Scene In Passing: ‘Dis econo-train done left ‘da station here

Economic recovery isn’t just on track in these parts. It’s in your face.

If it were a train in a tunnel, it wouldn’t be light at the end but a locomotive beam bearing down on you. This recovery is no illusion or accident, any more than were the devastating recession troubles that preceded it. That earlier train wreck was caused by massive mistakes, just as the recovery came by dint of hard work and avoiding more mistakes. Mistakes can keep on devastating unless we learn from them.

“Most of my advances were by mistake,” said Buckminster Fuller, systems theorist, architect, inventor and designer.

“You uncover what is.” he said, “when you get rid of what isn’t.”

As devastating as the financial services/housing/greed fiasco of 2008-12 was, it also was a reminder recessions don’t just happen and rectifying them takes time. Former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke just published “The Courage to Act” to offer his views regarding actions taken in the face of mistakes and a financial firestorm.

Bernanke’s actions alone, however, caused neither the collapse nor the recovery, any more than Alan Greenspan’s before him as Fed chief caused prosperity or the recession by themselves. Nor will Janet Yellen, current Fed chief, cause recovery to stay on track or find a new place to crash. Fed chiefs obviously contribute, but so do we all.

Yellen and her Fed colleagues do need to act and raise interest rates, slowly, or risk re-igniting greed and asinine capital allocation eventually. My take: do it before mid-2016 at the latest. Why? Nevada provides clues.

“Our expectations are for job growth to continue hovering around 40,000 per year,” Nevada’s Department of Employment Training and Rehabilitation (DETR) said in a recent report, “which is likely to keep the Silver State near the top of the growth rankings list.” Things are on track to grow again.

“Along these same lines, should growth come in as we expect in the months ahead, we remain on pace to surpass our previous recession peak in job levels around mid-year 2016,” according to DETR.

In Carson City, the latest jobless report reported last week showed it was at 6.8 percent, down from 7.1 percent the previous month. In addition, Carson City and environs show the highest percentage of manufacturing jobs.

Last week it was reported the former Toyota building at 3659 S. Carson St. was purchased for $1.9 million and soon should be occupied, ending vacancy there since 2010. United Federal Credit Union’s new building is going up quickly at East William and State streets. The Board of Supervisors recently cleared paths for 18- and 41-unit housing projects. Soon it will tackle an appeal regarding a 90-unit apartment complex proposal.

Start of the Schulz Ranch subdivision’s 100-lot first phase is probable in 2016. The city’s multi-purpose athletic center is nearly done, an animal shelter began and downtown Carson Street’s makeover project begins next spring.

In the region, the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center (TRIC) is a beehive with the Tesla/Panasonic and SWITCH leading progress there. TRIC’s CEO, L. Lance Gilman, made that clear and predicted more in a Carson City speech last week.

The recovery train done left the station. It’s even almost done gathering steam. I’m not prodding or Yellen for the Fed to get on board right now, but the next stop will do.

John Barrette covers Carson City government and business. He can be reached at


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