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The Fiscal Cliff -- All Eyes Are Watching

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Sometimes I just think that I don't get it.

I believe that we live in a global society where everything is totally interconnected.

I remember a trip to Machu Picchu where I followed the path of a tsunami, all from a simple smartphone.

Where ever you go, within seconds, you can "read" the latest news of even the most obscure parts of the world.

That news can either have a social, political or economic theme to it.

As I like to say, we are so interconnected that if someone sneezes in Beijing, another person gets a cold in Doha.

Obviously this metaphor bespeaks the physical and virtual intertwined nature in which we all live.

Which brings me to the economy.

We all remember the "downturn" of 2008 which has left the world with a very fragile totally interwoven economic "system."

Every day, I watch the impact of headline news on the financial markets all over the world. What may start in Asia quickly migrates to Europe and then, in turn, jumps another pond to hit the Americas.

Even though so many of the elected officials in the United States have egos which are comparable to the size of the dollars needed to get elected, I can't figure out how they just don't get the "sneeze" analogy from above.

With the world so interconnected, all eyes are on them, especially as they "deal" with this pesky fiscal cliff issue.

Their behavior is watched very closely by the entire world.

As I' ve been saying recently, the outcome of this drama is very important, but the behavior along the way is watched on a moment-by-moment basis by everyone in the world, with the curiosity shown to the most riveting of soap operas.

Behavior matters.

If the world senses cooperation, financial markets react positively.

If the world feels deep chasms in approach, financial markets show that in the form of losses.

Today is one of those days--where the world markets are concerned about how the United States will resolve its issues.

If the world markets move downward by 1% in any given day, due to this concern, they lose over $500 billion in value.

So while there is ego-driven posturing in Washington (by ALL concerned), companies', institutions' and individuals' assets ride a roller coaster.

Roller coaster rides generally cause people to strap into their seats and experience a wild ride following both the ups and the downs.

Yet, all along the way, they just want to get through the experience unscathed and, most frequently, are frozen in place during the journey.

Frequently praying for an end to the ups and downs.

Are the elected officials in the United States so narcissistic that they have no idea what they are putting people through?

Isn't it time that our elected officials put their own self-interests aside for the good of the both the country and the world?

I certainly hope so.

Yet I'm buckling up and hoping that this ride will both be over soon and have a safe landing.