Roubini: Many Davos Speakers Think It’s Like 1914 … Right Before WW1 Broke Out

George Washington's picture

Well-known economist Nouriel Roubini tweeted from the gathering of the rich and powerful at Davos:

Many speakers compare 2014 to 1914 when WWI broke out & no one expected it. A black swan in the form of a war between China & Japan?


Both Abe and an influential Chinese analyst don’t rule out a military confrontation between China and Japan. Memories of 1914?

Many other economists have forecast war.

Kyle Bass writes:

Trillions of dollars of debts will be restructured and millions of financially prudent savers will lose large percentages of their real purchasing power at exactly the wrong time in their lives. Again, the world will not end, but the social fabric of the profligate nations will be stretched and in some cases torn. Sadly, looking back through economic history, all too often war is the manifestation of simple economic entropy played to its logical conclusion. We believe that war is an inevitable consequence of the current global economic situation.

Larry Edelson wrote an email to subscribers entitled “What the “Cycles of War” are saying for 2013″, which states:

Since the 1980s, I’ve been studying the so-called “cycles of war” — the natural rhythms that predispose societies to descend into chaos, into hatred, into civil and even international war.


I’m certainly not the first person to examine these very distinctive patterns in history. There have been many before me, notably, Raymond Wheeler, who published the most authoritative chronicle of war ever, covering a period of 2,600 years of data.


However, there are very few people who are willing to even discuss the issue right now. And based on what I’m seeing, the implications could be absolutely huge in 2013.

Former Goldman Sachs technical analyst Charles Nenner – who has made some big accurate calls, and counts major hedge funds, banks, brokerage houses, and high net worth individuals as clients – says there will be “a major war starting at the end of 2012 to 2013”, which will drive the Dow to 5,000.

Veteran investor adviser James Dines forecast a war is epochal as World Wars I and II, starting in the Middle East.

Billionaire investor Jim Rogers notes:

A continuation of bailouts in Europe could ultimately spark another world war, says international investor Jim Rogers.




“Add debt, the situation gets worse, and eventually it just collapses. Then everybody is looking for scapegoats. Politicians blame foreigners, and we’re in World War II or World War whatever.”

Marc Faber says that the American government will start new wars in response to the economic crisis:

We’re in the middle of a global currency war – i.e. a situation where nations all compete to devalue their currencies the most in order to boost exports. And Brazilian president-elect Rousseff said in 2010:

The last time there was a series of competitive devaluations … it ended in world war two.

Jim Rickards agrees:

Currency wars lead to trade wars, which often lead to hot wars. In 2009, Rickards participated in the Pentagon’s first-ever “financial” war games. While expressing confidence in America’s ability to defeat any other nation-state in battle, Rickards says the U.S. could get dragged into “asymmetric warfare,” if currency wars lead to rising inflation and global economic uncertainty.

As does Jim Rogers:

Trade wars always lead to wars.

Martin Armstrong wrote in August:

Our greatest problem is the bureaucracy wants a war. This will distract everyone from the NSA and justify what they have been doing. They need a distraction for the economic decline that is coming.

Armstrong argued last month that war plans against Syria are really about debt and spending:

The Syrian mess seems to have people lining up on Capital Hill when sources there say the phone calls coming in are overwhelmingly against any action. The politicians are ignoring the people entirely. This suggests there is indeed a secret agenda to achieve a goal outside the discussion box. That is most like the debt problem and a war is necessary to relief the pressure to curtail spending.

And given that many influential economists wrongly believe that war is good for the economy … many are overtly or quietly pushing for war.

In addition, historians say that the risk of world war is rising because the U.S. feels threatened by a rising China … and the U.S. government considers economic rivalry to be a basis for war

Moreover, former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan said that the Iraq war was really about oil, and former Treasury Secretary Paul O’Neill says that Bush planned the Iraq war before 9/11. And see this and this. If that war was for petroleum, other oil-rich countries might be invaded as well.

And the American policy of using the military to contain China’s growing economic influence – and of considering economic rivalry to be a basis for war – are creating a tinderbox.

