Depending on who you believe, if California was an independent state, it would have either the seventh, eighth or tenth largest economy in the world. Any way you cut it, the nation's most populated state (almost 37 million people@2006) represents better than 10% of the country's total population with a $1.8 trillion economy and tends to act as an early precursor to national trends in economics. Now that the State's Controller has announced a delay for tax refunds for 30 days starting February 1, 2009 for Personal Income Tax and Business Entity taxpayers I can't help but be reminded of an eerie set of postings I saw last year (about a secret closed door meeting by the House of Representatives held last March (only the fourth such meeting held in 176 years in this country)) that heralded the government's collapse in February of 2009, following a financial implosion that was predicted to begin in September of '08.

(Yeah, you might think some of the YouTube videos are over-the-top but they're food for thought, IMO.)

"Huh?" you're thinking. "What does this have to do with recruiting?"
Everything, my friend. Everything.

Now you all may think I'm nuts to bring this up (well, Jerry, maybe not you) but I have to tell you, I'm asking myself, doesn't the failure of a governmental body to pay its citizens back a "trusted" amount of money constitute a government's collapse? I think it does. I'm beginning (actually, this isn't true - I've been thinking about this for some time) to seriously question the framework of what all of us are facing here.

What do YOU think is going on?

“A patriot must always be ready to defend his country against his government.” ~ Edward Abbey (American Writer whose works, set primarily in the southwestern United States, reflect an uncompromising environmentalist philosophy. 1927-1989)

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Hi Maureen-

In my view there is good news and bad news- and I always take the bad news first:

We are in for a rough ride, likely equal and maybe worse than the Great Depression. The country is basically insolvent on every level, and the double hit of the war in Iraq and the gambling ways of the former masters of the universe just pushed the system over the brink. This means dramatically less business activity, including recruiting, decreasing in a series of waves down to as little as half of our previous economic activity. That means we are going to be seeing a lot of one-car families, people living with relatives, simple meals, far less travel, and a whole lot less of what we called "luxury" items across the board. This may last from five to as long as fifteen years as things get reworked.

Now for the good news: Visions of social disorder, anarchy, concentration camps, etc. are not going to happen absent natural disaster of huge proportions or a nuclear exchange with Russia or China. Our law-enfocrement regime is robust, to say the least. We are the most heavily armed society in the history of the world (I myself rarely leave the house without something strapped on) and people always underrate how strong highly ordered societies really are- looking at the last days of the Third Reich and the Japanese Empire, those social orders were under unimaginable stress and they did not really break down badly. Besides, (dont look now), but our prision system is already functioning as a kind of gulag.

Not only is all of the above true, but our nation still has vast wealth. We spend 7 billion a year on potato chips and more on defense than the rest of the world combined. Our new president is probably among the most talented and legititimate leaders to ever hold the office, and he seems focused on healthcare and energy- solving or mitigating those two items alone would turn it all around. We are going to change the way we live in this country, like it or not. We have put it off for two generations and certain political elements think its god-given to keep doing what we have been doing, but it's not and we wont.

Now this deal in California- states can't print money and so here we are. The feds will make good on the immediate debts of the state, but this will be a warning shot across the bow in terms of how radically things will have to change.

So what does this mean to most of us ? We are going to survive. We are all going to be much poorer than we thought we were going to be. The gap between rich and poor is going to narrow, maybe very quickly as saved cash either loses its value or just goes away to pixel land as it's doing by the hour now. Economic activity will go on, just at smaller scale. If you keep doing what you are good at doing, and realize that you are going to work hard for a lot less 'reward', you will be on the right track.

It's ugly, but we will be back, and when we come back, things will be on a better basis on a lot of levels.

Thats my 1.2 cents- deflated along with everything else.....
Martin, what do you make of this - what "catastophe" do you think he's referring to? It has a familiar "fear" ring to it.
WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama said Wednesday the recession will turn into "a catastrophe" if the economic stimulus is not passed quickly, lobbying anew for the plan as its price tag climbed above $900 billion and drew more criticism.
"No plan is perfect, and we should work to make it stronger," Obama told reporters at the White House. "Let's not make the perfect the enemy of the essential. Let's show people all over our country who are looking for leadership in this difficult time that we are equal to the task."
Cant read obama's mind of course but he is probably thinking accelerated unemployment and bank failures, from commercial real estate meltdown plus credit card and prime loan defaults.

In any case, check this guy out: Mike Shedlock, he has been right about everything (almost) for the past three years. Today's edition is likely just as accurate:

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2009/02/triage-for-troub...


Karen good to see you posting- I happen to think the economy can be turned without any "stimulus" beyond needed spending, but thats for another (long) post......

