October 2, 2013

Government Shutdown - Starbucks

So today is Day #2 of the Federal Government Shutdown. 

This is a picture from the local Starbucks that is typically billowing at lunch time--as you can see it's basically a morgue. 

Unfortunately, hard-working Federal employees, contractors, and local business are feeling the impact!

Even from those that are still working, there is word of "survivor's guilt"--like with a plane crash or other calamity, when those who survive the catastrophe question why they were so fortunate when the others weren't so lucky and perished. 

With both the budget shutdown and the impending debt ceiling showdown--we are facing the perfect storm, with real negotiation and compromise yet to emerge.

With this all, our significant national problems aren't going away--to the contrary, Iran and North Korea are still global nuclear threats, Syria still has chemical weapons, the economy remains on shaky ground (in the paper today, the once high-flying pharmaceutical company Merck is planning to lay off 20%!), the national debt continues to spiral out of control (albeit at a "slower pace"), cybersecurity remains a major national security risk (although Cyber Command continues to stand up its new headquarters and firepower), and so much more. 

Bubble stocks rose again yesterday after an almost 20% one-year return. Not only that, but the safety of gold took a beating again after an almost 40% one-year decline (full disclosure, I am a recent investor in the latter). One has to wonder how long it will take for sanity to prevail once again. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)  

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