By Scott Rubin | SF Gate.com | Jun. 16, 2011
The United States of America may potentially be on the precipice of a Greek-style debt crisis within a few years, and our economy is increasingly looking like it may be at risk of entering another recession - and the Financial Crisis 2.0 could make the Great Recession look tame. Simply put, the Fed and Treasury have bloated their balance sheets to such grotesque levels to fight the deflationary forces sparked in the economy as a result of the housing collapse that there will be no more temporary "smoke-and-mirrors" fiscal and monetary options to circumvent another downturn.
Certainly, the Fed will likely give QE3...QE4...QE5, a shot if the economy becomes completely unglued, but similar to what has occurred in Japan for the last 20 years, it will not work. We have already seen what Mr. Bernanke's money printing in the form of QE2 has wrought - it has robbed the middle class blind, while benefitting the entrenched corporate, banking, and political elite, along with wealthy Americans. The vast majority of Americans do not have sufficient financial assets such as bond, stock, commodity and hedge fund portfolios to offset the rise in food and energy prices that Bernanke has unleashed on the country due to his policy of Dollar devaluation through money printing.
The entire burden of a falling Dollar as a result of QE2 and the United States' exploding debt has been placed on the middle and working classes, while the elite have benefitted from rising prices for financial assets. It is a scam. Furthermore, it hasn't provided one iota of benefit for the vast majority of American citizens. The unemployment rate continues to hover at 9.1% and very likely could hit double digits by next year.
Furthermore, home prices hit a new low in May. This is the one asset that matters most to the majority of Americans, and things are getting worse. The creator of the Case-Shiller Home Price Index, Robert Shiller, recently said that he was optimistic that home prices could fall for the next 20 years. In all likelihood, there will be no economic recovery whatsoever when the dust settles. The bailouts, federal deficit spending, and quantitative easing programs that were enacted to attempt to reflate asset prices and spark the job market will be viewed by historians as failures. The entire Keynesian orgy's real result is likely to be an even more devastating financial collapse.
The toxic debt that was held by the private sector before the crisis has now been transferred to sovereign balance sheets as well as those of global central banks. Furthermore, many private corporations have taken advantage of the Fed's historically low interest rate policy to lever-up their balance sheets once again. These facts when combined with the moral hazard that we have introduced into our economic system as a result of the bailouts (corporate socialism), similar problems in most of the developed world, and an unprecedentedly interconnected global economy have set the stage for a potential systemic meltdown.
All of this could have been averted if we had taken heed of Dr. Ron Paul's warnings years ago. This man has been fighting with absolute integrity and honesty for the values that this country was founded on for the last 30 years - sound money, balanced budgets, free markets, non-interventionist foreign policy and civil liberties. Most every other GOP Presidential candidate is an Establishment panderer who is beholden to entrenched special interests. Why should we trust another Establishment politician after being subjected to the lies of George W. Bush and Barack Obama, not to mention nearly every other politician in Washington D.C.?
Obama's lies have been egregious and on par with those of President Bush. He lied about closing Guantanamo Bay. He lied about bringing the troops home. He resigned the Patriot Act after saying that he would not. Furthermore, Obama is targeting American citizens for assassination without due process. This is in addition to the socialist, big government, programs he has passed such as ObamaCare, which was opposed by the majority of the American populace. Domestically, our spending has gotten completely out of control. President Bush got the ball rolling, and President Obama has sped up the process of destroying the country through debt.
According to a recent Treasury report, the national debt will exceed the size of the economy this year. Just one year ago, the Treasury had said that the debt to GDP ratio would not break 100% until 2014. Can we really afford to elect Obama for 4 more years given that our debt/GDP level is estimated to hit 102% in 2012? Can you imagine what a U.S. default would look like? How about civil unrest, a collapsing Dollar, and unemployment rivaling the Great Depression.
Make no mistake, this country is on the precipice of crisis and we need to make radical changes. The 2012 Presidential elections may present one of the last opportunities for the American people to rise up against the oligarchy that has run this country into the ground for their own personal benefit at the expense of the majority of the citizens of this deteriorating Republic.
Amid the terrible domestic economy where another recession (depression?) seems likely, our politicians are still overseeing a disastrous foreign policy that is bankrupting us. We have been lied to repeatedly. We have been propagandized mercilessly by the mainstream media. We have been made to live in fear under the "War on Terror," yet we have not been given a clear message about how this war can be won. How do you win the "War on Terror" by invading and occupying a sovereign country that had nothing to do with Al-Qaeda, and killing hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians?
We are engaged in wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya, and we are bombing Yemen and Pakistan all the while threatening Iran. How is this going to stop terrorism? Please tell me! We are creating more terrorists, while at the same time giving the extremists opportunities to kill Americans day in and day out. Why? If anything, we are galvanizing their cause in the eyes of other Muslims. Furthermore, we simply cannot afford more war mongering and militarism. Period.
Into this void has stepped a man whose reputation for integrity, honesty, and principles is unimpeachable. He has ideas that address nearly every single problem that this country faces. He wants to follow the Constitution, restore civil liberties, end the foreign occupations, downsize government, restore sound money and reform the Entitlement State. If we elected Dr. Ron Paul, would all of these things happen overnight? Of course not. Many of his solutions would take years to successfully implement, but the ideas are powerful and very important. Ron Paul represents the idea of a radical reformation of our country - based on the principles enunciated by the founding fathers.
These ideas were profoundly powerful when they were written down in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. If Ron Paul can sufficiently stir the American populace, his ideas will take root even if he does not subsequently win the GOP nomination. If this happens, U.S. policy and the entire course of our country could shift much faster than most people realize. Nothing is more powerful than an idea, and few ideas are as powerful as the concept of liberty. It is time that we finally tried something different. Ron Paul represents real change.