Article 43


Next Recession, Next Depression

Thursday, March 16, 2023

The Next Recession Part 30 - The Next One Is Here

image: lehman and svb banlks
With the real wages and salaries of American civilian workers lower than 5 years ago, with their debts at all time highs, with the prices of their main asset--their homes--under pressure from overbuilding and fraudulent finance, and with scant opportunities to rise for the children they struggled to educate, Americans face a dim future.
- Return of the Robber Barons, 2007
“We’ve got strong financial institutions.  Our markets are the envy of the world. They’re resilient, they’re innovative, they’re flexible. I think we move very quickly to address situations in this country, and, as I said, our financial institutions are strong.”
- Henry Paulson, Real Clear Politics , March, 2008
“Long live the welfare king.” This person really exists, his name is James E. Cayne, and taxpayers just handed him almost $50 million. Mr. Cayne got this gift when J.P. Morgan renegotiated the terms of its takeover of BEAR STEARNS. The buying price went up fivefold, fetching Bear Stearns stockholders $1.2 billion instead of the $236 million in the agreement brokered by the Fed last week… James E. Cayne did especially well AS A RESULT of the taxpayer’s generosity because as the former CEO of Bear Stearns, and current chairman, he owned a great deal of the company’s stock.
- CEO Welfare, Truthout 2008
“I have full confidence in banking regulators to take appropriate actions in response and noted that the banking system remains resilient and regulators have effective tools to address this type of event. Let me be clear that during the financial crisis, there were investors and owners of systemic large banks that were bailed out . . . and the reforms that have been put in place means we are not going to do that again.
- Janet Yellen, 3/12/23


Our central bank - the Federal Reserve - has been HIKING INTEREST RATES, telling us it’s needed to battle inflation because there’s too many dollars floating around, and too many Americans FLUSH WITH CASH.

What they’re doing is trying to save capitalism and the capitalists, not “we the people”

With the recent bank collapses - lots of money disappeared - just like that - so the economy isn’t nearly as ”flush with cash” as it was.


Silicon Valley Bank CEO Greg Becker sold $3.6 million worth of the company’s shares less than two weeks before the bank’s collapse, drawing scrutiny from lawmakers like Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., who called on the bank to claw back the compensation.

The USUAL EXCUSES from government will need to switch:

To Wall Street and its backers, the solution to any price inflation is to reduce wages and public social spending. The orthodox way to do this is to push the economy into recession in order to reduce hiring. Rising unemployment will oblige labor to compete for jobs that pay less and less as the economy slows.

Instead of saying there’s too much money floating around, or the working class makes too much money, - SQUEEZING US WITH HIGHER AND HIGHER INTEREST RATES to take money out of our pockets circulation, they’ll bailout the banks by printing more money and literally give it to them - just like they did in 2008.

And they’ll keep SQUEEZING THE REST OF US dry.

And we’ll let them.

Like we always do.

We all know inflation is mostly caused by CORPORATE GREED, not the working class’ meager salaries.

current inflation is not only induced by the liquidity injected into the financial system but also being fuelled by speculation in food commodity markets and corporate greed as energy and food corporations continue to rake in vast profits at the expense of ordinary people.

But if it were true, then the recent bank collapses would be a godsend, as millions and millions of dollars disappeared just like that - meaning the “flush with cash” nonsense politicians propagandize - is laughable.

Just like the 2008 crash when President Obama and government left “we the people” to live on the streets with austerity policies that cut hard and deep into all our lives - the bankers will be rewarded.

Get ready for another round of homes foreclosures, and poverty worse than any we’ve ever seen, why the bankers are literally given money to do with as they please.

Why we don’t revolt en mass in a general strike is the biggest philosophical question I’ve though about since OCCUPY WALL STREET failed.

In the months ahead, there’ll be more layoffs, less disposable money, less owner-occupied homes, more suicides, more rich people, and more suffering for the masses.


Is The U.S. Banking System Safe?

By Administrator
The Burning Platform
March 15, 2023

With the recent implosion of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank, the largest bank failures since 2008, I had an overwhelming feeling of deja vu. I wrote the article IS THE U.S. BANKING SYSTEM SAFE? on August 3, 2008 for the Seeking Alpha website, one month before the collapse of the global financial system. It was this article, among others, that caught the attention of documentary filmmaker STEVE BENNON and convinced him he needed my perspective on the financial crisis for his film GENERATION ZERO. Of course he was pretty unknown in 2009 (not so much anymore) , and I continue to be unknown in 2023.

The quotes above by the lying deceitful Wall Street controlled Treasury Secretaries are exactly 15 years apart, but are exactly the same. Their sole job is to keep the confidence game going and to protect their real constituents the Wall Street bankers. And just as they did FIFTEEN YEARS AGO, the powers that be once again used taxpayer funds to bailout reckless bankers. Two hours before the only solution the Feds know - print money and shovel it to the bankers - MICHAEL BURRY explained exactly what was about to happen.

When Biden, Yellen, and the rest of the Wall Street protection team tell you the banking system is safe and they have it under control, they are lying, JUST AS I SAID fifteen years ago.

“Our economy and banking system is so complex and intertwined that no one knows where the next shoe will drop. Politicians and government bureaucrats are lying to the public when they say that everything is alright. They do not know. Should you believe a governmental agency that wants the public to remain in the dark to avoid bank runs, or an independent analysis based upon balance sheet analysis?”

Back in the days of THE BIG SHORT, before the public knew about toxic subprime mortgages issued by criminal bankers and packaged into derivatives given a AAA rating by the greedy compliant rating agencies, the Wall Street cabal knew time was growing short, but that didn’t keep the lying BASTARDS like John Thain (Merrill Lynch), Dick Fuld (Lehman Brothers), Angelo Mozilo (Countrywide), Kerry Killinger (Washington Mutual), and others from pretending their institutions were healthy and profitable - right up until the day they collapsed. Lying is in the DNA of every financial executive, politician, government bureaucrat, and Federal Reserve hack.

The quote from Hemingway seemed pertinent in 2008 and is just as pertinent today.

“How did you go bankrupt?” Bill asked.
“Two Ways,” Mike said. “Gradually and then suddenly”.

There are many similarities between what was happening in 2008 and what is happening today. BEAR STERNS WENT BELLY-UP in March 2008 and was taken over by JP Morgan in an arranged marriage by Bernanke and the Fed. The usual suspects assured the country this was a one off situation and the banking system was strong. The Wall Street banks had been reporting huge profits because they were hiding the massive losses on their balance sheets. If they didnt foreclose, they didn’t have to write-off the mortgages. The toxic debt just kept building.

In the summer of 2008 the banks started to report losses, but assured investors it was only a one time hit. All was well. The week I wrote my article Wall Street bank stocks had soared 20% or more because their reported losses for the 2nd quarter were less than expected. My article cut through all the BS being shoveled by the likes of Larry Kudlow, Jim Cramer, the Wall Street CEOs, and the supposed analyst experts who still had buy ratings on these bloated debt pigs. My assessment was somewhat contrary to the CNBC lies:

“I would estimate that we are only in the early innings of bank write-offs. The write-offs will at least equal the previous peaks reached in the early 1990s. If a large bank such as Washington Mutual or Wachovia were to fail, it would wipe out the FDIC fund. If the FDIC fund is depleted, guess who will pay? Right again, another taxpayer bailout. Whats another $100 or $200 billion among friends.”

Merrill Lynch was reporting billions in losses and issuing new stock to try and survive. They were clearly in a death spiral and I saw the writing on the wall:

“How long will investors be duped into supporting this disaster? You can be sure that the other suspects (Citicorp, Lehman Brothers, Washington Mutual) will be announcing more write-downs and capital dilution in the coming weeks.”

By the end of September Lehman Brothers and Washington Mutual were gone. Merrill Lynch and Wachovia were acquired for pennies, and Citicorp became a zombie bank sustained by the Fed for years. My article was dire and my analysis showed we were in for years of pain and the worst drop in housing prices in history:

“There are $440 billion of adjustable mortgages resetting this year. That means that the majority of foreclosures will not occur until 2009. This means that the banks will still be writing off billions of mortgage debt in 2009. The reversion to the mean for housing prices and the continued avalanche of foreclosures is not a recipe for a banking recovery. Home prices have another 15% to go on the downside.”

