The Madness Of Crowds And The Great Insanity

Tyler Durden's picture

Submitted by Ty Andros via TedBits,

Never in my 30+ year career as a market observer have I seen so many out on a limb which is about to be SAWED OFF. Those who live within the matrix are fully loaded for a recovery which is not and will not appear. Nominally the Main stream media can proclaim ECONOMIC recovery has arrived, point to the rising developed world stock markets, seemingly benign bond markets of all categories: sovereign, investment grade and Junk, Private equity, corporate buy backs and more have priced in “Happy Days are here again”. HFT, unrestrained leverage in a financially repressed world and Quantitative easing have done the rest in pushing financial assets to heights rarely, if ever, seen. Volatility is at all-time lows in most markets and investor confidence at superhuman levels. Like a boat where all the passengers are on one side of the boat and it is about to capsize, investors similarly have no fear.



“In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.”

- Friedrich Nietzsche

The central banks have created moral hazard on a scale which is simply unbelievable and set a stage for a bonfire of the vanities seldom, if ever, seen in history. In fact, nothing I can see rivals it.

“Over a protracted period of good times, capitalist economies tend to move from a financial structure dominated by hedge finance units to a structure in which there is a large weight to units engaged in speculative and Ponzi finance. . . . The greater the weight of speculative and Ponzi finance, the smaller the overall margins of safety in the economy and the greater the fragility of the financial structure.”

- Hyman Minsky, 1992

Professional Investors who have spent a lifetime playing these contrarian opportunities offered by human behavior are being carried out on stretchers as historic market behaviors fail to materialize. So the financial imbalances and historic overvaluations just grow and grow and when they are resolved only God knows.   In my opinion, it isn’t materializing because many markets are manipulated, pure and simple, with and without the assistance of the central banks, government regulators and the bankster financial community. As long as the results and consequent headlines are politically correct there are no consequences to be feared, they will be allowed to continue. Politicians HATED markets because they used to expose them as the liars they are. NO MORE as they are now in the hands of megalomaniac’s and sociopaths who don’t know the difference between right and wrong.

“Sometimes the law defends plunder and participates in it. Sometimes the law even places the whole apparatus of judges, police, prisons and gendarmes at the service of the plunderers, and treats the victim, when he defends himself, as a criminal. But often the masses are plundered and do not even know it.”

- Frédéric Bastiat

The masses are being plundered on a scale which is inconceivable and unmatched in history; it is the source of the middle classes dying in the developed world. The developed world has become a well-disguised plantation of serfs and slaves. They are given nothing to store and save their labor in as the currency they hold are printed endlessly and have no reserves to back them and are redeemable in NOTHING, contrary to every sound currency in history. Modern day money is nothing less than a wealth confiscation scheme run by morally and fiscally bankrupt central banks and governments against their own citizens.

Is there any human activity where you are not taxed today in one way or another? Is there any major financial holding which people own free and clear of annual taxes or don’t have to share any gain with the masters in central governments? They are your partners in everything even though you performed the work to buy your assets. The government has given the working man nothing in exchange for sharing in the profits or appreciation. Government services such as roads, schools, sewers, police and courts are paid for out of taxes.

“None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.”

- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

As long as big government progressives, elites, the main stream media, and banksters can manipulate and control the reality for the vast majority of citizens they tell themselves they are doing a public good. Fredric Bastiat described this nexus well:

“Sometimes the law defends plunder and participates in it. Sometimes the law even places the whole apparatus of judges, police, prisons and gendarmes at the service of the plunderers, and treats the victim, when he defends himself, as a criminal. But often the masses are plundered and do not even know it.”

- Frédéric Bastiat

Throughout the developed world, progressive governments have created huge welfare states that have crippled the futures of the people under whom they were meant to place a safety net. Now, it is a permanent way of life for them and the rolls are exploding daily.

“See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime. Then abolish this law without delay. If such a law is not abolished immediately it will spread, multiply and develop into a system.”

