An article in Daily Finance discusses how senior citizens are struggling because the prices of commodities (particularly corn, cotton, wheat, and gas) are rising, but they aren't seeing any increase in Social Security payments. This is because when the Social Security Administration determines how much the seniors will get, rises in prices in unpredictable products like food and energy often aren't taken into consideration.
As the Law of Demand predicts, since the prices of the commodities are rising, the demand for these products is decreasing. The seniors need these products, but some of them simply can't afford to buy them. Fortunately for them, President Obama expressed a desire to make Medicare and Social Security a priority in government spending in the State of the Union address last night. Hopefully if more money can be given to the seniors, that change in income will allow them to demand more of the products that they need most. If not, some seniors may have to go back to work in order to pay their bills. If they aren't able to, the economy will only suffer more. It's not only the elderly that can't pay their bills. Another article states that adults between 30 and 49 are the largest burden on the economy because they have more obligations than people older and younger than them. To have even more elderly and disabled people added to that burden could do a lot of damage. The bottom line is, something needs to change in order to keep the economy from falling farther into disarray.