Tag: recession

Mr. President: Tear Down this Banking System


Ooh, CNN is reporting Congress is about to get tough with AIG. This is like saying Baby Huey is going to get tough with his diaper pins.

Yeah, Congress, you remember them. Giving Kucinich and a few others a pass, almost 535 fellow citizens who give cowardice a good name in comparison to the craven, corrupt and gutless policies they pursue. Congress made up of used car salesmen with law degrees, is going to tax back $165 million of virtually worthless smackers from AIG for paying bonuses to managerial technocrats following the orders of free-range executives to maximize profits at all costs by filling regulatory loopholes (or caverns) with snake-oil chicanery.

Ooh. You better be scared AIG. Congress is coming! Ooh!

We the Bubble


“In the past few years, we’ve seen too much greed and too little fear; too much spending and not enough saving; too much borrowing and not enough worrying,” Summers said Friday in a speech to the Brookings Institution. “Today, however, our problem is exactly the opposite.”

Larry Summers – Idiot

Oh, the twists and turns of elite logic make for so much fun. Fun, that is, if there weren’t tent-cities rising like wild mushrooms along the decayed American landscape. If the fruits of the “ownership society” weren’t un-payable usurious debt, debauched currency and foreclosed houses full of slave-labor crap; the envy of first-worlders everywhere – never to mention the literally billions of human beings who live on less than a devalued dollar a day.

Can Obama Save Capitalism?

Original article, and editorial, via Socialist Appeal (US):

The capitalist system may well be suffering the worst crisis in its history. According to George Soros, billionaire investor and frank analyst of the system he defends, the world financial system has in effect disintegrated and there is no possibility of a near-term resolution to the crisis. He believes that the turbulence is in fact worse than during the Great Depression and that the current crisis is equivalent to the collapse of the Soviet Union. As he recently told an audience at Columbia University: “[Capitalism] was placed on life support, and it’s still on life support. There’s no sign that we are anywhere near a bottom.”

There was Never Supposed to be Another Great Depression

(crossposted from Cobalt6)

Yes that’s right.  There never was supposed to be another great depression.  It was never gonna happen.  The rich guys were way too smart to ever let anything like that happen.  This was part of the first advice I ever received about how to plan my finances for life.  Sitting on the front porch in Bridgewater in the Spring of 1975 at the ripe age of 23, my new financial guru, kindly providing his services as a benefit of my employment, went on for quite a while about how the bankers and politicians had learned their lesson very well and that there would “never, no way, ever, be another Great Depression.”

He is in grave danger of being wrong.  Thirty-three years later we find ourselves at the precipice.  We are in an economic crisis that is looking so deep and so wide that no one really understands it, and no one knows how to get us out of it.  Our leaders have a plan and they are trying to implement it but the going is slow.  Will the new law now going into affect slow the fall enough so that we can pull ourselves out of it?  The reviews are mixed. There is a lot of debate and shouting on both sides. Can we spend ourselves out of the ditch we’re in?

Where Did All the Money Go?


A funny thing happened on the way to peace and prosperity – we was robbed.

How Bad? This Bad.


If you are having trouble reading the fine print: The blue line shows job losses in the 1990 recession; the red line is 2001, and the green line is the path we are on now.

To clarify, these are not projections. This is actual job-loss data.

“almost homeless”

Wearing ‘almost homeless’ sign, ex-executive seeks work

Paul Nawrocki says he’s beyond the point where he cares about humiliation.

Jeremy Dear speaks at LRC Conference

Original article, a speech by Jeremy Dear given at the Annual Conference of the Labour Representation Committee (the organising hub of the left wing within the Labour Party and among trade union activists), via Socialist Appeal (UK):

As an aside, you may be asking why we should be interested in what Jeremy Dear is giving a speech on? The answer, to me, is simple: Labour has been hijacked by the neoliberal militarists just the same as the Democrats have been. While the crisis in Britain may not be 100% the same as here in the US, it is part and parcel of the collapse of international capitalism. Our workers face the same problems as theirs. It is within this framework that I think Dear’s speech is worth a read:

You Say Recession; I say Depression; Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off

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The difference between a recession and a depression?

A recession is when your neighbor loses his job. A depression is when you lose yours.

Old joke.

But who is laughing now?

Layoffs mount, economic crisis deepens in the US

Original article, by Tom Eley, via World Socialist Web Site:

Monday brought a number of fresh indications-including mass layoffs, bankruptcies and negative labor market data-that the US is entering a deep economic crisis.

The American Automotive Nightmare

When everyone is mad, only madmen are respectable. The sharp collapse of automobile sales in America is supposed to be a dire omen of economic failure, and pressure is mounting on the government to “save” the US auto industry. But on closer inspection, the US auto industry has been encouraging wildly wasteful and environmentally destructive behavior for decades, and “saving” it is the last thing we should do. This industry should be shut down and rebuilt from the ground up. Here is why:

1. Automobiles are ecologically and socially destructive. Producing, fueling, and disposing of them consumes vast amounts of precious resources. Yet their impact on world society has been to spread unsustainable living patterns and isolate individuals from contact with their neighbors.

2. Automobiles have been sold as disposable fashion merchandise, an extremely wasteful practice. There is no reason an automobile cannot be designed to last 20 years, like a refrigerator, stove, or washing machine. (The billionaire founder of IKEA drives a 20 year old Volvo.)

3. Automobiles generate a huge number of deaths and injuries and inflict enormous insurance costs on their owners. Actively selling “high performance” cars and encouraging drivers to drive them as fast as possible contributes to this mayhem.

4. The toxic wastes produced by automobiles are substantial. Discarded tires alone account for a huge problem, since no efficient recycling system has been developed for them. Similarly, vast amounts of plastics and toxic fluids are dumped into the ecosystem because of artificially stimulated junking of cars to permit the frequent replacement that is vital to the current industry model of selling cars as fashion statements.

We need to stop this madness. The world auto industry should be producing only about 1/3 of its current output of cars, and these cars should be engineered to last indefinitely, with a minimal negative environmental impact. GM, Ford, and Chrysler should be shut down, because they are unlikely to reinvent themselves as “green” vehicle manufacturers. New organizations should replace them, and the US government should provide appropriate research and development subsidies to help these newcomers rebuild the US auto industry.

The future of the world automotive industry should be grounded in sustainability, not disposability. We literally cannot afford to keep making and buying cars as we have for the last 60 years.

Bernie Sanders’ Sane Solution: Between Bailout and Collapse

Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has proposed what looks to me like the most sane and reasonable solution to our financial mess.  

Instead of being between a rock and a hard place, between a fraudulent bailout of the criminal banksters and a total collapse, Great Depression 2, destruction of the financial systems of the U.S. and the world, we have the middle ground sanity of Bernie Sanders.  His proposal for, if not solving, at least helping to heal our dire financial straits is the best I’ve seen.

Wall Street Bailout – 09/26/2008

There is little public support for President Bush’s $700 billion bailout. Just 30 percent support Bush’s package, according to an Associated Press poll released Friday. More than 4,000 of you have taken our survey, and those results are even more remarkable. Are you confident that taxpayers would be treated fairly if Congress and the Bush administration agree on a bailout? You aren’t. Do you think a bailout would help the economy? No. Do you favor a surtax on individuals who make more than $500,000 a year and couples earning more than $1 million to pay for a Wall Street bailout? More than 91 percent agree with the proposal by Senator Bernie Sanders. What’s more, as of late Friday, more than 40,000 (as of late Friday)of you co-signed Bernie’s letter to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson suggesting a tax on the very wealthy.

Follow below the fold to learn more and see if you want to sign on and support Sanders’ proposal.

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