Commentary: Recession's here. Now what?

This editorial appeared in The (Tacoma) News Tribune.

That foreboding sense of financial doom and gloom? It's not just in your head or your 401(k) statement.

The experts at the National Bureau of Economic Research have pronounced the United States officially in a recession. Turns out, this one hit in December – as in last December when some economists were still pooh-poohing such a notion.

The nation probably won't be so lucky as to have a repeat of 2001, when the recession almost came and went before the bureau declared there was one. A retroactive announcement certainly would have been preferable, akin to your doctor diagnosing cancer after it's cured.

The bureau's announcement, while no surprise, does serve to reinforce what many Americans know in their gut: For anyone who missed the Great Depression, this might be the worst recession of their lifetimes.

But this financial malaise has no sure antidote. Washington, D.C., is engaged in a $1.4 trillion strategy based largely on trial and error, mostly the latter.

To read the complete editorial, visit The (Tacoma) News Tribune.