As is usually the case, I’ve got more questions than answers. Luckily, somebody has answers — to these and other puzzling questions.
Economists tell us that the Great Recession ended last summer. One complication: Many people—President Obama included—are acting like we’re still in the midst of a recession. One more complication: A committee of economists now says that the recession that ended last summer may not have ended after all.
Back in 2007, everybody seemed willing to believe the housing market, stock market, and economy as a whole would keep humming along uninterrupted for, well, forever. Now, few people seem to believe that the recession is over—even though it supposedly ended last summer.
So much for making lemons out of lemonade. Sometimes, when you’re given lemons (i.e., you get fired), it just sucks, no two ways about it. And on a broader scale, layoffs and the long-term, perhaps permanent disappearance of jobs could cause more problems for families, neighborhoods, and society as a whole than you can possibly imagine.
Contrary to what you might assume, the nation’s overall health showed dramatic improvements during the Great Depression. Could something similar be happening right now? Does economic crisis actually make us healthier?
Sometimes, an adjective seems inappropriate. Take “great.” It seems both overused and misused. Wayne Gretzky? No doubt about it: GREAT. Alexander the Great? Sure. Muhammad Ali? The Greatest. But plagues, wars, floods, depressions, economic panics, riots, and recessions? If any of these things are occurring, the situation seems less than …