Felix Salmon expect a downturn in American auto sales for years to come, and I agree; though I believe that the downturn will have a greater depth of argument than he advances. Americans have first gotten the Notion into their heads that burning too much fuel is bad for the environment (I wonder where they found this idea). The Gas Run-up reminded them of the full-power increase in the price of Cigarettes, which finally brought reduction in their consumption after 40 years of simple maligning the Product. The price of Gas finally came down, though wiggling to go back up; but the downfall in the combination of Price and Advertising had already started the slide. The low-hanging fruit of that second Fill-up per Week per vehicle was so easy that the SUV Moms almost stopped taking their kids to Soccer practice. Many Parents, not fully integrated into the Full Consumption cycle, even discovered they could not only save the Cost of Gas and cavalcade of Five Dollar Bills taking the kids to Video Arcades on Sunday afternoon by staying home and learning How to talk to their kids. It not only sometimes enhanced their children’s Grades in certain Subjects, but gave them the mis-impression that they could even maintain a personal relationship with their kids through the process of Growing Up. The Writing was finally on the Wall, when Mom confessed she did not like to Window Shop under conditions that she could not afford to bring anything home. The Damage was done, as all members of the family realized they could live elsewhere than in a car seat.
No one would find this type of article in an American paper. Americans remain committed to definition of Crisis combined with their Solution, with no identification of the policy-makers who may have provided the Solution, or even the initial offense. It can be freely admitted, though, that the British express little greater aptitude than do Americans in Crisis Solution. Economists have an additional problem of an inevitable multitude of published Papers in support or rebuttal of every meaningful addendum to Economic Thought (just too many Dissertations by Graduate students needing some Subject to talk about). Some Economists even make their reputation by definition of some bibliography capable of giving some grasp of one element of the Economic realm. Dare One say that some 40% of Dissertations could be denied, if there was some Congress of Dissertation Committees? Great Britain may be small enough, with ample dissemination of material along a constrained geographic locale, that ordinary educated people can read and understand possible distinctions in a Newspaper. We Americans cannot get the NY Times and The Wall Street Journal to agree on most things, even though they are in one City.
The bewilderment of Americans, relating to the Above, can be found in this list of economic blogs. I applaud Anyone who has read more than 10 of these blogs (by which I mean some part of, not the entirety). I have personally read some 20 of them, mainly to gain information for my own blog (Truth in Advertising: I belong to one of them, but will not embarrass Anyone by being more specific). Readers will quickly discern that my blog is not listed, here or elsewhere on any Index, as I myself am considered a bane to consistent blogging. It is sufficient for Our discussion to state that the indexed economic blogs make up only about 10% of the economic blogs of major note out there, and blogging fare makes up only about 20% of the total economic literature out there. One cannot keep track of any argument, as it scatters to the Winds of Internet and Library. One can only hope not to miss necessary Research. lgl