Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Don Surber does the research. Here's what he proves

Look at the values.

As the world economy stalls, the American dollar rises.

In July, a euro was worth $1.57.

In December, $1.27.

In July, a Britsh pound was worth $1.99.

In December, $1.48.

In July, a Canadian dollar was worth 98 cents.

In December, 79 cents.

In July, a Swedish krona was worth 16 cents.

In December, 12 cents.

Any questions?

None at all Don. What this means is simple. It doesn't matter what the ills are of the American economy and political system. As furiously as I hate the policies of the incoming Obama administration, we're still getting more things right, than we are wrong, or at the very least, more things right, than "they" are, whoever they may be.

Yes we can point fingers, correctly, at liberals who manipulated our housing industry by granting loans in ways that became a value subtractor for the industry as a whole, both mortgage and construction. We can correctly rail that our tax structure is out of whack and our spending out of control and our politicians, corrupt.

It's worse over there. For over the last 6 months I've been trying to point out in my daily life, to customers and coworkers alike, that this current economic hiccup/crisis/meltdown/recession was unavoidable. Why?

Look at it this way. You can spend your money anywhere in the world. I'll simplify to make it easy to see. Would you buy stock in this country, or a company in this country that was productive and would yield a 12% after tax return or would you buy a cash poor dozen of companies, making cars, shirts, shoes, paper, cigarettes, paper clips, and coffee cups on the other side of the world for a penny on the dollar? If all but one of them failed and the world economy rebounded, in the long run, you'd make more money there, than you would here.

Faced with choices like that, what does money do? It flees good, sound and great investments here, and runs like a madman to investments overseas. Cheap acreage, copper mines, or fleets of ships and railroads. What would happen to our stock market when that money picks up it's skirts and runs to sexier investments elsewhere?

The world is an interconnected place. There are many more mechanisms, some of which I cannot even imagine. Bringing it to a bottom line, a crumbling world economy would have brought ours down, at least a little, no matter what.

Blame Bush? That would be folly of the highest order. Blame Barney Frank? That too. Could we have done better? Yes. Would we have been better off without the baggage of all this excess taxation, social spending and deficit spending. Certainly. We'd have hit this air pocket anyway.

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