Thursday, October 09, 2008

The Re-emergence...Some Thoughts on Finances

Have I really not posted since February? Goodness…

Well, what has been occurring in my personal life…working my tail off at my 9-5, got my own little slice of heaven in my freelance design business ( – check me out), and general do-gooding.

I think I stopped writing, not because I didn’t have anything to say, but because I was and still am, more interested in living the moment than talking about it. But there has been plenty to talk about these days, as I’m sure you’re aware.

So let’s have a chat, shall we? And by chat, I really mean monologue, but that’s ok – I’m sure you don’t mind.

The current situation with the Global market has got everyone very worried about their fiscal future. Am I worried? Hm…not as much, because I’m still relatively young and don’t plan on retiring any time soon, nor do I have any investments tied up in the market. So, no I’m not panicked. I AM however, disappointed at the way the American government is mishandling this entire ordeal. I know it isn’t helpful to harp on the past, but truly I think we had this one coming. I don’t see how people could have missed this. Banks making shoddy loans to folks who they knew couldn’t afford the payments once the interest rates kicked in…Predatory lending gone amuck…what did they expect to happen? The greed that this country engages in on the daily is appalling and I think it is coming back to bite us in the ass…and HARD.

What really sucks is the fact that those who are suffering the most are those who have the most to lose. Your typical American homeowner who just wanted to live out the “American Dream” and have a chance to have a place of their own…those folks are in turmoil right now as their homes go into foreclosure in a market that is as volatile as ever. These people are losing their homes and probably a lot of money as well. But the government isn’t thinking as much about those people…it’s the banks and the investment firms that are getting the bailout. Even after a $700 Billion dollar bailout plan banks are still hesitant to give out loans. Well what does that mean? In essence that we just fronted almost a Trillion dollars to save these financial institutions, only to find that they still are no better off. Thanks. My children’s children’s children will be paying off this debt. Debt accumulated from greed and avarice.

I don’t know what this means for the market in the long run, but you can bet that my eyes and ears are wide open looking for news about this. It seems that if banks continue to freeze credit, the average person like you and me can’t do basic things…like buy a car, apply for a credit card or an expansion of one’s credit (as banks are now lowering people’s credit limits), or even apply for a loan to go to college. For businesses it means that it will be harder for them to finance their businesses and keep them afloat. Production will more than likely be down as there is less money to go around to fund the labor. People will continue to get laid off as companies run out of money and can no longer afford to pay employees.

Such are the times we live in.

I believe it’s going to get worse before it gets better – it always does. I’m optimistic that the US will come out of this, but I just hope that we come away from this learning some serious lessons about regulating how banks and investment firms are able to leverage the money they have. It feels like this country is going through some serious growing pains at the moment, and I hope that when the dust has settled we will emerge stronger and more secure.


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