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Second Stimulus – What Ended the Depression?

There’s been a lot of shouting since the end of summer and name-calling in the Capitol. On the outside, meanwhile, respected economists say a second stimulus (including healthcare reform) is necessary to pull us out of this ‘Great Recession.’

Nevertheless, Republican leaders say the President is “bankrupting America,” that we can’t possibly spend any more, borrow any more.

Let’s look at some facts; about calamitous crashes and the climbs back out of them.

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Great Recession Unemployment: Since December 2007, employment has fallen by 6.9 million. As of August 2009, 14.3 million people were unemployed. [Bureau of Labor Statistics]

Great Depression Unemployment: At the height of the Depression in 1933, 12.8 million people were unemployed. [Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum]

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Obama Stimulus Cost: $816 billion over ten years (2009-2019). Jobs saved/created: 1.5 million as of the fourth quarter of Fiscal Year 2009. And an estimated 3.5 million as of this time next year.

New Deal Cost: (adjusted for inflation) $500 billion over six years (1933-1939). Over the course of the New deal, the government created jobs for more than 8.5 million people. Still, millions remained unemployed.

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WWII Cost: $5 trillion in inflation-adjusted dollars, 16.1 million enlisted; 406,000 died.

Instead of unemployment, we had a labor shortage. But it took a war to do it.

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“The New Deal brought jobs and relief to millions of Americans. It did not, however, end the depression. The depression ended because of World War II. During the war the nation’s economy was devoted to the production of weapons and other materials necessary to win the conflict.” [Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute]

The point of all this is to show that, in a catastrophic emergency, we have the capacity to do whatever it takes to save our nation. As patriots, as citizens, as human beings, we have to believe it is worth saving.

So, which would you rather have; a second stimulus to create jobs for the 14 million citizens out of work? Or another massive war with hundreds of thousands of deaths?

The choice is up to you.

Call 202/224-3121 and tell your members of Congress which one you prefer.

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Oh, and the ‘bankrupt’ idea didn’t seem to come up when the previous administration was on these two spending sprees:

The bailout of the banks: after 30 years of the conservative ‘Reagan Revolution’ that ripped up regulations and let the bankers run free: $700 billion and no jobs for ordinary folks.

Iraq War Cost: $3 trillion and 4,344 deaths (as of 9/15/09).

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