America: 'Free Money??'

The Way We Live Now: Peachily. It's over, people. The economy is "leveling out." The Fed says so! So please, stop doing poor things. In particular, stop your pandemonium-plagued grabs for free money from check-cashing spots. It looks bad.

This news will doubtless bring warm pangs of joy to the heart of even the coldest unemployed homeless box-dweller: "Economic activity is leveling out...the committee expects that inflation will remain subdued for some time." The bad times are gone! The Fed is going to stop buying back debt.

This day will go down in history, as "August 12, 2009."

Of course, you can't expect everything to "bounce back" immediately. There will still be lagging indicators. Latino workers are still sending less money back home. Ashamed laid-off workers are still putting on suits and leaving home all day, grasping tightly to the imaginary idea that their career options are not in tatters.

Butchers are our keenest financial advisers.

And perhaps if the economy was really rebounding, then the merest rumor that citizens had only one day to pick up $200 in free government cash wouldn't have caused huge lines to form outside of every check-cashing joint in upper Manhattan. But then again, maybe it would have. Put that money in a REIT and watch it quadruple!
[Pic via]