Sometimes the reasons you’re wrong turn out to be the reasons you’re right.
Even a broken clock is right twice a day.
Old Wall Street adage
Anyone who has consistently sounded cautionary or outright bearish notes during the last nine years of relentlessly rising equity markets has been cast aside. Wall Street is bipolar. You’re either right or wrong, and wrong doesn’t buy mansions and Maseratis. Like that broken clock, the so-called permabears have had a couple of minutes when they were right, far outweighed by those 1438 minutes when they were wrong.
Or maybe it’s all a matter of perspective, and it’s the last nine years that amounts to two minutes. In geologic time nine years isn’t even a nanosecond. Perhaps even on time periods scaled to human lifetimes and history, the last nine years will come to be seen as an evanescent flash that came and ignominiously went.
Markets don’t listen to reasons. They’re exercises in crowd psychology and crowds are emotional and capricious. That doesn’t mean that reason is a useless virtue in market analysis, quite the opposite. It’s reason that allows the few who are consistently successful to separate themselves from the crowd and capitalize on its emotion and caprice.
Reason identifies rising stock markets as one symptom of a sugar high global economy. Since 2009, staring into the abyss of debt implosion, central banks acting in concert have promoted furious debt expansion as the finger-in-the-dike remedy. Governments expanded their fiat (aka out of thin air) debt, and central banks monetized that debt with their own fiat debt. Not only did that create loanable reserves within the banking system—private debt fodder—it drove interest rates so low that yield-deprived investors were herded into the stock market. Borrowers won, savers lost.
The reason markets rose is also the reason they will fall. How can central banks exchanging fiat debt for governments’ fiat debt produce economic growth or anything else of lasting value? That metaphysical query pinpoints the artificiality of the expansion since 2009. That you can’t get something for nothing has not been repealed. The stock market has been the great and powerful Oz telling us not to pay attention to the fiat debt charade going on behind the curtain.
However, the expansion has been extraordinarily weak. It’s not clear that there has been any growth at all if you back out the debt necessary to produce what the government reports as growth. What is clear is that across developed country economies, each currency unit of debt is buying successively less growth and adding to an increasingly onerous debt burden.
Is a mechanic who warns that if you don’t don’t replace an engine part your car will break down a broken clock, simply because it may not break down this month? Is a doctor who warned that if you didn’t stop drinking your liver will fail a broken clock if it hasn’t failed yet? Objectively analyzing economies and equity markets hooked on rising levels of debt that generate diminishing returns, the conclusion is inescapable: this can’t work.
As the burden of debt becomes too much for the economy to bear, corporate profits slow and then vanish, creditors stuck with bad debt must write down assets values, and isolated credit brush fires merge and become a raging conflagration. We saw it in 2008 and 2009. Elevating the perspective beyond the last nine years, there are reasons to predict that this conflagration will be much worse, a once-in-many decades, perhaps a once-in-many centuries, disaster.
There is more global debt, either absolutely or relative to global production, than there has ever been. All financial assets are debt or equity claims. Most income streams, financial assets, and real assets are pledged as sources of debt repayment. The global economy and asset values are inextricably interlinked in a vast morass of debt, unfunded liabilities, collateral claims, inexorably declining production and inexorably mounting debt service. It can’t work and when if fails, the question becomes how far financial markets and the economy fall. If they fall far enough, the last nine years will indeed seem like an evanescent flash.
Today’s debt superstructure is built on the gradual separation of the dollar from its gold backing since 1913, when the Federal Reserve was established, to 1971, when Nixon abandoned the last vestiges of the gold standard. Central banking is a something for nothing proposition. The impending crash may well wipe out much of the ostensible something that rests on that foundation of nothing. Financial market technicians use the term “correct back” to denote the time when a market was last at a level to which that market has fallen. Markets and the economy may “correct back” to at least 1913, and the correction could extend even farther back than that.
The US’s peak economic growth was during the period between the Civil War and World War I. Growth has been in an irregular downtrend ever since as steady dollar depreciation and the growth of debt after 1913 have exacted their inevitable economic toll. During the gold standard era, there was a gentle deflation due to increased productivity and something close to laissez-faire capitalism. Nowadays only “fringe” elements endorse the gold standard, productivity-caused deflation, or capitalism, and even more fundamental ideas are under attack.