Finally, multi-billionaire investor Hugo Salinas Price says:

What happened to [Libya's] Mr. Gaddafi, many speculate the real reason he was ousted was that he was planning an all-African currency for conducting trade. The same thing happened to him that happened to Saddam because the US doesn’t want any solid competing currency out there vs the dollar. You know Gaddafi was talking about a gold dinar.

Indeed, senior CNBC editor John Carney noted:

Is this the first time a revolutionary group has created a central bank while it is still in the midst of fighting the entrenched political power? It certainly seems to indicate how extraordinarily powerful central bankers have become in our era.


Robert Wenzel of Economic Policy Journal thinks the central banking initiative reveals that foreign powers may have a strong influence over the rebels.


This suggests we have a bit more than a ragtag bunch of rebels running around and that there are some pretty sophisticated influences. “I have never before heard of a central bank being created in just a matter of weeks out of a popular uprising,” Wenzel writes.

Indeed, some say that recent wars have really been about bringing all countries into the fold of Western central banking.

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Radical Marijuana's picture

Another excellent article from George Washington, full of good links to great quotes!

However, I will REPEAT my typical bla, bla, blah that those are grossly underestimating the degree to which the sheer magnitude of the runaway criminal insanity of the ruling classes has been able to postpone the collapse into chaos, while it still constantly builds up a greater pressure to cause that. There is nothing in human history to compare to the development of weapons of mass destruction which are trillions of times more powerful and capable than ever before. Paradoxically, that has, so far, kept the lid on the pressure cooking, while the internal head of steam, of all the potential energy to drive disasters, has been building and building.

It is BECAUSE the established systems are globalized electronic fiat money frauds, backed up by the threats of the force of weapons of mass destruction, that those established systems have been able to stave off collapse into chaos way longer than would otherwise be expected. However, the underlying conditions are automatically getting worse, faster, with an important component of that being that the ruling classes are becoming more criminally insane, while those ruled over are, overall, becoming stupider, rather than overall "waking up." Sure, way more people than ever before are "waking up" to the real roles of the banksters behind the scenes controlling their puppet politicians, BUT, overall, there is a larger group of people who are becoming stupider, while that matches the ruling classes becoming more criminally insane, because the rulers and those ruled are part of one system, and thus, form bookends, or parenthetical brackets, to their system as a whole.

I REPEAT these observations, as particularly relevant, first about foreign affairs:

Making the World Safe for Banksters: Syria In the Cross-hairs

By Ellen Brown, September 5, 2013.

"... Forty percent of banks globally are publicly-owned. They are largely in the BRIC countries—Brazil, Russia, India and China—which house forty percent of the global population. They also escaped the 2008 credit crisis, but they at least made a show of conforming to Western banking rules. This was not true of the “rogue” Islamic nations, where usury was forbidden by Islamic teaching. To make the world safe for usury, these rogue states had to be silenced by other means. Having failed to succumb to economic coercion, they wound up in the crosshairs of the powerful US military. ...

WTO members were induced to sign the agreement by threatening their access to global markets if they refused; and they all did sign, except Brazil. Brazil was then threatened with an embargo; but its resistance paid off, since it alone among Western nations survived and thrived during the 2007-2009 crisis. ...

Among the notorious transactions legalized: Goldman Sachs (where Treasury Secretary Rubin had been Co-Chairman) worked a secret euro-derivatives swap with Greece which, ultimately, destroyed that nation. Ecuador, its own banking sector de-regulated and demolished, exploded into riots. Argentina had to sell off its oil companies (to the Spanish) and water systems (to Enron) while its teachers hunted for food in garbage cans. Then, Bankers Gone Wild in the Eurozone dove head-first into derivatives pools without knowing how to swim–and the continent is now being sold off in tiny, cheap pieces to Germany.

