Worldwide Turmoil, Financial Upheaval and Cataclysm

When the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) of 2008 occurred, many including myself were shocked enough to start doing further investigation into the nuts and bolts of our modern financial system. My at-the-time-research led me to be long gold and short sydney property - in 2011. Here we are in 2015 and the result of that is pretty (painfully) clear to me. It's not just my timeframes which were screwy, it became obvious that most of the narrative I had collected was incorrect. Recently I've been exploring this dichotomy, but today I want to bring some definition to something that comes up in a lot of discussion - the idea that the GFC was simply just a dress researsal for something much bigger.

Giving this supposed event a name allows us to study it better, so I'm proposing the term 'Worldwide Turmoil, Financial Upheaval and Cataclysm' or WTFUC for short. We have a new poll running at the right hand side of the page here - I encourage you to vote in it because it's kind of unique - the poll will run for 20 years finishing in 2035 and (fingers crossed) I hope to be around to write a synopsis on the final results. If the blogger platform remains constant then you should always be able to change your vote over time, although it won't let me change the options. The poll allows you to nominate your expected timing for the WTFUC and the hope is that this helps us discuss our beliefs and expectations in a practical fashion (even as they may change over time).

Some of this article was inspired by a recent reading of the 'Limits to Growth' paper, which shows 2015 as the point where it all starts going downhill. But when we say WTFUC, what are we really talking about? Over the weekend I conducted an incredibly unscientific experiment and asked my stepson (13) and his friends if they knew what the Global Financial Crisis was. Although they had heard of the term (but not the acronym) they didn't know any further details, offering only '... where china gets really rich?'. My point here is that the near-edge-collapse of the world's credit system isn't even part of the experience of today's youth, so historically it can't have been that bad right? As in, memorable, impacting and legacy-making. Sure, the event changed life for some folk who were over-leveraged in the wrong asset class and hey these same kids are being bred into tax slavery but again my point is that the GFC was not a civilization-stopping event.

By extension, any event (reprise) which might later be known as 'GFC #2' also doesn't qualify as being a WTFUC event. So my point here is that all the stuff we read about dollar collapse, ecology collapse, derivatives collapse, all talk about an expected paradigm shift for humanity resulting from the implosion of our modern debt-based economy. So just to be clear - the poll is for this type of event, but I wanted to clarify the details of what qualifies and what does not. In my view, it must have all of the following:
  1. Revaluation of a MAJOR ASSET CLASS, by a factor of 100-1.
    Whether it be Gold revaluation or USD hyperinflation (or both) or banking system failure, derivatives, evaporation of digital money etc ... to qualify as a WTFUC event the change needs to be permanent and involve panic as the majority of the population seeks to preserve capital - all at once. Because of the intertwined nature of our modern finance, we presume this will be a global event.
  2. Massive widespread riots on more than 1 continent.
    Any relatively sudden revaluation will leave winners and losers, and the losers will most likely express their sentiment and desperation by taking to the streets. Because of the widespread nature of the disruption, these riots would make today's rent-a-crowd-riot look like sunday school picnics. Looting and burning should be expected in populated centers across the world.
  3. Disruption of the just-in-time-delivery chain.
    Today's delivery chain is efficient but breaks down immediately if the trucks cannot roll. If a fleet of vehicles or aircraft is grounded because the financial system has melted, then most supermarkets will be out of supplies within a few days even at normal consumption levels. Forget trying to send an overnight courier in this kind of situation. However, the demand to keep the system rolling will be huge therefore I doubt the system would stop permanently - so, to classify as a WTFUC event it need only merely be disrupted for less than a week.
  4. Mass casualties and deaths worldwide, measuring in hundreds of millions.
    A complete breakdown of finance, credit and food supplies will be crippling for most of our densely-packed cities. Over a hundred million deaths worldwide would be a tragic loss but would certainly not spell the end for humanity.
For the record, my view is that we won't see these things - my vote in the poll is 'No economic collapse, just gradual changes over time'. But importantly I want to send a message to the doomers : your 'proposed event' is either massive in scale or it is not. If you're only talking about GFC 2 then why should we be worried if it is not even something our children will remember and talk about? And if you're talking with such knowledge about the WTFUC above, then for gods sake give us a workable model with timing and details so that we can prepare and react accordingly.

