Some cycles due in 2015

So you can be prepared, if you wish, here are some cycles due in 2015. One of them is gigantically important to both the political and financial worlds, so I hope my exposition is clear.

The first cycle is very easy to understand: something economically important really hits the fan every seven years. Going in reverse from here, seven years at a time:

  • 2008, start of the Great Recession, first real estate debt bubble pop;
  • 2001, recession begins as part of 2000-2002 internet/tech stock bubble pop;
  • 1994, worst year for bond markets in modern history;
  • 1987, the famed stock market Crash of ’87;
  • 1980, inflation, the “Misery Index”, start of a major recession that doesn’t go away for three years;
  • 1973, Arab Oil embargo, start of a major recession;
  • […] you get the idea.

The article at this link talks more about this cycle, including the note that the years in this seven-year cycle that coincided with an Autumn solar eclipse (1931 and 1987) had particularly strong events; and 2015 does have two solar eclipses. Again, from the article at the link:

In 1931, a solar eclipse took place on Sept. 12…Eight days later, England abandoned the gold standard, setting off market crashes and bank failures around the world. It also ushered in the greatest monthlong stock market percentage crash in Wall Street history.

In 1987, a solar eclipse took place Sept. 23…Less than 30 days later came “Black Monday” the greatest percentage crash in Wall Street history.

Some great forecasters think that March is a strong candidate for significant financial turbulence in 2015, and there is a total solar eclipse on March 20. And there is a partial solar eclipse on September 13, a better calendar correspondence with the events referenced in the quote above. So maybe we’ll get two strong events this year.

For those of you who believe what you read in the US media, perhaps you are wondering how we could get major financial problems when things are allegedly so “awesome.” Well, sorry to tell you, but even Goldman “doing God’s work” Sachs just admitted that the world economy has gone into contraction:

     It’s Official: Global Economy Back In Contraction For First Time Since 2012 According To Goldman 

(As a side note, Al Jazeera did a great video on true nature of Goldman Sachs. The link is here, but, if you are in the USA, the censors won’t allow you to view the video in the “Land of the Free” US, it’s only playable outside the US. A lot of that type of thing is going on these days. It’s a small part of what has dropped the US down to 49th globally in press freedom; see World Press Freedom Index Plunges – USA Now Ranked #49 Globally.)

If this seven-year cycle repeats in 2015, then I think we can easily predict what the authorities will do since it seems to be the only thing they know how to do when there’s trouble: print more money by creating more debt! But as explained in The deflationary wave intensifies, this strategy has become counter-productive and is locking the world economy in a deadly stranglehold.

Some realize all this and some do not. But this brings us to our second cycle: Martin Armstrong’s Sovereign Debt Big Bang. Here is a slide of Armstrong’s forecasts from a conference in early 1998:

Armstrong1998-Forecast

(Source, from Martin Armstrong’s blog)

These major forecasts all came true. The only one left to go (2015.75 = September 30, 2015) is the Sovereign Debt Big Bang. What it says in that the tide will monumentally shift away from confidence in government bonds starting on September 30, 2015. Currently, confidence in government bonds is so high that people are buying them even with negative interest rates. The easiest way to understand interest rates is that they are the rental charge for lending someone money. So you rent someone $100 and you hope to get back maybe $103, the original $100 plus $3 of rent. But people are now buying government bonds even though they get back less money than what they lent to some government in the first place. They are paying governments to lend them money!

     16% Of Global Government Bonds Now Have A Negative Yield: Here Is Who’s Buying It

That was a few weeks back, at which point JP Morgan calculated that $3.6 Trillion worth of government bonds were paying negative interest rates. Some of the countries involved were Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Netherlands, Sweden, and Denmark. In Denmark, because interest rates went negative, some adjustable rate mortgages are now paying interest to the people who took out the mortgage!

     In Denmark You Are Now Paid To Take Out A Mortgage

Now you might say: Why would anyone buy a government bond with a negative interest rate?!?! When I first said we should expect negative interest rates in More shackles readied for deploymentI did get a few e-mails politely suggesting that I might want to get checked for dementia. Here’s what was said:

The policy is that savers will soon be hit with negative interest rates…So people would have to pay the bank interest on their own savings. So if the negative interest rate were -3%, if you had $100 in your account, you’d have to pay the bank $3 in interest.

This is crazy. Most people alive today think governments never default on their debt.  But that’s just plain wrong. Here is a chart showing country debt defaults going back to 1800. And this chart only shows those countries that have defaulted at least four times, the rest are not shown. Note that the list includes supposed stalwarts like Germany:

Sov20140731_default

(Chart sourcefrom The Economist.)

What Armstrong is saying–and he has been saying it since the 1990’s and has strong mathematical/historical models backing up his forecast–is that, near the end of this year, the world at large is finally going to wake up and understand the insanity of all this government borrowing. Not all at once, but relentlessly. They will see that most if not all countries are not going to pay back what they borrowed. They can’t. They don’t have the money. Greece is the first country to forthrightly admit it. One of the pompous Eurocrats threatened Greece last week, saying “If you don’t do what we say, Greece will go bankrupt.”  To which the Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis replied, “Greece is already bankrupt.”  (Straight truth! From a politician! Finally! Maybe that will become a trend!)

So what will this do to those who own all these government bonds? Who does own them anyway? For one, most of what is called capital at banks is government bonds. So there go the banks: no capital, insolvent. (Watch out for the upcoming bail-ins if you still keep money in banks.) Insurance companies and both government and private pension funds are huge holders of government bonds. So there goes insurance, and pensions. A well-placed German friend says that several European insurance companies are on the verge of bankruptcy. All of the assets of the US Social Security system, for example, are US government bonds: that’s all they own!

And somehow, the financial system has come to accept government bonds as collateral for other loans and bets. The $1 Quadrillion (that’s 1,000 Trillions) world derivatives casino market floats on a thin veneer of government bonds as “collateral” for these bets. Before the US defaulted on its debts in 1971 when Nixon said they were no longer payable in currency backed by gold, as previously promised, but now were backed by promises alone, collateral meant something real. For example, when you have a mortgage, your house is the collateral. A car is the collateral for an auto loan. But now in the financial world, someone’s promise to pay back a loan that they can never repay counts as collateral for even more loans. This is insane. Starting later in the year, a lot more people will start to understand that. That’s the nature of this Big Bang cycle. And there will be major repercussions. We talked about the demise of banks, pensions, and insurance. The derivatives collapse will take down all the brokerages and investment banks. So where will people get money?

