It’s never time to panic. That is certainly doubly true when it comes to investing. But it takes a disciplined mind to avoid freaking out as shares continue to march lower day after day. And in the midst of the chaos to make wise decisions.
Hernando de Soto is one of my favorite economists. (Though as with almost anyone I disagree with him on some important points.) A champion of capitalism and everyday people he is my kind of guy.
His argument basically goes like this:
Poor people are shut out of economies. Cronyism and red tape make building businesses almost impossible. In many countries the poor remain permanently on the margins of society. The poor typically have no property rights (even if they’ve been on a piece of land for generations for instance) and enforceable contracts do not often exist. As a result this situation limits access to capital – no one will provide a loan on a piece of property for which there is no deed – which then keeps the poor poor.
Great. Just another reason for people leave the taxpayer (and worker’s) paradise which is New York State. I wonder which company freaked out about Ex-Im potentially being killed in DC and called up the Governor?
The CNBC guys poo poo the report, which is to be expected. David Faber particularly and he is on occasion very good. But the world is feeling wobbly to say the least. Post-2008 wobbly which is pretty wobbly. That the stock market has done as well as it has in the US, even considering all the juice from the Fed is pretty crazy, but a continued run is looking less and less like a prudent bet.
But that’s not new.
By far the most secret and least accountable operation of the federal government is not, as one might expect, the CIA, DIA, or some other super-secret intelligence agency. The CIA and other intelligence operations are under control of the Congress. They are accountable: a Congressional committee supervises these operations, controls their budgets, and is informed of their covert activities. It is true that the committee hearings and activities are closed to the public; but at least the people’s representatives in Congress insure some accountability for these secret agencies.
It is little known, however, that there is a federal agency that tops the others in secrecy by a country mile. The Federal Reserve System is accountable to no one; it has no budget; it is subject to no audit; and no Congressional committee knows of, or can truly supervise, its operations. The Federal Reserve, virtually in total control of the nation’s vital monetary system, is accountable to nobody – and this strange situation, if acknowledged at all, is invariably trumpeted as a virtue. – Murray Rothbard from (the original) Case Against the Federal Reserve
There is absolutely no legitimate reason why this deal is being done through the Ex-Im Bank. None. It is simply a gift to the state Mexican oil company and the American contractors which will supply Pemex. That’s it. This deal could easily have been done through private banks. But hey, if you can get the US taxpayers to subsidize a credit line why not get them to do it?
Both major parties are corporatist parties and both have been for a long time. But Dems seem to be signalling that they are interested in cozying up even closer to crony corporate America.
What it says and what it does are too different matters.
Some of the best cuisine for sale in America is actually cooked in homes, usually quietly. In Texas however at least a few food micro-entrepreneurs are now able to come out of the pantry.
People are starting to get sketched out on Wall Street. The market is wobbly this morning. The Alibaba IPO (which did well) has people looking around wondering what’s next. Europe slowed last month. China continues to slow. India’s SENSEX was down almost 2% today. The Ebola “worst case scenario” just jumped from 500,000 to 1,000,000. And we just started bombing Iraq and Syria.