The Fragile Middle Class: Americans in Debt


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Pretty soon, the same person defaults on everything and loses a house to foreclosure, and has to file for bankruptcy.

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So, medical bills were the engine of credit destruction. In , she conducted with other social scientists an updated study on medical related bankruptcies. This same study concludes: The US health care financing system is broken, and not only for the poor and uninsured. Middle-class families frequently collapse under the strain of a health care system that treats physical wounds, but often inflicts fiscal ones.

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In some ways, this is the authors' companion book to their excellent book, As We Forgive Our Debtors. The Fragile Middle Class is less academic than As We Forgive Our Debtors and focuses more on the people who fall into bankruptcy and less on the economics and supporting cast of players creditors and legal system that comprise the U.

In this book, the authors could provide reasons for why some individuals find themselves at the mercy of the bankruptcy court.

The Fragile Middle Class: Americans in Debt

For the time-pressed, Chapter One, Americans in Crisis, aptly summarizes the contents of the book. The book provides the reader with a comprehensive definition of what it means to be 'middle-class'. It also provides the key socio-economic reasons underlying bankruptcy. One chapter each is devoted to these reasons.

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View or edit your browsing history. Related Video Shorts 0 Upload your video. The Fragile Middle Class: In Terry Sullivan and her coauthors studied those entering bankruptcy; in they repeated and improved the study. This book tells you how you are entitled to make others "more fortunate" to pay for your Mercedes and at the same time that you are an idiot who needs their protection to navigate the troubled waters of Life.

Throughout, the stated goal of the authors was to tell the reader what the portrait of the bankrupt can tell us about the rest of society. The authors re-affirm the old refrain that economic insecurity has greatly increased in American society. In many cases, as the authors demonstrate, more than one culprit may be at work in a particular bankruptcy.

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Perhaps the most interesting thing I noted in reading the book was the juicy little tidbit on credit cards on page While the authors readily admit that mere possession of a credit card will not lead to bankruptcy, they do insist that the level of such revolving debt for which they define the tipping point toward bankruptcy as short-term debt exceeding one and a half times gross annual income is critical, and take care to point out that the debts can keep on compounding at twenty-four percent interest, compounded monthly long after the cardholder has shredded his or her piece of plastic.

In sum, this book was a very readable introduction to bankruptcy among the middle class. The authors have once again cranked out another excellent study. I had to read this book for a class.

I don't like to read but I think this book certainly sheds a lot of light on the financial problems our society is facing right now. It's a must read. One person found this helpful. See all 13 reviews. Most recent customer reviews. Published on March 7, Published on May 26, Published on February 4, Published on November 20, Published on May 4, Published on December 20, Published on October 10, Published on July 15, Published on May 19, Published on April 27, Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.

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Learn more about Amazon Giveaway. The Fragile Middle Class: For example, "The primary petitioners were more likely than the general population to have gotten some higher education but less likely to have achieved a degree. I found the other main argument much more compelling: Especially given the rapid increases in credit card debt, any of several shocks can push a family into bankruptcy.

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The most important such shocks are job-related reasons, credit cards, sickness and injury, divorce and family problems, or mortgage debt. For families trying to manage large credit card balances, any setback can spell disaster. If someone loses a job, it is bound to create hardship.

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