Governments love to hide the truth about their historical defaults on their debt. Thus everyone is taught that the “cause of the Great Depression” of the 1930’s was the 1929 stock market crash. Total BS. The stock market crash wiped out stock speculators. That wasn’t a truly big deal. What took down thousands of banks were defaults on government bonds they and their customers were holding. Let’s look at that government bond default chart again. This time there is a red box around the worldwide wave of country debt defaults in the early 1930’s that wiped out thousands of banks and millions of savers:

Sov20140731_defaultBox

Get it? That’s what’s coming up again, only this time it will be worse. Way worse. There’s been far more borrowing, far more leverage, and all of it is floating on paper and electronic currencies and promises. The link to reality–gold–was removed in 1971.

World-Debts

Now some people say all this unpayable debt can be wiped off the books in a debt jubilee, like they used to do in Old Testament times. Well that’s true. It can. The problem is that anyone who put money in a bank account needs to realize that they have loaned that money to the bank. It’s a debt of the bank, they owe you money. And your deposit is backed by government debt, not by actual cash. So, if there were a debt jubilee, no one would have any money in their bank account anymore. Same for businesses, so no business would be able to write a paycheck to anyone. ATM’s would not be able to dispense any cash. Credit cards would no longer work. All of the money in the world is someone’s debt to someone else. So a debt jubilee would mean there was no money.

So now, do you want a debt jubilee? Of course not. But we are going to get one anyway. Not on purpose. By accident. Starting in a big way later this year.

Why can anyone be confident that this is true? Well first, go back and look at the rest of the predictions on Armstrong’s slide from 1998. Second, it’s already starting to happen. Greece, Argentina, Puerto Rico–the dominoes are starting to fall. Japan is a financial basket case, there is no way they can repay their debts, and they have the second largest pile of government debt on the planet. The whole world has gone wild for debt!

Which brings us to a third “cycle of interest’ for 2015. What else floats on a sea of debt? Real estate prices! This cycle was described before here:

As examples, due to his real estate cycle work for the US, he was telling clients–in the 1990’s to give them ample time to act–to be out of all US real estate investments by February, 2007; that real estate prices would then fall from 2007 into 2012, then rise into 2015 in a snapback rally that would sucker a lot of people back into real estate, and then fall again through 2033.

Well here we are in the snapback real estate rally into 2015. So many have forgotten the 9 million US foreclosures and the 7 million US households that are still “under water” on their mortgages. All the signs of a bubble are back, though now some are already starting to dissipate as real estate prices in some of the bubbliest areas roll over:

     Southern California home sale volume for January slowest since 2008: The stalemate accelerates with Orange County seeing a monthly median price drop of $28,500.

The bubble is stronger than ever in countries like Canada, Australia, and the UK. Unless people request it by sending me e-mails saying they want it, I’m not going to do a detailed post on real estate. I doubt it will change anyone’s mind, so it probably isn’t worth it. But when the biggest debt bubble the world–and perhaps the galaxy–has ever known pops, and governments are falling left and right, real estate prices will be hammered. And those falling governments will be desperately raising property taxes to try to stay afloat.

And anyone who agrees with people who say that “debt doesn’t matter,” like Dick Cheney from the right or Paul Krugman from the left, is going to get quite an education over the next few years. Actually, we all will. Which is good, in my view. Humanity badly needs to understand which actions have real value and which do not.

Earth Changes Update, End of 2014 – Part 2

Before embarking on the discussion of the unusual happenings in the animal kingdom promised in Part 1, I’d like to cite a quote that demonstrates the nature and impact of exponential change. The quote comes from a remarkable article from Reuters:

      Special Report: In Jakarta, that sinking feeling is all too real

about major world cities combating the combination of rising seas and sinking landmass due to subsidence from draining the groundwater under each city:

Higher seas, sinking cities and more people mean worsening impacts from storms and floods. And the frequency of these events is increasing, too. Recorded floods and severe storms in Southeast Asia have risen sixfold, from fewer than 20 from 1960 to 1969 to nearly 120 from 2000 to 2008, according to an Asian Development Bank study.

So a sixfold increase in severe storms in SE Asia: Take a guess what annual percent increase in storms accounted for that sixfold change. The answer is 6%. Six percent per year doesn’t sound like much. But when it’s applied relentlessly–and that is the nature of an exponential increase–the change seems small at first, but at some point, the change can be overwhelming. Food for thought regarding the many exponential chart patterns shown over time at Thundering Heard. We are living in unprecedented times on many fronts.

     *     *     *

The point about pervasive permeability in Part 1 (accidental alliteration!) sparked some interest. Here’s a perfect example of increasing permeability, in this case in the Greenland ice sheet from Phys.org:

     Two lakes beneath the ice in Greenland, gone within weeks

As everyone knows, that ice sheet stores enough ice to raise the global sea level about 7 meters (24 feet).  As it gets more permeable, it becomes less stable. As I said, food for thought.

     *     *     *

The animal kingdom*

Especially during the last year, the animal kingdom has shown signs of extreme duress.

First, there are many stories of pets attacking, and sometimes killing, their owners:

If you would like to dismiss this as anecdotal, of course you can, but it would fly in the face of statistical evidence, from around the globe:

Here’s a quote from the India link just above:

In 2012, nearly 10,100 people were affected by dog bites from April to December. Number went up to 16,000 in 2013.

Sometimes the dogs are even attacking…CARS:

     Animal crackers: As well as terrorising people in Modesto, crazy dogs are now attacking stationary cars

dogcarwbeTd_AuSt_11

© JOAN BARNETT LEE
Damage done by an animal is seen Tuesday on a Ford Focus at Heritage Ford in Modesto. The car had some damage done to it by an animal. Three vehicles at the dealership have scratches and bite marks on them. The front grille of the Focus was torn completely off.

     Modesto, California: Vicious dogs roaming streets, chasing people and trapping them inside homes

Deer are known for trying to avoid people and buildings. Not these:

Elephants are running amok:

Then there are the many cases of fish that normally live deep in the oceans appearing at shorelines, sometimes thousands of miles from their usual area of habitation:

There are stories of birds so far from their usual turf that they sometimes end up on the wrong continent:

Whales are beaching and dying just about every day now:

And things are increasingly bad for sea turtles:

Fish die-offs have become quite common:

I have a lot more links for animals attacking humans (especially coyotes, jackals, wild dogs, and wild boars, but also including owls, foxes, and otters), but I’ll spare you having to scroll past them, and pass to another category: regional animal die-offs across many species.

