November 22: Daily Contrarian Reads

Boo Hoo! Daddy Trump’s In the House

America didn’t get what it expected, but perhaps it got what it deserved, good and hard. Daddy’s in the house and he busted straight into the nursery and now the little ones are squalling in horror. Mommy was discovered to be a grifting old jade who ran the household into a slum and she’s been turned out to solemnly await the judgment of the courts, nowhere to run, nowhere to hide. The kids on campus have gone temporarily insane over this domestic situation and some wonder if they’ll ever get over it.

Trump as The USA’s Daddy? Well, yeah. Might he turn out to be a good daddy? A lot of people worry that he can’t be. Look how he behaved on the campaign trail: no behavioral boundaries… uccchhh. He even lurches as he walks, like Frankenstein. Not very reassuring — though it appears that somehow he raised up a litter of high-functioning kids of his own. Not a tattoo or an earplug among them. No apparent gender confusion. All holding rather responsible positions in the family business. Go figure….

The Peak & Decline Of International Reserves Warns Of Massive Asset Deflation Ahead

The world is sitting at the edge of a massive deflationary cliff.  Even though Central Banks are desperately trying to keep the world’s financial assets from plunging down into the great depression below, signs suggest they are losing the battle. One critical sign is the peak and decline of International Reserves.  Hugo Salinas Price has been keeping an eye on International Reserves for quite some time.

History Repeats, And Repeats, And Repeats…

In what might be disappointing given all that, I can’t really say how this all ends. I still believe, strongly, that it does, perhaps has to end in a systemic reset, but what that ultimately looks like depends upon the amount of time it takes for the increasingly unstable system to force an equal response. That could mean a crash, a total disruption in social functions (overseas, of course), or just a whimper as some people in positions of power finally “get it” and realize everything about “dollars” above BLS stats. Ultimately, the manner of the reset will probably be driven by the amount of time it takes for that to happen. From what we can more easily surmise from the very recognizable repetitions shown here, until that point we should expect these reducing cycles to at least continue repeating their fluctuations between optimism (it’s all overseas! The Fed did something different!) and reality (“dollar”). That is about the only thing we do know; unfortunately, reality hasn’t changed.

The EU’s New Bomb Is Ticking in the Netherlands—–It’s New Referendum Law Puts The People In Charge

….This referendum law is a potential bomb under the EU, as both Dutch politicians and Brussels officials are well aware. Mr. Baudet believes he now has the means to block any steps the EU might seek to take to deepen European integration or stabilize the eurozone if they require Dutch legislation. This could potentially include aid to troubled Southern European countries such as Greece and Italy, rendering the eurozone unworkable.

The Unraveling Begins—-Totally Crazy Lending At The Peak

Then there’s the peak. It’s marked by “totally crazy lending.” We’ve seen that peak. One sign: white-hot online peer-to-peer lenders, or rather “platforms” for risky consumer loans. They’re Silicon Valley inventions that were going to revolutionize lending and put banks out of business. They proudly operate with disregard for risks. They borrow from individual and institutional investors and extend unsecured personal loans to consumers. They also repackage consumer loans into bonds and sell them to over-eager institutional investors.

Putting an End to the Regulatory Industry—Mind The “Break Room” Metric

By our rough calculation the break room metric currently indicates an economy that’s grossly overburdened by regulation.  The break room metric, if you’ve never heard of it, is the ratio of wall space in office break rooms that is utilized by mandatory federal and state regulatory postings.  Anything above 10 percent utilization represents gross regulatory overburden.

Flynn, Pompeo And Trump’s New Nationalism So Far—–Amber Alert!

All in all from a noninterventionist “America First” perspective, Pompeo is a somewhat mixed bag, but in the context of the CIA, he would be a disaster. To begin with, count on him to be constantly looking for “intel” that “proves” Iran has violated its agreement not to pursue a nuclear weapons program. Secondly, as his flip-flop on the Syrian rebel issue shows, his first instinct is to pursue regime-change. Thirdly, his views on the collection of meta-data – the scooping up of everyone’s online trail, indiscriminately – and his opposition to even the namby-pamby reforms that have supposedly modified the US government’s activities in this regard, is bad news for those of us who believe in the Constitution. Overall rating – Fail!

How To Drain The Swamp: Stop Wasting Taxpayer Dollars On Crony Capitalist Swindlers Like Elon Musk

From Enron to Bernie Madoff, at the end of every great American financial scandal, the totality of the perpetrators’ greed seems to be matched only by the public’s incredulity at how such a thing could be allowed to happen. And thanks to Elon Musk, there’s a good chance we may all be asking this question again soon.

Don’t Do It Donald—–You Were Wrong About The Iranian Nuke Deal

The JCPOA is a success. It has been fully working for well over a year. It has blocked all possible avenues to an Iranian nuclear weapon. Iran has been complying with its extensive obligations under the agreement, as certified by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Those opponents who have stretched to accuse Iran of violations have been doing exactly that: stretching. Regarding recent accusations regarding Iranian production of heavy water, for example, the agreement does not prohibit Iran from ever exceeding a specified limit of 130 metric tons. Instead, the JCPOA requires Iran to make any excess available for export — which is exactly what Iran has done.

Commodity Credit Versus Circulation Credit—Mises On The True Cause Of Booms And Busts

Mises made a distinction between credit that is backed by savings, and credit that does not have any backing. The first type of credit he labeled commodity credit the second he labeled circulation credit. It is circulation credit that plays the key role in setting the boom-bust cycle process.