Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The Federal Reserve: Illusion Of Understanding, Illusion Of Control......DO NOT MISS THIS!

The Federal Reserve: Illusion Of Understanding, Illusion Of Control

We live in an era of illusion: the illusion of understanding, and the illusion of control.

Few institutions reflect these illusions better than the Federal Reserve, though the Pentagon, Congress, the Imperial Presidency, the sick-care cartel and the higher education cartel are certainly giving it a run for its money.

The foundation of the illusion of understanding is data--Big Data. That the Fed has no idea of how the real economy actually functions is painfully apparent. But the state's vast flood of data, neatly organized into slop-troughs that suggest precision, creates a very compelling illusion of understanding: media shills go to absurd lengths to treat bogus or marginal data as the equivalent of the tablets brought down by Moses. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry, Corporate Media: the unemployment rate and the official rate of inflation are not real. They are illusions rigged to lull the masses and enrapture the simulacrum experts living high on the hog in academia, NGOs (non-governmental organizations) and think-tanks.

Here is the reality, as expressed by IMF Chairwoman Christine Lagarde: what passes for precise data is a guesstimate at best, and a carefully executed distortion at worst.

The net result is nonsensical policies that fail to achieve their stated objectives. Even more tragicomic, the spokespeople tasked with presenting this failure to the Great Unwashed are forced to speak gobbledigook that borders on the psychotic if taken at face value.

For example, Janet Yellen must claim she is planning to raise interest rates while also proclaiming that she's keeping rates at zero for the indefinite future. If a non-Elite person rambled on in this fashion, they would be tossed in jail as a 51-50 (involuntary psychiatric hold).

Equally perverse is the illusion of control--the fantasy that the Federal Reserve controls the real economy. Note to Fed: hosting the financial feasting of the Power Elites for 7 long years had essentially zero positive effect on the real economy.

All the Fed's QE and ZIRP (zero interest rate policy) accomplished was the inflating of multiple bubbles (housing, stocks, bonds, student loans, subprime auto loans, etc.) and chumming the feeding-frenzy of financiers gorging themselves on income-producing assets while the dwindling middle class has been mesmerized into accepting debt servitude as the acme of middle class membership.

The notion that the Fed or the IMF understands the real economy is pure illusion. So is the notion that they control the real economy. All they control is the level of exploitation of the many by the few!

By cowering in terror of a stock market tantrum, the Fed has surrendered everything: its vaunted (and completely phony) independence; its duty (yes, go ahead and laugh) to the nation and the real economy - everything. The Fed is nothing but an abject slave of the market.

The Fed is not alone; the entire financial-political system is now beholden to the stock market.

Want to impose real restrictions on the financial sector? Forget it, the market will rebel. And if the market sags--you'll cave in like all the market's servile minions because a significant chunk of your campaign contributions come from those profiteering off the market.

Corporate America--don't dare miss your quarterly earnings number or you will suffer the wrath of a market that destroys all who don't obey its demands for short-term profits at the expense of long-term profitability. Were the management of a public company bold enough to sacrifice short-term profits for long-term growth, they wouldn't survive the market's destruction of their stock price.

The stock market now dictates fiscal and monetary policy within the Empire because the American economy has been fully financialized. Profits flow not from innovation in products and services but from the financialization of every income stream.

Financialization is the mass commodification of debt and debt-based financial instruments collaterized by previously low-risk assets, a pyramiding of risk and speculative gains that is only possible in a massive expansion of low-cost credit and leverage.  

Another way to describe the same dynamics is: financialization results when leverage and information asymmetry replace innovation and productive investment as the source of wealth creation.

When the profits from financializing collateral and leveraging those bets to the hilt far exceed generating wealth by creating products and services, the economy is soon hollowed out as the perverse incentives of financialization start driving every business and political decision and strategy until the system collapses.



This time is "not different." The only difference will be what triggers the next valuation reversion when it occurs. 

If the last two bear markets haven't taught you this by now, I am not sure what will.  

Maybe three times really is a "charm."

We're all minions now of the stock market!


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