Home > Challenges, Economics > Climbing Out of a Ditch?

Climbing Out of a Ditch?

 

Economic Graph

Credit: BBC News Website

 

So today, I awoke to a buzz from my cell phone indicating new email. The CNN Breaking News of the day was that the U.S. economy has actually gone up for the first time in a year. Our fabulous and ever-reflective GDP has risen 3.5%. We didn’t have a dance party to celebrate this at work, but maybe they did on Wall Street.

Why the lack of dance parties? Mostly because all of us in the middle or lower end of the spectrum can still feel the pinch. We can still see the empty retail stores, and the lack of raises, and all of our countless friends and family that are unemployed, underemployed, or just plain broke.

When Barack Obama came into office, many people foresaw recovery. They foresaw change and had – gasp – HOPE. Including me. I still do. I am a hopeful person when it comes to the state of the world, because I like to study the reality, and draw lessons from it. As opposed to hiding in a corner. I don’t want to give Mr. Obama all the credit for this resilience, but I want to give him some. He did many things that were good for our economy.

The fact remains, though, that there is a real worry among us young people who the economic turn-around may be long in coming in our day-to-day lives. We won’t all get raises or get our jobs back right away.

Ultimately, what does this mean for us and for where we are going?

I think the recession has been an incredibly valid and interesting lesson. I myself have been affected by it. I left NYC in June to move to DC, mostly because of the job prospects available here for myself and my husband. This was definitely something caused by the recession. I cut back spending, but I have never been a huge spender anyway.

I cook almost every meal, and I think I will continue to do so as the economy changes. In most ways, I have remained the same, if not a bit wiser. There are people though who have been drastically affected. They have lost homes. They have lost careers, and they ultimately have lost faith in a system that failed them.

Our age group – from what I see on a daily basis – is becoming more and more creative with our skill sets. We are learning new languages, writing more and more, and trying to use the downturn to our advantage.

Farmers markets, Freecycle, and tons of other business models based on direct exchange are thriving. We are learning to evolve.

My hope as today’s statistic reaches global ears, is that we continue to stay on this evolving path, and that we don’t get complacent.

We need to stay on a road that will lead us to the new challenges, and not be counting down to the return of yesterday. Barack wouldn’t really like that very much.

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Categories: Challenges, Economics
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