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Calculating the cost of bailing out the economy
Posted by: Lance on Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Now that the NBER has decided to endorse my view that we went into recession last December which I first first claimed last January, I think my points about the efficacy of fiscal stimulus still apply.

As for spending already pledged to save us, the figures are growing at a rate that has even astounded someone as bearish and cynical as myself. Barry Ritholtz has given us a breakdown and a spreadsheet to track it:

Click to Enlarge

I suspect given the continuing issues and a President intent on expanding the government balance sheet even more than our present one that that spreadsheet will get quite a bit larger. All that money to save a $13 trillion economy. What a mess.

Meanwhile the housing market continues to collapse, as the lights repeatedly seen at the end of the tunnel seem to really just be a series of oncoming trains. Lots of charts and analysis here and here.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

The best commentary I’ve found on the economic situation has been Karl Denninger’s at

Going through his archives for the past year, and especially the past 3-4 months, is well worth it.
Written By: Rollory
URL: http://
And those staggering numbers don’t even include such trifling things as social security. It is the biggest of many elephants in the room. The math says we have to dramatically cut entitlement spending. The politics say crank up the printing press. Unfortunately politics usually win out. How can the dollar survive?
Written By: Captain Obviousness
URL: http://
The math says we have to dramatically cut entitlement spending. The politics say crank up the printing press. Unfortunately politics usually win out.
...and that, boys and girls, is how the Roman Empire fell; because the Roman state went bankrupt paying for a huge entitlement portfolio and literally taxed the productive class into exile. The invading Goths, Huns and Vandals were more Hollywood embellishment than anything else.

That said, is there clear indication that such massive pump-priming (more like pump-gilding if you ask me) really makes a significant positive impact in getting us out of a recession? To my uneducated eyes it looks like robbing Peter to pay Paul.
Written By: CR
URL: http://
It’s almost 2009, where are those fricken robots that are going to do the work while we all sit around and get paid for it?

I want my damn robot!

And I want my flying car, too.

Written By: CaptinSarcastic
URL: http://
CaptinSarcastic wants robots and flying cars. I just want MY bailout. I figure that Uncle Sugar MUST have a few hundred thou that he can spare for me SOMEWHERE in those trillions.
Written By: docjim505
URL: http://
"For the first time in history, the total indebtedness of the U.S., including unfunded liabilities, exceeds the total net worth of all U.S. households. —former Comptroller of the Currency, David Walker, SQUAWK BOX, CNBC, November 7, 2008, 07:23:05"
(found here)

I have no doubt.

"If your children ever discover how lame you really are, they’ll murder you in your sleep."

(Frank Zappa, 1966)
Written By: Billy Beck
URL: http://www.two—
So, what did Countrywide get for working so well with the CRA?
Written By: Don
URL: http://
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