For the past four years I have been covering the progression of the global economic crisis with an emphasis on the debilitating effects it has had on the American financial system. Only once before have I ever issued an economic alert, and this was at the onset of the very first credit downgrade in U.S. history by S&P. I do not take the word “alert” lightly. [Read on to to understand why I have issued an economic alert once again.] Words: 1904
So says Brandon Smith (www.ALT-Market.com) in edited excerpts from his original article*.
Lorimer Wilson, editor of www.munKNEE.com (Your Key to Making Money!), has edited the article below for length and clarity – see Editor’s Note at the bottom of the page. This paragraph must be included in any article re-posting to avoid copyright infringement.
Smith goes on to say, in part:
Since 2008 we have seen a cycle of events that have severely weakened our country’s foundation, but each event has then been followed by a lull, sometimes 4 to 6 months at a stretch, which seems to disarm the public, drawing them back into apathy and complacency. The calm moments before each passing storm give Americans a false sense of hope that our capsized fiscal vessel will somehow right itself if we just hold on a little longer…but this is not going to happen….
Debt implosions and currency devaluation NEVER simply “fade away”; they are always followed by extreme social and political strife that tends to sully the doorsteps of almost every individual and family. The notion that we can coast through such a tempest unscathed is an insane idea, filled with a dangerous potential for sour regrets.
There are some people who also believe that the private Federal Reserve with the Treasury in tow has the ability to prolong the worst symptoms of the collapse indefinitely, or at least, until they have long since kicked the bucket and don’t have to worry about it anymore (the ‘pay-it forward to our grandkids’ crowd).
I can say with 100% certainty that most of us will live to see the climax of the breakdown, and that this breakdown is about to enter a more precarious state before the end of this year. You can only stretch a sun-boiled rubber band so far before it snaps completely, and America’s financial elasticity has long been melted away.
A pummeling hailstorm of news items and international developments have made the first half of 2012 almost impossible to track and analyze. The frequency at which negative information has surfaced is almost dizzying. However, a pattern and a recognizable motion are beginning to take shape, and, I believe, a loose timeline is beginning to form.
Here are some of the most important reasons why every American should be prepared for much harder days, especially before the end of 2012:
1. The European Union Is Officially Dead In The Water
Stick a fork in er’, the EU is done! We are talking about full scale dismantlement, likely followed by a reformation of core nations and multiple collapse scenarios of peripheral countries. The writing is all over the wall in the wake of the latest election results in Greece and France, where, as alternative researchers have been predicting for some time, the battle between the government spending crowd and proponents of austerity has reached a fever pitch.
The Greeks and the French are royally pissed over draconian cuts in public programs and the destruction of pensions which have been a mainstay of their economies for quite some time. They are also furious over being sold off like collateral to the IMF and World Bank. Rightly so.
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Like the American taxpayer, the taxpayers of floundering EU nations are wrongly being held responsible for the financial mismanagement and fraud of their governments and global banks which have remained untouched and unpunished for their trespasses. The problem is, the voters of both countries are signing on to the socialist/quasi-communist bandwagon in response. In Greece, the Left Coalition Party, a splinter group of the traditional communist party, has now taken a primary position of power while, in France, voters have elected socialist Francois Hollande…, whose latest promise is to spend France into recovery through his “pro-growth agenda”.
I have no doubt that the elections of the EU are as manipulated by elitists as they are here in the U.S., and I’m sure false paradigms abound. Have Europeans forgotten that it was overt government spending that set them on the path to calamity in the first place or are they like [many/most] Americans who are just desperate for any change in the ranks of leadership? One would think that they would take note of the problems here in our country and realize that electing a socialist to replace another socialist is no way out of economic hardship….
The French and the Greeks have essentially replaced closet collectivists with outspoken collectivists, and will see NO relief from the crisis in the Euro-zone as a result of the political reordering.
In fact, the stage has now been set for a volatile chain of dominos.
- Germany, which is the only economy left holding the EU together, has been unyielding on austerity cuts.
- A conflict between France and Germany is now inevitable. Neither will compromise their position, and
- I can see no other eventual result than a reexamination and perhaps abandonment of the EU charter.
How does this affect America? Being that international banks and corporations have forced our countries into interdependency through the engineered chicanery of globalization, any collapse in Europe is going to strike hard around the world, but the worst will hit the U.S. and China – which is probably why China is disengaging trade away from the U.S. and the EU and focusing on other developing nations.
