Monday, January 3, 2011

Recovery? What recovery?

just finished a fun little piece by mary bottari on called "full catastrophe banking", which sets the stage for an exciting ride in the financial marketplace in 2011. check it out here.

the headlines in the local newspaper these past couple of days are promoting the idea that the worst is behind us and that there are blue skies ahead. to those who've lost much in the recent unpleasantness, the idea is to suck it up and keep on straight ahead.

but unfortunately there's lots of crap bubbling just under the surface of these glowing reports about the stock market reaching unseen heights. for starters, the housing mess and foreclosures have nowhere near run their course. millions will lose their homes in 2011, and more will find themselves underwater. there's the "mortagegate" fraud circus, with shady securitization of fatally flawed mortgages sold to gullible investors, that may lead to billions in losses for the big banks (BofA just announced just such a writedown in the financials today). of course, the banks will demand and receive complete and total bailouts by the taxpayers -- all this tea party nonsense notwithstanding.

but the clincher is probably the collapse of the cities and states into default and bankruptcy. 100 candidates for collapse this year across the land -- a gambit the GOPpers anticipate with relish, seeing it as a path to busting municipal workers' unions. not only will social services be shredded in the process, but an entire slice of the economy that depends on government contracts will be savaged. the trickle-down effect promises to be substantial.

at the end of the line is the po' lil' ol' taxpayers. we're making less, being taxed more, and getting further and further behind. $4/gal gasoline is in sight; how long til our devalued dollar brings it up to $5? all the while, those on the receiving end of bailouts and huge tax cuts and other giveaways are loath to feel any of the pain they so prodigiously created, leaving those of us working for a living holding the bag.

same old same old, it looks like. who'd of thought? while these tea partyers and mall lizards are cloaking themselves in obliviousness, bad juju is coming down on us from above. welsh on your current debts, pile more charges on another card, until you can numb the pain from the impending collapse... the narcotic of conspicuous consumption will cure what ails ya!

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