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  1.    #1  
    Guess we can stop arguing about this now....

    NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- The National Bureau of Economic Research said Monday that the U.S. has been in a recession since December 2007, making official what most Americans have already believed about the state of the economy .

    The NBER is a private group of leading economists charged with dating the start and end of economic downturns. It typically takes a long time after the start of a recession to declare its start because of the need to look at final readings of various economic measures.

    "The committee views the payroll employment measure, which is based on a large survey of employers, as the most reliable comprehensive estimate of employment," said the group's statement. "This series reached a peak in December 2007 and has declined every month since then."

    Employers have trimmed payrolls by 1.2 million jobs in the first 10 months of this year. On Friday, economists are predicting the government will report a loss of another 325,000 jobs for November.
    http://money.cnn.com/2008/12/01/news...ion=2008120112
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  2. #2  
    Yeah, hanh? You haven't seen anything yet
  3.    #3  
    Quote Originally Posted by treobk214 View Post
    Yeah, hanh? You haven't seen anything yet
    Think we have seen ENOUGH with BUSH!

    Yes, it was ALL Bush's fault... 100%.
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  4. #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by treobk214 View Post
    Yeah, hanh? You haven't seen anything yet
    how much worse -- how bad are you expecting it to get ???
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  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by theog View Post
    Think we have seen ENOUGH with BUSH!

    Yes, it was ALL Bush's fault... 100%.
    A lot to do with bush, but there were dems behind the wheel as well. 100%

    Acorn's forcing banks to lend to those with no business owning a home was not bush. Chris dodd's involvement in the affair was not bush either. You're fooling yourself if you think only one party to blame here.
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by BARYE View Post
    how much worse -- how bad are you expecting it to get ???
    In all likelihood the big three will be bailed out but only after solid business plans are unveiled. However, if they fail to produce and congress opts against the bailout, obviously the recession will deepen severely.

    I think our financial problems are such that it will take several years to even slowly recover.

    The notion of DOUBLING foreign aid while our own country is in shambles sounds absurd to me. I can't see how that's an option considering the mess we are in now.

    Not only are we in a recession but the nations with which we do business are contracting economically as well.

    I think we will see worsening conditions particularly after the holidays. I wish it wasn't the case, but there are no encouraging signs .... ANYWHERE.
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by treobk214 View Post
    In all likelihood the big three will be bailed out but only after solid business plans are unveiled. However, if they fail to produce and congress opts against the bailout, obviously the recession will deepen severely.

    I think our financial problems are such that it will take several years to even slowly recover.

    The notion of DOUBLING foreign aid while our own country is in shambles sounds absurd to me. I can't see how that's an option considering the mess we are in now.

    Not only are we in a recession but the nations with which we do business are contracting economically as well.

    I think we will see worsening conditions particularly after the holidays. I wish it wasn't the case, but there are no encouraging signs .... ANYWHERE.
    mostly I'm in alignment with what you've said.

    Well except about foreign aid -- which is a comparitively modest sum, unless you include the cost of irrigating iraqi sand with american blood -- and all the attendant borrowed billions we're in debt for, out to eternity.

    The economy will likely slunk along gasping for breath for at least another 2-3 years. They have to get control over the financial system, ensure that credit and lending recovers, and re-establish homes (and their ownership value) as a core foundation for stability and savings for families and the national economy.

    And they need to do all this while being mindful of somehow preventing super inflation from overtaking deflation, if we ever have a genuine recovery.
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  8.    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by treobk214 View Post
    A lot to do with bush, but there were dems behind the wheel as well. 100%

    Acorn's forcing banks to lend to those with no business owning a home was not bush. Chris dodd's involvement in the affair was not bush either. You're fooling yourself if you think only one party to blame here.
    Do you know what "" means? Bet you know what "" is...

    Anyway, your post reads like a John McCain add... Oh, god, Acorn "forced" banks to issue high-risk loans. Again, .

    Yes, I think there is enough "blame" to go around, obviously. When you can read and understand what "" is, then meaningful conversation can take place.

    Seriously, this conversation is old anyway... been talked to death. Who cares "who" is to blame anyway? The focus is on what needs to be done.
    Last edited by ToolkiT; 12/05/2008 at 04:38 AM. Reason: removed '**** on shoe' remark
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  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by BARYE View Post
    mostly I'm in alignment with what you've said.

    Well except about foreign aid -- which is a comparitively modest sum, unless you include the cost of irrigating iraqi sand with american blood -- and all the attendant borrowed billions we're in debt for, out to eternity.

    The economy will likely slunk along gasping for breath for at least another 2-3 years. They have to get control over the financial system, ensure that credit and lending recovers, and re-establish homes (and their ownership value) as a core foundation for stability and savings for families and the national economy.

