Thursday, February 5, 2009

"Catastrophe"? What happened to "Hope" and "Change"

President Obama is having a much tougher time of it than Candidate Obama or President-elect Obama.  See, as president, he actually has to govern.  Symbolism just does not cut it in his capacity as commander-in-chief and chief executive.  

I am afraid that being black, or young, or handsome, or having the cutest kids on the planet, etc... just doesn't cut it.  In the final analysis, we just elected a freshman Senator to the presidency at a critical moment.  This just isn't a school prayer/gay marriage/run for a cure moment.  We have very real, and very immanent issues, and this stimulus package is an EMBARRASSMENT.  

But let us speak plainly... none of Obama's supporters have read the document, but they will ferociously defend their hero.

What is even MORE curious, I continue to see sound bites of the looney left bashing GW Bush and Dick Cheney!  Get over it!  They are OUT!  You WON!! Now you gotta deliver.

And therein lies the rub...

No one could deliver.

This is what our friend and retired career CIA analyst Tom Whipple had to say about the politics of telling folks that things might not turn out as promised:
We are having an election for Governor in Virginia this year and, as could be expected, inboxes and mail slots are already filling with messages from the candidates.

Most of the messages, naturally enough, concern the economic downturn and promise to increase jobs and restore economic growth - for running on anything less upbeat this year is likely to be a surefire looser. There is no way that people are as yet ready to vote for prophets who talk about increasing troubles ahead and peak anything. Talk of the end of the American dream and the need to hunker down and prepare for hard times ahead is just not in the cards at the minute.

However, we are living in one of those rare occasions when foretelling the future - at least in a general way -- seems unusually easy. All indicators say the global economy will continue to spiral down. This could last for a year, or two or three, but also could last for decades. Think about the South after the American Civil War - it took nearly a century to get going again. If we are lucky some of the "stimulating" that is going on might make things look better for awhile, but this is bound to be short-lived. Without major structural changes to the world's economy, the increasing demand for oil and other forms of energy will send energy prices right back through the last summer's highs and the downward spiral will start all over again.
Our political leaders are going to have to level with the American people at some point.


No, not on their bond interest payments...  The state is issuing IOU's to their citizens and vendors. Can bond payments be far behind?  NAFC.

Let us put this in perspective:  California is home to 1 in 8 Americans, ergo 1/8 of America's state government has defaulted, and New York is 12 to 18 months behind.

Please keep in mind that the California wing of the Democratic party DOMINATES that party and the Federal Government, just as surely as the South's Republicans dominate their party.  Both of these groups are lamentable at BEST, and downright f***ing dangerous at worst.

California is the 7th or 8th largest economy in the WORLD.  The mentality and values of TPTB in California have led the state to fiscal RUIN.  These are the very folks that just wrote the Stimulus Bill.

Good Grief!!


Bill Gross, PIMCO fund manager had this to say:

Government borrowing will probably reach $2.5 trillion during the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, according to Goldman Sachs Group Inc.

Speculation has risen that China, which holds $681.9 billion of Treasuries as the single largest investor in U.S. debt, may stop or slow the purchases of U.S. debt as its own economic growth slows.

“To the extent that the Chinese and others do not have the necessary funds, someone has to buy them,” Gross said. “It is incumbent upon the Fed to step in. If they do, that will be a significant day in the bond market and the credit markets.”
The crash in the markets during the last couple of months was the "beginning of the end".  When (I think there is NO IF) the scenario described above by Gross comes to pass, I would describe that as the "middle of the end".  I hope it is ways off, but it might occur sometime in 2009.  

Still, the equity market could have a significant rally between here and there.  

In any event, this is sure to be interesting.

Good Luck!

Mentatt (at) yahoo (dot) com


bureaucrat said...

I'm not gonna reiterate what has happened in the last 2-3 years that should NOT have happened, cause we've been down this road on this blog before. The thing to study is how it came to pass and perhaps make some future provisions for it never happening again. As I've also said before, we didn't elect Obama cause of his experience or his pretty family. He was a cry for help -- very little more. He looks a little impotent now cause anyone would be. The only things that will cure this thing are time & bankruptcies. Starting over. That probably will not happen easily. The baby boomers have too much invested in this damaged financial system, and they are too old to start over. I feel sorry for them. And when a ray of light does finally start to shine thru ... there it is, staring us in the face: peak oil and everything that goes with it. For now, enjoy the deflation. Stock up and pay down.

Anonymous said...

>The baby boomers have too much invested in this damaged financial system, and they are too old to start over. I feel sorry for them.<

Don't feel TOO sorry for the boomers.

All the ridiculous US media distortions have painted a silly picture of a large group of folks. Plenty of us never bought into McMansions, SUVs, suicide loans, mountainous credit card debts etc.

