Have nothing to do with the [evil] things that people do, things that belong to the darkness. Instead, bring them out to the light... [For] when all things are brought out into the light, then their true nature is clearly revealed...

-Ephesians 5:11-13

Tag Archives: Free Market

Runaway Inflation in the United States? Impossible.

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, April 18, 2018: 

Sinclair Lewis’s It Can’t Happen Here has recently been pounced upon by liberal pundits as a novel that remains relevant today with the election of President Donald Trump. Said left-liberal Salon magazine in its review of the 1935 novel, this is “the novel that foreshadowed Donald Trump’s authoritarian appeal.”

What this author intends is to draw a parallel between the inflation and destruction of the German currency in the early 1920s that led to the rise of Hitler and the slow, steady inflation of the American currency that could lead to the same end: a totalitarian police state here.

Here is what libertarian author, economist, and professor Murray Rothbard wrote about the runaway German inflation:

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Starvation, Suicides Increasing Under Venezuela’s Hyperinflation

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, April 17, 2018: 

When Venezuela’s legitimate but outlawed National Assembly reported on the country’s runaway inflation numbers last week, the statistics were so astronomical that few could relate to them. Prices increased by 67 percent in March, 453 percent in the first quarter, and 8,878 percent over the last year.

Marxist Nicolás Maduro’s socialist government stopped reporting on those price increases two years ago, and he has sharply criticized any efforts by the National Assembly or websites such as Dolartoday.com since then to tell the truth. A spokesman for the National Assembly, Congressman Rafael Guzman, told a press conference that the runaway prices are beyond the control of the government:

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Nearly 3,000 Venezuelans Leaving Their Country Every Day

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, March 19, 2018: 

English: Logo of the Norwegian Refugee Council

The increasing flood of Venezuelan refugees is putting so much pressure on neighboring countries that the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) is calling for help. More than four million people have left Marxist Nicolas Maduro’s socialist “paradise” in just the last four years, and the numbers are increasing. They are finding temporary refuge in Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Chile, Argentina, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama, Aruba, and Spain; however, those countries are being pushed to their limits.

The NRC stated that the “international community … must step up efforts immediately to provide much-needed protection and humanitarian assistance … a comprehensive and rapid response to food, education, documentation and health needs [is] vital throughout the region … [we are] requesting an immediate $2.5 million … particularly on the border areas between Colombia and Venezuela.”

But, as the NRC itself admits,

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Public-Private Partnerships the Key to Trump’s Infrastructure Plan

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, February 13, 2018:

On the surface, the White House’s plan to rebuild America’s failing infrastructure looks like magic: The job is going to cost $1.5 trillion, but the federal government will only have to “invest” $20 billion each year for the next 10 years to get the job done. The rest will come from states and local municipalities in response to various “incentives” through the grant process. Additionally, the White House’s proposed plan will cut the permitting process down from the usual 10 to 13 years to just 24 months — 21 months to consider the project and three months to approve it. It also relies heavily on the concept of “public-private partnerships” to fund the program.

The president promoted the idea that “it is time to give Americans the working, modern infrastructure they deserve.” Of course, the government has nothing to give which it has not already previously extracted from its citizens. But no matter. Trump added:

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With Venezuela’s Marxist Dictator Gone, the Country’s Oil Production Could Soar

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, February 12, 2018: 

By every measure, Venezuela’s Marxist dictator Nicolas Maduro isn’t long for this world. His socialist regime is losing altitude and airspeed at a most satisfyingly horrific rate. His people are starving, as are many in his army. Citizens are fleeing into Colombia to buy food missing from shelves at home, and many are staying there. He’s in default on his estimated $150 billion national debt, and his lenders – China, Russia, and Cuba – appear to be increasingly reluctant to throw good money after bad. American refineries, which have been supporting Maduro through their purchases of his country’s sticky crude, have happily cut them by two-thirds, finding more reliable sources in Canada and Mexico, and as a result helping to starve Maduro into oblivion.

Finally, his precious oil company, PdVSA, which is essentially Maduro’s only oxygen hose, is failing as well. Its production is down to a little over a million barrels a day. In 2014 it produced more than three.

So it’s reasonable to assume, as economist Herb Stein expressed it, that “if something cannot continue, it will end.” And the end of Maduro won’t be lamented.

In a burst of perhaps unjustified optimism,

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Does Trump Really Want a Trade war?

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, January 24, 2018: 

It would seem so. Following Monday’s announcement by President Trump that tariffs of between 30 and 50 percent would immediately apply to imported solar panels from China and washing machines from South Korea, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer rejoiced: “The president’s action makes clear again that the Trump administration will always defend American workers, farmers, ranches, and businesses.” This view was confirmed by a White House trade official who told reporters:

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Trump Launches First Salvo in Trade War

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, January 23, 2018: 

Seal of the United States International Trade ...

Seal of the United States International Trade Commission.

