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Michael Clark

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  • Japan to the U.S.: 'We Don't Want to Exclude You, But...' [View article]
    Actually, I was speaking to the theme of this article, pan-Asian politics. I am VERY AWARE of Vietnamese resistance to French and American lifestyles and political agendas (although, by the same token, half of Vietnam seemed to enjoy and defend their alliance with Western powers, and the more free lifestyle they lived in the South, because of this).

    A lot of Vietnamese in the south still have a very strong allegiance to Americans, even though they feel we betrayed them in the final analysis.

    On Sep 17 10:33 AM americanincanada wrote:

    > Yes the Japanese abused the Vietnamese. But once they were thrown
    > out of Vietnam the French were not welcomed back with open arms and
    > over a million Vietnamese died trying to keep the US from taking
    > over. So any analysis of how people behave has to be more subtle
    > and deep.
    Sep 17 01:38 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Japan to the U.S.: 'We Don't Want to Exclude You, But...' [View article]
    Asia Hand.

    I love Lao Tse. But he was a monk and described the monk's path.

    Confucius was the political man, the prophet of worldly ambition and leadership.

    The always seems to be a Mister Outside, and Mister Inside. Aristotle and Plato. Confucius and Lao Tse. Freud and Jung. One is the Male; the other is the (soft, pliable, eternal) Female.

    On Sep 17 11:21 AM Asia Hand wrote:

    > Broxburnboy,
    > Totally agree with your sentiments.
    > The U.S. leadership could take a very good lesson from my brilliant
    > friend Mr. Lao Tzu who lived in the 6th century BC,
    > "Water is fluid, soft, and yielding. But water will wear away rock,
    > which is rigid and cannot yield. As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft,
    > and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard. This is another
    > paradox: what is soft is strong."
    Sep 17 01:31 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Japan to the U.S.: 'We Don't Want to Exclude You, But...' [View article]
    Asia Hand.

    I love Lao Tse. But he was a monk and described the monk's path. I follow his path, personally.

    Confucius was the political man, the prophet of worldly ambition and leadership.

    The always seems to be a Mister Outside, and Mister Inside. Aristotle and Plato. Confucius and Lao Tse. Freud and Jung. One is the Male; the other is the (soft, pliable, eternal) Female.

    On Sep 17 11:21 AM Asia Hand wrote:

    > Broxburnboy,
    > Totally agree with your sentiments.
    > The U.S. leadership could take a very good lesson from my brilliant
    > friend Mr. Lao Tzu who lived in the 6th century BC,
    > "Water is fluid, soft, and yielding. But water will wear away rock,
    > which is rigid and cannot yield. As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft,
    > and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard. This is another
    > paradox: what is soft is strong."
    Sep 17 01:30 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Japan to the U.S.: 'We Don't Want to Exclude You, But...' [View article]

    Thanks for the update. I was speaking more in a historical sense. I remember Spengler's book 'Decline of the West' presenting Russia as the barbarian state destined to take over Western Europe, with Germany being the state in between Russia and Western Europe. I think Hitler's obsession with Russia was similar to Spengler's. Hitler wanted to mortally wound the barbarian state so they would not be able to threaten Germany.

    Clearly current German thinking is to prepare for the world after America leaves Europe. Friendship with Russia and Russia's oil fields makes a lot of sense for the Germans.

    Is the Franco-German alliance (counterbalance to America) breaking down at all?

    On Sep 17 11:26 AM petra wrote:

    > Michael, I agree with you, only one thing, Germany does't fear Russia.
    > On the contrary the relationship get's better and better. Former
    > Chancellor Schroeder is a great buddy of Putin and is now on the
    > board of Gazprom, Chancellor Merkel was born and raised in East-Germany
    > and has excellent relations to Russia, as well as most politicians.
    > Furthermore the former communism party is getting stronger and clearly
    > will help to build a even better relationship. The new pipeline between
    > Russia and Germany will make Germany independent from foreign oil
    > and gas and German companies are investing more in Russia than anywhere
    > else and Russians are buying in Germany hand over fist, like Opel.
    > The EU is not very happy about this, because the Berlin-Moscow axis
    > is going to threaten their influence and they could loose the guy
    > who pays the bills so far.
    > I am not in favor of this, but it is going to happen and the US-Administration
    > already noticed it and probably won't push the missile shield in
    > Eastern Europe in order to avoid further outrage.
    Sep 17 01:26 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Japan to the U.S.: 'We Don't Want to Exclude You, But...' [View article]
    I agree with this. But I also understand that EVERY nation in the world has a CIA. It's just one of the sad facts of life. America didn't invent the CIA/Intelligence agency spy network. Imperial China had a CIA. So did Rome. So did every European nation that ever existed. China has a CIA now, many of whom are arresting Chinese expected of working for democratic reform in China.

