Saturday, February 7, 2015

Obama, The Ultimate Senior Banker’s President

For sixty four years, the world enjoyed some degree of stability, perhaps greater than at any previous period in history, with the United States performing the expensive, but indispensable role of “stabilizer.”  There had been regional wars, and provincial atrocities often localized to sectarian disputes, but most of the world went about its business, criss-crossing oceans and borders to grow trade, or travelling to distant vacations.  9/11 changed behaviours, nevertheless, we continued on our paths, but did so with a little more caution on our air-travels.  Then, with the power of wealthy and powerful senior bankers behind him, an unknown, untried, and utterly inexperienced junior Senator was placed in the Oval Office.

 "Six years beyond his election, it is now difficult to ascribe descriptives to our world that don’t signify chaos. For six years we witnessed with astonishment as the Obama Administration puzzled us and the world with decisions that held no common sense.  Autocratic and presumptuous decisions, smothered in ignorance, shouted to the world that the United States was standing down, . . . everywhere.

Defence missile shield in Poland?  No. We have no interest in defending Europeans, or counterbalancing Putin’s USSR Empire reconstruction plans. Putin shot an airliner out of the sky? We’ll have to get some facts on that, soon, and I won’t sleep until . . .  But look over there, our good friends the Muslim Brotherhood, brought down that nasty Mubarak, . . . oops, Egypt broke? Nevermind, the Arab Spring is in full bloom.  Hillary, while you’re racking up a  million miles aboard flying hotels, go take care of bringing down Qaddafi, . . . oops, damn, Lybia’s on fire.  Yah, but good news, we’ll tell all our enemies how and when we’re vacating Iraq and, . . . oh damn, ISIS you say?  Hell don’t worry, they’re just a JV team. Syria? Really? Well at least those arms we smuggled to those rebels from Lybia are doing their job.  Assad is cowering, isn’t he?   Never mind, nice work Hillary, this should help you in 2016, or not.  The Saudis and their neighbours are funding ISIS and Al Quaeda?  Nah, they’re my real friends. Iran? Of course they’ll become a nuclear power. Get used to it.  But don’t worry folks, the whole Middle East isn’t on fire, you’re looking at the glow of golden sunsets and you’re confused.  And Europe’s problems?  Those countries launched the colonialist invasions which abused peoples around the world. They deserve what they’re getting. Asia?  What’s Asia? Fighting over some islands?  People trying to leave poverty?  Hah.

Reality beyond the minds of the narcissistic Administration is a world where too many nations are in complete disarray, where broken states have no power centers, where too many nations are consumed with overwhelming economic problems, and where country after country is punctured with political and religious battles that will take decades to settle.  It almost matters little which direction one looks, Sudan, Nigeria, Syria, Iraq, Libya, . . . well OK, most of Africa and all of the Middle East,  Europe with the EU in jeopardy, China’s communists flexing newfound muscles against their neighbours, and Putin taking advantage of a weak President and a confused Europe.

A feeble President unable to lead, or inspire the great Nation he was elected to lead, and unable to lead the world, is better than anything the senior bankers in their most private and most wild dreams could have engineered. They may have bought this Administration into office, but there’s no way they could have predicted their luck.  What luck?

Further accentuating the chaos governing the troubled world, is a multitude of “bubbles,” including major bank debts, national bank debts, government debt, and artificial inflation of equity markets, all fed by senior and central bankers who have no solutions other than to throw worthless Central Bank paper into the chaos.  In ignorance, bankers hope something happens as they delay the inevitable, and hope no one notices the fundamental insanity of the historically high debt being created.

Amidst this strife, America’s geopolitical and economic stability provides the world’s wealth with the only safe haven, . . .  relatively.  It matters little that unemployment is at record highs, or that new jobs are not good paying full time jobs, or that almost 50 million Americans depend on food stamps in silent misery, America is considered as the only safe place to park cash.  The more the chaos, the more America’s attraction as a shelter, better than any other on Earth.  America is perceived by the world as being physically isolated, with a powerful military and with laws which minimize corruption.

The unprecedented accelerating dissolution of the international community into discord and disorder has made the United States the only secure depository.  Whether cash extracted from oil wells by kings and kleptocrats, or cash from the drug world, cash scammed off the top from nations such as Mexico, Brazil, or China, trillions of dollars extracted from autocratic governments need parking.  Not only are senior bankers happy to oblige in movement of cash, or sale of U.S. bonds, the conversion of foreign assets and wealth to “dollars” hides the reality of the abuse which central bankers have perpetrated on a Nation which appears confused and in fear of the uncertain future.

