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Think This Can't Happen Where You Live? Think Again...

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by Simon Black of Sovereign Man blog,

Throughout history, bankrupt governments in decline almost ALWAYS fall back on a time-tested playbook.

This includes imposing controls on EVERYTHING– wage and price controls, trade controls, capital controls, border controls, people controls. Everything. And this idea goes back to the dawn of human civilization.

The Third Dynasty of Ur in ancient Mesopotamia, for example, built a very early version of a commodities future exchange. People would commit to terms of trade on clay tablets for the future delivery of agricultural crops, then trade the tablets in a secondary market. It was genius.

But when the economy started to turn in earnest, the government set up a bizarre, complex, and increasingly bureaucratic system of regulating such trade and collecting taxes from it. They even started rationing resources and regulating irrigation.

It was debilitating. The market could no longer function, and the society soon collapsed.

Later, in the 4th century AD, Roman Emperor Diocletian infamously failed to control runaway inflation by fixing the prices of everything from labor to food to articles of clothing.

In the 1790s, the post-Revolution French government tried the same trick whilst inflating away their new paper currency. French farmers could no longer grow their crops profitably, and the 1793 ‘Law on Maximum’ created severe shortages of staple foods in the country.

In our modern times, Argentina has become the poster child for these tactics; the government has fixed prices at the grocery stores, banned advertising, prevented people from holding precious metals and foreign currency, nationalized pensions, and restricted beef exports.

Needless to say, these policies have been a complete disaster for the country. But as the rest of the world looks on, people in ‘rich’ countries foolishly believe that ‘it can’t happen here.’

This is wishful, ignorant, dangerous thinking. It can happen. It is already happening.

Just in the past week in the Land of the Free, for example, two pieces of legislation have been quietly introduced.

One, S.435, is an appalling bill that proposes to BAN the exportation of crude oil or refined petroleum products that originate in the United States.

The second bill would follow the European model and introduce a financial transactions tax (FTT) in the US. Like all taxes, they start with a small sum (0.03% in this case). And, like all taxes, we can be certain that this one would rise as well.

The FTT would apply to nearly all financial instruments– stocks, bonds, options, derivative contracts, etc. Everything except, of course, US government debt purchased directly from the Treasury.

To be clear, neither of these is law yet. But both give a very clear idea of how far the political elite is willing to go.

So, again, if you think that gold criminalization, price controls, and IRA/pension confiscation could NEVER happen where you live, think again. The chances of something happening are clearly greater than zero… which begs the question: why take the risk?

If you diversify internationally– establish a foreign bank account, form a Global Self-Directed IRA, store gold overseas, etc.– you substantially mitigate these risks. And no matter what scenario plays out, you won’t be worse off for having done these things.


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Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:49 | 3302280 eatthebanksters
eatthebanksters's picture

Isn't manipulation just one form of control?


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:36 | 3302552 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

like a married woman manipulates her husband in any marriage.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:08 | 3302669 mirac
mirac's picture

I believe the term is "pussy-whipped"...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:09 | 3302672 misnomer
misnomer's picture

You call it manipulation, I call it foreplay...;)

Tit for tat.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:47 | 3302798 BigJim
BigJim's picture

Tit for tat?

Isn't that a man's reward when he manages to hoodwink his girlfriend with fake jewellery?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:07 | 3303075 EscapingProgress
EscapingProgress's picture

Look! It's a bird. It's a plane. No! It's Dronebomba!!!

Eric Holder: Yes, Your Government Can Drone You to Death on U.S. Soil


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 23:33 | 3303614 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Every kiss begins with Kay?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:10 | 3302681 reTARD
reTARD's picture

Then perhaps he should exercise some self-control. It's doesn't matter whether he is right-handed or left-handed.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:18 | 3302712 toady
toady's picture

Well, in my marriage ...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:22 | 3302948 Buck Johnson
Buck Johnson's picture

Yep, just like that.

Wed, 03/06/2013 - 02:05 | 3303884 TraderTimm
TraderTimm's picture

Bitcoin users not affected.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:51 | 3302285 imbrbing
imbrbing's picture

Here we go with the "store gold overseas" again......

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:55 | 3302301 NoWayJose
NoWayJose's picture

The best place for gold is at the fingertips of your left hand, and the reason your left hand is the best place for your gold is that your right hand is already holding a trigger...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:25 | 3302746 imbrbing
imbrbing's picture

I tryed to hypothicate your up arrow count, but I guess banks only have the magic ability for that. Otherwisw I would have given you +1000

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:29 | 3302757 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

ambidexterity bitchez

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:59 | 3302851 Ness.
Ness.'s picture


Wed, 03/06/2013 - 05:53 | 3304068 Brit_Abroad
Brit_Abroad's picture

Damn, I'm left handed.