The Holdouts

That was the fate of countries in the WTO ... those that were not in that organization at all, including Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Iran. These seven countries were named by U.S. General Wesley Clark (Ret.) in a 2007 “Democracy Now” interview as the new “rogue states” being targeted for take down after September 11, 2001. He said that about 10 days after 9-11, he was told by a general that the decision had been made to go to war with Iraq. Later, the same general said they planned to take out seven countries in five years: Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Iran.

What did these countries have in common? Besides being Islamic, they were not members either of the WTO or of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). That left them outside the long regulatory arm of the central bankers’ central bank in Switzerland. Other countries later identified as “rogue states” that were also not members of the BIS included North Korea, Cuba, and Afghanistan. ..."


Silent Weapons for Quiet Wars

"Energy is recognized as the key to all activity on earth. Natural science is the study of the sources and control of natural energy, and social science, theoretically expressed as economics, is the study of the sources and control of social energy. Both are bookkeeping systems: mathematics. Therefore, mathematics is the primary energy science. And the bookkeeper can be king if the public can be kept ignorant of the methodology of the bookkeeping. ... In this structure, credit, presented as a pure element called "currency," has the appearance of capital, but is in effect negative capital. Hence, it has the appearance of service, but is in fact, indebtedness or debt. ... if balanced in no other way, will be balanced by the negation of population (war, genocide)... They must eventually resort to war to balance the account, because war ultimately is merely the act of destroying the creditor ... War is therefore the balancing of the system by killing the true creditors (the public ...) the economy has been transformed into a guided missile on target."


Both politics and economics had warfare and militarism at their central core, because the death controls are necessarily the keystone to those systems, or the lynch pin that holds the rest of the components of the social systems together. One of the basic problems has been that success in warfare depended upon deceits, and thus that enabled frauds to become fundamental to finance. The history of the War Kings, creating sovereign states, morphed into the global systems of Fraud Kings operated through international banksters applying the methods of organized crime to dominate the political economy, by persistently working to make sure that the surviving, successful politicians were their puppets, while the masses of muppets would become ever more scientifically brainwashed by the school systems and mass media. (As I said above, that has resulted in the MATCHING runaway insanities of BOTH the rulers and those they rule over.)

During those processes, the biggest bullies' social stories, which are lies, backed up by violence, have been amplified many orders of magnitude by the application of scientific methods and technologies in order to achieve those purposes. However, that bullshit is based on deliberately presenting a Bizarro Mirror World, where everything is shown to be backwards to the way it really is, while very, very few people ever wake up enough to understand that, especially not systematically waking up to how that continues through level after level of lies, where those lies are different at every level.

It is wrong to think that there is any fundamental dichotomy between war and peace. It is wrong to uphold impossible ideals based on that fundamental dichotomy. There are chronic political problems, which have to constantly be resolved, in one way or another. Failure to resolve them better in the short-term means that they will grow bigger, and be resolved in far worse ways in longer term. WE TEND TO THINK ABOUT "WARFARE" BACKWARDS, WHICH MISTAKES GET WORSE AND WORSE, AS THEY ARE AMPLIFIED BY PROGRESS IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, WHICH ARE NOT ALLOWED TO BE APPLIED TO THE DESIGN SCIENCE PROBLEMS OF SOCIAL SYSTEMS.

The only genuine solutions to our problems are better death controls. The default position is still towards worse death controls. The longer that the established debt slavery systems are enabled to drive their numbers towards debt insanities, then the more that there must eventually be driven more death insanities to result. In that context, I return to my opening comment, that the various quotes presented in this article are from relatively mainstream guys who are right, within their rather old-fashioned frame of reference. However, in fact, our problems are trillions of times worse than ever before in human history, and therefore, we "should" go through profound paradigm shifts in the philosophy of science, which apply to political economy, and militarism, because that is theoretically the most necessary thing we "should" do. However, obviously, that happening in any significant way is practically impossible. (Which is why my bothering to write my kind of bla, bla, blah on these topics is merely done for my own amusement, to pass time, because actually nothing realistic can be done to prevent the runaway social insanities from becoming madder and madder, and thereby eventually destroying themselves on a far greater scale than ever before in human history, after which all bets are off regarding what the future may look like then.)

rsnoble's picture

Not sure how we win if nukes get involved even if you dont get hit.  Then again maybe it will just be one big killing game with all participants sworn to not use them? One things for sure we're going to get fucked as usual.

financialrealist's picture

no one wins if nukes are used.  MADS.  reason they have not been used since Hiro/Nag.  barring extremist getting invlolved, war(s) of the developed world would be nuke free (at least that would be the agreement)  

adr's picture

What I see is a group of people responsible for just about everything wrong in the world trying to figure out how to deflect blame from them.

