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Saturday, March 1, 2014

The New Plantation- The Sunday Collage

Something really odd happened at work yesterday. It borders on insane and I'll tell you this- it makes no sense to me. The company that I work for, deep in the heart of America's first right to work state, gave us a 20% raise. From 10 dollars an hour to 12.

They did not have to do this.

I am still in a state of shock. I didn't have to beg anyone, get some glowing review or show up daily and kiss anyone's ass. This is a company that will work you 14, 16, 19 hours a day without paying overtime and does so frequently.

Perhaps they have acquired some level of corporate shame. I'm not sure. I didn't give our team a 5% chance against the corporate oligarchy.

One of the reasons government "work" has become so popular is that it shelters you from the reality of life in private, corporate America. In Idaho, the corporate oligarchy is at it's strongest. Not only are we in a right to work state, but employers in Idaho can fire you without cause, explanations, or due process. There is no recourse either. Your former employer will fight tooth and nail at the unemployment hearing also.

Oh how I miss government "work." I can't go back because the great Satan, the public retirement system here, will stop your checks. PERSI has a strangle hold on guys like me. You have to leave the state to find government "work" elsewhere. That option, for family reasons, just isn't open to me right now.

(I put government "work" in quotation marks for my father who still maintains that government and work are mutually exclusive terms)

And the good jobs in Boise, those are the ones that pay 20 bucks an hr. and up, those jobs are reserved for the insiders. I don't care how well your qualifications stack up, or that your resume' was written by Tony Robbins, or that your cover letter was crafted by Ernest Hemingway. Everyone has some friend or shoestring relative that needs a leg up and if you know the right people here- that's how you get hired. Ohhh... they advertise the job and pretend that the hiring process is competitive- but it isn't. Posting a well paying job in Boise is simply a legal formality. The hiring or the completion of the short list- that has already been done well in advance of the job posting.

That's how the new plantation operates. It is always "who you know" that gets you hired for the good jobs. On the lower rungs or the jobs that nobody really wants, you become a part of the employer grist mill. Work your ass off for chump change and no benefits, allow management to violate half of the employee manual without ever complaining, and keep your mouth shut or suffer the consequences. It's like a sheep factory here.

Now I guarantee you that some smug person out there will think they are immune to this or "There's no way this could happen to me, I am too (insert smug adjective here: smart, valuable, ambitious) to have that happen to me."

Until reality gives you a swift kick in the ass. If you haven't received this whopping dose of reality yet- chances are very good that you are simply lucky or too young. Both of those things will change.

Now I don't need to work and that is something I am truly grateful for. That is freedom. That's what 25 years worth of government work gets you- at least for now. Don't think for a second that I am unaware of the millions of taxpayers who are pissed off at the government sector. When I signed on back in 1982- it wasn't that way. In fact, I worked most of my first year for free. Did you?

So walking away from some nine or ten dollar an hr. job is an option for me and I like to keep my options open. I am in awe of what I have encountered since I "retired." We have a corporate mentality in Idaho where the employer is always right, due process is some ridiculous concept, and management will can you on a whim.

What corporation would not want to come here and operate under those conditions? Even if you have an escalating pay structure to lure employees, you can simply wait until they all reach the top rung and replace them with cheaper workers. What robber baron could not exploit that situation? Idaho is a dream come true for the corporate oligarchy. I am surprised Boise is not the size of Seattle yet.

I had planned on quitting my job in the next month or so. Pushing 500 pound gun safes up narrow stairways for 10 bucks an hr. isn't exactly a dream come true nor is it a job that 50ish type people should probably be doing. Ibuprofen and I have formed a strong partnership. People aren't exactly beating down the door trying to get hired here.

But I'll tell you something. That two bucks an hr. raise just might have bought some goodwill and loyalty from me- if for no other reason- because they didn't have to do it. That's the kind of goodwill that makes me think- maybe I should explore other options with this outfit. Maybe they have developed a conscience, maybe some corporate shame. On the new plantation, things like that don't happen every day.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

How One Great Lie Spawned a National Debate

The other day, I was engaged in the usual back and forth banter with a friend of mine who thinks Obama is a great President and of course the default position is- "well even if he's not- it's George Bush's fault."

This is the liberal argument. We've all heard it. So this is nothing new.

Yesterday, Rick Santelli (on live television) pulled the trigger on the greatest lie ever told to the US public. That the economy is doing fine. This is the biggest crock of shit ever proffered forth as fact but why can't America see it? Why do they insist on telling us that everything is fine?

Why do we all argue ad nauseum about this?

Because the people in power, the rich and elite, corporate America, Congress and the President are all personally invested in the great lie. Every card carrying and faithful liberal in America is invested in the great lie.

Here is the great lie. If you conjure up 2 trillion dollars in stimulus, add 4 trillion dollars in QE programs, continue to offer zero interest rates to banks while delivering all of this excess cash to Wall St., corporate America, and the rich and elite- where is it going to go?

It's going to flow into the only investment in America with any kind of return. Equity markets. Equity markets are on the verge of tripling. The DJIA triples at 18, 900 from the March '09 low of 6300.

