Name your terms: The 2008 Economic Whatzit

It is too early, I suppose, to glean a definitive name for the financial crisis we are currently undergoing in the U.S. of A. But in order to give you all a head start on a name for this hoo-hah, I thought I would provide some definitions to determine if what is transpiring meets some of the prequisites for certain types of economic events:


Panic — Or rather PANIC!!! Depending on the type and the severity of the panic, provided that doesn’t give birth to some oxymoron, then how the word should be displayed should just as logically seem as important as its definition. But as I always like to say: “What the hell do I know?”


 “A sudden, widespread fear of economic or market collapse, leading to massive bank deposit withdrawals and/or falling stock prices,” according to


Depression Okay, I had to do a little visual pun with color, as in making “depression” blue. Get it? Since I sufer from depression and have been diagnosed, right or wrong, as having a narcissistic personality disorder I feel entitled to do that. But the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Assoc.-College Equities Retirement Fund (TIAA-CREF)  Web site defines depression in the economic sense as (drumroll please):


“Economic situation characterized by rising unemployment, an excess of supply over demand, deflation, reduced purchasing power, contraction of general business activity and public fear.”


Well, at least we haven’t reached deflation yet.


Recessionrecession —  Here we have a wealth of lexigraphy. Perhaps that is the reason — along with it almost requiring a recession to be over before one identifies it — that politicians and economists have had such a difficult time figuring out whether we are in one or not.


  “A period of general economic decline, part of the usual business cycle,” says the Australian Financial Review ( ).


  “A stage of the business cycle in which economic activity is in slow decline. Recession usually follows a boom, and precedes a depression. It is characterized by rising unemployment and falling levels of output and investment,” according to International Profits Associates (IPA .)


  “As reflected in the gross national product, a decline in economic activity in at least two consecutive quarters,” that from Thrasher Capital.


 And, of course, as a rule (hard and fast one at that) I don’t read CosmoGirl, but …


  “A significant decline in economic growth that lasts six months or longer. It is usually marked by job layoffs, high unemployment, reductions in retail sales, and the slowing of housing and car markets. A recession is milder than a depression. An arduous or extremely long recession is referred to as an economic depression.”


A couple of days, two consecutive quarters, six months? Be there no doubt how hard it is to identify the kind of economic mess we are into at the moment. Although I do not know of the word being in any of the economic dictionaries or encyclopedias, I personally would choose to describe the crisis as just an old fashioned “s**tstorm.”


Being that as it may, I hope you all have brought your sturdy umbrellas.

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