“The consumer is being forced to CUT BACK on eating out and shopping. The marginal players will fall by the wayside. Big box retailers, restaurants, mall developers, and commercial developers are about to find out that their massive expansion was built upon false assumptions, a foundation of sand, and driven by excessive debt.

It seems I was quite accurate in my assessment, as home prices went down more than 15%, not bottoming until 2012. This global financial collapse brought an end to the big box expansion phase, as many went under, and the survivors concentrated on their existing stores. We entered the worst recession since the 1930s. The most interesting part in going back to my 15 year old article was the psychology of the crowd revealed in the comment section. Despite my use of unequivocal facts, I was branded a doomer, overly pessimistic, and an idiot. Many commenters said the Fed would save the day and it was time to buy the dip. If they had bought the dip on the day of my article, they would have lost 44% over the next 8 months during a relentless bear market.

The question now is whether the current situation is better or worse than the situation we faced in 2008. There are some factual items which may help in assessing where we are. In August 2008 the national debt was $9.5 trillion (67% of GDP). Today it is $31.5 trillion (130% of GDP). Total household debt was $12 trillion in 2008 and stands at $17 trillion today. The Feds balance sheet was $900 billion in 2008 and now stands at $8.3 trillion. Inflation was at a 17 year high in August 2008 at 5.9% and stands at 6.0% today. GDP was growing at 3.2% in 2008, versus 2.7% today. An impartial observer would have to conclude our economic situation is far worse than 2008.

image: fed h.4.1 balance sheet 2007 - 2022

But all you hear is happy talk and false bravado from Wall Street analysts covering their own insolvent industry. They constantly harp on the fact mortgage lending is much more risk averse and secure. Of course the next liquidity driven crisis is never driven by the same exact factors as the previous liquidity driven crisis. But the key factors are always the same. Loose monetary policies by the Fed lead to excess risk taking by greedy bankers, hedge funds, and corporate executives. Then something blows up and the billionaires get bailed out at the expense of the taxpayers who have been getting devastated financially by the inflation caused by Powell and his printing press.

So far, this latest banking crisis “that no one could see coming”, except any honest financial analyst who understands math and history, is following the same path as 2008. The narrative about banks not taking credit risk and peddling bad mortgages is being blown up as we speak. Instead of the risk being centered on toxic mortgages like 2008, the risk has permeated every crevice of the financial system due to years of 0% rates by the Fed. Virtually everything is overvalued by 30% to 50% because cheap debt was available to everyone for everything. Extremely low interest rates led to extreme risk taking by bankers, corporations, home buyers, auto buyers, and politicians. The unleashing of inflation by Powells policies has led to the tide going out and revealing who was swimming naked.

image: daily mall blurb

While risk managers at banks across the world have been concentrating on diversity and pushing woke agendas about transgender rights, climate change and practicing ESG investing, they ignored the simple concept that bonds they acquired at 1% lose money when interest rates go to 4%. Just as the banks in 2008 were sitting on billions of unrealized losses from the toxic mortgages on their books, the same banks are now sitting on billions of unrealized losses from the newest toxic asset U.S. Treasuries. Everyone knows it. It’s just math. They have been counting on Powell to reverse course, but with reported inflation still at 6%, hes trapped. Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank were swimming naked and when depositors realized that fact a bank run ensued. Poof!!! Sudden Crisis.

image: unrealized bank losses

The narrative being spun is this is a regional banking crisis confined to smaller banks. This narrative is being spun by the big Wall Street banks and their captured media mouthpieces, with the intent that depositors at smaller banks would panic and shift their deposits to the “safe” Wall Street banks. The truth is that the Wall Street banks have massive levels of unrealized losses and desperately need deposits to keep them from facing the same fate as Silicon Valley and Signature. Those unrealized losses arent going away and will have to be realized in the near future.

image: big 4 banks unrealized losses

Credit Suisse has been the crazy uncle of the financial industry, kept in the basement for years. Their demise is a foregone conclusion, but that has been covered up and ignored by those in the know. They appear to be the new Lehman Brothers, which will blow up the already insolvent European financial system and spread a contagion of losses across the financial world. Those quadrillions in obscure derivatives are an unknown element in the coming meltdown. But you can be sure they wont have a positive impact.

Both small and large banks have little to no reserves left to lend. Debt issuance is the Potemkin ingredient in keeping this farce of an economic system running. Without debt to finance overextended consumer lifestyles, funding wars in Ukraine, and the woke agendas of corporations and politicians, the entire facade collapses.

image: bank reserves

Real wages have been negative for 23 consecutive months. A banking crisis means banks will reduce lending dramatically. Consumers have been forced to live off their credit cards for the last two years, as their savings dried up and their wages bought less. A deep recession is in the cards. Consumers are already pulling back and spending less. With credit drying up and spending going down, employers across the globe will start laying people off. As unemployment rises, people will stop paying their enormous mortgage and auto loans. This will lead to more losses at banks, just like 2008/2009.

image: real earnings

Everyone will look to the Fed to save the day. And they will pretend they have everything under control, but they dont. Back in 2008 their balance sheet was only $900 billion. Today it is 9 times as large. The relentless QE while interest rates were suppressed has left them with enormous unrealized losses on the mortgage and Treasury bonds they bought. They let the inflation genie out of the bottle and now it is ingrained in the economy. Companies who gave 2% annual raises to their employees for a decade are now forced to give 4% or more due to the Fed created inflation.

image: fed h.4.1 balance sheet 2007 - 2022

If the Fed slashes rates and goes back to money printing through QE, the current 6% inflation rate will skyrocket back to double digits. If Powell does nothing or continues raising rates, the banking system will likely collapse. His choices are deflationary collapse or hyper-inflationary collapse. Hes stuck between the proverbial rock and a hard place. Since he is controlled by Wall Street, he will slash rates, restart QE, backstop the bankers, and screw the average American, as always. My conclusion reached in my 2008 article, just before the financial system imploded seems, for the most part, to apply today.

“The U.S. banking system is essentially insolvent. The Treasury, Federal Reserve, FASB, and Congress are colluding to keep the American public in the dark for as long as possible. They are trying to buy time and prop up these banks so they can convince enough fools to give them more capital. They will continue to writeoff debt for many quarters to come. We are in danger of duplicating the mistakes of Japan in the 1990s by allowing them to pretend to be sound. We could have a zombie banking system for a decade.”

We never paid the piper and cleaned out the excesses of the previous banking crisis. The financial condition of the nation is far worse than it was in 2008. The financial condition of the average American is far worse than it was in 2008. The financial condition of the Federal Reserve is far worse than it was in 2008. The financial condition of the banking system is far worse than it was in 2008. Our leaders kicked the can down the road in order to give the system the appearance of stability, and we let them do it. We could have taken the pain in 2008 and let the system reset after purging all the bad debt and bad banks, but we chose the wrong path and will now suffer the consequences described by Ludwig von Mises a century ago.

“There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as the result of voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved.”
- Ludwig von Mises

My advice 15 years ago at the end of the article was to reduce your deposit exposure at all financial institutions, dont invest in financial stocks, follow the writings of honest truthful analysts and this final piece of advice, which is as solid now as it was then:

“When you see a bank CEO or a top government official tell you that everything is alright, run for the hills. They are lying. They didn’t see this coming and they have no idea how it will end.”

We are at the beginning of the next global financial crisis, not the end. Fourth Turnings do not fizzle out. They build to a crescendo of chaos and war. This financial crisis will usher in the military conflict that has been beckoning for the last year. Time to buckle up and prepare for the coming storm.


Posted by Elvis on 03/16/23 •
Section Revelations • Section NWO • Section Dying America • Section Next Recession, Next Depression
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Saturday, March 04, 2023

New Cars and The New Order

image: wef

In the 2010 WEF report titled GLOBAL REDESIGN, Schwab postulates that a globalized world is best managed by a “self-selected coalition of multinational corporations, governments (including through the UN system), and select civil society organizations (CSOs).” This is the exact opposite of a democracy.
- The Top 10 creepiest and most dystopian things pushed by the World Economic Forum

Rudimentary kill switches have long been sold to the public as anti-theft devices for less than $50 apiece. But many subprime auto lenders across the country are using more sophisticated versions to ensure that car buyers make their payments.
- Late Payment? A “Kill Switch” Can Strand You and Your Car

Welcome to the year 2030. Welcome to my city - or should I say, “our city.” I don’t own anything. I don’t own a car. I don’t own a house. I don’t own any appliances or any clothes.
- Welcome To 2030: I Own Nothing, Have No Privacy And Life Has Never Been Better


Now we can’t even afford new cars.

