Headlines Confirming Troubled Times Are Here

By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com

Some people see the Internet as an electronic world of wires and computers run at speeds measured in nanoseconds.  I tend to see the Internet as an electronic extension of human biology.  Sample enough of the Internet in the right places and you can get a snapshot of what people are generally feeling. One of my own readers, Alyce, commented recently, “It’s easy for people to become lulled into a false sense of security. The term normalcy bias keeps popping up in articles I read lately. It is when people interpret warnings in the most optimistic way possible. Happens all the time…human nature to believe that since a disaster has never occurred in one’s lifetime, that it just never will. Trust your instincts.”  Bravo Alyce!  What are some of the headlines flashing warning signs?  Let’s start with one concerning the ongoing enormous problems with the banks.  The Phoenix Business Journal reports “Arizona, Nevada Sue Bank of America over home loans, modifications.” The story goes on to say, “Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto filed in the Eighth Judicial District of Nevada . . . The Nevada complaint alleges the bank told consumers they would not be foreclosed on while requests for loan modifications were under way, not acting on the modifications within a specific time, making false promises to consumers and potentially selling their homes while they were waiting for decisions. “We are holding Bank of America accountable for misleading and deceiving consumers,” said Masto. “Nevadans who were trying desperately to save their homes were unable to get truthful information in order to make critical life decisions.” (Click here to read the complete story.) There have been dozens of lawsuits against banks alleging fraud and wrongdoing.  This marks a new twist in that, now, lawsuits are coming from state AG’s.

The FDIC shut down another 6 banks last week.  157 small banks have gone under this year alone.  Instead of sounding the alarm, this news is met with a yawn by the mainstream media.  This is a record for the new millennium and proof positive things are NOT getting better.   On the big bank front, many say they are hiding the fact they are insolvent!  The Market-ticker.org headline says it all System Was Insolvent In 2008 (And Still Is)”. (Click here to read the complete story.) We are clearly facing a systemic solvency problem, but few people realize just how bad the economy really is.

Economist John Williams has been warning of an economic collapse for a few years.  In his latest Shadowstats.com report, he says, “. . . the U.S. remains the proverbial elephant in the bathtub in terms of pending effective sovereign bankruptcies.” Williams thinks it will all hit the fan within 6 months and is predicting a dollar catastrophe.  Europe is a sideshow to the coming main event.  Williams says, “The various European crises remain an intermittent foil for the U.S. dollar, pulling market attention away from the unfolding solvency crisis in the United States and a likely move to massive selling against the U.S. currency.  Accordingly, high risk of the early stages of a hyperinflation (see Hyperinflation Special Report) beginning to unfold by mid-2011 continues.”

Williams’ views fall right in line with this recent headline from Theeconomiccollapseblog.com“Tipping Point: 25 Signs That The Coming Financial Collapse Is Now Closer Than Ever.”  The story goes on to say, “Is the world on the verge of a major financial collapse?  Let’s hope not, but with each passing week the financial news just seems to get even worse.  Not only is U.S. government debt spinning wildly toward a breaking point, but many U.S. states (such as California) are in such horrific financial condition that they are beginning to resemble banana republics. But it is not just the United States that is in trouble.  Nightmarish debt problems in Greece, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Belgium and several other European nations threaten to crash the euro at any time.  In fact, many economists are now openly debating which will collapse first – the euro or the U.S. dollar.” The story goes on to provide 25 real reasons (with sourcing links) why we could be on the brink of a financial collapse.  (Click here to read the complete story.)

How bad do you think all this could get if we got involved in yet another war?  Check out this disturbing headline from Fox News, Mullen: US ‘very ready’ to counter Iran on nukes.” This was said this past Saturday and is a not so subtle threat of war.  (Click here to read the complete Fox News story.) Iran is not a rag-tag country that we will defeat easily or cleanly.  If there is war in this part of the world, sky high fuel prices and economic collapse will be the least of your worries.

A reader named Jimmy asked me yesterday, “Do you personally think 2011 will be the year that the economy ‘really’ starts to fall apart? And by really, I mean to the point that the government can’t stop it or do you think it can be stretched out for years to come? I ask because I got into buying gold and silver coins quite late and don’t yet have enough and fear the prices will start getting so out of hand that I won’t be able to catch up.” I replied to Jimmy, “I really do not know when it all falls out of bed, but I do know it will happen fast.  Do what you think you should do now, and do not wait.” Given the headlines out there now, that is probably good advice for just about everybody.

Comments
  1. Mark

    Greg-

    Per my previous emails regarding Wells Fargo offering to refi my current 15 yr 5.5% mortgage after challenging them to show me the note. Last week I received the “close at home documents” for the new rate of 4 1/8. This is a big savings! WF did finally show me the promissory note even though it took a while. I am not a fan of big banks but WF has treated me right and I am appreciative of their efforts to keep me a happy customer. Merry Christmas.

    • Greg

      Mark,
      This is good news. I am happy for you! Merry Christmas to you as well!!!
      Greg

  2. Robert

    Problem is many people who are paying attention still don’t know just what an economic meltdown will look like.

