Fear Of Inflation, But Not Recession

Yesterday, the Fed raised the interest rate banks pay on emergency Fed loans:

Financial markets were sent into a late-day spin after being caught off-guard by the Federal Reserve decision to raise the rate it charges banks for emergency loans. [. . .] The increase in the discount rate is just one of several moves the Fed is taking to reverse its unprecedented easing of monetary policy, but it is perhaps the most visible action taken so far. [. . .] [T]he move was widely seen as a key step in the central bank's move toward raising interest rates more broadly.

Why in heaven's name would the Fed take such an approach? Surely not a rational fear of inflation. Today, new inflation numbers were released - they show DEflation for the first time since 1982:

The price of a variety of goods, everything from rent to cigarettes, rose 0.2 percent in January. Excluding food and fuel costs, which tend to be volatile, prices fell 0.1 percent — the first decrease since 1982.

What could the Fed be thinking? Thursday's jobs report was not good:

Thursday’s report on jobless filings, in fact, rekindled worries that the labor market would be slow to bounce back. First-time unemployment claims last week were much higher than expected — 473,000, up 31,000 from the previous week.

The problem is not inflation, it is unemployment. How the Fed could see it otherwise is not clear to me.

Speaking for me only

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    And, in more bad news (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by jbindc on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:50:01 AM EST
    More community banks in DC face closure.

    A mortgage crisis like the one that has devastated homeowners is enveloping the nation's office and retail buildings, and few places are likely to be hit as hard as Washington.

    The foreclosure wave is likely to swamp many smaller community banks across the country, and many well-known properties, including Washington's Mayflower Hotel and the Boulevard at the Capital Centre in Largo, are at risk, industry analysts say.

    The new round of financial pain, which some had anticipated but hoped to avoid, now seems all but certain. "There's been an enormous bubble in commercial real estate, and it has to come down," said Elizabeth Warren, chairman of the Congressional Oversight Panel, the watchdog created by Congress to monitor the financial bailout. "There will be significant bankruptcies among developers and significant failures among community banks."

    Unlike the largest banks, such as Citigroup and Wachovia, that got into so much trouble early on, the community banks in general fared better in the residential mortgage crisis. But their turn is coming: Not only did community banks issue a higher proportion of commercial loans, but they also have held on to them rather than sell them to other investors.

    Nearly 3,000 community banks -- 40 percent of the banking system -- have a high proportion of commercial real estate loans relative to their capital, said Warren, whose committee issued a report on commercial real estate last week. "Every dollar they lose in commercial real estate is a dollar they can't use for small businesses," she said. Individuals -- who saw their home values drop in the residential mortgage crisis -- would not feel that kind of loss, but, Warren said, a large-scale failure would "throw sand into the gears of economic recovery."

    So, many have been pushing to support community banks over the behomoths like Bank of America and Citigroup, but may get stuck holding the bag.

    My wife works for a small bank (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Dadler on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:38:57 AM EST
    In California she tells me that, like her bank, federal regulators are making things next to impossible for small institutions who, largely, never engaged in the chicanery that led to our collapse.  For her bank, if simply a few business clients go belly up, as they have, then trouble is a comin'.  The bank needs to raise a 15 million by the middle of March, which it looks like they will, or they could be closed down.  You know what chump change, contextually speaking of course, compared to the big cheaters and crooks who have been, essentially, rewarded?  

    Really sickening.  But the small banks are easy pickins, and as our government is not of and by and for the people much anymore, well, you know the drill.  There's a new CFO in town, and his name is Ben Dover.


    This is very disturbing (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:33:41 PM EST
    Without competition, there will be no actual reform possible.

    BINGO (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by Inspector Gadget on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 01:05:02 PM EST
    Helping Big Failure (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by norris morris on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 03:00:16 PM EST
    Our government has chosen to help the "too big to fail" failures that continue to gorgr themselves with bonuses and perks with the public's dollars.

    Small community banks, foreclosures,startup business, has all stagnated.

    Citibank who has behaved as wantonly as the rest of the biggies and whose judgement calls have been reprehensible, gets saved. For the moment.

    We are living through fiscal madness with no tough restrictions in place. Our country is becoming a corporate and big bank cesspool. Our credit cards practice usory and no laws exist whether by State or Federal mandate to control intereest rates at 30%.

    There is no master plan that I know of and it all seems scattershot, and totally driven by Wall St and big banking.. Hey, they all cough up bucks for elections.


    Madness! (5.00 / 2) (#46)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 04:44:58 PM EST
    Yup.  That's an apt description.

