France in a Nutshell: “The Government Stopped Listening to the People 20 Years Ago”

The elites’ clever exploitation of politically correct cover stories has enthralled the comatose, uncritical Left, but not those who see their living standards in a free-fall. A family member who has lived in France for decades summarized the source of the gilets jaunes protests in one sentence: “The government stopped listening to […]

The Conflicting Forces of Modernism: Kafka and Kierkegaard

We seem to be heading into a confrontation between the two forces of Modernism: the primacy of the individual versus the increasing technological and economic might of the central state. In Kafka’s Nightmare Emerges: China’s “Social Credit Score” (May 7, 2018). I wrote about Kafka’s vision of a bureaucratic nightmare emerging in […]

Are We in a Recession Already?

The value of declaring the entire nation in or out of recession is limited. Recessions are typically only visible to statisticians long after the fact, but they are often visible in real time on the ground: business volume drops, people stop buying houses and vehicles, restaurants that were jammed are suddenly […]

The View from the Trenches of the Alternative Media

What’s scarce in a world awash in free content and nearly infinite entertainment content? After 3,701 posts (from May 2005 to the present), here are my observations of the Alternative Media from the muddy trenches. It’s increasingly difficult to make a living creating content outside the corporate matrix. The share of […]

Truth Is What We Hide, Self-Serving Cover Stories Are What We Sell

The fact that lies and cover stories are now the official norm only makes us love our servitude with greater devotion. We can summarize the current era in one sentence: truth is what we hide, self-serving cover stories are what we sell. Jean-Claude Juncker’s famous quote captures the essence of the era: “When […]

America Needs a New National Strategy

A productive national Strategy would systemically decentralize power and capital rather than concentrate both in the hands of a self-serving elite. If you ask America’s well-paid punditry to define America’s National Strategy, you’ll most likely get the UNESCO version: America’s national strategy is to support a Liberal Global Order (LGO) of […]

Bearish on Fake Fixes

This systemic vulnerability is largely invisible, and so the inevitable contagion will surprise most observers and participants. The conventional definition of a Bear is someone who expects stocks to decline. For those of us who are bearish on fake fixes, that definition doesn’t apply: we aren’t making guesses about future market gyrations […]

The Politics of Debt-Serfs and Tax Donkeys: Our Only Choice Is the Least Bad Option

The reality is there is no avenue left for advocacy, grievances or redress in a system dominated by global corporations and self-serving political insiders. What’s striking about the protests in Paris against higher fuel taxes is the universality of the protesters’ expressions of being fed up with a status quo […]

The Two Paths to Collapse

The very structure of our systems guarantees their failure once conditions change beyond their limited ability to adjust. As a general rule, there are two paths to collapse: gradual erosion and sudden crash. The two are intertwined, of course; in most cases, the system slowly loses vigor, resources, efficiency, etc. (erosion) […]

Thanksgiving 2018: A Few of the Many Things I’m Grateful For

Lots to be grateful for. Of the many things I’m grateful for, the most important are: after 50 years of work I still have my health and more work than I know what to do with; good friends; family; freedom, opportunity, the good fortune that a few of the many stupidly […]

Does the Market Need a Heimlich Maneuver?

For all we know, the panic selling is Wall Street’s way of forcing the Fed’s hand: stop with the rates increases already or Mr. Market expires. Markets everywhere are gagging on something: they’re sagging, crashing, imploding, blowing up, dropping and generally exhibiting signs of distress. Does the market need a Heimlich […]

Hell Hath No Fury Like a Liberal Scorned: The Media Turns on Facebook and Google

Here’s the ugly truth: Facebook and Google are profit-maximizing quasi-monopolies who will do anything to protect their monopolies. Of the many remarkable trend changes of the past year, few are more striking than the fawning embrace of Facebook et al. by Big Media turning to an enraged sense of betrayal. Facebook […]

The Political Rebellion Gathers Momentum

When was the last time a monopoly or quasi-monopoly was broken up? A generation ago, or was it two generations ago? The Ruling Class that wants us to love our servitude incites us to seek divisions: between red and blue, left and right, progressive and conservative, and so on. The Ruling Class in […]

Does Any of This Make Sense?

Does any of this make sense? No. But it’s so darn profitable to the oligarchy, it’s difficult to escape debt-serfdom and tax-donkey servitude. We rarely ask “does this make any sense?” of things that are widely accepted as beneficial— or if not beneficial, “the way it is,” i.e. it can’t […]

The Implicit Desperation of China’s “Social Credit” System

Other governments are keenly interested in following China’s lead. I’ve been pondering the excellent 1964 history of the Southern Song Dynasty’s capital of Hangzhou, Daily Life in China on the Eve of the Mongol Invasion, 1250-1276 by Jacques Gernet, in light of the Chinese government’s unprecedented “Social Credit Score” system, which I […]

Understanding the Global Recession of 2019

Isn’t it obvious that repeating the policies of 2009 won’t be enough to save the system from a long-delayed reset? 2019 is shaping up to be the year in which all the policies that worked in the past will no longer work. As we all know, the Global Financial Meltdown / […]

Why Are so Few Americans Able to Get Ahead?

Our entire economy is characterized by cartel rentier skims, central-bank goosed asset bubbles and stagnating earned income for the bottom 90%. Despite the rah-rah about the “ownership society” and the best economy ever, the sobering reality is very few Americans are able to get ahead, i.e. build real financial security via […]

Is This “The Most Important Election of our Lives” or Just Another Distraction?

The problem isn’t polarization; the problem is neither flavor of the status quo is actually solving any of the nation’s most pressing system problems. As I write this at 5 pm (Left Coast) November 6, the election results are unknown. While various media are trumpeting this as “the most important election […]

Turn Off, Tune Out, Drop Out

An unknown but likely staggeringly large percentage of small business owners in the U.S. are an inch away from calling it quits and closing shop. Timothy Leary famously coined the definitive 60s counterculture phrase, “Turn on, tune in, drop out” in 1966. (According to Wikipedia, In a 1988 interview with Neil […]

What’s Behind the Erosion of Civil Society?

Rebuilding social capital and social connectedness is not something that can be done by governments or corporations. As the mid-term elections are widely viewed as a referendum of sorts, let’s set aside politics and ask, what’s behind the erosion of our civil society? That civil society in the U.S. and elsewhere […]