Panic, panic....what to do ?sarc

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:58 | 3302316 HD
HD's picture

Most here will be storing their gold "under seas" ;)

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:04 | 3302359 localsavage
localsavage's picture

What gold?   I don't know what ypu are talking about officer.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:15 | 3302433 Vooter
Vooter's picture

But hey, check out these twin Evinrudes!

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:35 | 3302980 Ness.
Ness.'s picture

There is always money in the Banana Stand.  

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:21 | 3302730 toady
toady's picture

(gun to your kids head)


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:06 | 3302878 worbsid
worbsid's picture

Go ahead, shoot the bastard. 

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:38 | 3302564 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

I live overseas... why don't you just send me your gold? I'll send you in return a IOU for your gold.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:58 | 3302583 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

Can't I just go to the Comex to do that?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:09 | 3302674 Sudden Debt
Sudden Debt's picture

I'll parfume the paper and you get a free candy to go with it!!!


Wed, 03/06/2013 - 08:29 | 3304219 KickIce
KickIce's picture

Good stuff, thanks for the morning laugh.

Wed, 03/06/2013 - 14:22 | 3305401 Kobe Beef
Kobe Beef's picture

Sudden Debt's offering perfumed letters, but I've got:


Send me your gold, and be the best-equipped muppet on the beach this summer.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:55 | 3302627 AGuy
AGuy's picture

"I'll send you in return a IOU for your gold."

No need for Gold, Uncle same will take care of it for me! Besides they promised me huge entitlements when I retire, which are backed up by Federal IOUs? What better than a US gov't guarenteed IOU? </sarc if you haven't figure it out>


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:55 | 3302628 CheapBastard
CheapBastard's picture
10 cities with the most burglaries

While crime rates have been falling across the nation, there are still some bad eggs out there. And if you forget to lock your doors, you may want to avoid Texas.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:11 | 3302678 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

Surprised to see New York only at number 5.  Must not include daylight robbery.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:38 | 3302988 Buzz Hacksaw
Buzz Hacksaw's picture

FBI MSN. Are you kidding?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:06 | 3303083 Umh
Umh's picture

I believe that crime rates have been falling for years. I also believe that crime rates are on there way back up based on local information. I believe this is being caused by the piss poor economy. The crime statistics are a lagging indicator if for no other reason than that they are announced at least 1 year late.

Wed, 03/06/2013 - 01:56 | 3303866 Antifaschistische
Antifaschistische's picture

Yes, and Dallas and Houston have been cursing themselves for importing the Katrina victims every since.  It's sad when you need a fence on TWO borders.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 23:08 | 3303522 Demonoid
Demonoid's picture

I'll gladly pay you Tuesday for a goldburger today.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:52 | 3302287 WarHorse
WarHorse's picture

There are already quasi-wage controls in the financial sector and strict controls being discussed by the EU (eg, definitive bonus caps).  Say what you want about banker pay but it is not governments role to limit wages in the private sector

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:35 | 3302539 Bam_Man
Bam_Man's picture

Bad example.

Since 2008, banking has not been part of the "private sector".

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:36 | 3302549 adr
adr's picture

It also isn't the government's job to step in and bail out failed corporations and put a floor under the stock market either.

Say what you want about banker pay, but it probably wouldn't be where it is if the government was out of the picture. You wouldn't need to limit pay because there probably wouldn't be anyone employed there.

The private sector is a lie. The private sector is the mom and pop store selling stuff made by the guy who lives down the street. Anything traded on Wall Street is about as private as two people fucking on a parade float.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:05 | 3302290 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

wage and price controls - check

 trade controls - check

capital controls - check

 border controls - check

 people controls - check

It already happened, no? 

All that is left now is a continuance of policy and a lot of complaining. 


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:00 | 3302648 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

You forgot Gun Control:

The Never Again Campaign

The above was released yesterday from Star Parker of Coalition for Urban Renewal and Education (CURE).


They also spoke out against gun control at a press conference recently:

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:58 | 3302291 MoneyThangs
MoneyThangs's picture

As Jim Cramer pointed out on the open this morning "Diamonds, Gold, Masterpeice art and Mansions did great in Zimbabwe and the Weimar republic"

- Nothing to worry about here, all those jewels and Van Gogh's you own should perform well through all this. You'll be fine!

No more dreaded deflation for this humble banker

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:26 | 3302489 LongBalls
LongBalls's picture

I gave you an up arrow here (+1) and a down arrow. One up for citing history and the other for citing Jim Cramer. Nothing personal. I just want to shoot myself in the mouth when I hear of Jim Cramer.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:48 | 3303239 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

If I could hypothecate here, I'd lever up on your green, up arrows, my good man !

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:29 | 3302513 adr
adr's picture

The rich will always buy items of value because they are rich. If you had a Van Gogh you bought with Zim dollars when they were worth something, your Van Gogh is still worth a ton of money in a different currency. The thing is, you were probably already in the 1% club. Very few common citizens can afford to buy anything of real value.

