» » As mentioned in my New Year's eve entry, which represents an attempt by a concerned citizen-parent to wrap his head around the incomprehensible and portray the problems plaguing the future of our nation's economy » I am no Economist. But ..
Geeks vs the Government | Game On
.. I'm starting to see articles (posted by professionals) that appear to echo points I made ..
.. about our economy being "heavily-medicated" .. for an increasingly troubling length of time ..
.. while he was discussing the government's response to the recession of 1920 that helped shorten its duration.
Probably just a coincidence. New Years eve, you might recall, is when I wrote »
"A little medicine can be a good thing. A great thing, even. But when the medication NEEDS TO CONTINUE .. over an extended period .. that's a bad sign. Because, IF IT CONTINUES .. the road (in my experience) always leads to » death."
IF you followed my line of reasoning in that entry ~ ..
.. by the acceptance of predefined concepts .. which can lead to predefined (within-the-academic-box) thinking .. and result in predictable, but inaccurate conclusions. (See t=8:20 here for an example of what I mean.)
So I come from a very different background, which gives me a decidedly different perspective .. than the regular commentators you normally hear discussing the economy ..
.. and especially since readers claim I have a knack for discussing sophisticated concepts in ways that ordinary folk can easily understand .. breaking it down into easy-to-chew bite-sized morsels (.. cuz that's how I like to chew them myself) ..
.. ~ THEN you know that the "long-term heavily-medicated patient" was my own concocted analogy .. for the State-of-our-Economy, based on my own Life Experiences.
It was an intuitive analogy .. one that I wasnt even sure was valid, which is why I included copious hyperlinks .. to identify & support the basis for my concepts. [ Regulars know how I strive for the authenticity that comes only from original thought. ]
Speaking of the Federal Reserve .. here's another article you should see .. which helps make my point. It contains a comment from the President of the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank, Richard Fisher, who says (paragraph 6):
"Adding to the accommodative doses we have [already] applied, rather than beginning to wean the patient, might be the equivalent of medical malpractice."
Here's one more .. again, from my good buddy Rich over at the Dallas Fed:
"We don't need any more monetary morphine."
I added the bold-type. If nothing else, this confirms the validity of my analogy .. according to people who would certainly know. And you must admit, his comments are very clear. No need to guess or hire a double-speak interpreter.
It's no big deal (NBD) .. but, uh, I have not been able to find any articles that reference the use of an analogy that is anything similar to one that compares our economy to that of a "long-term heavily-medicated patient" .. posted PRIOR TO the New Year.
The first was that Bloomberg article, quoting James Grant, which surprised me. It is dated February 14, 2012 (Valentines day). The articles quoting Richard Fisher are dated March 5, and March 22, both 2012.
So if you happen to find one dated earlier than December 30, 2011, or even before February 14, 2012 .. please kindly forward me a link. Gracias. Cuz my ego is convinced » "Dude! They are totally reading your shit!" =)
But, wait! There's more! Cuz New Years eve is when I also said:
"So .. when I look out over the valley that is 2012, what do I see? You should hope I have no prophetic gift .. because I see it getting ugly, or I see it getting worse .. just below the layer of FOG sitting there."
And smack dab between Grant's Valentines day comment and Richard's the very next month came one on Feb 29 [ leap year day ] from Bernanke himself ..
The phrase "fiscal cliff" is a term that some people interpret to mean "disaster" .. cuz, uh, that's what usually happens when you walk off a cliff. (And you know what they say about 13 being an unlucky number.)
This article, for example, by an economist at BoA is titled » "Fiscal Cliff May Make Europe Look Like a Dip."
I said VALLEY. Ben said CLIFF. Coincidence? (You can easily see the date on the Bernanke article.)
Like me, Ben is also using geographical terrain as a METAPHOR for the future of our nation's economy .. tho my view also includes the SOCIAL ramifications. Because, while many Economists ignore them, the two cant be separated.
Now I will concede that a VALLEY may or may not be bordered by a steep CLIFF (.. perhaps a gentle slope).
But clearly, Ben is talking about a particular type of cliff .. one that proceeds from » high ground to low .. just like the view taken in of my valley .. that I "look out over" (.. and not up from below). In other words, neither one of us are talking about the kind of cliff that you climb.
The Unsinkable Economy Headed Straight for Massive Congressional Iceberg
It wasnt long before everybody standing on the Fiscal Deck of the USS Economy in the thick forecasting fog that frigid leapyear night said, "Cliff? Yikes! Iceberg! Dead ahead! Sound the alarm! Admiral Ben said it's massive!"
[ Cant you almost hear the music playing in the background? .. where the rich survived and the poor died .. in the freezing-cold waters of the North Atlantic on the night of April 15, 1912, exactly 100 years & 1 month ago ..
.. cuz there were not enough lifeboat$ to save everybody .. as the unsinkable sank. ]
I must admit, you guys are certainly very good at keeping things interesting for John Q. My toes tingle nearly all the time. Lively.
Because the point at which our economic problems become a Political problem .. is the point at which we find ourselves ourselves enmeshed in a bona fide CRISIS. A crisis of confidence, if nothing else.
Here's how you'll know when our Economic problems have morphed into a Political problem » when the economy starts to suffer as a result of political dysfunction. For example, one economist says here (10th paragraph):
"The cliff is likely to hurt growth this year as much as next year. By risking a recession-sized fiscal contraction and then offering no guidance to how it will be resolved, politicians are creating a major uncertainty shock."
Regarding a solution to our current situation (.. which he terms a "Depression") Krugman says at t=1:20 here » "The economics is actually quite easy. It's only politics that stands in the way." [ And he doesnt stutter. ]
Yet let somebody tell a few of your secrets and you're suddenly all up in arms. So you can see why we feel your priorities are outta whack with reality .. like you're looking for love in all the wrong places.
As Steven Aftergood says: "Secrecy cloaks not only the operations, but their justification and rationale, which are legitimate subjects of public interest" .. for affairs that you guys are doing in the name of the American people.
See this video (at end of article) at t=9:15 to hear the Chairman discuss the Fiscal Cliff with members of Congress. Watch his lips at t=10:40.