October 6, 2008

A Timely Question

Justin Katz

With the economic downturn still in the news while a fresh wave of "saying he's inevitable makes it true" passes through the opinion world, one question comes to mind: How does a family prepare for a Great Depression? Keeping in mind that I'm an optimist on religious grounds, that particular trajectory carries fair odds with an Obama presidency.

With no technological revolutions on the horizon, we're surely not in for a rapid economic recovery — do the media what it will to declare that the sun has risen in a giant, shining O. The Democrat executive and Democrat legislature can be relied upon to respond by giving away money to people who'll use it to pay down debt or waste it and to increase government spending as a form of economic stimulus. To pay for this renewed attempt at socialism, they'll borrow money and raise taxes on wealth and productivity. Consequently, the rich will sit on their wallets, and the productive will wallow in a lack of opportunity.

The silver lining is that the ruling regime of the United States of America will be so weak that our enemies will waste no time coalescing and pushing the world toward some brink or another, ultimately spurring the American people to rally the West toward a war-driven economic boom.

But again: How ought a family to prepare for such a future?


On a related note, I wonder whether the Saturday Night Live folks realize how close to a cultural divide they are when they give the following line to Tina Fey/Sarah Palin:

We don't know if this climate change whoseywhatsit is manmade or if it's just a natural part of the end of days.
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First of all, stop obsessing about things totally beyond your control, it's pointless and it makes you miserable which detracts from the enjoyment of life and family that you deserve. There's not much a carpenter from Tiverton can do about global deleveraging. If the truth be known, there's not all that much the Secretary of the Treasury can do, that's kind of the problem. We all just have to wait it out. Try and minimize or stay out of debt. Don't be fooled by these low interest rates, eventually the liquidity flooding in to the financial system will result in inflation and higher rates, but that is in no way imminent. The immediate problem is deflation. I hope you can continue to get work. As someone in construction, you must be used to some seasonal or occasional downtime, I hope it's not too much. Don't spend to much time listening to the so called experts. More people lost money today being short the market than long it. There was a vicious 500 point Dow rally in about 75 minutes this afternoon, just after all the experts were predicting the end was near. I'm not predicting any quick solutions, we will face a quarter or two of weak and volatile markets but the sun will come up tomorrow. This is in no way a depression. If you want to fret about it becoming one, go ahead but you are only cheating yourself.

Posted by: observer at October 6, 2008 8:05 PM

You said " The silver lining is that the ruling regime of the United States of America will be so weak that our enemies will waste no time coalescing and pushing the world toward some brink or another, ultimately spurring the American people to rally the West toward a war-driven economic boom."

You should read some Cormac McCarthy. Try Blood Meridian.

Posted by: David at October 6, 2008 8:09 PM

Who's obsessing, and who's miserable? Me, I'm of the "son will come up" school (that's not a typo), whatever happens geopolitically.

Posted by: Justin Katz at October 6, 2008 8:11 PM

1) Invest in some gold and tangible asset mutual funds (e.g., T. Rowe Price New Era): with tens of trillions of unfunded liabilities hitting in the next few decades, the United States is already technically bankrupt - it just needs a tipping point, and a Marxist President (Obama) could well provide it. The Barney Frank Bailout is just a preview. But most likely they'll try to avoid a 1930's deflation and opt for repudiating the public and private debt with devalued dollars, i.e., they'll run the printing presses Weimar like. Say hello to hyper-inflation.

Along similar lines, try to invest in some Asian (China / India) oriented mutual funds - the mismanagement of our country by our politicians, increasingly uncompetitive workforce (thank you NEA), and the increasing socialization of our economy, means that we are in long term decline and those economies are ascendant.

2) A good shotgun in the house couldn't hurt: property crimes are likely to go up as the economy goes down.

3) Have no debt, if you can manage it. (Though in a hyper-inflationary environment there's something to be said for acquiring tangible assets with debt and repaying the debt / loan with devalued dollars).

4) Move to a Sunbelt state if you can - family support costs are lower (taxes and housing) and job prospects will continue to be better there than here.

On a macro level, lower energy costs and a more business friendly political culture means that economically those states will continue to fare better there than the Northeast states, which are also saddled with unmaintained / decaying infrastructure that they can't afford to fix, and higher legacy costs due to public sector unionization (e.g., RI multi-billion dollar unfunded pension liabilities). All this as the tax base will continue to shrink.

As a region we're analogous to the UAW-saddled Detroit manufacturers, in long term decline and closing plants even as new UAW-free plants are being constructed across the South. Like the UAW-saddled auto manufacturers, we have been spiraling downward for some time, and that decline will only accelerate as the national economy declines.

Posted by: Tom W at October 6, 2008 9:15 PM

Bernanke book on Depression rides sales surge


Posted by: Tom W at October 6, 2008 10:25 PM

But again: How ought a family to prepare for such a future?


Posted by: Eric Blair at October 6, 2008 10:30 PM

Atlas Shrugged comes to mind.

If Barry's going to demagogue for 4 years and tax us all to death why not?

Posted by: Tom the Redhunter at October 6, 2008 10:31 PM


Congratulations on making it onto Instapundit.com! What will you do with your newfound fame? ;)

"JUSTIN KATZ WONDERS IF, AND HOW, HE SHOULD prepare for an Obama presidency.

posted at 10:10 PM by Glenn Reynolds"

Hopefully, this only ends up being a hypothetical question. Obviously, America's enemies would be very pleased by the prospect of Obama bin Biden being elected, so of course, to the extent it puts our country in more danger, I am quite worried about the prospect.

However, from the purely political point of view, whomever wins is likely to inherit an even more craptacular economy than presently come January 20th, so basically, we are now witnessing a contest between who will be the next Jimmy Carter for 4 years. On the "bright side," I suspect that should Obama win, it will greatly increase the prospects of the GOP retaking the House and/or Senate in 2010. I also think the "winner" will end up being a one-termer, regardless of party.

