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Guest Post: Our "Let's Pretend" Economy

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by Charles Hugh Smith from Of Two Minds

Our "Let's Pretend" Economy

There are two economies--the real one, which is in decline, and the "let's pretend" one touted by the State and corporate propaganda machines.

Children love to play "let's pretend." Let's pretend the economy is "recovering." Why does this "recovery" remind me of an addict who's conning his caseworker? (Yes, I'm really in recovery--those aren't tracks, they're insect bites....)

Let's play pretend that jobs are really really coming back, so please ignore this chart, or turn it upside down:

Also ignore that Big U.S. Firms Are Shifting Hiring Abroad.

Let's pretend that households, corporations and government are reducing their debt. To do that, we have to ignore that the debt-junkie (i.e. the U.S.A.) hasn't kicked the monkey off its back, it just keeps feeding it more debt. David Stockman dismantled all that propaganda about corporations sitting on trillions in cash--they're sitting on even bigger piles of debt: Federal Reserve’s path of destruction. He also takes out the claim that "consumers are deleveraging." Consumer debt has barely budged.

Never mind, let's pretend we're deleveraging. So please ignore this chart:

Excuse me but that cute little debt monkey on your back is actually an 800-pound gorilla.

Let's pretend that wages are rising. Except they aren't--household income is getting creamed. Real wages are back to the pre-dot-com bubble days of 1996--only the debt load on households and the nation have skyrocketed since then.

Courtesy of the always insightful Oil Empire and Peak Oil, here is a chart of the ratio of wages to gasoline:

Put another way: this is your wage priced in gasoline. Notice how wages tanked when oil hit $140/barrel in the summer of 2008, and how the brief plunge in oil around Q1 2009 caused a spike in the ratio. Now that the Fed is destroying the U.S. dollar, then oil is back over $100 and well on its way to $120 and higher.

Let's pretend your purchasing power isn't in a free-fall
. Have you eaten an iPad recently? Yum, crunchy!

Let's pretend unemployment is falling
. The only way to make losing 7 million jobs look good is to ignore this chart of the ratio of civilian employment to population. The ratio is back to the 1970 level, back before Mom, Sis and Aunty all went to work. This means there are fewer people working to support the population. Fewer workers means higher taxes on those still standing, and higher debt loads on them, too, as they have to service household debt, student loans, underwater mortgages and a Federal debt that's exploded higher by $1 trillion a year just since the "end of the recession."

Let's pretend corporate profits are the most important metric of our financial well-being.

Who benefits from the surge of corporate profits to record levels around $1.6 trillion, or 11% of GDP? The 21 million employees of global Corporate America certainly do, but then they represent about 16% of non-farm employment, roughly in line with government employment (22 million).

Too bad Global Corporate America is hiring where the growth is faster and the wages lower, i.e. overseas (Big U.S. Firms Are Shifting Hiring Abroad).

Let's pretend those great profits trickle down to the greater good. Only they don't. Corporate taxes (around $330 billion annually) cover less than 10% of Federal expenditures (Federal Budget 2009) and despite those record profits--surprise, Corporate Tax Receipts Plunge 31% in Q1.

The tax avoidance Panzer divisions of Global Corporate America are simply unstoppable forces of Nature, it seems. Corporate welfare queens never had it so good.

But let's pretend those profits increase the wealth of a broad spectrum of citizens. Oops, the top 5% of households collect 72% of the corporate profits.

In Who Rules America?, Sociologist G. William Dumhoff draws an important distinction between the net worth held by households in "marketable assets" such as homes and vehicles and "financial wealth." Homes and other tangible assets are, in Dumhoff's words, "not as readily converted into cash and are more valuable to their owners for use purposes than they are for resale."

Financial wealth such as stocks, bonds and other securities are liquid and therefore easily converted to cash; these assets are what Dumhoff describes as "non-home wealth" on his website Wealth, Income, and Power.

As of 2007, the bottom 80% of American households held a mere 7% of these financial assets, while the top 1% held 42.7% and the top 20% held fully 93%.

Never mind that, let's pretend the corporate profits trickle down via the "wealth effect" to pension funds that benefit workers everywhere. Too bad that according to the Fed flow of funds data, this rousing, raging Bull Market in stocks fueled by stupendous corporate profits has only brought total pension fund assets back to their 2007 level: $13.3 trillion in 2007 and $13.1 trillion in 2011.

Ajusted for inflation (as measured by the Bureau of Labor Statistics), the pension assets would have to be over $14.3 trillion just to stay even with their value in 2007. So pension funds have actually declined by over $1 trillion in real dollars in the Great Bull Wealth Effect.

So the wage earner's pension assets have actually fallen. We got your wealth effect right here, buddy, right next to the "recovery." And the check's in the mail, we promise.

How much longer are we willing to play "let's pretend"? Eventually we'll have to return to the grown-up world and deal with reality.


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Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:31 | 1192475 Rainman
Rainman's picture

Let's pretend housing is setting up for a big comeback.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:32 | 1192482 Cole Younger
Cole Younger's picture


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:15 | 1193186 BrobamaReds
BrobamaReds's picture

Tyler, you have issues....maybe you should start a Fight Club to temper your aggression.... first rule of fight club is you do not talk about fight club.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:59 | 1192616 Popo
Popo's picture

It doesn't even need to be said.  There's never going to be a way that we can compete with workers working for $10 a day.  Especially when they don't obey intellectual property laws, and they now have access to all our current technology anyway.  The keys to the kingdom have already been given away.


Furthermore.  We have created debts which can never be paid, and we have leveraged against those debts to insane mulitples.  The notion of restructuring is just silly.   There's no restructuring that can ever make an impossible-to-pay debt, possible to pay, without tanking the economy for generations.  The bankers are hoping they can 'slip that past us' with out us noticing.  


The price for profligacy must be paid.   And the era of arbitraging China's cheap labor against generations of accumulated American wealth has come to an end.


