Friday, October 24, 2008

Preparing for the Obama Depression

Take a look at this and this. If you connect the dots, they spell a devastating economic downturn under Obama plus Pelosi plus filibuster-proof Reid. They also spell a national security disaster of historic proportions. Either one--economic disaster or national security disaster--alone would be catastrophic. Both at the same time would be cataclysmic for the 230 year old American Experiment. "A republic, if you can keep it . . ." Franklin said. "If" indeed.

How would a wise person prepare for a potential Obama depression? First of all, don't wait until the election. Start buying things you might have been strongly considering buying anyway, if they fit the scenario.

Guns, lots of guns and ammunition--if you know how to use them and care for them. Otherwise, you may want to make friends with loyal and reliable people who have that expertise.

Get out of debt. Nothing is worse in the middle of economic bad times than to be tossed out on the street or to have your vital transportation confiscated. Cut down on luxuries and accelerate those payments. Build a cash reserve. Have a cache of gold and silver coins, and a supply of trade goods of various value to use in place of money. Also, hone any basic skills you may have which might allow for barter situations.

Make good friends with your neighbors. If too many of your neighbors are unreliable or antagonistic, consider relocating to a more amenable (and defensible) area.

Look to essentials: food, water, sanitation, shelter, heat, power, fuel etc. How would you get the essentials under different scenarios? What do you need to stockpile, and what do you need to find super-reliable sources for? Can you convert to ethanol or biodiesel for transportation and/or generator fuel?

Once you account for most of the basic needs of yourself and your family, what about others in your inner circle? Are they thinking about worst cases? What can you do to help them?

Do you have a bugout kit and destination? Those precautions are for when things are soon to be falling apart around you at your current location, and you must get out now if you get out at all. A bugout destination is a fallback position. It can be an intermediate fallback position or your final "do or die" location. Best to consider every location an intermediate fallback but be prepared to defend it if it comes to "d or d."

There are many other things to consider. Check out the survival category on the Al Fin sidebar as a possible starting point. Customize your planning for your particular situation.

Added Bonus: A Tutorial on Obamanomics
H/T Small Dead Animals

All the PhDs, JDs, MBAs Cannot Make Capital Markets Work, But Sarah Palin Can

Sarah Palin is quite special, and quite ordinary--for America--at the same time. The true story of Palin contains the reason for America's ability to absorb multiple blows that would have ended most other governments and economies. It is the resilience of Americans like Palin, the sheer energy, optimism in the face of difficulties, and perseverance that allows America to bounce back in the face of multiple overwhelming problems and threats.
Provincial America depends on the initiative of ordinary people to get through the day..... Americans pay for most of their school costs out of local taxes, and levy those taxes on themselves. In small towns, many public agencies, including fire protection and emergency medical assistance, depend almost entirely on volunteers. People who tax themselves, and give their own time and money for services on which communities depend, are not easily cowed by the federal government or by large corporations.

Palin's career may look like a poor imitation of a Preston Sturges script, but films such as Hail the Conquering Hero (1944) struck a chord with Americans precisely because the character type of the ordinary man or woman who takes on entrenched interests is instantly recognizable in America.

Palin really did take on the American oil companies and turn the scoundrels out of office. Her predecessor, Frank Murkowski, appointed her to the state oil and gas commission in the apparent belief that a small-town mayor and former beauty queen would rubber-stamp corrupt deals between the state and the Big Oil companies.

Shades of Jimmy Stewart in Mr Smith Goes to Washington, Palin ran against Murkowski and took his job. That does not qualify her to be president, to be sure, but it does show cunning and strength of character. Palin is qualified for high office by temperament if not by education, and is preferable to candidates whose education has made no improvement on their characters.

....One doesn't see demonstrations by wronged peasants in the small towns of America. There never were peasants - American farmers always were entrepreneurs - and the locals avenge injury by taking over their local governments, which have sufficient authority to make a difference. At the capillary level, school boards, the Parent Teachers' Association, self-administered religious organizations and volunteer organizations incubate a political class entirely different from anything to be found in Asia. There are tens of thousands of Sarah Palins lurking in the minor leagues of American politics, and they are the guarantors of market probity.

...Twenty-eight percent of China's population falls in the age cohort of 39-64 years, when individuals must put away most of their retirement savings. By 2025, the proportion will rise to 35%. (By contrast, America has 32% of its population in the 39-64 cohort today, but it will fall to 30% by 2025). _AsiaTimes
Europe's problem is similar to China's. Europe--and Russia--was populated by peasants at one time. The peasant mentality still persists in European and Asian countries--the lack of independent thinking which imagines that it can actually make a difference.

Sarah Palin has an impressive record of achievement which promises to grow stronger every year, whether or not she is elected Vice President next month. Unlike entitlist Barak Obama--whose followers hint that they may riot if their messianic leader is not elected--Palin inspires people to want to work for and earn what they achieve. That spirit of setting goals and working hard to achieve them is what caused America to rise to the top of the economic world in the late 19th century, and to the top of the political and military world after the end of WWII. Most Americans--like Sarah Palin--do not whine and quit just because things are not going well.

The entitlement mentality that controls most of the polities of the world--and is knocking at the door on Wall street and Pennsylvania Avenue--has not yet completely taken over main street America. Just the fact of opinion polls suggesting a high likelihood of the entitlist winning the presidency, is having a depressing effect on markets recently.

Because if America goes over entirely to entitlement thinking, the thing that once made America special and has continued to keep America on top, will be smothered and in danger of dying. Understanding that an American cold gives the world pneumonia, one might begin to apprehend what would happen to the rest of the world should America's situation suddenly become much worse than a mere cold.

300 million Barak Obama's in one country would be an epic disaster of narcissistic top-heaviness and absence of competence. 300 million Sarah Palin's, on the other hand, would carry on much as America has carried on for centuries. Working, planning, innovating, reforming, worshiping, raising families, fulfilling their contracts, keeping their word, and living within their means.

BO might be a good president of Zimbabwe or Venezuela--he might represent an improvement over their current leaders. As president of the US, BO is simply a suicidal gesture thrown in the face of ordinary Americans by wastrels who never in their best efforts could make capital markets work.

More: Why European banks are likely in much more trouble than American banks