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Economic Warning Signs

Economic Warning Signs

Kerby Anderson

February 5, 2008



            While many are talking about the possibility of recession, some economists and commentators are looking at America's long term economic future. The picture doesn't look so good.


            Consider that the United States is about to lose its top credit rating. Since it began to give credit ratings to nations (in 1917), the Moody rating for America has always been triple-A. Money in the U.S. was considered to be one of the most secure in the world.


All of that might be changing. The U.S. may lose that top credit rating. Moody's announced in January that if the U.S. fails to rein in the exploding costs of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, the rating will be downgraded.


So how have the presidential candidates responded to this news? Most have ignored it, with perhaps the exception of Ron Paul. And the Democratic candidates have proposed universal health care, an action almost certain to make the problem worse. To his credit President Bush tried to address the issue of Social Security after he was re-elected his proposals went nowhere.


So how can the U.S. retain its valued credit rating? The answer is simple: reverse the trends that put it at risk in the first place. We are a nation of consumers not savers. We save almost nothing and borrow in order to pay for imported oil and goods manufactured overseas.


We have also allowed other countries to do what is in their economic self interest while not doing the same for ourselves. Europe imposes a value-added tax on our exports while at the same time rebating the value-added tax on their exports to use. No wonder the euro is nearly doubled compared to the U.S. dollar. Asian countries have been protecting their markets and dumping their products into our country. Each year we see more jobs and factories go overseas.


I think the American people don't just want to hear campaign promises about change, they want to see real change implemented by the next president. If not, there goes our credit rating. I'm Kerby Anderson, and that's my point of view.