Tick-tick-tickety Means Run Your Ass Out of There...
I would highly recommend that Ben Bernanke and Co. study the disaster in Japan (and no, I'm not talking deflation) to understand the mechanics of supply and demand once and for all. Then, they can figure out how to manufacture the same desperation for overbuilt U.S. housing inventory, big screen TVs and shitty Detroit cars.
Looking for a geiger counter? Keep looking.
While the nation’s industrial clusters in the south and west seemed to be spared the worst, the crisis at damaged nuclear plants north of Tokyo was threatening to cause an energy squeeze that could set back all sectors of Japan’s economy.
To help bring electricity back to the devastated areas, utilities across Japan are cutting back and sharing power, imposing rolling blackouts that will affect factories, stores and homes throughout the nation. The emergency effort is expected to last up to two weeks, but could take longer.
“The big question is whether this will seriously affect Japan’s ability to produce goods for any extended period of time,” said Edward Yardeni, an independent economist and investment strategist.
Is that really the big question? Disregard the fact that Japan has been in an economic coma for the last 20 years (better read up on it, it's exactly where we're headed in the most optimistic scenario and what keeps Ben Bernanke up at night) and let's consider instead the fragile nature of man, who can't stave off disasters like this no matter how big a stack of dollars or yen or rubles he's sitting on.
Even all the gold and guns can't help these people. But this incident reminds us that any emergency readiness kit (prepared ahead of time, of course) should include potassium iodide (remember to check expiration dates on older supplies), water disinfectant and if you're fancy, an awesome, fairly reliable Russian geiger counter (rad fun for the whole family!).
Remember too that in our digital age, we can't expect to simply flip our laptops open and catch the news. I learned from the last DC snowstorm that it's a good idea to keep at least one extra BlackBerry battery (assuming there's a network) if not two, a generator that gets checked every summer and a stockpile of Washington Posts, lollipops and flashlight batteries, especially the big awkward ones that only go in big clunky lanterns.
btw for those who are concerned, we hear Maru is safe and sound in Japan. Praise Allah.