First Pours Doing Well in 2021

Gold miners are struggling this year, but first pours are not. This is one I didn't buy, but it has a nice chart. I was unable to get into the private placement that closed yesterday. Telson is up 50 percent from the end of 2020. It was in a basing pattern then and now it's near completing a bigger basing pattern.
Update: Good timing. One day later pow.

Delta Won't Let Black People Fly, But It Will Badger Georgia Over Election Laws

Black people are less likely to accept the coronavirus vaccine, thus won't be getting vaccine passports. Delta airlines has no trouble denying black, brown, white, red, blue, yellow and purple Americans the fundamental human right of travel. Yet the CEO joins other corporations in opposing a law that protects election integrity. ZH: 72 Black Executives Joined By Delta, Microsoft In Opposing Georgia Election Law
Joining Chenault and the black executives are Atlanta-based Delta CEO Ed Bastian, who called Georgia's new election law "unacceptable" in a memo circulated to staff, adding that the "entire rationale for this bill was based on a lie" about election fraud in the 2020 election. "After having time to now fully understand all that is in the bill, coupled with discussions with leaders and employees in the Black community, it’s evident that the bill includes provisions that will make it harder for many underrepresented voters, particularly Black voters, to exercise their constitutional right to elect their representatives. That is wrong."

Also 'concerned' over Georgia's election law is Microsoft, which will press the state to change the 'unfair' law over provisions the company says "unfairly restrict the rights of people to vote legally, securely, and safely," according to president Brad Smith in a statement posted to the company's website. Smith notes the company's significant investments in Atlanta, adding "we should all work together to oppose legislation in other states that would undermine the right to vote conveniently, securely, and safely."

Lastly, Coca-Cola North American President Alfredo Rivera issued a Wednesday statement during Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms' State of the City Address, saying "I, along with my colleagues at The Coca-Cola Company, have been disappointed in the outcome of Georgia’s voting legislation. We don’t see this as the final chapter, as we will continue to work with many of you."

Warnings will likely go unheeded, but I will state it as many ways as possible. According to the ruling class, if you oppose their authoritarian takeover of America, you're a racist. If you oppose corporate communism, you hate black people. They prey on the gullibility of the weak minded, the people who fear being called racist. If you get defensvie if someone calls you racist, you are the problem in America. You cannot back down one inch from barbarian scum tearing down the foundations of civilization. You have Truth, God, Logic, Common Sense, Morality, Honestly, Charity, Justice, Love and even Tolerance on your side. The "Woke" are attacking all of these concepts.

Huning Pigs Massacred

Individual stocks in China are suddenly plunging too amid what I believe is an ongoing topping process.
iFeng: 沪宁股份“杀猪盘惨案”揭秘:福建系游资因何清仓抛售?
In the absence of any abnormalities in the fundamentals, why are investors in the secondary market suddenly strangled by the "slaughter plate"? The CBN investigation found that the flash crash of the Shanghai-Nanjing stocks was directly related to the hot money of the Fujian-based brokerage business department. Since March 17, Shanghai-Nanjing shares have been on the Dragon and Tiger list four times, and the corresponding 20 trading seats with the largest selling amount, mostly from the brokerage department of Fujian, accounted for 19, of which the sales disclosed in the past three trading days The top five seats were all seats in the business department of Fujian brokerage firms. During the period, the accumulated sales amount reached more than 246 million yuan.

Behind the concentrated sell-off of Fujian brokerage seats, a number of Fujianese shareholders of Shanghai-Nanjing shares have also begun to surface. As of the end of September last year, a private equity institution named Fujian Chengyi Asset Management Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as "Chengyi Assets") held a total of 3.11 million shares of Shanghai-Nanjing shares, and many of its natural-person shareholders also existed with the business department of Fujian securities firms. Intersection.

From the perspective of transaction distribution, from March 17th to 30th, the sales department seats of the Shanghai-Nanjing shares were sold in a high degree of overlap with the accounts of the securities companies held by these shareholders. For example, the sales department of Dongxing Securities has appeared in the top five of the stock’s Long and Tigers list ten times during the period, and the cumulative sales amount has exceeded 130 million yuan. The accounts of Chengyi Assets and several other shareholders are all from Dongxing Securities. .

For a long time, Shanghai-Nanjing Co., Ltd. has few public offerings, insurance funds and other institutions holding shares, while private placements and hot money have frequently entered and exited. At the end of the first quarter of last year, the company's top ten shareholders of tradable shares were all natural persons, and there has been no major change since then. Almost all of the shares held by these natural persons are leveraged by the two securities companies.

From the end of 2019 to before the flash crash, the stock price of Shanghai-Nanjing Co., Ltd. had risen by more than 2.5 times. In 2020, individual shareholders of the company were sued in court for private loan disputes. These private equity and natural person shareholders concentrated on liquidating their positions. Is the capital chain broken or is it profitable?

USD Will Rip So Hard CNY Will Soar Versus EUR and JPY

I've taken prices off the chart, but left drawings and added the 50-, 100- and 200-day moving averages. If those all trends and bends continue, they say dollar rallies hard because it is only starting a reversal versus CNY, but CNY is clearly trending strongly against JPY and EUR. Not an immediate forcast.

Will the U.S. Outgrow China This Decade?

ZH: Some Perspective: We Are Talking 2% Of 2021 US GDP In Public Investment For A Decade
Let’s then imagine where the USD would sit with GDP growth of 4% and 10-year yields at 4%, for a hypothetical example (higher!); and where it would sit if the same stimulus and growth sees yields artificially capped at 1.50% (lower!). Can you see the wild ride markets could be about to set out on? It’s really quite the Show!

It’s unclear how the Swedish Chefs at the ECB (“We pooot de PEPP in de poot”) would be prepared for this US recipe. They can “bork, bork, bork!” all they like, but it’s something they can’t control – just hope any US stimulus lifts their booot.

Likewise, the giant Sweetums of the PBOC, overseeing an economy where there don’t appear any post-2021 GDP growth targets, and some view the sustainable level of GDP growth being as low as 2-3%, could face a US economy outgrowing it for a decade, and potentially with higher yields too. Where would that put CNY? Today’s fixing was 6.5713, so the direction is already clear - in which case those who know think: pork, pork, pork!

The U.S. population is growing. China, Japan and Europe are not. Many emerging markets are also aging rapidly. Assume growth is slowing and there isn't organic growth coming except via public spending around the world. While most would say China would spend the money the best, their opportunity for infrastructure investment is limited, plus that risks stoking the housing bubble. Their domestic economy is also less dynamic than the U.S. economy. Their transition to a domestic consumer economy has been stalled for 10 years. They are doing pilot programs today in the hopes of lifting capital controls.

The U.S. domestic economy is still more dynamic than Europe and Japan too. If (big if) the U.S. has turned a corner on glboalism and free trade, it can take GDP growth back from overseas by attaching Buy American provisions to government spending.