If I was president I would have sent a B2 with a JDAM over Davos and leveled the hotel. Imagine the freedom that would result from that act. 

War is the result of the tribe enriching themselves at the expense of a livable life for everyone else. A working person can barely afford to heat their house, drive their car, and feed their family because some member of the tribe decided they wanted to make money selling commodity contracts. Because they can not add anything of real value to the economy, they use schemes and banking to fool with currencies. The resulting inflation cripples the average man, the tribesman hopes to increase his worth at a higher rate than the prevailing inflation keeping him wealthy. The S&P was up almost 30%, while real inflation was close to 20%. This nets the tribesman 10%. Of course real wealth gains for the Davos set far eclipse inflation. When you add a couple billion in net worth in a year, $10lb hamburger and $5 a gallon milk are of no concern to you.

The bankers financed WWI and WWII was the result of them extracting what they believed they were owed from the common people. The next war will be the result of the bankers extracting what they believed they were owed from the entire world. Hopefully the next conflict will end their kind once and for all.

EFNuttin's picture

"how to deflect blame from them."

The Chinese and Japanese heads of state both have serious economic problems lurking (debt bubble and debt:GDP, respectively). All this saber rattling is likely just a wink wink, nod nod way of deflecting blame from them and distracting their constituencies. If it actually came to blows, I would think it would be like a typical North versus South Korea spat with some gunboat shelling near a meaningless island. 

As for Davos, given the huge shift of economic activity from the West to the East, why are we still so concerned about what the people at Davos are plotting? Seems like we should be a lot more concerned about similar gatherings in the East with the men really pulling the strings there. Obsessing over Davos feels as dated as obsessing over Boss Tweed.

optimator's picture

Only one thing worse than a nuclear war, loosing a nuclear war.

SamAdams's picture

Note the pumping of China/Japan war which will require USA assist to Japan.  Additionally, media has recently villified former petrodollar ally, Saudi Arabia.

YOU should read this from Video Rebel, and then listen to the video of Jim Willie...

This cites a very interesting position about China's strategy regarding the insolvent banks which own shares in the FED.  What happens when they go bust?  Will CL A controlling shares be bought by China?  Why was the Chase building next to the FED bought for only $728M by the Chinese?  Was it collateral?

chindit13's picture

Odds of war, next five years:

1)  China vs Japan:  5 to 1

2)  China vs Philippines:  2.5 to 1

3)  India vs Pakistan:  2.5 to 1  (includes at least one nuke)

4)  Thailand vs Thailand: 5 to 4  (If King passes, odds go 10 to 1 no civil war)

5)  Russia vs Ukraine:  10 to 3

6)  Turkey vs Kurds:  10 to 3

7)  US vs Anybody:  40 to 1  (too spent, equipment shortage, personnel shortage)

8)  Italy vs Nigeria:  50 to 1

9)  Mafia vs Nigerian Immigrants:  3 to 1

10)  North Korea vs Four of Five Party Talks:  10 to 1 (unless France cuts off Remy Martin shipments)

Kobe Beef's picture

Revisit the odds on #7.. The USSA is already at war and will continue to do so.

ncdirtdigger's picture

WE have always been at war with ..........

Peter Pan's picture

War only replaces one set of problems with another set of problems.

We might see a whole squadron of black swans descending this year and yet a collapse might not happen. And then some black swan happens to be run over at a crossing and then it will be on for young and old.

