Monday, March 17, 2008

Bushville, USA

In the 30s they were called 'Hoovervilles': shantytowns filled with victims of the Great Depression set up in Central Park and other public spaces all over America, named for the man who (before this one) was arguably the worst U.S. President in history.

During the 80s recession, tent cities called 'Reagan Ranches' were erected Washington and other cities as a form of protest against Reagan's gutting of social housing budgets. However, some of these tent cities were actually filled with the homeless and the the jobless, like the one that sprang up around Houston as thousands of unemployed workers fled the industrial midwest desperately looking for jobs.

Today it's starting all over again.

Funny how you never see stuff like that on CNN. Or read anything with quite the same odour of raw panic as this item from 'The Independant' regarding the Bear Stearns takeover:
A Goldman Sachs trader in New York said: “Everyone is in a total state of shock, aghast at what is happening. No one wants to talk, let alone deal; we’re just standing by waiting. Everyone is nervous about what is going to emerge when trading starts tomorrow.”

In the UK, Michael Taylor, a senior market strategist at Lombard, the economics consultancy, said on Friday night: “We have all been talking about a 1970s-style crisis but as each day goes by this looks more like the 1930s. No one has any clue as to where this is going to end; it’s a self-feeding disaster.”

Time to buy a horse.

(H/T to Ted over in the the comments at Turner's place for the video link.)


UPDATE: Oh, look at that. CNN is doing a piece on a couple who lost their 2,700 sq. ft. home in Vegas and are now living in their camper. Oddly, the interview seems to focus on how this is all their fault. Hmm.

1 comment:

  1. When Chris was in Dallas for a conference this past November he drove past some big fenced off lots where people were living. They were Katrina refugees. And about 100 feet away from them was a big empty warehouse, being used by no one.