A dollar bull market rests on one of two scenarios and one assumption. One scenario is the pessimistic case where the world economy goes into recession/collapse. Everything collapses against the dollar before that too collapses. This is the scenario that ends the dollar as reserve currency most quickly. The optimistic scenario is the above economic scenario (or some similar form of it) accompanies rising rates. The dollar also diverges from history because demographics are everything. The assumption is that the U.S. remains "the cleanest dirty shirt." Debt levels, demogaphics, regulations are all worse in most major markets.

The biggest hole in the dollar bear argument (we're talking FX crosses, not dollar vs gold) is that it assumes the U.S. is more profligate and irresponsible than other nations. Or that the U.S. will sacrifice the dollar to remain the reserve currency. My working thesis for years has been this is a massive negative mood cycle. Increasing weaponization of the U.S. dollar by USG is destructive of the dollar in the long-term, but it also shows USG is abandoning a global coneption of the dollar. What if instead of, or along with weaponizing USD, nationoalist and populist economic policies also push Federal Reserve policy towards more domestic concerns? If you're a foreign investor in a country with worse demographics, higher debt levels, kleptocratic government or less efficient domestic economy, do you want to be outisde of a weaponized dollar system or inside of it?

The best dollar bear argument is the one I subsribe to: it's time. The dollar had a 6-year bull market. It's due for a bear market if the past ~36 years of history holds. I'm agnostic on the future and will let the chart guide me. And I will have to because both of the dollar bull market theses are still intact at this moment. Weakned for sure, but not out.


Is Anyone In Charge in Biden Admin?

Even I assumed the Biden admin would be a little more professional than the Trump admin given they're all insiders. Yet a little over two months in and the Trump admin is starting to look more competent.

Two Chinas? U.S. Ambassador Visits Taiwan, Calls It a Country Amid Escalating Sino-US Tensions

UPI: U.S. ambassador's visit to Taiwan stirs tough response from China
China warned the United States and Taiwan against cultivating too-close ties after the U.S. Ambassador to Palau John Hennessey-Niland began an official visit to the island nation on Sunday.

Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Tuesday at a regular press briefing that Beijing opposes any form of government exchange between the United States and "China's Taiwan region."

ZH: China Furious As 1st US Ambassador To Visit Taiwan Since 1979 Calls It A "Country"
"I know that here in Taiwan people describe the relationship between the United States and Taiwan as real friends, real progress and I believe that description applies to the three countries — the United States, Taiwan and Palau," he was cited in Reuters and AFP as saying.
China is extremly hypersensitive about calling Taiwain a country. Even ordinary Chinese citizens are on guard for this and will immediaterly correct you if you reference Taiwan as anything other than a province of China. I was once "corrected" in a totally non-political discussion about how products are labeled by country of origin. I listed off "Made In" countries like Malysia, Mexico, Germany and included Taiwan in the list. This is a huge, huge deal to China. And it will be a huge signal that the Biden admin wants to wreck the U.S.-China relationship if it doesn't quickly say this was a slip of the tongue.

Meanwhile, now even 60 Minutes is spreading the Wuhan-lab origin thesis for coronavirus. I don't trust 60 Minutes as a source. Along with the news aboe, I take this as a signal that the U.S. ruling class might be readying for ultra-escalation with China.

Related. Global Times: Diplomat’s tweet reflects intensifying China-US friction

Third, the China-US and China-West conflicts have intensified. Sentiments on both sides have seen vehemence with rhetoric escalating. The words used by the US and Western politicians are constantly breaking boundaries. For instance, former US secretary of state Mike Pompeo and others repeatedly resorted to extreme words such as "evil" to describe CPC and China. The US government has viciously attacked Xinjiang with the label of "genocide." Some US lawmakers have gone even further to target specific Chinese individuals. These are all serious breaches of normal diplomatic etiquette. In general, the language the Chinese side uses is more restrained than their US and Western counterparts.


Remember August 2007, Remember August 2015

How Bear Stearns lost its way

Two hedge funds run by its asset-management division have gone belly-up. On Aug. 5, Cayne dumped his heir apparent, the much-admired Warren Spector; Cayne and his new No. 2, investment banker Alan Schwartz, are defending Bear's reputation -- and trying to persuade the Street that the firm can weather the credit storm -- even as they quietly seek an equity investment.

Bear got into this jam in part by coveting its neighbor's business. At Bear, trading and handling money for clients has always been the main game. The firm made a steady profit as Wall Street's back office.

The businesses "weren't very sexy," says Michael Holland, chairman of the eponymous money management firm, "but they looked really good when things went lousy for a lot of their competitors."

For a long time that was enough. Particularly under the leadership of the legendary Alan "Ace" Greenberg, Bear's disciplined trading culture made it the "Sparta of Wall Street," in the words of Bernstein analyst Brad Hintz.

The current hedge fund blow-up struck me as more of a non-story, temporary hype that fades as pricse march higher. It's still early in the story, but if it does get some legs remember how a fund blow-up in August 2007 was ignored by most investors too. A tell will be if as in August 2007, the Fed surprises with some emergency move: Fed cuts discount rate
The Federal Reserve, reacting to concerns about the subprime lending crisis that's rocked financial markets in recent weeks, Friday cut its so-called discount rate half a percentage point, to 5.75 percent.
Another possible corrollary is the LTCM blow-up in 1998 that came at the end of the Asian/ emerging market crisis. However, for now markets seem to be taking it all in stride.

ZH: Archegos? Argh, Chaos More Like

I noted yesterday that the expected market turbulence caused by the Archegos sell-off was not representative of the underlying structural issues that will guide markets going forwards. I stick by that claim, but even so what a messy day it was. Some individual stocks got hit hard, and US bond yields were up, presumably due to the need to sell anything to get liquidity, while the USD see-sawed. Archegos? ‘Argh, chaos’ more like.
I do not expect imminent trouble either, except potentially an ongoing tech sell-off. That said, I am now operating under the suspicion that the Nasdaq bull market is over and increasingly thinking the markets have more than priced in a re-opening boom. Moreover, evidence that the world is still trapped in the post-2008 disinflationary world keep showing up. In short, while Archegos doesn't strike me as a big deal, lots of other things have my Spidey-sense tingling.

And as I was compiling this post, I came across this fresh piece of evidence over at Slope of Hope: Something Weird in the Neighborhood

Typically, the Equity PCR 10MA only reaches its UWBB after a decline. It’s so unusual, it prompted me to look back through my entire historical pics back to 2004. The ONLY other instance I could find was in 2015 at this extremely bullish juncture (sarcasm).
Click through to see the chart and indicator he's talking about.

