Ron Paul’s Swords into Plowshares, Outlander, and other Amazon Orders

I’m headed to America on July 20th with my family. We’re planning on splurging a bit since we don’t have to buy food or electricity or water or whatever else it is we buy on our own that we won’t buy when we’re at our parents’ places. And I’ll still be working, so nothing lost there.

My first mass purchase was based on Bob Wenzel’s post for Ron Paul’s new book Swords into Plowshares. The truth is, these days, I generally find Ron’s commentary somewhat boring because I know it all already. But I love him so much that I am compelled to support him in anything he does, and I urge you to do the same. The man is a Tzadik Gamur, 100%, (a perfect righteous person) one of a handful left on the planet. I am not one. I do not claim to be one. But I can recognize one. Ron Paul is one. And we must support everything he does on the condition that it is just. We can assume everything he does is just until proven otherwise.

So while on Amazon buying Swords into Plowshares, which I will read immediately upon receiving it, I also bought the Game of Thrones books, some Injinji toe socks, a pair of pants because my wife complains there are too many holes in my current pairs of pants, and the Outlander series of books.

Here’s a blurb about each of these purchases. First of all, you’ll notice there are no affiliate links here, at all. That’s because you can give all the money to Bob, Click on his amazon links and give him money. He’s more productive than me so he can use it more to promote the libertarian cause. Maybe one day, with God’s help, I’ll overtake him, but right now I’m still a baby.

Swords and Plowshares, the point is to support Ron over all everyone else calling for more war and bombing, which is most people, including those I hang out with and daven with in Minyan. Everyone wants to kill everyone, for one reason or another. (Again, it’s a wonder I’m still religious.)

As for Game of Thrones, I watch the show because it is anti government. And entertaining. Even the supposed good guys are sometimes evil.

Injinji socks, I have a pair of Vibrams I wear on Har Habayit, and when I’m not suffering from plantar fasciitis due to my flat feet. If anyone has any remedies for that, let me know. I like toe socks.

Most interestingly, Outlander. I got into this show totally accidentally, when one of my wife’s friends recommended it. At first I wasn’t so impressed. Something about stupid magic stones that transformed someone into the past or some nonsense. But towards the end of the season things got really intense.

It ended with a male rape scene that was very difficult to watch. I can handle most violence, but this was a first for me. Watching a male rape scene was horrible. Probably the worst thing I’ve seen on screen. It was not pornographic, they did not show those parts. But emotionally it was something new, because I’ve seen female rape scenes. I do not like them, but being a male I don’t identify with female rape as much as women do. But this I did, and it hurt watching it.

The most real thing about it was, the guy was so abused that at the end, he just acquiesced because there was nothing else he could do about it. Being married to a woman, he felt guilty that he let it happen without fighting at the end, and even liking it because he was no longer being tortured. And he felt he could no longer be married to his wife when he was finally rescued, because he did not fight until the end.

That opened my eyes up to something new. I never even considered the fact that women who are raped may be (and probably are) often biologically compelled to let it happen, on an animalistic level. The human in them fights it, but sexual response is often automated, especially when there is no way of fighting it off physically. The prospect of allowing a rape to happen, and then being forced to biologically respond to it is horrifying. It strips you of your humanity completely, and leads to incredible guilt.

As a man, I have never considered this before. But now I (at least think) I know part of the horror of rape. In the end he recovers, but not without suicidal thoughts.

And that’s why I bought all those things. Hooray for trade.

Chinese Government Threatens to Physically Beat Shortsellers, Shanghai Rallies

HA!

I guess I’ll cover this morning and lock in some profits. China has threatened to physically beat short sellers of stocks in an attempt to arrest the tide of panic selling. They can’t beat me up, those bastards.

Short selling is actually balancing for the market because, as Murray Rothbard not so famously said, because virtually nobody knows anything he ever said, “For every short seller there is a buyer”.

If someone sells a stock short, someone has to buy the stock from that short seller. Otherwise he cannot sell it short. He has to sell it short to somebody. And that somebody has to buy it. Short selling sounds mystical and magical and confusing, but it is very simple. You put in an order to borrow shares from somebody else who is willing to loan them to you. You sell the borrowed shares at their current price on the market. And then, if you are successful, you buy them back at a lower price and give them back to the guy you borrowed them from. That’s pretty much it.

Short sellers must buy shares back in order to return them. The more short sellers there are in a market, the more people are forced to buy shares because they have to by contract. That supports declines when they do happen. By banning short sellers and threatening to beat the crap out of them, all China is doing is ensuring that there will be no support for future collapses.