They're gonna need 'em if the pundits are correct...
Stimulus Plan Has $1 Billion to Hire More Local Police

WASHINGTON — President Obama’s economic stimulus plan includes about $1 billion to help local governments hire more police officers, which would resurrect a Clinton administration program that had been largely shelved by President George W. Bush.

The so-called COPS Program, for Community Oriented Policing Services, aimed to add 100,000 police officers to local departments in eight years. Whether it met that goal is the subject of heated debate in law enforcement and public policy circles.

Mr. Bush, reflecting a Republican philosophical objection to having the federal government pay for local police salaries, all but eliminated the program. More here.
Maureen I would not worry all that much about social breakdown. Some riots here and there (American style anyway) are not the end of the world, and we did not go to pieces during the Depression- by and large crime does not pay unless the government is the major criminal, which may be something to worry about, but that's not a law-and-order concern....

Lets hope much more enhancement of the LE complex is not for the state to protect itself or assert itself.




Maureen Sharib said:

They're gonna need 'em if the pundits are correct...
Stimulus Plan Has $1 Billion to Hire More Local Police

WASHINGTON — President Obama’s economic stimulus plan includes about $1 billion to help local governments hire more police officers, which would resurrect a Clinton administration program that had been largely shelved by President George W. Bush.

The so-called COPS Program, for Community Oriented Policing Services, aimed to add 100,000 police officers to local departments in eight years. Whether it met that goal is the subject of heated debate in law enforcement and public policy circles.

Mr. Bush, reflecting a Republican philosophical objection to having the federal government pay for local police salaries, all but eliminated the program. More here.
This sure reminds me of George Orwell's '1984' (Big brother is watching). Amazing similarities however I don't think as Patriots we'll let this awesome country of ours fall into totalitarian rule.

Maureen Sharib said:

They're gonna need 'em if the pundits are correct...
Stimulus Plan Has $1 Billion to Hire More Local Police

WASHINGTON — President Obama’s economic stimulus plan includes about $1 billion to help local governments hire more police officers, which would resurrect a Clinton administration program that had been largely shelved by President George W. Bush.

The so-called COPS Program, for Community Oriented Policing Services, aimed to add 100,000 police officers to local departments in eight years. Whether it met that goal is the subject of heated debate in law enforcement and public policy circles.

Mr. Bush, reflecting a Republican philosophical objection to having the federal government pay for local police salaries, all but eliminated the program. More here.
We'll see - time will tell, won't it? Believe me, I don't lie awake worryin' about this stuff- at least NOT YET.
;)
Maureen. Who is John Galt?

We are not at the bottom, and the folks in Congress just aren't smart enough to handle the mess. Which would matter if they were interested in doing so. Collapse may or may not come - the truth is that "triggers" in societies are little understood, and while a rapid downward spiral could occur, the chances are small because there are many strengths to an organized society.

Look at it this way. If a collapse does come, it will be so sudden and so vicious that most of your preparations wouldn't matter. Thus the best strategy is to be prepared (food, water, basic survival knowledge, and of course firearms, ammo, and training), but not to spend too much time on it.

If the world is ending, it will happen quickly. If it doesn't, then time spent worrying or over-preparing will actually hurt you more. The chances of societal collapse are small. The chances that making foolish decisions or suffering from bad morale are sure to hurt you, and it won't help if things fall apart.

The time to work hard and plan for the future is now. You can only control your reactions to external events. The best advice is to turn off the television and stop reading the newspaper, and focus on business and family. If you're politically motivated, there is a lot more you can do to organize, and I'd be happy to walk you down that path, but if you're not, shutting off the doomsayer noise is the best strategy.

And if you want conspiracy - there are far more interesting folks than Hal Turner.
John Galt is the protagonist star of a book featuring the ravings of a moral cretin whose influence (esp. in the form of one Alan Greenspan) has led us to exactly where we are today. Just sayin.......



Jim Durbin said:
Maureen. Who is John Galt?

Martin,

I believe the correct response is a knowing look and a steely, "I am John Galt."
Steely indeed; you could not have selected a more Randian adjective ;-)




Jim Durbin said:
Martin,

I believe the correct response is a knowing look and a steely, "I am John Galt."
Maureen,

Great post. I too am concerned as are many of us. But I should like to point out, as a recruiting industry we have a very important role to play in helping people find and maintain work. I think our role to the economy is so vital, that we must petition our government to do the right thing. Your post invites engagement which in this economy now is all the more vital. Keep up the great work.

I recently posted living each day with "Conviction of the Heart". We get one chance in this world to exact good, and that is the power we have collectively and invidually.

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