March 5th, 2009
05:00 PM ET

How worried are you about a full-blown depression?


This sculpture of a 1930s era bread line captures the hunger and desperation many Americans felt during the Great Depression. (PHOTO CREDIT: MANNY CENETA/GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

There's a 20 percent chance the U.S. will sink into a full-blown depression according to a professor of economics at Harvard University who has studied the economic cycles of the last 139 years.

Robert Barro writes in the Wall Street Journal that the most serious concern these days is that our economic downturn will become something worse than the largest recession since World War II. And he comes to the conclusion that there's a one-in-five chance that America's GDP and consumption will fall by 10 percent or more - something we haven't seen since the 1930s.

Barro found in his research that knowing a stock market crash has occurred sharply raises the odds of a depression - not good news for us, considering what the market has done since the fall of 2007 when the Dow was above 14,000.

However, he writes that the bright side of all this is there's an 80 percent chance we can avoid a depression - pointing out how the U.S. had stock market crashes in 2000 and 1973 and both times only experienced mild recessions.

Nonetheless, in the 59 non war depressions Barrow studied across various countries, he found an average length of almost four years, which could potentially push back a recovery until 2012.

Here’s my question to you: How worried are you the U.S. will experience a full-blown depression?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Jim from North Carolina writes:
When you consider the manner in which the Bush administration spent our national treasure (and Obama is even worse), I am extremely worried about a depression. But what worries me even more, if we get through this period without a depression, is hyperinflation. I am afraid it is going to be very troubling either way.

Vern from Anaheim, California writes:
This could turn into a depression if the government isn't careful. I was not born until the end of the Great Depression of the 1930s but my parents told me about the long lines of people seeking work and food. People did anything to survive; it was a terrible time and I hope we don't have to go through it again.

Mike writes:
Keep posting questions like this and we will have one. A consumer economy is one based on consumer confidence and if consumers perceive and/or are worried about a depression, they will save rather than spend. If that is the case, we will inevitably have a depression. It's effectively a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Gretchen from Denver writes:
This country was so mismanaged for the past 8 years, it is altogether possible that we can not avoid a full-blown depression. The one thing we can be thankful for is that now we have a president who has a brain, and we all need to support him. He is smarter than the entire Congress put together and they all should quit trying to be experts on anything.

Barbara writes:
Not worried. I think it will turn around after 2 years. I have full confidence in Obama, but don't think it will happen immediately. As a small business owner, I look forward to health care reform, making it easier to cover my employees.

Darren from Fairbanks, Alaska writes:
It's downright depressing, and even worse when you can't afford your antidepressants!

Filed under: Economy
soundoff (389 Responses)
  1. agilog

    Very worried indeed.

    March 5, 2009 at 12:57 pm |
  2. agilog

    Very worried indeed.
    los angeles, ca

    March 5, 2009 at 12:58 pm |
  3. mac from traverse city Michigan

    I'm scared Jack, we should all be very very scared. The rich are going to pull their wealth out of the economy and hoard it to make sure the democratic vision of democracy fails. Our jobs are gone overseas or obsolete to technology and if our economy can't turn the unemployed into taxpayers we're all in trouble.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:03 pm |
  4. DrFrann in Los Angeles, CA

    I think we are in a low level depression.
    There is no question to me that dysthymia is sweeping across this country. The stock market is hemorrhaging. People are hurting and scared. And very angry. People are very very angry.
    We may not be in a full blown depression, but many people are very depressed.
    The stimulus package is not the antidepressant we are looking for. Frankly, I don't know what is although people might start to feel better if some of the white collar criminals were held accountable.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  5. Tony

    Jack –

    Why don't we report the number of unemployed workers or new claims filed as a percentage of the work force? It doesn't really give a good comparison if we don't know the total number of people in the work force and therefore makes it unfair to see this is worse than 1929, 1972, 1982, etc, etc.

    Curious –

    March 5, 2009 at 1:04 pm |
  6. Conor in Chicago

    I am far more worried about armed revolt on the part of Republican/Christian Conservatives than I am a Great Depression. They way they are talking these days you'd think Stalin just on the Presidency, Satan owns the airwaves, and Obama is working towards herding us into labor camps as revenge for slavery. It's pretty scary.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  7. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    With a stock market that lost more than half its value in less than a year, we are very close now, if not actually in one.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:07 pm |
  8. Kevin in Dallas, TX

    As Reagan once said, "a recession is when your neighbor loses his job. A depression is when you lose yours." My job is quite secure, so I'm not worried. But a recovery is when Pelosi loses her job, the partisan hack.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  9. Mike Bravo, Wichita, KS

    I am very worried. My income will be OK but I really do not want the kids to be moving back home.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:10 pm |
  10. heidi

    I'm extremely worried about the US going into fullblown depression.
    The spending of this administration, so far, seems extremely wasteful and all Obama does is go back on his campaign promises, especially the promise of identifying earmarks. How could the man say with a straight face that the first stimulus bill had not one earmark in it? I didn't vote for him.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:10 pm |
  11. JD in NH

    Oh, no. The black cloud has descended on CNN again. Here's a novel idea: let's try to be positive and work on finding solutions and not dwell on the worst case scenario. Times have been bad before and we've always come out of them. We'll emerge from this mess eventually and hopefully we'll be a whole lot smarter. It's not time to take the cyanide pills yet, Jack.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:12 pm |
  12. Katiec Pekin, IL

    Jack, believe we are just an inch away from being in a full blown depression. We hear additional bad news daily, and, unless our
    government is able to move quickly on the stimulous/job creation
    package, the economy will continue to fail.
    The budget needs to be passed so the elimination of waste in
    goverment and goverment spending can be cut, contracts handled
    with integrity, and our country being put back on the right path.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:19 pm |
  13. Bill in Michigan

    It's just around the corner and Michigan is leading the way. Each day we hear more about layoffs, foreclosures, plant closings, loss of benefits, etc., etc. Some Michiganders are already there, setting up camp for those to follow. I think I'll re-read the Grapes of Wrath.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:21 pm |
  14. Ed Waldroop

    I think Mr. Obama's policies are driving us wily nily toward a fulll blown depression. Once he drives ALL small business into bankruptcy, there will be no chance to recover. Maybe we should just all be on the Federal payroll rather than trying to work for ourselves.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:25 pm |
  15. bob z.from pa.

    i am more worried about losing our country

    March 5, 2009 at 1:27 pm |
  16. Roy

    Jack I'm already depressed enough as it is. Where's President Bush when you need him to be hollering "Bring it On!" and I guess he did succeed in helping this one come to the fore.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:28 pm |
  17. Steve Pepperell, MA

    I think we are in a "Small d" depression now. However since the measures that define a depression seem less well established than for a recession there is plenty of room for Obamite spin mysters to ride the R-word until it is clear that we have sailed off the cliff, are in free fall and no one spent stimulus money on parachutes.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:28 pm |
  18. Stacy from Leesburg, VA

    Jack, when the river floods you can sit there and watch the waters rise to engulf your house, or you can start bagging sand and do your best to ensure the waters don’t take it away. Those sitting on the porch worry and complain about it while those bagging sand don’t have time to think about. Right now, we have too many porch dwellers and not enough sandbaggers if you ask me.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:29 pm |
  19. Jackie in Dallas

    Worried, no. Concerned, yes. Define "full-blown depression" and I can be more specific. 10% or greater unemployment? We're already at that point in some parts of the country. Credit freezes and bank failures? We've already seen that happen, and it is still happening. Economic failures of major Wall Street financial institutions? Been there, already seen that. World wide effects? Yep, already happening.

    What more will it take? Soup kitchens? Bread lines? Suicides? Oops, all of those are already happening!

    March 5, 2009 at 1:29 pm |
  20. Chad from California

    Well, I am seriously considering having my yard turn into a full garden, so yeah, It may come down to growing our own food to survive!

    March 5, 2009 at 1:32 pm |
  21. Emily Moss

    I grew up hearing about the Great Depression. If Bush were still in charge, I would be very worried. I feel that Obama will explore all ideas to ameliorate this economic descent. It will take a long time to turn this around; but with a President who does not expect tax cuts and free markets to fix everything, we will succeed. Confidence and trust will be difficult to restore after the 8 year disaster that was the Bush presidency.

    Greenville, SC

    March 5, 2009 at 1:33 pm |
  22. John from Alabama

    Jack: Tom Brokaw called them "The Greatest Generation", and a man I love more than life,my father was a member of that generation. The reforms started by FDR will keep this deep, deep recession from becoming a depression. The love of Americans for their fellow citizens will not let their children strave or their parents. Some say, FDR's reforms did not end the depression, but rather World War Two ended the depression. Well, people FDR's reforms raised the morale of this nation, so they could face another world war. If your not part of the solution, your part of the problem. I wonder if the Republicans liked FDR's reforms.

    John from Alabama

    March 5, 2009 at 1:34 pm |
  23. Rodney, Minnesota

    I am deeply worried about our financial system. It is messed up. If these heavy weight failures continue to show the same judgement that got us in to this mess, they will drag us through a depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:34 pm |
  24. Natalie T. in Clay, WV

    I live in West Virginia. We never came out of the last depression. A new one will not be as hard on us as it is on the rest of you. Here, we can still hunt & farm to feed ourselves. We are used to living on a serious budget here. We still know the neighbors, and more to the point, try to help them when times are tough for them. They will do the same for us. So, am I worried? Absolutely. But I also think that this is as much an opportunity as it is a crisis. The last Depression gave rise to "the greatest generation". Imagine what the next generation could achieve for this country, and themselves. I think while it will be very hard, the country could emerge stronger, smarter and more respected than ever before.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:36 pm |
  25. john...... marlton nj

    We have watched the flaming liberals churn a credit crunch-crisis into a recession and now, under the pretense of this recession, gin up a spending regime that is nothing more than theft and a replication of early 1900's red bolshevik seizure of power in russia.

    If history repeats itself the flaming liberals should be the most worried if the recession they cultivated explodes into a full-blown depression

    March 5, 2009 at 1:37 pm |
  26. Billy G in Las Vegas

    Jack, I am VERY worried about a depression

    I read a business article today that GM's auditors have raised substantial doubt about the troubled automaker's ability to continue operations. IF that happens, there will be a domino effect that very well could produce a rerun of the 1930's. a shutdown of GM would probably destroy many of their suppliers and venders putting millions more out of work.

    IF that happens, it's GAME OVER.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:37 pm |
  27. Jesse from Elizabeth,New Jersey

    Worry about a depression? It's beenhere for the people at the bottom of the economic ladder for a while now. Ask anyone in the black community.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:38 pm |
  28. Jeff in E. Lyme, CT

    Jack, I'm unemployed, we're behind on our mortgage and we get the impression that the government homeowner help is for Fannie May & Freddie Mac mortgages only, neither of which holds our deed. My wife is already in Full-Blown depresion.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:39 pm |
  29. Kerry Diehl

    What do you mean “will”????? – wrong tense of the word Jack!!

    March 5, 2009 at 1:40 pm |

    It depends on which is worse–a depression or a recession? I know that a recession is when we have negative GDP, but I'm not exactly sure what the textbook definition of a "depression" is.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:42 pm |
  31. LM from Fayetteville, NC

    If we would just clean house and get rid of the people who don't pay taxes or who get paid under the table or get medical treatment when they are not here legally, or get bonuses ON TOP OF HUGE PAY CHECKS, we would not have to worry about a depression.

    There is something to be said for a middle income mindset. You live here and use our roads and utilities – you pay taxes. You earn your pay and you get paid by a paycheck and taxes and social security is deducted. You have to prove you deserve medical treatment and are not a result of an anchor baby. You work hard and MAYBE get a bonus based on your productivity NOT who you are or who you know. THEN DEPRESSION IS NOT A PART OF YOUR MINDSET.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:44 pm |
  32. Sandi AZ

    No, worry only causes stress, depression and negative attitudes. We must have faith in God and always look forward, and not backwards. Through positive thoughts and helping to keep our neighbors spirits up we can weather through this storm as we have many many times in the past.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:45 pm |
  33. Erik

    I'm not worried too much about a depression. If we can come away from this economic turmoil with less greed in our society, I think we will emerge a better, more powerful country. Maybe this will teach us all a lesson or two. After all, how important does the argument over same sex marriage seem now when compared to the argument over the economy?

    McDonough, GA

    March 5, 2009 at 1:47 pm |
  34. carson

    Very worry

    March 5, 2009 at 1:48 pm |
  35. Terry in Hanover County

    The U.S. will not experience a full-blown depression because we're already there. Now the question should be will the U.S. survive a worse depression? Yes, we can, but not unless things start changing now, not tomorrow, with regards to pork barrel spending; GOP divisiveness (you guys lost - get over yourselves for the good of America); paying NO attention to the childish hystrionics of Rush Limbaugh; and paying more attention to working class Americans. To steal a slogan from Nike - Mr. Obama and Congress, Just Do It.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:52 pm |
  36. Jane M

    Extremely. I can't see how all this troubling horrible bad news will ever change? Maybe if the media put out there a positive story for every negative story it might help change the outlook? I just don't know. It's sickening to me at this point and I'm sure in another few months the entire American public will be on Prozac! I know I'm going next week to ask my doctor for a prescription!

    March 5, 2009 at 1:52 pm |
  37. Dennis

    Somewhat. I am hoping that all that President Obama is doing will start to turn this downturn around.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:55 pm |
  38. Mike S., New Orleans

    I was more worried about a full blown depression before the presidential election than I am now. We have changed course, and that's exactly what was needed. It will take decades to pay off the Bush years, but like Obama said, "Yes we can." Ironically, Governor Bobby Jindal's father said "Americans can do anything."
    So you see, both parties are totally optimistic.

    March 5, 2009 at 1:58 pm |
  39. Jacki Matthews

    The international nature of our economy could prevent a 10% reduction in GDP. Bank stress tests will determine our economic future. I am not afraid. I am hopeful. Im going to go spend some money right now!

    March 5, 2009 at 1:58 pm |
  40. Rob of Brooklyn

    Jack–you know our government. They said we were in a recession after we had been in one for over a year. We're in a depression – but they are never going to admit... This country thinks everyone is stupid.. My question to you is why hasn't bush been arrested for treason ?

    March 5, 2009 at 2:00 pm |
  41. Remo in Austin,Texas

    We aren't there yet? I sort of figured borrowing our "toddlers" money indicated that we were already there. I mean if you consider a bail-out as a "Stop the Problem Measure" and Citi is trading at, or, under $1.00
    how much lower, or how much spending, do we have to do before we realize that we're there?

    March 5, 2009 at 2:01 pm |
  42. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    Not worried about the.The only thing I am worried about is the denial Congress is in about GM and Citi and AIG.Its OUR money that we will never see again yet we have families and kids at school going hungry.
    Yes I am worried allot but I don't think we'll have a depression.
    David Bebeau

    March 5, 2009 at 2:02 pm |
  43. Allen L Wenger

    I'm a little less worried today, than I was a few months ago.

    Mountain Home ID

    March 5, 2009 at 2:03 pm |
  44. Mark Easton, PA

    Since I have not lived through one, I cannot fully appreciate what a depression is; I hear it's really bad.

    It is my opinion though, that the market is being manipulated to steer the focus of the budget talks and stimulus spending; and I'll tell you why.

    As a fundamental trait, people look for easier ways to do things, kind of like the way Wall Street earns its money; on the backs of others. Once they see where the Government will be focusing it's investments, the numbers will improve as they dive in again to drink up the sweet nectar they are addicted to; free money.

    Case in point, the bank stimulus money. Banks fail, government inserts coin in banks, bank stocks go up, investors withdrawl profits.

    Count on Wall Street to show up with Investors where the government puts the taxpayers hard earned cash. When the stimulus/spending bills go through, so will the market numbers improve.

