Ali Velshi | Bio
CNN Chief Business Correspondent
President Obama and his administration are facing America’s worst economic crisis in generations. The recession is entering its fourteenth month, fast approaching the longest recession ever seen. Job cuts continue to mount: 2.6 million in 2008 and this week alone, 110,000 more cuts were announced. As Americans continue to cut back on their spending, companies will be forced to cut costs, resulting in further job losses, and even less consumer spending. It’s a continuous, downward spiral.
And nearly as bad: there’s little agreement on how to fix any of it.
The stimulus package being kicked around in Congress right now has proven extremely divisive: legislation with a price tag approaching $900 billion tends to do that. Proponents say if passed it will create 4 million new jobs, but detractors contend that burying the government in even more debt isn’t going to help anyone. They say the best thing to do is cut taxes and let Americans get out and spend on their own.
But would Americans even do that? Most of us are running scared right now: we’re afraid to spend a dime over what we have to. Our jobs seem less and less secure with each new round of layoffs. Is anybody safe?
And it’s not like loans are readily available. Remember the $700 billion bailout for the financial industry that Congress approved in October? Well a full half of that has already been spent- doled out to banks and automakers- and still credit remains nearly frozen. Millions of Americans can’t secure a loan to pay for college, a car, or a house, and small businesses are struggling just to make ends meet. Spending continues to drop further and further.
So to whom should we look for help? Those Titans of Industry down on Wall Street? Given that each day seems to deliver even wilder swings in the market and more dismal corporate reports, I think not. Oh, and the Madoffs of the world aren’t exactly helping to gain back the public’s trust, either.
So, I ask: how do we fix the American economy?
Everybody's got an opinion.
For real answers, watch AC360° tonight for Ali Velshi and the best money team on TV in the first CNN Money Summit.
Anderson Cooper goes beyond the headlines to tell stories from many points of view, so you can make up your own mind about the news. Tune in weeknights at 8 and 10 ET on CNN.
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