Michael Snyder posted an excellent example:

     North America: Massive numbers of sea creatures dying along the west coast

in which he listed reports of devastations of West Coast starfish (A marine epidemiologist at Cornell University says that this is “the largest mortality event for marine diseases we’ve seen“); bluefin tuna (only 4% are left); sardine, anchovy, herring, and oyster populations; and major difficulties for many marine birds including pelicans. And more:

     West Coast devastation continues: seals, oysters, pelicans, fish, squid — all sick, dying or failing to breed

     Study: Dead sea creatures cover 98 percent of ocean floor off California coast; up from 1 percent before Fukushima

At an ocean research station known as Station M, located 145 miles out to sea between the Californian cities of Santa Barbara and Monterey, Huffard and her colleague Ken Smith observed a sharp uptick in the amount of dead sea life drifting to the ocean floor. The masses of dead sea plankton, jellyfish, feces and other oceanic matter that typically only cover about 1 percent of the ocean floor were found to now be covering about 98 percent of it — and multiple other stations located throughout the Pacific have since reported similar figures.

“In March 2012, less than one percent of the seafloor beneath Station M was covered in dead sea salps,” writes Carrie Arnold for National Geographic. “By July 1, more than 98 percent of it was covered in the decomposing organisms. … The major increase in activity of deep-sea life in 2011 and 2012 weren’t limit to Station M, though: Other ocean-research stations reported similar data.”

Anyone who still thinks the ongoing effects from Fukushima are trivial really needs to consider the meaning of that 98 to 1 ratio reported in the study at the preceding quote and link. Truly, what do people expect when this August 2014 article Japan Prepares To Release Thousands Of Tons Of Fukushima Groundwater Into The Pacific quotes NHK, Japan’s national public broadcasting organization, as saying:

Highly radioactive water at the plant is seeping into the earth and mixing with ground water. Experts estimate around 200 tons of contaminated ground water are leaking into the ocean each day.

Each day!

Then there are the global problems:

     More mass animal deaths occurring now than ever before, study claims

Mass die-offs of certain animals has increased in frequency every year for seven decades, according to a new study.

Researchers found that such events, which can kill more than 90 per cent of a population, are increasing among birds, fish and marine invertebrates.

     Silent Spring: Songbirds are disappearing across the planet reveals new documentary film

     Report: Lions, Tigers, Cheetahs Could Be Extinct In 10 Years

     Otters across the world are threatened with extinction says new report

And this link points to a study that lists 794 species that are on the brink of extinction:

     Study pinpoints species facing extinction threat

So, what are the reasons for this dreadful state of affairs. There are several, to be sure.

In the case of the whales (and perhaps the other creatures that normally inhabit the ocean depths and who can now be found at the beaches), one major cause is certain: the use of powerful sonar technologies by the militaries to hunt for submarines and the oil and gas companies to hunt for that stuff we pump into our cars. This link:

     The epic fight to protect cetaceans from the US Navy

has a sad but amazing story of how proof of this was accepted by the US Navy itself. A retired navy guy with an interest in whales–the guy actually worked in the navy’s secret sonar program–witnessed the beaching of 17 beaked whales immediately following US Navy exercises in his area. This is the deepest diving whale species of them all. For them to beach as a group was unprecedented. Suspecting the cause, the guy immediately had their heads sent to a lab for autopsy and it was found that the ear drums of each whale had been shattered. The guy had to get this info onto the 60 Minutes television program before the navy would respond, but finally, respond they did, strongly limiting their own sonar use during exercises. And this link:

      Whale Mass Stranding Attributed to Sonar Mapping For First Time

describes how the mass stranding of 100 whales was connected with exploration by ExxonMobil.

So, is there relief for the whales and other deep-sea creatures? Given the near-daily whale beachings listed above, probably not much. In July, the purportedly liberal White House approved the use of such technologies in Federal waters off the US East Coast:

The Obama administration has sided with energy developers over environmentalists, approving the use of underwater blasts of sound to pinpoint oil and gas deposits in federal Atlantic Ocean waters.

And how could we forget this as an indicator of what’s plaguing sea creatures:

     Fourth Anniversary of Gulf Oil Spill: Wildlife Is Still Suffering from Toxic Cover Up

Perhaps the deflationary wave that has been sent to the world economy–the price of oil, at $45.29 per barrel today, has now been cut by 58% since June, natural gas prices have also been crashing (again), and interest rates are now negative in several countries–will provide the kindness of some relief for the creatures of the ocean deep, kindness that humanity has been unwilling to provide.

Another monster problem for sea creatures and ocean birds is tens of thousands of tons of plastic:

One highly-recommended article that really gets the point across about the state of the oceans, especially the Pacific, is this one by an Australian yachtsman, which should be a must-read for everyone:

     The ocean is broken

What was missing was the cries of the seabirds which, on all previous similar voyages, had surrounded the boat.

The birds were missing because the fish were missing.

Exactly 10 years before, when Newcastle yachtsman Ivan Macfadyen had sailed exactly the same course from Melbourne to Osaka, all he’d had to do to catch a fish from the ocean between Brisbane and Japan was throw out a baited line.

“There was not one of the 28 days on that portion of the trip when we didn’t catch a good-sized fish to cook up and eat with some rice,” Macfadyen recalled.

But this time, on that whole long leg of sea journey, the total catch was two.

No fish. No birds. Hardly a sign of life at all…

If that sounds depressing, it only got worse.

The next leg of the long voyage was from Osaka to San Francisco and for most of that trip the desolation was tinged with nauseous horror and a degree of fear.

“After we left Japan, it felt as if the ocean itself was dead,” Macfadyen said.

“We hardly saw any living things. We saw one whale, sort of rolling helplessly on the surface with what looked like a big tumour on its head. It was pretty sickening.

“I’ve done a lot of miles on the ocean in my life and I’m used to seeing turtles, dolphins, sharks and big flurries of feeding birds. But this time, for 3000 nautical miles there was nothing alive to be seen.”

In place of the missing life was garbage in astounding volumes.

“Part of it was the aftermath of the tsunami that hit Japan a couple of years ago. The wave came in over the land, picked up an unbelievable load of stuff and carried it out to sea. And it’s still out there, everywhere you look.”

This lack of ocean fish is killing the ocean-migrating birds because there is nothing for them to eat:

     Up to 5 million seabirds likely to have died on Australian and New Zealand beaches

The industrial overfishing, the chemical pollution, the radiation, the acidification, the garbage…We truly are trying to “break” the oceans.

When that Malaysian airliner went missing, garbage hampered the search:

     Malaysia plane: Confronting searchers is an ocean full of garbage

Since the older generations can’t see a way to fix this, maybe younger people can start the process:

     19-Year-Old Develops Cleanup Array To Remove 7,250,000 Tons Of Plastic From Oceans

As far as those rampaging elephants are concerned, can you blame them?