    On Sep 16 02:39 PM mna wrote:

    > Exactly right, America didn't "police" the world for humanitarian
    > purposes, we did it for our personal political and economic gain.
    > America lost its credibility as a humanitarian when the CIA was created.
    > Now the CIA and its front organization, the misnamed "National Endowment
    > for Democracy" are planting the seeds for more global turmoil. This
    > in turn, sets up the political scene so that our military can intervene
    > in other nations for our economic gain. Knowing this, is it any
    > wonder why so many people around the world hates us?
    > It's too bad more people don't see that the activities that the agency
    > engages in are extremely hawkish and short sighted, and may sow the
    > seeds of a global war if it's not stopped.
    Sep 17 01:20 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Housing Starts Rise. But Remain at Historically Low Levels [View article]
    Do we really want more home construction? Don't we have something like twenty million homes that are empty or in foreclosure at the moment? Anyone building a new home in this climate should be forced to take a sanity test before proceeding.

    This is actually BEARISH for the economy.
    Sep 17 01:15 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Great Depression 2.0: Is it Over Yet? [View article]
    1785 Night Cycle Economic Bubble Debt Deflation begins –
    1803 Day Cycle Economic Bubble Credit Inflation begins.

    Robert A. Becker writes in A Companion to the American Revolution:

    "The states ended the war, as did Congress, with massive debts to pay. Virginia’s public debt stood at 4,250,000 pounds in 1784; Massachusetts’ (debt) at about 1,500,000 pounds in 1785. The state debts included money owed for supplies, their old depreciated war currencies, some of which still circulated, and debts owed to soldiers for back pay. The post-revolutionary states regularly allocated 50% to 90% of their revenues to pay the interest they owed on their revolutionary debts. To raise it, and some principal, the states levied heavy new general taxes, and tried where possible to collect indirect taxes, such as imposts – the very revenues Congress wanted to appropriate for the national debt. The politics of postwar finance and taxation in every state was, then, a matter of vigorous an occasionally violent dispute….
    "The legislature’s refusal to relent on its deflationary debt policy in the midst of the postwar depression was in part responsible for the outbreak of rioting in western Massachusetts known as Shays’ Rebellion. Throughout the new republic, as taxes rose to sink the states’ debts in the midst of deflation and depression, angry taxpayers began demanding relief – tax abatements and postponements, the right to pay in virtually any sort of outstanding ste or federal notes or certificates, or to pay in commodities and produce. Most state (Massachusetts excepted) adopted extensive tax relief programs in the mid-1780’s…

    General Henry Knox, the Commander of U.S. forces who opposed tax rebels in 1786, wrote:

    "As the situation worsened in 1786 armed bands of impoverished debtors forcibly prohibited courts from sitting including the Court of Quarter Sessions in Worcester County. Violence was most intense in New England and the Northeast, where population pressures combined with depleted soil to press subsistence [sp] farmers to desperation. Rioting mobs intent on preventing the enforcement of judgements [sp] against debtors struck in many areas, including New York, Connececut [sp], Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Massachusetts.
    In Massachusetts, Connececut [sp], and Rhode Island the discontent was organized along military lines. thousands of men, commanded by continental army Veterans and current officers of the Massachusetts state militia, were organized into rebel regiments."
    The most important military engagement of these revolts was Shays' Rebellion, a battle for a Federal arsenal at Springfield, Massachusetts, on January 25, 1787.
    Their Creed is, that the property of the United States has been protected from the confiscations of Britain by the joint exertions [sp] of all, and therefore out to be the common property of all; and he that attempts opposition to this creed is an enemy to equality and justice and ought to be swept from the face of the Earth...."

    1821 Night Cycle Economic Bubble Debt Deflation begins –
    1839 Day Cycle Economic Bubble Credit Inflation begins

    The Panic of 1819 was, according to historian David Reynolds, ‘the first great American depression’. Reynolds writes in "Waking Giant: American in the Age of Jackson:"

    "All the way back during the Presidency of James Monroe, American workers got a harsh lesson in the vicissitudes of capitalism when the economy crashed. The Panic of 1819 initiated the nation’s first major depression...."

