Robert Reich, who served under President Clinton as secretary of Labor, takes a look at today's unemployment figures and declares, "It's a Depression."
Reich draws on the government's broadest measure of job loss, which has one in every six Americans as either unemployed or underemployed. Most of us are within two degrees of separation from someone out of work, he says. Reich writes:
All this means that the real economy will need a larger stimulus than the $787 billion already enacted. To be sure, only a small fraction of the $787 billion has been turned into new jobs so far. The money is still moving out the door. But today's bleak jobs report shows that the economy is so far below its productive capacity that much more money will be needed.
This is still not the Great Depression of the 1930s, but it is a Depression. And the only way out is government spending on a very large scale. We should stop worrying about Wall Street. Worry about American workers. Use money to build up Main Street, and the future capacities of our workforce.