For most of us we’ve not lived in this sort of environment before — one where all that we’ve trusted is shattered.
There is momentous change taking place right now. Let us cover some ground here just to see how far things have come so that we don’t delude ourselves. In times of exponential change it is better to be faster than it is to be precise. In essence speed trumps finesse.
Part of a disturbing trend over the last few months has been one of financial institutions and governments stealing other people’s money in broad daylight.
CFA Jeff Dorman wrote a worthwhile piece on the collapse of the LME as well as other associated topics.
Have we completely lost sight of the goal?
For a second, remove your biases. To those lucky enough to have made fortunes investing in digital assets, ignore the euphoria. For those hellbent on trying to prove digital assets have no purpose, think objectively for a moment. And let’s just look at the facts:
– The Canadian government shutdown banking access to many of its citizens over a protest.
– A decision to invade Ukraine by a single leader of a nation, Russian President Vladimir Putin, created hundreds of billions of dollars of losses in weeks due to an almost 50% decline in the Russian stock market, immediately turned Russia’s credit worthiness upside down (5yr CDS widened to as much as 900 bps from 100 bps earlier this year), and has led to rising oil prices affecting billions across the world.
– The response to the Russian attack on Ukraine by Western Allies included shutting Russia off from the international banking communication system, SWIFT—a decision that is already leading to bank runs and bank failures.
– Even before this, bond and equity markets were roiled by the decisions (or jawboning) of a handful of non-elected Federal Reserve and central bank officials who essentially control the fate of the global capital markets.
– In my own sheltered world, it took over 3 days just to transfer money from one of my U.S. bank accounts to another, despite U.S. banking being nothing more than a ledger entry in a spreadsheet.
Jeff is not wrong. Gratefully, people like Jeff are now rapidly waking up to these realities.
What was amazing with the Canadian trucker protest is that these “emergency acts” were passed retroactively. WTF?
In other words, when you donated to the truckers, it was legal to do so. But now you are in violation of Canadian law, and as such the government can and have frozen stolen your money without any due process. Consider what that actually means.
In fact, GoFundMe attempted (with coercion from government no doubt) to steal $9m worth of donors’ money, and it wasn’t until the threat of lawsuits from governors in US red states saw them back down and refund the monies. Rest assured, next time they will have measures in place to deal with this.
Then moving internationally we have Western governments blocking Russia from SWIFT, and then proceeding to
freezing stealing the central bank’s reserves.
Think about it. Western governments confiscated the assets and money of rich Russian citizens (oligarchs), including the EPL team Chelsea and London properties from its owner. You may well ask yourself what the owner of Chelsea has to do with an invasion of Ukraine, and you’d be asking a good question.
Then we had the LME canceling 9,000 trades worth $4bn, effectively using this money (stolen) from “regular” traders to bailout a Chinese tycoon.
Talk about creating moral hazard. Good gracious!
You may not like trucker protestors and you may not like LME traders and you may not like Russian oligarchs, and that’s fine. That’s your prerogative. But understand that the Rubicon has been crossed in the last few mere months and that the rules based world order that we all lived under for our entire lives is gone. It’s over. The vast majority of people you talk to won’t understand this and most will get angry if you suggest it. They’ll look to the MSM to “explain” what “actually took place.” There they may not fully agree but they’ll take their word for it. Why? Because it’s too hard to consider the truth.
The truth is that your net worth is zero. My net worth is zero. All of our net worth is the property of the financial institution that holds it. The land we own is the property of the state (wherever that may be held) should they choose it to be so.
All we will need to do to keep it is to keep in their good books. Don’t step out of line. Money will soon fall into this category when CBDCs are issued. We will be allowed to use it for the purposes they deem suitable.
The good news is that communism never works. Humans will continue to search for freedom and find a way. The cracks in this totalitarian system will begin to appear and mark a path for us, and with it will likely be some of the greatest asymmetry we’re ever to experience in our lifetimes. Let’s hope we navigate it well. Our children and grandchildren will thank us.