19 July 2018

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts - Gold Rebounds as Dollar Plunges on Trump's Offhand Remark- Stock Option Expiration

"We looked into the abyss if the gold price rose further. A further rise would have taken down one or several trading houses, which might have taken down all the rest in their wake.

Therefore at any price, at any cost, the central banks had to quell the gold price, manage it. It was very difficult to get the gold price under control but we have now succeeded. The US Fed was very active in getting the gold price down. So was the U.K."

Eddie George, Governor Bank of England, in a conversation with the CEO of Lonmin, September 1999

The dollar plunged and gold sharply rebounded this afternoon, thanks to an offhand remark by Trumpolini in a CNBC interview that he is 'not thrilled' with the Fed raising interest rates.

I think this highlights how divorced gold and silver, but especially gold, are from supply and demand, with gold being treated as just another currency cross and paper trading vehicle.

But Asia keeps taking more and more physical gold off the table, into their own deep storage, not to be seen again for many years.

This is going to blow up in the faces of the Banks and the regulators, and will shakes many an institution and exchange to their foundations.

It was a quiet trading day with stocks off a bit, 'digesting' their recent gains if you will.

Weakness in the earnings reports, despite the huge gift of corporate tax cuts, has the Street feeling a bit uneasy.

Those companies that have mastered their accounting, and reside primarily in the world of financial paper shuffling like the Banks, are doing well.

But for corporations with ties to that pesky real world economy, not so much.

Wages are stagnant for workers, but the banksters and their congressmen are buying yachts.

What could go wrong with that?

I was thinking today about something Thomas Frank said in his video Q&A at Politics & Prose bookstore that I had posted yesterday.

He said that while he did not like Trump, but he was glad that we had this kind of bad actor now, one who is not particularly good at pulling the levers of government power, like Ted Cruz would have been.

Uh, Thomas, that is exactly why so many people, including and especially Democrats, did not vote for Hillary. Because she was exactly that kind of clever creature.   Even without having both houses of Congress in her party, the damage she could have done would have been profound.   Her husband Bill did more to advance the deregulation of financial markets and neoliberalism than many a Republican in his ruthless pursuit of self-interest.

And Hillary showed a ruthless disregard for the people in pursuit of power in the way in which she manipulated the elite insiders in her party to crush progressives and the rising populism which threatened the money flows to the corporate Democratic pockets from Wall Sttreet's Big Money.

Not to mention how she and her crew, even while not in power, can whip up hysteria like Russiagate to take the public eye off the shocking revelations in their emails.  But the credibility trap keeps so many people from accepting this.

And if you want to know who the members of the Deep State are, they are the ones against whom no criticism, not even skeptical doubt, can be permitted or tolerated by the punditry class.

It is unpatriotic not to trust them, blindly.  No matter what they say, no matter how little evidence they may provide to back it up.  No matter what lies they have been caught in recent memory.

And we are seeing quite a bit of that sort of establishment outrage at the very kind of skepticism that keeps a democracy healthy, and secures it from the abuse of official power.

Need little, want less, love more. For those who abide in love abide in God, and God in them.

There is a stock option expiration tomorrow.

Have a pleasant evening.

18 July 2018

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts - The Madness of Crowds - Panem et Circenses

“In reading The History of Nations, we find that, like individuals, they have their whims and their peculiarities, their seasons of excitement and recklessness, when they care not what they do. We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object and go mad in its pursuit; that millions of people become simultaneously impressed with one delusion, and run after it, till their attention is caught by some new folly more captivating than the first...

Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, one by one.”

Charles Mackay

“The true measure of a man is not his intelligence or how high he rises in this freak establishment.  No, the true measure of a man is this: how quickly can he respond to the needs of others and how much of himself he can give.”

Philip K. Dick

"When a population becomes distracted by trivia, when cultural life is redefined as a perpetual round of entertainments, when serious public conversation becomes a form of baby-talk, when, in short, a people become an audience, and their public business a vaudeville act, then a nation finds itself at risk; culture-death is a clear possibility.”

Neil Postman, Amusing Ourselves To Death

Stocks finished mixed on the day as the earnings reports for the 2Q are starting to roll in.

Their valuations seem a bit thick at these levels, and are vulnerable to news that does not support ideal pricing.

Gold finished unchanged, while silver was off a few cents.

The dollar finished slightly higher.

There will be a stock option expiration on Friday.

There were some intraday postings, of videos from Thomas Frank and Glenn Greenwald respectively.  You can scroll down to watch them.

Watching or reading any of the specialty news outlets is like observing a group of people who exist within isolated conclaves,  on ideological islands, engaging in insular feedback loops of simulated conversations, and bending the events of the day to fit their particular hysteria of the moment in their own parallel universe.

One can only step back and wonder what it is that has driven them to run in a mad herd from one place to another, seemingly without self-awareness.  And unless you drink deeply of the particular flavor of their kool-aid, it makes little sense because it has become unmoored from the common experience.

Truly, life imitates high school.

Need little, want less, love more. For those who abide in love abide in God, and God in them.

Have a pleasant evening.

Debate on the Trump-Putin Summit Between Cirincione and Greenwald

The original posting with transcript of this debate between Joe Cirincione and Glenn Greenwald about the Trump-Putin Summit can be found here.

Thomas Frank: The Catechism of Tech, Bank, and Globe, Which Is Nothing But an Excuse For an Out-of-Touch Elite

"Back in 1941, Franklin Roosevelt set down his understanding of American political history, in which there were two schools of political belief.

'The liberal party believed in the wisdom and efficacy of the will of the great majority of the people, as distinguished from the judgement of a small minority of either education or wealth.'

What Roosevelt could not foresee was a party system in which the divide fell not between the few and the many, but between the small minority of education and the small minority of wealth. Enlightened technocrats on one side, and resentful billionaires on the other. Get that great majority back together, and they would be unstoppable."

Thomas Frank

In order to change and regain their party's historical mandate, the Democrats have to abandon their patterns of behaviour adopted and set down in the 1990's.

They may have to get rid of their consultants, and most importantly their methods of fund raising almost exclusively among the professional moneyed class with which they closely identify.

And above all, they must take Hillary Clinton and her class of big money politicians aside, and bid them good luck and goodbye.

They must embrace genuine change,  instead of attempting to imitate reform by continually softening their image with professionally applied makeup, and a cynically thin veneer of identity politics and tribalism.

This is how they have managed to avoid discussing this vast inequality of ours, and addressing, with practical solutions rather reframing the questions with diversionary rhetoric, the slow demise of the long ignored working poor and middle class, which is their traditional base, and their party majority.