Southeast Missouri State University

Derivatives, Futures, and the Future

John Casebolt

Recently I listened as Salar Ghahramani explained the state of the world’s economy to a group of interns and young professionals at CSIS. As a listened, I was reminded of the time value of money. With any long range scenario, the best time to make a correction would be yesterday (and the worst time would be tomorrow). Mr. Gharamani spoke of the huge “Derivatives” market and the impact of cross-border economics. Paul Farrell of Market Watch shares Mr. Gharamani’s concern for derivatives as well (see the “Ticking Time Bomb”).

CSIS’s own Arnaud De Borchgrave weighed in on current economic dilemma also in his review of Saving America’s Future: A Challenge to the American People (published by the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress and directly connected with the work of GSI and our director, Erik R. Peterson). Mr. De Borchgrave’s article paints a stark landscape of truth. According to these sources, the current economic conditions may just be the tip of the iceberg in the path of our great ship of state, the USS Debt. Fortunately, we are not sunk yet. I fear that if we do not change our course soon, we will run head long into disaster. We need to realize that bailing America out with more debt is not going to keep us from going under in the long-term.

On the bright side, at least we have seen the iceberg. I just hope that the message makes it to the engine room (Congress) and the wheel (White House) in time to steer clear.