Finally, good news - the scenario outlined above, although dire - is not actually a humanity-stopping event. If you think the implications will be more severe than I've written, please don't hesitate to add your comment below.


Grumps LaBastard said...

The reason why we haven't seen any massive doomer events, is the problem was punted to upstair balance sheets. But the problem is still there festering.

Look at it as a pension manager or insurance company. Six years ago nearly all your assets were yielding 4+ percent in securities of 10 year maturity. Now what has happened? In six years more than half your portfolio has rolled-over in a ZIRP/NIRP environment and your liabilities are demographically coming due. Lots of retired fireman, cops, government workers who've helped keep consumer demand up, will start feeling squeezed.

DF said...

That long wave date target of 2016-19 shows just what BS long wave is - the long wave targets used to be in the 00s, but it never really happened.

Grumps LaBastard said...

That's why the derivative market became such a monster the last 15 years. It (temporarily) usurped the insurance role of gold.

Paper gold is not just all the futures on gold, but interest rate swaps for the most part. This allowed managers of OPM to pretend risk was managed.

Gary Morgan said...

I voted 2030 or later.

Something like GFC2 is coming in the next few years, starting imminently, but the big trouble will build as we enter the 2030s.

US civil war, WW3, both or either, as the American empire dies, and governments everywhere run our of excuses and money. If we're lucky we will avoid global nuclear exchanges.

Bullion Baron said...

I had previously voted by 2020 (before this article), but based on your description I have changed my vote to no economic collapse.

I think 1 is the most likely to occur, but I don't think it's inevitable that 3 & 4 follow on a global scale.

"...if it is not even something our children will remember and talk about..."

This will always be location & situation dependent, the impact (of the GFC) in Australia has been minimal (to date), but if you asked some children in the US who had their home foreclosed on or children in Greece who've seen their parents lose their job or not been able to find one themselves...

I suspect there would have been 13 year old children in the great depression who wouldn't have been able to identify it as a historical even 5-10 years after it started.

Are we facing a larger collapse or change than in 1929 & 2008? It's likely, I would say inevitable (in the medium term), but humans are resilient & adaptable. I don't think we are on the cusp of an event that results in hundreds of millions dead, but I do think there will be some large structural adjustments to the way the international monetary system works and there will be some large winners and losers as a result. People will adjust (with short term interruptions and events) and move on.

Warren James said...

Thanks Bullion Baron (and others) this is good feedback.

I don't wish to belittle the hardships endured by common folk resulting from the GFC - many were unfairly impacted. If 3 & 4 aren't met then this doesn't fulfil the 'Cataclysm' requirement, that becomes just 'large scale unhappiness due to financial change' which would give a different poll result.

I'm glad you pointed out the effects of each will be location and situation dependent; those distinctions are often omitted from the financial apocalyptic literature I've seen, and it behooves each individual to assess their own position, exposure, goals and timeframes. Unfortunately this is difficult because the narratives are typically simplistic or vague.

Perhaps it is worthwhile to start sub-classifications: GFC2 would be just a repeat of last time, GFC² would be same event/effects but on a larger scale and perhaps 'mother of GFC' for something with the same effects but in multiples of the original. I submit that a WTFUC event is in a class of its own but it all points to the same requirement - much more detail is required from the doomer crowd for their predictions to be directly relevant to our individual space. Drawing a line in the sand, I hope, has been a worthwhile contribution to the wider discussion.

Grumps LaBastard said...

I kinda keep half an eye of Cliff High's material. I really don't know what to make of it, but it's an input. Here's a synopsis of the latest.

And there's this timeline:

What stuck out is this: "September 22: The Pope will arrive in Washington, D.C. to covertly and symbolically remove the crown of world leadership from the US for its transfer to the UN. He will arrive in the evening to signify the end of “America’s Day,” and the Fall Equinox will occur during that night. So when the Pope visits Obama on the 23rd, this can be said: “The Fall (of the ‘American Empire’) begins the day the Pope visits the White House.” He will also speak before a joint session of Congress that day.