    Those watching the DOW as the only economic indicator; have not learned yet that the President is watching the number of unemployed as his indicator on the shape of the nations economic health. And I agree with him, in case you haven't noticed.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:03 pm |
  45. Rich Monk

    Hey Jack,
    We are already in a full blown Depression!
    If the Government had not already put a Trillion or more into the Banks, Wall St. and the Big 3 auto companies there would be an additional 3 to 5 million more people out of work and on unemployment.
    Add to this total economic collapse we are already in two failed wars!!!
    The American politicians have sold the public out long ago, and have failed miserably at everything they have done the past 50 years.America's fate rest in the hands of complete greedy, entitled MORONS, the same bozos that created this cliff dive to Hell!
    Yes, I do mean Congress and the Senate.
    At least President Obama has much common sense, knowledge and humbleness to correct the path that we are going.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:03 pm |
  46. janet Hodges

    I am not as worried about the economy as I am about the way that President Obama is handling it, I don't need any more taxes to fund this budget bill.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:06 pm |
  47. samir from florida

    I thought the last depression put triggers in place to prevent a future depression. The fact that these triggers did not come into effect has me worried. Also, my secure job doesn't seem that secure anymore. It seems as though I have to prove my value to the company every day, and that value must exceed my salary. It gets more and more difficult, but I trust in God and thats what keeps me going.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:07 pm |
  48. Rob, San Diego

    Not worried at all. We are already there. The talking heads will confirm this in a few months.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  49. Charles, Lansing, MI

    Climb out of your closet, Jack. We are in a full blown depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  50. Marie Ontario

    If the big 3 Automakers go under then I fully expect the U.S. will go into a full blown depression. I don't think the Government has fully or properly explained to the public what it will cost them if this happens in terms of lost tax revenues, lost jobs and assistance for those millions of people who will lose their jobs and pensions.

    Everyone should be worried about a full blown depression including those who oppose assisting the unfortunate people who are both jobless and homeless and feel they should just swim for it since they may just follow these people into the same cess pool.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  51. Kim in Dodge City, KS

    Too late to worry. Remember, it took the government almost a year to declare a recession, so why wait another year to call it a depression? You don't have to be a genius to know a depression when you see one.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  52. Dee in Florida

    Scared senseless (I would use another word, but am trying to be nice)

    In the "Great Depression" people actually tried to help each other. Neighbors helped neighbors, and strangers helped strangers.

    Today, our NEIGHBORS are STRANGERS, and they are all armed to the teeth! Anyone who is NOT worried must either be rich or on tranquilizers!

    March 5, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  53. Dan from Alliance, OH

    I am not really worried that a full blown depression will occur. Before this happens the people of this country will approve a socialistic society with medical care, government banks and government housing. Then the 30 Million a year executives can pay 60 to 70 % in taxes with no deductions.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:10 pm |
  54. Frost

    Not worried..

    So what if it does?

    maybe we need it... we've gone away from the basics of life..
    people are closer now than ever with family
    more family meals around the table
    people are spending time with their kids for a change
    People making choices of what truly is important
    People are watching CNN more..
    People are seeing the hate more and changing it.. first witin themself and then with a vote
    People are dealing with their own problems and keeping their nose out of others..
    more than a few found out they hit harder from being snotty.. they had more of a fall.

    Now while some of us poor people were already adjusted to going without..

    getting over hearing the ex-rich whine..

    maybe that's what this country needs... everyone on the same playing field.. seems like the best person to ask on how to survive is the poor..


    March 5, 2009 at 2:12 pm |
  55. David Gerstenfeld

    Why, would worrying make a difference?

    March 5, 2009 at 2:13 pm |
  56. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: I'm concerned-–not worried-–fear, panic and worry are only "interest" being paid on something that hasn't happen yet.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:14 pm |
  57. Dennis north Carolina

    I worry about my children and my grandchildren other wise I would say bring on the depression to teach the greedy and the rich a lesson because they are the ones that created this mess.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:16 pm |
  58. James Lenon - Chuckey TN

    I don't think a full-blown depression can be avoided.

    This one should be labeled "The Reagan-Bush Not-so-great Depression" in honor of the two men who did the most to allow it by removing all regulation that could have kept the financial system honest and solvent.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:17 pm |
  59. Chris - Savannah GA

    Deeply. Obama looks like he's turkey shooting at every problem this country has. None of them will be done right and the majority will miss the target. A sign of a good manager is that he can prioritize. Not everything can be priority #1.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:17 pm |
  60. Ron from Chicago

    I'm more worry about a family member getting federally charged with a crime.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:18 pm |
  61. mary

    i personaly an not worrie about depression it cant get to much worse the people as broke as i am. in fact it might even help me i would be able to trade my hand made goods for sum of the goods and services i need like a pig for grain or fencing.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:20 pm |
  62. Paul - New Orleans, LA

    How worried I am, well let's just say I'm kind of scared that we will face the Second Great Depression and I fear Limbaugh will lead us to this catastrophe as he is leading the Repulicans to their politcal depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  63. Tony from Torrington

    We are supposed to learn from history, but it appears from what has been going on the past 5 or 6 weeks, we ahven't learned a thing. A full blown depression is only a breath away.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:23 pm |
  64. Terry from North Carolina

    Unless this administration move a little quicker in putting people back to work in order to pay their bills and purchase goods. Yes I am very concerned about sliding into a depression. Who said " a chicken in every pot " and look at what happened, bread lines as far as the eye could see.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:24 pm |
  65. Harold from Anchorage,AK

    We need projects to replace public infrastructure, much of which was constructed by projects in the '30's depression(maybe these depresions are cyclical)

    March 5, 2009 at 2:24 pm |
  66. Chryssa

    Careful, Jack. Say the D-word twice more and it'll show up, just like Beetlejuice.

    Boise, ID

    March 5, 2009 at 2:25 pm |
  67. Tony from Torrington

    We are supposed to learn from history, but it appears from what has been going on the past 5 or 6 weeks, we haven’t learned a thing. A full blown depression is only a breath away. Just look at the stock market!!

    March 5, 2009 at 2:25 pm |
  68. Barb - NC

    I've bought and frozen and sealed about a one year supply of corn meal, flour, and dried milk. (Freeze 1st to kill any bugs or eggs).

    I know which greens can be eaten if cleaned properly. Also have a whole case of spam (extra). There are other staples, but I won't go into detail.

    Not worried at all Jack (she said)

    March 5, 2009 at 2:26 pm |
  69. Barbara - NC

    I've bought and frozen and sealed about a one year supply of corn meal, flour, and dried milk. (Freeze 1st to kill any bugs or eggs).

    I know which greens can be eaten if cleaned properly. Also have a whole case of spam (extra). Many pounds of pinto beans and black eyed peas. There are other staples, but I won't go into detail.

    Not worried at all Jack (she said)

    March 5, 2009 at 2:28 pm |
  70. odessa

    not worried..yes, i am very concerned for anyone who are working everyday so they can take care of their families or themselves..i am tired of people losing homes, jobs and healthcare which are more important to me than pork spending..united states was facing this recession under bush for eight years and nobody wasn't worried..all of sudden, the annoying media want president obama to speed it up..he doesn't have a magic wand..it will time to get over our recession..our country has been suffering for years without having deregulation in wall street and big banks..things will take time to get out of this bump..

    March 5, 2009 at 2:30 pm |
  71. Judie from St. Augustine, Florida

    I try not to worry about what now seems inevitable. I am trying to plan ahead for a very lean and mean way of life. You know hoping to be able to exist and be as happy as I can be with what I have. Acceptance is something I practice on a daily basis. I can now thank my frugal Irish New England relatives who taught me how to stretch a dollar and to make do.

    St. Augustine, Fl

    March 5, 2009 at 2:34 pm |
  72. J Georgia

    We're reliving Robber Barron days. While a few guys take enough for themselves to buy vacation homes in the Hamptons, the rest of us, in terms of bailout, get a cheeseburger.....with no cheese.....or burger. Until the social disparity of incomes and the honor of meaningful work is corrected in terms of compensation, and until enough enforced oversight is in place to keep the Robber Barrons from stealing the spikey hat right off the Statue of Liberty, we're probably in for continued hard times, whatever "depression" word you may use to describe it. Everyone now knows that the emporer is naked.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:37 pm |
  73. Griff...... The Truth

    It will not make that much difference, to this world of today. They will all be in the same boat. Scrambled! It will be the War torn area's who will suffer the most.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:37 pm |
  74. Judy, Exeter, Calif,

    A full blown depression is always on our minds. What is frightening to me is the unknown. What will it look like? Certainly nothing like the 1930's. The world is different today, more people, more violence, crowded conditions. My biggest fear is the US could become a third world country if that happens. That said, hope springs eternal. We have a president who is intelligent and committed to cleaning up this awful mess. If he fails, it will be because it was worse than any of us imagined at the beginning, and the opposition party doesn't know how to stop playing politics.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:37 pm |
  75. Dakota Don from Akra

    Not particularly worried as regards myself. I saw the handwriting on the wall a year into the Bush administration and started preparing years ago for what has arrived and is yet to come.

    The nation and people as a whole though, well, it's getting ugly out there, Jack. I will be astonished if this nation still exists as an operational democratic republic in 2020. Even 2015 is looking iffy.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:38 pm |
  76. David in San Diego

    I don't even know what that would really mean. In asking the question, do you?

    March 5, 2009 at 2:39 pm |
  77. Philip from Toronto

    Very concerned.
    There is a global reorganization of wealth going on, much of it is beyond Americas influence. Trying to return to yesterday is like trying to hold back the tides, impossible. The richest 1% have the means to protect themselves and ultimately rule over a decimated America. There may be a near total collapse of the American Economy, American Dream, and American Spirit,and the end result of a feudal society with the richest 1% ruling 99% of the rest of population is not out of the question. Look at almost all of the world today!

    March 5, 2009 at 2:39 pm |
  78. ingrid, new york

    worried :-O

    We have to continue to walk forward with both eyes open and outrthinking caps on. Obama and his team are taking on the responsibility and the risks- they are at least moving and taking action. it seems to me that the republicans and the extreme right (two separate but equal groups) are not offering any alternatives, they are busy critiquing and putting the democrats down, the strategy is that Maybe if they are loud enough and obnoxious enough, people will start to forget that it is their responsibility that we are in this horrible situation, so that people forget that the move towards deregulation and a laisez faire philosophy, no bid contracts and a not justified war, was theirs. Theirs is a case of the gentlemen "doth protest too much."

    March 5, 2009 at 2:42 pm |
  79. Carolyn

    We have a small home, we were diversified, saved our money for college and retirement, have taken a pay cut due to company loss, and have watched those around us that enjoyed their little spending spree. How much more are we suppose to endure because we did everything by the book. Just curious, when will people start to panic? I'm there! I've watched more than half of our savings disappear and it's unbelievable that we now have to help others that are in a bad way.
    I never thought I would see this day.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:43 pm |
  80. Tina Tx

    I was more worried with Bush in charge but now that Obama is working very hard to help the poor and the middle clase become citizens again I quit worrying.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:44 pm |
  81. Mike - Hot Springs, Arkansas

    No sense worrying about it. What will be will be. Enjoy life for the moment. Tomorrow we may die. Everyone does you know and that is not worst thing that happens.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:45 pm |
  82. David Gerstenfeld

    No, use his line item veto. Opps, I forgot, there isn't one.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  83. Diane Glasser

    Jack lets face the facts! Depression, I think it has already begun. Lets get it out in the open. Let us not hide it like Bush tried to. He denied it and just kept trying to hide the recession.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:47 pm |
  84. Adam from Philly

    I don't think it will get that bad, but I would love to hear something positive for a change. Isn't there anything good happening in the world?

    March 5, 2009 at 2:49 pm |
  85. Philip from Toronto

    More concerned today than at any other time in my long life.

    To prevent chaos and anarchy, President Obama must socialize Medicine, bring the Troops home for crime suppression and plan around a 15%-20% permanent underclass of un-employed and under-employed. With some Swedish/French style of socialism citizens then have a stake in the country and its governing institutions. A pure capitalist society is the definition of "every-man-for-himself" society at its uglyist, imagine living in L.A. as a slum you would find outside of Rio or Calcutta. No law, no society beyond your gang and your family.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:53 pm |
  86. daryl

    Not at all. I'm more concerned about the day and night non-stop trotting out of the procession of republican "nattering nabobs of negativity" on Cnn without equal time being give to those who are actually positive about the future of this country. You say Obama was talking down the economy, but that all you guys seem to do now. That's more stressful and depressing than anything.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:53 pm |
  87. Chuck in Warren,Ohio

    Jack: I don't worry about things I can't control. The wind blows out of the North West here in North East Ohio most of the time. A full blown depression started in 2005 and no one did anything to stop it!

    March 5, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  88. Tom, Bradenton

    All the elements of a depression are there and I believe we are already in one. I am heart broken to see what politicians have done to this great nation. We got that far due to outsourcing all the jobs. The housing crisis did not start this, it was outsourcing jobs. Without jobs or decent paying jobs you can not buy a car or pay a mortgage. Wake America, wake up Americans fight and take your country back.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  89. vern-t anaheim,ca

    this could turn into a depression if the goverment isn't careful.i was not born until the end of the great depression of the 1930' but my parents did and told me about the long lines of people seeking work and food,people did anything to survive,it was a terrible time and i hope we don't have to go through it again

    March 5, 2009 at 2:57 pm |
  90. Keith - Twinsburg, OH

    Jack, you're using future tense, as though you are looking at the same polls that our government sees.

    Thousands have lost their jobs, thousands are loosing their jobs every month, thousands are turning out for the job fairs around the country, and you can't get a loan if you wanted... If this ain't a dression, then I don't know what one is.

    Big Brother doesn't want to scare any one, so they're still calling this a resession... If you recall, we didn't know THIS until last September... And the figures indicate that it was this way since last January.

    Too late, Jack... We're there.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:58 pm |
  91. dan in Tucson

    A depression seems inevitable because the spending is not stopping. As a matter of fact it is getting a lot worse and it doesn't take a rocket scientist to know where that will lead us. You can only print so much money before it totally loses it value, then you end up with a depression. I say this and I am not a Republican. The Republican rheteric is merely sour grapes. They also spend too much. Remember this problem started during the Republican era.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:58 pm |
  92. mark in az

    Not really worried. Times are bad but not as bad as the 30's. People should do what I have done and take in boarders. It was popular back in the 30's and I can see why. I charge them just under what it would cost for them to find a place of their own and it pretty much pays all my bills. if I lose my job, at least I have that to fall back on.

    March 5, 2009 at 2:58 pm |

    Jack, one hundred percent worried. Every day it looks worse. People older than me (I am 48) say this is the worst they have ever seen. They have given me the same advice and I would like to pass it on to everyone else:


    March 5, 2009 at 2:59 pm |
  94. Russ in PA

    Our elected officials can't see past all of the lobbyists, and will drive this country deeper into economic misery. Until the Fed is audited, then abolished, and until this country returns to sound money, and sound budgetary policies, we will sink deeper into debt, and find our "money" more worthless as time goes on.

    Ron Paul is one of the few politicians that understands the hazards of allowing the Fed to run roughshod over the economy, and that understands that increasing the debt and money supply will make us all financially and morally bankrupt.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  95. freddie rocker

    i've said it before and i'll say it again
    the man wit da money gotsa million friends
    that's why i'm the loneliest man around
    'cos ima po'boy inna rich man's town

    March 5, 2009 at 3:00 pm |
  96. Randy from Salt Lake City

    Not worried at all, Jack. I'm kinda looking forward to it, actually. I won't have to go to work anymore, AND, I'll get to meet a lot of new people while slurping contaminated soup.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:03 pm |
  97. Casey | Sebastopol, CA

    I'm not worrying about it, I'm planning for it. If it doesn't happen, then I'm prepared for the future.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:03 pm |
  98. Xavier

    Jack its already starting to happen no jobs, banks failing, more corruption, we can't count on the federal government when the American people ask for help Jack they tell us that there is no money we don't have a budget but when big bank is limping on one leg they run to their aid with billions of dollars why don't they inject billion of dollars into the system instead of throwing it away there is only one word Jack. Politics with people lives!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! we are suffering everyday may god have mercy on us.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:03 pm |
  99. Russ Texas

    I'm not at all worried about a full blown depression. I'm more concerned about the totally irresponsible Obama and his congressional playmates bankrupting America. They are mindlessly spending money we do not have, cannot afford to borrow or print and by all evaluation appear intent on spending America into total bankruptcy. What I can't determine is, are they just mindless idiots, mocking taxpayers who are outraged at their behavior or driving America to bankruptcy with absolute intent and purpose?

