Monday, October 06, 2008

My cheery disposition deteriorates along with the economy

A shit-for-brains such as Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reily, Sara Palin or Dick Cheney might read things I have said in this blog and try to raise questions about my patriotism. Well, I sure as hell do criticize many of the actions and expenditures made or avoided by the current administration and some of its predecessors and I try to get at the attitudes that enabled such incompetent and damaging government: the predominant jingoism and war lust we use to blind ourselves to economic common sense. But I just came across a prospect that hurts and angers me and leaves a raw bruise on the particular mix of identities and allegiances that make up my patriotism: America has been so financially weakened by its "we can just spend like mad, cut taxes and borrow" leadership that international commerce has become as indispensable for us as it was for other struggling nations. And what strikes an especially sore nerve in me is that we are no longer going to do business by merely selling stuff we make: we are going to have to sell off parts of the farm, as it were, in order to keep our house. Thom Friedman points to our empire's setting sun:
I would also bet that more and more of the foreign investors who come our way are going to want to buy hard, tangible assets skyscrapers, real estate and real companies not just mutual funds, T-bills, bank stocks or other equities. No problem. Americans own assets all over the world; foreigners have long owned substantial positions in U.S. companies. That’s globalization and now you are going to see globalization and financial integration on steroids. It should help us, but also change us.

The next round of capital that comes in from abroad is going to be much more demanding and move into real assets, argued Jeffrey Garten, professor of trade and finance at the Yale School of Management. Being a bigger debtor nation means losing even more of our sovereignty. It means conducting our economic policies with an eye toward whether others approve. It means bearing the advice and criticism that we have dispensed ad nauseam to other countries for over half a century. It means far more intensive consultations with other capitals on our fiscal policies and our monetary policies.
God Damn every last politician and voter who has gone along thinking they would never have to pay for anything. You have gotten and are getting what you deserve but why did you drag the rest of us down? What future do my children have? What do I have to show for my years of forgone luxuries and toys passed up in order to pay off all my debts? I would have been looked upon as an anachronistic economic puritan a few years ago. The dollars I saved have been cut in half by the those of you who supported Bush. God damn you. I never understood grasshoppers could do that to ants.

The next American president will not deal with the world from a position of strength because we have wasted our strength.

How long have we been fooling ourselves? What kind of leaders have kept shafting the next generation of tax payers and getting into office by telling this generation's voters they shouldn't have to pay? Here is part of the story you really need to read.

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