About Me

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Did Socrates say "Know Thyself", or was he misunderstood, as all are. Show Thyself is all we can do. The knowing is unknowable.  

I am filled with joy.  It can't be helped.  

Became a Farmer, Builder, Musician, Tank Commander, Librarian, Lawyer and Minister. I have failed at many things. And now retired.  Filled, just filled, with Joy. 

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Consumer Protection replaced by Consumerism

In AlterNet:

How Our Gutless Media Helped Trigger the Credit Crisis

By Trudy Lieberman, Columbia Journalism Review. Posted November 20, 2008.


"As Dean Starkman, who runs The Audit on cjr.org, pointed out in this magazine in March ("Red Ink Rising"), American credit-card debt now stands at more than $900 billion, up 9,000 percent from 1968, having risen by a third between 2001 and 2006. Worse, he noted that more than three quarters of the credit industry's profits now come from people who make minimum monthly payments. As he further reported, these industry-wide changes followed a regulatory rollback and were by and large missed by the nation's press."

During the Bush-Cheney-Rove regime, Americans preserved an appearance of prosperity even as they lost it, by dramatically deepening their dependence on rolling credit. The "investment bank" packaging of CDS/Credit Default Swaps with sub-prime mortgages was just the beginning of the financial collapse. The Trillion Dollar credit card debts which underemployed people will never be able to pay back has not yet begun to blight the rapidly eroding "fundamentals".