- French economist Frederic Bastiat (1801-1850)

This is the system in the developed world today and it will not be stopped except by Mother Nature and Darwin. These programs have now created a class of people who have no ability to rise and prosper in life: they have no skills, no ability to produce more than they consume, and do not know the source of their inability to do so. They are told their lack of success is someone else’s fault.   They are crippled intentionally to be victims of the elites who wish to prey on them and their ignorance. They have been provided a POTEMKIN FAKE education by public schools who FAIL to provide them the educations necessary to rise through adversity and in life. These FAKE educations have ONLY one goal as outlined by George Carlin:

“…But I’ll tell you what they don’t want. They DON’T want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking. They don’t want well-informed, well-educated people capable of critical thinking. They’re not interested in that, that doesn’t help them. That’s against their interests. That’s right. They don’t want people who are smart enough to sit around the kitchen table and figure out how badly they’re getting F#CKED by system that threw them overboard 30 f#ckin’ years ago. They don’t want that. You know what they want? They want OBEDIENT WORKERS. OBEDIENT WORKERS. People who are just smart enough to run the machines and do the paperwork, and just dumb enough to passably accept all these increasingly shittier jobs with the lower pay, the longer hours, the reduced benefits, the end of overtime, and the vanishing pension that disappears the minute you go to collect it.”

- George Carlin

Is this not the world we live in today? These words were said over 15 years ago. The USEFUL idiots as Lenin called them have no ability to think, manufactured by public school monopolies (which I call indoctrination/brain washing centers) and told they have been born with the right to all of their basic needs provided by the government:

“It is not an endlessly expanding list of rights —the “right” to an education; the “right” to health care; the “right” to food and housing. That is not freedom. That is dependency. Those are not rights. Those are the rations of slavery – hay and a barn for human cattle.”

- Alexis de Tocqueville

They believe the impossible dream that they have the right to live their lives at the expense of others and will vote for the people that tell them this is so and use a government gun to make it happen. Most of society today does not know: where money comes from, what it is or isn’t in a historical or practical sense, how wealth is created, the virtues of capitalism and wealth creation, why it’s important to stay debt free and live within your means, why they should work hard and never give up, why save money, why it’s important to be self-reliant, what the constitution is and why it’s important to protect our freedom and future, nor economics of any sort but socialism and Keynesianism (central government control of all aspects of life also known as Marxism).  

In my estimation this means they are functually ILLITERATE to life’s basic requirements to grow and thrive as a human in society.  They couldn’t be less prepared to meet life’s challenges. The school systems are designed to create peasants and serfs to socialism. Not educated, self-reliant and independent citizens. Prior generations such as mine where taught all these things. We want it restored, and now are labeled extremists and terrorists for insisting on it. This teaching of socialism labeled democracy has led to very destructive behavior:

Democratic institutions awaken and foster a passion for equality which they can never entirely satisfy.  This complete equality eludes the grasp of the people at the very moment they think that they have grasped it… the people are excited in the pursuit of an advantage, which is more precious because it is not sufficiently near to be enjoyed.  Democratic institutions strongly tend to promote the feeling of envy.  A depraved taste for equality, which impels the weak attempt to lower the powerful to their own level and reduces men to prefer equality in slavery to inequality with freedom.

- Alexis de Tocqueville, 1825

This is the agenda of the voting public with the president and his minions in congress and the bureaucracy as his supporters. I have never seen an administration so dedicated to dividing people and attacking the private economy which is the basis of future prosperity. Progressives in Government espouse the gospel of Carl Marx even though they never say so explicitly:

“The whole gospel of Karl Marx can be summed up in a single sentence: Hate the man who is better off than you are. Never under any circumstances admit that his success may be due to his own efforts, to the productive contribution he has made to the whole community. Always attribute his success to the exploitation, the cheating, the more or less open robbery of others. Never under any circumstances admit that your own failure may be owing to your own weakness, or that the failure of anyone else may be due to his own defects, to his laziness, incompetence, improvidence or simple stupidity.”

- Henry Hazlitt on envy and Marxism

This is from where progressives derive their power as this is what the public is taught in public schools. They are a generation of unaccountable victims. Government does not create prosperity or wealth, it destroys prosperity and wealth… correction: it CONSUMES them.

Several weeks ago, I commented on the $30 trillion dollars ($30 million million dollars printed out of THIN air) of new debt which has been created since the nadir of the Global Financial Crisis in late 2008. This has created the greatest fire hose of HOT money zooming around the world in history. Too much money chasing too few opportunities is repressing yields and returns. Combine this with deliberate FINANCIAL REPRESSION by banksters and governments as they transfer the returns from prudent savers to themselves to fill in the insolvency their Reserveless banking systems created. Trillions of dollars of unpaid interest has flowed to insolvent governments and banks during this period and continues to do so as REAL inflation eats the money the public is paid in and stores its wealth in. While bankers and governments borrow money for nothing, false government inflation statistics hide the theft from the public (see

“You never want to let a serious crisis go to waste.”