Pretty soon, the working class may have nothing but bicycles to get around. 

I wonder WHAT HAPPENED to the $10k Chinese CHERY ?

image rich and poor

New Cars Are Only for the Rich Now as Automakers Rake In Profits

With pandemic-era chip shortages fading, manufacturers are keeping inventories low - and prices high. The shift to EVs will make things worse.

By David Welch and Keith Naughton
February 14, 2023

A shiny new car in the driveway has been an emblem of middle-class prosperity for generations. But for the typical American family, it’s now a distant dream.

The average monthly payment for a new car has soared to a record $777, nearly doubling from late 2019, according to Kelley Blue Book owner Cox Automotive. That’s ALMOST A SIXTH of the median after-tax income for US households. Even USED MODELS have climbed to $544 a month on average.

The sticker shock extends well beyond the US, where inflation is a thorny political issue for President Joe Biden as the 2024 election looms. In Europe, prices are flirting with records. Used-car prices soared in Japan last year, and in China, a rapid push to electric vehicles means consumers will have to pay more in some cities.

At the root of the problem is automakers; new mantra: Keep inventory lean and price tags fat. Three years after the pandemic triggered a global shortage of semiconductor chips and crippled car manufacturing, Ford Motor Co., General Motors Co. and their overseas rivals are notching big profits. Even as the chip crunch shows signs of easing, theyre pledging to keep production in check.

And because electric vehicles cost about 25% more than the average car, the shift to plug-ins is about to make the affordability crisis even worse. Add soaring interest rates to the mix, and new cars - like home ownership and a college education - are fast becoming the domain of the rich.

“The idea of a new car in every Americans driveway is not the world we live in,” said Charlie Chesbrough, a senior economist at Cox.

Sky-High Payments

For a decade, the average new-car payment in the US bumped along at roughly $400 a month. That’s about as much as the typical American household can shell out and still meet other major expenses, said Jonathan Smoke, chief economist at Cox. But it crossed that mark in November 2019 and has been soaring ever since.

The average price for a new vehicle in the US has jumped to almost $50,000, up 30% since 2019, according to JPMorgan. Though prices have retreated somewhat in recent weeks as production recovers, the pullback isnt enough for most consumers to comfortably buy a new car. The average price of a USED CAR, meanwhile, now stands at about $27,000, Cox data show.

Manufacturers are reaping the benefits of selling fewer but more expensive cars. Last year, automakers SOLD about 13 million vehicles in the US, down 8% from 2021 and the lowest in a decade. But Ford’s gross profit rose 4.4% in 2022 from a year earlier, while GM’s adjusted EARNINGS grew by about $200 million to reach $14.5 billion. Margins for some manufacturers are expected to narrow this year amid global economic weakness.

In Europe, meanwhile, new-car prices are at all-time highs and still climbing, according to data from ING Research. Vehicle shortages drove used-car prices up in Japan through most of last year. China’s economic slump has kept prices at bay, but major cities are making it difficult to register internal-combustion vehicles amid a push toward EVs, which tend to be more expensive.

Keeping Inventories Low

Its a sea change from the business model that defined car manufacturing for decades: Run plants at full tilt and then use deep discounts to move the metal. In the US, automakers customarily carried 60 to 100 days of inventory. These days, manufacturers are targeting about half that much to lower overheads and keep prices high.

“We’ll never go back to the inventory levels that we were at in the past,” GM Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra told investors last year.

Her rival, Ford CEO Jim Farley, has said he doesn’t want to pay for billions of dollars in inventory or offer discounts and other incentives to offload it. Toyota Motor Corp. and Nissan Motor Co. have vowed to attempt the same strategy.

‘You’re not going to see most manufacturers go back to where it was three or four years ago,’ Judy Wheeler, vice president of US vehicle sales for Nissan, said in an interview. “We’ll keep that supply and demand in a level state.”

There are some signs, though, that consumer pain will ease slightly as supply-chain snarls abate. Ford Chief Financial Officer John Lawler said this month that he expects new-car prices toFALL 5% in 2023 as automakers dial up the discounts, while Nissan’s Wheeler predicted prices will drop toward “a more normal level.” Tesla Inc. and Ford SLASHED PRICES on ELECTRIC VEHICLES.

Short-Lived Relief

Dealers are skeptical that automakers will keep inventories in check, said Rhett Ricart, whose Columbus, Ohio-based Ricart Automotive Group is a major dealer of Ford, Nissan and Chevrolet models.

“They all talk about 30 to 45 days’ supply of cars. They won’t do it,” Ricart said in an interview. “These chips aren’t a big issue any more. Car wars is back.”

But any recovery in supply is likely to happen in fits and starts. Barra and Jack Hollis, executive vice president of sales for Toyota Motor North America, see the industry getting enough chips to sell 15 million vehicles in the US this year, which is about 12% below where sales were three years ago. Hollis said there could be more than 4 million vehicles worth of pent-up demand from the chip shortage, keeping prices from falling fast.

“We will have another year with a supply-constrained sales number,” Hollis said. “Prices keep rising. It’s clear that demand is still outstripping supply.”

For used cars, Cox’s Smoke sees prices falling only 4% this year, in part because automakers have not been leasing as much. That translates to fewer recent-model cars coming back to market.

Sercy Sanders has been riding the bus in Pittsburgh ever since the transmission blew on his 2006 Acura TL in early January. When the cost of repairing it was more than the car was worth, Sanders got pre-approved for a loan from his credit union and set out to find a 2016 Honda Accord for under $17,000. But he found nothing for less than $19,000 and now is looking at models that are over a decade old.

“Thats just the way it may have to be if I want to stay in my price range and not have too high a monthly car bill,” said Sanders, 48, a customer service representative and single dad of two high schoolers. “It’s very frustrating. I wanted a newer vehicle that I felt would be more reliable. With an older used car, you just never know what you’re going to get.”

And for those looking for a new car at a budget price, the options are limited. Domestic automakers stopped building compact cars in the US because they couldn’t make money on them.

The dearth of cheaper models means more new cars are being snapped up by affluent consumers. Nearly 30% of the market is from households with annual income of more than $150,000, up from 22% in 2016, said Mark Wakefield, managing director at consulting firm AlixPartners.

“You’ve seen a move to more wealthy people buying cars,” Wakefield said. “The bottom part of the market sort of fell out.”



Miss a Car Payment and Ford’s Patent Could Shut Off Your A/C

By Paige Smith

Ford Motor Co. has filed for a patent on technology that could remotely shut down your radio or air conditioning, lock you out of your vehicle, or prompt it to ceaselessly beep if you miss car payments. Ford said it has no plans to use the technology, contained in just one of the many patents filed by the auto-making giant.

Still, it emerges at a troubling time for car owners. Loan delinquencies have been steadily ticking back up from their pandemic lull. Cox Automotive data showed severely delinquent auto loans in January hitting their highest point since 2006. The use of technology to aid repossessions isn’t new, but the patent application is wide-ranging, even proposing the idea that an autonomous vehicle could drive itself to a “more convenient” location to be collected by a tow truck.

“It really seems like youre opening up a can of worms that, as a manufacturer, you don’t really need to be doing,” said John Van Alst, a senior attorney with the National Consumer Law Center.

According to the Ford patent application for repossession-linked technology, cruise control and automated windows could be disabled if a consumer doesn’t acknowledge a notice of an overdue car payment. Ford could also shut down key fobs, door locks - even the accelerator or the engine itself.

“Disabling such components may cause an additional level of discomfort to a driver and occupants of the vehicle,” the patent application states.

Wes Sherwood, a spokesman for the Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker, said Ford has “no plan to deploy this.” Ford was granted more than 1,300 patents in 2022 as part of “encouraging a culture of innovation,” the automaker said in an email.

“We submit patents on new inventions as a normal course of business, but they aren’t necessarily an indication of new business or product plans,” Ford said in the statement.

“The patent is concerning because by creating this technology, lenders with less-than-stellar reputations for repossessions could possibly take advantage of it,” NCLCs Van Alst said.

“You’ve now created this device which is like the doomsday device in Dr. Strangelove,” he said.

