Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Letter to the editor - refused by Newsweek

Normally, I am not very keen on writing letters to the weekly I read. But in this case, something rankled.

Many economists, I think, can be compared to psychologists or meteorologists. Very learned coves indeed and thus always ready and available for an exhaustive explanation. But when the events prove them wrong - that happens not infrequently - , don't wait for an excuse, you are wasting your time.

Thus I wrote a letter to the editor of Newsweek but they did not publish it. So I thought nothing should be wasted in these hard times. My letter might be worthwhile reading inside this wonderful blog.

All this is about Robert J. Samuelson's article "It's really a global crisis".

So, if someone needs to smile a bit, here is Georgyporgy's idea of how to save the economy pronto.

It might be a great help if one of these economics pundits would admit the fact that they are clueless, more or less. This recession will subside until people finally operate a change of mind and start spending again. Not before.

All those government induced spending programs won't change this situation. You could built new roads, you could even level the Mojave dcsert and cover it with a slab of concrete three feet thick: that would certainly boost the cement industry but not the manufacturer of toothpaste or the shipyards. Etc, etc, etc.

However, let yourself be inspired by Roosevelt's inauguration speech, back in 1933. He asked for special powers to tackle the problem at hand. "I shall ask the Congress for the one remaining instrument to meet the crisis—broad Executive power to wage a war against the emergency, as great as the power that would be given to me if we were in fact invaded by a foreign foe".

Having achieved this, the incumbent president could vote to have the National Guard be equipped with axes or heavy clubs. Nationwide. Then these so armed recession fighters would enter every home and start destroying the following items in each household: 1 TV set - 1 car - 1 washing machine - 1 cell phone plus about 100 items of more or less value laying around.

Before leaving they should paste a written recommendation saying those goods have to be replaced by items manufactured inside the country. No need to boost those Asiatic economies, right?

These harsh measures would get the country humming in no time and once again the rest of the world would rush to imitate.

Here in France, however, we would start by going on strike, sure.


Your comments, please. As to me, I am busy these days with the chain saw and the log splitting machine. Hard work.