November 24: Daily Contrarian Reads

The Phony Russian Threat: A Gun Store Attached To A Gas Station In The Middle of A Wheat Field

This is a tempest in a tiny little toilet bowl. The Russians are not a threat at all. I’ve often described Russia as being nothing more than a gun store attached to a gas station in the middle of a wheat field. And that’s all it is. It’s not an economic power. The country suffers from chronic alcoholism, and is in perhaps terminal demographic decline. It’s not an economic power. It’s not even a military power anymore. This hysteria about the Russians is crazy. It’s a fabrication of what Eisenhower called the military-industrial complex. They’re in back of this spate of Russophobia as well as the insane sport wars the U.S. is fighting all over the world.

Two Big Warning Signs Emerge for the Stock Market

You see, we’re entering into an incredibly dangerous phase of this bull market. Ironically, that also means most people will find stocks simply irresistible. But trust me, friends… it’s time to start selling.

When JFK Turned Toward Peace—A Thanksgiving Toast

But we can still celebrate, mourn, and offer thanksgiving for his courageous witness.  When we gather tomorrow to give thanks, we should remember today – the profound significance of the date – and the absent presence of a man whose death, dark and bloody as it was, is a sign of hope in these dark times. For if John Kennedy had not had the spiritual conscience to secretly carry-on a back-channel letter correspondence with Nikita Khrushchev, facilitated by Pope John XXIII, we very well might not be here, having been incinerated in a nuclear holocaust. Hope?  Not because he was assassinated, but why he was assassinated.

Biggest Bubble Ever? 2017 Recapped In 15 Bullet Points

Yesterday we presented readers with one of the most pessimistic, if not outright apocalyptic, 2018 year previews, courtesy of BofA’s chief investment, Michael Hartnett who warned that in addition to the bursting of the bond bubble in the first half of the year, the stock market could see a 1987-like flash crash, potentially followed by a sharp spike in (violent) social conflict…..Here are his 15 bullet points that show why in 2017 we may have seen the biggest bubble ever (and why we can’t wait to see what 2018 reveals).

Red Ponzi Update—Mind The “Beautiful 50” High-Flyers

The Beautiful 50, a local term for the 50 most influential companies on the Shanghai Stock Exchange, returned 33 percent this year. Can the Beautiful 50 defy gravity? The Chinese government is clearly worried.  On Monday night, the Shanghai Stock Exchange rebuked the publisher of a bullish report on Kweichow Moutai, days after the official Xinhua News Agency said shares of China’s biggest liquor maker should rise at a slower pace.

How the Deep State Squeezed America’s Wealth

We bring up the tax cut because we think it helps explain the painting. Not for nothing are Republicans and the modern Salvator Himself, Donald J. Trump, setting up the middle class for a huge bamboozle.

The Market’s More Dangerous Than Ever–Just Ask The Turkey

These are the types of moves that are deadly to those with any resting orders, especially short sellers. Whether it’s an orchestrated “hunt and destroy” algo-program, or just an HFT algo gone wild. Doesn’t matter. For what it portends, usually, is not good for those that only believe in the BTFD investment bromide.

Why Washington Allowed ISIS Fighters To Escape

The shambles of American policy as it applies to the Middle East was highlighted by yet another similar and particularly bizarre episode that was revealed initially by the BBC on Monday of last week. In early October, when the Syrians and Russians were closing in from the west on Raqqa, the “capital” of the ISIS caliphate while the U.S supported Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which predominantly consists of the Kurdish militias, was closing in from the east, a deal was reportedly struck to permit an evacuation of the remaining ISIS fighters and their families.

Stumbling Blindly Into Cold War 2.0

NATO’s recent provocative decision to build up its military forces across Europe — by sending four new multinational battalions to Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and Poland — comes at a time of great turmoil and intense questioning of global security with new forces for both good and evil straining to make their mark on the course of history.

Goodbye, American Dream: Average U.S. Household’s $137,063 In Debt, 38% Of Millennials Live With Parents

Once upon a time the United States had the largest and most vibrant middle class in the history of the world, but now the middle class is steadily being eroded.  The middle class became a minority of the population for the first time ever in 2015, and just recently I wrote about a new survey that showed that 78 percent of all full-time workers in the United States live paycheck to paycheck at least part of the time.  But most people still want to live the American Dream, and so they are going into tremendous amounts of debt in a desperate attempt to live that kind of a lifestyle.