Another New Thought: Helicopter money and fiscal rules

Submitted by Old and Gray on Fri, 06/10/2016 - 18:46

by John Muellbauer

John Muellbauer, Senior Research Fellow, Nuffield College; Professor of Economics, Oxford University; and Senior Fellow, Institute for New Economic Thinking, Oxford Martin School.

http://voxeu.org/article/helicopter-money-and-fiscal-rules

His article was posted on voxeu.org 10 June 2016

The preceding article is a puzzle; either the author/professor disbelieves German Weimar 1920s history, preferring to believe Jung’s psychological analysis of events rather than the parallel of research by an historian, Andrew Dickson White, into the French inflation of the late eighteenth century, or, the Professor has never been exposed to standard teachings of monetary policy by the economic profession or discipline. For all the interaction and obfuscation from economists and politicians, this puzzle does not require a difficult or complex solution if the reader can stay with us to the end of this entry.

About the question about Prof. Meulbauer’s helicopter money: did he not hear of the George W. Bush similar “helicopter money distribution” the 300 USD distribution per taxpayer? Doctor, it was utter failure! Would the failure be attributed to the timing in the historic timeline, the sum of money involved (the more recent suggestion is 500 euros, considerably more than W distributed), Add in the cultural differences of Germans penchant for being less investment prone, more savings oriented, with lower prices in general and 500 euros does add up to a great deal more than W. envisioned. And, lest we forget, the Bush distribution was instituted through the tax system. If no taxes were paid, no benefits accrued. (The reminder was missing, but the message was: “Don’t forget this - next election? at the ballot box?”)

Still, that is not the “helicopter money” considered by either Friedman or Bernanke, their suggestions were a good deal more profligate as well as desultory. If helicopter dumps numbers one, two, three and four do not work, neither will five, six, seven or eight. That was the French Fiat lesson of the late eighteenth century, proposed by the most sincere of the French heroes of the day, who paid dearly for their patriotic efforts, which suggested to their successors that the next drop should be larger. The rabble was an angry, impatient lot.

We may have an advantage to the outlook on the proposal here on Duff’s, having been introduced to A. D. White’s ”Inflation in France” complete with documentation and his simple arithmetic of consequence (which should be understood by everyone with or without a degree) accompanying the text courtesy of Veteran Lender’s introduction; but even if that’s an advantage we enjoy over the professor’s education or experience, common sense should dictate that inflation does not respond as expected nor can it go on forever, multiplied under uncontrolled circumstances with no concern about the future. The fact that the past five years has suffered subdued growth, which in turn inhibits attempts to invest the already QE distributed extra “helicopter money”, or keep it safe from normal circulation, that is - safe from normal contact with markets or the supply/demand environment - does not mean all money has changed its nature and will not suddenly leap out of its dormant state and corrupt the economic scene the minute it is released from its restricting bondage. And, we have discovered that the one-time distribution was accepted as such and was not accepted by the Americans as an invitation to rush down to the nearest Wal-Mart and splurge on the devices that would have filled the gap and brought about instant recovery. . . which, whatever their reputation suggested, they did not accept as dictum.

Despite the difference in German habits and customs, expectations should not surpass the historical US results a few years back.

Money at work under current circumstances, which include reticent investors (witness the subdued volume on the NYSE and elsewhere and the suggestions of fewer IPO offerings, etc.) as well as the uncertainty exhibited in fluctuation of the exchange imbalances (with Japan and China leading the way ) and attempts to control credit expansion through fiscal policy (the recent flawed attempt through the Eurozone “fiscal austerity experimentation” which helped generate their present condition) have not responded to normal expectations because we simply are not normal in historic terms when we depend on finance to provide goods for the market and dominate the economy! (That is something still waiting to confront us in the very near future.) The pipeline has just recently shifted, the strengths or weaknesses have not yet been fully tested, and when they are, we’ll discover they cannot satisfy requirements for a global population growth not yet fully calculated, appreciated, or recognized.

We are running out of fuel and the economic engine is sputtering!

We’ve been besieged with ideas of negative interest outwardly without mention of who is to be subjected to the tithes levied through the process. Undoubtedly, it will fall on the lower brackets! All responsibility falls on the lower bracket.

The idea of larger batches of helicopter money already delivered to the larger entities and the well-heeled, tried and found ineffective in the QE rounds, is beginning to find a new batch of devotees globally. Investment advisors are beginning to devise half-baked ideas of quick maneuvers with money a la South American style of a few decades ago – (with recent revivals underway) - of avoiding the effects of hyperinflation, by taking the time off from work to rush down to the local bank or broker to invest, cancel, withdraw or reinvest or redeposit money to guard against loss, in the fitful and panic-driven attempts to save the family fortune. What was once good (but ineffective) for them then is now good enough and will be effective for the rest of the world?

Here’s an observation which may be of some value: that ploy had half a chance in the past when domestic funds under stress could be moved to relatively unaffected global areas before full dedication to “globalization” was in place; but, now globalization has leveled the advantages and when one nation experiences difficulties, since we’ve grown so interdependent, there is little chance of finding a region or section of the globe that does not suffer consequences. Which means your money is not more or less safe elsewhere.

Today you’ll be reading more little ads and blurbs – and tomorrow you’ll be inundated with them - indicating that globalization is a “good thing” suggesting we should all embrace it and be grateful we live in the best, most interactive of all possible worlds. . . for those sitting at the controls, of course! This opinion is advanced on the basis of recent economic papers which “prove” that shocks are transmitted from one point to another such as one bank to another, or one competitor to another, or one nation to another if not at electronic speed, the flaw is simply due to the switch not being flipped on this morning – nothing else. Given that banks are no longer restricted to simple localities, or function only within the boundaries of a single nation, that transmission is instantaneous rather than “delayed” by transmission by the grace and glory of technology.
Why should this happen? Why do we reject the proofs of history and turn down the wrong lane again and again? Is it unwillingness to admit that our guiding science is flawed or mistaken? Or, could it be simple stubbornness? If it’s one or the other what’s the difference? Do the adherents to the discipline have the magic powers to overturn native inclinations of the human race? If so, that is hardly a convincing argument.

The previous O&G thread without comment leading to the Bill Gross blogsite with the hope that it might stimulate some insightful comments still sits there as a challenge. It is part of the future envisioned for us, proposed for us in desperation, holding onto what someone has gained to this point, trusting that someone still has your interest in mind that all is not lost, there is another way out of these dark days.

It’s a long shot that it could ever be so, because any assets sold today for the sake of the safe feeling of cash in hand (which may be the prevailing thought among financial advisors today) will suffer disappointment when the cash dissipates into hyper-devaluation and the assets subsequently multiply in value – under the same impetus.

But, that should be no consolation; if we were all to follow that path, it’s another episode of concentration, everyone shifting to the same side of the boat - we’ll be rich in assets having no markets.

Of course, we could skip it all by just providing the only means we have of saving the entire world from this debacle – raise taxes. . . the bugaboo to be shunned as worse than death. All this searching for a way out is nothing more than an end run around taxation – and the threat is not in the ledger, it’s at the ballot box.

Negative interest rates, austerity, neglecting population growth, switching our paradigm from production to finance and the mess it’s created - - every bit of what you see and what’s to come, has to do with avoiding taxes for those who proportionally own too much already. The specter of multi-billionaires with more than enough assets to bring a nation to its knees inspires the rest of us to genuflect in their direction? Or, imitate them?

A breath-taking, awe-inspiring thought, is it not?

GM Plant Seized And Lost Yesterday

Perhaps it didn't appear in any mainstream news reporting the vast majority of us are exposed to. Amid heavy protests in Venezuela recently, the nation seized, shuttered and snuffed ALL American factories there. USA Today at least reported that a GM plant was put out of business, but there were several. Naturally, big bloated business executives went crying to our government to "save" those offshore job-stealing factories and the sweat shop profitability they make for the idle rich. The response was-- nope. Feel free to seize all those Venezuelan factories in operation HERE on American Soil. There are--- ZERO. Losses are estimated at $800 billion... AMAZINGLY... the exact amount Wall Street pumped up the Dow with--- just yesterday... that is-- three days after it had pumped up the Dow with $750 billion in offset of more than 3 weeks downward slide.

Meanwhile... Steven Mnuchin... a member in our government with direct and specific ties to Goldman Sachs-- the financial tyrannical maker of ALL that is wrong, going down and will trigger Armageddon in the world-- claims a new "tax plan" is near. Wall Street cheered because it no doubt contains wealth-insulating worker-insulting language that will likely get him burned at the stake after the Fairness Trials. He should probably put the Koolaid glass down now and wake up.

We need a fair restart to grow back what made us great once... which will begin the next day after Wall Street is leveled. The world's anger continues to rise. If the wealthy had any balls at all, it would drive INTO the mess they have made and surprise all the inheritors with the challenge of doing what they did from scratch, not scheme hatch. It won't end well any other way.

At A Party

That is true of every problem, including this one. It is like living in a world where nothing happens. They turn their backs on you.

At a party.

Him: did you hear what Trump is doing? He wants to destroy the climate data!

Me: I heard something about that.

Him: tell me what you are thinking about climate change.

Me: it is a long history.

Him: I want to know what you think.

Me: really?

Him: absolutely.

Me: the situation is out of control. The icecaps are melting, droughts are destroying agriculture in the tropical regions, extreme weather phenomena are on the rise. We are in the middle of a mass extinction, destroying the fertile soil, poisonig everything, running out of mineral resource, and the planet is overpopulated.

Him:......

Me......

Him: I read that we'll soon be able to colonize other planets.

Me:........

He walks away, glass in hand.

Smart And Aware People Are Ostracized Today

He wasn't your type.

If your type was the recipient of that statement, he would have responded... so what are we going to do about all that? And listened for intelligence. They are out there.

I am most interested today in-- 1927. It was the last year for unbridled stupid hubris and the year cognizant people took the off-ramp from Koolaid Boulevard toward the safe harbor vicinity.

Most of America will push back on the loss of the EPA until it is revived. That will happen before economy. It may actually be what ignites new economy.

I am looking forward to those wanting to colonize other planets-- leaving for them. It allows the only known planet to naturally sustain life to get back to doing that.

As NEOH's David Stockman has remarked... it is delusional to believe an artificially propped prosperity will last forever. Have a Plan B and a skill set handy.

Make sure your soul is showing.

How Goldman Sachs Goes Down Hard

By now, anyone blaming a "President" or any other "leader" is ignorant. We are where we are because of a Goldman Sachs. From it's IPO in 1999 to-date, this organization has done more damage globe-wide than any terror sect. Bizarrely, they didn't appear out of nowhere... Goldman and Sachs were integral in the huckstering of stocks for a bargain price of ten cents on the dollar (ninety cents owed wink-wink-wink) from 1925 through October 1929. They literally caused the financial imbalance that took down the United States of America and were shadow-present in a number of global collapses in that era. Today's alumni are Ivy League... educated purely for that ticket to glass floors above the ceiling the rest of us exist beneath.

Watch now as a series of corrupt financial initiatives attempt to usurp the less than 3% of free-flowing currencies from around the world and increase the amount stuck in a bunch of dead stocks. We broke 21,000 (DOW) yesterday. The two-day run spearheaded and led by Goldman Sachs cost the American People upwards of $1.4 TRILLION in additional debt. A "duty" was applied to Canadian lumber, an automatic triggering of hyper-inflation in housing. The attempted gasoline coup- failed. We can't afford cars or driving any longer. It is now impossible to live and work in Silicon Valley for less than $160,000 in annual salary but nearly every other place in America has people living on roughly $13 hour wages from multiple low-paying under-employment that is truly the crux of ALL big retail storefronts. The latest-- "Cohn" is a former Goldman Sacher in a key Cabinet role under Trump now and the likely successor to Janet Yellen in the Federal Reserve.

I ask you... how are the following nations fairing today: Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Puerto Rico, Poland, Romania? Each is gripped by Goldman Sachs' debt contracts. We are heading into a body-slamming crash now. On the docket for Friday... Congress MUST pass the submitted national budget or America shuts down. In that budget is the full-brunt cost of Trump's Wall. Not a penny paid by Mexico (his campaign promise), no tariff intact tapping Asia for import damage, no new jobs or better pay for his working-age supporters, no unity in the nation BUT... windfalls for lobbies.