    We hear anecdotal stories and are even being told to buy silver and gold, but I think how on earth are we going to exchange gold and silver at the grocery store? Stores aren’t set up to take that kind of commerce. They aren’t assay offices that can distinguish between real and fake precious metals (if money can be counterfieted so can precious metals) and how would they give change back? We aren’t set up to take precious metals for commerce transactions, so what good is gold and silver going to be?

    I’d like to know how safe is our money in the banks? Will the FDIC be funded by the FED? Where else will the money come from if the FED which is under fire printing money going to come from? I remember my grandparents losing the money they had in the bank during the depression era of 1929 and they never had a bank account after that, paid cash for everything.

    Even during the period of high inflation in the early 80s when people were making 15% on their money market accounts, I still recall being able to find good deals on food items, I had a job and survived just fine. Yet we are continually told how inflation will eat away our buying power.

    Like I opened this entry with, no one has provided a realistic view of what this insolvency problem will look like that doesn’t sound like a hell fire and damn nation preacher. My greater concerns are how are the people going to act when entitlement programs are cut back. Will they resort to stealing and mugging and coveting the goods and property of those people that paid attention and prepared as best they could for less than optimal times.

    Its the potential loss of civility that concerns me as people do crazy things when theyre hungry and are relying on a mainstream media that thrives on selling disinformation and outright lies as a way of keeping the people deliberately agitated and angry.

    • Greg

      Robert,
      You are certainly better off with gold and silver coins than without them. You can’t be long the U.S. Dollar no can you? Who really know how this will turn out but there is no getting around disastrous possibilities do exist. I hope we don’t end up with a real life Mad Max situation but that is one of many very negative possibilities. Thank you for your comment.
      Greg

  3. John Bernard

    Greg
    This article is dead on. Most people, and I mean from all social levels, are whistling past the graveyard. Even on such gloom and doom spots as ZeroHedge there are those insisting that nothing bad can happen to the USD. The sad fact is that for most people history begins with their birthday, everything after that is normal. That is why you hear comments like don’t worry change is inevitable.

    Change is always happening but we should be striving for the positive. We are going backwards. It won’t happen overnight most likely but it will seem like it to those who aren’t paying attention at the moment.

    I have felt, for about a year now, that I inhabit a parallel universe and am observing something strange in the other. Wherever one goes it is possible to see crowded parking lots,stores, and restaurants. Why is this so? Clearly it cannot be real yet watching the MSM talking heads is reminiscent of Baghdad Bob in 2003.

    If your readers want to see a worst case scenario they should take a look at Survivorman. This is a disquieting show during which the star gets dropped off somewhere with only his cameras and must survive for a certain period. If this is our future look out!

    • Greg

      John Bernard,
      Thank you for your sobering comment. The possibilities you describe are real. I pray it does not get that bad.
      Greg

  4. Tom H

    You know the end is near when the MSM starts talking about it. Did you see 60 minutes last night? I have decided to get a job rather than build a new business. What would the point be of trying to build a business right now? One would be better off diving in the shallow end of the pool. Glad I am prepared (as much as I am going to be anyway). Maybe Ron Paul can accomplish something, but I doubt it. But, no matter what happens, I will live life with a smile on my face and love in my heart. What other choice do I have with a 4 and 2 year old. The good news is, once we purge the system of evil, we can get back to that pesky little human condition the banksters hate; FREEDOM! God bless Greg, you rock!

    • Greg

      Tom H,
      Thank you for reminding me what life is really all about. Kids and love are worth having and protecting.
      Greg

  5. Jim in GA

    I live in GA and we’re happy Florida has stolen our lead in most failed banks this year. As for the big banks…..remember that TARP was supposed to create the “bad bank” and buy up all those toxic MBS assets and hold them until the real estate market recovered (aka re-inflated)? Well, that didn’t happen so the Fed “bought” them in violation of its charter. So now the TBTF banks “borrow” from the Fed at zero interest and play the stock and currency markets, thereby generating record profits while small banks fail in record numbers, transferring their losses to the taxpayers through FDIC guarantees and “loss sharing” agreements. So the big get bigger and the small get smaller (at record rates) and the citizens pay for both.

    Can this system be sustained? I’d say no, and economic collapse is inevitable and is at hand.

    • Greg

      Thank you Art and Jim for adding to the content of this post!
      Greg

  6. Art Barnes

    Wow, and the main street media continues to discuss the pros and cons of “don’t ask, don’t tell” as the debate of our time. Greg, what in the world is the problem here? Are they lying or just hoping for the best, or do they just think the “doomsday” media is just fearmongering without justification? I don’t know. Maybe you could do an article on the main street media and we could get your insight into their reseasoning not to sound any alarms. Thanks for such a great article.

  7. steve parker

    Greg, Thks for a serious and orderly analysis over the past couple of years. I have been losing sleep as my efforts to understand where we have been and where we are heared have yielded similar conclusions. I was at a Holiday party last night–20 college chums–all about 60 yrs.old–several with long careers in banking. I took a poll asking about the S&P,Dollar,Interest rates, And Gold for the next 12 months. They were 100% bullish on equities and would NOT take my concerns seriously. I am just a blacksmith.This normalcy bias got a lot of Jews killed in WW II. My friends desperately want me to be wrong. I do too, but I am stockpiling gold.

