Ides of March: State of the Economy

After having received a few emails and even verbal inquiries about my ceasing blogging, I decided to take a spare moment to make a post on the blog on the state of things.

My uniform response to those inquiries has been that I am a business bankruptcy lawyer in this economy. What do you think I have been doing?

Over the last two months, my life has been legally what an ER doc’s life would be medically after an atomic bomb goes off. Yes, the economy is precisely that bad. There has been exactly that much need for my services; I have to triage clients on the first phone contact – has anyone filed suit yet, is there a foreclosure pending, is the tax man at the door, has an involuntary bankruptcy petition been filed? Short of that, let’s set our appointment a week or so from now since it appears you won’t “die” between now and then.

As my regular readers know, I have a flair for the overly dramatic. The only thing I have to back up my story is that generally I have been logging the same amount of billable hours each week that I would normally log in a week and a half. There haven’t been any sprints to get ready for long trials, either – with the exception of a short day trial last Thursday out of town, it has been putting out fires, period.

A lot of people ask me where I think all this is going, economically speaking. They ask when we will come out of this, will things get better or worse, and so on. Frankly, things will get worse before they get better, despite stock market rallies, etc. Even when the garbage is taken out of the banking system, credit will not be as available, banks and other institutions will look a lot harder at both old and new deals. It will take two years or better to get all the garbage out of the economic system and get the assets and people back in service, and another three after that to deal with the aftermath of litigation.

In short, my life for the last two months is going to be this way for the next two years, and then will get a little better for the next three, before things return to normal in my law practice.

I’ve now become a keen watcher of the financial news, and I find the latest proclamations of peace and prosperity by talking heads in the economy by talking heads and our President to be interesting. Reminds me of the movie the Killing Fields when Phenom Penh celebrates the end of the war between the government and the Khmer Rouge, yet one trip over to the hospital where the wounded and dying are tells a different story. And then things really get worse, sort of like the economic pogrom against Capitalism Obama and his administration has in store for us.

God created this world of plenty and famine, of economic boom and bust. They are cycles, they are here to teach us something, about faith, about values, and about ourselves. You can study it in the Bible, you can see it in our history. Moreover, socialism is doomed to failure due to human nature. As long as someone else has something someone else wants or needs, you will end up with either capitalism or violence. Rules and regulations will not make people ethical, much less Christian. People are always trying to find a way around the rules, especially where the rules are unjust and deny freedom. Rules are there for those that have no ethics; too many rules makes everyone unethical and corrupt. We get rid of our Christian moorings as a society, and, well, look what happens – we become corrupt, so we make more rules, and ultimately become more corrupt.

In any event, this will be the first week I am not staring at a calendar for the week wherein I’ll be out of town for two or three days. Hopefully, I’ll get caught up. I find myself praying for those who still have the time to fight the good fight for Christianity in these times. For right now, I am tending to the economically wounded and dying. God made me for these times, and I feel his pleasure in what I am doing, despite being exhausted.

6 Responses to “Ides of March: State of the Economy”


  1. 1 The Lakeland Two March 16, 2009 at 2:45 pm

    We were wondering if you were OK, too. We miss your take on things. But understand the recognition of futility. While we aren’t in the financial circuit, we feel we haven’t seen the economy bottom out yet either.

    God bless your ministry in every venue. And take care of yourself!

  2. 2 Bill in Ottawa March 16, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    God bless you in your work. I will enjoy what you post, when you can, but understand that it is not in your top priorities right now.

    I have been one of those tax men and understand the stress that our visits cause. I also understand the temptation to “borrow” money from the government to keep your business afloat, even if it isn’t legal.

    Again, Brad, bless you and get some rest. May the Lord grant you patience and a sense of humour through these difficult times.

  3. 3 revrhino March 22, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    Good to hear your voice crying in the wilderness again. I figured you were extremely busy what with the economy. Thanks for taking a moment to talk. You are in my prayers!

  4. 4 Alice C. Linsley March 26, 2009 at 2:20 am

    Brad, What’s happening with your home church? Anything encouraging that you can write about?

  5. 5 R. Scott Purdy March 29, 2009 at 1:07 pm

    Brad –
    I have a slightly different take. It’s not, “It will get worse before it gets better,” it’s “It will get worse before it gets worst.”

    Oil & gas exploration & production companies are now hurting (not to mention oil field services), and commercial real estate issues are just starting to come home to roost (businesses turning floors back to landlords due to layoffs). Over the next three months I will finally be getting title to residential properties I started foreclosing almost a year ago, so they will be hitting the market this summer. More residential foreclosures will follow – flooding the market with supply.

    Your 2 year estimate may be optimistic with the extreme inflation we are almost sure to experience.

    Lots of folks need the help your background and experience uniquely provide.


  1. 1 Posts about Foreclosure as of March 16, 2009 Trackback on March 16, 2009 at 3:09 am

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