Forward Guidance

Off the keyboard of James Howard Kunstler

Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666
Friend us on Facebook

shirt_FederalReserve_2
Originally Published on Clusterfuck Nation  April 7, 2014

    Guess what? There is none. Rather, the Federal Reserve practice of Delphically divulging its intentions ought to be understood as the master pretense of US economic life — the delusion that wise persons are actually in control of anything. The result of this guidance continues to be the mis-pricing of everything, especially the cost of money as represented in the operations of debt, and hence the value of everything denominated in money.

     The interventions of our central bank have really been aimed at one objective: to compensate for the contraction of real wealth in an economy that replaced purposeful activity with Kardashian studies and tattoo art.  Purposeful economic activity provides surpluses that allow for the repayment of debt. Kardashian study and tattoo art lead to entropic entrapment, aka, a death spiral of culture and economy. That’s where we are at. The debt is now eating us alive, and the central bank trick of piling on additional debt to mask the failure of repaying old debt is losing  its palliative punch.

     One big problem with the Fed’s policies is that the mis-pricing of everything ends up being expressed in the very statistics (GDP, unemployment, inflation) that are used to justify further interventions that produce ever deeper perversities. That is, the Fed distorts prices, which distort statistics used to make policy, which prompt the fed to ramp up policies that further distort prices, a dangerous recursive dynamic. Since prices are the basic information for running an economy, we end up in a situation where nothing really adds up. The antidote to that has been pervasive accounting fraud — the covering-up of mis-pricing, pretending that things add up when they don’t.

     The poster child for that, of course, is the US government, the operations of which are so saturated in falsity that the inspectors general in every branch and agency might as well just fling linguini against the wall to arrive at whatever conditional reality suits their bosses. The pretense extends to the largest financial institutions including the TBTF banks (their vaults stuffed with the detritus of epic swindles), to the giant pension funds, which were among the chief victims of the swindling, to the corporations dedicated to producing this-and-that, whose cost structures are so fatally impaired by all the aforesaid mis-pricing and accounting fraud, that they must resort to massive stock share buy-backs to maintain the illusion of being going concerns, to the millions of ordinary households running on maxed-out plastic.

     These perversities have been in force for five years now, and “folks” — to use our president’s fond locution for the diabetic masses — are beginning to get nervous about the five-year duration of the so-called bull market. This refers to the stock markets collectively, which have generally only gone up since 2009 in an economic environment that can only be called unconvincing. The word “bubble” is heard more and more in casual chatter. Events like Friday’s tanking of the NASDAQ put people in mind of the ominous Four Horsemen.

      One thing we really do know, as good old Herb Stein put it, is that things go on until they can’t, and then they don’t. Sighs of relief were heaved all last week when it appeared that the Obama / Kerry response to doings in Ukraine amounted, more-or-less, to a policy that might be called “Oh… nevermind.” Personally, I’m relieved that our leaders decided not to start World War Three over that, since in the aftermath there might be no human historians left on planet earth to record our monumental stupidity for the cosmic annals — something for our successors, the sentient cockroaches, to meditate on. But a certain nagging emptiness remains in that void of initiative. The spring zephyrs are finally caressing the tender hills and vales of upstate New York. Something is in that wind. I think I scent revolution.

 

***

James Howard Kunstler is the author of many books including (non-fiction) The Geography of Nowhere, The City in Mind: Notes on the Urban Condition, Home from Nowhere, The Long Emergency, and Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology and the Fate of the Nation. His novels include World Made By Hand, The Witch of Hebron, Maggie Darling — A Modern Romance, The Halloween Ball, an Embarrassment of Riches, and many others. He has published three novellas with Water Street Press: Manhattan Gothic, A Christmas Orphan, and The Flight of Mehetabel.

