Will the Economy Survive?

People are looking forward to the future with mixed emotions. One question they ask is, “Will the Economy Survive?” A lot of conservatives are very optimistic.

They believe that Donald Trump will start the economy back up and get America on solid footing again. They view most of the things that he has done so far as great for America. They believe he can undo the damage done to our nation and restore us to greatness.

I have to admit that I feel a bet more hopeful for our nation with what I see Donald saying and doing. I think he means well and he is a force to be reckoned with. Donald does have a knack for getting his agenda done.

However, I still think the foundation of our economy is rotten. It is based on debt and we have to continue creating more and more debt to keep it going. This trend cannot continue indefinitely. I am afraid that it will have to stop by crashing.

Donald has some good ideas about helping America and if our economy were not so far in debt and it was based on sound money, he would probably succeed. I am concerned that it would take more than good intentions to help our economy survive.

I don’t believe Donald will cut the national debt. In fact, I believe he will add to it. Also, as he helps the economy to heat up, interest rates will rise and we will have to pay more of our tax money as interest.

The national and private debt is growing faster than the economy is and it is only a matter of time until we cannot even support the interest payments on this debt. I don’t know the timing of when this will came to a crisis, but I can just about guarantee you that we will have a major crisis.

Are we Being Regulated to Death?

So far this year over 81,000 pages of new regulations have been put on the books. These are not regulations that Congress has passed, but these were passed without being voted on. It seems everything has to be regulated today.

Regulations now affect almost every business that has been created in the United States. From hairdressers to manufacturers and from real estate agents to restaurants. They are all regulated to the point that if they obeyed every regulation, many of them would not be in business today.

We are being regulated about what we are allowed to put in our own mouths, and we are regulated about what we can build on a piece of property that we have paid for. We are even regulated about how well our homes have to be insulated.

As we get more and more regulations, we lose our freedom. We lose our freedom to choose what we think is best for us and our families. Instead, some bureaucrat decides how we are to take care of ourselves.

Now, I am not saying that all regulations are bad, but they are double-edged swords. Each regulation eliminates a piece of someone’s freedom even as it supposedly protects someone else.

We do need protection over basic property rights and some of the most flagrant health threats. However, I think every regulation should be carefully scrutinized to see if it causes more harm than good.

I also think Congress should be the deciding opinion on whether or not a regulation gets passed. That way they could have to answer to their voters as to why they voted for a regulation.

I know Trump has talked about reducing regulations and I hope he is successful at it. However, just to get us back to a sane number of regulations, he has a lot of work to do. As it is, I think free enterprise is being strangled to death with regulations.


Where is the US at Morally?

I still remember when I was a child that things were very different morally than they are today. We did a lot more as a family and a lot less as an individual just looking for their own pleasure.

When I was a child, almost all businesses were closed on Sunday and you thought ill of a farmer that was working in the fields that day. Sundays were the day that you spent with your family or went to visit relatives.

I remember that it seemed to be a disgrace if an unmarried woman got pregnant or had a child out of wedlock. TV shows didn’t show or glorify any sex, especially between unmarried persons.

I don’t think I heard of or even imagined that people could be attracted to the same sex the way one was attracted to the opposite sex. It certainly wasn’t cool to be that way.

I also don’t remember hearing anything about abortion. Killing children was seldom heard of and those that did were put away for a long time. If a girl got pregnant, she often went away until she had her baby. Then the only normal options were to keep the baby or put it up for adoption.

In the area of the country that I grew up in, almost all families had a mother and a father. It was very rare to have a one parent household.

Most things are completely different now. Most stores are open 7 days a week and families spend very little time together. Even when they are together, many kids are staring at some type of screen most of the time.

Single parent families are so common that they are almost the norm in some neighborhoods. Teenagers regularly have babies and most girls don’t have the father of their child to help them with it.

Today, homosexuality is celebrated and gay marriage is legal in all fifty states. If you are opposed to homosexuality, you are looked down on.

As far as abortion, we have killed almost 60 million babies in this country through abortion. Many young girls are counseled to have an abortion rather than inconvenience themselves.

Our country has changed an awful lot over the last fifty years. I’m not saying that all of the changes are bad. I am also not saying that there were not immoral and bad people in this country fifty years ago. But I think the conscience of America has changed dramatically over the last half a century. My question is, “Are we getting better or worse in God’s eyes?”

The Federal Reserve is Backed into a Corner!

The Federal Reserve keeps talking about raising interest rates until it gets them back to more normal interest. Right now the official Fed funds rate is .5%.  I think we are to a point where the Federal Reserve is backed into a corner.

The Fed funds rate cannot be lowered too much more before it becomes negative. Negative rates were thought to be impossible until recently when several countries issued negative rate bonds. Unbelievably, the bonds actually sold! Now there is actually approximately 15 trillion in negative interest rate bonds out there.

So, the Federal Reserve can only lower interest rates for  a little bit in order to stimulate the economy.  Even with rates at record lows, the economy is not doing all that great. Corporate profits have been dropping for over a year now. Work force participation has gone down in the last ten years while incomes adjusted for inflation have been stagnant.

This during a period when debt has gone up dramatically. National debt has doubled in the last ten years while personal debt is starting to rise also. This shows me that just holding the economy where it is at takes an incredible amount of debt.

A logical reason why lowering the interest rate does not stimulate the economy as much as hoped is that a lot of people are saving for retirement. With a decent interest rate, people don’t need to save as much as they do when the interest rates are at record lows. So now, many people are saving even more instead of spending more money.

The Federal Reserve doesn’t have very far to go in lowering interest rates until they are backed into a corner and are out of bullets. On the other hand, there are multiple problems with raising interest rates also.

If the Federal Reserve raise rates, the US government will have a big problem! With the current national debt load, if rates went back up to 5%, the US government would be paying almost a trillion dollars a year in interest. This is over a third of all of the money they bring in!

Also, corporations would struggle even more to make a profit and more corporations would default on their loans. Families would struggle with more debt and the economy would probably slow down even more than it is.

So overall, the Federal Reserve is backed into a corner. They can’t lower interest rates much, but they can’t raise them much either. I think they are just about out of bullets and may ultimately lose control over interest rates all together.

What Will a Donald Trump Presidency Mean Economically?

I have to admit, I was as surprised as most people to see Donald Trump win the Presidential election. I honestly didn’t think the establishment would let that occur. However, I don’t think a Donald Trump presidency will change everything.

I want to say first of all that I think Donald says some good things and he is definitely better for our nation than Hillary would have been. Many of his supporters are expecting him to ‘make America great again’. I honestly don’t think that is going to happen.

Donald will be more friendly toward private enterprise. I also don’t think Donald cares more about other people than Hillary does. I suspect that he actually has a conscience.

I suspect that he will not do a lot to slow the accumulation of debt in America, both private and public. He does not have strong libertarian leanings. He has already promised to spend heavily on infrastructure, a wall and on the military. I don’t think he will get a chance to cut social spending very much either.

I think he will be caught between a rock and a hard place. We will probably be going into some very tough times financially, and he will have to make some very hard decisions. Even though some of these problems will be because of President Obama’s policies, Donald will get the blame.

A Donald Trump presidency will not be able to save us from the fallout from our debt problems either. Our national debt will  be over 20 trillion dollars by the time he is in office. If interest rates would rise to just 5%, we would have to pay over a trillion dollars a year just in interest! That is over a third of all of the revenue we bring in.

Our debt problem is like a ticking time bomb. The problem is, we have gotten so used to the ticking sound that almost no one even pays any attention to it anymore. Meanwhile, the bomb continues to grow. When it blows, no one will be able to predict how much damage it will do.

Donald Trump will do whatever he has to do to contain the damage if it blows during his presidency. While I am glad he won the election rather than Hillary, I don’t think it will make a lot of difference in the long run.

What is the Likelihood of an Economic Crash?

