The Phaserl


Central Bank Hubris That Would Make Icarus Blanche

by Andy Hoffman, Miles Franklin:

In Greek mythology, hubris is defined as excessive pride or self-confidence, in defiance of the gods, which ultimately brings about one’s demise. Synonyms include arrogance, conceit, self-importance, egotism, pomposity, superciliousness, and superiority – with some of the most famous mythological examples being Phaethon, Narcissisus, Arachne, and Cassiopeia; and in modern times, Richard Nixon, Tiger Woods, and Mel Gibson. However, the “poster child” of hubris, in my view, is Icarus; who, in defiance of the warnings of his father, flew too close to the sun – causing his waxen wings to melt, and his flight of fancy to end in death by drowning.

Much of what I describe, on a daily basis, regards the hubris of political, monetary, and corporate personalities – who, through either luck or skill, were put in positions of awesome power – principally “armed” with lethal Central bank printing presses. The “hubristic” decisions they have made have resulted in disaster; sometimes for them personally; but usually, the “99%.” Today, everything I discuss relates to these decisions; which have not only caused massive economic, monetary, and social destruction already – but will unquestionably cause far more before all is said and done. All of which, will have dramatically positive ramifications for history’s most reliable and – care of unprecedented manipulation, undervalued – safe haven assets; i.e., physical gold and silver.

Starting with, perhaps the most vile, disingenuous crony capitalist in U.S. history; who ironically, was not only one of the world’s biggest silver investors less than 15 years ago, but is the son of perhaps the most famous “goldbug” to ever serve in Congress. That goldbug was Howard Buffett, a four-term Republican Congressman from Nebraska; and said crony capitalist is his son, Warren – who deemed derivatives “weapons of mass financial destruction” just before “helping” the U.S. government bail out Goldman Sachs’ and General Electric’s bad derivative bets; and even the Canadian government, via last week’s nonsensical, out- of-left field “investment” in the “Countrywide Capital of Canada,” Home Capital Group.
Yesterday, this self-righteous, heavily compensated political mercenary, took his hubris to a new level – and playing field, given his admission that he understands nothing about the healthcare industry – in claiming the U.S. is ‘so rich, it can afford single payer healthcare.’ This, on the same day that not only was the latest – and potentially, final – version of the no-better-than-Obamacare Trumpcare bill mercifully shot down by Senate Republicans; but we learned that due to the surging deductibles Obamacare has caused – let alone, the more than doubling of premiums since Obama set foot in the Oval Office – 68% of U.S. hospital patients couldn’t pay the resulting bills in 2016, up from “just” 49% in 2014. I mean, just how many nation-destroying schemes can this horrible, evil man support – all, in the name of personal enrichment?

Next, we have the State of Illinois – which, like the “territory” of Puerto Rico (which ironically, now that it has declared bankruptcy, wants to become a U.S. State), ran up bills in a manner even California and New Jersey blanche at – to the point that a summer bankruptcy announcement is all but guaranteed; with the timeline to its “death spiral” commencing on July 1st. When, after it fails to enact a budget for the third straight year, S&P (and likely Moody’s) will downgrade it to junk status, causing interest rates in the Illinois “banana republic” (as described by Governor Bruce Rauner) to explode, in a State with a $7 billion budget deficit; $15 billion of unpaid bills; $154 billion of debt; and $250 billion of unfunded liabilities – including the Chicago Police Pension Fund, which will likely go bankrupt next year. No wonder there are thousands of Cubs hats littered throughout the Denver area, as people are leaving the political and economic disaster Illinois is becoming en masse; which I assure you, many other States and municipalities will shortly become, too.

Speaking of derivatives, I didn’t think it possible that the kings of dead derivative purveyors, Bear Stearns and Lehman Brothers, could be “topped” in the reckless financial engineering realm so soon after the worst -derivative-fueled – financial crisis since the Great Depression. Unquestionably, all major banks are more exposed to toxic derivatives than in 2008 – like Italy’s Monte Paschi and Spain’s Banco Popular, which both recently collapsed. However, the rest have done a better job – with the government’s expert “guidance,” of course – of masking it. Except, that is, the largest bank in Europe, Deutsche Bank; which according to the IMF, is the world’s “most systematically dangerous.” And thus, just one month after officially admitting to have rigged – read, suppressed – paper Precious Metal prices for years, it couldn’t be more fitting – or ironic – that Deutsche Bank may be facing additional, significant derivative losses. Gee, I wonder why the Bank of International Settlements, in its Annual Report released yesterday, warned “the end may come to resemble a financial boom gone wrong – just as the latest recession showed, with a vengeance.”

Then there’s the NSA, or “National Security Agency,” whose unconstitutional “job” of spying on everyone from foreign leaders to domestic “Joe Sixpacks,” has dramatically weakened America’s international – and domestic – reputation. How hubristic that the latest vicious, global ransomware attacks – based on protocols that can easily be mutated, yielding the potential for massive future thefts – were found to be rooted in NSA-created software? It kind of reminds me of Skynet in the Terminator, in the ultimate incidence of unintended consequences. At least Skynet was created with benevolent intentions – before ultimately turning on its creators, and destroying the planet.

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