    And they need to do all this while being mindful of somehow preventing super inflation from overtaking deflation, if we ever have a genuine recovery.
    First of all, I'm against pouring both additional money and blood into Iraq. Our pullout has been long overdue.

    As we are amidst incredibly sobering economic times, the cash outflow to both Iraq and foreign nations should be curtailed. We need to rescue OURSELVES from disaster now.

    How can we continue doing so if our own country is on the brink?

    I think we could be as much as 5 years out from economic strength (or even just stability) again. It could be worse still. Our financial system is so twisted and mangled that an incredible amount of time, effort and taxpayers' money will be required to dismantle and rebuild from this unbelievable mess.

    Even in lieu of bailouts, there's no guarantee that much of our money won't simply be put into still more broken financial schemes.

    This will be an enormous task that will demand years of diligent attention and policing to make sure the system doesn't waver off track again.

    To say we are in bad shape is an understatement, as I have a pretty pessimistic outlook for the US.
    Last edited by treobk214; 12/04/2008 at 07:14 PM.
  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by treobk214 View Post
    First of all, I'm against pouring both additional money and blood into Iraq. Our pullout has been long overdue.

    As we are amidst incredibly sobering economic times, the cash outflow to both Iraq and foreign nations should be curtailed. We need to rescue OURSELVES from disaster now.

    How can we continue doing so if our own country is on the brink?

    I think we could be as much as 5 years out from economic strength (or even just stability) again. It could be worse still. Our financial system is so twisted and mangled that an incredible amount of time, effort and taxpayers' money will be required to dismantle and rebuild from this unbelievable mess.

    Even in lieu of bailouts, there's no guarantee that much of our money won't simply be put into still more broken financial schemes.

    This will be an enormous task that will demand years of diligent attention and policing to make sure the system doesn't waver off track again.

    To say we are in bad shape is an understatement, as I have a pretty pessimistic outlook for the US.
    again, we are mostly in agreement.

    Two things happening now will effect how optimistic or pessimistic I will be.

    After more than a year and a half, junior's folks have finally recognized that ground zero for the country's economic crisis is housing -- with interest rates on mortgages being what began and accelerated the meltdown (a simplification, but anyone wanting more should read the "mortgage, securitization thread")

    The forced lowering of mortgage rates to as low as 4.5% should have been done much sooner -- but this effort has the potential to put a floor beneath this meltdown.

    Secondly -- and much more worrisome -- do the car companies declare bankruptcy or not.

    If they do, things will get VERY bad.
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  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by BARYE View Post
    again, we are mostly in agreement.

    Two things happening now will effect how optimistic or pessimistic I will be.

    After more than a year and a half, junior's folks have finally recognized that ground zero for the country's economic crisis is housing -- with interest rates on mortgages being what began and accelerated the meltdown (a simplification, but anyone wanting more should read the "mortgage, securitization thread")

    The forced lowering of mortgage rates to as low as 4.5% should have been done much sooner -- but this effort has the potential to put a floor beneath this meltdown.

    Secondly -- and much more worrisome -- do the car companies declare bankruptcy or not.

    If they do, things will get VERY bad.
    Personally I don't think the auto companies deserve to be bailed out, but unfortunately "deserves" have nothing to do with it.

    Should they be given the rescue funds, there HAS to be a policing committee which oversees how these "companies" will be using taxpayers' dollars. In fact, that policing committee should have a say in their business model, as ford/gm have proven to be incapable thus far. (The same goes for banks.)

    The risk still exists after they are bailed out. Would you feel comfortable buying a car from ford if you knew the bailout package would only keep them afloat for another year or two?!

    I sure wouldn't. Sure the volt sounds great but if I can't get parts for the car following a collapse then I'd be in a pretty rough patch.

    I honestly doubt this is going to help. I think the overall result will be life support for about a year or two and despite the aid, one or two, if not more auto companies will fail anyway.

    THAT will send a concussive blast through our economic climate the likes of which have not been seen for generations.

    Doomsday predictions, I know, but the so-called "heads" of our banks and auto firms have mishandled our nation's industry so severely in recent years that I have precious little confidence in them going forward
    Last edited by treobk214; 12/06/2008 at 12:31 AM.
  12. #12  
    I agree wholeheartedly that interest rates should have been lowered to at least 4.5 % much sooner.

    Banks wouldn't have made much money but they might also have staved off some of the massive losses they ended up writing off.

    Compromise with the homeowner might have led to better circumstances nationwide for the financial sector. It would have been a wise move, but wisdom seems to be trait seldom called upon in this country these days.