If you live in this country today, you have to ask yourself, “What is the likelihood of an economic crash?” There are signs that things as we have known them for most of our lives are changing quickly.

Unless you want to bury your head in the sand and pretend that everything is OK, it is pretty obvious that economically, we cannot continue on the path we are on and expect favorable results.

The debt situation in this country and much of the world is out of control. We owe more money than anyone would have dreamed of twenty years ago. Our current acknowledged debt is over 19.8 trillion and will very soon pass 20 trillion dollars. I remember when we were concerned about a national debt in the billions.

No one in Washington or running for office seems to have a care in the world that it is so high. They are just trying to figure out ways to run it higher.

This debt is not the whole story. In addition to this, we have unfunded liabilities like retirement benefits and Medicare that could run over 100 trillion dollars. This is more than the wealth of every citizen put together.

Does anyone really think all of these obligations will be met? There will either be a very problematic default or the debt will be nullified by deflating the value of money.

Private debt is also a huge problem. Our whole money system and business cycles are built on debt. Debt is what fuels our economy. Most of us are used to this because this is the way it has been for most or all of our lives.

Historically, saving and investing have been the path to prosperity. This debt fueled path to getting rich has only been used this extensively for the last 50 or 60 years. We have not seen the final results of this yet.

It appears to me that we will see an economic crash of epic proportions. I don’t know how soon we will see it, but I think the timing will probably surprise all of us.

Donald is Probably Right, the Election is Rigged

Donald Trump keeps saying that the election is rigged against him. He says that the media and the insiders in Washington are rigging the election against him.

I think that very likely he is right. It’s rather obvious that the insiders in Washington are against him. Many of the Republican leaders have never liked him from the beginning. During the primaries, they had nothing good to say about him.

Even now, during the election, it appears that many of them would rather lose the election than have Donald Trump as president. They seem to be trying to split the vote on the republican side.

The media also seems to be very biased against Donald Trump. For instance, the recording that came out about his remarks about women, you know they had that for ten years. As much as he has been on TV and in the public, it never came out until he was running for president.

On the other side, Hillary Clinton has so much garbage on her, it is a wonder she is not in jail. Instead, the media says nothing bad about her. Most of the media is completely silent about anything derogatory about either her or President Obama.

The main stream media does appear to cover what they want to and if you question anything, you are painted as the crazy one. It almost seems as if they want to create the news rather than report it.

I am not saying that I am die hard Donald fan. I do think he says some of the right stuff, but I have trouble believing that he can make America great again as he claims. I do however think that his claim of the election being rigged has some merit.

It certainly will be an interesting ride this year to see how the elections actually turn out. I do not know for sure, but I suspect the rigging may be enough to get Hillary in as president.

What Could Light the Fuse to an Economic Crash?

Last week I talked about how we are setting on a powder keg right now and the economic situation in this country and much of the world could get set off and domino out of control rather quickly. We could be facing a full out economic crash very quickly.

Today, I’ll talk a little about how this could all get started. The first thing to know is that no one knows the future and it is almost impossible to say how a crash could start and exactly how it will play out.

One big trigger could be a stock market crash like we had in 1987 or any of the other crashes we have gone through. Sometimes it is very hard to say what starts these crashes, they just catch everyone off guard.

If we had a major crash, it could spook investors enough to start withdrawing money from the markets and if bonds start dropping as well, interest rates could rise. With the amount of debt in the world today, rising interest rates could be very hard on a lot of businesses and private individuals.

Another possible trigger to an economic crash, would be if debt defaults rise too much. As we covered last week, we have far too much debt in our country. If a percentage of those debts start to go bad, it could soon snowball into a crisis.

Banks could have some major problems and depositors may find their deposits in jeopardy of disappearing. Also, interest rates could rise because of the risk. This might trigger more defaults and continue to grow the crisis.

A third possible trigger could be a major bank failure. Deutsche bank in Germany is very close to collapsing now. If a bank that large goes down, it could bring down other banks with it.

We had something similar to it when Lehman Brothers went out in the 2008 crisis. This time, the powers that be may not be able to stop the bleeding. It could spread like a cancer.

A fourth possible trigger to an economic collapse is if a war starts that the world does not anticipate. Relations between the US and Russia have been declining for a while. Now Russia is asking it’s officials to came back home. Do they know something we don’t?

If a severe event like war breaks out, it could send economies into a major tailspin that they may not be able to recover from. Economic collapse could be triggered by many things or a combination of things. I believe it is likely that we will see a trigger within the next five to ten years, maybe sooner.

We’re Setting on a Powder Keg, Ready for the Explosion?

In the modern world today, I feel like we’re setting on a powder keg just waiting for it to explode. Economic instability is rampant and it could be any fuse that sets it off.

Debt is almost completely out of control. Most of the major governments in the world are hopelessly in debt and going further in debt every day. The US government is the world’s largest debtor. We have to borrow money just to pay the interest on our debt.

In addition to this debt, corporations are further in debt than ever before at a time when profits are dropping. Personal debt is also out of control with student debt and auto debt setting new highs.

As if all of this economic instability isn’t enough, in today’s world we are dealing with the lowest interest rates in history. Some countries have actually issued debt with negative interest rates. This is ridiculous! These countries and a few corporations are actually being paid to borrow money!

With interest rates this low, it penalizes saving and encourages borrowing. No wonder we have such a debt problem. People that had hoped to save enough money and retire on the interest, are really getting hurt by these interest rates.

Many people invest in the stock market hoping to get some kind of return on their money. That has driven the stock market to ridiculous valuations. Stocks are selling at higher prices while corporate profits have dropped for the last year.

As if this climate isn’t hard enough for businesses to survive, the government is creating more regulations all of the time. These never ending regulations are making it harder and harder all of the time for businesses to survive.

Over all, we live in a world where all of the debt and other promised payments like retirement and healthcare can never be paid. We are just kicking the can down the road and adding more gunpowder to the keg until something sets it off.

This is the economic situation in a nutshell. Do you really think we have any chance of maintaining our lifestyle for even another ten years?

What Would an Economic Collapse Look Like?

Many people think that the US is very stable and our leaders can help us to overcome almost any major problem that comes up. They expect their lives and economic stability to continue as they are for the next 20 or 30 years. They are totally unprepared for an economic collapse.

They make plans for children’s education and their own retirement as if nothing devastating could happen to derail their plans. They expect Social Security to be there for them and the money they save to still be worth what they need to retire on.

I believe that we are facing an economic collapse like we have never seen before. I think this will change all of our lives and drastically affect our plans for the future.

What would an economic collapse look like? I think it will start gradually and then speed up until it ends very quickly. I suspect we will first see debt defaults start to increase. Corporate defaults are already on the rise.

These defaults will probably start in either businesses or in personal finances. People have just about borrowed as much as they can handle. As these defaults increase, banks will be affected and start to have problems. Interest rates could rise which will accelerate the problem.

If a few banks start to have problems, people might start withdrawing their money from banks to protect their savings. If this becomes too widespread, banks and the government will limit withdrawals, which will create more defaults and more attempts to withdraw money.

For many people, it will seem like the banks are being closed with no warning as the government declares a bank holiday. Withdrawal restrictions will be in force. When people realize this there will be social unrest and rioting in larger cities.

If this unrest is throughout the country, martial law will have to be declared and troops will be called out to stop it. In order to provide necessities for everyone, the government will nationalize farms and other businesses to provide for everyone.

As the government seizes more control, productivity will drop and there will be even more shortages. I suspect there are those who are in government who will use this opportunity to seize more power.

I really hope we aren’t facing this type of scenario, but I am afraid it will sooner or later play out very much like this.

What Happens if The Feds Can’t Control the Interest Rates?

It’s common knowledge that the federal reserve controls the interest rates that we pay and get on our savings. They have purposely kept them low for years, trying to stimulate the economy. With borrowed money being practically free, people are encourage to borrow and spend their way to prosperity.

