Nov 142010

Much of our news and concern since late 2007 has involved what the media-at-large have titled “The Great Recession.” Now the elected leadership and their appointed lackeys have begun claiming the recession is over and the stimuli worked.

There are simply too many holes in politics for me to take this down in a single column, but I will attempt to identify a couple of key concepts for the uninformed. The people who define these words –– whoever they may be –– decided “recession” would mean two consecutive quarters of decline in Growth Domestic Product. Dozens of variables define GDP, so this definition becomes a bit obscure.

For instance, when the federal government hired thousands of employees for the 2010 Census in late 2009 and early 2010, employment numbers received a gigantic boost, which caused an increase in GDP. But those jobs were temporary and will not have a long-lasting benefit.

How has our educational system fallen so far that U.S. citizens, once the most independent group of people on Earth, became so deluded as to the powers of government and the effects of similar prior attempts?

Politicians lie; this is a fact. They claim their statements are simply spinning the truth to appear more palatable to their constituents. Well, I’m no expert, but I believe something is either truth, or a lie, never both. The economy isn’t recovering.

We know the effect of centrally managed economies is failure. The Soviet Union taught us this very recently. Apparently, we forgot.

One central agency in America has the responsibility to “grow the economy.” The Federal Reserve, currently chaired by Ben Bernanke, previously chaired by Alan Greenspan, has the authority to attempt to manipulate economic factors in order to provide economic growth and to –– in theory –– keep the dollar strong.

What has been the effect on the dollar of the Federal Reserve since its founding in 1913? The dollar has lost approximately 96 percent of its value and the economy –– minus a few bubbles and idiotic acts by Congress to legislate economic equality –– has been in the tank since the mid-1980s.

The, housing and commodities bubbles all preceded economic downturns. Want the worse news? The Great Depression followed five-to-seven years of tremendous economic growth.

Why am I worried? This latest claimed-recovery by D.C. is smoke and mirrors. It is nothing more than fool’s gold. The factors that caused the Great Recession have not gone away, unemployment is worse than it ever was; the Federal Reserve is out of tricks.

Greenspan and Bernanke both lowered interest rates in order to encourage borrowing and lending. Rates are currently below 0.25 percent, in other words, they cannot be lowered significantly.

Worse, the Fed has been intentionally increasing the money supply via “quantitative easing.” A great video on YouTube explains the inherent moral hazards of the Federal Reserve. Search: “Quantitative Easing Explained.” The video is animated.

Demonstrating their trademark arrogance and hubris, the current administration accused China of intentionally suppressing the value of the Yen in order to maintain their trade advantage over the western world.

China, appropriately, responded by citing the $600 billion quantitative easing carried out by Bernanke the same week.

How does all of this affect you, a student at CSU? As we already know, you will graduate with more debt than previous generations, and you will graduate to a weakened job market that will not pay you what you think you deserve in the rare circumstance that you actually find a job.

Bankers who wanted to have central control over the economy established the Federal Reserve in 1913. Those same bankers carried as much influence over politicians then as they do now –– meaning they get what they want.

We likely have utterly no chance whatsoever to reverse the course of the federal government, and likely the nation; but you, as a student and future taxpayer, have a responsibility to understand how toxic the Federal Reserve has been for America and her citizens.

Centrally managed economies fail. Countries that invade Afghanistan fail. Countries with massive overseas military forces fail. These are the facts of world history.

We will not be any different.

Seth Stern is a senior journalism major. His column appears Mondays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to

 Posted by at 1:24 pm

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