Do any of you honestly believe this is sustainable?

The make believe equity in the stock market is the same make believe equity every one had in their homes before that bubble burst.

If I was fully invested in this market right now- I'd sell every fucking thing I had in it and I'd run like I hit the lottery because I gotta tell ya- I never made 200% in 5 years on anything. That is a 40% annualized rate and the only way that can continue is if the FED conjures up another 6 trillion of so over the next 5 years. Then we might see DOW 33,000.

Remember when you make 40%- somebody has to lose 40%. It's the Frankenstein Government version of matter- matter cannot be created or destroyed. For you to win means someone else has to lose. I mean if you write covered calls on a stock, I buy them and call away your stock after I make 40%- that is how the economic matter principle works. So who are the counter parties- who is losing in this 6 trillion dollar experiment?  

Perhaps the FED will conjure up another 6 trillion after another 6 trillion and then we can have DOW 49,000. The truth is, it's all an illusion and none of us knows when this stupidity will end. But it will end. It has to.

Until then, we will have the great national debate from their side which is fully invested in the great lie and points to it every time they need an example- and the rest of us who understand that just because you conjure up a visual aid to help you with your argument- doesn't mean it's true.

Yesterday, Santelli while doing battle with the leftist media and Wall St sycophants, used the same argument that I have been using for 5 years.

If this economy is so fucking great, why does the FED keep pumping billions and trillions into it? Let's stop zero interest rates and QE right now- and see just how great this economy is. At that precise moment- everyone will lose their money, their equity will be wiped away, the left will be forced to admit they and theirs didn't solve anything and that nothing has changed.

We all pray for that moment because I am so sick of arguing with the leftists and everyone else invested in the great lie.

I can almost hear the howling now.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

The Future Ain't What It Used To Be- The Sunday Collage

I have always kind of known, deep down, that America is it's own greatest enemy. I don't worry about China, or Russia, or whatever Al Qaeda boogie man our government cooks up.There will be no invasions, no evil enemies to repel, no new Autie Murphys, no Medals of Valor or Purple Hearts handed out to warriors on our soil.

The future of America will come about as result of apathy, a complete lack of intelligence, and an American public so self absorbed with all of the wrong things- that we are going to end up losing the only thing that matters. Freedom.

The chains that bind are given clever names. Tax hikes, Obamacare, property appraisal and re-assessment, compounding interest, fees, corporate monopolies, inflation. Want to lie to the American public? Sure, it's easy. Just call the greatest tax hike in the history of the country, "The Affordable Care Act."

Or call a private bank owned by the world's elite, "The Federal Reserve Bank." That name implies that the bank is "Federal" that it has "reserves" and that it is our bank. Why then can't we audit our own bank?

Names designed to mislead you work well. They've been working for a long time.

Why can't we have a fair tax? Tax reform. Or term limits for Congress?

Because it's all one giant lie. The elite own this place and they bought and paid for the best tax system Congress can get them. Congress will never vote to limit their own power. It has become a body of self serving sociopaths and alcoholics. On any given day John Boehner looks completely hung over or drunk. I wanted to give Obama a drug test the night of his first debate with Romney.

This garbage is what passes for leadership in America. This is the status quo. To change it- means you will have to kill a few of them. You see people in power, don't give it up easily. They have the upper hand and they are more than willing to put a boot on your throat to keep the status quo intact. Year after year, all over the globe, this shit plays out until such point that the people in any given country get completely enraged and start shooting. That is the tree of liberty that Thomas Jefferson spoke so eloquently of. It must be refreshed with the blood of free men and tyrants from time to time.

An excellent piece on the failure of our Constitution.

Six years ago, the American people were plundered by their government, two Presidents and Congress, and the greedy shills of Wall St and the megabanks. We were set on a course so disastrous that there can be no recovery- except for a hyperinflation event which will wipe away the 200 trillion in debt that this country has accumulated.

Do you take issue with that number? You should. That's the real number. So real the CBO won't even publish it this year. Try searching the term "Inform Act" and Laurence Kotlikoff. Kotlikoff is a Boston University economist who believes along with over 1000 other economists, (who signed the Inform Act) that the true indebtedness of the US is 205 trillion. Maybe you think they are all right wing shills. Maybe you just don't care. But I guarantee you this- you will care one day. One day a hyperinflation event is going to wipe away everything you own.

Well unless you own gold and silver. Things people will desperately want. Things that have value like food, land, and shelter.

And from the past we get the future. How civilizations like ours start, grow, prosper, and decline.

Everything has a lifespan, nothing lasts forever. So too, the collapse of the dollar in a hyper-inflationary event. There is no other way out. We cannot grow our way out, we cannot counterfeit our way out,we cannot borrow our way out. At one time, I thought we could deflate our way out- until the FED made it quite apparent that they would be more than willing to destroy our wealth and way of life (QE1,2,3,4,5) rather than face the deflationary death spiral that they brought about and which culminated in 2006-07.

