What Your Loyalty Means in Light of the Fiscal Cliff

Everyone is talking about the fiscal cliff. I don’t have to tell you about our current situation in this country, the debt ceiling issue, expiring tax cuts and the fight between Democrats and Republicans. You know all of this.

But what does this mean for you – a working man or woman who has dedicated your life to a promising career?

It could mean everything.

The difference between having a job and becoming homeless. Between feeling happy and ending your life. That’s what’s at stake.

The fiscal cliff means uncertainty – in the economy, and our personal lives. If politicians can’t agree on extending the cuts with “certain provisions”, we may be in for one hell of a ride.

For starters, we may repeat 2008. I’m sure you remember that year well. It’s when we went into a recession. Millions lost jobs.

Those of us who are employed could be next. Our companies won’t keep us around for being “loyal” for x amount of years – that’s wishful thinking. When it comes down to staying in business or going under, we are nothing but numbers.

If the Market Panics, People Lose Jobs.

But don’t take my word for it. Pay attention to what’s going on at work. Are there talks of delayed raises? That’s just code talk for “we have to see what happens in January to decide whether to keep you or let you go.”

Hearing rumors of mergers or acquisitions? You better know that means cuts.

Are you asked to train a new hire? That’s your replacement.

Money is all that matters. So when you feel nice and cozy at your job, thinking nothing is going to happen because you’ve been loyal for many years, don’t. The fiscal cliff may sound like a politician’s problem to worry about, but it affects us more than we care to think about.

With that I will end my random blabbing. I couldn’t help but say something about this issue seeing how the news is bombarded with fiscal cliff this, fiscal cliff that and nothing mentioned about what it means for American jobs. Yeah, taxes are important, but without a job there’s nothing to tax.

Are you tired of hearing about the fiscal cliff, or is this something that truly concerns you?

15 Comments

  1. I don’t know if I’d say that I am concerned. But, tentatively watching. I think the media (because they NEVER do this) has blown it up to where people think the sky is going to fall. We could have elected Bozo the clown for all it matters and filled Congress with nobodies and we’d still have an issue.

    That said, there does need to be some sort of change in terms of taxes, I don’t see anyway around it. Sure, it might suck for a while but in the long run (I hope) we’ll be able to come out of it.

    I will be interested to see how companies handle the upcoming changes. There’s just an absurd amount of cash they’re sitting on…trillions of dollars worth. The problem is that nothing really changed from a week ago and now they get to deal with the likelihood of increased taxes. Unfortunately for us we don’t have high payed lawyers and tax attorneys that can help us shift around our money so we can avoid being taxed.

    Ok, I am now stepping off of my soapbox. :) Great post btw, I can’t remember if I said that or not. :)
    John S @ Frugal Rules recently posted..October Blog Goals UpdateMy Profile

    • Haha John, interesting observation. Do you think PF bloggers are doing their part in blowing it out of proportion? We’re certainly all talking about it :)

    • I have a feeling that’s a big part of it. To me, it feels like many people are back on edge about them keeping their jobs when they hear about the fiscal cliff every day now. Maybe the news needs to shut up about it and let the politicians figure it out.

  2. I remember 2008 and like you said loyalty meant absolutely nothing in the corporate world I was living in. Neither did seniority. Skill and ability kept some of us around a little longer, but sales dictates everything. Less people working = less sales = less of us employees.

    • Exactly. I’ve heard stories about layoffs and what was happening all over. It was saddening, but now the echos of those events are coming back. When you take public transportation on your morning commute you get to hear all sorts of stuff.

  3. Veronica,
    2008 was a result of the credit market freezing which and not tax or fiscal policy. No one had access to credit including the banks as everyone feared the banks were insolvent. The Fed gave the banks a direct credit line to grease the lines of credit.

    The fiscal cliff will not happen. There will be a compromise from both side. If the economy slips into a recession the Democrats will be blamed and get voted out in the next election in two years. If the Republicans block everything by Obama they will lose the next cycle because they have thrown the kitchen sink at him twice and lost.

    The santa claus rally in stocks will be coming for those who are brave enough and can see a compromise is coming.
    charles@gettingarichlife.com recently posted..Why your home is keeping you poor, turn your home into an income streamMy Profile

    • I wasn’t implying that 2008 was a result of fiscal policy, merely a fear in investors when they panicked and switched from money market funds to treasure notes.

      However, I do appreciate your opinion on the fiscal cliff. I really hope you’r right and a compromise is achieved, otherwise we’ll be in trouble. I have a feeling your assessment about Republican cooperation due to fear of not standing a chance at getting elected next term is absolutely correct. Let’s just cross fingers and see it through.

  4. Big Gov will not let everyone fall off the cliff. If you make over $200K or all your money comes from dividends, you probably will be paying more taxes, but I don’t think the majority of employed persons will have that much of a change. It will really suck when you and I reach retirement age if we are depending on the government. I really believe we will be on our own for the most part. It just isn’t possible to maintain Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security as they are now. Just means we have to work harder in the meantime.
    Kim@Eyesonthedollar recently posted..How To Have a Cheap European HolidayMy Profile

    • Oh Kim I very much agree with you that we’ll be all on our own at retirement. That’s why seeing all these 20 year olds doing whatever the heck they want scares me dearly. I hope they pick up on the PF blogosphere early enough to figure out that they must save, and save aggressively. Thanks for sharing your opinion, I know this is not a favorite subject with PF bloggers :)

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  7. You saw my post, so you know my opinion on the subject.

    The guy I worked for in 2008 took a beating back then. When I worked for him one summer in 2001, he had 15 employees at the busiest part of the season. Same time in 2008, I was one of 2. And he sold almost no inventory that year at all. We spent months throwing dead plants away that year.
    Edward Antrobus recently posted..5 Tips on How to Lower Insurance PremiumsMy Profile

    • Wow, that’s terrible. I know many businesses took a major hit and so many lost their jobs (many yet to recover, perhaps never). I hope this doesn’t happen again.

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