The theory is that the feds can speed up or slow down the economy by regulating the interest rates. Theoretically, if they raise rates, it slows down the economy and if they lower them the economy should speed up.

That may work sometimes, but after having their foot on the accelerator for enough years, it doesn’t always work the way they plan for it to. It seems that maybe people can handle only so much debt, and after so long, they can’t keep going farther into debt.

Right now, borrowed money is close to free and in some cases, governments and corporations are being paid to borrow money. (Try to explain that one!) Even though Janet Yellen keeps talking about raising rates, the economy just isn’t strong enough to do so.

So how can the Feds lose control of interest rates? Their policies are not them only way interest rates are determined. Risk is also a factor in interest rates. For example, people with poor credit have to pay higher interest rates than other people or no one would loan to them.

The same is true of corporations and governments. If defaults rise, then interest rates will also have to rise to help cover the loses. Corporate defaults are already on the rise and if any governments have trouble paying their bond holders, people won’t lend to them unless they get a higher interest rates.

The bond market is often how interest rates are determined. The lower bonds go, the higher interest rates go. For example, if you own a $100 bond that pays $1 per year, it yields 1%. If your bond gets investors worried about whether it will get paid or not, and it drops to $50, now it pays 2% as long as it keeps paying.

So if interest rates rise because of defaults, it could escape the Feds control and go wherever the market says they should go. That my take the Feds out of the driver’s seat altogether.

Build a Wall? I Doubt it!

I know a lot of people make fun of Donald Trump because he talks about building a wall. His theory is that we need to build a wall to keep illegal migrants from coming in and taking jobs away from Americans.

The reason I don’t think the wall will ever get built, is that now it would keep more illegal immigrants from leaving the country than coming into it. The research indicates that more people are crossing the border with Mexico going into Mexico than are coming out of it.

There may be many reasons for that, but one of the big ones is probably that we are no longer the land of opportunity that we used to be. There simply are not that many great jobs for the immigrants.

Mexico is also improving, so the difference between the countries isn’t that great any more. Let’s face it, our economy isn’t doing that great. It is very likely we have never fully come out of the recession that started in 2008.

Another statistic is that more and more Americans are renouncing their US citizenship. Even though they raised the cost to renounce your citizenship dramatically, more people are shelling out the money to do it.

We used to be the country that the whole world wanted to come to. That was the dream for many people, but that is now in the past. Now we excel in the percentage of people in prison and in government regulation and spying.

So, no matter who gets elected in November, will we build a wall? I doubt it! There is very little need for a wall unless they want to build one to keep Americans from leaving. By the way, don’t think that is an impossibility. Other countries have built walls to keep their best citizens from leaving.

Why Is It OK to Redistribute Wealth?

Since when is it OK to steal from one person and give it to another. Many people would feel guilty about going to their neighbors house and just taking what they want. However, some of those same people are just fine with electing a politician who will pass laws that force someone to pay money so they can get benefits.

Whether an individual takes what someone else earned or a group of people find someone to force the other person to give them money it is still called theft.

When our country was founded as a free country, there was no welfare, social security, food stamps or any  other social programs. Each person was free to earn as much or as little money as they wanted and anyone who stole from them was in danger of being hung. Wealth redistribution was treated as the crime that it is.

The mindset in this country has completely changed. Now we think people who have worked hard, educated themselves, and taken risks to make a lot of money should pay their ‘fair’ share so that those who choose not to do these things can get paid for doing nothing!

Now, I am all for charity and being willing to help out those who have had hard times. But real charity is never forced at the end of a gun. When government forces us to pay taxes so that someone else can benefit, that is not charity. It is stealing, plain and simple.

In this country, too many people have an entitlement mindset and that is part of what is ruining this country. It won’t be as long as many people think, before it all comes crashing down. Wealth redistribution is a hoax that people who want something for nothing have bought into. It has never worked well and it never will!


The Investing World is Upside Down!

Historically, people have worked hard, saved some money and then invested it in a good company to get more money back then they invested. The general market would reward those who saved and invested wisely and penalize those who didn’t and had to borrow money.

Much of history had some form of gold as money. It was either the real metal itself, gold coins or certificates that were good for gold. Silver was also used for smaller denominations.

If you look at our world now, all of this is completely upside down! Now we have over 13 trillion dollars worth of bonds that have been sold at negative interest rates. This means that the borrower is rewarded for borrowing and the lender is penalized for lending the money.

The problem is that the money being lent is not money that has been saved and earned, but it has mostly been created out of thin air! Much of this creation of money is done by debt.

Debt is used the same as money by many banks and other institutions. Banks create money almost every time they make a loan. This works fine as long as this debt has a very low default rate. If default rates climb very much, things could start to unravel rather quickly.

The other thing that is upside down is that corporate profits have been falling for some time. If that happens companies should be worth less. However, instead of this, the stock market is making new highs. So these companies that have falling profits are now worth more than they were. That doesn’t make sense at all.

The only thing that can be happening is that because interest rates are so low, large institutions are buying stocks to get at least a little bit of return. This can only continue until fresh money quits flowing into the markets.

It has been pretty quiet the last month, is something about ready to happen? We’ll wait and see!

Has Anyone Asked God What He Thinks?

America was founded on Christian principles. That is simply a fact of history. Many of our founding fathers believed in prayer and in the value of Christian morals. They tried to model many of our early laws on biblical principles.

You may or may not believe in God, but if you do believe in the God of Christians, what do you think is God’s opinion of our country today? Do you think He is pleased with the direction our country is headed?

We all think Hitler was a monster for having six million Jews killed in Germany. I think that was a terrible time and I believe God judged Hitler and Germany for that. In America today, we have murdered almost ten times as many innocent babies in  the name of choice!

Do you think God will wink at that and bless us as a nation when Germany had such a high price to pay? God has some very serious thoughts about shedding innocent blood.

When as a nation, we redefine God’s definition of marriage and even promote gay marriage throughout our country, do you think God is pleased with us? He judged Sodom and Gomorrah for the same sin. Will He have to apologize them if He does not judge America for it?

In our movies and media, we promote and glorify many acts that God calls sin. But at the same time, we say ‘God bless America’. Do we really think that is going to happen to our country?

God has blessed America more than any other nation on earth. We have prospered beyond many of our founding fathers dreams. Will that continue, or is all of that about to change?


Is This a Free Country Anymore?

What Happened to America?

We’ve been taught since were young children that we live in the freest country in the world. We grew up quoting the pledge of allegiance that talks about how our country has liberty and justice for all. That all sounds great, but is it true anymore?

When I was young, we had to pay taxes, but other than the occasional traffic stop and fine, the government pretty much left us alone to live our lives as we saw best. I know we didn’t have the freedoms that existed in the late 1800’s when people could do what they wanted with their property and the government did not steal part of their income every year.

Back then if a person wanted to go into business, they just put a sign up and they were in business. They also got to keep all of their profits and did not have to file papers with the government every year.

Now, we cannot even have work done on our own houses without asking a government bureaucrat for permission to do it. We can’t open a business without getting permission from someone who has no stake in our business.

If we lose money in business, that is all our problem and we suffer for it. However, if we make money, Uncle Sam is there with his hand out to collect money that the government didn’t help to earn.

A person can’t leave the country without filing the appropriate paperwork to get a passport. Anymore, we can’t spread manure without getting a certification from the government. People can’t even cut someone else’s hair without having the proper license!

The government regulates what we can buy and what we can’t buy. A farmer can be put in jail for selling a willing customer milk from a cow. Water heaters cost a lot more because of government regulations. The government even keeps tabs on how much of your own money you try to draw out of the bank.

Americans have their phone calls and emails listened to and evaluated by government agencies. Our bank accounts can be frozen in a heartbeat without us ever being convicted of a crime. We have IRS agents targeting certain individuals and the EPA fining people whenever they feel like it.

