Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Depression Watch

I’ve been watching the economy’s ups and downs since the early 70’s. Many think a financial “perfect storm” is coming soon. Ominous economic signs abound, while optimism is hard to find. There’s too much to post all at once. I’ll just share some as we go. The prudent thing to do is to get your house in order, and don’t get trapped by the falling dollar.

Government economists stepped up their lying about the real rate of inflation during the Clinton years. This was to keep from paying those on inflation-indexed payments like Social Security from getting so much money. So the government introduced the concept of “core inflation,” that excluded such minor items as food, energy and housing from their measure of general prices. And the stenographers from the Lame Stream Media dutifully report their figures with straight faces month after month.

Too few Americans still understand what Richard Russell calls
The Federal Reserve Racket. One of the reasons Ron Paul was either ignored or ridiculed during his campaign was his call for abolishing the Federal Reserve and returning to the stability of Constitutional money. The simple fact is that when the Fed creates money out of thin air, the value of all currency is debased. That’s inflation. If the government’s central bank does it, it is legal. If you or I do it, it is counterfeiting. But the result is the same.

Since most people hate paying taxes, the Cheney-Bush administration has paid for its wars of choice in the Middle East the same way the Vietnam War was financed – with borrowed money, which produces inflation. Devaluing a currency is just another form of tax that hits people on fixed and low incomes the most.

What we currently see in America is “stagflation.” The economy is stagnating into recession, while inflation is rapidly increasing. Continued inflation, with government bungling like price controls, higher tariffs, rationing and what other futile measures the political class takes while ignoring the causes of the problem, will only make things worse. The result will be a Depression as bad as the 1930, with the destruction of the middle class. One analyst says inflation is unleashing a
global financial tsunami. I wish I could prove him wrong.

The Dow-Crash, The Dollar, Gold, and WAR!” says it all in the title. You don’t have to be a financial guru or technical analysis expert to understand the simple charts. The Dow crashed through its eight-year support level. Gold has broken out to the upside from its consolidation decline since its all-time high in March. Iran may have sealed its fate by going off the petrodollar standard (just like Iraq did prior to that war). The author has some interesting things to say about the Euro moving into worldwide preeminence, as the globalist insiders want the United States (and its citizens’ bothersome concerns about individual liberty) to move into second-class status.

Gold is still the currency of peace. Better get some at today’s bargain prices. Protect your financial future. The dollar has a long-way yet to fall. If you want to put gold or silver coins into your IRA check out the Self-Directed IRA services for precious metals at
Sterling Trust. It’s easy to do.

As inflation shows up in higher prices for energy, food and raw materials, and demand drops for other items because of less discretionary income, the US economy sinks along with the US dollar and stock market.

Not only are the big automakers shutting down production lines and plants. So are many of
America’s top retail chain stores. Can the impact on be any less on all the independent mom and pop stores? Here’s the list:

(01) 84 Lumber is closing 12 stores

(02) Ann Taylor is closing 117 stores.

(03) Big Dollar is closing 10 stores after having been around for 21 years - so even dollar stores are closing.

(04) Bombay Company is closing all 384 U.S. stores.

(05) Cache, the women's retailer, is closing 20 to 23 stores.

(06) CompUSA is closing 128 stores.

(07) Dell is closing 140 stores.

(08) Dillard's is closing under-performing stores

(09) Disney Stores is possibly closing 98 stores.

(10) Eddie Bauer has closed 27 shops and is going to close more.

(11) Ethan Allen Interiors closing 12 stores.

(12) Foot Locker is closing 140 stores

(13) Friedman's Jewelers is closing 120 stores according to one report and 473 stores according to another as it goes through bankruptcy proceedings.

(14) Gap Inc. is closing 85 stores including Old Navy and Banana Republic stores.

(15) Home Depot is closing 15 stores.

(16) Jasmine Sola is closing 23 stores

(17) J. C. Penney is scaling back

(18) KB Toys is closing 356 stores as part of its bankruptcy

(19) Kirkland's is closing 30 to 130 stores

(20) Lane Bryant, Fashion Bug, and Catherine’s, members of a consortium, are closing 150 stores.

(21) Levitz Furniture is closing all 76 stores and going out of business

(22) Lillian Vernon the Internet Marketer is closing down and filing for bankruptcy - so don't think that area is impervious.

(23) Linens 'n Things is closing 120 stores

(24) Lonestar Steakhouse is closing 27 stores

(25) Lowe's is scaling back.

(26) Macy's is closing 9 stores. They say they plan to open other stores - but a lot of those closing try to put on an optimistic face for stock and other reasons.

(27) Movie Gallery is closing 160 stores

(28) Office Depot is scaling back

(29) Pacific Sunwear is closing 154 stores

(30) Pep Boys is closing 33 stores

(31) Pier 1 Imports has closed 79 stores and is closing another 25

(32) Piercing Pagoda is closing 82 stores

(33) Rite Aid is closing 28 stores

(34) Saks is closing 1 store

(35) Sofa Express is closing 44 stores

(36) Sharper Image is filing for bankruptcy and is closing 90 stores.

(37) Sprint Nextel Corp. is closing 125 stores. This will mean 4000 more job losses on top of the 5,000 last year.

(38) Talbot's & Sigrid Olsen is closing all 78 of its kids and men's stores plus another 22 of its female stores.

(39) Urban Interiors is closing 2 stores.

(40) Wicke’s Furniture is closing all 38 stores. They have been around for 37 years. Called the canary in the cave for this recession. They are in bankruptcy.

(41) Wilson’s the Leather Experts is closing 160 stores

(42) Zale’s is closing 105 stores

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