Strapped: Why America's 20- and 30-Somethings Can't Get


Strapped: Why America's 20- and 30-Somethings Can't Get Ahead [PDF / EPUB] Strapped: Why America's 20– and 30–Somethings Can't Get Ahead Drowning in student loans Can t afford to get married, buy a home, have children Up to your ears in credit card debt At last, a book for the under generation that explains why it s not their fault, a America's 20- PDF/EPUB ã Drowning in student loans Can t afford to get married, buy a home, have children Up to your ears in credit card debt At last, a book for the undergeneration that explains why it s not their fault, and what can be done Strapped: Why PDF/EPUB ² about it Strapped offers a groundbreaking look at the new obstacle course facing young adults Getting ahead, argues commentator and policy maven Tamara Draut, is getting harder A college degree is the new high school diploma and costs a fortune to obtain Good jobs Why America's 20- Kindle Ð are scarcer thanks to stagnant wages and disappearing benefits And, the cost of everything starter homes, health coverage, child care keeps going up Witty and wise, Strapped brims with ideas for fashioning a new kind of America in which every young person can go to college, buy a home, and start a family The future starts here.


10 thoughts on “Strapped: Why America's 20- and 30-Somethings Can't Get Ahead

  1. says:

    Let me save you the read by summing up 5 key points and by throwing in my ever so valuable two centsAuthor states 1 The cost of education and student loans are outrageous TRUE 2 The cost of housing is outrageous Depends on where you want to live, I guess, and if you are willing to settle for less than a McMansion Where I live, you can get a damn nice home for 150,000 3 Good jobs with decent pay, benefits and pensions, that DO NOT require college no longer exist Agreed 4 Having Let me save you the read by summing up 5 key points and by throwing in my ever so valuable two centsAuthor states 1 The cost of education and student loans are outrageous TRUE 2 The cost of housing is outrageous Depends on where you want to live, I guess, and if you are willing to settle for less than a McMansion Where I live, you can get a damn nice home for 150,000 3 Good jobs with decent pay, benefits and pensions, that DO NOT require college no longer exist Agreed 4 Having babies is expensive Day care is outrageous word 5 Credit cards suck uh huh While I have to agree that it is a bit harder for youth these days to get started up, I really found some of her examples a bit silly I may have not been so critical, but on the inside jacket there s a line about why 20 and 30 somethings are struggling and get this it s not their faultPoo, say I, especially when she mentions SEVERAL times in the book young people having a hard time with credit card balances because they fly home for visits can t afford it, DON T GO The one the really got me was the complaint about having to fly travel to be in go to weddings for friends that are out of state She mentions flying to friends weddings at least three different times She wrote something like, don t go, and you can count on losing a friend Now, I m practical, perhaps to a fault, but here s how I see it I have time in advance to plan for the wedding expense, right So, if I can t sock away the money for a plane ticket, and a nice gift, I wouldn t go into debt over it That s some common sense to knock your freaking socks off, right there, yes And frankly, if my friend does not appreciate the fact that my financial situation would not allow me to attend her wedding on the other side of the country, and she would not accept my card, thoughts of love and maybe a nice gift I send via UPS or USPS, whichever is cheaper then she s probably nothan a bitch ass bridezilla crybaby princess and who the hell needs friends like that And why even send the gift, because that snotty little brat will probably be divorced in 2 years anyway Keep the toaster for yourself Maybe it s hard to think of that when you are only 22, who knows What I m getting at is this YOU fly all over the country on your Visa card, YOU take out loans to study abroad, YOU make car payments instead of driving a beater for a few years while you save up to pay cash for a car then IT IS YOUR FAULT Another example she gave of someone struggling financially A person that had thousands of dollars on a credit card for furniture because she didn t want the new house apt to look like a dorm room Well, again, I hear ya, but, IT s your FAULT Deal with your milk carton shelves for a year while you save up and can buy things, maybe one room at a time patience is a beeotch, yes Now, let us talk about what really does not help us get ahead College.Sure, getting the education may save you from becoming a greeter at Wal Mart The good paying jobs at the local factories have vanished.It took me 6 LONG FREAKING YEARS to get a damn associates degree Know why Because I worked full time and chipped away at a damn turtles pace at classes as I was able to pay for them It was frustrating as hell at the time For a LONG LONG time, I was envious of my friends that went to real college Now, not so much Unlike them, I have no debt to repay My husband had parents that were able to foot the bill for his education WHAT A GIFT and he took cheaper courses at a community college before moving on These things gave us a huge financial head start when we married.A BIG PROBLEM IN THIS COUNTRY IS THE COST OF EDUCATION IS SKYROCKETING AND PEOPLE ARE FORCED TO GO INTO DEBT FOR A DEGREE THAT MAY NOT EVEN GET YOU A GOOD PAYING JOB UPON GRADUATION YES, I M YELLING Don t start me on the racket that is the college textbook Want to stimulate the economy want to help the future of the country Make it affordable for kids to get to college Forgive some student loan debt Seriously, if someone wants an advanced degree, help them out Their knowledge can bring advances to the country falls off soapbox I wanted nothingthan to study medicine I realized that was NOT affordable, so I put that dream in the trash can Then I thought about education Little less school, a little less debt But when I did that math, that sucked too Rush Limbaugh, I hear you screaming at me If I REALLY wanted it, I could have done it This is AMERICA for the love of GAWD But, you see, I grew up in a poor home I was not willing to have debt and feel that discomfort for the rest of my life or 20 years until the debt was paid back NextHousing Yep It can get pricey If you don t have extra in the bank, the house knows it and finds ways to torture you The water heater goes out The roof leaks Kids, rent yourself a cheap apartment until you can buy And don t get a crazy ass mortgage, please I guess what I got out of this book was a bit of understanding on why some of my friends are struggling to get by How it is indeed much different to get started, certainlychallenging in ways that our parents did not have to deal with.I count my blessings every day that we have no debt other than a mortgage It s nice Really nice But you know what It can all be gone in an instant if you add catastrophe think illness or accident Sure, we have insurance, but HOW good is it really That s another subject the author discusses lack of insurance can throw a family into financial ruin And companies are cutting back on what they offer to their employees Obama will save us all, right Hell, that s another book for another time.Okay kids That s all Go save some money