Forget the timing....concentrate on a reasonable preparation.

Super Broccoli's picture

"we think this is like when we didn't think about war" ... duh ? the mere fact you're expecting it demonstrate the opposite !

ebworthen's picture

Well those Central Bankers, the MIC, and their toadies in government would just love to send the kids off to a war versus a civil war to enact individual liberty and sound money.

kurt's picture

Mostly an echo chamber accept Martin Armstron (read it again above): I'd say he nailed it. Furthermore, its likely to be a huge, ugly false flag. I'll say it but only in the hope that they will not proceed, Superbowl.

We're being fed ... black widow in Sochi Olympics bla bla bla 

New show "Intelligence" about an all-knowing operative plugged into a super jazzy NSA whose pilot episode in the first 10 minutes says "Superbowl Bombing."

Don't forget "The Lone Gunmen" episode that predicted 911.

wtf1369's picture

On the Sochi note, if TPTB weren't looking for justification for tightening controls why else would the host city for the Olympics be held in such close proximity to the Chechen Republic? With a host city like that they're almost guaranteed a good tactical sideshow.

MrSteve's picture

But didn't President Obama's Nobel Peace Prize innoculate the USA from war and such? Or was that some PR spin-stunt-scam?

the grateful unemployed's picture

the rothchilds et all got filthy rich in the century after ww1, they want another, sure they do

lasvegaspersona's picture

yeah those evil RedShields...of course there was Baron Guy...Joined the war after the Vichys govt kicked him out for being a jew and took his bank away,  then spent 12 hours swimming in the N Atlantic (when his troop ship sunk) before making it to GB from whence he went to fight again in France, captured by zee Germans and escaped to fight again.

After the war Mitterand took his bank away because he was not a commie.

aside from those smalll acts of patriotism for France was all about the money.

suteibu's picture

Right.  And they need to hurry before the climate change agenda falls apart.

The time is ripe.

the grateful unemployed's picture

there may be a war between China and Japan but it will be an Falklands style war over some islands which have no importance. great humiliation for China with a following economic collapse, and rebound. still

BuddyEffed's picture



Maybe game theory has started to show that as a losing proposition.  Suspect the really intelligent and connected people at Davos have held some 0.000001 percent level meetings about it.

suteibu's picture

Davos is marketing.  They only announce the shit that has already been decided.

Do you really think that if this crowd is conspiratorial, they would hold such a meeting at this event?  Would you?

SendMeYourWorthlessMoney's picture

Exactly. This the the "closed-door crowd" in action, and they know exactly what they are showing you, likely in more ways than one.



BuddyEffed's picture

If they are there boozin and schoozin together, why not?

Besides, they are shitting their pants about Fukushima and don't want any more part of any of that kind of thing so suspect everyone will chill for a while and live and let live as best can be.

One of their biggest issues is to try to figure out how to repurpose the idle youth, or rather find purpose for them.  Hard labor and less wage is looking unattractive, but it's also looking structural.

suteibu's picture

So which is it...they have .000000001 chance of meeting or they are all drunk and say, "What the fuck, let's talk about our global takeover while we're here having a good time?"

As for Fukushima, they don't seem so worried that they stopped building NPPs all over the place.

Lastly, "live and let live?"  When has any powerful and corrupt enterprise ever said, "You know what, we don't need any more power or wealth.  Let's all just live and let live?"

I think your rose-colored glasses have a smudge on them.

BuddyEffed's picture

And there are tears in my eyes too, but that's another matter.

RebelDevil's picture

Davos is simply marketing! - The real decisions I think are made at Bilderberg.

Kiss My Icelandic Ass's picture

"Former Goldman Sachs technical analyst Charles Nenner – who has made some big accurate calls, and counts major hedge funds, banks, brokerage houses, and high net worth individuals as clients – says there will be “a major war starting at the end of 2012 to 2013”, which will drive the Dow to 5,000."


Um ... that didn't happen ?