These are animals who walk miles to attend to the death of another elephant or the death of a person who was a friend to them:

     Wild Elephants gather inexplicably, mourn death of “Elephant Whisperer” 

Author and legendary conservationist Lawrence Anthony died March 2. His family spoke of a solemn procession of Elephants that defies human explanation…

For 12 hours, two herds of wild South African elephants slowly made their way through the Zululand bush until they reached the house of late author Lawrence Anthony, the conservationist who saved their lives. The formerly violent, rogue elephants, destined to be shot a few years ago as pests, were rescued and rehabilitated by Anthony…

For two days the herds loitered at Anthony’s rural compound on the vast Thula Thula game reserve in the South African KwaZulu – to say good-bye to the man they loved. But how did they know he had died?…

There are two elephant herds at Thula Thula. According to his son Dylan, both arrived at the Anthony family compound shortly after Anthony’s death. “They had not visited the house for a year and a half and it must have taken them about 12 hours to make the journey,” Dylan is quoted in various local news accounts. “The first herd arrived on Sunday and the second herd, a day later. They all hung around for about two days before making their way back into the bush.”

If humans were more rational, perhaps we would be trying to understand elephants’ telepathy and empathy rather than killing them for their tusks.

And then there are the poisons we spray, and the systemic poisons created by design in GMO crops:

     Neurotoxic pesticides linked to honeybee decline are affecting other species, scientists say after four-year assessment

Neurotoxic pesticides blamed for the decline of honeybees is also harming butterflies, worms, fish, and birds, and contaminating habitats worldwide which are crucial for food production and wildlife, scientists have concluded after a four-year assessment.

So we’re not just poisoning ourselves–and the bees and pollinators who are crucial to one third of humanity’s food supply–with toxic chemicals:

Glyph_autism

we’re poisoning lots of species.

And what about the migratory animals, both birds and sea creatures, who are losing their way?

     Birds are losing all sense of direction

It turns out that some migratory birds are stymied when they encounter the edges of a city, industrial area, or campus. The electromagnetic emanations from these places disturb the workings of these birds’ navigation systems. Given that experiments have shown that the emanations from wifi routers can kill plants, I guess it isn’t surprising that our electromagnetics are disturbing animals. And probably us as well.

And how can I fail to mention how we treat animals raised for food, putting them in cramped industrial settings and cages prior to their slaughter. Were it not for strong doses of antibiotics–which end up on our plates–most of these animals would die of disease.

Is the growing 2014 trend of animal attacks on people an indication that they have started to fight back? We better hope not. If the animal kingdom ever decided to fight with us, we’d likely all be dead within months. Without the ceaseless cleanup of our environment by insects, worms, algae, bacteria, fungi, etc., we would find ourselves living in waste. As it is, these beings constantly process billions of tons of materials into forms useful for us. And we often pay them back by trying to exterminate them, interested in the endless “growth, growth, growth” chant of our so-called leaders who definitely have no understanding of the exponential function.

Everyone has heard of the “lost animal syndrome” where there is a notable increase in pets getting lost before earthquakes. Are the animal agitations and disorientations a reaction to current Earth changes, or to an impending mega-Earth change. If it’s the latter, one might shudder to think what that would be.

Are the animals who normally remain deep in the oceans reacting to increases in methane and volcanic materials coming from the ocean floor? Perhaps.

Are the animal attacks a reaction to the changing energies of our evolving world? Are they reacting to the rapid decrease in Earth’s magnetic field, described here:

…based on the latest readings from the European Space Agency’s (ESA) satellite array called Swarm:

          Earth’s Magnetic Field Is Weakening 10 Times Faster Now

Once every few hundred thousand years the magnetic poles flip so that a compass would point south instead of north. While changes in magnetic field strength are part of this normal flipping cycle, data from Swarm have shown the field is starting to weaken faster than in the past. Previously, researchers estimated the field was weakening about 5 percent per century, but the new data revealed the field is actually weakening at 5 percent per decade, or 10 times faster than thought. As such, rather than the full flip occurring in about 2,000 years, as was predicted, the new data suggest it could happen sooner…

(Wow, 5% per decade. An exponential progression to be reckoned with.)

Or are the animal attacks on humans simply the animals reflecting our own emotional and mental states?

It seems clear that the assault, often clearly our assault, on the animal kingdom, and the plant kingdom, is unwise. Some Churchianity people quote Genesis about man being given “dominion” over the animals and plants. For some, this somehow justifies pillage and plunder versus the stewardship that, logically, must have been the intended meaning of the statement. Undoubtedly, dominion can’t mean the creation of a wasteland. But that is what we are doing in many domains. Here’s an excellent indicator of the bad news (I promise to follow it with some good news!):

     Photographic Adventure Reveals the Frightening Deadness of Genetically Engineered Corn Field

By Dr. Mercola

A recent NPR article highlights the truly frightening environmental effect of monoculture. NPR commentator and science writer Craig Childs decided to replicate a photo project by David Liittschwager, a portrait photographer who spent years traveling the world dropping one-cubic-foot metal frames into gardens, streams, parks, forests, and oceans, photographing anything and everything that entered the frame.

Around the world, his camera captured thousands of plants, animals, and insects within the cubes, with entirely different “worlds” of plants and animals living as little as a few feet away from each other.

Childs recruited a friend, and together they set out to replicate Littschwager’s “critter census” in a corn field in Grundy County, Iowa.

But whereas Littschwager’s camera captured several dozens of insects wherever he set up his frames, Childs and friend found nothing stirring among the genetically engineered corn stalks on the 600 acre farm in Iowa, where they spent an entire weekend crawling around on the ground. No signs of life with the exception of an isolated spider, a single red mite, and a couple grasshoppers.

“It felt like another planet entirely,” Childs said. “I listened and heard nothing, no birds, no clicks from insects. There were no bees. The air, the ground, seemed vacant. Yet, 100 years ago, these same fields, these prairies, were home to 300 species of plants, 60 mammals, 300 birds, hundreds and hundreds of insects,” Robert Krulwich writes2. “This soil was the richest, the loamiest in the state. And now, in these patches, there is almost literally nothing but one kind of living thing. We’ve erased everything else.”

The good news, the very good news, is that more and more people (permaculturists, organic growers, channelers of information from the devic realm in places like Findhorn and Perelandra, occultists, etc.) are realizing that nature provides a physical and energetic abundance that is currently well beyond our comprehension and perception; that we should be working with the processes, energies, and intelligences that provide that abundance rather than working against them; and that our own evolution depends directly on our turning our interaction with the natural kingdoms from one of exploitation and devastation to one of great respect and harmony. In this exponential accelerating trend lies great hope for us all.

