For those of you who are still unclear about the economic situation in the USA, or for those of you who are looking for a one-stop site to show others, here’s a good one.
Charles Hugh Smith has a good blog post up right now titled “The Grand Summary: Our Empire of Debt is Collapsing.” Mr. Smith’s post is a good, if depressing overview of our current quandary. He paints a grim economic picture, and then ties in the coming effects of peak oil, which will only further exacerbate the issue. Lots of charts help to illustrate his position.
Most of what Smith writes isn’t news to me; I’ve been studying & worrying about such things for a few years. As I suspected, it is too late for the USA to avoid financial pain. Since our government lacks the intestinal fortitude to raise interest rates & taxes to try and stave off financial collapse, I can only foresee things getting worse. I have a comfortable life right now; good job, nice home, two cars, etc. I am not confident about holding on to all of those things over the coming 5-10 years.
While I would rather keep things the way they are now, I do realize that this isn’t possible, so my main interest now is seeing what I can do to maintain a decent lifestyle as possible while also doing what I can to improve the situation for my children when they grow up and start life on their own. It is unfair for the current generations (mostly boomers & gen-Xers at this point), to stick their children & grandchildren with the bill for decades of financial excess. That said, I think it unlikely that the new administration coming in 2009 will do much to alleviate things. Raising taxes on an already economically-overstressed American public is political suicide.
As I’ve said before, the rest of 2008 will be interesting… in a bad way.