All that being said, I will say what I have oft said before, "Never underestimate the ability of the Democrat nominee for President to blow a a 'sure to win' election."

Posted by: Will at October 6, 2008 10:41 PM

For one, buy ammunition for your guns now, while you can. The price is high enough thanks to the cost of the metal in them, but I'm sure that will be one of the first things he'll tax

Posted by: JeremyR at October 6, 2008 10:44 PM

Buy lots of guns and learn how to use them. Buy lots of ammo too.

Posted by: Somebody #57 at October 6, 2008 10:47 PM

Don't just buy ammo - buy as many of the standard capacity mags that you think you'll ever need and then some more.

I don't know the gun laws in RI but if legal now, buy your AR-15 or AK's while the getting is still good. Ammo for the AK-74 and its variants (5.45x39) is almost dirt cheap right now. Many places have sealed cans of 1040 rounds for $115 or so.

Check out James Wesley Rawles's blog www.survivalblog.com for more prepardedness tips.

Posted by: J Richardson at October 6, 2008 10:54 PM

Bad news: There may be a "President Obama" in our future.

Good news: Obama's congressional honeymoon will likely be nasty, brutish and short. Does anybody think that Pelosi, Reid, Frank, and the other usual suspects will indefinitely defer to a backbenching pretty-boy who got lucky? Me neither.

Even better news: By January 2010, "The One" will have performed the superhuman feat of pissing off even his most bug-eyed supporters. Especially after he tells them, "Uhhh, remember all that, ummm, stuff I promised you during the campaign? Ummm, uhhh, forget about it."

Wacky news: Given current economic trends, look for the increasing emergence of "Obamavilles" in the next couple of years.

I'm hoping McCain/Palin win. I really do. However, even if Obama wins in November, within a year or so, Obama Skywalker will be telling his angry wife every night that he wished to hell he'd LOST...before he sulks off to sleep on the couch.

And George W. Bush, kicked back at his ranch, will be laughing his ass off as he deals another round of Texas Hold'em...

"'Bama, yuh li'l pissant, I'll bet ya thought bein' Prezident was jes like commun'ty organizin', didn'tcha? Ya always were all hat an' no cattle!"

Posted by: MarkJ at October 6, 2008 11:19 PM

"I suspect that should Obama win, it will greatly increase the prospects of the GOP retaking the House and/or Senate in 2010."

I'm not so sure. What we're seeing is a political perfect storm: a confluence of media narcissism, hard-left plotting, and Chicago-style corruption. These forces will not rest until the entire country is one huge Cook County: the government totally submissive to the Party, and the Party totally submissive to the Boss. That how Boss Daley runs his fiefdom, and that's how The One will run the country, if he can.

Posted by: Brown Line at October 6, 2008 11:22 PM

For myself, I am looking to the hills.

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. ( Psalm 121:1-2)

Posted by: Thom X at October 6, 2008 11:23 PM

It wasn't that long ago that America's demise was being predicted because Japan was going to buy up the entire country. Before that, Jimmy Carter was telling us to carpool and before that, we were all going to be the victims of mutually assured destruction in a nuclear war with the Soviets.

Our economy is still in better shape than it was in the late 70's. Much of the panic and downturn in the markets is being caused by uncertainty---not by an identifiable or quantifiable factors.

Chinese and Indian growth has been fueled because they were filling the material wants and needs of western countries. As demand goes down, well you can guess the rest.

I believe that there are many U.S. companies that are fundamentally good companies and are undervalued right now because of fear.

I also agree with the debt reduction piece. Americans have leveraged themselves to the hilt. Spending helps fuel the economy and that's a good thing. Spending beyond one's means leads to risk that aren't good for anyone. It needs to be brought under control.

It's also difficult to argue with the premise that job prospects will be better in the sun belt states. Eventually, RI will have to be brought in line with the rest of the world, but it may be a slow and difficult process.

Posted by: Anthony at October 6, 2008 11:41 PM

Guns and ammo are nice to have, but they won't pay the mortgage and you can't eat them. For my grandparents, the depression was the defining time of their life. They always saved leftovers, tin cans, jars, twine, foil anything that could be reused for something. A few other things I learned from them...

You need a year's worth of food, long term nitrogen packed, flour mills and food canning equipment. You'll want to put in a garden and get as self sufficient as you can.

Hopefully, you have a job Obama will support -- teacher, policeman, firefighter or nurse. Those are always the jobs he mentions in his speeches that we should aspire to and "public service" jobs will always get paid, since the government will print money to support them.

If you happen to be an investment banker, business owner, rancher or anyone else who produces wealth, get ready to head for the soup kitchen. Obama won't be writing you any checks. Think about what the Cultural Revolution did to these kinds of people in China -- that's what the Big O has in mind for you.

If you have a big mortgage, you should sell your house tomorrow and move into something you can pay off that has low property taxes. Rent for a while as the real estate prices decline another 50 pct. Then go make a low ball cash offer with the money you socked away in gold or US treasuries.

Plan to wear the clothes you have for the next 4 or 5 years.

Unscrew half the lightbulbs in your house to save electricity.

Get to know your neighbors, you can share tools, skills, extras from your garden and dvds you no longer can afford to rent. No one will have any cash, you'd better be good with your hands and be able to barter.

This is going to be a good opportunity to see exactly how great it's going to be to live with no money.

People who went through it, said they had some of the best memories of their lives during this time. However...

One thing was for sure, my grandparents were very happy to have the Depression behind them!

Posted by: Concerned Citizen at October 6, 2008 11:43 PM

I think you should stop panicking. Jimmy Carter had a supportive congress and mucked things up, but not enough for the cities to burn and the Republic to fall.

A victory by your political opponents is not the end of the world.

