Jan 16, 2008

The "R" word finally rears it's ugly head

With the stock market taking a crap yesterday on the news that Citigroup will take an $18B write-down..people are finally using a word that BushCo still won't utter: Recession.

Gee, the regular Joe's and Jane's have known the economy was in the shitter for months now. How can we not know? We are the ones who have been feeling it, living it..choosing between gas for our vehicles and food for our tables in many instances.

Robert Borosage has a fine read up over at TomPaine which btw, has changed it's name to OurFuture. In his article, which is titled "Its the Recession, Stupid", Borosage first takes the Rethug Presidential candidates to task:

In the January Myrtle Beach Republican debate, the candidates were asked what they would do to get the economy going in the event of recession. The answers expose just how preposterous conservatism has become.
He makes fun of each and every plan the Rethug candidates lays out. Of course the Rethugs probably aren't feeling the recession yet..those folks are usually well above the middle class financially. The Recession usually starts at the bottom and works it's way upward. Borosage then dissects the Democratic candidates plans for dealing with the recession:

Once more John Edwards drove the debate, releasing a serious short-term stimulus plan, mixing tax rebates for low income people with direct spending and aid to the states. Hillary followed with the largest plan, with a good mix mirroring that of Edwards. Obama's plan relied almost entirely on tax cuts, quicker but less effective than direct spending.

Then, he starts on the Democrats in Congress:

Democrats on the Hill seem more muddled. The conservative Blue Dog Democrats are reported as demanding that the tax cuts and spending of any stimulus "be paid for," which would, of course, eliminate their stimulus effect. This preposterous proposition has led Pelosi and Reid to seek pre-emptive agreement with Bush on a plan. That virtually ensures that what emerges will be too small to make a difference, and weighted towards tax cuts. (The President suggested that repealing the estate tax permanently would be a stimulus. Other than exciting the Paris Hiltons of the world, it isn't clear what he had in mind.)

His final word on the subject is this:

This debate has just begun, but it's got to get a lot bolder. This is a $13 trillion economy wounded by successive body blows. It will take a lot to get it turned around. Consider the last recession after the collapse of the dot-com bubble and the shock of 9/11. The Fed lowered interest rates to the lowest levels in memory; Bush racked up record deficits with massive top-end tax cuts and increased spending on the military and homeland security; Chinese and Japanese central bankers lent the money needed to prop up the dollar and limit inflation – and still we witnessed a slow recovery in which employment as a percentage of the population and income never returned to pre-recession levels.

Sadly, he doesn't give us a winning strategy to kick start our economy. But then, he doesn't have to, he isn't running the show...BushCo still is for another year. Will we better or worse off by the time the next President takes office?

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It's moving day!!!!!!!!!!!!

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