I am going to approach this economic crisis that we are in, in two ways, the mundane and then, the spiritual. I first want to say personally, that I am deeply entangled in what is happening to so many people. This is my story:
I purchased a house with my husband that was well within our ability to support. However, my son has a learning disability and I found that in the special class in which he was placed, there were no text books, and basically no teaching going on. The only recourse that I could see was to send him to a special school. The insurance paid for counseling, but not for diagnosis, which was a $2000.00 expense. The medication that he was taking was very expensive even with insurance and so was his tuition. Being hounded regularly by mortgage brokers who made offers that were so good, while we were unable to continue to pay for our son’s tuition, we said “yes”. Of course, at that moment when we promised the tuition payments would be brought up to date, the closer for the mortgage company comes in with the ‘switch’ as in ‘bait and switch’, and we really did not get the mortgage that we were promised, but we were already too in need of the money to back out.
At this point, we can’t pay for food, clothing ,utilities, the mortgage and continuing tuition, so we accepted the many credit card offers that came in, only to use for living expenses. Without knowing that the interest rates would only equal a loan shark. I explain my story because when I hear politicians concerned over the fact that the government helping the people who are losing their homes could penalize those tax payers who were not abusive, I think that this is ludicrous. I believe that bailing out the institutions who prayed on those of us struggling so that their executives could bring home embarrassing paychecks is what is insane.
That was personal, now, here is what is logical to me. I have been hearing lately, predictions that this recovery will happen by the end of 2009 or 2010. I still don’t see how. The reason that I don’t see how is because there is a difference between a PH.D. in economics and common sense. Since the 1980’s there has been little government regulation of industry and what regulation there was, was clearly overlooked. And what has happened? This is called the benefit of small government. No matter what anyone says, we are here because the Government wasn’t. Let me repeat, this is what happens when the government does not regulate industry. This is no government intervention in business. As opposed, to total government intervention into our private lives as we have had since 9/11. Ok, Business= no government – the common citizen = Big Brother.
The average CEO went from making 50 times as much as the average worker to 500 – 5000 times as much in that time period. So, while the top of the food chain was experiencing a boom, the bottom was experiencing a bust. The cost of living steadily increased as the incomes on top increased, so the rich grew richer, the poor grew poorer, and the middleclass just grew poor. But no one in Washington saw this coming. No regulators, no analysts, no oversight committees it was just POOF- it all happened in two months! Almost Supernatural!
In the past two years we have lost over 2,000,000 jobs – more than half of those this year. Millions of families have lost their homes, everything that they have struggled to build. Now, the government thinks that putting more money into the banks will help the economy recover. How? If – the banks lend, it will only be to those will good credit which leaves out everyone who has lost their jobs and or homes. Or, it will be fixed by tax breaks. Again, How? If I am an employer who pays for store space in order to sell shoes that no one can afford to buy – why would I hire more employees to stand around doing nothing? Why would I keep the employees that I already have standing around doing nothing? What kind of tax break will make this work for me? If the small businessman receives a large tax write-off for losses, he will be really grateful that now he will be able to make his own mortgage, he is certainly not going to increase production of merchandise that will sit on the shelves because no one can buy. If I were a manufacturer or a store owner I would appreciate my tax break come in the form of paying customers, after all, to go from 50% of nothing to 35% of nothing really isn’t a big incentive. And I think that I can speak for many Americans when I say that an extra 25.00 in my paycheck each week would only change how many times a week we eat pasta. Perhaps an extra 50.00 might help us add a steak night. As for shopping, my department store of choice is The Goodwill Superstore and I am afraid that unless the tax break can in effect double our income, or guarantee a future income, that will remain the only other store I enter outside of the supermarket.
Today, we need 2,000,000 jobs. We don’t even have to create an industry to do it. Hire teachers, hire police, hire firemen, hire healthcare professionals. Hire laborers to build more and better schools so that our country can compete in the industrialized world, good clinics so that everyone can receive adequate healthcare. Instead of guessing how much bad debt the banks have. Let the government take over the mortgages that are at risk of foreclosure and renegotiate loans with terms that people can afford. Let the government take over the homes that have been foreclosed on, locate the families and again renegotiate terms that they can realistically pay. Do this, and it is a win, win situation. The government will see more of its money than it ever will if it gives it to banks. The school system and healthcare system will not be the worst one in the industrialized world, people will be better protected, crime will decrease and most of all – we will have some money to spend and maybe we will not be so afraid of spending it. Then create a supplemental healthcare system for those who cannot afford insurance, and for those medical crisis that insurance companies don’t pay for which destroy the livelihoods and lives of millions of Americans. All of this, if done, can create employment today – create spending today, because if we don’t do it today, by the time the government has created 2,000,000 jobs we will need 8,000,000.
The Republicans like to call this wasteful spending, pork. I believe that tax breaks, at this juncture, is wasteful spending. This is my opinion. Arguably, I am a little miffed. But I would be even if it was not happening to me because I see what has been going on as unconscionable. You know how I think it could have been avoided? I think that if the government renamed the minimum wage a “livable wage”, and raised it to meet the increase each year of the cost of living, corporations would have had to raise all of the wages on up and those at the top would have had less to steal. In fact, if I knew a ballsy litigation firm, I’d beg for the largest class action suit ever seen against these CEO’s of Wall street who created this mess, took government money and still spent in only on themselves while the rest of the country lost everything. OK, now this is my non-spiritual take on this situation. My next post, will be my Spiritual view of what is happening in the world, why it must happen, and how it fits into Astrology and the indigenous predictions.