It's over.  The workers of America will be returning to a life of struggle.  The sad part of course is that most people in America don't realize that it is in fact, their families who *are* the workers of America.  Such is the curse of 2 generations of illusory wealth:  It breeds expectations of continuity, even when continuity was never actually possible.


It was always pretend.  Even when times were good.  That's the game of the banker:  Create debt, and before the debt collapses, take your money of the table.  Upon collapse -- either shield yourself behind complex legal and securities structures, or (more brilliant) shift your losses on to the public sector and rape the public a second time.


Of course, "Pretend" is a nice word.  "Criminal fraud", "deceit", "trickery" and "lies" are probably more descriptive.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:50 | 1192812 velobabe
velobabe's picture

the government is taking aim at day camps etc. that play risky games amongst the children. like kick the ball, red rover and next let's PRETEND.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:50 | 1192813 centerline
centerline's picture




Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:49 | 1192858 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

"...Especially when they don't obey intellectual property laws..."

C'mon poppy, the whole 'China stole my mojo; schmmeeeeee' is wearing a bit thin, no? 'Sif the US wasn't built on stealing, or otherwise 'acquiring' all the innovation it could, just ask Tesla. 'Keys to kingdoms' are bought/stolen all the time, its a vital component of the 'free market' system you claim to so dearly love and respect; perhaps you just don't want to face up to the fact that you might have had a hand in giving them away?

You might as well get used to admitting that the REAl reason China got all your manufacturing jobs is because you and yours just had to have that dinner ware set for a dollar less than the lead-free one made in the US.

You sound to me like someone who has unwittingly shot himself in the face and is using what's left of it to look around for someone else to take the blame for his own asshattedness.

Gotta eventually bite the bullet if you're gonna put the barrel of a loaded gun in your mouth and repeatedly squeeze the trigger, IMHO.

Junks, hunh. Care to explain or are they just the result of the truth hurting so many dupes so very much?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:04 | 1193138 Shock and Aweful
Shock and Aweful's picture

You guys can junk this man's statements all day....but what he is saying is SPOT on.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:19 | 1193212 centerline
centerline's picture

Give me break.  Saying that intellectual property laws being stolen is a key part of the free market system is advocating complete lawlessness.  That is one of the prime reasons we are in the place we are in.  Yeah, one could argue that laws can be designed to hurt as well.  And I would agree.  But, the subject is not binary.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:50 | 1193282 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

I wasn't 'advocating' anything. Just observing...and mentioning black in contrast to white isn't denying the possibility of 'grey'.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:07 | 1193442 CH1
CH1's picture

Double post.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:04 | 1193445 CH1
CH1's picture

"Lawlessness" can be a very misleading emotional trigger.

Is copying a video the same kind of "lawlessness" as stealing a car?

Copyright and patent law are, at the minimum, way out of date. Shall we jail 15 year old kids who 'steal' songs and TV shows? And if not, why not? IT'S THE LAW!

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:12 | 1193486 centerline
centerline's picture

Agreed.  Is a grey area.  Would expect it would continue to be redefined as we evolve as a society in concert with technicological advancements, etc.  Hell, the internet really turned about to pandora's box in this regard (LOL).


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 16:30 | 1193911 unnamed enemy
unnamed enemy's picture

jail em i say - the same way we jail potheads, and imigrants on their way our - its the american way.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:58 | 1193397 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

Thanks S&A.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:16 | 1193202 Kitler
Kitler's picture

Truth does hurt and both posts were good.

Nice observation on the junks BTW.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:30 | 1193248 Vendetta
Vendetta's picture

No one voted to get a dinner ware set for a dollar less.  The dollar less price was to blow out competition that remained in the US.  Its called product dumping to get market share.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:08 | 1193465 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

You 'voted' with your dollars, then.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 16:53 | 1194031 morkov
morkov's picture

'voted' ?? no one voted, you know... it doesn't look like a very personal choice to me, but what do i know... LOL

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:52 | 1193356 Banjo
Banjo's picture

GoinFawr: Absolutely 100% spot on.

How the masses were ever convinced it was good to offshore one job and bust unions apart is beyond me.

It's like they have a desire to get raped (as long as it's someone else first, so they can grab that cheap t-shirt)  then one day when their livelyhood is on the line the light bulb starts to dimly go on thats somethings not right and of course it's China, the unions or someone elses fault.

I work in IT and I finally am loving the fact that good white collar jobs are moving overseas. Why because most of my colleagues thought they were untouchable :-) Think again if you "work" and there are thousands in your profession "your job" can be shipped anywhere so the top 10% can have even more money for iPads while you struggle to put food on the table and gas in the car.




Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:10 | 1193464 centerline
centerline's picture

Come on guys...

At the base of the society pyramid it is all about resources.  Some people work directly with these resources (food, energy, etc.).  Some people work in industries that serve the needs of those who work directly with the resources.  And so forth into a complex society.  At the top of the pyramid are those who live completely off of the system below.  They have minimum requirements, just like any other part of the pyramid. 

Anyhow, the top of the societal pyramid own most of resources and the supply chains.  Where they no longer can extract their yield in a given environment, they take action.  In our case, years ago, in order to maintain volume at lower prices it necessitated finding cheaper labor, and environments to rape.  When that no longer works (e.g. now), they can choke supply and/or drive the prices up to maintain yield.  The lower portions of the pyramid are slammed in the process.  Along the way, we have all seen the decline of corporate pensions, decline of the “career”, shifting towards “freelance” employees without benefits, outsourcing, and so forth.  It’s all the same thing to the top.

One of the main reasons we travel this path is our debt-backed money system.  The shifting of the industrial base to China, outsourcing to India, etc. are simply effects of our system levering up on debt… taking advantage of people whose standard of living is much lower (those who have yet to be pulled into the same box)… taking advantage of environments. 