Unless, of course, your political opponent is Bushitlerhalliburtoncheney in which case it's perfectly OK for you to lose all mental stability and run about screaming at the top of your lungs.


Posted by: K T Cat at October 6, 2008 11:44 PM

1. Practice trying to find something humorous in every situation you encounter. Use some of the more awful scenarios that pop up as exercises. If you can train yourself to find something that amuses you in, say, Chavez's latest nine-hour speech, BO's four-year stint will be less painful.

2. Start saving money now. But don't save it all as dollars. Save some of it - maybe a third? - as gold, or cigarettes, or high-quality whiskey, or small diamonds, or dried smelt. Paradigm changes such as what an Obama presidency promises usually involve the New flushing out the assets of the Old, and they don't do this by searching your house - they do it by devaluing the material form in which most people have sought to save wealth.

If you and many others hide currency, you'll find that massive inflation will render your mattress-treasure worthless. If you buy real estate, suddenly property will belong to "the people." If you own stocks, the value of your companies will suddenly tank, while others will mysteriously rise. You want to own things that people will want, and will be willing to exchange other valuable things for, and that you can keep and protect, through thick and thin. Guns, sadly, are a wonderful investment property during times when others are buying gold.

Posted by: bobby b at October 6, 2008 11:45 PM


Should you be worrying about preparing your family for a Great Depression? There will be no Great Depression because of checks and balances currently in place but what you will have NO MATTER WHO GETS ELECTED is a protracted long recession. RI already is in a recession so it will be very bad and long lasting in the Ocean State. Get use to it! I was laid off in RI 6 times over my working career!

With planning you should know how to create a victory garden and root cellar, canning your fruits and vegetables, keep chickens for eggs and meat, lots of one pot casseroles make stone soup, sock rugs, sew your own clothes, learn to live without TV/cable/computers and lower the house heat. Learn to layer clothing in the winter. Make hand sewn family designed quilts for all the beds.

As an elementary school youngster my home duties were to maintain the coal fired steam heating system in the house thus providing heat and hot water for the two story house, family and ash to spread on the walkways, driveway during winter. I also was responsible for keeping the kitchen kerosene stove full of fuel, sweeping down the rear stairwell and maintaining the garden and chicken coop besides walking 1 mile to public school for morning session, return home for lunch mid-day, returning to afternoon public school session, returning home, doing my homework, and enjoying creative playtime with my neighborhood friends. Such was RI life in the late 40s and 50s. My primary entertainment at night was a Cub Scout crystal cat-whisker battery radio kit and listening to radio stations. My father and mother lived through the Great Depression and I’ve lived through all of the succeeding recessions in RI till my retirement to Hawaii.

The last long 1980s recession in RI my wife and I learned to make a victory garden and put up vegetables and fruits and before we knew it the whole street of neighbors had gardens and were bartering with each other.

Because we were avid campers (before it became chic) we learned to entertain ourselves with basic games and reading. When we were not camping we were visiting family and friends or vise versa. Get your family back to basics. Learn to live with the basics.

The Associated Press provides the following and the problem I see is no one willing to take ownership for calling a spade a spade:

“Forecasters see wobbly economy ahead
Associated Press
Updated at 4:27 a.m., Monday, October 6, 2008

WASHINGTON — A growing number of economists believe the country is on the brink of — or already in — its first recession since 2001 and that it will be longer lasting.

That's part of the latest outlook from forecasters in a survey to be released Monday by the National Association for Business Economics, also know by its acronym NABE.

Close to 69 percent of the economists think the economy has started or will enter a recession this year. That's up from 56 percent in a survey in May. "The general view is .... that this recession will be longer than the last two — lasting roughly one year, but relatively mild," the survey concluded. The 2001 recession started in March and ended in November. The one before that began in July 1990 and ended in March 1991.

Under one classic definition, a recession happens when the economy shrinks for two quarters in a row. The National Bureau of Economic Research, the recognized arbiters for dating recessions, uses a more complicated formula that takes into account such things as employment and income growth.

"Business economists have become more negative on the economic outlook for the next several quarters as a result of the tightness in credit markets and weakness in consumer spending, expecting growth to stall in the fourth quarter," said Chris Varvares, president-elect of the NABE and president of Macroeconomic Advisers.

"If financial conditions fail to improve quickly, near-term economic prospects could deteriorate markedly," he warned.
For all of this year, the economy's growth is expected to slow to 1.8 percent, down from 2 percent last year, the NABE forecasters predicted. Growth will turn even weaker next year at 1.6 percent, they said.

The survey was taken before President Bush speedily signed an unprecedented $700 billion financial bailout into law on Friday shortly after Congress completed action.

The plan would allow the government to buy bad assets from banks and other institutions to shore up the financial industry. The rationale behind this is that by taking these toxic debts off financial companies' balances sheets, they'll be in a better position to raise capital and more inclined to boost lending.

The credit clog, which has intensified in recent weeks, has roiled Wall Street and poses a grave danger to the economy, warned Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, who backed the bailout measure.

Still, even with the bailout, many analysts predict more pain ahead. Employers will keep cutting jobs and the unemployment rate — now at 6.1 percent — will climb higher. In September alone, the economy lost 159,000 jobs, the most in more than five years, the government reported Friday.

The survey of 48 forecasters was taken Sept. 8 through the Sept. 19; some supplemental questions were taken on Oct. 1-2.”

Posted by: Ken at October 7, 2008 12:02 AM

Don't look at the polls. They're BS. The democratic party is bably split. McCain will win in a landslide.

Posted by: nofreelunch at October 7, 2008 12:09 AM

“A democracy cannot survive as a permanent form of government. It can last only until its citizens discover that they can vote themselves largesse from the public treasury. " - Lord Thomas McCauley, May 23, 1857

He called it.

We started this "beginning of the end" under FDR and his "New Deal" ... and may well see the finality under Comrade President Obama.

