America's Coming Garage Sale

The bill is due for years of living beyond our means. But as US goods become cheaper, foreign investors will eventually move back in

Justin Sullivan / Getty

A container ship passes through the San Francisco Bay in San Francisco, California.

For years, Americans have reveled in profligate, load-up-the-back- of-the-SUV-at-Target excess, much of it paid for by credit cards, home equity or other loans. The binge has produced some supposedly healthy economic growth and provided everyone lots of nice stuff. But now debt collectors from around the world are knocking. That's why today's turmoil in U.S. financial markets will end in a massive transfer of wealth from America to the rest of the globe.

The housing bust, the subprime catastrophe, the Bear Stearns evaporation, and the tanking markets have already dented household wealth. But this is just the beginning....

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