    I've heard them refer to spending "government money" wisely, being held accountable by taxpayers and so forth. They just don't get it. Government has no money unless it takes it away from the taxpays. We have no means of holding them accountable. Voting them out and new blood into the DC culture just does not accmplish anything. Look at Obama. He is already proving to be just as common as all his predecessors.

    HOW CAN WE HOLD THEM ACCOUNTABLE to do what we want, what we elect them for and what for what we pay them?

    March 5, 2009 at 3:04 pm |
  100. Jim/NC

    The manner in which the Bush administration spent our national treasure and Obama is even worse, I am extremely worried about a depression. But what worries me even more, if we get through this period without a depression, is hyperinflation. I am afraid it is going to be very troubling either way.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  101. Ann from Charleston, S.C.

    I am not worried that the U.S. will experience a full-blown depression. Worry does no one any good.
    I am hoping that the measures the Obama administration is taking will bring us out of this financial crisis, but in the meantime I refuse to get caught up in the frenzy or obsess about something over which I have no control.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:05 pm |
  102. Clive Pollock

    Jack, YES. The USA has a total debt (public+private) of 3.6 GDP´s. That is the same as a company oweing three and a half years of gross sales. Even chapter 11 could not save it. A country can print money and erode the debt through inflation which is very painful, I lived through that here in Brazil for 25 years.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:06 pm |
  103. Francena

    I am very worried about the Economy. Tell Obama it's the HOUSING problem. Either fix it or people will be on welfare or food stamps. The government will pay one way or another.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:07 pm |
  104. Ann from Hampton, New Jersey

    Quite worried. The crash of 1929 was a few years before my time, but I do remember the ration books during World War II. The population was not like it is now and a depression will be devastating to us all.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:08 pm |
  105. Rob of Brooklyn

    jack why do you ask questions if you don't post answers. I posted something hours ago and there's still nothing there

    March 5, 2009 at 3:10 pm |
  106. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    It could happen and it will be worse then the Great Depression. If that happens,I don't think we will recover in my lifetime. It appears that the party is over.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:11 pm |
  107. cy gardner

    I'm very worried. It seems every corporate honcho has been ignoring reality. Look at all the businesses that borrowed gobs of money to try and monopolize their field and then cut customer service. I don't want to give any of my money to sports team owners, cable companies, Exxon, the credit card companies, telecoms, etc etc because of the shabby way they've treated consumers and the sheer arrogance of the way they have run their enterprises. People who have less money to spend are going to pay closer attention to who they give it to and many US companies just don't deserve my money. Cy Gardner arlington, va

    March 5, 2009 at 3:14 pm |
  108. Hope M. Madisonville, KY

    I think it is very possible especially since Obama has not been sticking to his guns and is trying to make Republicans happy. His
    stimulus bill needed more infrastructure in order to create jobs immediately. Forget bipartisanship if the Republicans are going to
    mess up the recovery with their policy of "NO" to everything. They lost,
    Obama won. Time for Obama to just get the bills passed that will help this economy and to heck with the Republicans. The Republicans'
    answer to everything is tax cuts and deregulation. That's what got us
    into this mess. They're wrong so why is Obama listening to them?
    No one likes taxes but they are necessary to keep our country running.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  109. Lisa B in Yucca Valley, CA

    I guess that depends on whether you are one of the corporate elite or most wealthy, that made out like a bandit during the hayday of mortgage deriviatives, offshoring of your money, and business's, hiding assets and profits, OR if you are one of the victims of the mortgage meltdown, wage loss, job loss, higher food and gas prices, being uninsured, and overwhelmed by illegal aliens and Work Visas taking over your country and life, and degrading your ability to live the American Dream.
    It is a matter of perspective, Jack.. .

    March 5, 2009 at 3:15 pm |
  110. T Stewart

    Why do some resort to saying we are rewarding home owners who were irresponsible to keep there homes? Didn't we reward AIG, GM, Citigroup, and all the other bail-out companies for there acts of irresponsibility, hell for that matter George Bush and Congress also get the nod. Greed is the force that has ruined America through exotic loans and business practices. And with no one stepping up to the plate but President Obama, cause frankly we do not know what will work, all he can do is try.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  111. George, Dunedin, Florida

    To the people on the low end of the totem pole, it is already a full blown depression. No jobs to be had, not enough money to put food on the table, or pay rent ,and even those who seem to be hanging on by a thread don't have two extra pennies to rub together. Then we have those in trheir ivory towers worrying that they will lose money in the stock market, aor that there will be a little tax money taken out of their millions to help others. Its a crying shame that people don't help other people when they are down, but actually will take their last dime.To those of us who have always made less than 24 thousand dollars a year it has always been a grind...

    March 5, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  112. Roger A. Meyer from Espanola, New Mexico

    Actually, I am very worried! We are not quite the productive country that we once were. Our standards of education, though full of experimental hogwash, are lower than ever in spite of "No Child Left Behind." Expert, (underline expert,) tradespeople are harder to find. For example,carpenters are used to pre-fab building packets instead of working out disigns. The food industry is full of incidents of sloppiness to the point of endangering public safety. If we are going to restore our economy, we not only have to fix Wall Streert and make it honest and answerable to the people while stopping big business and multi-national greed, but we need to become the talented, resourceful nation we once were and can become again if we can get our priorities straight. If not, I fear we could sink into a depression that will make the "Great Depression" seem like a minor period on inconveniance!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  113. Jack Martin

    At my age (78) I no longer worry about a depression. I remember the 1930's all too well and the world war that followed. I have learned that there are only two things that can happen. The first is something you can control and can do something about it .The second is something you have no control over such as another depression. Either way worrying is a waste of time and energy. You just have to survive like you always have.
    Jack in Florida

    March 5, 2009 at 3:17 pm |
  114. Darren

    I won't start worry about that until the Big Three Automakers tank, the cornerstone of our economy, then we can all start growing heavily concerned.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:18 pm |
  115. Mike out West

    I'm not worried. I, like many Americans, know the grim truth is that we are already there. The bailout and stimulus plans are the proof, and possibly even the death nails.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  116. cy gardner

    Isn't it inevitable? For years, most Americans have seen their wages stagnate or do down. Yet, health insurers, energy companies, landlords, retailers, etc etc all act as if we can all afford to pay more and more for goods and services. Something had to give. It's giving. Average people can't borrow anymore, we're lucky if we have a job. How are we supposed to fulfill the overly rosy scenarios that so many CEOs envisioned when they borrowed tons of money to buy up their competitors or snap up other businesses they had no idea how to run? How did they think the spending spree would last forever when they kept firing everyone who made for than 12 dollars an hour? cy gardner, arlington , va

    March 5, 2009 at 3:20 pm |
  117. Denny from Tacoma, WA

    The only way that we could experience a full blown depression is if our entire government fails. Many of our banks are in trouble because of the mortgage crisis, however our savings are now protected by FDIC for up to 250,000.00; there was no such thing prior to the onset of the big depression of 1929. If our government fails then we have anarchy. Our economy is faltering because of the mortgage crisis, the greed of the oil companies, loans are not being made by the banks and people are not spending their money. When I see how the political and corporate fat cats are spending our money, my intent is to contribute as little as possible to their cause.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  118. Jack Carlson

    USA is going to be in a tough situation soon, unless they start putting Americans ahead of Politicians and their crony friends. Signs of the Depression are in the air there is no doubt !
    Jack CArlson
    Seattle WA

    March 5, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  119. Tim in Texas

    Not that worried, but I think that we're in for a pretty long and deep and hard recession. What will keep us out of a depression and eventually get us out of the recession is a huge amount of government spending, and we need to get used to that idea. What worries me is how that spending happens. We could just spend to move dirt around, even that would help the economy, but if the govenment spends wisely - that is spends on things that will save us money in the future, like renewable energy and better education, then when we come out of this mess, we'll be on the right track for economic growth and what we're spending now will pay for itself. Otherwise, we're in for a very dismal future.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:22 pm |
  120. Paul S. Columbia, SC

    How about petrified? Everything I had is gone except my social security and I fear the morons in our government will only squander what's left of it as well. Take that away and only one choice remains.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:23 pm |
  121. annie

    If the Republicans don't get on board soon to help solve this mess Bush got us in, America is toast. Why hasn't anyone mentioned that this financial catastrophe is exactly what Osama Bin Laden intended to achieve when he attacked the United States. He wanted the US financial system to collapse and that is exactly what happened. George Bush did not keep us safe after 911! He did exactly what Bin Laden intended to happen, spend trillions (before it's all over) and bankrupt the United States. Bin Laden has won thanks to George Bush and his corrupt administration.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:26 pm |
  122. Joyce, Jacksonville, FL


    I believe that if this country comes together to solve problems instead
    of constantly harping on why everyone knows best, we can avoid a depression. Both political parties should explore resolutions, not one-upmanship. Bankruptcy is not the best path for every business. If we let every business fail who is asking for bailout funds, we won't have a starting point for recovery. We must work to help the best possibilities. I believe that instead of nasty comments on what the President shouldn't do, EVERYONE should work on what we ALL can do. It will require both parties to get off their power kicks and advance planning to win the next election, and concentrate on bringing our country back to prosperity. That happens in the US affects the whole world. Protesters wearing signs that say "your mortgage is not my problem" apparently has nothing to worry about (until if affects their job, their family, etc.).

    March 5, 2009 at 3:29 pm |
  123. Dr. Giorgio da Modena,Italia

    Not worried at all about a full blown depression! Why with the advent of Prozac in late 1988, followed by Zoloft, and then Paxil in 1993, there is no need to worry! But for the Republicans, the SSRI's don't work! They benefit from Haldol, Trilafon, and Seroquel due to highly impaired judgments! A 12 episodes of ECT might be better to eliminate their inherent psychosis!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:29 pm |
  124. JD, NC

    A Depression would be terrible, but a return to the policies that led us here would be worse. Let's stop whining and get to work making things better.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:30 pm |
  125. Mark, Berwyn PA

    At this point I am not too worried, however if our elected officials don't pull their collective heads out of the sand and realize that THEY are the largest part of our economic problems, then I will get more worried. I continue to hold my trust that the American public will run the bums out of town before we dive full bore into the Great Depression part Two. Just hope it happens soon. Real soon!!!!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:30 pm |
  126. garrick

    hi jack
    not worried at all,when you have always been without,you dont miss it.my parents always raised us to be thankfuf for the small things,so a bowl of soup and a glass of sugar water goes along way.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:31 pm |
  127. Krishna


    Yes, I am worried. I see my retirement nest egg getting vanishingly small and add to that I am retired. But what amazes me is this recession/depression is man-made and we as men of goodwill can rectify it. What we lack is unity of purpose and action. Blame game and praying for the president to fail wii definitely drive this recession to depression. Last November we decided to put Barack Obama in the drivers seat and we should let him drive. He is no dummy and he will figure out a way out of this man-made mess.


    March 5, 2009 at 3:32 pm |
  128. Joe in AZ

    Six months from now our government will tell us we have been in a depression since January 2009. A little delayed action.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:32 pm |
  129. Franky, Land of Lincoln

    Worried?? Jack, we're waiting for it, LOL!!! Na'h, I'm playing, I'm playing...

    By the way, the Wall St. Journal and Harvard do studies?? Wow, I never realized it. I thought Harvards basketball team has a better chance winning a championship than predicting the future...as for the Wall St...they are too easy, LOL!!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  130. Joe in DE

    I worried for my friends and relatives.. I am so old I eat on a spoonful of gruel a day.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:33 pm |
  131. Tori

    I am not worried about it as we now have saftey nets for the public thanks to FDR. Had it not been for the Phil Gramm and Bill Clinton removal of the Glass Stegal act the banks would not have gotten us into this. I think the Stock market is just upset as the era of deregulation is over and they know that their stupid ponzi schemes are done.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:34 pm |
  132. Dr. Giorgio da Modena,Italia

    Why worry about a full blown depression? Remember Bill Clinton's half-blown state in the White House, and I must say both he, and Monica have done pretty well for themselves since then! Even his wife Hillary Clinton blew away the competition for Secretary of State! So now, now, let's be reasonable, and have your censors print this one, Jack!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  133. Sue -Idaho

    Worried, but not so worried that I don't have a little hope that somehow President Obama and the administration can pull us out of this mess. It's not going to be easy or fast, that's the thing that apparently the news media and some in the public simply don't understand!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:35 pm |
  134. Deborah Wallace, Waleska Georgia

    If people would take responsibility and stiop living beyond their means, if corporate greed in America is stopped we may not enter into a full blown recession. Maybe this was a wake up call. I just don't know how many people set their clocks?
    We are America because of our beliefs. Too bad that credit cards, greed and impatience took over our country. It's a disgrace. Maybe people will be better prepared and care enough to stay involved with what is going on around them so this history does not repeat itself.
    I am grateful that we have President Obama. he is a visionary and seems to be a descent man with values. I think he will exhaust all means to prevent a full blown recession.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:36 pm |
  135. Don

    Personally I'm not... because I can make my own decisions and determinations based on my income, outgo, etc. However, if we continue to act like Pavlov's dog when the stock market bell rings every day... then I'm worried about the country being brainwashed into thinking that.

    Wilmington, DE

    March 5, 2009 at 3:36 pm |
  136. George from NYC

    I don't think I am any more worried than the average citizen. Recession or Depression, it doesn't matter what you call it. It's tough out there.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:37 pm |
  137. dmariewrit

    I'm very worry, because I have suffered with depression for thirty years. Though I have insurance I can't even afford my medication less long seeing a doctor when your refills are outdated. The stress trying to make ends meet, worrying about lay offs, and ALL THE BAD NEWS. It is scarry! It is a disease it comes and it goes.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:37 pm |
  138. Daniel, Indiana

    More than most are. Rush, the great voice of the Republican party, has many Americans believing that all will be just fime if nothing is done and we allow major corporations fall to bankruptcy and millions become unemployed. This is not the wise direction to go, unless we want America to be completely bankrupted and fall into the worst depression that Americans could ever imagine. Nationalism may be the direction needed to go in order to save America. We do not need to be further divided economically and fall into a Dark Ages society where the rich own everything and the rest of the population is beholden to them for everything.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:38 pm |
  139. Gigi

    If it happened once it could happen again.Yes I'm worried. Families today have no idea how to cope with out a charge card, live on a budget, make meal not found in the freezer or a box.. Live off the land, live in a house with three other families etc. That is how it was done in the thirties. When you hit that point you'll know for sure you are in a depression. Lets just hope we don't have a world war three to get us out of it.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  140. Len in Clarkston, Wa.

    Jack, it depends on which Network will declare it first in order to grab the viewers. Sad, isn't it?