And what about the beeping sound? Car owners would be unable to shut off the noise without first contacting their auto lender about a delinquency, the patent application shows.

Ford called the sound “incessant and unpleasant.”


Posted by Elvis on 03/04/23 •
Section Revelations • Section NWO • Section Dying America • Section Next Recession, Next Depression
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Thursday, December 15, 2022

America In Collapse 7 - More Suffering

image: class warfare

Over the past several decades a “global elite” has emerged whose connections to each other have become more significant than their ties to their home nations and governments
- Rise of the Superclass, 2008
Signs have been around for awhile hinting at the breakdown of the US society. For instance at WORK, with its FEUDALISTIC UNDERTONES, and HOME RAGE from those getting kicked out of their houses, may only be the beginning.  Some even predict a BREAKUP OF THE UNITED STATES.
- Bad Moon Rising Part 34 - US Revolution, December 17, 2008
For the most part, American bankers whose rash pursuit of profit brought on the 2008 global financial collapse didn’t get indicted. They got bonuses.
- Vietnam’s Solution to Corrupt Bankers, 2014
“The TRANSITION FROM DEMOCRACY to oligarchy usually starts with the very wealthy acquiring political power by buying influence with elected officials,” Hartmann wrote in his book, explaining that their influence grows until they “completely CONTROL THE MECHANISMS OF INFORMATION” and “their agenda overwhelms the governing agenda.”
“In the final stages, Hartmann said, “the oligarchs RISE UP through seemingly democratic processes and take complete or near complete control of government, smashing the programs that give economic and democratic power to the people and cruelly punishing dissent.
- Return of the Oligarchs
In periods of acute crisis for the bourgeoisie, Fascism resorts to anti-capitalist phraseology, but after it has established itself at the helm of State, it casts aside its anti-capitalist rattle and discloses itself as a terrorist dictatorship of big capital.
- Growth of Socio-Fascism in Britain
The only thing that can possibly transform the U.S. government to one that cares for the voters who elect it, rather than for the plutocracy that controls it, is a UNIFIED OPPOSITION BY ALL OF THE PEOPLE, irrespective of their social class or political beliefs. The energy driving such a mass movement must flow from the personal actions taken by each of its individual participants.
- Challenging America’s Plutocracy


AFTER newly-elected Democrat President Biden screwed the working class by NOT SENDING OUT promised covid stimulus checks a year and a half ago, things here keep getting so bad for the 99%, THAT:

Shoplifting is up markedly since the pandemic began in the spring what’s distinctive about this trend, experts say, is whats being taken - more staples like bread, pasta and baby formula… Those who are stealing to survive are not out there talking to the Washington Post about it They’re ashamed to be in the position in which they have to steal.

Over on YouTube, an Epic Economist VIDEO reports:

Walmart, Target, Rite Aid, Home Depot, CVS, Walgreens, Best Buy, and many other big brands are now threatening to close stores due to an industry-wide problem that is causing major losses to retailers and severe consequences for their customers. According to several reports, the holiday season is making things exponentially worse, and experts note that many companies will be forced to raise prices even further to offset their losses or face the risk of going out of business in the months ahead.

Last week, Walmart joined the growing list of retailers being plagued by raging theft amid the busiest shopping season of the year. In the past few months, big pharmacy chains like CVS, Rite Aid, Walgreens, and retail giants including Kroger, Target, Best Buy, and Home Depot, all publicly cited shoplifting concerns and reported acute financial losses.

In the retail world, shoplifting is often referred to as “shrinkage” and this year, shrinkage is biting a big chunk out of retailers profits. Over the past twelve months, rising retail theft cost the industry $94.5 billion in losses, nearly double the amount from a couple of years ago, according to data from the National Retail Federation. In fact, last month, Target CFO Michael Fiddelke said that the company expects to lose over $600 million in gross profit by the end of the year due to shrinkage from shoplifters, “This is an industry-wide problem that is often driven by large networks of offenders,” Fiddelke stressed.

“It’s a misdemeanor. It’s not a felony. So, people are using theft as a business to fund other illegal activities because there’s not a penalty for it,” emphasized California Retailers Association President Rachel Michelin. Given that shoplifting isn’t a priority in the justice system, big retailers are forced to hire loss-prevention specialists to combat the issue themselves. And thats all at the company’s expense.

Walmart CEO Doug McMillon said the big box retailer would close several stores if thefts continue to plague those locations. Right now, Walgreens is actually in process of closing five locations in San Franciso, where the rate of shoplifting turned stores unprofitable. Since 2019, more than 10 Walgreens stores in the city here shut down due to the same reason.

The latest events have alarmed Home Depot CEO Bob Nardelli, who said last year that retail theft was an epidemic, that was spreading faster than COVID. Our associates are afraid. The retail salespeople are afraid. Consumers are afraid. We’ve got to get control of this. And if the administration doesn’t get control of this, they’re abdicating it to the businesses, both public and private, stresses the CEO.

Researchers with the Heritage Foundation warned that the surge in organized retail theft will shutter storefronts and further increase consumer prices. “If companies can’t increase their costs to cover the cost of the theft, if they’re not making a profit, then they’re going to go out of business,” Puzder alerts. Stores in cities where the issue is rampant are left with two options: further hike up prices to cover the cost of theft or close locations struggling to turn a profit, said Joel Griffith, a Heritage research fellow."The companies have to make up for that loss somehow,” Griffith explains.

The problem is getting worse by the day, and its spreading all over the industry. And even though big brands are seeing their balance sheets being impacted by this wave of organized robbery, at the end of the day, the hardest hit will be ordinary Americans, who may lose access to their favorite stores and cope with skyrocketing prices that never seem to stop rising.

For the 18 years this website’s been on the internet, inequality keeps getting worse.

Don’t expect any help from politicians masquerading as LAW MAKERS who manage to stay in power, and blame us for everything, while capitalism’s inequality and blood sucking rich run the country. Will “we the people” ever FIGHT BACK?

To show us how out of touch, and insulting our elected officials are with the suffering people they claim to represent, Business Insider quotes SENATOR MITCH MCCONNELL:

“You’ve got a whole lot of people sitting on the sidelines because, frankly, they’re flush for the moment,” the Kentucky Republican said. “What we’ve got to hope is once they run out of money, they’ll start concluding it’s better to work than not to work.”

This year AT AT&T:

CEO John Stankey said that customers are “starting to put off paying their phone bills”

Even the Federal Reserve NOTED IN JUNE people can’t afford a gallon of milk anymore:

“They are also doing things such as purchasing half a gallon of milk instead of a gallon.” Contacts broadly expected to continue to push up their prices over the next 12 months to keep up with rising costs.

Our BRAINWASHED KIDS are being led to think unionizing a couple of Starbucks’ and Amazon warehouses are going to miraculously end a decades old era of corporate America’s outsourcing, offshoring, and replacing of American workers with foreigners and automation.  Unless they, boomers, young, old, black, white, latinx, etc, rally together in a general strike of all workers everywhere, and grind this country’s production to a halt - they’re going to be in for a rude awakening.

Starbucks and the powerful corporations will just CLOSE THE UNIONIZED STORES, and laugh at us, while government protects them.

Starbucks will tell you it’s all about safety. But a lot of workers are second-guessing that, as are customers who frequent the shops. They say it seems to be more about squashing union activity. About one-third of the stores that are about to close are involved in union efforts.  This is what piqued the curiosity of a lot of workers and customers. These are busy spots, including one on 23rd and Jackson in Seattle, and the beloved Gaybucks, as the kids call it, on Capitol Hill. People are very curious about whether safety is the real reason.

Over at our southern border, battling Covid isn’t the big thing.


“The record number of illegal migrants coming to the US southern border is OUT OF CONTROL and President Joe Biden appears to be doing nothing to help local law enforcement deal with the crisis,” Maverick County Sheriff Tom Schmerber said.

And President Biden is sending billions to a war that may make this all moot.

How’s the GREAT RESIGNATION doing?

Supposedly - every talking head on mainstream news and politician on TV is talking about a “worker shortage” leang to everything from CUTTING UNEMPOLYMENT in the middle of Covid, to the raising of interest rates on our credit cards, to INFLATION and price gouging from corporate America.

