More proof that the economy doesn't work for the working class

When I was growing up it was called moonlighting. It wasn't something to be proud of. It was something you did without telling anyone. When I was growing up, unregistered cabs were called "gypsy cabs". They weren't anything to be proud of either. Moonlighting got rebranded to "side hustle", so it sounds cool.
The results of this survey are absolutely horrific and depressing, but the survey actually tries to put a positive spin on things.

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Gone are the days of working 9 to 5. A new survey of over 1,000 Americans finds a whopping 93% of Americans who are currently working part-time or full-time have a side hustle. Of those, 38% work one side job, 38% work two, and 20% work three or more...
When asked why Americans are working a side hustle, most (63%) say it’s for something to do and a bit of extra cash. 44% say they need to do it to make ends meet and cover their bills. 32% say they genuinely enjoy it.

Great! A third of people take a SECOND job because they actually enjoy that second job.
Let's not forget that it's likely that they don't enjoy their FIRST job. And don't forget that twice as many people DON'T take their SECOND job for enjoyment.
Oh, wait. Did I say "second" job. I meant THIRD job. Or FOURTH job.

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Inflation is pushing the prices of necessities (and just about everything else) up, and 28% say this is the reason they’ve taken up a side gig. Additionally, 26% say they work the extra job to pay down debt faster.
Working Americans are dedicating an extra 13 hours per week on average to their side hustle. That’s an average hourly wage of $37. 35% have worked a side hustle for more than three years. 20% have worked their side hustle for two years, and 16% have worked their side hustle for over one year. 26% have had their side hustle for less than a year.

So more than half of working Americans have been working two or more jobs for two or more years.
No wonder people seem so stressed out these days.

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QMS's picture

the untaxed income is an added value out of uncle Sammy's reach. The somewhat arbitrary
income vs. tax rate punishes people that report a shade more.
(unless you are a gazzillionaire)
Wink

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6 users have voted.

" (63%) say it’s for something to do and a bit of extra cash. 44% say they need to do it to make ends meet and cover their bills. 32% say they genuinely enjoy it."
so Americans are liars. So what else can we learn?
How many Americans really need the extra money to live? How many are working to prop up a lifestyle they really can't afford? How many are just brainwashed to believe their life is defined by what they do as wage slaves?
Let's have some reality.

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12 users have voted.

On to Biden since 1973

QMS's picture

@doh1304

if it is non-reported income?
what incentive is there to be honest with a pollster?
just sayin'

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QMS's picture

it is not only the working class getting screwed
people of my vintage (over 65) who have had their pensions robbed,
retirement savings taken by 'the market' and social security paying peanuts
also are having to get side gigs to stay afloat (myself included)
so many I speak with are resigned to working until the grave

the dollar I put into SS in the 60's is worth about a dime now
plus they tax my benefits. that's the second time my income is taxed
yet the gazzillionaires are getting richer
just ain't fair I tell ya!

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@QMS
there is a limit below which SS benefits are not taxed (for example I would have to make something like $8000 extra before being subject to income tax. there's a formula - I'd have to look it up) Regardless, your point is right, and the more you make above that bare minimum the more you are penalized. The line is so low that people are mostly required to work and of course most are required to "cheat".
And of course this explains "gig work" and income tax cheating.

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9 users have voted.

On to Biden since 1973

Cassiodorus's picture

-- that I planned my life around waiting for my parents to die so I could inherit the proceeds from the sale of their house to buy something of my own. It's that -- unless you can draw a professional salary -- work doesn't get you anywhere, and so you must do more of it in order to survive.

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"The future is inside us/ It's not somewhere else." -- Radiohead

@Cassiodorus

work doesn't get you anywhere, and so you must do more of it in order to survive.

It's unfair, but it's hardwired into the capitalist system and can't be removed.
Capital will always pay better than labor.

I'm looking at retiring overseas.

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Cassiodorus's picture

@gjohnsit

can't be removed.

Do you really think capitalism is eternal? There are plenty of other options.

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5 users have voted.

"The future is inside us/ It's not somewhere else." -- Radiohead

@Cassiodorus and couldn't be separated from capitalism. Not that capitalism was eternal.

But since you brought it up, capitalism will remain in power until it consumes itself. and the global economy collapses.

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QMS's picture

@gjohnsit @gjohnsit

financial options if you are interested ..

https://www.americanexpatfinance.com/about-american-expat-financial-news...

https://creativeplanning.com/international/ (used to be Thun Financial Services)

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Lily O Lady's picture

@gjohnsit

My husband and looked into it and most countries want money upfront—and they don’t want old, useless people.

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"The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?" ~Orwell, "1984"

@Lily O Lady What I found is that countries I checked into were happy for you to come as long as you didn't work and take a job from one of their countryman. not what we do with immigrants here.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@Lily O Lady

Many countries are competing to attract US Elders. Panama is even offering free health care.

Mexico is building assisted living resorts in popular cities and towns to attract north of the border Americans and Canadians. Many older retirees are priced out of housing in the US and their options are dreadful. Medical care is excellent and reasonable in Mexico. Medicare doesn't work outside the US. But it's still a better deal.

