Tuesday, November 6, 2012

We can draw inspiration from the election (without being political)

Wow!  It's amazing how much of a difference there can be in just four (4) short years.

What a difference four (4) years makes!

4 Years Ago: Barack Obama was CLEARLY going to win the presidential election.  It was also clear that he was a better choice than George W. Bush--not necessarily his opponent John McCain.  (4 years later, that is still unclear.)

The US was in shambles.  Banks were terrified of giving ANY loans, because so many people were losing their jobs and defaulting on those loans.  Nobody could buy anything requiring a loan, meaning that hardly any BIG purchases could be made.

Some HUGE banks were terrified of failing.  Many of them went on to fail (Washington Mutual, Bear Sterns, and Lehman Brothers being amongst the largest of those.)

We were looking at the possibility of having all three (3) big US auto makers become bankrupt and non-defunct.

The world was looking pretty bleak.

Today (4 Years Later): Barack Obama is UNSURE of his future going into Election Day.  It is ENTIRELY UNCLEAR whether he is the best choice.  (Both he and Mitt Romney offer genuinely good and bad perspectives and direction.  This same uncertainly applies to Romney, as well.)

However, today, the US is struggling, but we are not in shambles.  Occasionally, we see encouraging signs of economic recovery.  Banks are giving loans to more people, and more people can make bigger purchases.

Banks today are not spending the majority of their daily energy simply trying to stay alive.  They still have the problem of not being able to offer very good incentives for people to place their money there for savings (Sub 1% interest rates have a way of failing to allure), but the loan rates are really attractive.  Most people do not know what else to do with their money; so they put it into banks, anyway.  (That helps keep the banks afloat to have enough money to make those loans.)

GM, Ford, and Chrysler all have their problems (declining quality ratings and ill-timed recalls leading the way), but at least today's problems do not involve daily talk about bankruptcy.  The car companies have even enjoyed some really good, profitable quarters during the past few years.

Overall Lesson: If an entire country's outlook can improve in just four (4) years, how much do you think you can change YOUR life in just four (4) more years?  Will it be for the better?

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