David Westerfield

Gospel. Culture. Technology. Music.

Tag: depression

Psalm 77 – Reminding Ourselves of the Gospel Story… Everyday

It was during the course of reading the Daily Office readings for today that I read Psalm 77. Asaph has a struggle of confidence in the Lord within his heart causing him to waver, displayed here (man, have I been here before):

Psalm 77:4–9
You hold my eyelids open;
I am so troubled that I cannot speak.
I consider the days of old,
the years long ago.
I said, “Let me remember my song in the night;
let me meditate in my heart.”
Then my spirit made a diligent search:
“Will the Lord spurn forever,
and never again be favorable?
Has his steadfast love forever ceased?
Are his promises at an end for all time?
Has God forgotten to be gracious?
Has he in anger shut up his compassion?” Selah (ESV)

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What Are These Protests About?

Many are weighing in and spinning what these protests are about. Liberal pundits slam only banks and couple Republicans to the problem, ad nauseum. Conservatives defend the banks against what they perceive as a monolithic group of liberal protestors while ignoring the banks’ obvious and blatant fraud as well as their disregard for the law and yet at the same time (appropriately) slamming liberals like Michael Moore for absurdly wanting to get rid of capitalism.

While I agree with Herman Cain on a lot of issues, he proved to not understand what is happening either and frankly offered a very arrogant assessment of those without jobs or aren’t rich that can’t seem to help him win many points with voters, especially independents: “Don’t blame Wall Street, don’t blame the big banks, if you don’t have a job and you’re not rich, blame yourself. It is not someone’s fault if they succeeded, it is someone’s fault if they failed.” In other words, pull up your bootstraps you unemployed yobs!

Now I’m all for personal responsibility and taking ownership, but I also believe in the ability and likelihood of elites using power and prominence for evil. Our situation economically came from and was initiated by fraud, both in the private and public sectors, and is being perpetuated and protected by people in his position, at his level. I know a couple of people who have not been able to find jobs for over 52 weeks. It is mean and arrogant to slam them as if this is something they can prevent.

But regardless in the midst of all this back and forth and nonsensical discourse that misses the forest for the trees, the message is being lost as to what this is all about.

It really comes down to something I wrote in a couple of comments on Facebook related to the protests recently:

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US in Depression and What it Means for the Church in America

The ‘D’ word is being uttered in the mainstream now. Despite whatever the media says concerning the ‘jobless recovery’ we’re in (which is a complete oxymoron) or the ‘summer recovery’ we’ve begun that Obama touted as truth last month, all indicators are pointing to the fact that the US is officially entering an era of economic depression, something not seen in my or my dad’s generation.

The numbers tell the story. A couple of articles in particular are pointing to this fact. One on CNBC, the other by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard of the Telegraph. In addition, even liberal, Keynesian economist Paul Krugman from the New York Times is calling this the beginning of the Third Depression, as I talked about in my last entry. He is dead wrong on how to fix it, but his diagnosis is correct.

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Credit Crisis Was a Gigantic Ponzi Scheme, on the Scale of Enron x1000

It seems this message is becoming more mainstream these days. It’s about time. Max Keiser is right to call this financial terrorism, especially in light of the fact that we, the tax payers, have bailed them out while everyone else is suffering from their dealings, and as a result, they have had record profits this past year. Unbelievable. I’m pro-profit, pro-free-market, pro-conservative, but Max Keiser is also right to call this Rigged Market Capitalism. I can’t think of a better term for it.

Anyone else find it odd the “flash crash” (1000 point dow drop within a matter of minutes) happened right when Congress was negotiating rules regulating derivatives? Oh and oddly enough now, the rules around derivatives have been completely gutted as I understand it. There is rampant corruption and looting going on within the government and the larger corporate world, particularly the monolithic banks. This is not a free market but an oligarchy.

More generally, here are Davidowitz’s views on the economy at large. Even Paul Krugman from the New York Times is calling the Third Great Depression, though he’s completely wrong about the remedy (even more spending).

China Risks Moving World Into Greater Recession

China has now become the biggest risk to the world economy – Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, (bracketed insertions and emphasis mine)

These are headlines you won’t ever read, that to me are worthy of true news alerts.

“By holding the yuan to 6.83 to the dollar to boost exports, Beijing is dumping its unemployment abroad – ‘stealing American jobs’, says Nobel laureate Paul Krugman. As long as China does it, other tigers must do it too.

Western capitalists are complicit, of course. They rent cheap workers and cheap plant in Guangdong, then lobby Capitol Hill to prevent Congress doing anything about it. This is labour arbitrage.

At some point, American workers will rebel. US unemployment is already 17.5pc under the broad ‘U6‘ gauge followed by Barack Obama [the same gauge used to determine unemployment during the Great Depression if that is any indicator of where things actually stand]. Realty Track said that 332,000 properties were foreclosed in October alone. More Americans have lost their homes this year than during the entire decade of the Great Depression. A backlog of 7m homes is awaiting likely seizure by lenders. If you are not paying attention to this political time-bomb, perhaps you should.”

It’s worth noting that Evans-Pritchard is known for making overstatements, though he has been right most of the time to be sure. However, these numbers are not overstatements.

Ah, What Do Those Pesky Economists Know Anyway?

Why has the economy collapsed? The real, fundamental issue? “When you really get down to it, it’s the lack of ethics, the lack of morality that’s seeped into our society in the last decade that has largely brought us to this point.” – Eric Hovde.

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