Subjects Archives: Global Economic Crisis

  • Confronting the Economic Crisis: The New Deal at 75 — Lessons for Today

    When I was growing up in the 1950s, a photo of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1932-1945) still hung in the homes of some family members and friends.  Our only four-term president was remembered by them as the leader — and even the savior — of the country.  Those like my parents, who experienced the Great […]

  • Barack Obama’s Speech on Race: New Challenges for Him, the Democrats, and Us

    Barack Obama’s speech on race, the greatest speech by a major American political figure in decades, elevates the discussion of race in America to a new level.  What makes this speech so powerful is not only what he said, but also what it requires us to ask and what it demands that we reply.  With […]

  • The Economic Crisis, the American Working Class, and the Left: The Situation Today and the Situation in 1930

    The world appears to be on the verge of an economic crisis and, if it turns out to be as serious as some think, one that could rival or exceed the great panics of the late nineteenth century and the decade-long Great Depression.  The crisis began with unscrupulous mortgage lending on an enormous scale, leading […]

  • As Rome Burned, the Emperor Fiddled

    As global finance’s house of cards implodes, Bush and Congress fiddle and Bernanke Fedles.  When sub-prime mortgages defaulted, debt-backed securities tanked, and credit everywhere contracted.  Business investment then shrank as did consumer spending.  Recession now looms in the US if it is not already here.  Worry deepens that it might get very bad and last […]

  • Class and Inflation in Australia

    Just as the slump in the US economy threatens to trigger a global recession, Australian authorities have pronounced inflation ‘public enemy number one’ and are trying to slow growth.  They tell workers to ‘exercise wage restraint’. Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, Industrial Relations Minister Julia Gillard and Treasurer Wayne Swan sing the same tune: workers […]

  • Putting the U.S. Economic Crisis in Perspective

    It is time to take stock.  The centrality of the American economy to the capitalist world — which now literally does encompass the whole world — has spread the financial crisis that began in the U.S. housing market around the globe.  And the economic recession which that financial crisis has triggered in the U.S. now […]

  • Beyond Abstract Art — Reflections of Life: The Amazing World of George Brodsky

    The Cantellops Art Gallery at La Roche College will feature the first-ever exhibition of American artist George Brodsky (1901-1999) from Jan. 14-31.  “Beyond Abstract Art — Reflections of Life on Shell, Rock, Bark and Flat Surfaces: The Amazing World of George Brodsky” will be open to the public for viewing daily from 10 a.m. to […]

  • Emotionomics: A Noteworthy “Revelation” of Market Totalitarianism

    “O there are times, we must confess To harboring a whim — we Like to picture old Karl Marx Sliding down our chimney” — Susie Day “Help fund the good fight.   By contributing to MR, you help reinforce the left and reclaim the future.” — Richard D. Vogel “To do my part, I just […]

  • Neoliberal Globalization Is Not the Problem

    “O there are times, we must confess To harboring a whim — we Like to picture old Karl Marx Sliding down our chimney” — Susie Day “Help fund the good fight.   By contributing to MR, you help reinforce the left and reclaim the future.” — Richard D. Vogel “To do my part, I just […]

  • Financial Capital: Crises Are Part of the Game

    Everything went well during the summer of 2007.  The economy was in an upswing and stock-market prices rose even faster.  Then the end of the housing boom in the United States triggered an international financial crisis.  Up to now it has been contained by heavy central-bank intervention; but the euphoria is gone.  The world of […]

  • Our Sub-prime Economy

    What matters most in economics often gets the least attention.  So it is with the link between wages and productivity: what workers get paid versus the value of what they produce.  Most commentators focus elsewhere.  They hype what their employers want to see or what they want others to believe.  Stock boosters see market upswings […]

  • Quick Thoughts on Carbon Sequestration

    How do we mitigate climate change?  A fashionable suggestion is technologically intensive carbon sequestration.  That, however, is an excessively expensive and probably technically impossible method of capturing significant amounts of carbon.  Another popular suggestion for sequestering carbon is planting trees. A more traditional method — building up the soil — which is better for the […]

  • Empire’s Contradictions, Our Weaknesses: The Empire Stumbles On

    Today’s two most conspicuous global flashpoints — the Middle East and Latin America — have widely exposed the fact of US imperialism and highlighted some of its limitations.  Adding the apparent cracks in US economic hegemony seems to indicate an empire in decline.  Yet a more cautious assessment would recall that the earlier defeat in […]

  • The Rapist Returns: More Lessons from Katrina’s Aftermath

      In the big business media’s “two years after Katrina” coverage, there was one glaring omission — the story of the utter bankruptcy of the so-called Black leadership, in particular, the Black Democratic Party establishment.  Nothing confirms that story better than the brief appearance in New Orleans on August 29 of President George W. Bush.  […]

  • Financial Panics, Then and Now

    The authors of the most widely read book on financial panics (Manias, Panics, and Crashes: A History of Financial Crises, Fifth Edition, 2005) refer to them as “hardy perennials” and document how they have repeatedly devastated large portions of modern economies and societies over the last three centuries.  Charles Kindleberger (a professor of economics at […]

  • Mass Political Withdrawal

    In regular high-school rituals, teachers berate students for their disinterest in, mockery of, and/or failure to focus on “the important issues” in elections for student government.  Students are forced to hear about cherishing their right to vote, taking the issues seriously, and participating fully.  Most never do.  Some notice that teachers likewise take little interest […]

  • Today’s Haunting Specter (or What Needs Doing)

    An attractive social democrat, Ségolène Royal, just lost the French presidential race to a neoliberal candidate, leaving French leftists debating the causes of their failures and what to do about them.  The center-left in Italy recently defeated the staunch neo-liberal, Sylvio Berlusconi.  Yet its incapacities to define a new and different social program or mobilize […]