Yesterday, the Dow was up more than 300 points, and gold hit another all-time high before dropping nearly $100 an ounce. You would think the stock market was back and the gold trade was over. Wall Street is excited about recent bad economic news that just may force Fed Chief Ben Bernanke to start a third round of quantitative easing (QE3). I hate to break it to Wall Street, but QE3 is already underway in the form of 2 years of guaranteed near 0% interest rates.
That’s the close up of the economy. The wide shot reveals something much more profound and dangerous for anyone who does not know which direction the giant economic cruise ship is turning.
The problem the world faces today is crushing debt. In America, it is at the local, state and federal level. On top of that, there have been many promises made in the form of retirement and health care. In Europe, the same thing, except there the problem is more immediate and dire. The fate of the European Union hangs in the balance.
There has never been a time in history when debt problems globally have been this monstrous. At the beginning of the year, I quoted 87 year old Harry Schultz. He is now retired but is widely respected for his economic and market calls. In his last newsletter, Schultz summed up the calamity we face by saying, “Roughly speaking, the mess we are in is the worst since 17th century financial collapse. Comparisons with the 1930s are ludicrous. We’ve gone far beyond that. And, alas, the courage & political will to recognize the mess & act wisely to reverse gears, is absent in U.S. leadership, where the problems were hatched & where the rot is by far the deepest.” (Click here to read my original post from January 2011.)
David Knox Barker, who wrote “Jubilee on Wall Street: An Optimistic Look at the Global Financial Crash,” echoes Schultz. Enormous problems will usher in equally enormous changes. Barker said this week, “The final plunge of this long wave winter season is now underway. The international political economy, which has lost its moorings in individual accountability, responsibility and purpose, is breaking up. Socialism in all its forms, including the global banking system that is dependent on the government dole, is collapsing from the weight of its internal contradictions. Socialism is going through an extinction event in the final years of this long wave, receiving its just reward from the crushing long wave forces that it has magnified around the globe.” (Click here to read the complete article by Mr. Barker.)