    For the past 30 years the country has become increasingly insane.

    The outlook isn't brilliant.


    Better cut some more taxes. (5.00 / 0) (#5)
    by observed on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:51:57 AM EST

    I'm no economist... (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by sweetthings on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:56:47 AM EST
    But I think the Fed is just trying to send a signal that things are slowly going back to 'normal,' whatever that means. Raising this particular rate has no effect at all on consumers or anything, really, as long as banks are lending to each other. They stopped doing this in the middle of the crisis, but as far as I know, they're since started again. So the Fed can raise this rate, signaling investors that the worst has passed, without actually affecting the economy at all.

    At least, that's the theory.

    I think you're right that (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:39:44 AM EST
    that's the reason for it.  Whether it's a good idea or not I have no clue.

    I think this is along the lines of (none / 0) (#54)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 06:10:57 PM EST
    easing.  But it is creating a deeper recession too.

    Normal for the top 1% (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by esmense on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 03:35:26 PM EST
    The only ones who count.

    High unemployment is a feature, not a bug (5.00 / 3) (#9)
    by lambert on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:02:05 AM EST
    Over the long term, more peasants will die earlier. Fiscal responsibility!

    (Please don't make the mistake of imagining that the "public interest" has anything to do with how "public policy" is made. It doesn't.)

    In addition (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:23:15 AM EST
    ...as I've said a zillion times before...in addition, more peasants will be desperate for jobs and won't care too much about silly things like "worker rights".

    The Ayn Randian/Alan Greenspan sect is rubbing their knuckles in glee over the wage deflation that's been going on.  

    The current situation is absolutely what they want.


    I also read that Paul Volcker (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:22:52 AM EST
    agrees with raising the retirement age now too to ease the pressure on social security while the boomers retire...on almost next to nothing.  Looks like no real solutions that will benefit "the people" will be sought.  They are going to beat and pound the Wall Street ripoff out of our hides.  I feel horrible for most people out there looking at 60, with most of their retirements blown.  Their golden years are pounded to a pulp, little remains for most.

    And wecan also worry about what (5.00 / 5) (#14)
    by Anne on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:49:40 AM EST
    this means for the survival of Social Security and Medicare/Medicaid:

    President Obama enacted via executive order the "National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform" today, naming former Clinton Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles and former Senator Alan Simpson (R-WY) as the co-chairs.

    From TPM:

    It is not good news that President Obama picked former Senator Alan Simpson as one of the co-chairs of his deficit commission. Simpson is not just your run of the mill Republican. He is an extreme foe of Social Security.

    More from D-day:

    As New Deal Democrat painstakingly documents, there's reason to be concerned about Obama's commitment to Social Security. The President has claimed to be "agnostic" about solutions to the program, even though he has said that the long-term funding problems are minor and remote. I agree with New Deal Democrat that no real Democrat is "agnostic" about Social Security, a compact we keep with our seniors that has proven to be one of the most successful social insurance programs in American history.

    Weak stimulus bill, no action on real health care reform, Senate jobs bill just beyond pitiful, and the WH sending more and more signals that it's ready to cut and gut the entitlement programs that are keeping a lot of heads above water in economic times that even his new messaging campaign cannot convince me is improving.

    It just plain galls me to think that the result of his own failure to push hard for the kinds of policies that would lift people up and improve the economy, he appears to have his eyes locked on Social Security and Medicare as the answer to our spending woes.

    At this stage, I can only hope he continues to putz around with these things, so that by the time we get to presidential campaign season, he will be all but unelectable and decide to leave politics for Wall Street at the end of his term.

    That being said, I'm waiting for the Democrats to get rid of the filibuster in time for a larger Republican Congress to be in a position to carry out Obama's Republican wish list.


    Alan Simpson?? (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by norris morris on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 03:08:26 PM EST
    Obama's appointment of Simpson is not only compromise, it's dangerous.

    Simpson has been an outspoken critic of Medicaid/Medicare and this is another gesture by Obama that is very unsettling.

    Obama appears more  Republican in deeds inspite of his words. He has a tone deaf insistent stubborness about dealing with Republicans that is not comforting.

    This particular appointment is very troubling
    regarding Obama's judgement.


    Actually I think this was part of the (5.00 / 1) (#47)
    by observed on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 04:56:20 PM EST
    plan from the beginning.
    A long time ago, in another universe, when everyone and their mother was all hopey-changey about Obama and his message of working with Republicans, I made the following argument:
    1. Obama is not stupid enough to think Republicans will deal with him unless he gives them something big.
    2. Republicans want to get rid of SS more than anything else
    3. Ergo, Obama's plan could be to get rid of SS to get Republican votes for other important goals.

