Chasing the Wind

Chasing the WindPlebeians generally ignore the tact of their economic central planners.  They care more that their meatloaf is hot and their suds are cold, than about any plans being hatched in the capital city.  Nonetheless, the central planners know an angry mob, with torches and pitchforks, are only a few empty bellies away.  Hence, they must always stay on point.

One of the central aims of central planners is to achieve effective public exhortation.  While they pursue futility, in practice.  They must do so with focus and purpose.

For example, economic reports with impressive tables and charts, including pie graphs, are important to maintaining the requisite public perception.  Central planners know that financial scientism must always be employed as early and often as possible.

Statistics, with per annum projections, particularly those that show increasing exports and decreasing imports, are critical to maintaining the proper narrative.  The USA’s embarrassing deficit in the balance of international payments will certainly diminish if it’s sketched accordingly in an “official” report…right? Continue reading

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America Goes Full Imbecile

Credit has a wicked way of magnifying a person’s defects.  Even the most cautious man, with unlimited credit, can make mistakes that in retrospect seem absurd.  But an average man, with unlimited credit, is preeminently disposed to going full imbecile.

Several weeks ago we came across a woeful tale of Mike Meru.  Somehow, this special fellow, while of apparent sound mine and worthy intent, racked up over $1 million dollars in student loan debt – all to become an orthodontist.

Surely, with several good text books, and a disciplined self-study program, Meru could’ve learned everything there was to possibly know about adjusting malpositioned teeth for roughly $200 bucks.  Instead, with the full backing of Uncle Sam’s loan program, he went full imbecile.

Yet Meru isn’t alone.  According to the Department of Education, there are 101 people in the U.S. who are a million dollars or more in federal student loan debt.  What’s more, there are 2.5 million people who owe at least $100,000.  What could they have possibly learned that could be so doggone valuable? Continue reading

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Who’s That Ringing the Korean Bell of Friendship?

Do citizens of the United States trust their government will do what’s right?  It depends who you ask.

By and large, the esteem the American populace holds its government in is likely a small fraction of what it was roughly 65 years ago.  That was when Lieutenant General William Kelly Harrison Jr. signed the Korean Armistice Agreement.  Certainly, in days gone by representatives of other nations held the U.S. government in higher regard.

Several weeks ago, President Donald Trump decided to pull the U.S. out of the Iran nuclear deal and reimpose sanctions on Iran.  This action, and its implications for various European companies with business interests in Iran, stuck like a chicken bone in the craw of European Council President Donald Tusk.  “With friends like that who needs enemies,” tweeted Tusk.

Indeed, President Trump is an erratic fellow.  He’s a master table pounder.  He goes about his business with passion and the appearance of purpose.  His emotions run hot.  Yet, he has ice in his veins. Continue reading

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Getting Out of Dodge

Modern economists are prone to shouting fire in a crowded theater.  The world is full of seeming incongruences.  Economists puzzle over things like population growth and arable acres of farmland.  They project out a linear scenario of increasing divergence, and see a catastrophe in the making.

Yet it is beyond individual human capacity to precisely fit each piece of the puzzle together, particularly where the shapes and numbers of pieces are continuously changing.  That is what markets are for; to make real time corrections and adjustments, which keep things from slipping too far into disorder.

Most of the time markets work remarkably well.  But occasionally, and especially where governments have commandeered a nation’s economy or its money, disaster strikes.  That’s when it’s time to get out of Dodge.

Today we greet you from beyond the outer margins of civilization.  Here in Joshua Tree, in Southern California’s High Desert, we’re on a quest to unearth a rare and valuable commodity.  One that’s in low supply and high demand in our day to day activities.  Perhaps it’s in low supply and high demand in yours too. Continue reading

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