The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
Show by  
Email This Page to Someone

 Remember My Information



=>
Print Archives1 Item • Total Print Archives • Readable Only
CounterPunch
Nothing found
 BlogviewMike Whitney Archive
/
Economics

Bookmark Toggle AllToCAdd to LibraryRemove from Library • BShow CommentNext New CommentNext New ReplyRead More
ReplyAgree/Disagree/Etc. More... This Commenter This Thread Hide Thread Display All Comments
AgreeDisagreeLOLTroll
These buttons register your public Agreement, Disagreement, Troll, or LOL with the selected comment. They are ONLY available to recent, frequent commenters who have saved their Name+Email using the 'Remember My Information' checkbox, and may also ONLY be used once per hour.
Ignore Commenter Follow Commenter
O'Neill's Revenge
Former Secretary of the Treasury, Paul O' Neill's appearance turned out to be significantly more illuminating than anyone could possibly have expected. Notwithstanding, his description of the President as a "disengaged" simpleton with the attention span of a preschooler, he provided a great deal of new information that could suggest future indictments. Take for example,... Read More
Greenspan's Treason
There are two principle factors that keep an economy humming along; interest rates and the amount of money that is circulating through the economy. Interest rates are presently at historic lows (40 year low) and the Bush tax cuts have added nearly $530 billion a year ($625 billion by Mr. Greenspan's calculations) to the amount... Read More
Pandora's Government
In case you missed it, we lost the war on terror this week. The decisive battle took place in Nigeria when local groups threatened to attack international oil facilities. This sent the price of crude rocketting through the ceiling. In fact, there were no attacks, which proves that even the mere hint of a disruption... Read More
Greenspan's Hammer
Last Thursday's press conference was pure Greenspan. The shriveled Fed-master used his trip to Germany to deliver the roundhouse punch that many had expected for two years. He "warned that the deficit in US trade with the rest of the world could not be sustained indefinitely."(BBC) Really? Does anyone seriously believe that this "road to... Read More
Coming Sooner Than You Think
It seems that there are a growing number of people who believe as I do, that the economic tsunami planned by the Bush administration is probably only months away. In just 5 short years the national debt has increased by nearly 3 trillion dollars while the dollar has continued its predictable decline. The dollar has... Read More
Robbing the Last Bag of Gold in the Public Vault
Seattle, Washington Thursday night's press conference gave us with a solid example of how elite interests dominate the news cycle. Consider this; at the same time Bush was braying about fixing the Social Security system, the violence in Iraq was reaching a crescendo (13 bombs went off in Baghdad on Friday killing 50 civilians and... Read More
Doomsday Approaches
I sold my home three weeks ago anticipating what I believe will be "Economic Armageddon" in the United States. It wasn't an easy thing to do. My wife and I have lived in the same home for 25 years, raised both of our children there, and owned the property outright without any loans or mortgage.... Read More
Pop Goes the Weasel
It's strange that Alan Greenspan hasn't been blamed for the housing bubble. After all, he set the "easy money" policies that put the whole thing in motion and he's the one who should be held responsible when it goes up in smoke. Let me explain. Most people expect the Federal Reserve to lower rates when... Read More
Debt, Unemployment, Privatization and War
No one has done more to ensure the ultimate demise of the American middle class than Alan Greenspan. No one. In the stately pantheon of class-warriors, Greenspan's spectral-image looms larger than any other; the foremost proponent of hardnosed social-Darwinism and exclusionary economics. Even his carpet-bagging consort, G.W. Bush, pales in comparison. In just under 5... Read More
The Fall of the House of Cards
Four months ago I wrote an article, "Doomsday; the Final Months of the Housing Bubble" that predicted a dramatic fall in housing prices that would have a catastrophic effect on the American economy. In truth, I'm a lousy forecaster and simply collected the relevant data from a number of sources that convinced me that the... Read More
Obliterating the Dollar ... and the Middle Class?