    I figured that only dismantling SS would be a big enough carrot to get any votes.

    This was my theory 2 1/2 years ago.


    Troubling! (none / 0) (#55)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 07:37:33 PM EST
    I'm not troubled, I'm enraged.

    Obama still thinks he's not a boomer (3.83 / 6) (#16)
    by Cream City on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:54:21 AM EST
    based on his adoring fans, or his abs, or whoknowswhat.  So he thinks he doesn't need us.

    Fine.  Then we don't need him, either.  Wait and see.


    It isn't just the boomers (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by cawaltz on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 11:01:25 AM EST
    Gen X has poured a substantial amount of income into the Social Security plan as well. Furthermore, considering the 401ks substantial reductions of late, I dare say any of them are feeling particularly confident on relying on those type of plans to fund their retirement.

    If he attempts to dismantle Social Security during an economic downturn he'll be a one termer.


    Look, at least he's supporting (none / 0) (#18)
    by observed on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 11:03:11 AM EST
    some Green [span] policies.

    Correct; thanks. Post-boomers (none / 0) (#19)
    by Cream City on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 11:22:20 AM EST
    are nearing 50 years old now. . . .

    Hey, we're not all like Obama. (5.00 / 4) (#24)
    by inclusiveheart on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:32:54 PM EST
    I look at a decrease in social security as a direct threat NOW and I have 20 years before I retire.  The reason I see it as a threat is that I have parents who rely on it and I will be the one who makes up the difference for them - so, for Gen X people like me, a decrease in Social Security could be a double whammy - I take care of them and have less to put away for myself and then what I've paid in already is discounted in my future support at retirement age. Add in the years lost to this recession and my generation is in real trouble with little time to regroup.  It is not good.

    Yes, we have an enormous problem on our (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:48:57 PM EST
    hands.  How are we going to care for the aging?  It isn't funny and it isn't going away either.

    Thanks for pointing this out -- so many (5.00 / 2) (#43)
    by esmense on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 03:42:03 PM EST
    younger people never seem to get that point. Social Security doesn't just provide a benefit for to elders, it benefits younger people, too.

    I'm gen X (none / 0) (#27)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:38:52 PM EST
    We saved for a solid ten years and lost about half of it before we pulled the rest out.  What is it actually worth though now in a destroyed economy?  Not much at the moment.  Such is life though.....they didn't wipe us out at the end of the most productive portion of our lives.  There is no safety net for the boomers.  Wall Street was the safety net.  Didn't they beat into our heads until we were all literally silly from it?

    My own (none / 0) (#34)
    by Inspector Gadget on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 01:08:01 PM EST
    Gen Y'ers really don't want to have to contribute directly to my later years...they want Social Security to remain in place and available...at least to me. They have enough time to plan ahead for their own retirements.

    And (none / 0) (#56)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 07:42:10 PM EST
    all things considered, the disappearance of defined benefit pensionsb and the exposure of the 401K; cutting Social Security will manke Obama one of the villians of American History.

    Only Nixon can go to China ...


    The Simpson/Bowles Deficit Commission (none / 0) (#38)
    by KeysDan on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 02:20:18 PM EST
    will have 10 Democrats and 8 Republicans, so social security, medicare and medicaid should be safe, especially if the soon to be idle Evan Bayh is available, right?  Oh, and  Mr. Obama has proposed that 14 of the 18 members would have to support any recommendations, giving the Republicans a veto in the unlikely event that some Democratic members go rogue and suggest no cuts, just new revenue, for example,  by removing the annual cap on social security payroll deductions (now at about $100,000) and to provide additional funds to support Medicare and Medicaid, with slightly greater taxes on incomes greater than $1 million annually.

    Obama did not set up this commission (5.00 / 6) (#44)
    by Anne on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 03:45:06 PM EST
    as a means of preserving and strengthening these entitlement programs; any Democrat who says he is "agnostic" about cuts is (1) no Democrat and (2) pretty much lying through his teeth.

    You don't make Alan Simpson, someone who has a vehement objection to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, co-chair of any commission that will be looking at these - and other - programs, if you have any real interest in and concern for the people who benefit from them.

    Look carefully at who - Democrats and Republicans - gets appointed to this commission - Obama gets to appoint four more, Democratic leaders get to name six and GOP leaders get to name six - and then let's talk again about how "safe" we think these programs are.


