George W. Bush inherited a vibrant economy on the verge of collapse due to the dot.com bust, followed shortly thereafter by the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
As a result, the markets, real estate and virtually all investment vehicles crashed in concert. Bush's response was to borrow a page from Ronald Reagan's playbook, cutting taxes to spur the economy and inspire investment. Tax revenue at first dipped, but then increased, but so did spending, adding to the nation's deficit. However, for seven years the economy thrived until the collapse of the housing market brought on by failures in the derivatives markets and blatant fraud at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. (Where are the investigations of Franklin Raines, Valarie Jarret, Barney Frank, Chris Dodd and others?)
We now have the most inexperienced ideologue ever to occupy the White House ignoring historical economic facts as they relate to public monetary policy. With spending at record levels and a complicit Federal Reserve devaluing our currency through quantitative easing, the results could be ruinous. The facts be damned; it's full speed ahead in an onward rush toward insolvency.
Most of the public does not understand the subtleties involved in how we've been brought to the brink, but they do understand their pocketbooks, which begs the question: Are we as a nation any better off now than we were two-and-a-half years ago?
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Hilton Head Island