Are you worried about the economy? Many Americans apparently believe that we are in a recession, contrary to any facts whatsoever. I hear callers to talk shows insisting that the economy is in the tank and that we are in real trouble. Certainly some elements of the media have been busily trying to talk the economy down in the interest of blaming something more on Bush.
I suspect that too many people listen to radio commercials–endless mortgage broker ads, telling people to convert their ARM before it it too late. Then there are the debt counsellors who will be glad to take you in hand if you just owe enough money on your credit cards, or are deep in debt to the IRS. Or the dealers who want you to buy gold now before it climbs more out of reach. Media people speak breathlessly of the sub-prime mortgage market — which is a very small piece of the national mortgage market. Add in a trip to the gas station, and who wouldn’t begin to feel nervous?
The political season brings out the demagogues who intend to manipulate your vote by playing on your emotions and prejudices. “Change”, they cry. And the best bet is always to disparage the current occupants of the beltway and suggest that only they (the demagogue) can change everything for the better. Before they make a sucker of you, you might insist on a few specifics. What exactly do they plan to change? Why do they believe that that will improve anything? And what evidence can they present that proves that they are capable of making such changes — specifically?
Before you let gloom and doom convince you that all is lost, consider from whom you are getting your information or if , indeed, you have any real information — or only feelings inflicted by those with something to sell. The economy has slowed a little, but there are a lot of folks out there with an intense interest in manipulating our feelings, and raiding our wallets. It’s time for some clear thinking.
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