The Moment

1|26|09: Peoria

For all the dazzle of the digital age, never forget the essential economic undertaking: busting rocks and moving dirt. You can't have Silicon Valley without first digging up the silicon, and even the smartest building starts out as a hole in the ground. So the news that Caterpillar is laying off 5,000 workers--bringing its total of recent layoffs to 20,000--only confirms that the economic contagion is spreading, from the executive floors of high finance to the bedrock world of tractors and dump trucks.

A recession is when your neighbor loses his job, the saying goes; a depression is when you lose...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!