It suddenly struck me, when replying to other people in the last couple of days, what America's real problem is- we have a Culture of Debt. It's so strong that economists are no longer bothered by such problems as trade deficits, the government deficit, or consumer debt; it's just assumed that we'll be able to grow our economy enough to take care of such trivialities.
Even after September 2008, I had somebody tell me that a trade deficit was a good thing because we're essentially keeping a high standard of living by printing paper.
Do economists not read newspapers? Do they never talk to people who are on unemployment? What's wrong with this picture?