Saturday, April 29, 2023

A government default could pull the plug on asset values

The debt ceiling impasse has gone to the next step. Surprisingly enough Republicans in the House did barely get on board for a "Republican plan" to raise the ceiling and have big cuts in spending.

Democrats and probably most of the American people would not go for those cuts. Meanwhile, raising taxes isn't being considered by the Republicans.

The government does provide a lot of important services, such as health insurance for many who can't afford super high insurance premiums. Governments provide public safety, police, fire, and the large military budget. Affordable housing is provided as well. Basic research in medicine, space exploration and other science is often funded by a small sliver of the budget which helps to keep us abreast with the rest of the world that is moving forward.

Some people think we need to rely more on the private sector, which does some good things, but much private money goes to private yachts, big homes, called McMansions, second homes, political bribes and multi million dollar salaries for playing football.

There we have the dilemma of the budget. We could just pull the plug and let the economy go into a depression. Much of the money, that we thought we had in things like bank accounts and asset values could disappear. These perceived stores of value could plummet.

Perceived stores of value are possibly no more real that some of the tricks proposed, that Biden could do, such as minting a trillion dollar coin and calling it "money," so we can continue to prop things up, rather than the possibility of panic setting in and things crashing.

One possible scenario for the debt ceiling problem is that the impasse will put the US into default and uncharted financial territory. Like the virus, it could cause financial panic and a Wall Street crash. Like in March of 2020, politicians got a bit scared and figured out how to make more money out of thin air; thus paying unemployment to cover the shutdowns that likely saved many lives. Rents were paid for businesses and individuals when restaurants, bars and so forth closed. Money was spend to develop the vaccine and provide hospitalization to the afflicted. Most of us, still alive at least, came out of the pandemic, but now there is worry about some inflation.

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