The millenials are so broke that they’re BLAMING BOOMERS for their lousy lives:

“As millennials are now the poorest generation ever, we at Hunter Design Company will no longer be offering a senior discount,” a text overlay on the video reads. Because let’s face it, if you get to retire, you don’t really need it. So, Hunter Design Company is proud to offer, for the first time ever, the millennial discount. A discount for millennials by millennials because you’re entitled to it.

Over at GALLUP:

Lower-income Americans are about as likely now as last fall to say they are experiencing either severe or moderate hardship - 74%, compared with 70% in November.

Footware News REPORTS:

As consumers pivot to mainly non-discretionary categories, big-box and department store retailers have seen excesses in discretionary categories like apparel.

In the last week, retailers like Target, Walmart and Kohls have mentioned cancelling or cutting down on orders to stay ahead of their higher-than-usual inventories. Meanwhile, brands that partner with wholesale retailers have noted the impact of these cancellations.

Kohl’s has also pulled back on order receipts and increased promotions to get through an inventory glut.

Even FACEBOOK is laying off:

Meta Platforms is planning to cut expenses by at least 10% in the coming months, in part through staff reductions

MSNBC last month talked to a bunch of regular people:

EVERYBODY IN CONGRESS, almost everybody in congress is certainly wealthy, independently wealthy, more money than they would be making from their congressional salaries, even if they came from poverty,” said Chris. “And I don’t think they understand how expensive it is to live right now. I don’t think they understand how expensive rent is, the number of houses signed for less than $300,000 has dwindled to almost nothing in the last five years, just the fact that nobody can access, not even building wealth, but just getting stability.”

When asked by Luntz “to describe” in one word “conditions in America right now,” respondents did not hold back.

“Poor,” said Tiffany of New York.

“Disparity,” said Jen of Washington, D.C.

“Struggling,” said Sal of Florida.

“Confusing,” said Kirsten of Illinois.

“Uncertain,” said Paul of New York.

“Depressing,” said Brian of Michigan.

“Miserable,” said John of South Carolina.

“Divided,” said Susan of California.

“Shaky,” said Jana of Nevada.

“Unstable,” said Rich of Idaho.

“Polarized,” said Chris of Pennsylvania.

“Dire,” said Valerie of California.

“Dismal,” said Debra of Wyoming.

“Division,” said Bob of Texas.


Walmart says shoppers are swapping lunch meat for beans in the latest sign that inflation is roiling low income households

By Aine Cain
Business Insider
August 16, 2022

Walmart shoppers are reaching for beans over lunch meats, the company said Tuesday, in the latest sign that INFLATION is hitting low-income consumers the hardest.

While Walmart’s average customer is an EDUCATED SUBURBAN WOMAN, the chain has also historically catered to LOWER INCOME SHOPPERS. When inflation first began to spike, the company even saw a BOOST in sales, owing to its penchant for steep discounts. But as prices continued to skyrocket, Walmart began to deal with its own CUSTOMERS erasing items from their shopping lists or swapping certain purchases for cheaper substitutes.

“Instead of buying maybe deli meats or beef, they’re trading down to things like canned tuna, chicken and, even, beans,” Walmart CFO John Rainey told investors. “We’re seeing the same thing in the quantity, where they’re trading down for smaller pack sizes that are more affordable. So instead of buying 12 items to buy six items in a pack.”

Rainey said the big box giant’s shoppers are also generally buying fewer items and foregoing general merchandise for cheap food options like Walmart’s private label offerings.

In June, the inflation rate hit 9.1%, a 40-YEAR-HIGH. Since then, prices have begun to cool down somewhat. In July, PRICES only rose 8.5% year over year, marking an end of the trend of month-over-month spikes. Still, ongoing inflation has made many Americans feel substantially poorer whenever they hit the grocery store or the gas pump.

Fuel proved to be an increasingly-expensive necessity over the summer. Staples like eggs, beef, and pork have also seen surging costs. In June, the price of beef jumped 4.5%% month-to-month, while eggs increased 3% and pork leaped 3.1%.

But these high prices aren’t borne equally by everyone. Rising prices have especially harmed low-income to middle-class individuals, as opposed to their wealthy counterparts. Thousands of citizens fell below the poverty line in 2020, and experts have expressed concern that ongoing inflation could make matters worse by sparking a recession.



Parents are buying fewer baby clothes, a sign of deep financial distress

By Parija Kavilanz
CNN Business
November 21, 2022

Customers are pulling back on spending at Gap and Old Navy - particularly in one specific category that shows just how much families are feeling inflations pinch.

In tough times, parents typically skimp on themselves and focus on meeting the needs of their growing children. But Gap and Old Navy said Thursday theyҒre now seeing less spending on babies and kidsҒ items.

“Spending on kids is one of the last areas most parents cut back on, so softness at Gap and Old Navy suggests that some households are under significant financial strain, said Neil Saunders, retail industry analyst and managing director of Globaldata.

Because these brands cater to mid-to-low income shoppers, this decline in spending is a very real indicator of how deeply budget-conscious households are feeling the pain of higher prices. They’ve been forced to go to their last resort.

Overall inflation is up 7.7% compared to 2021, even as the latest reading on prices that households pay for necessities and discretionary purchases showed a SLIGHT SHUTDOWN.

The cutback in kids’ clothing spend at Gap Inc. (GPS) - which operates its namesake Gap stores, Old Navy, Banana Republic and Athleta divisions under its corporate umbrella - was part of the companys third-quarter earnings release Thursday.

While overall company sales were up 2% from last year to $4 billion for the quarter ended October 29, the retailer noted that sales growth at both Gap and Old Navy were offset by weaker sales in kids and baby categories.

“Old Navy customers still have a propensity to buy. That being said, it continues to experience softness in spending and shopping frequency from its lowest-income consumers,” Bobby L. Martin, Gap Inc.Ғs interim CEO, told analysts during the earnings call Thursday.

It’s not just Gap. According to market research firm NPD, purchases of infant and toddler clothing are down this year: From January through October, sales of clothing for infants and toddlers declined by 3% in revenue and 6% in units sold versus the same period last year.

“This is a huge indicator of financial strain,” said Marshal Cohen, chief retail industry analyst with NPD. “One has to look at the total picture. Are families just trading down to less expensive products and stores or is it a pullback in general?”

“The other thing to watch is how long the pullback lasts,” he said. “Parents can go just so long in clothes that are getting a bit small, but not for long. So a quarter slide is one thing - multiple quarters [of decline] send a strong message.”

Turning to resale

As parents purchase fewer new items, theyre turning to resale platforms instead to buy kids clothing and other necessities for less.

Resale platform Mercari said a survey of more than 2,000 parents in March by Globaldata found that 62% said they bought secondhand items for children sometime in the past year. More than a quarter said inflation motivated those purchases, and half of parents surveyed sold a secondhand item in the kids’ and baby items category.

Mercari said parents of kids 2 and under are the most active secondhand shoppers, according to its survey.

“This shift [to reuse] is gaining momentum in 2022 as consumer prices rise amid inflation and ongoing uncertainty,” Mercari US CEO John Lagerling, said in Mercari’s 2022 REUSE REPORT: FAMILY EDITITION.

“Americans spent a total of $143 billion on kids and baby items alone in 2021. By 2030, this figure is expected to grow to $182 billion. In our opinion, that’s simply too much,” he said.

“Secondhand shopping is becoming a lifeline for budget-strapped households,” said Burt Flickinger, retail expert and managing director of retail consultancy Strategic Resource Group.

“Families are relying heavily on CREDIT CARDS to pay their rent, food and gas bills and everything else. “Household wealth is down, while cost of food has surged,” said Flickinger. “If they didn’t plan for it earlier, parents are shopping at resale and taking hand-me-downs from family and friends.”


