Tuesday, December 22, 2009
States Exhaust Unemployment Compensation Funds
25 states have exhausted their unemployment compensation funds. An additional 15 states are expected to do so soon. When the fund is exhausted, the states begin to borrow money from the federal government to keep their state-based unemployment compensation system afloat. But the money borrowed from the federal government will have to be repaid. How will it be repaid? Some states are talking about radical increases in the costs to employers of unemployment insurance. And if the employment does not return to a state, eventually the federal government will cut the state off from further loans, and then the people in that state will not have any unemployment compensation program. Which actually is part of the Republican platform: get rid of unemployment compensation. Looks like they are succeeding in that.
This tracks with Naomi Klein's book "Shock Doctrine." First the Republicans allow Wall Street to loot the country; they start wars for Empire and further drain the treasury, have some (as yet undefined) relationship to 9/11, either by not bothering to protect the public from the attack or by knowing it was coming and using it to justify attacking Iraq, but in any event they use the 9/11 attacks to suspend the constitution, terrify the public, and tell people to expect very little in their lives in the future other than the national goal of keeping them "safe." But safe from whom? Not safe from the corporations who are taking our jobs overseas, bribing our politicians, setting up offshore shell facades so they won't have to pay any taxes.
And now here we are with ongoing long-term large unemployment. Our government is loaning our money to the credit card industry at 0% interest per year, and the credit card companies turn around and the loan the money to us at 30%/year. The banks have taken everyone's money by the grossly inflated real estate market created by Alan Greenspan, and now they are foreclosing and kicking people out on the street.
When the financial crisis hit hard, our government did not do anything to help us, the people -- why not give us money? Why not pass emergency legislation limiting interest charges on credit cards to 10%? Why not help the people? Instead, the Democrats gave hundreds of billions of dollars to the same criminals on Wall Street who created these problems in the first place. Why are they rewarded? Why is the Obama administration packed with the same people who supported the looting of our country by Wall Street?
What will happen eventually? Some states (like California, if Arnold has his way) will begin selling off all the assets that belong to the state, cutting back on public education to the point that it is so bad that anyone who can will have their kids in private schools (probably "Christian" private schools), laying off cops, firefighters, teachers, shutting down libraries, cutting salaries for the clerical employees and eliminating healthcare and pensions for everyone. Then we will have a public that is "crushed" by the forces of Wall Street. Nobody can stand up to the Empire. People will simply go along, standing on streetcorners begging for a day's work while the politicians carry off bags of bribes to hide away in off-shore hedge funds.
Our entire country has been looted. Everything has been taken away. People's savings are disappearing from grossly inflated housing costs, unemployment, and the fact that the banks pay 0% interest. People who have money in the stock market already saw 30-40% disappear, and if we have a "double dip" early next year, as many predict, it could be a rinse and repeat scenario. There is no job security for the employed. And now the government is giving another $200 billion per year of our money to the medical industry, the same people who have been gouging us for decades now, making our medical care the most expensive, but among the worst of western nations.
We were waiting for the Democrats to save us. They are on the other side, though, Republicans in disguise. Now what?