  2. says:

    This should belike Strapped Why many Americans Who Weren t Born Rich Can t Get Ahead It was OK, but it bugged me greatly that it concentrates on the under 35 generation I read it far on the other side of 35 and I have friends in their 40s who are still in this situation if you went to graduate school, for instance, this book remains relevant to your situation Likewise if you ve never gotten help from your parents, had low paying jobs inevitable with journalism and thus had to use This should belike Strapped Why many Americans Who Weren t Born Rich Can t Get Ahead It was OK, but it bugged me greatly that it concentrates on the under 35 generation I read it far on the other side of 35 and I have friends in their 40s who are still in this situation if you went to graduate school, for instance, this book remains relevant to your situation Likewise if you ve never gotten help from your parents, had low paying jobs inevitable with journalism and thus had to use a credit cardthan you probably should have


  3. says:

    This whole college tuition thing is really fucking infuriating.


  4. says:

    My checking out this book is an excellent example of confirmation bias, the tendency to search for, interpret, prefer, and recall information in a way that confirms one s beliefs or hypotheses while giving disproportionately less attention to information that contradicts it I would be unlikely to check out a book called Loaded Why America s 20 and 30 Somethings Have More Money Than They Know What to Do With It d be nice, though, wouldn t it The book, unfortunately, is plodding and artl My checking out this book is an excellent example of confirmation bias, the tendency to search for, interpret, prefer, and recall information in a way that confirms one s beliefs or hypotheses while giving disproportionately less attention to information that contradicts it I would be unlikely to check out a book called Loaded Why America s 20 and 30 Somethings Have More Money Than They Know What to Do With It d be nice, though, wouldn t it The book, unfortunately, is plodding and artless It reads like a compendium of contemporary research and newspaper clippings Draut s argument that young people are struggling financially won t be especially surprising to young people College is expensive, housing is expensive, child care is expensive Salaries vary, but the minimum wage is pathetic, and, for many, debt is filling the gap.I wish Draut s flat, basic writing style could tackle some of the bigger questions her book raises When was it better How and why Draut writes a provocative sentence, We are the first generation of Americans to start our lives with five figure debt and the first generation to start our careers in the unforgivably Darwinian new economy If we re being historically minded, indentured servitude is worth noting, as is the transatlantic slave trade Also noteworthy the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, child labor in the early 20th century, and the Dust Bowl Draut mentions Levittown, but doesn t mention New York City s tenements, or Depression era Hoovervilles If you re going to argue that Generation X and the Millennials are uniquely challenged, I would like to see that argument in historical context.Perhaps aaccurate thesis would be to say that Generation Strapped won t have the same opportunities as their parents, and will see a decline in their standard of living Certainly, Old Economy Steve s advice and expectations are not relevant in 2015 But this is a book of advocacy and policy proposals, not history.Draut notes how business shifted from a 30 years and a watch model to a Middle management GTFO for shareholders sake model, and I think that is a noteworthy and possibly calamitous shift Housing policy is interesting to me as well Frequently, expensive houses are the point and affordability is shunned The Two Income Trap Why Middle Class Parents are Going Broke is a better book on a very similar subject This is a public policy choice and there are costs difficult for young people and benefits great if you bought a 200 K house in 1959 for 20K.Maybe the book I want to read is a project for a contemporary Studs Terkel P.S My parents were among the Lucky Few Their experiences were very different than mine The difference between job hunting in Youngstown, OH in 1950 and in 2015


