All sorts of centralized organizations that appear rock-solid may well melt into air as the disintegrative dynamics gather momentum. Rising political and social discord that is generally being attributed to “populism” may actually be the re-emergence of ancient geographic and cultural fault lines. An often-overlooked manifestation of this might be the nation-state of Germany, a possibility fleshed out by longtime correspondent Mark G.
It’s both convenient and expedient for politicos to blame “populism” for the fracturing of the status quo. Given the unsavory undertones of ethnic/religious bias of “populism,” this allows the media-savvy politico (and aren’t they all media-savvy?) to paint his/her opponents as racist via the code-word “populist.”
Labeling dissenters “populists” doesn’t explain or predict anything. In terms of economic classes, it’s more insightful to distinguish between the Protected Class (insiders and favored elites) who benefits enormously from the status quo and the Unprotected Class (outsiders, marginalized workers, those without privilege or access to cheap capital).
Read more at: Could Germany Fracture?
When are America’s global corporations and Wall Street going to sit down with President Trump and explain to him that his trade war is not with China but with them? The biggest chunk of America’s trade deficit with China is the offshored production of America’s global corporations. When the corporations bring the products that they produce in China to the US consumer market, the products are classified as imports from China.
Six years ago when I was writing The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism, I concluded on the evidence that half of US imports from China consist of the offshored production of US corporations. Offshoring is a substantial benefit to US corporations because of much lower labor and compliance costs. Profits, executive bonuses, and shareholders’ capital gains receive a large boost from offshoring. The costs of these benefits for a few fall on the many – the former American employees who formerly had a middle class income and expectations for their children.
Read more at:“How Long Can The Federal Reserve Stave Off The Inevitable?”
It is difficult to find the words to describe just how serious America’s trade war with China is becoming. As you will see below, the two largest economies on the entire planet are on a self-destructive course that almost seems irreversible at this point. The only way that this trade war is going to come to a rapid conclusion is if one side is willing to totally submit and accept an extremely bitter and humiliating defeat on the global stage, and that is not likely to happen. So in the short-term, and probably beyond that, we are going to experience a tremendous amount of economic pain. In fact, if one wanted to create a recipe for economic disaster, it would be hard to beat having the Federal Reserve dramatically raise interest rates at the exact same time that the U.S. government is starting trade wars with all of the other major economic powers simultaneously. Unless something drastically changes in the very near future, there is no way that the U.S. is going to be able to get through this without experiencing severe pain. Many had hoped that President Trump would settle down after the initial salvos in this new trade war, but instead on Sunday evening we learned that he has decided to go nuclear.
Read more at:Things Just Went Nuclear In Our Trade War With China, And A Giant Shockwave Is About To Hit The U.S. Economy
Market “fixes” fuel wealth/income inequality which feeds political and social instability.
There are two Grand Narratives about the U.S. economy and asset markets: the mainstream narrative is that nothing is fundamentally wrong with the economy, and so no structural changes (and the sacrifices such changes entail) are needed.
In this narrative, the only problem that needs solving is markets stop bubbling higher. The mainstream always expects markets to keep bubbling higher essentially forever, but reality intrudes and the asset bubbles pop.
The solution in this narrative is to “fix” markets with massive stimulus: fiscal stimulus from the Savior State and monetary stimulus from the central bank — Federal Reserve (reinflating bubbles that enrich the already-wealthy is our primary job).
I’ve marked up a chart of the S&P 500 stock index to reflect this narrative:
Read more at:Are You Prepared to Invest in Troubled Times?
There is a classic denial tactic that many people use when confronted with negative facts about a subject they have a personal attachment to; I would call it “deferral denial” — or a psychological postponing of reality
For example, point out the fundamentals on the U.S. economy such as the fact that unemployment is not below 4% as official numbers suggest, but actually closer to 20% when you factor in U-6 measurements including the record 96 million people not counted because they have run out of unemployment benefits. Or point out that true consumer inflation in the U.S. is not around 3% as the Federal Reserve and the Bureau of Labor Statistics claims, but closer to 10% according to the way CPI used to be calculated before the government started rigging the numbers. For a large part of the public including a lot of economic analysts, there is perhaps a momentary acceptance of the danger, but then an immediate deferral — “Well, maybe things will get worse down the road, 10 or 20 years from now, but it’s not that bad today…”
Read more at:America’s Debt Dependence Makes It An Easy Economic Target
A California judge has ruled that social media giant Twitter can be sued for falsely advertising free speech. The judge said that Twitter’s policy of banning users “at any time, for any reason or for no reason” may constitute an “unconscionable contract” for a company which advertises free speech.
The judge rejected Twitter’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit from Jared Taylor, who was banned by the platform in December last year, according to Breitbart. Taylor, a self-described “white activist” may proceed with his lawsuit against Twitter because the social media company falsely advertises free speech, yet bans users for “any or no reason.” The judge also ruled that Twitter could be sued on the basis of misleading its users, due to the platform’s promise not to ban accounts on the basis of viewpoint or political affiliation, which is frequently violated.
Read more at: CA Judge: Twitter Can Be Sued For Falsely Advertising They Allow Free Speech
There has been a longstanding narrative in economic circles that no matter what crisis occurs the U.S. dollar is essentially invincible. I have never been one to buy into this assumption.
Reason 1: Because I remember distinctly just before the derivatives and credit crisis in 2007/2008 the majority of mainstream economists were so certain that U.S. housing and debt markets were invincible, and they were terribly wrong. Whenever the mainstream financial media are confident of an outcome, expect the opposite to happen.
Reason 2: Because karma has a way of crushing grand illusions. When you proudly declare a Titanic “unsinkable,” nature or fate often tests that resolve and finds it wanting.
Reason 3: Because I understand that a primary goal of the internationalist, globalist, anti-sovereignty and New World Order crowd is to diminish U.S. economic performance dramatically, and this includes ending the reserve status and petro-status of the dollar in order to make way for a single global currency unit dictated by a single global economic administrator.
Read more at:America Loses When The Trade War Becomes A Currency War