Gold traders love George Bush. They know that his blundering mismanagement of the economy will keep gold soaring well into the future. In the last year alone gold increased nearly $200 an ounce capping off a 5 year run that has taken it from $274 per ounce to $635 at Friday's close. These are serious... Read More
The Controlled Demolition of the Dollar
The great dollar sell-off has begun in earnest, although to a large extent, it's being concealed from the public. Wary currency traders have been expecting a dollar-slide for months but were nervous about the possibility of widespread panic. Everyone from Bill Gates to Paul Volcker has predicted that the current trade deficit of $800 billion... Read More
The Veep's Curious Investment Portfolio
Wouldn't you like to know where Dick Cheney puts his money? Then you'd know whether his "deficits don't matter" claim is just baloney or not. Well, as it turns out, Kiplinger Magazine ran an article based on Cheney's financial disclosure statement and, sure enough, found out that the VP is lying to the American people... Read More
Pop Goes the Bubble!
This month's figures prove that the so-called "housing bubble" is not only real, but that its cratering faster than anyone had realized. As the UK Guardian reported just yesterday, "the orderly housing slowdown predicted by the Federal Reserve will (soon) become a full-blown crash". All the indicators are now pointing in the wrong direction. Consumer... Read More
America's Economic Meltdown
There’s growing concern among economists and market-savvy pundits that the global financial system is hanging by a few well-worn threads that could snap at any time. The $10.4 trillion real estate “bubble” has attracted the most attention, but the shaky derivatives market, hedge funds, and falling dollar are equally worrisome. 20 years of deregulation has... Read More
Hard Times on the Way
In the next few months, a financial crisis will arise somewhere in the world which will jolt the American economy and trigger a swift and precipitous decline in the value of the dollar. This is not speculation; it will happen and there is nothing that the Bush administration can do to stop it. All of... Read More
shutterstock_12366958
Alan Greenspan, Homewrecker
Give me 5 minutes and I'll convince you that you should sell your house immediately and invest your life-savings in gold or a Swiss bank-account. Okay? For some time now we've been hearing about the so-called housing bubble and what effect it could have on your net worth and future. Well, the numbers are finally... Read More
"I Was Just About to Change Everything ... "
By now, everyone has heard about Rumsfeld's memo. It was leaked to the New York Times supposedly without Rumsfeld's knowledge. It makes the case that Rumsfeld was just about to make major changes in Iraq because he could see that the strategy was failing and had created a disaster. Everything about the memo reeks of... Read More
Baghdad Crackdown
Even a cursory review of Bush's speech shows that the president is less concerned with "security" in Baghdad than he is with plans to attack Iran. Paul Craig Roberts was correct in his article yesterday when he questioned whether all the hoopla over a surge was just "an orchestrated distraction" to draw attention away from... Read More
There is No Solution
Let's assume for a moment, that Dick Cheney is the driving force behind the plan to surge in Iraq. Does anyone really believe that the vice president is genuinely concerned about the safety of the Iraqi people? And, yet, the media still insists that the purpose of the troop-increase is to improve security in Baghdad.... Read More
The Fall of the Housing Market
"The Fed should have tightened earlier to avoid a festering of the housing bubble early on. The Fed is facing a nightmare now: the recession will come and easing will not prevent it." Nouriel Roubini, "Fed Holds Interest Rates Steady as Slowdown Outweighs Inflation", Wall Street Journal I'm really baffled by the e-mails I've been... Read More
Bird Flu Panic and Profiteering
Man, these guys give me the creeps. On Friday there was an article in the New York Times ("In a Daylong Drill, an Agency Tries to Prepare for a Real Outbreak of Avian Flu", Donald McNeil Jr.) that gave the details of the drills that are being conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and... Read More
Crashing to Earth
This week's data on the sagging real estate market leaves no doubt that the housing bubble is quickly crashing to earth and that hard times are on the way. "The slump in home prices from the end of 2005 to the end of 2006 was the biggest year over year drop since the National Association... Read More
Everything He Touches Turns Into Someone Else's Gold
Gold traders love Dick Cheney. Every time he opens his twisted lip and barks out another threat to Iran, the dollar takes a powder and gold futures shoot to the moon. Maybe that's the way Cheney likes it. After all, he dumped about $25 million in euro-bonds before he took office. Judging by the way... Read More
The Dead Hand of Greenspan
Tuesday's stock market freefall has Greenspan's bloody fingerprints all over it. And, no, I'm not talking about Sir Alan's crystal ball predictions about the impending recession; that's just more of his same circuitous blather. The real issue is the Fed's lunatic policies of low interest rates and currency deregulation which have paved the way for... Read More
The Architects of Centralized Power
Democratic leaders have consistently shown that they are no match for their Republican counterparts. Whenever an opportunity presents itself to swoop down for the kill; congressional Democrats start preening for the cameras or bloviating on the floor of the House. That's not how you get things done in Washington. If the Democrats are serious about... Read More
Doomsday for the Greenback?