See you Monday, America... intact or broken.

When Change Happens

Three books coming. Change coming before them.

I want you to understand something very significant-- we (globe-wide) have not had significant change for decades now. We have had "change" like when auto companies and fashion designers add new colors or toy with components and market the product as- new and improved. Technology is not change. It's cancer. Fuel for complacency. When you remove the Chaos and brutality of Trial, Error, Feast or Failure... you get- Complacency.

When the world knew brutality before anything else, two factions dominated. One used brute force in onslaught to conquer. The other used commonsense and intelligence to thwart the brute and force deviation. There are tales of brute forces driving wild animals through forests ahead of them. The scared and frightened beasts would run ahead and emerge in the enemy camp field, surprising those troops and causing enough Chaos to give the brute the advantage and edge. It was a clever tactic. But as such a trick was played in repetition, it was eventually gamed-on. The enemy learned to "surprise back" the animals and send them panicky back toward the brute. The enemy learned a scatter technique that sent the brute into their camp where he could be trapped by split forces flanking and fronting him. He could emerge to find bloodied corpses covered in what looked like blood (slaughtered animals) and once fully in that camp- surprised by rising from-the-faked-dead warriors and slaughtered by re-surprise. The point is... old tricks are often thwarted by people intelligent-enough to read history and remember it.

An I-Phone addiction leaves a befuddled mess once silenced. A salaried complacency is no match for the guerrilla world it created by oppressing others. A degree is only as good as the skill set gleaned in the classroom then tried and forged in the REAL world. Complacency is cancer. Funny... once there was a motto "NO FEAR" supposedly created to ease the tension of people being led into assimilated existence for the Rise of Big Brother. Perhaps the new motto will be "FEAR". It's only when change takes you by surprise and you exist the next day that you truly grasp how complacent you became and how sweet freedom tastes, even when you are forced to earn it.

TODAY. It's Day 100. Budget in Congress. Anger and Frustration everywhere else today. The forest is full of scared wild animals.

Le Pen loses.

For all the whining and protesting being done by those who will rage against the machine, apparently not enough want to actually see the machine fail. You can't rally with I-Phones in hand and expect corporativism to fall. You have to lose the I-Phone... which most if not all are now addicted to. Corporativism won again on Sunday. The EU remains intact. The suppression and oppression continues. Generations who want change really like salaries and imported fad crap instead.

C'est la vie.

Left Or Right: It Doesn't Matter

There will come a time, as desperation spreads among the dispossessed middle class, when the linear movement between two opposing and equally useless options will be abandoned and a spiral movement will begin, probably when the level of abstention is so high that it will destroy the legitimacy of two-choice elections.Arriving at this point, desperate solutions will be pushed by the dire conditions of the majority of the population.
And there we are. Totally unable to conceive the real terms of the problem. Our society is an emergent phenomenon which we cannot really perceive, full of unknown unknowns and our desperate two-dimensional search of something that will save us is hopeless: left or right doesn't matter.

What's Happening Here Now...

Few realize that when Alberton's (grocery) tried to buy Whole Foods, it was more than just a power play toward the healthy food chain. Nearly ALL mid-sized grocers are going down now. Marsh filed for bankruptcy protection this week.

JC Penny losses doubled. Sears and K-Mart are essentially gone. One thing you should know about each of the failing entities today is- a commonality. 100% of them are run by equity groups and 100% of them go down with massive debt. Forensics on the debt is revealing that nearly ALL of the debt didn't go to salvaging the entity. In fact, there isn't much merchandising debt out there... it's in the stock markets! Yes... you are struggling so you retain an equity group to help you and they ruin you by liquidating all you have and gamble it in-- rigged stock markets.

One thing is becoming super clear... the politics are a smoke screen. The real enemy of the world is the collective financial sectors and the weapon of mass destruction that frees us all is amazingly simple... super nova. Bizarrely, the more you have, the less you can maneuver now. The less your credibility will be soon. Being wealthy is about to become as cancerous as-- cancer. Word is-- Warren Buffett is taking massive hits on his investments. So what?

Remember this-- most recently, less that 50 people globe-wide had more wealth-in-assets than 4 BILLION other people. That doesn't mean a handful of people have more cash flow, just more assets and all of them are intrinsically tied to phony money and corrupt accounting. The rest of the world is finding it harder and harder to just-- live, so those with their heads in the sand are now beginning to poke those heads up and are massively ill-equipped for what they see.

MIDDLE matters. Always has.

Wal-Mart to go after Amazon in Sales Volume (not earnings)

Today's youngest adults are busy marveling at the industrial integrity of mid-Century gadgets and devices. One of the most talked-up topics is how the heaving higher in quality devices sold relatively cheaply in ordinary department stores were an amazingly efficient market tool. Supply line-side was a craft-racket of epic proportions and a cascade of prosperity. From the ore mining to metal refinement to the tool making and parts stamping, to the motor manufacturing and assembly to the testing, boxing and national logistics, to wholesale to retail to sales, then service and even reconstitution... America made America GREAT just by sharing the opportunities because there were no legacies or degree thresholds-- just pride. Your doctor lived down the street next to the garbage man and everybody collectively despised the insurance agent and did stuff together after work. We got-- educated back then... rather than "test" and our government protected us, not screwed us or colluded with wealth to conjure up wars or false competition that padded already-too-stuffed demented corrupted not-good-for-America pockets. Young adults examine those devices carefully because-- they can see plain as day that they will NEED to know crafts skills soon.

Technology and greed are the new conundrum... what happens when the seemingly unstoppable demise of Humanity by irresponsible technology collides with the stubborn corrupt nefarious over-reaching fat and flat-assed greed and the vast majority of once-productive able-skilled mainly middle is forced involuntarily to watch from the side lines? The answer is-- it won't be greatness again until long after the dust settles and sunlight once again warms our globe. FEW realize that Donald Trump and a host of Hell-born sludge like him emerged from mansions from roughly 1977 through 1990 only to steal the momentum of millions of Americans and convert it all into an inheritor-legacy machine with absolutely no possible way to NOT steer this once-great nation to it's demise. Garbage wealth with its hand permanently attached to the Cookie Jar and not a day of honest labor for fair pay since the day they were born. OUR WORST.

When you see such utter stupidity as a ramp-up of garbage goods not made where they are sold and a ramp-up of salaries to zombies doing anything BUT working to make America great again just mostly tweeting in office suites... and a President who can't fulfill ONE promise or stop tweeting... while upwards to 85% of America now starts to hunker down (or has been oppressed down already); we get a Garbage Goods Shipped from Online Sales War that no one in their right mind needs. There are people living entirely off goods from Wal-Mart and Amazon... employed by entities who take profits from the America these no-class-losers bleed salaries in. It's like we are forced to stare at Genuine STUPID drive us to ruin. There is NO upside or positive to this at all.

Well... one positive. Dwayne Johnson (The Rock) wants to run for President after Trump is thrown out of the White House for stinking it up. Certainly our solution to this current mindless arrogant anti-American human pollution is-- another actor. He can reprise roles while Satan's Army steals more souls and turns them into new Twitters and Amazon junkies.

Young adults can marvel at a 1946 Era Deep Fryer and realize that 100% of it isn't remotely Made in America today and can't be as long as we continue down this path to Obliteration. The people in charge are largely over 70 and wear Depends. They have forced two of three tiers of Baby Boomers into destitution but want whatever money those poor folks have left to keep the un-American stock markets fires stoked. What a joke. Record stock prices. Record numbers of ABLE Americans no longer looking for work because work done today has no value or actual skill set. It has obedience and submission.

We won't recognize sheer Anti-Trust. We will. Soon and WAY too late.

The EUC Falls First

America watches now as it's major corporations fire and attempt to replace key executive roles (like- CEO, CFO, COO, etc...) in an attempt to stop the slide toward failure. There are virtually ZERO entities generating native (random) profit from consumer enterprise. There is some suspicion that many online sales are not to real people... they are internally generated to corrupt the data.

The Middle East is being outfitted with fresh arms as to ignite Armageddon. The idea is to create a war that cannot end against nebulous targets so that when assaults miss the intended, the unintended can strike back.

Meanwhile in Europe... the birthplace of useless employment for salaries that support unearned freedoms... suppressed data fails to chronicle the FACT that there are no nations thriving on self-generated economic vessels. Perhaps it is more inflammatory in the USA, exacerbated by corrupted Media... but all indications exist now that there is no pulse in Europe. Financial tyrannical control has achieved ubiquitous stagnation there.

Let the back-draft begin. Collapsing markets also collapse bloated over-producing manufacturing, marketing, finance and corporativism.

All Done Here?

If it is... here are my parting thoughts...

Based on observation, there are fatal flaws now in just about everything that manipulated the outcome since Y2K. It is obvious that while we were supposed to watch our PC's for time-clock malfunction, a nefarious force shifted the world into a giant oppression. The Golden Generation will expire on top, the Day After appears to be looking more and more like a nightmare. Why? The generation that could have salvaged us was derailed (mine), every "educated" generation after mine has paid themselves first and ignored the loss of integrity and enterprise.

I seriously doubt that the Robot Age will benefit Man. I don't believe in aliens so after Man is extinct, Earth will begin a new Cycle of Inevitability without Humanity.

If Man is not extinct, that which corruption suppresses today will fester to make itself better and the coming renaissance of Art, Music, Literature and Commonsense will be incredible. Elsewhere... when less than 10 people out of 7+ billion have all the wealth... 7+ billion other people will redefine what is valuable and make new currency.

As for me... I choose Life. See you somewhere...

If You Are Still Reading

Young people in Europe will not fight for future generations, for the simple reason that there won't be much in the way of future generations. Women in Europe (excluding immigrants) average 1.3 children, a very low fertility rate.
The European infecund, aging population has no reason to fight for a dubious future.
And....what would you expect from a digitised renaissance? If there will be a renaissance, it will be so: digitised.

Mortal Realization

There is said to be a $400 TRILLION shortfall globe-wide in approaching pension funds. An estimated $6-7 QUADRILLION in financial instruments now exist. Less than 3% of the world's currencies actually flow as cash right now. Just 20 years ago-- there was only $50-60 TRILLION in globe-wide currencies and the majority of them flowed along Main Streets not Wall Streets. 14 more "billionaires" have agreed to give half their fortunes away RIGHT NOW to ease the obvious. A year ago... less than 50 people in this world had more in assets that 4 billion other people. Today, the ratio is even greater. A handful of people claiming possession to everything resemble a PIMPLE not a monarchy. I have written for 10 years now about what the real PRIZE is. It's the mortal realization that when all of the currencies stop flowing (we are almost there today), these currencies and every financial instrument tied to them will become VOID of value-- instantly. What will remain of value-- the home you live in; your skill set (deemed valuable not be YOU but by the prevailing society; your ability to cooperate in random society; your ability to do things of progress-- not digress.

That last statement is the key. FAILURE holds these truths as self-evident: cycles and orbs rule Nature, so linear anything is the failure. To stand in the way of natural random order and profess a new world order is-- linear in thinking or... unnatural. It WILL fail because it has to. When you attempt to thwart natural order with technology, you create two new constants-- a self-inflicted wound that festers until your accelerated death and a gap in Evolution.

It is completely unlikely that people taking salaries in administrative jobs requiring them to mainly stare at screens and peck with fingers... acts that are completely and truly dysfunctional to random natural order-- were ever meant to survive. The Arrogant professed themselves years ago as-- a new level of Man. Really? Humans without ability to sustain and self-predicate are NOT a new rung on the Evolution ladder. They are dysfunctional to it. Before there are robots who rule us, there will be catastrophic failure that fools fools into believing a false superiority.

Nostradamus predicted a series of anti-AntiChrist characters steering our failure. The last one defaults us to ONE who redirects us toward 1,000 years of Peace. If you reduce your barriers and contemplate on a broader less-jaded view of current perspectives and circumstances... if you shed all pretenses and default to a Belief in God's Plan above all else... this IS peace. Something other than Winter- is coming. Have Faith, not Fear.