    March 5, 2009 at 3:40 pm |
  141. David of Natchez, Mississippi

    I don't think so Jack. We have better drugs now so depression ain't what it used to be. I still like the saying "What me worry". If it gets too bad the government just needs to make these drugs free and plentiful.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:41 pm |
  142. Michael C. McHugh

    As a historian, I knew from the start that this depression resembled the ones in teh 1930s, 1890s and 1870s. It is a whole different animal from the post-World War II recessions–far more dangerous. I've been emphatic about this, warning in any way I can that it's nothing to be played with. It is aclassic depression, and historians can recognize one when they see it: a crash of the finanicial system, followed very quickly by mass unemployment, masss bankruptcy, collapse of trade and commodity prices, threatened defaults by many countries. (In the 1930s, every country defaulted on its debts.) Yes, that is how you distinguish a depression from a recession, which is a to say a major depression from a mild or moderate depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:46 pm |
  143. Leo, Canada

    What full-blown depression?
    Aren' we there yet?
    Jack 2009 will be the worst we've have seen since the dirty 30's...
    When my father was working on the transCanada Hwy for $5.00/month 10 hrs per day 6 days a week.
    After walking 6 miles to go to work and then the same for coming back home...
    No one should be subject to that slavery!!!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:46 pm |
  144. Dr. Giorgio da Modena,Italia

    A full blown depression will not happen again in the United States, because, (1) Americans,Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, and Michael Bloomberg, all billionaires, will come to the rescue of the country,should it even gets close to such a critical point!, (2) The American government will not hesitate to launch an atomic bomb on an Islamic nation, and rob it of all it's oil and natural riches, to save ?Demockracy and Capitallism. (3) Only good people die young, so The average American has nothing to worry about! Print this Jack, I dare you to ?

    March 5, 2009 at 3:49 pm |
  145. KarenLapchynski

    Jack, I am thankfull that my parents showe me how to live on a little. Fait in God, friends, family and a positive outlook will help us all get through this time just fine. Good luck with your bookh to live on verya

    March 5, 2009 at 3:50 pm |
  146. Vinnie Vino


    The big D is close however due to all the Government spending occurring to stimulate the economy and bailout companies/financial institutions. A depression will never happen and our economy will begin to recover by the 2009 Holiday Season...

    Central Islip, N.Y.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:55 pm |
  147. Ryan, Galesburg, IL

    Because the greed-heads in charge of our financial systems are still clueless and spiteful of ordinary Americans: Very.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:56 pm |
  148. Lynne

    Why worry? Just prepare.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  149. Linda Elvin

    I am extremely worried about a full blown depression. Watching the stock market going down and our life savings going down the drain. I can't do anything to stop what is happening because we are now using my husbands 401K plan as his retirement money and there is no money left to live. Yet, Bernie Madoff is sitting in a 7 million dollar apartment....What's wrong with this picture?

    March 5, 2009 at 3:57 pm |
  150. NANCY M.- Colorado

    If we do, it will be "Katie bar the door", but it won't be President Obama's fault, that's for sure.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  151. Ron San Antonio

    Realistically, Jack, We're there and it's getting worse. It's not Obama's fault, We all have to remember who got us here! Bush!T he horsemen are ridding, Jack. What's next, a natural disaster, or terrorism as people starve? The money isn't getting to the people!

    March 5, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  152. JR in Norfolk VA

    Very worried. It appears we have an empty suit at the helm with no plan, except to do what he's been conditioned to all his political life – to throw money at the problem.

    A recovery in 2012? Perfect timing for a comeback for The One.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  153. Jay in Texas

    If you are asking me this question, Jack, then you haven't paid attention to my blog comments for over a year now. I have said we have been in a depression for a long time. It is leading up to Great Depression #2. Whether it will be greater than the first Great Depression or not remains to be seen.
    Brownwood, Texas

    March 5, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  154. Mike, Albuquerque, NM

    This is a worldwide financial crises. It has been created as a means to force the world into a global centralized banking system. It does not profit the financial powers behind this crisis to drive the world into a depression. Following a new Bretton Woods the nations that fall in line first will see their suffering relieved.

    March 5, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  155. judy Knight

    I truly believe that if the media would quit drilling it into our heads that we would all give the people working toward fixing it the time they need to do so.
    It isnt down to boiling bones here yet. There is still noodles and veggies in the stew. (smile)
    Judy Knight, Boise, Idaho

    March 5, 2009 at 3:59 pm |
  156. Patrick - Butte Montana

    Jack, I am a middle aged man with a good job and pay my bills and taxes. I have no credit card debt. I am more worried than ever that the downward economic trend will become far worse than anyone would have predicted. I see many dark days ahead.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:01 pm |
  157. Fred, MN

    Put it this way Jack. I don't want to be sixth in line when tourists
    revisit this sculpture 50 years from now.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  158. Karen, Idaho Falls, Idaho

    Hi Jack,

    This is already a depression for many, many people. We are far beyond recession. Let's call it what it is–depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  159. "Diamond Don" Barnes

    I have already started stocking up on MRE's and other non-perishible food items and bottled water. It is coming and it is gonna be a doozy Jack ! Younger generations who do not know how to raise a garden will not survive ! "Diamond Don" Barnes Poteau (Poe-Toe), Oklahoma

    March 5, 2009 at 4:02 pm |
  160. Chris

    This emergency with the economy is absolutely frightening. And it would seem that no matter what the White House/Congress has in their plans, bad news from GM and Citi only pound the good news back. Investors are scared but their fears and micromanaging are causing more damage than anything the WH or GM could do. My advise, buy stocks now that they are super low and we may get off this merry-go-round!!

    March 5, 2009 at 4:05 pm |
  161. Joyce Becker-Long Island

    We all should worry about a full-blown depression, it could happen if we are not careful. We had good times for a long time and the bubble had to burst sooner or later. I just can't imagine going through bread lines or having wall street bankers out on the streets selling apples and oranges, but it could happen and we should prepare for the worse. I tend to want to believe that President Obama is on the right track in helping our country avoid further disasters, I go along with his three legged stool solution otherwise every thing will really collapse. You have to fix health, education and energy concerns for this country to get back to its greatness. I would tell the Republicans to stop being the party of NO but be the party that will contribute thoughtful solutions and not let fear take them over.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  162. Jake, Oregon

    As is said, things will get worse before they get better. It took 10 years of solid GOP control to put us here. That includes the last 2 years of the Clinton term when the bulk of de-regulation occurred. Some of those congressional defenders say it was because Clinton wanted it. And it was a GOP Congress at that time.

    The way I remember it, the GOP Congress impeached him...why in the world would they try to satisfy his fiscal requests?

    March 5, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  163. Eileen

    Jack, as someone who retired a few years ago, yes, I'm worried, especially by the fact that my IRA funds have plummeted in the last year. Now I'm actively seeking work - at a time when many in their prime have lost theirs. I think this financial situation is extremely dire, and unlike the previous recessions. Unless the government can sustain the social safety net, there could be real unrest in this country not seen ever. We baby boomers have been spoiled, and our children are even more spoiled. To sacrifice and suck it up for four years may in fact be more difficult than it was during the Depression, when there was practically no middle class. These politicians better start working together and finding solutions. We are paying attention now because the effects of their policies are totally apparent - in our wallets.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:06 pm |
  164. Kapitalist

    Very. We keep hearing about becoming a socialist nation. The problem with socialism is eventually you run out of other peoples money.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:07 pm |
  165. "Diamond Don" Barnes

    Jack...I get so tired of hearing some individuals harping about how the government is spending too much money on the stimulus plan. It
    is going to take a lot of money to get us out of this and who in the hell besides the government whether you agree with their plans or not has enough financial clout to borrow that much money ?? Any suggestions anyoone ?? "Diamond Don" Barnes Poteau (Poe-Toe), Oklahoma

    March 5, 2009 at 4:07 pm |
  166. Deb in Lancaster, PA

    Of course. Who isn't?
    That being said, we need to take lessons from FDR. The New Deal worked. Let's charge forward, because where else do we have to go and what other proven remedy do we have in our arsenal?
    Republicans are not offering feasible alternatives, they're just a bunch of spoiled girly-men taking a collective hissy fit because they lost the pageant.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  167. Cori

    Jack, a full-blown depression is imminent. I'm waiting and watching for the dust of an implosion.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  168. Tino

    They wouldn't tell you over a year ago that we were already in a recession so let me be the first to tell you here and now that we are already in a depression. These investment folks, including your own Ali Veshi, try to spin a cheerful upward market on those rare days it goes up but fact is it's a bunch of bullcrap. Tell Ali to get a job selling used cars, maybe he can convince people looking for those that they found the right place to buy one.
    Tino, NYC

    March 5, 2009 at 4:11 pm |
  169. Billy from Minneapolis

    I'm extremely worried that we are already in a depression. Not only is the economy getting worse, but now we have an absolute free-fall in the stock market. If the stock market continues to fall, it could take decades to recover. Let's not forget that the babyboomers can't retire without healthy retirement accounts...which means they have to work longer (keeping unemployment high) and reduce their spending in order to rebuild their devasted life savings.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  170. Allen in Hartwell GA


    As long as Wall Street is puffed-up with self-importance I won't be worried. Right now Wall Street thinks they have the upper hand and are controlling things. When they get worried they we all should also.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:13 pm |
  171. Samuel Taylor

    With the Markets projected to bottom out somewhere in the 5400 to 5500 range without some deflationary activity it is clear we are in
    a World wide depression.
    My worry is those whom knew, but did nothing about it will be once again rewarded, while everyone else is economicly flogged by it.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  172. Damon in NC

    Just as long as it's all over by December 21, 2012.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  173. Mike in Akron, OH

    Too much so.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  174. Roland (St George, UT)

    Worried, no. Concerned, very.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:14 pm |
  175. glenn andrew in Texas

    I believe that we are going to be OK. Our country and our system will survive as long as we avoid the temptations of socialism and a welfare state. The threats to our government and economic system during the great depression were mitigated by recovery. The current crisis has to be addressed by each citizen. That collective result will get us through this. We need to stick to our core values and we'll be OK.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  176. Ralph Nelson

    About 45 percent. The key to recovery is the banks. That, and not another shocker like China going down or something. Also, the guy's from Harvard. Isn't that the place that graduated that MBA genius George W. Bush? They sure didn't teach him Macro-Economics 520. The people in the know on Economics teach at Berkley (CAL). Ralph, Yakima, Wa.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  177. Darrell - Indianapolis, IN

    Jack this question is just plain dumb. Do you recall that when Jimmy Carter was President he told the public that we were in the middle of a depression. After scaring half the population, they came up with the milder word recession.

    If you mean are we headed to a greater economic disaster, then I would say yes. I do not think that the stock market will go to zero, but it will get so low that any person with a few dollars could start playing the game. And although I do not think we will see breadlines (that is why they created welfare & Foodstamps), I do believe you will see more people planting vegtables and producing goods from thier homes.

    It will not hurt the rich man, just make the middle class and the poor equals. Maybe this time someone will learn how to deal with the rich, and instead of turning the middle class back into the poor, they will take away the power of those with large sums of money. Of Course Jack, you are not figured into this scenerio. I realize a reporter is lucky to make $100,000 a year. And that is if he / she writes books, is on several different station, including radio.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  178. Liz, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

    I am hopefully optimistic that the U.S. will NOT experience a full-blown depression, because if it does, we'll all be up Sh*t's creek in a global depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:15 pm |
  179. Sophie, Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada

    Jack, it is time to wake up and smell the coffee beans. We are in a depression! When the entire world is going through a recession as severe as what we are experiencing , see line ups of people going to job fairs, an increase in home foreclosure and homelessness, what do you call it? An episode? I don't need a fancy economics professor with all their fancy research to tell me we may end up in a depression. I have eyes! I see what is happening out there. Instead of doing research on wether or not we are in a recession/depression (whatever!), why don't they do research on getting us out of the DEPRESSION!!!

    March 5, 2009 at 4:16 pm |
  180. Anna Aurand

    Full blown depression not gonna happen. Unlike the 1930's we'll just ask all the Hollywood and American Corporate biilionaires to share with the rest of us schmucks!! However, I do believe there is a possibility of Wall Street as we know it disappearing into the historical archives and amoney market driven by fair trade and sophisticated bartering to emerge victorious. Maybe Daniel Boone was onto something after all.

    I find it deplorabel that big corporate America had to throw a bilion dollar tantrum in order for government to listen to the quiet majoriy. The poor and middle class have needed help for a long, long time. We have needed help with the basics of fodd, heat, housing and affordable education for our kids. Nobody has ever listened until now. Are they listening now???

    March 5, 2009 at 4:17 pm |
  181. Jerry - Toronto

    Since the so called professionals are worried, I should be worried too...but..since they got it all wrong in the first place, maybe, just maybe, they are wrong on how bad this is as well.

    Personally I think the market is being manipulated by those on Wall Street to get tax payer money. Just another cash grab by the fat cats.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  182. Lillian

    I am not worried at all, as long as the Republicans stay clear of the white house everything will be fine.

    Republicans consider responsibility to be crumbling roads and bridges, and fight a slight rise in taxes to feed folks in soup kitchens.

    We know they can say yes to big business and wall street, they certainly can pop the dollars for that. Tell me Jack, when will they say yes to the little guy?

    March 5, 2009 at 4:18 pm |
  183. Mac from Vacaville

    I doubt the U.S. will experience a full blown depression, especially now that I see the odds of that occurring. I never expected the economy to recover over night, much less within a year, so I will not be surprised if we have yet to recover by the end of Obama's first term. People need to realize this economic hardship took a while to make and will now take a while to fix. For now, people need to try something different for once: live within your means.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  184. Ed Tant in Athens, GA

    It doesn't take a Harvard economist to know that the possibility of another American or even worldwide depression is very real. We have squandered trillions of dollars by invading Iraq and bailing out Wall Street, all while borrowing from and propping up repressive regimes in places like China and Saudi Arabia. President Obama was right to remind us in his Feb. 24 speech that "the day of reckoning has arrived."

    March 5, 2009 at 4:19 pm |
  185. LInda in Arizona

    I don't worry about things I can't do anything about. If we do have a "full-blown depression", we will all just have to do the best we can to survive it. I'd like to know more about how this professor at Harvard came up with his figures. I think the odds are much higher that we are already in a depression, and as it worsens world-wide, we are going to fall right down the rabbit hole. Hang on, Alice.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:20 pm |
  186. Virginia, Michigan

    I said we were in a recession 2 years before the feds admitted it. I've been saying we are in a full depression since last fall. Why can an old lady like me figure this out real easy, but the government always admits it well after the fact? Are they afraid of scaring the public? It scares me a heckuva lot more the think all the government whiz kids and 'experts' can't figure it out. Why izzit the words 'honesty' and 'government' are never used in the same sentence?

    March 5, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  187. ET

    No chance for a depression in this great United States. The American people are to highly educated to let any thing like that happen. The president is on the right track and we will see results down the line. Just hold in there and don't anyone get to excited.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:21 pm |
  188. walt

    Not worried the fderal goverment will step in and take the banks and wall street over they [banks and wall street] are the problem when they fail shut down and take them over if your going to give billions the taxpayers might as well own them 100 percent

    March 5, 2009 at 4:22 pm |
  189. Bruce, Georgia

    Uh Jack, there's no clinical definition of a Depression from what I've heard only Recessions. So for the family living in their car, the unemployed person unable to get a job, the ready to retire couple that's been severely economically crippled, etc ... We are there.

    The stock market is crashing, the financial system is crippled, financial market regulation and oversight in shambles, and a ballooning national debt. Nice mess we've gotten ourselves into.

