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Jeff Nielson is from Canada and is a writer/editor for Bullion Bulls Canada (http://www.bullionbullscanada.com/#content). He has a personal background in law and economics. Bullion Bulls Canada provides general macro-economic and political commentary, since the precious metals markets are among... More
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  • U.S. Standard Of Living Has Fallen More Than 50%

    In writing about the relentless collapse of Western economies, I frequently point to "forty years of plummeting wages" for Western workers, in real dollars. However, where I have been remiss is in quantifying the magnitude of this collapse in Western wages.

    On several occasions I have glibly referred to how it now takes two spouses working to equal the wages of a one-income family of forty years ago. Unfortunately that is now an understatement. In fact, Western wages have plummeted so low that a two-income family is now (on average) 15% poorer than a one-income family of 40 years ago.

    Regular readers will recognize the chart below on U.S. average wages:

    (click to enlarge)

    [courtesy of nowandfutures.com/index.html]

    Using the year 2000 as the numerical base from which to "zero" all of the numbers, real wages peaked in 1970 at around $20/hour. Today the average worker makes $8.50 hour - more than 57% less than in 1970. And since the average wage directly determines the standard of living of our society, we can see that the average standard of living in the U.S. has plummeted by over 57% over a span of 40 years.

    There are no "tricks" here. Indeed, all of the tricks are used by our governments. The green line shows average wages, discounted by inflation calculated with the same methodology for all 40 years. Obviously that is the only way in which we can compare any data over time: through applying identical parameters to it each year.

    Then we have the blue line: showing wage data discounted with our "official" inflation rate. The problem? The methodology used by our governments to calculate inflation in 1975 was different from the method they used in 1985, which was different than the method they used in 1995, which was different than the method they used in 2005.

    Two obvious points flow from this observation. First, it is tautological that the only way in which data can be compared meaningfully is to use a consistent methodology. If the government thinks it has improved upon its inflation methodology, then all it had to do was take all of its old data and re-calculate it with their "improved" methodology. Since 1970 there is this invention called "computers" which makes such calculations rather simple.

    This brings us to the second point: the refusal of our governments to adopt a consistent methodology in reporting inflation statistics can only imply a deliberate attempt to deceive, since it is 100% logically/statistically invalid to simply string together disconnected series of data - and present it as if it represents a consistent picture. More specifically, we can see precisely what lie our government was attempting to get us to believe.

    Roughly speaking, the blue line trends flat. Thus, our governments have been lying about inflation for the last 40 years as a deliberate means of hiding the 57% collapse in our standard of living. Meanwhile, the situation is more than reversed if you're one of the fat-cats at the top. While average American workers have seen their wages plummet by 57% over the past 40 years, in just 15 years (1992-2007) the 400 wealthiest Americans saw their incomes rise by 700%.

    Now we have the complete picture: wages grinding steadily lower year after year, decade after decade for the Little People, while wages go straight up for the fat-cats. To say this is "unfair" would rank as one of history's greatest understatements. This is economic rape, plain and simple.

    To this point I have only presented the consequences of our economic rape, in a chart which is totally unequivocal/incontrovertible. The causes of that economic rape are equally obvious in terms of categories, although the actual analysis of those causes is somewhat more complex.

    1) Taxation oppression. As I detailed in a previous three-part series, income taxation is the worst possible form of taxation which could possibly be devised. The length of criticisms is virtually infinite, but at the top of the list is the fact that as a matter of basic arithmetic, all income-taxation systems must funnel all wealth into the hands of the ultra-wealthy, over time. This is precisely what we see today. Billionaires and trillionaires sit with the largest fortunes in history - while ordinary people have been turned into "the working poor".

    2) Systemic/structural unemployment. Technology always eliminates jobs faster than it creates new opportunities. This means that our economies are permanently reducing jobs (and creating structural unemployment) every day, every week, every month, every year. For more than 200 years, our governments have dealt with this permanent structural unemployment problem by shortening the work week every few decades…until now. The refusal of our governments to shorten the work week (while we have the worst structural unemployment in history) is a deliberate attempt to maintain massive unemployment - which is the strongest downward driver of average wages.

    3) Oligopolies/monopolies. It is elementary capitalist theory that monopolies and oligopolies are unmitigated evils. By definition they are 100% parasitic, and 100% non-competitive - and have absolutely no place in any capitalist economy. Yet today the global economy is totally overrun with these gigantic, non-competitive parasites. With these mega-parasites permanently blood-sucking us, the impoverishment of our societies was an inevitable result.