Have Faith

Living life your own way and wits is something that will make you far better men. Whether or not your financial fortunes skyrocket, the progress of your soul will, and that's a big deal.
In the long run you'll will succeed too, but that will take decades, at least. What this really is, is evolution. Humanity is slowly improving and the great blockage in front of us is a system of rulership that's basilically unchanged since the Bronze Age. It is a long-outdated, barbaric system of control and extorsion and it needs to go...and sooner or later it will go.

Have Faith.

My New Spouse Shares Your Wisdom...

She has known difficult times in her life and today she is testimony that great people rise higher by what they have endured. Tonight, she stated specifically that when you look at the life I once had and how distant I am from it today BUT still possess all the intellect I had then AND all I have learned from endurance since, I am a force.

This is what I have been trying to say for some time now... get a skill set. All we know happening around us now is truly unsustainable. Instead of letting it grip us, prepare to shift because we know it will happen. I am truly blessed by this person in my life and I cherish our friendship here too.

We should not let this site go down.

The Inevitable Reaction Against Neoliberalism

" My new spouse"...Congratulations V_L. So happy you found the one that completes you and enhances you as a person. An ideal wife is any woman who has an ideal husband :)

It should hardly be controversial anymore to say we are embarking on the "end times" of...something. Maybe it is corporate capitalism, maybe it is civilization. Whatever it is, the unsustainability of the contemporary ancien regime, on the global level, has become obvious.
Inasmuch as the predatory regime of corporate capitalism is founded on the privatization of resources and on antagonist relations of production, a more just and stable society will have to be grounded in the public production and distribution of resources, and in relatively democratic and cooperative economic structures.
We can already see the seeds of a new economy being planted. They have yet to sprout in a very visible way, but on the grassroots level there are, nonetheless, glimmers of hope.
Worker cooperatives and public banking, for example, are two concepts that are gaining traction even in the United States.
The cooperative movement is still in its early stages, so one cannot predict what its potential may be. What one can say is that public pressure will continue to build for measures like these to protect jobs and in so doing transform the economy.
If dire prophecies of another economic collapse are borne out, the chaos that follows will surely, in the end, empower radical reformers agitating for a more democratic and cooperative political economy, in addition to more conventional progressives demanding a reversal of the international austerity regime.

The sorts of changes that will someday, perhaps, make possible a move away from the capitalist "growth economy" that cannot but devour nature, people, democracy and society itself.

The Fall Of Western Empire

The evolution of complex systems is discontinuous, it goes on oscillating and collapsing. It is part of the way the universe works and if there were no collapses, nothing would ever change. It is a rule that applies to political systems and it is described with stark clarity by Alastair Crooke, as reported by Raul Ilargi in the "Automatic Earth" in a post entitled "Coming apart: The Imperial City at A Brink".
Here is an except:
Alastair Crook: David Stockman refers to President Trump as the " Great Disrupter". But this is not a bad quality, he insists. Rather, it is a necessary one. Stockman argues that Trump represents the outside force, the externality. That tips a world system, over the brink: it has to tip over the brink, because systems become too ossified, too far out on their 'branch' to be able to reform themselves.
It does not really matter so much, whether the agency of this tipping process (President Trump in this instance), fully comprehends his pivotal role, or plays it out in an intelligent and subtle way, or in a heavy-handed, and unsubtle manner. Either serve the purpose. And that purpose is to disrupt.

Why should destruption be somehow a quality? It is because, during a period when a 'system' is coming apart, one can reach a point at which there is no possibility of revival within the old, but still prevaling, system. An externality of some sort - maybe war, or some other calamity or Trump - is necessary to tip the congealed system over: thus, the external intrusion can be the catalyst for (often traumatic) transformational change.

That's is what we've been saying here. What we are feeling.

P.S.
I am just trying not to let this site die. Ciao

Over The Edge

Back from vacation. Did not pay attention to Media for 10 whole days! Didn't miss much.

Stockman is mostly correct but missing a key component. In order to end the old, the machinery of the old has to be dismantled and beaten into new plowshares before it can become obsolete. An observation few are noting today is-- what the "machinery" is. It's- Incorporation.

The Far Right have wealth and control by corporate seating. The Far Left has wealth and control by corporate seating. The seats are on different floors yet both produce a commonality-- obstruction instead of progress. The Board of Directors for any corporation were once key movers and shakers in the community who possessed specific traits to compliment those of the corporation's management. A banker and lawyer sat there next to entrepreneurs, to professionals and brand names with histories of great track record performance. The old "English" Boardrooms were smoke-filled chambers of corruption, collusion and greed. King Henry the VIII found them to be so stifling to his society that he mandated the national interest rate at 12% fixed without ANY variances and ordered banks to lend ONLY at that rate. The butcher, baker and candlestick maker realized instant prosperity because they had been stuck with excessive rates and sapped of profits as nose-bleed-level interest. The banker's relatives and friends literally went out-of-business instantly when they were forced to actually PAY interest. In modern times- Regulation "O" exists for much this same reason but not enforced, so bankers and their ilk still favor themselves and screw the broad economy. The Far Left control Human Resources and Administrative Management. HR does not hire by a skill or talent, it hires by political correctness. Management does not know how to or ever does-- manage. This is most clearly evident in Retail... which is dying.

The machine that goes kablooey in the Stockman scenario is-- Incorporation. It is already toxic on a personal basis to be beholden to a salary, an Amazon-based life and isolation for the dire circumstances everyone else is enduring. While personal debt is indeed on the rise (worst case scenario attributes today exceed those of 2007-08), corporate debt is astronomical. It is now conceivable that we are seeing bail-funding of global stock markets exceeding trillions in freshly printed non-currency everyday. The business-machine is causing what is most likely in excess of $6 QUADRILLION now and rising exponentially. Now apply THAT to Stockman's point of Trump being an agent of end-game criteria for the "old".

Read Stockman, don't BE Stockman. One of the most significant pieces of advice not heard today is-- hedge anything daily ordinary necessary... repel all things financial and money-related. We are seeing moving boxes, storage tape, dollies, hand-carts and plastic bins fly off the shelves. Everybody is "moving" but not really going places or demonstrating a "way" that translates to progress. When the "end" comes, it won't look like one. Simply, when you are struck by a wave of lethal radiation you do not fall over dead... a process begins. Defeating that inevitability requires two disciplines-- do NOT hunker-down and do NOT retain baggage. Best to have a nest and make sure the eggs in it mean something to everyone else but not at a "prize" level, more likely a component of continuance. Jokingly-- if you could corner the toilet paper and tissue stockpiles, you would control kingdoms going forward until someone else comes up with an alternative. Think THAT way, but be more sensible.

The world will be a different place as early as this September. Keep this site alive... we will need each other.

Its All Downhill From Here

I have nothing to say about the political circus or the financial bubbles that are hanging over our collective head right now. You know the story.

I want to say about the energy issues. They are an ever growing threat to humanity. There is such an incredible disconnect between the scientific data versus the stories told in the media regarding energy availabilty. The ordinary citizen thinks that because gasoline prices are relatively low (but they do seem to be creeping up) and they hear so much about fracked oil and gas, that we must be swimming in energy resources. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Of course gasoline prices are still high by historical standards and since the most of the new oil is coming from unconventional sources with costs higher than the market value of the oil, the oil and gas companies are losing money like crazy. The smaller ones are going bankrupt, the bigger ones are borrowing like crazy to stay in business and preserve their market shares. Things are really going crazy.

The Day Is Always Darkest Just Before Dawn

Things are crazy. To extend the exploitative 20th Century this far into the 21st is-- crazy. Have no fear that aspects well-beyond our control are churning now to end it. As it ends, so does all that distorted with it. Things on Earth need a rest to recover. We have been crawling all over them for decades now. That's a lot of mess for just one Mother Nature to clean and one Father Time to revive naturally.

The half-empty glass fears the remaining liquid inside is running out. The half-full glass feels privileged to have sipped at all. All pendulums swing... the trick is to not have yours stretched literally to it's nth degree in a direction so that the swing is a life wrecking thing.

It's time to get a few extra bike tires, tubes and a decent air pump... which seems easier than it really is given where all things are made these days. It's time to remember how to ride one uphill... both ways, and to get to where we are supposed to be going.

America-- unusable healthcare. Tax cuts for the rich. The rich don't spend anything now that generates economy. How much longer can a woodchuck chuck wood when a woodchuck cuts all the trees down and exploits the forest? There will be a gap time. It will be truly crazy because of the fear and paranoia. We will see things end that we probably knew- would, but could not fathom the actual event. Some different things will replace them. I believe the Bible says there will be great gnashing of teeth. There will be... but then common sense and the will of the majority will exceed all other falsenesses-- like wealth, power, fortune and arrogance.

My name is- Craig. I was a lender once. I haven't been a lender in a long time. What I have been since then is broader and more capable of shifting with circumstances and events because little to nothing of my life has been in my control since then. I have experienced a lot of pain and still woke up, stood up and tried to progress the next day. It is a skill set far-beyond anything any college or university can offer anyone. It is Life. There will be a tomorrow. It will be different than today. I accept that.

The Tomorrows Of Yesterday

Hi Craig. My name is Valentine, and now I am going to bore you with my Italian family's story. It is linked to the great fossil cycle.

My mother is Italian, born in Florence. The most remote ancestors of mine were living during the early 19th century and they were all poor. But their life, just as the life of everyone in Italy and in the rest of the world, was to change with the great fossil revoluton that had started in England in the 18th century.

My mother's great-great grand-father, Ferdinando (born in 1822) lived in an age when coal was just starting to become common and people would still use whale oil to light up their homes.
He was a soldier in the infantry of the Grand-Duke of Tuscany. But despite his medals, Ferdinando was poor. His condition is described as "dire poverty" in some documents we still have. But things were changing and the conditions of the family would change too.
The coal revolution had made North Europe rich. England had build a world Empire using coal, France had its revolution and Napoleon, and the industrial age had started. Of course, Italy had no significant coal resources but, already in those times coal started being imported from England and that changed many things.
Tuscany was slowly building up a certain degree of prosperity based on a rapidly developing industry and on a flow of tourism from Northern Europe that had made Florence a favourite destination.

Antonio, Ferdinando's son and my mother's great-grandfather started a career as a painter. That such a career was possible for Antonio was due to tourism becoming more and more common in Florence. Color photography did not exist at that time and this led to a brisk market of hand-made reproduction of ancient masterpieces. It seems to have been a rather diffuse occupation and Florentines were adapting to the opportunities that the world changes were offering to them.
But Antonio never was very successful as painter and in his later life he moved to a job as a guardsman. Still, he had escaped the poverty trap that had affected his ancestors.
Tuscany in the 19th century was still a poor place, but its economy was rapidly growing as a result of the ongoing coal age that opened up opportunities that had never existed before.

My mother's grandfather, Raffaello, was born in 1892. Found a job in a Swiss company that had established a branch in Florence and that manufactured straw hats, exporting them all over the world. There was a reason for that company to exist and to be located in Florence. It was that the Italian economy in the 20th century had gone thrugh a rapid growth. Many Italian regions were playing the role that today is played by Eastern European countries or South-Asian ones. They were being colonized by North European companies as sources of cheap labor.
Tuscany had a well developed hydroelectric energy system and could offer a skilled workforce. Swiss, Germany and British companies were flocking there to establish profitable branches for their businesses, that was an opportunity that my mother's grandfather exploited. He bought a nice home for his family in the suburbs, very much in the style od the American dream (although without a car in the garage).
He could also afford to take his family on a vacation for about one month every summer. He could send his sons to college, although not his daughters. Women were still not supposed to study in those times.
Then came the Fascist government, the great crash of 1929, and the 2nd world war. Hard times for everyone. But my moter's granfather Raffaello's home survived the allied bombing raids.
With the end of the war, the Italian economy experienced a period of growth so rapid that it was termed the "economic miracle". It was no miracle but the consequences of crude oil being cheap and easily available. The Italian industry boomed and with it tourism. During this period the Italian labor was not anymore so cheap as it had been in earlier times.

