My new article on Linkedin “Every Boom Has Its Bust”
“US Bonds Flag Recession Risk,” says today’s headline on Bloomberg.com. “Futures Put S&P 500 on Course to Enter Bear Market,” reads today’s headline of The Wall Street Journal. Other newspapers, too, devote their business sections to the worsening economic outlook, and everyone seems alarmed, and mainly surprised, as if they did not expect the rise in commodity prices, the war in Ukraine, the semiconductor shortage, the shipment delays, and the (very) generous Covid relief packages to have a negative impact on the economy.
In fact, even without so many good reasons for a slowdown, nothing in reality evolves in straight lines; things evolve in sinusoids, in waves, and so does the economy. A straight line means death, and the economy reflects the relationships between people. As such, it is always changing, and after every boom there is a bust. Therefore, I do not think that the downturn is such a disaster; it is actually a sign of vitality.
When I was in high school, many years ago, we learned something called “politiconomy.” Even back then, they taught me that the economy always moves in waves, that there is a constant up and down motion, and the line of its progress is not straight but sinusoidal.
This is why every time I hear about bear markets and crises and busts after booms, I am reminded that it cannot be otherwise. We will always advance in sinusoidal waves, there is simply no other option because this is how all the laws of nature work, including in commerce and economics.
The only time you see a straight line in regard to something that is supposed to be alive and changing is when that something has died. This is why it should not alarm or surprise us when someone lost billions of dollars, since it is simply a part of the wave.
Recently, it has become clear that the economy is over-inflated and a bust is imminent. Corporations and wealthy investors have accumulated enough surplus to ride out the slump, and there is no major breakdown on the horizon.
On another note, I personally would not recommend my children to get into the high-tech industry where these waves are felt the most. People burn themselves out and end up with no real benefit. If anything, it makes them condescending, as if they are superior, but it is completely unwarranted.
If I were to recommend a good career for my children, it would be a career in teaching people how to connect positively to other people. This skill will be in high demand in the years to come, and people who work in it will reap rewards that no other career can give.