Meet The Economic Collapse Family, by Will in Wyoming

In recent months, as he described America’s incipient economic peril, Jim Rawles has made references in to “The Mother of All Bailouts.” To illustrate the extent of the disaster that is awaiting us–I’d like to introduce you to the entire Economic Collapse Family’s cast of characters. This family is so large that I’ll use numerous analogies and, with apologies, some mixed metaphors. To include the full Dramatis Personae I’ll have to borrow from both The Addams Family, and The Munsters. My apologies to anyone that never saw these two TV shows from the 1960s. This will seem like gibberish to you. And if you hate allegorical pieces, just skip reading this. – Will in Wyoming

You are Pugsley Addams. (The American citizenry.) You are a content, pampered, over-fed child. You have indulging but perverse parents. They let you eat all the junk food you’d like (consumerism), and they let you watch as much television (the mass media) as you’d like, to keep you occupied. Their only demand is that you “do your chores” (pay taxes.) You live in a strange sprawling old mansion with extensive grounds and horse stables (America). The mansion doesn’t look like it has been painted or repaired in decades. (Crumbling infrastructure.) You are young and naive, so you don’t really understand all that is going on around you. But you have had a vaguely uneasy feeling for as long as you can remember. You certainly have a lot of strange relatives.

Your father, Gomez Addams, is a banker. (The Federal Reserve.) He always wears a dark suits and he keeps a pocketful of cigars (call loans) handy. Oddly, they are lit, even as he pulls them out of his pocket. On his time off, he likes to play with an elaborate electric toy train set (the economy) with you. It is one of those father and son bonding opportunities. He is always at the controls of the the train. (The train set was very expensive, so you can only watch.) Whenever he sees trouble ahead, instead of hitting the brakes, he takes a puff on his big cigar, and opens the throttle (liquidity) wide open. After all, he has always enjoyed seeing a nice train derailment. Gomez is madly in love with his wife. They are inseparable. (The Federal Reserve’s monopolistic cartel relationship with the US government.)

Your mother, Morticia Addams, is also known as the Mother of All Bailouts. She (the US government) is supported by her husband Gomez, the banker. She makes any problems go away by throwing money at them. Oddly, she always wears black (debt), but it matches her long black hair (the budget deficit). Morticia has a timeless beauty, but you wonder what potions she takes to maintain that beauty. Morticia’s hobby is growing carnivorous plants (stocks and stock mutual funds) that have insatiable appetites. She has an unlimited supply of cash because of her brother, Uncle Fester.

Uncle Fester (the US Treasury) is an inventor of sorts, always experimenting with new things up in the attic. Years ago has invented a nifty high speed printing press, on which he can produce as many $100 bills as he wants. He also has a spare set of plates to produce $100,000 bills.

Lurch. He is the lugubrious house butler (the police). Lurch is seven feet tall and very strong. He obeys the orders of your mother and father without question. Whenever there are any difficulties, you mother and father can ring a bell, and Lurch comes immediately to solve the problem. Whenever he enters the room, he asks in a very deep voice “You rang?”

Cousin Itt. (Social unrest.) Your mom and dad have always given Lurch instructions to keep Cousin Itt locked up in the basement. They’ve warned Lurch that whenever “Itt” gets loose, he starts breaking things. But luckily “Itt” rarely gets out, and for not very long. Without fail, Lurch catches Cousin Itt, and locks him up again. But a lot of your mom’s fine china gets broken each time. She gets angry, but she just takes some of the money from Uncle Fester’s printing press and buys new dishes from the store. You’ve notice that the new dishes are all marked “Made in China.”

Thing. Even more scary than Cousin Itt is the disembodied hand creature called “Thing”. (The US military, warfare.) Thing is powerful, and also breaks some china, but thankfully that is usually in other people’s houses.

Some of your cousins are The Munsters. They live in a big house of their own (much older than your family’s), that is called Europe. They drive a very stylish car. (The Munsters have a great sense of design and style.) Their daughter, Marilyn, is a real babe. She could get work as a model at a Paris fashion show. Her little brother is your cousin, Eddie Munster. He is cool and likes a lot of the same games and TV shows that you do. Their Grandpa (the European Central Bank) is a strange old man that is sort of like Uncle Fester. (He is also in inventor.)

Your mom once said that the Addams Family and the Munsters are very closely related. She mentioned something about some cousins marrying each other, but never gave you the details. The Munsters always seem to be getting in fights with their neighbors, so occasionally your family has to send Thing over to the Munster’s house and restore order.