But the guy that got paid in Zim dollars for his labor, who became an overnight trillionaire, and the only use for them was wiping his ass sure has nothing to show for it.

Same goes for the guy that needed a wheelbarrow of cash to buy a cup of coffee.

Sure I could buy ten ounces of gold. In a hyperinflationary environment that gold may end up being worth a trillion dollars per ounce. But that would mean it would cost 1oz of gold to pay for a cup of coffee. Ten cups of coffee probably isn't the best way to spend ten ounces of gold. But a guy like Soros who holds a few tons of gold might use an ounce or two if he really wanted a nice cup of joe. It is impossible for me to ever buy more than a few ounces of gold at a time. I could never dream of buying a few hundred pounds.

The best I can hope for is that my gold will be worth what I paid for it in a different currency, perhaps a bit more. Even if I owned $50k in gold and the dollar collapsed, and somehow I moved to China and they made it through, an equivelent value of $50k probably wouldn't mean much if I couldn't get a job.

The true store of value is skilled labor. If you can build something, you have value.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:42 | 3302575 SilverIsKing
SilverIsKing's picture

There's a big difference between being able to generate an income and storing one's wealth.  You are correct, unless very wealthy, you need to be productive to generate an income but saving some of that income in the form of gold will protect against weakening fiat currencies.  Ultimately, gold may be the only form of money that retains value but it might very well be useless to measure it against other fiat currencies.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:36 | 3302775 johnQpublic
johnQpublic's picture

Rev 6:6-"And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine."

When a laborer went into the field to labor, during the time of Jesus’ walk on the earth, the standard wage for a day’s labor was a penny a day. Of course this is not a “penny” of our day, but a coin of that day. The value of it must be measured it what it represented – Payment for a day’s labor. The rich ate wheat bread. The poor ate barley bread. A “measure” was approximately what a man with large hands could hold in his two hands cupped together. A measure would make a small loaf of bread.



dont measure it against currency

measure it against wheat(et al)

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:29 | 3303176 Matt
Matt's picture

So, labourers worked for 3 loaves of barley per day? Somehow, supporting a family on that kind of wage seems kind of doubtful.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 22:49 | 3303464 gonetogalt
gonetogalt's picture

No, the vision represents food inflation/famine in our time.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 23:59 | 3303683 horseman
horseman's picture

I sold all my soft white wheat at $9.00 a bushel.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:03 | 3302660 Tinky
Tinky's picture

While I certainly agree that practical skills are ultimately of the greatest value, you (and many others) miss the point that when (not if) gold reaches the bubble stage, those smart enough to sell will gain considerably more than a simple retention of purchase power.

There is a correlation between the degradation of fiat currencies and the ascent of gold values, but it will not remain taught throughout the cycle.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:44 | 3302586 nofluer
nofluer's picture

IIRC, those things were stores of wealth. AFTER the period of flying fecal matter was over, they could be exchanged for more spendable currencies, the owner of such could then sell them for value. But DURING the fecal matter flying they were just things to worry about and of no practical use.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:58 | 3302642 AGuy
AGuy's picture

" "Diamonds, Gold, Masterpeice art and Mansions did great in.. the Weimar republic"

Unless you were Jewish living in Germany or didn't support the Brown shirt movement of the 1920s and 1930s. The people with the guns usually end up with the Diamonds, Gold and Mansions.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:53 | 3302292 earleflorida
earleflorida's picture

Question: why doesn't the UsSa [WTI] become a member of OPEC? i know, i know what's been said,... but,

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:53 | 3302294 NoWayJose
NoWayJose's picture

Just look at your cell phone bill if you want to see how invasive the Tax Man can be.  Same with any real estate transaction.  I fully expect some new taxes like - any amount that you employer pays for your health care plan that exceeds $5000 per year will be taxed as income...  or means testing Social Security and Medicare...  or taxing assets including savings and investments, even beyond any interest or income they earn...  and of course, the old reliable Federal Sales Tax or VAT...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:49 | 3302600 Bingfa
Bingfa's picture

You got that right, taxes are going to suck the life-blood out of this country...

They're just getting warmed up

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:53 | 3302295 reader2010
reader2010's picture

Conformity brought by control.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:55 | 3302305 The worst trader
The worst trader's picture

S.435 bill? better check your facts.......... 2009 youth prison reduction bill.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:03 | 3302346 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

good catch!

Tylerz probably had a bad day with fact checking

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:31 | 3302523 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

spoiler: the title is something like

S.435 - A bill to ban the exportation of crude oil or refined petroleum products derived from Federal land

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:50 | 3302603 SafelyGraze
SafelyGraze's picture

and not to neglect the

Universal National Service Act, HR 748 which asserts that

It is the obligation of every citizen of the United States, and every other person residing in the United States, who is between the ages of 18 and 25 to perform a period of national service as prescribed in this title unless exempted under the provisions of this title.

