Chili Palmer

The greatest mob movie of all time was Get Shorty. (Please, don’t argue.) The whole movie revolved around this exchange:

Ronnie Wingate: Excuse me bro', but who the fuck are you? Chili Palmer: I'm the one tellin' you how it is...

Last Sunday, Greece was Chili Palmer. A few days later, Angela Merkel is.

 

Funny how things change.

You probably heard that Greece’s Prime Minister called for a referendum on the troika’s terms. And the PM encouraged Greeks to vote no. And the Greeks did—by a whopping 61-39 laugher.

Turns out, though, Prime Minister Tsipras was sort of bluffing. He expected Greeks to vote Yes no matter what he told them. In other words, he doubted his own mandate.

He hoped Greek voters would accept the Troika’s terms, reject his leadership, and make the whole thing somebody else’s problem.

When Greece followed Tsipras’s advice and rejected the offer, Tsipras fired the mastermind of the strategy, Marxist game theorist Yanis Varoufakis. Varoufakis rode is motorcycle into the sunset.

As last Monday morning dragged on, Tsipras turned his blinking eye toward Germany and . . . and needed to change his pants. In the North stood Europe’s Chili Palmer who goes by the name Angela Merkel—pronounced, like her policies, with a hard “G.”

Tsipras offered to accept the Troika's terms—the ones his people had just overwhelmingly rejected. Merkel spake “nein!”

Now, Germany, Finland, and other Eurozone members are laying out terms Greek can’t accept. The alternative is a five-year leave of absense from the Eurozone—a term Greece has little choice but to take. As the Wall Street Journal puts it:

Sunday’s statement on Greece by eurozone finance ministers will go down as one of the most brutal diplomatic démarches in the history of the European Union, a bloc built to foster peace and harmony that is now publicly threatening one of its own with ruination unless it surrenders.

Greece’s new best friend, Vladimir Putin, waits in the wings with oil and gas and gold on ships ready to dock in Greece’s warm-water ports.

The Eurozone isn’t an economic venture: it’s a loan-sharking racket. Europe happily fed Greece’s voracious appetite for debt for over a decade, knowing full well Greece would never make good on the loans.

Why? Exports. The same reason our own establishment freaks out over the Export Import Bank.

Since the creation of the Euro, Germany has pressured European banks to make risky loans to Greece, Italy, Portugal, and other countries. The loans allowed the southern countries to buy German goods. The scheme worked remarkably while while it lasted:

clipped from http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-07-12/latest-out-europe-pretty-steady-level-shittiness

Now, Europe owns Greece and doesn’t want it.

What happens next? Who knows. But everyone has learned never to borrow money from Germany or the European Central Bank. Or the IMF, for that matter. Never. Any alternative is better.

I can’t imagine this ends well for Greece, Europe, or the world.

Chili Palmer: Look at me. What I'm thinking is, 'You're mine. I fuckin' own you.' But what I'm not doing is feeling anything about it one way or the other. You understand? You're not a person to me, you're a name in my collection book, a guy who owes me money, that's all.

I wonder if John Travolta will play Merkel in the movie.

[embed height="315" width="560"]http://youtu.be/FbSIk3Q2KrI[/embed]

Human Decay in the Age of Obama

In 47BC, Julius Caesar assumed dictatorial power in Rome.  He instituted “reforms” that transformed the Republic into the Empire. In the process, he became a dictator.  Rome’s decent into oblivion began. In 44BC, seeing the damage Caesar’s tyranny and reforms, three men removed Caesar from power by the method of the day.

History moves faster now than it did 2,000 years ago. A megalomaniacal leaders bent on fundamentally transforming a nation can do remarkable damage in the blink of an eye. It’s not just the economy and institutions that rot from Obama’s sort of transformation, but the people themselves.  Their souls erode, leaving hollow, bitter creatures that scratch at each others eyes.