    Having now seen the consequences of our problems and the causes of our problems, the solutions are obvious. To even halt the slide in our wages (and standard of living) we must eradicate at least one of these three problems. To reverse this trend (and restore our standard of living) requires eradicating all three problems.

    Taxation oppression can be solved by implementing a flat wealth tax. Everyone pays at the same rate. No one gets to hide their wealth with sleazy, tax loopholes. And once we tax wealth, we get to eliminate all of the ridiculous, inefficient taxes which discourage economic activity: our income taxes, our consumption taxes, our capital gains taxes, our corporate taxes. What kind of idiots create a capitalist economic system, and then strangle that system with taxes which discourage all capitalist activity?

    Structural unemployment can be eliminated, at virtually zero cost; the same way that it has been done for 200 years: by reducing the length of the work week. The basic work week at the Dawn of the Industrial Revolution was 7 days a week, 12 hours a day - an 84-hour week. For 200 years our governments steadily shortened the work week, and our societies became steadily more prosperous. Suddenly our governments refuse to shorten the work week, and we immediately see our standard of living reverse lower for the first time in modern history.

    Exterminating all of the parasitic oligopolies and monopolies is considerably more problematic. These corporate behemoths have been allowed to grow to unimaginable sizes. Not only do our governments lack the moral courage to eradicate this economic cancer, but they effectively even lack the political power to do so.

    As a first step, I have recommended we adopt the progressive economic strategy known as "protectionism". Big Business sold us "globalization"; pretending that it was the same thing as free trade. They all fattened-up to many times their original sizes and we got a 50+% drop in our standard of living. Bigger is not better (when it comes to parasites). And there is no more direct path to a Small Business (high prosperity) economy than protectionism.

    At the very least, protectionism makes it impossible for these corporate behemoths to grow even larger. Add a flat wealth tax and a four-day work week to that equation and we have a means to genuinely "stimulate" our economies - which does not require any significant amounts of government spending (i.e. additional debt).

    Big Media (itself another oligopoly) tells us we should have even more globalization, and allow these corporate behemoths to grow even larger and more concentrated. Not only do our economics text books dictate the opposite, but so does 40 years of empirical evidence.

    Big Media tells us that our deadbeat governments (the biggest debtors in human history) are going to "bail out" each other by borrowing much, much more money. Simple arithmetic tells us this cannot possibly be true.

    We need to completely tune-out the economic voodoo preached by these media charlatans. Fixing our economies requires returning to what has worked in the past, not continuing what has failed in the present. Fixing our economic balance sheets is another matter entirely.

    Most of our governments are already past the point of no return in terms of indebtedness. It makes no sense at all to completely destroy economies with some form of Friedman Austerity first (as was done in Greece) - only to end up with an even larger default in the end. Had the bond parasites accepted a 50% haircut at the beginning of Greece's debt-crisis, Greece's economy would have remained intact, and they would have salvaged 50% more of their dubious debts (rather than the 75% default with which they ended).

    Our morally bankrupt political leaders would have us believe that the collapse in our standard of living was some sort of inevitable "accident" of history. The truth is that the economic oppression inflicted upon us has been deliberate and intentional. We have been given the very worst taxation policies, solely to benefit the few at the top. We have been given the very worst employment policies, solely to benefit the few at the top.

    Instead of our governments vigilantly preventing the spread (or even birth) of any oligopolies or monopolies, they have totally abdicated all responsibility - and allowed these monstrosities to devour most of the global economy. Even more reprehensible has been the silence of the economics community as these corporate behemoths have been allowed to rampage across the globe. Were all of these economists absent from class during the two weeks of study devoted to explaining why these oligopolies/monopolies should never be allowed to come into existence?

    It is a tragedy that the standard of living in the United States (and much of the Western world) has plummeted by more than 50% over the last 40 years - unless you're one of the privileged few. It is a crime that this take-down in our standard of living is an obvious matter of cause-and-effect.

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

    Apr 20 12:01 PM | Link | 2 Comments
  • Precious Metals Déjà Vu For Morgan Stanley?

    In the middle of 2007, Morgan Stanley paid out $4.4 million to settle a class-action lawsuit initiated against it by its own clients. Why were Morgan Stanley's clients suing it? They alleged that Morgan Stanley took money from them for buying precious metals on their behalf, took money from them for "storage" of these precious metals accounts, but only pretended to purchase the bullion.