    • Greg

      Steve,
      The fact say your fears are well founded. Here’s a few talking points you can pass by your banker buddies the next time you all get together. This is what I told a reader named Dave this evening. Enjoy. “We are growing only because of massive money printing and also keep in mind the government is supplying 95% of all new mortgages. Also the banks are technically insolvent on a mark to market basis, but phony accounting was allowed by the Financial Accounting Standards Board in April 2008. All what I say is 100% fact you can google. I ask you, how do you feel now about this so-called “growth? I would be very careful in the markets trying to get my money back from the sharks. Oh, I almost forgot, insiders have been selling at a rate of something like 5 or 6 hundred to 1. Peace and good luck.” Greg You are on the right track Steve.
      Greg

    • George

      Steve,
      I want you, me and Greg to be wrong, too. I am looking for some land to have a 25 acre garden and a few horses…we are going to need blacksmiths in hte future…bankers…not so much
      Merry Christmas

  8. josef zack

    this article is Dead On Target. about 10 years ago, I got into mental “survival mode”. I was laughed at, ridiculed and so on.

    Nowadays, when people remember me being stupid, i.e., doing the “Survival Thang”, I say nothing. If these people press me for an answer, I clearly state (and therefore lie while looking them straight into their eyes), that I gave up all of that foolishness, and that IMHO everything is just fine. I add in that the economy will certainly get better sometime during 2011.

    Meanwhile, with other “stupid people” I plan survival of me and the family.

    Don’t want to “be right” any more. Don’t need acknowledgement that I WAS right, at all.

    Just leave me alone while I prepare for the worse, while hoping & praying for the best.

    • Greg

      Josef Zack,
      You are the Man! I can see why you do not want the acknowledgement. That could be dangerous and costly. Peace Bro.
      Greg

    • Sam

      Sir,

      I’ve been “prepping” since I read Harry Browne’s “You Can Profit From the Coming Monetary Crisis” back in the 1970’s. You’re not “wrong” in “prepping” (as it’s a form of insurance), but you are wrong in lying. Please don’t lie to others, just give your honest opinion, and be done with it. Also, NEVER tell others what you have! When it starts to rain and the water is about their ankles, they’ll in on your ark.

  9. Vess

    A major crisis always takes more time to arrive than predicted – but then develops much faster than expected.

    I, for one, would like to go on record and say that John Williams is wrong and there will be no hyperinflation in the USA in 2011. Let’s see in one year which one of us was right. ;-)

    Seriously, folks, most of you “doomsayers” out there have just no idea how much power the powers that be have to keep the status quo for quite a while. They haven’t even begun fighting in earnest. Even if it all falls apart eventually (which I believe it will, although I might be wrong), it will take several more years to happen – but then will happen much faster and will be much worse than most people expect.

    Regarding the headlines – they are mostly irrelevant. It is the cycles in human psychology that matter. When it is in an upswing, all news are treated as good. When it is on a downswing, all news are treated as bad.

    Regarding Iran, you have to define “defeat”. The US military can blow up the Iranian National Guard into smithereens in just a couple of months. It is successfully invading and occupying Iran that’s essentially impossible.

    • Greg

      Vess,
      Your statement, “They haven’t even begun fighting in earnest,” is laughable. What do you call $12.3 trillion in bailouts!? I would like to remind you, John Williams says he sees the beginning of hyperinflation in 2011. I thank you for your comments and views. They are always thought provoking, interesting and always welcome.
      Greg

    • George

      Vess, Enron thought the same thing. You may be right on 2011 not being the start of the end but our leaders don’t have as much power as you are saying unless they plan to steal everyone’s 401-K, IRA, CDs, etc. Would you lend money to an entity that is esentially bankrupt?

  10. Dave

    I agree with what you see Greg. These are very confusing times, I read Jim Sinclair, Monty Guild and Richard Russell. I have avoided being too heavy into general equities and am holding only cash (cad) and gold.
    However, in Monty Guilds latest advice he sees 3-4% steady growth in the US economy next year, increasing optimism and a steadily rising DOW. Yes, the DOW will continue to rally due to inflationary forces but at what point does this all fall apart? As I have told my CFP “you could have bought shares in a buggy whip company and made 20% in the last several years”.
    For now it appears that Bernanke is winning, the VIX shows very little fear is out there but are we being set up for the biggest theft of all in general equities? I like many others want to make back the money lost in 08-09. I remain cautious as I still cannot get my head around a “Jobless recovery”.

