Tuesday, December 11, 2018

The Conflicting Forces of Modernism: Kafka and Kierkegaard

by Charles Hugh Smith, Of Two Minds:

We seem to be heading into a confrontation between the two forces of Modernism: the primacy of the individual versus the increasing technological and economic might of the central state.

In Kafka’s Nightmare Emerges: China’s “Social Credit Score” (May 7, 2018), I wrote about Kafka’s vision of a bureaucratic nightmare emerging in China’s “Social Credit Score.”

The idea here is the central state sets up a vast, pervasive surveillance system to monitor all its citizens, and assigns a social score to each citizen based on his/her compliance with regulations and social norms as defined by the state.

Jerome Powell Is Between A Rock And A Hard Place

by Jim Rickards, Daily Reckoning:

One of the major drags on the market, besides trade wars, has been uncertainty about whether the Fed will raise rates this month. Despite the verbal bravado of Federal Reserve Chairman, Jerome Powell, over how strong the U.S. economy is, he doesn’t live in a vacuum.

Powell’s borne the brunt of President Trump’s recent accusations that the Fed’s hikes are what’s hurting the stock market and threatening the economy. That lead to a media debate over whether Powell would “cave” to Trump or demonstrate that the Fed is the independent body that it’s legally designed to be, and continue with planned hikes anyway.

Bye-bye dollar: India & UAE agree to trade in local currencies

from RT:


New Delhi and Abu Dhabi have inked a currency swap agreement to boost trade and investment without involvement of a third currency like the US dollar.

The swap is for an amount of two billion UAE dirham or 35 billion Indian rupees (US$495 million), according to the Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi.

“The bilateral currency swap agreement between India and UAE is expected to reduce the dependency on hard currencies like the US dollar,” the embassy said.

Yet Another Trillion-Dollar Unfunded Liability: WHY California Is Burning

by John Rubino, Dollar Collapse:

The apocalyptic fires that hit California last month have left observers scratching their heads and wondering how destruction on that scale could be possible – and how much it will cost in the future if the causes aren’t addressed immediately.

This morning’s Wall Street Journal concludes that 1) the problems aren’t being addressed and 2) this failure is going to cost a fortune that no government is prepared to cover (emphasis added below).

Confidence in the System is Collapsing

from Silver Fortune:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p28UAO8A8vY

Gold & Silver Prices Rise As The Markets & Oil Decline

by Steve St. Angelo, SRSRocco Report:

Over the past week, the gold and silver prices have held up rather well compared to the overall markets.  While precious metals investors still fear that a huge sell-off in the gold and silver prices will take place during the next market crash, it seems that the metals continue to be very resilient during large market corrections.

Now, I am not saying that the metals prices cannot fall any lower, but a lot of the leverage in the gold and silver market has already been removed and is now at a near all-time low.  So, even though we could see weaker precious metals prices, the overwhelming leverage and bubble asset prices are in the stock and real estate markets.

The Friday Avalanche In Vail Resorts Stock

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by Dave Kranzler, Investment Research Dynamics:

I recommended shorting MTN to my Short Seller’s Journal subscribers in my December 2nd issue. While I expect MTN to lose at least $200 over time, I did not expect nearly 25% of that price-decline expectation to occur in 5 trading days after I presented the idea.

After I sent out my newsletter last Sunday, a subscriber sent me a link to a Motley Fool article titled, “Why You’re Smart To Buy Vail Resorts Now.” I had to laugh. I certainly hope that report didn’t deter any of my subscribers from shorting MTN or buying puts. I booked a 4-bagger on the puts I bought last Friday. I had several subscribers email me with thanks, most reporting gains anywhere from 2x to 5x (I always advise that shorting shares gives you the best probability of success shorting but I use put options and present put option ideas with every short idea). Here’s an excerpt from this idea presentation last week:

The Wild East: Airlines in South & Southeast Asia

by Wolf Richter, Wolf Street:

Huge aircraft orders, booming traffic, dozens of upstarts with easy mega-funding, fierce competition, already a big collapse, and allegations of shady business.

As of October 31, Airbus had 6,245 members of the A320neo family on order, of which around 250 had already been delivered. Even taking into account the large discounts which are the norm for large orders, the estimated value for this order book alone was in the region of about US$705 billion. Boeing had 4,783 members of the 737MAX family on order, with 241 already delivered, and an estimated order book value for this family of aircraft alone of US $526 billion.

Yield Curve Inversion & Recession Fears | Gary Christenson

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from Silver Doctors:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7_fcNEBYFJE

Stock Market DROPS 550 Points! Deutsche Bank Hits RECORD LOW! FANG Stocks SELL OFF!

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from The Money GPS:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=di5z0D9ulfY