SAN MARTIN, ARGENTINA – The “war” against the C virus raged over the weekend.
Donald Trump invoked war powers to force major industries to manufacture ventilators and called the bug “the silent enemy.” Casualties increased. There are now more than 2,400 dead in the U.S. Worldwide, the total is over 30,000.
The Washington Post reports that civilians are fleeing before the invading forces:
The Great Migration of 2020: On the move to escape the coronavirus
From beaches and resort towns to mountain cabins to rural family homesteads, places far from densely packed cities are drawing people eager to escape from infection hotspots.
But virus fugitives often are running into fierce opposition on their routes, including Florida’s effort to block New Yorkers from joining their relatives in the Sunshine State, a police checkpoint keeping outsiders from entering the Florida Keys, and several coastal islands closing bridges to try to keep the coronavirus at bay.
The New York Times reports that same thing is underway in Europe… separating haves from have-nots:
In France and across Europe, affluent city dwellers have been decamping epicenters of the crisis to their second homes, where proximity to the sea or the mountains lessens the discomfort of confinement and a decent internet link permits remote work. But they also bring fears that they will spread the virus to regions with few hospitals to handle a surge in the sick, putting at greater risk local residents who tend to be older and have limited incomes. War profiteers are going the other way.
Meanwhile, another group races to Washington to join The Swamp critters, trying to get some of that $2 trillion worth of federal boondoggle spending.
The New York Times:
The Race for Virus Money Is On. Lobbyists Are Standing By.
But who’s the real enemy? Is it a molecule with a Facebook page? Is it the damage done by the virus… or by the feds’ heavy-handed financial reaction? Or is it something else… something deeper…
… a desperate, last-ditch war to protect a fraudulent financial system, the ersatz “wealth” of the elite… and their decrepit empire?
Perhaps it is all those things…
Biggest Bubble in History
Over the last three decades, a bogus “stimulus” program impaired the economy’s immune system and created the biggest bubble in asset price history.
Then, the “deus ex virus” came along and attacked it, like a birthday balloon suddenly struck by a machete.
The feds point the finger at God. It was God’s bug, they say.
[Former Federal Reserve Chair] Bernanke says this is much closer to a natural disaster than the Great Depression
And yet, while you rarely get what you expect or what you want from markets, you always get what you deserve.
And after decades of meddling by the feds… and after trillions of dollars of fake money, record debt and distorted interest rates… the U.S. economy surely was ready for a trip to the woodshed.
And, while perhaps no one foresaw the approach of the COVID-19 molecule, you’d have to have been blind not to see the financial disaster coming.
Bubbles… zombies… unicorns… negative rates… trillion-dollar deficits… public officials doing strange and nonsensical things – all the portents of impending doom were on display.
But what next?
Nature has her own program. The COVID-19 will come and go. The number of cases of the virus will probably peak out within a few weeks. We will bury our dead and go on with life…
But the jackasses will always be with us.
The feds will learn that not only can they get away with $2 trillion deficits… but also that the voters, the campaign donors, the cronies, the Deep State insiders – every Tom, Dick, and Harry will demand it.
Bailed-out businesses will not learn to save capital for a rainy day. Instead, they will pass out the loot to managers and shareholders, becoming even weaker.
Households, too, will find the free money appealing; they will come to expect it.
In New Jersey, just to take one example, the additional emergency federal contribution to unemployment compensation will bring the hourly rate to a minimum of $32 an hour.
Many people will make more money collecting unemployment than actually working.
We’ve seen this before… short-term solutions turn into bigger, long-term problems.
Emergency measures during a crisis – like the ultra-low interest rates of 2009 – soon become permanent.
The problem in 2008 was mortgage debt. The feds responded with more debt – particularly corporate and government debt. This made the economy more fragile than ever, leading to today’s crisis.
This time, they follow the same protocol, only in triplicate or quadruplicate. The amount of new money (and debt) going into the system is staggering.
More fake money can create more fake wealth. But it can’t create real wealth.
We saw that over the last 10 years. The feds’ fake money drove up stock prices 300%. But real economic growth was the lowest for any recovery on record.
Today, the losses in the Main Street economy are real. The feds can’t make them up. All they can do is create more fake wealth.
That’s why we watch the Dow-to-Gold ratio. It will tell the tale… not precisely, and not immediately… but eventually. Stock prices may rise, but real values won’t.
Look, the feds are in an Inflate-or-Die trap. They’re fighting it with the only thing they have: more and more inflation.
They’ll add more and more fake-money firepower… until the whole shebang blows to kingdom come.
This is a war they’re going to lose.