    Unsafe and on speed, absolutely. (none / 0) (#51)
    by KeysDan on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 05:46:23 PM EST
    Targeting social security, for example, to cover deficits caused by bailing out banks and credit card- financed wars around the globe is what is on the agenda. In 1983 we had a "bipartisan" commission chaired by Alan Greenspan to produce huge and regressive tax increases--a flat tax where deductions begin with the first dollar of wages each year up to a ceiling. So when you start to make more money the tax stops. Tax increases of any sort was a bane of Reagan, but he was talked into this one (according to William Greider in his essay in Nation, entitled "Looting of Social Security, Jan 25) by David Stockman, his budget director, by assuring Reagan that if the payroll tax was increased by 25 per cent, it would turn people against social security and eventually destroy it. Now we have another Alan, an equal if not greater enemy of social security, spearheading a "bipartisan" collaboration on behalf of Obama for an encore performance.  The social security surpluses have been massive but diverted to make the budgets look better than they are. We can be sure that a war-surcharge will never emerge, or any other progressive approach.  Only cover for the cellophane men and women who are supposed to address these matters. Sorry, Anne,  I should have noted the snark intended in my earlier comment.  

    One word (none / 0) (#60)
    by lambert on Sat Feb 20, 2010 at 01:55:24 PM EST

    Why do you believe anything Obama says?


    Thanks for the link (none / 0) (#58)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 07:57:34 PM EST
    to New Deal Democrat's post.

    Since Obama "declared" Social Security to be in crisis during the early months of the primary campaign I've been convinced that he's unfit to be President.

    Now maybe other "Democrats" will get the message.


    Fed fears stagflation (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by abdiel on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:22:32 PM EST
    and the Chinese aren't going to buy T-bills forever.  Given that another stimulus is probably impossible, the Fed needs to give itself a little more wiggle room for monetary policy should we face a double-dip recession.  

    They can fear it all they want (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:46:02 PM EST
    They all knew with the choices they were making at the start of this that we were literally buying ten effing years of pathetic economic growth and high unemployment. Now they are worried?  The die has been cast for Christ sake.  Everyone with big inventories is underwater, they must have more for their goods or they will go broke. Maybe they can momentarily tamp it down but what they are doing strangles the little people even more and the little people are the engine.  We are in big big trouble.

    My Supermarket $$ GO UP (none / 0) (#39)
    by norris morris on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 02:49:38 PM EST
    It's odd because both are happening at the same time.

    Yes there is inflation at the supermarket,butchers, bakers, etc.  My dollar buys less each week.

    In NYC while there is more procuct in co ops and condos, rentals still remain high and good rentals in the City are hard to find.

    Produce keeps going up in price along with most food,paper,soap.

    So what's happening?


    There will be a lot more (none / 0) (#52)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 06:04:15 PM EST
    banruptcies of families and businesses, but nobody wants to go there.  Everyone will fight going bankrupt tooth and nail and that is why prices are still high....everyone is up to their necks in debt.

    What planet (none / 0) (#45)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 04:39:30 PM EST
    are you on?

    There is no threat of inflation.  One needs inflation to achieve stagflation.

    And so far as the Chinese are concerned they'll keep buying treasuries.  It's in their interest to do so.


    Is it really though? (none / 0) (#53)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 06:07:29 PM EST
    They have begun to ask themselves a couple of questions about that.

    Helps (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 07:47:10 PM EST
    keep the dollar overvalued against their currency.

    The planet I'm on saw a 1.6% increase (none / 0) (#59)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 20, 2010 at 06:51:45 AM EST
    at the wholesale level last month.

    Almost all of it in food and energy

    That just happens to be the bulk of what most people spend.

    Groceries and gas.


    the fed sees the need (5.00 / 3) (#33)
    by cpinva on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 01:06:24 PM EST
    to appear as though it's "doing something", regardless of whether or not that "something" makes any sense economically. we all like to think those running the show have much greater knowledge than us mere peons, otherwise they wouldn't be running the show, right?

    turns out (see: greenspan, alan) they don't. i submit dr. krugman will support me on this: the middle (and yes, we are still in the middle of it) of a massive recession, with ginormous unemployment, is generally not the best time to raise interest rates. making it harder for business to borrow leads to stasis, not expansion.

    in other words (imo), they don't really know what the heck they're doing.

    core is BS (5.00 / 2) (#49)
    by jedimom on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 05:03:10 PM EST
    there IS inflation..in food and energy

    now when an economist can show me how they get through 1 week without using food and energy THEN I will look at the BS 'core' data and not until then

    it bled through into the CPI

    this cycle will prove you can have high UE and falling wages AND inflation through commodities like Oil! and Food! at the same time

    let's see if the Fed learns this lesson as we suffer

    Austerity! (none / 0) (#1)
    by andgarden on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:37:42 AM EST

    I think you meant (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by Anne on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:42:52 AM EST
    Austerity Now! (I think we can forget about serenity...)

