Posts Tagged ‘STIMULUS SPENDING’

Preserve and Protect: The Jaws Of Death

Courtesy of Gordon T. Long of Tipping Points

Preserve and Protect: The Jaws Of Death

The United States is facing both a structural and demand problem – it is not the cyclical recessionary business cycle or the fallout of a credit supply crisis which the Washington spin would have you believe.

It is my opinion that the Washington political machine is being forced to take this position, because it simply does not know what to do about the real dilemma associated with the implications of the massive structural debt and deficits facing the US.  This is a politically dangerous predicament because the reality is we are on the cusp of an imminent and significant collapse in the standard of living for most Americans.

The politicos’ proven tool of stimulus spending, which has been the silver bullet solution for decades to everything that has even hinted of being a problem, is clearly no longer working. Monetary and Fiscal policy are presently no match for the collapse of the Shadow Banking System. A $2.1 Trillion YTD drop in Shadow Banking Liabilities has become an insurmountable problem for the Federal Reserve without a further and dramatic increase in Quantitative Easing. The fallout from this action will be an intractable problem which we will face for the next five to eight years, resulting in the ‘Jaws of Death’ for the American public.

The ‘Jaws of Death’ is the crushing squeeze of a shrinking gap between incomes and a rising burden of the real cost of debt burdens. Many may say there is nothing new in this, but I would respectfully disagree. There is a widespread misperception of what is actually evolving that stops voters from forcing politicians to address America’s substantial underlying dilemma.  It also stops investors from positioning themselves correctly.

Any solutions of real substance are presently considered political suicide. It is wiser to wait for a crisis event to unfold. As White House Chief of Staff and a primary Obama political strategist, Rahm Emanuel has said on numerous occasions: “You never want a serious crisis to go to waste”. It doesn’t take much intelligence to understand this also implies looking for a crisis as a political shield, for example from an almost insurmountable political problem such as a generational reduction in the US standard of living.

Before I delve into misperceptions of…
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Where We Are Today: Interest Rates ‘Too High,’ Double Dip on Deck, the Failure of Economics

Key point: "Reform is the only solution that is sustainable. Austerity or stimulus without reform are worse than useless." I post many articles discussing virtues and vices of more stimulus vs. the benefits and evils of austerity measures.  But I think Jesse has it precisely correct. – Ilene 

Where We Are Today: Interest Rates ‘Too High,’ Double Dip on Deck, the Failure of Economics

Courtesy of JESSE’S CAFÉ AMÉRICAIN

David Rosenberg of Gluskin Sheff is a daily read of mine. His most recent breakfast message does a remarkably concise job of summarizing the US financial markets.

The reason for the gold market rally is obvious; declining production in the face of record monetization and increasing demand. The same financial engineers in the central banks that ruined the economy had been suppressing the price of gold through managed sales for almost thirty years in a desperate reaction to the Nixon assault on Bretton Woods in 1971. And now we see the fruits of their long contrivance, and its inevitable failure. The world will have to develop a replacement to this incredible farce we call globalization and world trade based on arbitrary and easily manipulated values.

At the same time, Dave points out that according to the Taylor Rule the Fed is overly tight, even with ZIRP! We have spoken about this in the past, in making a distinction between quantitative and qualitative easing. This also speaks to the massive deformity which the US economy had become under first Greenspan and then Bernanke, and a financial sector turned outsized predator, with little connection to real market discipline of supply and demand thanks in large part to the proliferation of derivatives.

Ben could adjust somewhat this with the interest payments on reserves which the Fed is now paying. I suspect at some point he will, even taking them negative if necessary. But the Fed’s first priority is the insolvent Wall Street firms, and the continued charade that allows them to still pay outrageous bonuses while the nations suffers between the hammer of unemployment and the anvil of a toxic disaster in the Gulf and the collapse of its local economies. The first policy failure was in not nationalizing the insolvent US banks like Goldman and liquidating them. The second policy error is the failure to engage in serious financial reform, severely curtailing the derivatives market to something more resembling a well…
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