    Panic and Depression, 1832. In 1832, President Andrew Jackson refused to renew the charter of the Second Bank of the United States; and Jackson transferred government monies to state banks. Nicholas Biddle, head of the National Bank, called in all outstanding commercial loans. A panic followed; and then a recession. Eight hundred banks closed; and the national banking system collapsed. One third of manual laborers were out of work in New York City alone. And the national unemployment rate was over 10%.

    Panic and Depression, 1836. President Andrew Jackson comes to recognize that his defeat of the National Bank in 1832 might present long-range problems for the country. In an effort to short-circuit the inflationary consequences of unlimited printing of money by unregulated state banks, Jackson issued the Specie Circular, which law required all public lands be paid for in gold or silver, hard currency. Land sales and prices collapse. The hoarding of precious metals. Land and metals speculation explodes.

    Panic and Depression, 1837-1843. Historian Reynolds writes that five weeks after Martin Van Buren’s election, national pessimism and erratic bank policies sank the economy and triggered ‘the worst depression that the United States had known’. Reynolds writes that this fourth panic since 1819 lasted from 1837 through 1843:

    1857 Night Cycle Economic Bubble Debt Deflation begins –
    1875 Day Cycle Economic Bubble Credit Inflation begins.

    Donald J. Mabry, in his article ‘Economic History, 1843 -1857’ describes the vigorous American expansion of this Day-Cycle. The inflation of the credit bubble brings inflated prices, an inflated sense of national mission, and an inflated masculine power that brings conflict to the world.

    "From 1843 to 1857, the market economy showed what it could do without a major economic depression. The results were impressive...."

    The Panic of 1857. America did have an economic panic that began in 1857; this led into the Dark Half of the 18 year cycle (the Night-Cycle) which led, shortly thereafter, into the American Civil War.
    J.S. Gibbons writes in The Banks of New York, Their Dealers, the Clearing-House, and the Panic of 1857.

    "The major financial catalyst for the panic of 1857 was the August 24, 1857, failure of the New York branch of the Ohio Life Insurance and Trust Company. It was soon reported that the entire capital of the Trust's home office had been embezzled. What followed was one of the most severe economic crises in U.S. history....The contraction of the economy that followed the panic of 1857 was profound and had parallels in Europe, South America, South Africa, and the Far East causing it to be held as the first worldwide economic crisis.
    "In the U.S., the setback caused significant job loss; a major slowdown in capital investment, commerce, land development, and the formation of unions, as well as in the rate of immigration. The effects of the "revulsion," as it was referred to at the time, lasted a full eighteen months and reverberated until the onset of the Civil War...."

    Gibbons speculates the world-wide financial crisis lasted for 18 months. My thesis, of course, is that the period of chaos and depression lasted much longer, from 1857 – 1875: 18 years. Historians tend to think of history as a succession of unconnected (or loosely-connected) events. Discrete happenings: here today, gone tomorrow. A connecting theory or structure of history will enable historians to organize isolated incidents into a fabric of causes for better understanding cycles in history.
    Historians seem to agree that there was a Panic of 1857, a depression caused by the Civil War 1861-1866, a Panic and Depression of 1869-1871, and a Panic of 1873.

    Miriam Medina writes in her article ‘The Panic and Depression of 1869-1871’:
    "BLACK FRIDAY: The term is often used to designate a dark financial day. September 24, 1869, is sometimes referred to as Black Friday in the United States. On this day a syndicate of New York bankers advanced the price of gold to 162 1/2, causing a panic. It sold at 143 1/8 the previous evening. The Grant Administration dumped $4,000,000 in gold on the market, the price falls in fifteen minutes from 162 to 133, and many investors were ruined. Fortunes were lost. Wall Street brokerage houses failed. Railway stocks shrank. The nation's business was paralyzed. Another such day was Friday, Sept. 19, 1873, when Jay Cooke & Co., leading American bankers, failed. A great crash ensued in Wall Street, the center of financial operations in America, and the historic panic of 1873 began. Credit generally was impaired and many financial institutions were forced into bankruptcy..."

    Ms Medina also writes about the ‘Panic of 1873’.

    "The Panic of 1873 begins another period of [American] depression. The economy is in fact over-expanded, particularly in railroad construction, and the weak link turns out to be the banking house of Jay Cooke and Company, which helped the U.S. Government finance the Civil War and also underwrote the construction of the Northern Pacific Railroad. Jay Cooke and Company, a large and respected banking house declares itself bankrupt, and announces its failure on September 18, 1873. (The bank's collapse precipitates the "Panic of 1873" and the ensuing three year depression during which more than 10,000 businesses fail.)...