Because government is institutionalized violence, war is the oldest statist institution. What followed World War I can only be described as massive intellectual default. There was no recoil from state-sponsored carnage and the state after the world’s then deadliest war. There was no reexamination of its premises and practices, no calls for somehow limiting this deadly institution, and no reaffirmation of freedom and individual rights.
The intellectuals went the other way. They hailed Marxism, socialism, welfare statism, the income tax, central banking, and virtually anything else that increased the size and power of governments. They deplored pesky notions of individual rights, ordered liberty, and constrained government tracing their roots back to the American Revolution, the Enlightenment, the Renaissance, and ancient Greece. Such impractical precepts impeded their vision of rule by self-appointed elites who supposedly knew and protected the “common good” better than the commoners they were to rule. The cherry on this statist sundae would be global governance.
The world’s deadliest war and the introduction of weapons that could destroy humanity only twenty-seven years after the World War I armistice didn’t slow this intellectual freight train. Somehow tens of millions dead and a world in ruins thanks to the depredations of its governments was an argument for still more government and the United Nations, the camel’s nose under the tent for global government. There was nary a peep of protest from the intellectual mainstream, most of which became servants of the state. Only a few rebelled, and they were ignored, snubbed, marginalized, maligned, threatened, and exiled until they repented.
As the intellectuals sow we all reap: a world on the cusp of its worst financial crisis and quite possibly wars that could annihilate humanity. Faced with the irrefutable death and destruction wrought by statism over the 100 years, statist intellectuals no longer pretend their schemes will lead to a better world. Instead, they denigrate the reason, applied logic, intellectual rigor, initiative, hard work, science, technology, contract and property rights, markets, and voluntary exchange that accounts for what value that remains in this world. Their vision offers less than nihilism and promises to destroy that residual value. The world will reflect the chaos, panic, and blind hatred that fills their heads. If that sounds too dire, just listen to their vacuous intellectual progeny on most college campuses.
If their “vision” triumphs and the values that made civilization civilized are discarded, humanity could “correct” back to Stone Age barbarism. The broken clocks’ minute is upon us. Unfortunately, it may well last many hours.
You Should Be Laughing At Them!
There is a country in the Southern Hemisphere where a lot of people are starting to understand what you have written. They just elected a new president in an effort to impede and reverse the slide to savagery and preserve their civilization. Can we get this article translated into Portuguese?
Anybody who knows Portuguese and wants to translate and repost this article is free to do so. There is a site in France that translates some of my stuff into French and reposts it. I’ll take readers wherever I can find them.
Enjoyed your presentation on video with Patcon this year. You speak truth. It’s difficult to convince anyone when most people only want the charade to last their lifetimes. The analogy of the boiling frog is apt, there will be one last grasp to escape the inescapable. Then what, will we revert to an 18th century agrarian economy? It certainly won’t support the level of population we have now. After the great flood, God promised Noah he would never again allow the devil to destroy the world (Gen 9:15). If one is to believe the bible, then all manner of evil is set to let loose. The only defense is a belief in the truth of God’s word. The most important prep is spiritual. Thanks for the validation of what we all intrinsically know to be factually accurate. I would like to see the national debt repudiated and the Fed abolished. That would be the first step in remediation and restoration of our nation to it’s constitutional republican foundation.
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Robert, you are still repeating the same fatal flaw in all your arguments, regarding left and right ideologism, and that is, you somehow think that individuals rights are conflicting with altruism and utilitarianism, or vice versa.
Not only are they NOT in conflict with each other, but they can work harmoniously, and benefit each other.
I think I’ve said it before, and you take it as an insult, but you really are a feckless and gormless American.
You should go and live in other countries for some time, and experience firsthand, the different cultures and political/economic systems.
Yes, Robert i can’t imagine why you would take this as an insult? How very droll.
Sorry could not help me self.
“you somehow think that individuals rights are conflicting with altruism and utilitarianism, or vice versa.”
It would be vice versa from my perspective, ( you know liberty minded individuals.) Group against individual.
Government (man’s) knows best and we will take away as many individual rights as needed to 1.protect you from you to keep group 2.happy and 3.safe. Three things man’s government are very incapable of accomplishing ever!.