  5. says:

    Tamara Draut s argument is that 30 somethings, Gen Xers, have the financial deck stacked against them Education, the key to the middle class, will drive them into crippling debt Starting a family will saddle them with medical costs, daycare costs, etc Buying a house puts them at the mercy of a predatory financial industry see also student loans And a serious injury or a cancer diagnosis will very likely drive them into bankruptcy Basically, unless they re trust fund babies, they re screwe Tamara Draut s argument is that 30 somethings, Gen Xers, have the financial deck stacked against them Education, the key to the middle class, will drive them into crippling debt Starting a family will saddle them with medical costs, daycare costs, etc Buying a house puts them at the mercy of a predatory financial industry see also student loans And a serious injury or a cancer diagnosis will very likely drive them into bankruptcy Basically, unless they re trust fund babies, they re screwed.I m mostly in agreement with Draut on all of this The problem with the book is a lot of other people have written similar books If you ve read much of anything by Paul Krugman, et al, none of Draut s contentions will seem particularly shocking Draut s methodology is to outline the problems facing young adults and support these with a series of anecdotes about the financial hardships her subjects face as a result of trying to achieve the American dream While the stories are compelling, the book is weak on statistics or other objective evidence.Draut limits her examination to middle and working class in their 30s, people finished with college and maybe grad school and ready to embark on adult lives She does not deal with the dilemmas of the poor, nor does she look at the way these same problems are faced by many people in middle age She justifies not examining the poor as that would have made her book unwieldy Also, rightly, she argues that those in poverty face a completely different set of problems.This book came out prior to the economic crisis that began in 2008 The financial crisis, the housing crisis, the recession, the pernicious concentration of wealth, and the growing lack of opportunity for most Americans have certainly affected 30 somethings, but people in the next age cohorts have been even harder hit Unemployment has hit men in their 50s as hard as 20 something liberal arts grads Careers have foundered a decade out from retirement Retirement savings have evaporated The suicide rate amongst baby boom era men has gone up Draut can t be faulted for not seeing what was coming a few years out from her book s publication date However, the roots of the dilemma of the middle class 50 somethings were developing well before 2008 If Draut had looked outside of the box to which she limited her study, she might have had something remarkable


  6. says:

    Parts of this book were interesting, but it was essentially just a conglomeration of statistics showing what most members of Gen X already know the cost of things has outpaced inflation since our parents were our age, and our salaries and the minimum wage have not increased correspondingly In addition, many of the personal stories she uses in the book that are intended to tug at the reader s heart strings did just the opposite for me It s hard for me to feel badly for a couple making 160k y Parts of this book were interesting, but it was essentially just a conglomeration of statistics showing what most members of Gen X already know the cost of things has outpaced inflation since our parents were our age, and our salaries and the minimum wage have not increased correspondingly In addition, many of the personal stories she uses in the book that are intended to tug at the reader s heart strings did just the opposite for me It s hard for me to feel badly for a couple making 160k year who is in massive credit card debt b c of all the travel they must do b c their friends are getting married and they have to keep in touch with family Being in roughly as much student loan debt myself as they earn annually, and having had to turn down many an invitation to friends weddings and family events due to an inability to afford to travel, it s hard for me to cry tears for these self indulgent, whiney rich people Their explanation as to how they set their priorities was that family and friends came before finances but wouldn t true friends and loving family understand if a couple with two kids and a mortgage couldn t afford to travel across the county or even sometimes, out of the country to see them For my part, I would not find it worth keeping friends or keeping in touch with family who would be upset with me for not having enough money in my bank account to suit their wishes


