Work is Job One

October 3, 2009

Today one year ago, Hank Paulson and his boys ignited TARP — Troubled Asset Relief Program — the $700 billion bank bullshit bailout that has done nothing to relieve the economic woes of US peoples.
An example of fighting symptoms and not the cause of disease:

“If you get a very expensive treatment that saves your life, but you don’t sort out the underlying problem, it may not come back for awhile, but it will come and get you again,” said Simon Johnson, professor of global economics and management at MIT.

(Illustration found here).

This little misfire has indeed already come back around to get us again.
For the first time in my lifetime, there’s more people about to loose it all.
According to Bloomberg:

The chart of the day shows the average duration of unemployment is now 26.2 weeks, longer than the 26 weeks of state benefits normally provided to workers who lose their jobs.
It’s the first time that has occurred since the Bureau of Labor Statistics began keeping records in 1948.
The jobless rate rose to 9.8 percent in September, while payrolls fell by 263,000, a Labor Department report showed today in Washington.

Which leads on to personal bankruptcies, which has soared this year to 1,046,449 in the first nine months, compared to 773,810 in the same period of 2008 — and in September alone there were 124,790 filing, a 41 percent increase over the same month last year.
And those people out hunting for jobs will have to stand in a long, long line as employers will only keep cutting jobs, not adding any, and most “experts” predict a 10.2 percent unemployment rate for next year.
Since December 2007, the US economy has lost 7.2 million jobs — “This recovery looks like roadkill,” said Christopher Rupkey, economist at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi. “The heavy layoffs have stopped, but there are simply no new jobs available, and the harder the jobs are to get, the harder and longer this road to recovery is going to be.”
When one adds those poor souls who have quit seeking work, and those working part-time, but would work more and those still looking, the unemployment rate is a whopping 17 percent.

The US taxpayer is expected to loose some $200 billion out of the TARP fiasco, and banks still keep failing, except of course all those Wall Street assholes, who are only getting fatter — where did the cash go?
In Paulson’s original version of TARP no one would know: Decisions by the Secretary pursuant to the authority of this Act are non-reviewable and committed to agency discretion, and may not be reviewed by any court of law or any administrative agency.

And it’s worse than the numbers.
According to the financial site Calculated Risk:

Instead of 7.2 million net jobs lost since December 2007, the preliminary benchmark estimate suggests the U.S. has lost over 8.0 million net jobs during that period.
Even before the annual revision, the current employment recession was already the worst recession since WWII in terms of percent of job losses.
The benchmark revision shows this recession was even deeper.
The revision will be reported in February … just something to remember over the next few months.

And the banks?
Three were closed Friday, bringing the total to 98 bank failures this year with an average of 10 a month, the highest level since 1992 — This year’s failures have reduced the FDIC’s insurance fund to $10.1 billion from $45 billion a year ago.

And where are we going from here?
Paul Krugman says down:

Stocks are up. Ben Bernanke says that the recession is over. And I sense a growing willingness among movers and shakers to declare “Mission Accomplished” when it comes to fighting the slump. It’s time, I keep hearing, to shift our focus from economic stimulus to the budget deficit.
No, it isn’t. And the complacency now setting in over the state of the economy is both foolish and dangerous.

Wait. It gets worse.
A new report from the International Monetary Fund shows that the kind of recession we’ve had, a recession caused by a financial crisis, often leads to long-term damage to a country’s growth prospects. “The path of output tends to be depressed substantially and persistently following banking crises.”

And so it goes…


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