Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Denial is not a river in Egypt

I woke up today and realized we’re all freakin’ doomed!
I’ll explain…

I’m currently sitting in a big diesel bus in the Florida Keys. It’s sunny, warm and pretty much all around pleasant. In the RV campground here there are French, Norwegian and Swedish campers on either side of me, having a gay old time living it up on the new found strength of their respective currencies. And that’s great except for the carefree attitude they exhibit. Don’t they know we’re all freakin’ doomed?!

For instance, the French couple might go back to France after their sunny trip to Florida to find their country de-coupled from the European Monetary Union. They might very well find they have no jobs if they currently work in the aircraft, automobile, luxury goods or textiles industries.

There are an abundance of American’s here as well, sunning themselves and riding their bicycles around without a care in the world. The ones I’ve talked with seem to know there is trouble on the horizon but speak as if it is not their problem and it won’t affect them.

Housing went into a death spiral in ’07 while commercial construction put in one of the best years since the 1980’s, that is until the last quarter of ’07. Commercial construction lags residential by a year or more, now that party is over.

Bernanke is talking about impending bank failures, something I suspect is going to be worse than forecast. Jobs are disappearing at an alarming rate, the dollar is dropping like a fat man off a high-dive and gold is touching $1,000. per ounce. Gold, it doesn’t pay dividends, has no real industrial value, but there it goes, to the moon, go figure. All in spite of whether the stock market rises or falls. This I count as a vote of no confidence in the U.S. dollar.

All while families who probably really can’t afford to do so spend $71.00 a head per day to get their brood into Disney World. I was there last week and it was crowded, really- really crowded. You’d never guess from those crowds that there were economic troubles in the land of the free but you can’t be out of money if there are still checks in the check book right?

Is it human nature to close our eyes and pretend we aren’t going over a cliff? Or is it just a childish trait we all possess to some degree that has us all living as if we will never run out of money until it’s too late?
I don’t know. I just know we better wake up and smell the coffee, get a clue, hang-up and drive or all of the above or we’re all freakin’ doomed!
Vern

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