Running of the pigs

flu1

The radio station employees were incredulous when I talked about Ottawa real estate this morning. On air, the interview was about politics. Off air, it was about them.

If you think this market is immune, you’re delusional, I said with my normal diplomacy. Especially now.

Apart from the usual reasons, new ones have emerged. It’s now about 75% certain Chrysler will go bankrupt and GM will be nationalized. America’s biggest carmaker says it will throw Pontiac overboard along with 21,000 more workers. It will be shutting 3,000 US dealerships, and by this time next year will have shuttered 30% of its factories. It also wants Washington to take a 50% ownership stake in return for outstanding debt.

If you thought the worst of the recession was behind us, look out.

But it could get a lot worse.

Financial markets are bracing for the Year of the Pig, as swine flu pandemic-manium sweeps across the western world. The fear is a public health emergency coming just as the first green shoots of recovery are appearing could seriously hamper economic activity. It’s already happening in Mexico, of course, as the government bans public gatherings and companies mull over shutting operations.

Let’s hope the thing dies out fast with no further loss of life. But if it doesn’t, this scare is the kind of event economists and governments have been secretly dreading. Like a bin Laden terrorist attack, Iraq tipping into chaos, Pakistan imploding or North Korea’s nutbar leader hurling a nuke, it has the potential to cause chaos just when order is needed most.

If the swine flu turns into a widespread epidemic – or even if it looks possible – then I reserve the right to review my long-standing odds of a neo-depression taking place (the misery meter now sits at 20%).

Already we know the ranks of the jobless will swell far. We know interest rates and taxes have just one direction in which to travel. We know one of the key North American manufacturing sectors will be decimated further before it stabilizes. We know families have done next to nothing to reduce their debt loads and their exposure, since this crisis hit last autumn. We know a faux spring of hope, fuelled by artificially-low interest rates and politicians desperate for us to borrow, has put lots of new home buyers are risk.

Hang on. And if you see a pig, see if he’s in the market for a condo.

114 comments ↓

#1 Grumpydawgs on 04.27.09 at 9:40 am

A great many buisnesses have been pinning thier hopes on a spring recovery, the emergence of a swine flu epidemic will shutter those, permanently. The government spokesmen have been very cautious not to startle the tourist dollars away, all flights are being allowed in unchecked. Lets hope the hospital staff doesn’t all book off sick this time as they did during the SARs scare in Toronto, that was one of the reasons so many people died. Nursing and doctoring are nice professions until you have to actually do what you were trained to do.

I’m sure that this is devastating news for many travel agents here in Vancouver and Alberta who are seeing thier cruise ship buisness evaporate. The Mexico buisness shutdown even briefly will put thousands more marginal travel agents and purveyors out to pature with the other Sheeple now milling around dumbstruck by circumstance.

Likw a lot of people I find it laughable that the Canadian medical establishment has declared that the swine flu bug has become a kinder gentler beast after having crossed into our country. Is it the welfare benefits for refugee claimants that has the bug feeling a little less virulent? Is it just the same public relations disaster we saw with SARS when the decisions were made based on hotel occupancy numbers in Vancouver and Toronto,rather than public safety, only a growing death toll will tell the tale this time around.

#2 Bulls eye on 04.27.09 at 9:50 am

Can’t help but feel that the Swin flu is staged. Received my tax return with the “72 Hour Preparedness Pamphlet” last week. They know something we don’t. Keep an eye out for the storm – this can get messy.

#3 Investor on 04.27.09 at 9:55 am

Swine flu? Must be a joke. I guess it was a very boring week in terms of stories around the world, so the media is jumping on flu wagon again. What’s next? Dog flu?

#4 wjp on 04.27.09 at 10:11 am

More Insanity…

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/30389117/

#5 wjp on 04.27.09 at 10:17 am

Bondholders of GM have no choice but to accept 225 shares per $1000 of bonds…otherwise GM threatens to go Chapter 11.
How long would you hold these shares if you were a present bond holder?
Better sell short today!!!
This company is done like dinner!
No way I would buy a GM product.
Or will there be a edict from the government that we have to buy our autos from the big three?
Seems to me that free enterprise is one big scam, when the sales are good, bonuses flow like water, when things go bad, you and I pick up the tab…

#6 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.27.09 at 10:18 am

Appendix A: Commercial and Savings Banks Rated D+ (Weak) or Lower

Beginning at page 52, of trailing …

http://www.moneyandmarkets.com/files/documents/banking-white-paper.pdf

CBC radio had a great story this morning, highlighting the Goldman Sachs free ride on ABCP, Derivatives, CDOs and other ‘market instruments,’ as well as a brief explanation of how ‘selling short’ was used to their advantage.

In these ‘toxic, flu-riddled days,’ be sure to wash your hands and stay away from toxic financial instruments.

#7 Slice on 04.27.09 at 10:29 am

We used to have a combined income of $160,000 but have been living on half – one income, for about 14 months now. Luckily (?) we were priced out of the insane Toronto RE market (moved back from a small town) so we couldn’t buy and are still renting a large Mississauga home for $1325 per month. We’ll keep renting until the market crashes.

