Yaakov Kirschen, 8/11/2011 [Archive]

What New Depression?

What New Depression?

By Yaakov Kirschen

People are worried.Some are frantic. America's credit rating has been downgraded.The Euro seems to be in trouble. Everyone has theories, but nobody seems to know what's happening to the international economic system. Nobody, except possibly, my mother.I'll get to her in a moment.Meanwhile, watching the economic experts on TV, or reading their newspaper attempts to explain the wild ups and downs of stock markets from Asia to Wall Street and the collapsing economies in the Euro zone,doesn't leave me any wiser, but it does remind me of an oldJewishjoke.

The old joke is abouta Jewish "curse" that goes "May you become so rich that every day you wake up in a different one of your many mansions,and are driven by one of your many uniformed chauffeurs in one of your many luxurious limousines to a different medical specialist.... and nobody should know what's wrong with you!"

Every day we're being examined and diagnosed by a different "expert" and, as far as I can see, nobody knows what's wrong ...which reminds me of another old joke.

This old joke is about a guy who goes to a doctor and explains "my head is spinning, my throat is sore, I'm seeing spots in front of my eyes, and I'm covered in a strange yellow rash!"The doctor says "Hmm, have you had this before?"The patient replies, "Yes I have." And the doctor says "Well, you've got it again."

Back to my mother. It was 2008, at the end of the Bush Presidency, and the planned bipartisan "bailouts", which would prevent a meltdown of the economy, were still ahead of us. I was visiting my mother, now in her nineties and living in Arizona, far from the harsh winters of her native New York."Well we've got it again." said mom, "It's back!"What do we have again? "I asked, "What's back? " The Depression!" she explained, "The Depression is back!"

With all of the patience that a mature son could muster in quietly explaining things to his aged mother, I tried to set her straight.There was just no way that America or the world would dive into another "Great Depression."But each of my carefully detailed and intelligent points was met with a smug and dismissive "Yeah, that's what they told us last time ...The Depression is back."

My parents had been Depression-era people.This meant that, as their kid, I grew up listening to their advice about survival.They explained that getting a "government job" was the only hedge against the monster, the only real security. It meant listening to their stories about life in hard times, about the value of money. They seemed to have been permanently damaged and possibly deranged by the belief that, like some mysterious incurable viral plague, The Depression could or would reappear at any time and ravage society.

So there we were in the 21st century and my Depression-era mom was trying to convince me that "It was back!"The years have now slipped by, the "bailouts" didn't work, unemployment is rising, and the economic experts on TV and in print are still refusing to use the "D-word". If we are heading into a rerun of the "Great Depression", I, for one, don't want to know or think about what happens next.

How will I avoid the really scary predictions of things to come you ask?

It's simple. I'm planning to not ask my mom.

© 2011Yaakov Kirschen. This column is distributed exclusively by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate. For more info email sales@cagle.com

Yaakov is an internationally syndicated editorial cartoonist, political analyst, blogger, and popular speaker. His "Dry Bones" cartoons have commented on the Middle East and the World since 1973. He may be reached at blog@mrdrybones.com

This column has been edited by the author. Representations of fact and opinions are solely those of the author.



Download Yaakov Kirschen's color photo - Download Yaakov Kirschen's black and white mug shot photo
Why not run a cartoon with the column? We recommend the cartoons below as a good compliment to Yaakov Kirschen's topic.
Click on the thumbnail images to preview and download the cartoons.

Related Cartoons

Sinking Boat
By: Yaakov Kirschen

August 11, 2011

Sinking Boat
By: Yaakov Kirschen

August 11, 2011

credit rating
By: Yaakov Kirschen

August 7, 2011

credit rating
By: Yaakov Kirschen

August 7, 2011
 

We do not accept and will not review unsolicited submissions from cartoonists.
Sales & Information: (805) 969-2829 sales@cagle.com
Billing Information: (805) 969-2829billing@cagle.com
Technical Support: support@cagle.com

FREE cartoons for your website if you're already a paying print subscriber!
Artwork and columns are copyrighted by each creator. All Rights Reserved. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited. [Privacy Policy]