It will stem the tide for now, so I’ll cover the short, but the decline will continue in a few days, and there won’t be any short sellers who must cover in order to support it.

Thanks to Bill Gross, I now know that the better ETF to short is the ASHR rather than FXI. It’s more concentrated on Chinese development banks and other speculative stuff rather than large cap established Chinese companies.

Looks like Sunday is Grexit Day

This is it. It’s either happening on Sunday, or it isn’t happening. Greece will either leave the Eurozone on Sunday, or they will get bailed out again.

One thing I simply do not understand about this crisis is Germany. They refuse to devalue Greek debt, yet they know it cannot be paid. So instead of getting a fraction of it after a restructuring, they are insisting on getting zero. I don’t understand why. Germany started World War II over unsustainable debt. They have defaulted more times than any other European country in modern times. Hypocrites.

From the outside, and from a frum perspective, it certainly seems like a case of God hardening Merkel’s heart. The only thing I can think of causitively is that if Germany accepts a debt restructuring, then every Eurozone country with unsustainable debt (there are 6 of them by my count, France among them) will demand the same, and then bonds everywhere in the Eurozone could crash. So they are forcing Greece out as an example to anyone who might ask for a debt restructuring. But that itself will crash the bond market as well.

There’s really no way out of this, barring every Eurozone politician suddenly transforming into a libertarian and freeing every economy simultaneously.

China is crashing. Japan seems to be following today. Japan is the most indebted country in the world in terms of debt to GDP. Over 200%. I’m short DXJ as well right now, have been since March. US money supply growth is grinding to a halt. There are about 4 weeks left until growth goes negative if we don’t push through $12.1T by then, meaning quarterly shrinkage of money supply. The last time that happened was September 2008.

The 2008 crash occurred on the last day of 5768, the final day of the last shmitah year, September 29, 2008. The S&P swung 103 points that day. I’m getting an itchy feeling that Tisha B’Av this year is going to be nuts. But since it falls on Shabbos, it’ll be either 8 Av or 11 Av when fireworks erupt.

Just a feeling.

In a world where money is debt and debt is garbage

Here’s a shout out to Bill Still, a strange guy (who isn’t strange these days?) I debated once when some monetary reform group headed by Crackpot Israeli Academic Chicagoan Friedmanite Monetary Totalitarian Socialists invited him to Israel to speak with Moshe Feiglin, and he had me take up the liberty side.

Still is obsessed with an accidental feature of the monetary system, a problematic one but an accidental one nonetheless – that money comes into existence through debt. This is true. It means that the creators of money buy bonds with the money they create, and whoever they give the new money to (always government) always owes the money back to the Fed.

Every dollar in existence is owed back to the Fed because it represents a government bond that was purchased. The government will get the money to repay the bond by taxing us. Therefore, every dollar that exists, that you have, will be paid back to the Fed at interest.

This sounds bad, and it is. But it is not a necessary part of the current fiat monetary system. Why not? Because the Fed does not have to buy bonds with the money it creates. It could buy anything it wants. It could buy my old dilapidated desk chair, or the desk I’m working on right now that I found abandoned on the street before Pesach.

If it bought real assets instead of debt, then no one would have to pay the money back. It could circulate indefinitely. It wouldn’t represent debt. It would just be value stolen from taxpayers that was used to buy my desk.

The real evil is not that money is debt. That is just an added layer of evil on top of the main sickness, which is that printed money – ANY printed money that must be used by law to pay taxes, whether it is printed initially to buy debt or a desk I found in the garbage, is theft of value from the previous holders of that money.

So Bill Still wants to change printed money from money used to buy debt, to money that is just injected into the economy used to buy nothing. Just distributed. For free. And he thinks this would solve everything. The guy is nuts, and his followers are obsessed with a purely accidental feature of the monetary system.

But my shout out to Mr. Still is that insofar as money is debt these days, however accidentally, and debt is garbage, then money is garbage. When the debt loses all nominal value because it simply cannot be repaid anymore, then the money goes with it.

And debt is losing value fast now in Europe.

China Freezes half of its Market, but ADR’s still trading down!

In response to the incredible Chinese market crash (called last month here), the Chinese authorities have suspended trading in 40% of its entire stock market. If you can’t trade anything, it can’t go down.

However, the American Depository Receipt (ADR) equivalents of Chinese stocks are still trading on the US exchanges. And they’re still going down. Here are the top ten holdings of the iShares China Large-Cap ETF, all still trading on American exchanges. China can’t shut those down.

Screen Shot 2015-07-08 at 7.57.18 AM

 

Central Banks can fool markets for a long time. But once the market decides where it wants to go, not even the printing press can help.

