Hi everyone. First, I’d like to say I’m sorry I haven’t responded to those who have contacted me or left comments recently; I have been on an extended and much-needed vacation and haven’t been checking or updating recently. Thanks for your emails.
Usually my posts are filled with hyperlinked references, to give substance and credence to my opinions, so I don’t come off as someone who thinks he knows it all, and also to encourage independent research. Today, however, I am going to post my predictions for 2009 without any references whatsoever. This is 100% opinion, based upon what I’ve been reading and observing. 2009 will be the year of action and culmination.
1) Major inflation. Sticker shock on everything from food to gas will repeat last year’s spring and summer pattern. The new fad scare of deflation will drift away as the US can’t get anyone to continue financing its debt and the Fed finally resorts to massive inflation to close the massive budgetary gaps. China will slowly stop buying debt so the inflation will be steady rather than in spikes. The government statistics on inflation, like unemployment, will under-report it by two or three times. The price of oil, silver, and gold will shoot up as they did last year, and in approximately the same time frames.
2) Russia and Germany up. UK, US down. Though Russia is currently hurting from the low prices of oil, they still have a net surplus and savings; something the US hasn’t had for a long time (not to mention 1/8 of the world’s land mass and all the resources that go with it). Ukraine’s tiff with Russia over gas right now is likely to fracture Ukraine into two pieces, not harm Russia in the slightest. Russia might even gain territory. Germany is much more pragmatic and better-positioned to weather the storm, being one of the few rich nations that actually produces more than it consumes. Soon, Germany will de-facto control the EU and the euro like the US currently controls the UN. UK won’t shed the pound for the euro — not because the pound won’t fall, but because the rest of the EU won’t allow it. Riots and unrest in Germany and Russia won’t be nearly on the same scale as the US and the UK, as both are more homogenous societies and race relations will become a white-hot divisive issue during the new depression in multicultural societies. China will be a little bit of both. Riots by the have-nots, but no economic deterioration like the US and UK. China will mostly remain flat.
3) Israel regrets its Palestine invasion. Israel’s attack dog, the US, is very ill and won’t be able to cover for Israel quite as well as before. The Muslim world will converge on Israel politically and will be supported to an extent greater than ever before due to worldwide souring of opinion towards the policies of the nation of Israel. High risk of expanded war in the region, with players such as Syria, Lebanon, and even Pakistan. Israel will have minor losses comparatively but will lose public sympathy (its most valuable asset) forever. No nuclear weapons will come into play, however. Israel’s economic status sours considerably. Iran will not play a large part, counter to most peoples’ expectations.
4) Obama appears to be Bush with a different face. Same policies, same excuses, same results. Slight variation on the implementation. (Coke with the sweetness of Pepsi — it’s Coke II!) Different group of blind supporters, I suppose. Huge let-down for those with half a brain, no surprise for those with a complete brain. Expansion of military engagements in the Middle East, blind support of the Federal Reserve’s disastrous policies (rather, existence), more spying on citizens, increased police aggressiveness, bailouts, and spending money we don’t have. Big push to “regulate” and filter opinions on the internet based upon the excuses of fighting “hate speech and “extremism.” Congress will continue to be mostly ineffective except at endorsing the President’s policies.
5) Huge housing bailout. Likely to include a massive delay of foreclosures, mandatory interest rates, changes in bankruptcy laws, tax laws, etcetera. Probably won’t occur until around tax time. Will help keep people in their homes and prevent a larger wave of rioting but will not cause prices to suddenly start rising. Established homeowners’ complaints will fall on deaf ears. Credit card bailout also a strong possibility. Corporate bailouts of every imagined (and unimagined) stripe are also likely. Bailouts of cities and states will be frequent and certain.