The national service obligation under this title shall be performed either through--

(1) military service; or

(2) civilian service in a Federal, State, or local government program or with a community-based agency or community-based entity that, as determined by the President, is engaged in meeting human, educational, environmental, or public safety needs.


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:19 | 3302725 Bill Blackstone
Bill Blackstone's picture

That shit gets brought up every session.  It's already been referred to committee, where it will hopefully die.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:44 | 3302796 Esso
Esso's picture

"...where it will hopefully die."

Until it doesn't.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:53 | 3302829 BigJim
BigJim's picture

Aw, c'mon! Slavery ended when Honest Abe won the Civil War!

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:12 | 3302421 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

"Space Corp Directive 39436175880932/B. All nations attending the conference are only allocated one parking space. Is that entirely relevant sir? I mean here we are, in mortal danger and you're worried about the Chinese delegates bringing two cars."

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:41 | 3302570 ThaBigPerm
ThaBigPerm's picture

Double+1 for the obscure Red Dwarf reference...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:33 | 3302533 politicskills
politicskills's picture

Sorry to report that you're wrong.


S.435 - A bill to ban the exportation of crude oil or refined petroleum products derived from Federal land, and for other purposes.


And.....Robert Menendez-D of New Joisey is the sponsor!  You can't make this stuff up in Amerika. 

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:34 | 3302537 Pairadimes
Pairadimes's picture


It gets even better - check out the sponsor.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:00 | 3302306 Bob
Bob's picture

Well, pension confiscation via vulture capital/LBO gangs, banks and bankruptcy courts has been a fact of life for over 30 years. 

For the working class, of course.  See the first Wall Street movie and millions of fucked over people in Real America for the story if you really don't know it.  

Yeah, it's gonna get worse.  You let a criminal virus get out of control and that's what happens.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:57 | 3302309 Rastadamus
Rastadamus's picture

Bought gold today. ANd I'm not storing where I cannot put my hands on it. Go ahead and illegalize gold. I've dealt in contraband before I live in northern California. You want Sativa Indica or Gold? Need I say more?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:00 | 3302338 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

They're gonna illegalize it? Uh oh.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:34 | 3302540 GubbermintWorker
GubbermintWorker's picture

Which is better for chronic pain?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:43 | 3302578 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

Analgelezics probably.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:59 | 3302646 GubbermintWorker
GubbermintWorker's picture


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:10 | 3302677 Temporalist
Temporalist's picture

You must work for the TSA...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:41 | 3302789 GubbermintWorker
GubbermintWorker's picture

I'm not sticking anything up your ass, no, I don't.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:51 | 3302607 nofluer
nofluer's picture

IbuPROfen is better because the alternative, ASSpirin, is illegal in many jurisdickshions.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:27 | 3302752 Bill Blackstone
Bill Blackstone's picture

You'll want a strong indica blend for the body high.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:14 | 3302912 GubbermintWorker
GubbermintWorker's picture

Thanks, that what I was wanting to know!

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:04 | 3303078 medium giraffe
medium giraffe's picture

You have to stick it up your ass though... 

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 17:57 | 3302312 DCFusor
DCFusor's picture

Store gold overseas?  Hell, that's out of the range of my sniper rifle.  Screw that.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:02 | 3302350 NoWayJose
NoWayJose's picture

Every year you come across a story where someone is remodeling an old house, and they pull down a wall or tear out a floor board - and hidden away they find some gold coins...  out of reach of FDR... 

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:12 | 3302419 SunRise
SunRise's picture

Out of Range??  Have you considered a Drone?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:16 | 3302434 DOT
DOT's picture

Great "hobby". Most models come with a free tyranny suppressor.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:04 | 3302362 Pareto
Pareto's picture

Never in a million years would I store my gold any further than a day's drive from my house.  EVER

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:36 | 3302547 XitSam
XitSam's picture

Note that Simon included border controls. Does he think the US will be the only country to do it?  He's always telling us how he's zipping around the world ... what if the country he's in won't let him out?  Or his precious Chili let him back in? Or a stopover country on his way home decides he broke some new law? He's deluded.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:55 | 3302614 Jam Akin
Jam Akin's picture

They don't even let "Simon" out of the call center during his shift.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:12 | 3302687 Poor Grogman
Poor Grogman's picture

You are correct

Border controls + overseas asset storage = guaranteed loss of assets.

Something doesn't make sense here...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:18 | 3302715 Strider52
Strider52's picture

A day's drive? Heck, the lake where I have so many accidents is in my front yard.  

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:52 | 3303256 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

Make that a day's bicycle ride, horseback ride, or walk.