    Its truly amazing.
  13. #13  
    People bought goods and housing they couldn't afford. If there wasn't someone in an ACORN office wanting a loan, the government could not have forced ACORN to loan.
    People failed at the big three. People did not manage the company properly. There are consequences for failure.
    Everyone blames the government, thus justifying asking for the government's help.
    'We the people....' need to take resonsibility and learn a lesson or two, even though it may be very hard!
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by Forgiven View Post
    People bought goods and housing they couldn't afford. If there wasn't someone in an ACORN office wanting a loan, the government could not have forced ACORN to loan.
    People failed at the big three. People did not manage the company properly. There are consequences for failure.
    Everyone blames the government, thus justifying asking for the government's help.
    'We the people....' need to take resonsibility and learn a lesson or two, even though it may be very hard!
    Knowing what I know about how this crisis originated and who bears the ovewhelming responsibility for this calamity that is devouring us all, I could be Forgiven perhaps, if I was so churlish to ask to ask that you first read the: Mortgages, securitization, and the end of the American dream thread so that you're a little more informed.

    Or at least start with this particular post, which discussses ACORN among things...



    Quote Originally Posted by BARYE View Post
    there's plenty of justification to be enraged at this economic meltdown.

    And yes mortgages were at the heart of it.

    But if you knew more about how this catastrophe came to be, you'd understand that activists like Acorn, and even shady mortgage broker- promoters -- played only a tiny part in this multi-trillion dollar scandal.

    In effect you are apportioning as much responsibility about what a factory manufactures to the workers on the assembly line -- as to their bosses.

    In free capitalist fashion, mortgage brokers were incentivized to make as many sub prime mortgage deals as possible -- irrespective whether these deals were predatory, fair, or could ever be afforded by their "customers".

    As a community based group, Acorn saw part of its mission to be helping disadvantaged people become homeowners. These are people who historically were denied decent loans even when their credit histories were good. These were people from communities that had been historically discriminated against by banks -- victims of a something called redlining.

    But the overwhelming power behind the explosion of these loans came not from below, not from these activists or the brokers -- the irresistable force behind the mortgage explosion came from above, from Wall Street.

    It was Wall Street's insatiable demand for these mortgage based deals that created this problem. Had there not been this voracious demand from above there would have been NO force from below that could have made these loans happen.

    Wall Street created a process where they conglomerated dubious mortgages together in a process known as securitization, a process that manufactured securities that could then be traded like conventional stocks or bonds.

    These securities (which were ostensibly paying higher than comparable interest rates) were often graded by securities rating companies as investment grade -- and were therefore bought by almost every bank, investment house, and hedge fund around the world. They were even bought by companies looking to earn extra returns on their cash hoards.

    Despite assurances that these securities were absolutely safe, investors wanted some form of insurance in case problems developed.

    Had conventional insurance been issued to protect these securities, by regulation that insurance would have had to have had a certain minimum of reserves behind that insurance, to insure a given amount of risk.

    To increase profits, companies like AIG created these UNREGULATED Credit Default Swaps to maximize their leverage, their returns, and their profits by writing policies without backing those policies with real collateral
    .

    These Credit Default Swaps eventually metastasized into trillions and trillions of uncovered risk held against securities around the world.

    When this contagion really began to catch fire in 2003-2005, junior's administration almost certainly could have have contained the fire by regulating these Credit Default Swaps, by insisting that they be treated as insurance, and by demanding that the same level of collateral underly the "policies" as they must in a normal insurance policy.

    They did not.

    Almost all the fault lies at the top of the pyramid -- not with the peons who had no control over anything ...

    (btw as a disclaimer, I confess that the depth of my understanding in regard to everything about these "credit default swaps" is not at all deep -- but apparently in this, I'm not alone ...)
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  15. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by treobk214 View Post
    I agree wholeheartedly that interest rates should have been lowered to at least 4.5 % much sooner.

    Banks wouldn't have made much money but they might also have staved off some of the massive losses they ended up writing off.

    Compromise with the homeowner might have led to better circumstances nationwide for the financial sector. It would have been a wise move, but wisdom seems to be trait seldom called upon in this country these days.

    Its truly amazing.
    I screamed for junior's minions to slash rates when it could have mattered -- August, September '07 -- but these brain dead ideologues were still talking about inflation.

    The reason there has not been this massive restructuring and rational discounting of loans is something I've written about extensively: the byzantine structure of how these loans became atomized -- the ENTIRE securitization derivative nightmare that seperated the "owner" of the debt from the original borrower.

    (A little commented upon, but addional element in this btw, was junior's and the GOP's gutting of the bankrupcy laws that offered some protection to borrowers, and more powers to judges to force meaningful compromises in work outs. (and yes some dems i.e. Biden, had dirty hands in this too. But overwhelmingly this scandal is the product of non-regulation -- of laissez-faire ignorance on the part of junior and his poser posse).
    Last edited by BARYE; 12/07/2008 at 02:11 PM.
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