Why is it significant that he arrives on the 22nd? “22″ is a Masonic “Master Number” and “because of its great power, the number 22 may result in outstanding ascendancy or disastrous downfall,” according to the numerologically-inclined. Here is the Pope’s itinerary."

I Will Never Accept The Terms of Service said...

The true significance of 22 is that it's one before the number 23, which represents the Bicycle and Tricycle of Discordianism. 2+3=5, see. Or at least 2+3=4<x<6 for all nonfivial values of x.

It is notable that in 2015, (2+0+1=5-2! I'm not making this up people!) the planet Nibiru makes its next close approach to Earth. We can expect an increase in chaos as this time approaches. As for the exact date, it doesn't matter because we're all pooched:

Apparently the Grays are working with NASA and the Sumerians (=ISIS? study it out people!) in an attempt to teleport the earth out of harm's way. You'll be able to tell it happened when you look up one night and see that all the stars are in different places. I assume a suitable new solar system has already been chosen.

The problem is that the Grays need us to abjure Christ the Saviour before they will begin the teleport spell. This is their payment. That parenthetically is the explanation behind Ke$ha:

And also Balrog HUSSEIN Obama the Christ-Denier though I haven't found a good music video with him in it yet.

Holding gold and silver is your only protection. That and of course holy Jesus praise be his name. Oh and Apple of course because whatever happens the Grays won't want to lose all the music on their iPods just cos earth is destroyed so you can be sure Apple will survive. Perhaps on an orbiting space platform? How do we know that it hasn't already been built? Have you even seen the other side of the moon? This might be an explanation for Steve Jobs' sudden "death".

Grumps LaBastard said...

Any thoughts on this?

I often pounded the table that gold mining wouldn't be taxed into oblivion ( it already is taxed bigtime). I said it would be encouraged after the transition.

Let's say gold is 10K/ounce. Which way is a Central Bank going to get more gold in the coffers? Have a two-tier price market in which miners are forced only to sell to CBs at a 8000 dollar discount? Yeah, I know think about that for awhile.


Have CBs (or more likely their intermediaries) take equity stakes/board seats in miners and get gold via dividends in kind.

Grumps LaBastard said...

Grumps LaBastard said...

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

I wonder, why there should be any change (in what?!??) at all.
It all depends on the mindset and narrative of the people. As long as all the sheeple stand up in the morning and work as their keysians masters tell them to work and pick up their paycheck with some funny numbers that buys them their bread&circus, why would anything change? (And remember those "masters" are dependants by themself)
Once in a while you bail-out some of your buddies or bail-in some of your non-buddies. The electronic banking balance sheets, will look like you want them to look, so what?
And in the meantime some think tanks come up with some nudging to keep the sheeple busy and assuming they are happy and being cared about, just as infants they always wanted to stay.
Why would anybody want to change something in this principle? From todays zeitgeist, absolutely nobody, really nobody has any interest in doing so. From my perspective it is stupid, but hey, that's the way it is (and actually always was and has been).
Greets, AD

Gary Morgan said...

Hello AD.

You appear to be saying that because we've had a period of socialism for the past c.70 years or so, that means we're stuck with that forever. Sorry to be blunt (I know you can handle it), but that's such lazy thinking.

You ignore three facts in that strange conclusion: 1. The laws of mathematics will not allow it to continue. 2.Action is already being taken to move us to a more market-driven approach (bail-ins, not bailouts). 3. History shows us very clearly that there is constant change, things never stand still.

Your disgust with the present system has perhaps knocked the optimism out of you, but you should not give up hope.

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

Hi Gary,
you might call it "lazy thinking", may I answer: Your's is wishful thinking?

"1. The laws of mathematics will not allow it to continue."
And what laws of mathematics in particular? You can type into a computer whatever number you want, simple as that. And in case somebody wants some paper, you can print up that paper (see Japan), or you can outlaw paper (current diskussion, see Sweden) or you can give a haircut, in a way, that nobody will revolt (see Cyprus). - No laws of mathematics violated...

