Sunday, August 07, 2011

Is the Economy Stressing Your Family Out?

I saw over at Rasmussen Reports (via Instapundit) that 67% of respondents felt that their family was being stressed by the economy:
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 67% of American Adults say the state of the economy is causing more stress on their family. That finding is up 10 points from this time last year . Twenty-seven percent (27%) say the economy isn’t causing their family more stress.

The survey also indicated more arguments with friends and family members:
Still, 43% of adults say they have gotten into an intense argument with a friend or family member about economic conditions in the country. That's up six points from 37% last year. Fifty-five percent (55%) say they have not gotten into a heated argument with a friend or family member about who is to blame for the state of the economy and how it should be fixed.

Senator Marco Rubio recently discussed the split in this country "between those who believe the government's job is to promote 'economic justice,'" i.e., the redistribution of wealth, that the government's job is to determine the equality of outcomes in people's lives, "and those who believe the government's job is to promote 'economic opportunity.'" Rush Limbaugh points out correctly that "economic justice" is not moral--it is socialism or Marxism and I agree with his point. But that is a separate issue.

As for family arguments about the economy, my guess is that family members are most likely to argue along these lines. Those who believe in "social justice" are arguing with those who believe in economic opportunity. It is sort of like the fight between Ayn Rand's characters in Atlas Shrugged. There are those who believe in taking from others and those who believe in the right to their own production. This isn't a fight that will be resolved easily and the bad economy is emphasizing the differences between how family members feel about these issues.

Is the economy stressing out your family members? Do you argue with them about the economy or just try to keep the peace?

Cross-posted at PJ Lifestyle.



Blogger pst314 said...

"Those who believe in social justice are arguing with...."

You forgot to put "social justice" in quotes, Dr. Helen. ;-)

8:55 AM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger pst314 said...

"Do you argue with them about the economy or just try to keep the peace?"

Nearly everyone in my family is a leftist or a union puke, so I gave up talking with them many years ago. In fact, I avoid many of the family get-togethers because I am tired of spending an entire evening listening to nasty political comments. I don't bring up politics, but they do--in which case I may let it slide or I may call them on it. But regardless, any question of "keeping the peace" is a joke.

8:59 AM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Helen said...


"You forgot to put "social justice" in quotes, Dr. Helen. ;-)"

Thanks, done.

9:20 AM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Bob Sorensen said...

It's interesting to me that people have complained about "the economy" for a long, long time. I was watching an old "Columbo" episode from 1972, and heard something about, "You know how the economy is..."

I'm wondering how much of the bad economy is based on our perceptions, and how much is based on reality. Now, don't go putting words in my mouth and lighting a straw man, I'm not saying that the economy is "good". But do our perceptions magnify its severity?

10:13 AM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Trust said...

@: "Do you argue with them about the economy or just try to keep the peace?"

Neither. I won't be silent about an important issue allowing them to think I agree with them, but I don't allow myself to be drawn into an immature argument either.

LEFTIST RELATIVE: Look at those big-wigs making six figures, they aren't struggling like we are.

ME: They pay more in taxes than I earn, and if we tax them more they have to lay people like off.

LEFTIST RELATIVE: blah blah blah blah thanks to BushCo blah blah blah things we so good under Clinton blah blah blah Obama is really trying blah blah blah

ME: [yawn]

If I want that kind of stimulation, I'll argue with my 2 year old about coloring on the walls.

10:42 AM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Trust said...

@Stormbringer said...
I'm wondering how much of the bad economy is based on our perceptions, and how much is based on reality. Now, don't go putting words in my mouth and lighting a straw man, I'm not saying that the economy is "good". But do our perceptions magnify its severity?

A lot. If we announced a sector was going to crash, everyone would pull put and it would crash. We argue another was going to flourish, people would flock to it and it would flourish.

Self fulfilling prophecies are very real.

10:44 AM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Doom said...

There are times when I am happy not to have a family, or more, all that goes with it. Some crazy woman, at the moment, would be all over me about trying to set up my survival gear and food storage type stuff. While it is erratic, due to having so many needs, it is on a rough path toward gearing and stocking up. A woman would be saying something like, "We need shopping sprees (clothes) and fancy stuff! It's for the CHILDREN!"...

Anyway. No problems here, stress wise. Other than that I might run out of popcorn as Rome burns. And licorice is a little low. Just... sayin'.

As for extended family? I bring God and gnashing of teeth and headaches when they dare spit stupidity in my ao. Feminism in a house of mostly females? I go there. Socialism (especially by people who are doing very well), boom, I do that. My family generally keeps their foul tongue in check in my proximity. I love em', I just don't tolerate stupid.

Oddly, many of them are actually coming around. I would like to think I help, but I won't swear to it. *BAM*

2:00 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Sad_Dad said...

My sister and her husband told me that the constitution was old and out of date and needed to be replaced! I lost it! I haven't been back since.

3:11 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Cham said...