    Personally I see one bright light in all this, The public appears to be paying close attention and not buying any of the Republican Spin.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  190. Rhena

    Rhena/ Chicago

    It has already hit me. I have been unemployed for a year, when my unemployment ran out I took the only job offer I had gotten. I was not physically able to do the job and was fired. Now I have no income and I'm in no physical conditon to work at most jobs. I am pretty much crippled by do more damage to my body than it can take. I have no insurance, so I can't get it fixed or get medication to make the pain bearable. I am trying to get financial aid to go back to colege, I am still waiting to hear on that. No unemployment benefits, no job, no propects, no bailout. The unemployment extension will not apply to me.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:23 pm |
  191. monica birakos from whittier, ca

    Not so much now with President Obama. He has the big ideas that are needed and is trying his best to steer us away from greater economic struggles.
    It's time the Republicans jump on board and get rid of their Rush Limbaugh mentality.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:24 pm |
  192. James in TN

    Actually , not to aurgue with a professor, it would the recovery at the end of 2010 or 2011. According to news the reccesion started at the end of 2007 but, I been in it mysself since the beginning of 2007. My personal opinion we will come out of this in 2010 but I think if we did go into depression, it would give a lot of people some respect and gratitude toward liffe when it is on up side of things.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:26 pm |

    All we need is a concerted and coordinated effort from leaders around the globe, who will have to set aside their political and personal agendas, agree with each other, and execute a plan efficiently. Oh.. and maybe having an actual plan would be good too. Is that too much to ask? Good luck to us.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  194. Geri

    Tucked away here in South Central Oklahoma we haven't seen a sign of a recession at all so as yet it's difficult to worry. Since I'm a teacher sub and my husband works for a large food company, it's pretty hard to imagine us being laid off from work. Besides that, sales tax revenues are up in our nearby towns, business is booming and real estate is still selling.

    I do worry about the country as a whole due to all of the money the government is spending plus I worry about the people who are being laid off and losing everything they have. I've been there and done that in the 70's and 80's. Having been married for 45 years I can tell each and everyone of you that you will survive whatever problems you are experiencing now whether you believe me or not. You will survive and due to these changes in your life there may be some lovely surprises up ahead, ones that you can't even begin to anticipate or imagine right now while in the thick of your fear. Release your fear and you will be ok sooner than you think. By releasing your fear you will be able to think clearer about what is going on in your life and you will be able to make decisions clearly and more calmly.

    Geri – Mead, OK

    March 5, 2009 at 4:26 pm |
  195. Don MacArthur

    I'm afraid its inevitable. The greed of big law, big pharma, big oil, big money, big war contractors has moved too much money from the middle and lower classes and we've arrived at the place where only the top 2% have anything to spend.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:28 pm |
  196. Paulette,Dallas,PA

    I am very concerned. I don't believe that anyone knows how to stop this downward spiral. We are in free fall. Many people do not reaize the consequences if we do enter a depression. I must say,this is the worst I have seen it in my lifetime.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:29 pm |
  197. Jane (Minnesota)

    Jack – It doesn't do any good to worry about it – we've got to try our hardest to avoid it-but if it hapens – it happens-we'll have to get out of it like it was done in the 1930's or better if possible (even though the Repubs don't acknowledge that hat FDR did was effective).

    March 5, 2009 at 4:30 pm |
  198. Diane, Barneveld, NY

    Is it only half-blown now?

    March 5, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  199. Ken M . Millington MI

    Hello Jack. I firmly believe that we can prevent another great depression if we can overcome partisan political gamemanship. The way we as a nation do business must be overhauled and strengthened across the entire spectrum Politically, fiananically, and industrially etc! etc!. If we don't then we will flounder for at least a decade or more. This is an american crisis not a liberal or conservative crisis it will only be solved thru hard work and common sense action form everyone.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:31 pm |
  200. Julie, Tucson AZ

    What I would really like to see is the media (that would be you) stop trying to scare the crap out of people every single day, stop obsessing about the Dow Jones, and using it like a performance meter of President Obama's daily speeches & decisions. We need to stop placing our worth as a nation on the stock market. We need to focus on Education, Energy, and Infrastructure. That will create jobs. That will create stability. What was happening when the Dow was above 14,000? We were torturing people, at war and Banks & Insurance companies were SCAMMING the country! Now that we know the truth, it's tanking! Stop being fear-mongers and start reporting facts and reality, not speculation!

    March 5, 2009 at 4:32 pm |
  201. Parker in Covington KY

    As John Stewart pointed out last night, the stock market doesn't necessarily reflect reality. There's an alternative view: that the value that's been lost in the market reflects the loss of what could be called "the corruption dividend". This is the cumulative value of all of the money that won't be made if traders suddenly have to operate in an honest, transparent, and well-regulated market. As Bernie Madoff and his ilk scatter like rats, as companies like Standard & Poors suddenly start to make valuations based on real value rather than sweetheart arrangements, as companies are forced to actually bid for government contracts, etc., etc., the inflated cumulative value of all that graft has disappeared as well. Where's the floor? That's easy. We'll see the floor after all of the rats have abandoned ship.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:33 pm |
  202. ST-NC

    You mean we aren't already there? It sure feels like we are.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  203. Doug

    Jack, .... Anyone who listens to and reads the news about the market, jobs, real estate and finance is concerned about things getting worse..... I said to myself last year "cheer up things could be worse" .... I did and sure enough.... things got worse. I don't like using the "D" word around the house because it makes my family crankier than me. (Bloomfield, NJ)

    March 5, 2009 at 4:35 pm |
  204. Mark in NJ

    How about we just shutdown the stock market for awhile. It only seems to be going down so if anything we will stay where we are at. It never seems to make any sense since it's based on speculation, remember when oil was so high because of the Chinese and the Indians were buying cars…doesn’t seem like anyone is buying them now. Close it down for awhile call it a cooling off period or a vacation but stop the madness for a little while. My 401k has lost 60% from the geniuses that are managing my account and it will take another 10 years to make it back if I have a job. Everyone just take a deep breath and relax a little. If anything it will make you news casters find something else to talk about for a little while, telling us how horrible things are doesn’t help the situation.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  205. Danielle

    It's already upon us. The sheep just haven't been informed yet by the story-tellers in DC and on Wall St that would like for everyone to believe otherwise.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:37 pm |
  206. Jessica Houston, Tx

    VERY worried jack. iv worked my tail off while on student loans for the past 4 years to get a degree that means little to nothing now. Entry level jobs are now being filled and the job market flooded with baby boomers. Not that i blame them, after all they are my parents, aunts and uncles. I'm the first in my family to graduate from a university, and back in 05' i would have never guessed id might regret it. Apparently the best investment wasn't in my own human capital but it's the one that's never made! May will be bitter sweet for me and many other hard working students. Just when we thought awful part time jobs were just a right of passage through gaining a degree... think again!

    March 5, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  207. Burt, Denver CO

    Not at all. We work with the cards we're dealt; if it happens, it happens. Long-term, it could even be a good thing, teaching a little about responsibility and consequence.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  208. Danielle. New Hampshire

    It’s already upon us. The sheep just haven’t been informed yet by the story-tellers in DC and on Wall St that would like for everyone to believe otherwise.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:38 pm |
  209. rpb Viburnum Mo

    Jack what is amazing to me is that everyone in the mass media the politicians say no one saw this comming. Well I saw it comming over a year ago and pulled out all my stocks and told my friends to do the same. The Federal Reserve had more holes in the dyke than they had fingers for. The real unemployment numbers are around 14% and we are bleeding jobs at about 700,000 a month. I would say we have more like a 50% chance of hitting a full blown recession and it scares the hell out of me.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:39 pm |
  210. Joe


    The economy isn't hurting me. I have mine and I have a stash of just in case "coin" to go along with it. It's called keeping my money "in the mattress" so to speak for over 27 years. Wall Street nor the government have their hands in my pockets!

    March 5, 2009 at 4:40 pm |
  211. Joe, Clinton Ma.

    As far as I am concerned it's here. And we have the Wall Street higharchy and the Republicans to thank for it.. It's a gift that will keep on giving for quite awhile.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:40 pm |
  212. Les, College Station Texas

    I'm worried that we WON'T have a depression, it's the only thing that MIGHT save this country. The kids 20-40 years old have NO CLUE about surviving tough times. Not sure we Baby Boomers have one either. Maybe, just maybe, my 2-yr. old great-niece will grow up in a depression, develop an appreciation for the rewards of real work, simplicity and assuming responsibility and thereby be a part of another Greatest Generation like her great-grandmother and great-grandfather.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:41 pm |
  213. Erik, from Seattle

    Jack, the thought of a full-blown depression is in the back of everyones mind. However, we need to continue to focus on long term economic recovery and as hard as it may be, not let the day to day market fluctuations scare us so drastically. When there is no clarity, there is no confidence, and without confidence there is no buying. We should rally around the new administration and see to it that the stimulus package begins to turn around the economy in our country.

    GO DAWGS!!

    March 5, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  214. Roger Boyer

    I think all we would have to do is look at the stock market numbers.

    This market begain its downward trend in after 2006 if you were to compare those numbers with that of 2008 after 2 years of a Democratic Congress.

    Then it really started falling after Nov 4th of 2008 when Obama was elected. And now every time he announces one of his plans the market falls. It will pick up some afterwards, but not where it was before he makes his next announce concerning the economic issues.

    Then compare the bench marks of the dates I have pass along and compare them with today's closing.

    We are heading straight into a depression if we are not already there. Bankrupcy in the world market could be the next step. China is having their own problems and may refuse to lend to us in the future.

    Roger Boyer, Little Rock, Arkansas

    March 5, 2009 at 4:42 pm |
  215. Jerry in Alaska

    Why worry about the INEVITABLE Jack? Just start storing up staple items to help you keep from taking the One World Governments UPC # on your hand or forehead thats required to work or buy necessities of life that the Builder Burgs & Kissinger want to impliment NOW. I would be worried about ETERNITY foremost. Jerry in Alaska

    March 5, 2009 at 4:44 pm |
  216. Liz in Los Angeles, CA

    I'm dealing with my Personal Great Depression so don't have the energy, or the academic background for that matter, to contemplate such things.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:47 pm |
  217. Jim from Chicago

    If Rush Limbaugh and the obstructionist congressional conservatives don't shut up and get out of the way, it could come anytime now. It is tough enough to row the economic boat out of this downward spiraling whirlpool without a couple dozen blabbering idiots hanging onto the oars.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  218. Lynn

    At the moment I'm not, I think we have a good, smart President, doing better than most under the circumstances. As a child of Depression Era parents who lived through WWII, I was raised to know the difference between NEED and WANT – the "ME" generation might just finally learn the same.
    I do admit to being a bit frustrated at this mess, but that doesn't mean I don't want help to go to those who are falling through the cracks. We as a Nation should help these fellow Americans, but we do need to see to it that everything possible is done to avoid another mess like this.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:48 pm |
  219. barbara; st. louis

    I'm not worried if we experience a full-blown depression because my spirituality lets me know that if a depression in America happens, then my family and I are thoroughly prepared. We've learned how to bond together...bond together for food, shelther and many other necessities in life. My husband is a minister, and I am an educator, So we will not go without secular and non-secular teaching. We own our own homes and have plenty of land for growing crops. Our ancestors taught us how to store away food and water and how to grow plentiful crops. We have nurses, doctors and excellent cooks in our family. We have learned to prepare meals on very low budgets...always did...need I say more?

    March 5, 2009 at 4:50 pm |
  220. Kris Reilly

    What is the uproar about Michelle Obama wearing sleeveless dresses? I don't get it. More power to her for having the physique that allows for that style - it takes hard work to have those great defined upper arms . And when did "sleeveless" become equivalent to "casual"? Most prom dresses and even many wedding dresses are sleeveless, or worse, neckless(!), and considered "formal" by most. Give it up. If you're jealous, get out the weights and put the time and energy into having arms to be proud of, instead of "covering up".

    March 5, 2009 at 4:51 pm |
  221. Denny Rhodes

    Yes. The profit-earnings ratios have been seriously mis-over-estimated.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  222. Ron from SF

    I'm very worried, as we bet far too much of the stimulus in tax cuts just to satisfy the Rich and their Republican puppets in Congress. Hasn't the last 8 years proven that tax cuts are totally ineffective? The bill that got passed, had far too little infrastructure spending to actually stimulate the economy and we're going to need much, much more to get out of the current death spiral. Tax cuts aren't stimulative and we're better off building things, as that getst people back to work, versus tax cuts that don't.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:52 pm |
  223. j/NJ

    How worried are you the U.S. will experience a full-blown depression?

    Actually the President is being paid 400K per year to make sure the US economy does not fall in depression...what is and what is not pork spending depends on which political party is making the determination; some pet projects are absolutely necessary and some aren't, simple as that...suffice it to say that irrespective of pet projects, there are many ways to cut federal spending...for example there are scores of federal agencies and departments that should be eliminated entirely, in some federal establishments budgets could be cut substantially just by downsizing the scope and control of the bureaucracy...in any event the cost of living in a surveillance society could not be more prohibitive...the fact that slashing federal budgets will result in a less intrusive govt is a welcome consequence since the American people will for all intents and purposes end up becoming more free...

    March 5, 2009 at 4:53 pm |
  224. marie banderas in texas

    At this time, I am not concerned about a full blown depression..heard all about that from my mother and grandparents..with at least 50 to 75 % of americans still working, still keeping thier jobs, it isnt nearly as bad as some would like us to believe..it "could" get there if wall street and big banks dont stop with thier game playing, and thats what most of this is about..Bush must still be somewhere in the background yanking the rich fat cats chains, giving them thier orders, maybe through Rush ! if people could just settle down, READ whats IN the stimulus and how "little" of it is actually so called pork, that half of that even was put IN by republicans, I think we would all be better off..let our new Pres get on with the tremendous job he "inheirited", things ARE going to improve ! its not a time for people to be getting so panicky....actually, if you have even a few dollars to play with, is an excellant time to invest and watch your profits soar as this economy turnsitself around...
    PEACE everyone...have FAITH...

    March 5, 2009 at 4:54 pm |
  225. LaVern McRaann

    I have been listening to the president for that last hour. I have a hard time believing that he would screw around withthe health and Social Security programs. We that are seniors have earned every cent we get towards our health and mostely we all live on the Social Security.I suppose that the president doesn't think that most of the Senators and Congressmen and women are old enought to draw and probably receive it. It is a good thing that we do not have too many years left to see what will be happening to our country and grandkids.By now you would think that the normal population would be tired of listening to the rant from the president. ALL TALK AND TOO MUCH ACTION. He mentiond on tv the other day that people should by stock from wall street. Who does he think he is kidding. We are not stupid. Ican't wait till a few more months to see what happens to his party of three, Pelosie H Reed and himself.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:54 pm |
  226. perry jones

    no i am worried more about whe bail outs destroying this nation and giving the government the power to inslave us as a national labor force
    perry jones

    March 5, 2009 at 4:57 pm |
  227. Robert in Galveston

    It is interesting that a professor of econimics at Harvard school of business is predicting a 20% chance that we will end up in a full blown depression when they have been touting "the bottom line" for the past 50 or so years. I'm sure that his job will be safe as the "rich" will still have the wherwithall to send their sons and daughters there even if we do end up in a depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:57 pm |
  228. Ed Forrester

    We are retired. Have been around a while.
    The Obama/Madoff type schemes are working only for themselves and contributers to their campaigns. When the rich are taxed out of the stock market who will invest? When no money is invested in companies and no money put into savings in banks. We will be in a full blown recession.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:58 pm |
  229. Peggy from Spokane WA

    Pretty worried, when the best thing they can tell us is, that it is going to get worse before it gets better, And, that we have not seen the bottom yet, I suspect that they are putting a bright spin on what they really know.
    When the Prime Minister of Britain tries to give an encouraging word to the American people. You know "Keep a stiff upper lip and all that rot"
    Well sure, I think we are in for wild spiral down the ole' flusher!
    Of course this is a biggy because we are in it with the rest of the world this time!!
    Who will we borrow from when the whole world is broke?
    Just a thought!

    March 5, 2009 at 4:59 pm |
  230. me46

    We have created the perfect storm – a convergence of high fuel prices, high interest rates, housing foreclosures, and financial mismanagement. These conditions are ideal for another depression because the structure which would normally forestall a depression has collapsed. As a career labor deparpartment manager on the front lines, I have never seen anything like this. Look around. More businesses close every day, large and small, old and new. There's no work. There's no place to look for work because every business has already cut back or they've gone bankrupt. People don't have money to spend. The picture is bleak, really bleak. I apologize for being so pessimistic, but the reality is starkly clear.

