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View Diary: The Great Depression Pt. III (172 comments)

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  •  Great Depression not that useful guide in 2008 (0+ / 0-)

    For a number of reasons, the main one is the changes made after the Great Depression to provide counter cyclical help.

    The result is that government spending on direct payments to individuals is a huge part of Federal Budget now and it was not in 1930's.

    1. Social Security - it was implemented because people lacked a financial safety net in retirement and disability.
    1. Unemployment - it was implemented so that when people did lose their jobs that six months of income.
    1. Medicaid/Medicare - pumps a lot of money into the health care industry.
    1. Various social welfare programs which are big part of state and Federal budgets.

    The real question today is what types of Keynesian counter cyclical stimulus programs are needed.

    Long term, next eight years, Obama's overall plan to rebuild US economy as a green economy, alternative energy industry which studies from Brookings, RAND and others show has huge job potential, is sound.  

    Short term, next two years, immediate stimulus can be provided via infrastructure spending, schools, bridges, water/sewer plants that are on the books and ready to go and which provide the backbone for economic expansion going forward.

    •  Medicare (0+ / 0-)

      was started because the insurance companies charged the elderly more and they couldn't afford the payments.  

      Insurance companies should not be in the Medicare or Medicaid programs.  They have to have their profit and we don't need them.  Also, Bush screwed it up royaly when he and his minions put in the no bid clauses, etc.

      They have deliberately made it too expensive to survive.  For instance, you could buy an oxygen tank for $750 a few years ago, now they pay close to that for rent on them for a year instead of buying them.

      They say Medicare and it's supplements and copays are going to go sky high next year.  We need to nip that in the bud.

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