Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My response to a friend about our current economic crisis

Ed.--I wrote this letter today to a dear friend down in Florida who came to me through this site. Say what you want about my writing, the content here, and its tone, but being able to connect to someone like this wonderful man has made it all worth it. All the sweat, all the frustrations, all the problems caused by Jeane--it's worth it if you make one friend, make one genuine connection with another human being who cares about others.

I'd also like to take a moment to apologize and correct my statements towards the exceptional journalist, Larisa Alexandrovna. The late Ms. Palfrey conveyed information to myself and others that was a lie and sent us on a trajectory of confrontation with Ms. Alexandrovna. Had I known at the time--and I did have my suspicions--none of the comments that came afterward would have happened. I retract them in-full, here, now, and I consider it a very heavy weight lifted. Best wishes to Larisa. Contrary to certain contentions, hope really is alive, and more than ever, not since January 1981.

...The current economic crisis: I'll write in more detail later, but in-sum, Lindsey Graham is just facing reality, which is amazing for a Republican, but now there's just no choice at all. The economy isn't going to get any better shoveling money into the banks as long as the CEOs in there now are allowed to run it, they blew it, they're corrupt and cannot be reformed except through criminal investigations and their removal one way or another.

America will never be the same, we know this, and a consumer economy as existed before is now extinct, it's just not sinking-in yet. I've gotten into it HARDCORE with former High School classmates and whatnot over this. They're about to suffer psychologically more than they usually do by being business worshipping turds and wack-jobs. The fact that they ascribed godlike power to these twits is going to be their emotional and psychological downfall coupled with their obsolete notions of the "rugged individual," that you--we--are 100% responsible for your own destiny. As you know, that's a double-edged sword that's going to cut them. Remember the stories of all the morons who blamed themselves for the Great Depression, for their own fallen lots? That's coming.

This shit about "the socialists are taking over" is going to die with a few loud gasps and rattles, but the kids don't remember the Cold War, the last brew was my generation, and the government is going to be forced by circumstance to run virtually the entire economy. People are already suffering, but it's a hard call to say how the suffering will be distributed, but for those who are being foreclosed on, it will be the worst, since they have lost their jobs in most cases.

The Obama plan is just a good start, that's it. This will have to be significantly bigger than the New Deal, more like the Marshall Plan, because the entire economy of the developed world is crashing. There will be significant changes as to what constitutes "work" "productivity," and whatnot, that's not going to be the same, but work might just become much more meaningful, it can happen, but we can only get it through demands. That's part of why Obama is backing the right to collective bargaining, he understands that he must get out of the way and let the public do a lot of the "correcting," not just the federal government. The private sector won't have many solutions to offer at all, but there won't be many of them around after all of this.

Expect: General Strikes, food riots, wildcat strikes, and more. This isn't to say there will be violence against the average American by other Americans--there will be some incidents of it--but do expect buildings, individuals, and symbols of established power to be assaulted, that's coming, it's virtually assured. CEOs are now more unpopular than Congress, a real shift. This is the end of this order and the beginning of a new one, a time of incredible opportunities. Have hope, I have more now than I have had in my entire adult life. If you had asked me in 1991, I would have told you we were completely fucked. I no longer feel this way anymore, there is now hope, real hope. It won't be pleasant, it won't be easy, but it will give us a real shot at saving ourselves from ourselves. That's a pretty big deal, eh?

your friend and ally, Matt Janovic