We have saved at double-digit rates, never accumulated debts, paid-off our houses, and avoided the big market downdrafts of 2008. And have limited exposure to the US financial system.

Greg T. Jeffers said...


As former politico, I was just teasing the folks that emailed me during the election with silly ideas of what their personal g-d would accomplish.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

WHy pay down?

The data suggest the average American is defaulting!

Anonymous said...

Obama got elected on hope. Exactly the message people wanted to hear. No one knew what he stood for, so they filled the blank page with their own vision of their savior. On the good side, he seems to be honest and ethical. Hell, he stayed clean of Illinois politics. Those boys put the rest of the country's crooked pols to shame. On the down side, his party's understanding of economics is misguided and destructive overall.

Who will buy Treasuries after the Fed starts to buy them? Sounds like the end of the dollar to me. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.


Coal Guy

Anonymous said...

It's nice to have a president who respects the US Constitution...or at least appears to.

If another 9/11 happens, at least we have a chance to avoid concentration camp USA. If Bush-Cheney confronted another 9/11, they would likely have put the intercontinental nukes into action.

And just imagine the fiasco if Georgy-boy was able to direct the whole Social Security cashflow into the Wall Street casino!

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Dear anon @8:38:

From your short comments I would feel very comfortable that you view everything throught the thick prism (Coke Bottles) of your politics.

As I said in my blog: Symbolism and appearances mean nothng in the execution of the presidency. I would be very,very, very willing to bet BIG money that you have no idea how the presidency is actually conducted in this country - Not just you, but most AMericans.

Do you have ANY idea of the number of employees and operatives of the Executive branch? Do you really think that a president GWB, BHO, whoever... sits around and says:

"I want these guys to do this, and those guys to do that..." NAFC.

Here is how it works:

Each "problem" has a team of people (military - Generals and Joint Chiefs of Staff, Economy - Treas Sec, and WH Eco Advisor, etc...) These teams work up a menu of responses which are then presented to the POTUS who makes a choice from the f**king menu. That's the job - final decision maker.

Got that, sport?

Now, if you don't like some of the side show items... stem cell reserch, teen age abortion,etc... that the POTUS makes a call on, well, like most AMericans you suddenly start name calling. The POTUS is "stupid" or "retarded" or "dumb". This is exactly what all third grade mentalities do when confronted by a superiour intellect and they are too cerebrally lazy to formulate an intelligent response.

Ever read the f**ing Constitution there, sport? I absolutely guarantee you never served in the military, and am VERY SURE you have not been much of a business success, so maybe you read it ONCE back in 10th grade in between bouts of compulsive masterbation and hits on your bong...

Hell, I feel somehow disadvantaged that we did not have YOU (and your jackass cohorts) there to lend old GWB a hand with the decisions on 9/12/01 through 12/31/01. After all, you are cabinet level material, right? You are joint chiefs material, right?

Once upon a time, I worked in politics. And you, my friend, would have been considered an EASY mark, easily swayed with the silly hyperbole of campaign trail.

The thousands of folks working for the POTUS regularly go out and F*CK THINGS UP, just like everybody else. But in OUR world, if it is a Republican POTUS the media makes as much hay as possible out of said f**k up.

Lastly, if you were an operative, I could understand your silly shitiness. No operative would be looking to bash the guy that just left office - we would be too busy lookng for the guy for 2012 so we could "strip the bark off his ass" long before we get there.

Grow up. Get a job. Have a few kids. Gain some wisdom. Then come back and waste my time.

Anonymous said...

Wow. What a rant.

You are a major idiot.

And you just proved it in your own words.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

And what, exactly, in my rant proves that I am an idiot? Did you skip the paragraph where I address people, like you, who, when confronted with an opposing position resort to name calling.

I remember that tactic quite well from the school yard in 3rd grade.

Or, am I an idiot because I question that which "every body knows"?

Get over yourself. Appearing intelligent when surrounded by those that agree with you is nothing to brag about. Actually being intelligent and being able to co examine the facts with people that do not agree with you is somewhat more challanging.

Finally, I am no defender of GWB, nor Bill Clinton, or BHO, or any other politician. I do not, however, assign blame arbitratily to accomodate my political beliefs. Try that some time sport. It would be a new thing for you.

Greg T. Jeffers said...

Anf for your information:

I am a JERK. I am not an IDIOT.

There is a sublte difference...

Anonymous said...

I wonder if the California workers receiving the IOU's will start trading them for goods and services. Sorta like derivatives. Wow. California starts printing it's own deeply debt laden money. That could make for all sorts of fun and games. Screw the even more debt laden greenback, I'll take my change in Kalipesos. Interesting. No? The market rules, bitches.

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