Park City Chamber luncheon with Rich Karlgaard

On Monday I attended the annual Economic Forecast luncheon put on by the Park City Chamber, where the publisher of Forbes, Rich Karlgaard was the keynote speaker. 

We’re no where near the Great Depression

Expecting to hear the same dire news the media has been doling out, I was pleasantly surprised to hear Mr. Karlgaard speak of optimism as the key focus going forward. He feels the economic situation we are in is more akin to the 1973 depression than the 1930’s saying,

The media does a horrible disservice promiscuously throwing around the Great Depression. It was beyond anything any of us has experienced and to refer to it is to needlessly scare people…

Even though most of us didn’t experience the Great Depression first hand, there are plenty of stories from the older generation about the hardships they endured, saving every scrap of this and that just to get by. I don’t see that now, and I don’t really feel we’ll be seeing it in the near future either.

Rich’s message highlights

The Park Record has a pretty good rundown of Mr. Karlgaard’s presentation, but here were some of the highlights from my perspective:

  • Bashes Hank Paulson for being inept and sweaty
  • Bashes Paul Krugman, calling him a ‘little twit’
  • Thinks a few simple rule changes at the SEC will solve the current problem
  • Thinks the stimulus is more of a political stunt than a real solution
  • Worried more about deflation than inflation
  • Warns that we should expect inflation to follow once the recovery starts

The Recovery

Rich also had a few ideas on what will make the recovery come to certain places quicker. He believes the two keys are:

  1. Proximity to University Education, particularly a research university
  2. Regional focus on economic development

Luckily for Park City, we have both, plus a whole host of other things like great weather and an active lifestyle that make us so desirable. The PC Chamber Bureau continues to promote the area around the country, so I’m optimistic that things will be getting better sooner than most expect.

Continuing to be optimistic

As a business owner, the only real option is to be optimistic and continue to move forward. Continue to work hard and promote yourself.

Making it through this downturn will only make the business stronger coming out the other end.

1 Comment

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