A few years ago, Kevin Phillips wrote a sadly accurate and insightful book entitled AMERICAN THEOCRACY, in which he accurately predicted all of the economic troubles in the USA this autumn 2008. In his analyses, Phillips clearly saw that the failed attempt to boost the economy in the early Bush years of this decade simply covered up one bubble with another larger one. This is why Phillips called the Federal Reserve Board Chairman, Paul Volcker, a serial-bubbler.
"In official statistics, the finance, insurance, and real estate (FIRE) sector of the U.S. economy swelled to 20 percent of the gross domestic product in 2000, jumping ahead of manufacturing, which slipped to 14 percent. Since the 1980s financial deregulation has encouraged these three related vocations to interweave in so many holding companies and financial groups that their identification as one sector has become routine."-
In all, since 1987, the U.S. has faced an increasing set of bubbles and crashes--mostly propelled by casino-like speculation:
1987 Post-Stock Market Drive Rescue,
1989-1992 S & L Bailout,
1990-1992 Citibank & Bank of New England Bailout,
1994-1995 Mexican Peso Rescue,
1997 Asia Currency Bailout,
1998 Long-Term Capital Management Bailout,
1999-2000 Y2K Fears and .com Bubble Crash
2001-2005 Post-Stock-Market Crash Federal Rate Cuts Bubble
2006-2008 Real Estate Crash and Finance/Investment Sector Bubble Collapse
In short, as the former wizards of Wall Street, the Federal Reserve, and many financial firms' supporting George W. Bush's presidency cry that the sky is falling and America must cough up 800 billion dollars (and Now), Americans have to decide whether the proposed medicine for this FIRE""and America's dependence on finance, insurance and real estate""will only continue to make more-and-more bubbles as the recent federal reserve chairmen have engineered so often over the past 20 years.
Phillips spent the last half of his book, AMERICAN THEOCRACY, going over the historical framework of political economic decline that great nations have faced over the past 500 years, i.e. as they have become over-dependent on the financial sector to run their political economic regimes. Phillips' short narrations took us through the collapse of Habsburg Spain, the end of the Dutch financial wizardry of the 17th century, and the end of the British Colonial world financial system at the end of the world's industrial revolution.
Now, America appears to be heading towards a swan dive because (particularly since the 1980s) its leadership has thrown more-and-more political weight (and federal rescue money) behind banks, insurance firms, and real estate lenders than money to support good education, development of production oriented jobs & industries, and generally improved the security of the commonweal.AMERICAN CULT OF DEBT-IS-GOOD
In the INDEBTED SOCIETY, James Medoff and Andrew Harless, wrote, "Thirty years ago, neither firms nor politicians used (or could use) massive indebtedness to justify their actions or inaction. Since 1980, firms, politicians and others have regularly used debt to rationalize conduct that has been damaging to workers and to the poor . . . .Debt, directly or indirectly, has decayed the very soul of America."-