If you look at the real numbers that tell the story of a non recovery then you know we are in pretty bad shape and without a major course change we will become a third world country. We are well on our way right now. A nation that depends on consumers spending but is unwilling to pay them a decent wage and won't let them have a retirement system that will provide them with income after their working life. Without money to shop the economy will continue to shrink. Wages already down $5000 over the last decade haven't provided the necessary funds to build a recovery.
It's not rocket science what has to be done , we have been down this road before and know exactly what needs to be done. However our congress filled with right leaning majorities will never allow the necessary changes to happen. The game plan laid out in this weeks post by the Archdruid shows what we did to get out of the great depression, it even lays out the mistakes made in early attempts to fix the problem. The biggest myth today is that the old fixes will not work, we need some new kind of economic thinking to get us back up.
Those who believe we need some new gimmick to fix whats broke , refuse to acknowledge that too much money in the hands of a very few who just want more. Proper taxation of the well to do to bring in more funds to enable the programs that are needed to be financed. A drastic reduction in defense spending will make the tax cuts less intrusive although I admit they can afford to pay more and a defense spending cut would put more money into the coffers.
With funds available a huge program to rebuild our infrastructure could be initiated putting millions back to work in good paying jobs (also putting more tax money in the coffers). Infrastructure spending puts lots more money into the economy than military spending and would allow the economy to recover into a permanent fix.
If you look at just a few of Bernie Sanders platform programs and understand how much money would be put into play with college loans being paid for by a small transaction tax or the amount put in play by a Medicare for all program would put into play then you understand that's exactly what needs to be done.
The only reasons to not do the above is that you think the rich deserve to get richer while you loose all little more each year as the profits go to all those at the top. It is hard to believe that that the rich can't see they are cutting their own throats by driving the masses lower and lower. When the whole world of workers get so desperate there is little left for them to do but rebel.
Actions of late indicate to me they are finally realizing this and of course are trying to start a new world war to protect their empires.. Only problem with this is they are still are being driven by neocons of the 1980's. The fools believe that a first strike attack is winnable, but it's not and never has been an idea that was the basis of the Cold War that MAD was the real end of any nuclear war. Still is the end game.
A simple sharing of wealth with the goal of rising all boats is the way out of this mess. The rich seem unwilling to do that and it's a lot cheaper to buy politicians and election than to fund a prosperous nation. Greed is an ugly thing and the rich of the world have lots of it.