Monday, July 14, 2008

American business now for sale

Congratulations, politicians & economists: our dollar has fallen so far behind that even the previously most untouchable names in big business are deciding to sell out rather than continuing as going concerns under their own names.

Not that I would ever drink the slop, but Anheuser-Busch (maker of Budweiser and Bud Light) sold out for $52 billion, a transaction which signifies more than just one giant brewer buying another. This would not have happened the other way around; American businesses that deal mostly in American currency simply do not have the global financial strength to buy large European or Asian companies anymore. Instead of merely seeing European tourists float around Disney world due to relatively cheap trip packages, we now have our first taste of what the fall to third world status will feel like: investors buying huge swaths of American business & property (South America, anyone?), with announcements like these becoming ever more common as high-percentage stockholders take their money & run to their asset managers to diversify.

Truth be told, Americans should have seen these days coming as soon as GM, Ford, and Chrysler decided to "diversify" and "globalize" their operations abroad rather than take some pride in their product and try to keep up with the Japanese & European auto companies by playing fair. This is just the latest step in America's economic freefall.

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