Note that the plans for this system were designed long before any of us.  It has been done before as well.  In some ways it is core to who we are.  But that is another subject altogether.  Nonetheless, the “planning” going on here is generations in the making.  Most people don’t have timeframes that long.  If you are middle class, I doubt you are looking more than a few years down the road at most.  If you are lower class, I doubt you are looking any further than a few weeks… maybe just towards the next meal.  Making claims that average people willingly participated in the decline of America is really painting poor picture of reality.  On the surface it could be argued that it is true.  And there is some minor truth there.  But really it was the bigger con that has perpetrated on the people.  An effect, not a cause per se.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:23 | 1193513 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

"Making claims that average people willingly participated in the decline of America is really painting poor picture of reality."

Who is doing that? Certainly not me, I swear, and I still say that despite meeting scores of americans.
Reread my posts and look for key words like, "dupe", "unwittingly" or "asshat".


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:50 | 1193704 centerline
centerline's picture

Yeah, probably the wrong choice of words.  My bad.  I probably should have phrased it along the lines of "blaming average people for having an active hand in....".


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 17:36 | 1193928 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

Well, OTOH, your average American has had more than one opportunity to install a Ralph Nader led administration.

Now, while ol` RN and I don`t necessarily see eye to eye on every single little thing, I still have to wonder which he would have sold out in late 2008: Wall St. or mainstreet? The probable answer to that one question alone tells me how I would have cast my ballot, given the chance(s).

So you see, the `blame` can be passed around a bit, after all there are over 300 million in the US right now, if you all really felt the need to change something, why the hell wait?

Really, my original point was simply that the `blame` can hardly be placed on China for wanting to better the lot of its people by taking the opportunity dropped in its lap by avaricious plutocrats, an arrangement which was then supported by the stupid/duped.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 19:43 | 1194670 centerline
centerline's picture

With you on the China point.  And in an ironic twist, it is our vices in part that allowed so many to be duped or stupified.  Herd mentality at it's finest!  Now the herd is corned and it's slaughtering time.  Not going to be pretty when cattle in back realize what is going on up front.

On the question of "why wait?" - I ask that all the time.  Then I look around and see two things... normalcy bias at play - and people that are run so hard so fast all the time that they lack the ability to focus on what is really going on around them anyhow.  Of course, there's also American Idol and Iphones.  LOL.  I struggle to call this blame though.  That is where you and I differ.  In my opinion, your position is akin to blaming a rape victim for walking unknownly (or distracted) into a bad place.

Sat, 04/23/2011 - 00:36 | 1198425 Andre
Andre's picture

You're young, I guess. Too young to remember things like the Teamster's Central States pension fund scandal, or the UAW scandals of the 70's.

Too young to remember "Ross for Boss" and the "giant sucking sound" which (along with "No New Taxes") made sure HW Bush was NOT re-elected (of course, Clinton signed it anyway, along with giving China MFN status).

Too young to have talked to people from all walks of life who have seen this coming for 20 years or more. They just didn't have degrees or the right connections to be taken seriously, but guess what?

It all came to pass, just like we thought.

The loss of manufacturing jobs creamed the local tax bases, along with the perceived value of education. Shop classes were closed, as people were told "thinking is the only valued doing" as they were "prepared for 21st century jobs". At this point, the US military can fight brushfire/colonial or all out nuclear wars ONLY. We have neither the economy nor the productivity to sustain a protracted conventional war.

This is not what "the masses" asked for, despite Walmart's advertising. Nobody asked, and nobody gave us a choice.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:28 | 1192909 SME MOFO
SME MOFO's picture

"arbitraging China's cheap labor against generations of accumulated American wealth"

I think about this often.  How did the accumulated wealth of the USA get sucked away?

I mean the real wealth, the means necessary to educate well, to keep people healthy, to keep them housed and etc. - hard to believe that it was simply traded away for seven hundred thousand containers of salad shooters and wrought iron garden furniture.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:41 | 1193014 pan-the-ist
pan-the-ist's picture

We have Natural Resources and Food.  The rest of the economy is fluff.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:05 | 1193157 centerline
centerline's picture

The rest is fabricated around the extraction and development of resources and the food required to fuel the enterprises.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 19:50 | 1194712 gmj
gmj's picture

We are shipping both overseas.  We are burning through our topsoil and aquifers to reduce our trade deficit.  We are selling our coal and natural gas.  We are insane.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:32 | 1193257 Village Smithy
Village Smithy's picture

Nicely said. It is very sad when you consider the labor, good honest labor that went into building that wealth. I think it happens because always the ruling class has time on their hands to think about how to manipulate the system to their benefit, while the rest of us just get up and go to work each day so that we can care for our families. At one time in history people with money spent their time advancing science, medicine, mathematics, philosophy and so on. Now, "how can we twist the system to improve our financial status?" is the only philosophical question they ask.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:42 | 1193301 SME MOFO
SME MOFO's picture

good point.  people really did start taking seriously the inquiry, "if you're so smart why aren't you rich".  and when that mid level slide rule job at IBM no longer offered super security and status about the cul de sac, it became difficult even to get a suitable mate sans bling...

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:27 | 1192960 66Sexy
66Sexy's picture

You say "We"...

More like "They".... My vote never counted, the globalist agenda fooled the Baby boomers and what wealth was left in the country.


The unions bribe the politicians, so do the internaitonal bankers.

And that is the dynamic of a failed system.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:32 | 1193602 European American
European American's picture

It seems as though each of us must truly become self reliant, e.g. our own Central Banker, our own Master Gardener, our own Energy Provider, etc. No longer can we expect any help from those that previously were perceived as helping us.  We have the resources and technology to pull it off. The key is circumventing TPTB ability to "take what they please, when they please" from us. I think "community" i.e. United We Stand will be the tactic for accomplishing such a strategy.


Better to allow the process to be experienced naturally and automatically rather than having it force-fed to us.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 17:51 | 1194294 GoinFawr
GoinFawr's picture

Epiphanies like yours would have made Abbie Hoffman proud.

Sat, 04/23/2011 - 23:38 | 1200285 MSimon
MSimon's picture

Wait until you have to compete with robots.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:18 | 1192642 Soul Train
Soul Train's picture

This was a great article. USA does have a two faced propaganda machine. It is strong. It is a real problem.

