Our Humpty Dumpty Economies
By Dian Vujovich
Looks as though we’re living in Humpty Dumpty economic times, again. You remember him— he’;s that egg-shaped character who took such a bad tumble he couldn’t be fixed.
In case you’ve forgotten that 1810 nursery rhyme it goes like this:
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.
And so it goes right here in America nearly 200 years later. Our banks, stock markets, the economy, job markets and retirement plans are all broken. Can they be fixed? Sure. But when and how are the two big questions no one really has the answers to because the messes made are so complicated most political, economic or sales professional types can’t even understand or unravel them.
But there’s hope. There’s always hope. And when something gets broken it’s either repaired or something new gets created. So while we’re waiting for the new Humpty Dumpty economy to appear—ideally he’ll be sturdier, resilient and better shaped for the times— let’s look back at history and then forward at some things I’m doing to assuage today’s economic pain.
First, some history: 1932 and 1933 were the worst years of the Great Depression, according to Hyperhistory.com
In 1932, industrial stocks had lost 80 percent of their value since 1930; unemployment was over 24 percent and 13 million Americans had lost their jobs; 10,000 banks had failed and international trade had fallen by two-thirds since 1929; the top tax rate was raised from 25 percent to 63 percent; etc. etc. etc.
To fix that then very broken Humpty Dumpty economy, Congress did a number of things such as create the Reconstruction Finance Corp and pass the Federal Home Loan Bank Act. Emergency Banking Bill and the Glass-Steagall Act along with the Farm Credit Act, the National Industrial Recovery Act and the Truth-in-Securities Act.
It authorized the Agricultural Adjustment Administration, the Civilian Conservation Corps, the Farm Credit Administration, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, the National Recovery Administration, the Public Works Administration, and the Tennessee Valley Authority.
Those were good things to do at that time and I look forward to seeing what good stuff President Obama and his advisers come up with now. But while I’m waiting, I’m going to do all I can to help myself live through these times. First, will be giving President Obama a chance. The man is trying his best to solve our problems so I’m happy to stand behind him.
Second, and equally as important, is that I’m going to stop listening to all of those obnoxious, opinionated, have-nothing-but-criticism to say and no concrete ideas to share nitwits who have programs on TV and a.m. radio. From what I can tell, not a one of those talking heads or loud mouth voices is doing any good for our country, the times, our personal lives or solving our economic woes.
So it’s “Off” for me and perhaps for you too. Yelling, screaming, banging on tables and finger wagging has never done any one any good. Enough of that nonsense could even push a delicate egg-shaped character from its perch and at this point in time we need no more of that.
Read the rest of the story at
http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2009/02/20/business/0222-pay-graphic.html?ref=business and weep.
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