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The American Dream, Vanishing

Home ownership, small business, apple pie and hot dogs, are flittering away under the heavy hand and micro management of government (note: Chevrolet is no longer included in the American Dream since the Government takeover).  Federal, State and local governments seem to think they can manage our lives better than we, suggesting they know best.  Government control and intrusion into private business is a formula for failure, always has been and always will. 

Recent economic data belies the positive Government spin, and the "summer of recovery" looks like the "mission accomplished" slogan of the Bush administration.  More and more retail traders are leaving the equity markets for "safer" investments and to remove themselves from the schizophrenic market mood.   The moaning and gnashing of teeth over concerns of receding manufacturing data (the hope and basis of the expected recovery) seems disingenuous in the face of the significantly weak labor market.  The labor market has never recovered and continues to be the indicator that suggests there never was a recovery.  Government and institutional spin pushed market values higher on a hope that business spending will lead the economy upward; but if consumers aren't working, Business America's growth to fill depleted inventory is but a "head fake".

Bernanke and company are firing blanks as they look to buy US debt with interest payments from the bad paper of mortgage backed securities.  This act alone is driving foreign debt buyers away from US Debt, recently validated as China is preferring the Euro over the Dollar.  The scenario reminds me of the "Dumb and Dumber" movie where the main characters replace real money with IOU's expecting that the owner of the cash would be happy to find his briefcase full of worthless notes.  Such is the current situation in the US as Government fills the Social Security fund with IOU's (Social Security is in the red this year) and the Feds buying US debt using "bad paper" and more likely printed money.

Early today, during this mornings trading session, the markets seemed to be ignoring the really bad economic data as market values attempted to push values upward.  I look at the move as continued institutional market manipulation as they try to lure retail investors back in, but don't be fooled. As soon as retailers enter the markets, like sheep and pigs, they'll be slaughtered as institutions pull out with an attempt to book profits.

Lowe's missed expectation and lowered future outlook, mirroring reports from Kohl's and Cisco.  I wish there were positives, real positives, to mention, but there is none.  Research in Motions lackluster sale of the Torch, is indicative of a company that has failed to inspire itself and consumers to continue to use its products and services - I'm seeing a hint of Word Perfect and Novell, in Research in Motion.

The American Dream of individual rights and ownership is giving way to government rights and redistribution.  When you see people lining up in the thousands for government handouts and protestors suggesting that "jobs are a right", or when government workers earn twice the pay as private workers, then you have to consider the Dream is gone.  The expectation that Government is the provider and that individuals have no accountability further suggests that the US Dream and Constitution is hanging by a thread.  Side note: This weekend a horrible accident at an off-road race killed spectators that had practically put themselves right on the race course and news commentators are looking to blame the driver and/or promoters rather than the spectators whom had no common sense that stepping into or standing right next to a race course with speeding vehicles would be safe.

Summary:  The markets don't feel right.  The economy does not feel right, but the feeling is based on fact and actual data that is overlooked by most, or ignored.  If you must be in the markets, stay protective.  Gold is on the rise - buying Gold or Silver makes sense with the continued rise in debt and no confidence in the US Dollar.

Disclosure: No positions