"...And allow me to leave you with a pinch of optimism, just because I can. I call it Adams' Rule of Obvious Calamities. It states that any calamity that is foreseeable by the public at large won't turn out so bad after all. The best recent example was the Y2K problem, where computers worldwide were expected to fail. It seemed impossible that those issues could be resolved in time, but they were.
The problems that hit hardest are the ones that sneak up on you. Our current financial problem is big, but I expect a recession to be mild and even useful, precisely because so much human energy and attention is being focused on the fix."