Thursday, May 26, 2016

Unaffordable Housing in America

Unaffordable Housing in America

by Stephen Lendman

According to the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) report, titled “Out of Reach 2015,” income inequality in America makes housing increasingly unaffordable.

“(I)n no state, metropolitan area, or county can a full-time worker earning the prevailing minimum wage afford a modest two-bedroom apartment,” it said.

At $7.25 an hour, the federal minimum wage, it would take 112 hours a week, 52 weeks a year, meaning all work and sleep with no time for anything else. 

Stagnant wages, declining benefits, high inflation (8.8% according to economist John Williams, not the phony 1.1% CPI), and protracted Main Street Depression conditions created a deplorable situation for growing millions.

Not only isn’t America beautiful, modestly priced housing is increasingly unaffordable. According to NLIHC president and CEO Diane Yentel, “(t)he federal government has the resources to end the shortage of housing affordable to the lowest income families.”

“It is simply a matter of how those resources are allocated. Instead of subsidizing the mortgages of higher income people, we must invest in making rental housing more affordable and available to those most in need of assistance.”

Trillions of dollars go for warmaking and benefits for America’s privileged class. Most others are increasingly on their own. Millions are one lost paycheck away from hunger, homelessness and despair.

The world’s richest country cares little about its most disadvantaged, why poverty is a growth industry and one in four working aged Americans have no jobs. Potemkin village illusion conceals reality.

In contrast, million dollar book deals and 6-figure speech payments await Obama when he leaves office in January - already very rich, about to become super-rich, cashing in on serving monied interests throughout his tenure, waging class war on most others.

Problems affecting ordinary Americans don’t concern him. An affluent lifestyle awaits. Reportedly he’ll move into an 8,200 square foot, 9-bedroom luxury home in Washington’s upscale Kalorama neighborhood, two miles from the White House.

Former Clinton aide Joe Lockhart owns the mansion. Obama will pay $22,000 in monthly rent. It would take an average low-wage US worker up to 12 or more years to cover its annual rental cost - provided he or she didn’t eat, own a car or have medical, transportation, or utility expenses.

The community is home to Washington’s political elites. Former presidents William Howard Taft, Woodrow Wilson, Warren Harding, Herbert Hoover and Franklin Roosevelt lived there.

In March, Obama said he’ll remain in Washington at least until his youngest daughter finishes Sidwell Friends School - uncaring about the global human misery he caused, unaccountable for war crimes too appalling to ignore.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net. 

His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 


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