Peggy Noonan wrote about the effects of Obama’s dreams on the small country of Greece.  She included this long quote from Michael Lewis from his article in Vanity Fair:

The Greek state was not just corrupt but also corrupting. Once you saw how it worked you could understand a phenomenon which otherwise made no sense at all: the difficulty Greek people have saying a kind word about one another. . . . Everyone is pretty sure everyone is cheating on his taxes, or bribing politicians, or taking bribes, or lying about the value of his real estate. And this total absence of faith in one another is self-reinforcing. The epidemic of lying and cheating and stealing makes any sort of civic life impossible.

Wretched. 

Yet it’s where America and Americans now aim: the shoals of soulless dissipation, turned by government handouts (stolen from us first) into angry, cynical vipers. Free isn’t free when it costs you your humanity.

November 2 is your chance to stop the erosion.  We’re at 4512 Hampton Ave. in St. Louis Hills through the election.  We’re there to stop Greece from happening in America.  We offer no guarantees except your rightful place in history.

Terrific: U.S. Pumping $$ into European Economic Abyss

Break out the Depression Glasses to toast the Obama Administration’s latest foray into economic disaster. Just posted on WSJ.com:

BREAKING: The Federal Reserve and other central banks open a credit line to send dollars to Europe to ease debt crisis.

Yes, folks. Your taxes are going up, your kids are going deeper into debt, to bail out lazy, overpaid, spoiled Greek socialists. Thank your president.

The U.S. move follows a panicked decision by EU leaders to pump hundreds of billions of $$ into failing socialist economies in Europe to avert a global economic collapse.

But the scheme may not work.

The problems in Greece, Spain, and Portugal (and Japan, Ireland, and elsewhere) result from too much government debt and too much government regulation.  The countries offering to fund this $650 billion emergency fund are already deeply in debt.  In other words, this is just the latest attempts by socialist governments to borrow their way to prosperity.

In 2008, governments moved debt from underneath Shell A to underneath Shell B.  Now, they’re moving debt to Shell C, the last shell in the game. It looks to me that governments around the world are in an all out panic.  They see the shell game crumbling.  They’re running out of tricks.

Related news stories highlight the problem. Bloomberg reports that banks no longer trust each other, which is driving Credit Default Swaps (CDS) to record levels.

The interest rate that financial companies charge each other for three month loans in dollars is the highest since August, while traders are paying record amounts to hedge against losses in European bank bonds. Yields on all types of corporate bonds rose last week by the most relative to government debt since Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.’s bankruptcy in September 2008, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch indexes.

Moody’s, the debt rating organization, says that a Greek-style crisis could his America as soon as 2013, according to Investors.com (HT Drudge Report).

But under more adverse scenarios than the CBO considered, including higher interest rates, Moody's projects that debt service could hit 22.4% of revenue by 2013.

"While we see limited risk of a U.S. sovereign debt downgrade in the next 2-3 years, beyond that we cannot be so certain," wrote Societe Generale's economics team in a recent report.

The Tea Party happened because ordinary Americans sensed something horribly foul in the air steaming out of Washington, DC.  That acrid smell was socialist-driven debt.  And it’s only gotten thicker since then. The White House is imposing policies designed to weaken and break small businesses and to socialize large businesses until there is nothing left but government.

Stop them.  Stop them now. Stopping them is why we created Ensuring Liberty.  Join us today.

Greece: America’s Future

As I waited to appear on Larry Kudlow’s show last Friday, I heard Larry announce over and over again that he’s sick of hearing about Greece’s problems.  Greece isn’t America.  The U.S. economy is booming, and Greece can’t hurt it.

I didn’t tell Larry, but I think he was wrong.

Greece’s problems will hurt the American economy because Greece’s problems foreshadow a far more dangerous crash headed to America.

Markets are people.  People react emotionally to rational thought.  People in America see our government adopting the same reckless socialism that destroyed Greece.  They see America’s debt rising like a hydraulic lift, just as Greece’s did.  They hear warnings that Moody’s or Standard & Poor’s may cut the U.S. treasury rating, as they cut Greece’s debt rating today. People realize that Greece is not just a small European country, but also the canary in the debt coal mine. Portugal is next.

Ben Bernanke warned today that our debt and deficits must be dealt with sooner rather than later.

But Obama just borrows and borrows.