debt

A Modern Greek Tragedy

  The financial problems of Greece have dominated the headlines for months. The problems are not new. They have been apparent since the end of 2009 when Greece revealed that its budget deficit would be more than three times previous projections. The March 2010 rescue package (E110 Billion) and austerity measures agreed to by European [...]

Leaving the Tab: Indebting America’s Youth

We older Americans have saddled our youth with a mind-boggling public debt -- over $20 trillion already spent ($14.3 trillion of “official” national debt plus various off-budget expenditures, according to the U.S. Treasury); trillions more of projected deficit-spending over the coming decade; and tens of trillions of dollars of unfunded liabilities. By the time today’s [...]

How to Kill the Housing Market

  And you thought things couldn't get worse on the housing front. The U.S. housing market is in the worst shape since the Great Depression, and now the Obama administration's solution is to impose new rules that would banish 60 percent of current homebuyers from the market. The proposed Mortgage Qualification Rules are the result [...]

The Late Great American Dollar

The economic crisis that hit the developed world a few years ago was devastating. Millions lost their jobs, their homes, and their retirements. But the next catastrophe -- which could be coming soon -- will make the recent recession feel like a boom time. Imagine gasoline prices really skyrocketing and the cost of food and [...]

Slaves to Words

We could definitely use another Abraham Lincoln to emancipate us all from being slaves to words. In the midst of a historic financial crisis of unprecedented government spending, and a national debt that outstrips even the debt accumulated by the reckless government spending of previous administration, we are still enthralled by words and ignoring realities. [...]

Debt, Finance, and Catholics

Debt and deficits seem to be on everyone's minds these days. Whether it be worries about the American government's fiscal woes, Europe's fragile banking system, or the debt-as-a-way-of-life culture that disfigures so many lives, many people are seeking guidance about how to extradite ourselves from this mess with our souls intact. In this regard, Catholics [...]

There Ain’t No Pure Church

Some people become Catholic because the Church is a communion of sinners and slobs who are losers, oddballs, factory rejects, and broken dunderheads who can't tell their butt from a hole in the ground and who have messed up their lives so badly that they know only God can save them. They don't know from [...]

The Church and the Unions

Judging by the impassioned commentary from some Catholic quarters during recent confrontations between unionized public-sector workers and state governments, you'd think we were back in 1919, with the Church defending the rights of wage slaves laboring in sweat shops under draconian working conditions. That would hardly seem to be the circumstances of, say, unionized American [...]

Who is mein bruder?

I read an interesting article in Time today about Germany and the economic powerhouse it has become.  Their exports are high, unemployment is down to 6.9% and their GDP rose 3.6% in 2010.  They have recovered from the economic recession that swallowed Europe and their future is bright. What bothered me in the article was the view [...]

Should we also raise the household debt limit?

If you're having a hard time understanding the problem with raising the statutory debt limit (yet again), here it is on a family scale:  

William Kristol now supports the gold standard?

Is neoconservative icon Bill Kristol coming around on the idea of returning to the gold standard? In response to Chinese President Hu Jintao's recent comment that "the current international currency system is the product of the past," Kristol writes: Isn't Hu in this one respect right? And does the current international currency system of fiat [...]

Government Debt: Cure or Curse?

The U.S. Treasury announced on its website that, at year end, the national debt topped $14 trillion for the first time. This was an increase from $13 trillion on June 1, 2010, and $12 trillion at year end 2009. When the recession officially began in December 2007, U.S. debt to Gross Domestic Product was about [...]

It’s Shut-Up Time for Paul Krugman

Jeremy Warner, assistant editor of The Daily Telegraph and prominent British economics journalist, has a message for liberal economist Paul Krugman: Please shut up. The occasion for the remark -- and come on, we've all been thinking it -- was Krugman's recent and wholly unsolicited criticism of Britain's deficit reduction plan. Professor Krugman suggests that [...]

Bear Wrongs Patiently

Me assuming the task of writing about "bearing wrongs patiently" is like asking the Incredible Hulk for anger management counseling or seeking out Britney Spears for tips on marriage and child-rearing. I don't bear wrongs very patiently. Why should I? Those people are wrong! They need to be set right! I'm only doing my Christian [...]

Are We at a Moment Before the Deluge?

The phrase "Après moi, le déluge" is attributed to Louis XV on his deathbed. Fifteen years later, in 1789, the French Revolution confirmed his prediction: "After me, the flood." Whether the king felt a sense of foreboding of things to come or simple indifference, the expression seems an apt description of where our nation stands [...]

Why Evangelicals Support Israel

"Israel is not just necessary to the return of Christ, it is essential to it." So says the Rev. A. R. Bernard, pastor of the Christian Cultural Center in New York City. His sentiments are shared by millions of Christians around the world who steadfastly believe that a Jewish state is necessary for the Second [...]

Our phony economic recovery

The optimists over at The American Dream (tagline: "Waking People Up And Getting Them To Realize That The American Dream Is Quickly Becoming The American Nightmare") say the claims of economic recovery are false. In fact, our apparent turnaround is actually the brief period of calm before a second, more serious collapse. There are troubling [...]

How Not to Imitate Detroit

  Perhaps the most telling sign that our country is headed for trouble is the phenomenon of the shrinking middle class. Once the hallmark of America's promise, America's middle class was dealt a serious setback last year against the backdrop of the imminent death of the domestic automobile industry.   In the past, America's salvation [...]

Learning to Forgive

   The Eastern Catholic and Orthodox tradition of Forgiveness Sunday -- otherwise known as Get Out of your Comfort Zone Sunday -- is fast approaching. (As my husband is canonically a Ukrainian Catholic, I have the good fortune of discovering another world of "new" old practices.) On the Sunday before Lent, during a Vespers service, [...]

Canceling Haiti’s debt

The Times Online ran a great piece last May on Haiti, highlighting the history of the impoverished nation. Many people don't know the background story: The appalling state of the country is a direct result of having offended a quite different celestial authority — the French. France gained the western third of the island of [...]

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