    Morgan Stanley (reading from the standard Wall Street script) denied the allegations, but settled the case "to avoid the cost and distraction of continued litigation." Before moving on to Morgan's Stanley's latest exploits in the precious metals market, this deserves a few comments.

    First of all, if Morgan Stanley did only pretend to purchase bullion on behalf of its clients, while charging them for the "bullion" and storage fees on that imaginary bullion, we have a word for such actions: fraud. So if Morgan Stanley was guilty of swindling its own clients in this manner then why wasn't it required to acknowledge its guilt?

    The answer is simple. Morgan Stanley is based in The Land of Fraud (aka the United States of America). In The Land of Fraud swindling people (whether total strangers or long-term clients) is a way of life - just ask a former Goldman Sachs employee. Thus the Wall Street banksters can commit fraud without ever having to admit fraud.

    Indeed, Bloomberg explicitly confirmed that the SEC's commit-but-never-admit policy has been standard practice for more than four decades, with such settlements then rubber-stamped by the U.S. judiciary. Bloomberg noted this institutionalized corruption when it criticized a (lone) U.S. judge who has had the temerity to challenge the commit-but-never-admit doctrine:

    As part of the agreement, New York-based Citigroup neither admitted nor denied the allegations, a clause which has been standard in such settlements for at least four decades.

    But it gets better for the Wall Street fraud factories. Not only can they commit acts of fraud with impunity while never having to admit to them, but the "fine" they receive after being caught in the act is rarely more than 10% of their proceeds of crime - and often much, much less.

    A classic example was the travesty of American Justice when Wachovia Bank was caught laundering nearly $400 billion dollars of drug cartel profits. It paid less than $200 million in fines and penalties. This was less than 2% of the bank's 2009 profits, and less than 0.05% of the drug-money it laundered.

    Given the colossal size of the crime, given the hundreds (if not thousands) of people who would have been murdered to produce those profits, given the tens of thousands (if not hundreds of thousands) of people who would have become addicted to the drugs which produced those profits; one would have thought that Wachovia would have faced the maximum possible wrath of the law. After all, this crime occurred in the country which has foisted its hypocritical "War on Drugs" upon the world. Yet what we saw (and what we always see in The Land of Fraud) was something far less than "a slap on the wrist."

    The analogy would be a group of serial-rapists who go around buggering their victims with impunity, because not only do they never have to admit to the act of rape; but the "punishment" for their crimes (no matter how frequent, or how aggravated) is never anything worse than a pat on the bum.

    The implication here is clear with a commit-but-never-admit doctrine which goes back at least 40 years: in the United States the word "fraud" is considered redundant. The presumption of the so-called regulators can only be that all of Wall Street's transactions are fraudulent, and thus classifying any individual Wall Street business deal as a "fraudulent transaction" would be like referring to "wet water" or "cold ice".

    This is confirmed by the quantum of fines for this litany of fraud, which is never called fraud. We have another term for when someone is forced to surrender a tiny portion of their profits from a transaction to an "associate": a commission. These farcical legal proceedings are nothing for the Wall Street banksters but a (minor) cost of doing business.

    In other words, it is yet another absurd fraud to refer to the pennies levied against Wall Street as "fines". A fine (by definition) penalizes someone for doing something wrong. Obviously if you "fine" someone only 1% or 2% of their ill-gotten gains you are not penalizing them at all - you are encouraging them to rape-and-pillage as a way of life.

    Thus we come to the latter half of Morgan Stanley's Wall Street script for denying wrong-doing: it's claim that it only agreed to pay its slap on the wrist " to avoid the cost and distraction of continued litigation." As we have seen, the cost of litigation (i.e. doing business) is utterly trivial. As for Morgan Stanley's claim that it would be "distracted by litigation", this would be like a fish claiming it was getting "distracted" from all that swimming.

    If anyone visits Bloomberg News on a daily basis they will find that the plethora of Wall Street fraud has become such a burden on Bloomberg's reporters that they now only publish individual acts of Wall Street wrong-doing of the most extreme/egregious nature. For all the everyday, nickle-and-dime acts of fraud (i.e. involving mere millions) Bloomberg now produces a daily compendium of Wall Street's endless litigation. Indeed, on some days Bloomberg needs to publish several of these compendiums - as the individual summaries of banker misdeeds was too extensive to be included in a single article.

