The Government has Failed/Nonexistant per the Constitution
As the economic collapse picks up speed, it’s time to take a hard look at the performance of the U.S. national political leadership in meeting some of their most fundamental responsibilities. It’s time to face the fact of serious failure over the last quarter century.
During this time, the leaders of both political parties and of major institutions such as the Federal Reserve have presided over the abandonment of some of the most solemn obligations of constitutional government. They have done this in order to embrace an agenda favorable mainly to the financial, corporate, and government elites.
On January 20, 1981, a full generation ago, President Ronald Reagan said in his first inaugural address, "Government is not a solution to our problem, government is the problem."
Reagan was both right and wrong.
The problem the U.S. was facing then was the collapse of the nation’s manufacturing base through a recession that happened when the Federal Reserve raised interest rates to over the twenty percent level. It did so almost a decade after President Richard Nixon removed the gold peg for the dollar, leading to the inflation of the 1970s when our currency flooded world markets through the oil trade.
Reagan’s statement that "government is the problem" was correct to the extent that failed financial policies and the out-of-control actions of a Federal Reserve beholden to private financial interests combined in the worse economic downturn since the Great Depression to wreck the world’s greatest industrial powerhouse.
But he was wrong in thinking that the solution was deregulation of the economy, particularly deregulation of financial and investment institutions which took place during his two terms. The result was enormous growth in the power and influence of Wall Street and the big banks over the rest of the economy. The era of leveraged mergers, acquisitions, and buyouts was the predecessor of the disaster of today with the unfolding fiasco of equity, hedge, and derivative funds in the process of collapse.
After Reagan came President George H.W. Bush. By the end of his term, the loss of manufacturing jobs had produced another recession. Within a couple of years of Bill Clinton’s election in 1992, action by Secretary of the Treasury Robert Rubin to strengthen the dollar attracted enough foreign investment to create the dot.com bubble.
Clinton then cut the federal budget enough by reducing federal employment that he was able to achieve a budget surplus. This lessened the drag on the economy from the national debt which Reagan had left behind from his tax cuts and trillion dollar military build-up. But the over-leveraged dot.com bubble burst with the stock market collapse of 2000, leaving us in recession again.
Enter President George W. Bush. Despite the "achievement" of Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan in creating another bubble—the housing one—big enough to float the U.S. economy for four consecutive years—2002 to 2005—the economic fundamentals today are horrendous. We are living in an economy that has begun to crash, with the Federal Reserve, the Treasury Department, and Congress cobbling together bail-outs of various descriptions which they hope will right what is obviously a sinking ship.
We can only hope they will succeed to some extent, because it would be heartless to wish disaster on the ones who suffer the most from the consequences of the greed and stupidity of people in power—namely the ordinary people who work for a living and who honestly try to raise their families and hold to a decent standard of living. But life is becoming very hard for the vast majority of Americans who have been bearing the brunt of our failed economic and monetary polices of the last three decades.
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