America is shrinking.  We’re officially in a recession — for the last year without officially knowing it until yesterday — and the influence of the USA abroad is waning and is in danger of completely failing.  Is there really a bits worth of difference between “recession” and “depression” in the eye of the mind?


Here’s the bad news from Reuters:

U.S. economic and political clout will decline over the next two decades and the world will be more dangerous, with food and water scarce and advanced weapons plentiful, U.S. spy agencies projected on Thursday.

The National Intelligence Council analysis “Global Trends 2025” also said the current financial crisis on Wall Street is just the first phase of a global economic reordering.

The U.S. dollar’s role as the world’s major currency would weaken to become a “first among equals,” the report said.

How can the USA get out of this economic and spiritual depression?

Is it too late to come out of the depths?

Or are we already sunk?

17 Comments

  1. Call me the eternal optimist.
    I think if President Clinton was able to turn things around, President elect Obama will be able to have somewhat of a profound impact on the economy. His plans for invigorating the economy certainly seem sound.

  2. How will Obama turn around the economy, Gordon?
    It seems the economy is set to tank this Summer with high unemployment benefits hitting a peak a year from now.
    We’re in for at least two years of eroding, international, economic dignity and strength. I hope we can pull through it without dissolving.

  3. I have been quite keen on the updates on this page:
    http://www.barackobama.com/issues/economy/index.php
    I really like this:

    End Tax Breaks for Companies that Send Jobs Overseas: Barack Obama and Joe Biden believe that companies should not get billions of dollars in tax deductions for moving their operations overseas. Obama and Biden will also fight to ensure that public contracts are awarded to companies that are committed to American workers.

    It seems just something that should have been in place ages ago.

  4. The auto industry, if I am not mistaken, was given a fairly hefty check to innovate in green technology, and it was squandered. Now that the competition is well above them because of their environmentally friendlier cars, they are crying for more help? When companies fail, other companies rise up in their stead. Maybe some money should go to Tesla to help them make electric cars a practical reality for everyman.
    States need to carefully reconsider who they are imprisoning, and for what. Perhaps if not everyone was imprisoned (ie lesser crimes punished in other ways) we wouldn’t have this problem?

  5. Gordon —
    Tesla said they don’t want Federal help. In two years they think they can sell their $80,000.00 car for half that — we’ll see.
    I agree the previous car money was been squandered, but do we really want to turn over our entire automotive manufacturing process to Japan?
    There was once a time in America when most people didn’t go to prison until after a trial first found them guilty. Now the habit of action is to incarcerate first, find guilt later.

  6. I think it’s more of a matter of letting other American car companies take over. There were once many american motorcycle manufacturers but they fell because they couldn’t keep up.
    There have to be other American car companies that will take over – or the ‘big 3’ will have to figure out how to cut expenses and innovate to become profitable again.

  7. I think ultimately either the “big 3” will wake up and do what needs to be done or companies like Tesla will take over. One man left. Another will take his place. I have confidence in them!

  8. Gordon —
    I do think the Big 3 need to downsize and break apart. Having a bunch of people thinking green is the best way to take on the Teslas.
    Any bailout money should be tied to creating cars within five years that do not use any gasoline. That would be worth the cash.

  9. David,
    Lately there’s been much thinking along these lines. There are some who say that China, India and Brazil and a few other countries will be the places to watch over the next couple of decades.
    I like the way Obama’s plans for the economy include immediate tax relief for working families and small/home businesses etc. as well as investing in green/renewable energy and the resultant jobs.

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