  7. says:

    This was a good book to read as I launched into my post college life because it helped me place my own experiences and observations in the context of what is happening to other people my age in this country From the debt for diploma system, to the terribly high prices of housing and child care, to the prevalence of credit card debt this book hits the main obstacles that face our generation Yes, we are stillprivileged than most of the world, but that doesn t mean that these problems shoul This was a good book to read as I launched into my post college life because it helped me place my own experiences and observations in the context of what is happening to other people my age in this country From the debt for diploma system, to the terribly high prices of housing and child care, to the prevalence of credit card debt this book hits the main obstacles that face our generation Yes, we are stillprivileged than most of the world, but that doesn t mean that these problems shouldn t be addressed I found it valuable to consider what obstacles to watch out for in the future Draut s book suffers from a slight repetitiveness, a few questionable statistic interpretations, and an underdeveloped solution, but despite its flaws, I found myself discussing the book in numerous conversations


  8. says:

    I am SO GLAD I read this book Honestly, I expected it to be a big the world owes me a living song and dance routine, but it wasn t Really It was alternately enlightening, reassuring, terrifying, depressing, and provocative With all the statistics, it does get a bit dry, and I thought the constant re capping of her primary points was a little over the top Nevertheless, I wish everyone in America would read this book obviously the young adults it s aimed at, and especially those who have I am SO GLAD I read this book Honestly, I expected it to be a big the world owes me a living song and dance routine, but it wasn t Really It was alternately enlightening, reassuring, terrifying, depressing, and provocative With all the statistics, it does get a bit dry, and I thought the constant re capping of her primary points was a little over the top Nevertheless, I wish everyone in America would read this book obviously the young adults it s aimed at, and especially those who have or plan to have children, but also and maybe most of all the older generations who need to wake up and realize what their profiteering is doing to the lives of their children and grandchildren I d also be interested to hear what the author has to say now that the economy is in crisis besides I told you so


  9. says:

    This book is somewhat true Having a Bachelor s degree today clearly means being in debt after receiving your education Financial aid assistance is not always available and alot of students take out loans It also mentions in the book college graduates earn less than college graduates 30 years ago The type of jobs also changed, I have seen many posting on Craigslist requiring a college graduate to start off 13.00 an hour This book is an eye opener, and if I was in high school and found this This book is somewhat true Having a Bachelor s degree today clearly means being in debt after receiving your education Financial aid assistance is not always available and alot of students take out loans It also mentions in the book college graduates earn less than college graduates 30 years ago The type of jobs also changed, I have seen many posting on Craigslist requiring a college graduate to start off 13.00 an hour This book is an eye opener, and if I was in high school and found this book, I would have went a different route with school Anyway, it talksabout WHY people in their 20 and 30 somethings are broke due to having a child, debt they have accumulated over the years, choices they had made, etc Its a good readIt has made me think twice in making choices in lifefinancially


  10. says:

    This is a telling book on the financial situation of my generation one that is paid increasingly less for jobs that cost increasinglyto get We arein debt and further behind than our predecessors, and are getting less help to succeed Draut takes us on a journey from the cost of higher education through finding a job, buying a house, and having a baby all things most people in their 20s and 30s are unable to afford I disagree with her bitter review of community colleges as a sec This is a telling book on the financial situation of my generation one that is paid increasingly less for jobs that cost increasinglyto get We arein debt and further behind than our predecessors, and are getting less help to succeed Draut takes us on a journey from the cost of higher education through finding a job, buying a house, and having a baby all things most people in their 20s and 30s are unable to afford I disagree with her bitter review of community colleges as a second rate alternative to a four year school rather than as a smart economical decision.Tamara s book certainly defines the problem in detail, but as she must know there is no quick fix Her last chapter is isn t overtly political, but goes a bit outside the scope of the book, going into the landscape of unbalanced funding for political campaigns I recommend this to any college bound student or parent thereof This is one instance where knowing the territory ahead is half the battle.A favorite quote p 107 In 2002, the average college senior had six credit cards and an average balance of just over 3,200 Many college students are in deeper trouble One in five students has credit card debt of 3,000 to 7,000


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