    1893 Night Cycle Economic Bubble Debt Deflation begins –
    1911 Day Cycle Economic Bubble Credit Inflation begins.

    . David O. Whitten writes in his article ‘The Depression of 1893’ about both the depression and the impressive growth of the preceding Day-Cycle (1875 – 1893):

    "The Depression of 1893 was one of the worst in American history with the unemployment rate exceeding ten percent for half a decade. This article describes economic developments in the decades leading up to the depression; the performance of the economy during the 1890s; domestic and international causes of the depression; and political and social responses to the depression.
    "The Depression of 1893 can be seen as a watershed event in American history. It was accompanied by violent strikes, the climax of the Populist and free silver political crusades, the creation of a new political balance, the continuing transformation of the country's economy, major changes in national policy, and far-reaching social and intellectual developments. Business contraction shaped the decade that ushered out the nineteenth century...."

    Whitten claims there were two depressions, 1893-1894 and 1895-1897. Of course, these two depressions were probably the same depression, with separate surface appearances, but with a common root system.
    There was also a depression in 1901. And there was also a bank panic caused recession/depression in 1907 – the so-called J.P. Morgan bank panic, caused by America’s leading banking family for the benefit of America’s leading banking family. We are seeing, as we have seen in the other Night-Cycle periods, a sustained de-construction of matter lasting for very close to 18 years. There are bull rallies in the stock markets during periods of economic deflation. There are companies that thrive. There are attempts made by the masters of money to turn the tide of the economy in the direction of prosperity. These rallies are bear traps. The bears control the markets, with their negative energy: a combination of dread, sense of righteous self-martyrdom, appreciation of the tragic (the tragic view belongs to the Romantic) – and a real terror of sudden poverty which leads to tight-fisted saving as an ethic, which new Puritanism sinks the world further into inactivity, as the currency dries up in bank accounts, no longer circulating, which cripples the body politic. Banks refuse to lend, since fewer and fewer people become credit worthy. Fewer and fewer people want to borrow, as borrowing is viewed by the suddenly self-sufficient natures as foolish, at best, or part of a criminal intrigue they wish to avoid. Bankers are viewed as satanic accomplices. The capitalist is equated with the slave-owner and the heartless landlord.

    1929 Night Cycle Economic Bubble Debt Deflation begins –
    1947 Day Cycle Economic Bubble Credit Inflation begins

    We all know about this depression. Actually, there were a series of deep-recessions followed by shallow 'recoveries': 1929-33 depression; 1936-37 depression; 1937-39 deflation; World War II depression 1941-45, and 1946-47 depression.

    In their article 'The Great Depression of 1946', Richard K. Veddar and Lowell Gallaway write:

    "It seems inevitable that some Ph.D. student in economics wome time soon will pick up a recent copy of the Economic Report of the President looking for a dissertation topic and learn that there was a Great Depression in 1946, a topic which he or she will then analyze using all the tools of modern economic analysis. The student will read that real groww national product in 1946 fell 19%, the largest single decrease in annual output in the century of recorded annual GNP data. He or she will also learn quickly that from 1944 to 1947, real output fell by 22.7%. Looking up population figures, the stuent will observe that per capita output actually declined by more than one-fourth in real terms over the three years of conversion from war to peace, and did not regain the pre-depression (1944) level again until 1964.

    "From all this the student will no doubt conclude that the heretofore neglected Great Depression of 1946 was the worst cyclical downturn in modern American economic history, and that, by some measures, it had a greater disruptive impace of the American economy than the earlier, more celebrated Great Depression of 1929 - 1941. For example, in the earlier downturn, real per capita BNP surpassed the 1929 peak levels with 12 years, compared with 20 years it took to surpass the 1944 peak after the 1946 depression. Moreover, while the 1929-33 downturn wa quantitatively a bit larger (30% vs 23%), no single year exhibited a decline of the magnitude of that witnessed in 1946..."

    1965 Night Cycle Economic Bubble Debt Deflation begins –
    1983 Day Cycle Economic Bubble Credit Inflation begins

    No decade has been more rife with social chaos, disintegration of the Patriarchy, racial division, financial uncertainty (both deflation and inflation at the same time: stagflation – and unemployment rates above 10%) -- the U.S. endured riots and burning cities, racial warfare -- and the U.S. lost its first war in Vietnam mainly because she had lost her identity, no longer believing in her 'heroic' mission to save the world for freedom and democracy (i.e., for capitalism). Capitalism and Patriarchy were under attack nationally and internationally. Communism was spreading in both eastern and western hemispheres.