If you think we still live in a free country, then you obviously don’t know what being free means. Being free means you have the right to do what you want with your own property as long as you don’t harm another person while doing it. It means that only you need to know where your money is and what you are doing with it.

I really yearn for freedom again. I want to be solely responsible for my well being and success. Shouldn’t I  be able to make my own choices about what I put in my body. I want to be able to decide what happens with the money that I earn. I don’t think that is being selfish, I think it is just being free.

Now it Can be Crime to Carry Your Own Money!

I was out of the country last week and when I returned, I had to go through customs to get back in. That is a big hassle and a lot of waiting in line. Of course, there are signs all over with warnings and threats about being fined and jailed. Believe me, getting into a foreign country was much easier than getting back in even with my passport.

One sign in particular disturbed me. It basically said that if you were carrying more than $10,000 in cash or cash equivalents, you had to declare it or they could take your money and throw you in jail.

Now in 2014, civil asset forfeitures totaled 4.5 billion dollars while reported burglaries only totaled 3.5 billion dollars. In case you don’t know, civil asset forfeiture is when a person wearing a badge and a gun just takes your money or other property, often without charging you with a crime.

So this sign is telling me that if I am carrying $12,000 of my own money, I have to report it to the biggest thief in the country or I am the criminal. Does something seem a little messed up with this picture?

There are many legal reasons for people to carry large amounts of cash. They might be in the diamond buying business, they might be wanting to pay cash for a car or other asset, or they might just like to carry large amounts of cash for other personal reasons.

You can’t tell me this is a free country anymore when you can become a criminal just by carrying the money around that you earned and is rightfully yours. I think the real thieves have taken over and we are just here for them to steal from.

This is the kind of behavior you can expect from a bankrupt government. Things will continue to deteriorate until people look around and decide they can’t live here anymore. By then it will probably be too late for most of them and they won’t be able to get out.

Will There be Enough Money for You to Retire?

A lot of people in the US put a lot of effort into planning for retirement. They save and try to invest money for the golden day when they will no longer have to go to work to earn a living. After all, their parents and grandparents retired, why couldn’t they retire?

Personally, I think retirement is a fallacy that has been promoted in the last 70or 80 years. I don’t think we were made to retire and just quit being productive. Sure, people may need to change vocations or slow down a little, but what are people supposed to do if they just stop working?

I also think a lot of people who try this, die soon after. I love to vacation, but I can’t imagine vacationing all of the time. I think you would soon quit looking forward to it.

Now as far as the funds for retirement, there are private funds and there is Social Security, which every self-employed person hates because of the huge chunk it takes out of their earnings. By the governments own admission, Social Security is set to run out of excess funds in about 20 years.

That is if all of the funds in it that have been borrowed out, get repaid so that it can pay out benefits. Social Security is invested in Treasury bonds, which are basically IOU’s by an already broke government.

Many private pension plans are also in trouble. Many of them are set up to be solvent if they can maintain an investment return of 8%. That is extremely hard to achieve in today’s world with over 13 trillion dollars worth of negative interest rate bonds.

On top of having problems funding retirement, inflation will compound the problem. Inflation is a consistent way of eating your savings and increasing the amount of money you would need for retirement.

By the way, you can’t trust the governments figures for inflation. They change the way they calculate it to keep the number smaller. If you went by the way they calculated it in the 1980’s, inflation would be over twice as high as it is now.

People think that if they invest in the stock market, it will keep going up like it has for the last 30 years. Corporate profits are falling, so the markets are going up just because people think they should. That could fall apart in a short time.

With the record low interest rates, Baby Boomers retiring quickly and a slowing world economy, I wouldn’t plan on being able to retire and live comfortably for the next ten or fifteen years. Find some productive work you like to do and do it for life.

Our government is broke and our money system is broke. It is only a matter of time until it affects your lifestyle. Sorry about the bad news, but you can still do something about it.

Things are Getting Really Strange Out There

This country and world are getting really strange. Let me give you some examples. First of all, interest rates are at 5000 year lows. We now have over  12 trillion dollars worth of negative interest rate government bonds out there. That means if you buy one of these government bonds, you are guaranteed to lose money. Seriously? Is that an investment?

For now, US government bonds still pay a little interest, but not much. So we now live in a world where governments and a few people get paid to borrow money and you get penalized if you save money. What is wrong with this picture?

The stock market is making new highs while corporate profits are going down and corporate defaults are rising. Does this seem a little backwards? How long can this continue?

We have mass killings almost every other week by radical Islamists. However, on the flip side, we are told not to criticize them because that is hate speech. In addition, we are supposed to let thousands of refugees in the country without a good way to vet them. Does this make sense to anyone?

We kill hundreds of thousands of unborn babies every year. In New York almost a third of the babies conceived are aborted. This is all done as a ‘choice’. However, if you kill a bald eagle, you can spend a year in jail for it. Are our values a littles upside down?

When I was young, it was rare to see a gay couple. Marriage was a respected bond between a man and a woman and that was how it was defined. Now Gay marriage is legal in all 50 states and people that oppose it are penalized. Have we advanced or gone backwards in God’s eyes?

Everything seems to backwards these days. What makes you think our system will stand up and continue to exist. Is it so broken that any crisis can cause it to collapse?

Is There Some Reason Hillary Get’s a Free Pass?

If you paid attention to the news this week before the shootings took over the coverage, Hillary Clinton had all charges dropped by the FBI.

Now it is obvious to everybody, that she did break the law by having classified information on a private server and then by repeatedly lying about it. It seems she did all that she could to obstruct the investigation.

Does that sound like the actions of someone who is innocent or didn’t know they were breaking the law? I suspect she knew what she was doing all of the time.

I think it looks a bit suspicious that just before she starts her campaign in earnest, the FBI drops all of the charges against her. Even though the FBI director stated that she lied repeatedly and told what she had done wrong, the charges were still dropped.

Now, if it were you or I that had done what she did, I can just about guarantee you that we would probably going to the big house. I suspect there are reasons that she get’s off with no punishment.

I suspect that we the people have very little control over what really happens in this country and the real strings are pulled by those who benefit from the direction this country is headed.

I think there is some very big money calling the shots. I have heard that Hillary raises seven times as much money as Donald does. Is that because the big money supports her?

Defying Gravity

Well, the stock market got over Brexit rather quickly. The market dropped hard for a couple of days , then it went back up to almost where it was before.

I think the stock market is defying gravity. GDP growth rate has been dropping for the past year, corporate profits are lower than they have been for years, a lot less jobs were created in May than previously thought, and corporate junk bond defaults are rising.  This doesn’t look like a scenario where the stock market should be near it’s top.

People are earning less than they used to and price to earnings ratio’s are much higher than they used to be. Now to be fair, lower interest rates cause people to invest in stocks and expect lower rates of return than they used to get.

Even though official unemployment rates are down, we have some of the lowest employment participation rates in 38 years. Does it look like someone may be cooking the books?

If you look at the real numbers, the economy is rather sluggish at a time when interest rates are almost zero. I suspect the Federal Reserve is getting backed into a corner real fast as they try to stimulate a declining economy.

The stock market may defy gravity for a while, but my money is on the power of gravity in the long run. I suspect we will see sluggish performance for a while, and then things could start to go downhill fairly rapidly.


Brexit, What Does it Mean?

There was an event that happened Friday that rocked the markets all over the world. The UK voted to leave the European Union. Many people don’t even know it happened. The effect on Friday was that the Dow Jones was down 600 points. Gold shot up 5%, many other stock markets were down and interest rates look like they could go down again, if possible.

Now, the UK is still part of the European Union today and it could take 2 years for them to actually sever the ties that bind them to the EU. So, no one really knows what the fall out from this will all mean.

The markets went down because they all thought the UK would remain in the EU and they got surprised by the news. Usually, markets don’t like uncertainty. It causes people to spend less and profits go down.