The American people are in La-la land. If they had any idea of what the Federal Reserve was up to they'd be out on the streets waving fists and pitchforks. Instead, we go our business like nothing is wrong. Are we really that stupid? What is it that people don't understand about the trade deficit?... Read More
Bubble People and the Faith-Based Market
Two years ago, anyone who wrote about the housing bubble was dismissed as a conspiracy nut. Now hardly a day goes by that the headlines aren't splattered with the details of the massive meltdown in the real estate market. What changed? The facts are essentially the same today as they were back then. In fact,... Read More
"Is It Too Late to Get Out?"
Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson delivered an upbeat assessment of the slumping real estate market on Friday saying, "All the signs I look at" show "the housing market is at or near the bottom." Baloney. Paulson added that the meltdown in subprime mortages was not a "serious problem. I think it's going to be largely contained."... Read More
The Harder They Come ...
The real estate market is crashing faster than anyone had anticipated. Housing prices have fallen in 17 of 20 of the nation's largest cities and the trend lines indicate that the worst is yet to come. March sales of new homes plummeted by a record 23.5% (year over year) removing all hope for a quick... Read More
Dancing with the Drago
Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson wrapped up 2 days of high level talks with the Chinese delegation on Wednesday without any progress on the two issues of central importance to the American people"the massive $230 billion trade deficit and the ongoing manipulation of the Chinese currency, the yuan. As expected, China agreed to allow "more passenger... Read More
A Subprime Chernobyl?
The Bank for International Settlements issued a warning last week that the Federal Reserve's monetary policies have created an enormous equity bubble which could lead to another "Great Depression". The UK Telegraph says that, "The BIS--the ultimate bank of central bankers--pointed to a confluence a worrying signs, citing mass issuance of new-fangled credit instruments, soaring... Read More
Full System Breakdown?
Two columns of black smoke can still be seen rising over the New York skyline. Terrorism? Not quite. The plumes of smoke are all that's left of two major hedge funds which blew up just weeks ago leaving nothing behind but a few smoldering embers and a mound of black soot. The compiled assets of... Read More
The Junk Credit Crisis
It's a Bloodbath. That’s the only way to describe it. On Friday the Dow Jones took a 280 point nosedive on fears that that losses in the subprime market will spill over into the broader economy and cut into GDP. Ever since the two Bears Sterns hedge funds folded a couple weeks ago the stock... Read More
Plummeting Dollar, Credit Crunch...
