By David A. Graham
It might seem like eons ago, but it was only mid-June when the White House declared that the following three months would be 2010’s “Recovery Summer.” Instead, the economic scene is, if anything, bleaker now than it was back then: what appeared to be a nascent bounceback has matured into a dismal slog, and while GDP growth and employment are still slowly improving, fears of a double-dip recession are looming more than ever. Below those top-line numbers things are even worse. The unemployed comprise nearly 15 million Americans, but it’s not just people who have been out of work for a while: an increasingly large number of them are “99ers,” people who have been out of work so long that they’ve exhausted the 99 weeks of unemployment insurance guaranteed to out-of-work Americans. And with an average of five applicants for every job opening, it’s unlikely that the situation will change soon. The poverty rate is hit 14.3 percent, in 2009, the highest level since 1994. While things are improving for the wealthiest Americans, here’s a look at those who are still reeling from the financial blows they’ve been dealt.