US ECONOMISTS WARN OF ANOTHER CRASH!
Erle Frayne D. Argonza
Magandang araw, mga kapamilyang global! Good day, fellow global family members!
Let me echo a theme that has been reverberating among circles of economists in the USA lately: a new cycle of economic crash. I’ve already begun to echo notes about whether the ‘stimulus package’ did its task as effectively as it can to deliver the goods, notes that connect to what the economists have been saying of late.
Among a leading light of the US economist circles is Joseph Stiglitz, former executive at the World Bank. A brilliant and dynamic mind in America, Stiglitz represents a coterie of rare experts who can be adjudged as independent-minded, for most of America’s experts are intellectual prostitutes whose purses are fattened by their loyal patronage of oligarchic and political interest groups.
America’s economists are again echoing the alarm calls about another round or cycle of recession which could lead the USA into a ‘double-dip recession’ the impact of which could be the worst that the U.S. work force will have ever experienced. The alarm call practically resonates with an identical forewarning by European economists on the bigger crash that could happen to Europe’s already burning economy.
The very same experts are very keen observers of the global economy aside from their deep grounding in their own domestic economies, and so the cautionary echoes include Japan’s and Canada’s economies as well. Practically all of the pillars of the Western economy—all powerful members of the OECD—have been receiving alarm calls from their own economists.
Maybe the media should better seek audiences with other experts as well, notably the sociologists and public policy as well, who have been keenly observant of the domestic (USA’s) and global economies. Why not consult the likes of Peter Evans and Theda Skocpol for instance, who have been doing works over the past decades that run parallel to what economists have been doing?
Chances are that the experts across a broad spectrum of the social sciences will end up with parallel if not identical evaluations about the impact of the stimulus package and the directions of the US economy and society.
The last round of financial reforms and a new stimulus package announced by White House recently just don’t seem to fit into the expectations of the noblesse experts who all trace the economic malaise of America to the effects of excessive liberalization reforms. Those reforms saw the diminution of the ‘real economy’, to note: (a) de-industrialization, (b) agricultural decay, (c) infrastructure neglect and collapse, (d) neglect of transport & communications sectors, and (e) decay/erosion of science & technology.
Whether the Bush & Obama stimulus package was able to shore up the collapsing ‘real/physical economy’ is now doubtful. The recent Obama-initiated reforms is only putting some caps on regulation problems for big business and ensuring some fairness in the games of the financial-monetary sectors. The coming tax cuts are added incentives to big business that do not necessarily ensure the revivification of the physical economy.
And that’s where the rub lies in America today. By the very fact that a new ‘stimulus package’ is being prepared in the pipeline means precisely the failure of the recovery program. As already shared by me in a previous article, the pronouncement of a new pump priming package is already causing jitters among portfolio and long-term investors.
With the investment field blurred anew in the USA, the resuscitation of employment to full employment level had been turned into an elusive dream. Whether tax cuts can induce new investments (inclusive of the realty sector), factoring the new financial reforms, will be a raging debate not only in America but among other global observers as well.
I am now of the opinion that Obama has been badly advised by his own economic team about the policy and institutional options for salving the structural ailments of the US economy. Bad advise means the resort to ‘bad economics’, a behavior that is ‘bad science’. Bad science breeds bad practice, and bad practice breeds disasters and catastrophes.
Will Obama and the policy-makers listen to the independent-minded economists this time?
[Philippines, 01 October 2010]
[See: IKONOKLAST: http://erleargonza.blogspot.com,
BRIGHTWORLD: http://erlefraynebrightworld.wordpress.com, ARTBLOG: http://erleargonza.wordpress.com,