Here's a tidbit
from Adam Levitin, writing for the Credit Slips
The US economy is fueled by consumer spending. In order for the economy to grow, consumer spending has to grow, and consumer spending is fueled by debt. Consumers largely spend not out of current assets or current income, but out of future income. Consumers are able to do this because of their assumptions about their current assets — especially their retirement savings. Unfortunately, consumer behavior for the past seven years has been shaped by the unrealistic expectations formed in a bubble. Consumers have saved less because they thought they had a bigger investment cushion. This sets us up for a retrenchment in consumer spending, which is exactly what Treasury does not want to see. In order to keep consumer behavior the same, Treasury needs to reinflate that bubble. But doing so just sets us up for another crash.
My thoughts: Levitin's words are spot-on. That is precisely where we are.
We have a massive (bad) debt problem, and our government's collective answer seems to be "Add more debt!"
Is it really any surprise?