I think our stock market is way overpriced anyway and our economy is a lot weaker than the government would like for you to believe it is. I feel like our economy and our money system is like a balloon in a world full of needles. You never know which needle will pop it, but it will probably pop sometime.

Now, Brexit was a pretty big needle. It may not be the one that pops our economic system, but it could start us in that direction. I can’t see that we are going to prosper a whole lot in the next few months. Our economy is slowing with interest rates near zero. There isn’t a whole lot more the Federal Reserve can do to stimulate the economy.

I suspect that over the next few months, we will see our economy continue to slow down. There aren’t a lot of things that those in charge can do to prevent this. There will come a time when things will start to go bad very rapidly. I don’t know exactly when that will happen, but I don’t expect it to be too far in the future.

How to Take Over a Country Without Firing a Shot

This is a very hypothetical post, but you decide for yourself if any of it sounds familiar. Here is a possible scenario if a group wanted to take over a powerful country and was willing to take their time to do it. It is also a good way to keep the resources of the country intact so they could be plundered.

The first thing you would need to do is to gain power over the inhabitants of that country. You don’t have much power over independent individuals, but if you can make people dependent on the government you have more power over them. For example, my dogs are dependent on me for almost everything. I also have complete power over them, even life and death power.

So the best way to get people dependent on the government is to give them free stuff. The more social programs and giveaways you can promise people, the more they will like you and the more dependent they will become. As they become more dependent, you can tell them what to do more, because eventually they won’t be able to survive without the government.

You also will need to gain control of the money system. He who controls the money can make the rules. Precious metals are hard to control, so if you force people to use a currency you control, then you have real power over the economy. The ideal money system is where the ruling elites can create money at will, but no one else can.

Once enough people are dependent on the government and the elites control the money system, you also would want people to obey rules and regulations. The more of them you pass, the more people will expect the government to take care of any problem and as long as they are not hurt by the regulation, they are fine with others being regulated.

Now that you have people dependent, used to obeying the government and you have control of the money, it is time to accelerate the process. Now the goal is to crash the system, so the government can seize control of everything. You do this by creating so much debt and bureaucracy that eventually something will crack.

Since the money system is built solely on confidence and nothing really backing it, sooner or later, it will start to unravel too. Once things get bad enough and many people can’t buy food for their families, crime will rise dramatically. At that point, the population will just want the government to do something about the crime and problems.

Of course, the only thing to do then will be to declare martial law and nationalize the farms and industry to provide for all of these dependent people. And that, boys and girls is how you can take over the most powerful nation on the face of the earth without firing a shot!

A Brief History of Our Money

A lot of people don’t realize how much our money system has declined and how fragile it is. Basically it is just built on confidence or the greater fool theory. People take our money as payment assuming that someone else (a greater fool?) will take the money from them as payment. As long as there are no problems, the system continues to work.

The constitution gives the government the right to coin money but does not say that the government has the right to print money. To be fair, it doesn’t expressly forbid it either. Now though, we have the Federal Reserve, which is not a part of the government, printing and creating money.

Though we have had paper money around for a long time, over a hundred years ago, much of the money used were coins. Coins were around for a lot longer than paper money. I have some gold $10 and $20 coins from the late 1800’s.

They will probably buy as much or more today than they would back then. If we still used gold and silver as money, we wouldn’t see much or any inflation.Inflation is really money going down in value, not things costing more.

In 1933, FDR outlawed gold and made it so the Federal Government had all of the gold. This way, they could manipulate the price of gold and make our money worth less. However, a dollar was still worth a dollars’ worth of gold. It was like having a piece of paper good for a pound of coffee.

In 1971, Nixon took us off of the gold standard altogether. Now you had a piece of paper good for a dollar’s worth of nothing. Kind of like having your certificate for a pound of coffee good for just a pound of who knows what.

This did trigger a lack of confidence in the dollar that got so bad in 1978, that the US government issued bonds in Swiss Francs. Eventually interest rates rose to 18% to restore faith in the dollar.

Now, our money isn’t even based on worthless paper. There are actually very few paper dollars in existence. Most of our money is based on debt. For example, if a bank has $100,000 in assets, they can loan a million dollars out. So they just created $900,000 out of thin air with debt. The loan is the asset they hold to secure the $900,000.

An example of our debt based economy might go like this. A farmer borrows money for equipment, ground and seed to plant a crop. When he harvests it, a trucker borrows money to buy a truck to take the crop to a processing plant. The plant owner borrows money to build the plant and process the crop.

Finally, the consumer uses a credit card to buy the end product. Most of our society is run by debt very similar to this. The problem occurs when a few people can’t pay their debts. Then those they were supposed to pay, can’t pay their debts and so on. It can create a domino effect that collapse the whole system.

This collapse can happen very rapidly. The first you may know of it is that your cards don’t work or the bank is closed when it is not supposed to be. No matter how much money you have in the bank, it won’t do you any good.


They’re at it Again!

Well, the Federal Government is busy again to make our lives better. They are passing more regulations to keep us safe and to make sure we make the right decisions for ourselves. After all, I’m sure we would make a real mess of our lives if we got to make our own decisions.

There are two areas recently that could prove to hurt a lot of people. One of those areas is the need to pay salaried workers overtime pay. They are raising the income from just over $23,000 to over $47,000. This means that if you used to pay a salaried employee more than $24,000, you didn’t have to pay overtime.

Now, you have to pay them over $47,000 to not have to pay them overtime. The Governments suggestions are to either pay the overtime, pay them over $47,000 or don’t let them work over 40 hours per week.

Of course I’m sure none of this extra money that employers will have to come up with to comply with these new regulations will cause anything to cost more. And I am sure this will drastically improve the employees situation with no ill effects.

Much like Obamacare, this will affect employees and consumers alike. Good thing we have the government helping us employers out!

The other regulation is new rules on payday loans. I guess too many people have trouble paying bills so they have to get short term loans to help pay bills and they pay a lot in fees to do this.

Of course we can’t expect loan companies to make high risk loans like this and charge higher fees to offset their risk. It’s ridiculous that they would actually try to make a profit off of their business!

So the government is planning on basically regulating these businesses out of existence. That will really help some family the next time they need a loan but can’t get one to pay their rent or to buy groceries!

Oh, what would we do without the government helping us out so much? No wonder Ronald Reagan said, “The nine worst words you can hear are ‘I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.’ ”


A Few Warning Signs to Look For

I suspect when the final collapse comes, it will come pretty rapidly. It is possible that it will come quick enough that there won’t be much time to protect your family when most people see that we are in  trouble.

Just like in 2008 when the subprime market collapsed and a lot of mortgages went into default, the end happened very quickly. The entire system very nearly went down then.

There are some warning signs to look for now. They may not be in this order and may not all be evident before the crash. However, here are a few problems to look out for that could signal that we are headed for a bigger crash.

There will very likely be some control of the money system. It could take several forms. One may be that they quit printing $100 bills. Another may be that there is a limit on cash or ATM withdrawals. There also may be restrictions on transferring money out of the country.

Most of these restrictions would be to encourage people to keep their money in the banking system where government and the big banks know where it is and can access it if they want to.

Another sign may be that the Federal Reserve takes interest rates negative. This has already happened in several countries and the Federal Reserve has already hinted that this is a possibility. The reason they might do this is that it is a last ditch effort to try to stimulate the economy.

Look for debt defaults to increase. Student debt already has 11% of it’s loans currently delinquent. The junk corporate bond default rate is also rising a little. People and companies have taken on too much debt in the last ten years and some of them are going to be in trouble.

One other sign to watch for is the government may try to force retirement plans to invest in government securities. We already have the MYRA plan that encourages people to invest in government bonds for their retirement. It wouldn’t be a real big step for the government to force people to invest in government bonds for their own ‘safety’.

