Growing a healthy economy is very much like growing a healthy garden. Economies need the proper conditions to grow, just as gardens do. When a gardener is neglectful of his garden, one can predict a poor result long before the crop is due to mature. The same thing applies to the managers of an economy. Bad -- incompetent or even malicious -- managers make prediction of the future easy.
US President Obama rode into the White House on a huge wave of hope, change, and popular enthusiasm. Everywhere he went, he was met by huge and adoring crowds. Expectations for this new president were astronomically high . . . . and then something happened -- the new president was inaugurated and put in a position where he had to accomplish something, for the first time in his life.
Mr. Obama's achievements failed to live up to his promises and the astronomical expectations set for him. As the economy failed to improve -- and in many ways actually worsened -- the number of people flocking to his banner gradually and reluctantly fell away. "How could I have known that he would be such a bad president?", Obama voters would ask themselves, as they walked away from the president, sadly shaking their heads in disappointment and shame.
designed energy-starvation, and growth-strangling regulations expanded exponentially.
It is easy to see where the economy was going when the gardener is a narcissistic clown of no achievement and no competence, such as Obama. Never having participated in the productive private sector, Obama had no interest in seeing the prospering of markets and trade.
Consequently, debt has ballooned, the dollar has progressively lost value, the cost of consumables has exploded, jobs have disappeared in the millions, wages have shrunk, government has grown, regulations that make starting businesses difficult have proliferated, gold and silver prices have soared, and anyone with cash is holding onto it, just waiting for a glimmer of hope -- such as the Obama's packing up and moving out of the White House.
Of course, the damage Obama has done will live on for many years and decades. Once government regulations and departments are established, they can become almost impossible to remove -- no matter how destructive they are to the prosperity and well-being of the people.
And yet, economic seeds of prosperity -- just like the seeds of plants -- are still there waiting for the proper conditions that will allow them to bloom and grow. Growth and prosperity will be much spottier than they would have been without Obama, but they will come back to parts of the US. Look to the places where shale oil & gas fracking are being done to see pockets of prosperity so strong as to resist even Obama's attempts to shut them down.
The Obama economic agenda is equivalent to a "salting of the soil" approach to gardening. But even salt-toxic soil can be remediated so that healthy growth can take place again. But as I said, the post-Obama recovery in the US (and consequently around the globe) will be spotty. Keep your eyes open. Pay attention.
Predicting the economy will not be so easy when a different president is elected.
Cross-posted from Al Fin