Steve Forbes Talks What's Ahead for 2012

Focus: POLITICS

Steve Forbes Image Steve Forbes Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Forbes Media

The Forbes chairman and former presidential candidate takes a look at the political and economic outlook for 2012, while also assessing the chances that Israel will attack Iran's nuclear facilities.

Steve, what do you make of the tinder-box geopolitical situation we have during 2012—perhaps later—and the economy in the meantime?

Well, the economy in 2012 will be better than it was in 2011 or 2010. We’re like the car on the superhighway, we’re going to go from 20 miles an hour to 40. We should be going 70 to 75 miles an hour...but it’s going to be a greater pace than we had the year before.

What that is going to force I think Republicans to do is not just rely on a punk economy to win, but to actually expound positive Reaganist proposals and principals to move ahead after 2012 to the speed we should be moving at. So the economy will do better.

The market clearly wants to rise. It is very depressed. As you know, it hasn’t gone anywhere in real terms since the late 1990s.

The one big caveat in all of this, of course...well there are two. One is Europe blowing up financially. I think at least for a year they’ll kick that camp proverbially down the road.

Another one is an explosion in the Middle East. I think Israel now feels it must make a decision whether to actively go to war to disrupt...

Will they go to war, in your view?

I think they will. They’ve done in the last few years, I know at least they seriously considered it and backed off from it, but now they feel they must make a decision because more and more of those nuclear assets are being buried in underground bunkers that even the most sophisticated bombs can’t reach.

So I think that is something we’re going to have to face.

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