Category Archives: President Bush

The Bear is Yet to Come: The U.S. Economy will fall into a Depression

With today’s announcement that Bear Stearns, the 5th largest investment bank needed an influx of cash to remain solvent to its outstanding investors/investments, it calls to question: what will happen next?

Bear Stearns, Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, Lehman Brothers and Goldman Sachs are the benchmarks for high-yielding banks that produce money/provide liquidity in the Capital markets. If they start to falter, the next group is the commercial banks, which affects all Americans, Europeans and Asia markets.

The signs have been clear: Commodity Prices (Gold, Corn, Wheat, Silver, Oil) are at record highs, Mortgages are failing at huge rates, with ex-Fed Chair Greenspan asleep at the wheel in allowing the housing market to gallop ahead unrestrained, the United States Dollar is at record lows versus the Japanese Yen (99 Yen), Canadian Dollar (1.01), Swiss Franc (0.9987), The Euro (1.567) and to add to that, we are in a economic standstill right now, zero growth.

The United States Economy will trigger larger problems as it continues to pump liquidity into the market via lowering interest rates (expect .75% ease on Tuesday), thus causing the dollar to decrease in value and thus continuing to raise commodity prices, which introduces more inflation into an all ready, dicey situation.

Inflation has been a European concern of utmost importance which is why they have not lower their interest rates in lockstep with the United States. They are uniquely aware of the triggers of the Great Depression, which started in Europe, namely Germany, after WWI.

We are just at the beginning of a major economic shake up. And we have one Presidential candidate, John McCain, who said, “I don’t understand the economy…”

Which leads one to wonder, do you want another ill-equipped President running a country in a economic meltdown? What did the Iraqi war gain us in economic terms? (The cost and money spent could have been used better…)

George W. Bush, with a Harvard MBA, has taken us back to the edge of the 1929 October financial meltdown.

He and his policy people pushed for easy/no regs on lending of money to people that should not have ever received a banking loan on a house. These people got over their heads. Then the banks got too tight – on lending, or passed their bad paper on to other banks, and other banks did the same,etc. – and the money has been devalued in the process. Meanwhile, the Fed and Government has done us in with bad policies.

Oil prices are being driven by devaluation of currency. Your money is buying less and less – and the problem is spreading to corporations that are cutting jobs – as Ford, Chrysler, GM and other big manufacturing are reducing their forecasts but cannot lower prices, while those that do overseas business are doing ok or better. So, not all is lost.

So, I am sounding the alarm on the 1MC: “start preparing for a long downturn in the U.S. Economy. Expect prices to rise 20, 30 and 50% above today’s rate. And get your money out of risky investment vehicles. Hedge funds are the first to go. Stock up on staples. Get prepared for more bad news…”

Predicting another Great Depression is sometimes a self-fulfilling prophecy. But the government as currently constituted is not going to save you or me. “Let them eat cake,” is their mantra.

I have made numerous posts on the American Economy prior to this, which means I have been paying attention longer than just today…so, though this is radical to say “Depression,” in 12-18 months, it may “bear” itself out.

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Bonds Indictment: Unforgivable…that’s what you are…???

In a not so sudden turn of events, Barry Bonds has been indicted on 4 counts of perjury and 1 count of obstruction of justice charges.

As The NY Times reports:

“The charges stem from his Dec. 4, 2003, testimony to a federal grand
jury. He denied knowingly taking steroids…The United States attorney’s office
for the Northern District of California has been investigating whether Mr. Bonds
perjured himself in December 2003 when he told a grand jury in San Francisco
that he did not knowingly use performance enhancing drugs, despite drastic
changes to his physique and documents with his name on them from 2001 to 2003 showing drug schedules
.”

After these 4 years, and likely a huge amount of money spent on gathering evidence, chasing down witnesses and holding grand jury proceedings twice, they finally “got” him.

It really didn’t surprise me that they waited this long. It was in some regards a better way to destroy the man, after setting the record, than say, stopping him from it before hand. For those that may disagree, it would have been seen as an isolated one case, one instance, of wrongdoing because it so happen that Bonds was about to break baseball’s most hallowed record. By allowing him to break it (and not besmirching baseball mid-season), the prosecution now can proceed forward vigorously knowing out of sight, out of mind. And more importantly, how people feel about Bonds – dislike is only one word to describe – and how he will not be a sympathetic defendant.

One thing is for certain, Bonds will be considered for the “unforgivable list” of athletes that in some way made a dark stain on their chosen sport.

For myself, and not being a rooter for the Giants or in anyway enamored with Bonds, I do feel some sympathy for him. I know this was a planned attack on his singular achievement. So much so, that even our current President decided to make a statement via a spokesman about this, just an hour after it was handed down:

“The president is very disappointed to hear this,” Bush spokesman Tony
Fratto said. “As this case is now in the criminal justice system, we will
refrain from any further specific comments about it. But clearly this is a sad
day for baseball.”

Funny, this is coming from the former managing partner of the Texas Rangers (Bush) that traded for patient zero, Jose Canseco, whose usage of Performance Enhancers has been well known since the late 1980’s. And the General Manager of Jose’s initial team (A’s): Sandy Alderson, now works for Bud Selig, the commissioner of baseball. Plenty of connections – and plenty of high ranking men in baseball that buried their head in the sand for years. (To the increase of revenues in the baseball from $2 billion in 1995 to $6 Billion this past year.)

Bonds is a victim of his own greed and place in history. He felt his pay was tied to hitting dingers into McCovey Cove – and it was – and his legacy as a baseball player was tied to his putting up outlandish numbers – and it probably was.

Do I feel Steroids alone did this for him? No, not exactly in the way people perceive it to be. Maybe it is more due to recovery from aches and pains, not gaining untold (and unmeasured, I might add) strength to crush that “bee ball” out of the yard.

It is my contention that the baseball, itself, was doctored up by 1994 to produce the ERA of extra base hits (doubles specifically), not just the jacks that sail mightily over the fence into new and improved dining areas of these ballyards.

IF Bonds is unforgivable…
Then baseball is unforgivable..TOO.

Other stories: ESPN report