    • Greg

      Dave,
      We are growing only because of massive money printing and also keep in mind the government is supplying 95% of all new mortgages. Also the banks are technically insolvent on a mark to market basis, but phony accounting was allowed by the Financial Accounting Standards Board in April 2008. All what I say is 100% fact you can google. I ask you, how do you feel now about this so-called “growth? I would be very careful in the markets trying to get my money back from the sharks. Oh, I almost forgot, insiders have been selling at a rate of something like 5 or 6 hundred to 1. Peace and good luck .
      Greg

      • Dave

        Thanks for the reply Greg
        It really is hard keeping grounded in all of this. Most everybody I know thinks I am wearing a tin foil hat the size of Hoss Cartwright’s ten gallon texas special. As a matter of fact this is the typical response I get when I talk about the ongoing debt/currency crisis with people “they fixed all that…didn’t they?” (this from people who are better educated and by far much wealthier than myself)

        I agree, our current growth is based solely on stimulus, bailouts, artificially cheap money and accounting tricks. As Jim Sinclair has stated many times “it will be QE to infinity”

        Merry Xmas to you Greg ! Keep up the good work!

        • Greg

          Thanks Dave. Hang in there! Merry Chirstmas back at you.
          Greg

  11. brutlstrudl

    And a very merry Christmas to you too, Greg

    • Greg

      Brutlstrudl,
      Merry Christmas to you and yours.
      Greg

  12. BigTom

    War with Iran? That rumor has been going on for years. Not that it couldn’t happen but there perhaps already is a virus in their nuke labs disabling their computors….These armageddon prophecies were also given out freely prior to the Iraq war. Carl Sagen predicted a massive nuclear winter world wide and total chaos for mankind etc. etc. Not that I am for the wars over there as our gov’t has screwed those up in a big way, and the lives of our American youth are spent on a what seems a most dubious errand, but these are third world countries despotically ruled by an over zealous religous elite. If bad politics/press didn’t get in the way, they could easily be disposed of by US military might if it was so needed. However bad politics/press does get in the way and having said the above, I agree, we are on the bad road to a well guided economic/social malfeasance brought to us by both parties, and cyoa seems the appropiate guide for the dark future that vey well could lay before us.

    • Greg

      Big Tom,
      This was not some idle rumor, it came from the Joint Chiefs of Staff on Saturday. Maybe we don’t have another war, but it is a possibility. I just want to make folks aware of that. There is a reason Adm. Mullen made that statement. I don’t know what it is, but there is a reason for the announcement.
      Greg

  13. John

    It will be an interesting day/month/year/s when the yuan moves strongly vs. the dollar. At this point it appears that Europe and the U.S. are both backed by the Fed via direct or indirect(IMF) intervention. The keystroke printing will continue until… At some point, a balancing takes place and that may trigger the various declines we are all guessing at in terms of specifics and timing. The WHAT & WHEN.

    What are we really preparing for here? For many of us phase 1 is a financial last man standing scenario. As the erosion of faith in paper and electronic currencies continue we want things that will hold value. In other words, “Real Things”. That may be food, seeds, tools, PM’s, fuel, generators, etc. If/when times continue to darken (phase 2) we want the means to provide the needs for and defend our families, friends, communities and loved ones from any who would do them harm. We are in preparation mode and that should be going on right now!

    Eventually, the skills and knowledge that served countless generations of peoples around the world until the fossil fuel era will be what is needed if things get BAD. When the shortages begin, when fighting starts close to home, when diseases spread, it would be beneficial to walk into the wilderness and feel at home, that all your needs are present and that you have the knowledge and skills to thrive and help (and HIDE!!!). Having the middle man of money to get what we need is a liability. In many ways that need makes us slaves.

    Anyone who has seen “The Road” or “The Road Warrior”(stay away from roads?) has seen the very near worst case but not improbable scenario.
    Guessing at how we get to those points or when events take place is often what we focus on but that may be a waste of energy. Do what you feel you need to do(I’m a major procrastinator but now active) to prepare as well as you can for what you feel is coming. Your choices count, your thoughts and actions make a difference. Don’t go into the dumps. Now is the only moment we have. When TSHTF you don’t want to have to join up with the local version of Benito Mussolini just to ensure you get food and medicine for your family.

    How much time do we have? With the watchdog out there for us we are freed to focus most of our energies on preparation. Hopefully we have enough time to change or at least delay the course of things. Thanks Greg for doing what you do. Your work is a service to us all. Good luck everyone.

    • Greg

      John,
      Thank you for this well thought out comment and your support.
      Greg

  14. OTE

    Greg, normalcy bias sounds good. I would argue something different, far different.

    A recent analysis of 15 YOs from 34 countries on reading, math and science skills had the US looking pretty bad. Reading 14th, math 17th, and science 25th. The US spends the most for education per student.

    Our schools teach to the test. Every fact has a limitted lifespan. We fail to teach critical thinking skills and particularly synthesis. Generaly speaking nobody remembers the last umpteen financial problems and these same oxygen thieves can’t tie two thoughts together.

    We have been conditioned to believe the gov’t/FED fixes everything. The people believe because they can’t grasp complex interactions and they live lives of constant distractions aka bland recreation.

    The public hasn’t a clue, but will believe right up to the end. That end might be slow (doubtful)or over-night. There will always be the blame game. Never underestimate the threat of unhappy people in large groups.