*     *     *

(*Note of credit and thanks: Many links in this article come from the amazing SOTT.NET Earth Changes tracking page. They make great videos summarizing each month’s earth changes; you can see them here. As stated elsewhere, I think they do a wonderful job of collecting information, but a poor job of theorizing about its causes. They say that there is so much global cooling that a new ice age has already started, that “Planet X” is on the way, etc. I think they are wrong about these things. However, they do seem to like G.I. Gurdjieff, so there is hope.)

Currency Balloon Madness

Today’s headline from GoldCore:

     Market Chaos as Swiss Franc Surges 30% In 13 Minutes, Gold Rises Sharply

Historians will not look kindly on the financial titans and politicians of this period. They’ll have little trouble understanding the deceptions, but one wonders how they will account for the derangement. As some blame lead in the water for the demise of the Roman Empire, they’ll probably blame it on pharmaceuticals in our water supply, or electromagnetic pollution, or maybe, using the same data set cited here in Your daily dose of poison, they’ll blame it on a pesticide:

     MIT Researcher’s New Warning: At Today’s Rate, Half Of All U.S. Children Will Be Autistic By 2025

But let’s get back to a major world currency, the Swiss Franc, rising 30% in 13 minutes. As pointed out in Currency Balloons, it is best for one’s financial health if they don’t say, “The Franc rose 30% in value in 13 minutes,” but instead say, “The Franc rose 30% in price in 13 minutes.” The concept of value has–for anyone who is not thinking clearly and carefully about it–been distorted beyond all recognition in this world where currency units are tethered to nothing real and Trillions of them can be conjured up (or lost!) with a few keystrokes.

So what happened with the Swiss Franc? Lots of Europeans, foreseeing the inevitable bankruptcy of Eurozone governments, were trading their Euros for Swiss Francs, driving up the price of the Swiss Franc relative to Euros. The Swiss central bank didn’t like this because, whenever a currency rises in price these days, the corporations in the country don’t like it because their products appear more expensive when they export them. So the Swiss central bank printed and spent hundreds of billions of Swiss Francs and sold them to buy Euros to artificially peg the price of the Franc to the price of the Euro.

But they ran into a problem. The price of the Euro has been, let’s put it nicely, diminishing, losing 16% versus the US Dollar in the last several months. So all of their Euro positions keep losing money. So despite saying just last week that they would keep pegging the Franc to the Euro, that they would print unlimited amounts of Swiss Francs to keep going, today they announced that they wouldn’t, that they were throwing in the towel. (By the way, with all currency resets, this has always been the case–they lie about their intentions right up to the last minute. You will never get an advance warning from the authorities about anything like this. You must make decisions about such things in advance on your own; or live with their decisions, which benefit them, not you.)

Such is the world of paper/electronic debt currencies these days, intimations of their inevitable demise. Very few people think through what is happening here. Why do people value money? Because they believe that they, or their descendants, can use it to acquire something real. But what does it mean when those in power (governments and banks) can conjure as much of this “money” as they see fit, Trillions at a time? All who end up with that currency believe that they can use it to acquire what is real.

But emergencies show the reality. When an earthquake or a storm hits, within hours or even minutes, store shelves are empty; what is real is gone, there’s none to be had. Then people realize that what is real is what has value: real actions, real goods, real knowledge; and that the concepts of price and currency-denominated wealth are increasingly unreliable in our money-mad world.

The deflationary wave intensifies

Little darling, I feel that ice is slowly melting
Little darling, it seems like years since it’s been clear
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it’s all right
     –George Harrison, The Beatles, Here Comes the Sun

Most people have probably heard by now that world crude oil prices are in a dramatic plunge. In the futures market, the price is down 47% since June, from $107.68 per barrel to $57.49. The scuttlebut is that prices in the cash market are even lower as desperate countries and companies get what prices they can.

And it isn’t just crude oil prices that are crashing. Think stuff that China used for its “economic miracle,” like the price of iron ore (used in making steel), which has been cut in half since 2013.

But this current wave of deflation has taken on a new intensity. ZeroHedge summarized the most recent week quite well in Crude Carnage Contagion: Biggest Stock Bloodbath In 3 Years, Credit Crashes [my explanatory remarks in brackets]:

WTI’s [oil] 2nd worst week in over 3 years (down 10 of last 11 weeks)
Dow’s [stocks] worst worst week in 3 years
Financials [stocks] worst week in 2 months
Materials [stocks] worst week since Sept 2011
VIX’s Biggest week since Sept 2011 [VIX is a fear index, it rises when people are afraid]
Gold’s best week in 6 months [Gold is real money, solidified sunlight 🙂 ]
Silver’s last 2 weeks are best in 6 months [Silver is also real money!]
HY Credit’s worst 2 weeks since May 2012 [HY = High Yield (aka junk) bonds]
IG Credit’s worst week in 2 months [IG= Investment Grade bonds]
10Y Yield’s best week since June 2012 [10Y = US 10 year note]
US Oil Rig Count worst week in 2 years [Rigs are for drilling/fracking]
The USDollar’s worst week since July 2013
USDJPY’s worst week since June 2013 (USDJPY = US$ priced in Japanese Yen]
Portugal Bonds worst week since July 2011
Greek stocks worst week since 1987

So, why the intensifying deflation? Because, as has been explained here on several occasions, the world is groaning under an increasingly fierce debt load. The central banks have printed up $11 trillion in new money in the last 5 years to try to fend off deflation. Why? Because when debt loads get too large, some people and companies can’t pay back their loans, so they default, and the money they owe disappears. If they are companies, their employees lose their jobs. So their households spend less. Putting pressure on more businesses because of lost sales. Leading to more layoffs and more defaults. It’s a vicious cycle, an economy in reverse, and economy that is deflating. Remember, because all of the money in the system is debt, the economy must always grow to pay the interest on that debt. If the economy stops growing, the interest can’t be paid, defaults arise, and the deflationary cycle ensues. People tend to associate deflation with falling prices, but the falling prices are the result of deflation, not its cause.

So the central banks tried to ease the debt load by lowering interest rates to zero or lower. But one of the results was that all that cheap money financed all kinds of projects that would never have been created without this almost-free money because they weren’t very good ideas to begin with, such as the stories we’ve all heard about China having 3,000 companies all basically in the same business–how can they all make money? They can’t. Such overcapacity makes life tough for all of the companies, which all have to lower their prices, which start laying off employees, which can’t pay back their debts, etc. etc. as explained above. So this lowering of rates might seem to work for a short time, but when it’s carried on for years, it’s deflationary!

The second thing the central banks did was create this new $11 trillion to buy more debt! So they are trying to fight a problem of too much debt by creating more debt! Historians will marvel at the lack of logic by an entire academic profession. The reason for this pervasive illogic is that academic economists have for years purged from their ranks anyone who brought up the topic of gold as real money, ridiculing and marginalizing them. So they banished logic from their own ranks.