6) Unrest followed by deployment of soldiers as “helping teams” (read police state) and all the bad press, riots, and anger that accompanies such. Increase in power of local gangs and hatred directed along racial lines. Economic division will not be seen along class lines as is more accurate, but along racial lines. 2009 will be the first year most people start to think about the US as several different regions, rather than a single nation. Possibility of bank “holidays,” government-assumed control of private retirement accounts, even a dollar default. Like the 30s, massive anger towards bankers, and wealthy people in general, and massive sympathy for any criminals who take on the establishment. Possible relaxation on the rules, or lax enforcement, of criminal marijuana laws. Marijuana becomes the new prohibition issue with its myriad motivations and repercussions. Huge increase on the regulation of firearms and acts of “terrorism.”
And there you have it. Stay tuned next time for my regularly-recurring article of doom.
There are two great articles I read recently which explain a vast majority of what’s going on in the minds of the current ruling administration. Due to the relentless media propaganda, the obvious lies, and the ridiculous opinions of its followers, I’ve always wondered just what the true beliefs of the Bush clique were, and now I think I know. Here is article one and here is article two. Or, if you’re more of the liberal bent than the libertarian, and are turned off by Ron Paul, here they are in reverse order; article two and article one.
Noteworthy excerpts include:
“The people will not be happy to learn that there is only one natural right – the right of the superior to rule over the inferior, the master over the slave, the husband over the wife, and the wise few over the vulgar many. In On Tyranny, Strauss refers to this natural right as the “tyrannical teaching” of his beloved ancients. It is tyrannical in the classic sense of rule above rule or in the absence of law (p. 70).
Now, the ancients were determined to keep this tyrannical teaching secret because the people are not likely to tolerate the fact that they are intended for subordination; indeed, they may very well turn their resentment against the superior few. Lies are thus necessary to protect the superior few from the persecution of the vulgar many.
The effect of Strauss’s teaching is to convince his acolytes that they are the natural ruling elite and the persecuted few. And it does not take much intelligence for them to surmise that they are in a situation of great danger, especially in a world devoted to the modern ideas of equal rights and freedoms. Now more than ever, the wise few must proceed cautiously and with circumspection. So, they come to the conclusion that they have a moral justification to lie in order to avoid persecution. Strauss goes so far as to say that dissembling and deception – in effect, a culture of lies – is the peculiar justice of the wise.”
“…lying is central to the survival of nations and to the success of great enterprises, because if our enemies can count on the reliability of everything you say, your vulnerability is enormously increased.” What about the effects of lying on one’s own people? Who cares if a leader can fool the enemy? Does calling it “strategic deception” make lying morally justifiable? Ledeen and Machiavelli argue that it does, as long as the survivability of the state is at stake. Preserving the state is their goal, even if the personal liberty of all individuals has to be suspended or canceled.”Disclaimer: please don’t think I’m advocating for Obama, or McCain, in the slightest. I have a hard time choosing between dying of ebola and dying of dysentery.
Today’s article of doom: FBI gets to investigate (spy) even when there is no basis for suspicion.
The British government wants to record the details of every phone call, email, and all activity on the internet. Big brother complete. Assuming the US would like the same (and of course they would) the only relevant questions are whether or not we already have something like this in development and when they’re finally going to announce it. As the US Principal Deputy Director of Intelligence said recently, “Privacy can no longer mean anonymity.” Britain is the most “progressive” society in the world. Based upon history, what happens there generally happens here after a small time delay. Good thing we get to look forward to such enlightened rulings as “children don’t need a father.”
Ah well. It’s hard to criticize Britain when we have genius lawmakers over here trying to sue OPEC over high oil prices. As if it’s OPEC’s fault that the value of the dollar keeps plummeting to new lows. We keep printing more and more dollars and expect the value of each one to remain the same. Last time the Federal Reserve reported the increase to the money supply, we were adding 16% annually. Of course, that was over a year ago and they don’t report the number anymore.
Besides, it makes perfect sense for us to be able to dictate to other countries at what price they should be selling their goods to us. And if you don’t agree, maybe you should be bombed. Oh yeah, and according to Bush, the reason our food prices are high aren’t due to the government miscalculating inflation. They’re due to all those gluttonous Indians.