The Real State of the Union



As an entrepreneur for over 30 years, I keep a pretty close eye on what is happening in Washington and the economy. Entrepreneurs are affected first by the economy and government regulations.

We have to know what is happening so we can steer our businesses successfully through some very rough waters. Sometimes it seems like much of the world is trying to crash what we have built up through hard work and determination.

About four years ago, I realized that the national debt was completely unsustainable. No matter who was in office, it continued to rise with no thought about how it was going to be handled. With the possible exception of Ron Paul, it seems like no one was even paying any attention to it.

Government Debt Burden

I for one feel like the economic and currency problems we are facing are huge! The national debt is over 19 trillion dollars and the unfunded liabilities of the Federal Government add at least another 100 trillion dollars. That is more than the net worth of every person in the United states!

Let me put this in perspective. Let’s say that you made $50,000 a year. But, you had a debt of 290,000 that you had to pay interest on. You also spend about $65,000 a year. You just borrow more money to cover the difference. As if that’s not bad enough, you had previous employees and other people that you promised to help support. The total support you promised them is about 1.5 million dollars.

Now, with that financial picture, do you think you could go to the bank and borrow some more money? The only way you can keep going is you have a good buddy who prints money and loans it to you at very low interest rates.

Most of our founding fathers despised public debt. James Madison said, “I go on the principle that a public debt is a public curse, and in a Republican Government a greater curse than any other.”

Very appropriately Benjamin Franklin said, “When you run in debt; you give to another power over your liberty.” We are certainly losing our liberties!


So, how did we get from dreading debt to being the greatest debtor on the face of the earth? I believe we got here gradually by expecting the federal government to do more and more for us. Our government started stepping on the constitution little by little until we hardly recognize the constitution as our guiding document for our country.

It did this by promising free ice cream for everybody. From Herbert Hoover promising a ‘chicken in every pot’ to Barrack Obama handing out free cell phones. Of course, it wasn’t only social programs that are to blame for our debt. It is very expensive to police the whole world. I am sure our founding fathers never had that in mind when they founded this country.

The problem is that many people think the government should provide an answer to every problem. I have never seen the government take on a problem yet without spending more money and creating more regulations and bureaucracy.

Another are of concern is that over the last five years, the federal reserve has nearly quintupled the base money supply. Are we to believe that all of those dollars will still be worth as much as they used to be?

Banking Problems

We’ve had warning signs that there is a problem. We had the dot com bubble crash in 2000. Then on Sept 11, 2001, we had the infamous terrorist attack on the twin towers. The stock market really tanked then.

In 2008, the housing bubble burst and the entire banking system almost went down. If you’ve seen the movie, ‘The Big Short’, you have an idea what happened then. The government went in debt another trillion dollars to bail out the big banks.

The problem is, the banks are bigger now and even more highly leveraged. Everything in our financial system is set up to work well if everything goes according to plan. As long as there are no surprises, we will be fine.

However, life is full of surprises and not all of them are pleasant. We live in a volatile world and things can and do go wrong. Sometimes horribly wrong.

I’ve already covered how far in debt the US government is. There is also an Achilles heel with the largest banks. In 2008, they were considered too big to fail. Now they are approximately 40% bigger and we have lost a lot of smaller banks. This makes them even more essential to our financial system.

The Achilles heel of the large banks are derivatives. Derivatives are simply bets that something else will change or stay the same in price. Therefore, they are derived from underlying asset or investment.

The problem is that the five largest banks have over 200 trillion dollars of risk in derivatives. Their total assets are less than 10 trillion dollars. Now can you see why they are only fine if nothing goes wrong?

If things start to go wrong, it would take pretty much all of the wealth in the world to cover those derivatives! I am afraid that we could see a domino effect if problems arise.

Besides the government debt problems and the risky bets the big banks have taken, personal debt is too high also. One of the most alarming debts are student loans. Total student loan debt is 1.1 trillion dollars. Over 11% of these are currently delinquent.

Other Financial Problems

Kids are going to college and then unable to find high paying jobs, so they are either not working, or working at low paying service jobs. If these debts continue to go unpaid, the money will have to come from somewhere.

There are other very troubling factors in our economy. One of these is government run healthcare. We all know that healthcare bills have ballooned out of proportion with the rest of our economy. How will they ever get paid when the poorest members of our society can get practically free healthcare whenever they want?

I recently broke my back and I was in the hospital for four days. The original bill would have been over $200,000. We were able to negotiate it down to a little over $50,000. Many medical bills are even higher than that! As our population ages, who is going to pay for these ridiculously high bills?

What Other People Think

There are a few other people saying that we are heading toward some serious trouble, but by and large, people expect things to continue as they have. They are planning for college, families and retirement like nothing bad will happen.

I have trouble understanding this, but I think it is because they just cannot imagine that a catastrophe could happen here. After all, aren’t we the greatest nation on earth? Many people think the whole world revolves around the United States.

I also think a lot of people are too busy living their lives and trying to make a living to pay any attention to what is really happening in our country.

However, many people that I have talked to feel like something is going to happen. They feel like things just aren’t right and there will be some type of problem. People react in various ways to this.

Some people think those in authority will figure it out and come up with a solution. The problem is that the usual solution from those in charge is to spend more money and seize more control.

The issue is, that is what created the problem in the first place! We have spent way too much money and we have way too much government control. The entire system can’t take too much more of either one.

Many other people sense there is going to be a problem, but they are so busy, they don’t really think it through. A lot of people are too busy earning a living, plus earning enough to pay their taxes to spend too much time looking at the problem.

A few other people tell me how many guns the American public has and believe we will have another American revolution. They think the public will rise up and get rid of our current form of government and create a new government.

I see a number of problems with this idea. First of all, how will they organize. The government has the ability to shut down most forms of communication. It will be real hard to organize without any phones or internet.

The next problem with this theory is who do you rebel against. Do you shoot the next police officer, or do you fight against your local courthouse, or even your neighbor who happens to work in a public office?

The last problem with rebelling is that half the country relies on the government giving them handouts. So you may find yourself fighting them also.

The last solution people give me is that they will elect someone who will fix the problem. Really? We have been trying this for the last fifty years and the problem has only gotten bigger!

It is my belief that no one who has a plan to solve the national debt could get elected. They would have to cut too many programs for too many people. They would never get enough votes to win the election.

I see no other option other than to go through a major crash. I think the only chance we have to avoid the destruction of our country as we know it, is if we have a major revival and we repent as a nation and call out to God to help us.

I honestly believe that no man can solve the problems that we as a nation are facing.

Moral Decline

The final problem I see in America is the moral decline we have had for over 50 years. Depending on your religious views, you may discount this, but most nations in decline also go through a moral decline.

We think Hitler was a horrible person for killing over 6 million Jews. We have killed almost 10 times that many innocent unborn children just for our convenience. When I was young, it was almost unheard of to see a gay couple anywhere. Now they can be married in all 50 states.

Now I am not a homophobe and I do not condone violence to gay people in any way, but we were founded as a Christian nation and I can find no place in the Bible where God condones any homosexual behavior.

We also promote all types of immoral behavior in much of our media. Whether you watch movies, TV or go online, almost anything is available.

Possible Scenario

Now putting this all together, how do I see this going down? I suspect we will have some type of financial crisis. This could be started by debt defaults, continued weakness in the economy or by a loss of confidence in the dollar.

When the financial crisis gets bad enough, people that rely on government assistance and many others will find it difficult to provide food for their families. The only option for many of them will be to turn to crime.

As crime rises, people will feel very insecure and turn to the government for help. The only option at that point will be for martial law to be declared. People will not like losing freedoms, but as we have seen in the past, people will gladly give up freedoms for security.

Once the chaos is calmed, the government will have to feed everybody and the only way they can do it is to nationalize farms and most if not all businesses. This will be done with a promise to return them once everything is brought back to normal.