But let’s get back to the big deal of the last several weeks, the crash in oil prices. Cool, you might say, I’ll be able to pay less when I fill up my car with gas. True. But it might be wise to consider why oil prices are crashing:

     World Oil Demand Outlook Cut Again; Sub-$60 Price Seen Holding

Any hope that global demand would provide a floor for oil’s freefall was dashed as the leading energy forecaster cut its outlook for the fourth time in five months and crude extended its tumble.

Frankly, I don’t think I’ve ever heard of one of these international organizations like the International Energy Agency cutting their forecast four times in five months. So what’s happening is collapsing demand for oil.

Several recent financial statistics that measure changes in the economy are reporting levels of decline “last seen in 2009.” Recall that in 2009, a lot of people thought the world economy was not just staring into the abyss, but was about to fall in.

     PPI Slides, Misses Estimates, After Finished Goods Prices Tumble Most Since July 2009

     Short-Term Inflation Expectations Have Crashed To 5 Year Lows (In The US)

Now how does this relate to yet another “miracle” discovered by the pom-pom and short-skirt-bedecked economic and political cheerleaders, the “US shale miracle”? This is the miracle by which the US will allegedly frack its way to energy independence.

For the last three years, the US shale drillers have been borrowing $1.50 for every $1.00 in oil and gas that they pull from the ground. And that was with oil prices above $100 per barrel. The industry as a whole expected to get to breakeven–instead of losing money hand over fist, which is what they have been doing with oil just above $100–with oil above $120 per barrel. But now the price is under $60, which is less than half of the price needed for them to break even. (Chris Martenson’s group has done a great, clear video on this if you want the details.)

All told since early 2010, these energy producers have borrowed at least $550 billion. Remember that the size of the sub-prime mortgage problem was around $1.1 trillion, and the collapse of that sub-prime mortgage market nearly took down the whole system. These oil frackers have borrowed over a half trillion just since 2010 and now it looks like a lot of that borrowing will not get repaid, that is, they will default.

Now that $550 billion was a lot of spending for purchasing equipment and creating jobs to use that gear. It turns out that 1/3 of business capital spending in the US in recent years has been for energy exploration and production. And some estimate that 90% of new jobs created in the US in the last five years are related to energy production.

But now suddenly, no one wants to lend the frackers cheap money to create more overcapacity in the shale patch (because the lenders know there is a good chance they will never get paid back.) So now there will be a huge drop in equipment purchases and lots of job layoffs, leading to, you guessed it, more deflation!

If you don’t think this will happen, check this headline:

     Exclusive: New U.S. oil and gas well November permits tumble nearly 40 percent

Plunging oil prices sparked a drop of almost 40 percent in new well permits issued across the United States in November, in a sudden pause in the growth of the U.S. shale oil and gas boom that started around 2007.

Data provided exclusively to Reuters on Tuesday by industry data firm Drilling Info Inc showed 4,520 new well permits were approved last month, down from 7,227 in October.

So, the “US shale miracle” will be proven to be another fable, along with the US energy independence it was supposed to engender. It was fueled by a supply of ultra-cheap money that has now dried up. One aspect of fracked wells is that they lose 70% of their production capacity in two years, and 80% to 90% in three years. So to keep more oil flowing, these fracking companies have had to borrow more and more money to drill more and more wells. As described above, it wasn’t a very good business model and would not have existed were it not for the cheap money being provided to Wall St by the central banks.

So while you may be able to buy cheaper gas for your car, the US economy is likley to take a serious hit relating to jobs and business spending from the oil collapse.

And the US is supposed to be the bright spot in the world economy. Japan is in recession yet again. The Eurozone perennially flirts with recession, and is being dragged down by the US-led sanctions against Russia, which itself has fallen back into recession. China claims to still be growing, but the hard evidence of the falling prices mentioned above, falling real estate prices, and stalling growth in the use of electricity in China argues otherwise. From Deutsche Bank:

…the global financial system is still extremely fragile and not sustainable…2015 will be the 9th year of highly unconventional central bank policy and…we’re no nearer to finding a sustainable solution…
–Deutsche Bank

But not to worry: Uber, the emerging ride sharing service, is said to be valued at $40 billion. (Those must be some rides!)  And Jessica Alba’s new diaper-cleaning service company is apparently valued at $1 billion!

     No Bubble At All: Jessica Alba’s Diaper-Delivery Startup Is Valued At $1 Billion, Prepares For IPO

So I guess everyone will get rich (again, like in the year 2000) from internet startups?

Historically, deflation is rather unkind to stock prices. World stock markets are currently being floated by the free money from the central banks, but how long can that last? And this deflationary trend has supports beyond the overload of debt, such as the end of several cycles, including the the 26,000 year precession of the equinoxes, which tends to really clear the decks on this planet.

Now, will this deflation crash the price of gold? Not at all likely. Historically, gold increases in purchasing power during both inflationary and deflationary periods; these are periods during which people start to think that governments are losing control, so people opt for real money over government-issued scrip. Gold loses purchasing power when people think everything is, to put it technically, hunky-dory, and that their government is doing a great job. Most people don’t see it that way during bouts of deflation. Intelligent observers are still stacking real coins:

     Sales Of Silver American Eagles Rise To Record High For Second Consecutive Year

and likely hanging onto their hats to get ready for a very wild ride. Because sometimes, in reaction to deflation, governments really ramp up the money printing presses, and people lose all confidence in government money, which is known as hyper-inflation.

Whatever it is that’s coming, it’s good to know that our bank regulators will be well protected:

     Why Is The US Treasury Quietly Ordering “Surival Kits” For US Bankers?

The Department of Treasury is spending $200,000 on survival kits for all of its employees who oversee the federal banking system, according to a new solicitation. As FreeBeacon reports, survival kits will be delivered to every major bank in the United States and includes a solar blanket, food bar, water-purification tablets, and dust mask (among other things). The question, obviously, is just what do they know that the rest of us don’t?

Saturday morning cartoons

(But) look at these sexagenarian dogs! Their dog-teeth get sharper at every moment. The hairs drop from the fur of an old dog; (but) see these old (human) dogs clad in satin! See how their passionate desire and greed for women and gold, like the progeny of dogs, is increasing continually! Such a life as this, which is Hell’s stock-in-trade, is a shambles for the butchers (executioners) of (the Divine) Wrath; (Yet) when people say to him, “May your life be long!” he is delighted and opens his mouth in laughter.
He thinks a curse like this is a benediction: he never uncloses his (inward) eye or raises his head once (from the slumber of heedlessness). If he had seen (even as much as) a hair’s tip of the future state, he would have said to him (who wished him long life), “May thy life be like this!”
–Rumi, The Mathnawi, Book VI, circa 1270 A.D.