- Rahm Emanuel, February 9, 2009

This debt has been disguised as GDP by the governments of the world while they used the crisis not to reform themselves but, instead, to implement new and innovative ways to loot and enslave the publics they claim to serve by increasing taxes, taking regulations to levels of suffocation of private enterprise (moving this demand to connected crony capitalists), removing freedoms and taking confiscation of private property to new extremes. An insidious process, and exactly opposite of the recipe for economic recovery. They have destroyed the human spirit of hope, hard work, and tenacity as they destroy the incentives to do so.

“When people who earn more than the average have their ‘surplus,’ or the greater part of it, seized from them in taxes, and when people who earn less than the average have the deficiency, or the greater part of it, turned over to them in hand?outs and doles, the production of all must sharply decline; for the energetic and able lose their incentive to produce more than the average and the slothful and unskilled lose their incentive to improve their condition.”

- Henry Hazlitt

In the process, creating a society of misery spread widely (definition of socialism): 

No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable.”

- Adam Smith

Is this not the mood of the vast majority of the developed world? And they are giving up in record numbers, succumbing to the hopelessness in the world their elite masters have created for them.

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

- Carl Sagan

In closing, the greatest top in economic activity and leverage in human history has been in the making since 2000. When the leverage FAILS, the world’s developed economies will be thrust into the next leg of the cleansing process of deleveraging which began in 2000, made another top in 2008 and now this time.  The leverage is far greater now than it was at the 2000, and the 2007/2008 highs. The destruction of it will be equally bigger.  The world has slipped below the proverbial event horizon of a Black hole, slipping closer and closer to the final denouement of the insanity running amok today.

Then, we will have a time of great economic and social turmoil as what has gone before slides to its doom. Then, a great reformation will emerge just as it did in China after the cultural revolution failed in 1976 and then with Deng Xiaoping in 1989 when he said “to get rich is glorious” and he unleashed the human spirit in China and wealth creation exploded. Don’t you think similar epiphany’s lie in the future after the socialist welfare states of the world collapse? 

“Political ideas that have dominated the public mind for decades cannot be refuted through rational arguments, they must run their course in life and cannot collapse otherwise than in great catastrophe.”

- Ludwig Von Mises

This conclusion is firmly on the horizon; let’s call it the great INSANITY. I believe this version is the greatest in history and will be written about for centuries. Those that forget history are doomed to repeat it and this time is no different. However, there is always great opportunity with great danger as the greatest transfer of wealth from these that hold it in paper to those that don’t is underway and there is nothing that can stop it. The sociopaths and elites have no ability to turn the ship of states around as their policies have created the collapse. While this is a manmade disaster, it is most definitely the greatest opportunity in history for those that see it and adjust their behavior accordingly. Don’t ever forget, THEY WILL PRINT THE MONEY!

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TeamDepends's picture

This is your bain on goupthink.

sunaJ's picture

Speaking of the letter "R," don't expect a revolution from the masses until it is all actually gone.  Then expect panic.  Then expect the wrong people to be blamed.  Rinse, Repeat.


  My favorite quote was Carl Sagan's:


“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”


jbvtme's picture

"Madness" is a lame excuse. Cowardice is more like it.

Publicus's picture

Peer to peer currencies will free us all.

CH1's picture

Silver is great. Problem is, people who own it never use it. The stack it up and nearly worship it, but do not use it.

Cryptocurrencies get used. That's why the Bitcoin kids are changing things, but the stackers change nothing.

Fukushima Sam's picture

Currency does not equal money.

The International Jew's picture

zerohedge pages are the only places where the same thing is repeated ad infinum.  You think they would think of somethig new to say...  Zerohedge I now see why you guys get prayed on.  the weak live here.  Still though love some of the pieces, some of the time.  remember when smart people came on this site?  I still do. kinda miss those times.  maybe i got smart idk.  love you  pce!

Vooter's picture

"maybe i got smart idk."

It's "preyed," not "prayed."

Vooter's picture

"Silver is great. Problem is, people who own it never use it. The stack it up and nearly worship it, but do not use it."


That sounds like YOUR problem, not theirs...

sleigher's picture

They stack it for now.  There will be a day when it is used.  They use the worthless green paper right now because people accept it.  It would be silly to use the valuable stuff when people readily accept the worthless stuff.

DanDaley's picture

It's just that people hate to think for themselves or be alone, so they turn their autonomy over to a mass movement -religious or political usually. Eric Hoffer explains it very well in The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements.

