Thursday, February 08, 2018

Against the backdrop of a 1000 point drop in the Dow, I'm going to toss this into your lap

I expect that most of the folks who happen by this particular spot on the Intertubz have at least heard of Strauss and Howe's book The Fourth Turning. If you haven't you're going to be behind the curve for this post. I would say "Go read it and I'll wait," but it's 400 pages in paperback and takes considerable time and digestion. If you haven't read it, I suggest getting a copy and doing so as soon as you can. I have, and it definitely...interrupted is a good word...my thinking on a lot of things having to do with planning for the future, at least when it comes to extreme cases.

Some months back, a two part post appeared on The Burning Platform blog entitled "The Unbearable Slowness of Fourth Turnings". (Link is to Part 1, there is link to Part 2 at the bottom of it.) Jim Quinn, the author of the blog, basically explains why it's taking so long for this whole Fourth Turning thing to really get moving, considering he believes it began in 2008.

I'm not going to rehash his post. He doesn't need my interference, and you should go read it yourself. All I want to do is point out that our great societal problem and its associated issues havn't gone away. As I noted in this morning's post it's been kind of easy to get lulled into a sense of complacency in the last few months. I think that, from the point of view of most people with a similar point of view as ours, things have been going relatively well. The other side has been quiet for the most part, nobody's coming after our guns, the economy has been improving and we've been watching Trump rub the other side's nose in it all. It's been quite a party.

But to some extent, it's the sort of party that was had just after Prohibition passed, where people drank up the last of the booze in the house in one big blow out. Sobriety is going to set in, sooner rather than later, I suspect. It's probably going to set in with all the subtly of a 2x4 to the head when it happens, unless you're paying attention and are ready to duck at the right moment.

Is today's 1000 point drop in the Dow that moment? Is it the moment where things start to accelerate? Beats me. It may be a market correction, the beginning of another painful yet standard bear market or it could be that moment. Only history will be able to make that judgement. But it doesn't hurt to consider your status in light of those options, and any others you may see. Depending on your situation, financial and otherwise, each scenario will require certain reactions from you. It may be no more than an elevation in your level of attention, but you need to take that action.

The last thing you want to do is find yourself in the position of our forces on the island of Oahu on December 7, 1941 at 7:47 AM. Because by 8 AM, things weren't going so well.

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