Shall we call his agenda the "Last Dance?"

Posted by: Tom W at October 7, 2008 12:28 AM

I don't like many of the suggestions you've gotten. It seems to me that your question was: "If there's going to be a Depression, how do I prepare now to get my family to the other side of it."

And I think that the answer is to be as self-reliant as possible. That means eliminating unnecessary expenses now, while the Depression is still a few months off, to conserve cash.

It means planning where your Victory Garden is going to be planted next year and what veggies need to go into it.

I've recently refreshed my learning of how to dress game in the field; not because I believe there won't be food, but because I think it will be expensive and hunting is one way to lower that expense.

I've recently upgraded my preparation skills. You remember ... the things you learned in Boy Scouts. There may be disruptions of services. Do you know how to do simple things - like make water safe to drink? Build a fire without matches? Have you tried to do them to make sure you really, really know how? What about other basic skills that it just makes good sense to have?

If you had to leave your house in 5 minutes and be gone for 3 days, what would you take with you? Could you survive that long living in your car with your family?

There are lots of things that you can do now that improve your preparation for the unknowable. Doing the sensible ones that can't hurt (such as knowing how to pitch a tent) will at a minimum take your mind off of things you cannot control, and better yet, will begin to get you to think in a self-reliant way to figure out where you're going to be weak.

Posted by: justareader at October 7, 2008 12:32 AM

Stop the Debauchery


Posted by: Tom W at October 7, 2008 12:39 AM

Just turn the page and don't give a damn about the economy anymore, like McCain's minions say.

Posted by: rhody at October 7, 2008 1:00 AM

There is no such thing as a war driven economic boom. Sending potential employees overseas to be shot full of holes, and dropping resources in the form of bombs on enemy cities does not an economy make.

Neither produces any good or service that our citizens can use and drains resources from the system.

Are you actually adding the Iraq and Afghanistan expenses to the income column of your mental books? Come-on, it's a dead weight loss.

Posted by: Brian Macker at October 7, 2008 2:15 AM

Armageddon outta here.

Posted by: Phil at October 7, 2008 6:43 AM

Me? I'm hoping for the rapture. I can't wait until you Bible thumpers are gone. Without the religious zealots of the world the rest of us can learn to get along.

Posted by: Greg at October 7, 2008 7:39 AM

David-read ANYTHING by Cormac McCarthy-he can't write a bad book.I read 'em all and am waiting for the next one.
Greg-I get a little tired of religious wars-you'd have thought the Thirty Years War and the Crusades would've worn that out,but no such luck
Ammunition will be a tax target of Obama-Ted Kennedy was already heading that way when illness intervened.
Being armed is a good idea even in the best of times.And it is your RIGHT in spite of Obama,Steven Brown,Kennedy,or David Cicilline.

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 7, 2008 9:07 AM

I think the posts about a depression are overblown, although there's no question that we're in a recession.

Mr. Mad Money Jim Cramer is suggesting anyone who needs their money within the next 5 years should pull their money out of the stock market.

Obama's tax plan calls for a heavy increase in the capital gains tax, so if you've held stock for decades and have made a profit, it might make sense to cash out if he should somehow manage to win. I suspect the baby boomer generation will be affected the most.

If you're still 10+ years away from needing money that is in the stock market, I think this is a buying opportunity.

Posted by: Anthony at October 7, 2008 10:45 AM

Yes, this is a real worry, because only with a Republican president will there be responsible management of the economy...BWAH HAH HAHAHA...knew I couldn't type that without laughing....

Posted by: Ted at October 7, 2008 10:49 AM

Yeah, the Republicans have screwed up - they've strayed far from the Reagan principles of low taxes and small government.

They went native in the Democrat plantation of Washington, D.C.

But let's not ignore the ACORN / Barney Frank / Chris Dodd / Bill Clinton-Franklin Raines underlying responsibility for the subprime collapse.

The subprime bomb ignited during the Bush administration, but it was built and the fuse lit by the Democrats.

Speaking of building bombs - economic and otherwise - no doubt William Ayers has given his Marxist protege Barack Hussein Obama lessons. No wonder Hussein has gone to such lengths to hide his college records, law school records (who did pay for his Occidental and Columbia and Harvard education????) and every other paper trail.

You think the economy is bad now, just wait until our semi-free market economy becomes a command economy under Pelosi, Reid and Barack Hugo Chavez Obama.

The Jimmy Carter era of malaise is going to look like a cake walk.

Posted by: Ragin' Rhode Islander at October 7, 2008 11:16 AM

My grandmother got through the great depression by gardening. She converted half her back yard into a vegetable garden. She grew enough to feed her extended family for most of the year. As things got better she converted most of her garden from vegetables to flowers. She always had one of the best gardens in town.

Grandpa fortunately had marketable skills (printer, typesetter, plumber, carpenter, farmer) that allowed him to get work most of the time. Most of his work was low paying and temporary, but it brought in enough for them to get by until times got better.

Grandma saved EVERYTHING. Reused anything she could in any way she could think to reuse it. She learned to do with what she had, or do without.

She became a good trader. One arrangement that started during the depression had her trading vegetables for eggs and milk with a local farmer. This arrangement lasted for over 50 years. Shortly after the depression ended and Grandpa had regular work, they changed from vegetables to flowers. For over 30 years she would trade a large bouquet of fresh flowers from her garden once a week in exchange for 1-3 dozen eggs and a couple bottles (yes - glass bottles) of milk, depending on whether or not she had family visiting that week. During the winter when flowers didn't bloom, she traded bake goods - cookies, bread, etc for the eggs and milk.

Learn how to garden in your area, learn how to reuse things. Be willing to work - hard. Get to know people in your area who you can trade with, or work with or for. Stop worrying and just do whatever it takes to get by.