    March 5, 2009 at 4:59 pm |
  231. Darr/ Cleveland

    Considering I don't have any savings, no job and just graduated from college I am not too worried. I feel sorry for all those older people who have seen their IRA's or 401K's basically disappear. To hear about eighty and ninety year old people going back to work sickens me. What broker took care of them?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:00 pm |
  232. Yatin

    Not worried at all ! When we plain folk stand in the same soup line with once-famous bankers and car-makers, we may see the beginning of a new world, world full of people from all walks and income levels that finally realized, sharing which can be as contagious as TB or AIDS is the real answer.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:00 pm |
  233. AndyZ Lynn, MA

    If we are not currently in a depression then I never, ever want to experience a depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:01 pm |
  234. EyeAm

    I'm more curious than worried. As an astrologer, I know that the United States has entered a train of bad aspects that will last on through to 2018. August of 2010 is likely to be very bad. We will no doubt see a depression dwarfing the one of 1929. Unemployment levels will surely exceed 30%.

    The best bet right now would be to return to the Gold Standard. As Gold has been trading at all-time highs in recent years, backing the Dollar by Gold (again) would increase its value many times over. Even then, there are severe challenges ahead.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  235. Chris A.

    I'm very worried, and I think we should all stock up now on canned goods, because you won't be sure what the future holds, even if the Stimulus package is law now.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:04 pm |
  236. Irv Lilley

    Jack, I certainly hope not.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:04 pm |
  237. Quentin in Houston, Tx

    Worried doesn't express my concerns – my fear is beyond that. The stock market is on a steady decline, job losses are continuing at an alarming rate, foreclosures continue despite "Government Intervention", and Americans are continuing to suffer. Worried is an understatement!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:04 pm |
  238. Nick Phoenix, AZ

    Extremely worried!

    And the most sickening part is that all of these Wall St white collar criminals won't even be investigated, let alone prosecuted.

    Rob a McDonalds for $200 and you go away for 20 years.

    Rob billions from the entire country and you walk away with your billions.

    God Bless Amerika.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:05 pm |
  239. Jim S

    No! But if the Republicans were in charge, I would definately be concerned. These people have never demonstrated that they understood the economy and just about every Republican President in recent history has carried us to at least one serious recession. I'm reminded of Ronald Reagan's statement:" Deficits don't matter." Of course they do and every Republican President in recent memory has contributed toward the monumental national debt. When you consider t heir record on the economy combined with their attitude toward regulations, it's no wonder we are in this mess!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:05 pm |
  240. Eileen

    It took years for the Bush administration to destroy our economy, and even years for them to admit we were in a recession. If they hadn't lied so much, President Obama wouldn't have so much to fix. We are already in a depression Jack. There are modern day forms of soup lines. But at least we have a great leader who could make this depression far less painful than the last one, if the republicans would stop putting up ridiculous road blocks.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:06 pm |
  241. ines

    I'm too worried about just making it on a daily basis to worry about whether to call this mess a recession or a depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:07 pm |
  242. Marnie

    I guess the D word is out there – and given the fear mongering being promoted by the Republicans re: the Healthcare reform – I should be concerned. But, I have to be optomistic and deal with what I can control. Given the news these days, if I don't, I'll end up in a hovel in fetal position. Why can't they all just get along and get something done?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:07 pm |
  243. Doug - Dallas, TX


    You can't worry about something that's already happened. The question should be "How will we survive it"?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  244. David


    March 5, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  245. Daniel from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida

    Right now I am not worried, but if the Ominous bill is passed, then I will be absolutely sure that we will be in a depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  246. Mark Shafer

    Come to Michigan or Northern Indiana....I think we are in a depression now.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:08 pm |
  247. Mike Starke Pembroke Pines FL

    No difference to me,Jack. Government's had me in a full blow depression for most of my life.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  248. Josh Cahill

    Extremely Worried.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:09 pm |
  249. Natalie Ohio

    I'm not worried and for once I wish the media would find something else to do besides play Tokyo Rose. We all get it. We don't need a bunch of negativity from media hound naysayers gifted to forecast gloom and doom over our great country. This is America and we been through and overcome hard times before...this too shall pass and we shall be the better for it: Wiser and more united than we have ever been as a people.

    I don't know Jack, today's media makes me long for the days of Paul Harvey who mastered the art of telling it like it is but somehow always managed to end on a note that made you secure and proud to be an American.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  250. Daniel from Florida

    I will be absolutely sure we will be in a depression if Congress keeps passing these bills made up of 100% earmarks.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  251. Liz in MA

    I'm not worried because we're already in one. It's simply going to take the number crunchers another 4 months to announce it. What to worry about? How are we going to get out of this pit?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  252. ANTHONY HOSEA st.louis mo

    the economy will not recover because the new world order has to come
    And the rapture must take place first (the church must be removed) then the new world
    Order then the anti Christ if things recover people wont turn to God everything that’s
    Going on is in Gods plan

    March 5, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  253. V.K. Raman, Sparks

    I am not a prophet of doom and would not entertain the possibility of depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  254. Al

    No recovery until 2012? Isn't that when Nostradamus says the world is ending? I say we all party like rock stars and spend, spend, spend – since it doesn't matter, anyway.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  255. Arnold J. Jordan

    I am 20% worried.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  256. Catherine

    Jack.....we are already in a depression, but nobody is admitting it. Im depressed...aren't you????

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |

    Frabkly, I'm concerned enough that i would like to tar and feather Limbaugh, Boehner and all of Obama's other detractors.

    It's very easy to sit back andf be a Monday morning quarterback, but it's a lot tougher to come up with worthwhile solutions that have not already been proven failures.

    For example, the terrible "Tax Increase" all of the Republicans are talking about amounts to about 10% higher taxes on the the ultra-wealthy... in other words, for every $36,000 Donald Trump pays in taxes, he'll have to pay about $3,600. more. Whoopee.

    Thanks to tax sheltyers and loopholes, many wealthy people pay fewer tax dollars than my wife and I pay and I'm on full disability! What I would like to see is a FLAT TAX or a general sales tax that is the same for everyone, with deductions for food and medical only.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  258. Jim

    Tell Obama to stop making speeches. Every time he does the market goes down,

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  259. kevin okello

    i think America will not fall to a full depression but we are in for a very tough times ahead.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  260. Mike Roche

    Keep posting questions like this and we will have one... A consumer economy is one based on consumer confidence and if consumers perceive and/or are worried about a depression, they will save rather than spend. If that is the case, we will inevitably have a depression. It's effectively a self-fulling prophecy.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  261. Ken in NC

    I'm to busy trying to figure out how to best survive this depression to worry if the US will survive. I'm making a list and checking it twice. Got a nice cave picked out and stocking it with computer batteries so I can get the Situation Room on my Lap Top everyday just to read your segment.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  262. Lloyd L. Smith

    How worried about the US going into a depression? I'm not worried at all, were already there. Wonder when the politicians will figgure that out?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  263. Saheed O.

    I'm not worried at all. It's going to happen. I've already started preparing to profit from a destroyed dollar.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  264. Elvin

    Elvin of Atlanta

    Jack my friend, and to the rest of my fellow compadres, we are already in a depression as we speak.....

    Businesses and Jobs have disintergrated from the face of this earth

    March 5, 2009 at 5:11 pm |
  265. Marcus Toronto

    Come on America,where's that kick ass spirit I grew up with?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  266. Gretchen from Denver

    This country was so mismanaged for the past eight years it is altogether possible that we can not avoid a full blown depression. The one thing we can be thankful for is that now we have a president who has a brain, and we all need to support him. He is smarter than the entire Congress put together and they all should quit trying to be experts on anything.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  267. Matt Reid


    I am 20% worried we will fall into a depression.

    Matt Reid
    Zebulon, NC

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  268. John Barr

    Im some what worried, but more worried about congress passing a bill without PORK.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  269. William

    DEPRESSION! It's a real possibility so my family and I have agreed to begin our escape plan to a country we feel will be most comforting to us during this type of crisis. It's important nowadays to a have a plan B or even an F.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  270. Ima...Mississippi

    There just is no question about it. We are headed for a major depression. My greatest fear is whether or not people can brave it. Who are the survivors and who are not. One thing that needs to be dealt with immediately is our health...prevention. As a great people, we cannot sit by and watch each other take falls...we must all pull together. This would include the greedy...the CEOs who have caused it all.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  271. Joel from Abilene TX

    Worried about it... Im in it...

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  272. Joshua

    I really am not worried about a full-blown depression. This country needs to learn how to not be so superficial. It's a natural cycle within the economy, and it should be considered a healthy one. Being poor, I'm practically prepared for this. It is kind of a slap of reality for the rich idiots who cannot handle their money as well as they think they may be able.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  273. Mithan

    I am very worried.

    In fact, I am worried about the complete economic collapse of the United States and the end of life as we know it, similar to the Roman Empire, Soviet Union, etc, etc, with millions of Americans starving to death as supply lines dry up, farms fail, food riots, martial law, etc, etc.

    Jack, this may sound crazy, but what about all those FEMA Facilities being built across the country. Some people think they are being built as future detention camps for the Government to be able to control people as the economy collapses.

    YOU should do an article on this stuff and put American Minds to rest.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  274. Tommy D. G. Ferrell

    I'm a 15 year old living with a grandmother who survived the Great Depression. Grandma has told me what can only be called horror stories of how the Depression affected her and her family back then. I'm terrified of it.

    Tommy Ferrell
    Delbarton, WV

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  275. Tony in IL

    Jack.....I'd bet you everything I own against everything you own that the US ends up in a "D"epression, not "d"epression by the end of this year. You might as well sign it over now and count your losses.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  276. jim Toronto

    Never in our life time have we in North America experienced such a life altering dilemma. America has sent men and women off to war, to Vietnam, Iraq, and had to deal with 9/11. But what is about to overshadow us now is the unknown, the 'abyss'. We can all hope for the best, but must brace ourselves for the worst.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  277. Bert

    It is sad to say about my countrry but perhaps it is what we need and start over again.Let all these greedy companies and political figures get a taste of the struggling we the backbone of america are experiencing.Maybe it will bring them back to reality.
    If thats what it takes for all these greedy hacks to fall down to reality and realize they are no better then the next man or there neighbor then I'll take the fall and maybe we will come together and unite as a proud country we once were!
    Wouldn't it be nice?Wishful thinking though!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  278. Casey | Sebastopol, CA

    I'm not worried Jack, I'm planning on it. If it doesn't happen, I'm prepared for the future.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:12 pm |
  279. Barbara kelley

    Not worried. I think it will turn around after 2 years. I have full confidence in Obama, but don't think it will happen immediately. As a small business owner, I look forward to health care reform, making it easier to cover my employees.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  280. Kat Nicoli


    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  281. Tony

    A rose by any other name....... Remember when we were told by the last adminstration that the economy was fine and we weren't in a recession? Looks like the same kind of denial's going on here. With continued job losses, plummeting stocks, more and more foreclosures, etc., I think we're already in a depression but just won't admit it yet.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  282. Jay from PA

    The bright side for those of us who are already experiencing the depression is that we don't have to worry whether a depression is coming or not.

    Worked full time for 46 years but currently out of work, unemployment is running out, no prospects for a 61 year old salesman, can't afford health insurance. I am definitely in depression territory.

    Not one thing in the stimulus bill to help my family.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  283. Matt Jirak

    I am 14 years old. I am not very worried at all. The unemployment rate is no where near what it was back in the '30s. Even if we did sink to a full-bown depression. It would, from what my grandparents tell me, be no where near as bad as the Great Depression

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  284. Darren Johnson

    It's downright depressing, and even worse when you can't afford your antidepressants!

    Darren in Fairbanks, Alaska

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  285. Art T

    I thought we were already in a depression?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  286. Sarah womg

    To be honest, I am not worried at all about a full blown depression. How much more can you lose if you had already lost everything?!?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  287. Dorothea Clymer

    We're standing in a big pile of the Big D right now.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  288. matthew

    I am worried. I've already lost one job and quickly scrambled to find another. I thank god I have that to support my family.

    I'm more worried about the so-called conservatives in this nation who are placing their ideology over workable solutions for the working family.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:13 pm |
  289. Bob in Florida

    I think the economist has it bass-ackwards. I believe we have an 80% chance of a depression. The meltdown will get progressively worse as long as we blame politicians and homeowners for this crisis. The blame falls SQUARELY on Wall Street financiers and Banking executives who broke laws, committed fraud, ignored ethics and morality. I am convinced the ONLY WAY to turn this meltdown around is to put tough regulations in place, put those execs on trial and punish ALL those involved in this massive fraud and corruption.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  290. Casey in Sebastopol, CA

    I'd be more worried if Republicans were running the show, Jack.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  291. Lynn

    I'm extremely worried. It's get worse every day. The business community, both Wall Street and Main Street, that we all depend on is contracting rapidly. There's no indication that they have any confidence of a turnaround soon.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  292. Sonia

    Hi Jack. I love these guys that study stuff.....aren't these the same types that give stock advise? They look at the past....to predict the future....etc. etc. All he has to do is ask the American people whether or not we are in a depression. We are losing our jobs, our insurance, our homes, our health, our minds! HELL NO I don't agree with his study. I think we are in a depression now. WAKE UP DOC

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  293. Tanner

    I've been worried about the possibility of a full blown depression since the start of 2009. It is hard to picture it not happening. We have never had to deal with a situation such as this and we can't fix it over night.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |

    jack, it's a crazy but realistic question. our forefather's have already rolled over 10 time's in their grave's,saying " here we go again"

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  295. Joe

    We should be very, very, worrined. President Obama's policies mirror Herbert Hoover's policies. History repeats itself. Protectionism, higher taxes in a recession, and big government spending on pork laden stimulis packages almost insure the inevitible depression that is coming!
    Sad days ahead for us all.


    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  296. Barb. Sonnier Springfield, MO

    I believe that we could fall into a depression. What I am concerned with is if republicans don't get on the "solve" wagon, it could be much harder, because they seem to try to block every move of Obama's team. They need to get on board, or get out of the way, or depression could very well be a sure thing

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  297. Edward Waterhouse

    more like 50/50 i think. and thats only if china buys our debt.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  298. Susan

    I am a news junkie, love CNN and you Jack, but I truly believe that the media is fueling the flames of fear. You are increasing the chances a depression will occur. I am in a position to spend in my usual manner, but I don't because I've had the fear of shopping instilled in me by all the negative reporting and the doom and gloom atmosphere.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  299. Karen

    I am worried that we will be driven into a depression by people who keep talking about whether or not we are in a depression. Keep it up and soon we will be buried under his depression, her depression, their depression and every depressing news story aimed at the possibility of deepening our depression.

    That is enough to depress anyone.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:14 pm |
  300. Art T

    I thought we were already in a full-blown depression?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  301. Jim Caldwell

    Today's problems are so great, and with unemployment growing daily, a depression is not out of the question. However, Jack, you could always fall back on your movie career. I saw you in "It Could Happen To You". Great job!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  302. Tony in SC

    Wake up we're already there. The DOW has lost nearly 60% of it's 2007 highs. The safeties that were put in place to prevent a collapse have only prolonged it. So now we get to see it happen over the course of 6 MOS as opposed to 5 days. It's like watching a train wreck in slow motion. Your powerless. When the dust settles after GM and Citigroup the DOW will be below 5,000. Will we call it what it is then?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  303. Rafael Jovel

    The secret that no one is talking about, is that the country is in a depression right now. The only question is how long will it last and how big can it get?