Gasoline will be rationed before gold is confiscated, and you may not be privy to the petrol

Wed, 03/06/2013 - 03:41 | 3303989 enloe creek
enloe creek's picture

basically emerging markets use more oil than developed world now so the game is to not let dollar fall or oil goes up since oil is traded in dollars
when china, india etc. can buy oil in some other currency, game changes to aquiring resources without ising dollar and the USA can't do a thing about it.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:07 | 3302389 rhinoblitzing
rhinoblitzing's picture

"Peple in "rich" countries foolsifly beleieve it cant happen here.

Please define "rich countries". every time I hear someone say "the USA is a wealthy country" or "rich country" I get.... perplexed. Just what statistics are they using to define the USA as rich.

the bottom line is we have off shored all real and tangible work, and imported cheap, undocumented labor - most of which do not pay into the system, and give birth to flocks of children to get benefits and dilute what was once known as "citizenship".

As for the article: Anyone have a list of empires that did/did not implode socially? The UK empire dissolved without social implosion - but then again WWI and WWII ....


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:27 | 3302506 Bob
Bob's picture

There used to exist in America a sense of a living, real "we."  In that scenario, we were rich. 

Unfortunately, most of our wealth and future has been seized by billionaire sociopaths in the past ten-fifteen years. 

We don't mean what it used to mean.  Apparently we are broke. 

Times change.  Especially when most of the money goes to just a few people. 

Wed, 03/06/2013 - 05:01 | 3304047 mkhs
mkhs's picture

 "Just in the past week in the Land of the Free, ..."

Where are we referring to?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:13 | 3302425 adr
adr's picture

I am all for applying a massive export tariff on oil and refined petroleum products. Fuck the rest of the world. If it grinds China to a halt and puts most of the publicly traded multinationals out of business, HALFUCKINLUJAH. I pay nearly $4 at the pump while we ship record amounts of gasoline because Argentina will pay more and subsidize the cost just to keep the population from rioting.

Put a 90% tax on stock transactions, derivatives, options, the whole lot. It won't affect 90% of the population and, GASP, force corporations to produce something of value to stay in business.

You would sure kill off the irrational stock market exuberance. Of course what would all the CEOs do if they can't just print up some stock to sell for a couple hundred million a year. That $300 a plate restaurant might go out of business, the million dollar yacht club might fold. OH NO THE HUMANITY!!!!!

Throughout history the concept of futures and a stock market has destroyed every civilization that implemented it. It is the root cause of collapse. The entire concept of futures and hedging is pointless because you can't know the future, it is at its core an attempt to prevent failure. The minority that controls the market always wins, those who wish to prevent a total loss will at best make out ok. When you attempt to prevent failure you actually guarantee it. Ending with 50% still means you lose.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:37 | 3302557 donsluck
donsluck's picture

You may be suffering from inflationitis. $4.00 today is 29 cents in 1942 dollars. In other words, gas is not particularly expensive when adjusted for inflation.

Also, your concept of banning futures etc would put farmers out of business. Without access to capital, businesses can't expand (or even start) and we approach the living standards of North Korea.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:48 | 3302597 donsluck
donsluck's picture

And for the down arrow, preventing people from entering into private Contracts smacks of totalitarianism. Why can't I offer $0.30/lb now for my neighbors potatoes to be harvested this fall? Should you put me in jail for the offer?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:58 | 3302644 nofluer
nofluer's picture

I think that the Christian Bible indicates that the Battle of Armageddon will be fought with swords and bows and arrows and spears... Given the global hyperinflation and encroaching poverty, it's beginning to appear that it could just happen because when it happens, the nations of the world probably won't be able to afford any more advanced weapons!

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:40 | 3302785 jimmytorpedo
jimmytorpedo's picture

I don't know what weapons world war 3 will be fought with but world war 4 will be fought with sticks and rocks.

(or something to that effect)

--Albert Einstein

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:14 | 3302429 world_debt_slave
world_debt_slave's picture

yeah, and they can also prevent citizens from leaving their prison (country).

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:18 | 3302432 WarHorse
WarHorse's picture

While it is not technically illegal to export U.S. oil, it does require Commerce Dept approval which is never granted.  So in reality, US oil exports are already illegal.  In contrast, Refined products (eg, gasoline) are exported frequently.  If they are moving to prevent the export of refined products I will have lost faith in our "free country"

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:17 | 3302443 DarthVaderMentor
DarthVaderMentor's picture

Drop this guy. His facts on S.435 are wrong and his web site won't even take comments to attempt to correct him. Lost credibility that could affect ZH credibility.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:31 | 3302524 Ayr Rand
Ayr Rand's picture

The 0.03% tax on financial transactions is intended (ostensibly) to shut down HFT, which is a plank of ZH. There is plenty of good info here, and Simon Black should be congratulated on his many bon mots, but he missed the mark with this one. Tylers, please elucidate. BR.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:37 | 3302559 Pairadimes
Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:28 | 3303147 DarthVaderMentor
DarthVaderMentor's picture

Now this is indeed fascinating. Google and Thomas Register have a different bill identified as S.435.


