Good morning, all. We had rain yesterday with falling temps. For the week it will be cool and wet with some snow possible. But then it is the last week of November. The rain should end later today for a bit so we should be able to get out weekly shopping done without getting wet.
I saw a snippet of this story on the morning broadcast news but no details. The reporter did say that the total (for now) was $1.2 trillion. What wasn't said was how many big FOREIGN banks got our money. That is one aspect that pisses me off. Another is the fact that these are private businesses whose risks (and costs) have been shifted from them to the private sector to the taxpayers. So a significant portion of the bailout went to foreign private businesses which simply compounds my disgust. And the Federal Reserve and the banks fought tooth and nail to keep the details secret. Once upon a time, we were told that a democracy required an educated and informed electorate. Another indication that democracy is functionally dead no matter the pronouncements of our political class. Firedoglake also points out that the Fed earmarked $7.7 Billion to rescue the financial sector or 11 times the amount of TARP. These are mind boggling numbers. And I have to ask a question that has come to mind frequently over the last four years: when is the red ink so deep that there is not enough money in the world to wipe it out? And when do the printing presses break down from a long period of excessive use?
The New York Times posted this article which reflects many of the conclusions I have come to over the last decade. They still tell us that a college degree is the way to a comfortable middle class life. But I noticed nearly ten years ago that blanket prescription had a lot of holes in it. It depends upon the subject, the school, the connections the student has, and other factors as well. For many they will never recoup the cost of their education. Furthermore, many graduates will find that the career they trained for has been eliminated by technology. The pundits used to tell us that technology created as many jobs as it erased. That was a lie. Combine that trend with government policies and globalization and you get the current split between low level jobs they used to describe as 'entry level' and upper level professional jobs with no bridge between.
The news readers tell us that Black Friday sales set records. The first question in my mind was how much was on credit and how many of those consumers will file for bankruptcy in January or February. It is amazing how many of our pundits are almost orgasmic over the sales figures as though it really signals an economic revival.