We are all going to die, but I hope not in the “extended period” of our current low-interest-rate environment. On the subject of a financial crisis ahead, I pull out this old prediction of our recent crisis to boast about its acumen and to mark its two-year April Fools’ Day anniversary (see April 1st, 2008 image below). I also call attention to a secondary use of this ancient document: Does it predict a new crisis on top of the old crisis? Is new-crisis prediction as simple as predicting a bimbo eruption of Tiger textings?
The short answer is the probability of a new crisis is more obvious now than it was April 1, 2008. We now can see with clarity explosive panic creators which promise a new crisis, if it should erupt, that it will be of far greater severity than our recent explosion of financial destruction. What are those obvious signs?
The housing market is Exhibit A. The housing market in the United States is dead, but government intervention is pumping formaldehyde into the body and painting blue lips with liquid white out. Everything is fine if you live in a wax museum and enjoy sex with blow up dolls.
The data prove that the bubble must exhale more. Is this scary? Does it scare you that housing prices would fall 50% should we close Uncle Sam’s Mortgage Shop?
Our real estate market bubble is two or three times any previous bubble of the last 120 years, but many of the rest of the world’s housing markets are psychedelic free-verse manics.
These Europeans and others make us cute little wall flowers quietly wailing in the corner. Since our 30% property fall in values is a bank buster their psychedelia ain’t nothing to ignore. A bigger housing bubble leads to a bigger bank crisis. What if the United States has the conservative mortgage market? The thought that this could be true makes me ponder a future in Scientology.
What else? Add to toil and trouble reckless government spending at home and abroad, new fecal colonies of sovereign debt, high unemployment, and it is ridiculous to deny the possibility of a gargantuan fall. Last by not least? Our governors do not comprehend, or do not have the courage to admit, that killing a credit crisis requires debt destruction. They are running in the wrong direction and creating more.
If Ben and Tim don’t know about destroying debt in a credit crisis, then the recent crisis hasn’t been managed.
Still, we have every reason to believe all will work out well in the long run. April fools.