The cries for going totally crazy are growing louder... the lunatics are running the asylum. One shouldn’t underestimate what they are capable of. The only consolation is that the day will come when the monetary cranks will be discredited again (for the umpteenth time). Thereafter it will presumably take a few decades before these ideas will rear their head again (like an especially sturdy weed, the idea that inflationism can promote prosperity seems nigh ineradicable in the long term – it always rises from the ashes again). The bad news is that many of us will probably still be around when the bill for these idiocies will be presented.
We will be the first to admit that yield curve inversion is not the only factor causing recessions, but through the credit channel it can be an important contributor. Depending on the importance of the credit channel, the Federal Reserve, by pegging the short term rate at zero, have essentially removed one recessionary market mechanism that used to efficiently clear excesses within the financial system. While stability obsessed Keynesians on a quest to the permanent boom regard this as a positive development, the rest of us obviously understand that false stability breeds instability.
This is also why the debt ceiling needs to be raised every year, and the US has doubled the national debt over the last 8 years.
Last week, beleaguered Illinois Comptroller Leslie Geissler Munger admitted that, thanks to the bitter budget battle going on in Springfield, the state would miss a $560 million pension payment in November. Now, in a move that shouldn't exactly surprise anyone, Fitch has cut the state's GO rating citing the budget impasse. The move affects some $27 billion in debt.
Governments and their central bank creations usurped market-based monetary and banking systems to serve the plundering purposes of kings, princes, parliaments, and special interest groups who all wanted to hold the magical hand of the monetary printing press. Print up money (or its digital substitutes and surrogates in more modern times) and you can have access to all the hard work of others without the reciprocal effort. The monetary social engineers' century-long legacy in the arena of money and banking has been the booms and busts of the business cycle. The time has come to end the tragic and disruptive reign of monetary central planning.
But what’s different this time?
Never have markets carried so much risk. And never have markets been as vulnerable to an abrupt change in perceptions with regard to central banker competence, effectiveness and capabilities. At the minimum, global markets will function poorly, but risk is now high for a disorderly – Party Crashing - "run" on financial markets, as faith in central banking begins to wane.
Having achieved his militarist goals, amid massive protests and plunging popularity, it appears Shinzo Abe is rapidly taking gaining on Vladimir Putin's spot atop the tyrannical-dicators-of-the-world-meme. By pushing through this change to Japan’s pacifist constitution, Japan’s nationalists have gotten their foot in the door, so to speak; and as Pater Tenebrarum notes, once a long-held principle is abandoned, further steps to alter the legal framework are usually not long in coming, prompting, as TokyoReporter.com reports, a 71-year-old man to allegedly deface roughly 30 political posters - drawing a hitler-esque moustache on Abe posters.
Some people will never learn... ever. What is happening today is nothing more than rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. The iceberg has been struck, we’re taking on water, and this sucker is going to sink. Game Over.
The Fed remains in a box of its own making. We are beginning to doubt whether central bank will ever be hike rates again voluntarily. What is however eventually highly likely to happen is that the markets will force the Fed to act – or as Bill Fleckenstein puts it, “the bond market may take the printing press away from them”.
The world is becoming increasingly chaotic and the American people are seeking a leader who can bring order, make tough decisions, and capture the zeitgeist of this moment in history. They are in search of a prophet generation (Boomer) Grey Champion, whose arrival marks the moment of darkness, adversity and peril as the Fourth Turning careens towards its climax. The Grey Champion doesn’t necessarily have to be a good person, but they must lead and display tremendous confidence in their cause and path. Franklin, Lincoln, and FDR have many detractors, but during their Fourth Turnings, they most certainly led, casting aside obstacles (sometimes illegally) and enduring dark days and bleak prospects for success. Is there someone of that stature ready to lead the American people now?
And monetary policies will be “ineffective”: Natixis
Simply put, a perfect storm of failing trends...
Bernanke Shills for El Militario-Industrio Complexo
Poverty is better than wealth in one crucial way: The poor are still under the illusion that money can make them happy. But just as the common man is deceived by money (he thinks more of it will make him happier), so are policymakers. Their belief is a little more sophisticated. They know it is the economy, not money, that creates wealth. But they believe that adding money (and more demand) will make the economy function better… and make people wealthier. Never, since the beginning of time, has government ever added to wealth. It has no way to do so. And no intention of doing so. All it can do is to increase the power, wealth, or status of some people – at others’ expense.