The cartoons at the link below should be required viewing (and understanding!) in school, especially any history or economics class. These cartoons are all from 100 years ago or more. They clearly describe the cementing into law–pending at the time– of the rigged banking, currency, and stock markets that financially enslave almost everyone on the planet to the endless hunger for humongo-profits of the few. They show that at least a some people understood the game then. Sadly, few understand the game even now. How do we get this understanding to everyone so that we can end this vicious travesty? How do we bring in the logic and compassion that clearly show the primitive and self-defeating nature of systematically-enshrined greed? Continue reading

Currency Balloons

Given the state of most media reporting, it’s sometimes tough to know whether to laugh or cry. Here’s a story from last week about a surge in gold bullion purchasing in Germany in August and September:

     German Bullion Dealers Report Major Increase in Sales

Christian Brenner, Chief Executive of Philoro Edelmetalle GmbH: “Already in August we noticed an increase on orders compared to the previous months, but September… September beats it all. From a German viewpoint it’s the strongest month of 2014.”. At their head office in Austria they also register an “overproportional high level” of revenue.

At the end of the article, there is a stumbling attempt to explain the recent surge with no mention of its real reason. Here’s a chart of the Euro showing it losing over 7% of its “value” in August and September, in the context of a 10% loss since May:
Euro2014107

It would seem clear that at least some people in Germany and Austria noticed that someone was letting the air out of their Euros and decided to convert to real money.

It was the same for the Japanese in August and September, but much worse overall since the Japanese government has been hellbent on devaluing the Yen for two years. Here’s a chart showing the loss in “value” of the yen of more than 31% in the last three years:

Yen20141007Since these losses in “value” are measured against the biggest balloon of them all, the US Dollar, this is the source of what you may have been hearing lately about the “strong Dollar”! In other words, the “strong Dollar” is simply the result of other major governments succeeding in intentionally letting air out of the balloons known as their currencies.

They are doing this in an attempt to create inflation! Unlike regular people, who like it when prices drop and they can get good deals, governments, being the largest debtors on the planet, want inflation so that their debts can be repaid in cheaper and cheaper currency as time passes. In case you haven’t noticed, that’s a form of grand theft: I’ll borrow money from you today, and pay it back with cheaper money later.

Well so what, you might say. If they are all doing that, what’s the big deal? Continue reading

A major change, Part 2

Continuing, following Part 1, with the idea that an energetic pressure has been lifted from the Entrenched Elites and their minions, allowing them to better recognize reality and to speak more freely:

If you think that you can escape the clutches of the money confiscators plotting their bank bail-ins by having your money in a US-based money market fund, think again. The SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission)–founded to protect people from the wolves of Wall St but which now protects the wolves–sees the crises rolling toward us and has just ruled that money market funds can suspend withdrawals or place high fees on those withdrawals “during times of market stress.”

     The “Gates” Are Closing: SEC Votes Through Money Market Reform

Some think this attempt to prevent runs on money market funds will actually create such runs since, as more people become aware of such rules, their first reaction during “market stress,” also known as a panic, will be to withdraw their money before the exit gates are closed. Others think they are trying to scare people out of money market funds and into stocks to further enhance the “wealth effect” which allegedly makes people spend more when they feel good because they see the stock market rising as a signal that “everything is OK.” Either way, and as usual these days, this isn’t good for regular people. The government regulators see these runs on the horizon and will try to “protect the system” by controlling what people can do with what is supposed to be their own money.

And if you think you can escape the money confiscation vice by being in bond mutual funds, the Fed sees the potential for runs on these funds, so you’ll soon be out of luck there as well. According to the Financial Times:

Federal Reserve officials have discussed imposing exit fees on bond funds to avert a potential run by investors, underlining regulators’ concern about the vulnerability of the $10tn corporate bond market…

Exit fees would seek to discourage retail investors from withdrawing funds, thereby making their claims less liquid and making a fire sale of the assets more unlikely.

Wonder how long it will take before they put exit gates on stock market mutual funds. And then, at some point, the whole stock market. For our own good, of course. To save the system. For national security. All please now rise for a rendition of God Save the Queen.

Next, the so-called BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa), home to 3 billion of our fellow inhabitants of Earth, announced that they have had enough of being treated as poor relations on the world economic stage, and enough of broken promises from EUUSUK (European Union, US, and UK), and have formed their own alternative to the IMF (International Monetary Fund) called the New Development Bank. From the joint statement by these five major countries:

“We remain disappointed and seriously concerned with the current non-implementation of the 2010 International Monetary Fund (IMF) reforms, which negatively impacts on the IMF’s legitimacy, credibility and effectiveness. The IMF reform process is based on high-level commitments, which already strengthened the Fund’s resources and must also lead to the modernization of its governance structure so as to better reflect the increasing weight of EMDCs in the world economy.”

The old guard countries promised the Emerging Market countries, in 2004 and again in 2010, greater say in the governance of the IMF in exchange for greater monetary contributions from the BRICS; they took the money but never come through on their promises. For example, Belgium still has more votes at the IMF than Brazil despite the fact that Brazil’s economy is more than five times larger. And the IMF is strongly dominated by the US despite the fact that, according to the World Bank’s calculations, the Chinese economy will be the world’s largest by the end of 2014. That wasn’t “supposed” to happen till 2020 by US government calculations, but the USgov tends to use very strange calculators that have a button that says, “Make the US economy look better than it is,” and they press that button a lot. Anyway, the BRICS are backing their new bank with $50 billion up front, with another $50 billion promised as a contingency fund.

This presents an alternative for countries in financial distress. No longer is the IMF the only game in town. This is important since IMF “rescues” can often be summed up like this: “Oh, you’re in trouble with your bankers? Tell us absolutely everything about the finances of your country, your banking system, your companies, etc. and then we’ll loan you a bunch of new money that will first and foremost go to paying your international bankers, and be sure to spend some of the rest with the following US and European companies who will help you develop your natural resources and get you a price that will be very fair for those companies. And since you will now have even more debt than before, you’ll have to implement austerity measures that will further impoverish your citizens. Sign here or default on your debts and lose all access to the international capital markets.”

As a side note, this New Development Bank is yet another whack to the US Dollar’s status as the world reserve currency.