Posted by Elvis on 12/15/22 •
Section Revelations • Section NWO • Section Dying America • Section Next Recession, Next Depression • Section Austerity American Style
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Friday, September 23, 2022

The Next Depression Part 66 - Interest Rates Hikes, and Forced Unemployment

image: class warfare
In the boardrooms of corporate America, profits aren’t everything - they are the only thing. A JPMorgan research report concludes that the current corporate profit recovery is more dependent on falling unit-labor costs than during any previous expansion.
- Why The Rich Love Unemployment
After saying that “the halls of Congress are no joke,” Ocasio-Cortez said that “standing up to corporate power, and established interests is no joke. It’s not just about standing up and saying these things, but behind closed doors, your arm is twisted, the vise pressure of political pressure gets put on you, every trick in the book, psychological, and otherwise is to get us to abandon the working class.”
- AOC - Bernie Sanders Won’t Abandon the Working Class, 2020
To Wall Street and its backers, the solution to any price inflation is to reduce wages and public social spending. The orthodox way to do this is to push the economy into recession in order to reduce hiring. Rising unemployment will oblige labor to compete for jobs that pay less and less as the economy slows.
- Austerity American Style Part 22 - Forced Unemployment
Fed Chair Powell says
(1) interest rate hikes will inflict pain,
(2) no other choice exists.
Both points mislead.
(1) Pain will fall unjustly on those losing jobs (they did not cause an inflation the FED failed to prevent).
(2) Powell’s FED refuses to discuss price/wage controls that COULD DISTRIBUTE PAIN DIFFERENTLY.
- Richard Wolff on Facebook, 9/21/2022
THANK YOU President Obama for bailing out the BANKS, so the American People are the big owners, and thank you very much for the new Credit Card bill thats supposed to stop THE BIG BANKS from SCREWING US on on our credit cards starting next February.  I’ve had my CWA branded Union Plus Credit Card for at least 25 years, and don’t think I’ve ever missed a payment in all that time.  Saturday I got a letter from the bank that the INTEREST RATE IS GOING UP from 12% to 18% starting next month.
- Obama’s Big Business Bailout Screws The Public, 2009
The combination of lost jobs and millions of foreclosures means a lot of folks are homeless and hungry for the first time in their lives. One of the consequences of the recession that you don’t hear much about is the record number of children descending into poverty. The government considers a family of four to be impoverished if they take in less than $22,000 a year. Based on that standard, and the government projections of unemployment, it is estimated that the poverty rate for kids in this country will soon hit 25 percent.
- Poverty In Central Florida, November 2011
Today I had the opportunity to speak before Congress about a major driver of inflation that’s being ignored - price gouging corporations.
- Robert Reich’s Full Testimony Regarding Corporate Profits and Inflation to House Oversight Committee, September 21, 2022
Average long-term U.S. mortgage rates jumped by more than a quarter-point this week to their highest level since 2007 as the Federal Reserve intensified its effort to tamp down decades-high inflation and cool the economy.
- CBS News, Moneywatch, September 22, 2022
The only thing that can possibly transform the U.S. government to one that cares for the voters who elect it, rather than for the plutocracy that controls it, is a UNIFIED OPPOSITION BY ALL OF THE PEOPLE, irrespective of their social class or political beliefs. The energy driving such a mass movement must flow from the personal actions taken by each of its individual participants.
- Challenging America’s Plutocracy


Axios Macro

By Neil Irwin, Courtnay Brow
September 22, 2022

The overriding message out of the Fed’s communications yesterday was a simple one: Its leaders believe that some meaningful economic pain is necessary to bring inflation down, and they are willing to impose it.

It is a contrast with just three months ago, when the policymakers clung to a more optimistic story in which inflation resolves itself with a mere bumpy patch for the economy.

Why it matters: The Fed is now forecasting a meaningful rise in unemployment over the next year as it pushes interest rates to their highest levels since 2007 - which implies that it will not only tolerate a recession or near-recession, but see it as evidence of success.

“We have got to get inflation behind us,” chair Jerome Powell said in his news conference. “I wish there were a painless way to do that. There isn’t.”

The big picture: What matters most for both the economic and political outlook is who will feel that pain, and how. Already, some on the left are assailing the Fed for throwing workers under the bus in its inflation-fighting campaign.

Perhaps most prominently, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) tweeted yesterday that she’s “been warning that Chair Powell’s Fed would throw millions of Americans out of work - and I fear he"s already on the path to doing so.”

If yesterday’s projections prove accurate meaning a 4.4% unemployment rate late next year, up from a low of 3.5% in July ח that would imply another 1.5 million Americans unemployed.

Hypothetically, unemployment could rise that much due to a mere soft patch in the economy. But in practice, historical examples of that playing out are scarce. Unemployment only rises that much in recessions.

There’s no doubt that in this scenario, moderately HIGHER UNEMPLOYMENT IS, IN FACT, A GOAL OF THE FED, with all the moral and political consequences that implies. But it goes too far to say workers bear the entire brunt of the war on inflation.

Tighter money from the Fed has its first-order effects through financial markets, as witnessed in the S&P 500’s 21% collapse this year.

Indeed, if you believe, as many people do, that the era of zero interest rates and quantitative easing made the rich richer and increased inequality, then the era of rate hikes and quantitative tightening ought to have the reverse effect.

There are many channels through which the Fed tightening can help bring down demand and inflation without people losing their jobs.

For example: An affluent investor decides they can’t afford a vacation home because of stock market losses. Or a business accepts lower profit margins because it believes it can’t raise prices in a slump.

Reality check: But just because those channels exist doesn’t mean job losses won’t be the most salient in how people experience the economy.

The bottom line: The 1.5 million people who may lose their jobs in the Fed’s scenario will experience a lot more pain than the tens of millions who experience a moderately lower balance in their investment portfolio.


Posted by Elvis on 09/23/22 •
Section Revelations • Section NWO • Section Dying America • Section Next Recession, Next Depression
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Wednesday, September 21, 2022

The Next Depression Part 65 - Another Global Collapse

imahe the end is near

The economic situation in Europe is far worse than it was a year ago, and it is going to continue to get worse as AUSTERITY continues to take a huge toll on the economies of the eurozone.
- Bad Moon Rising Part 56, Fiscal Collapse, 2013
With the exception of a few thousand very powerful people, the entire worlds’ population, all seven billion of us, are trapped - trapped into a criminal debt creating banking system that has taken hundreds of years to perfect and to come to fruition.

[T]he banking dynasties, such as the House of Rothschild, control the political processes around the world to such an extent that their network of private central banks have the right to create money completely out of thin air and then charge interest on that nothingness. The polite term is “Fractional Reserve.” Lending but in reality it is just simple fraud. The result is that the whole world is currently drowning in a sea of fraudulent debt.

There is absolutely no defence for the present system whereby private bankers create money completely out of thin air for themselves to lend and then charge interest on that “nothingness.”

If our government were to go down the path of a new Bradbury Treasury Note (as well as pursuing the banksters with Common Law for their crimes against humanity) then our debt burden would be removed overnight - there would be no deficit and no national debt.
- Bankers, Bradburys, Carnage And Slaughter On The Western Front , Justin Walker, UK Column, November 19, 2012
In just over a week the government is probably going to enter full-scale austerity. Republicans are refusing to end tax loopholes for big corporations and billionaires, choosing to let the sequester occur instead. Unless something changes, and soon, $1.2 trillion in cuts to defense and domestic spending begin to kick in. This will hit jobs, growth, and above all it will hit real people.
- Austerity American Style Part 9, 2013
The war industry loves the Christian fascists who turn every conflict from Iraq to Ukraine into a holy crusade to crush the LATEST ITERATION OF SATAN
The glue holding this Christianized fascism together is not prayer, although we will get a lot of that, but war. War is the raison dtre of all systems of totalitarianism. War justifies a constant search for internal enemies. It is used to revoke basic civil liberties and impose censorship.
Christian fascists have never hidden their agenda or their desire to create a “Christian” nation, any more than Adolf Hitler hid his demented vision for Germany in Mein Kampf. They prey, like all fascists, on the despair of their followers. They paint gruesome portraits of the end times when the longed-for obliteration of non-believers presages the glorious return of Jesus Christ. The battle at Armageddon, they believe, will be launched from the Antichrist’s worldwide headquarters in Babylon once the Jews again have control of Israel. The closer we get to Armageddon, the giddier they become.
Violence is embraced as a cleansing agent, a key component of any fascist movement. The Christian fascists do not fear nuclear war. They welcome it.
- Jesus, Endless War, and the Rise of American Fascism, Chris Hedges, May 8, 2022


Economic Collapse Has Arrived In Germany. Will The U.S. Be Close Behind?