Brett in Manhattan's picture

Yes, you never about the batting averages of these prophets. It's like saying a baseball player, "got some hits."

aardvarkk's picture

When you take a closer look at a lot of these guys, all of them nearly without exception either inherited their stake and a LOT of connections, or else went big and went long on one major call using a borrowed or scrounged stake and hit it out of the park, and then from their notoriety developed good connections.  A lot of them are smart and most of them take well-calculated risks, but most of them aren't much more infallible than the average reader here.

I don't think there's a single person in all of finance that could make a call that I'd bet everything on.  There are just too many unknowns, and while many of them are known unknowns, there are some unknown unknowns that will spank us all in the ass sooner or later.  Probably sooner.

max2205's picture

So I should go.all in stocks.....come.on!

satoshi101's picture

Roubini isn't saying anything new.

And all the other quotes here are aged, ... damn aged,...

So from one little tweet is an entire narrative,

Most likely just the opposite, everybody is broke, who will finance the war?


I think the real wild-card would be the MUSLIMS strike back,... if you look at all the war going down, its the WORLD fucking the MUSLIM and they never fight back,

A real interestng monkey-rich would be a black-swan from the muslim,

The entire AIPAC war mongering is fucking boring, and generals told OBAMA no way to SYRIA, ...

Look for a 911, and then the USA or CHINA will react or maybe even RUSSIA? With the SOCHIA thing, it would be interesting if the CIA could provode PUTIN to do something stupid, ...

SYRIA was you all know is about ISRAEL/SAUDI oil transactions, and the obstacle is GAZPROM(russia),

China is smart, and JAPAN is a mess, but RUSSIA has the ability to react, ... this way the USA/AIPAC could make ISRAEL happy, and also the USA could fuck PUTIN over SNOWDEN.


insect0man's picture

Who was fucking who when the Fallible and Uninspired Talibani/MUSLIM were blowing out the brains of women that dared to wear squeaky shoes?

q99x2's picture

Maybe China will target the oligarchs behind the China Sea grab instead of the Japanese land mass. Or maybe no one told them of that possibility yet and they haven't figured it out.

suteibu's picture

Or maybe they're in on the whole thing.  Japan, too.

satoshi101's picture

The Chinese are the Jews of Asia, the JAPS are the Nazi's.


Never Forget is ingrained in the Chinese mind.

Of course in JAPAN, the CHINESE are the 'pigs' of Asia.


If anybody does the attack, it would be the JAP's, but as we know for now the nationalism isn't there but it could come, and going after the Chinese gold just might make it worth it, but the USA really castrated the JAPS, ... it would take a real 1920's-1930's MIL build-up to have a credible fight with china.

Son of Captain Nemo's picture

He should know being a member of the "tribe"

Richard Chesler's picture

We believe that war is an inevitable consequence of the current global economic situation.


So do we.


LongSilverJohn's picture

War is Inevitable? We have a choice. Getting off foreign oil is a choice. I simply shifted from a Honda Accord to a Honda Civic Hybrid and save about 40% of the gas I used to consume. I'm negotiating a contract now that would offshore some technical work. I am going to push to choose to "buy American" technical labor, instead. That corporate choice would give work to recent college grads who are living in their parents' basement. I think we have more choices than we admit and the thought that "war is inevitable" shows a human tendency to needlessly narrow our options down the rat hole of extinction.... Thoughts?

Bunga Bunga's picture

What is the current global economic situation or better the ecomomic problem? Too much debt! The state of war gives governments the power to suspend of the rule of law, where the primary goal is not to fight an enemy but eleminate their obligation to service government debt to domestic and foreign creditors.

dexter_morgan's picture

Economists think war is good for the economy. I suggest we conscript them all and they can do their part in it.

blindman's picture

may they all enlist to do the duty thing
and die first.

williambanzai7's picture

Roubini, the Oracle of Doom. Got bored with bashing Goldbugs and now suddenly acknowledges the early 20th century analogy while sipping hot twitties in the visitor's lounge of the World Economic Forum.

How sensational!

Fringe lunatic low brows such as all of us can learn so much from him...