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April 24, 2019 | We’re Raising the Crash Flag

YOUGHAL, IRELAND – Shhh…! Take off your shoes. Walk on tiptoe. Be quiet. In front of us lies inflation. It hasn’t moved for years – rising only about 1.5%-2% – despite all the prodding from the feds. The Fed tried to shock it awake with $3.6 trillion in stimulus money. And Congress hit it with […]

April 13, 2019 | What America’s Elite Have Planned for Your Money

PARIS – Yes, it is heartwarming, isn’t it? Almost inspiring. We mean… seeing our leaders finally get together… embracing warmly… and agreeing on something. No more trouble. No more strife. Oh, Lord, they’ve seen the light! They are all on board now – Trump, AOC, Bernie Sanders, Powell, The New York Times… and hundreds, thousands of […]

April 8, 2019 | The Real Threat Is in Washington

PARIS – What’s going on now? In all the excitement we risk losing the plot. Close the border with Mexico? A trade deal with China? A WWE wrasler punched in the mouth? No news report is so foolish and so obviously insipid that it fails to be taken seriously. But what matters? What doesn’t? Let’s […]

March 28, 2019 | How the Feds Sedated American Capitalism

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – A Diary Dictum: People are neither always bad nor always good, but always subject to influence. Want to know why tax cuts, spending increases, and EZ money from the Fed don’t work? Wonder how the feds could add $4 trillion in new money, suppress interest rates below zero for an entire decade, add $13 […]

March 26, 2019 | Trump Has Found His “Stimulus Guy”

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – Let’s see… …the yield curve inverted… …the feds’ monthly deficit hit a new record… …the trade deficit hit a new annual record… …the Fed said the economy was weaker than expected… so it said it would lay off the rate increases… …home sales are falling to new lows… with the sales/population ratio […]

March 25, 2019 | A Bomb Cyclone Is Headed for Stocks

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – Oh, Dear Reader… last week’s news from the Fed reminded us of those home videos where someone gets hurt. Fun to watch. But painful if you’re in the picture. And now, front and center, is the U.S. financial system. Have a seat. Get a beer. How often do we get to see […]

March 21, 2019 | Three Reasons Why America Can’t Get a Grip

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – First, we discover that inflation here in the Andes is worse than we thought… Economist Steve Hanke in Forbes: [Last week] Argentina released its February inflation statistics. Inflation spiked, again. Indeed, the official annual inflation rate jumped to 51.3%/yr. While this spike caught most observers off balance, it didn’t surprise me. Each day, […]

March 20, 2019 | Paul Volcker Can’t Save Us This Time…

Still no visible crack in the stock market. But the economy may be breaking down. First, there is growing recognition that the Obama/Trump recovery has been a flop. A headline at Yahoo Finance: Jamie Dimon: The U.S. economy should have grown 40% in the last decade, not 20% Hardly a week has gone by since […]

March 18, 2019 | Firebombs in Paris!

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – You think you’ve got problems? First, a report from a friend in Paris: We were out for a Saturday stroll and rounded the corner to a police van that was getting smashed by… um… freedom fighters, or protestors, or idiots with nothing better to do (not sure which)… I went closer to […]

March 13, 2019 | AOC’s “Solutions” Will Just Make Things Worse

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – First, the jobs report on Friday showed a big collapse in hiring. The official numbers showed 20,000 new jobs added in February, a far cry from the 170,000 that were expected. Then, the Atlanta Fed said projected GDP growth for Q1 slowed to a crawl. It estimates Q1 growth will come in […]

March 11, 2019 | The Only Way to Drain The Swamp…

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – A Washington Post headline caught our eye on the weekend: “Trump to slash spending” At last! Our eyes lit up. Our pulse raced. Finally, the Great Disruptor was disrupting something that really matters. Slash spending! Cut the budget! Fire federal employees! Eliminate agencies. Kill departments. Bring home the troops. Curb the Deep State. MAGA! […]

March 8, 2019 | What the French Could Teach AOC…

LA PAMPA GRANDE, ARGENTINA – Comes word that the Democrats are up to more mischief. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) was expected to introduce a new tax bill earlier this week. The senator says his bill would tax the sale of stocks, bonds, and derivatives at a 0.1 rate. It would apply to any transaction in […]

