Is it possible that what Trump and his whims have done is effectively destroy Iran? I think that is entirely possible. But looking at history, that will increase his power, which will lead to no good for the US.

The Ayatollahs in a happier time. Rafsanjani, third from left, died under mysterious circumstances in 2016

As previously mentioned, I think Iran’s internal politics got rid of Qassem. Now they will duke it out in preparation for their elections next year. The hard liners will hold sway and ultimately destroy the country. Isn’t that the way it always is? Here too.

And Trump will be the beneficiary of all that. Three days ago he had a losing set of dice. Now he’s back on top, and will coast to a landslide victory – because of his asymmetric thinking. Four more years of Trump will lead to ultimate folly. How can we prepare for this?

What has rocketed up will coast down

First and foremost: stay out of the stock market. Iran’s descent to the bottom will pick at us the whole way – it’s inevitable. That will roil markets, and – as previously predicted – they’ll be on a downward slide through most of 2020, but not drastically enough to kill Trump’s re-election.

Second: hoard cash. Have a nest egg set aside, even if it means just maintaining reasonable credit payments. It will do no good to have lots of available credit on cards when banks pull back and cancel them. Then you’ll wish you put that money into cash and saved it.

Save all the Cash You Can in a Safe Place – not a Coffee Can

Third: cut down on unnecessary expenses. I’ve resolved not to buy anything whatsoever from Amazon in the month of January. That should get me out of the habit of just picking up the Ipad and, with a few clicks, purchasing things that are still on the shelf in the pantry. Did I really need those preserved lemons? Must not – haven’t used them yet.

Fourth: keep your family close, and expand your circle of friends. You’re going to need to stay in touch with smart people, who give you good ideas as things progress over this coming year. You’ll also need the support of those who know you best: your family.

Fifth: stay creative. This will help you focus on things that have nothing to do with current events, which are going to get ever scarier. And finally,

I Miss Alan Rickman

Sixth: don’t panic. Erik says we’ve seen worse before; I’m not so sure about that. But I know that panic makes us do things we later regret. So don’t panic.

If you do all six of the things I’ve mentioned above, you will survive 2020. Then, take this year’s learnings and apply them 150% in 2021.

As Emperor Franz Joseph was wont to say in Amadeus, “There you have it”. Wasn’t Jeffrey Jones a hoot in that role? Indeed.

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