Many years ago, I used to play poker in Northern Nevada with a cantankerous old millionaire who played a lot of cards. He was frequently very lucky and he'd do stupid things like count the cards in the middle of the table with his index finger, including the two he was holding in his hand, and then announce he had a straight. Of course, he would then bet. Newcomers would always think that nobody would say that out loud and mostly they would just call his bet- a few of the aggressive ones would raise just prior to being introduced to a re-raise.
One time, after a very lucky session, my friend looked over at me and announced he was leaving. He was a big winner. He looked at me and said, "These assholes are just after my money." I replied, "No shit Sheldon- it's a poker game."
In just the last three months, my property taxes have gone up 200 a year, my homeowners and car insurance went up 200 a year, and my cable bill went up 150 a year. I am going to pay a 450 dollar Obamacare penalty. Those 4 things are going to cost me 1000 more dollars next year aside from rising food and energy costs.
Is there anyone out there- anywhere- who believes the Bureau of Labor Statistics 2.5% annual inflation bullshit?
And if you don't- please explain to me how the masters of the universe have stopped the precious metals from soaring which they have a tendency to do whenever inflation hell is breaking out.
I am in absolute awe at what I am seeing. Consumers are being absolutely stripped of what little wealth they have left, while being introduced to lower, crappier wages as the stock market band on the economic Titanic just plays along.
If I didn't know any better, I'd just say that everybody was after my money.
I'll tell you the nuttiest part. I actually bought precious metals thinking that this precise scenario was about to take place years ago but alas, somehow, someone, has reversed the economic laws of nature which have governed the 53 years that I have been on this rock- forcing gold and silver to trade near three year lows.
I cancelled my Direct TV account last week. I am kind of sick of them arbitrarily raising my monthly charge every year or so which is their trade tactic for getting you to sign a new contract. Each time a contract expires, they gouge me just a little bit more. Six years of this nonsense. This time, I said "no mas." I am gonna save about 900 a year. I very gleefully will box up their receiver, the card, and pay my last payment to these pirates.
I am going to use that money to pay my taxes, insurance, and my Obamacare penalty.
Now granted, I'm going to be missing out on CNBC telling me how wonderful banks and Wall St. are every weekday morning. I won't be able to see the digger clowns from Montana finding "nectar" in the hole. Or Jeremy Whatshisname catching river monsters. Somehow I am going to just have to make due without all of that "entertainment."
Or not. I bought a Roku from Amazon that actually gives me most of what I watch for 99 bucks, one time. I'm still playing with it but I think it might be a viable alternative to corporate capture. I streamed the Preakness today over Pimlico's site and watched the only thing worth seeing. California Chrome might just break the 40 year triple crown drought. I will finally be able to die in peace.
I've been watching commodity prices rising dramatically over the past two months- well everything except gold and silver- that is. Gas is almost back to 4 bucks a gallon in Boise with two weeks until Memorial Day. Prices on everything from meat to coffee are soaring. They even raised my water bill.
I don't know about you, but I get this sneaking suspicion that our economy is heading for a cliff. Like something very big is about to happen and nobody is talking about it or sees it coming.
This morning, I am thinking about going to Jackpot, Nevada and playing in a poker tournament. Everyone will be trying to get my money while I in fact- will be trying to get theirs. That's kind of the agreed upon premise. At least it's all above board and everyone plays on the same, level, playing field. Nobody can simply extort your chips from you without winning them- fair and square- nor do you have to sign contracts or listen to corporate drones try and entice you into giving them more money.
I used to see Sheldon, my friend, every Sunday in that tournament. He won his fair share of them. I haven't played in it since he passed away a couple of years ago. Maybe, I will get a straight and count the cards out in the middle out loud (of course) and my two hole cards and say, "I gotta straight" and then bet.
I bet they'll call me. Some things, thank gawd, never change.