For those interested in oddities like the virtual world Second Life and economics, this article might pique your interest - Money Trouble in Second Life
Matthew Beller, who works for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and, as a hobby, writes about Second Life, says that the current growth in Second Life is "an unsustainable boom." Because the Linden dollar has no commodity backing, he says, the Second Life economy is in danger of crashing when provoked by any sufficient shock. Although the recent shocks may not necessarily cause a run on the Linden dollar itself, Beller says, the danger remains, should additional shocks occur.
Anyone who reads this blog should get a good chuckle from how closely that paragraph resembles.. the US economy. To wit:
Xxxxxxx Yyyyyy, who works for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and, as a hobby, writes about [the US economy], says that the current growth in [the US economy] is "an unsustainable boom." Because the [US] dollar has no commodity backing, he says, the [US] economy is in danger of crashing when provoked by any sufficient shock.
Is it all doom and gloom though? No.. Matthew still thinks there is sustainability and growth potential (again, read this with [US] replacing [Second Life]):
In spite of the turmoil in Second Life's financial sector, Bloomfield says, he thinks the game's economy will survive as long as there is continued growth in the demand for virtual goods and services, as well as for real services, such as programming in-game systems. "That, to me, is far more important in determining the future of Second Life's economy than little hiccups in the world," he says.
Arguably, no matter what sort of recession or slow down might come, the US will probably be providing goods and services for a long time to come. Even the dark clouds moving in over the subprime debacle will likely blow over - eventually. The question is how much will stay standing and how much will need to be rebuilt?