Following the announcement by the White House on Monday that it was imposing tariffs and import quotas on solar panels and washing machines, effective immediately, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer rejoiced: “The president’s action makes clear again that the Trump administration will always defend American workers, farmers, ranches, and businesses.” This view was confirmed by a White House trade official who told reporters:

If you look at solar closely, you have a clear example of Chinese trade policy propping up an industry, creating excess capacity in an industry [causing] significant harm to the United States and globally as well.

He assured reporters that this isn’t just about washing machines coming from South Korea or solar panels from China, either:

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Amazon Opens Its First “Just Walk Out” Store in Seattle

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, January 22, 2018: 

On Monday morning regular customers started shopping at Amazon’s no-lines walk-away store in Seattle. Some have said it feels like they’re shoplifting, until the bill shows up on their iPhone. Others feel like they’re just raiding the pantry, not worrying about price but just grabbing what they need.

Before Monday only Amazon employees could shop at the 1,800 square foot store on 7th Avenue — about the size of a 7-11 — using their experience to refine the software and hardware behind it. To get the technology right, which depends upon hundreds of hidden cameras in the ceiling trained on shoppers’ iPhones and the items on the shelves, it took four years before the store opened to the general public. For the moment, at least, those items are ordinary: groceries, sodas, ready-to-eat meals, potato chips, ketchup, toilet paper, toothpaste, and the like. But each item sports a dot similar to a barcode. When the item is moved into the customer’s bag, it moves it into his online shopping cart. When the customer leaves the store the software adds everything up, bills his account, and sends a receipt to his iPhone.

There are at least two things those new customers will notice:

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Walmart Voluntarily Raises Its Minimum Wage

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, January 12, 2018: 

The world’s largest retailer, Walmart, announced on Thursday that it was voluntarily raising its minimum wage for new workers to $11 an hour starting next month. Included in the announcement were staged bonuses that will be paid to present workers based on their time with the company. Also included was a vast improvement in maternity benefits, with full-time hourly workers receiving 10 weeks of paid maternity leave and six weeks of paternal leave. Parents who adopt will get the same benefits plus a check from Walmart for $5,000 to help cover their adoption costs.

This is on top of the wage increases announced by the retailer in 2015 to be staged in over the next three years.

What’s notable is that this is taking place ahead of

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Establishment Insider Calls for Military Intervention in Venezuela

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, January 10, 2018: 

English: Ricardo Hausmann

Ricardo Hausmann

When an obscure college professor nearing retirement age suggests that the only way to “solve” the Venezuelan “crisis” is through military intervention, few people would pay any attention. But when that person, Ricardo Hausmann, is a professor at Harvard and a director of the John F. Kennedy School of Government there, his proposal represents much more than just wishful thinking.

Hausmann, with a Ph.D. in economics from Cornell University, is a bona fide Keynesian interventionist. Considering that Hausmann was a former minister of planning in Venezuela and a member of the board of directors of the Central Bank of Venezuela in the early 1990s, one can rest assured that free market principles aren’t being considered as any part of his solution to Venezuela’s problems.

Under socialism, things have gotten so bad in Venezuela that Hausmann now thinks military intervention is the only cure. His plan, “D Day Venezuela,”

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Economist Mark Zandi Exposes His Statist Worldview

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, January 8, 2018:

Mark Zandi should be embarrassed. Not because he is an establishment economist. Not because he is a Keynesian. And not because he’s not a smart guy. He should be embarrassed that someone allowed him to publish nonsense about the state of the economy in order to promote his worldview.

He lives in a world that is behaving much differently than he expected or than he apparently wants. He wants the Trump tax reform law to fail. He must admit that the economy is working much better than he ever expected it to. But, in the end, he says that it’s all a mirage, temporary, that the resurgence measured by nearly every metric isn’t going to last.

He is establishment to the core, and perhaps that’s why he’s willing to go to the mat for a worldview that is being overturned and increasingly discredited: that statists can control things much better than an uncontrolled “free” economy can.

He admitted in an article for CNBC that things are going just swimmingly:

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Where Will 50,000 Former Deutsche Bank Employees Find Work?

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, November 10, 2017:

The short answer is: they will find other work. They will also find that other work to be more rewarding, higher paying, more satisfying, and providing greater benefits to others than they did while working for the bank. That’s how the free market operates, when it is allowed to.

It’s not that those DB employees didn’t have fair warning. In September, DB’s CEO, John Cryan, hired in 2015 to turn the bank around, told them:

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Aramco’s CEO Tells Half a Truth

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, October 27, 2017: 

Carbon print of Alfred Lord Tennyson, 1869, pr...

Alfred Lord Tennyson, 1869

A Yiddish proverb holds that “a half-truth is a whole lie,” while Ann Landers said that “the naked truth is always better than the best-dressed lie.” Alfred Lord Tennyson said it best: “A lie which is half a truth is ever the blackest of lies.”

