Financial Crisis Good in Long Run
Financial crisis aside, the markets were up sharply on the date of this post. It means nothing. I stand by my previous gloomy financial predictions. Things are totally screwed up and we're headed for a time of intense, painful change. All change is painful, but it's also necessary and good. I have personally experienced major life changes on several occasions, and they've always turned out for the best because I've always planned and prepared for all contingencies and known going in that the change would entail discomfort.
Make no mistake about it: this current state of financial meltdown will lead to change that we will all see in our day-to-day lives. It will be bad at first, but it will turn out for the best.
Banks are going to tank. Gas stations will run low. Store shelves will seem bare. Crime will probably spike sharply. Lots of people will be out of work, hungry and broke. There will be pain, but it's not the end of the world. It might be the beginning of a beautiful new world if we approach it that way.
Basically, we're going to have to do two things to dig ourselves out of this hole, the same things any prudent household faced with a tight financial situation would do:
1) Consume less. Make a budget and stick to it.
2) Produce more. Pick up a second job or start a side business until our heads are above water.
as a society (and we will need to take a more social and less selfish approach to these problems) means smaller portions, not fewer portions. We Americans could stand to eat less anyway. It also means -- importantly -- making adjustments to the way we transport ourselves. Carpooling, riding bicycles for short trips, taking public transportation when feasible, driving smaller cars, reducing the number of trips taken in a car -- all of these help, and all of us can do some small part; remember: smaller portions, not fewer portions. If we each consume one fewer gallon of gasoline per month, it saves 300,000,000 gallons a month. We're also going to have to stop buying so much cheap crap from China. That will help get the trade deficit back into balance. It's also a convenient segue into...
will really be the fun part in all this. As a people, we Americans have so much creativity, so much energy, so much ambition. It's in our DNA. We're brave explorers, outside-the-box thinkers, dreamers chasing after the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It's who we are.
Damn Skippy we can make our own socks and underwear! We're gonna get to work and become the envy and joy of the world, again. We're going to devise the coolest new gadgets to conserve energy (or produce it!). We're going to make the best damn cherry pie from cherries out of our own trees. We're going to raise the sturdiest barns and sew the most beautiful quilts. We're going to heal our land and bring forth from it the tastiest, most nutritious foods. We're going to undertake massive public works projects like high-speed rail corridors and bicycle-safe cities. We're going to hustle our incredible creative energy to the rest of the world by making the greatest movies and singing the most ecstatic songs ever. We're going to emerge from this crisis stronger, healthier, and far better. Mark my words. Providence has given America to be free, and free we will be, brothers and sisters, so long as we pull together and consciously heed two simple maxims:
That's easy enough, right?