Eden Hill Journal

Comments, dreams, stories, and rantings from a middle-aged native of Maine living on a shoestring and a prayer in the woods of Maine. My portion of the family farm is to be known as Eden Hill Farm just because I want to call it that and because that's the closest thing to the truth that I could come up with. If you enjoy what I write, email me or make a comment. If you enjoy Eden Hill, come visit.

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Location: Maine, United States

Friday, February 13, 2009

No Solution Solution

Like just about everybody these days with living brain cells, I have been trying to make sense of the financial situation we are facing now and to nobody's surprise, I think, it makes absolutely no sense to me at all. If I had to guess, and I've probably said this before, we are in the predicted outcome in Atlas Shrugged where the captains of industry and finance are on strike. They're the bosses, though, so they don't have to tell anyone that's what they're doing. But that's just my guess.
Unfortunately, nobody who appears in public on any of the media has any better answer than this.
For a very long time now Republicans have wanted to terminate social spending by government. Since they can't overcome the political power of the people here in America, they have chosen to spend us into a depression believing the solution will come when American voters finally realize that we cannot afford social spending.
That is delusional reasoning, but so what. Republicans are delusional.
It may be that this recession/depression we seem to be in is as temporary as was the spike last year in gasoline prices. It may be that in a few years everything will just simply be back on track and back to business as usual, Wall Street heading back up, home price speculation heading back up, consumer spending heading back up. But it also may be that we've reached the inevitable outcome of free trade and outsourcing, a tipping point that forces America's working class to join the third world labor market.
I'm not inclined yet to think that is the best solution to this problem, or even if indeed it is the best solution, that it is the one America will choose. And it is increasingly clear to me that bailing out the banks and Wall Street, bailing out the captains of industry and finance, isn't going to help us either. In fact I'm increasingly convinced that they are holding the economy ransom - either government hands over all future tax revenues to them or they will shut the economy down completely. They have the power to do this.
But suppose the government were to say, hey you private banks and industries, you go right ahead and run your business however you want. We are setting up a government bank to compete with you and we are going to set it up in such a way that we won't have to turn to you to get money. And don't bother coming to us for money. Our money is for loaning to individuals and industries that have the best interest of America in mind, not the interests of the wealthy few. Maybe even this - you captains of finance will not even be allowed to touch our currency. You have your own. Deal with it.
Do you suppose just the threat of that might be enough to shock the wealthy into reviving the economy on their own?

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