Some statistics came out this week in Germany...which triggered a number of people to ponder upon the meaning of the numbers.
The federal office in Germany, responsible for all statistics, said that the current numbers for 2013 indicate that roughly three million Germans are on the upper edge of poverty....making just slightly above the Hartz IV rate.....thus becoming the working-poor. These are people who make late payments, miss the apartment rental payment, and survive off marginal food supplements.
The office looked back at the number for five years prior and noted that there were roughly two-and-a-half-million people then.....so the number has grown.
They even came to note that roughly 600,000 of these people...don't have the financial capital to own a car.
The real story here? Germany has done a great job in creating jobs and stabilizing the economy. Salaries have been somewhat stagnant, and various tools have been invented to hire lower-income employees. When you step into a store and the guy isn't that eager person you'd like to deal with as a customer.....you might want to think about the fact that he's probably making a marginal income and just doesn't care anymore....he's lost interest in the customers of the business.
The same is true when someone notes that they haven't really done anything in six years, with the six weeks of vacation they get each year....because they don't make enough to do anything. Other than sitting at the city pool or just sitting at home and watching TV....that's their normal summer vacation.
The odds in five more years? Unless something changes....it'll be three-and-a-half million people who are marginally surviving without Hartz IV, growing another half-million.
Just inventing jobs won't work. Just telling people to slide the minimum wage into place won't work. And bringing Bulgarians in to do the crap-work won't work.
In a way, there's going to be some type of way where things change, with salaries in some better fashion. The question is....how to get from here to there.