    The recession of 1973-75 was the worst recession since the 1930's. The inflation created by over-liquidation by the Fed led to sharp rises in the price of oil and gold.

    The recession of 1980-82 was caused by Fed Chairman's Paul Volcker's ratcheting up of interest rates to try to make up for years of Fed quantitative easing.

    2001 Night Cycle Economic Bubble Debt Deflation begins –
    2019 Day Cycle Economic Bubble Credit Inflation begins.
    Sep 17 11:25 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bulls Are Wrong About Our Economic Recovery [View article]
    Actually, the stock market put in a bottom in 1932 (40.56), successfully tested that bottom in 1933 (low of 49.68), then roared ahead to 187 in 1937. Then it went sideways for 5 years, trading at a low of 92 in 1942. Then it roared to a new high of 213 in 1946.

    All this time, with stocks acting fairly constructively, the economy tanked, the war came and dragged on -- then in 1946-47, we had another depression.

    The stock market and the economy are NOT connection. Rationalists say they are connected. But the stock market is a casino run for big money players who fix the game through the Fed. Wall Street is not much different than Las Vegas. The House always wins; as we saw last year, even when the lose they win.

    On Sep 17 09:27 AM TeresaE wrote:

    > The stock market truly did not recover until after WWII.
    > It took nearly two decades after the final, and brutal, descent of
    > '32/'33 to "recover."
    Sep 17 09:38 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • ACORN Update [View instapost]
    I feel the same. We also need to re-think how we elect our candidates, how we spend billions of dollars to make the election a form of the Super Bowl, the cost of which limits us to candidates who are either personally rich, rich lawyers, or people who are willing and eager to prostitute themselves to the rich and famous. 95% of Americans are excluded from becoming candidates for public office because they can't afford to play the game.

    On Sep 15 03:45 PM CautiousInvestor wrote:

    > It's really getting out of control and I've never felt as marginalized
    > and alienated as I do now.
    > We have to start serious work on term limits, line item vetoes, greater
    > public accountability and a host of other measures to contain their
    > spending and expansion of governemnt into our lives and wallets.
    > We have to miscreants more accountable; they need to be subject to
    > hearings.
    > Thanks for the interest and the link.
    Sep 17 09:22 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • ACORN Update [View instapost]
    A bullet in the brain was their way. Are you advocating that, Nova? Is that what you're supporting to clean up the world?

    On Sep 15 03:01 PM nova wrote:

    > I still say that the real socialists (Mao, Hitler, Stalin, etc.,)
    > knew and applied very effective means in dealing with "liberal" parasites.
    Sep 17 08:51 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Big CAT Breakout Signals Bulls Are Far from Finished [View article]
    I don't argue with your technical analysis. Why CAT is advancing is the mystery. Forward PE is almost 30. This market advance is like a frightened cat climbing a very thin rail afraid to look back.

    None of our banking problems have been fixed.

    We are in the midst of a 'solvency crisis' and we are feeding it liquidity. That's like feeding a drowning man more water.
    Sep 17 08:41 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Capacity's Comeback Strongly Indicates Recession's End [View article]
    In fact, the chart shows a downtrend for the entire life of the chart. I could not read the starting date. Our capacity utilization has not recovered from any of the downturns on the chart.

    Recovery means a higher high and a higher low. We are trending lower...and we're still trending lower.
    Sep 17 08:24 AM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Good News: Dollar Headed Down [View article]
    If the dollar falls enough, Chinese peasants will be standing in line waiting to buy American cars. It's going to have to fall a LONG way for that to happen.

    And then the dollar in my pocket will be worth about 6 cents.

    Isn't the Dollar, itself, America's largest export? And the more it falls, the less foreigners want to own it.
    Sep 17 08:20 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Not So Fast on That Recovery, Bernanke [View article]
    Just what a junkie needs: more junk. Adrenalin junkies need to cut down on adrenalin. Debt junkies needs less debt. But the rulers of America own most of the assets in American and deflation would destroy their power so they choose more junk, more adrenalin, more debt....anything to not have to face the law of deflation. But deflation will win.
    Sep 17 08:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Interview: Economist Michael Pento Finds the Fed 'Completely Unnecessary' [View article]
    Independence does not mean unaccountability. Independence does not mean secrecy. Independence does not mean directorate of the government.
    Sep 17 07:56 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment