The world "properly" worries about greenhouse emissions causing global warming, says Buffett. "Unchecked carbon emissions will likely cause icebergs to melt. Unchecked greenback emissions will certainly cause the purchasing power of currency to melt. The dollar's destiny lies with Congress."
It's hard to imagine Washington will have the discipline to properly handle that responsibility, and that brings us back to Buffett's previous op-ed in the Times last October.
What should an investor do in tough economic times with inflation on the horizon? Buffett's recommendation then was to buy stocks rather than try to play it safe with cash:
"People who hold cash equivalents feel comfortable. They shouldn’t. They have opted for a terrible long-term asset, one that pays virtually nothing and is certain to depreciate in value. Indeed, the policies that government will follow in its efforts to alleviate the current crisis will probably prove inflationary and therefore accelerate declines in the real value of cash accounts."
He repeated that advice late last month, when he told CNBC viewers that with "real inflationary possibilities" down the road, he "would much rather own equities at 9000 on the Dow than have a long investment in government bonds or a continuously rolling investment in short-term money."
So, while Buffett doesn't explicitly use today's Times piece to repeat his advice to buy stocks, that remains the implicit recommendation given his argument that it will be very difficult, if not impossible, for Washington to summon the "extraordinary political will" to hold off serious long-term inflation.
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