Having seen several other countries it was clear they do not care much for their peasants.
No thanks, most of those countries are even more screwed up than ours. I’d rather stay here and try to get this one straightened out. I have nothing at all against voluntary altruism, but altruism at the point of a gun does indeed conflict with the individual rights of the person at the wrong end of that gun. Please name those countries where such altruism doesn’t conflict with individual rights.
@Peter Harris, do not confuse happiness with the right to pursue happiness. Liberty is having the right to pursue happiness. Beyond that you are on your own.
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This LONG and detailed review on the Chinese possible moves in gold goes withe the facts on their buying the gold vaults in London and New York, and the buying of the LBMA. Connecting the dots for inquiring minds.
That was an excellent article. I posted it 11/4.
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I enjoyed the easily understood economics for those of us not employed by Wall Street that seems a synopsis of Griffin’s, “The Creature from Jeyckle Island” combined with some persuasive advise against freedom and democracy’s archenemy; world statism, or globalization. What I did not get from the introduction to your book is any indication of action. If this were an everyday article ending there I would expect an advertisement to buy gold and ammunition. What action to you conclude?
All the action I recommend is personal–get ready for collapse. That collapse will in turn do more to change things than all the determined political action in the world could do right now. The collapse, as I said in another post, will give lovers of liberty their best opportunity since the American Revolution.
“No thanks, most of those countries are even more screwed up than ours.”
What countries could be more screwed up than your country right now?
And I’m referring to like for like, not Syria or Yemen for example.
Friends and I were just sitting around the TV last night, commenting on the latest mass shooting at the Chicago Hospital.
We made the observation, that the US must spend maybe billions of dollars each year, to protect Americans from domestic and international terrorism, while at the same time, completely accepting mass shootings occurring virtually every day.
What an absolute absurd Paradox that is!
“I have nothing at all against voluntary altruism, but altruism at the point of a gun does indeed conflict with the individual rights of the person at the wrong end of that gun.”
Robert, you keep repeating the same absurdly ridiculous and inane talking points, as everyone else on the alt-right, and others who follow Austrian economic principles.
Give me the example where someone from the government, is going to point a gun at somebody for not paying taxes.
“Please name those countries where such altruism doesn’t conflict with individual rights.”
Ok, some of the Scandinavian countries are the best examples in the world.
And in regular yearly surveys, conducted over the last say 20 years, people in the Scandinavian countries have had generally the most positive outlook on life, when it comes to such basic human values as happiness and contentment.
That cannot be said about the United States in the 21st century, because many Americans are drugged up on illegal and/or prescription drugs, are frightened of gun violence, and not to mention, the now growing huge social / economic disparity between the rich and the growing numbers of poor.
And lastly, I regard altruism as a broad brush, and here is an example to answer your question, and to point out that the two countries closest to me, Indonesia, where I spend most of my time, and Australia where I was born, feature prominently in this particular survey.
“Welcome to the ‘most generous country’ in the world: Indonesia.”
It’s difficult to imagine this level of generosity occurring in the United States, because part of the problem, is that Americans are terribly tribal.
That has been my experience, after touring around the United States a few years ago.
I remember the vox pops in Michael Moore’s movie “Sicko,” where people flatly refused to pay for a public medical service, similar to Australia and Canada, with their taxes.
Last time I checked, if you don’t pay your taxes, you go to jail, and should you be recalcitrant, it will be at the point of a gun. If there is a country in the world where paying taxes is voluntary, let me know, I’ll move there. My friend in Denmark assures me that taxes are not voluntary there, and he bitched all the time about Danish taxes. So again I ask: please name those countries where such altruism doesn’t conflict with individual rights, and spare me the condescending sarcasm or spread your garbage on some other site. I don’t regard my statement as an “absurdly ridiculous and inane talking point,” and if it is, you should have a better refutation than “Robert…really?” and some irrrelevant nonsense about violence and quality of life in America, neither of which I mentioned or defended, and the wonders of indonesia. Yes, Peter, really, answer the point made. Or this conversation, at least for my part, is over.
Okay, leaving out the perceived sarcasm and condescending talk, I asked you some individual questions, and I think you have nicely sidestepped them, and haven’t attempted at all to give a fullsome reply.
