Officially, the ongoing recession ended in June 2009. Just no one bothered to let us know around here.
Well, actually it’s over for the corporations. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce report for the 2010’s Third Quarter published this past week, American companies enjoyed the most generous profits ever: $1.66 trillion —the whole Bush and Obama’s bailouts together… in three months!!!
And the now Republican-controlled Congress is set on protecting the owners and stockholders of these corporations from going back to the regular tax quotas they had before George “W” gave them a break.
“W” —and the Republicans’— excuse was and still is that if you help the big guys they will, in turn, employ Americans and invest in the U.S. economy… the trickle-down fallacy.
Except that these obscene profits are so high because corporations have managed to produce more with less… people! Right —those pesky individuals who demand to be paid for their work and once in a while get sick and want medical insurance. Corporations have their payrolls reduced by the millions and will not re-hire them now. Why would they? They can perfectly manage with eager, dirt-cheap Third World labor.
Yet around the San Joaquin Valley none of this affects us. Our unemployment rate is a third higher than the U.S. average and applications for subsidized food have doubled. Local businesses and public agencies are barely surviving and bartering is on the rise. Everyone is going for the same, meager dollars and, when things are going this bad, xenophobes and Tea Party activists find the crowd ripe for an immigrant-cleansing.
The sad part is that we haven’t stopped producing and consuming and that the recession is, in fact, over. It is just that someone forgot to revert the system back to when the distribution of the profits wasn’t so lopsided.