Poor Us: The Great Depression 2.0

January 30, 2009

Blanket statement

Filed under: Harbinger — Tags: , — debacled @ 12:47 am

The Little Match Girl, Illustration by Jerry Pinkney“Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes.” Henry David Thoreau, Walden

In the last 90 days, 4 million people have flooded  Snuggie with orders for their blanket-with-sleeves twofer sold with matching battery-run book lights.  True, the couch-potato couture has been ridiculed by smart alecky college kids but Ellen DeGeneres loves hers and plus it’s the only thing that’s selling, and it’s keeping Chinese factory workers on the job, so maybe Beijing will keep fronting us the cash to keep the country afloat.  Laugh all you want, but at least Snuggie is doing what billions in bailout have not.

Still, why are so many buying backwards bathrobes? Are red-blooded Americans abandoning “guns and religion” for left-leaning, security-blanket cocoons? Or, with unemployment expected to climb to 5 million, are they simply suiting up for the not-so-distant-day when their very survival might depend on the ability to carry their beds on their backs while keeping  hands free to shine a booklight on the dark, lonely road ahead?


January 27, 2009

Year of the Ox slouches towards Obama

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — debacled @ 2:44 am

That twenty centuries of stony sleep were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle," W.B.YeatsToday is  Chinese New Year and we had hoped to launch Poor Us by wishing  you “Kung Hei Fat Choy” but unless those words translate to “Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold…” they don’t really do justice to the  Chinese fortunetellers’ blood-dimmed tide of dire predictions for this Year of the Ox.

The mystics say 2009 is going to be a rough beast (massive earthquakes!), but it’s not like that comes as some big surprise (war with Russia!).  True, this horoscope paints a pretty grim scenario,  but don’t chicken out now.  Fear of the unknown is far more frightening than knowing what fate has in store.  Even when it’s really, really bad news like this is, it’s better to know in advance so while everyone is still stuck on the collapsing economy, you’ll have time to build yourself a bomb shelter.

“Chinese soothsayers see a deepening recession, millions more losing their jobs, and stocks and home prices continuing to fall. That’s more or less in line with what some economists are predicting, but some fortune tellers are throwing in other dire predictions – massive earthquakes, rising U.S.-Russian tensions and trouble for U.S. President Barack Obama.

“Obama, born in the Year of the Ox, is taking office in a particularly bad year for his Chinese astrological sign. The ox sign is in direct conflict this year with a traditional Chinese divinity called the “God of Year,” considered a bad omen. Obama also is the 44th president, a number the Chinese deem extremely unlucky because “four” is pronounced the same as “death” in Chinese.

“The new U.S. president is not having good luck this year. His honeymoon will only be short-lived,” said fortune teller Alion Yeo, predicting Obama may even face impeachment in his first year in office. “

via Year of the Ox is looking very un-bullish, fortune tellers say – Yahoo! Canada News

The Second Coming, W.B. Yeats, 1920

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