BTW - Grandpa slept every night of his adult life with a shotgun beside his bed. At first it was load with rock salt to keep thieves out of the garden at night. In the 40s it was loaded with buck shot in case the Japanese invaded. (no I'm not kidding, Grandpa thought the Japanese were going to invade South Dakota.)

Posted by: David at October 7, 2008 11:23 AM

Amazing. The first ever global depression will go down in history horribly misunderstood. What a pathetic bunch of ignorant fools we have become. Consumer junkie credit card morons. Perfect little victims. Say that reminds me.

Don’t believe one optimistic word from any public figure about the economy or humanity in general. They are all part of the problem. Its like a game of Monopoly. In America, the richest 1% now hold ALMOST 1/2 OF ALL UNITED STATES WEALTH. Unlike ‘lesser’ estimates, this includes all stocks, bonds, cash, offshore accounts, and material assets held by America’s richest 1%. Even that filthy pig Oprah acknowledged that it was at about 50% in 2006. Naturally, she put her own ‘humanitarian’ spin on it. Calling attention to her own ‘good will’. WHAT A DISGUSTING HYPOCRITE SLOB. THE RICHEST ONE PERCENT HAVE LITERALLY MADE WORLD PROSPERITY ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE. Don’t fall for any of their ‘humanitarian’ CRAP. ITS A SHAM. THESE PEOPLE ARE CAUSING THE SAME PROBLEMS THEY PRETEND TO CARE ABOUT. Ask any professor of economics. Money does not grow on trees. The government can’t just print up more on a whim. At any given time, there is a relative limit to the wealth within ANY economy of ANY size. So when too much wealth accumulates at the top, the middle class slip further into debt and the lower class further into poverty. A similar rule applies worldwide. The world’s richest 1% now own over 40% of ALL WORLD WEALTH. This is EVEN AFTER you account for all of this ‘good will’ ‘humanitarian’ BS from celebrities and executives. ITS A SHAM. As they get richer and richer, less wealth is left circulating beneath them. This is the single greatest underlying cause for the current US recession. The middle class can no longer afford to sustain their share of the economy. Their wealth has been gradually transfered to the richest 1%. One way or another, we suffer because of their incredible greed. We are talking about TRILLIONS of dollars which have been transfered FROM US TO THEM. All over a period of about 27 years. Thats Reaganomics for you. The wealth does not ‘trickle down’ as we were told it would. It just accumulates at the top. Shrinking the middle class and expanding the lower class. Causing a domino effect of socio-economic problems. But the rich will never stop. They just keep getting richer. Leaving even less of the pie for the other 99% of us to share. At the same time, they throw back a few tax deductible crumbs and call themselves ‘humanitarians’. Cashing in on the PR and getting even richer the following year. IT CAN’T WORK THIS WAY. Their bogus efforts to make the world a better place can not possibly succeed. Any ‘humanitarian’ progress made in one area will be lost in another. EVERY SINGLE TIME. IT ABSOLUTELY CAN NOT WORK THIS WAY. This is going to end just like a game of Monopoly. The current US recession will drag on for years and lead into the worst US depression of all time. The richest 1% will live like royalty while the rest of us fight over jobs, food, and gasoline. So don’t fall for any of this PR CRAP from Hollywood, Pro Sports, and Wall Street PIGS. ITS A SHAM. Remember: They are filthy rich EVEN AFTER their tax deductible contributions. Greedy pigs. Now, we are headed for the worst economic and cultural crisis of all time. Crime, poverty, and suicide will skyrocket. SEND A “THANK YOU” NOTE TO YOUR FAVORITE MILLIONAIRE. ITS THEIR FAULT. I’m not discounting other factors like China, sub-prime, or gas prices. But all of those factors combined still pale in comparison to that HUGE transfer of wealth to the rich. Anyway, those other factors are all related and further aggrivated because of GREED. If it weren’t for the OBSCENE distribution of wealth within our country, there never would have been such a market for sub-prime to begin with. IF IT WEREN’T FOR THE OBSCENE, UNREASONABLE, AND UNJUST DISTRIBUTION OF UNITED STATES WEALTH, THERE NEVER WOULD HAVE BEEN SUCH A MARKET FOR SUB-PRIME AND THERE NEVER WOULD HAVE BEEN A COLLAPSE IN THE HOUSING MARKET. Sub-prime did not cause the problem. It only accelerated the outcome. Which by the way, was another trick whipped up by greedy bankers and executives. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. The credit industry has been ENDORSED by people like Oprah Winfrey, Ellen DeGeneres, Dr Phil, and many other celebrities. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. In fact, they specifically endorsed Countrywide by name. The same Countrywide widely responsible for predatory adjustable rate sub-prime lending and the accelerated collapse of the housing market. ENDORSED BY OPRAH WINFREY, ELLEN DEGENERES, AND DR PHIL. Now, there are commercial ties between nearly every industry and every public figure. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. It also drives up the cost for nearly every product and service on the market. So don’t fall for their ‘good will’ BS. ITS A LIE. If you fall for it, then you’re a fool. If you see any real difference between the moral character of a celebrity, politician, attorney, or executive, then you’re a fool. No offense fellow citizens. But we have been mislead by nearly every public figure. We still are. Even now, they claim to be ‘hurting’ right along with the rest of us. As if gas prices actually effect the lifestyle of a millionaire. ITS A LIE. IN 2007, THE RICHEST 1% INCREASED THEIR AVERAGE BOTTOM LINE WEALTH AGAIN. On average, they are now worth over $4,000,000 each. Thats an all time high. As a group, they are now worth well over $17,000,000,000,000. THATS WELL OVER SEVENTEEN TRILLION DOLLARS. Another all time high. Which by the way, is much more than the entire middle and lower classes combined. Also more than enough to pay off our national debt, fund the Iraq war for a decade, repair our infrastructure, and bail out the US housing market. Still think that our biggest problem is China? Think again. Its the 1% club. That means every big name celebrity, athlete, executive, entrepreneur, developer, banker, and lottery winner. Along with many attorneys, doctors, and politicians. If they are rich, then they are part of the problem. Their incredible wealth was not ‘created’, ‘generated’, grown in their back yard, or printed up on their command. It was transfered FROM US TO THEM. Directly and indirectly. Its become near impossible to spend a dollar without making some greedy pig even richer. Don’t be fooled by the occasional loss of a millionaire’s fortune. Overall, they just keep getting richer. They absolutely will not stop. Still, they have the nerve to pretend as if they care about ordinary