"2.Action is already being taken to move us to a more market-driven approach (bail-ins, not bailouts)."
Just show me one serious attempt? By whom? Against whom? 2yrs Eurobonds in negative territory (even communist France). Massive QE by the ECB together with massive ELO. Secret balance sheets like the ESM installed.... man, com'on what else do you need? And remember, that is just the financial plane. Like Warren pointed out, the financial plane is just one side of it. The physical plane is even manipulated worse: EU regulation on every single shit in life you can imagine. And if nudging or dumbing down of the people does not work, rule with your fist and outlaw the shit that doesnt fit your agenda, e.g. outlaw incandescent light bulb. Instead you come up with something clever like emmissions trading for your buddies at financial centers and for the regular sheeple you come up with Energy Performance Certificates...
Did you know, that the precessor of the EU, the EG(EWG), what founded with one pure purpose, to manipulate and abondon free markets and to control them by the european governments. It even states that officially in the treaty of Rom 1958. BTW the original idea of a etatistic ruled european market place came from Hitler...
You like it, just like you admire the €? Dont worry, you get lots more of it in the future.

"3. History shows us very clearly that there is constant change, things never stand still."
sure. "Den Sozialismus in seinem Lauf halten weder Ochs noch Esel auf (Erich Honecker, 1989)"
Next stop, Brave New World.

Again, all of above topics do not really matter in the end. It is the people. And the people like it. They enjoy it. They desire it to be taken care of their lifes.

Greets, AD

Gary Morgan said...

Hello AD.

'You can type into a computer whatever number you want, simple as that.'

Well, no, it's not that at all. Creating money from thin air devalues the currency. The 'people' who might love socialism have seen falling real incomes since 2008, as I mentioned, the laws of maths ensure a knock on effect. This process is finite, that is certain.

'Just show me one serious attempt? By whom? Against whom?'

Foolish Cypriot creditors were subject to losses.
Soon, foolish lenders to Greece are likely to suffer the same.
Soon, bank creditors will suffer the same.

I have a post to write on these subjects, so I'll save any further thoughts til then.

Re your Honecker quote, I'm sure you'd agree that a comment from 1989 hardly wipes away the evidence of mankind's evolution and constant change over many thousands of years.

Gary Morgan said...

BTW, I hope this isn't literal?

'EU regulation on every single shit in life you can imagine'

Hate to be that inspector!

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

No Gary, that's not funny, no joke, also taking a shit is being regulated and controlled literally (see also EN997).
Again, I built a company from scratch, which included the toilettes. So let me tell you, I've been through all of this, including the "inspectors" (for whom I had to pay every three month). (Oh forgot "didnt build it by my own")
Greets, AD

"Creating money from thin air devalues the currency."
No it doesn't, although this myth is repeated over and over again. Because it matters what the receiver is doing with the currency. If he is just happily stuffing his matteress with it (see Japan), why not?

"Soon, foolish lenders to Greece are likely to suffer the same."
you mean the ECB or the IMF? Do you think these people really care? OPM!!!
BTW You ever wondered why the "collective action clauses" have been introduced during the GFC? Or why the minimum reserve had been lowered from 2% to 1%? I wonder what the math will tell us, if the ECB might put it to 0%? :D

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

"Foolish Cypriot creditors were subject to losses."
No Gary. Not foolish Cypriot creditors, just regular hard working private citizens, who had been stupid (or should I say unlucky?) enough to have more in a regular bank account than the emperor decided to cancel away from them.

Gary Morgan said...

Hello AD.

It's hard to debate with someone who disputes actual facts! That's tough luck re the toilets though.

If countries like Japan keep on printing, eventually the crunch will come, and suddenly that mattress money will be withdrawn and spent in a hurry. Sorry AD, but it may not have happened yet, but it will happen eventually (mathematics, demographics & market forces make it unavoidable).