Also, the legitimacy of the Obama holding office - get a grip on it, because you never know, this one could rock the stock market someday big time.

Read some of the posts on about the upcoming book to be released in May. The insights from the blogosphere are incredible. It's no wonder that Trump is on the scent. Stay tuned.

Here is the link - read through all the comments. Even the apparent fact that his legal name was never changed back to Barack Obama could be a bombshell - fraud - because the guy who holds office actual name is Barry Soetoro. He even lied about his name. Maybe not impeachable, but maybe it is. Plus of course all the birther arguments.


And check this one out - it is legit - you can click through all the links and see

It shows an archived East African newspaper stating that he was Kenyan born during his US Senate election. The website is not a fraud - click on the links and also the main page and this is one of the worldwide web history caches.

So the politics is just a timebomb, just like this propaganda economic system that makes no sense - no sense at all - except that it is gamed for the big boys to throw head fakes at us and get our money anyway they can.

Keep up the good work - ZeroHedge - and thanks.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:10 | 1192879 velobabe
velobabe's picture

hey soul train, you do good work. now hoping the Donald reads zerohedge, probably does and gets his birther ideas juicin'.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:56 | 1193096 Soul Train
Soul Train's picture

thanks for the hat tip Velobabe. But ouch,  someone flagged my post as junk.

The message is that this birther thing could affect the markets very quickly if something comes down. It would not take much to affect our political system, and the market WILL react.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:55 | 1193723 centerline
centerline's picture

Ignore those junks.  There have been some serial junkers around here for a long time now.  You brought up an interesting point, in my humble opinion.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:54 | 1193707 That Peak Oil Guy
That Peak Oil Guy's picture

That Kenyan newspaper article doesn't mean much on its own. We all know how often the media gets its facts straight.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 21:12 | 1194909 Bárðarbunga
Bárðarbunga's picture

A junk from me too. Just a small leap to grab a Snopes article and you wouldn't look so fucking smug.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:32 | 1192990 flattrader
flattrader's picture

Let's pretend CHS said something new...or even different.


Just more screaming at the rain.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:29 | 1192480 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

No matter how hard pensions get screwed they will never stop buying stocks. Perfect victims.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:36 | 1192501 redpill
redpill's picture

Same with 401ks.  Which is precisely why the system was invented.  College savings accounts are the same way.  Any time you need a "bank sponsor" to participate in a tax deferred program, who also coincidentally limits your purchase options to a handful of mutual funds of their choosing, it's a pretty clear indication why the system exists as it does

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:37 | 1193283 Vendetta
Vendetta's picture

yep.  When the panic comes to get out of 401ks, the govt will get an influx of 30% right off the top.  They put a little cheese called 'employer contributions' in the 401k trap to lure the mice into the trap.

After contributing the minimum of 3% to my 401k as my trust was destroyed of our government and wall street in 2002/2003, it built up considerably ... uncomfortably so.  Since they wouldn't let me have my 401k money without quitting my job, I took half out as a loan and bought .... dare I say physical silver.  Needless to say my 30% penalty for the whole thing is already covered ... by 300% gains

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:14 | 1193196 Cynthia
Cynthia's picture

Buzz or anyone else here,

It is true that because commodities have a long proven track record for being highly volatile and thus very risky, most state pension funds are forbidden from investing in gold and other commodities?

If true, then this may explain why the TBTF Banks remain silent about their recent actions to dump equities in favor commodities. This is their way of returning a favor to the Obama Administration for continuing to bail them out, via quantitative easing and near zero-interest loans. If the word got out that the TBTF banks are no longer confident enough in the stock market to remain invested there, then the public would know without a doubt that the Obama Administration is lying about how the jobs market is improving and the overall economy is well on its way to recovery, thus reducing Obama's chances of being reelected in 2012.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:33 | 1192484 X. Kurt OSis
X. Kurt OSis's picture

Lots of charts here but how exactly is this bullish for AAPL (which is what I assume is the point of all of this 'data')?  I can't quite find the punchline.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:33 | 1192485 GOSPLAN HERO
GOSPLAN HERO's picture

Let's pretend we can create money from thin air.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:49 | 1192570 I am more equal...
I am more equal than others's picture

....PUUUFFF....  here's $1,000,000,000,000. It is bernaked money.  Spend wisely.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:34 | 1192488 John McCloy
John McCloy's picture

One if the best articles on ZH in a while. Short and concise just like the fundamentals of economics. Playing games is indeed for children. Like they say, " women and children can afford to be careless a true man cannot act careless" This guy thinks just like Tyler with his " Panzer division of corporate tax evasion remarks" Illusion economy touted on Tv. Folks have no idea all the temporary solace they enjoy now is courteousy of future generations and coming tax hiked wether official or from currency devaluation. When the larger elites are telling how they want taxes raised on the supposed rich they fail to mention the 1% is near immune because this is income. They make their money through dividend distributions which are in a different tax realm. They really want to tax small " job creating" business.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:45 | 1192564 WaterWings
WaterWings's picture

Well put. The elite know that meaningless headlines will soothe the masses.

"Kool-Aid Rations To Be Increased For Slaves"

"Having A Larger Television Increases Self-Esteem"

"Underwater? So What! You're Exceptional!"

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:13 | 1192888 Sunshine n Lollipops
Sunshine n Lollipops's picture

"The New Superfood: Potatoes!"

"Jobless Have More Sex Than Employed"

"Why 3 Meals a Day Are Bad for You"

"City Buses: The Best Place to Meet Someone?"

"Your Kids: Why the Military Might Be a Better Choice than College"

"MSN Travel Rates America's Best Tent Cities"

"Chickens Pass Cats as 2nd Most Popular Housepets"


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:25 | 1193242 Kitler
Kitler's picture


I hope they pay you well for you ideas.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 22:35 | 1195093 FEDbuster
FEDbuster's picture

"Smoke 'em, if you got 'em. Medical marijuana taxes to bail out states"

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:35 | 1192492 ibjamming
ibjamming's picture

Looking at the "emplotment as a % of population...we're getting back to levels of employment PRE women going to work.  Quite an eye-opener...