If you thought the Greek rollercoaster was a pain in the neck for investment markets, just wait until the whole of the EU is in a shambles!
Spain is next in line, with a 25% official unemployment rate and a massive black market economy forming….When governments disrupt the financial survival of the people, they WILL form their own alternatives, including black markets and barter markets. It is about survival. The Spanish government does not care much for these alternatives, though, and has now banned cash transaction over 2500 euros in a futile attempt to squeeze taxes out of the populace through digitally tracked payment methods.
Another major concern for Americans is the fact that Europeans are inching towards an abandonment of the dollar. Francois Hollande has openly called for an end to the dollar’s world reserve status, and with a majority backing of the French people, he could easily make this happen, at least where France is concerned. All it takes is for a few key countries to publically and completely drop the Greenback and the dollar’s reputation as a safe haven investment will be quashed. This could very well happen before 2012 is over.
2. QE3 Is The End
Here is the bottom line; U.S. growth is a theater of shadows. There has been no progress, no recovery….:
- Millions of Americans have fallen off unemployment rolls because they have been jobless for too long, which lowers the unemployment rate, but does not change the fact that they are still without work.
- Durable goods orders are dropping like an avalanche.
- U.S. credit has been lowered yet again by rating agency Egan-Jones.
- The currency’s safety is nonexistent with China making bilateral trade deals in numerous countries on the condition that the dollar be dropped as the primary purchasing mechanism, and with the EU turning to economic mulch. Traditional investors who cling to the idea that a falling Euro spells dollar strength will be sorely disappointed when the currency is suddenly being rejected in international currency markets.
The Federal Reserve has already stated that any signs of “relapse” into recession (the recession that we never left) will be met with all options on the table, including QE3.
I believe that QE3 will probably be announced this year (due in large part to trauma from Europe), and, that this will trigger a mass movement by foreign nations to drop the dollar as the world reserve.
QE3 will be the straw that broke the camel’s back. How exactly this will play out socially and politically, I do not know…but the technical results are predictable:
- The Fed will respond to the lack of treasury purchases by ramping up fiat printing in order to cover the ever increasing costs of the government machine.
- The Greenback will immediately lose a large portion of its value, at least in terms of imported goods, causing inflation in prices.
- Oil and energy prices will skyrocket if OPEC follows suit (which they will, though the Saudis may still honor dollars for a time).
- Doing any traditional business will become nearly impossible, and price inflation will dominate the lives and the minds of average unprepared citizens..
The amount of time that it will take for these difficulties to unfold is also not clear. We are operating in uncharted territory, and dealing with a collapse scenario on a truly planetary scale. My best advice is to assume that the avalanche will move fast.
While markets in our country have seen only mild disruptions so far this year, their solidity is predicated on a host of props and costume pieces, any one of which could pull the rug out from under America’s suspension of disbelief if it strays but a little from the illusion.
As long as the dollar holds, stocks can be infused with bailout juice through major banks as can major companies and even desperate state governments on the verge of bankruptcy. The Dow will remain relatively friendly, and day traders and the public will remain happy. As soon as the dollar comes into question, [though,] all bets are off….
The question now is, how much longer can the U.S. wobble along on one wheel? In my view, and from the evidence I see in markets at the moment, not much longer….
All indicators suggest that this year will be unlike any other before:
- In 2008, we saw the first trigger events for the collapse.
- In 2008/2009, we saw the creation of the bailout culture, setting the stage for inflation and dollar disintegration.
- In 2010, we saw the first bilateral trade deal cutting out the dollar between China and Russia, which is now the template for trade deals all over the globe.
- In 2011, we saw the first downgrade of the U.S. credit rating and the crisis in the EU become epidemic.
- In 2012, I see not just another difficulty to add to the mountain, but a culmination of all these detriments to produce something entirely new; a vast and subversive realignment forcing many of us to take a more aggressive stance in the fight for an economically and socially free America.
Financial disasters have always been a convenient catalyst for a host of even more frightening obstacles, including civil unrest, and blatant totalitarianism. This is the cusp. It is one of those moments that people of later generations read about in awe, and sometimes horror. The “doom” is not in the event, [however,] but in the response.
What we make of the days approaching determines the darkness that they cast upon the future. It is a test. It is not something to be dreaded. It is something to be seized upon, and dealt with, as great men and women before us have done….
*http://www.alt-market.com/articles/765-economic-alert-if-youre-not-worried-yetyou-should-be (Alt-Market is an organization designed to help you find like-minded activists and preppers in your local area so that you can network and construct communities for mutual aid and defense. Join Alt-Market.com today and learn what it means to step away from the system and build something better. You can contact Brandon Smith at: firstname.lastname@example.org . To access the articles please copy the URL and paste it into your browser.)
