Friday, March 12, 2010

America in Economic Decline

Erich Deagostino has forwarded a link to a Yahoo! news report that suggests that America is heading down the same road as Greece, which is nearing bankruptcy. The report notes that:

"As with Greece, America's national debt has been growing by leaps and bounds over the past decade, to the point where it threatens to swamp overall economic output. And in the U.S., as in Greece, a large portion of that debt is owed to foreign investors."

The aggressive Democratic health care socialization push will cause us to stumble further down this road.

There is a long history of cries about excessive borrowing's leading to economic crisis that have turned out not to be true. The history goes back to the 18th century. But of course, it sometimes does turn out to be true. American has defaulted on its loans before. The nation issued a currency called the Continental to finance the Revolutionary War and after the War the Continental turned out to be worthless. People who held it were defrauded. America invented modern hyper-inflation along with democracy. In response, the 19th century saw the development of hard money attitudes, which were viewed as benevolent and pro-labor. In the twentieth century labor unions' leaders realized that they could advance themselves by advocating inflationary policies that benefit Wall Street and harm their membership. In no small part as a result, labor union membership has consistently fallen. Why should workers pay dues to support leaders who betray them?

The claim that America is too big to fail should seem absurd now that we have witnessed General Motors' failure. For much of my life, GM was the largest corporation in the world and few could have imagined its failure, at least until the mid 1970s. The claim that China and other countries "need us" may be true, but eventually some will wake up to the fact that the Emperor is a pauper and will pull out, leading to a dollar crisis.

Greek labor unions are striking. But one cannot derive water from a stone, and the irrational strikes will only make matters worse.

In response to mounting American and European instability, Marc Faber on Kitco radio recommends gold, US real estate, developing countries' stocks like India and Brazil and cash. Faber says that a crash in China cannot be ruled out so that there is no rush to go into developing countries' stocks. Also, US real estate may not have much further to fall in his opinion. He says up to twenty percent further. I'm not sure of that, but given Congress's commitment to prop up real estate and stock prices, he may be right. I doubt that real estate prices could be maintained were this a market economy. But that is true of all assets.

In the meantime I have begun to have thoughts of an exit strategy as I am concerned that the US will increasingly become totalitarian under Obama and the Democratic Party. Were I slightly wealthier I would buy land in the Bahamas. Unfortunately, on a professor's salary I have to be content with hard asset investments and my house. Without a stable monetary system and with a system of economic redistribution whereby the privileged benefit from Congress's and the states' theories of beneficence, which inevitably loot those who work hard and are criminal in substance, has the American dream died?

1 comment:

Admin BeDa said...

Blogwalking here from Indonesia. How do You do?