For my grandfather, Giuliano, graduated in architecture, the booming Italian economy offered good opportunities. The period from the 1950s to the early 1970s was probably the richest period enjoyed by Italy in modern times and the moment of highest prosperity for the members of my family in Florence.

(to be continued)

Theory versus reality

Reality does not accomodate economic theory, so economists now turn to comic strips or their equivalent to deal with theoretical short-comings.

In the 1969 Milton Friedman publication, a compilation handiwork of Rose Director Friedman in gathering together Milton's essays dealing with monetary policy and some monetarist viewpoints in economics, Milton churned out an essay that served to draw the twelve previously published essays together under one roof, thus providing a name for the opus and the essay, "The Optimum Quantity of Money".

In order to demonstrate the presence or absense of currency neutrality and a few other points, he sought to introduce a specific amount of currency into the direct control of each individual, providing each resident in the closed economy with exactly equal supplements to the equal-to-the-penny amounts he originally endowed the population with to demonstrate the resulting interaction. He could have used any means to do this: a magic carpet, a blind ostrich, or an invisible samaritan. He chose a helicopter drop. Once the distribution was completed, the helicopter vanished and was never heard of or referred to again and from that point, Milton was off to address his complex point, finishing off the short Section "IV. Basic Principles illustrated" with text that pointed out "two essential empirical generalizations of long-run monetary theory:

  1. The nominal amount of money is determined primarily by conditions of supply.
  2. The real amount of money is determined primarily by conditions of demand - by the functional relation between the real amount of money demanded and other variables in the system."

The point being that he was discussing a hypothetical situation, then introduced a specific amount of currency into his imaginary condition without any additional friction or factors to interfere with a clean, clear distribution which was a one time event never to be accounted for or mentioned again so that he might assess the effects of the addition.

Might these sums not have been distributed by magic carpet, blind ostriches or samaritans? Good thing it was not, because today, and in the recent past some ambitious economists, none of whom can be considered reliable monetarists, are using Milton's Helicopter drop as an alternate means of saving us from the residual ravages of our recession. It would be ludicrous to propose we use magic carpets or blind ostriches to advance the art of monetary polcy, would it not?

Is it going too far to suggest that they probably see the means as a re-introduction of the money purloined from the system by those who backed the extraction to begin with and created the recession we know not how to resolve. Who knows that a vanishing helicopter did not appear at the loading dock one morning before sunbreak and make off with the loaded pallets of cash that caused the collapse?

Yes, folks like Ben Bernanke, Willem Buiter and other lesser known flickering lights have turned a casual device into monetary policy. Which in turn causes people like Claudio Borio, Ben Bernanke, Richard Caballero and Stephen Grenville, Adair Turner, Lucretia Reichlin and other equally competient people, to spend time discussing some improbable and a great number of likely soft spots that would be created by the practice should it be introduced. We might assume that the new helicopter drop is offered as a means of counterbalancing the QEs of trillions of dollars distributed to the commercial side of the equation. If it doesn't work, another helicopoter drop QE or two to the commercial side will follow and around and around we go a la France late 1700s.

Sound ludicrous? From what point on?

Better yet, let's don't call up Friedman's memory and cast the burden of responsibility onto his shoulders. He never mentioned any such monetary policy. He was too smart for that. In the first place, as Borio et. al. point out in their paper, "Helicopter Money: The Illusion of a free lunch" - the last section of which is headed Beware of central Banks bearing gifts, they also pointed out that this is not a matter for central banks, giving away money is the privilege of the governments through fiscal policy.

.

Does this desperate move illustrate the hopeless state of economics in dealing with the recession they cannot understand because they choose not to identify the culprits who created it or discuss how the same people benefitted from it at a cost borne by everyone else?

Our History

Thank you, Valentine! The name suits your heart well. Writing here to create another broad box.

Mine rode north from Macedonia as retired Roman soldiers to copulate with Steppes people who likely migrated west from India (forced out mercenaries). They settled in a lush place in what is today- Slovakia. My great great grandfather immigrated to America as a noble and was quickly fleeced of all he had by nefarious Irish and Germans in the Pennsylvania Commonwealth. He would die in prison there, condemned for convenience because PA could not feed the victim-immigrants at that time. They sent them to jail and many froze to death in stone blocks without heat or running water. My great grandfather was rescued by his sister off the streets at 6 years old, adopted and took her husband's name (now my last name). That man came essentially from the same geographic area as we did. As an adult he moved to Detroit for work, met a woman from that same ethnicity, married her and produced 11 children, 9 lived to adulthood. Somewhere in their history there was a Jewish man who gave them Burger's Disease and it took legs from my grandfather and father's brothers before killing them. I have no trace of that in me. Of my father's siblings, 1 fought in Austria, another in North Africa, my father in Germany, another became a career Navy Officer and saved the fleeing Americans off a Viet Nam coast under attack, another was a prominent lawyer, another was the character Marlon Brando portrayed in The Wild One and lived on the edge. My mother's family were Irish and German who also came to America in the latter 1800's. Her father crashed in 1929 and never recovered, becoming a Merchant Marine before WWII and died on church steps as a broken drifter. Her mother raised 4 children on a phone operator's paycheck. My parents met at a friend's birthday party, married, raised 7 children in an Upper Middle Class way.

My father was a Realtor for more than 50 years, most of that self-employed. It was from his efforts and disciplines that my own were patterned from. If it were not for his way of managing unsteady cash flow through diversity and discipline, I would have succumbed to the rises and crashes America has endured about every 6 years of my life. I earned my degree by correspondence on flights between offices in 42 states nationwide, where I was a Master Lender. My career was destroyed in 1999, then again in 2007 by nefarious Ivy League people, like those who are Goldman Sachs alumni today. At my lowest point (while still able to post on this site), I had nearly no income and lived destitute but not homeless. I owe a lot to tenacity, the wiles my father taught me and an undeniable Faith in God's Plan for me. I managed to retain the historical history of my family through this, met and married a woman with an Eastern European background who was able to decipher much of it (old style script writing) to tell me my real history. Ironically, her roots and mine lived close enough to have traveled same roads together. She is very stable. I have been able to progress with her and will rise back up and return from my Oblivion soon. I expect to write about it. My children survive me. Three amazing daughters who are young adults now and finding their lives tempered by the wisdom and disciplines I have passed on to them.

Life is funny. I survive today mainly because of what the curs of my ancestry did, not the nobles, and from my life lessons not education. I look forward to your continued history.

The Importance Of Roots

There are only two lasting bequests we can give our children - one is roots and the other, wings. I have both. Inside me, a secret swan slumbers longing to burst forth and take flight.

"I look forward to your continued history". Good, I'll continue.

....The period from the 1950s to the early 1970s was the moment of highest prosperity for the members of my family in Florence.
Then, there came the crisis of the 1970s. In Italy, it was defined as the "congiuntura economica" a term that indicated it was just temporary, a hiccup that was soon to be forgotten as growth were to restart. It never did. It was the start of the great oil crisis that had started with the peaking of the US oil production. The consequences were reverbating all over the world. It was in this condition that my mother's generation came of age.
Her generation was perhaps the most schooled one in the history of Italy. But when they tried to sell their skills in the labor market, it was a though time. They were clearly overskilled for the kind of jobs that were available in Italy and many of them had to use again the strategy of their ancestors of old, emigrating toward foreign countries. It was the start of what we call today the "brain drain".
My mother moved to the US for a while. She could have stayed there, but she found love in Paris (my father is French) and a decent position with Opera National de Paris.
One thing was sure. The life of my mother's generation was way more difficult than it had been for their fathers and grandfathers. Of course, they were not as poor as their ancestors had been in the early 19th century, but supporting a family on a single salary had become nearly untinkable.

There came the end of the 20th century and the 2nd millennium as well. Another generation came of age (my generation) and they faced difficult times again. Perfect candidates for the brain drain trend. I still have to find a decent job. The oil crisis faded, then returned. The global peak of oil production was closer and closer, causing the start of a de-industrialization trend that's still ongoing.
Only agricolture and tourism are still doing well in Italy. That's specially true in Florence, a town that went through a long-term cycle that transformed it from a sleepy town into a sort of giant food court. Tourists are still flocking to Florence in ever-increasing numbers, but they don't seem to be so much interested in art anymore: their focus today seems to be food. It is for this reason that, today, almost everyone I know who is under 30 is either unemployed or working in restaurants, bars and hotels.
People keep adapting to changing times as they have always done everywhere in the world. It is hard to say what the future will bring to us, but one thing is certain. The great cycle of the fossil fuels is waning. The hard times are coming back.

Thank You For Your History

My parents settled on the East Side of Detroit. He held three jobs while she raised her own children and pulled my father's siblings from an orphanage and raised them too. He obtained his Real Estate license after 1949 and began selling tract homes in the new "suburbs" to accommodate the growing ranks of auto factory workers and all of the other enterprises that grew as they did. The East Side suburbs attracted Germans, Poles, Italians, Hillbillies and banned Blacks in writing on the property deeds. I was raised in a pool of ethnicities raising baby boom children. Every stove had a pot of water simmering on it and it was not uncommon to go see your friends and stuff yourself with a lot of sausage, pasta, pierogi and when of age- beer. The Italians I grew up with were from Terrasini... a seaside craftsman village that sustained on ocean fare and wine. The value they brought to America was in the building of custom houses, custom iron and brick work. My father and his Italian immigrant business partner barely understood each other but were both very honest so the relationship lasted decades, as did the German bricklayer/farmer and others. Every 6 or so years, America would fall into a deep recession that sent the weaker workers back to Europe while refining the doings of the risk-takers. The lesson learned was-- be a key component in the facilitation, there is enough money for everyone. 1979 brought the current generation of Ivy League into Middle Management roles their fathers put them into. From that day to now we endure what you and I both struggle with.

Tourists and flourishing towns. You know full-well that I am a big supporter of skill sets. The "globalization" era we initiated in the 1990's opened the door to wandering all over the place and plopping our stinky greedy fat American asses on fragile unique environments and cultures. Everyone from Gays to Pedophiles to Racketeers followed and forced the world into a chain of speedy mediocracy outlets. You don't make your own tee shirts, you import them, but your nation was once renown for it's textiles, sewing and tailoring. The Piedmont Valley wines were hallowed once, now the puree is shipped to China. The world needed a renaissance in art, music and literature but got stuck with Amazon, Facebook, Apple, Netflix, Google and Twitter zombies instead. The career condition you describe is directly relative to global secular stagnation. You were abhorred by NEOH's and my stance on Trump. We do not support Far Right... we support bulls in china shops that need fracturing and Chaos.

You need to know something that, I think, was what you were seeking from Money Talk to Duff, all along. Wisdom. I enjoyed O&G and NEOH and 5-Parts because I was in need to that generation's exposure and how their sense cultivated wisdom from their experiences. I am younger but literally climbed onto their wagon early and so I am capable of gleaning from them. It is not that way ubiquitously. They... existed as adults when the globe operated independently. We became oppressed into a collective after that-- for pure greed's sake. We endure today the decay component of doing that. Guess what comes next? Yep. Bull. China shop. Fracturing. Independence that is poor and forced to cooperate too survive. It doesn't matter where you live, it matters what you know how to do. I have three jobs. The sum income of all three are not the stuff that sustains and I am certainly not able to retire--- as the onlooker can see me now. But...

America's healthcare is a mess. ACA will be destroyed, the new polarized-opposite versions will fail. Healthcare will become a crisis that will be resolved by SKILL SETS in the industry, not politicians and lobbyists. Amazon is a massive over-encompassing anti-trust pariah. It will be collapsed and divested BUT in it's wake will be-- nothing. Why? Because it ate-up the sectors it engulfed and left too little too weak to grow quickly in replacement. Your generations (21 - 56) have lived lifetimes so far without an environment that forces the weak out and forces the hopeless to get a clue, stand up and do something superhuman on sweat equity. That is coming very quickly now. It has to occur to you, Valentine, that your lack of stable career is an asset in an anomaly. You just invested 8 years writing online and participating in discussions almost no one else has. You possess all your own knowledge and a great deal of casually-conversed history. You know how to proceed.