After a painfully long illness my father finally succumbed to his pancreatic cancer last week. Of his 3 daughters, it was no secret I was the apple of my father's eye. I spent a fair amount of the last year taking care of him and making sure his needs were met.

My BPD mother has taken the opportunity of his death to behave like a spoiled brat. She's been on a week-long meltdown, and I can only assume she has had this drama carefully planned for months. But wait, there's older sister has taken the opportunity to get in on the act as well.

I would not want my worst enemy to endure what I have had to endure this last week. It's been one long steady stream of horrifying insults. Insults about my job, insults about my house, insults about my money, and especially massive amounts of insults about my marital status, or lack thereof. Since I don't have a husband I don't have a security guard and these two numb nuts see me as low-hanging fruit.

You'd think these two would be a little nicer. Although I kept my mouth firmly shut, mom can be expecting to mow her own lawn from this day forward. I doubt the economy had anything to do with the bad behavior.

6:06 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Bob Sorensen said...

Cham, you have my condolences for your loss as well as for bad behavior. I've seen it too often, people use family losses for their own advantage. We went through it ourselves a year ago.

6:08 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Cham said...

Thank you, Stormbringer. I really appreciate your condolences. You have expressed more concern about my loss in 3 sentences than any of my extended family has done.

6:33 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger DADvocate said...

The only liberal, er prograssive, I can't stand is my sister. Her and her husband the wealthiest people in my family constellation and not the least bit generous. (Own their own company and approx $300,000 house, which is quite a bit in the Knoxville area.)`

While they berate conservatives, Tea Partiers, and the like as often as possible on their blog and otherwise, they've lived in gated communities, still live in a nice rich neighborhood isolated from the undesirables and have a golf course behind them. No kids so they have lots of money to splurge.

When they built their house I asked them about fluorescent bulbs, none because they don't like the bluish glow. Up until a few years ago when I embarrassed them about driving an 18 mpg guzzler, they drove 18 mpg guzzlers while complaining about Bush being tight with the Saudis and global warming.

They once told me they wouldn't hire any other employees because they don't want to have to deal with the government red tape. But, they don't hesitate to tell other businesses how they should operate and what to pay their employees.

Etc, etc.

I simply avoid her. She's not worth my time and effort. I probably havne't said 10 words to her in the past6-7 years. (I remember this because I decided to avoid her after she decided to bring up feminist issues during a family Thanksgiving gathering. Now I just spend with my kis, which sometimes includes my phycho ex who is more pleasant than my sister) She wouldn't listen to a word I said anyway. Most open-minded, enlightened progressives won't listen to a word a non-progressive has to say.

Quite a rant, I guess. I'm somewhat pissed that my sister feels fully justified in her actions with no consideration of the feelings of others in the family. But, I've reached the point where I'm going to lead my life as I see best and want, and will not maintain a relationship with someone who's going to drag me down.

Cham - my thoughts are with you also. My father died 5 years ago. It's a tough time.

8:27 PM, August 07, 2011  
Blogger Zorro said...

I am horribly sorry for your loss, Cham, and I truly hope things lighten up for you very soon.

I am presently helping my mother care for Dad, who is winding down with Alzheimer's, pulmonary dementia, asthma, and emphysema. Not fun at all.

I sympathize.

5:40 AM, August 08, 2011  
Blogger Helen said...


I am so sorry about the loss of your father.

6:12 AM, August 08, 2011  
Blogger TMink said...

Sorry Cham, stay strong, the pain gets better with time.

If America DOUBLED the tax rate on everyone who pays taxes we would still have $400 billion in deficit spending. It is not the economy so much as the spending that is the problem.


9:48 AM, August 08, 2011  
Blogger Dr.Alistair said...

sorry to hear about your father cham. all the best.....

2:25 PM, August 08, 2011  
Blogger Xiaoding said...

We are seeing the effects of machines replacing the labor of humans.

A creaking, ancient economic system is not up to the task of managing this change.

We say a man should keep the fruits of his labor. but what about the labor of his machines? When those very machines, take jobs away, from those who need them, and prevent other people from getting a job at all?

Of course taxes need to go up, when machines displace human jobs, and we are fixated on taxing the labor of working humans, it seems the only solution.

We need to figure out, how do we live, without jobs? Without money? Because jobs are going away, forever.

10:01 PM, August 08, 2011  
Blogger br549 said...


6:08 AM, August 09, 2011  
Blogger Bob Sorensen said...

The fear of everyone losing their jobs to machines is very, very old. While some people have lost jobs to robots and such, many jobs have been created.

"Of course, taxes need to go up". To quote Confucious, "HUH?" That "reasoning" does not follow.

6:09 AM, August 09, 2011  
Blogger br549 said...

These very machines also allow for the society to be as it is. People who do nothing for themselves are able to eat and have a roof over their head as a "gift" from the rest of us. If we were all still subsistence farmers, basically growing food organically instead of utilizing modern fertilizers and farming machinery, things would be quite different.

6:13 AM, August 09, 2011  

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