If Portugal weren’t in the EU, they could probably take advantage of the New Development Bank for their next bailout. The Euro-pols have been parading Portugal as a country bailout success because their economy is expected to expand a meager 0.9% this year. That’s despite the unmentioned fact that said economy will be 16% smaller than it was in 2009. But all that won’t matter now that Portugal’s largest banking group, Espirito Santo, is going down the tubes, and a second bank, Rio Forte, is filing for bankruptcy. And going along with the theme of this post, Portugal’s President Cavaco Silva actually said publicly what politicians never say: that this is going to hurt the economy:

“If some citizens, some investors suffer significant losses (from the Espirito Santo group), they may delay investment decisions, or some of them may find themselves in very big difficulties,” Cavaco Silva said in comments during a visit to South Korea, which were aired on local television. “We cannot ignore that there will be some impact on the real economy.”

Previously, politicians have always claimed any problem is “well-contained,” a tempest in a teapot, nothing to worry about. Perhaps the President is being savvy in trying to distance himself from the Espirito Santo group. Now that everyone knows the banking group is in trouble, there’s little point in hiding the dirty laundry any longer from some misplaced fear that truth about a country’s largest bank will “hurt the economy”. The authorities have detained the man who was that groups’s CEO until his resignation a month ago:

     Banco Espirito Santo CEO, Who Quit Last Month, Detained In Money Laundering Probe

I guess the phrase honest bank executive can be firmly placed in the list of oxymorons along with crash landing, even odds, and good grief.

This points rather nicely (or nastily, depending on one’s point of view) back to the IMF. In its continuing frank admission that countries will never be able to pay back a lot of the money they’ve borrowed, the IMF published another of what Martin Armstrong accurately calls “partial default options” for countries, that is, they are telling countries, “don’t default on all of your debt, here are some ways to not-pay your debts, but in smaller chunks so as to be less noticeable and alarming.” Some of the “options” they have previously discussed:

Financial repression: This is described on the IMF website as:

Financial repression occurs when governments implement policies to channel to themselves funds that in a deregulated market environment would go elsewhere. Policies include directed lending to the government by captive domestic audiences (such as pension funds or domestic banks), explicit or implicit caps on interest rates, regulation of cross-border capital movements, and (generally) a tighter connection between government and banks.

This option has already been chosen and activated by the US, the European Union, Japan, the UK, and so forth. This is where governments print money to buy bonds to drive interest rates to near-zero or, in the case of the European Central Bank, negative. This saves the government huge amounts in interest expenses. Instead of paying 5% or 6% interest, a reasonable estimate of the historical average for government debt, they now pay almost nothing. This steals money from savers, pension funds, insurance companies, etc., who get little or no interest on their savings/investments, but it allows national governments to temporarily maintain the appearance of solvency, to keep their power and their empires and, for government’s upper management, to continue to live like royalty.

The IMF website goes on to say:

In the current policy discussion, financial repression issues come under the broad umbrella of “macroprudential regulation”…

Well how do you like that: the new Chairwoman of the US Federal Reserve, Janet Yellen, used the phrase macroprudential regulation repeatedly last week in testimony to Congress and in her press conference. She is telling everyone with ears to hear that she will go further down the road of financial repression during the next phase of the crisis. See the quote above that includes “directed lending to the government by captive domestic audiences,…regulation of cross-border capital movements.” In other words, like they did in Cyprus, if they say so, then your money will have to stay in the country. And it may get lent to the government whether you like it or not. If you think these people won’t pull such stunts when they decide it’s a matter of national security (which equates in their minds with them remaining in power), then you need to study them more carefully. And admittedly this one is semi-coded, but they are informing you up-front that they will take such measures.

What else has the IMF recommended?

Wealth Tax: From this IMF paper:

The sharp deterioration of the public finances in many countries has revived interest in a “capital levy”— a one-off tax on private wealth—as an exceptional measure to restore debt sustainability. The appeal is that such a tax, if it is implemented before avoidance is possible and there is a belief that it will never be repeated, does not distort behavior (and may be seen by some as fair).

Folks, if you need to, “distort your behavior”!!! In other words, they have gone on record saying that this tactic only works if they give no advance warning. So that IMF paper is the advance warning. If they pull this tactic, and I think desperate countries will, it will be just as it happened in Cyprus, their test bed: You go to sleep Friday with X dollars in your account, and when you check your balance on Monday, some of it is gone! In the case of Cyprus, a lot of it was gone for some people. And for what? To save a failing bank. So “distort your behavior” ahead of time and get your savings out of their way. Any account balance you can call up on a screen is in their way.

The IMF also calculated just how high they thought each country could raise its income tax rates and not crash their economy. For some countries, the rates were a lot higher than they are now. And of course they recommended higher property tax rates because it’s very difficult for people to hide their houses or move them to another country, so property owners are sitting ducks.

So what is the IMF’s recent addition to this list?

Duration extension: For this one, they came up with the name “re-profiling.” Which means I’m wrong that maybe they now they think they can really call a spade and spade: they still feel the need to make up BS names for the tricks they pull on people. Still, I think the last couple of months have shown a striking increase in honesty from these folks. Anyway, what’s this re-profiling?

This would be the ability to extend the duration of debt at will. Sounds esoteric, but it’s really rather simple. Most government borrowing is very short term, say 30 days to 90 days: The government says, “Lend me some money, I’ll pay you back, plus a little bit of interest, in 30 days.” These short-term debt instruments end up in money market funds, corporate treasuries, etc. Most people treat their money market fund like cash, that is, they write checks from it, pay bills from it, etc. But this tactic would allow the government to say: that 30-day Treasury Bill is now a 5-year Bond, that is, we’re not going to pay the principal back in 30 days, we’re going to pay it back in 5 years. And we’ll give you the same miniscule interest rate we have been paying on that 30-day bill, namely something like 0.01%. So then lots of people who thought they had ready access to their cash? They would find out their “cash” was now tied up for years. This would enable the government to put off its own bills till way off in the future, giving them free reign to continue ordering caviar and champagne for their free red-carpet junkets around the world.

In my view, the best thing about all this is they are telling people up front what they plan to do. I hope regular readers have already taken the appropriate measures to protect themselves from these tactics, but if you haven’t, it still isn’t too late.

I am remembering a scene in the movie Body Heat where a hardened white-collar criminal chides William Hurt for being someone who won’t “do whatever it takes.” Be assured that when the next inevitable phase of this ongoing financial and political crisis hits, those in power will “do whatever it takes” to stay there.

In the longer term, their efforts will fail. But there’s some road to travel before we get to that longer term. From recent events, it’s fairly clear that part of that road involves war. So far, the biggest downside I can see to this lifting of pressure from the Elites and their minions is that they seem to think they can do and say just about anything they want in terms of threatening, and in some cases attacking, other countries. I’ll take up this topic soon in an update on the War Cycle.