The Dog Days of Summer

The Dog Days of Summer are upon us.

[The Blog is almost identical to comments I wrote in August 2008.  The situation ain’t changed much since then.]

Back in the old days, the phrase used to refer to the time when Sirius (“the Dog Star”) was the brightest star in the heavens – July and August of each year.

Now, however, the phrase has different connotations – hot, dry days (at least in CA), hound dogs lolling around with their tongues hangin’ out, hurricanes, baseball & cold beer, the last few days before school starts, preseason football games, stock & bond traders returning from vacations hoping the world has changed back while they were gone, and political conventions.

In normal times, the period after Labor Day is usually filled with vigor and high expectations for the end of the year.  But I don’t think that will be the case this year.   

It will be hard for the next few months to figure out what is really going on.  There will be a whole lot of political voices yelling about how bad things are and how good things will be when THEY get in office.  My instincts are that politicians really can’t do much to rapidly improve the situation.  However, they can certainly screw things up (and already have).  But I don’t think there is a magic bullet that will make things better, and I think the bullets that can be fired already have been.  It’s just that the results take a long time to show up and government actions can make it even slower.

This Fall, there will be lots of decisions NOT made, since not making a decision may be the safest path in uncertain times.  There will be lots of folks treading water until they see economic improvement they can count on.  There will be lots of people trying to get past the election, through Thanksgiving and on to Christmas as unscathed as they can.
Right now, everyone is moving reeeeeal slow.

I will be in touch.


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