``What do Americans do when we can't afford the necessities? What we've learned to do over the past 30 years as our wages stagnated: use credit cards to plug the gaping holes. Only this time it's worse, because wages have actually shrunk over the past decade, with the median family's earnings falling from $52,388 a year in 2000 to $47,127 in 2010. We still have 9% unemployment. And 27% of Americans had no personal savings as of February this year, up from 22% 18 months before that.''

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