    Given that no one knows their way around a courtroom like a Wall Street bankster, this also begs the question: why would Morgan Stanley's (veteran, highly-paid) legal team pay millions in fines for only pretending to buy bullion for its own clients if (as Morgan Stanley argued) there were "no violations of law and no default or failure to perform [emphasis mine]"?

    Either it did purchase precious metals (and store them) for its clients - as it contracted to do - or it didn't; there is no possible middle-ground here. If it did purchase the bullion; then it writes down the serial numbers, takes a few pictures, produces a notarized affidavit or two, and case dismissed.

    Since it would only cost Morgan Stanley roughly 1/1,000,000th of what it paid in its fine to completely exonerate itself (and pay no fine), there can be no rational explanation for Morgan Stanley "settling" this litigation if it had done nothing wrong. Indeed, if Morgan Stanley is as adverse to "the distraction of litigation" as it claims to be, then why spend two years in this class-action lawsuit - when it would have taken little more than two days to completely exonerate itself (if it had done nothing wrong). Quite simply, Morgan Stanley's deeds totally contradict its own words.

    However, that was 2007 and this is 2012 - and Morgan Stanley is back in the bullion business, betting that the chumps who still bring their business to these fraud factories have very short memories. This time it has "refined" its approach to selling precious metals to its clients, as described by another commentator, Avery Goodman:

    It is now offering to sell you gold, silver and platinum bars, and to keep them "safe", but in a scheme in which they refuse to segregate client assets that they falsely label "allocated" ownership.

    Customers who take them up on their offer are going to be cheated. They will not be purchasing metal in allocated storage. Instead they will be purchasing an unsecured bond with repayment promised in the form of gold, silver or platinum. They will be investing in money, not to purchase real metal, but, rather, to fund the operations of a fractional banking scheme involving precious metals.

    How does Goodman justify those strong remarks?

    Under traditional concepts of allocated precious metals storage, the legal relationship between the warehouse facility and the owner is one of bailment. That means that the warehouse must segregate your property so that it is capable of being identified specifically as yours. It must be able to identify every exact coin, bar and/or piece of jewelry [emphasis mine]…

    As Goodman himself concludes, the intent of Morgan Stanley is clear:

    Apparently, investors who are looking to buy precious metals , for the first time, are reading enough, beforehand, to know that they are supposed to be demanding that their holdings be placed in allocated storage…

    Thus just as in 2005, Morgan Stanley is explicitly promising its clients that it is buying "physical" metal on their behalf, and then storing that metal in individual (allocated/segregated) accounts. However, in 2005 Morgan Stanley was explicitly pretending to be "storing" gold/silver/platinum for them in individual accounts (as alleged by the clients who successfully sued Morgan Stanley in 2007).

    In 2012 Morgan Stanley has added a different wrinkle. Instead of pretending to store precious metals on behalf of its clients (as was alleged in 2005), it has simply invented its own definition of "allocated", where it is not required to actually hold any metal for clients individually - despite what it is advertising to them. Goodman supplies us with Morgan Stanley's unique, 2012 definition of an "allocated account":

    Allocated ownership means that the physical precious metals (bars and coins) you order from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney's Precious Metals Trading Desk are purchased and stored on your behalf, but no specific metal bar or coin is specifically identified as belonging to you [emphasis mine]…

    Before we slide down the slippery slope of semantics, let's take a moment to supply a definition of the verb "to allocate", so that there can be no accusation (on my part) of perverting language:

    1. To set apart for a particular purpose; assign or allot

    Yet those clients who choose to hand their money to Morgan Stanley for one of its "allocated precious metals accounts" will find (as Morgan Stanley explicitly acknowledges in the fine print) that nothing is being "set apart, assigned, or allotted" to them.

    In 2007, Morgan Stanley paid $4.4 million after being accused by its own clients of only pretending to purchase bullion on their behalf, and then charging them "storage fees" on this imaginary bullion - a blatant act of fraud (as alleged). However, in 2012 while Morgan Stanley is once again charging its clients "storage fees" for the bullion they think they are buying for themselves, it is no longer even pretending to store any bullion on their behalf.

    Should Morgan Stanley (again) find itself in the familiar position of being a defendant to more litigation from this latest precious metals scheme, one doesn't have to have a law degree to predict their line of defense. This isn't "fraud", but merely a minor issue of "mislabeling".

    Let us never forget this is The Land of Fraud. If the Wall Street fraud factories can knowingly submit blatantly forged documents to U.S. judges in official court proceedings (countless thousands of times), and have this brushed-off as nothing more than "sloppy paperwork"; I like Morgan Stanley's odds should it once again find itself being sued by its own clients.

