Saturday, January 24, 2009

A New US President – the start of a new era?

New US President at last
As with most of you I suspect, I watched the inauguration of President Obama, spellbound. As local blogger Suburban pointed out, the Muscat Festival fireworks almost seemed synchronised with the event taking place in Washington! Spooky. Meanwhile work and other commitments, combined with an almost total lack of decent news in Oman of late, have lead to a short posting hiatus. Normal service should resume soon, JD...

The oath was messed up a bit (apparently by the Judge, and later the oath was re-administered properly to ensure no later legal problems). His speech was pretty good. Drawing the connection to the founding US constitution and the need to keep the faith was brilliant. His comments reflecting the need to change back to a firm basis of US policy based on law and constitutional correctness, with ol’ GW sitting there, were right to the point.

Good luck Mr. President. We all expect far too much of you. But after the across the board disaster that was GW Bush and his ineptitude, there is really no way you could be worse.

There are excellent articles on Obama and Bush in last week’s Economist.

Omani Government maintains spending despite oil price drop
Meanwhile, Oman's Government are taking the decision to draw down reserves and increase State borrowing to sustain Government spending in 2009. Effectively they are hoping oil prices will increase to at least $70 by next year sometime. This brings Oman into the swelling ranks of other Keynesian based approaches to the recession.

The Government have also pumped a lot of money into maintaining domestic borrowing as well.

While Government infrastructure projects that have yet to start will be delayed, on-going projects will be continued.


  1. and there I was, thinking that the world financial crisis would put some sense into countries like oman and encourage them to take control of their own monetary policy instead of more government involvement in those temp-to-perm projects. ah, the idealistic naïveté.

  2. If you want a very interesting read, buy The Economist's special edition "The World in 2009" - a great read.

    How much of it they have predicted correctly, who knows.....but it's food for thought.


  3. Boxter,

    its impossible to have Oman's own monetary policy..........we are too small of an economy......... we could be less dependable on the US dollar but having our currency float would mean........... adios amigos

  4. ColOman - the sinking ship has been and will continue to drag you down with it.

    I say peg the riyal to a basket that includes export oil price too.

    Certainly better than borrowing beyond one's means and forever owing that pound of flesh.


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