The days of the dollar as the world’s “reserve currency” may be drawing to a close. In August, foreign central banks and governments dumped a whopping 3.8 per cent of their holdings of US debt. Rising unemployment and the ongoing housing slump have triggered fears of a recession sending wary foreign investors running for the... Read More
By now, you’ve probably seen the photos of the angry customers queued up outside of Northern Rock Bank waiting to withdraw their money. This is the first big run on a British bank in over a century. It’s lost an eighth of its deposits in three days. The pictures are headline news in the U.K.... Read More
Bernacke, Rate Cuts and the "Greenspan Put"
Wall Street loves cheap money. That's why traders were celebrating on Tuesday when Fed chief Ben Bernanke announced that he'd drop interest rates from 5.25% to 4.75%. The stock market immediately zoomed skyward adding 336 points before the bell rang. The next day the giddiness continued. By mid-morning the Dow was up another 110 points... Read More
The Cracks in Wall Street's Hall of Mirrors
  Officials in the Treasury Dept--working with their colleagues at Citigroup, J.P. Morgan and Bank of America---have concocted a scheme to rescue the banks from their massive losses in mortgage-backed securities. The group is planning to set up a $100 billion emergency fund which will purchase non-performing assets for short term debt. In truth, the... Read More
California Falls Into the Sea
Is it really fair to blame one man for destroying the US economy? Probably not. But Alan Greenspan is still tops on our list. After all, Greenspan "presided over the greatest expansion of speculative finance in history, including a trillion-dollar hedge fund industry, bloated Wall Street-firm balance sheets approaching $2 trillion, and a global derivatives... Read More
Paulson's $100 Billion Bankers' Bankruptcy Bailout Fund
Friday's bloodbath on Wall Street proved that the troubles in the credit markets have not been relieved by the Fed's rate cuts. The Dow Jones slipped 367 points on the 20th anniversary of Black Monday, the stock market's biggest one-day loss in history. Since Friday, Asian markets have plunged; stocks are down sharply in Japan,... Read More
"The End is Nigh!" Cries Paul Volcker, as Heads Topple at Merrill Lynch and Citigroup
Last Wednesday, the Federal Reserve dropped its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points to 4.5 per cent citing ongoing weakness in the housing sector. As expected, the stock market rallied and the Dow Jones Industrial Average went up137 points. Unfortunately, Bernanke's "low interest" stardust wasn't enough to buoy the markets through the rest of... Read More
The Long Fall
America is finished, washed up, kaput. Foreign investors and central banks around the world have lost confidence in US markets and are headed for the exits. The dollar is sinking, the country is insolvent, and its leaders are barking mad. That's bad for business. Investors are voting with their feet. They've had enough. Capital is... Read More
For Whom the Closing Bell Tolls
What a week for the stock market. On Wednesday the market took a 360 point nosedive followed, two days later, by a 220 point belly-flop. By the time it was over, the trading pits looked more like a sausage-packing plant than the world's financial epicenter. After the bell, downcast traders could be seen tiptoeing through... Read More
"Steady as She Sinks!"
On Monday, Asian stock markets took another beating, on fears that the credit squeeze which began in the United States will continue to worsen in the months ahead. Every index from Tokyo to Sidney fell sharply continuing the "self-reinforcing" cycle of losses started last week on Wall Street. The Nikkei 225 average fell 3.3 per... Read More
"A Generalized Meltdown of Financial Institutions"
Reality has finally caught up to the stock market. The American consumer is underwater, the banks are buried in dept, and the housing market is in terminal distress. The Dow is now below its 200-Day Moving Average -- the first big "sell" signal. Anything below 12,500 could trigger program-trading and crash the market. The increased... Read More
Even Larry Summers Predicts Doom
Lately it seems as though everyone wants to take a poke at the dollar. Last week, it was the Brazilian supermodel who demanded euros for her jaunts on the catwalk instead of USD. The week before that, hip-hop impresario, Jay-Z, released a video dissin' the dollar and praising the euro as the 'baddest Dude in... Read More
The Coming Collapse of the Modern Day Banking System
Stocks fell sharply last week on news of accelerating inflation which will limit the Federal Reserves ability to continue cutting interest rates. On Tuesday the Dow Jones Industrials tumbled 294 points following the Fed's announcement of a quarter point cut to the Fed Funds rate. On Friday, the Dow dipped another 178 points when government... Read More
The Voting System is Broken--and So are the Political Parties
Last Friday Ohio's top election official, Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner issued a report concluding that the voting systems that decided the 2004 election in Ohio were rife with "critical security failures". The perpetrators were so cocksure they could pull it off that the servers for the computation of the Ohio vote count were in... Read More
A $250 "Freebie" for Every Taxpayer Bush's Voodoo Stimulus Package
In the next couple of weeks, George Bush will prove that the last 30 years of supply side, free market economics was nothing more than a overripe pile of horse manure. In fact, right now, the B-52s are being loaded with pallets-full of freshly-minted hundred dollar bills which will be air-dropped from sea to shining... Read More
An Inverted Pyramid of Subprime Slop The Great Credit Unwind of 2008
Global market turmoil continued into a second week as stock markets in Asia and Europe took another tumble on Monday on growing fears of a recession in the United States. China's benchmark index plummeted 7.2 per cent to its lowest point in six months, while Japan's Nikkei index slipped another 4.3 per cent. Equities markets... Read More