In the past year, we have seen our economy dip to record lows and struggle with issues that many businesspeople were unprepared for.
With companies seeing this downturn in market value, the bottom line on their income statements is dipping into the red. The explanation surrounding the economic problems could be very extensive and dry, so I want to talk more about the bigger picture and what the outlook for the future seems to be.
First of all, I believe that the current problems in our economy are only part of a cycle that is inevitable in our business and economic realm. Big business many times involves trying to do what will generate the largest income and maybe not the best long-term implications and effects. I recognize that making money is generally termed the “goal of business,” but with this principle as a driving force, mistakes and faulty decisions will be made along the way.
While both businesses and the government do a very good job of covering up most of these mistakes, there will be a point when the economy cannot take any more and will inevitably break. As we have seen in the last few years, these mistakes and business practices have caught up with us. We are caught in a situation that will take both a lot of work and a long time to fix.
Neither you nor I could have have done anything to change this inevitability. The odds are that in another hundred years or so, the United States will experience another major economic fluctuation or flare and see something that is similar to what we are going through right now.
On January 20 we inaugurated Barack Obama as our 44th president in the midst of an economic recession that has directly affected millions of Americans. I personally believe this change in the leadership comes at a very suitable time. While we cannot blame President Bush directly for the current recession, he did lead a government that fell apart economically in his final term.
Just as in any other situation when fresh people are introduced, there is a creative spark that can be very effective in problem solving. President Obama has acted quickly and recently pushed for a stimulus bill that totals $789 billion.
As many have realized, the current situation is very complicated and it will take years for our economy to get to the same level it was before. But I feel that with new leadership, there is a new drive and need for change.
Aaron Shenk is a sophomore accounting major with a business minor from Goshen.