We are ending the first decade of the 21st century in a few days, and as we look back, the realization is, as Paul Krugman in the NY Times calls it, that the period was “The Big Zero”, with the nation in the midst of the “Great Recession” as it ends.
How is it Zero? First, the investment in stocks in the beginning of the decade came out with no profit by its end, including for those who were planning for their retirement, the so called “Baby Boomers” born after World War II.
Job Creation was Zero, and the highest unemployment since 1983 by the end of the decade resulted.
Housing prices came out Zero, after a boom early in the decade, and a complete collapse late in the decade.
Median family household income was also Zero, a sad commentary on the economic disaster of the past decade.
Overall, nothing good happened economically, and one has to wonder how we emerge from this economic mess with the possibility now of expansion of war into Yemen, and concern about the future of Iran and Pakistan, along with the continuing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Tax cuts and deregulation under George W. Bush contributed a lot to this disaster, and yet we hear nothing new from GOP leadership.
What a difference from the Clinton 90s when there may have been moral lapses on the part of the President, but it was a time of economic boom and avoidance of foreign wars. To try to make this first decade of the new century look good will be a massive undertaking that I doubt anyone who is sane will attempt to do!