America and now Europe possess the means for outright Chaos-- a stagnant indigenous society forced down by waves of immigrants given greater attention and in many ways-- means that are unfair and even unjust. When you pull out the fog... the indigenous remain and the immigrants MUST fly without aid. This is very much the same as the society O&G and NEOH entered into, very different than anything you have been exposed to in your lifetime. We will all endure a collapse of globalization now and the ubiquity of technology will get relegated to- tools, not replacements for empowered human thinking. Yes, it will happen. You have to be ready with confidence. You need to be able to say-- this way... when a lot of other people are confused. You need to grasp fundamentals and know when you aren't seeing footings where they need to be. It's what REALLY matters. 40 years of baloney... 1978 to 2018... ends hard. It has to. Bizarrely for me... that literally spans my adulthood, I have been manipulated all that time. Imagine the possibilities as I am free for the first time.

I can help you. Certain barriers must drop, certain perceptions must be challenged, certain risks taken. Nothing great comes from osmosis.

Emotional Strength

Craig...you said: "I choose life", " I choose to live". Meaningful words.
We have natures that are suited to high adventure, yet we ramain stagnant. Why? Because we have been conditioned only to exist, not to live.
Humanity in our time remains in infancy. We are essentially unlimited creatures, yet we have been wallowing in abject poverty-phisically, mentally, and spiritually. Look at our history: 6.000 years of wars, famines, epidemics and nonstop misery, dear God isn' it time to question the rules we have been living under?
All of the socal, sexual and political norms that people now hold dear will someday be gone and will look as archaic as praying to the gods of wind and rain. Most people are living in ways that will be pitied by future generations. The fashion of this world will pass away. And it will not be missed.
Our life is too valuable not to be lived. We have unlimited potential. Why the fear of expressiveness? Why the paralyzing fear of being different?

Your message, Craig, can help because it has emotional strength. This is what works. Rigorous intellectual arguments are not enough and in many cases they are counterproductive.

Two Ways To Rail Against The Machine

One: Opt Out and become dysfunctional. You'll look cool to yourself and maybe a few friends, annoying to the rest of the world.

Two: Defy assimilation. Sure, it's not a popular choice because assimilation has so many perks (tongue-in-cheek) and it requires a massive amount of thinking and making commonsense decisions about life.

Did you ever think about God and His Plan, relative to people living on Earth today? Here He goes to all this trouble molding us out of clay and breathing life into our form so we can exist honoring Him but evolving according to His Plan (life is a journey not a canned good with the lid open spoiling on the counter from what falls into it). I revel in the thought that one-day... my mangled folded mutilated worn-out Self will pass on carrying with it a lifetime of exposures experiences and amazements, while others let a plastic society become their god. I expect to be re-invented by God bestowed with a helping of my evolution added to what He re-animates. I expect there to be an awful lot of SLUGS under rocks in that lifetime... those given a rare LIFE wasted on deception greed no character no ethics no fortitude, just an endless thirst for koolaid. May the Salt of the Earth rub them eternally. (LOL)

There is a reward for the type of strength I recommend... tasted part of it yesterday, then worked until Midnight and was up before Dawn to work my other jobs. I will gush on it as it unfolds... going home in a sense... all the better for the detour, I think. Things are unraveling. Fear grows among those hypnotized by No Fear. Loose ships-- sink. Have focus today. What YOU see is not what THEY see. You will see Opportunity with clear vision toward what's really real.

An Idea For Your Independence Day

Another 4th of July is on the near horizon.
If you are on Mr. V_L's side and buy into his theories, please prepare to meet him. He has just popped the cork on a little bottle of Chianti, the fava beans are on the stove, you will just allow the wine a little time to breath.
V_L, reluctant citizen of the American Empire, claims his right to criticize and reject the economic fiasco, the greed and lies.

This Independence Day, politicians will drone on about American Exceptionalism. They will envoke the blessings of God, as they hand over another trillion bucks in fiat currency to the US Military-Security-Intelligence Complex. They will get teary-eyed as they speak of the American Dream and their sleep-walking constituents will proudly cry with them.

But if you are on V_L's side....the Chianti is opening up nicely. Would you prefer ribs or flank steak?

P.s.
I am going on vacation tomorrow. Ciao

I Don't Have A Side.

It's baked pork loin stuffed with fruit and cheese with a Merlot during and some homemade champagne after.

Energy Bonanza announced. More gas. No one wants it. They have no Plan B. No beef.

Enjoy your vacation. I am working. Still and often.

Work in progress for me...

Now You Don’t See It, Missing It Is Fatal.

By:

It’s the mid-1600’s in America and you are in a log/sod cabin deep in the woods without the Internet. You don’t know how you got there. There is no UBER waiting to take you from there. No road exists. There are wild primal sounds beyond the front door and they don’t sound like anything Simon Cowell would endorse. In fact, you are there in the wild and you need to— survive. Survival belongs to the fittest and in that time, in that place, holding a wad of stocks in a rigged market bought using fiat-printed money, recommended by drug and number addicts, alienating your family and prioritizing wealth-mongering… makes you a target for dinner, not a diner. Hundreds of thousands of people no one remembers- died in those woods, in those conditions, by making wrong decisions and believing Koolaid relieves a thirst caused by a lack of commonsense and basic survival instinct... one can become a morsel.

I offer you this. When we actually had an economy and you were part of it, gleefully chugging along in your career field and participating in real life, it in no way resembled who you are today and what comprised your existence. Few can deny this because no part of today’s world resembles the world when it functioned. We exist today in what may be best-described as Total Dysfunction... but not Chaos. REAL people thrive in Chaos and fester in Order. The debate about Order is moot-- its all we have now, suffocating everyone. We endured gross terrorism in the last decade when virtually everyone with a viable function was eliminated from the workforce and generally barred from re-entering it through manipulative devices. The people eliminated--- were the economy. The people who survived the cuts— were not only dysfunctional to any real economy but their existence in key roles on excessive salaries that fueled an encapsulated economy— caused 100% of the distortion we have now. What we have now is unsustainable. A crash is inevitable but calling it that is under-estimating the size of the wave by a long shot. The real horror ahead is catastrophic failure. It comes when there are people piled on wagons without wheels geared with harnesses to dead horses force-imprisoned on them and an infrastructure so deteriorated that it resembles the woods of 1600 described above.

I was a wave-surfer for most of my career. Not because I liked to job-jump a lot. I grasp- cycles- and can roll with them. We were once called- change agents, but those who labeled us never really wanted "change" they wanted Dollars and were willing to go through as many people as necessary to acquire windfalls. Each windfall killed off some vital component of economic stability- locally, regionally, nationally, then globally. I possess a rare discipline few were willing to endure, much less excel in. I had a formal hands-on old-school often-oppressive base education in my field that included textbook rote with exact execution. I wasn't taught to test, I was taught to learn and to keep evolving. Once "graduated" it was more a matter of absorbing my experiences as lessons and transform a broad scope of them into wisdom fuel (competence) that was worth it’s weight in everything. Ironically, such a broadness hasn't been taught or learned in decades. We are compartmentalized with fractional skill sets... so when a modern "degree" meets such a broad person, they cannot fathom the breadth and width and depth and dumb the image to their narrow perception. Proof-- I was once interviewed for a credit position at a major bank. The snide person doing the interview said I was ineligible because I did not possess the "credential" and showed me the training book. I opened it and recognized the blatant plagiarism of an older manual I once had to memorize. I turned it back around and recited it verbatim. Shocked but then smug, the interviewer called it a "trick" and insisted on the [hollow] credential. THIS is absolutely what is wrong in the world today. A degree; license, badge or belt is meaningless. Ability is everything... always was, will be again.

The component of Finance I engaged in once broadly hurt many people but after the Small Loan Act of 1905 passed, it saved millions following the Great Depression. The field (in Credit) shifted daily with changing aspects in Society. To be great in it, one needed commonsense, not organized crime or a narrow mind routine. Essentially, I ran in direct opposition to what Wall Street was doing. Wall Street needed to steer clear of Credit but couldn't resist it. And their ties in Politics was and remains a fatal flaw. Its like this-- when credit portfolios were local, trends were easily observed. Concentrations of decent wage earners afforded steady sturdy growth that survived all of the ups and downs every economy cycles through every 6 years or so. One learned that a quiet mostly white-collar concentration unchecked for credit over-extension was a powder keg so devastating that it could and did wipe out the security interests pledged and leave only expenses where assets once existed. Norwest (now Wells Fargo) to National City (now PNC) Bank to every derivative-toxic portfolio stagnating today demonstrates this identical structure... a portfolio is a moving object until it is subjected to stoppage and all its contents drop their juggling balls. The mess that ensues doesn't liquidate-- it disintegrates unless managed correctly. You cannot automate moving targets so absolutely NO automated computerized portfolio has a clue about its volatility.

Wall Street attempts to tame things they shouldn’t to automate wealth-taking. When Goldman Sachs inflicted their Mark-to-Market credit facilitation debacle on the credit industry, it literally tore the world in half. The war against fraud was tilting in favor of high discipline by the demands of file integrity. Simply, mandating a set file structure and holding ground on variances, warehousing facilities could and did filter down the amount of fraudulent components in [at least] mortgage credit. That is, until Goldman Sachs gave the Mark Tool to Bank Fools who forewent every cross-check and balance effort in order to throw garbage into securities on Wall Street. THIS is the crux of our economic collapse in both 2001 and 2007-09... previously pristine portfolios of performance putrefied by point-of-sale pandered poop authored by originators paid points on aggregate loan amount. A LOT of crooked sleazy people made a LOT of money ruining the credit portfolios of the world. Question the-- world-- reference? We know for a fact that Charles Schwab had advertised a "fund" based on global currency backings that turned out to be backed themselves by Subprime mortgages! As soon as Schwab analyzed its own position, it refunded early investors and learned a sober lesson. This is a rare event on Wall Street... somebody actually learning about a portfolio concern and making restitution when wrong.

There are no stable or solvent portfolios in Wall Street office buildings today. Zero. The terror sect that attacked credit and has assimilated it into a network racket cannot deny a simple test (and it isn't a mocked-up phony "Stress Test"). Here it is-- if you have a cup of fresh water and drink from it, it sates your thirst. If you pee in a cup and drink it, it poisons you. If you mix the two cups, it ALL becomes poisoned and so do you should you drink it. This is by fact-- the state of credit worldwide today! There is huge debate over the extent of the pee in that cup but here is my take on it. By 1998... there was $50 to $60 trillion in global currencies coursing through economy from here to there along Main Streets and Exchanges. Since then, financial tyrants have mutated vessels like-- derivative contracts, debt notes and other assorted worthless-to-us-all kinds of financial paper into a new form of currency. These have no validation against anything sensible and the "pee" may actually be that holders of the paper may also be their own debtors so the paper validity is-- fiat. The pus inside this bizarro-currency is tremendous. Just ten years ago it was estimated that over a million rich people possessed the same in assets as 2.5 billion other people around the world. Since then we have seen the ratio distort to become less than FIFTY rich people possess the same assets as 4.5 billion other people. Bizarrely, those few rich people possess ALL of those fiat financial instruments and are likely the debtors to them. There are almost no free-flowing paper currencies left in the world and those who hunkered down after 2008 haven't touched a penny in savings, so... the entire distorted steaming pile of fiat wealth instruments is made out of-- invalid non-coursing social and economic dysfunctional paper owed to those who own the Notes! Derivatives alone were estimated at $632 trillion in August, 2012. We have bailed stocks ad nauseum since and based on exponential breadth... the sum total financial instruments in the world today (all demanding credibility) could easily exceed $5 Quadrillion. Less than $60 trillion of it is actually validated (fresh usable water) and that- by historic references only. The rest is a LOT of pee in the cup.

