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Economy
See other Economy Articles

Title: Thirteen Years Later
Source: Zero Hedge
URL Source: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/thirteen-years-later
Published: Apr 27, 2012
Author: Mark J. Grant
Post Date: 2012-04-27 12:16:14 by SJN
Keywords: None
Views: 717
Comments: 1

There have been many grand experiments in social engineering during the past several centuries. We have witnessed the American Revolution, the French Revolution, the American Civil War, Communism and finally 1999 and the founding of the European Union. It is an interesting exercise to consider the long view as I have wondered what the world looked like in 1789 which was thirteen years after the commencement of the American experiment. It is also interesting to note, when comparing the two restructurings of society, that the new construct in the United States was founded upon assuming our own destiny and throwing off the yoke of the British Empire which was a common bond for the individual states which was not present and is not present, except in a curious twist, for the Europeans to cling to in times of significant decision. The “curious twist” is Germany which is seeking to dominate Europe through its economic prowess which would have been like Virginia or New York trying to dominate the United States in its infancy which was not possible due to the construct of a Senate and a Congress and a George Washington who rejected being the King. Unfortunately, the Europeans did not have an Adams, Hamilton or Jefferson to help guide the process, this is my opinion, and so the paradigm for Europe is so flawed in structure that in times of stress, such as the current recession in most of Europe; the structure itself may defeat the cause. What we are witnessing now in Europe is then a serious pushback against Germany and its policies, the rise of Nationalism coupled with real anger against the German interventions and a German economy which will certainly go into decline as affected by its neighbors and trading partners which will exacerbate Germany’s internal issues I submit before the end of this year.

Tomorrow, April 28, commemorates the date of the Mutiny on the Bounty in 1789 which, curiously enough, was the British Navy throwing off the shackles of the absolute power of a Naval Captain and an event which ultimately changed the British laws at sea. The year 1789 was also earmarked with 25% of the people in Paris being without work and the date of July 14, 1789 which was the storming of the Bastille and the beginning of the French Revolution. In America, thirteen years after our founding, George Washington was elected President and the first Congress and Senates began and the proposal for a “Bill of Rights” was approved. Finally, in 1789, American established our Judiciary which was another ground breaking act for our fledgling country. It seems then historically that thirteen years after America began we were in a process of formation and working towards national goals as a coalition of individual States while we find the European Union, thirteen years after its inception, following quite a different route.

In times of great stress I have often noticed that ridiculous comments get made and the more the stress; the more delusionary the statements. Let us then examine a few comments made today.

“The EU fiscal pact cannot be re-negotiated.”

-German Chancellor Merkel

Who is kidding whom? Of course it can be renegotiated and any time enough nations decide to change it. The fiscal pact can be thrown out, amended, or burned at the stake when enough nations in Europe do not wish to pursue its goals and governance by German fiat is not yet operative except in the minds of the German politicians it appears.

“Mortgages get paid in good times and in bad. Anyone raising this problem as one of the issues for the Spanish financial system is saying something stupid.”

- Banco Santander SA Chief Executive Officer Alfredo Saenz

This fellow is living way out beyond the edge in the land make-believe. America has just experienced this during the last four years and we know exactly what happens when in a financial crisis and when the reign of foolish money ends. It is my opinion but the Spanish proclamations of only a 3.00% mortgage delinquency rate in their country is nothing more than grand rush into the land of attacking windmills. It may well be that the banks do not wish to recognize the delinquent loans or that they have packaged them into massive securitizations and pledged them as collateral at the ECB who also does not wish to recognize any losses but with an unemployment rate at 24.4% now which will cause a further economic contraction, according to official figures, of $1.3 billion; the official mortgage delinquency rate is just a preposterous claim.

“Nobody has asked Spain, either officially or unofficially to turn to Europe’s bailout mechanisms. We don’t need it.”

-Spanish Finance Minister de Guindos

S&P just downgraded the country to BBB+; down two notches. It is not just the horrid unemployment numbers but the severe contraction in the economy and a Real Estate market that is down 25% and projected to head down another 20-25% that would make any rational person realize that Spain will soon be forced to seek outside help. A clear reading of Spain’s financials cannot lead to any other conclusion. They have come up with a plan to liquidate the banks’ Real Estate positions to outside, private companies. That much is fine except when they see what private companies wish to pay I predict that the retching will commence in Madrid. This exercise will also force the Spanish banks to take actual losses so that the balance sheets of the banks in Spain will begin to look like ground chorizo when/if this plan is implemented. In my view now; there is just no other way out except some sort of rebellion.

Reversals

Reversals are curious things. Everything is just fine right up until the day when it is not. On October 9, 2007 the Dow Jones Index stood at 1464.53 and then it bottomed on March 9, 2009 at 6547.05 which was a 54% decline. On 10/9/07 CNN reported, “Stocks rallied Tuesday, sending the Dow and S&P 500 to all-time highs as investors breathed a sigh of relief that the minutes from the last Fed meeting supported hopes for another interest rate cut by the end of the year.” The decline began gradually enough and then strengthened with America’s economic contraction, the Bear Stearns buy-out and then the fall of Lehman Brothers. Any notion of what is going on in Europe will not affect America is just as silly as Germany supposing that they will be immune from the effects of the recession in Europe. That is not the way the world works and that will be proven again shortly. May 6 may mark the date when the sleeper finally awakens as Greece and France may both vote in such a manner as to significantly change the political landscape on the Continent. I submit that we are quickly coming to a major reversal in both equities and in credit/risk assets and that instead of being aggravated that it took so long that you should be thankful that you had the luxury of time to prepare for it.

“That was a memorable day to me, for it made great changes in me. But, it is the same with any life. Imagine one selected day struck out of it, and think how different its course would have been. Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation of the first link on one memorable day.”

-Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

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#1. To: SJN (#0)

Excellent article.

I love zerohedge.com Those guys run rings around the academic economists, making fools of Bernanke and Krugman on a daily basis.

You have to understand, most of these people are not ready to be unplugged. And many of them are so inert, so hopelessly dependant on the system, that they will fight to protect it." --Morpheus, "The Matrix"


The economy is wonderful!
Re-elect Obama, he'll pay your rent!
A chicken in every pot!

-- Baghdad Bri-bri --

Sig of LoonyMing: Anyone claiming to be an expert is selling something. I brandish my ignorance like a crucifix at vampires. Aaron Bady

Translation: WAR IS PEACE, FREEDOM IS SLAVERY, and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

LoonyMing, you are one sick bitch.

Capitalist Eric  posted on  2012-04-27   12:53:51 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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