However, we all know once the government gets a foot hold on something, they almost never give it back. As the government continues to run things, productivity will drop and there will probably be shortages of many essential items.

By the way, an executive order authorizing the government to do this was signed on March 16, 2012. It is called National Defense Resources Preparedness Executive Order. You can find it on the White House website.

Does it Feel Like Something is Coming?

Many people that I have talked to feel like something is going to happen. They feel like things just aren’t right and there will be some type of problem. People react in various ways to this.

Some people think those in authority will figure it out and come up with a solution. The problem is that the usual solution from those in charge is to spend more money and seize more control.

The issue is, that is what created the problem in the first place! We have spent way too much money and we have way too much government control. The entire system can’t take too much more of either one.

Many other people sense there is going to be a problem, but they are so busy, they don’t really think it through. A lot of people are too busy earning a living, plus earning enough to pay their taxes to spend to much time looking at the problem.

A few other people tell me how many guns the American public has and believe we will have another American revolution. They think the public will rise up and get rid of our current form of government and create a new government.

I see a number of problems with this idea. First of all, how will they organize. The government has the ability to shut down most forms of communication. It will be real hard to organize without any phones or internet.

The next problem with this theory is who do you rebel against. Do you shoot the next police officer, or do you fight against your local courthouse, or even your neighbor who happens to work in a public office.

The last problem with rebelling is that half the country relies on the government giving them handouts. So you may find yourself fighting them also.

The last solution people give me is that they will elect someone who will fix  the problem. Really? We have been trying this for the last fifty years and the problem has only gotten bigger!

It is my belief that no one who has a plan to solve the national debt could get elected. They would have to cut too many programs for too many people. They would never get enough votes to win the election.

I see no other option other then to go through a major crash. I think the only chance we have to avoid the destruction of our country as we know it, is if we have a major revival and we repent as a nation and call out to God to help us.

I honestly believe that no man can solve the problems that we as a nation are facing.




Will What Happened in 2008, Happen Again?

I recently watched the movie ‘The Big Short’. Now, I wouldn’t recommend the movie as a family movie. It had a lot of language and other stuff that I would not want my family to see. However, the story of the movie was very instructive.

In case you don’t know, it was based on a true story of what happened in 2008. The banks were making a lot of risky loans to people on their homes and figured they were safe. A lot of them were interest only and made to people with very risky credit.

They were then repackaging those loans into securities and selling them to the public as safe investments. This was borderline fraud. The problem was that everyone was in on it from the ratings agencies to the government.

Very few people saw the collapse coming, but a few smart guys placed money on it crashing. They made a lot of money, but at one time they were afraid of losing everything. The only thing that saved anyone was that the government took money from us and bailed out the big banks.

So, the big banks got bailed out and paid themselves big bonuses with our money while the national debt just got bigger. Now most of those banks are bigger and highly leveraged. That means that if things don’t go as planned, they could have a bigger problem.

They movie gave me a little bit of deja vu as the main characters in the movie said what was going to happen and no one believed them. I am saying we are headed for another major disaster and very few people want to believe me.

I don’t know for sure what will trigger the disaster, but I suspect debt defaults will play into it. We have a trillion dollars worth of college loans and many of them are behind on payments. Corporate debt is also struggling as well as car loans.

If the economy keeps on struggling along like it has been and we get a little downturn, it could start the ball rolling. I just can’t see how we can kick the can much further down the road.

How Bad is the Financial Picture?

To say that our government owes more than it could ever pay is an understatement to say the least. The acknowledged national debt now stands at over 19.2 trillion dollars. This comes to almost $60,000 for every man, woman and child in the United States.

That figure is very alarming. Most people could never pay that amount in ten years of saving. In addition it has been growing around a trillion dollars a year for the last eight years. That makes it even harder to try to get it paid.

However, the listed national debt doesn’t tell the whole story. There is such a thing as unfunded liabilities. This is all of the payments and retirement benefits promised that haven’t been paid yet and there is no money set aside for.

Many retirement accounts have large lump sums set aside to pay people a regular payment as they retire. The Federal government has promised retirement benefits, but they have no money set aside for these promises.

In fact, Social Security funds have been borrowed out, so it is full of IOU’s. There is no money there for all of the people who are depending on it. The total of all of these unfunded liabilities has been quoted as being just over 100 trillion dollars to over 200 trillion dollars.

Even if we take the lowest number suggested, with the national debt added on, we come to a total of $120 trillion dollars. This is a lot when you consider that the entire wealth of the US (Every citizen in the US) is only around 85 trillion!

So they could confiscate everything in the United States and still not have enough to fulfill all of the promises they made! The total wealth of the whole world is only about 250 trillion.

Do you really think all of these obligations will ever get paid?!

Putting it in Perspective

Most people have trouble really fathoming what a trillion dollars is. When I talk about the national debt being over 19 trillion dollars, it is hard to comprehend how much that is. It is also easy to ignore it because it is just another large number.

Well, to start with, it comes to over $160,000 per taxpayer. How soon will you be paying your share of it? That does not count all of the liabilities the government has promised to people.

I will try to put it in easy to understand terms. If there was a person who made $50,000 a year but they owed $290,000 in debt, that would be the picture of the U.S. government. In addition to this, they had previous employees and other people they had promised to help support. All of this support will come to about $1,530,000 over time.

Now every year this person also spent $10-15,000  more than what they brought in, so they were always going deeper in debt. The problem is they have expenses to support there standard of living and they cannot quit pending this money without experiencing some pain.

In addition to this, they spend much of their time trying to come up with more things to spend money on. The one thing they have going for them is that up until now, they have great credit.

Do you think any bank in their right mind should lend this person more money. Yet they do every day when they purchase government bonds.

If you had a balance sheet like this, or knew someone that did, what would you say will be the financial outcome of them. We all know it cannot continue like this and it will not end in a good way.

Most People are in Denial

If they looked at a balance sheet  that was like the one of our government, I think most rational intelligent people could tell you that there is only one outcome for that entity.  If a small business had a balance sheet that looked that bad, I doubt many banks would lend money to it.

For starters, they owe a lot more than they are worth. Then they spend a lot more than they bring in every year and have for most years in the last 30 or more. In addition they have to borrow money just to pay the interest on the debt and other outstanding liabilities .

As if all of this weren’t bad enough, they work to come up with more things to spend money on. So why aren’t people reacting to this at all? They aren’t storming Washington to stop the madness, they aren’t doing everything they can to get their families out before it all crashes.

The only explanation I can think of is that they are so emotionally attached to the outcome of it all that they are in denial. They won’t admit to themselves that life as they know it could drastically change and never return to the way it was.

Obviously things cannot continue the way they have been going. We cannot rack up debt indefinitely. On the other hand, no one wants to quit getting all of the freebies they are used to receiving from the government.

No matter which path you choose there will be extreme withdrawal symptoms and a lot of unrest. There is no good ending for all of this.

However, people are so in denial, they would rather continue on until it is too late to get out from under this mess.

I think it is like a bunch of people playing on the beach on a nice summer day when there are all kinds of signs that a tsunami is coming. However, rather than leave the comfort of the beach, they all decide to pretend that things will be OK until it is too late to escape.

We’re Not What We Used to be!

I want to talk about something that’s happened gradually over the last few decades. We as a nation have changed morally in some really big ways. I believe we have fallen a long way from where we were a few generations ago and a lot in the last decade.

Back in the fifties and sixties, we were shocked if an unwed woman were to become pregnant. Abortions were seldom practiced and were not publicized. Homosexuality was something to be ashamed of. Almost every business was closed on Sunday and most people went to church.

Back then, most neighborhoods were safe for kids to ride their bikes to the park and people used common sense and common courtesy.

Things have changed a lot since then and even in the last decade. When I was younger, I never would have believed that we would legalize gay marriage. Abortion has been legal for most of my life, but it still amazes me that we allow the murder of unwanted children.

