Our friend Limited, Inc. has been posting away on the current economic crisis in his usual clear-sighted way. Here's the best paragraph on the subject I've read anywhere:
It isn’t a credit crisis. It isn’t a liquidity crisis. This is an inequality crisis. The massive increase in the inequality between the wealth of the working and middle class and the upper class is the sole perpetrator of today’s implosion, and of tomorrow’s implosion too. You can’t run a consumer economy on extended credit and frozen wages. You can’t trade the residual. You can’t make the financial sector, of all sectors, the engine of the economy ... As the government transfers appalling hundreds of billions to the plutocrats and assures the CNN viewing audience that it is for the good of all, the spectator must wonder if the servility of the general population, its inertia, its ignorance, its general incapacity to chew gum and walk, will allow this, too, to pass. So far, it does look like the hugest robbery in history will proceed without a hitch, and with no suspense, even. Why dress all in black and map out the sensors that guard the vault of Fort Knox when the treasury secretary gives you a key and your own gilded wheelbarrow?