Skip to comments.The Toll of Human Suffering During the Great Depression
Posted on 09/25/2008 12:25:31 AM PDT by Freedom_Is_Not_Free
Human suffering became a reality for millions of Americans as the depression continued. Many died of disease resulting from malnutrition. Thousands lost their home because they could not pay the mortgage. In 1932,at least 25,000 families,and more than 200,000 young people wandered through the country seeking food,clothing,shelter,and a job.
Many of the young people traveled in freight trains,and lived near train yards called hobo jungles. The homeless,jobless travelers obtained food from welfare agencies,or religious missions in town along the way. Most of their meals consisted of soup,beans,or stew and had very little nourishment. The travelers begged for food,or stole it if they could not get something to eat. They even ate scraps of food from garbage cans.
The ragged travelers found clothing even harder to obtain than food. Missions gave most of the clothing they had to the needy local people. Many of the travelers became very ill because they did not have food,or proper clothing. Even the sick wanderers had trouble getting help because the hospitals aided local residents first.
Well, folks... I can't say if $700 billion in taxpayer money will avert a depression or not, but no attempt is going to embrace a depression.
Food distribution is going to be very interesting. It will be interesting to see how fast shelves go bare in stores. I hope you don't expect your internet provider not to be impacted by a depression. Prepare for internet service to be a thing of the rich, not the common man. How will you connect to Free Republic?
The riots and violence in bigger cities are going to be very interesting to watch unfold. Just wait until things break down along racial lines and might makes right again as large contingencies vie for feudal control of portions of cities. Cops are going to be protecting the rich and influential. They aren't going to have any time for you.
So enjoy your malnutrition and disease. I'm sure the garbage of the rich will still be available. Maybe you can tear out your front yard and plant a garden. And maybe you'll even live to see some of plants start to bear fruit.
I posted this as a small reminder of how rapidly civilized society falls apart in a depression, when the normal lines of supply, communication, energy distribution and social structure break down.
Y'all think it can't happen again. "We're beyond that," you are thinking. Right. Just like NASDAQ was going straight to the moon, you thought. Just like house prices always go up, you thought. Just like the economy was peachy and it as just the evil MSM and doom and gloomers talking down the economy to get Hitlery elected you thought.
Stick around. Y'all will be shocked to see how fast the entire economy can grind to a screeching halt. Gas stations completely empty. Grocery stores completely empty. Hospitals rationing medicine. Watch and see.
But that's OK. You will have done your duty as a Conservative and screamed "NO BAILOUT, NO SOCIALISM" and you will have your pride as you look for another pair of shoes for dinner, but guess what, soles are plastic today so you can't even eat your shoes.
I'm sure I'm exaggerating, but the point remains. For those who lose their jobs -- and there will be NO finding work for years for these people -- it will be back to "Hey buddy, can you spare a $100 for a meal? I haven't eaten in a couple of days." Churches are dying. Families are scattered. Where is the support network going to come from in the next depression, from the cash strapped government running their printing presses? Not hardly.
So go ahead. Stick to your guns. Sink any chance we have, slim as it may be, to restore confidence to the market, avert depression now, and then we can shoot the bastards later. No, go ahead and embrace the new Depression. I'm sure your starving children living in the streets will thank you for it. "Mom, Dad, thank you so much for standing up for your principles. My pneumonia will kill me without medical help, but at least I'll die the child of a proud, conservative, unyielding Freeper."
Booyah! NO BAILOUT! Screw em! Bring on the Depression. Bring it all down, man! NO BAILOUT! No bailout for wall street pigs! No money for wall street! Hands off my taxes!!!
So long, and thanks for the Depression...
Thank you for your permission. I will take my chances.
Your right! It won’t be very pretty!
Bailout or not, stockpile food and ammo.
So you really think that the government is going to fix things and not make them worse?
Wow. Just wow.
You're welcome. In turn, thanks for the hyperbole, Emo.
By the way, hyperbole cuts both ways.
Below is a heartbreaking picture of a poor woman in Weimar Germany burning hyperinflated banknotes, because their value as fuel is greater than their purchasing power.
We are ABSOLUTELY POSITIVELY going to have WORSE FREAKING INFLATION THAN THE WORLD HAS EVER SEEN if we HAVE A BAILOUT!!!
What proof do I have? Just my say-so. As with you -- my shrieking hyperbole and my historical (hysterical?) reminders that it can happen, and it did happen, are all I need. :-)
Don’t forget Seabiscuit.
Just to be clear, I never thought that. And interestingly, none of my fellow dumb friends who also went to state universities thought that. Seems this concept of "what goes up will continue to go up" is something they only teach the Ivy Leaguers on Wall Street.
There will be suffering. You are correct.
HA! You say that now. How flippant we all are when we are warm and comfortable and sated and our stomachs are full. When our children our safe. When we aren’t living with 14 other people in one home. When we aren’t massed on buses taking a 2 hour ride to go 20 miles to work because we can’t afford to operate our cars. When we aren’t living on rice and beans day after day and can’t remember the last time we enjoyed a dessert.