    The "airing of grievances" would be quite something, wouldn't it?


    I got a lot of problems with you people! (none / 0) (#3)
    by andgarden on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:49:30 AM EST
    Question: does the Fed (none / 0) (#6)
    by observed on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:52:47 AM EST
    routinely consult with the Treasury department on questions of rate changes?

    Don't have to (none / 0) (#20)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 11:41:07 AM EST
    The Fed by act of Congress is independent.  The Fed is actually controlled by a Board of Governors, with the Governors coming from different districts of the Fed, some ten of them I think.  They are appointed to very long terms--ostensibly to keep them protected from political pressure....

    Geithner was the Fed governor from NY before going over to Treasury--a very influential position historically within the Fed. Bernanke is the Chairman of the board of governors...

    The Fed has their own staff of economists and obtains all kinds of raw economic data on their own.  I assume the Fed does know what the Treasury is doing....


    Not exactly right (none / 0) (#22)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 11:49:33 AM EST
    Wikipedia has a pretty good article on the Fed...

    Anyone who has been shopping for (none / 0) (#8)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 09:58:34 AM EST
    food and energy over the past few months know that
    prices have jumped.

    Does that mean I agree with Feds move? No.

    What we should be doing is starting a national emergency program to bring more oil on line any place we can find it within the US.

    The cost of energy is the base cause of our problems.

    Why do mega-banks... (none / 0) (#15)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 10:50:23 AM EST
    get a discount rate on emergency loans from the fed in the first place?

    When Joe or Jane Blow has got an emergency and needs a loan, isn't that when the mega-banks really put the screws to them with the terms?  If they even qualify for a loan at all.  

    This don't seem right or fair or free market...but little in our banking system does.

    The Blows get a predatory rate (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by inclusiveheart on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:34:15 PM EST
    of like 50%, 60%, or 90% from those government approved loan shark lenders.

    That's what I thought... (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 12:56:51 PM EST
    fuedalist oligarchal Orwellian "Animal Farm"...dontcha just love it folks?

    Irony - the Fed could probably make (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by inclusiveheart on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 01:01:19 PM EST
    a ton of money if they went direct to the people and only charged them 10%.  But this isn't about recouping lost tax revenue, it is about a rigged game that keeps all of the power and money at the top of the pyramid.

    That's so FDR (5.00 / 2) (#35)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 01:15:05 PM EST
    investing in the people.  There is no place for FDR solutions in this brand new age.....even though it looks exactly like that olden days time.

    Again... (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 01:19:19 PM EST
    exactly as I thought.  Like when we had to bail-out the too big to fails to make sure credit didn't dry up...I guess only a simpleton would ask "why not loan it out direct and screw the incompetent greedy pig of a middleman?"

    Bernanke's (none / 0) (#21)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 11:43:14 AM EST
    scholarly interest was the Great Depression....He supposedly believes that deflation is a bigger problem than inflation....

    So, hopefully Bernanke won't tighten credit anytime soon....

    Bernanke (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 04:58:17 PM EST
    I understand beieves that the Great Depression was caused entirely by monetary policy.  It wasn't, but, Ben thinks so.  That's the kind of scholar Bernanke is.  

    So now he makes this move.  Incredible.

    By now we should be accustomed to intellectual ineptitude, we've been swamped with examples.  Laffer, Greenspan, "free" trade, etc.

    We just don't make 'um like we used to.


    This Is Not Going (none / 0) (#37)
    by bob h on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 02:10:14 PM EST
    to get passed onto consumers in any way.  It is the beginning of the end of the free money and free profits the banks get from borrowing from the Fed.
    It is a good thing.

    Plutocrat Strategy 101 (none / 0) (#50)
    by pluege on Fri Feb 19, 2010 at 05:41:47 PM EST
    keep the rabble in survival mode so they constantly struggle against each other rather than the plutocrats that plunder the wealth from the sweat of the rabble, stealing them and their future blind.

    The Fed has made abundantly clear that a 10%+ average (much worse among low end pay scales) unemployment rate is a very tolerable number for them.