Alright... we are back in in that cabin again without modern resources. Our I-Phone doesn't work and we can't Twit (a Trump nightmare premise). The longer we stay in that cabin and that era, the more likely we become another random society obscure in history and forgotten. There is an old fat man in the corner with all that financial paper demanding we carry him during any concocted survival quest. There is a dude in another corner with an arm-load of technology claiming they are integral in our lives and insists we carry him too. There are all kinds of "groups" stuffed in that cabin also insisting we carry them because they are special. Stockpiling guns, gold and ammo isn't prudent... best left in the vintage Cadillac we once thought was a good investment in spite of it being all about dinosaurs and fossils. We- we are plain-out hungry and all we want is to not become a meal for something that will take bites out of us while we are catatonic but can feel the fangs sink in. We have base skills or at least our ancestors did that might be able to carve survival out in that wilderness if left to our own wiles alone in that cabin... but we aren't alone. In fact... few societies ever in the History of Man had more baggage and monkeys on their backs than we do. We even have our own families (IF the word is applicable now) living off us.

What would YOU DO in such a circumstance? The answer will vary across the globe. My father once told me that all pendulums swing. Man has, since his dawn, tried to prevent an unwelcome swing only to mess enough with the contraption to destroy his progress and invite de-evolution. We are there now. The razor-sharp blade begins to slice through financial tyrannical manipulation which has left our civilization exposed. It deteriorated while we were distracted by play money and false elitism. It is time to leave the cabin or be sliced in half by cyclical inevitable Fate. Wake up. Take ONLY what you need. WHAT do you need?

Son of Work in Progress

When Greed Isn't Good

By:

In the early 1800's an unknown young man fresh out of an American university traveled abroad, to France, specifically, and sat through lectures at the Sorbonne given by some survivors of the French Revolution Era. His focus was- and remained so thorough his incredible career-- on Economic History. Following those lectures, he would become a young Professor at the University of Michigan. A half-century later, he would lecture BOTH political parties in a sitting Congress on the history of recessions and how they might avoid this nation's first one. There had actually been many recessions in America before that lecture, but most of the Elected knew quite well that the playing field had changed and with it-- the dynamics in motion and in variable potential. Later, that young man as an older man would Found Cornell University.

The man was: Andrew Dickson White and the lecture was published as: Fiat Money Inflation in France. I was privileged to trip over an early unabridged version and got to be part of that Congressional audience in my imagination. I read White's words likely as he spoke them. The book-- a marvel at only 108 pages with spaces-- is actually scary. Why? Because an astute reader can overlay modern characters onto the names of historically accurate French of that Era, and read it as if it is unfolding today. In short... it's premise tells us a history we apparently are forever doomed to repeat. It's a tale of greed and it doesn't end well for anyone of that day. There are no winners in cataclysmic failure.

White calls today's Wall Streeters in that French Era-- stock-jobbers. In his succinct description, one grasps the slimy pariah of today in that history. Unethical lowlifes in financial driver's seats fleecing wealthy and working alike, taking the most of the pie in hand. About the only thing missing in the White version is-- fund groups. Maybe it was too obvious for garbage to collude at that level in that France. Apparently today, we call that crap-- talented. How talented can you be taking the lion's share as the nation crumbles around your nefarious activity? There was active use of a guillotine back then. Today, we can't even condemn the obvious corrupt because those whose job it is to do that are corrupt themselves. Three bodies of government... uh huh... a judicial divided by party politics, a Congressional divided by political parties and way too many "lobbies" (filthy groups with cash and select agenda, not America or Patriotism in their Creeds), a Presidency sold to the highest bidder or lowest critter who is willing to sell his/her soul for 4 to 8 years of hyper-aging followed by a remaining lifetime in hiding and under protection.

If your mind is able to expand beyond the closed narrow corridors we are forced into today... you read White's book and re-evaluate the chronology in it to cyclicality and suddenly you grasp more than a horrific event, you grasp WHY societies rise out of desperate conditions to become vessel of invention, innovation and prosperity, only to become over-organized to favor bull exploitation and new frontier suppression... then oppressed by graft, ordinances, bureaucracy and tyranny until all life is choked out of the prosperity. In a nutshell... birth is the time when desperate destitute people stand up out of hopelessness and take a Risk to save their existence. Growth occurs when another Risk is taken to sustain the motion that Birth inspired. Maturity is when the Mover and Shaker stepped back to cash-in on some of the momentum, but let administrative pariah seep-in and stain the otherwise successful enterprise. Decline happens when the premise is lost and both administrative and executive pariah stop doing business (enterprise) and begin distorting the machine to be a financial thing benefiting very few and never those who actually built it. DEATH occurs when, and the FACT is that there is always a 'when' date-- the grossly manipulated, raped, pillaged, violated machine hits the wall and disintegrates. Death always occurs- voluntarily or involuntarily and the subsequent smithereens of the disintegration NEVER reform to re-animate what the pariah took the machine to. One true fact found in White's book is... no society ever survives it's Decline arc even remotely intact, unless it voluntarily wipes out it's pariah and restores life at the workforce level.

It's interesting to note that England's King Henry VIII had to deal with a similar oppressive banker-tyrannical desperate economic period. Bankers had turned credit into a political game where friends willing to cooperate with strings attached got favorable terms and everyone else got screwed. The credit extended to the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker were so oppressive that most worked day and night for the payments, not for food, shelter or family, until gross suppression was killing most of the nation. Faced with a complete blow-out like Revolution Era France, late 19th Century America and the world as it is gripped by secular stagnation right now... Henry tried something very unique. Henry VIII mandated the universal interest rate on ALL credit attributed to the English and England be written at 12% per year, no matter who or what or where or when it was written. If you needed credit, it was 12% AND... the payment terms had to be within the capacity of the borrower to make them. This was an interesting strategy because it removed the politics from credit by simply putting it this way-- obey or lose your (bulbous bony banker head). Banks had no choice but to comply or go out of business. The butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker suddenly realized a net income off their efforts. Not surprisingly, it went into food, shelter and family... all of which appreciated in all the right ways from the new cash flow. Needless to say... numerous shoddy snooty businesses bit the dust from the new lack of cash flow because payments had to be made where they had once likely been forgiven forgotten or rebated. Did it work? England realized 264 YEARS of unbridled growth and expansion simply because Henry had harnessed bankers to be bankers.

Is greed good like Michael Douglas's character froths in the movie- Wall Street? Nope. Nada. Never. It's pretty simple, really... if all the currencies worldwide flowed on Main Streets, just about everyone would have equal opportunity to touch some, use it, and maintain robust economic movement. It is ONLY when garbage people decide to become tyrants and control currency, thus making it inoperative as a cash flow tool, that economies break. Chaos rarely ensues for a time, oppression and Order take root and truly destroy any momentum the society accumulates. Bizarrely, cycles run alongside centuries s far as Main Street relevance goes. It seems far too coincidental that we had a "Y2K" scare about our computer clocks, followed by the greatest bamboozle and subsequent suppression by bankers in world history. It's as if... if Andrew Dickson White were alive today... his lecture would be chronicling several periods of corruption layered atop one and other. His synopsis-- we are screwed, folks... unless we restore Main Street cash flow, we slide backward to a Dark Ages without a BIC lighter or Li-Ion battery charger.

When you get to the part in the book where France smashed the printing plates... think very specifically about the USA scrapping it's old printing presses and redesigning the currency. That is history repeating itself. The end-game that follows is probably the same too. France's unemployment rate in the 1790's was dismally low because so few were counted as eligible. The general population were starving in stagnation, in spite of abundant untouchable resources. Wealth spent wildly but not sensibly and debt accumulated without a real currency backed by anything tangible and viable. Stocks rose in bubbles, not vitality and there actually wasn't any prosperity. Read the book. We are repeating that history again.

An alternate theory concerning Brexit

With all of the "doom and gloom" predictions concerning Britain's exit, I found this article somewhat refreshing:
International finance expert James Lothian, PhD, the Distinguished Professor of Finance at the Gabelli School of Business and holder of the Toppeta Family Chair in Global Financial Markets, answers 4 key questions on Britain’s June 23 vote to withdraw from the European Union.

1) For the uninitiated, why is the future of the European Union such a big deal? Or is it?

As things have turned out, the E.U. is not that big of a deal. The initial impetus was good–get rid of barriers to trade in Europe. That was a big plus.

One major minus was that trade with the rest of the world remained inhibited by tariffs and other non-tariff barriers. Pick any consumer durable–say a TV, a computer or an electric drill–and you will pay at least 25 percent more in an E.U. country than in the United States.

The second was that the E.U. has become a big bureaucracy that grows like [wild] year in and year out. That bureaucracy does what bureaucrats do. They inflict costs on the rest of society in the form of taxes and regulations. All of these things have costs in terms of diminished productivity and real GDP growth. People are made worse off.

And they restrict human freedom. European bureaucrats could not give a fig about the common man and woman. Theirs is a power trip.

Washington is getting out of control in this regard. Brussels [the Belgian city the European Union calls home]is worse. It does, however, have one saving grace: more Michelin-starred restaurants than any city other than Paris. And guess who pays the expense account bills for that?
2) The European Union is obviously a huge economic entity, but with some obviously shaky partners such as Greece. [Will the] pullout by Britain, one of the largest members of the union, signal an imminent collapse of the EU?

No, but it [is] a wake up call. Some other countries may start thinking hard about costs vs. returns from membership in the E.U., and more importantly, the single currency.

3) What is the potential impact on the U.S. dollar and commerce?

A leave [will] be good for us, not huge but a positive. Trade between the U.K. and the United States, which is already considerable, [will] increase further. The E.U. has free trade within its bloc, but 20 percent tariffs on goods from the rest of the world.

4) If there are [stock]losses, will they be short-term or long-term?

The idea underlying theme is that real GDP will plummet and that those declines will feed directly into stock prices. The fact is that the U.K.’s real GDP is more likely to increase. Correspondingly, spillovers abroad will be minimal. Trade will not come to an end. It very likely will increase on net. Income will not fall. It very likely will rise. The only losers on this deal are the bureaucrats and the protected industries in the E.U. that would have to compete with industries in the rest of the world.

http://news.fordham.edu/business-and-economics/brexit-business-professor...

The Age Of Destabilazation

I am a pro-European Eurosceptic. By instinct I am a European.

Financial authorities around the world warned of dire consequences were Britain to leave the Euro, but, I recognize, it is hard to see what these might be. Britain's auto industry is mostly owned by German companies, who will not stop producing or buying cars made in their British plants. The 2008 collapse has already cleaned most of the fluff out of the City of London, which shed more than 130,000 jobs in the years after the crisis. The global ambitions of European banks are long since gone and it is unlikely that a grat deal of financial business will leave the already shrunken City.
Britain contributes half a percent of its GDP to the rest of Europe each year, mostly to Eastern Europe an I recognize this drain on the British taxpayer will end.

Europe's attention now will turn to Italy, whose $2.2 trillion sovereign debt is the same as Germany's with an economy barely over half the size. Roughly a fifth of Italian banks loans are non-performing, and Italian banks are trading at liquidation prices. The victor in Rome and Turin majoral elections of the Five Stars movement, an expression of populist surrealism, portends a collapse of the center-left government of Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. The Brexit vote probably will set an example for the Italian populists and Eurosceptics elsewhere. This is a seroius problem.

Another victor in the unexpected Brexit vote is American presidential candidate Donald Trump, whose brand of populist nationalism resonates with anti-European sentiment in Britain. Trump will point to the British vote as a defeat for elite economic management.

It is also true that in the UK there are regrets, recriminations and accusations. Young people complain that the vote did not take their interests into account. A petition for a second referendum reached over 3m votes in a few days. There is a sense of denial: if only we could turn back time...but it is too late. The UK is now persona non grata in the EU.

Populist movements arise.
People dream of prosperity but they have poverty. They dream of being important but they are insignificant. They dream of fulfilling, enjoyable work, but they have drudgery. They dream but they have no hope. Populist movements sell them hope.
When people have no hope, the sellers of snake oil become rich.

The Age of Realization Begins...

I am an individual. I am what I am and one thing I am not is-- reliant on a group for any part of my identity. This is a critical part of the approaching shift to Reality.

