Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Depression?

 First I'd like to make a couple of announcements.  I'm going to try to update this blog more often; I know I've said it before but I KNOW I can do this!  Having said that, I'm off traveling in a week so internet access will be spotty.  I'll do what I can! 

I've added comment moderation - I'm sorry to do it but I'm getting some comments in Chinese.  I don't know Chinese and just don't care for things I have to go have translated.  Sorry for the inconvenience but there we go.  If some Chinese person is reading my drivel then they can comment in English or be unheard.

Now; for the title commentary.  One of the investment blogs I read had a kind of minor discussion about whether we are in a recession or a depression.  It made me really happy that I'm not an 'investment professional'.  Debating semantics is fine for folks who are doing well but for folks who are losing their homes or seeing retirement dreams go up in flames; it's not so fun.  So far, I'm one of the lucky ones.  Will I remain so?  Who knows.  If I could foretell the future, I'd be a hell of a lot wealthier, more popular and probably more paranoid that I am today!

Anyway, I'm older than the people who were having that discussion and my parents were fairly old when I was born so I've heard from my parents what it was like to live through the Great Depression.  My mother was orphaned when she was 19 - in 1931.  She got a job as a waitress.  Not a great job but it was enough.  My dad was managing a dime store - anyone know what that was?  Their stories sounded a lot like what is going on now.  The big difference is that now we have welfare programs, both public and private, to keep people from standing in line at a soup kitchen.  My mother-in-law was a little younger(age 13 in 1930); she lived on her parent's dairy farm.  Back then farmers didn't rely on grocery stores very much so she basically didn't know there was a depression!  The point remains, it doesn't matter what you call it, these are not the best of times.

My folks came out of the depression knowing about saving; knowing about not wasting things.  Maybe this 'economic event' will help our country re-discover some of those values.  I doubt it but I sure wish it.


(Go read the first line of A Tale of Two Cities for yourself!)

1 comment:

Dan said...

Already read A Tale of Two Cities - {*grin*}

When you are broke and hurting and no job is in sight, it really doesn't make any difference whether it is a recession of depression. The only difference is how many friends in the same situation are around you.

BTW - soup kitchens and food pantries are in desperate need of supplies in spite of the so-called safety net programs which have seemingly failed to a large extent.