Well, it has begun- the much-touted crash of 2016 is now under way, and China is ground-zero.
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If you're wondering whether or not this is true, or how anyone can know such a thing with accuracy, here is a little recap for you:
Those of you who don't know about economics will probably not have heard of a little something called the Derivatives Market.
What is the Derivatives Market, you might ask?
In a nutshell, Derivatives are side-bets (hence the name). They are bets derived from something that has actual value.
For example, when housing prices fluctuate up and down, speculators gamble (with other people's money) on which way the trends are going to go.
Here's the really bad part: these side-bets, which have no inherent value of their own, are up there in the trillions of dollars, to the point where they've become far greater than the world's total GDP.
This is a matter of public record. You can look it up anywhere on the Interweb.
The Derivatives Market is therefore an empty bubble with zero intrinsic value, and is a close relative of the Sub-Prime Mortgage market that collapsed and destroyed the markets.
Now, it is no secret that the banks have not learned their lesson, even after the bailout. Economists have been warning that they haven't changed their ways in the least, and are still at it. And now, the bubble is in the process of bursting.
But don't panic just yet. Most of us, who have nothing to do with the markets, and who weren't involved in things Sub-Prime, were pretty much unaffected by the economic collapse. And even if the economy melts down completely, those of us living in the real world are still going to be able to get by, as we're doing now.
The underlying truth is that things with real value are always able to divest themselves from the economy. What I mean by this is that farmers are still going to grow food, and we're still going to be buying it. Oil companies are still going to be making gas and diesel, and we're still going to be fuelling up at the pump. Those things- the things we need in order to keep going- are not going to be affected.
But you are going to be listening to a lot of angst and hair-pulling and hand-wringing in the media as fortunes are lost and stock becomes worthless.
My advice is: change the channel. Watch a rerun of Law & Order SVU. Kick back and have a cold one. The economy has collapsed before, many times. It too is a rerun, and in it, no one dies, and we all know how things turn out in the end.