March 5, 2019 | How the Feds Socialized American Capitalism

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – Mike Pence told the crowd at CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) that “we will never be a socialist country.” What was that? A prediction? Or just political BS? Already, America’s medical system – 17% of the economy – is largely socialized. So is the education system – another 7.3%. And its national […]

March 4, 2019 | The Disappearance of the American Conservative

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – As the quality of government declines – from Jefferson and Adams… to Dubya and The Donald – the observer needs a broader sense of humor. Where he used to titter over a bon mot… or smile wryly at a double entendre, now he can only give a hoarse laugh, like a half-wit […]

March 1, 2019 | Our Advice to America’s 11-Year-Olds

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – What a week! Cohen, Kim, Powell, Xi, Putin – We could barely keep up with the excitement. But, strangely, investors were blasé… It didn’t matter to them that the president’s own lawyer accused him of impeachable offenses while in the White House… or that the Russian leader threatened nuclear war… or that […]

February 26, 2019 | How the Middle Class Was Doubly Cheated

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – Politics – whether local or national – is always a con game. And the con generally increases with the scale. The bigger the “we,” the bigger the swindle. Second Observation Recall our second observation from yesterday: The old “us versus them” is always a scam. People are unique, with thousands of different […]

February 25, 2019 | “Us vs. Them” Is Always a Scam

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – With the Dow once again over 26,000, we have to wonder… Are stocks really in a bear market? We thought we passed the peak in October. If so, we can look forward to a long bear market that will take the Dow down to 15,000 or 10,000… or so. And between the […]

February 22, 2019 | Bill vs. the Bull

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – Warning: The following may not be suitable for today’s namby-pamby, panty-waisted, gluten-fearing audiences.   Cattle Drive Yesterday was the roundup. We set out on horseback early in the morning. But the gauchos were way ahead of us. We were meant to ride to the end of the river, where it enters a […]

February 21, 2019 | America: 52nd in Freedom

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – Let’s see, Dear Reader, what were we talking about? We are on a walkabout… looking at others in order to see ourselves. And, oh yes… the gist of the last few days’ conversation was that you should be more generous… and more open-minded. You should be ready to give your money, your […]

February 20, 2019 | How Mob Rule Comes to America

GUALFIN, ARGENTINA – We are a-wandering… searching high and low… looking for ourselves. Yes, that is what travel is all about: trying to find out who you are.   Rule of the Mob And we begin by looking in our back pocket. There, we have a copy of Polybius’ history of what he calls the […]

February 19, 2019 | We’re Losing Our Originario “War”

I love to go a-wandering along the mountain track. And as I go, I love to sing, my knapsack on my back. Val-deri, val-dera, val-deri, val-dera-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. – “The Happy Wanderer” SALTA, ARGENTINA – Come with us, Dear Reader… We are about to launch on an excursion. We will swing our arms gaily… and bend our […]

February 15, 2019 | U.S. Stocks Are Playing Russian Roulette

SALTA, ARGENTINA – We watch. We wait. We wonder. “The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation,” wrote Hemingway. “The second is war…” he continued. And the third is concrete. We’ll probably see all of them in the years ahead.   Russian Roulette Top macroeconomists are calling for a recession “before the end of […]

February 8, 2019 | Should We “Abolish Billionaires”?

A physician cannot heal the sick if he is ignorant of the causes of certain conditions of the body, nor can a statesman help his fellow citizens if he cannot follow how, why or by what process each event had developed. – Polybius PARIS – Whenever you see the “we should do this” or “we […]

February 7, 2019 | Who’s America’s True Enemy?

YOUGHAL, IRELAND – We warned readers. This week would require a little extra effort. We are challenging one of our most deeply held instincts – the drive to take sides. As expected, many readers sided against your editor yesterday. They were generally in agreement that he is an SOB. But they couldn’t agree on what kind of […]

February 1, 2019 | Is America Really the “Good Guy”?

RANCHO SANTANA – The week went by so fast! Stocks got a big boost on Wednesday, on news of an impending trade deal with China. Then too, Jerome Powell announced that if anything was going to ruin the party on Wall Street, it wouldn’t be the Fed. Rate hikes are off the table… for now. […]

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