people. ITS A LIE. NOTHING BUT CALCULATED PR CRAP. WAKE UP PEOPLE. THEIR GOAL IS TO WIN THE GAME. The 1% club will always say or do whatever it takes to get as rich as possible. Without the slightest regard for anything or anyone but themselves. Reaganomics. Their idea. Loans from China. Their idea. NAFTA. Their idea. Outsourcing. Their idea. Sub-prime. Their idea. High energy prices. Their idea. Oil ‘futures’. Their idea. Obscene health care charges. Their idea. The commercial lobbyist. Their idea. The multi-million dollar lawsuit. Their idea. The multi-million dollar endorsement deal. Their idea. $200 cell phone bills. Their idea. $200 basketball shoes. Their idea. $30 late fees. Their idea. $30 NSF fees. Their idea. $20 DVDs. Their idea. Subliminal advertising. Their idea. Brainwash plots on TV. Their idea. Vioxx, and Celebrex. Their idea. Excessive medical testing. Their idea. The MASSIVE campaign to turn every American into a brainwashed, credit card, pharmaceutical, medical testing, love-sick, celebrity junkie. Their idea. All of the above drive up the cost of living, shrink the middle class, concentrate the world’s wealth and resources, create a dominoe effect of socio-economic problems, and wreak havok on society. All of which have been CREATED AND ENDORSED by celebrities, athletes, executives, entrepreneurs, attorneys, and politicians. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. So don’t fall for any of their ‘good will’ ‘humanitarian’ BS. ITS A SHAM. NOTHING BUT TAX DEDUCTIBLE PR CRAP. In many cases, the ‘charitable’ contribution is almost entirely offset. Not to mention the opportunity to plug their name, image, product, and ‘good will’ all at once. Which is usually done just before or after the release of their latest commercial project. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. These filthy pigs even have the nerve to throw a fit and spin up a misleading defense with regard to ‘federal tax revenue’. ITS A SHAM. THEY SCREWED UP THE EQUATION TO BEGIN WITH. If the middle and lower classes had a greater share of the pie, they could easily cover a greater share of the federal tax revenue. They are held down in many ways because of greed. Wages remain stagnant for millions because the executives, celebrities, athletes, attorneys, and entrepreneurs, are paid millions. They over-sell, over-charge, under-pay, outsource, cut jobs, and benefits to increase their bottom line. As their profits rise, so do the stock values. Which are owned primarily by the richest 5%. As more United States wealth rises to the top, the middle and lower classes inevitably suffer. This reduces the potential tax reveue drawn from those brackets. At the same time, it wreaks havok on middle and lower class communities and increases the need for financial aid. Not to mention the spike in crime because of it. There is a dominoe effect to consider. IT CAN’T WORK THIS WAY. But our leaders refuse to acknowledge this. Instead they come up with one trick after another to milk the system and screw the majority. These decisions are heavily influensed by the 1% club. Every year, billions of federal tax dollars are diverted behind the scenes back to the rich and their respective industries. Loans from China have been necessary to compensate in part, for the red ink and multi-trillion dollar transfer of wealth to the rich. At the same time, the feds have been pushing more financial burden onto the states who push them lower onto the cities. Again, the hardship is felt more by the majority and less by the 1% club. The rich prefer to live in exclusive areas or upper class communities. They get the best of everything. Reliable city services, new schools, freshly paved roads, upscale parks, ect. The middle and lower class communities get little or nothing without a local tax increase. Which, they usually can’t afford. So the red ink flows followed by service cuts and lay-offs. All because of the OBSCENE distribution of bottom line wealth in this country. Anyway, when you account for all federal, state, and local taxes, the middle class actually pay about the same rate as the rich. The devil is in the details. So when people forgive the rich for their incredible greed and then praise them for paying a greater share of the FEDERAL income taxes, its like nails on a chalk board. I can not accept any theory that our economy would suffer in any way with a more reasonable distribution of wealth. Afterall, it was more reasonable 30 years ago. Before Reaganomics came along. Before GREED became such an epidemic. Before we had an army of over-paid executives, bankers, celebrities, athletes, attorneys, doctors, investors, entrepreneurs, developers, and sold-out politicians to kiss their asses. As a nation, we were in much better shape. Strong middle class, free and clear assets, lower crime rate, more widespread prosperity, stable job market, lower deficit, ect. Our economy as a whole was much more stable and prosperous for the majority. WITHOUT LOANS FROM CHINA. Now, we have a more obscene distribution of bottom line wealth than ever before. We have a sold-out government, crumbling infrastructure, energy crisis, home forclosure epidemic, credit crunch, weak US dollar, 13 figure national deficit, and 12 figure annual shortfall. The cost of living is higher than ever before. Most people can’t even afford basic health care. ALL BECAUSE OF GREED. I really don’t blame the 2nd -5th percentiles in general. No economy could ever function without some reasonable scale of personal wealth and income. But it can’t be allowed to run wild like a mad dog. ALBERT EINSTEIN TRIED TO MAKE PEOPLE UNDERSTAND. UNBRIDLED CAPITALISM ABSOLUTELY CAN NOT WORK. TOP HEAVY ECONOMIES ALWAYS COLLAPSE. Bottom line: The richest 1% will soon tank the largest economy in the world. It will be like nothing we’ve ever seen before. The American dream will be shattered. and thats just the beginning. Greed will eventually tank every major economy in the world. Causing millions to suffer and die. Oprah, Angelina, Brad, Bono, and Bill are not part of the solution. They are part of the problem. THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A MULTI-MILLIONAIRE HUMANITARIAN. EXTREME WEALTH MAKES WORLD PROSPERITY ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE. WITHOUT WORLD PROSPERITY, THERE WILL NEVER BE WORLD PEACE OR ANYTHING EVEN CLOSE. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL. Of course, the rich will throw a fit and call me a madman. Of course, they will jump to small minded conclusions about ‘jealousy’, ‘envy’, or ’socialism’. Of course, their ignorant fans will do the same. You have to expect that. But I speak the truth. If you don’t believe me, then copy this entry and run it by any professor of economics or socio-economics. Then tell a friend. Call the local radio station. Re-post this entry or put it in your own words. Be one of the first to predict the worst economic and cultural crisis of all time and explain its cause. WE ARE IN BIG TROUBLE.