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:35 | 1192494 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

It is not the children, but adults, that love to play let's pretend.  We do this when we are trying to distract children from our behaviour in the real world.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:40 | 1192496 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

It is not the children, but adults, that love to play let's pretend.  We do this when we are trying to distract children from our behaviour in the real world.

Glitch in The Matrix?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:34 | 1192503 Rastadamus
Rastadamus's picture

Let's pretend that Babylon is burning....

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:37 | 1192504 RobotTrader
RobotTrader's picture

We are definitely entering an economic boom of unprecedented proportions.  The market is telling us that when chemical companies are busting out to new highs with huge price spread...

Not only that, but another "student loan boom" must be afoot, since millions of new jobs will be coming up and we'll need lots of college graduates to fill them.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:42 | 1192529 redpill
redpill's picture

Are you joking?  Why would we be entering an economic boom when fundamentals are horrible and downgrades are widespread?  Why would we need more students when we have millions of unemployed waiting for jobs already?  Now you're becoming a caricature of yourself, it's really sad.

The reality is you know the market isn't telling us these things, stocks are being ramped by printed money, which is why PMs are advancing relentlessly.  Why do you keep posting individual stock charts for no reason other than showing an up trend as if that is significant in this environment?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:00 | 1192622 Commander Cody
Commander Cody's picture

It is his way.  Heed RoboTrader at your peril.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:31 | 1192720 Votewithabullet
Votewithabullet's picture

Harry Wanker with charts. I think its pure sarcasm. Gotta be

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 19:10 | 1194594 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture

Robo is some kind of satire, right?  Nobody is actually that fucking stupid.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 19:30 | 1194636 Bicycle Repairman
Bicycle Repairman's picture


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:47 | 1192540 scratch_and_sniff
scratch_and_sniff's picture

Congratulations Hobotrader, you have plumed new depths of "i didn't actually read the post before i posted".


I should think a large proportion of the chemicals being sold is tubs of glue, along with plastic bags.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:44 | 1192544 lieutenantjohnchard
lieutenantjohnchard's picture

then why can't you get a job? you told us a while back you were going to work for some company. instead we find you posting at zh all day long, and into the evening. last week you told us you were going to boca for the week. you can't tell the truth even when the truth won't hurt.

your post fits perfect for this post: pretend.

new name: the pretender.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:25 | 1192689 Richard Head
Richard Head's picture

I prefer "Robo-faker."  BS and fakery all around from him. 

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:30 | 1192731 lieutenantjohnchard
lieutenantjohnchard's picture

true. gotta agree.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:43 | 1192548 Tracerfan
Tracerfan's picture

Egypt has a huge number of (unemployed) students, too.  What did they just do?  They overthrew the government because they didn't have jobs.  Unemployment among the young in the U.S. is at record levels.  They can't get jobs, so they go or stay in school.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:21 | 1192687 Bubbles...bubbl...
Bubbles...bubbles everywhere's picture

They are fighting in Libya.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:21 | 1192941 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

So what is the comparison to Egypt about??? Are you suggesting the young, unemployed in the US can be put to a better use?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:48 | 1192567 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

Goddamit it, Tyler. WHY are you foisting this IDIOT faux persona called RobotTrader upon this board?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:56 | 1192588 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

Cuz it is fight club, not lets all hold hands and never disagree club.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:19 | 1192677 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

Somebody is being naughty with the junk button. Come out and fight like a man!

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:23 | 1193230 mt paul
mt paul's picture

fight like a woman 

take all your stuff..

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:21 | 1192678 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

<<<  not lets all hold hands and never disagree club >>>

ZH presents NEWS.  RobotTrader presents stock charts.  RobotTrader is not adding ANY value by doing so, yet ZH gives special privileges to this persona that it does not give to other members.  Gimme a break.  RobotTrader is a pot stirrer.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:36 | 1192751 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

I appreciate Robotrader's honesty.  Charts don't lie.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:53 | 1192827 John Law Lives
John Law Lives's picture

<<<  I appreciate Robotrader's honesty.  >>>

RobotTrader never said anything of substance.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:12 | 1192902 tmosley
tmosley's picture

They don't tell the truth either.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:17 | 1192922 Dave Thomas
Dave Thomas's picture

We need him to make sure the Junk button works. Everyone has a purpose.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:52 | 1193084 10kby2k
10kby2k's picture

Robo Trader plays both sides of the fence.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:47 | 1192572 AccreditedEYE
AccreditedEYE's picture

The market is telling us that when chemical companies are busting out to new highs with huge price spread...

Who's buying chemicals man? Overseas in Asia for stock piles maybe, but not here. If the rally in risk assets continues, the price of goods and services is going to CRUSH consumers and corp profits. (which, BTW, is a LAGGING indicator) Yes, you can ignore reality for a long time but at some point, it comes to punch you in the face. And if even a whiff of this rumor of letting taxes float back to pre-Bush cuts for the middle class is true.....

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:24 | 1192957 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

Who's buying chemicals man?

Maybe it is all those unemployed youth, who are equipping their Meth Labs so they can get into one of the few remaining growth industries.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:49 | 1192575 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

do you actually ever read the articles you are responding to or do you simply pontificate via posting hindsight charts that, in this case in particular, are completely discredited by the very article you are responding to?

needless to say...this is a rhetorical question to which the answer is obvious to everyone here.

go buy some BIDU stock. the PE just cracked 100x and you don't want to be the only boy at the party that ain't holding that bloated pig.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:52 | 1192580 teotwawki
teotwawki's picture

Either that or we are going into hyperinflation.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:56 | 1192606 teotwawki
teotwawki's picture

Pretty sure robottrader is being sarcastic. I happen to agree with him if he is, you just have to buy something because cash is trash. It's not so much much a bull market as a dollar collapse.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:33 | 1192743 DR
DR's picture

"student loan boom"

Student loans stocks are booming because most are recourse loans that people can't walk away from when the coming debt collaspe starts...