There is no possible way that Goldman Sachs and friends believe their extreme luck as they accumulate hundreds of billions in personal wealth. They could not have foretold their good fortunes when they purchased a Presidency totally ignorant of things economic – manipulate, yes, but this level of luck? Not a chance.

By the time their abuse comes to an abrupt end, and the “indentured species” known as the American middle class collapses under unrepayable debt, the senior bankers will no longer care who occupies the White House.

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Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Age Of The Great American Dissolve

America’s consciousness has shifted. We live in a predominantly unstable and unpredictable world, a situation long accepted as the norm, however, we also live during the first period of history in which America’s prominence in the world and its own vision and notion of itself, has been blurred. A majority of Americans have adopted self doubt and the confidence America has held through much of its story has been dissipated.

Through the fog of apprehension Americans plucked an unknown to take the helm of their governance. The fog did not lift, and in fact with the unknown’s propagation of envy, the opacity and anxiety intensified and the unknown was reelected. Unease and apprehension rarely if ever translate into positive decisions. For the Nation, this retrenchment of confidence will not lead to growth where it is most necessary and where it would be most felt — in that parat of the population not employed by government and not part of the economic 1%ers. 

America was not built on coveting the neighbour’s wealth nor on wealth seizure and redistribution. America was built by the work of many, and it flourished majestically on the grand ideas and on the creativity of a few. Those few were all those creative minds who advanced innovation in their businesses. Those few have been our entrepreneurs who enabled breakthroughs in all areas of human endeavour, lifting the whole to ever greater levels in quality of life. 

The self hatred of socialism, that deplorable consequence and tendency of a lazy mind, condemns the independence of thought and heart. It condemns entrepreneurialism and reviles it as a blight on society along with capitalism. As this pernicious socialism creeps toward communism, it imposes stifling taxes and regulations on the very engines which prosperity depends on. We currently have schismatic leadership which has followed the socialist playbook for five years, in attempt to build a society controlled by a self serving political elite. 

The disintegration of the single greatest human experiment is accelerated by a complicit mainstream media, unable to find common sense as it drowns in the debris of stupor oiled with the insanity which comes when you believe in your own intellectually superiority. With few exceptions, the liberal media covers for an out-of-control Administration, and lies about the economic conditions of a Nation struggling with stratospheric levels of public and private indebtedness. But don’t stress about your monthly debt payments, after all, statistics indicate that collectively we hold many times more in asset values than the size of our personal debt, so just keep working those two jobs and you’ll survive, . . . OK, three jobs. And when interest rates rise, well, . . . nevermind, you’ll figure it out, really, don’t worry. 

Economic literacy is not a prerequisite to grasping the obvious financial realities flooding the neighbourhoods across the Nation. That the Federal Reserve has played a major role in the disintegration of the dollar, in the indebtedness of all Americans and in the disintegration of ‘savings’ is not a secret, and yet the Nation is numbed. The Nation is accepting of an invisible, all-wise, and all-knowing group placing it in a permanent vat of destructive debt, washing an unwilling economy with hundreds of billions of cash it cannot and will not use. 

The stupefied populace accepts the government’s insinuation into all areas of life, social, personal, economic and spiritual — it has become the norm that Bernanke and Obama will tell the world anything they politically need no matter how absurd, or prevaricative. Whatever they lay on the Nation, the Nation accepts in its slide into lethargy. For some obscure reason America does not wonder why a small band of unenlightened, uncreative, and ignorant economists wield so much Control, and manipulate markets that natural laws tells us should be Free. Do any of these people understand the entrepreneur? They can’t. The Fed, just as with this Administration, is led by pontificating ideologues and academics splashing around in a confused theoretical quagmire of manipulation. Two incomes per household has become a necessity whether in marriage or in combination of incomes by two or three friends under one roof, as purchasing power of the dollar has been brutalized by a vapid, self serving, pariah — The Federal Reserve, serving its owners and bountifully satisfying a willfully harmful and oblivious Administration. The days when savings were encouraged have become eclipsed by endemic propagation of debt and the breeding of pervasive risk-taking with our cash. In our indolence, we succumbed. 

