Simply put, the Fed pulled off a magic trick that would leave Houdini gasping. Janet Yellen and the Fed took the made-up money and bought Wall Street assets that would have otherwise crashed and gave money to Wall Street banks that would have otherwise gone bankrupt...with no strings attached.
We see it on the news. We see it in our communities. Ferguson, Baltimore, Minneapolis, Dallas . . . no matter where we live, we confront stories highlighting the consequences of a society divided deeply by race and opportunity. And we all struggle to find ways to make a difference.
On September 13, the Census Bureau released a report that the U.S. economy had performed well for many Americans in 2015. The report indicated that the poverty rate had fallen by 1.2 percentage points last year - which was the biggest decline in one year since 1968.
Over the last forty years the tax system has become much less progressive, monopolists have been given free reign, unions have been busted, the minimum wage hasn't risen, and corporate criminals have gone unpunished.
The corruption seen in government agencies, or any large bureaucratic agency, is insidious and more linked to "power-hungry" civil servants who are complacent with the knowledge that they can do absolutely nothing but show up for work, keep a chair warm, and look busy.
In cynical moments when I need to ponder the wonders of human existence, I think about the work of Edith Turner, a monumental anthropologist who died on June 18th of this year, one day after her 95th birthday.
In watching aghast the incomprehensible ascendancy of Donald Trump, I am struck with a sense of déjà vu. Where else have I heard of a people, drowning in despair, who clutch for a life raft of false promises? And then it comes back to me.