2012

According to the Mayan calendar, the world is going to end on Dec. 21, 2012.

Well, right now that looks like the only way to keep Barack Obama from serving a second term.

The Internet is abuzz with rumors of the end of days. You check in Google under 2012 End of Days, and you get 5.59 million hits. That is lot of people contemplating the end of the world.

Nostradamus predicted that a big comet would come to Earth around 2012 and cause quite a scene, wiping out big cities and, with them, a third of the population. That is one way to deal with the issue of overpopulation. The other, less painful way is to refrain from sex (at least the kind of sex that leads to babies).

You have the global warming crowd, led by that dispassionate scientist Al Gore. They think the end is coming quickly, because of hairspray and the combustion engine. The global warming phenomenon is so ingrained in our body politic that even the promise of a Great Depression has not dissuaded leading Democrats of the need to sharply increase taxes on energy consumption. Ready or not, here comes cap-and-trade.

The latest conflict in the Middle East undoubtedly has many orthodox Christians (and orthodox Jews, for that matter) convinced that the end is coming. The Messiah will come in the final days and pick who has been naughty and who has been nice, and believe me, you don’t want to be naughty.

Throw in some doomsday economists, and you have the makings of a very nice New Year’s Day holiday.

Undoubtedly, the next year is going to be a tough one.

We are all going to have to deal with one hell of a spending hangover, as most Americans decide they don’t have to buy all the crap that they bought religiously over the last 20 years or so and still live quite nicely.

When Americans don’t buy as much crap, stores that sell crap go out of business. Just ask the Bombay Company, which apparently has a great sale going on right now. They have lots of crap there, but it is going fast.

The problem for American car companies is that many Americans think that their cars are crap. That is not true anymore (especially for my client Ford), as American cars do very well overseas, and their quality ratings equal the best of the world. Ford cars are not crap. But still, since nobody can get car loans, nobody is buying them anyway.

That leads to more unemployment and fewer people who can afford to buy anything.

That is the situation that Barack Obama will find himself in once he takes office.

For the time being, he is enjoying some quiet time in Hawaii, showing off his abs (I hate a showoff), getting his daily briefings and probably wondering why he wanted the job in the first place.

He can take comfort he doesn’t really have to worry about his reelection. The Republicans probably won’t get their act together by that time, and besides, who cares? The world is going to end anyway. Just ask the Mayans.



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