Broken Window Fallacy

The country pulled together to fight in WWII – stimulating economic growth

When we study the Great Depression, and the double dip recession of 1937-38, the class discussion inevitably ends up with the role that World War II played in bringing an end to a decade’s worth of poor economic performance. Which leads . . . → Read More: Broken Window Fallacy

If I Ever Get A Job Again…

Dick Robertson – If I Ever Get A Job Again (1933)

If I ever get a job again, I will never be a snob again; I’ll live within my means, Carry a dollar in my jeans, If I ever get a job again.

If I ever get a break again, Brother, what I’ll do . . . → Read More: If I Ever Get A Job Again…

Protectionism, Recession, Recovery: Looking Back and Looking Forward

In thinking of protectionism, the Great Depression, the Great Recession, and what might come next, here are two interesting angles.

Governments with their backs against the wall

Ideally, stabilisation using monetary and fiscal policy, alongside actions by the private sector, should restrain the decline in consumption, and yield conditions which are not too harsh . . . → Read More: Protectionism, Recession, Recovery: Looking Back and Looking Forward

Bear Stearns Collapse: Why It May Also Be the End for the SEC

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) was set up as a reaction to the stock market crash of 1929 to provide oversight of brokerage firms and protect investors. Last month, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., filed to become bank holding companies. Now with the sale of Bear Stearns, the bankruptcy of Lehman . . . → Read More: Bear Stearns Collapse: Why It May Also Be the End for the SEC

Congress’ Bailout Plan: Will It Be Enough to Bridge Political, Cultural Divides?

When I was a kid (I’m 55 now), I looked forward to holiday dinners because that was when my parents and my grandparents held their traditional “Was FDR a scoundrel or a savior?” debate. My grandparents, who worked for public utilities and, thus, survived the Great Depression with conservative opinions intact, argued for FDR . . . → Read More: Congress’ Bailout Plan: Will It Be Enough to Bridge Political, Cultural Divides?

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Bailout: We Are Now at the Mercy of the Chinese

If you watch the news at all these days (and a case could definitely be made for avoiding this habit), then you already know that the United States imports way more cheap stuff from China than it sends over there for sale to the Chinese people. That big difference between the huge amount we . . . → Read More: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac Bailout: We Are Now at the Mercy of the Chinese

Is There a Correlation Between Crime and the Economy?

Crime rates should drop during good economic times and rise during bad ones. So very soon if you are walking the streets of New York late at night, you may be at risk of being mugged by gangs of investment bankers, driven to acts of desperate violence by the travails of the credit markets. . . . → Read More: Is There a Correlation Between Crime and the Economy?

Election Issues III: America’s Two Economies

By the time November rolls around, Americans will have heard more economic numbers crunched in more creative ways than anyone ever would have imagined possible. That’s the mathematical formula for recreating any candidate in the image of a populist hero: numbers and more numbers. Bury ‘em in numbers, and if they start asking questions, . . . → Read More: Election Issues III: America’s Two Economies

Is the “Free Market” to Blame for the Recession?

We are taught in school that the Great Depression was a result of the 1929 stock-market crash, and that the crash was caused by unregulated financial markets or “unfettered capitalism.” Even so-called conservative history teachers and professors tend to share this view, and certainly the leadership of both American political parties accept this myth . . . → Read More: Is the “Free Market” to Blame for the Recession?

Conspiracy Theories and the Federal Reserve: Say What?

Recently, in an attempt to generate some calm in the wake of the IndyMac Bank failure, I published an article (on another website) about FDIC insurance and how it works. My intent was to settle some of the rampant fear that kicked off the week of July 15, 2008. I work in a bank, . . . → Read More: Conspiracy Theories and the Federal Reserve: Say What?