The houselights dim. The audience scurries to their seats, now with heightened anticipation. A new political force has gained ascendancy, with an anti-government, anti-regulation, anti-tax, anti-entitlement, pro-corporate, free market agenda. What will the future hold? The curtain rises and . . . .
On Thursday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged over 500 points, dropping a total of 1,350 points, or 10%, over 10 trading days. This drop in stock prices represented a loss in value of $1.5 trillion. During the same period, European stocks took a similar beating, with a comparable loss in value. For comparison purposes, it is worth noting that the estimated cost for the Katrina hurricane disaster amounted to $61 billion, while the cost of the BP oil spill has been estimated at $100 billion. The total cost of the Japanese earthquake/tsunami/nuclear disaster has came in at approximately $300 billion, just one fifth of the funds lost in a 10-day spasm of fear, anxiety and uncertainty. So much of the blame for the recession has been attributed to uncertainty created by the recent drama being played out in tragicomic fashion in Washington. But now that the drama has been settled and business knows that their Republican supporters have won the battle, where is the confidence the certainty was supposed to provide? Investors are fleeing toward the exits. Me thinks the Republican party has greatly overreached, and it will be interesting to see how they react when they return from vacation to their record-low approval ratings and to all the damage they have already done by causing Standard and Poor’s to reduce the US Government’s rating from AAA to AA+.
Gil Scott-Heron warns that “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.”