    It is fundamentally impossible to counter a person’s beliefs with facts. Multiply this by 200-300 million. Hmm, maybe normalcy bias includes belief systems. We are sooo screwed.

    Everything is connected to everything.
    Everything has to go somewhere.
    There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch. TANSTAAFL

    • Greg

      Thank you OTE for the stellar analysis and comment.
      Greg

  15. Nathan Moerman

    One Black Swan event will catapult this crisis to levels unseen before. The financial trickery used today is nothing compared to what was used in the Great Depression…
    Let’s hope that this crisis creates a new all encompasing system where innovative entrepreneurism instead of financial wizardry helps us to live to the standards we all feel happy about.

    • Greg

      Nathan Moerman,
      Amen brother.
      Greg

  16. gpeters

    yes, there will probably be a financial collapse at some point , but it probably will NOT happend when all the dooms-day gurus predict.
    markets have a way of doing things when no one expects it.

    my estimated timeframe is somewhere between 2025-2040…

    • Greg

      Gpeters,
      The facts say otherwise. I say no-way it takes that long. Please tell us all how you came up with the 2025-2040 time frame? Thank you for your comment. Even though we disagree you are always welcome here.

  17. Bud Wood

    Greg:

    You say that you “tend to see the Internet as an electronic extension of human biology”.

    O.K.; so what do you see the proposed regulation of the Internet by one of the federal FCC appointees to be?

    • Greg

      Bud Wood,
      That is a bad idea and is purely censorship. I hope people fight tooth and nail to thwart that kind of regulation.
      Greg

  18. Troy

    When will we Americans realize that the cupboard is bare?

    It is probably too late for ‘shared sacrifice’ and a ‘war for our very survival’ mentalities to keep us from the hardships that are soon to envelop our once great nation.

    I think that Reagan’s “shining city on the hill” is watching its’ last lights flicker at dusk.

    I have always espoused that my generation, the very tail end of the ‘baby boom’, would someday suffer great upheavel and unfortunately it appears more and more each passing day that I have been; regretably so; correct.

    What to do, stay informed with info sites such as this, stock up on things you need and use as you may, and prepare for the day when the water doesn’t run and there is true darkness in the night…

    • Greg

      Troy,
      Thank you for your comment and support. You give good advise.
      Greg

  19. Mitch Bupp

    HI Greg, You are right on …. What is really sad is that we are going to pay for the imaginary fractionilized debt that the banks sold and can not pay. I wonder if it would be cheaper to cashout the house and leave the bank to pay the fractionalized funny money they created out of thin air.

    unfourtenately, I don’t see how we can keep going … I guess my job is more secure than most since I am an independant contractor working on foreclosed homes.

    • Greg

      Mitch,
      You will have work for years into the future. Thank you for sharing your comment and your special perspective. I invite you to please post any important information on the foreclosure crisis you deem important. Thank you in advance.
      Greg

  20. Elihu E. O'Dowd

    Hi Greg,

    I don’t pretend to know the timing, but as our mutual friend, Jim Sinclair says, ‘gold is not just about preserving wealth; it’s now about survival’.

    Eli

    • Greg

      Eli O’Dowd.
      You will not go wrong listening to Mr. Sinclair. He is one of the very best over-all analysts/experts out there. He was the first to spot the enormous unfix-able problems of OTC Derivatives. Thank you for your comment.
      Greg

  21. Liah

    Greg,

    I know that you were formerly associated with CNN – but have you noticed what Dylan Rattigan has been up to on MSNBC? As you are a truth teller, I wonder about, ahem, relative marginalization by the MSM.

    Have you considered doing something more mainstream now that things are becoming less deniable?

    Perhaps with Rattigan (some similarity of experience…) as he seems on the same vein?

    The wider audience might push some positive results – even if the writing is already on the wall – some people might be helped.

    Just saying…

    Liah

    (P.S. Organization? Me? I am an artist. Are you kidding?!)

    • Greg

      Liah,
      Thank you for the idea. I have actually pinged him in the past (quite often) but I think it is time to try again.

  22. Sam

    Dear Greg,

    First, a very Merry Christmas to you and yours.

    Second, left out of the mix is China.

    China holds massive amounts of U.S. debt, yet is watching as that debt is becoming massively depreciated. China’s leadership must know at this point that they’ll never be repaid, and that they’re being made fools of.

    Now, as most of us know, for such a large country, China has little in the way of natural resources. They have to buy resources overseas, to the point of owning such items as mines and oil wells in other countries. Now, here’s some dots.

    1. China has the know-how (taught by out-of-work IT Americans some seven years ago), to shut down America’s power grid via computer. The Chinese also have nuclear missiles, including those that can emit an EMP pulse high in the atmosphere.

    2. The “mysterious” contrails off L.A. and N.Y.C. on November 9. Contrary to the “official” government position, several experts have come forward and stated that they WERE missiles (and with the dirty contrails, NOT AMERICAN). If you really want to know what I think, I grew up in an area that had three Air Force bases (McClellan in Citrus Heights, CA, Mather in Rancho Cordova, CA, and that base in Marysville, CA, whose name I always forget). This is not including Aerojet General, makers of the Saturn V engines, as well as smaller missile motors. In short, I think I know my contrails.