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

    Apr 20 11:59 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Oligopolies: Too Big To Shrink

    As regular readers know, one of the first things learned by beginning economics students is that monopolies and oligopolies are unmitigated evils in any free-market economy. They are (by definition) non-competitive and totally parasitic; and in the rare instances when one of these abominations is perceived to be a necessary evil, that inherently parasitic nature demands that they be securely restrained in a regulatory straitjacket.

    Sadly, this appears to also be one of the first lessons forgotten by economics graduates, apparently moments after accepting their degrees. For what do we see in the global economy today? A world which is not only saturated with these mega-monstrosities, but where much, most, and in some cases all regulation has simply been put through a paper-shredder - and all with the complete blessing of the intellectual zombies in the economics community.

    After a quarter-century of allowing these corporate oligopolies to rampage out of control, the carnage is plain to see. The worst revenue-crisis in the history of Western democracy threatens to bankrupt most if not all of these economies. Our tax-base continues to wither and die. We see on the one hand Big Business and the ultra-wealthy refusing to be taxed (while parasitically enriching themselves at the fastest rate in history). Meanwhile everyone else simply has nothing left to tax.

    Forty, solid years of declining wages (in real dollars) combined with forty, solid years of rising structural unemployment has not only caused our poverty rates to more than double (and created millions of homeless), but has transformed most of our former middle-class into a brand-new class: the "working poor" - drones who exist merely to service the Corporate Oligarchs. The result of this forty-year slide in our standard of living is that it now takes two incomes in a household to provide the same standard of living as was formerly provided by one-income families a mere generation ago.

    However, you would never know of this crisis by reading/viewing any of the outlets of the Oligarch-controlled, mainstream media. In the world of Big Media, our governments are being bankrupted by "too much spending". The disconnect with the real world only intensifies when Big Media tells us what it thinks we "can afford" and what we "cannot afford".

    We can afford to spend $trillions invading nations halfway around the world. Apparently no price is too high when it comes to preserving the money-laundering profits of the Banking Oligarchs (the "War for Drugs" in Afghanistan), or hijacking the oil resources of other nations for the Oil Oligarchs (the "War for Oil" in Iraq).

    We can afford to dole out $trillions more every year in corporate welfare (i.e. "subsidies") for these deadbeat Oligarchs - who take about $10 in hand-outs for every $1 they pay in taxes. You "do the math" here, because no one in Big Media will ever do it for you.

    We can afford to pay $trillions in interest every year to the bond parasites, interest on paper which these bankers literally conjured out of thin air (and at no cost to themselves). This is despite the fact that much of this debt, and the interest payments on it are a direct result of either fraud in the interest-rate swaps market or fraud in the credit default swaps market (by the same cabal of bankers).

    At the same time, Big Media isn't shy about telling us what we cannot afford. We cannot afford healthcare, education, aid to the poor, pensions, or any other basic government service - at least not in the same quantity/quality which our parents enjoyed only a generation earlier.

    Even talk about lighting a match to $trillions in fraudulent bond-debt (or their own outrageous "bonuses") and the Banking Oligarchs will howl in outrage about "the sanctity of contracts". Yet when it comes to tearing-up the pension obligations, health benefits, or even wages of ordinary workers, "sanctity" is a word nowhere to be seen - at least nowhere in the world of Big Media.

    Complain about the $trillions that have been squandered in the War for Drugs and the War for Oil over the past decade, and first Big Media tells us that it was all to "fight terrorism". Today (at least if you're an American) protest about the $trillions being squandered in the War for Drugs and the War for Oil and you are "a terrorist."

    Question the $trillions being wasted every year in corporate welfare, and this is where the propaganda of Big Media becomes especially loathsome. It was Big Media which sold "too big to fail" to the sheep: that we were somehow better off providing $15+ trillions in assorted hand-outs and "guarantees" to the Banking Oligarchs, so that they could continue their Empire of Fraud for at least a few years longer.

    While this was the most blatant pimping which Big Media has done for its fellow Corporate Oligarchs, it is far from being the only form of such pandering. Indeed, the more subtle (but equally important) way in which Big Media solicits $trillions for these corporate deadbeats has been so low-key that (until now) it hasn't even had a name.

    Let me introduce readers to "too big to shrink."