 

Knarf plays the Doomer Blues

https://image.freepik.com/free-icon/musical-notes-symbols_318-29778.jpg

Support the Diner
Search the Diner
Surveys & Podcasts

NEW SURVEY

Renewable Energy

VISIT AND FOLLOW US ON DINER SOUNDCLOUD

" As a daily reader of all of the doomsday blogs, e.g. the Diner, Nature Bats Last, Zerohedge, Scribbler, etc… I must say that I most look forward to your “off the microphone” rants. Your analysis, insights, and conclusions are always logical, well supported, and clearly articulated – a trifecta not frequently achieved."- Joe D
Archives
Global Diners

View Full Diner Stats

Global Population Stats

Enter a Country Name for full Population & Demographic Statistics

Lake Mead Watch

http://si.wsj.net/public/resources/images/NA-BX686_LakeMe_G_20130816175615.jpg

loading

Inside the Diner

Quote from: Palloy2 on February 20, 2020, 09:53:19 PMEddie: Our old friend Palloy thought that.....and he could still be proven correct.Cam: I don't think I've heard of this Palloy guy. Was he once a regular on the Diner?Palloy...

Eddie: Our old friend Palloy thought that.....and he could still be proven correct.Cam: I don't think I've heard of this Palloy guy. Was he once a regular on the Diner?Palloy: Yes.  Still chopping wood and carrying water, although at MUCH slower rate...

http://www.youtube.com/v/rEdGnIIOdeo[...

Quote from: RE on February 20, 2020, 09:18:00 PMQuote from: K-Dog on February 20, 2020, 09:11:09 PMI'm not set up for it yet but you have done polls before.  Perhaps you could do something like this.Do you t...

Quote from: K-Dog on February 20, 2020, 09:11:09 PMI'm not set up for it yet but you have done polls before.  Perhaps you could do something like this.Do you think Bernie will be killed before he can be elected.  Yes or No.[/b...

Recent Facebook Posts

No recent Facebook posts to show

Diner Twitter feed

Knarf’s Knewz

Quote from: azozeo on February 18, 2020, 10:33:56 [...]

knarf,Nice to see you posting again, especially in [...]

Thunberg is among a growing list of people to dedi [...]

Quote from: knarf on February 16, 2020, 06:53:31 A [...]

Diner Newz Feeds
  • Surly
  • Agelbert
  • Knarf
  • Golden Oxen
  • Frostbite Falls

QuoteI don't understand the kind of karma tha [...]

Quote from: K-Dog on Today at 05:30:39 PM Julian A [...]

 Julian Assange is in prison with bad health.  Jul [...]

Quote from: Surly1 on Today at 04:12:02 PMRudy [...]

Rudy's back, and Evan Hurst has him.Don' [...]

Quote from: UnhingedBecauseLucid on March 18, 2019 [...]

CleanTechnicaSupport CleanTechnica’s work via dona [...]

QuoteThe FACT that the current incredibly STUPID e [...]

Quote from: azozeo on February 18, 2020, 10:33:56 [...]

knarf,Nice to see you posting again, especially in [...]

Thunberg is among a growing list of people to dedi [...]

Quote from: knarf on February 16, 2020, 06:53:31 A [...]

Scientists have unlocked the power of gold atoms b [...]

Quote from: azozeo on August 14, 2019, 10:41:33 AM [...]

Wisconsin Bill Would Remove Barrier to Using Gold, [...]

Under extreme conditions, gold rearranges its atom [...]

The cost of gold futures on the Comex exchange inc [...]

Time to add my share of Carbon to the atmosphere!I [...]

Quote from: Nearingsfault on January 28, 2020, 08: [...]

Quote from: RE on January 28, 2020, 08:29:30 AMQuo [...]

Quote from: Nearingsfault on January 28, 2020, 08: [...]

Alternate Perspectives
  • Two Ice Floes
  • Jumping Jack Flash
  • From Filmers to Farmers

Lies, Damn Lies and Coronavirus Statistics By Cognitive Dissonance     “Never believe anything in po [...]

The Decline and Fall of Civil Society Chapter One By Cognitive Dissonance     From my perspective at [...]

Missing In Action By Cognitive Dissonance     As a very young pup, whenever I was overdue and not ho [...]

Politicians’ Privilege By Cognitive Dissonance     Imagine for a moment you work for a small or medi [...]