Gold Signals Inflation Trades, Financial Markets Could Be in Danger

The charts for gold and miners have been weak of late. GDX held above my support line and bounced, but I cannot fault anyone who looks at gold's performance versus other assets and says Gold is Garbage. To my eye, the outlook isn't bearish yet. Today's dip fills a gap, but GDX remains above my major support line (violet).
Gold is weak overall compared to stocks and crypto though, because real interst rates are rising. Gold fell $50 an ounce today because the 10-year yield hit a new 52-week high in morning trading. Gold would rise if inflation was outrunning interest rates. The plunging gold price is screaming that this might indeed be another rope-a-dope on the ifnlation crowd by central bankers. Fooled them in 2008, 2011, 2014, 2018, 2020 and maybe 2021...

I offer no forecast of the future, except to say I will not ignore the message gold sends me. The probability of another deflationary panic is rising. I remain bullish on gold miners over the long-term. Right now, I suspect it is closer to a bottom...but if I am wrong...global markets have been down this road many times since 2008.

They Hate You and Want You Dead

A meme from the far-right is slowly working its way into the conservative right and who knows if it will grow from there. It is phrased various ways, but the core message is that the Baizuo/leftists/Democrats hate America, hate you (normal Americans) and want you and your children dead. It's a toxic meme, but it is spreading because the news feed appears to confirm it.

The latest news item is from San Diego. American children are at home taking zoom classes because public school teachers (who are represented by left-wing teachers unions) refuse to teach in-person classes. American children are suffering from various mental ailments, hopefully temporary but who knows, from being separated from their friends and social life for more than a year. Some of those children have taken their lives out of despair. Meanwhile...Education program for migrant teens staying at the San Diego Convention Center

The migrant teenagers that are staying at the San Diego Convention Center will be provided an in-person educational program.

According to the San Diego County Office of Education, the educational program will include English language development and social-emotional learning opportunities.

In addition, teachers who participate in the program are doing so voluntarily, and the program will be following covid-19 screening protocols based on CDC guidelines.

Public school teachers who want to teach American children are forbidden by the government and teachers unions. Those who want to teach invading migrants can though. Migrant children are also being placed in foster homes, ahead of American children. There are tent cities in cities run by leftists, the streets are filling with homeless, but leftists instead give aid to invaders pouring over the borders.

This comes on the heels of the U.S. National Guard troops helping homicidal carjackers out of car they used to murder an Uber driver. It comes as murder rates soar across American cities because leftists "defunded" the police.

Lockdowns, shipping jobs and wealth overseas, replacing American workers with H1-B visas holders, pumping children and the mentally ill with hormones, letting murderers out of prison earlier, at every turn it seems like you could apply the meme.

I live in a "blue" part of America. This is an area where you almost never see a sign for a Republican presidential candidate. Not only were there many (compared to before) Trump flags and signs during the election, but most of them are still up. I don't know if this represents that Trump voters are fed up and don't care about social pressure anymore or if it signals a shift in the general population. It's more likely the former, but even average Democrats who go along with their side's narrative are getting fed up with lockdowns, crime, closed public schools, etc.

Additoinally, the recent "Asian American hate" campaign that blames "white supremacy" is having a reverse impact as Asian Americans aren't buying it. Maybe they'll go back to sleep; this isn't a new story. From 2010 in San Francisco: Dirty secret of black-on-Asian violence is out. From summer 2020: This is what Black on Asian crime looks like. A generation of Americans have been taught that the race of people invovled is very important. If you apply the logic of Wokeness and Critical Race Theory, instead of a crime problem in the black community you see an organized hate campaign. There is no logic in Wokeness and Critical Race Theory though. They have a rule: all problems are caused by white people, whiteness, white privilege and white supremacy. But if people abandon that rule without returning to the Christian and American concept of the individual, very bad ideas could start percolating in minority communities because Wokeism and CRT both absolve them of guilt and, ironically, silence minority voices who break from the routine. It would not surprise me in the least if a very bad reaction to Wokeism and Critical Race Theory emerges from the Asian or Hispanic demographic, if someone takes the right's concept of the leftists hating them and mixes it into a new racial animus.

The position of the ruling class in America seems impregnable today. It has the Capitol under military control and proposes domestic spy powers, a Patriot Act for political dissidents, that could be passed by Congress and signed into law. It is also very fragile because if any group within its coalition gets fed up with the crime, violence and lockdowns, or if any groups demand that they are "more equal than others" it can all come crashing down. And this growing meme on the right is exactly the type of thinking that leads to "1776" and "1789" moments when an entire ruling class is overthrown.

The crime surge in America is an accelerated repeat of the 1960s and 1970s. Then too, it started with riots and turned into a generational crime wave. America resembles a police state today in part because of the public's response to how leftists ran American cities in the 1970s and 1980s. In the 1980s, right-wingers used the term "bleeding heart liberal" to describe their opponents. They meant well, but they were "soft on crime." They didn't have the right character needed in government and political leaders. The stakes are much higher today with a polarized electorate. Today, the meme is not a general opposition to left-wing opponents, but focused on the ruling class itself: "they hate you and want you dead." Ordinary Americans watching from the sidelines, afraid to speak out against Wokeness and CRT, who allowed this toxic narrative to spread into schools, will be powerless to stop the toxic response. The ruling class' plan is paint the response as the problem. They double down on Wokeness and CRT. Time is running out as America crashes headlong into a confrontation between its toxic ruling class and the "Toxic Avengers" it is creating.


Out of Cardboard

ARKK On the Line

The h pattern should fail. The support line is at $110.11 today. Want to see a big clean break for an extended bear move. I'm in the money on my puts, but watching here...

Real Estate Update

Rates didn't keep rising and now real estate is coming up on old highs. If a topping process is underway, with Nasdaq perhaps already topped, it's likely REITs could achieve a new all-time highs along with other "defensive" sectors before the broader market finally tops later this year. Not a trade that interests me. In the very short-term, perhaps a test of that resistance.


Look Out: USDJPY Breaks Resistance

If this is a breakout in USDJPY, the immeidiate reaction will be "bullish." The yen has been inversely correlated with economic growth since the 2000s, it has been the "risk off" currency and became correlated with gold. The charts below show USDJPY and gold inverted. If the correlation is still alive, the breakout in USDJPY would be bearish for gold.

There is resistance along the way, not drawn, but if this is breakout that holds, the next major area would be around 120, after that the neckline of a monster head-and-shoulders pattern around 125. Complete that and the initial target is 175...getting ahead of myself. If this breakout in the dollar versus instead signals a break with the past and something new, that something new might be high inflation or fiat currency destruction coming to Japan first. A decade ago most investors believed the yen would sink first. In my scenerio, China would likely sink first and take down other export currencies, but the yen going first would probably quickly sink the won and yuan. Or perhaps this hints that Japan will fare much worse than the U.S. under inflationary conditions.

