Analysis Of Stiglitz's 'The Great Recession'

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Picture this; one day you are driving through a nice neighborhood, filled mainly with middle-class families. Every day you drive through this neighborhood and notice how it is changing from day to day. The first day it was a clean neighborhood, manicured lawns, friendly people waving hello, and maintained homes. Soon this neighborhood shifts, there are more homes for sale or foreclosed, this once pristine neighborhood has turned into abandoned homes, overgrown lawns, and fewer and fewer people. This is what happened over time during The Great Recession; while the middle and lower class fought to keep their homes, the upper class had money and needn’t worry much about the recession. This is just an example of what happened to many families …show more content…
He starts off by showing some alarming stats about how The Great Recession affected mainly those in the middle and lower class. Stiglitz (2013) says eight million plus people lost their homes, life savings depleted, and work was much harder to find, especially for middle-aged and youth fresh out of college. During this time the safety net America had build shown its flaws (p. ##). He continues to talk about how not only because of this Great Recession but years before the income inequality had started, in part he says it 's because as the rich got richer, the middle classes income remained nearly the same (p. ##). The most shocking was when Stiglitz (2013) had …show more content…
The equality does not stop at the income; it goes further into living conditions, education, and physical and mental health. The top percentage of the country can afford to get help for any ailments, whereas the bottom percentage has to choose between feeding themselves, their children or their family over getting help for their own ailments. One reason he gives for this gap, caused by The Great Recession, is what he calls “phantom wealth.” Phantom wealth is essentially the appearance of having great value, which at any time can vanish. For example, Stiglitz talks about how much of the middle and lower classes wealth laid in their home values. When the housing bubble burst, their wealth went as quick. Because of this the middle and lower classes could not recoup what they had lost in home values, much of the time actually losing money on their homes, or even defaulting. All while the top percentage was able to recover from this the bottom could not. Since much of the bottom percentage relied on government support, when The Great Recession caused cuts in many social programs, like Medicare, causing greater uncertainty and insecurity for the safety, security, and well-being of one 's self and their family. To further this insecurity of well-being, Midgley and Livermore (2009) talked about how the United States is the only industrialized nation that does not provide health insurance or allowances to

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