Why As a Teenager, Am I Concerned About Our U.S Economy… And Why You Should Be Too!

Even though many are still optimistic about the future of our U.S economy, don’t be optimistic just yet, or not welling to make change!

 

I am a teenage boy, just at the ripe age of 16 (soon to be 17.) People might wonder why I would be interested in such a subject, especially considering the fact that I am part of a such a young group and a supposedly ‘care free’ group. Not only is it an interest of mine, which I have even just finished my first draft on an economics book that I am writing, I also am simply anxious about how things are. I’m not just typically anxious about how the economy will be in the days, months, or years to come. I am worried about how it will come for my generation.
You often hear in times like this about how everything is going well. The unemployment is quite low, wages are going up, and we are successfully getting out of the 2008 recession. The stock market continues to go up, and overall, at least a portion of the population is content with how things are. Welcome to the economic cycle, the economic booms and busts, goes up, then comes down. Throughout history, especially recently there has been a lot of corruption that has led to downfalls and recessions in our economy. Though different people with different points of view will have a variety of explanations and claims for what is causing these downfalls in our economy, I see it as a lot of greed and misunderstanding. Many will agree that corruption going on in wall street was a big cause of the last recession, and I am among that group that thinks so.

Inequality continues to soar, while the middle class is stagnate, along with the majority of the population, even for some likely going down! Just looking at the charts, the top 1 percent has skyrocket over the past few decades, while little growth for most people has continued to happen. Also, power and greed continues to occur with places like the big banks, and certain monopolies continuing to lobby and hold special interest groups that has a strong say in our politics, and even amongst our politicians. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against all monopolies, banks, and even wealth in general, but I don’t agree with record high inequality and lack of say and power amongst the middle class, while the top continues to profit. Problems continue to occur for the middle class, like a lack of a good health care system (which is about to change in a worse way, with millions losing their coverage as I speak.) Also, problems like college tuition continuing to beat inflation, and becoming unaffordable for many, especially for people with lower incomes.

So how does this all come of concern to a 16-year-old high schooler like me, and for many others in my age group, (or younger?) Well… for one, our society could continue to get worse inequality. Again, I’m not against some inequality, which is essential for a function-able society and for people to be motivated to work hard. I just don’t see our society with extreme inequality being good for anyone, even for the wealthy, without a strong middle class. Rather than looking at the trickle-down theory that many people started to believe in, especially since the Reagan area, why don’t we instead look at possible a ‘trickle up theory.’

As I get older, I want to see an educated middle class, where every teenager and child has the right to have a future and a good education, without a boatload of student loan debt. I believe that with more consumerism, and opportunity for the middle class to be more productive, and even more startups and entrepreneurs, we can have a better society and standard of living for everyone. Things aren’t all bad though, the standard of living has gotten much higher, even for the world over the many decades. The question is though, can it continue to get even better, especially for everyone? It is a concern that our GDP for last year was only 1.6% last year. I think everyone can agree on that. The question is, how can we make a society that benefits everyone, and use the best of our scarce resources? That’s what economics is all about.
As I spend more time on my blog I will talk more about how we can fix these problems, at least from my point of view. I am not expert or economist by any means, I’m just a 16-year-old boy, (who you could argue is kind of liberal!) However, I am anxious about the mentality and the statistics, and where we are heading. I think we can accomplish many things if we all work together and really look at the numbers, and have a good fundamental understanding of economics. Everyone, especially people my age should be more educated with economics, and other relating subjects like personal finance, now more than other. We can make change happen, and have our voices, (and hopefully my voice too), heard!!!