The last four years have been tough but some economists are predicting that in the next 24 months, the economic situation will become much worse for the average American. I wonder, how will Americans respond during a time of want?
Everyone wants the economy to get better and it would be wonderful if things went back to the way they were before the crash. However, when a major event takes place, things never go back to the way they were before. There is life before that event and life after that event and those two realities are forever, separate. Many of us have made adjustments and feel less fearful about the future than we did in 2008 but so far, there have only been short bursts of improved economic activity and the economy is basically, still frozen. The government and the Federal Reserve Bank took drastic measures to prevent the banks from failing but none of those efforts have taken a strong hold. Now economists are predicting that the fall-out from those failed, drastic measures are going to cause further trouble in the American Economy and the larger, global economy. Economists say that all of this will land squarely on the shoulders of the American people and there will be hardship. If and when this other shoe falls on the American economy, I wonder, how will Americans respond?
The Federal Reserve Bank, through QE1 and QE2 have digitized $12 trillion new dollars, with value tied to nothing but America’s status as the World Reserve Currency. America has gone from being the largest creditor nation to the largest debtor nation in the world, in a little over eight years. The national debt is growing by leaps and bounds. Policing the world is expensive and we are near the point when we will no longer be able to afford to do so. The government is broke and must either borrow from other countries or ask the Federal Reserve to digitize new funds, in order to pay the debt they have accrued. Gasoline prices are soaring, as investors desperately seek a safe haven for their money. Inflation is beginning to get out of control and economists are predicting that The Fed will be forced to raise the interest rate on borrowed money, in an effort to bring inflation under control. This will cause more pain in the housing market and those who owe more on their houses than they are worth, will have to question if it is reasonable to continuing paying their mortgage. It could cause more foreclosures and any new building that may have begun to increase, to stop. More small businesses will fail and even those large corporations who enjoy special benefits from the government, may also, begin to feel pain. The fall that the government sought to prevent by extravagant spending, will produce economic failure that will cut deeper than the original crash would have if it had been allowed its natural course. Now tax payers owe what the government spent and the dollar is worth far less because of the Quantitative Easing measures taken by the Federal Reserve. The last crash hurt small business owners and home owners but this time, those who work for the government will also, be hurt. State and municipal governments will be hard hit and unable to provide services or meet the promises they’ve made to employees in the way of benefits and retirement pensions. Many government jobs will have to be cut. Those living on retirement incomes will also, be hit hard. The American way of life, if these predictions come to pass, will change, drastically. This is the fall of the second shoe. How will Americans respond?
Most living Americans know only prosperity. It’s true that things were tough in the seventies but the problems back then were not of the same magnitude. If America does go through another period of great want, like that of the Great Depression, how will we choose to respond to one another? There are those dooms-day preppers out there who imagine a complete apocalypse, with marauding bands of people stealing food and supplies from one another. I know there will be those who resort to crime because we always have that sort among us. However, I believe that most Americans are still good, hard-working people, who believe in God and value their fellow human beings. If such a time of hardship comes to pass, I’m believing that many of us will reach out to help one another and share the resources we have. There will be drug addicts and criminals who find themselves also, in need and desperate, who may turn to hurting others but they are basically, weak. I don’t think they will survive for long. If things are harder, I’m hoping that in the long run, a change of heart will be produced out of the hardship that will benefit us as a people and return those who live in debauchery, to sanity. Having our material treasures and those things by which we feed our cravings for pleasure, taken away, may be a blessing in disguise. I’m praying that hard times will cause people to turn back to God and the values that made us a beacon of hope in the world. If we do, I know there will be a brighter future. If we don’t, then the preppers will be proven right and America is doomed.
The government and greed on the part of investment bankers, created the problems we are faced with today. The government and bankers can’t fix it and we may find some relief when government lacks the funds to continue to grow and bankers get caught in their own corrupted schemes. The American people will have to fix it and I think it is a good idea to prepare not only for tough times ahead but consider how we will conduct ourselves during those tough days. I know I want to be a part of the solution and not a part of the problem. I am a baby boomer American and I am prone to excess but I know that it’s time to change. It’s time to look to God for answers and ways to not only help myself but others who may be in want. I’m not a doomsday prepper and I don’t think I can out-think every possible disaster that may strike but I can take common sense measures to prepare for tough times. Storing food, planting a garden, being sensible when shopping, and not putting myself in debt are all things that I’d be better off doing all of the time and I know common sense will help during any harder times that may come. I also, choose not to live in fear of tomorrow but live fully in today and meet the problems that come, as they come. Anxiety and fear help no one. I trust that God will provide what I need for myself and to help others. I may not have more than I need but God has never let me down in the past and I trust Him to meet that need. Whatever comes, Jesus is faithful and will never leave me. God does not give us a spirit of fear but the courage and guidance we need to overcome all adversity. In the days ahead, I hope you, if you are a believer, will join me in praying for Americas return to God, Who will provide us with the stamina and know-how to rebuild that which has been destroyed by human greed and excess. Americans have grown fat and soft and what lies ahead will either destroy us or make us lean and strong. I’m trusting God and looking forward to my new figure! When God blesses America again, I hope we find ourselves in the place of appreciating those blessings and no longer take them for granted. America will be great again when America returns to that which makes her good. If and when, the other shoe falls on the American economy, my hope is that Americans will respond by turning to God and reaching out to help one another. I believe, this is the true character of the American people.