Saturday, 2 April 2011


A simple GOOGLE search of the term "recession is good", reveals that there are more than 30 million hits on the topic. Despite so many articles on why recession is good for so many reasons, these days when capitalism has triumphed over decadent Communism and has managed to conquer the world through globalization there are still scholars, politicians, journalists, web loggers,  and most people believe that recessions are bad.

Scholars usually point to the Great Depression as the ultimate example of how economic contraction results in untold human suffering. This is simply not true! Economic recessions can be a refreshing beginning of unexpected personal renewal and spiritual awakening, a time of hidden opportunities in life. With my own 14 points as a tribute to President Woodrow Wilson who inherited a recession when he took office, I aim to prove why recession is good!

1. Recessions mean frugality.
For individuals, for wasteful governments, and for society as a whole living beyond its means recessions are Godsend. Is there anything better than a good economic crisis to eliminate the fat from an otherwise complacent individual, government, and society where simple folk who work for a living entertain the grand illusion that they can actually retire and enjoy comfort and leisure in their declining years like rich people?

2. Recessions eliminate inefficiency,
by eliminating jobs in the public sector and allowing unemployed government workers to compete in the private sector for minimum wage. Recessions also mean efficiency by putting small and weak companies out of business, thus freeing workers from the burden of employment until the next hiring cycle begins where they will be grateful to have any kind of work for any kind of salary, without benefits if necessary, after they have undergone career retraining and proper psychological attitude adjustment.

3. Recessions result in a leaner economy and a new and leaner you!
Embrace recession as your friend and savior for helping you with that lingering weight problem that a good steady job and good income created. Instead of enjoying a t-bone steak dinner at the neighborhood restaurant, start enjoying franks and beans or macaroni and cheese at home; much healthier than eating out and a more fitting menu for the new leaner you crying to come out.

4. Recessions help shape your moral fiber,
forcing you to drink less because you can no longer afford expensive liquor, and indulge in fewer vices associated with money. You exercise more by walking around your neighborhood to see who else is exercising instead of working. Run a few blocks around your former employer's place to check out how many cars remain parked in the lot than to enjoy a fine glass of aged whiskey after work. Be grateful that recession is saving you and so many others from the transgression of alcohol consumption and the hedonistic lifestyle you been meaning to change but never had the chance.

5. Recessions reduce crime. 
Recessions afford the opportunity to the unemployed and the poor to pray often to the Lord to deliver just a bit of what rich folks enjoy, if not the miracle of life's basic necessities so they will not have to steal. Whether they rely on public transportation or their run-down car, the poor and unemployed can't afford to drive over to the rich folks areas to steal from them. Crime rates drop making the rich feel more secure about their wealth and the just society in which they live.

6. Recessions result in cleaner environment.
People have less money to spend, so everyone saves on consumer products, generating less garbage, and cutting down fewer trees and killing fewer animals. Just think of how much is saved in energy and transportation costs when people stay home instead of commuting to work! Yes, recessions are eco-friendly and they are nature's way of protecting the environment from over-indulgent workers and middle class people who care more about their personal consumption than they do about the ecosystem.

7. Recessions help you to be more humane and less materialistic.
Wealth possession is just bad for the soul and you know it, no matter how appealing and convincing the ads about new products for your home and your family. Recession forces you to appreciate money less because you don't have as much, so you turn to family and friends more because they are all the support you need. You were just looking for an excuse to be closer to family and friends, especially if they have money, and now you have no choice because you're broke and you need them!

8. Recessions will help your love life.
You have nothing to do all day long, so to keep from sinking deeper into chronic depression you immerse yourself in 'recession-sympathy sex' with your partner who slaves away so both of you can have the luxury of a home-cooked meal and a roof over your heads. You are so appreciative that recession has given this opportunity to discover the lover in you, that you forgot all about other aspects of your life as you found the ultimate outlet in love making.

9. Recessions make you more philosophical,
helping you reflect on your personal life, and the deeper meaning of life in general, thereby bringing out the philosopher in you that was always there but too busy working, shopping, entertaining and just living good instead of thinking deep thoughts that make you a better and smarter person. And if philosophizing is not enough, you still feel good about yourself because you know that so many millions out there less fortunate than you, yet not as philosophical about it.

10. Recessions make you less materialistic,
helping you downsize and return to nature. You never really wanted that big house, that nice car, all those furnishings, clothes and just stuff that clutters your life. Well, now is your chance to prove that you are not a materialist but a person whose values rest in enjoying the great outdoors where your spouse has sent you for failing to secure a job after you have been playing naturalist for a year. 

11. Recessions enrich your character.
Is there a better teacher in life than economic hardship to make you realize that it's time to address those character flaws that cost you your job in the first place, to make you a more humble and sympathetic human being who understands that someone must make a sacrifice - and why not you - to keep banks and corporations profitable? Is there a better teacher in life than economic hardship to make you appreciate rich folks who always had so much but who will have less during the recession, whereas you never had much in the first place, so you will never miss it? Unlike the hollow rich, you rely on inner strength of character for which recession is responsible. 

12. Recessions make you more optimistic.
While you are wallowing in your misery because your savings cannot keep pace with mounting in-coming bills, you are forced to anticipate the next boom cycle that honest politicians, journalists, and economists have been predicting. You rejoice that the system really works for you, that it was really meant to serve you but you were too self-absorbed in the misery of your unemployment to appreciate it. Suddenly, there is a burst of unexpected optimism you never thought you had, and all of it is owed to politicians, pundits, and other honest professionals who have your interests at heart!

13. Recessions reduce the death rate.
Oh, sure some of the weaker souls will decide to end it all and join their ancestors earlier than God planned for them. The majority of LES MISERABLES, however, stand to live longer because they reduce their chances of work-related accidents. Given that they are unemployed they have fewer  chances of death or injury during the commute to work or to those frequent outings  to restaurants, bars, theater, etc. And if you are really anxious about improving your health and living longer, relocate today to a very poor country like Bangladesh and you will enjoy the spiritual tranquility among the masses seeking to be more virtuous people in this life so they do not return as something abhorrent like AIG or Goldman-Sachs executives in the next life.

14. Recessions make you more spiritual.
Unemployed and modest in general  demeanor about your long-term plans for a life of comfort you have only dreamed of, your mind wonders about everything from how Divine Providence determines your destiny to how NASA's latest astro-biological findings could mean that your alien friends could beam you up soon and save you from this wretched existence. You contemplate how worry-free it will be in the afterlife that while unemployed you have come to appreciate as a concept; how much more eternally tranquil and fulfilling it will be in comparison with this life of intermittent recessions, bursts of unexpected growth and unpredictable boom cycles. Finally, it dawns on you that recessions have transformed you into a spiritual person, and for that you are eternally grateful.

SOURCE: The INDISPUTABLE proof for the 14 points listed above is provided by countless studies - too many to list here - some that are actually scholarly, conducted by reputable think tanks and universities whose research is supported by philanthropic billionaires and corporations to convince LES MISERABLES of the world to feel better about their government, institutions and about wealthy people who may not be experiencing the effects of recession but fully understand the hard times the other half is experiencing.

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