The body count on Main Street

In These Times
by Nick Turse

12/19/08

On Oct. 4, in Los Angeles, Karthik Rajaram, 45, shot his wife, mother-in-law and three sons before turning the gun on himself. In a suicide note, Rajaram wrote that he was broke, having incurred massive financial losses in the economic meltdown. ‘I understand he was unemployed, his dealings in the stock market had taken a disastrous turn for the worse,’ said Los Angeles Deputy Police Chief Michel R. Moore in a public statement. In recent weeks, the media has begun to address the burgeoning body count, at least anecdotally. Suicide is, however, just one type of extreme act that has resulted from the financial crisis, and the attendant rise in foreclosures...

//tinyurl.com/7omoro



America needs a period of pain

Toronto Sun
by Eric Margolis

12/20/08

Washington’s response was panic, then flooding the economy with freshly printed money in hope something positive would happen. Japan made precisely the same gamble when its bubble economy collapsed in the early 1990s. Today, Japan has one of the world’s highest deficits and its economy remains dead in the water. The U.S. economy must be weaned off credit addiction. Pumping billions and billions of dollars into the economy is like mainlining more drugs to a sick junkie. The economy needs a period of cold turkey in which remaining credit bubbles, bad debt and financial distortions are purged. This is called recession, and it’s a vital part of the capitalist free market cycle. Without a period of pain, we can’t restore economic health or sanity. But panicky American politicians plan to spend $8.5 trillion to stave off this necessary, beneficial recession. Their misguided efforts risk igniting a future firestorm of inflation that will be far more dangerous and painful than any recession...

//tinyurl.com/7z7atp



The final absurdity

Financial Sense
by JR Nyquist

12/19/08

It is important to understand that private property is fundamental to civilization. Without private property and the legal concept of ownership there cannot be a market, there cannot be material progress, and there cannot be civilization. At the same time, if the government intervenes with trillions of dollars in support of failed private businesses — with the money extorted from taxpayers and strings attached to the money — the result signifies a mighty negation of private property. In this situation the government assumes economic responsibility for every individual, even though such an assumption of responsibility is utterly absurd and unrealistic. And yet, despite the absurdities on every side, President Bush excuses himself by saying, -I’ve abandoned free market principles to save the free market system.- Oh ye of little faith! The free market doesn’t need you to save it! Even if it happens to collapse, it will recover if you leave it alone...

//tinyurl.com/7xc8bq


Informant: Thomas L. Knapp



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