    My fear is that there will be a global depression with global civil wars in the next couple of months.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:15 pm |
  304. Nate

    I am not as worried about a full-blown depression as I am worried about everyday that passes under Obama's rule, our great Nation inches closer and closer to a full-blown socialism.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  305. Quanzale McMath

    I feel that if you were already living under poverty conditions, then you have experienced a full-blown depression. It just comes to a time where a person on high pedestals has to come down.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  306. esguy27

    Well Jack, I hope and pray that we don't see 25% or greater unemployment as was seen in the Great Depression, but those new unemployment figures soon to come out are quite sobering. My concern is, if the average length of recessions/depressions is about 4 yrs, to what extent will our economy suffer and who will receive the blame? The partisan posturing going on at the Capitol makes me feel even less optimistic...

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  307. Alan-Buxton, Maine

    I don't know what you call what we have now but if it is not yet a full blown depression it soon will be. The more the government meddles in the economy the worse it will get and the longer it will last. Propping up failing companies will result in more billions wasted and ultimate failure of those companies anyway. Letting them fall and rebuilding on a sound foundation will accomplish far more positive results or so history tells us. Let us not ignore history again.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  308. Jesse Johl

    Hi Jack,

    I am very worried about the US and world slipping into Depression. I believe it is a very real possibility and we are still being lead there by greedy Wall Street and industry.

    When times were good and the money flowed like milk and honey everyone was a capitalist and it was everyone for them self.

    Now times have gone very wrong and very bad and the same greedy capitalists want to be socialists with big TAX PAYER bailouts and yet they still want to have the big salaries and perks?

    It's time for a gut check and the return of fundamentals and HEAVY regulation on all banks and financial institutions... as well as extremely stringent accounting laws for industry and big business.

    This should be the last time a mega business like AIG can be run with absolutely nothing on the books and even less in the bank!!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  309. Raymond Duke

    Jack; I do not watch cnn anymore after the joke you people made of yourself in helping to screw Hillary Clinton and anoint the messiah. I do not see what you people are worried about. Remember the Obama (Messiah) can walk on water , raise the dead, heal all our foriegn domestic affairs with one of his great speeches. The world loves him. I guarrantee you that your liberal northeast, upper midwest and west coast will see a depression before we will in Texas. Heck we are doing great except soon we will have to bail you liberals out.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  310. Barbie from Hollywood, CA

    Jack, my husband was born and raised during the 1930s; he remembers well, the Great Depression. Seven years ago he saw signs in today's economy that led him to believe we were headed for another BIG one, and soon! So he made the proper financial adjustments, and we are going to be okay. BTW, he's NOT an economist or a financier; he's a retired programmer, does genealogy, and uses the blueprints of the Past as a guideline for Today and Tomorrow. Maybe The White House would like to talk to HIM! LOL

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  311. Ann from Atlanta, TX

    I have faith in President Obama and his team. Let's give him time to turn things around. Remember, it took George Bush 8 years to get us in the mess we're in.

    Jack, quit talking about the stock market, recession, depression, doom and gloom. Challenge everyone in the media to do the same. Focus on the positive. We have a brilliant president, who has surround himself with the smartest and best. Talk about what a great job President Obama is doing and how he's trying to turn things around. I bet in no time at all you'd see the stock market turning upwards.

    Give it a try!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:16 pm |
  312. Gary McKeever

    There was a time when a comment from someone at Harvard actually impressed me. However, after having a Harvard MBA (George W) driving this country into the economic crisis that exists today I'd be more impressed by a comment or study from my local Community College.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  313. Roger from NJ

    I am concerned, but since i'm 23 I don't think it'll be the same as the 1930's depression from the history books. I am more concerned with the collapse of the US Dollar as it is slowly losing its prowess as the world's reserve currency. Times are changing are many Americans are going to be getting a Huge wake up call.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  314. Jim in Lakeland, FL

    It's already begun. Lines for jobs, lines at food pantries, lines for free or low-cost health care. We're going to have a rough time of it - but let's not lose sight of the goal: jobs, food for all and guaranteed health care. I'm intimidated by the gloom but I for one am going to do what Americans really do well - keep my eye on the prize, and help where I can.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  315. Jesse J

    Hi Jack,

    I am very worried about the US and world slipping into Depression. I believe it is a very real possibility and we are still being lead there by greedy Wall Street and industry.

    When times were good and the money flowed like milk and honey everyone was a capitalist and it was everyone for them self.

    Now times have gone very wrong and very bad and the same greedy capitalists want to be socialists with big TAX PAYER bailouts and yet they still want to have the big salaries and perks?

    It's time for a gut check and the return of fundamentals and HEAVY regulation on all banks and financial institutions... as well as extremely stringent accounting laws for industry and big business.

    This should be the last time a mega business like AIG can be run with absolutely nothing on the books and even less in the bank!!

    Vancouver Canada

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  316. Karen- New Orleans, La

    I am absolutely petrified! I don't know what I would do if things get that bad. I hope and pray that it doesn't happen, but I'm concerned about how a depression comes about. Has there ever been an investigation into what causes a depression? Or better yet what has caused this current recession? Jack it's a criminal act against the country to lead to such human cruelty, and the culprits should be prosecuted.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  317. .catherine wienckowski

    Oh my Jack, you have become the grim reaper along with the rest of the cnn news team. I actually prefer to watch fox these days, which is a sad thing to say as a liberal democrat that I am.
    I am scared to spend two pennies after listening to Wolf Blitzer.
    Please CNN drop the negativity and the sky is burning routine. Lets focus on what is good (92% of this country have jobs). 89% of this countries homeowners pay their mortgage on time etc............

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  318. Katherine

    i have seen our IRA retirement funds disappear slowly every day and I am convinced this is not going to get better soon. I believe this crisis was underestimated from the beginning and it will be a long time before we see the light. We were hoping not to be a burden on our kids but now I am not so sure. Talk about passing on a legacy!@!!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  319. Thomas Hanley

    What concerns me is the negativism reflected in your question as well the media’s right-wing partisan rants predicting more gloom and doom. This can become a self-fulfilling prophecy as there is a psychological aspect to how well the economy does. Had FDR faced this kind of babble we would have never gotten out of the first Republican depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  320. Jim Green, Seguin, TX www.Inclusivism.org

    Jack, We are in uncharted waters, however, we have many safeguards in place to prevent a full-blown depression, not in place in 1929, as well as a president receptive to government intervention to -prevent such a depression--nevertheless, our unemployment is growing exponentially, as our economy is imploding-–and we haven't seen the bott9om yet-perhaps the bottom will be caleed a "full-blown depression"

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  321. Dan

    Right Now the Economy is on the edge and could go either way. I think the only answer comes in Obama's policies and if he decides he wants to change his preconceptions and start to do things the right way.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:17 pm |
  322. Ralph

    Jack, Once the historians get through this, it will be clear that we have been in a depression since at least May last year. Obama inherited this mess and I see impressive traction towards Federal intervention however my impression is that it will be "too little too late" as the Bush mess will not be compensated for in the next ten years or so, to use Rush's term Bush spent money like water and we are now paying for it as will be the next generation.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  323. Brooks

    On 9/12 I got up took a deep breath, said a prayer and went about the business of the day.
    When the market tanked in October and my 401K and my kids college fund dropped by 30+% again I took a deep breath, said a prayer and went about what I had to do.
    If the crisis in the ecomony becomes a depression I'll take a deep breath, say a prayer and go about doing what I have to do.
    I'm alive, I have a family that loves me and that won't change if we slip into a depression.
    I think everyone needs to take a collective deep breath remember what is really important.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  324. Silas, Frederick, MD

    I'm already at rock bottom Jack. I lost my job 16 months ago, I'm disabled, I lost my car, my house, my wife after she cheated on me (with her boss mind you), and I'm living in my uncles basement. I'm already in a depression. If it wasn't for my family, I'd be on the streets. Unemployment may only be near 8%, but thats alot of people...25% back in the day of the great depression is high, but there was also alot less people compared to today. I think we are already in a depression. I had to flee to the big cities in MD to keep a cover over my head, leaving the rural sandhills of North Carolina. If there were jobs for the people that have no experience in a field, then we could of avoided some of this. But no, I have to have 3 years expierence to file papers at a doctors office, or 3 years of manger expierence to watch teenagers flip burgers at McDonalds.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  325. John Provel

    We could stop this whole depression if the banks would just start using 40 year, 50 year, or 60 year fixed mortgage. This would allow people underwater to stay in there homes without the tax payers paying for them, and stimulate the economy, but since the banks are running the country this will never happen.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  326. Fran of Huntington, NY

    If the folks over at CNBC would stop talking so positively sure that everything the President is doing is wrong, as though they know something our finest economic minds don't, maybe things would improve a little. I find it amusing that they expect this administration to fix things in 45 days. Wow! Just a little less pessimistic please, and maybe we would see baby steps in the right direction. I am going with the 80% chance of no depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  327. Adam Levine, Thousand Oaks, CA

    A depression is certain. In the past, we ONLY avoided these by attracting global capital. Given the global nature of credit issues, there are no funds anywhere that can pull us from the brink. I fear we are going the way of Argentina. All it will take is one major crisis (e.g., end of petrodollars, major terrorist attack) to send us over the edge. IMO, given the known recurring pattern of bubbles, we were set up beautifully.

    Finance and banking should be required courses in our schools! Our children are woefully unprepared to manage money.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  328. Bill in Shelbyville Indiana

    Real concerned Jack because my Dear Grandmother is no longer alive & and able to pull our small wagon down the railroad tracks with me.... in search of mustard greens.......... that she would take home and wash 3 times and then pull them again in her wagon down Washington Street in this small town selling them to the maids of the doctors and lawyers so our family of 12 could have a real meal also.....Makes you think doesn't it Jack?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  329. Robert

    I am not terribly concerned that things will be as bad as the Great Depression was, but it could feel like it to us in the 2009 era in many areas. Between the United States and the G8 and G20 countries, it would be in everyone's best interest for them to make sure they work together so we don't allow things to get to the point where it would be technically called a "depression." I have faith that can be done working together with other countries that are also having problems.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  330. frank valparaiso indiana

    I'm not concerned about a full blown depression, severe recession, yes.

    The handwriting has been on the wall since Reagan. All of this voodoo economics and removal of regulations has set us up for a fall. There were reasons that we didn't have severe economic downturns after the Great Depression. Bank regulations, savings and loans handled differently from other financial institutions. Remove those, we had the S&L crisis, another problem with people who want to make money and the heck with the rest of the country. Same with credit card companies, now banks, Wall Street. Well the free lunch is over. Now the check is on the table.

    It would be nice if the crooks who stole all the money would end up in jail or with significant tax burdens for life.

    A lot of these people just go from job to job. Sort of like sports coaches. Fired as CEO, just get on a board. Or multiple boards.

    But the system is rigged against the stockholders.

    And the CEO compensation committees are incestuous.

    We need a serious shakeup of the system. A lot of these crooks should be banned for life, starting with CEOs and management in any firm that gets a taxpayer buyout. Hit them individually with a 90% tax rate for LIFE over a million. That was the tax rate until JFK for high earners. Under Ike. Bipartisan. They survived then. Won't hurt them now.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:18 pm |
  331. marie banderas in texas

    hmmm, some of you, "still dont get it"..y'all dont know what the rich fat cats and wall street know.( and dont want you to know ).and all the time people, republicans, independents, democrats, ALL are griping, the stock that has dropped to record lows is being scarfed up, and when this is over, and the republicans "know" too, it will be over, all of those who bought the low priced stock are going to be smiling all the way to the bank ! and...who here can actually SAY just how much money the government really has ???? thought not..this bill will pass, republicans know this too, this economy IS going to turn around, and then they will say ( as they try to rebuild thier party ) we said NO, while the same ones sit and count the fortune they made off of this so called recession..
    Marie...Texas...buying low stocks...

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  332. Dave

    You don't just water a plant from the top and and let the water trickle down to the root. But make sure the root is well watered and it will feed the plant.
    The American working people are the root. Take care of them and everything else will fall into place.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  333. Ted Munda

    Edgar Cayce said that Depressions go in 56 Year Cycles and predicted the Great Depression way ahead of time. He said that this one would be worse than the 1930's. Check his Predictions: Edgard Cayce on the Future. Edgar Cayce on the Great Depression of 1929.
    He has a great track record and all his predictions are preserved at the A.R.E. in Virginia Beach, VA. He was a Medical Intuitive that the American Medical Association called the Father of Holistic Health.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  334. Carole

    I refuse to panic and worry about one peron's opinion!! Depressions happen, in part, because people get really scared and attack the economic foundation of the country (runs on banks, dumping stocks, etc.) However, our consumer finance systems are turning in on themselves, in my opinion. Banks DO need to lower the outrageous rates on credit cards so that people can pay down balances and feel more comfortable about their debt load. Banks should stop the practice of arbitrarily dropping credit limits becase that action damages individual credit scores–which in turn leads the banks to raise the interest charged. It's a vicious cycle that too many people are caught in through no fault of their own. verall, let's focus on the core strengths of our economy, support the small and medium sized businesses and make sure we spend prudently.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  335. Adela Johnson

    Worried...let me put it this way "Gird up your loins America!" Let me ask you a question...are ammunition sales up?

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  336. Bette

    If the Republicans continue with their negative attacks not only on the President but any of the new programs, we will be in a depression. They, the Republicans, had control for 6 years in Congress and 8 in the White House. What did they do? Ah! That's right, just added to the deficit, made more money for themselves and their lobbyists and forgot about the middle class. What new ideas did they come up with for health care, the mortgage problems and fair trade? They should say nothing but work for the good of our country. What a bunch of self-serving ,self-important ,one-sided , narrow minded group of people.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  337. Reed McGowan

    I work in the entertainment industry...three years ago I saw the trends spiraling towards this deep recession, and all my friends said I was a crazy pessimist. Now that we are experiencing it, they are scrambling, and I am looking ahead for solutions. The only problem is, I don't see any. Obama is clever, but he is limited in his capacity to overcome the hand that's been dealt. What I predict is the worst poverty we have seen in our lifetime. Depression? Perhaps...but if it turns global, then I think what we would experience would make the 1930's look like Mardi Gras.

    New York City

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  338. Gail in Texas

    Depression is a certainty the way the economy is being handled. The "takers" will continue to take (e.g. financial firms, auto makers, unqualified homeowners and banks) and the "givers" (you, me and all the other sheep in the nation) will contune to give or else suffer civil prosecution for failure to pay taxes. This is neither a Republican or Democratic issue. It is an issue of massive larceny foisted upon a nation. Worry is not a factor. Preparation for basic survival is now mandatory.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:19 pm |
  339. Josh

    Everyone is looking to Washington for the way out. If that isn't depressing, I don't know what is.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  340. Neil

    Yes, thanks to George Bush & his cronies, the greedy and others that don't give a hoot right now, their will be a full blown depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  341. Karl from SF, CA

    I'm looking at the 80% possibility rather than the 20%. We have a President now that is doing something about our economy, after eight years of it being ignored like a red-headed step child. We are tough and we will survive. If Bush was still there, I’d be on Prozac by now.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:20 pm |
  342. Mike Lavoie

    Last week the power went out and the pipes froze. This morning car started making funny rattling sounds and now my chest is doing the same thing. And, oh yeah, the neighbours dog bit me. I'm in a full-blown depression right now.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  343. Marissa - New York, NY

    Up until last week, I was not all too concerned. Then, on the same day, my boyfriend and I were both laid-off. We are both in our mid-twenties, starting our careers (or so we thought). We want to get married, buy a home and start our family, just like our parents did when they were our age. In these times, however, we feel like we are unable to do so. It is sad that instead of being better off than our parents were, we are actually in a worse position due to this economy- so yes, I am now concerned about a depression and it is a sad and scary concern to have, especially at our age.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:21 pm |
  344. Liz

    No, the make up of the country is so different now that a depression the magnitude of the past is not likely. I do believe we'll have to change our lifestyle for a period, we'll need to stick to needs rather than wants.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  345. John Pineda

    If you are not worried, you just don't understand

    Kirtland, OH

    March 5, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  346. Chris


    Worried? I was worried when they decided to out-source our manufacuring base and go to the service base economy. Such a balant ripe-off that transferred the US wealth to only 10% of the population. I guess now the upper class do have their serfs to choose from. and Yes we can thank Reagan and company- and all the special interest and the last man standing "Rush"

    March 5, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  347. Lynn, Columbia, Mo..

