Posts Tagged ‘solutions’

What is the answer to America's economic woes?

What is the answer to America's economic woes?

It would be fair to say, ahead of the crucial speech by the head of the Fed today/tonight, (depending where you are in the world), that all sorts of people have ideas as to what the American establishment should do to fix up the current economic mess, but most everyday folks don’t understand any of the prescriptions on offer.

The following collection of opinions by four leading economists interviewed by the BBC may help to cast some light on the topic, which is surely of great interest to all of us.

It includes an easy-to-read “ready reckoner” explaining all of the Fed’s available actions.

I cannot help but feel, however, that right now the answer to America’s woes lies in the hands of its people and communities, not its rulers. Perhaps it was ever thus. Looking at the very restricted room for manoeuvre that the Fed currently has, it is certainly true at the moment.

Somehow, the brow-beaten and frightened people of this great country, which used to literally throb with the rhythm and pulse of a citizenry who believed anyone could “make it big” given enough effort and application, have to be encouraged to take advantage – right now – of how cheap money is to borrow, dragged kicking and screaming from their cocoons to invest in their own futures, to start or expand businesses, to invent valuable new products and services, to take business trips and engage the world in what they have to offer … bluntly, Americans need to grab themselves by their own bootstraps and lift themselves up.

But Americans, like many in the world, seem utterly mesmerised by the current economic woes of their country, and others.

Unaccustomed to times anything like as hard as this, mis-led for a generation as to the health of their economy and their genuine standing in the world, and fed a relentless diet of depressing economic news and the prognostiocations of doom-saying public commentators – not to mention watching the antics of politicians who have eschewed principled leadership and rely instead on name-calling and jingoism to get themselves re-elected – well, these people are just simply very confused, and very scared.

Like millions of rabbits trapped in the twin headlights of a media-led misery fest and weak, self-serving leadership, they hunker down with cable TV and pay down their mortgages, reduce their credit card debt, and hope like hell that the economic Angel of Death doesn’t visit their front door.

Well never mind what the economists say, or the politicians, and least of all the TV and radio shock-jocks.

Someone yell it from the rooftops: Americans need to do it for themselves.

After all, there could hardly be a better time to try and make a go of it. Money is so cheap, a business simply needs to cover its actual operating costs to be in profit.

So stop waiting for someone else to fix this situation. Come on, Americans. You can do it.

PS This article makes almost as much sense if you Find and Replace “America” with Britain, France, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, Australia …