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____________________
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.
— Voltaire

janis b's picture

@Lily O Lady

My husband being 10 years younger and more highly educated, was the one who applied. It was over a years process with many obstacles put in our path. It was based on a points system. That year (1996) we reached 29 points to qualify. One point less and we wouldn’t have. Points were based (in order of value) on age, level of education, health, and least of all financial investment in the country. The financial investment was equal to the one point that got us qualification. At the time, the financial investment was minimal. Now financial investment is much more significant, and there’s no possibility of even applying if you’re over 55. We were quite a bit younger. Over the past 25 years immigration policies have continually changed. There have been and continue to be periods when immigration is looking for specific work skills or financial investment, while other criteria were not as significant. I’m not clear about where it is at the moment, but the 'residency from work' category is still possible. This may be a way for your children or young friends. Priorities here keep changing because of practical necessity. I understand the objective in immigration policy on a practical level, but I still wonder whether the value is well placed.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

...outside the US.

They have to pay taxes on their income in the country where they earn it, however they must also pay income tax on their foreign earnings to the US.

There's a new class of American digital nomads, both young and retirees, who have discovered ways to work around those restrictions with online jobs and foreign investments. They are the ones who are living the dream.

The links provided in this thread follow the path of the corporate tax-paying expat.

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____________________
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.
— Voltaire

QMS's picture

@Pluto's Republic

used to have good advice on getting around tax rules when you are
living out of the country, drawing SS, getting your money while still
maintaining a US citizenship. It's kinda complicated, but there are ways
as you say.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@QMS

One of the best for cost information is Expat Money Forum by Mikkel Thorup. I get to it through Facebook. If you're new to Facebook (which I am) just search on it and click "join."

He also has an interview site at https://expatmoneyshow.com

It's a very ethical place with much active participation. Politics are not discussed there. In fact, they are not discussed on any expat forum I've visited. They do discuss ecological issues and are very proactive in that area. Expats need to stay on top of that.

I'm taking a Digital Nomad course at OTHERLIFE — also at Facebook. Lots of people learning and earning and sharing tips in the community.

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____________________
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.
— Voltaire

QMS's picture

@Pluto's Republic

I am in convo with several who are thinking along the same lines
Sell-out and get the hell-out, before the sky falls ..

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enhydra lutris's picture

@Pluto's Republic

for taxes you pay there (for individuals). It doesn't generate a perfect offset, but in theory, you compute your foreign taxable income and US (worldwide) taxable income separately. Simplest case single foreign country, income is earned income - Then (foreign TI/global TI) times US Tax = foreign tax limitation. Foreign tax credit is lesser of foreign tax paid or foreign tax limitation and that is a direct reduction in US taxes. Sadly a lot of things can mung this up. Ideally, an expat with only foreign source income paying a foreign tax rate greater than or equal to the US rate should pay no US tax.

be well and have a good one

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That, in its essence, is fascism--ownership of government by an individual, by a group, or by any other controlling private power. -- Franklin D. Roosevelt --

I suspect income for the lowest wage workers has increased faster than inflation. That's not based on any numbers because I never hear or see any quoted for the lowest two quintiles. All I ever hear is that inflation is outpacing earnings, and for those who are on salary, or in long term contracts (union) that's probably true. I base my thoughts on what low skilled labor goes for. $18 for McDonalds here. $17 to $20 for landscape labor for the big company I'm subbing for right now. Lots of fast food shut down for lack of help. It would take a doubling of entry level wages to truly bring the lowest two quintiles up to survivable wages, and I don't see that happening soon, but here at least things are getting better.

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He and his wife retired, had some issues with US taxes, none with Panama, as neither works. The difficulty until they got their credentials was they had to be out of country so many days per year for several years, maybe 5. The flights back to the US, expense of staying here the required time, since they had sold their home, then flights back to Panama were incredibly high. Then, they had to learn Spanish in order to function locally with doctors, repairmen, tax authorities, landscapers, etc..., they did arrive at the place they wanted to be. They are happy, financially secure.
If i were rich, I would be in Austria.
What I could realistically afford if I retired would be some third world country in south or central America. I love to visit them, but would not want to live there.

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Pluto's Republic's picture

@on the cusp

Your friends ordeal in Panama sounds more exhausting and expensive than it is now. It's been on my destination radar for some time, so I try to keep up with it. In Panama, Retirees get amazing perks and substantial discounts on everything, along with a hassle-free residence visa (and a second passport). Most expats pick up second passports, which they use for international travel. They only use their US passports for visiting the US.

I think the object of the expat game is to live in a happy paradise and eat organic for significantly less than it costs in the US, often as much as two and a half times less. Perhaps at one time it was the "third world" but now it's something else. The numbers of US expats has really exploded. The digital world changed everything, and made it much easier to make money on the road. In some cases, a lot of money.

The expat guru I mentioned above has been writing a nifty blog that focuses on the legal perks of popular expat destinations. You might find it interesting: Securing Your New Life Abroad

I found an eye-opening article there about expat trends that you might enjoy:

The Top 8 Locations Expats Cab Build a Real Life Abroad

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____________________
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.
— Voltaire