The two income necessity places an especially vile pressure on single parents, particularly single mothers, literally forcing them into the arms of the government. The majority of them want jobs, want to go to work and would rather not be wholly dependent. It would flow against the grain of human nature for them to feel otherwise, however, the age of massive and invasive government is upon us, and the more people the government can corral into its paddock, and the more difficult the government can make it to escape, the greater the support for the socialist mindset. 

We read and hear about a fading “middle class” and that without it, society will slide into feudalism. What middle class? That middle 95% of the population? That’s not the middle class. That’s America. A very few bankers and “Wall Streeters” at the top of the fiat-currency financial food-chain are firmly in control. And you, the middle class — don’t you believe your lying eyes as you witness the legions of unemployed and underemployed in every neighbourhood around you, desperately looking for jobs. Your eyes, your common sense, and your intuition are wrong. Just plain wrong. Everything’s fine. Ignore the fact that for over two generations your wealth has been drained by The Fed, and coagulated into the imperious pockets of its caretakers. The stock market is frothing with exuberance, can’t you see how wonderful things are? Just go meditate yourself into a continued euphoric indifference, or better still, just go back to sleep. 

 For five years now, we have regularly been provided with a constant flow of evidence pointing to the a politicization of government bureaucracy that now enforces ideologically-sprung mandates. That kind of orchestration and direction can only have come from one place — the White House. Unfortunately, that arrogant, hubristic, and sanctimonious attitude permeated so many of the federal government departments, that a reversal of this monopolistic calcification will prove impossible once any new Administration takes over. Anything and anyone not stepping in line with the socialist ideology and rustling any leaves in political opposition, will find the powers of the DOJ, or the FBI, or the NSA, or the CIA, or the IRS, launched against them. 

We are living in an age when the democratic process has been thwarted by ideological bureaucracies stoked by political ambitions. At the same time we have allowed laws to be trampled without regularity of enforcement, and stood-by as capitalism became corrupted without recourse. 

From the heights of bold confidence led by entrepreneurs forging new paths toward flourishing prosperity where the claim to opportunity was distruted more broadly than ever in its history, America has dissolved into a state of confusion and indecision, with apathy as its next stop to being overrun by the self-hate which embraces and implements the socialist dicta.

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Monday, September 9, 2013

The Line Of Courage and Determination In The Sand

2181 years ago a Roman consul Gaius Popillius Laenas, delivered one of the earliest known “Line In The Sand” ultimatums against King Antiochus IV of Syria.   Is there a message buried in a two millennium old event that might inform Barack Obama as he rattles the military might over which American voters handed him title of Commander In Chief (CIC)?

Antiochus was a descendent of Seleucus, an Alexander the Great general who had taken Syria as his quarter of Alexander’s Empire upon the young Emperor’s untimely death. Antiochus had violently conquered, pillaged, and generally run amuck around the Eastern Mediterranean controlling Israel, capturing Cyprus and overrunning all of Egypt, except for Alexandria.

