Out and About on a Sunday

The Baltic Dry Index has reached a 29 year low: here’s the “we’re all gonna die” take on it and the “no worries” view. I lean towards the former – it just can’t be good when an index like this crashes through the floor. On the other hand, the central bankers have been astoundingly successful in keeping up appearances since 2009 and I have no idea how much longer they’ll be able to do it. I expect a Dow above 20k before it crashes…on the other other hand (all conservatives being three-handed mutant lizard people, after all), I have started to hear radio ads urging people to take out home equity loans and to start getting into house flipping…which is just what I heard in 2008. So, make of it what you will.

News story says Obama threatened to shoot down Israeli air force jets if Israel tried to strike Iran’s nuclear program. I don’t know if its true – don’t know if its completely mythical or absolutely true or if its just someone who heard an Obama official getting really mad and saying something along these lines. However: if it turns out to be true, it wouldn’t surprise me in the least. In geo-strategic terms, the American left has hated the state of the world since 1991 – since the USSR fell, that is, and left the United States as the world’s sole super power. It just isn’t fair that there’s no power on earth which can restrain the United States, ya dig? A nuclear-armed Iran will re-balance power in the Middle East…just as a rebuilt Russian Empire will re-balance it in Europe and a powerful China re-balances it in east Asia. All else being equal, our liberals prefer a world where the United States is forced to be circumspect in world affairs…the enemy (who is only an enemy because of our crimes/errors, per the left) must be able to stand up to us. A nuclear-armed Iran is a feature, not a bug, in liberal strategy. Once it exists, they’ll be able to say, “well, there’s nothing we can do so we’ll need to go the route of peaceful co-existence and detente with Iran (Russia/China)…”. Anyone who wants to oppose Iran will be accused of wanting 24-hour-round-the-clock nuclear holocaust and dismissed from the debate. Look for ISALT (Iran Strategic Arms Limitations Talks) to start in 2018 or so…

Rep. Peter King (RINO-NY) has had it with the “delusional wing” of the GOP. Hey, Pete, guess what? We’ve rather had it with you. Why don’t you become a Democrat or Independent and leave us alone? If we’re doomed to defeat without the likes of you in the party, then we’ll sing proudly of our defeat.

More and more Walker to Reagan comparisons are being made, and I’m seeing the point. Liberals called Reagan the “teflon President” because nothing stuck to him. Now, in the fevered mind of the left, this meant that Reagan was horrible and corrupt but they could never get the American people to see that. The reality is that Reagan was incorruptible and thus liberal slanders just rolled off him…when you are innocent, you genuinely can laugh off nonsense. Liberals are doing everything they can to slander Walker – they are already deep into just making stuff up and seeing if it flies – but it isn’t sticking. One thing I’ve always enjoyed is liberals who come across a conservative they just can’t beat no matter how hard they try.

Venezuela’s crazy commie dictatorship does some crazy, commie stuff

Gas prices have been spiking – worst in California but whenever non-Californians hear bad economic news from California, we just laugh: its your own darned fault, California – you really thought that Jerry Brown was going to make things better? Geesh! But, it is also bad news in general…a lot of the not-quite-dead-glow on the U.S. economy for the past couple months has been from lower gas prices…

I guess the Germans felt the need to brush up on their anti-Semitism. Can’t get too far behind the French, huh? Hitler’s mindless tome is to be re-released in Germany for the first time since World War Two.

In a bit of entirely unrelated news, the religion of peace does a little bit of literary criticism.

Jeb wants to be our 2nd choice for 2016 – meaning we conservatives. Sorry, Jeb; at best you’d be my 8th or 9th choice…and if its between you and Hillary, what is my reason for voting?

9 thoughts on “Out and About on a Sunday

  1. Retired Spook March 2, 2015 / 12:03 am

    With regard to the Baltic Dry Index, I found this reader comment at Zero Hedge very interesting:

    Soo… World commodity prices have collapsed and global shipping prices have collapsed?

    But asset prices are sky high?

    Monetary velocity is being compressed at an alarming rate and nobody knows why or what to do about it (activity/trade is slowing, but wealth/assets are rising).

    Monetary easing has FAILED to stimulate monetary velocity. This divergence between economic activity and wealth is unsustainable. The wealth is not real if it can generate no income, the emperor has no clothes.

    Assets are not rising in price, the price of cash is crashing. Currencies are no longer anchored, all of them are collapsing in value.

    Everything is deflating, but it’s difficult to spot because currencies are deflating faster than assets are deflating. The result is that markets continue to make new highs. It’s not that these assets are performing so well, they are merely outperforming the value of the currencies in which they are priced, currencies which are in a state of collapse.

    • M. Noonan March 2, 2015 / 11:46 am

      It is a fake economy – I still get the odd liberal brickbat thrown at me because I was expecting this smoke and mirrors to come to an end years ago…I’m just patiently waiting, now. I don’t know when the crash will come, but it will come…as Glenn Reynolds (Instapundit puts it), that which cannot continue, won’t (addendum: and debts that cannot be repaid won’t be – see, Greece). Eventually the bubble the central bankers started engineering in 2009 will pop…signs of it already abound. I put in the bit about the return of the HELOC because I do think it important…for a while there, never heard of them…but now they’re back.

