Monday, March 17, 2008

The wheels come off

I certainly don't have anything insightful to say about the ongoing economic meltdown, but man. I could see this coming from a long way off, why couldn't the people who actually know something about economics? Too bad I didn't put more money behind my pessimism, but it took one of my crazed right-wing correspondents to wake me up and put some into gold (via the exchange-traded GLD fund). So far so good.

Jim Kunstler tries to not gloat too hard.

The Guardian says "Indeed, it is somewhat surprising that there is not already rioting in the streets, given the gigantic fraud perpetrated by the financial elite at the expense of ordinary Americans." Uh, no it's not. Americans as a group are too fat, lazy, and apolitical to do anything as constructive as riot. Besides, the ones most affected are off in the edge suburbs which don't have the population density to support a good mob.


G. M. Palmer said...

Hey MT

Hopping over from UR because, well, what else do I have to do?

I completely agree -- my pals and I have been gaming the impending financial implosion for a while now. Unfortunately, my teacher salary leaves little cash to put into gold but there you are.

With a further devaluation of our money by the Fed today, I wonder when we will hit effective 400% inflation for the Bush Era (oil, gas, and gold have now more than tripled in cost since the millenium).

I wonder more what can be done to correct the problem, short of total financial collapse (which is bad in which ways? -- will my power still run or will I have to cook all the food in my freezer?)


TGGP said...

Edward Banfield discussed what causes riots in the chapter "Rioting mostly for fun and profit" in "The Unheavenly City", which can be read free online here.

I take a less pessimistic view of things. Kunstler was wrong about Y2K, and his predictions are still wrong.

mtraven said...

Kunstler is not a very reliable prophet, I agree, but but Joseph Stiglitz might be worth paying attention to.

goatchowder said...

Kuntstler loves to gloat.

I did put my money where my doom and gloom was, and is. I invested in Euros, and alternative energy funds, and gold.

Gold and the Euro are hedges; if it all falls apart-- investing my fears. The alternative energy funds were in case we manage to pull out of it-- investing my hopes. I try to balance the two. Especially because, a LOT of money goes chasing hopes, especially in desperate times, so it's safe to predict that stock will go up, even if it doesn't ultimately succeed, investors will go there in sufficient numbers to give you a nice ride up.

Gold has done very well since I put some in during the run-up to the second Iraq war. Alternative energy has done very well since Al Gore's movie came out.

I still think we're going to hell in a handbasket. I'm also spending my days investing in learning survival skills to deal with the upcoming depression and economic meltdown.