Will next month’s US presidential vote go down as the Big Yellow Taxi election? Recall the defining words of Joni Mitchell’s eponymous song – “you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone”. In the song, the big yellow taxi took away Joni’s old man. In November, maybe democracy gets taken away. The cab driver? Intuition says “Donald Trump”, but – at least according to one notion – more likely it’s Joe Biden.
Maybe we should start with a digression: democracy – even in the world’s richest and most powerful nation – does it really matter to investors? What do we care about democracy’s roll call, from the 1689 English Bill of Rights, to the French and American versions (both declared in 1789) through to the US Civil Rights Act of 1964, the erosion of which might decisively affect November’s poll? Such things neither guarantee good investment returns, nor does their absence preclude them. So why get hung up?