As we take a four-day break for Thanksgiving weekend this Thursday, we all have personal reasons for giving thanks, but we also have overriding reasons for giving thanks for national blessings in this particularly difficult year of 2020, which everyone has come to despise. Consider these opening thoughts:
#1 - We still have our families, our faith, our friends and our valued customers. We still live in the greatest nation on earth, and we are in the midst of a peaceful transfer of power, however controversial at times. We have the Bill of Rights, the Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Let’s be thankful for those pillars of strength.
#2 - In this difficult year, gold has had its best year in a decade, setting a new high over $2,000, and silver has performed even better. Stocks have also had a positive year, despite COVID-19, and the home real estate had a positive year, as well, setting sales records in October, so America has elevated its net wealth in 2020.
#3 - Thanks to “Operation Warp Speed,” we should have at least two effective vaccines by year’s end. One should produce enough doses for 25 million Americans in December and 1.3 billion doses in 2021, and another company may match that volume. Both vaccines are about 95% effective, so better times are ahead! By the way, Bill Gates also recently praised “Operation Warp Speed.”
#4 - The economy has fared a lot better than most feared, with peak unemployment at 14.7% in April, quickly falling back to 6.9% in October, vs. predictions of 30% to 40% unemployment by some pundits. Our economy is in much better shape than Europe, for instance. Our GDP fell the least of all G-7 nations. Also, our COVID deaths are about 250,000, but original predictions were 10 times higher, at 2.5 million.
#5 - We have learned new ways of working, shopping and learning from home. We have also learned to save more and pay off our credit cards, often by traveling less and cutting costs. What seemed like a sacrifice at first turned into a new way of discovering what is valuable in life, and what is expendable.
#6 - Thanks that America is the strongest nation on earth, by far, and we are a good nation. We do not seek an empire, nor do we seek to destroy others, but we promote peace and commerce among allies.
#7 – Thanks that competitive sports are back on television, especially college sports. You can only watch so many national cornhole championships on ESPN.
#8 - Thanks to our responsive Federal Reserve and Congress for delivering checks to needy families this year. No matter the consequences in future years, that was the necessary thing to do at the time.
#9 – Thanks to all those individuals who helped people in need, especially those in the medical profession and our first responders.
#10 – Thanks to teachers who help educate our children in these challenging times.