Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Not so light reading for the Christmas season

Christmas usually brings out some of the lighter fare when it comes to reading.

Stories of Santa and Grinches, Reindeer and Drummer boys, and of course the stories of ancient Bethlehem and wandering Kings in search of a baby boy.

But, this Christmas, some of the reading material is more akin to Halloween, scary tales of fear that will leave you hiding under the covers wondering what's to come next.

Vanity Fare in December is featuring an interesting article on the American Economy, as Nobel laureate, Joseph E. Stiglitz examines what almost eight years of the Bush Administration have done to the once dominant American economy.

In a four page article, Stiglitz sees a generation long struggle to come to recover from what he calls the "catastrophe that was the Bush administration."

According to Stiglitz's reckoning, some 5.3 million more Americans have entered poverty since Mr. Bush took over the White House, a young male in his thirties today is making 12 percent less than what his father was making 30 years ago and America's class structure is in the developmental stages of resembling that of Mexico or Brazil.

Borrowing from abroad during the six years of the Bush administration amounts to some $5 trillion, one fifth of it debt that is owed to China alone. While the chance of that marker ever being called in is remote (a cataclysmic world financial disaster would no doubt quickly follow) in this sub prime, hedge fund era of American excess it seems interesting to note that the world's capitalist leader doesn't even control it's own financial destiny anymore.

It's a fascinating if slightly worrisome read, one that most likely won't leave you with sugar plums dancing in your dreams, providing you can actually get to sleep after reading the synopsis of a financial mess.

Vanity Fair, December 2007--The Economic Consequences of Mr. Bush

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