Re the Cypriot creditors, I'll pin you down here if I may. As an avowed hater of socialism, would you rather see state bailouts of banks at the taxpayer's expense, or bail ins, where the creditors (including large deposit holders) are subject to losses, as would be the case when any business fails. I know which one I prefer. Caveat Emptor!

You can't have it both ways. Surely you're not a closet socialist?

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

Hello Gary,

"...and suddenly that mattress money will be withdrawn and spent in a hurry."
No Gary, sorry to say, but that's not the way financial behavior works. Never has and never will (no judgement from me on that, simple "a posteriori" facts). If you disagree, just name me one example in human history. (pls dont confuse with abandoning a currency). If you dont believe me, just think about the Tsunami earthquake destroying Japan: Productivity destroyed, need for real stuff, no products being exported in the meantime, yet exploding yen to infinity so that world wide CB had to intervene.... Sorry to say, but you just sound like a Peter Schiff gold buggery sales man ;(
BTW maybe you have not read Armstrong yet? ;)

"would you rather see state bailouts of banks at the taxpayer's expense, or bail ins, where the creditors (including large deposit holders) are subject to losses, as would be the case when any business fails."
How would a regular business fail step by step, Gary?
1.) possible prosecution and accountability of management
2.) 100% wipe out of all share holders
3.) 100% wipe out of unsecured bond holders
4.) 100% wipe out of secured bond holders
5.) and then only after 1-4, a percentage quota of the remaining to the regular banking accounts, regardless of any limits, creditors or account values.
Now Gary, tell me, have you seen anything of the above? No? Welcome to the brave new EUdSSR just as I wrote in my first post above.
Greets, AD

Gary Morgan said...

Hello AD.

Weird, here was me thinking that every currency that has ever existed eventually burns itself out and is abandoned (always for essentially the same reason, the same one affecting Japan and others), but you believe otherwise. So, we'll forget that issue, I'm happy with my thoughts.

As for company failures, I'm not sure management would need prosecuting, unless some sort of fraud has taken place. I am surprised that you don't feel that the Cypriot banks were handled in a very similar way to your 1-4 list? It was essentially the same process.

So, you wrote: 'regular hard working private citizens, who had been stupid (or should I say unlucky?) enough to have more in a regular bank account than the emperor decided to cancel away from them.'

Stupid? Unlucky? Emperor?

No, just Mr Market. Caveat Emptor, unless you favour bailouts by the Empire? I sense some conflict within you young AD, the dark side (socialism) is tugging at your heart. Let it go, embrace markets.
Ultimately, sadly, I feel your intense hatred of the EU will always blind you to the progress being made by the ECB with regard to 'money', but maybe what lies ahead will open your eyes. Maybe not.
Good luck.

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

Hi Gary,

before beating your EU fanatism to the ground, let me repeat my original statement:
"Once in a while you bail-out some of your buddies or bail-in some of your non-buddies."

Exactly that's what's happening. My problem with that is, either the "lender of last resort" prints or he doesnt print. If he just prints for the pensions fonds, wall street, governments&banks (buying PIIFGS junk bonds etc.), but not for the private saver (bailing out) randomly, THAT is the opposite of a rule-of-law market place. You cant have it both ways in a rule-of-law free market.

About the steps of insolvency, I dont know british law, but in Germany and probably the rest of the EU it works like this:
1.) "I'm not sure management would need prosecuting, unless some sort of fraud has taken place."
That's why I wrote "possible". In case the management is aware of the bankruptcy, but enlongs the insolcency declaration, it has to compensate personally unlimited to share holders and debtors that arose in the meantime. Was that the case? Probably, since Cypress ask already six month earlier for a bail-out.
3.&4.) As far as I know the bond holders got the same quota as the rest. This is not normal.
5.) In the true free market, why has the ECB pumped further money into Cypress and let the Bundsbank fly 5Billion Euro in paper cash by plane to Cypress? Why can a creditor of 99999€ can keep his money to 100% but somebody with 1Mio.€ has to take a haircut of ~50%? Tell me Gary, is that your idea of a free market approach? I say, your are far closer to socialism than I am, go check your closet.

