Our President just announced that our economy is essentially sound, so I suppose we're doomed after all. The President's reassurances have this effect on me an others. The question in My mind is not if we are entering a period of serious economic dislocation, but how long it will last and just how bad things will get before we arrive at some new equilibrium.
My guess is that historians of the future will write about the Reagan era, followed by the Bush/Clinton /Bush era. While Reagan believed in markets, he also had an old fashioned inclination to a degree of economic nationalism as evidenced by his actions regarding steel tariffs. An old man, he still thought like an American. Those who followed him are free market purists who represent the new managerial class. They have no instinctive respect or affinity with their ordinary countrymen. This is why we will get increased immigration no matter who wins the presidential race in November. The new masters of our universe are not going to pass up the chance to import cheap labor. We Americans just cost too much. Those historians will marvel that the population of America allowed itself to be supplanted so easily.
What I find incredible is that this new elite who banish our culture and our patrimony is every bit as economically determinist as the Communists ever were. It's just that they accept the market. Their entire conception of man otherwise is homo-economicus. We exist because we service the economy.
In the end I think they see an America that is more like Brazil. The wealthy products of elite institutions managing the exertions of a cultureless mass of workers, content to have jobs and lulled into dumb acquiescence by the electronic porno-culture of mass media.