The economic position that the United States is now in is the result of a series of economic bubbles. To explain the nature of bubbles, I’m going to start by talking about their history; I’m not going to go all the way back to Tulip Mania and John Law, but I do want to mention some things from the Roaring Twenties that might sound familiar to us today.
Over the eight-year period of that boom, the money supply increased by 62 percent. All kinds of new appliances and gadgets were sold: refrigerators, phonographs, electric irons, toasters, and vacuum cleaners. Many more cars were built — more than twice as many in 1929 than in 1919. More and more leisure activities became popular. More hotels were built, as were more roadside diners. There was an explosion of movie theaters, and of developments in Hollywood. Professional sports became a big business. Skyscrapers such as the Chrysler Building and the Empire State Building were started. There was a speculative boom in Florida real estate. The stock market boomed. Hoover promised a chicken in every pot. I don’t know what Obama’s going to promise — maybe pot in every kitchen. FULL ARTICLE