Gary, since you are such a big fan of these free markets happening in the EU with the ECB, can you explain ELO in some simple words? Can you explain, why there are not rules to ELO, but rather only despotism behind closed doors?
Oh btw, you are probably also quite proud that the Ukraine is being supported&bailed out by the EU, with who's money? Okay, this time it's not the ECB, but rather you and me as taxpayers, while the bonds are being stacked in the ECBs basement.

Greets, AD

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

Sorry mistyped acronym, should not be ELO, but ELA(=Emergency Liquidity Assistance).

Gary Morgan said...

I'll be covering my thoughts on most of these issues is an upcoming post AD, so I hope you'll forgive me holding back at this point.

Meanwhile, I'll ponder this:

'regular hard working private citizens, who had been stupid (or should I say unlucky?) enough to have more in a regular bank account than the emperor decided to cancel away from them.'

and this:

'Why can a creditor of 99999€ can keep his money to 100% but somebody with 1Mio.€ has to take a haircut of ~50%?'

I think I'm grasping your internal conflicts. But are you? Nothing will ever be perfect (or black or white) on this world, choose your shade of grey.

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

"I think I'm grasping your internal conflicts. But are you?"

As I said, I dont have a conflict (actually I dont care, I hope for the WTFUC, let those suckers burn, but I know it will not happen anyway), it just shows that this ECB/EU/Troika-flip-floping has nothing to do with a free rule-of-law market, more or less it proves the opposite.

And about you constantly pondering my:
"regular hard working private citizens, who had been stupid (or should I say unlucky?) enough to have more in a regular bank account than the emperor decided to cancel away from them."
Actually I blaime those people as well, not for their saving decision (like the FG dummies probably would), but rather shouldnt have worked for the system from the beginning. Probably some socialist has a good explanation, "you have not worked for that money in your bank account by yourself anyway, other people made that happen, you do not need&deserve more than we decide".
Should have just lived on social welfare like our new african refugee "guests" the EU is now shipping and distributing all over the place as the new "future skilled workforce".

Greets, AD

P.S. Cant wait for your next post on the topic ;)

Unknown said...

I will answer the original question from my point of view but would like to comment on the exchange above in a broader context separately in order to not hijack beyond all recognition.

In my view a debt based monetary system does not work for most people on the planet and is in any case not sustainable. To my last point the relentless increase in debt and what this means to humans will ensure that the system falls apart in some way in the future. How this plays out in terms of GFC's or WTFUC's is in clear to me and in a major way irrelevant. However if pushed I would expect several more GFC's over the next several decades although whether we allow a global WTFUC depends on whether humans can become conscious enough on a large enough scale to make a move away from any kind of monetary system. My best guess is that I suspect that it will have to get pretty ugly before enough taxpayers grow some balls and realise that the only real power in the world in the current paradigm is the working people. So I also expect wars and unrest. The ordinary human does not have the tools or motivation currently to do anything at this time but if the debates progress from the limited exchanges above and through global communication some education takes place it may be that we can avoid some of the pain later. This isunlikely in my view but we can but try.

I will come back soon with some thoughts for debate on the comments above.


AdvocatusDiaboli said...

a little OT, but talking about taxes and the development of "the system", here's some news from Germany:

Somebody sold illegal copies of M$-Windows at a very large organized scale. No debate that this is some serious crime to consider. But now the sentence he received: For tax evasion of his "profits" he got 4years 9month in prison, for the crime itself he only got an extra in 1year 6month, so in total 6yrs3month.
Why am I writing this? It shows that the state gives a shit about a crime or the victim or protection, no, it is the opposite: crime is neglectable as long as the profit is being shared 1/1 with the state.

AdvocatusDiaboli said...

just an update on "german" views: ;)

Mr. Schäuble (german finance minister) anounced that probably after 2017 the personal capital gains taxes will be raised further (currently ~28%). The justification for this step is officially "fairness". The amazing thing is that the plebs applauded this step, since, who doesnt like "fairness" anyway? And at least in the EU, the regular working citizen has no f*cking clue about taxation anyway.

