The Economist

Burning Down The House

It is a little-understood historical fact that each nation has a shelf life. After a nation has peaked and a majority of the people have traded in their work ethic for the undeliverable promise of ever-increasing governmental largesse, the decline is set in stone. When this has taken place, it’s not only the work ethic that’s in a terminal decline. The nation heads inexorably downward in other ways...

'X' Marks The Spot - Wages Started Losing When The Dollar Delinked From Gold In 1971

At “X” Marks the Spot, "[s]omething happened," and the wages of goods-producing workers flatlined, never to recover. As it happens, “X” correlates with Nixon shutting down the Bretton Woods gold standard in 1971 and the epic failure to get it fixed and restored in 1973. The drag, after a modest lag, filtered into the working economy. The rest is persistent stagnation for median families.

Free Speech Under Attack

Speech is either free or it isn’t. One cannot have it both ways, as the EU apparatchiks apparently think. As soon as restrictions on free speech are introduced, abuse is sure to follow.

Steve H. Hanke's picture

Authored by Steve H. Hanke of The Johns Hopkins University. Follow him on Twitter @Steve_Hanke.

 

Most press reports about Zimbabwe’s fantastic hyperinflation are off the mark – way off the mark. Even our most trusted news sources fail to get the facts right. This confirms the “95 Percent Rule”: 95 percent of what you read in the financial press is either wrong or irrelevant.

The Obamacare Cliff: Redistribution & The Disincentive To Work

As awful as Obamacare has been at its purported goal of making health care affordable, it has been unquestionably successful at one of Obama's other primary goals: the redistribution of wealth.  Unfortunately, the poor design of the redistribution function is one of the reasons Obamacare is failing. This will not end well.

Marc Faber Warns Of "Moral Degeneration" From America's "Consensual Hallucination"

The flood of money that central banks are creating pollutes the Western capitalistic system and free markets, as well as democracy. The consequences are anemic economic growth, deep social discontent, a culture of cheating, and moral degeneration. At the same time, “the bureaucracy is expanding to meet the needs of an expanding bureaucracy” (Oscar Wilde). Hardly a recipe for sustainable economic growth and rising standards of living.

Here's Why All Pension Funds Are Doomed, Doomed, Doomed

It's looking increasingly likely that third time's the charm: this set of bubbles is the last one central banks can blow. And when markets free-fall and don't reflate into new bubbles, pension funds will expire, as they were fated to do the day central banks chose zero interest rates forever as their cure for a broken economic model.

Global Stocks Slide, S&P Set To Open Red For The Year As Hawkish Fed Ignites "Risk Off"

After yesterday's algo-driven mad dash to close the S&P green both for the day and for the year following Fed minutes that came in shocking hawkish, the selling has continued overnight, led by the commodity complex as rate hike fears have pushed oil back down some 2% from yesterday's 7 month highs, which in turn has dragged global stocks lower to a six-week low, while pushing bond yields higher across developed nations as the market suddenly reprices the probability of a June/July rate hike.

The Endgame

There is a growing fear in financial and monetary circles that there is something deeply wrong with the global economy. Publicly, officials and practitioners alike have become confused by policy failures, and privately, occasionally even downright pessimistic, at a loss to see a statist solution. It is hardly exaggerating to say there is a growing feeling of impending doom. In short, growing evidence of price inflation and stagnant production can be expected to materially increase the risk of a global banking and currency meltdown. The best escape-route is ownership of anything other than purely financial assets and fiat currency deposits. No wonder the price of gold, which is the soundest of moneys, appears to have entered a new bull market.

What Will The Global Economy Look Like After The "Great Reset"?

The globalist reset needs a trigger, a crisis which admittedly we do not have the ability to avoid. But, the reset also depends on the right people in place to rebuild the system after the crisis unfolds. Here is where the future can be determined. Whoever is left standing after the opening salvo will have a choice: to hide and hope for the best, or to fight for the position to choose who builds tomorrow. Will it be the psychotic globalist cabal, or will it be free people of conscience? It may not seem like it now, but the end result is up to us.

Supermodels And Other Productivity Measures

If we are getting so much productivity out of the current range of offerings from Silicon Valley, I have a question: why aren’t these products really expensive, as the technology of the 1920s clearly was?  In fairness, a cell phone is costly – good monthly deals from major carriers usually make you pay about $600 for the phone. Which, funny enough, is what the typewriter cost (inflation adjusted) exactly 100 years ago.  But what about all the free apps and services?  Even Uber has to pay bonuses to recruit drivers. Why is that, if the model is so good? Yes, getting to scale is important for the service, but shouldn’t drivers come running if their productivity is so much better in the new model? Something is off.