It is easy to get caught up in all the hype of the media pundits, Ben Bernanke, Joe Biden and Barack Obama that the economy is slowly but surely recovering from the worst recession since the 1930s. It’s not. And what is even worse is that we are deeper in debt with nothing good to show for it.
In September of 2007, just months before the current crisis began, our national debt was a little over $9 trillion give or take a few billion. As of late last week, our national debt was quickly approaching $12 trillion. That is an increase in debt of $3 trillion in just two years! Of course, most of the new debt is a result of stimulus spending, other government handouts to stimulate the economy, and war - things Keynesians have always historically believed would turn any economy around. That theory has been disproved previously and this current economic crisis is just the most recent repudiation of it.
So, with all this spending what do we have to show for it. This week the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that unemployment is at a 26 year high in the United States at 9.8 percent. Payroll employment has fallen for 21 consecutive months, with total jobs lost equaling 7.2 million. This is only the phony government number. It doesn’t count workers who have been unemployed so long they have given up on finding a job and those working part time who prefer full time. The total unemployed number, meaning the number the government has always used up until the Clinton years, is actually 17 percent! This is a Great Depression number. So it is interesting when Fed chairman Ben Bernanke says his monetary policies have kept us from an economic calamity.