Nostradamus warned us about anti-Anti-Christs and I for one, was boggled by the label. What the heck could an anti anti... be? A well-known comedian's recent take on it was: so I'm the bad guy for watching a 6'4" tall man in heels, lipstick, a bad wig and odd-fitting stretch mini dress follow my 9 year-old daughter into the Women's restroom and saying that's not right. Said again different venue-- So I am a bad guy for raising my eyebrows as Janet Yellen is "data watching" today to decide whether or not she should LOWER the bank rate from 0% to giving Wall Street rebates for borrowing to keep dead cat stocks of inept business platforms alive? Notably, Nostradamus warned us about when a "European Union" forms (yes, those two words are in his quatrains) and it's collapse. We must be closing in on those 1,000 years of peace foretold in the next quatrain.

Forget about the BREXIT long enough to consider the positive impact of the Bank of England lending directly to those small entrepreneurs looking to revitalize Main Streets in hamlets, villages and urban sectors that can demonstrate a tangible commerce venue (no financial services). Reviving everything now imported back drafts a renaissance in small manufacturing, craft, skill and cooperatives. When you mention Trump, this is more likely an adjunct of his term in Office than not... all he has actually said in his rants is-- disconnect from New World Order and concentrate governmental assets on revitalizing commerce. He is the right choice for that.

I wince at the connotations of the EU going after Italy. Consider this... the Piedmont Valley still grows superb wine grapes. China buys the puree annually. End that and Italy can restore it's incredible wine-making industry. Pulling Armani, Zanella and all the other Uomo design and tailor studios back from China revives those. There is no challenge to the FACT that original indigenous manufacturing of specialty goods throughout Europe are superior to the mass-produced facsimiles made elsewhere. Italian products, Polish products, German products, etc... used to be the hallmarks. The advances in logistics born out of the everything-Amazon era will make those goods comparable in price now and eliminating Big Box dominance for smaller specialty enterprises worldwide will restore economy. Remove the tariffs imposed on countries in the EU and they can buy globally and export globally again. Free the people from Brussels Bureaucracy and grow economies.

You can grasp who loses here. Italy and Germany... over $2 Trillion in debt. Greece-- financially insolvent. Bad debt and destitution in every South American nation. It goes on. Iceland told Britain... we resisted first and it wasn't easy but there is still a thriving Iceland. Look at America after it's Revolution. The one common entity for all the world's debt is not the IMF, or World Bank or any other bank... it's Goldman Sachs... underwriter for nearly every failing vessel today.

Janet Yellen MUST act after today but which way and for what result? More "exits" ahead. That will definitely do some boggling in the Giant Complacency. Call it rash but... Close the banks, end the Federal Reserve and get RID of Wall Street. The Great Fake Money Evaporation is looking better and better every day.

Requiem For A Dream

For many years, I had thought that a united Europe was a great idea. An institution created by wise men who had wanted to avoid repeating the horrible mistakes that had led Europeans to massacre each other in two terrible wars. Europe was supposed to be a Europe of the people, a force for peace, for justice, for the defense of both humankind and nature. But it's not.
The European Parliament is a bunch of ill-advised, pompous bureaucrats wandering in a gigantic and useless palace. The ghosts of the founders had been thoroughly exorcised and now what is left is an empty shell, a structure that just perpetuated itsels without any clear purpose, except drilling more fossil fuels out of the ground and- maybe - make war to Russia.

So here is where we find ourselves.

- The economic system is not working. The age of enterprise has become the age of unearned income. The age of the market, te age of market failure. The age of opportunity a steel cage of zero-hour contracts, precarity and surveillance.

- The political system is not working. The real decisions are taken elsewhere: by the money, for the money.

- Culture is not working. When the peculiarities of community and place are swept away by the tides of capital, all that is left is a globalized shopping culture, in which we engage with glazed passivity. Man was born free, and he is everywhere in chainstores.

How will politics change without a maelstorm? Remote authority has been rejected so let'us address the task that the left and center have catastrophically neglected: developing a political and economic philosophy fit for the 21th Century, rather than repeatedely microwaving the leftovers of the 20th. If the history of the last 80 years tell us anything, it is that little changes without a new and feracious framework of thought. And when it arrives, everything changes.

Despair and rage and curse: there are reasons enough to do so. But, if the Age of Realization is beginning, then raise your eyes to where hope lies.

much ado about nothing

Oh how the main stream media and even the alternative media have portrayed the Brexit, or the possible break-up of the EU as being an "end of civilization" event.
I suppose if the internet and television existed during the 18th through later 20th century that they would have been saying similar things as colonial powers lost their own NWO of pretending to be daddy to far away lands.
The whole scenario reminds me of when we are expecting a "snow" event in northern Ohio. Initial reports call for possibly 4in of snow and then competing news channels are predicting possibly 2-3 ft of snow a few hours later. The sheeple naturally tune in to the channels that have the most spectacular scenarios. So everybody goes to bed and wakes up in the morning, looks out their window, and find 2 in of snow. Within 24 hrs everybody has forgotten about the "snowmegeddon" reports.
Mankind has the memory of a camera flash and is easily misled by "media", "politicians", and other so called "experts". We have the uncanny ability to be deceived repeatedly by these people.
The USA invaded Iraq because Saddam allegedly had a stockpile of nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons that would destroy the world. There were none. Most people in the USA give you a blank stare when you bring this to their attention. It's like talking to a dog. They just pant and wag their tail. So now we do the same with Libya, Syria, Russia and you get the same reaction.
Yes there was big money lost when those old colonial powers lost their colonies. Yes the 2% that owm 90+% might lose some. The rest of us won't notice much...unless you let the 2% convince you to die in battle so that the 2% can stay rich.

Warexit

"Much ado about nothing"

The main issue that was raised during the campaign was about immigration.
Neither Brexit, nor Italexit will solve the immigration problem. The only way to solve the problem is Warexit. Therefore it's blindingly obvious that if we want to put an end to refugees and asylum seekers, we must no longer support the mostly illegal wars that destroy their homes and countries.

If you'll excuse me...I have sun, crystal blue waters in my mind now. I will find them in Lampedusa. Tomorrow. Far away from Italian banking bailout. It will evoke the darkest days of 2008.
Ciao

So WHY Have We Not Corrected?

http://www.msn.com/en-us/money/markets/everyone%E2%80%99s-a-winner-in-br...

What you have to find fascinating about this article is--- it validates failure not omnipotence. For Central Banks to be printing at this rate, all forms of currency on Earth are rapidly declining in value due to dilution. There cannot be tangible value to anything associated with global financial sectors at all. Essentially, they fake print to bail themselves while causing the next reason to fail.

I think the one thing we aren't recognizing that aligns the current era with the past is-- people paid salaries are literally prolonging their own assimilation into the real world (which is destitute). We cannot formulate recovery until people everywhere admit that failure happened and this artificial economic stuff recovered nothing of value or viability.

Euro-exits... two pole positions to watch as this race begins... nations opting-out and forcing economy that is not based on financial wrangling (financial services totally collapsing) AND the state of Japan as nations opting-out do not recognize the obligations caused by financial tyrannical control and manipulation. When the curtains open and reveal the machine operators-- don't be shocked that you and I knew all along who they were- emphasis on "were".

Exit Update

Some interesting observations... financial people in Britain were halted from exporting assets (money) off the Isle over the weekend. Both parties prepare candidates for new election. Noteworthy... neither platform suggests a remain will gain favor so BOTH parties are soliciting for post-exit activity. Sterling is losing value against the Euro and Dollar but NO money is exchanging across the world so far today. Pre-Opening Bell stock figures suggest repayment of obligations borrowed to bolster last week.

A stall at Sears. The routine of removing all the clearance and sale tags on goods, then announcing "store-wide" markdowns is false advertising but... who can prosecute an entity going out of business? Everything left in Sears' failing stores is found elsewhere in better condition for as much as HALF OFF the price at the cashier in Sears. In other Big Retailers, they are monitoring markdowns and returning items to wholesale points when they achieve 90% off the MSRP. It tells us all that little activity is actually occurring in the B2C sector (Business to Consumer).

Technology-- it's getting very hard to actually click on an article and read it. The transition from source to view portal takes several minutes and bounces, freezes, shifts with the deluge of pariah programs monitoring what we are doing and the garbage that surrounds the actual target of our interest. It's notable that on MSNBC, an article may have just 250 words (read in a minute) but 1,000 distractions per page. We actually no longer see the distractions or have mental refusals to see them-- so they are not view-able ads, articles or anything more than nuisances. It's likely that Big Tech is creating it's own train wreck through commercial exploitation.

All of this is resembling a pimple more and more everyday. It used to scare us but no longer. Anybody read news on South America lately? Nearly ALL the nations there stopped paying on debt obligation and have reverted to social survival tactics. It's not food banks or rationing... it looks more like free markets covering necessities to ward off violence. Interesting tactic while those nations reel from a lack of jobs.

If you can't see it yet... the English have appeared to say "BOO" to the monster (New World Order) and the monster freaked out. Freezing asset exodus is the new thing to watch. Anybody notice that Switzerland is building an army and buying weapons? Why? The Swiss mailing address for VISA starts 666...

Recession Update

To further exacerbate a loser-condition for Hillary Clinton, we have these... Obama uses Air Force One to ferry her around and for stumping while the US Budget needs cannot be met by incoming revenues. She escapes prosecution for a scandal but the FBI Director clearly admonishes that she lied. Her campaign luster is contained in Twitter. There's no love or trust of Hillary. Bill stands nearby... good Americans don't want him using her position to give him the ability to seek revenge or becoming the invisible President dictating from the bedroom. Obama faces a gauntlet that will be his legacy now... he focused on LGBT instead of the USA and on illegals becoming citizens instead of helping indigenous Americans get jobs restored and business platforms dismantled. He more than anyone else appears to be a leading voice in New World Order and indentured globalization... all we got for Hipster/Dipster rule is massive debt and unsustainable things.

We need to pay attention to Big Oil again. It is fascinatingly sick to read: America has the most oil, gas prices are rising causing gluts that disappear in the bookkeeping and PLEASE let us drill in National Parks and build pipe lines that divide the nation. Oh... and we have guns and trillions of rounds of ammo to "convince" you to allow us to ruin the ground you must drive on for every little thing. Nice try, GOP, but me thinks what you REALLY got was a bill for the anti-Americanism that defines YOUR legacy. Yours is offshore and those folks are falling apart.

I once wrote long ago... where do the crooked run to once they ruin the world through Attempted Order and damage every last place on Earth? My self-inflicted answer was and remains... buy hand baskets for where you are headed.

The odds are completely against the world's people tolerating algorithmic assimilation now. When you are forced to eat cake, you grow to hate cake- no matter what the flavor. I suspect the pendulum swing requires do-able talents demonstrated in skill with a tangible verifiable result. Millennials want simplicity restored. They intend to see Bernie Sanders in the White House by write-in vote. They don't put money in banks, they don't invest on Wall Street, they don't trust or tolerate a Federal Reserve. Funny ironic... they have degrees that cost them plenty in credit debt but cannot get jobs in the fields the degree is in. They have life-lesson jobs and manage budgets and life at the thrift level. They are less likely to buy a Mercedes if they could afford one, more likely to invest in sustainable pursuits or bizarrely-- fantasy. Nothing in between. As this garbage Administration falls away, the vast majority of victims (the entire former Middle Class) will repeat what survivors of the Great Depression did. No Mercedes for those folks either.

Every "big" is at the edge of the caldera right now, seeing their very existence flash before their eyes caused entirely by their own misdoing. Less than 1% of currencies flow anywhere on Earth now. 99% of all that was valid and since fake-printed (toxic) is in a cistern the majority deem "rigged" and corrupt. The first new leader from any nation anywhere on Earth that declares all stocks and bonds BOGUS wins the trust of the vast majority.

The Giant Complacency is clutching it's throat and gasping... the Great Reconciliation is beginning. There are ample resources to validate this much corruption and commonsense to push the box it is contained in off the cliff and redistribute for a saner, calmer, unilaterally sustainable globe.

rail recession update

We've had three consecutive quarters of severe drop in rail traffic. Traffic actually started dropping 6 quarters ago but it is easily seen on a chart beginning in October 2015 (total traffic for 2015 was less than 2014).