We really have moved away from being a Christian nation and have almost no guiding principles in our country today. The average American today is influenced more by pop culture than they are by conscience.

We were founded as a Godly nation and on Christian principles. Now we are opposed to many of the principles our founding fathers lived by. Almost all of these changes in morals have happened gradually.

The sad thing is, many people think we have evolved into a better nation. They think we have advanced in our thinking. Here’s a thought, ‘What do you think God thinks about our moral changes?’

The Governments Answer to Everything

Have you ever noticed that almost every problem the government decides to tackle, they go about it in the same way. Every problem for them has to have a complex answer that costs a lot and centralizes control over that problem.

Their answer too healthcare problems was a 2000 page healthcare bill. It will end up costing a lot more money than we spent before and everything is under the control of the Federal Government.

It doesn’t work, they spent billions on a website that didn’t work and people have worse coverage than they had before. The only thing the bill accomplishes is to give more power to the Federal government.

This is the way all of the governments solutions go. From cleaning up the environment to education to farm bills. Everything the government touches turns gold into garbage.

Most people won’t see it yet, but the government has used this approach long enough, that we as a country are completely broke. We can’t even dig our way out of the hole we are in, but politicians are promising even more goodies paid for by the government.

The only sane response would be to start shutting down parts of the government that we can’t afford. No body would get elected that would propose that, so our only course of action is to go forward until we crash into reality!

That will be a very painful reality and probably in the not too distant future. People don’t want to acknowledge it, but that will be our destiny.

Is the Fed Desperate?

Well, last December the Fed decided to raise interest rates by .25 percent in order to start normalizing interest rates. Rates have been way too low for several years. The plan was to keep raising rates a little at a time until they got up to around 3%.

The problem is that as soon as they raised rates .25 percent, the stock market started selling off. The stock market rallied off of all of the free money that the Fed was throwing around and when it couldn’t get free money anymore, it started dropping.

Well, the Fed can’t leave anything alone to take it’s natural course, so now they are talking about going as far as having negative interest rates. To be fair, a few other countries are already there. There have even been government bonds sold at negative interest rates.

This boggles my mind why any sane person would loan a highly indebted government money, knowing they are going to get less money back in the future (if they get their money back at all).

The fact that Federal Reserve is discussing the idea of negative interest rates, tells me that they are truly desperate. They really can’t control the economy like they like to think they can. It’s like they have an accelerator and a brake, but no steering wheel. So they either try to speed up or slow down, but they can’t really control the direction this thing is going.

I think their back is up against the wall and they are almost out of bullets. If they go negative with interest rates, how far will they go? Will banks start charging depositors for giving them money? If they do that, will people try to start drawing cash out of the banks?

It won’t take too many people demanding cash for the banks to be in trouble. We could end up seeing cash illegal to use. They are already talking about doing away with $100 dollar bills.

With a cashless society, it would be a lot easier to control people and their money. Everything could be tracked! You wouldn’t be able to by a pack of gum without it being tracked to you. Is this the kind of world you want to live in?

Continuity of Government

I don’t know if you have ever heard the term, continuity of government, but it is what many politicians are most concerned with. When our government was founded, our founding fathers wanted a government that would preserve our freedoms and the constitution as it was written.

We were supposed to have basic protections and laws to allow free enterprise to flourish. They did not intend for the government to try to protect you from your own poor decisions or to try to regulate everything. They also did not intend for the government to indebt the people to pay for endless social programs and wars.

I would venture to guess from their actions, that most politicians today are not very concerned about preserving your freedoms. Their main concern appears to be how to keep themselves in power and to gain more power over your life.

When, (not if) the house of cards they have created starts to come crashing down, the governments reaction will not be to try to save your freedoms. Instead, they will do whatever it takes to preserve the continuity of government.

This means that they will keep themselves in power no matter how many citizens they have to sacrifice. If need be they will seize everything you own to keep things going.

Of course, this will all be done for the ‘common good’. After all, when times get tough, we will all have to share everything so everyone can be equal.

Now, I admit, we do need some government in order to have a stable and prosperous economy. However, we do not need the government we now are saddled with and we definitely do not need it at any cost.

I suspect the best case scenario we can expect when government does whatever it takes to preserve itself, will be something like what the former Soviet Union had. In any case, this will not end in a good way.

The Emperor has No Clothes!

There is a popular fairy tale where an Emperor hires a couple of tailors to make him a very special suit of clothes. The tailors claim that the clothes cannot be seenTHe Harbinger by anyone who is unfit for his position or is stupid or incompetent. Finally, as he parades in front of his subjects, a little girls exclaims, “The Emperor has no clothes!”

I think we are at the same position in our country. No one wants to admit it, but we are completely broke as a nation and no man can fix it. I don’t think anyone is even trying to fix it.

The problem is that the Democrats want to spend more money on social programs and the Republicans want to spend more money on the military. The truth is, we can’t afford either, but their solution is to try to fund both!

No one who admits what our real problem is and plans to try to fix it can get elected. Ron Paul and Rand to a lessor extent were the only one’s to admit what the problem was and they couldn’t get elected.

If someone does try to call attention to the problem, they are labeled as crazy or radical. As a nation, we are hooked on debt and no one wants to even try to get free of this addiction.

If we were from a different planet and were unattached to the outcome, I think most of us would admit that this system is unsustainable and is going to crash. Most people are so emotionally attached to our lives in this country that we cannot admit to what is so obvious.

The truth is, the addiction to debt will kill us as a nation as we know it today. The very best outcome is a drastic reduction in living standards and loss of freedoms. I fear it could be worse than that.

There are very few people saying the Emperor has no clothes and hardly anyone is listening to them. I am not afraid to admit that the Emperor has no clothes, I just wonder if anyone will listen.

Have We Gone too Far in God’s Eyes?

The United States was founded on Christian principles. Most of our founding fathers has a strong faith and reverence for God. There were several great revivals in our nations history.

Are we still a Christian nation? President Obama once made the comment that we are no longer a Christian nation. Is that true? I think the question we need to know is ‘Does God think we are still a Christian nation?’.

I know there are still a lot of good people here in this country. But, are we good in God’s eyes or are we only good in our eyes?

When you think about it, in this nation we have murdered over 50 million innocent babies through abortion. We are to the point that we are forcing people to support gay marriage in their businesses. We promote and glorify immorality through the movies we watch.

I think we have drifted from where God wants us to be. I don’t see people seeking God and His forgiveness. Instead I see pride and defensiveness.

When we have social problems, we ask for the government to do something instead of calling out to God. When we have medical problems, we trust the medical system instead of trusting God. When we have financial problems, we go to the bank or trust in our income instead of asking God. We trust in our guns more than we do in God.

I do think there is hope for America, but only if we seek God, ask for forgiveness and have a real revival .I don’t know if we have gone too far in God’s eyes and we are facing imminent judgment or not, but I suspect we are getting real close.

Robert V Baynes

Is it possible to take control of the US?

In the book, “The Day the Dollar Died” there is a plot to bring down the system until martial law is declared and the government takes over everything. Could this really happen in a ‘free’ country such as ours?

The lure of the power to control a nation can be great to some people in high positions. Having a lot of money gives a person power. Power can be a great motivator to many people. What better way to gain a lot of power than to completely take control of a nation.

The other benefit of taking control of a country such as the United States is that the US is rich in natural resources. These resources can be exploited by anyone with complete control.

Some people would argue that there is no way that the government would get that much control. I agree as long as things remain good for us. However, if there is a large enough crisis, people will give up almost all of their freedoms for security.

Look at all of the freedoms we have lost already in the name of being safe. We can’t get on a plane without being treated like a criminal. We have lost almost all privacy. In most states, we can’t even buy raw milk.

We are just one good crisis away from losing the few freedoms we have left. Even in this country, we can be enslaved once again by a runaway government.

Robert V Baynes