“An Epistle to the Good”, Jim Walker, Asianomics, 19 December 2008 — Excerpt:
Dear saver, in the Great Depression the government of the United States repudiated its promise to pay the owners of gold deposits (it was on the Gold Standard at the time) in the physical metal. Yes, it is only 70-odd years ago that the US behaved in a way that is now only associated with the worst of tinpot regimes – Argentina being the classic example in the last decade when it confiscated its savers’ US dollar deposits.
Today the Federal Reserve, and its cohorts around the world, is stealing your money in an equally insidious way. With its move to a zero interest rate policy the Federal Reserve, like the Bank of Japan before it, is trying to starve you – the lifeblood of every economy.
While Motown CEOs bleat and beg in front of Congress; while failed regulators, politicians and economists stamp their feet and scream for ‘More!, More!, More!’; and while high-rolling bankers worry about a smaller bonus this year – no-one speaks for, cares about or is interested in you – the savers of America that did nothing wrong but are now being penalised like criminals.
Think about it. You are a retired previously self-employed tradesman. You worked hard all your life and accumulated a nest egg for old age. You didn’t work for the government (so no bloated public sector pension at age 50) and you didn’t have a union pulling for you (so no pension at 65 either). You worked, you saved and then you retired. You didn’t buy into Bernie Madoff’s hedge fund, you didn’t speculate on CDOs and you didn’t risk your money in high-flying investment bank equity. You just put it in the bank and lived quietly off the interest. Until Ben Bernanke decided to take your money away. Until Ben Bernanke decided to drive you into penury. Until Ben Bernanke decided that YOU are the problem because you don’t borrow enough or spend enough. What a sick, disgusting world you and I live in.
What Ben Bernanke is intent on doing is taking away the only thing that might now save you – oh poor, interestless saver – and that is deflation. At least with deflation your real wealth would be rising and you could eat a little into your capital without lowering your net worth. But even that crumb of comfort is to be denied you. The Mad Hatter has decreed that inflation must reign. His message, and the message of all economists that support the grandest larceny ever, is that we savers are the scum of the earth. We deserve nothing – literally.
It is going to be a bleak Christmas for many former investment bankers, construction workers and real estate agents. But they all had a chance to make hay when times were good. For you savers of the world, the people that finance investment and ultimately make all the wheels of commerce turn, there will be no Christmas cheer, no return for your frugality and prudence. Just the prospect of an idiot from Princeton driving us all to ruin.
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To read other articles about these things, see the FM reference page on the right side menu bar. Of esp relevance to this topic:
- about the Financial crisis – what’s happening? how will this end?
- about the End of the post-WWII geopolitical regime
- some Good News about America!
Post on the FM site about forecasts and warnings of this crisis:
- A brief note on the US Dollar. Is this like August 1914?, 8 November 2007 — How the current situation is as unstable financially as was Europe geopolitically in early 1914.
- We have been warned. Death of the post-WWII geopolitical regime, Chapter II, 28 November 2007 — A long list of the warnings we have ignored, from individual experts and major financial institutions.
- Geopolitical implications of the current economic downturn, 24 January 2008 – How will this recession end? With re-balancing of the global economy — and a decline of the US dollar so that the US goods and services are again competitive. No more trade deficit, and we can pay our debts.
- What will America look like after this recession?, 18 March 2008 — The recession will change many things, from the distribution of wealth within the US to the ranking of global powers.
- Making us dumber, chanting “Dude, where’s my recession?”, 3 June 2008 — Economic columnists do a disservice to their readers by ignoring the data showing a weakening economy.
- Another warning from our leaders, which we will ignore, 4 June 2008 — An extraordinarily clear warning from a senior officer of the Federal Reserve.
- When did “Dude” predict a recession? How severe?, 6 June 2008 — Why accurate economic forecasting is difficult, what we know about current conditions, and warnings from a top economist.
- Consequences of a long, deep recession – part I, 18 June 2008
- Consequences of a serious US recession – part II, 19 June 2008
- Consequences of a long, deep recession – part III, 20 June 2008
- A look at one page of what lies ahead in America’s history, 7 August 2008 — Death of an American industry.
- “The Coming US Consumption Bust”, by Nouriel Roubini, 6 September 2008
- The most important news of the month. Perhaps the year., 29 September 2008 — Warnings from our foreign creditors.
- Forecasting the results of this financial crisis – part I, about politics, 13 October 2008
- Forecasting the results of this financial crisis – part II, a new economy for America, 14 October 2008
- Miscelaneous news and thoughts about the financial crisis, 16 October 2008
- The Coming Global Stag-Deflation (Stagnation/Recession plus Deflation), 28 October 2008
- A look at the next phase of the crisis, as it hits the real economy, 31 October 2008
- A look at out future, 2009 – 2010 … and beyond, 9 November 2008
Originally published at Fabius Maximus and reproduced here with the author’s permission.