It was introduced yesterday so it's just got a single sponsor (Menendez) and bill status.

Latest Title: A bill to ban the exportation of crude oil or refined petroleum products derived from Federal land, and for other purposes. 
Sponsor: Sen Menendez, Robert [NJ] (introduced 3/4/2013)      Cosponsors (None) 
Latest Major Action: 3/4/2013 Referred to Senate committee. Status: Read twice and referred to the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs. 


All Information (except text) Text of Legislation Summary Major Congressional Actions 

All Congressional Actions 

All Congressional Actions with Amendments 
With links to Congressional Record pages, votes,reports Titles Cosponsors (None) Committees Related Bills Amendments   CBO Cost Estimates Subjects  

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 22:47 | 3303453 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture


Now this is indeed fascinating. Google and Thomas Register have a different bill identified as S.435.

There's no mystery to it at all. Every time there is a new congress (every two years), the numbers for house bills and senate bills begin at 1.

The referenced bill S.435 is from the 113th congress (2013-2014).

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:17 | 3302444 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

"Those who don't learn from history are doomed to repeat it."

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:20 | 3302461 MeelionDollerBogus
MeelionDollerBogus's picture

what's a golds? No comprende mister

 I just drive zee boats


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:25 | 3302486 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

The FTT tax proposition is nothing new.

You have to wonder though if levitating the market by excessive use of HFT was the ruse to get a FTT tax bill on the books by turning the public against the stock market. I didn't know this but the idea of an FTT tax is actually a Keysian idea.

In 1936, when Keynes first proposed a financial transaction tax, he wrote, "Speculators may do no harm as bubbles on a steady stream of enterprise. But the situation is serious when enterprise becomes the bubble on a whirlpool of speculation.


Only problem is the issue here is not a speculator problem. I'm sure Krugman will be cooing all about this if the bill gains enough traction.

For anyone that wants to read the full text of this incarnation of the FTT bill before Congress.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:05 | 3302873 BigJim
BigJim's picture

One of the few useful functions a government can perform is prevention/punishment of fraud.

Given that people making financial transactions expect the government to step in and prosecute any fraud their counterparties commit, I think it's reasonable the government charges a small surcharge on financial transactions to pay for this service.

Yeah, I know, it's Wall Street; the government doesn't prosecute fraud. But you get my point.

We typically have sales tax on sales of goods and services; why not on financial 'goods' like stocks and bonds? Oh, that's right, bankers don't like taxes. Unlike the rest of us.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 21:01 | 3303069 Umh
Umh's picture

I don't like taxes either. You can pay mine if you like them.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:25 | 3302492 lolmao500
lolmao500's picture

The shock doctrine is coming to America.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:28 | 3302510 yogibear
yogibear's picture

With the deficit reaching $20 trillion soon (look at February's accelerating debt 225 billion) the only way out for Bernanke, the Fed and Jack Jew is to print!! 

While unfunded liabilities also jump.

Zimbabwe economic plan!!!

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:34 | 3302536 Ayr Rand
Ayr Rand's picture

While the deficit may reach $20T soon, I think you meant to say that the national debt will reach $20T soon, as that will happen somewhat sooner. 

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:30 | 3302516 PoliticalRefuge...
PoliticalRefugeefromCalif.'s picture

In the good old Soviet model much of the information on who was hoarding and what was provided by patriotic citizens willingly reporting to the authorities any information of national interest and oddly enough everything in these types of regime become that of national interest.

..two people can share a secret but only if one of them is dead.

The IRS has both the leverage available to encourage and the ability to incentive the process.

The worst part of it is we have been paying our public schools to create that type of mind numbed environment.. It's been all about getting the herd mentality to accept Political Correctness, "if you see something say something", zero tolerance", big brother always watching, two sets of laws, etc..


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:15 | 3302703 Poor Grogman
Poor Grogman's picture

Dont forget to be a "team player" also.

That doesn't include team ZH by the way...

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:30 | 3302518 TrustWho
TrustWho's picture

I am amazed at the number of Americans that I talk and respect their intelligence who think America has this magical safety net. Just resently an engineer who ran and sold his own firm told me the Fed was going to buy all government debt and just write it off. I told Wayne the Fed could pay all US government debt tomorrow, but social security people would be very upset if all their treasuries are worthless. I was really depressed, because if Wayne does not understand, less than 0.1% of Americans understand and arrogantly believe America is immune to a collapse.

This blind faith is why Daddy Bernanke can add more than $2 trillion to the Fed's balance sheet in 4 years without any pushback.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:37 | 3302532 Bárðarbunga
Bárðarbunga's picture
Bill S.435 188th (Current) An Act relative to the licensure of insurance adjusters in the Commonwealth




An act
to amend the public health law, in relation to requiring public
toilet facilities in restaurants with a seating capacity of ten or

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:36 | 3302548 Ayr Rand
Ayr Rand's picture

Why can't the Fed simply zeroize all the US Treasuries they have? I have asked this question in various contexts, and nobody has been able to provide a reason why this would not work. This is I believe the Fed's actual exit plan. There is no harm done, and the value of other US Treasuries will actually increase as a result. 

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:43 | 3302579 donsluck
donsluck's picture

The Fed is a private corporation. They can "zeroize" all their Treasuries and then they would be bankrupt. Why would a corporation bankrupt itself? Only if the Treasury would step in and quickly "print" the trillions in Treasuries "zeroized" by the Fed. All that debt would turn into electronic cash and lead to crippling inflation.

It would be like you "zeroizing" all your 401k stocks. Sure, it's possible, but "harmless"? Hardly. And you would be crazy to do it.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:57 | 3302636 css1971
css1971's picture

They could but it's highly inflationary and the value of other bonds would decrease.

I expect to see exactly this in Japan at some point relatively soon, as the government collapses.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:37 | 3302558 tony bonn
tony bonn's picture

the united states is ruled by a kleptocratic nazi elite, most of these assholes being invisible and members in good standing of the rockefeller axis of evil or bush crime syndicate - both entities being joined at the hip....

when they were establishing hitler during the 1920s, they established fdr in the 1930s - it is no coincidence that they both came to power at the same time and thankfully died at the same time...but the real power behind both thrones was the rae.....

gold criminalization is coming next....the signs of a desperate regime yes - but a desperate regime can stay in power longer than you can hide or is long past time for a people's revolution - the nazis have a complete lock on power...amerika knew not the hour of its visitation and shall pay dearly for its foolishness....

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:38 | 3302560 yogibear
yogibear's picture

Next the government raids private retirement funds.

Desperation takes hold with uncontrolled spending.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:41 | 3302569 Ban KKiller
Ban KKiller's picture

Who can see derivative contracts? Is there such a listing? Show me please. I need to off load my Mine are only bets on bets as opposed to the the other type which is bets on bets on bets on bets. See why mine are better? Yield? Don't worry about that...mine will return the same "value" as all the rest. 100%! 


Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:45 | 3302589 giorgioorwell
giorgioorwell's picture

Having lived in one of these so called "overseas havens" (Costa Rica) for a few years, and witnessed how it was pitched as a great place to invest/escape the onerous taxes and regulation of the US to many a retired Texan and Floridian, I laugh when I read Simon's investment "advice".  Costa Rican regulations on investment, US citizen owned bank accounts, property taxes have taken a hard turn to the left since 2008, and just goes to show the influence US govt has abroad (they demanded all Costa Rican banks share bank account info of all US citizens, which they complied with, with no fuss)  "Luxury" property taxes have been implemented there to cover their own entitlement programs, corporate taxes have gone up, many other incentives to invest there are being pulled away...

Any of these safe havens he mentions, Singapore, Panama, Switzerland, Vietnam, Ecuador, you name it, can change their minds very quickly as to the rules of ownership and investing in their countries, and the first on the chopping block will be US based investors.   They do it all the time....diversifying is only good if you have millions to spread around, but if you do, you're probably not reading ZH or Simon Black much

New rules are: there are no "safe" places to invest, unless you can somehow purchase PM's with no paper trail whatsoever and bury in your yard (anyone else will probably recieve a 90% windfall tax bill in the mail if US $ is every adjusted to gold in any serious way)  Even then you'll be sitting on that gold for a long long time before you're able to ever do anything with it if there's anything approaching a dollar melt down.  If you've bought any gold online, or through any of the bigger brokers you can be assured Uncle Sam knows how much you own and where you live.

Bottom line, no one on this board should be cocky as to thinking they have it all figured out....That doesn't mean prepare as best you can, but PM's and international investing have just as many potential pitfalls as stocks and bonds in this insane Central Bank run economy we all live in.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:01 | 3302861 shinobi-7
shinobi-7's picture

This is unfortunately correct. safe havens are anything but unless you are weathy and can diversify. Think about another problem I recently had: No more direct flight!

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:58 | 3303052 gnomon
gnomon's picture

Hey, I've got it figured out.  The right to hold property is an inalienable, individual right.  Agent man comes to take property.  Big party ensues.  No sense dragging things out.  

I ain't putting up with the shitheads.  Not one inch more.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:46 | 3302592 Fix It Again Timmy
Fix It Again Timmy's picture

We know where we're going, we just don't know the exact arrival time....

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:46 | 3302593 Hannibal
Hannibal's picture

Planted moar sweet tators and greens.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 18:52 | 3302615 lolmao500
lolmao500's picture

Think again indeed.