Vampyroteuthis infernalis's picture

One issue that arises from our current society is the elites are not grooming or training the next generation to take over the responsibilities of production. If everyone is addicted to free hand outs and is unable to perform societies basic functions, society will break down. Everyone will lose then. This is going to happen soon.

rosiescenario's picture

The real problem is that 90% of the elites (that excludes those who made the big bucks by starting up a company) are just financial manipulators whose work contributes nothing but harm.

Mosin Nagant's picture

Its not even cowardice. The populace "or proletariat" has never been the focus of western states or economies ( nor eastern ones either). They were never meant to be. Bemoaning the fate of the many is a simply a waste of time- good for artists and authors, "liberal" politicians and internet pundits. Whats the big deal? Why is anyone surprised? Where is this fictional "state of grace" that man once had and is now gone? Can Nirvana still be attained (after the"Cleansing" )? All has been said and done before-no schocker there-and yet the world goes on. Today is still better than yesterday for MOST. The game is set up to be won by the .001 %. Why? Who "sets" up the game, who controls it? No one in particular (sorry Bilderberger and Illuminati no disrepect to you intended!)  Its just that you have to be cruel, heartless, shady and corrupt to enter the .001%. No schocker there either  The past sucked worse for most. The future will too. And?  Ad libbing V.Clausewitz " Economic Collapse (and war) is after just an extension of Politics by other means...the only real change is that some of us are aware of it more than (most) others. 

Weak critiques of Marxism not withstanding most of the world is statist-be it so called Capitaist (which doesnt exist, besides Adam Smith was a Mercantlist anyway...) "Communist" (which has nothing to do with Hegelian Marxism) or Keynesian (which is neither Socialist nor Progressive, just a different take on monterism if you actually read it. What changes is who controls the money supply and how, state vs business/bank, its always about the money....) so why the alarm? Sheep are sheep and wolves are wolves and the world goes on ....nothing to see here move along thank you.....if your worried for yourself (and your family) stock up. If your worried for "mankind" its not your job and you cant change thjat group as a whole. If your into heralding the Second Coming...COOL! Later dudes

Seek_Truth's picture

You mean Carl "in Khazaria we Trust" Sagan?

You mean Ashkenazi Carl Sagan?

Who coulda

MayIMommaDogFace2theBananaPatch's picture

You probably call the new show "Black Cosmos" don't you?  C'mon -- admit it.

Seek_Truth's picture

-minus one, "Carl Sagan" is a bought and paid for Ashkenazi idiot liar.

Lost My Shorts's picture

Speaking of group-think -- didn't I read this same article on ZH before?  About 46 times ... this month I mean; since the beginning of ZH it's too many to count.  Damn, that doom is slow in getting here.  The end is near !!! probably sort of.  How disappointing if it all ends not with a bang but a whimper.

g speed's picture

well you damn sure didn't read it in Time, Newsweek, et al.

ATM's picture

The end is coming. Whether or not it is near is a matter of opinion. That is its coming is a historical fact.

paulbain's picture






TeamDepends wrote:

This is your bain on goupthink.


I resent that remark.

-- Paul D. Bain





Atomizer's picture

Hashtag.  theyweretosupposetofallforthisshit

disabledvet's picture

This really is the "who's who" but you're talking to an American here...SO WHERE'S THE PHUCKING NEWS BITCH?"

And of course the answer (h/t Twitter) is "one ounce of non existent gold causes Bank America to default on debt instrument 43275a/7c."

As we know from no less than JP Morgan/Chase "that cost 25 billion."

A better example than Bernie Madoff is "the other Bernie" (EBBERS.). That guy wasn't running a Ponzi scheme but simply moving the liabilities over to the asset column.



Radical Marijuana's picture

disabledvet, speaking of the "PHUCKING NEWS," I find this guy, Deek Jackson, to be too materialistic, but nevertheless, here is a link:

FKN Newz

Ill informed rumour – Comedy half truth

disabledvet's picture

"If it's funny it's probably true."

And that no joke...

Radical Marijuana's picture

Yeah, like the images of "visual combat"

from willianbanzai7.

Funny because they are true, as well as

deeply disturbing because they are true.


I'M OK--You'Re a TeRRoRiST...

I thought some of Deek Jackson's earlier videos were very funny. However, after a while, it got too be too much of the same bad newz to still be able to laugh so much. Not really his fault, just the way that the world appears to actually be headed.

