Dan the Fat Cat, a very successful ad executive from Colorado via California, is a would-be candidate for the weight-loss pill. He is also a high roller. He’s in Vegas practically every other weekend and enjoys the customary perks at the Mirage. Donna Harris, director of poker operations at the Mirage, says that to play “you have to give your name at the door, get on waiting lists, know where to go for the limit you want to play”. None of this for Dan the Fat Cat – he only plays high stakes in the high-roller room. He’s the quintessential Judi Online24jam poker man: familiar with nuts (an unbeatable hand), trips (three-of-a-kind), holes (the first two cards one is dealt, face down, in the game Texas Hold’Em) and flop (the first three cards on the table in Texas Hold’Em). He’s a Republican who will vote Democrat next November (John Kerry is carrying a five-point lead over Bush in Vegas at the moment).
Poker players better take Dan the Fat Cat’s message seriously: America will have to stop consuming like crazy because its economy is in trouble. “Politicians always promise the free market is our salvation and the key to our prosperity. That’s wrong, because we cannot live with an everlasting trade deficit. Last year it was almost half a trillion dollars,” he says.
How does America manage? According to Dan the Fat Cat, “China, Japan and Europe lend us a fortune, so we can keep on buying more and more imports. And the trade deficit keeps growing. Imagine when they decide to stop lending. When that happens, we will have huge interest rates, a collapse in the stock market, a collapse in home prices. That’ll be the end of easy credit. I don’t need to tell you that when you have these Judi Online24jam everlasting trade deficits getting bigger and bigger, this is always interpreted as a sign of weakness.”
Dan the Fat Cat, never a man to spurn a first-growth Bordeaux at a four-digit price at the Renoir restaurant in the Mirage, is nevertheless worried: “Last year we had to borrow something like $540 billion from Europe, Japan and China. We became a debtor nation in the late 1980s. Now our debt abroad is something like $3 trillion. It will be double before 2010. Some people say that when the dollar hits new lows, Americans will buy less and less imports. That’s bull. The way I see it, we are indebted to the house. And the house one day will come to collect. The house is now a bunch of countries. They hold our debt paper, they collect interest on our Treasury bonds and private bank loans. We may be a very wealthy nation, but we can’t keep spending what we don’t have and borrowing money forever. One of these days America will lose control of its destiny.”
So when does the poker game end? “It ends when one of the major players decides it’s time to collect and go home. Suppose China has a Judi Online24jam banking crisis. They would have no choice except selling off their US bonds and use the proceeds to correct their financial system, and also to politically appease their masses.”