It is a given, an absolute certainty, that Americans will destroy America. So the million dollar question is, "When does the collapse occur?" Secondarily, "What will it look like and what can I do to protect myself?"

Practice acceptance. There is no stopping this. Millions upon millions of government largesse seekers are going to continue to vote for whatever candidate promises them the most food stamps, unemployment, free housing, medical care. There is nothing you can do to stop this. It must run it's course and you will have to keep paying for more and more of it because nobody has a vested interest in telling the ignorant asses who vote and get the free shit- that it has to stop sooner or later. Their numbers can only grow.

Fortunately we have an American public so completely apathetic, drugged, distracted, and ignorant, that it is actually prolonging the government and the dollar's lifespan. Americans are willing to work for less and less, pay more in taxes, continue to be duped by fraudulent numbers, accept irresponsible and sociopathic leadership- because they are too pussified to demand change and completely captured by a two party system that laughs every time the suckers pull a Diebold voting handle. It's like a frog in boiling water. The government and its masters will just incrementally and slowly keep turning up the heat until one day the frog can't escape the boiling water and becomes soup.

We are becoming one big soup kitchen.

Our military strength means we can intimidate other countries into buying our debt and using the petrodollar to buy oil. So that helps the hoi polloi and buys us some more time as we bully our way around the world.

Don't believe the "credentialed" people who try to time the collapse. They are all full of shit. I don't care if it's the people I like such as Eric Sprott or Peter Schiff. Only one man ever predicted the future accurately and he did not have any initials after his name nor did he go to Harvard where the other stooges go. I get so sick of listening to "experts" who don't know shit. Go ahead and listen to one day's worth of CNBC and you will have captured the essence of all dialogue on that channel for the past five years and the coming five years. Just insert a new date.

Early on, I fell for that shit after Schiff predicted the banking collapse back in 2006. Now Schiff along with people like Eric Sprott think they are prophets. Sprott is predicting 50 dollar silver this year and +2000 gold. I would bet my house- I guarantee it- that Sprott is full of shit. He's got ten months left on his prediction and all he has to do is beat the coordinated efforts of the world's greatest central banks as they collectively suppress the price of precious metals to keep people from buying them. Beat the world's bankers Sprott and you can have my house. All I ask in return is 100 oz. of gold. Do we have a bet?

So how will the collapse look?

It has already started. First we will accumulate debt levels which we cannot pay. Then we will not be able to finance them. The government will incrementally and slowly start reducing tax breaks and hiking taxes to the cheers of the hoi polloi who don't understand that even if you confiscate 100% of the elite's riches- it won't even dent the debt we have accumulated already.

The welfare rolls will continue to rise. 

People will begin to default. They simply won't be able to pay their debts and their taxes. Interest rates will rise because unsecured debt is essentially worthless debt. Nobody will buy the debt of an essentially bankrupt and unsecured nation. Personal assets will get seized. Laws will be passed further reducing your money and wealth like the ACA. The government will begin to pass new laws reducing their exposure to the obligations they have incurred. Eventually, they are going to try and seize any asset they can get their hands on. That will include gold, silver, land. They may even try to nationalize commodities such as coal and oil and simply take them under some emergency act which they will tell people is only temporary.

The corporate oligarchy and megabanks will stay off shore. They will hide every last penny that they can.

And the people- people who have had it too good for too long will wonder wtf hit them. Just like that frog in the boiling water- they will realize they are soup just before they become soup.

I started this blog almost 6 years ago after our leadership stole trillions of dollars and delivered it to AIG, the megabanks and robber barons like Warren Buffet, and GM. I waited for prosecutions and reform. There was neither. Our leadership not only turned a blind eye to the greatest financial grand theft of all time- but it actually dialed up trillions of dollars in new debt, trillions of dollars in new taxes, and squeezed the ass of a corporate oligarchy that has off shored millions of jobs to the slave labor pools of the Pacific Rim and Mexico.

Geniuses, and certainly not you, understand that the way to cure a debt problem is by adding new debt.

You want to hear the best part? I have grown weary of reading naked capitalism and their high brow content, tired of reading the same old regurgitated crap at Zerohedge, tired of waiting for an event which will have no other merit for me other than some enabling moment with which I can say, "I told you so." Big deal. A collapse which in fact- may not even happen in my lifetime. What kind of a moron hopes for an event that will financially crush millions upon millions of innocent people just to say,  "I told you so." A moron sick of watching his countrymen act like apathetic stooges. I get that.

It's always easy to be the enabling guy. The guy who spoils the grand kids and hands them back screaming, to their parents. That's why I've always known that the American people will not wake up, they will not demand the right thing nor will the leadership acquiesce. Nobody has a vested interest in doing the right thing because the right thing is hard. The hard, right things will cost elections, careers, and lives. Doing the right thing will cause hardship and strife that this country, spoiled that it is, has never known.

That's why- when you examine all of the pieces as they exist right now- the future looks pretty damned predictable. It doesn't look good but I'm not sure bad is gonna get here while I'm still around.

Predicting can be hard though, especially about the future.