Friday, December 5, 2008

Glib Washington Denial About the Financial Crisis

Speaking at the White House, Mr Bush said: "Our economy is in a recession. This is in large part because of severe problems in our housing, credit and financial markets."
I beg to differ. The question is: what caused these problems?
The recession is due in large part to the generation-long trend of impoverishing the middle class, ignoring the poor, and enriching the rich, who, in the last three months have of course received several trillion (!) more dollars from the middle and the poor. I guess the rich have farther to fall so their fall must be cushioned more.
The generation-long trend of enriching the rich at the expense of everyone else is greatly due to the enormous expense of the military position Washington chooses to maintain astride the globe combined with the government's encouragement of consumption rather than living within our means.
The long-term structural problems of a growing gap between rich and the rest plus the expense of an imperial foreign policy come at a cost that must eventually be paid. If the spark had not been "severe problems in our housing, credit and financial markets," then it would have been something else. Putting out these sparks will not prevent the house from burning.
It's just real tough to solve a problem if you refuse to recognize the cause.

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