The American Misery Index 2009


America, you're not looking so hot these days.

That's the only conclusion one can draw from recently released reports on a number of economic and social indicators that paint a rather bleak picture of life in the USA. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, median income dropped from $52,163 in 2007 to $50,303 in 2008. That's lower than the median income in 1998, meaning the average American has gotten poorer over the last decade even though G.D.P. and productivity continue to increase. Not surprisingly, this is reflecting in a rising poverty rate, which reached 13.2% of the population in 2008, up from 12.5% in 2007. One in five American children now live in poverty, an absolute scandal in the richest country in human history.

Things get even more depressing when considering the 2009 edition of the OECD's Social Indicators report. As Doug Henwood reports, Americans are on average poorer, sicker, undereducated, and massively overworked in comparison to our peers in the rich countries of the world.

There's a lot of misery and a deep sense of grievance out there, as the inchoate populist anger toward almost everything the Obama administration has done shows. But most of it is coming from the right. Most liberals and many "progressives" continue to trust against all evidence that the Obama administration and the Democrats in Congress have a program to effectively deal with these problems, and until they're forced to face reality the danger posed by ascendant right-wing radicalism will only increase.

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Revolution at the Crossroads: Igniting the Socialist Resistance Against Trump

February 17, 2017 · $20.00 USD

Location: MayDay Space
Where: 176 St Nicholas Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11237
When: Friday, February 17th at 6 PM to Sunday, February 19th to 4 PM

Political Context

This Presidents’ Day weekend, the Young Democratic Socialists will gather for our annual winter conference in New York City titled Revolution at the Crossroads: Igniting the Socialist Resistance Against Trump. We did not choose the name lightly. In doing so, we call for leftists to collectively confront Trump and Trumpism at every possible opportunity. When a Trump administration attempts mass deportations of undocumented workers, when it attempts to register Muslims or roll back worker protections, when it attempts to take away reproductive, LGTBQ, civil, or any other rights, then we must militantly resist to prevent such measures.

To succeed, this must be explicitly socialist resistance. With liberalism having repeatedly shown itself incapable of combating the far right, it is now the time for socialists to openly declare our place in building the mass, multi-racial, and working class movement necessary for defeating the Trump administration. In this struggle, millennials will play an outsized role. That is why this conference comes at such a critical time—together we must create spaces for democratic and strategic discussion, spaces to gain organizing skills, and most importantly, spaces to form networks of young radicals for the future struggles ahead. These spaces will only come together if socialists come together. Join us this Presidents Weekend and help ignite the movement to defeat the Trump administration, continue the political revolution, and build the socialist alternative.

Key Deadlines

  • January 8th: Travel Scholarship for Air Travel (for application see below)
  • January 15th: Travel Scholarship for Non-Air Travel (ex: bus, car, train, etc.)
  • February 3rd: Early Bird Registration Ends - Tickets prices go up from $5 to $10
  • February 10th: Free Housing - We have limited free housing. You need to first register, then you will be sent an application for free housing.

Apply for a travel scholarship here! (First Deadline January 8, 2017)

Check out the working program (subject to change)