@Gary, there you have your demanded "bail in" to fix your "math". Just install mechanisms that regardless of where interests/yields/money are headed, state gets it all anyway to redirect the electronic currency units whereever it pleases, shall it be greek banks or ECB or ESM, you name it.
Remember my words: "Once in a while you bail-out some of your buddies or bail-in some of your non-buddies. The electronic banking balance sheets, will look like you want them to look, so what? ( long the bloody dumb sheeple keep on showing up for work)"

Gary Morgan said...

Fairness does seem in vogue these days AD, so no point bursting a blood vessel over these things.

There is a big game afoot re EZ bail-ins, the new banking regulation/resolution rules come into effect at the end of the year, so some care is being taken until then.

Warren James said...

Some support for those expecting a WTFUC in the 2015.75 timeframe (which currently stands at 12% of poll respondents), apparently the next six months are fraught with danger. Depends who you listen to, I guess.

BTW, I realised an important distinction I omitted from the discussion - the WTFUC has to be financial in origin. i.e. there is some environmental and resource pressure going on in the world as we ratchet up the number of eating and talking heads courtesy of the age of dinosaur juice (fossil fuel/petroleum); any changes there will inevitably have an effect on finance but the point of the WTFUC is that it is based on the money system changing first.

Warren James said...

And here's other people warning about 'the next global financial crisis'. This time though, it's coming from the Bank of International Settlements, who are criticising (get this) "monetary policy makers". Huh? okay now we're all officially confused so go ahead and show us your damn cards. Plenty of scaremongering going on when a central bank challenges the central bank omnipotence narrative. Whatever it takes to move the market, I suppose.

Motley Fool said...

I am not too convinced of your four points being required for a major upheaval.

The first is fair enough. The second perhaps, but I would keep in mind that riots require a target and when people are really struggling to survive there is no spare energy for such.

The third seems fair. The last I am not convinced of. Humans don't die so easily, our drive for survival is high. A week long supply-chain interruption would not suffice to kill that many. Perhaps if it were interrupted for a few months, but there we are contemplating a completely different world, and it is uncertain if it would restart after that long.

Another you could consider would be shifts in the world power structure. That tends to happen when major financial upheaval occurs.

Warren James said...

Hi Motley - long time no see.

You illustrate the argument nicely - everyone has different classifications for 'major upheaval'. Anyone writing doomer literature has to weigh what they are writing on an honest set of scales and also explore the relevance to their readership.

Otherwise, their warnings actually provide a disservice. An interesting exercise I recently conducted is to research articles warning on 'the Greek Crisis'. If I had a dollar for every conjecture that the fallout would bring down the financial system as we know it (looking at you, Zero Hedge) then I could retire in comfort.

My point is the honest writers will establish timeframes based on their research and constantly rework their model as necessary. Shortly we pass Armstrong's date - if it passes with no particular incident then there are at least 20 people in the poll to the right, who will have to review their world outlook (and Martin Armstrong will also have to revisit his definitions too).

Motley Fool said...

Hi Warren

Yes. I think this is an interesting project, and the fact that you set a 20 year time limit on the poll amuses me, as that in itself would create a lot of cognitive dissonance, and would force you to judge your predictions against reality.

I think your creating set conditions for this type of event is a good idea too, but sure I think one can disagree as to what constitutes such an event.

I look forward to seeing what happens on the first date, either way.


Ps. Pity you didn't give us fg's an option except opting out since we eschew timing prediction.

Warren James said...

Speaking of Armstrong, he just tweeted an update to his 2015.75 stuff (link). If anyone can make head or tails of it please enlighten me - I don't think he's making a case for a WTFUC event. Or did he describe that here? I'm not feeling the intellectual love.

Happy to stick with my 'No economic collapse, just gradual changes over time.' vote.

p.s. Motley, re 'but sure I think one can disagree as to what constitutes such an event'. Yes, I agree - let's establish consensus to grading, scale and impact for different scenarios. This way, we can winnow and grade various writers and models. After all, we are all searching for the one which provides best accuracy, for its predictive capabilities (so that we as individuals, can plan according to our own time frames and priorities).