People avoid silence because they’re afraid of what they might hear. Although we value our freedom of speech, polite conversation in America is subject to one crushing rule, “Don’t talk about religion or politics!” Most of us were raised with this stifling warning in our ears. The purpose was to avoid arguments at the dinner table but the result is a population unconcerned in the two subjects affecting life the most. I can only talk about the weather for so long which displays the wisdom of memorizing sports stats and watching American Idol. With the two biggest topics off the table we’re faced with either trivial pursuit or silence. Bored with the weather and having neglected my memorization and viewing options I propose a topic to stimulate vigorous conversation without causing any bickering: economics.
Barry, Harry, and Nancy knew they had to take us through-the-looking-glass in four short years. With no effective break on their power for the first two years, Congress moved so fast their yesterday became our tomorrow. That tomorrow is now today. The ruling party rammed their agenda through without one opposition vote. Every revolution needs an emergency to justify radical surgery and the economy is the emergency available. Consequently, these descendants of FDR and LBJ shoved a raw deal down the throat of a great society.
Almost everyone is in agreement that the first stimulus failed. According to MSNBC, “In January, Obama’s economic team predicted unemployment would rise no higher than 8 percent with the help of $787 billion in new government spending.” However, according to the LA Times the unemployment rate in May reached a 25-year high of 9.4 percent. The President may see glimmers of hope but Say-it Ain’t-So Joe said he couldn’t rule out a second stimulus telling us the administration which ran on the slogan, “The worst economy since the Great Depression” misread how bad the economy was. How bad is it? What’s worse than the Great Depression? What’s their answer to this baddest of bad economies? What’s their Plan B? Try Plan A again, and again, and again? I think what our leaders need as they drive the largest economy the world has ever known over the cliff is Economics 102, Macroeconomics or how an economy works.
Most people, including the best-government-money-can-buy, look at the economy as if it were controlled by magic having no idea where the rabbit goes or where the doves come from, and since I doubt I’ll convince any of our all-knowing leaders to enroll in freshman macroeconomics I want to offer a crash course in Economic Reality.
1. Government regulations distort markets and inflate bubbles.
2. Every generation experiences at least one bubble and at least one bust.
3. Every bubble bursts.
4. Every burst bubble is followed by a panic.
5. Panics inspire economic regulations.
6. Economic regulations reflect political ideologies not economic realities.
7. Economic regulations always regulate the excesses of the last bubble.
8. Economic regulations are always blind to the excesses of the next bubble.