We told you so (sadly)

Econ bloggers like myself have been saying for years that a big crash was coming. This sort of prediction was not the sort of thing you would find in the deepest, darkest corners of the internet amongst conspiracy theorists and DIY economists - rather, it was the result of study, thinking, logic and discussion.

As a result, we Cassandras (the red headed lady you can see in the picture) have been cursed with the knowledge of the future without the means to convince anyone who mattered.

My own prediction came about in August 2005. In that prediction I spoke about a "perfect storm" (a phrase that was not used as often as it is now of course) which included four main points:
  • A housing market crash.
  • A US Dollar crash.
  • Rising oil prices caused by peak oil.
  • Government debt becoming unsustainable.
It would be nice to think that I was the only one saying these things, but credit where it's due - a whole host of doomsayers were discussing these issues before I took them up. But, as far as I know (and this is self-promotion time), I was the only one to put them all together.

And it's annoying because if I had the means I could have made myself quite rich if I had invested enough money into markets I knew would be affected. Back in 2004 when I first understood Peak Oil I was kicking myself with annoyance that I didn't have the means to purchase shares in oil companies that I knew would shoot up as Peak Oil got worse.

And it's annoying also because people in power were totally ignorant of the dangers. Take Ben Bernanke - in July 2007 he was assuring everyone around the world that the subprime bubble was contained. One month later the market tanked and since then the world has been in perpetual economic crisis. Why is it that people like Bernanke get to be in well paid positions of power while Cassandras like myself, who saw the coming storm, get ignored.

As soon as Bernanke dropped rates last year I made the prediction that oil would go beyond $100. In January of this year I predicted that the US would be stagflating. In March this year I even proposed my own version of The Big BailoutTM that has since become rather important.

The reason why I posting this is that I'm feeling rather cheesed off. I don't like the fact that the world is about to go through the Second Great DepressionTM. I don't like the fact that people are losing jobs and going through emotional and financial stress, leading to marriage breakdowns, suicide and crime. I don't pretend to hope for a utopia but I I unashamedly believe that good policy and foresight can help limit the damage caused by human stupidity.

So there is no schadenfreude, no gleeful shouts of joy over rising bankruptcies, rising unemployment and economic decline amongst us economic Cassandras. Only head shaking and annoyance.

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