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11.12.2008... Barack, you'd do well to have someone on your staff monitor Ken Denninger on YouTube.
In the meantime, first things first: many of your constituents... the people who voted for you... will be asking... nay, demanding, that you deliver immediate solutions to they problems facing the country at this time. Your first job should be to calmly and patiently explain to those morons that "getting us into this situation literally took decades," and that digging us out of this hole will not happen immediately, and to push for month-to-month or even "results this quarter" will only make things worse, not better.
Fire Poulson and Bernanke; curb Pelosi, Franks and all of the other "wise men" nearby. They have very little grasp of what motivates the real people out here, and have much more interest in power for themselves than actually helping the Country, no matter what blather is coming out of their mouths. The first "Plan" Poulson announced... three pages and infinite power with no restraints or checks and balances was more than an affront to all US citizens, it was a bitch-slap insult. Their jobs must not be to insure the "full-employment economy." They can't. tr
The historical doctrine that the financial agencies of the government should be responsible for maintaining a "full-employment economy," ie, 5% or less unemployment, must go. In the long run, we're all much better off if inflation is kept in check and the money supply grows to match population and GDP, not be used to drive them. It's more like "every person in the country needs a certain number of dollars in circulation in order for the whole place to operate smoothly. Too much => inflation, too little => deflation. Pumping money in and out of the economy is like pushing a rope. They don't operate best that way.
Everyone must be taught that all economies have fluctuations, and the best way to deal with them is to plan for and expect occasional peaks and troughs, but NOT to try to eliminate them. The cure is always worse than the cause. Look at history with open eyes. Jimmy Carter's "Whip Inflation Now" buttons for everyone... as if what I do with my money will have any effect on inflation in the country. No way!
Are there any worse ideas or "solutions" than that? Sure: Wage or Price Controls or Freezes. Ask Jimmy Carter. Companies loved the idea because they could cap raises on salaries and work around pricing limits. Everyone screwed by that idea just sat around waiting for the economy to bounce back and for the limits to be lifted. At that instant, we all asked for raises or left our jobs for other companies at higher pay... in order for the "time lost" during the Freeze periods.
Energy: Please gently explain to everyone that the "gasoline from corn" idea was fatally flawed and has caused more harm to more people around the world than it will ever deliver in benefits to them. The hunger and starvation and increased food prices will never justify a government-driven mandate and price supports and subsidies to an industry which can in no way meet the needs that it was "designed" to meet. Solar: yes. There's no cartel supplying the energy. But massive infrastructure changes will be required to "do it right." All homes should have photovoltaic collectors and storage. Subsidize the purchase and let home-owners find the lowest bidders. I offer my home as a "test bed" for new technologies for solar electric, geothermal heating and cooling, as well as new technologies in high-efficiency lighting.