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:32 | 1193256 stormsailor
stormsailor's picture

my oldest son (26) works with another 26 year old at an i t company.  the other guy owes 175,000 in student loans and they are garnishing his wages 200 per week.


my son got his tech certificates free by taking the test on the internet.  the other guy went to one of these career technical schools.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:36 | 1192766 Trillax
Trillax's picture

Robo, every time you make one of your 'greatest economic boom' farts, I take a quick little glance at the picture of my daughter next to my PC; and cry a little.

Seriously the Kool-Aid you must be drinking..

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:08 | 1193167 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

Pretty simple in my eyes... When silver hits a "Brazillion" dollars, you'll be able to flip 'em a pre-1964 Rosie to pay for your degree that you got in your pajamas from the University of Phoenix...

Looking good SALLIE!

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:34 | 1193261 r101958
r101958's picture

You and Ivars would make a perfect couple (of Devil's advocates).

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:43 | 1193302 Vendetta
Vendetta's picture

just say no to drugs

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:38 | 1192505 lynnybee
lynnybee's picture

30 years of malinvestments must be purged.   30 years of disasterous policies out of Wall St. via our Government need to be corrected.    we used to be a nation of citizens & the wealth of natural resources were ours to use & enjoy & leave for future generations.    when will we rise up & take our country back ?    our children & future generations deserve better than this current outrageous state of affairs . 

fraud / crimes / predatory capitalism

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:49 | 1192576 AccreditedEYE
AccreditedEYE's picture

+100 You may be waiting a long time Lynn, but it does have to eventually happen. Whether they want it to or not.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:36 | 1192508 digalert
digalert's picture

The entire post describes CNBS, c'mon DOW 36k baby.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:40 | 1192513 economessed
economessed's picture

I feel younger and better looking already!  It's working!

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:44 | 1192558 yabyum
yabyum's picture

economessed, Have you lost weight?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:38 | 1192514 AldoHux_IV
AldoHux_IV's picture

"You can't go on thinking nothing's wrong-- no you can't go on thinking nothing's wrong, who's going to drive you home tonight."

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:41 | 1192519 Rodent Freikorps
Rodent Freikorps's picture

I can no longer pretend.

I don't really love gold. I just tell it that to get it into bed.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:52 | 1192578 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

Good one, rat man.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:41 | 1192521 dbTX
dbTX's picture

Can we pretend Timmy, Ben and Barry will resign tomorrow, wait today?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:41 | 1192522 Shell Game
Shell Game's picture

Bernan-kant-stop-inflating, we're coming for you, MF'er..

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:45 | 1192549 sodbuster
sodbuster's picture

The crap you hear on the MSM about the economy, ranks right up there with the greatest lie ever told- "No babe, I won't cum in your mouth!"

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:29 | 1192967 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

You call that a lie?  The greatest lie along those lines would be something like, "It will make me love you even more, baby."

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:44 | 1192555 Kickaha
Kickaha's picture

Yes, but...

I like to imagine Larry Kudlow's show merging with Glee! somehow.

Last night out of morbid curiosity I watched that loudmouth idiot interview a panel of "experts" all of whom opined that things were a lot worse than they looked.  No matter how many times Larry shouted an interruption, and tried to argue with them about their data, they patiently explained to him that things were really bad, and getting worse.  The hangdog expression on Larry's face was priceless as the show ended on that note.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:46 | 1192556 zaknick
zaknick's picture

AmeriKKKa, bitchez!!

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:44 | 1192557 writingsonthewall
writingsonthewall's picture

You 'aint seen nuffink yet.


In the UK they're actually getting the excuses in early for a Q2 GDP downgrade. Apparently it's due to 1 days extra holiday for some royal turds to get married. That days 'lost work' is going to cause as much chaos as the snow!


I kid you not.


Extend and pretend....

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:45 | 1192566 espirit
espirit's picture

Free pixie dust and kool-aid for everyone- Not!

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:47 | 1192571 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

Reality is harder to deal with.

We americans have no innate superiority over others and have no greater claim to the worlds productive resources than others. Global wage convergence or Smoot-Hawley, take your pick, but the reality is that for the time being workers are going to get less in real terms.

For living beyond our means and being foolish with finances we are going to have a reduced standard of living in the future even if we repudiate our sovereign debt.

Having essentially lost our moral values of thrift, self.discipline, and sacrifice so that future generations could benefit, we have squandered our capital. Immoral, undisciplined people will ultimately suffer. It has been so since time immemoral.

As your president I say suck it up, bitchez. We can make it thru this but it requires acceptance of personal responsibility, hard work, the end of government dependency and moral hazard in all its forms, and a small reduction in the 100 or so military bases in germany

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:50 | 1192574 the grateful un...
the grateful unemployed's picture

my favorite chart is Real Household Median Income, it destroys the myth that baby boomers have prospered the most during the last 50 years. Real Income was stagnant through the Boomers formative earnings years, the years they were working and raising a family. It wasn't until around 83' when the first Boomers children graduated from HS that Income started to rise. The real sweet spot in this chart is 83' to around 00'. If you were a boomer, your job, your career was already decided by 83'. There were fewer opportunities to channel into higher paying jobs in that period.  Also payroll taxes were higher, if you worked overtime, you were paid time and a half, and the regressive tax system took most of it. Now that the grandchildren of the Boomers are coming of age, once again the real income has stagnated. Boomers are a lot like Mexicans, they work hard, and then they are blamed for taking the biggest share of spending on social services, when the bottom line is they were underpaid throughout most of their lives.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:20 | 1192685 W T Effington
W T Effington's picture

We have come to stand on this current precipice because of Baby Boomer leadership. I'm not sure if you are trying to make excuses for the generation of people who have gotten us to this point, but it sure sounds like it. Passing on this national debt to your kids and grandkids is frankly, immoral, and enormously selfish. Boomers may work hard, but apparently they couldnt spend the time to educate themselves on simple economic and mathematical truths.If they had, I imagine they would have voted for different leadership.  Boomers are going to retire and do everything they can to suck the younger generations dry, because they didnt save enough themselves. Social Security and Medicare are jokes and if you have any other opinion you are sticking your head in the sand.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:03 | 1192855 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

The greatest generation produced the most selfish generation, boomers.

