Someone break out the ProZac!
Man, is this thread getting depressing.
One thing you have to realise is that it's going to get worse before it gets better.
I've been talking to a few electricians in the course of my work recently and while no-one is being laid off over here (yet), the existing staff of a lot of EC companies are on short days and even shorter weeks.
People just aren't spending the money that they were say a year ago or if they are, they are shopping around for the lowest price job they can get and you and I all know what that means.