Incidentally, the National Bank of Greece ADR (NBG) also has its main security suspended in Athens. But it is still trading in the US. And by monday, it could go all the way to zero.

Still short NBG and FXI. NBG puts at .50 cents are still available for cheap. FXI puts are getting more expensive though.

UNBELIEVABLE New Greek FM Euclid Something Forgets his Homework at Home

You know, when people flippantly say “Greeks are lazy and that’s why they’re bankrupt,” I have dismissed it. Japan is much more bankrupt than Greece by debt to GDP and I would’t call Japanese people lazy. Japan can print its own money though, so they can keep financing it through inflation.

America is also much more in debt than Greece in terms of unfunded liabilities into the future, but America can print dollars until the currency collapses. Greece can’t.

But now, I think I’ve seen it all. The new Greek Debt Minister Euclid Tzakalotos came to the emergency post referendum meeting with nothing. Un-be-friggin-leavable. He wrote cursory notes on hotel stationary.

Maybe they are just lazy.

 

In defense of Bill Cosby

News is coming out now that Bill Cosby gave drugs to women he wanted to have sex with who were not his wife. Nothing says he raped any of them or tricked any of them or gave them something they did not agree to take.

People love it when otherwise good people slip up. The better they are, the better people feel when it is revealed they made a mistake. It makes them feel better about themselves.

A few years ago my father and I discussed a case of a family friend’s husband soliciting a 15-year-old for sex. It turned out to be a cop and he got arrested. I argued, and still argue, that this is not a crime, and that sex with a post-pubescent teenager is not pedophilia or especially perverted. A bad idea, yes, but sick, I wouldn’t go that far.

Pedophilia is a crime and a perverted sickness because young children cannot consent, and there is no biological reason to even want to have sex with a child. The desire belies something deeply wrong that infects your fantasy world. To want to have sex with a prepubescent child shows that something is inherently wrong with your sex drive. As for homosexuality (if we want to go there), it does exist in the animal kingdom, so there is room to say it is not a sickness but simply an aberration that is known to exist across species.

Pedophilia, in terms of sex before breeding age, does not exist among animals. It is a uniquely human sickness.

In any case, the cops should stay out of all consensual sex, which does not include children, and Cosby must only answer to his wife and family.

Drugging women consensually in order to have sex with them is a problem of low self esteem. Some people hurt themselves because of low confidence, some suffer depression, some take drugs, and some have consensual sex with people who are not their spouses. It is all the same disease, stemming from a lack of satisfaction from current circumstances leading to an inability to control one’s fantasy world (which we all have) and prevent it from intruding on reality.

But it goes full circle with the people dumping on Cosby because he did this. They want to feel better about themselves because they are, to a degree, suffering from a lack of confidence in themselves. Pointing a finger at Bill Cosby for doing this is just a different way of dealing with a lack of confidence, just like having sex with multiple women who are not your wife.

We would not dump all over Bill Cosby if he were simply depressed. We would reach out and try to help him. This is the same thing. If he actually raped women (I don’t know if he did, but the news that came out today had nothing to do with rape) then Cosby haters would have more of a case.

Oh, and if you don’t like Bill Cosby, you’re a racist. Etc.

Bring them all down

I smell blood.

Greece. Italy. Spain. All of them either destroyed the Beit Hamikdash, or expelled us. In the next three months, they are all going down.

And Francis, give me my menorah and books back that you stole from me over millenia and have stuffed in your vault of theft. I’m asking nicely now.

As big as the government is in Israel, we are still Jews. We know how to handle money. Even the thieves among us. Goodbye, European States.

The match has been lit. Now watch the fire spread. You cannot keep piling debt on debt and expect to survive. It cannot be done, and it will topple. It is now toppling.

I generally make a feeble attempt to mask my hatred for States and the fractional reserve system of inflation that supports them. I always follow State monetary law no matter how unjust. I pay my taxes and obey all monetary and economic regulations. But I always express my disdain for it because thank God, there is still freedom to do at least that, as long as I wish no violence on anyone. And I don’t . I only wish bankruptcy, and the natural consequences of that.

Now I’m ditching even the feeble attempt of disguising my hatred for disdain. We’re in the home stretch now.

A Daffenblurb about the Government

We’re sitting under the food pyramid at the doctor. I tell them to look at the food pyramid, and see that the bottom row is all wrong. We shouldn’t eat any bread, grains, or cereal, but the government says we should eat lots of it so we all get sick so we have to go to the government doctors.

Tziv: I don’t like the government.

Daf: That’s why when I see the government…I RUN AWAY!