One of my reasons I started this website years ago was to counter all the denial that I saw in the mainstream media about how long and deep the problems from the Great Financial Crisis would be and about how we were failing in every way to resolve the greed, decay and especially faulty thinking that would assure our next collapse would be even greater than the Great Recession.
Today, the same lame thinking still dominates, but not just in the media. It’s pervasive in the general public, too. Of course, it is particularly prevalent among high-flying stock investors, who actually think because stocks can float above it all, the world must be doing fine.
I found myself observing a … shall we call it … a balloon ride crowded with lightheaded investors floating over my little mountain this week? (I live in the mountains, you know?) Even as I tried to shout out a warning that their overcrowded gondola was starting to tear at the bottom and that the top of their balloon was on fire, they scoffed and sailed on past me on the trade winds out toward a vast and stormy looking reach of rocky peaks and deep canyons. They could have landed on the grassy uphill slope just before my little mountaintop and got off, but all they could seem to see was blue sky. It beckoned them….
The only things preventing the greatest storm of mortgage defaults and bankruptcies ever witnessed in US history right now — and this is straight fact, not opinion — are the equally massive government intervention programs that congress can no longer agree on — the $1,200 stimulus checks, the extended and enhanced unemployment benefits, the expanded unemployment benefits for gig workers, the payroll protection program, and the mortgage and rent forbearance act….
All of this means there is absolutely zero chance that the second half of 2020 gets better just because unemployment has flatlined. The economy has already reopened for more than two months and has experienced as much benefit as it is going to from reopening. The benefits saving us from total despair are increasingly being battled in congress, and more than 50% of businesses on Yelp already reported they have closed “PERMANENTLY.” There is no reason to think the businesses that are not on yelp are somehow experiencing a different reality.
That is not going to change even with a vaccine. It has already happened, and vaccines are not retroactive!
I’m explaining to those lost in the new politically correct math that five minus two doesn’t equal a million, no matter how much you want it to!