    3. A New York Times story from Sunday, 12/19/10. Apparently the Obama administration is trying to tell people that nuclear war is survivable, they just have to stay and shelter and wait for the authorities. This “shelter” includes motor vehicles! Supposedly, the Obama administration wants to tell people how to survive in the event of a “terrorist” attack, but is afraid of “frightening” people.

    4. A story on Drudge Report, 12/20/10, that China has a severe coal shortage.

    The late Harry Browne (“How You Can Profit from the Coming Devaluation,” “How You Can Profit from the Coming Monetary Crisis”), first put forth that people should own gold coins and “junk silver.” The gold was for wealth protection, the silver for trade. When our economy DOES collapse, one may also have to barter services or goods (Browne, “Crisis”). However, should we DO have a collapse, I really believe that people should be ready for “off the grid” living, as I really believe that the “ChiComs” will knock out our electrical infrastructure in order to collect on the debt, via asset seizure. Get ready to see gold and silver become worthless here. Items of value will be skills that can rebuild infrastructure as well as farming, medical and veterinary skills (William Forstchen, “One Second After”), items that can be used for food production (James Wesley, Rawles “Patriots”). Also of value would be preserved food (Rawles, “Patriots”), and ammunition, specifically .22 (Forstchen “After”).

    Anyone think we’ll have a Happy and Prosperous 2011?

    • Greg

      Sam,
      All I can say is GREAT STUFF!!! Thank you for adding to this post. Please come back.
      Greg

  23. Sean S

    It really would be too much to ask our Administration and politicians to tell it as it really is. I’m sure the majority of them are living in their own “La La land” and dedicating their careers primarily to their own preservation right now. So the spin will continue and more of the “recovery” nonsense will be promulgated in 2011 to try and shore up consumer and business confidence. Most business people are far too informed and smart to be taken in by the rhetoric however.

    It has been interesting reading your articles and views (especially on economic issues) during the year and those of your readers. You really do seem to have a pretty intelligent group of readers published on this site(which is more than you can say for some other US news and US current affairs sites).

    Wishing you and all your readers a very Merry Christmas and a successful, happy and healthy New Year.

    • Greg

      Thank you Sean S! I have been saying the same thing to my friend for months. I have some really smart folks reading and commenting on this site. Sometimes I even get a little intimidated by the raw intelligence posted here form readers. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours as well!
      Greg

  24. Bob

    I still have faith in this country. We work are way in to this problem we can work are way back out of this hole. It’s just boils down to getting up in the morning and trying to improve from the day before. The trouble is the people in DC they and the banks have lost the respect of the people and the world. They have proven to be failed institutions and need to be cut off and replace. That’s one reason everyone is sitting on there money and holding back. I don’t care that my home has lost value they all have, are that my savings is lost to inflation it’s no great lost but the lost of trust must stop are we will end up in a lawless land and no currency can work in that system. The people who steal and lied us in to wars must pay for there crimes and that is what’s draining this country lack of trust an respect. Because they the DC boys and girls have gotten themselves in so deep they can’t do what has to be done and that will be are undoing. peace

    • Greg

      Bob,
      I still have some faith in what America stands for too, but just in case folks should be very cautious and get in a protected position. Thank you for you comment.
      Greg

  25. kk

    I feel that the future of the United States will be determined by its people. If our populace continues to be more interested in sports, reality TV, violent network programs, and the culture of celebrity, then our demise is certain. ONLY GOD can save America at this point. Our elected representatives do not represent the people. Those of us who are paying attention are powerless to hold back the tidal wave of unconstitutional legislation that the Congress continues to forcibly push through. Anyone who is not asleep has to be scared out of their wits. If our country turned back to God, however, we the people would demand that our government pass laws that reflect what is good instead of evil.
    I am praying that Americans wake up, however, I believe that I am a realist, and I do not see our populace WANTING to take on the responsibility of a free people anymore. The laws that are now in place are designed to treat the citizenry as though we are cattle that are owned by our rulers. So, my prayers also include prayers to St. Michael the Archangel, that when evil comes to our home that the perpretrators simply cannot see us. Yes, I am praying for a miracle. As for our country, if we had enough people here who cared about something other than their addictions and turned to God and demanded our legislators to OBEY GOS, we would not be in this predicament. I also think we have to love one another, and think about survival and doing what is right. One thing is certain — I’ll be seeing you all on the other side when this is over. I think that those of us who chose good will fare better than those who succumbed to evil or who turned the other way and did not live up to our responsibilities to God and others.

    • Greg

      KK,
      I hope you are right and American smells the coffee. Thank you for your comment and Merry Christmas.
      Greg

  26. ReliantMedia

    Enjoyed the post. A few other comments might be in order:

    1. Can you survive a nuclear war? Sure. Visit KI4u.com. It gives extremely valuable information that could save your life. Do I believe nuclear war is coming? Yep – one day – but not soon. We are still valuable as a resource – land and minerals still hold weight and China just bought a good portion of Texas ranch land the other day and I am sure they would like to protect their investment.

