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We Have a Zombie Economy

Posted on August 8 2010 10:15 pm
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by Matthew Continetti

Since 2008, the federal government and the Federal Reserve have spent some $3 trillion to secure the financial system and prevent a second Great Depression. What did all this money buy us? A really expensive life jacket.

The economy did not collapse. Growth, while low, has returned. Unemployment, while high, is lower than it otherwise might have been. Institutions and companies that otherwise would have been destroyed are still around, because the government owns or controls them. We own Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac at a cost, so far, of $145 billion. We own AIG at a cost, so far, of $182 billion. We own GM and Chrysler—and bailed out GMAC and Chrysler Financial—for a cost of around $80 billion.

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