Whatever the implications, the yen is a major currency. It's correlation with gold makes its direction important for gold investors and traders, more important than the U.S. dollar in my opinion. A sustained breakout in USDJPY is big news. It would put a floor on the DXY, potentially fueling a much bigger or faster rally than anticipated.

A broader dollar bull market would most likely accompany a reversal in the euro. EURJPY remains one to watch as well. It broke out of a smaller triangle, which is bullish for the global economy and inflation. The line to watch here is the blue one at 132 (along with the green uptrend in the shorter-term). A failure in EURJPY combined with rising USDJPY (euro loses) would create a major up move in DXY, potentially leading to the epic dollar bull market I've discussed at IICS for years, as have others such as Brent Johnson of Santiago Capital (who has a more generally bullish Milkshake Theory). The DXY target would be 120 or higher, with higher likely.

A reversal in USDJPY and EURJPY (yen wins) could signal the traditional "risk-off" event with a major correction in stocks and commodities likely.

A major rise in EURJPY and USDJPY, but with EUR beating USD, would signal possible trouble in Japan down the road, but would be a risk-on for inflation trades signal in the short-term. This seems like a possibility because Japan is a resource importer.

Finally, if EURJPY rises and USDJPY sinks, that's your traditional dollar-down bear market in action. A possible breakdown in the dollar would be years away, roughly 5 to 6 years at least because that's when I'd expect a normal bear market to terminate.

Here's EURUSD. It has broken back below former resistance, a potential failure in the making. Things start getting more bearish below $1.16, which would probably conincide with a DXY rally towards the 96 area.
Finally, the DXY. The 96 area remains the upper target for a correction within a bull market. EURUSD might be around $1.12 then, not far off the blue support line. No matter which way the markets go long-term, a test of all these various levels will be accompanied by financial market volatility. The final DXY resistance is around 100, after that it breaks longer-term resistance and runs to a level that most would consider unfathomable today. In that scenario, the March 2020 was only a hint of the bigger panic coming.

Every Single Time: China Tightens Lending Rules as Housing Speculators Feast on SME Loans

Demand for credit in China is driven by housing speculation. Stop housing speculation, credit growth slows and the economy slides towards collapse because credit bubbles do not deflate slowly. Force lending and it flows into housing, which only delays the bust and increases the fallout. China has been trapped in a stop-start economic cycle since 2008. Each cycle was marked by surging government investment or credit growth, following by a housing or stock market bubble, tightening of conditions and varying degrees of near-misses with recessions or financial collapse before the govenrment loosened again. Global ommodities have followed a similar path with price peaks in 2011,2014 and 2018.

Caixin: China Tightens Crackdown on Illicit Borrowing for Property Speculation

Three central government ministries jointly launched a sweeping clampdown on illicit borrowing for property speculation, expanding efforts made by several local regulators to contain risks in the white-hot housing market.

The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC), the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development (MHURD) and the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) issued a joint statement Friday announcing a nationwide inspection of business loans, targeting borrowers illicitly using individual or corporate business loans to speculate in the housing market.

The inspection is set to be completed by May 31, said the regulators in the statement, pledging to toughen punishments on violators.

Regulators in localities including Beijing, Shenzhen and the province of Guangdong are already working to stop business loans being used to invest in real estate amid mounting risk concerns on the overheated market.

China, along with the developed world, is constrained by a combination of excessive regulation and demographic headwinds. They also all have massive credit bubbles the require repressive financial regulation such as negative interest rates in Japan and Europe, capital controls in China and ZIRP in the United States. Most countries are fighting either a housing bubble, a stock market bubble or both. All fear a wave of defaults that would be unleashed if credit growth ceases.

The general bull assumption is the U.S. will break the global trap by doing some type of infrastructure spend that sends U.S. Treasury debt soaring. (I'm ignoring stagflation/inflationary collapse arguments because whether they agree with the specific causes or not, they essentially agree with the idea that government attempts to force growth will destroy the value of state-created fiat currencies.) There's also some hope that China will do it, but the above (and other comments about bubbles) suggest they cannot or will not.

The assumption about the U.S. leading comes with additional assumptions. One is that the U.S. dollar declines. If the growth cycles are broken, perhaps the U.S. dollar cycles is broken too. I have previously discussed how the U.S. Dollar Index is "out of time" by the cycle clock. Many bearish forecasts that come with hyperbolic claims about inflation and the dollar are on par with the bear markets in 1985 and 2002, neither of which were accompanied by disaster. The U.S. Dollar Index should decline now. There should be a multi-year round of growth led by emerging markets, accompanied by strengthening non-U.S. dollar currencies. If there isn't, something is up.

There are more assumptions. One is that spending by the U.S. government will be enough. If the U.S. government spends X and the economy "needs" X+1, the result is recession. A second is that the U.S. outspends/outpumps the world. A normal growth cycle is driven by rising U.S. dollar credit growth (as the reserve currency, the dollar inflates as it fuels the system). If government credit replaces private credit, it's not immediately clear that the U.S. will be the most profligate nation. Or lacking a conduit into private borrowing, perhaps U.S. spending fizzles out. There's no multiplier effect. A third assumption is U.S. government spending is productive, but government spending is more likely to be unproductive. An additional assumption is that a shift to electric cars and alternative energy would be productive, rather than a giant tax on the economy, or at best a zero-sum that leaves the economy worse off because of the debt required. My assumption is that it will take a collective mania similar to the housing bubble, except centered on "green" energy, low carbon, electric cars, etc. all accompanied with infrastructure spending to get the ball rolling.

Something like a Green New Deal will lead to a bust down the road, but that type of mania would induce commodity inflation, which in turn sparks emerging markets, it sparks price inflation that makes borrowing attractive. Urban residents are leaving cities for rural areas in response to the lockdowns already, fueling home price rises. Lockdowns also damaged global supply chains. Now central bank printing is further damaging supply chains. The blockage of the Suez Canal by the Ever Given is a major economic problem because of central bank activity over the past year. We will see an ongoing series of "Ever Givens," singular events that are one-offs in disinflationary times that become stepping stones to ever higher inflation in inflationary times.

Long story short, the evidence for organic economic growth is thin. After years of screaming for more credit, Chinese SMEs obtained more credit and immediately it was funneled into housing speculation, either by the SMEs themselves or speculators posing as SMEs. The former tells us credit demand isn't really that high (or that banks still don't want to lend), the latter that China's credit creation is too dysfunctional. I also believe China's "decommunization" dividend is gone. China is running into the hard problem of CCP political control conflicting with economic freedom. The economy remains overly reliant on real estate (state infrastructure) investment and exports.

From the perspective of markets, the risk is that the bullish economic case is priced in. I see a growing risk of real growth peaking. If real growth peaks and governments continue with stimulus, gold and similar assets (monetary) will eventually win out. If stimulus sparks growth, industrial commodities and related investments in politically-favored (directly or indirectly) industries will win. An example of an indirect winner is oil because it will take a lot of it to fuel the massive mining effort that will be part of a GND.