    Those who spend any time following the world of international trade know that there is a "war" going on: a war of subsidies. How is this war fought? One government (bought-and-paid-for by the Oligarchs) hands out a fat subsidy to one Corporate Oligarch. Then another government (also bought-and-paid-for by the Oligarchs) offers a bigger hand-out to a supposedly "competing" fellow Corporate Oligarch, and the "war" is on.

    The Oligarchs have discovered that they can be much more effective parasites by remaining as oligopolies rather than becoming simple monopolies, because as oligopolies they can play this endless/infinite game of "subsidies blackmail". If one government refuses to match (or exceed) the welfare anted-up by another government, the "competing" Oligarch throws a tantrum - and begins making threats to that government. Thus each group of political lackeys simply continue to raise the level of corporate welfare.

    What is the threat these extortionists use for this endless game of escalating corporate welfare? If one group of political lackeys fails to match (or exceed) the corporate welfare handed out by another group of political lackeys to "their" Oligarch then that Oligarch will start laying off workers.

    In our global economy now completely saturated by these oligopolies workers have become hostages: give me everything I want, or the workers "get it". Through this game of corporate extortion these oligopolies (with the aid of the Corporate Media propaganda machine) have now all pronounced themselves "too big to shrink."

    The pretensions by both the political lackeys and the Corporate Oligarchs that they actually care about the jobs of the drones ( i.e. the Little People) would be comical if it weren't so revoltingly hypocritical. It is the same Corporate Oligarchs who have been ruthlessly slashing employment (and wages) for these past several decades - all the while promising us that they were bringing us prosperity. In reality all they ever gave us was the Working Poor.

    The politicians are even worse hypocrites. Our massive, structural unemployment problem (the worst in history) could be ended tomorrow if the Oligarchs pulling the strings of these puppets didn't want massive unemployment as a means of permanently depressing wages for the Little People.

    How? The same way that structural unemployment has been eliminated in our economies ever since the Dawn of the Industrial Revolution: through regularly shortening the work week. How did we go from working seven days a week, twelve hours a day (an 80+ hour week) to an official 40-hour work week? We certainly didn't get there by extending the length of the work week - as was recently done by France's Nicolas Sarkozy.

    Sarkozy fans may recall that this is the same man-of-the-people who wants to force all of the unemployed to undergo "mandatory job-training". So first Sarkozy lengthens the work week - to throw more ordinary workers out of work. Then he forces all of the unemployed to get more "job training", so that in the rare instances when one of the Corporate Oligarchs actually creates a job (rather than just destroying them) that instead of there only being ten people lining-up hoping to get that job that there will be thirty or fifty people instead. The inevitable result of the combination of these two policies is to drive wages down even faster, even lower.

    Note that the blackmail of these "too big to shrink" oligopolies goes well beyond endlessly soliciting more welfare. The corrupt lackeys in our government rarely utter a peep when even after all of this welfare, the Oligarchs again put a gun to the heads of their workers and say: "take our unilateral demands of wage/benefit/security cuts, or we'll shut down, move somewhere else - and begin blood-sucking that government, and their workers." As with all parasites, once they have blood-sucked the government and the workers for as much as they can get they simply abandon the dried-up husk and look for a new host.

    When it comes to ridding ourselves of these corporate parasites, examples are all around us with respect to ending unhealthy dependencies - and they all involve some pain and sacrifice over the short-term so that we can recover over the longer term. Alcoholics go through withdrawal to conquer their addiction. However these Corporate Oligarchs are far worse than an addiction, as they have thoroughly entrenched themselves in our governments; in our societies; in our lives.

    They are a cancer, and as with all cancers the alternatives are unpleasant: radiation treatment, chemotherapy, even surgery. Once diagnosed with cancer we willingly undergo this pain and sacrifice because we fully understand the explicit choice we have been given. Kill the cancer, or the cancer will kill us.

    None of these oligopolies is (or was ever) "too big to shrink", and it was even more absurd to suggest that any of them was "too big fail". In fact, in any rational world only the parasites see themselves as too big to fail or shrink. In any rational world, there is only one rational response to parasites: extermination.

    It is only after we have rid ourselves of the parasitic Oligarchs, and their $trillions for wars; $trillions in welfare; and $trillions in interest payments that we will ever have the possibility of returning to economic health. Alternately we can continue to wear the yokes of economic slavery which the Oligarchs have forged for us. The choice is clear.

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

    Apr 20 11:57 AM | Link | Comment!
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