A boom is when everyone pretends that everyone else has money. A recession is when some inconsiderate bastard tries to collect.
Failing companies used credit to delay collapsing.
Credit companies faked solvency with investment before collapsing.
The investment firms got money from the government before collapsing.
The government, well, we've redefined the Mad Max series as educational films. We now owe both the Chinese and the future several trillion dollars, and if we've learned anything from the movies it's that both could kick our asses - and want to.
This can be entirely traced to plastic crap like Billy The Singing Sea-Bass: we spent all our money on them, China had to make them, and the future keeps digging the unkillably unbiodegradable things up, and now they all want us gone.
During a recession staple goods survive while luxuries are sacrificed. As a food provider or medicine provider you would be fine; as internet comedy writers we'll be banging on the barbed wire fence begging to be let in.