A common definition of recession is two consecutive quarters of declining GDP. The Democrats and the mainstream media (which are pretty much the same thing) have been screeching about recession in the hopes of scaring the population into voting Democrat. There's just one little problem: we haven't reached that point yet. From July 31, 2008 Forbes:
The Commerce Department reported an advance reading on second-quarter GDP of 1.9%, mildly below the expected 2.3%, but also revised its first-quarter figure to 0.9%, from 1.0%, and cut the fourth-quarter 2007 GDP figure to negative 0.2%, from 0.6%. (See "GDP Lags, Employment Scares.")Now, the concern is that part of why the second quarter growth numbers are still okay was that this was the result of the economic stimulus package. The revision of the 4Q 2007 numbers to a negative is indicative that the economy is slowing, and there is some real danger. But we aren't in a recession. We could be in the future, and it is worth worrying about--but to the extent that media screeching creates public perceptions, it can help to create it. I would ask the media to be responsible, but I might as well ask the sun to not rise tomorrow.