If we got a little problem lets just spend more taxpayer money on it or borrow from china. Heck, the kids wont mind paying it off.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:13 | 1192892 redpill
redpill's picture

Ah the baby boomers, a generation for the history books indeed.  The "me" generation.  Those who really believe in little but themselves.  The terminally self-centric who believe the economy, culture, society, and planet are theirs to use up and discard like a kleenex when they are done as long as they had fun along the way.  The motto is NOW at the expense of the past, future, anything, and everything.  And they are all still thinking they'll get out of this and be able to retire on a golf course and live on the social security checks without a care in the world, giggling about how good they had it and how fucked everyone else is, while their parents, sitting on their deathbeds and watching their final episodes of Wheel of Fortune, can only shake their heads and wonder how their life struggles yielded such ungrateful nihilistic self-centered devilspawn, with pitiful glances at their grand children and great grand children who somberly attempt to pick up the pieces in an exercise of utter futility as they toil under the so most obscene amount of largesse-spawning debt the world has ever known.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:24 | 1192944 topcallingtroll
topcallingtroll's picture

I think we underestimate the millenials. We just gotta try to quit pissing on them.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:53 | 1193075 the grateful un...
the grateful unemployed's picture

don't confuse me with the facts. read the chart, it tells the story.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:35 | 1192996 Rhodin
Rhodin's picture

We agree about passing debt, SS and Medicare, but it was FDR who started rolling that snowball.  For young boomers, it was harder to see thru the matrix in formative years, and more difficult for those who could.  As children (mostly) boomers, and potential leaders, got an object lesson in JFK, about the disposability of leaders who move toward seperating the vampire banksters from their blood supply.  RFK and MLK added emphasis, and all presidents since have been bankster puppets.   A gadfly or two is permitted in CONgress, for the captive media to poke fun at.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:45 | 1193048 redpill
redpill's picture

Johnson's "war on poverty", escalation of Vietnam, Medicare, etc., really became the modern working model for increasing debt, keeping the military industrial complex happy with long protracted conflict, and expanding the welfare state to keep the majority pulling the voting levers.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:49 | 1193065 the grateful un...
the grateful unemployed's picture

BS it was Reagan who blew up the debt, where it's been ever since. Boomers hated Reagan, they saw him as a washed up B movie actor, but the kids loved him, because he gave them BS job in the MIC which will soon be paid for with money that was supposed to take care of Grandmas cancer operation. rant back on.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:01 | 1193116 redpill
redpill's picture

Horseshit.  Reagan had a record landslide in 84, the boomers voted for him like everyone else.   He and Congress rapidly expanded the debt to be sure.  However the modern trend line for federal debt accumulation really began in the 60s, and it was Johnson's timebomb Medicare that is making our future unfunded obligations go parabolic today.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 22:28 | 1195080 the grateful un...
the grateful unemployed's picture

you say horse shit i say bullshit. johnson paid for the war in nam with higher taxes. and get this, people didn't demand the same standard of living they think is their god given right today. i can see the deficit numbers start with reagan and his bullshit war against the soviets, which was built on the back of unchecked funding for the MIC, but you are right. the democratic congress signed off on all of it. just like Iraq, which is why i turned in my membership card.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:47 | 1193044 the grateful un...
the grateful unemployed's picture

point is boomers made the sacrifice, asked for and took less than their children (the real me generation) and now that they made that sacrifice they are being pilloried for not being wealthy enough, for not making money like their yuppie children, which was all courtesy of government deficits, and borrow and spend policies. Boomers paid for everything they took. Every Boomer remembers the moment their teenage kid demanded a pair of designer jeans, and free car, and free healthcare, so they could take a day off, or have an excellent adventure. If Boomers have any problem it was being too indulgent of everyone who wanted something for nothing. (Note Reagan was very popular with young people).

Now the whiners sit around and cry about the empire, this and the empire that. Boomers built the empire. Now the government wants to toss them under the bus, (mostly spoiled Republican brats raised with better values). rant over

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:11 | 1193162 redpill
redpill's picture

BOOMERS made the sacrifice?  lol that's a good one.  Fuckers wouldn't know sacrifice if it hit them in their fat self-entitled faces.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:38 | 1193278 r101958
r101958's picture

sorry to throw water on the boomer basher party....but, boomers did not vote Johnson or Nixon into power. One created the largest ever gov't programs and the other signed off on getting rid of the gold standard ....which started this entire debt mess. Most Boomers weren't even old enough to vote at the time.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:27 | 1193572 redpill
redpill's picture

No one claimed they did.  Of course even if they were of age to vote in '72 they were probably too stoned to remember to get up and go to the polls.  But hey maybe they finally came into their own when they got around to electing that bastion of leadership James Earl Carter Jr. in '76.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 15:37 | 1193619 the grateful un...
the grateful unemployed's picture

check your icon junkman

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 17:06 | 1194088 redpill
redpill's picture

I didn't junk you

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 20:47 | 1194836 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Hard to ignore such a fun intergenerational mudfest...

Boomers certainly aren't to blame for big spending problems created under Johnson and the gold-standard reversal, but they sure as hell were instrumental in launching the Reaganite "cut taxes and spend" revolution which has persisted for every Republican politician for over 30 years.

Overall, Boomers were not expected to sacrifice much--they came of age during the most profound long-term economic boom in the USA caused by the post-war reconstruction, and saw a greater increase in living standards than any generation before or after.  In nominal terms, it might be possible to argue that the Boomer offspring saw more "wealth" shoveled their way, but the qualitative difference between living without electronics and living without cellphones is enormous.  The 50s-80s change in level of day-to-day luxury far outstrips the change from 1980 to today for the vast majority of people.