Last but not least: the chart. One thing I've focused more on in recent years is the charts because as great as the macro thesis may be, timing is of the essence. Moreover, as I've tried to lay out above, more than one outcome is possible. The charts help strip away whatever attachment I may have to a particular macro thesis. I have annotated the chart with the popular arguments at the time. There is a clear basing pattern on the chart that, were it to complete, would strongly argue that commodity prices will rise one way or another. I'm not confident in forecasting a full blown deflationary collapse yet (that would require a bearish breakdown of charts like the one below), but macro forces are starting to indicate another deflationary scare might come before the next round of stimulus. Which as I said above, would be good news for monetary metals and related assets.

The Essence of Anarcho-Tyranny: America's Woke Military Stand By as Carjackers Murder an Uber Driver

This video is graphic. It shows the absolute mayhem going on in "Woke" American cities. It also shows the National Guard were on the scene. They are clueless bystanders doing nothing in Washington, D.C. except provide theater for the politidal establishment's tyrannical takeover of the levers of power. They are there to help create the narrative of a threat from rural whites and Trump voters, one that allows for a domestic Patriot Act to crush political dissent. Meanwhile, for the citizens of D.C., there is murder and mayhem. This is the essence of Anarcho-Tyranny. Anarchy as lawbreaks are protected by law, be they criminals or illegal aliens. Tyranny for law abiding citizens, be it lockdowns, mask laws, gun control, vaccine passports, etc. Your children cannot go to school, but illegal alien children get free school on the border. You cannot visit DC because of "a threat" to the political establishment, but the threats to your life and property run wild in the streets. Repeat this across society and you can see the future if the Woke establishment isn't ejected from power. The media, governmental (including nearly all Democrats and most of the GOP estalishment) and educational instituions are all converged and controlled by Woke ideology, critical race theory, preogressivism, whatever you want to call it. It goes by many names to confse you and dissipate opposition into factions, but it is all united by the same evil impulses and false ideas that fueled communism and fascism in the 20th Century.

I will be surprised if Twitter doesn't take this video down. Not because it is graphic, but because it is destructive for the ruling class.

Woke/CRT Culture: The Red Guard-Stasi Mashup

Many have made analogies between the woke "cancel culture" phenomenon and the Chinese Cultural Revolution. I think this is a great analogy, but I think that another, perhaps better, analog has been overlooked, namely the "Disintegration Directive" of the East German Stasi. (Archive link here)
Briefly, the Disintegration Directive, also known as the Decomposition Directive (officially Richtlinie 1/76 or the Zersetzung in German) was the approach that the East German secret police (the Stasi) took from 1976 onwards to crush dissent, or even potential dissent.

Before 1976, the Stasi used the conventional gulag-and-torture methods to control political opinion in the DDR. But in the 1970s, the DDR was seeking international recognition, so they needed a lower-profile method of suppressing opposition to Communism.


Do You Trust Election Results

Election epistemology

Ultimately, the voter is in the same position with the security of the 2020 election as with Chinese biolab security: either we take an opaque and unaccountable institution’s word that nothing untoward could possibly have happened, or we don’t.

We know that this institution can do a very impressive job of investigating itself. We see that in 2015 and 2019, it did not think it was very secure. But in 2020 it decided it was very secure indeed! Perhaps it improved. Stranger things have happened.

Yet when we ask to look into the matter—it gives us the finger. Then pulls out its club. What other message should we receive? Why else would we go straight to ad baculum, with barely even a cursory stop at ad verecundiam?

The presentee election

How to Vote In Mexico

How to Vote in Mexico


Why Is There Mass Immigration of Low Skill Workers

1789 cometh

A Single Ship Destroys Globalism

Have fun being fragile. Back of the envelope calculation is that everyday the ship is stock, the world is losing about 0.05 percent of global annual trade. That's only the seen, not the unseen losses.

Update: CENX Breaks Resistance

Mammoth, you are spot-on correct. CENX failed right at that resistance.

Wave Bye-Bye to the Chinese Market and Open Season on Woke Companies

I have discussed how foreign companies have to consider their profile when operating in China. I think the last post on it was here: Prepare for Smashed Up KFCs and McDonald's
If I was running a visible American brand in China, I'd be thinking about lowering my profile right now. China could unleash nationalist riots in response to a trade spat. I don't know that they would do that, but a serious trade dispute with the U.S. would be more significant than Japanese history textbooks. I suspect it would be more negative than the South China Sea ruling by the Hague in 2016 (see below).
ZH: Rabo: Very Important Developments Are Taking Place In China
In particular, very important developments may be taking place in China. Western sportswear and clothing retailers such as Nike, Adidas, and H&M have all made recent statements they are “concerned about reports of forced labor” in Xinjiang, or have stopped buying cotton from it completely. The Chinese response has been furious: official rhetoric is withering - “China is not to be messed with,” and those who do “will find that we are force to be reckoned with”; social media is filled with nationalist attacks and open calls from celebrities to boycott these firms; and H&M stores in China have suddenly disappeared from search engine location functions.

Yes, we’ve seen similar Chinese moves against foreign products before. Some Aussie agri exports are currently locked out; South Korean soap operas and Norwegian salmon have been in the past; and back in 2012 there were major anti-Japanese boycotts and protests due to the geopolitical backdrop. Yes, those earlier storms passed: but that was arguably a very different China, at least in the eyes of the West, and according to its own combative rhetoric. Indeed, ‘Wolf Warrior’ diplomacy --in the past few days alone-- has seen massively growing skepticism about China’s direction from Western diplomatic, military, and even businesses elites.

The problem is now on both sides. In China, the 2012 protests were quashed by the government, but this time round the Communist Youth League is actively trolling, and the diplomacy is blaring. The question in the minds of some who have read history is if this a - non-violent - replay of the anti-foreigner Boxer Rebellion rather than just a Boxer-Shorts Rebellion. In the West, the firms involved face a stark choice: stick to their professed social values and lose the China market, or accept China gets to dictate what they worry about - even when it reaches the alleged level of forced labour and genocide…and then try to explain corporate mottos like “Just Do It”. Could this even escalate to the level of the 2022 Olympics so we see the Para- and Parallel games? Probably not – but if it did, China has stated any boycotting countries will be sanctioned, dragging even more firms in. The risk is that this backdrop could accelerate existing moves towards decoupling of the global economy, which had been expected to be focused on semiconductors, but may now be on Lycra, sneakers, and socks and underwear value-packs too.

Western corporations that became "woke" and political are doomed. If they go silent on China, they lose Western customers. They lose "woke" customers who see them bending to China and they lose the normal people who ask, "You won't offend China, but you have no problem offending Western customers and meddling in our politics?" If the corporations make noise, they lose Chinese customers. Their only real option is to focus on their business, but that seems to be the least important item on their agendas.

