Feb 26, 2013
Whenever I endeavor to explain America’s current economic situation to a person who likely receives most of his information from skewed mainstream news sources, I try to use two comparisons; the Great Depression, and Weimar Germany, because what we are experiencing is actually a combination of elements from both events. Some people, unfortunately, have little understanding of the Weimar hyperinflationary crisis, but at the very least, the imagery of the Great Depression is present in the minds of most Americans, if only through television and film.
When the depression is mentioned, they begin to grasp the gravity of our fiscal disaster, or at least what I am trying to convey. However, those slow on the draw almost always sneer at the validity of the threat. After all, during the Great Depression, there were bank runs, endless soup kitchen lines, roving masses of dirty homeless drifters looking for employment, shanty towns, and desperation everywhere. We’ve all seen the old stock black and white photos, and the America of today looks nothing similar…
We have shopping malls and imported fineries. We have sports cars and HDTV and video games and iPads and Disneyland and pharmaceuticals in every color of the rainbow! We have tract homes and gated communities and condos and beach houses and summer vacations and first-class flights and texting and nightclubs and lattes and credit cards! When we turn on cable news, what do we see? Progress! Glorious progress! All is in “recovery”. All is as it was yesterday. All is well…
For the average unaware citizen, as long as the commercials and the fast food continue, there is nothing to be concerned about. What they have overlooked is that in this country we have had for at least the past decade the illusion of prosperity, and nothing more. Our modern citizenry looks back at the Great Depression and sees a deteriorating exterior that matched the true state of the interior crisis. They look at today, and see a fresh, glimmering, glossy exterior that cleverly hides the rotting financial sinew underneath.
They do not grasp how today’s implosion could be worse than that of any crisis yet seen in our history while still maintaining a visual facade of working order.