      Of course, if we have this booming real-estate market, then why do I see so few houses for sale?

      Inquiring minds want to know…

  2. Amazona March 2, 2015 / 10:14 am

    Speaking of gas prices going up and down, or rather down and up, and getting back to the topic of the collapse or near-collapse of the oil industry, here’s a thought and possibly an idea for discussion:

    Why don’t we repeal the ban on exporting crude oil?

    Yes, folks, US crude oil producers are not allowed to export crude oil. There are some ways to get around it, to some extent, and the weasel-wording is not so much that it is “banned” so much as exporting crude oil requires a “license”, but why in the world would we tolerate ANYTHING that restricts the freedom to market a commodity produced in this country?

    Canada can export crude oil. Mexico can export crude oil. Venezuela can export crude oil. But the United States, the new leader in the extraction of crude oil, can’t.

    Does that make sense to anyone?

    • M. Noonan March 2, 2015 / 11:44 am

      It doesn’t make any sense – but trying to get Obama to change it would be next to impossible…he and his like don’t want more oil on the global market because inexpensive oil means no political ability to provide taxpayer funds for expensive green energy…

  3. Retired Spook March 3, 2015 / 9:17 am

    Brandon Smith has a great piece at Personal Liberty this morning that expands substantially on the topic of this post.

    We are only two months into 2015, and it has already proven to be the most volatile year for the economic environment since 2008-2009. We have seen oil markets collapsing by about 50 percent in the span of a few months (just as the Federal Reserve announced the end of QE3, indicating fiat money was used to hide falling demand), the Baltic Dry Index losing 30 percent since the beginning of the year, the Swiss currency surprise, the Greeks threatening EU exit (and now Greek citizens threatening violent protests with the new four-month can-kicking deal), and the effects of the nine-month-long West Coast port strike not yet quantified. This is not just a fleeting expression of a negative first quarter; it is a sign of things to come.

    Stock markets are, of course, once again at all-time highs after a shaky start, despite nearly every single fundamental indicator flashing red. But as Zero Hedge recently pointed out in its article on artificial juicing of equities by corporations using massive stock buybacks, this is not going to last much longer, simply because the debt companies are generating is outpacing their ability to prop up the markets.

    This conundrum is also visible in central bank stimulus measures. As I have related in past articles, the ability of central banks to goose the global financial system is faltering, as bailouts and low-interest-rate capital infusions now have little to no effect on overall economic performance. The fiat fuel is no longer enough; and when this becomes apparent in the mainstream, all hell will indeed break loose.

    The argument that banks can prop up the system forever is now being debunked. In this series of articles, I will cover the core reasons why this is happening, starting with the basis of all economics: supply and demand.

  4. Retired Spook March 3, 2015 / 11:07 am

    As usual, when the collapse does come, the little guy is going to be left holding the bag.

    Where the world probably went wrong was relying too much on monetary policy, inflation targeting by non-reserve currencies in particular, and not actually building the things we need for productive economies (EMPHASIS MINE, JUST FOR MARK’S BENEFIT). We have underinvested in infrastructure that is becoming dilapidated and other necessities that could become scarce in the next decade if we don’t wake up very soon. Meanwhile, we have overinvested in toys and counterproductivity. Much of that is represented by very overvalued tech stocks that have IPO’d recently.

    I am not completely despondent. I think there is a way for the global economy to rebound eventually, in fact, three ways, only one of which is horrible. But that doesn’t really matter for this column. What matters here is that my thesis the past year or so that the big money was leaving the markets and that smaller investors were getting handed the bag is clearly true.

    This past weekend in Barron’s, there was a special section with a headline article that described how large wealth-management firms were holding more money in cash and short-term Treasurys. In Berkshire Hathaway’s annual letter, Warren Buffett talked about holding cash and short-term treasurys, likely in response to the fact that Berkshire’s cash and Treasury holdings have grown to a record.

    • M. Noonan March 3, 2015 / 12:43 pm

      Make, Mine, Grow – if it ain’t that, it is, at best, of secondary importance. The United States – which is a continent-sized nation, after all – is awash in untapped wealth. We haven’t even scratched the surface (France has been civilized for 2,000 years and still has vast resources; and they are a very much smaller nation) of what we have. All we have to do it use it – of course, Obama’s action is to declare ever more of our resources off limits.

      The time is coming when we’ll wake up – either because we wake up or because we’re shaken awake. This world of fake money, debt and corrupt Ruling Classes is through…

      • Retired Spook March 3, 2015 / 1:20 pm

        The time is coming when we’ll wake up

        It’s not yet to the point that it keeps me awake at night, primarily because I’m pretty well prepared for whatever happens, but my first thought every morning when I wake up is, is this the day when it all comes apart?

      • M. Noonan March 3, 2015 / 10:57 pm

        It’ll come as a shock – but only because our MSM doesn’t report what really happens. I don’t think most people fully realize that probably 80% of what the MSM says is just re-worked press releases from official and semi-official sources. If someone doesn’t tell the MSM what to look for, they won’t see it. A good source for Doom is on Ace of Spades from time to time and Zero Hedge…though the folks at Zero hedge do some times stray into strange ideas…

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