Woke copmanies are weak because they are trying to be mass market, global brands. Their infection with Wokeism means they are anti-nationalist at a time of rising nationalism. They are also destroying their mass appeal. Nike sneakers are for Wokies, not for normal people, Christians, Muslims, etc. anyone with traditional ideas of the family. Across the economy, including banks like Bank of America, payment processors and platforms such as Paypal, Mastercard and Visa. They are turning off ~30-50 percent of American customers and who knows how many international ones once competition emerges.

Trump is Gone, Lab Escape Narrative Allowed

The establshment didn't want to let the lab escape meme loose when Trump was in office because he could use it as a campaign issue. And he might actually do something about it. With China Joe in the White House, there's no fear of the issue leading to say, more tariffs. Additionally, it'll be controlled to put the blame on China instead of science, although probably with a nod to lab safety. If anything, American scientists will use the opportunity to call for gain-of-function research in the USA.

ZeroHedge: Former CDC Director Says COVID-19 Escaped From Wuhan Lab

Former CDC Director Robert Redfield says that SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19, did not originate from a wet market in Wuhan, China, and instead escaped from a nearby lab which was performing gain-of-function research on bat coronaviruses to make them more easily infect humans.
As a reminder, dissidents on right and left (mostly right) were saying this early in teh pandemic. They were attacked by the mainstream media. If you are not reading alternative sources of information, you are going to be months and years behind developing issues in society and the economy.

Here was one article produced after this theory was well known all over the dissident right.

American Mind: Biosecurity’s Faustian Bargains (Part I)

So I’ve always felt that the general public and governments were not well prepared. I’ve been quietly preparing myself, but I never said anything publicly because I didn’t want to be seen as crazy. Despite thinking about biosafety for almost my whole life, I restricted my engagement to private conversation among friends. Social media strengthened that instinct.

Asking for citations on Twitter usually isn’t honest intellectual curiosity, but an appeal-to-authority argument used by closed-minded midwits to shut down the exploration of new ideas. “Do yoU hAvE a sOuRce??” is a tell for first-order thinkers, or as Nassim Taleb would call them, intellectuals yet idiots (IYI).

Even if you provide a source, odds are that the source is bad and the idiot who asked for the source won’t check how bad it is, being unable in the first place to recognize flaws in experimental design and data analysis.

Biologists are by and large notoriously bad at probability and statistics. There was a joke in college that biology majors are the students who failed out of engineering, math, and the harder sciences.

Origin of the Coronavirus

When I first heard of the novel coronavirus back in late January, I immediately thought the most likely possibility was that the virus escaped from a lab due to bad biosafety practices.

Current research suggests that SARS-Cov-2 was not purposefully manipulated, yet this does not rule out the possibility that lab animals and/or samples were involved. There’s a nuanced view that most people seem to have trouble understanding: the virus could be zoonotic and not a bioweapon, yet still come from a lab that’s capable of creating bioweapons. No genomic analysis could eliminate this possibility. All virology labs are potentially dual-use. Most researchers are not intentionally trying to create bioweapons, but their lab facilities can be easily converted to researching bioweapons, and their research findings could be repurposed.

The typical authority/expert/researcher is a first-order thinker who assumes that the absence of evidence equals the evidence of absence. They also want to view themselves as good people who follow proper biosafety protocols, so they are incentivized to deny that researchers at some other lab could ever commit such costly mistakes due to incompetence and carelessness.

When an epidemiologist or virologist at your local university sees a top official at the WHO or CDC, they don’t see a bureaucrat, they see a colleague whom they aspire to emulate. These officials are the mimetic models of your average academic researcher. When the average academic researcher’s thoughts get affirmed by a more prestigious researcher, they swoon and get giddy, just like what a teenage girl would do if she was praised by Beyoncé.

Consensus among experts is often nothing more than a social approval game in a network of influencers—a mimetic pyramid scheme. That means there’s no need even to bother looking at how many experts agree on an issue: most are just mimicking the opinions of their higher-ups. To get at the truth, go directly to scrutinizing the thoughts and works of the highest-centrality nodes.

Let me illustrate some possible scenarios for the origin of COVID-19.

When I was maybe 5 years old, back when my father used to work in a lab in China, he brought home a rabbit from the lab and we ate it. It was delicious. He made sure that the rabbit was uncontaminated, but I don’t doubt the possibility that some other researchers could have been eating or selling contaminated lab animals at wet markets.

Customs are different in different countries. There are various reports of researchers being involved in bushmeat trade.

The typical biology researcher in the West is usually a goody two-shoes who is either completely unaware or doesn’t want to admit that shady shit goes down in other countries. Selling lab animals to wet markets is not the norm in China either, but if someone wants to do it, they could find a way to get away with it. And if university or government authorities found out, they’d try to cover it up.

But the wet market is probably a red herring, as Wuhan is hundreds of miles away from the natural habitats of bats and the typical Wuhan native would be as shocked as any Westerner to find out that people ate bats. If the wet market is related to the origin of the virus, a researcher likely infected some other type of animal with the bat coronavirus, then sold it at the wet market.

Another possibility: the virus emerged from an experiment that would not have been approved in the West but could be approved in China, especially if bribery was involved. In China, you can basically get away with anything if you bribe the right people. It’s common sense in China that not everyone is equal under the law. A virus could have easily mutated zoonotically in a lab without being genetically engineered if they just locked a bunch of different species of infected animals in the same cage.

People like to point to the BSL-4 lab in Wuhan, but really it could have happened in almost any local biology labs. SARS is only BSL-3. In fact, even in the U.S., rodents can be housed at animal biosafety level 1 (ABSL-1) 72 hours after exposure to viral vectors with the approval of the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC).

This brings me to my next point: I’ve seen some pretty damn careless researchers in BSL-1 and BSL-2 labs. I’ve seen plenty of them not wearing gloves, disposing waste in the wrong trash, or even eating while doing experiments. Researchers often take their kids to the lab after school, and the kids would run around the lab with little supervision. I’ve seen this happen frequently ever since I was 5 years old. Pretty early on in my life, I realized that a bad accident was inevitable.

Honest researchers will admit that this is all true, but plenty others would vigorously deny it to cover their own asses. Researchers are incentivized to cover up their mistakes, especially if they are applying for grants and don’t have tenure.

Viruses have already been leaked from labs around the world. This has been a commonly acknowledged problem for many years. “One of the things that we want to do is reduce the number of laboratories that work with dangerous agents to the absolute minimum necessary,” said former CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden in 2014. “Reduce the number of people who have access to those laboratories to the absolute minimum necessary. Reduce the number of dangerous pathogens we work with.”