My personal favourite is this one:

The FKN Newz on DRUGS

He also did some more serious videos. like this:

New History of Humanity - Astounding Scientific Discoveries
FieldingMellish's picture

OT - California Chrome did NOT win Belmont... therefore... no guaranteed 4+% GDP this year. Isn't economics wonderful?

Atomizer's picture

Shit, Yellen gave us Chrome Dome data leads.

disabledvet's picture

"Secrateriat wins by a mile" and other wonderful tales of the 70's.

CH1's picture

I never cared about horses - still don't - but Secretariat was amazing.

darteaus's picture

Did it snow at the Belmont yesterday?

nmewn's picture

lol...doesn't matter, if it snowed thats the reason it came in tied for fourth, if it didn't snow its still the reason it came in tied for fourth.

Naturally, the owner of California Chrome is complaining about the hot/cold/wet/dry/windy/calm longshot denialist Tonalist winning against the odds, even after California Chrome was allowed to skew the data...ahem, errr, ahhh...competition, in its favor (the breathe-right strips were allowed & peer reviewed) so obviously the Koch brothers are behind this!

Heh ;-)

MrButtoMcFarty's picture was a gorgeous day to observe 120K+ drunken people cheer on the athletes....

Drunken frat boys with their shorts, jackets & bowties weaving through the 100 person long MacTruck line....

Drunken JAPs stumbling through the lawns and blankets, using their chubby arms wrapped in chiffon to balance as their FMPs stuck in the soft ground.

Weirdos with cellphones spending the day leering at the pretty young things stand in line at the portapot.

Sometimes a cigar really is just a big brown dick.




intric8's picture

Pegging economic predictions on a random mane trotting along in first place in a fucking horse race is a WAY better indicator than the consensus of 3000 economists and the fed res chair, i guarantee you that!

erg's picture

The Great Mendacity.

what's that smell's picture

zhedge's favorite game: kick-the-welfare-queen.

to blame one head of the hydra when it's the hydra we should destroy is the SAME OLD TIRED GAME.

blame the powerless---wow, deepthink. randian madmen one and all.

from wikipedia: Even prior to her success with The Fountainhead, the novelist Ayn Rand was a friend of both Hazlitt and his wife, Frances, and it was Hazlitt who introduced Rand to Mises, bringing together the two figures who would become most associated with the defense of pure laissez-faire capitalism.[20] The two became admirers of Hazlitt and of one another.[21]

Economics in One Lesson (1946) has been called Hazlitt's "most enduring contribution,"[24] with a million copies sold and available in ten languages,[25] it is considered an "enduring classic" in conservativefree market and libertarian circles.[26] Ayn Rand called it a "magnificent job of theoretical exposition," while Congressman Ron Paul ranks it with the works of Frédéric Bastiat and F. A. Hayek.[27] Hayek himself praised the work, as did fellow Nobel Prize laureate Milton Friedman, who said that Hazlitt's description of the price system, for example, was "a true classic: timeless, correct, painlessly instructive."[5] In his book Basic EconomicsThomas Sowell also compliments Hazlitt, and Sowell's work has been cited as "following" in the "Bastiat-Hazlitt tradition" of economic exposition.[28] In 1996, Laissez Faire Books issued a 50th anniversary edition with an introduction by publisher and presidential candidate Steve Forbes.

Tinky's picture


mt paul's picture

With neg interest rates

it won't be long now..


what about neg interest loans


Vincent Vega's picture

How 'bout negative taxes!?

Reaper's picture

The great insanity is to trust in government, or leaders, or banks, or the used car salesman. The sheeple trust because they don't want the responsibility for their own thinking. Trust and believing is the basic human flaw.

I think, therefore, I'm my own master. I trust, therefore I'm their serf.

Woodyg's picture

It's not progressives stealing everything - it's the god damn fascists -
When has ANY progressive ever won an election?
These politicians are bought by the .01%ers who run the freaking place -
Insane oligarchs and fascists and their minions the kleptocrat who will sell out the country for a nice little payoff from the masters -

Atomizer's picture

Your just learning. Take your hate and convert into comedy. It really pisses them off.


erg's picture

Yes, above all else, the elite despise being laughed at...the subjects of ridicule. Really pisses them off. 

disabledvet's picture

Break balls...see if they really will take a swipe at you.

Sue the bastard.

That's how Bismark did it.

Well...the first part at least.

lasvegaspersona's picture

Let Woody and Pete and Utah rest...they thought they were doing good.