Editor’s Note: The above article may have been edited ([ ]), abridged (…), and reformatted (including the title, some sub-titles and bold/italics emphases) for the sake of clarity and brevity to ensure a fast and easy read. The article’s views and conclusions are unaltered and no personal comments have been included to maintain the integrity of the original article.
Europe may soon be choking on that plat du jour of government a la Hollandaise with the side of chopped Greek salad. The whole world, in fact, has got something like a giant hairball stuck in its craw. The hairball is composed of filaments of lies wound over a core of supernatural indebtedness. The lies are promises that the debt will be paid back. Words: 710
The implications for the elections in Europe likely portend what will happen in the U.S.. A similar revolt against incumbents [will] …sweep Obama…out of office but… the newcomers will be placed in the position of Sarkozy and other European incumbents. They will have to address the insolvency and eventual liquidity issues in similar fashion which will be viewed here as “austerity” or worse, “cruel and unusual” punishment. [So, how likely is that? Not very, because] politicians, by nature, are not courageous animals. Instead we will see more of the same: half-assed attempts to fool the people into believing that something is being done to solve the problems. [So what does the future hold for America?] Words: 631
The Federal government is gearing up for unprecedented social unrest (worse than Greece or Spain) when Washington is forced to impose “austerity” plans next year… [which will be deemed absolutely necessary to avoid] runaway inflation [that would otherwise occur] to pay for the country’s costly welfare programs like Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Food Stamps and massive unfunded liabilities. [Below are the preparations presently underway.] Words: 500
The United States and most of Europe…risk an eruption and collapse of the mountain of unsustainable sovereign debt built up over the last two decades. Frankly, the U.S. dollar and national debt situation is so dire – and our means to contain a sovereign debt crisis so limited by multiple wars and Washington’s debt and political incompetence at home – that anything could happen, almost overnight. [The best] America and most European governments and the central banking elites, which created the criminal sovereign debt fiasco, [appear able to do is] try to buy more time and delay the inevitable. This inaction means the threat of an immediate US debt and dollar collapse cannot be ruled out. Therefore, readers who have not protected themselves certainly have cause to worry because now could be too late. [Let me explain further.] Words: 1689
The demise of America is on borrowed time – and the end game could be dire – unless YOU do something about it. Congress is a tool of special interests – not OURS! As such, WE, as citizens, must become proactive if we are to protect OUR financial future by solving the Washington debt and tyranny problems and preventing foreign nations and/or creditors from forcing OUR country into bankruptcy and collapse! [What can YOU do to help? Read on!] Words: 2971
One of the problems with the debate over the “national debt” is that there’s no generally agreed upon definition of that term. Is it what the federal government owes, or what it owes foreigners, or what the whole country, private and public sector together, owes? Does it include off-balance-sheet items and contingent liabilities? There’s a hundred-trillion dollar gap between lowest and highest on this spectrum, which allows each commentator to confuse the rest of us by picking the measure that best suits their point of view. [Let’s try to decipher the true state of the nation.] Words: 1468
The definition of insanity is to continue doing something that goes wrong, without contemplating that there could be a different course of action…[and we] are heading deeper and deeper into insanity…we are just getting deeper and deeper into problems leaving our children and grandchildren with loans that could well take decades to finish (paying) off. I fear we are now stoking up the conditions, at some point in the future, for serious inflation.
With the U.S. election just nine months off, political pressures will mount to favor fiscal stimulus measures instead of restraint. Such action can only accelerate higher domestic inflation and intensified dollar debasement culminating in a Great Collapse – a hyperinflationary great depression – by 2014. [Let me explain why that is the inevitable outcome.] Words: 2766
Currency wars arise when a country steals growth from trading partners by cheapening its currency to promote exports. The new currency war began in 2010 when President Obama declared in his State of the Union address that it was the policy of the United States to double exports in five years. Since the U.S. would not become twice as productive in five years, the implication was the U.S. would severely cheapen its currency to achieve this goal. [Let me expand upon this.] Words: 666
The economy is now so manipulated by politicians, big bankers, and special-interest groups that making sense of the markets has become an almost impossible feat. Which is to say, it must push even harder on the levers of its printing presses, further setting the stage for the massive period of inflation we continue to see as inevitable… and for a stunning rise in interest rates. Words: 968