"WASHINGTON, D.C. – Jul. 6, 2016 – The Association of American Railroads (AAR) today reported weekly U.S. rail traffic, as well as volumes for June 2016.

Carload traffic in June totaled 1,245,025 carloads, down 7 percent or 93,687 from June 2015. U.S. railroads also originated 1,295,240 containers and trailers in June 2016, down 5.6 percent or 76,920 units from the same month last year. For June 2016, combined U.S. carload and intermodal originations were 2,540,265, down 6.3 percent or 170,607 carloads and intermodal units from June 2015.

In June 2016, six of the 20 carload commodity categories tracked by the AAR each month saw carload gains compared with June 2015. These included: grain, up 13.8 percent or 12,982 carloads; miscellaneous carloads, up 17 percent or 4,569 carloads; and waste and nonferrous scrap, up 16.4 percent or 2,907 carloads. Commodities that saw declines in June 2016 from June 2015 included: coal, down 16.4 percent or 73,194 carloads; petroleum and petroleum products, down 22.2 percent or 15,415 carloads; and crushed stone, gravel and sand, down 6.6 percent or 7,727 carloads.

Excluding coal, carloads were down 2.3 percent or 20,493 carloads in June 2016 from June 2015.

Total U.S. carload traffic for the first 26 weeks of 2016 was 6,295,216 carloads, down 12.3 percent or 886,579 carloads, while intermodal containers and trailers were 6,713,003 units, down 2.1 percent or 147,056 containers and trailers when compared to the same period in 2015. For the first six months of 2016, total rail traffic volume in the United States was 13,008,219 carloads and intermodal units, down 7.4 percent or 1,033,635 carloads and intermodal units from the same point last year.

"Rail traffic remains relatively weak, with slightly better coal volumes in June offset by continued weakness in intermodal caused in part by an inventory overhang and global economic uncertainty," said AAR Senior Vice President of Policy and Economics John T. Gray. "Because current economic indicators are presenting a mixed picture, it's not clear if railroads should be pessimistic or cautiously optimistic about the near- to medium term."

Chart can be seen in the link below:

https://www.aar.org/Pages/Freight-Rail-Traffic-Data.aspx#monthlyrailtraffic

Pension Investment Update

I read this morning that Bank of America (among others) transitioned all their client pension funds to US Treasury instruments. The yield is almost negligent so those funds won't be gaining value in the markets.

Today's Dow finished UP 78 points. Can anyone tell me anything motivating stock gains besides direct Federal Reserve fake money infusions?

The new normal

Eight years ago, a person would have been mocked if he/she suggested that the main driving force behind price discovery was central banks buying bonds and stock. Today it's openly acknowledged, even boasted about, by major central banks.
"Whatever it takes" includes false data reporting. So a combination of Central Banks, politicians, and the MSM all being on the same page, combined with a clueless public, has made market making (manipulation) acceptable.
MSN had an article today predicting that the market will soar due to people with damaged credit from 2008 being eligible for new credit again!
It will be difficult to establish sane economic policy after such a long period of insanity. For now, insanity is accepted as normal and healthy. Dishonest politicians are considered acceptable. Excess debt is considered a virtue. Personal accountability and belief in God is considered ignorant. How many "likes" on facebook matters more.

Yellen Says The Economy Is "Strong"

I was fascinated by the sudden surge in job creation. Where? What jobs? Who got hired? One person commented that I was "lazy" for not looking those facts up in the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports (data). Guess what... I did and those facts were not there. A growing illumination is-- the same select people have job-jumped so many times in the past 8 years to create THESE data figures. More broadly, long term unemployment has risen monthly so that it is now the majority. Even in vital areas there are vacancy signs in commercial storefronts and some of those signs are aging. Employers are again mass terminating, but the media does not advertise it.

Why would Ford offer incentives on the outrageously (reportedly) popular F150 truck if it in fact was? Why would the 30-year mortgage rate fall to an all-time record low if we had a strong economy? Those two are in diametric oppose, not congruent alignment. I thought it bizarre that JP Morgan Economists would make noteworthy a $1.3 Trillion (USD) fake money printing on Thursday and then literally ONLY JPM and Goldman Sachs led the 250 point faked bull run seen on Friday. Financial corruption is getting blatant and yet... the majority are fixated on Racism, Police Profiling and Hate Crimes... while just a few individuals working collectively are destroying the same world the majority live in. It's apparently "PC" to voice concern over social injustices while one's own family succumbs to destitution and governments borrow so much that the likelihood of a net paycheck with ANY money in it is getting slim.

The crazy part is-- Yellen has ZERO credibility now. She hasn't said anything believable in years and obviously an irresponsible criminal level money printing scam is not generating recovery. It's fueling Armageddon. The Brexit vote came and now "a woman" will lead Britain... not a qualified candidate or a person of this or that credential and skill set... a woman. Yellen is "a woman" (I think). I'm not sure what the significance is. Globe-wide, every nation needs COMPETENT leaders... not group spew.

The lights are flickering...

Of course the economy is strong

Just look at some of the headline stories this week:

-World Trade Organization’s New Global Trade Gauge Points Weaker

-UK trade deficit widens in May

-German exports plunge: ‘Performance not champion-like’

-France’s State Budget Deficit Widens to EUR65.7 Billion in May

-German Manufacturing Turnover Falls In May

-China Said to Consider Aid Package for Struggling State Firms

-China Should Rein In Wage Increases, Official Says

-The big bank bloodbath: losses near half a trillion dollars

-Central Banks Still Intervene in Currency Markets Despite Weakened Effect

-China’s innovation economy a real estate bubble in disguise?

-Plunge in German industry output points to weaker growth in second quarter

-Lacklustre global demand may impact India’s growth: Moody’s

And on and on it goes. http://www.hellenicshippingnews.com/

Why did the dow surge on Friday? Because we added another couple hundred thousand fry-cook, bar tender, and pole dancer jobs.

Beyond The Horizon...

There are very troubled times: politically, socially and economically not only in Europe but in the world too. In addition, there is this bloody summer that melts the asphalt, liquefy the news and burns the brain. But I am on vacation (9 days left) next to water and what I do is to take care more of things to do in, at, by and next to the sea, than to care of news.
Who cares about news details nowadays?
OK, for the moment, the big things are happening.

1. London Stock Exchange and the Deutsche Boerse braced for row over headquarters after their merge.
2. The red loans in Italian banks mount 360 billion euro. At least 10 of them are in need of recapitalization and getting ready to apply for some 116 billion euro in ECB loans asap. The banks have the potential to drag Europe yet into another crisis.
3. The German Deutsche Bank does not feel well either.
4. In UK two Prime ministers saw their reputation to have been eliminated within two weeks. David Cameron via the Brexit referendum and ex PM Tony Blair via the Chilcot Report that says UK went to war in Iraq in 2003 on the basis of flawed intelligence that went unchallenged.
5. Not to mention the polical future of British Boris, Farage and Corbyn or EC's Juncker.

When Britain is done with its politicians, then it would come time for German Finance Minister to resign, followed by Merkel, and Rajoy.
A consequence of political change in Europe, something like, paraphrasing Leonard Cohen:
First we take London, then we take Berlin.

It is too hot to make plans on how to change the leadership in Europe. Mid-summer is certainly much too bad time to make strategy plans. Only rough outlines. Drafts. Short paragraphs. Key words. Titles.
News? What news?
Who cares about other news? Let's go swimming!

vacation?

What is the meaning of this word today. In the states it means if you have a "good" job that pays ~40k/yr, your employer MIGHT allows you 10-15 of personal days/yr that most people use the majority of for sick or personal appointments and emergencies.
Sitting on a beach chair while watching the sunset is something from a bygone era or only seen in television commercials.
Of course most new jobs have no paid time for being off so I feel fortunate.
The jobs in the states that have vacation time are either very upper end jobs or government jobs whose vacation time is paid for by taxes from lesser paid private employees that don't get a vacation.
I have to admit that European vacations are much different than the rest of the world. Enjoy it while it lasts because it won't last much longer for the vast majority.
Most business owners throughout the world today say "If I can get by without you for two weeks then I obviously don't really need you".
Not trying to be mean, but the European vacation along with generous unfunded pension programs (worldwide) will soon meet the fate of the current Greek tragedy being played out today.
I imagine that we'll revert to a time from past centuries which means no paid vacation.

Recharge... Don't Troll For Exposure

I disagree with NeOH on "vacation". In spite of all that is happening [to me] I still value it. I can take a day in my backyard and be "on vacation" if I use it to my advantage and actually relax. I will take time in the Summer to settle in to a deep sleep in open air (shaded from the global warming that isn't happening according to Big Oil) and use the natural energy around me to recharge. Cost: Free. Benefit: Too numerous to list.

Writing about lists... in your bullet points, NeOH, is the nearly Half-Trillion in bank losses (THIS YEAR). A lot of people are all over Facebook with condemnation of shootings apparently based on Hatred. Few grasp that Big Media was once indicted in England for stealing the cell phone of a killed kidnap juvenile so they could tap it for stories. I hardly think we are in a random event arena today. Anybody hear any more about the Panama Papers revelation? There are scores of well-known people engaged in a superiority complex terror act meant to keep them afloat while the rest of us die in the moat.

- Janet Yellen won't raise the bank rate because Fed member banks will tank for good this time as she does it.
- Global entity debt exceeds $5 Quadrillion and rising.
- In 18 US states- wealth took 100% of the QE allotted there.
- The $500 BILLION in charge offs is almost entirely Energy Sector commercial debt.
- We've closed banks for less losses and those were more solvent than today's big banks.
- The Global FAS Board says NO American Fed-member bank has met required reserves thresholds. NONE.
- Over 40 nations globe-wide have defaulted on their debt YET Goldman Sachs was a leader in Friday's BS rally.
- Obama has outright refused to answer direct questions about the state of our America economy.
- We endure 24 global war fronts- all in oil countries. The "G" nations are not winning any of them.
- A robot was used to take down the Dallas sniper. A robo-cop.
- 78% of Americans believe their government is corrupt.
- 99% of Americans are STILL waiting on a recovery from the 2008 caused-collapse and terror seizure.
- After 2008, global wealth usurped nearly 100% of tangible value repossessed assets in closed-bid auctions.
- There are 100 million long term unemployed in America, 50+ million working multiple low-pay jobs in areas below their skill level or in struggling oppressed small businesses. The average 30-something has YET to hold a single job down for more than 2 years, in a relevant non-tech position, has not paid off their college debt and cannot do basic life-requirement tasks without looking at their i-Phone every 120 seconds.

My Vacation Update

" Oh no, not a credit rating downgrade!..." our Australian friend exclaimed reading the news here in Lampedusa, where the sky is still up there in the sky although a little cloudy today.
" Oh no, the government is claiming it has to increase the intensity of its austerity plans..oh no!"
Australia now on negative watch. So what!
The media is trying to whip a sense of gravity over the S&P decision. The reality is that nothing will happen. The rating is irrevelant and the media should just ignore any press release these corrupt organizations put out. They are only designed to advance the profitability of the agency and should be subject to tight product quality scrutiny. The rasulting fines for incompetence would put the companies out of business.

I am still working while I am on vacation. I have been asked to write something about the Chilcot Report as soon as possible.
Why don't you have your Chilcot Report?

Timing Is Everything...

http://www.iraqinquiry.org.uk/the-report/

I find it amazingly fascinating to be as censored and suppressed as most of us are. The interesting part now is-- a battle will escalate to illuminate the hidden wimps behind this Global Economic Domination game. For a fact, global "best" are not playing the game, they are victims of it. As soon as the illumination occurs, me-thinks a lot of big bad paper and button pushers get extincted.

The next trick... a fair and just redistribution of a balanced and stable currency flow validated by actual work and not investment fodder whatsoever. In spite of all my detractors over all these years... it is conceivable now that closing the major banks, ending all central banks and getting RID of stock and bond markets globe-wide is an action of highest validity and priority. Unplug the thugs... see them feeble.