Thursday, October 27, 2005

Can Anyone Pay the Bills?

Yes, the economy is in trouble, yes the nation has an unsustainable deficit. No, the people on the bottom of the current economic policies should not be responsible for balancing the budget.
Will Anyone Pay the Bills?: "Her concepts include mandated programs of individual savings for the predictable expenses of child-rearing, education and retirement; social insurance for the costs of catastrophic but unforeseeable medical bills; and some guarantee of safety-net income for people who, through no fault of their own, lose jobs or retirement benefits because of broad economic changes."
Let's be realistic. Delphi wants their workers to take a cut in pay and a rather substantial one at that. Let's say that they are forcibly returned to the wages I earned in my twenties and for ease of calculation since I suck at math, we will use $10 an hour, 52 weeks a year. Vacations are not included, nobody takes a week off on those wages. $20,800/yr, $1733/mo, married with two kids, no DINK's here. I was taught that 1/4 of your income should go for housing, but nowadays that isn't really feasible, so let's be generous and say they found a place to live at $600/month. Their credit is still pretty good so they were able to get a reasonable car for $250/month, they had an old one but it kept breaking down and they couldn't afford the constant unexpected repairs that didn't match payday. It gets good gas mileage and is only taken our if needed but fuel is still costing about $100 a month (2 1/2 tankfuls). Food, ah yes food. Mom's thrifty, no fresh fruit or vegetables, the twins are 12 and growing like a weed but she keeps the food costs to $400 a month (which is way below average and the first to suffer in emergencies). Winter is coming and it looks like that bill is going to go up so we will say $75(lol) a month. No cell phone or cable, dial-up because the kids need it for school, $15 a month. They have $293 left and haven't paid taxes because I don't know what the rate is, but even if it is 15% that is $260, leaving $33 for the phone and any other utilities or expenses (clothes, healthcare, dental, vision).

Yup, they are going to be right on that savings thing.

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