Damn I love conservative economics. It makes me feel like the motherfucking angel of compassion.
American consumers are awash in debt, drowning in it. This is the fundamental issue with the stimulus proposal. We’re trying to borrow our way out of debt. Unfortunately, we need a recession. That is, consumption must decline because for some time we have been consuming more than we produce or have reasonable prospects of producing. Monetary policy has been used to inflate a series of bubbles to avoid the consequences of excess debt, and the more we try to hold it off, the worse it’s going to be. Bourbon works as a hangover cure, but only for a while.
It’s theoretically possible for an intelligently-designed stimulus action to help smooth this landing a bit, but we can’t avoid a painful adjustment. Americans are going to live in smaller houses, drive older cars, vacation nearer to home and have less impressive digital camcorders than they expect.
“Vacation nearer to home”? Well, I guess that’s one way to put it.
The number of people receiving unemployment benefits has reached an all-time record, the government said Thursday, and more layoffs are spreading throughout the economy.
The Labor Department reported that the number of Americans continuing to claim unemployment insurance for the week ending Jan. 17 was a seasonally adjusted 4.78 million, the highest on records dating back to 1967. That’s an increase of 159,000 from the previous week and worse than economists’ expectations of 4.65 million.
Ford Motor Co. said Thursday it lost $5.9 billion in the fourth quarter and burned through $5.5 billion in cash as sales slumped
Ah, but that’s Ford – when’s the last time they made any money? What about our shiny Japanese friends?
Toyota Motor Corp., the world’s second-largest automaker, forecast its first operating loss in 71 years on plummeting demand, prompting Moody’s Investors Service to consider downgrading the company’s top-rated credit.
The carmaker will post a 150 billion yen ($1.7 billion) loss in the year through March, it said in a statement today, scrapping a previous forecast of a 600 billion yen profit.
“The environment we’re in is extremely tough,” President Katsuaki Watanabe told reporters today in Nagoya. “We’re facing an unprecedented emergency situation. Unfortunately, we can’t see the bottom.”
Unprecedented emergency? Nah, this is just a trip to fat camp for all of those greedy, fat, over-consumers who are all stuffed with their ill-gotten loot – and now there aren’t any donuts for the rest of us! But, a few weeks of rice cakes and push-ups and they’ll be good to go. Thursday is movie night – free Crystal Light! Leave your crappy camcorders at home, nobody wants to see what really happens while you’re being painfully adjusted. It’ll be fun!
And his precious economy will be all better.