Well, this is a key question. I think that the solid positives of the US economy cannot be discounted. Educated, diversified workforce (the best educated often being imported), word class companies, world class basic reasearch, leading positions in pharmaceuticals, aircraft, on and on. Similar things can be said for Europe and Japan, and Europe's monetary policy, oddly enough, is the most responsible at present, probably for strategically competitive reasons.
The productivity revolution also probably has some truth to it, permitting in theory some hope for profits to rise to where stock prices already are.
The bedrock facts supporting goldbugs include the unsustainability of the structural imbalances, in trade and borrowing (at all levels) for the US, in currency levels for Japan and perhaps China. These certainly connot be corrected without a significant disruption (recession), and that recession will expose the monetary shenanigans that have been going on among those who set a value for our money. That exposure will lift gold.
How bad must it all be. Pretty bad, but if the dollar is the stock of the country, I consider that there has been major dilution, but dilution of a reasonably solid corporation, so I don't personally see total bankruptcy on the horizon.
Then again, Germany was in many ways a solid going economic concern in 1921. Alot depends on what our governors do once it all gets started.