Suggesting that lethal viruses can be leaked from labs is the opposite of a conspiracy theory. There is nothing to organize, plan, or conspire. It’s a decentralized, emergent phenomenon. Human error exists and risk compounding over time is non-ergodic.

This pandemic isn’t a black swan. It’s an inevitability.

刘云平是白左而是乌龟, Ted Lieu Explodes When He's Exposed as Anti-Asian

Here is a great exchange that white people who have trouble spotting cucks and Baizuo can learn from. The discussion is about underepresentation of Asian Americans in the courts. The speaker starts talking about discrimination against Asian Americans at Ivy League colleges, which if you know how America works, produce the vast majority of high level judges. Thus any group being discriminated against at these institutions would likely be under represented. Ted Lieu claims to represent Asian Americans, but he explodes here because the Biden Administration's Justice Department dropped the Asian (and white) discrimination cases against the Ivy League. The Democrats do not want any investigation into how the "diversity" Democrats, corporations, media and government talk about is really an inverted apartheid system that is anti-American to the core.

Ted Lieu is a cuck. Like nearly all the minorities the Democrats trot out, he is a cuck for the Baizuo. Racism and claims of discrimination, system racism, whiteness, white supremacy, etc. are merely terms to keep their fragile coalition together. Uniting people in hatred of America and whites is how white leftists stay in power. Highlighting this and opposing actual racism by leftist whites at the Ivy League gives away the game. He explodes in fury because he's exposed here.

WashEx: Ted Lieu melts down after witness cites Harvard's anti-Asian discrimination
Kirsanow added that the perception of racial discrimination at Harvard contributes to a broader undermining of trust in institutions. He said, especially because Harvard pumps out a disproportionate number of federal judges, the way that it operates matters to the judiciary.

Lieu replied that Kirsanow was avoiding the greater issue that the federal judiciary is majority white.

"It's corrosive to America to have an entire third branch of government in which people are selected on the basis of them being white," he said. "That's the only way to explain these statistics."

Once you see through the tribalism and race war politics of the left, their whole ideological infrastructure collapses. The Democrats scare minorities away from the GOP, effectively turning it into the white party. The GOPe is rather clueless and old, doesn't understand the game being played and can't really fight back. When Trump did fight back, his minority support surged. But Trump was like a flash in the pan, thus overall the GOP is still heavily white. This means when they have power and make appointments, they'll mostly be white. This is common sense and not racism, but the Democrats focus on it because...they're run by Baizuo. The party that exhibits the most actual racism is the Democrat party because it is the one that is representing minorities. If minorities are underrepresented in political appointments, it is mainly the fault of Democrats, not Republicans. I don't have data at hand, but I'd be willing to bet a sizable sum that minorities are overrepreseneted in GOP political appointments as a percentage of the GOP vote. Do the same for Democrats and...uh oh. Ted Lieu explodes because he's exposed as a Baizuo cuck. He's the Asian face protect the actual "white supremacists" to use the parlance of the left. If Republicans start fighting anti-Asian and anti-White discimination in the institutions, it will be an exstential threat for race hustlers like Lieu and also begin chipping away at the Democrats unitary control over USG, in this case the State of California as well and then their entire raison d'être as their racial tribalism as a cover for communism comes crashing down on their heads.


China Has 5 Coronavirus Vaccines, Has Only Vaccinated ~80mm

It is reported that this is the fifth new coronavirus vaccine approved for use in China and the first new coronavirus recombinant subunit protein vaccine approved for clinical use in the world. At the same time, this also means that three technical routes and five vaccines have been put into use on a large scale in China. Prior to this, China had already approved 4 new crown vaccines for the market, including 3 new crown inactivated vaccines and 1 adenovirus vector vaccine. They are respectively 2 inactivated vaccines from Sinopharm Group and 1 inactivated vaccine from Beijing Kexing. Vaccine, an adenovirus vector vaccine jointly developed by the team of Cansino and Academician Chen Wei.
"Currently, the new crown virus vaccination work for key populations is progressing smoothly. As of March 20, a total of 74.956 million doses have been reported nationwide." At the State Council Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism press conference held on the 21st, the National Health Commission made a press statement. Ren Mi Feng introduced.

Which vaccine is better? 新冠疫苗单针、双针怎么选?权威回应来了!

Gotta love Google translate:

Q: What are the contraindications for vaccination against the new coronavirus?   

Answer: The contraindications of vaccination refer to situations where vaccination should not be taken. Because most contraindications are temporary, the vaccine can be vaccinated at a later time when the conditions that caused the contraindication no longer exist. The contraindications of the new coronavirus vaccine according to the vaccine instructions include:  

 ①Severe allergic reaction to vaccination;  

 ②Having bleeding diseases;  

 ③People with neurological diseases or mental diseases;

  ④Severe liver and kidney disease;

  ⑤Persons suffering from diseases such as hypertension, diabetes complications, malignant tumors, immunodeficiency, etc. that are not controlled by drugs;

 ⑥Pregnant, breast-feeding lesbians comrades, as well as all kinds of diseases in acute onset of vaccination should be postponed.


Israel, Coronavirus and the Vaccines

Once the vaccination campaign started, we saw a very interesting shift. While the Orthodox Jews went en masse to get “the jab”, the Palestinians (Israeli Arabs) did not follow this pattern. In the early stages of the vaccination campaign, in January, we saw a rise of 15 times as many morbidity cases in the Orthodox Jewish segment while we saw a significant drop (in morbidity) in the Israeli Arab segment. By not taking the vaccine, the level of morbidity dropped sharply. It was then that I began to figure out there was a connection between vaccination and morbidity.”
Operation Vaxx-All Deplorables: Codename; "Satan's Poker"

Amazon Topped in September 2020


How Do We De-woke America?

Time to study how Poland and Hungary decommunized in recent years, because that is going to be the only way forward soon. The institutions have to be repopulated by new people.

Ethniklashitan: Blacks Beat up Asians, Baizuo Blame Whites

America is doomed on its current trajectory. A nation cannot survive a government, media and educational institutions teaching racial hatred based on lies. Either confront reality and take on these institutions, which requires being callled a fascist, racist and other names, or prepare for totalitarian oppression, a major civil war, dissolving of political bonds or all three.

China Tries Easing Capital Controls

No progress in more than 10 years.

Caixin: China Picks 10 Companies for Currency Conversion Trial

The pilot program is part of China’s push to internationalize the yuan. Currently, multinationals operating in China need to keep a separate local currency cash pool supervised by the PBOC and a foreign currency pool supervised by SAFE. They need to seek SAFE approval every time they want to buy foreign currency under the capital account, several regulators and bankers told Caixin. Such controls deny businesses the freedom to buy and sell foreign exchange at will to hedge against currency fluctuations.

State-owned conglomerates Sinochem Corp., COFCO Group, China General Technology Group, Aviation Industry Corp. of China and global oil giant Royal Dutch Shell PLC are the five participants selected in Beijing, according to the central bank.

