Recently, a former chairman of the Federal Reserve remarked that “things are really a mess” in the world, or something to that effect. That statement really offended me because, as we have written previously, the U.S. economy is in good shape and, notwithstanding the bush-league politics that are being practiced in our country, the future looks pretty positive.
The more I thought about the comment, however, the more I changed my mind, especially when world events are thrown into the equation. Let’s focus on some of the recent events throughout the world:
- A journalist who was a U.S. resident was the subject of a premeditated murder in the Saudi Arabia embassy in Turkey because of his critical writings about the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. That hit too close to home and should never happen in a free society. The hurt is even deeper because Saudi Arabia has been a close political ally and trading partner of the U.S. for many years. It will be interesting to see how our government “punishes” the Saudis for an act that no country can ignore.
- Our country is threatened with “invasions” by caravans of migrants (and anyone else who wants to join the march). I’m sure there are many people marching who have genuine intentions to get admitted to a process that will guide them to gaining legal entrance into the U.S., and who are really joining the throngs to escape horrible conditions in their own countries. However, if the U.S. admitted large groups from all the countries of the world that offer little to their citizens, we would be inundated to the point that we would not be able to process, feed or find work for people involved in this type of entry. Some balance must be found to prevent our laws from being broken and to make certain that only people with good intentions are invited to participate in the process.
- Attacks on our police from within our country are becoming common and ever more brazen. Is there no more respect for uniformed officers? Are the attackers so downtrodden that they feel they have nothing to lose? Have we admitted too many people into our country who are not accustomed to abiding by rules of law and have little respect for life, even their own?
- Accusations of sexual improprieties, real or imagined, are rampant and there is often little evidence to support these claims, whether they are true or not. Many who read about these situations assume they are true, and that threatens the law of the land that people are deemed innocent until there is proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. That puts the country in the vice of trying to draw a supportable conclusion based on the law of the land without there being any corroboration of the facts.
- The financial markets, especially the New York Stock Exchange, have acted like yo-yos every time there is the threat of a trade war, whether the threat was just a negotiating tactic or not, or there is discussion about closing the government down unless there is funding for a border wall, again whether or not the threat is real, or there is a poll showing a change in public support for one of our political party’s positions on something, or the U.K. appears to be changing its position on Brexit. It is difficult to manage one’s financial side with the markets being this volatile. No one can accurately forecast the direction of these markets, and that affects businesses large and small.
- TV channels have reported news about the mailing of what appear to be crudely prepared bombs to high-ranked members of the Democratic Party and celebrities. Never during my lifetime has anyone attempted something like this without concern about the fear it will cause.
- And, if you really want to get depressed, we can talk about the abuses and oppressions occurring in places like Syria, Iran and North Korea, to name just a few of the worst places in the world to live.
- I know, it seems that all I write about is the dark side of civilization, but all this is real and not “fake news.” The reality is that I like what is happening “in” most areas of the world, including the United States, but I worry about what is happening “to” the world and the U.S..
We all need to slow things down, not jump to conclusions, put down our cell phones, stay off Facebook and Twitter until clear thought is given the situation, and try to return the country, and the world, to adopting thoughtful approaches and re-introducing consistency and dependability to the conduct of government and to the lives of our citizens.