By Michael Snyder
The Economic Collapse Blog
September 20, 2022

Things are starting to get really crazy in Germany.  The Germans are dealing with the worst inflation crisis that they have seen since the days of the Weimar Republic, and meanwhile economic activity is starting to shut down all over the nation.  Of course other European countries are facing similar problems, but Germany was supposed to be the economic rock that the rest of Europe could always depend upon.  Unfortunately, the decision by the Russians to cut off the flow of gas through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline is hitting Germany extremely hard.  If we could just get both sides to agree to end the war in Ukraine, that would greatly help matters, but that simply isnt going to happen.  In fact, it appears that Vladimir Putin has decided to greatly escalate matters, and the western powers will inevitably greatly escalate matters in response.  What this means is that the economic turmoil that we are witnessing in Europe isn’t going anywhere any time soon.

This week, we got some inflation numbers out of Germany THAT ARE SO HIGH that it is difficult to believe that they are actually real

German producer prices rose in August at the fastest rate since records began in 1949, data released by the Federal Statistical Office showed today, pointing to a further increase in consumer prices.

Producer prices of industrial products rose by 45.8 percent compared to the same month of last year. Compared to July 2022, prices rose 7.9 percent.

Soaring energy prices on the back of Russia’s war against the Ukraine remain the main driver behind rising prices.

If we continue to see monthly increases of around 8 percent, next year at this time we could be talking about a yearly jump of close to 100 percent.


How bad do things have to get before we actually start using the term “hyperinflation”?

Energy prices are the biggest reason why inflation has gotten completely out of control, and the German government has been forced to nationalize a huge natural gas company in order to TO KEEP IT FROM GOING UNDER.

The German government is closing in on an agreement to nationalize gas giant Uniper SE, as Berlin moves to stave off a collapse of the countrys energy sector.

A provisional agreement between the government, Uniper and its main shareholder, Finland’s Fortum Oyj, has been reached, according to people familiar with the situation. While contracts havent been signed, Berlin is aiming for an announcement later this week.

According to the CEO of Uniper, the company has been losing about 100 million euros a day during this crisis.

Needless to say, the German government cannot save everyone, and so a lot of firms won’t survive this crisis at all.

For example, a manufacturer that has been making toilet paper for Germans for nearly 100 years is now HEADED INTO INSOLVENCY

Hakle has been a German household name since 1928, but the Duesseldorf-based toilet paper manufacturer said all it took was this summer’s gas price shock to drive it into insolvency.

Sadly, this is just the beginning.

According to the German central bank, the nation is moving into a BROAD-BASED AND PROLONGED DECLINE IN ECONOMIC OUTPUT

“Economic activity may pull back somewhat this quarter and shrink markedly in the autumn and winter months,” the central bank said, adding that it didnt forecast this adverse scenario in a June report.

Bundesbank continued: “There are mounting signs of a recession in the German economy in the sense of a clear, broad-based and prolonged decline in economic output.” It said a contraction is expected in the third quarter with deeper declines in economic activity in the fourth.

“High inflation and uncertainty with regard to energy supply and its costs affect not only the gas and electricity-intensive industry and its export business and investments, but also private consumption and the service providers dependent on it,” the central bank said.

You can refer to such a scenario as a “recession” or a “depression” if it makes you feel better.

I call it an economic collapse.

The U.S. economy will soon be experiencing immense turmoil as well.

According to billionaire Barry Sternlicht, the Fed’s exceedingly foolish policies are pushing us toward a SERIOUS RECESSION

In an interview with CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Thursday, Barry Sternlicht, the chairman and CEO of Starwood Capital, said he believes Americans are facing a major recession if the Federal Reserve proceeds with several more rate hikes as a means of curbing inflation, which is reportedly the central bank’s plan.

“The economy is braking hard,” Sternlicht told the financial news outlet, according to the Daily Caller. “If the Fed KEEPS THIS UP, they are going to have a serious recession and people will LOSE THEIR JOBS.”

He is right on target, but instead of saying people “will lose their jobs” he should have noted that lots of people are ALREADY being laid off.  This is something that I have been documenting ON MY WEBSITE for quite some time, and this week we learned that GAP HAS DECIDED TO LAY OFF HUNDREDS OF CORPORATE WORKERS

Gap Inc. is cutting about 500 corporate jobs as the clothing retailer struggles with declining sales.

The job cuts, which include open positions, will be primarily at Gap’s offices in San Francisco, New York and Asia and hit various departments, a representative for the retailer confirmed Tuesday. The moves were first reported by The Wall Street Journal.


In this environment, very few workers are truly safe.


The struggling TV and film industry continues to run face first into bad news. This week it was reported that Warner Bros. Discovery was firing 100 TV ad salespeople at the same time that Paramount has considered ending offering Showtime as a standalone service, Bloomberg reported.

Netflix followed suit with their own layoffs, the report says. The company has reportedly let go hundreds of employees and abandoned some of its office space. At the same time, the firms stock price has collapsed and fallen more than 60% from its all time highs.

Back in 2008 and 2009, millions of Americans lost their jobs.

Will we see something similar in the months ahead?

And just like during “the Great Recession,” the housing market is really starting to slow down.  In fact, we just learned that HOMEBUILDER CONFIDENCE HAS NOW FALLEN FOR NINE MONTH IN A ROW

The confidence of builders of single-family houses fell again in September, the ninth month in a row of declines, ғas the combination of elevated interest rates, persistent building material supply chain disruptions, and high home prices continue to take a toll on affordability, the NAHB report said.

With today’s index value of 46, the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index is now below where it had been in May 2006, on the way down into the Housing Bust.

This time around, it wont just be a few areas of the planet that suffer.

At this moment we are literally witnessing economic implosions all over the planet, and the stage is being set for an immensely painful 2023.

The one thing that could really turn things around would be peace.

Unfortunately, global leaders on both sides seem absolutely determined to drag us into the type of cataclysmic global conflict that I have BEEN WARNING ABOUT FOR YEARS

So there isn’t going to be peace, and that means that things are going to get really bad in 2023 and beyond.

But I also believe that you were put at this specific moment in history for a reason.

It is when times are the darkest that the greatest good can be done, and that is something that we will all need to remember during the very dark times in front of us.



The Fed just raised interest rates by another 0.75%, putting Main Street economy ‘dangerously close’ to edge of lending cliff

By Eric Rosenbaum
September 21, 2022

The FEDERAL RESERVE’S DECISION TO RAISE INTEREST RATES by 0.75%, or 75 basis points, for the third-consecutive time at the Federal Open Market Committee meeting, is a step being taken to cool the economy and bring down inflation, but it is also putting small business owners across the country in a lending fix they have not experienced since the 1990s.

If the Federal Reserve’s FOMC next moves match the market’s expectation for two more interest rate hikes by the end of the year, small business loans will reach at least 9%, maybe higher, and that will bring business owners to a difficult set of decisions. Businesses are healthy today, especially those in the rebounding services sector, and credit performance remains good throughout the small business community, according to lenders, but the Feds more aggressive turn against inflation will lead more business owners to think twice about taking out new debt for expansion.

Partly, it is psychological: with many business owners never having operated in anything but a low interest rate environment, the sticker shock on debt stands out more even if their business cash flow remains healthy enough to cover the monthly repayment. But there will also be more businesses finding it harder to make cash flow match monthly repayment at a time of high inflation across all of their other business costs, including goods, labor, and transportation.

“Demand for lending hasn’t changed yet, but weҒre getting dangerously close to where people will start to second guess,” said Chris Hurn, the founder and CEO of Fountainhead, which specializes in small business lending.

“Were not there yet,” he said. “But weҒre closer.”

Increasing interest cost

As traditional banks and credit unions tighten lending standards and businesses begin to breach debt covenants based on debt service coverage ratios [ the amount of cash flow needed to cover debt - more business owners will turn to the SBA loan market in which firms like Hurns specialize.

“Every time we get into one of these cycles and the economy is slowing and rates are going up, one of the few places to get business credit is SBA lenders,” he said.

But even in the SBA market, business owners are beginning to pause as a result of the Fed’s rate actions, said Rohit Arora, co-founder and CEO of Biz2Credit, which also focuses on small business lending. ғFrom a credit perspective, people are getting more cognizant about increasing interest cost, and that the Fed will keep interest rates at 4-4.50%, Arora said.

FED OFFICIALS SIGNALLED the intention on Wednesday of continuing to hike until the funds level hits a “terminal rate,” or end point of 4.6% in 2023.

“Even a month ago, this was a ‘2022 phenomenon’ and now they will have to live with the pain for longer,” Arora said. “ItԒs a harder decision now because you don’t have the Fed ‘put’ behind you,” he added, referring to an environment in which you could bank on adjustable loan rates not going higher.