Sinochem completed the first transaction under the program, borrowing $10 million for its subsidiaries to settle foreign currency accounts. COFCO, China General Technology and Aviation Industry have also conducted transactions, the central bank said.

Maybe this time they'll follow through or maybe this is yet another rope-a-dope for the entire inflation/weak dollar crowd, the sixth in 13 years...


China Cannot Reverse Fertility Decline

Not with their current policy mix, which stems from a more fundamental political and economic orientation.

Caixin: How Chinese Society Fell Out of Love With Marriage

In 2020, the number fell 12.15 million to 8.13 million. Specifically, the number of first marriages dropped from 23.86 million in 2013 to 13.99 million in 2020, while the number of remarriages increased from 3.08 million to 4.56 million.

...Most parts of China have witnessed a declining marriage rate since 2013. Generally, there is a negative correlation between a region’s GDP growth and marriage rates.

In general, China’s more developed regions, like its coastal provinces, have lower marriage rates than the rest of the country. In 2019, Shanghai, Tianjin and the provinces of Zhejiang, Shandong, Guangdong and Fujian had some of the lowest marriage rates in the country, with Shanghai’s the lowest at 4.1%.

And housing costs:
We knowwhat causes low fertility. It is Western-style progressive capitalism, almost exactly what is embraced by a nominally socialist CCP. China hasn't deviated into wokeism and it pulled back from extremist feminism after going full communist for a time, but otherwise it is converging with Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong. Take a look at their fertility rates to see where China is headed. Policymakers in the West are retarded by being woke (in the West) and literally can't see the obvious correlations in the data or as in China, they don't want to pay the cost because they value things like GDP growth or the number of credentialed women more than higher fertility. Among those who say they genuinely view low fertility as a problem that needs addressing, if they aren't hitting at root causes they aren't seriouos about it. The vast majority of the population doesn't see low fertility as a problem. The one plus for China and other East Asian nations is they at least give their citizens the benefit of low fertility in more open space, less environmental strain and rising wages. In the West, all the benefits are reversed by mass immigration.


So Far So Good on Cardboard Pizza

The puts on CM I mentioned are even cheaper today. The market is pricing on volatility, but it's cheap if I have the direction right.

Do or Die for the ARKK Shorts

The dreaded h-pattern is in place. Hell for bulls or bears will swiftly follow. ARKK itself is much earlier in the pattern, but underlying holdings that I shorted along with ARKK are closer to completion, with BLI closest to a breakdown. TREE is already broken down, but battling around around a suppurt area. If it doesn't hold here, firmer support is around $190.

SARS2 Was Manufactured, And the Ruling Class Knows It

Gateway Pundit: BREAKING EXCLUSIVE: Location of Origin of COVID-19 Pandemic Identified – Between Two of China’s Biological Warfare Facilities in Wuhan

There's some new pieces of information in the article, but this is the main bit. The picture shows data pulled from Weibo. The dark areas show the location data of people who sought help on a dedicated channel for the unidentified pneumonia/coronavirus. The data is from before January 18. It shows a dense cluster not at the seafood market, but between the Wuhan Institute of Virology (WIV, black star) and the Biological Preparations Institute of the China Biology Technology Group (BPI, yellow square).

The evidence keeps pushing towards a lab accident as the cause of the pandemic. Then next question is what it manufactured by scientists as a bioweapon, as part of gain-of-function research, or was it a natural virus that escaped? Given what we know about research being done, the most likely scenario is gain-of-function research.

Most Western governments are run by a spineless ruling class, if not a treasonous one. They are getting rich selling off their nations to China. Many hate the native people. Every decision is designed to immiserate them, expose them to deadly pathogens, crush their political and economic power. There is no way they will reveal the truth about the virus and even if they did, it would probably only come about if their power was being threatened. Whipping up a war against China would be the last ditch effort for this criminal cabal. In their defense, it's hard to imagine what the public would demand if it was properly informed of the origin of the virus. The main cause of the disaster was lockdown policies, not the virus itself, an entirely self-imposed error by the ruling class. There's near zero-percent probability of a clear understanding of what happened along with a just assignment of responsibility.

Of course, given prevailing social mood, there is a rising threat of the entire order being overturned. If someone ran for office on the idea that this is in fact manfactured and escaped from China, the American ruling class knows it, covered it up and used this as a power grab, it would be the type of issue that could overthrow the entire regime in a single election cycle (6 years in the USA). Throw in the Biden adminstratioin mposing teh worst possible immigration policies at a time of even more negative social mood and in the midst of a pandemic releasing covid-positive migrants into the population. The factors that produced Trump in 2016 are far more powerful today. A far more radical right-wing candidate can emerge in 2024. Potential volatility is high and rising.


Buy a Farm and a Machine Gun

Some of Marc Faber's old interviews are going around again. Here's one of my favorites in which he recommends buying a farm and a machine gun, and belly laughs at the idea of trusting the U.S. administration. Funny enough, it is 12 years later and the same people are in the new administation...

Canadian Bank

The June 95 puts look good to me. The implied volatility is less than half of the corrolary KRE puts. CM is less volatile, but it trades like KRE at times. This is a bet that the financial sector sell-off goes global and CM's volatility converges with KRE.

Try Another Bite

Of the carboard pizza.

Will Solar Cycle 25 Be Shockingly Strong?

EarthSky: New sunspot cycle could be among strongest on record
McIntosh believes the bright points mark the travel of magnetic field bands, which wrap around the sun. When the bands from the northern and southern hemispheres – which have oppositely charged magnetic fields – meet at the equator, they mutually annihilate one another leading to a “terminator” event. These terminators are crucial markers on the sun’s 22-year clock, McIntosh says, because they flag the end of a magnetic cycle, along with its corresponding sunspot cycle, and act as a trigger for the following magnetic cycle to begin.

While one set of oppositely charged bands is about halfway through its migration toward the equatorial meetup, a second set appears at high latitudes and begins its own migration. While these bands appear at high latitudes at a relatively consistent rate – every 11 years – they sometimes slow as they cross the mid-latitudes, which appears to weaken the strength of the upcoming solar cycle.

This happens because the slowdown acts to increase the amount of time that the oppositely charged sets of bands overlap and interfere with one another inside the sun. The slowdown extends the current solar cycle by pushing the terminator event out in time. Shifting the terminator out in time has the effect of eating away at the spot productivity of the next cycle.

The opposite is also true, the Maunder Minimum cycle came after a 15-year solar cycle. Solar Cycle 24 was only 10 years long, so the theory proposes Solar Cycle 25 will be stronger than normal cycles. Most forecasts have predicted a weak cycle.


Slowly and then Suddenly....Inflation Expectations

This is either an epic inflation fakeout on par with 2008 (recall what people were saying at $150 oil) or something is about to change in a big way.