    I'm pretty worried, but I'm a worry wart anyway, especially when it comes to things that are out of my control, which is just about everything.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:22 pm |

    My buddy Jack Cafferty. I wasn't worried when Bush was president. I am beginning to worry now. Our sociaiist president Barack Hussein Obama is doing worse than even I thought he would do. The stock market has gone down over 3000 points since Obama was elected. Apparently Wall street agrees with me Obama is a incompetent president. If we have a depression, I am sure Obama can blame it on Bush. I don't know about his approval ratings but many working and middle class are losing their money in IRA's or 401k"s. Jack I thought Obama was for them? Maybe not.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:22 pm |
  349. Natalie Ohio

    I’m not worried and for once I wish the media would find something else to do besides play Tokyo Rose. We all get it. We don’t need a bunch of negativity from media hound naysayers gifted to forecast gloom and doom over our great country. This is America and we been through and overcome hard times before…this too shall pass and we shall be the better for it: Wiser and more united than we have ever been as a people.

    I don’t know Jack, today’s media makes me long for the days of Paul Harvey who mastered the art of telling it like it is but somehow always managed to end on a note that made you secure and proud to be an American.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  350. Gary - San Ramon, CA

    Jack – I am increasingly worried about a Depression, as I observe how President Obama seems smitten with copying FDR's unsuccessful polices of the 1930s. The pattern is all too familiar.
    1: Ram an over-zealous social agenda through Congress, justified by stimulating the economy, resulting in a temporary numbing of the pain but little more.
    2: Try to pay for it with a tax increase 3 years down the road, resulting in another 4 years of a declining economy.
    Seems to be a sure prescription for turning a Recession into a Depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  351. Monu Sohal

    Doesn't matter what you call it – Depression, or a Strong Recession – it's very bad either ways.

    My worry is – the US is losing it's competitive edge in most fields – education being right on top. That, is what worries me the most.

    Poor maths and logic is what made all the bankers make wrong loans. Very Simple maths can easily show if an applicant can afford a mortgage or not.

    -Monu Sohal.
    Lyndhurst, NJ

    March 5, 2009 at 5:23 pm |
  352. Chad

    We should all worry, if not about our money then about the doors this crisis leaves open for the countries we've pissed off over the years.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  353. Susan Alzner

    I believe that the more you ask questions like "Are you worried about a full-blown depression'" the more you make people worry about a full blown depression, and feel depressed themselves. This further paralyzes spending and makes a full blown economic depression more likely. I ask you to explore ideas about ways out of this mess instead of conjuring more images of how it could get worse.
    Thank you.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  354. Gayle

    I will be very surprised if this "recession' isn't the beginning of a true depression that will be as bad, if not worse, than the one in the 1930's. From firsthand experience, I am seeing the effects of the situation with the US economy in other countries. This is not even remotely confined to the US. It has become a worldwide economic problem which certainly does not bode well for any kind of quick recovery considering the amount of raw materials the US exports only to buy back as finished products. This practice combined with the severe drop in purchasing and construction in the US is devastating economies all over the world. I am very concerned that this may well become a worldwide depression.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:24 pm |
  355. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Not worried at all, it's just the beginning of a new era.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  356. John, Fort Collins, CO

    Since absolutely none of the financial experts in the private sector or government seem to have any idea how deep the hole is, I am very concerned that we might well end up in a modern day form of a depression that goes on for a very long time.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  357. Nate from San Diego, CA

    I am not as worried about a full-blown depression as I am worried that every passing day under Obama’s rule, our great Nation inches closer and closer to full-blown socialism.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  358. Don Weber

    A year ago they refused to admit we were in a recession, guess what were already in a depression. But don't worry they'll probably have another extravagant White House dinner to discuss it.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:25 pm |
  359. Tony in IL

    Besides your belongings, add Wolf's in their too.......with a depression, I'll need more assests.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:26 pm |
  360. B Rosin

    Lost my job 10/31/08. I am concerned that we are already there.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  361. William

    Depression by this Summer and full blown violence by February 2010- and yes I am worried.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:28 pm |
  362. Mary, Lansdowne Virginia

    I think we'll have rampant inflation so that any money we've saved will be worthless. I hope to purchase the stuff I may need somewhat soon – so I'm helping the country's economy now and planning for my future.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  363. r klokow

    I just want to know, what's the point in worrying – let's keep moving forward, taking action and evaluating that action. You know what they say, you get what you focus on, so let's focus solutions.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  364. Purnell Kankakee lL.

    Not at all!

    The Republicans are doing everything they can to make the President fail to make our country better, first they call him a socialist, next they say he’s against businesses, then they say he's talking down our markets, also they say when he says good thing about our markets that he is too rosy, Republican make up your dam minds or shut the hell up. You have no ideas at all if it's not about cutting taxes until they are fully gone, if we have no taxes to pay for the services that you want our whole governmental system will fall apart, and then our country will cease to exists!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:29 pm |
  365. Lynn Robb

    Since there is no hard and fast economic definition of "Depression," I can only assume the media are pushing the concept to boost audience/readership. "If it bleeds it leads." Many of the million or so unemployed have experienced a depression since the day they got their pink slip. Many in secure jobs may never experience one. I will start worrying when unemployment hits 25% and the GDP falls 10%.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  366. Pat Hudgins

    Unless we remove all those financial prostitutes who call the Halls of Congress their place of trade, it seems more likely by the day.
    While they enjoy their perks, repay political debts, and impress us with their incompetance, the world continues to crumble.
    A revolution is the only way to solve our problem.

    Pat Hudgins

    March 5, 2009 at 5:30 pm |
  367. Larry from San Jose

    I believe Ravi Batra had it right back in the late '80s. He was just too early. We need a serious flushing out (deleveraging) about once every 30 years. We haven't had one since the 1930s. That's well over 60 years. Add to this the fact that, since the early 1970s, we have had a strong divergence in compensation between executives and rank-and-file workers, and I think it's a foregone conclusion we are headed for something much different this time. My gut feeling tells me that, on average, all asset classes need to settle out somewhere around 50 percent below their recent peaks. That doesn't mean they can't significantly overshoot to the downside temporarily.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  368. Cindy

    I come from a fairly modest background. I've worked hard my whole life to be edcuated, save for retirement so I don't have to suffer in old age as my parent and family had. As I watch those hard earn dollars disappear from my retirement savings its hard not to worry about a "modern" day depression. So far no one has been able to pinpoint what that might look like. Its like the "R" word – nobody wanted to talk about it either, but we all knew we were there already. So if thats the process then I guess they'll tell us when we get there, and we can surmise we are already?

    In the mean time I'm buttoning down for a bumpy ride.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:31 pm |
  369. Gene

    Every day get more worrisome that a total collapse could occur.

    1. Banks are just swimming above water and may drown
    2. the government does not get and still spending on pork projects
    3. tarp – who what where and how
    4. GE under 7/share
    5 50% decease in auto sales
    6. American debt out of control
    7.mortgages under water
    8.401k now called 101k
    9, 14 kids with no job no house living off California
    10. 911 used for McDonald not having chicken Nuggets 3x times
    11.jobless over 9%

    yes we do have a full plate of issues but pork is in. they don't get it

    my suggestion have congress miss a month of paychecks and live on food stamps for a month and slow down the cocktail parties in the PEOPLES HOUSE

    March 5, 2009 at 5:32 pm |
  370. ada in ms

    If there are any students of the Bible out there...and you have read the back of the book, you will know this is inevitable. We are there...

    March 5, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  371. Purnell Kankakee lL.

    Not at all, we will be okay!

    The Republicans are doing everything they can to make the President fail to make our country better, first they call him a socialist, next they say he’s against businesses, then they say he's talking down our markets, also they say when he says good thing about our markets that he is too rosy, Republican make up your dam minds or shut the hell up. You have no ideas at all if it's not about cutting taxes until they are fully gone, if we have no taxes to pay for the services that you want our whole governmental system will fall apart, and then our country will cease to exists!

    Stop living in Wonderland or Disneyland were you get everything you want, while everyone else in the country has to pay for it!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  372. sbjones

    It's hard not to believe that we are headed for a full blown recession when there is virtually no news to indicate the slide has slowed let alone stopped. If you haven't suffered a job loss in your family it is easy to believe that things aren't as bad as the headlines say. Once the axe falls on you though the reality hits home fast and hard. If you are still not convinced you will be when attempting to replace the lost job; there are just fewer and fewer places to turn. Just ask me, I lost my job of 10 years as technical support engineer two weeks before Christmas from a company currently in Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

    Steve J in Springfield, Massachusetts

    March 5, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  373. Susan from Long Island

    When you ask questions like, "Are you worried about a full-blown depression?" you make people worry about it and then we spend less and our economy slides further toward a full-blown depression. I love your segment and believe you have a lot of influence, so please use it to help lift us up instead of remind us that we are down.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  374. Tom from Minnesota


    Everyone in this country should be scared. I think it's time for Obama to go. I can't not afford his type of change. It is his policies that is driving the stock market into the tank. They need to stop blaming Rush Limbaugh because he does not make policy for our country.


    March 5, 2009 at 5:33 pm |
  375. Richard Ragel Jr.

    Well heres the bottom line Jack, the President's stimilus plan that shold be helping the econmy is going right down the drain due to ever increasing ear marks tha give companies more money to spend lavishly; even if they dont need it. Want proof its just not banks? Ingalls Hospital just freezed all pay raises due to the ever worsening economy. The catch? The CEO got a raise and his 2 million dollar bonus. Some could argue that were in a mini depression other lobbiest and polticians argue that the worst has past, well i have a news flash for those people. Its only going to get worse if we sit here like children and argue, or the people we elect to run our country and keep this from happening can finally start acting like grown men, tajke charge and help lift this nations ever worsening econmy on its feet. So yes im midly worried.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  376. Patricia

    One summer I lived in a teepee in N. Idaho. We hauled all our water up a mountainside and cooked over a wood fire. We bathed in an icy creek. Every day was about sustaining ourselves. Life was good. There was no boredom and no worry because our needs were simple.

    Life may be very different than it is now if we have a full blown depression, but that's not all bad.


    March 5, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  377. TN

    We are not going to have a depression. I believe the global economy, and consequently the US economy, will bounce back within the next 6 months.

    The greater issue is the role of the US economy in the global economy over the next 10 years – will we remain manufacturersin any shape or form, or will we become a purely customer service orientated economy? How do we retrain people displaced by the changing landscape? Will they rebel? Can a customer service orientated economy support the prosperity of 300+ million people over the long-term? Why does such a great majority of people, in such a wealthy nation, still earn such low wages? How do we bridge the skills gap between this low-wage earning population with their counterparts in third world countries?

    As someone who's been laid off and finding it impossible to find another job, it's not looking pretty for me, but I am confident it will be right soon enough. In the meantime, we ought to take this time as an opportunity to better our skills and refocus on our long-term values.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  378. Allen

    I don't think we're in a depression, I think this is how things will be from now on, unless they get worse. There will be no "recovery". The hopeleslly corrupt people in Washington and on Wall St. have all the money, all the jobs have been sent overseas, and any wealth the middle class had has been stolen.
    Obama may have good intentions, but the people around him are so corrupt and interested only in their own special interests (see Pelosi, Nancy) that the President won't be allowed to do anything other than pad the pockets of the already rich.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  379. Rhonda

    What's the point in worrying about it. Let's just keep taking action and evaluating our action. You know what they say, you get what you focus on, so let's focus on solutions. How about this for a question, What can you do to help the economy? I think I'll go out and buy Jack C's new book.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  380. sherman

    Not worried at all. This country is stronger than alot of people think. At age 62 I've seen lots of recessions and we have always recovered. I think there is a whole generation of younger people who have been living very good for a long time. They have never wanted for anything and hard times is a new experience for them. Unfortunately hard times is part of the natural order. But it wont last forever. It will go away, I guarantee it!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  381. Dennis

    Well jack I will tell you that I am trying to sell some homes right now have been trying to sell them for a while. It makes me angry when all that is aired is how we are heading to deppression , the only way we avoid this is to stay possitive! So let me ask youa question when people turn on the TV and see this , does it help me or anyone sell there homes? sorry for my spelling I am on my cell phone.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:37 pm |
  382. B E Smith

    Dear Jack, I wonder if a person knew how to put 10,000 people to work for 10 years, would there be anyone who would listen to him. I am an inventor Jack. I watch CNN faithfully but to get a project this size off the ground obviously I need some help. It is hard to get anyone to listen to me including your senators and governors. We have the same problem in Canada where I'm from. The ironic thing is that all I'm trying to do is help your people and my people by creating investment opportunities and jobs. Sincerely B E Smith Barrie, Ontario Canada

    March 5, 2009 at 5:38 pm |
  383. Mary Texas

    Yes I'm in a depression just listning to Rush Limbaugh run his mouth. 95% of cable TV is about him, and I wouln't know if there was any good news out there if there really was.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:39 pm |
  384. Garth


    I do believe we are headed for depression. The leadership void in not only Washington, the banking section of our economy, or thanks to "Corporate America." They have not been dragged up before Congress to explain why they have been for years "outsourceing" the jobs, we now so desperately need. No guts in any part of our government have lead us the edge of the next "GREAT DEPRESSION." I do not know how the powers that be can ever sleep at nite knowing what they have done to the great country that once was America

    March 5, 2009 at 5:43 pm |
  385. Marcus

    No, I'm not worried about a full-blown depression because we, as a nation, are doing everything in our collective power to avoid a major depression. Regardless of whether this becomes a full-blown depression or not, we've all got to maintain our hope, our faith, and our efforts in these challenging times.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:44 pm |
  386. Greg Glider

    A depression we can weather, if it's of limited duration. What worries me is total meltdown, which a prolonged depression can become. It must be obvious that we cannot survive if the massive job loss can't be stemmed. Our tax base will dwindle until there are inadequate resources to support our infrastructure: no pay for firemen, police, city and street workers, all the people we depend on to keep us safe and our society functioning. Escalating home and job loss will cut deeply into utilities companies, and our power, gas, water, sewer and garbage may go away. if the oil/gasoline industry fails here, that's it for us. No driving, no trucking, and, consequently, no food, just dark, cold houses. No police could mean ruthless gangs at our doors, and shops, looting and worse.
    How bad can it get? This is it, and potentially far more dangerous to us, as a people and country, than the last depression. What astounds and galls me, is the politics as usual game the Republicans, and some Dems are still playing. Do they think they can redeem themselves for years of crooked and incompetent governing, by undermining this last-ditch, desperate attempt to stop our slide off the cliff. They should be saying "Yes, for God's sake, whatever it takes. Thank God it's Obama and not the Bush bunch." Do they have such truncated vision they can't see the handwriting on the wall? A trillion-dollar rescue will not be a problem for us if the country descends into medieval hell. No government will remain to pay back. If it does work, IT'S A GOD-SENT MIRACLE AND WORTH EVERY DOLLAR.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:52 pm |
  387. Diane Dagenais Turbide


    this economy thrives on consuing and not saving and producing!

    March 5, 2009 at 5:53 pm |
  388. dave in NC

    We are a strong Nation and as we adjust to what is going on around us, we will adapt and survive. I just wish our Govt would put the money into the economy from the bottom up instead of from the top down since it was the folks at the top that put us into this situation.

    March 5, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  389. Dave in Oregon

    Should government continue to be fiscally irresponsible and not require responsibility of the private sector, I believe that this is a definite possibility. The economy is resilient if we allow it, government needs to get out of the way and lead in showing fiscal responsibility.

    March 5, 2009 at 6:14 pm |