Thankfully, circumstances are different in your neighborhood. For as long as you can remember, the Addams Family has had peaceful relations with all of your nearby neighbors (Mexico and Canada), mainly because they are all afraid of your dad’s creepy mansion and all of his money. Starting about 30 years ago, one of your neighbors sent a maid named Maria (uncontrolled American immigration) to help out with the chores at the Addams mansion. You realize that Maria has been having a lot of babies up in her room, but they are quiet, so nobody worries about them.

The Latest Episode:

Your dad dashes into the TV Room. You have been distracted there (with the newer, big screen television with all the extra channels), so you didn’t notice the changes in your dad’s toy train set up. Your dad excitedly tells you “Come to the parlor, son, to see the upgrades that I’ve made to the train!” Among other things, you see that he has switched from the old low-current transformer (precious metals backed currency) to a new, high-current transformer (fiat currency.) This new train set is swell. It isn’t just an old steam locomotive. This one is a shiny streamlined Zephyr. It is very fast. (The post-Greenspan low interest rate economic boom.) Uncle Fester helped design and build it. Instead of just an old fashioned derailment, your dad says that he has a dramatic ending planned, using the “The D Word.” He calls them derivatives, but you recognizes those bundles: They are bundled sticks of dynamite.

“Watch this, son!” The toy train goes speeding down the track, faster and faster. It is barely staying on the tracks. Your mother and Uncles Fester clap their hands in delight. Lurch just stands off to the side patiently, but he moans “Uggggghh” to himself and he rolls his eyes. The expression on his face reveals that he knows that there will soon be a big mess that he will have to clean up. The train passes over the trestle, and just at the precise moment, your dad shoves down the lever on the blasting machine, setting off “The D Word” in a tremendously loud explosion. Things go flying everywhere. Your ears are ringing. There are huge clouds of acrid smoke. Windows, china, light bulbs, and even the big screen television are broken. You father comments drolly: “I guess that I used a bit too much of the D Word.”

Cousin Itt hears the commotion and breaks out of the basement. Lurch chases after him, but Cousin Itt is wild and uncontrollable. He breaks a lot of china. Meanwhile, Maria’s children–it turns out there 27 of them (who knew?)–come running out of their room, shouting. They join Cousin Itt in an orgy of breaking china, tearing the copper wiring out of the walls, and eating up all of the food in the house. It is absolute pandemonium. Lurch can’t control the situation. Cousin Itt and Maria’s kids slip from his grasp and continue wrecking things. There are too many of them. Sadly, “Thing” is no help, because he is currently off working at some other’s peoples house, down the street (Iraq). All of the gadgets in the house seems to be broken beyond repair, except that you still hear Uncle Fester’s printing press running upstairs. (It is reassuring to know that something still works.)

Amidst this confusion, you hear your dad shout at your mom: “Call the Munsters for help!” Your mom objects. “But Gomez!”, she sobs, “The Munsters already have a first and second mortgage on the mansion. This time they’ll demand that we sign over the title o the house and they’ll take Uncle Fester’s printing press. They’ll even send their own maid, cook, and butler to run our house!” You don’t like the sound of that, because you know that the Munster’s butler has a big mean German Shepherd (the United Nations) and their maid Sharia (uncontrolled European immigration) is very scary and speaks a foreign language. You were told that she was originally from North Africa. (But, like Maria, your cousins hired Sharia because she works for practically nothing. And, coincidentally, you’ve heard that Sharia is also having a lot of kids.)

You dad motions you outside. “Let’s have a talk, son.” The sun is setting. In the distance, your hear some nervous whinnying and stomping of the Four Horses out in the stable. Clearly, they have been agitated by the explosion and the continuing sounds of chaos in the house, and you wonder if they are going to get loose. Your dad sits you down and he nervously pulls out another lit cigar. Finally, the truth comes out. “Pugsley, it is time that I told you the truth: Your mother and I are are immortals. We’ve owned this mansion for more than 230 years. Nothing can ever kill us.” He goes on with some details, explaining that as their children have grown up, they just keep raising new ones, to do the chores. Your father also admits that this latest train wreck (economic depression) is one of many that he has orchestrated over the years. He begins proudly, “Son, some of my best train wrecks were in 1819, 1837, 1857 and 1929.” After a pause, he adds, more soberly, “Up until this last one, I’ve always used just the throttle and run the train off the tracks. But this time I made the mistake of using the D Word, and frankly I’m not sure if I can ever fix the train set.” Over in the house, you hear the sounds of Cousin Itt chasing chaos continuing. It is starting to get dark, and the lights in the house aren’t working. You realize will be a very long night, without television! – Will in Wyoming