FROM Dean Calbreath
Wall Street, Main Street and Economic Crisis The finger of blame for the worst economic mess since the Great Depression has been pointed mainly at Wall Street, but what about Main Street, where ordinary Americans were living on credit cards and subprime mortgages, borrowed money might never pay back? The Christmas season was as dismal as had been expected? On this archived discussion of To the Point, it's worth asking, as we did in October, about economic recovery. Does China's high savings rate and few credit cards offer a better model? Will the crisis change America's values?
Consumer Complicity in the Credit Crisis The finger of blame for the worst economic mess since the Great Depression has been pointed mainly at Wall Street. But what about Main Street, where ordinary Americans have been living on credit cards and sub-prime mortgages, borrowed money they'll never pay back? Now that the roof's falling in, can consumers afford to continue spending? If they don't, what happens to economic recovery? China's consumer economy is booming, with a high savings rate and very few credit cards. Is that a better model? Will the crisis change America's values? We'll raise these and other questions today.
San Diego Rebuilding Costs to Soar As they do after every round of wildfires, thousands of victims are promising to rebuild, but that will be more expensive than it’s been in the past. Since San Diego’s Cedar and Paradise fires in 2003 , the cost of residential construction has been going up by as much as 35 to 45 percent.
The longest US war: Will Trump send more troops to Afghanistan? The Trump White House is divided over the Pentagon's request for more troops in Afghanistan—where the US has been fighting for the past 16 years. Is there a formula -- either for "victory" or a political settlement? Is there an end in sight for America's longest war?
Is the threat from Russia missing from the Russia meddling probe? There's much being made about the Trump administration's possible ties with Russia. But the bottom line is Russia's effort to influence American democracy. Do the President and his aides care enough to take action before voters go back to the polls?
What happens when America retreats from the world? Is President Trump taking his "America First" agenda to extremes, withdrawing the country from the international stage on trade and climate change, distancing America from its traditional allies across the Atlantic and even threatening to physically isolate the country through the building of a wall along its southern border? León Krauze guest hosts.