Today’s article of doom: oil at $133 per barrel.
Usually I talk about the economy. However, the media has lately been doing an adequate job of documenting the downward spiral, so I don’t have much to point out there. I did run into a disturbing article, however, which seemed innocuous enough at first. Here it is. You have a mentally disturbed guy who wants to take out his high school in a repeat of Columbine. Bad, right? Of course. And there is really no question that he likely would have carried out his plan had his parents, and subsequently the cops, intervened. So, it’s a no-brainer he should be tried and, if convicted, sent to prison, right (unless found mentally incapable of standing trial)? Sure.
Well, here’s the problem. Among other things, he was charged with “attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction,” which carries a lifetime sentence. He never did attempt it, however. He had materials that could be used to make a bomb, but he didn’t actually make the bomb. He had a journal of hateful sayings and diagrams of his plans, etc, but he hadn’t acted them out.
I don’t have a problem with his arrest, or his being charged, but I do have a problem with what he was ultimately charged. The list includes: attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempting to use explosives on a building that gets federal funding, using interstate commerce to obtain explosives to be used against people and property, making a bomb threat, and possession of bomb-making materials.
The only one that seems accurate to me is possession of bomb-making materials considering he never actually made a bomb, never threatened to make a bomb, and never attempted to harm anyone. Now, I’m not saying he didn’t intend to possibly do all these things, but the point is that he hadn’t. Yet. Therefore, charging him for crimes he didn’t commit is thought-policing, and that scares me. All he had was a journal and some fertilizer, and now, if convicted on the WMD charge, will serve life in prison. Life in prison for THINKING about doing something and gathering materials that might be used to do it. There are literally hundreds of thousands of people behind bars who have actually taken a life who do not have life sentences.
By that rationale, every person who gets cut off while driving and yells to their spouse, “I’m going to run that bastard off the road” should be tried for attempted murder, because as the driver, they were in possession of a potentially deadly weapon. Even though they didn’t carry it out, they thought about it, and could have if they wanted to.
Similarly, having an empty wine bottle, some gasoline, and a rag is the same thing as owning a molotov cocktail because, as the police in the article mentioned, someone “could assemble a bomb with those materials in minutes.” If he is convicted, this sets a very dangerous precident which is that thinking about doing something and making preparations to potentially do it is the same as doing it. It is not.
He might have had a change of heart, he might have gotten scared. Hell, he might have gotten laid that day and changed his whole perspective. Or he might have carried it out. The point is he was stopped, which is good, but he didn’t attempt to carry it out, so he should not be charged as if he was one of the 9/11 hijackers. But I suppose the Federal government has every motivation to consider him a crazed terrorist with WMDs. Just for the record, I’m not scared of him. I’m scared of the people who are charging him with those crimes.
Today’s (other) article of doom: Wall Street Journal recommends hoarding food.
We’ve all heard that the US government is spying on all of us, and most of us aren’t reassured by the President’s remarks that it’s only on communications with someone outside the country who is a member of Al Qaida. But, of course, we civilians really have no idea to what extent the government is gathering information on those of us who don’t communicate with people in foreign countries who are suspected of being suspicious persons. I’ve seen several interesting articles the past few days, however, that reinforce the ominous feeling that Big Brother is watching far, far more than we’ve been led to believe.
The ACLU alleges here that the FBI is skirting the law in multiple ways to spy on people here in the US. Also, the ACLU recently obtained a memo from the Department of Justice from 2001 saying the fourth amendment no longer applied when the President said so. Finally, intelligence agencies across the country have access to pretty much all of your data anytime they ask for it. It’s nothing most people haven’t suspected, but reading it spelled out so clearly and completely just gives me the shivers — as if the Bill of Rights only applies in trouble-free times.
Today’s article of doom: lots of food riots around the world.