So what can we do about it? Well, not much. Unfortunately, we are stuck on a runaway train. The problem has gone unchecked for too many years. The US/global depression is comming thanks to the 1% club. It would take a massive effort by the vast majority to prevent it. Along with a voluntary sacrifice by the rich. THATS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. But if you believe in miracles, then spend your money as wisely as possible. Especially in middle and lower class communities. Check the Fortune 500 list and limit your support of high profit/low labor industries (Hollywood, pro sports, energy, credit, pharmaceutical, cable, satelite, internet advertising, cell phone, high fashion, jewelry, ect.). Cancel all but one credit card for emergencies only. If you need a cell phone, then do your homework and find the best deal on a local pre-pay. If you want home internet access, then use the least expensive provider, and share accounts whenever possible. If you need to search, then use the less popular search engines. They usually produce the same results anyway. Don’t click on any internet ad. If you need the product or service, then look up the phone number or address and contact that business directly. Don’t pay to see any blockbuster movie. Instead, wait a few months and rent the DVD from a local store or buy it USED. If you want to see a big name game or event, then watch it in a local bar, club, or at home on network TV. Don’t buy any high end official merchendise and don’t support the high end sponsors. If its endorsed by a big name celebrity, then don’t buy it. If you can afford a new car, then make an exception for GM, Ford, and Dodge. If they don’t increase their market share soon, then a lot more people are going to get screwed out of their pensions and/or benefits. Of course, you must know by now to avoid those big trucks and SUVs unless you truly need one for its intended purpose. Don’t be ashamed to buy a foreign car if you prefer it. Afterall, those with the most fuel efficient vehicles consume a lot less foreign oil. Which accounts for a pretty big chunk of our trade deficit. Anyway, the global economy is worth supporting to some extent. Its the obscene profit margins, trade deficits, and BS from OPEC that get us into trouble. Otherwise, the global economy would be a good thing for everyone. Just keep in mind that the big 3 are struggling and they do produce a few smaller reliable cars. Don’t frequent any high end department store or any business in a newly developed upper class community. By doing so, you make developers richer and draw support away from industrial areas and away from the middle class communities. Instead, support the local retailer and the less popular shopping centers. Especially in lower or middle class communities. If you can afford to buy a home, then do so. But go smaller and less expensive. Don’t get yourself in too deep and don’t buy into the newly developed condos or gated communities. Instead, find a modest home in a building or neighborhood at least 20 years old. If you live in one of the poorer states, then try to support its economy first and foremost. Be on the lookout for commercial brainwash plots on TV. They are written into nearly every scene of nearly every show. Most cater to network sponsors and parent companies. Especially commercial health care. Big business is fine on occasion depending on the profit margins and profit sharing. Do your homework. If you want to support any legitimate charity, then do so directly. Never support any celebrity foundation. They spend most of their funding on PR campaigns, travel, and high end accomodations for themselves. Instead, go to Charitywatch.org and look up a top rated charity to support your favorite cause. In general, support the little guy as much as possible and the big guy as little as possible. Do your part to reverse the transfer of wealth away from the rich and back to the middle and lower classes. Unfortunately, there is no perfect answer. Jobs will be lost either way. Innocent children will starve and die either way. But we need to support the largest group of workers with the most reasonable profit margins. We also need to support LEGITIMATE charities (Check that list at Charitywatch.org). This is our only chance to limit the severity and/or duration of the comming US/global depression. In the meantime, don’t listen to Bernanke, Paulson, Bartiromo, Orman, Dobbs, Kramer, OReiley, or any other public figure with regard to the economy. They are all plenty smart but I swear to you that they will lie right through their rotten teeth. IT MAKES THEM RICHER. These people work for big business. The ‘experts’ they cite also work for big business. They are all motivated by their desire to accumulate more wealth. THEY WILL LIE RIGHT THROUGH THEIR ROTTEN TEETH. So don’t fall for their tricks. Instead, look at the big picture. The economic problems we face have been mounting for well over 20 years. All of them caused or aggrivated by a constant transfer of wealth from poorer to richer. Soon, it will cause the first ever GLOBAL DEPRESION. Its not brain surgery. Its simple math. Like I said, you are welcome to run this by any professor of economics or socio-economics. If thats not good enough, then look up what Einstein had to say about greed, extreme wealth, and its horrible concequences. I speak the truth. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