Yes, you say that now. Ha ha ha ha. “I’ll take my chances”. Right, like you would honestly take a 50/50 chance on being deprived all of the comforts, conveniences, safeguards and essentials that you take for granted daily. Not me, baby! Oh, not me. My father went through a depression and scared the crap out of me with his stories. No thank you, baby! You go right ahead and take your chances. And then you get back to me when you cross your 50th month without a steady paycheck, just very rare odd jobs here and there because NOBODY is hiring. Come my way and if I am still employed and earning a regular measly check, then when you say “Hey buddy, can you spare $20 for a meal, I haven’t eaten in a couple of days”, then I’ll be happy to treat you to one meal. Hopefully a lot more people will be as generous. Hopefully I won’t be one of those begging from need.
Oh, take your chances you will. In a pigs eye, you will. If you knew what many will be in for in the next depression, you would be on your knees praying to God that would not happen. I kid you not.
If you thought the last depression was bad, how will it go for a nation of 350 MILLION people, mostly packed into crowded cities. Just wait until the violence starts. A whole lot of strong, mean, angry people who have been told they were given the short end of the stick all their lives are going to have a field day putting “might makes right” into practice, gleefully taking the spoils of bitterness from the man, and from every segment of society they have been brainwashed to believe are oppressors.
This is going to be stomach turning.
Anybody who thinks a depression can’t happen is ignorant. Anybody who thinks society can’t devolve is badly misinformed. Re-read “Lord of the Flies”. Might come in handy during the upcoming depression — all but guaranteed now by the ignorant masses who are trying to tie the hands of government from even attempting to avert it.
Again, I am not so stupid as to know the bailout will work. I absolutely do not know if it will work. I do know that there is a VERY NARROW window of opportunity before the entire system collapses from panic and screams of NO BAILOUT from 90% of the electorate will guarantee that panic and resulting worldwide financial collapse.
Oh, you’ll take your chances all right...
So long, and thanks for the Depression.
Let me guess...
You’re up late worrying because you’re long LEH and GS and JPM and AIG &etc. and you’re worried about your portfolio.
You poor dear. Have a glass of milk and try to go back to bed.
I’ll stay up and worry for both of us. I’m worried that after working hard and saving and getting out of debt I’m nothing but a big chump who is about to get *SO* screwed by our benevolent government as they inflate away and devalue my hard-earned nest egg.
But after paying my friggin taxes to bail these jokers out, I don't have anything left to invest. Darn the luck. I just can't catch a break.
Explain how you go Weimar when debt is being destroyed faster than you can even monetize? Debt is being destroyed with every write down, now totalling some $500 billion. That is short of the entire authorization that Paulson wants to print. And you are telling me that $700 billion, spent likely over years — not months — takes us Weimar.
You have your opinion but I am seeing massive debt destruction that printing can’t even begin to keep up with and this leaps an order of magnitude with an entire US financial collapse, never mind the other world systems.
And you are talking Weimar. Please explain to me how $700 billion spent is going to initiate hyperinflation. Or were you similarly worried about the $600 billion spent so far on the Iraq war?
>> Bailout or not, stockpile food and ammo.
My neighbors and I have a deal.
They’re already stockpiling food; I’m going to stockpile ammo.
(At what point do you think I should tell THEM about our deal?)
The only solution to the liquidity crisis is a market devaluation, especially in the house of CarDS. The market is going to come down severely, certainly within the next thirty years, probably within the next ten, and likely within the next three. The question of whether it will cause a depression will be determined by (1) what efforts are made to prevent the market correction [more == bad], and (2) what sorts of tax-and-spend programs are put in place afterward [again, more == bad].
If the government would put failed entities into receiver ship, let the bad debts play through the tangled web of CDSs, using only such intervention as is necessary to prevent bank runs and equalize losses, and if the government dropped tax rates, the market would recover since the systemic problems that are dogging it would be solved. Unfortunately, I really doubt anyone will have the courage to adopt such a plan. Instead, they'll throw $700bn+ into the house of CarDS thus ensuring that we're in more trouble three years from now than we're in presently.
For your information, we have lost $4 to $6 trillion dollars in housing wealth (yes, mainly fictitious, but gone none-the-less) in just the last year and another $4 trillion lost in the stock market.
And with that kind of capital/debt destruction, you are telling me that $700 billion in monetization is taking us Weimar? What the hell are you smoking?
I already told you. My shrieking hyperbole is enough. I don’t need to explain a thing!
And why not? It worked for you. You just shrieked and emoted and called up ghosts from the past. You didn’t “explain” or “prove” Jack Squat.
My hypothesis is every bit as likely to happen as yours. So there. :-P
>> yes, mainly fictitious, but gone none-the-less
I see. “Fake but accurate”.
...is that you, Dan?
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