January 1, 2019
The story of the 21st century is debt is soaring while earned income is stagnating for the bottom 95%.
Best wishes to all my readers and correspondents for a safe, healthy and productive 2019. Thank you, longstanding supporters, for renewing your financial support at the new year without any pathetic begging on my part. (The pathetic begging will commence shortly.)
While I don't have any predictions for 2019 (why look any dumber than I have to?), I do have a couple of thoughts on the economy, markets, globalization, etc. Here are a few of the key issues confronting humanity:
1. The war being waged by Corporate Power (Globalization / Open Borders) to eradicate democracy and the power of nation-states to control their own destiny. Democracy ceases to exist in a corporate-controlled globalized system of governance; the sole structure that enables a citizen to have political and economic agency is the nation-state.
Try voting for a U.N. resolution or E.U. regulation. Sorry, pal, there are no elections or representation of the rabble in globalized governance. Globalization destroys democracy and the agency of the citizenry. That's its goal.
Global corporations seek to destroy any and all barriers to their power and profits, and globalization / tax havens / Open Borders are the means to co-opt, marginalize and neuter nation-states and the political and economic agency of the citizenry. The net result of Corporate Power controlling the machinery of governance is neofeudalism .
2. Energy and capital flows. The status quo holds that energy flows don't matter very much because energy represents a shrinking percentage of economic activity. In other words, capital is what matters, not energy, because capital can always buy whatever it wants.
Try pushing your car or truck uphill for a mile. How many humans would you need to push your 3,000 pound "compact" vehicle up a slight incline for a mile or two? How about 20 miles, or 100 miles?
Take away liquid fuels and the global economy grinds to a halt, and capital loses its scarcity and value. So-called renewable energy is around 3% of total global energy consumption.
3. Volatility, liquidity and price discovery. Central banks have labored diligently for the past decade to eradicate volatility and price discovery while providing almost unlimited liquidity.