And you just keep repeating the same nonsense.
Who, in the recent history of Western democracies, as someone had a gun pointed at them, because they have refused to pay tax?
And your point about tax not being voluntary, is a non sequitur, because people who live in countries that appreciate altruism are happy to pay taxes.
I just think you’re looking at the world through this narrow prism of your Austrian economic idealism.
And of course, an economic model that has never been tried anywhere in the world.
Anyway, good luck, and I might drop by again in another couple years time.
“…you should have a better refutation than “Robert…really?”
Oh, and I forgot to mention that, you are being disingenuous to say the least.
After saying, Robert, really? I also stated this as my argument…
“Ok, some of the Scandinavian countries are the best examples in the world.
And in regular yearly surveys, conducted over the last say 20 years, people in the Scandinavian countries have had generally the most positive outlook on life, when it comes to such basic human values as happiness and contentment.”
After all, isn’t that what Society is all about?
Happiness and contentment?
And I don’t think my points about America are irrelevant, quiet the opposite, they are quite real.
So am I to assume, you think that gun violence in your country is acceptable?
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I can’t help Peter Harris but regarding Clive Lewis’ “What action to you conclude?”
If this old coot could recommend (especially to young parents willing to homeschool) just ONE PAGE on the vast internet it would be:
This old coot’s recommendation: https://survivalblog.com/retreatareas/
For years this old coot believed in secession from the federal government. Patriots had enough dog in the fight but not enough fight in the dog. Perhaps that was for the best.
Never in my wildest dreams did I expect the Commie State of California to take the boldest action toward reasserting ‘State’s Rights’. They voted to become a ‘Sanctuary State’’; effectively a step toward secession. This could escalate.
Don’t underestimate Commies. They have a big dog in California AND Commies have historically had a LOT of fight in them; albeit misplaced. But they are the enemy of our enemy the federal abomination. California could open the door and turn left. Others could follow and turn right
NOT to go off topic, so I will aND OFFER FINAL SOLUTION, stop breathing… and everything will be “O” f-ing K, OK?
Minority Import. But, before we get to that, that is that there is broken news as which is now referred to as SWEN, previous known as fake. Which off course is backwords, WORDS! NEWS/SWEN
News Flash +++ or — 2 degrees. Climate Change is OVER! Ninety eight percent of climate market speculators agree that real Economic Climate Scientists/ buyers agree + or – two digress it is a gas and not currency is the surreal cause of an over-heated gas market in the dreaded CO-2 (doctored charts and graphic evidence to follow). That was both surreal and off course real. The real cause of climate change was excessive gas from Big Fat Ass Al a Gory of the cave man, Al Gore! Jet lag logged, carbon ass print by the maga tonn! Climate change could and should be ended forever with a simple fix that is rather inexpensive. The fix would only require several yards of duct tape and plastic bags. A body bag would do nicely, with duct tape sealing up any and all orifices, I suspect. That followed shortly there after by the same procedure use on the entirety of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). For the cost of a few body bags and duct tape the US could save 306 billion!!!!!!! Per YEAR. I guarantee you the climate would change! Perhaps for the better?
Comprehensively Planning speaking, off course.
And now for you Minority Import Report update. A simple solution to the invasion of the minority reported. DECLARE WAR with Mexico! I believe that would cause a reversal of the invasion forces. Tear gas my ass, machine guns would do the trick, I AM pretty sure of that and would stop the drug cartels from distributing thug of choice. This discussion of the posse coming at US act is comatose, the issue is National Security and not a local police action!!! Please explain to me why the US Military with all of it’s armaments and ordnance’s should not use the full force against the invasion. And “O” by the way, we have never done that before have we? Perhaps, the war of 1812, the Spanish invasion of the Alamo, the Civil war, the Indian wars, or even Pearl Harbor, just to name a few where US troops were not involves? And “O””O” bye the way a reversal of fortunate on the perpetrators/instigators of OPEN Border enmesh invasion should not hang by their skinny little left tard necks until their expiration date is exceeded! Long necks for all the NGO’s!