When Antiochus decided to also take control of Alexandria in 168BC, Rome’s tolerance for his exploits withered. Rome’s Senate appointed a Roman Consul as its ambassador to stop Antiochus’ further advance.  The Senate sent Gaius Popillius Laenas, bestowing in Popillius Authority to carry the full power of Rome’s military might, and to speak and act on Rome’s behalf.  The assignment commissioned Popillius to stop a powerful army marching under Antiochus’ leadership.
In 168BC Rome was the most powerful nation on Earth with the largest army. Popillius’ commission might have seemed straightforward enough, were it not for the fact that the Roman Senate dispatched their envoy by ship along with only a dozen attendants (lictors) in support.
History tells us that Popillius landed at Alexandria, and confronted King Antiochus confidently leading a wall of Syrian soldiers marching along the Nile toward the great ancient city.  The confrontation was apparently short and effective.  Antiochus intructed Popillius that Rome had no business in Egypt, to which Popillius replied that neither did Syria.  Then Popillius did something which must have taken some degree of daring and courage.  He told Antiochus that he was offending the Roman Senate, and the people of Rome and that he had been instructed to make the King return to Syria. What scene that must have been – a dozen men facing an army, and telling its leader to go home.
Not surprisingly, the request was met with laughter, and the 168BC version of Oh yah, you and whose army?  with Antiochus asking,  “how are you going to make me go home? Where is your army?”
Popillius explained to Antiochus something like, “I am everything that is Rome. I am Rome. I am Rome’s largest army. Go home.”
If observed from one hundred feet above the setting just outside Alexandria through the eyes of a falcon, this is one of those moments in history, which would have provided boundless admiration for an almost solitary Roman Consul.  Gaius Popillius Laenas remained steadfast through the exchange, and with another, “No,” from Antiochus, Popillius drew a complete circle around the King in the Egyptian soil, with his staff.
Against the backdrop of the Syrian army looking on, Popillius instructed their King, “Before you step out of this circle, think again, and when you do step out of it, be facing East, and go home to Syria.”
History informs us that King Antiochus IV turned around and marched with his army out of Egypt.
Much can be learned from Popillius and his superiors in 168BC, including:
1.  Understand the power you have at your disposal and how to use it.
2.  Establish its most effective and beneficial application.
3.  Effectively negotiate with a strategy to do so, rather than ad libbing on the fly with whatever non-sense your ego feels necessary.
4.  Delegate authority.  If you’re surrounded by head-nodding advisors, the bench isn’t deep enough to be delegated any authority.  Deepen your bench.
5.   Deliver the message concisely, clearly, emphatically and with uncompromising confidence.  That dramatically affects the reception of the message.
6.  Here is a simple one which seems a long reach for the current CIC – Mean what you say.
7.  When you set out on a mission, have a plan and hold the determination to implement it.
8.  Don’t blink.

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Obama's Syrian Distraction

Who would ever have thought that examination of the continuing dire economic struggles distressing most Americans would completely disappear from the headlines and from public discussion?  Who would have believed that America’s stature in the world would be shaken over a failed state like Syria?   But here we are.  Americans are scrambling for part-time jobs, while listening to dictators insulting the resident of their most powerful office – the office they revere above all others.
The Oval Office has been imbued with almost magisterial spirit by a Nation founded on revolutionary determination.  The Presidency has since Washington been expected to personify the resolution, character and tenacity of those who first recoiled against the unreasonable arrogance of royalty.  That inspiration, which America breathed into the Oval Office since its creation 224 years ago, has lifted many common men who sought and accepted the responsibilities of the office to become greater than they were.