    2. You cannot have a economic recovery without jobs. And just in case you weren’t sure – we exported most of them out of the country. Most of US jobs today are service-sector and cannot grow the economy because of the type/nature of those jobs. If you wanted to see growth – you would have to bring back true manufacturing and support jobs. We can’t do that because we would hurt the planet with our industrialization. Go figure!

    3. There is a huge difference in gold/silver as an investment or insurance. Those that invest in gold/silver are doing so “in paper” – not physical. That’s going to be a problem when people start demanding the physical asset -rather than the bag. Understanding that physical gold/silver is truly insurance -not an investment is the better way to go. Physical gold/silver you possess has trade value, as inflation increases (or hyperinflation) -the value of physical metals increases (sometimes exponentially!).

    4. True: there is not a system in place to handle gold/silver transactions… Or is there? What about barter? I have something of value and you have something else of value – a meeting of the minds takes place and the transaction is completed. Barter happens everyday in many places around the world including the US – what do you think a garage sale is? It is important to note that we are entering a time when cash will not longer work. With hyperinflation (a loaf of bread for a day’s wages) – the debit card would be the only way to control the amount of zero’s without “printing” money i.e. Weimar Republic. Best to be prepared the way our grandparents did: the Well-Stocked Pantry!

    Merry Christmas and keep your powder dry!

    ReliantMedia

    • Greg

      ReliantMedia,
      Good comment, thank you.
      Greg

  27. nm

    I just finished reading John Williams piece on hyperinflation and some of it was too technical for me to understand, but I think the crux of his argument was this:

    The US cannot pay back it’s debt. Therefore, what it will do is default via printing. Basically, it’s going to give China (& it’s other creditors) the middle finger.

    So, I guess my only confusion at this time is the following:

    If the creditors pretty much know that the debt will never be re-paid why haven’t they reacted yet? I mean, are they waiting for some sort of miracle?

    • Greg

      NM,
      Ahhhh,
      The education continues. I am happy you read Williams’ report. I don’t know what they’re waiting for. Peace.
      Greg

    • George

      China is reacting

  28. Robert Hamburger

    Hey Greg, another good post. Sadly, I believe you are right and the economy will continue to unravel in the coming year. Despite the leaders assurances to the contrary, the fact remains that they’re driving us towards a cliff… and they have no idea what a brake pedal looks like.

    • Greg

      Robert,
      No brakes!! What on earth could go wrong?
      Greg

  29. Pragmatico

    Dear Preppers and Worrywarts-

    I’ve been sort of in that mentality something really bad would happen since around 1999. Recently I snapped out of that mentality bc it truly wasn’t serving me very well.

    You see, anything bad you can intuit or see coming, likely won’t either happen the way you envision, or won’t even happen at all. Humans are a curious creature in that regard. There is this massive mental propensity to somehow maintain “control” and have “certainty” against an uncertain future. This quite frankly has been there since the dawn of time. Its called the “survival instinct” in man, and as well many living creatures. When it gets really overpowering it turns into anxiety disorders, panic attacks, and many times mental depression.

    I don’t doubt for a minute that our economic situation with insolvent banks, or massive indebtedness, or a possibly massively devalued currency isn’t happening or won’t get worse, but many of these posts talking about being “prepared” to survive whatever perceived crisis, could be costing you a lot more than any future wealth loss. It could be costing you your mental well-being, enjoyment of the present, and the lives surrounding you who you beleive aen’t “prepared.”

    I am an Eaglescout, and surely if anyone thinks about being prepared, its someone who has acheived this rank in Scouting. I do have some gold coins, and have other items that might help me in the event of some unforeseen crisis. In reality though, becoming so focused on it, will likely you cause you to miss the better part of life that may happen, which you cannot possibly anticipate. Our news media, or internet, makes a living off of scaring folks. Negativity and fear sell, just like sex does. It plays on your innate instincts for survival.

    If you spent as much time focusing on how you can take advantage of all the changes occuring, the internet, the IPAD, technology in general, advances in medicine, and most importantly your job and career, you likely wouldn’t have time to do all of this senseless, and potentially costly worrying and prepping. Go ahead and buy some gold coins if you want, get your bug out vehicle, or food storage aligned how you think. The opportunities and abundance in this world, are just as great, if not greater than the forces of negativity and evil that will always lurk. If you really enjoy engaging in all of this, and feel its the best use of your time, then I have the following challenge for you: Take all of your fears and scenarios, and lay out a timeline of them happening. Take it step by step and detail out what you think could happen, and how you would react versus others. Be detailed about this. If it helps tape a a whole bunch of sheets of paper together until you have a big long banner of events. Once you’ve exhausted all possibilities, and determined if your supplies, gold, tents, BOV’s, etc. will prep you for anything, including a nuclear bomb detonating in your backyard, then ask yourself this question: if it all ends tomorrow, how do I want to be spending my time TODAY ? In otherwords, do I want to LIVE in the present, enjoy and have fun with my family, get the most out of life each and every day, succeed in my career, or do i want to sit around and worry and contemplate all of this stuff that may or MAY NOT happen ?