AND THEM of the FEDERAL PRESERVE, formally referred to as the WELL FED Reserve. Bank role me. Or perhaps GUNFUNDME? Please note, Socialism is the politics of the DAMN Communists. Where as the politic is the socialist and communist is the economics! It is all the same recipe of nut soup capabilities for disaster. And of course, the destruction and demise of US. Damn Communists you fools!!!
And now for mamma’s boy, or, perhaps man boy B-rack insane “O” mama. Perhaps the better question is who’s your daddy??? “O” f-ing K. I stand corrected. Nine ball is actually, double ought 8 ball, or perhaps 12, depending upon who you believe, concerning wad demotions and or potential impact at short range area of penetration, where most stuff happens. Do da maff. The question is, is penetration an issue, or is it impact? In other words, does force applied imply greater than velocity disablement achieved? Short range my go to are a 40 S&w 23 GLOCK and 12 Ga. 870 tactical with first two of slug, 6 rounds of double ought buck, shot. I augment with Glock 81 with slightly less than 7.5 inch (I do not do metric well, nor want to) blade with 1/8 inch serrated back bone with good weight and an edge that can be achieved. Followed shortly thereafter by a Kershaw Speed Safe model 1990 with 3-inch blade. Several flashlights and backup ammunition for both, batteries for uninformed. A somewhat reliable compass. And an extra flashlight for backup, of course. A first aid kit with appropriate bandages for said wound, in case someone got one. Gloves, wipes, gauze, paper tape, and plenty of drinkable alcohol and hydrogen peroxide, aspirin, atropine, iodine tablets, and Hersey’s chocolate morsels with sugar pills, you will be just fine, trust me, for a while. 50 feet of substantial cord, in case you needed to string somebody up, or set up a campsite. Did I mention the flashlights? Cleaning kit and supplies for all. Ammunition of at least 100 rounds of 40 and 25 of twelve ga., with four set of batteries for the flashlights. I might add, my son in law gave me the Glock knife, the Kershaw as well a tactical pen that writes anywhere and triple as a windshield cracker and a forehead thumper. How lucky AM I? I believe his kids; my Grand babies will learn to shoot straight and speak the truth, perhaps to ride? Again, how lucky AM I? Too, which I gave my daughter a Mustang .380, Colt upon her departure into the world. And she gave me life, which is Grand. I AM a daddy… how Grand? The color choice are white and blonde. How white is that?
You may take a deep breath now. Before we continue, too perhaps more on. That, that that which might be, more on, that.
Also, means to start fire, several types, from several Bic lighter to magnesium with matches with several types of fuel starter. Knife sharpener, fingernail clippers/with file, 6-inch Cresant wrench, screw driver, multi tool, razor blades, and two one-quart water bottles, clock in to more weight than you want to carry in a pinch. However, you will appreciate and thank me for the tip. Did I mention cleaning kits for all? Oil and ointment too, too and include food. All in shoulder bad with binoculars and extra glasses if you need them. Pills optional, if you don’t really need them. Food is another matter except some breakfast bars fit nicely and maybe some Altoids will get you by for about a week, sparingly, maybe?
The subject of unrealistic expectations came up the other day and so I pondered, what pray tell is worth the time of pondering? I came up with several, point of ponderifacations, which may included, but not limited too the meaning of life and or the purpose for which there is. On a more realistic level, perhaps survival is among them, perhaps the point of ponderifacations that is, is life? Survival of the ponder, perhaps?
The UN realistic expatiation are Great, you should read it. But I digress. The meaning of life is purpose, as I may have indicated previously. The purpose is survival of most prepared, prep that. Yet, you may prepare for anything, but not be prepare for the thing that happens and how will you know it is to late to do anything about it, that that has happened?
HAPPENING NOW! And, what have you done, except watch TV, or listen to the radio in hopes that somebody will do something about that which is? So, my question is what is happening now???
My fav “O” rite fables are fractured, Aesop like Fred on everything off course… BE Too still my heart, like a heart attack if the damn communist haven’t offered the final solution by 2020.
You do not seem to grasp the gravity of the situation; the world is against US!!! FREEDOM is the witch at stake to be burned. And you will do what? Ponder?
PS: May I offer a suggestion? FIGHT the damn Communists!!!!!!! The world is at stake!
The write up is very creative. It a bit of time but I later grabed the content. Thanks!
You are welcome and I’m glad you liked it.