Marchbooks' Blog

May 9, 2009

The Squirrel And The Grasshopper by Janus Kane

Filed under: In the News — marchbooks @ 8:39 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

Most of us are familiar with the fable; the tireless squirrel works through the summer to store nuts and fortify his home while the grasshopper laughs and relaxes in the tall grass. Eventually, winter comes and finds the grasshopper, literally, out in the cold.

Fables always carry an inescapable grain of truth, but rarely do we see them come to life before our very eyes as this one is now doing. Our current recession is having far reaching effects, not the least of which is the seperation of the squirrels from the grasshoppers.

We had a long summer. American businesses thrived, the stock market hit ever increasing highs and the housing market boomed, resulting in many good years for everyone involved in real estate and the construction business. During that time, the grasshoppers among us lived for the day, spending their gains as soon as the checks cleared. Big screen tvs, luxury cars and fancy boats were the order of the day for many. Those with more moderate means were still lured by the siren song of affluence. They eagerly stepped up to the loan officer’s desk and signed paperwork for homes on nothing but a wing and a prayer. Get it now, pay for it later became the tune on everyone’s lips. Well, I’m afraid that the tab has come due.

People that lived for the day, never giving a thought to tomorrow. People who were too eager to spend each and every dime that passed through their hands. Those grasshoppers are now paying the price. Only they are not, we all are.

Although I support Barack Obama and recognize the huge effort that he has put forth during his short time in office, I think that beating the drum for more consumerism is a miscalculation. Without some kind of a savings philosophy, we will all be out in the cold once winter comes. The concept of saving is something that we should be instilling in our youth, but we cannot do that until we start practicing it ourselves. Is it really going to take another Great Depression to remind us that a little bit of money in the bank is not a bad thing?

What will it take to make us realize that living the good life on credit alone comes at a high price, too high a price for our limited coffers? The thought that we can spend and spend, as long as our plastic holds out, is a fallacy of epic proportions. It is basic Economics 101 – a house of cards (credit cards) that is destined to come crashing down on us. When that happens, it will be the squirrels who survive the devastation, as they smugly reap the rewards of their planning and foresight. Hopefully, the grasshoppers will not take us all down with them.

To Be Released in August 2009

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