    If having your kids and spouse or signficant other, standing around watching you (if you allowed them and weren’t sneaky about it), while you prep the day before doomsday, is how you wish to go out the last day before God comes calling, then go ahead. But if after you’ve sobered up a bit, and realize how much of your life you are wasting could be better spent focusing on abundance, or creating abundance for you and those around you who you most love dearly, you may decide that all this worrying and prepping just isn’t the best use of your time, and others time that surround you.

    May God Bless all of you, and Merry Christmas !

    • Greg

      Pragmatico,
      This line in your comment makes me think you are being pretty hypocritical, “I do have some gold coins, and have other items that might help me in the event of some unforeseen crisis.” Why don’t you just get rid of all that nasty gold, guns and food you have been storing and live life to the fullest? Just the OTC Derivative mess alone it at the very least $600 trillion of risk in the world market. The banks are only solvent because of phony accounting. We are fighting 2 never ending wars. The government and most U.S. States are broke. As many as 100 U.S. cities and many states are a combined $2 trillion in the hole. It was just revealed the Fed spent $12.3 trillion bailing out the world. What could go wrong? You need to brush up on your math skills and please read the Grasshopper and the Ant. I am still enjoying life and my family. That is the best part of your message, but ignoring the overwhelming facts that things are historically FUBAR is a little disingenuous coming from a guy storing gold and “other items.” God bless and Merry Christmas to you as well.
      Greg

    • George

      Hope for the best; prepare for the worst. No offense but the whole “abundance” and “live for today” is what got us in the freaking financial mess to start with. I agree that excessive worry is unhealthy. But so is being delusional. It seems disingenuous to advise people, “Don’t worry, be happy” after you appear to be prepared for the coming storm. What? You want others to sell their gold and silver so you can buy it? One plus one is equal to two; even in China.
      I am not trying to predict exactly what will happen. I think that it will be beyond our worst nightmares. The Government knows it’s coming too otherwise they would not be taking over the internet.

  30. Michelle

    Greg,

    I think you missed the whole point that Pragmatico was trying to make. Not that you shouldn’t prepare and be aware, but that you need to live life without worrying either – as life will unfold whether we worry or not.

    Kindly,
    Michelle

    • Greg

      Michelle,
      I stand corrected. It would have helped if Pragmatico would not have addressed my readers as “Dear Preppers and worrywarts-.” I thought that was a little condescending to the readers here. Thank you for your comment.
      Greg

  31. Jan

    I think all of this site readers are trying to figure out the next step as government spends itself stupid. How do I protect my family? That is my number one priorty. If you have faithfully paid all you debt obligations, saved some money for the future, how do you protect yourself against the forces that are beyond your control? By taking control of your own actions and reactions.

    I alternate between feeling I am prepared for whatever comes my way and feeling that I have not done enough. Who knows? I do not dwell in fear, I find joy in every day. I intend to continue to educate myself as best I can by seeking the true market conditions and adapt as best I can.

    Happy and joyous Christmas to all.

  32. Tom H

    Greg, I think you are right that there was valuable insight in Pragmatico’s comments that were lost because of his snippy tone. Those Eagle Scout’s always think they know more than we just average cub scouts. What he is right about is that we should not be paralyzed by fear. If we are then the bankster’s have won. For me it is about earning as much fake money as I can. As soon as the bills are paid, I take whatever is left and head down to the coin shop and trade the fake in for real money. As we have both mentioned before, it is a miracle of God that one can still trade fiat money for real money. I think what Pragmatico misses is that the majority of people are ignorant to the financial devastation that awaits them, and most of them have not benefitted from the uber-preparation one can get only through eagle scouting. As I said in my earlier post, live life with a smile on your face and love in your heart, but do not be ignorant to imminent collapse. Know your history or you are condemned to repeat it. For all of you who have not had life’s ultimate training gained only through elite eagle-scout training, may I suggest this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U71-KsDArFM

    It contains everything you should have learned about money and didn’t. I think there is a big difference between fear mongering and presenting the facts. Keep up the good work Greg and Merry Christmas to all!

    • Greg

      Thank you Tom H for the comment, support and video link.
      Greg

    • George

      Tom,
      Well spoken. I never made it to Eagle Scout as I discovered women. If I’m going to be out in the great outdoors, I want my lady with me. Merry Christmas to all and to all goodnight

  33. nm

    Pragamtico:

    I don’t think people here are excessive worryworts. I think there is a genuine concern about losing our jobs, especially for those of us who have kids and mortgages and other obligations.

    I have friends who’ve been laid off and it is very stressful for them. Let’s not under play it.

    Also, I’ve lived in a very poor country and I’ll tell you what: When the economy goes down and when poverty goes up, it absolutely affects your quality of life.

    Crime goes up, stress levels go up, marriages break-up, there’s more drinking, more drug use, etc…etc.. and like I’ve said before, being broke is not something you can just wish away with meditation or with buddist chants.

    I don’t think many Americans have seen the consequences, but I have and it’s not pleasant, but it’s real.

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