Leaked Document: Military Internment Camps in U.S to be Used for Political Dissidents

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:46 | 3302800 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Think you can't be droned in your own backyard by your own government. Think again according to Capo Eric Holder.

Attorney General Eric Holder can imagine a scenario in which it would be constitutional to carry out a drone strike against an American on American soil, he wrote in a letter to Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky.

“It is possible, I suppose, to imagine an extraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution and applicable laws of the United States for the President to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States,” Holder replied in a letter yesterday to Paul’s question about whether Obama “has the power to authorize lethal force, such as a drone strike, against a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil, and without trial.”

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 19:58 | 3302848 lakecity55
lakecity55's picture

We're ALL on a NAZI train to midnight......

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:28 | 3302961 exgop
exgop's picture

A Jewish train

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:14 | 3302915 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

I have to wonder if Rand Paul is just playing a role in a WWE match like the rest of them.

Reading this makes me wonder if these guys read these things before sponsoring them or are they speaking out both sides of their mouths. I can understand certain Republicans signing on for this but guys like Rand Paul and Mike Lee?

Granted this is stalled in Congress and probably would not make it down to a vote in the states anyways the fact of the matter is it is absolutely horrific what is in this.

Proposing a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

Sounds great on the surface. Then you peel away the skin and find this is what is in it.

I will paraphase the key parts.

In plain English, this is what the 10 Sections of the BBA mean :

Section 1: They won't spend more than they take in unless they vote to spend more than they take in.

Section 2: They won't spend more than 18% of the GDP unless they vote to spend more than 18% of the GDP.

Section 3: The President will write the budget: He will designate the taxes, and what the money will be spent on. He won't spend more than he decides to tax you for, and he won't spend more than 18% of the GDP. The GDP is a computation made by the Bureau of Economic Analysis in the Department of Commerce, an agency under the control of the President. [Do you see? The President controls the agency which computes the number which limits his spending.]

Section 4: Congress won't make a law raising your taxes unless they vote to raise your taxes.

Section 5: Congress won't raise the debt limit unless they vote to raise the debt limit.

Sections 6 & 7: Congress can waive the above provisions of the BBA (except for Sec. 4 which says they can't raise your taxes unless they vote to raise your taxes) when there is a declared war or a "military conflict" which they think justifies their waiving the above provisions of the BBA.

Section 8: Courts can't order your taxes to be raised. [But you can bet your life that this section, together with section 3, will be seen to authorize the President to order that your taxes be raised.]

Section 9: I leave this to others to explain. But be assured the President's minions will define stuff however he wants; make stuff "off-budget" or "on-budget" to fit his agenda.

Section 10: Congress can make laws to enforce the BBA, and can rely on numbers provided by the President who is to be given constitutional authority to order tax increases & decide how to spend the money.

So! Do you see? You get no benefit from the BBA. But it will cause us irreparable harm.

How Would the BBA Cut the Heart Out of Our Constitution?

1. It would Transform Our Constitution From One of Enumerated Spending Powers To One of General ("Unlimited") Spending Powers.

2. The BBA Transfers Control of the "Purse" from Congress to the President.

3. The BBA grants judicial power over taxing & spending to the federal courts.


These guys are supposed to be smaller government,  abide by the Constitution types yet they would put their names on amendments that would in essence gut some of  the major protections in it. I hope Ron gives Rand a good fatherly ass whupin over this.  Between this and him endorsing O'Romney I ain't so sure about him anymore.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 23:36 | 3303625 Cathartes Aura
Cathartes Aura's picture

dude, what part of "career politicians" is stumping you?

who. pays. their. salary?

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:22 | 3302943 Its_the_economy...
Its_the_economy_stupid's picture

double post

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 20:57 | 3303045 Umh
Umh's picture

One, S.435, is an appalling bill that proposes to BAN the exportation of crude oil or refined petroleum products that originate in the United States.


In the best case this does nothing except cost money in the form of friction since the government(friction cost) is involved. In the worst case it triggers international retaliation.

Tue, 03/05/2013 - 22:45 | 3303442 snblitz
snblitz's picture


The US is already bankrupt, and the controls have already been put in place.

I wonder what country the author is referring to?

Wed, 03/06/2013 - 01:58 | 3303868 Hohum
Hohum's picture

Well, Mr. Black, you're right that we shouldn't have controls.  But freedom/decentralization means we (the top 10%) aren't going to be as rich.  You okay with that?

Wed, 03/06/2013 - 20:34 | 3306879 hwertz
hwertz's picture

Good article, and an interesting read. BUT, the 0.03% tax? I really can't object to it, I think it is SPECIFICALLY to combat high frequency trading -- low enough to not be a significant factor to normal trader, but a big deal to "people" trading thousands upon thousands of times an hour.

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