I've known plenty of assholes of every generation I've ever encountered, and I don't think it makes too much sense to blame this age-group or that.  There's more than enough direct effort and complicity no matter which group you look at, and even if you could figure out that those folks or those others were actually really "to blame" for any problem you want to bitch about, it still doesn't do anything to get closer to the SOLUTION.

The better approach might be to think about what each generation can contribute to fixing this fuckin' shitty mess.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:52 | 1192583 baby_BLYTHE
baby_BLYTHE's picture

Now is your opportunity to ask our dear chairsatan direct questions

What Would You Ask Bernanke?

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will take questions from the media at a press conference next week. Here’s a chance for RTE readers to sound off. What would you ask?
In a follow up post, we’ll highlight the best questions from our readers and experts we’ll survey.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:38 | 1192759 hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

What Would You Ask Bernanke?

"Would you prefer a blindfold?"

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:36 | 1193007 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

How often can you be wrong without being shitcanned?


After you destroy the U.S.A where will you move to?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:54 | 1192585 Hedgetard55
Hedgetard55's picture

The pretending will go on as long as a Dem is in the White House.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:08 | 1192638 Commander Cody
Commander Cody's picture

The color of the POTUS makes no difference.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:39 | 1192774 pods
pods's picture

Yeah, when that is over, we can go back to looking for boogiemen in caves.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 20:49 | 1194840 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

If a non-Dem gets in, we'll play a different pretendy-game.

I didn't care much for the last decade's make-believe, either.  We pretended we were trying to defend Emetica while turning it into a hellhole.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:57 | 1192607 MiningJunkie
MiningJunkie's picture

Let's pretend I'm not short the E/S....

Never underestimate the replacement power of stocks and bonds and gold and oil and IPads within a hyper-inflationary Zimbabwe-esque spiral.

And buy the Fcuking Dip....

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:04 | 1192611 Dejean Splicer
Dejean Splicer's picture

While you're here. Any comment on the following?

"American Express launches Social Currency"

~D'jean Splicer

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:00 | 1192612 Village Smithy
Village Smithy's picture

No one is pretending anything. There are two Americas, you talk about one or the other. The plutocracy is doing very well, the rest of us are all in a downward spiral just at various rates of acceleration. This bifurcation will continue it's present path. The only way to bring these two "streams" back together would be with massive social upheaval. That is not going to happen the way it did in the early days of our republic because the ruling class' military is so vastly superior now, compared to anything the people could mount today. Like the Libyans are experiencing only thousands of times worse.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 13:07 | 1192860 Founders Keeper
Founders Keeper's picture

[There are two Americas...]---Village Smithy

Thanks for your post, Smithy.

I agree, " not going to happen the way it did in the early days of our republic...."

As for your assumption the military will---on a whole---turn against the American people in defense of the ruling class, you may be surprised.

The ground work is already underway to avert, as much as possible, the scenario you describe. Thanks to the Oath Keepers.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:13 | 1193189 Shell Game
Shell Game's picture

As for your assumption the military will---on a whole---turn against the American people in defense of the ruling class, you may be surprised.

I've gone around and around about this. Overall, I think I agree - odds favor the military eventually backing a civilian revolution.  But, a miltary buddy of mine isn't quite so sure.  The grunts now serving are a reflection of our current self-centered society.  There will likely be periods and pockets of ugliness before they come around.  We'll see, hope you're right..

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:29 | 1193251 Kitler
Kitler's picture

Don't forget pay increases.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 14:50 | 1193345 Vendetta
Vendetta's picture

I don't know how the grunts will feel if they are ordered to kill or oppress the citizenry... when their loved ones are part of the citizenry.. I suggest they kill the man making the orders.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 16:14 | 1193824 Shell Game
Shell Game's picture

And if they're told the 'insurgents' are making it unsafe for their loved ones and their country?

It will take courage to disobey orders and leave that family without paycheck, and possibly, with an incarcerated father/husband..

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 20:51 | 1194848 blunderdog
blunderdog's picture

Doesn't matter.  A million active-duty troops is nowhere near enough to suppress the 300 million living here.  Just not even close.

We didn't even manage to pacify Iraq.

Think about it.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 20:21 | 1194785 gmj
gmj's picture

The ruling class has something much more powerful than the military.  They have the mass media.  Combine that with a stupid, indebted, Balkanized citizenry, and you have all the ingredients for control.  

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 11:59 | 1192614 ugmug
ugmug's picture


Obama's economic commandment number one – You shall bear false witness against your neighbor – take his stash cuz he be a rob'n the masses.


Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:01 | 1192617 lynnybee
lynnybee's picture

thank you, Tyler ..such a great posting today .   i don't know how you do it, it's all just so good & appreciated.

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:00 | 1192621 tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

let's pretend that there is such a thing as a magic bullet which killed president kennedy instead of a cia/military sniper's bullet.....

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:08 | 1192646 lynnybee
lynnybee's picture

"They killed him." , Jackie Kennedy.    When asked to change her blood-soaked clothing for the swearing in of Lyndon Johnson, she said she would not change.   "I want America to see what they did to my husband. "    She left the country & the American public still didn't understand.        I remember my own parents putting her down, how could she leave America, the wife of a president & marry a Greek man !    That was the mindset of the American public back then, the public bought the story of Oswald killing him... hook, line & sinker.

who is "they" ?

Thu, 04/21/2011 - 12:29 | 1192714 falak pema
falak pema's picture

read Agatha Christie : who benefits from the crime. Aka Watergate...where the tapes revealed all. Alas, not in the case of the 'magic bullet' the Warren Commission headed by an ex-chief Justice of Supreme, but 'guided' by 'dear Alan' and 'dear Ford', found a way to say to mainstream USA : One man did it. Agatha would NEVER have bought that!

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