Its already underway. A massive campaign to divert our attention. Trump, Buffet, OReiley, Dobbs, Pickens, Norris, and several other well known filthy rich public figures have been running their mouths about the economy. Finally admitting a hint of severity after almost 2 years of denial. They even have the nerve to acknowledge the possibility of a US/global depression. Still, they refuse to acknowledge the single greatest underlying cause. Instead, they focus on policies, procedures, and circumstances that were born FROM the underlying cause. Dancing their way around the big picture. DON'T FALL FOR IT. Remember: Our national debt was way up BEFORE sub-prime. Consumer debt was way up BEFORE sub-prime. The cost of living was up BEFORE sub-prime. Wall Street profits were obscene BEFORE sub-prime. The middle class were loosing free and clear assets BEFORE sub-prime. Our infrastructure was in bad shape BEFORE sub-prime. Loans from China were taken out BEFORE sub-prime. The dollar was loosing value BEFORE sub-prime. So don’t let these cowardly filthy rich public figures divert your attention or limit your range of thought. THE CURRENT ECONOMIC CRISIS WAS NOT CAUSED BY A SINGLE POLICY OR PROCEDURE. IT WAS CAUSED PRIMARILY BY A MASSIVE TRANSFER OF WEALTH FROM POOR TO RICH. THIS ALSO REPRESENTS A MASSIVE CONCENTRATION OF CAPITAL WORLDWIDE. OTHERWISE, THERE WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN SUCH A MARKET FOR SUB-PRIME AND THERE WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN A GLOBAL CREDIT CRUNCH. MONEY DOES NOT GROW ON TREES AND IT DOES NOT JUST FLOAT AWAY. IT ONLY TRANSFERS FROM ONE PARTY TO ANOTHER. ALBERT EINSTEIN TRIED TO MAKE PEOPLE UNDERSTAND. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

A word for those who respond with the usual ‘I know more than you. Look how smart, knowledgable, and articulate I am’ crap. Let me say this in advance. I don’t claim to be an expert in this field. But I did go on record with these predictions long before any public figure uttered the word ‘recession’. If you search long enough, you will find my early postings from ‘05′ and ‘06′. Including the first draft of this rant. Since then, I’ve gone on record against people like Greenspan, Bernanke, and Paulson. So far, my predictions have been accurate. Like I said. This is not brain surgery. For the mostpart, its simple math. When you concentrate the world’s wealth, you also concentrate its capital and shrink the middle class along with the potential market for every major industry. Homes go unsold. Bills go unpaid. Banks fail. More products go unsold. Jobs are lost. More banks fail. and so on. and so on. It happened 80 years ago. It will happen again. This time on a global scale. Throughout the cycle, the rich will tighten their grip. Concentrating the world’s wealth and resources even further and ensuring the collapse of every major economy worldwide. Think it can’t happen? Think again. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

Another thing. I don’t want credit for any of this. Otherwise, I would have given my full name a long time ago. As far as I’m concerned, you can put this rant in your own words and take credit for all of it. I don’t care. Just spread the word. Otherwise, the greatest injustice of all time will go down in history unchecked.

By the way. The bailout won’t work. IT WON’T WORK. The plan fails to address the fundamental problem. The middle class don’t need more credit. They need a reasonable share of the economic pie. They also need a lower cost of living and a chance to catch their breath. They need a break from all of the psychological marketing tricks and mass market BS. Most of all, they need to wake up and see the truth. GREED KILLS. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

To my surprise, two public figures have found the courage to acknowledge this problem to some degree. On 11.07.07 former presidential candidate Ron Paul mentioned the massive transfer of wealth from poor to rich. He also hinted at the possibility of economic collapse. He did so on 'Face the Nation'. He was blacklisted almost immediately for doing so. On 9.28.08 former secretary of labor Robert Reich refered to the obscene levels of income inequality as part of a "recipe for disaster". He mentioned the richest one percent in particular. He did so on 'Late Night With Conan OBrien'. As far as I know, Albert Einstein was the first to explain the link between extreme wealth and economic instability. He did so in 1949. He explained how the first Great Depression was actually caused by a massive transfer of wealth from poor to rich. He predicted that it would happen again. We are about to witness the first ever GLOBAL DEPRESSION. Amazing. The prosperity of an entire world is about to be compromised. Almost entirely because of greed. IT WILL BE OUR DOWNFALL.

The point about our government printing up more money was that it can't be done "on a whim" and that there are serious concequences for doing so (weak dollar, higher gas prices, inflation). I never said that it can't be or hasn't been done at all. Afterall, those loans from china weren't infused in the form of Chinese currency. They were infused in the form of our own. Not given to the middle class but instead to the banks in the form of credit. Its done nothing but perpetuate the problem. It never has been and never will be the answer. Sorry if I wasn't explicit enough the first time. The original draft was written 2 years ago and intended to fit within 300 characters. Anyway, I'm no English major. So if any of you want to re-word this post, feel free to do so. Whatever it takes to make people understand.

Posted by: fay at October 7, 2008 7:43 PM


Well said in so many words.

You are the second to point the finger at China.

There was a commentary printed in our newspaper editorial page Oct 7, 08; “Don't blame Bush-McCain deregulation Real roots of financial crisis lie in a flawed response to China”

By Sebastian Mallaby (is a fellow for International Economics with the Council of Foreign Relations. He wrote this commentary for the Washington Post)

Link to Commentary:


Posted by: Ken at October 7, 2008 10:43 PM

Prepare for the Worst


"Indeed, one of the insights of the book is that a major factor already tanking the stock market and leading foreign capital to flee America is the threat of the economic policies promised by Obama ...

"This list of economic body blows explains why, for the first time in years, hot capital is escaping over the borders out of the United States and flowing into China, India, Europe, and even Japan....[S]tarting in late 2007, foreigners started pulling their money out of the United States, and Americans started investing more abroad. Global investors are losing confidence in the U.S. The result is a falling stock market and a collapse of the dollar."

Posted by: Tom W at October 8, 2008 2:06 PM

The sad thing is that economically I don't see John McCain doing much different than Obama; he'll just give away a few billion less and ultimately cave and raise taxes to a level just a bit below where Obama would.

We can hope...

Posted by: Fred at October 10, 2008 4:24 PM
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