posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 03:45 AM
I agree, ProfEmeritus.
First of all, let's try to avoid partisan thrashing. It's starting to look like we're in the midst of an important chapter in history, here, and we
can't afford to stand around and strangle one another while the ship is sinking around us. Just as the Great War was renamed to World War I, I
wouldn't be surprised if history eventually calls the Great Depression the "American Depression," and the crash of 08/09 the "First World
Depression." Anyway, the biased viewpoints on Fox News are no worse than CNN's god-like announcements of who they perceive to be the good guys and
bad guys in this mess. I watch both networks anyway... news is news. You gotta take the good with the bad.
So here's my opinion on this mess. It's easy to point at the entire financial system and say that it's all wrong, from the ground up. But the
capitalist system that most of the world uses today has brought unprecedented productivity to the Earth, and the rise of a global economy is a major
part of that. Yes, I agree that it's broken and needs to be fixed... maybe even a large-scale overhaul. But I wouldn't go calling for socialism just
My perception is that we need more regulation on finances. The banks were practically handing out blank checks a few years ago, and as a result they
flooded the system with securities that weren't even remotely secure, and made a profit off of it at the expense of the economy. We've had good
regulation in the past, but we were blinded by the "roaring 90's" and I think we just let our guard down. But better regulation is a hindsight that
doesn't do us much good right now; it's more of a lesson we need to learn for the future. Right now, the economy is dissolving in a seemingly
unstoppable snowball of panic, and what good does economic regulation do us if there's no economy? So what do we do about this snowball of doom?
I'm getting the impression that we are just far too dependent on credit. I'm not talking about "bad consumerism." I mean, we have a financial
system that depends on loans. Borrowed money is the lifeblood of the economy, and on a certain level, that's just wrong. I understand that a healthy
economy needs to be able to support investments... when you get right down to it, almost everything is an investment. Owning a pet is an investment:
Somebody buys a dog because they are betting on a positive experience in the future, even though there is a risk they could be bitten at some point by
the dog. Whether you decide to hand some cash to your cousin who's trying to start a small business, or you buy stock in Google because they're
showing promise, or you're switching currencies over to the yen because its capital value is going up, the basic idea is the same. But this kind of
stuff is exactly what puts the entire world's economy in jeopardy at a time like this. So, where do we draw the line?
I'm no economist... I wish I could see even a faint suggestion of a Holy Grail solution to this problem, but I can't. However, I can't help feeling
like something major needs to change in the way we're doing things. Maybe banks should be a purely federal institution. Maybe there shouldn't even
BE any banks, and we need to find some other way to put a dollar sign on our trust in one another. Maybe we shouldn't use a 100% fiat currency. Or
maybe it's time to redefine our capital system somehow, I don't know. But whatever we need to do, maybe now is the time to do it.