The Price of Flight

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Well, looks like a relieved Mark Steyn won't have to make good on his threat to flee the Home of the Brave because of the presidential vote, but if anyone else is considering post-election defection, a word of warning: The dollar has been plummeting in value, and will likely continue heading south.

NEXT: Did Blogs Tip the Election? (Attn: DC Area Reasonoids)

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  1. I don’t see the connection . . . Bush’s reelection increases the chances that the dollar will continue to fall: i.e. eat the loss and get out now.

  2. Aw, geez. Here comes the gold standard shibboleth.

  3. Yes, but if your salary is denominated in U.S. dollars (as mine usually was), and/or if you dip into your savings from home, you’ll take stronger hits than if you just spent the money in the Motherland.

  4. No, because most of the things you’re buying here in the motherland are made abroad, therefore their prices are pulled upwards by the increasing currency difference. (The single reason why we haven’t seen too much inflation is because the countries who make most of the stuff we buy — japan, china, et al. — are propping up our currency. This won’t last forever.)

  5. Why move when you have a better chance of succeeding?

  6. If you wade through his article to get to the predictions at the end, Steyn was pretty close to the mark across the board.

  7. But if you just convert your dollars to swiss francs on the way out, where’s the problem?

  8. “Yes, but if your salary is denominated in U.S. dollars (as mine usually was), and/or if you dip into your savings from home, you’ll take stronger hits than if you just spent the money in the Motherland.”

    Motherland? It’s HOMELAND, you liberal pussy!

    Cripes, I bet you’re the type of wimp who’d catch shrapnel somewhere wussy, like the forearm.

  9. I think Steyn’s threat was to stop writing about politics, not leave the US.

  10. c — As imports become more expensive (both because of the dollar plunge and the skyrocketing price of oil), we’ll buy a greater percentage of homegrown, no?

    xxx — It could be the weariness talking, but I’m almost positive (though too lazy to re-read that column) it was the exact other way around.

  11. Certainly a rise in the price of imports would create a market incentive for domestic products, but it’s not like our domestic capacity is going to rise perfectly synchronized with the fall of our dollar. And, being limited to only domestic products where before we could choose from all over the world costs us something too.

    But, more to the point, if you really believe the the dollar “will likely continue heading south” like you state, then that’s more reason to expatriate now, not less. (Or at least expatriate your cash.)

  12. Ain’t that the truth. I have already put off this year’s European travels and will look to spring time in Mexico instead. You can always count on the peso to devalue along with the dollar.

  13. If you know which way the dollar is going, trade currency futures and retire incredibly wealthy in a month.

  14. Ron — I’m too stupid. I predicted the beginning of the dollar’s slide against the Euro, and turned in this article in April 2000….

  15. Well, Matt, you may not be stupid, but you obviously didn’t read Steyn’s article all the way to the end. He didn’t say he was going to leave the US, he did what every columnist (present company NOT excepted) should do – promise to hang it up if his predictions are off.

    Say, who did you predict was going to win the election? 😉

  16. The way future-predictors work in matters where success can be measured is simple.

    Take mutual fund managers.

    Start with 1024 of them.

    After a year, 512 of them did better than average.

    After 2 years, 256 of them did better than average twice. Pretty smart!

    After 3 years, 128 of them did better than average _three years in a row_. We’re getting up into psychic terriroty.

    After 4 years, 64 of them it four years in a row. They’re taking home millions in annual pay.

    After 5 years, 32 of them hit the big time five years in a row, surely a rare feat. Everybody listens to their advice.

    After 6 years, 16 of them have this incredible run, unaccountable for by chance alone. They have TV gigs.

    After 7 years, 8 of them have achieved unbelievable records, and are writing books.

    This does not continue, because all eight retire, not wanting to press their luck

  17. Ron,

    You forgot the ones who get busted for rigged deals or other misconduct.

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