Fed expected to keep rates higher for longer

The big change since the summer, reflected in the stock market as well, is the acknowledgment that the Fed is not likely to quickly reverse its interest rate hikes, as inflation proves stickier than previously forecast, and key areas of the economy, like the labor market, dont cool fast enough. As recently as the last FOMC meeting in July, many economists, traders and business owners expected the Fed to be cutting rates as soon as early 2023.

Now, ACCORDING TO CNBC’S SURVEYING of economists and investment managers, the Fed is likely to reach peak rates above 4% and hold rates there throughout 2023. This outlook implies at least two more rate hikes in November and December, for a total of at least 75 basis points more, and including WednesdayҒs hike, 150 basis points in all from September through the end of the year. And that is a big change for business owners.

The FOMC meeting decision reinforced this expectation of a more hawkish Fed, with the TWO YEAR TREASURY BOND YIELD HITTING ITS HIGHEST RTE SINCE 2007 and the central bank’s expectations for when it starts cutting rates again pushed out even further in time. In 2025, the fed funds rate median target is 2.9%, implying restrictive Fed policy into 2025.

How SBA loans work and why rate hikes are a big issue

SBA loans are floating rate loans, meaning they re-adjust based on changes in the prime rate, and that has not been an issue for business owners during the low interest rate environment, but it is suddenly becoming a prominent concern. With SBA loans based on the prime rate, currently at 5.50%, the interest rates are already between 7%-8%. With the prime rate poised to reach 6.25% after the Feds latest 75 basis point hike, SBA loans are heading to as high as the 9%-9.5% range.

“Most of the business owners today, because they have lived in such a low rate environment, while they have floating interest rate loans they didnҒt even realize that on existing loans it could go up,” Arora said. “Everyone expected with gas prices coming down to what I would call ‘pre-high inflation levels’ that things looked a lot better. Now people are realizing that oil prices dont solve the problem and thatҒs new for lots of business owners who thought inflation would taper off and the Fed not be so hawkish.”

He stressed, like Hurn, that demand for business loans is still healthy, and unlike deteriorating consumer credit, small business credit performance is still strong because many firms were underleveraged pre-Covid and then supported by the multiple government programs during the pandemic, including the PPP and SBA EIDL loans. “They are well capitalized and are seeing strong growth because the economy is still doing pretty well,” Arora said, and he added that the majority of small businesses are in the service economy, which is the strongest part of the economy right now.

But many business owners were waiting for the Fed to cut in early 2023 before making new loan decisions. Now, theyve been caught flatfooted by adjustable loan rates that went up, and an interest rate environment poised to go higher still.

“Lots of business owners look at gas prices first and that was true for most of the year, and now itҒs broken down. Wage inflation and rent inflation are running amok, so were not seeing inflation coming down anytime soon,” Arora said.

That’s leading to more interest in fixed-rate products.

Fixed versus adjustable rate debt

Demand for fixed-rate loans is going up because businesses can lock in rates, from a year to three years. “Though its pretty late to the game, they feel like maybe the next 14 to 15 months, before rates start coming down, they can at least lock in a rate,” Arora said. “The expectation is, in the short term, SBA loans will adjust up and non-SBA loans are shorter tenure,” he said.

SBA loans range from three years to as long as 10 years.

A fixed rate loan, even if it is a little higher than an SBA loan today, may be the better option given the change in interest rate outlook. But thereҒs considerable potential downside. Trying to time the Fed’s policy has proven difficult. The change from the summer to now is proof of that. So if there is a significant recession and the Fed starts cutting rates earlier than the current expectation, then the fixed-rate loan becomes more expensive and getting out of it, though an option, would entail prepayment penalties.

‘Thats the one big risk you run if taking a fixed-rate loan in this environment,” Arora said.

The other tradeoff in choosing a fixed-rate loan: the shorter duration means a higher monthly repayment amount. The amount a business can afford to pay back every month depends on the amount of income coming in, and a fixed rate loan with a higher monthly repayment amount requires a business to have more income to devote to servicing the loan.

“After 2008, business owners never experienced a jumped in SBA loans and now they see monthly interest payments increasing, and are feeling the pinch and starting to plan for it ... get adjusted to the new reality,” Arora said. Demand is still healthy but they are worried about the increased interest cost while they are still battling inflation, even as lower oil prices have helped them.Ӕ

SBA loan guaranty waiver ending

Another cost that is suddenly influencing the SBA loan decision is the end of a waiver this month on SBA loan guaranty fees that are traditionally charged to borrowers so that in the event of a default, the SBA pays the portion of the loan that was guaranteed.

With that waiver ending in September, the cost of guaranteeing a loan can be significant. For example, a 3% SBA guaranty fee on a $500,000 loan would cost the business borrowing the money $15,000.

“Its adding to the costs,” Arora said.

ItҒs still a mistake to wait too long to access credit

While oil prices are coming down, food and other inventory costs remain high, as do rent and labor costs, and that means the need for working capital isn’t changing. And business owners who have been through downturns before know that the time to access credit is before the economy and cash flow start to deteriorate. At some point, in the most severe downturns, “you won’t get money at any cost,” Arora said.

“If you have a reasonably calculated growth plan, no one is going to say keep your head in the sand and wait until Q2 of next year and see where rates are,” Hurn said. “Banks don’t like to lend when the economy is slowing and there are higher rates, which translate to higher risk of defaults.”

Hurn said loan covenants are being “tripped” more frequently now in deteriorating sectors of the economy, though that by no means typifies the credit profile on Main Street.

“Once interest rates go up, and if inflation does not go down, we will see more debt service coverage ratios getting violated,” Arora said. This has to be taken into account because here is a lag between Fed policy decisions and economic impact, and this implies that sticker forms of inflation will last for longer even as sectors like housing and construction are deteriorating.

Much of the surplus liquidity businesses are sitting on due to government support is being eroded, even amid healthy customer demand, because of high inflation. And even if this economic downturn may not be anything like the severe liquidity crisis of 2008, business owners are in a better position when they have the access to credit before the economic situation spirals.

This is not 2008, or 1998

The systemic issues in the financial sector, and the liquidity crisis, were much bigger in 2008. Today, unemployment is much lower, lender balance sheets are much stronger, and corporate balance sheets are stronger too.

“Were just running into a slowing economy,” Hurn said.

When he started in small business lending back in 1998, business loans reached as high as 12% to 12.5%. But telling a business owner that today, like telling a mortgage borrower that rates used to be much higher, doesn’t help after an artificially low interest rate era.

“Psychologically, people set their expectations for borrowing costs… ‘they will be this cheap forever,’” Hurn said. “ItҒs changing radically now.”

“If rates go close to 10%, psychologically, businesses will start hesitating to borrow,” Arora said. 

And with a peak Fed rate level of 4% or higher reached by late this year, that is where SBA loan rates are heading.

The problem of higher interest rates and recession

Another 150-175 basis points in total from the Fed, if it has its intended effect of bringing inflation down, would leave many businesses in a stable condition because all of the other costs they are facing outside of debt would be more manageable. But the key question is how quickly the interest rate actions bring down inflation, because the higher rates will impact the cash flow of businesses and their monthly loan payments.

Lower inflation in stickier parts of the economy, like labor, combined with energy costs remaining lower, would allow small businesses to effectively manage cash flow. But if those things don’t happen as quickly as people are expecting, “then there will be pain, and consumer spending will be down too, and that will have a bigger impact,” Arora said. “The challenge is recession and high interest rates together that they have to handle and havent seen in 40 years,” he said.

Rates are not ordinarily considered the determining factor in a businessҒs decision to take out a loan. It should be the business opportunity. But rates can become a determining factor based on the monthly repayment amount, and if a business is looking at cash flow against monthly costs like payroll being harder to make, expansion may have to wait. If rates go up enough, and inflation doesnt fall off fast enough, all borrowing may need to be applied to working capital.

One thing that won’t change, though, is that the U.S. economy is based on credit. “People will continue to borrow, but whether they can borrow at inexpensive rates, or even get capital trying to borrow form traditional sources, remains to be seen,” Hurn said.


Posted by Elvis on 09/21/22 •
Section Revelations • Section NWO • Section Dying America • Section Next Recession, Next Depression
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