I read the news…

I read the news today, oh boy, and everybody seems to know the truth. I would go even further: everybody seemed to know the truth quite a long time ago. It was pretty clear that many real estate markets across the world were insanely overvalued, and that the excesses of financiers had to boil down to the murky waters in which we are drowning today. These were not the headlines you could find in most newspapers a couple of years ago. With a few honourable exceptions, what you could find was a lot of recommendations to buy cheap mortgages and stocks of financial companies with unlimited growth prospects. Typical stock-market bubble.

In retrospect, the problem was that nobody could tell the truth for a number of reasons. Politicians could not tell all the truth and nothing but the truth because they could not afford to see the markets over-react in a kind of deadly self-fulfilling prophecy. Obviously vendors could not tell potential buyers that they were buying rotten lemons. Buyers could not tell themselves that they were the only idiots out there unable to own a luxurious house or a luxurious car. And so on and so forth. Finally a boy cried. But all of us are naked!! And suddenly a chain reaction started. Game theory at its worst.

But I guess that the truth is not so simple, and that the huge difficulties that we are facing in the present situation has more to do with the fact that nobody actually understood a damned single word of what was going on and nobody understands what is going on right now. Otherwise, it would be a lot easier to find a way out of the incredible mess. Right, again part of the problem is that everybody is trying to look after his or her own interests, and that of course hinders a so-called coordinated action. The party is over. Nobody wants to foot the bill, but the worst of all is that we do not even know how to split the bill!

While I was listening to the latest news, they reported that people all over the world are rushing to buy gold. Gold is the only asset whose value is increasing today and, as a matter of fact, it is skyrocketing. They reported that gold’s stocks in Germany were running short and they showed the image of a middle-age couple leaving a jeweller’s with a suspicious look on their faces. I wonder how they are going to make ends meet with the gold they can afford today in tomorrow’s collapsed world.

I turned to my children and I was only able to tell them: Look and please try to study and learn today as much as possible about the world you have to live in and cope with, try to learn and understand much more than the current generation, because it is pretty clear to me that we are not living up to the expectations.


Featured Image: John Lennon’s handwritten lyrics to Beatles song A Day In The Life, inspired by the death of Tara Browne, the 21-year-old heir to the Guiness fortune who had crashed his Lotus Elan on 18 December 1966 in Redcliffe Gardens

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