Whether Aramco’s CEO intended to tell a lie or just wasn’t completely forthright remains unknown. What Armin Nasser did tell CBNC’s “Squawk Box” on Sunday certainly wasn’t the whole picture. He blew off America’s energy frackers:

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Arizona Senator Jeff Flake Calls it Quits, Blames Trump

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, October 25, 2017:  

It took Arizona’s junior Republican Senator Jeff Flake 17 minutes in a speech to the Senate on Tuesday to say that he’d had enough: “I have decided that I will be better able to represent the people of Arizona and to better serve my country and my conscience by freeing myself from the political considerations that consume far too much bandwidth and would cause me to compromise far too many principles. To that end, I am announcing today that my service in the Senate will conclude at the end of my term in early January 2019.”

Flake said he plans to continue to snipe at the president: “We must be unafraid to stand up and speak out … I plan to spend the remaining fourteen months of my senate term doing just that.”

Initially one might have thought that Flake was attacking the far left — BLM, George Soros, the members of the radical congressional caucuses — blaming them for many of America’s current difficulties: “We must never regard as ‘normal’ the regular and casual undermining of our democratic norms and ideals. We must never meekly accept the daily sundering of our country: the personal attacks, the threats against principles, the reckless provocations.”

But no,

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What if Your Customer Can’t Buy Your Product, but Wants to?

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, October 16, 2017:

There are two basic rules of economics. The first is: if prices go down, more will be demanded. The second is: both sides of any economic transaction must benefit or there’s no deal.

The fracking revolution in the United States has pushed the price of crude oil down to the point where it is threatening the very existence of the OPEC cartel. Consumers are saving at the pump and the energy industry in the U.S. employs more than 10 million people, making up eight percent of the country’s gross domestic product.

But there’s been an all but invisible transformation taking place in natural gas. At least two of the Big Oil companies sell more natural gas than they do crude oil.

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U.S. Natural Gas Exports to Add 500,000 Jobs, $73 Billion to Economy

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, October 16, 2017:

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker, section vi...

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker, section view from side.

The latest estimate from API, the energy trade group, is that increased exports of LNG (liquefied natural gas) over the next 20 years will add nearly 500,000 jobs to the American economy and $73 billion to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). Marty Durbin, API’s chief strategy officer, stated, “This report confirms that increasing U.S. LNG exports would bring great benefits to American workers and consumers and [to] the U.S. economy. Increasing the use of U.S. natural gas throughout the world means more production here at home, cleaner air, and increased energy security for our nation and our allies.”

The revolution taking place in natural gas has been almost completely overlooked.

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Frustrated Trump Attacks “ObamaCare Nightmare” via Executive Order

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Thursday, October 12, 2017:

Increasingly frustrated over Congress’ inability or unwillingness to dismantle ObamaCare, President Trump tweeted earlier this week, “Since Congress can’t get its act together on HealthCare, I will be using the power of the pen to give great HealthCare to many people — FAST”; and now he has.

Of course the president cannot “give” anything to someone that hasn’t been taken from someone else, but other than that, the president is heading in the right direction. Leaks concerning his executive order, which he signed on Thursday, were confirmed: His order points to less government intervention and more individual freedom.

Calling the present Affordable Care Act an “Obamacare Nightmare,” Trump said his alternative is better:

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Unwinding ObamaCare

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Friday, October 13, 2017:

Those in the freedom fight know how to get rid of unnecessary, unconstitutional programs: starve them and/or let the free market compete against them. Either way, they’re done for. President Trump’s Executive Order issued on Thursday does both.

That’s why his order was so much more than just allowing the free market to operate in providing healthcare coverages. It set a pattern for further rescissions and reductions of other unnecessary and anti-freedom government programs. What President Trump said was music to the ears of those committed to free market principles and who have been fighting for years to see a day like Thursday arrive and hear a president say the following:

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OPEC is Textbook Example of Classic Cartel

This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Wednesday, October 11, 2017:

the new OPEC headquarters in Vienna Español: S...

OPEC headquarters in Vienna

Free market economists have long considered OPEC as a textbook example of the anti-free market cartel. Its mission statement confirms it:

To coordinate and unify the petroleum policies of its member countries and ensure the stabilization of oil markets, in order to secure an efficient, economic, and regular supply of petroleum to consumers, a steady income to producers, and a fair return on capital for those investing in the petroleum industry.

This is of course the “siren song” of every cartel:

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OPEC Asks U.S. Oil Industry to Join Its Cartel

This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Tuesday, October 10, 2017:

At a speech in New Delhi on Sunday, OPEC’s Secretary General Mohammed Barkindo offered an olive branch to the American oil industry: Come join our cartel and together we’ll keep prices up and everyone profitable. These are his exact words:

We urge our friends [we’re all friends, now] in the shale basins of North America to take this shared responsibility with all [the] seriousness it deserves, as one of the key lessons learned from the current unique supply-driven cycle.

Translation:

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Many of the articles on Light from the Right first appeared on either The New American or the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor.