things to avoid poverty: 1) graduate from high school and 2) don't have kids outside of marriage.  If you are too stupid to do both of those things, then tough. 

Life is an IQ test everywhere, but of all the places and times to have lived, America today is most forgiving of the stupid.  Look at our current President and Vice-president.

Flakmeister's picture

Wow, you live in a pretty simple world or have a twisted view of what poverty is...  Probably both...

Rustysilver's picture

Steve in Greensboro,

In America, we have a whole industries to "help" the poor. Ambulance service, ER etc.  Just told to anybody that has worked in ER. The stupider you are the more people are line up to help you.

freewolf7's picture


(It's the banks.)

Son of Loki's picture

There is always more misery among the lower classes than there is humanity in the higher.”


? Victor Hugo, Les Misérables of my favs.

Scro's picture

Steve always makes stupid comments.

Jumbotron's picture

Shut the fuck up Steve in know nothing moron.

Reread the article again you mind turd squeezed out of the anus of a public school.  This article was not JUST about being poor....(and not even about a comparison with other poor people of other cultures).  It's about the failure of this country to live up to its promises.  This article is about the process, the fucked up nature of the situation, the rigged game we call the American Dream.  Of course some person in the backwaters of India scrounging for a meal from the garbage dump and doomed to live out his fate because of being born in the wrong caste is worse off than most poor in America....that's wasn't the fucking point.  The point was...India or any other shit ball country is not America....with all its attendent promises.

You and other posters like you....come here all the time to bitch about how Wall Street is rigged for shitheads like fucking hoo.

Mainstreet is rigged as well...the American Dream is rigged....and useless fuckers like you have done nothing and/or are incapable of doing anything about it.

Oh....and Francis Sawyer....fuck you too.

Ropingdown's picture

Where did all this "promises" stuff come from? Where are these promises written?  The "American Dream" stuff is publicity material from the late 19th century Rockefeller staff, as is the whole "Meltingpot" nonnsense.  What you get in the USA is what you...get.  You aren't the child of the voters, you are the child of your parents.  If you have broke, ill parents who give you nothing but say "join the Army, pay for your own education, see you later" (I did), then make your way and just promise yourself not to create kids you can't educate and motivate.  Promises made by politicians are not paid with their own coin. Vote.  Volunteer.  Read.  Think.  Above all, pursue the friendship of people smarter and better self-educated than yourself.  Ditch your commiserating pals.

shovelhead's picture

What's wid dat promises shat?

Iz got me no promises.


Jumbotron's picture

Where did all this "promises" stuff come from? Where are these promises written?




Articles of Confederation

Declaration of Independence

The Constitution

The Bill of Rights

The Federalist Papers

The Anti-Federalist Papers.

The Seperation of Powers.

The underlying secular and religious ideals that undergird all the above.

Are you really that stupid?

(edit with addition)

Add to the above all of the decades if not centuries of indoctrination by civic, religious and school officials that if you stay in school, work hard, play by the will achieve the "American Dream"...whatever that was to you....whatever that means....

That's the clueless fuck

ebworthen's picture

Steve in Greensboro - sure, the poor in India have it worse, but they don't hide their poor nearly as well as the U.S.A.

It's easy to make fun of the welfare/EBT crowd who milk the system; there are millions of poor in America who are NOT those people.

Ignorance is bliss's picture

"An Indian immigrant said he realized he wanted to become an American when he realized that in America the poorest people are also the fattest"

That's because poor people are stuffed full of cancer inducing GMO foods. Ask your Indian friend if he wants to be poor full of cancer and dumber then a box of rocks because the food he consumes doesn't provide nutritional value. 

To be fare, it sucks being poor in all countries and in all languages. 

Diogenes's picture

This essay was not supposed to be funny. It was supposed to be true, and it is. It is not about being poor. It is about how the system is rigged. We all know the system is rigged but when you are a member of the working poor the velvet glove comes off and you see the iron fist.

First There Is A Mountain's picture

"In America, you only have to do two things to avoid poverty: 1) graduate from high school and 2) don't have kids outside of marriage."

Why on earth you got up voted for that crock of shit is beyond me. It's hard to imagine you're not mildly retarded saying something like that. A high school diploma guarantees a life free of poverty? Boy are you fucking out to lunch. And having kids WITHIN marriage also precludes poverty? Seriously, who are the mental giants that up voted your comment?

And by your logic, if poverty stricken Indians are poorer than your average poor American, they [Americans] are supposed to just accept their lot because things are "worse over there"? Indians also suffer from dysentery and cholera. Should Americans willingly and gladly accept cholera or dysentery or hepatitis B because things are worse over there? Yes, your argument is that dumb and easily dissected.



the not so mighty maximiza's picture

i agree with this article, and it is hillarious

detached.amusement's picture

that sums it up pretty well.


and the more everything costs at the pump, at the grocery store, etc, etc - the higher the threshold you have to have to just keep your head above water.


what's that about demoralizing the enemy again?

conspicio's picture

Nice article with a refreshing perspective. I am always amazed at the shit that happens to poor people that results in, well, keeping them poor. It is almost as if you need good life skills and the ability to make better choices in order to break the cycle. Of course, a generation raised by single moms may or may not get that. But hey, it's albout carpe diem, yolo, and me me me. Again, thanks for this article, need more of this "teaching up" as most people give no shits as to what this person has for life experience but it tells a larger tale.

dontgoforit's picture

Unfortunately, my children are having troubles, too.  Grandchildren and or poor job status and or school costs (actually in a major with high demand, medical), but they're finding out like I did starting out that it's not easy.  We've been lucky to be able to 'help' them, but our bankroll is getting pretty thin, too, and retirement is only a few years away.  One can only hope the general situation will improve, or at least we can say we know how to survive on chicken neck-bones, beans and cornmeal.  Good luck to all my less fortunate ZH blog-mates.

1C3-N1N3's picture


retirement is only a few years away.  One can only hope the general situation will improve

Hope this message from an 80s baby can brighten things up just a little.

I love my parents, absolutely. I know they don't have enough saved up for retirement, and what they get in SS (not here to debate whether SS is good or bad, just stating that my folks will likely get some) I don't expect it to cover the gaps or keep up with inflation. As soon as their bodies are unfit for work, it's pretty much the financial curtains for them when the medical bills start. It sucks.

So it's up to me. I will work my ass off and take care of them myself if necessary, because I don't want them to die poor and miserable. Because "you can't change it 'til you own it." They may worry about me, but I'm more worried about them. And there are other milennials out there who are also seeing this and planning accordingly. Yeah, I'm working But I'll make it work. And I hope things turn out for the best for you and yours also.

Regards. =]

Harry Dong's picture

 You are fulfilling prophecy (the fourth turning). It is cause for hope after the reset.

Retire? Lol rotflol..never even considered it. And this was our realisation 20 yrs ago even if the boomers couldn't see it.


1C3-N1N3's picture

Fourth Turning, Post-Apocalypse, The Remnant -- there are many terms. But I am not trying to achieve anything for prophecy fulfillment. I am acting out of love and principle. And if that means the end of me, fine.

I have no thoughts for or against my generation's retirement prospects. I expect the milennials will see the other side of the reset and the world will be radically different from today's world. I daresay for the better, though quite likely after some serious pain. There are still too many destructive folks in charge for me to expect to avoid pain. But destructive types are ultimately dysfunctional, so they will be dealt with in one way or another -- and this will undoubtedly hurt. After the pain, improvement and rebuilding and a general effort on a scale never seen before. I am batshit-crazy optimistic at the end of the day.

One thing I optimistically imagine is a significant advance in human longevity that would allow us (or the next generation) to create -- far beyond the ages of our predecessors. This in particular is one subject I intend on studying once I amass enough cash-equivalent (cash-convertible?) to keep my folks ok and actually try my hand at university-level study (which I've always wanted to do but I'm not a buyer, let alone a debtor, at today's prices). I regret that I can't offer any technical expertise at this time, because I am about as educated as a brick. The time will come, however.

Lastly, I don't blame the boomers for anything.

S5936's picture

If you drive around a suburban area without a spare tire, cost of used spare around 15 bucks, your not thinking things thru. You're asking for trouble.

Diogenes's picture

You have $15. You can buy a spare tire that you may or may not need someday or you can buy a pair of cheap shoes your child needs now. Choose.

You are offered a job in an industry notorious for poor work place safety. If you take the job there is a 50% chance you will die of cancer in 20 years. If you turn it down there is a 100% chance your children will go hungry next week. Choose. (my grandfather was faced with this choice. He took the job and died in agony 20 years later).

You have no fucking clue what it means to be the working poor.

dontgoforit's picture

Yeah; I got a clue.  Been there.  But I alwsys knew it would get better for me and it has.  I once had nothing - and I mean nothing - clothes on my back.  Yeah, I got a clue.  But the choice is work your ass off and get educated or give up and remain poor.

Diogenes's picture

My remarks were not for you. They were for SS396. Sorry for the confusion.

toys for tits's picture

Aldi - The grocery store for the poor.