Shaking the August Stick By Cognitive Dissonance     Sometime towards the end of the third or fourth [...]

Event Update For 2020-02-18http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2020-02-17http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2020-02-16http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2020-02-15http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2020-02-14http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

With fusion energy perpetually 20 years away we now also perpetually have [fill in the blank] years [...]

My mea culpa for having inadvertently neglected FF2F for so long, and an update on the upcoming post [...]

NYC plans to undertake the swindle of the civilisation by suing the companies that have enabled it t [...]

MbS, the personification of the age-old pre-revolutionary scenario in which an expiring regime attem [...]

Daily Doom Photo

man-watching-tv

Sustainability
  • Peak Surfer
  • SUN
  • Transition Voice

Floating Cities, Microbubbles and the Blue Acceleration"The human footprint is very large and there is little that has not felt its weight. "We t [...]

"The scale is building. Three point five percent is 260 million of us."Turns out McKibben [...]

"This is the second of a two-part look at the changes happening to our world that are far out o [...]

"Which would we rather — more electric cars or more octopuses? What do we do when reversing cli [...]

Thugs and Circuses: President Cobblepot's Season Finale"As the world watches, our circus moves to the floor of the Senate next week, pitting a real-es [...]

The folks at Windward have been doing great work at living sustainably for many years now.  Part of [...]

 The Daily SUN☼ Building a Better Tomorrow by Sustaining Universal Needs April 3, 2017 Powering Down [...]

Off the keyboard of Bob Montgomery Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666 Friend us on Facebook Publishe [...]

Visit SUN on Facebook Here [...]

What extinction crisis? Believe it or not, there are still climate science deniers out there. And th [...]

My new book, Abolish Oil Now, will talk about why the climate movement has failed and what we can do [...]

A new climate protest movement out of the UK has taken Europe by storm and made governments sit down [...]

The success of Apollo 11 flipped the American public from skeptics to fans. The climate movement nee [...]

Today's movement to abolish fossil fuels can learn from two different paths that the British an [...]

Top Commentariats
  • Our Finite World
  • Economic Undertow

In reply to Gail Tverberg. “At least six months” "That will definitely be a huge problem. It ha [...]

In reply to GBV. uh oh, Chris finally wiped that smile off his face. this must be getting serious. m [...]

In reply to GBV. wow... his picture no longer has a smiling face... is it a sign of things to come? [...]

In reply to Gail Tverberg. "A hospital in Central Beijing has reported 36 novel coronavirus cas [...]

https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/ it's noteworthy that the serious/critical % of activ [...]

That is ... a good series. Covers a lot of different kinds of ground. Thanks! [...]

Whatever happened to Rosie Scenario when we need her? Moonlighting at the Department of Easy Solutio [...]

Everyone please relax. The oilmen and traders of Reddit have it all under control. There is no probl [...]

"Poverty is considered a money issue rather than a ‘values’ issue, so we have no civilization w [...]

Yes, my point is that at most we can make an individual response. There isn't going to be a sys [...]

RE Economics

Going Cashless

Off the keyboard of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Simplifying the Final Countdown

Off the keyboard of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Bond Market Collapse and the Banning of Cash

Off the microphone of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Do Central Bankers Recognize there is NO GROWTH?

Discuss this article @ the ECONOMICS TABLE inside the...

Singularity of the Dollar

Off the Keyboard of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Kurrency Kollapse: To Print or Not To Print?

Off the microphone of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

SWISSIE CAPITULATION!

Off the microphone of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Of Heat Sinks & Debt Sinks: A Thermodynamic View of Money

Off the keyboard of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Merry Doomy Christmas

Off the keyboard of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Peak Customers: The Final Liquidation Sale

Off the keyboard of RE Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666...

Collapse Fiction
Useful Links
Technical Journals

Climate change will continue to have a largely detrimental impact on the agricultural sector worldwi [...]

We investigate historical and projected precipitation in Tanzania using observational and climate mo [...]

Follow on our http://www.doomsteaddiner.net/forum/