Whoever it elects to its Oval Office, America looks for the individual to fill that room fully.  It has every right to expect that person to ‘rise to the occasion,’  and it wants to feel that in that four or eight year undertaking, the President will reflect America’s own dreams, aspirations, resolution, forthrightness, and honor.  America wants its President to reflect its greatness.  Today, in a time of economic distress, Americans more than ever need a President who can provide the prospect of diminishing anguish.
No one expects a President to have all the answers, but it is reasonable to expect a President to attempt leading positively, surrounded by the best minds America has to offer for input on strategic thinking, analysis, design and implementation.
After five years of an Obama Presidency slamming business and industry, and littered with scandals ranging from IRS targeting conservatives, to Benghazi lies, to Solyndra, and to the NSA, America is presented with a deliberate provocation of the international community and an insane debate on WAR.
What WAR?  Obama’s WAR.  The Western MSM is misrepresenting the most important question:  Who will Obama’s ego be fighting?  We’ve heard it’s just a “shot across the bow” of Assad.  Let’s be clear, this is not a WAR about abuse of internationally prevailing modes of conduct on the use of poisonous chemical gas, although such provides poignant carriage, lifting emotions enough to confuse common sense. This is not about indignation on the death of an estimated 100,000 dead Syrians.  It can’t be.  Many times that number have died at the hands of Iranian leaders, Chinese leaders, and sundry African war lords without consequence. This is not really about Iran and Israel.
The WAR noise is about ego and vexation, with a dose of revenge to be inflicted on a seemingly weak adversary (Assad) on the part of a slighted personality who made serious missteps in front of the world, Barack Obama.  Not a slighted Office of The President, but a slighted individual, Barack Obama.
Other scandals grown from this Administration’s mismanagement and ineptitude, have cost lives, . . . Benghazi and the ATF ‘Fast and Furious,’ to name two.  Syria’s civil war has been used as a personal platform to rebuild the Obama Administration’s disintegrating credibility, erase the long list of scandals from public consciousness, assuage an ego in dire need of approval, and provide Obama with a lasting legacy on the world stage.  Whatever the wishful thinking, missiles fired into Syria will provide none of these.
Barack Obama going to WAR  with “My military” will inevitably ignite widescale slaughter across the Middle East.
At some point, Barack Obama became convinced that he could flex some military might.  After all, spiking the ball immediately after the hit on Bin Laden had been so well received by the devoted.  Even many conservatives had approved. Had it not been a glorious hour? Too many secrets were blurted out, endangering certain members of “His military,” but what marvelous triumph that operation had been.  And all the media had cheered.
Knowledge, capacity for strategic thinking based on engaged practical understanding, analysis based on input from depth of counsel equipped with independent, even contrarian minds,  experience,  and propensity to be decisive, are required when that so-called 3:00am phone call comes in.  The WAR  discourse which the world is now enbroiled in, did not get launched by a  3:00am phone call.  It comes from the imagination of Barack Obama.  The man who actually said this past week while in a foreign country, “my credibility isn’t on the line. . . . . America’s credibility is on the line” lacks all of those competencies.
Libya presented no long term calamitous consequences because it presented no significant import to foreign unfriendly Nations.  Egypt offered even less of material consequence to serious foreign rivals. Both Libya and Egypt also offered little of strategic substance to our foes.
Syria (Assad), presents a completely different strategic creature to two very powerful adversaries, Russia and Iran, or more accurately, Vladimir Putin and Ali Khamenei.  Putin has been buoyed by the stratospheric prices which oil and gas have enjoyed in recent years. Assad has been a useful customer of Putin arms, and provides Putin with a growing naval presence on the Mediteranean, Tardus, which is his only foreign military base.  Putin also has long term plans for Syria’s geography. He has a cozy relationship with Khamenei who needs to sell his oil and gas, particularly his gas in the vast South Pars gas field. Putin wants his Gasprom to build the pipeline through Syria which will quench the gas thirst of energy-consuming countries, particularly those of the EU.  Assad provides Putin and Khamenei an agreeable conduit for gas, as well as a pathway for arms and ammunition with which Iran can continue to attack Israel and kill its citizens.  For icing on his energy cake, Putin has his eye on the undeveloped offshore gas fields which can be accessed from Syria’s Alawite region on the shores of the Mediteranean.
An attack on Assad, is a provocation which threatens Putin and Khamenei at home, and in their pocket books.  Putin may not care if Syria remains whole, as long as enough of it remains under his control, and enables him to fulfill his ‘energy’ dollar objectives.
And Israel?  It would applaud the disintegration of Syria by anyone and by any means. Who could blame it?  Its priority is a removal of Assad and his replacement with someone less antipathetic to Israel in its conflict with Iran.  Israel may not be confident that it can control whoever the ‘rebel leader’ might be who will rise to power if Assad is removed, but what it is certain of, is that it cannot ‘deal’ with Assad.  It is looking for a new Syrian leader, and does not subscribe to “better the enemy you know.”  However, Israel expects a severing of relations between Syria and Iran, should a new leader be installed. That can only occur with force since Khamenei is not about to let Israel and the United States gain an upper hand in Syria.
Putin may be considered coarse, but he is a strategic thinker.  He took total control of Russia’s vast disjointed socioeconomic and political landscape through a thorough, effective, forceful, sometimes ruthless, campaign.  He now rules that nation with a firm hand. In order to maintain his ‘strongman’ image at home, Putin can hardly allow loss of Syria from his sphere of influence.  He also knows that for different reasons, Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar want to weaken Syria’s relationship with Iran.
Putin has not forgotten his loss of Gaddafi’s billions in contracts when he failed to prevent the obliteration of the Libyan regime, from his seat on the UN’s Security Council.  How could this Administration not have fully grasped that a blow on Syria would be nowhere near as much a slam on Khamenei, as it would be a blast to Putin, to his ego, and to his personal pocket-book.  How could it not envisage that Putin would not stand down?  Could NOT stand down?
Putin also knows that Obama made such a mistake on Syria, that he purposely tweaked Obama’s ego with a reference to his being a “Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.”   Putin is the man in charge of Syria and he has declared himself its protector. He is the only one with whom a deal can be negotiated.  Syria, being decimated by a conflagration of disparate armed insurgents, will end up not only broken psychologically, but will end up divided into zones of ‘influence.’
Obama has successfully blustered American taxpayers for five years, but he isn’t so effective at deceiving, or negotiating with Putin or Khamenei.
Obama’s bluff has been called.  Barack Obama must stand down unless he wants to militarily engage Putin, militarily engage Khamenei, find the overnight blockage of the Suez Canal and the Strait of Hormuz, and watch the price of oil rise sharply, further burdening America with higher costs of living.  Obama should not seek more excuses for his “shots across Assad’s bow” to indulge his own image. He must back off on the fearmongering and warmongering.
As Europe continues to teeter on the edge of an unprecedented debt abyss, and the U.S. cannot find a foothold on the path to recovery,  American taxpayers cannot afford, and will not afford, Barack Obama’s self-satisfaction through military action against Syria.  Barack Obama has not risen to the occasion of the Presidency.
The Oval Office will survive his insecurities and maladroit management of all things Presidential, but Obama’s image may not recover from his Syrian diversion.

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Sunday, August 25, 2013

Generational Gapping – $222 Trillion Worth of Schism

“Since the masses are always eager to believe something, for their benefit nothing is so easy to arrange as facts.” 
This scornful observation of our human nature is attributed to Charles Maurice de Talleyrand, an astute politician and long persevering survivor of the French revolution and Napoleonic eras.  Senior politicians and government mandarins in Washington are schooled in understanding and using the insight divulged by this derogatory statement.  They must be.  The most extensive, pervasive and obscene rearrangement of facts has become one of the biggest lies ever floated in history.

Even those who depend on Dave Letterman or perhaps a Kardashian for remaining informed, are aware that there exists a large National debt hanging over the United States.  Many of us are even aware that the often repeated amount of $17.2 trillion is an enormous amount of debt, however, it has too many zeros to be taken seriously and in any case, we heard, or read somewhere that it’s too big a debt to ever be repaid.  Fortunately for the Baby Boomer generation, the younger generations are too preoccupied with earning a living, or searching how they might earn one, to be angered.
These younger generations have every right to believe what they have been told.  It is not unreasonable for them to embrace the notion that since their efforts will partially finance 78 million Boomers into retirement, their own social security and health care needs will be taken care of when the time comes to retire.  It is also reasonable for them to accept the veracity of the government’s representation of $17.2 trillion in debt.
Twenty five years ago, governments and corporations promised Boomers generous pensions and benefits. Promises were cheap and easily made when the future was so far into the very distant and murky horizon.
Remembering Talleyrand’s acumen, we dig a little further and discover that there are some numbers (facts) missing in the $17.2 trillion.  One website offers a running amount which already exceeds $74 trillion in debt using different methodologies in the calculations.  Why such significant variance?  Accrual accounting – meaning the debt is accounted for when the obligation is entered into.  How does the government “arrange facts?”  It uses cash accounting, which accounts for Medicare and Social Security as debt when they come due.  We hear nothing from Washington about balancing the budget on a fully accounted and accrued manner.  We don’t even hear any suggestions on real spending cuts.
Most Boomers heading into retirement, or dreaming of doing so cannot trust the trust funds which career politicians and bureaucrats pretend guarantee their future well being.  Social Security?  There’s no guarantee of such for either Boomers, or their children, or their grandchildren.  The only prevailing guarantee appears to be that the money will run out, then, nothing.  When?  Well that’s easy.  That’s when . . . umm, oh no, another review of the “facts?”  Now what?  The Fiscal Gap.  That 74 with a dozen zeros following may look ominous, but it does not fully represent the Nation’s indebtedness.  The gap between costs and funds collected through time, is the Fiscal Gap.
A Boston University economics professor Larry Kotlikoff calculated the fiscal gap including unfunded liabilities, debt service costs and the mortgage guarantees under FDIC, and Fannie, and Freddie Mac and he came up with a present value of $222 trillion. That is over 13 times the total U.S. GDP.  Obviously there is room for error in this number, as the world will force events which will impact future costs and revenues.  The amount remains menacing regardless.
As we watch the Keynesian Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke destroy savings and generate $80 billion a month in quantitative easing, encouraged by progressive politicos spending lavishly to buy and retain votes, we know there is no possible method whereby the fiscal gap will be tightened.  Future generations will wonder how we were ever able to feel no compunction to elect anyone with skills, with leadership, with will, or with a plan.  They will wonder why we were incapable of discerning facts from fiction.  They will wonder if we understood Talleyrand.

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