The EI ran out over 6 months ago and nobody is hiring. Everyone knows someone who is out of work. If you are an executive 50 years or over better tighten your belt.

Slice

#8 wjp on 04.27.09 at 10:33 am

GM to slash jobs by 57% by 2014 in Canada..
GM to cut dealers in Canada by 42%
On BNN….
What jobs would the bailout save?
Might be better for the government to give each employee a severance, at least they will spend it in Canada as opposed to supporting a few entitled executives…

#9 wjp on 04.27.09 at 10:45 am

Another piece of interesting information…GM will cut workforce by 35% in the U.S. but 57% in Canada?

#10 Nostradamus jr on 04.27.09 at 11:20 am

Garth, you repeatedly point out, Canadian politics is self serving for the corporate elite.

Good work…expose Harper for who he really is….
a Western Canada Separatist and not an Eastern Corporate supporter.

…The swine virus will eliminate millions in Mexico, China and India..that is it’s purpose.

Yesterday, walked by a family w/ their Realtor entering a South Granville home listed at >$2 million.

…imo, within ten years, Ottawa will no longer be Capital of Canada.

#11 cowgirl kiss on 04.27.09 at 11:23 am

I am a really rational person, a genuine pearls and black pumps kinda girl, but I think I agree with Bull’s Eye. I think this flu is staged and designed to do what? Make a fear of spending and travel worse? Cripple world economies more? Maybe it is something that is designed to divert our attention … like the space program during the Viet Nam War. Oh my, (head shake)……I’m losin’ it.

#12 Future Expatriate on 04.27.09 at 11:25 am

Anyone who thinks that pandemics are a joke or plot are paperpushers and paperholders afraid they’re going to be wiped out. News flash; you are; it was ever so.

All bets are off. The reaction to this is not a joke, it’s severely and ridiculously restrained, and already a case of too little, too late.

Scientists have been predicting a global influenza pandemic bigger than 1918 (more air travel and US illegal immigration) for decades now. This is not some “shadow government” scam. It’s the real thing, although it might go underground for a few weeks and come back with a vengeance once it mutates yet again (as did the 1918 strain.)

This one of the final nails on the paper coffin and any further sham “recovery”. Take care of yourself and your families. In EVERY way.

#13 PTDBD on 04.27.09 at 11:43 am

EU Health Minister issues warning recommending no travel to Mexico and the United States

WHO confirmed swine flu cases in U.S.A. now 40

Canada on the World Stage – Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory reconstructs deadly 1918 Spanish flu virus, which disappeared from the world long ago. Body in Arctic recovered and DNA analyzed and then reconstructed and given to monkeys.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/6271833.stm

“it cannot be denied that the information that has been derived from this experiment is exciting…” says Doctor.

1918 pandemic – 50 million deaths

#14 $fromA$ia on 04.27.09 at 11:47 am

Again, slide on gold spot price today. Why would gold aound the world increase while in the U.S. morning the spot price slides showing volitility. After all the U.S. is where this whole economic problem began!!!

#15 Grumpydawgs on 04.27.09 at 11:55 am

#2 Bullseye, I think you’re on the right track but I would say instead, “managed” might be a more accurate term. The fact is that this has been going on for some time in Mexico. Several months in fact. It has only recently begun to rage out of control and the PR people at Mexico tourism ( and the Canadian government whores that run interferance for them) can no longer hide the facts. personally I think it is coincidental (not) that the ‘outbreaK’ has been ‘officially’ recognized just in time for the exact last day of the ‘high season’ of thier tourism market.

#16 Sondra on 04.27.09 at 11:57 am

Just having finished studying the effects of the black death and the flu of 1918 my daughter quickly realized that we could be in jeopardy.

On the way to school this morning she urged me to check our food supplies and buy enough to get us through next winter. She wants me to home school her; many students travel during most school breaks.

What’s a Mom to do? Well today I’m increasing the supply and searching for face masks.

Her Great Grandfather contracted the Spanish Flu when he was a teen, but recovered :)

We wish all of you well, it might not be until winter that this really hits the fan. Enjoy your summer. No really, enjoy your summer, make it the best summer ever.

Emergency, sterile, individually-packaged and nutritionaly balanced food available here. — Garth

#17 Kurt on 04.27.09 at 11:58 am

Yesterday, #30 Gold Bugger – I’m interested in a carefully thought-out answer. You wrote: “Buyers caused the RE bubble. Nobody forced anybody to borrow money. Nobody forced anybody to buy real estate. The fault lies with buyers and buyers alone.”

It looks like you’ve made a normative statement dressed up as a positive statement (that is to say, you’ve made a moralistic statement about how you would like the world to work, rather than an observation about how it does work.) For our economy to run smoothly, people must be able to trust vendors to a significant extent – not absolutely, but to a great amount. Given the pervasiveness of the need for shelter, we can assume a huge variation in buyer intelligence and aptitude. For instance, I saw the bubble and chose to rent: I’m comfortable with making strategic purchase decisions myself. However, I would not even consider choosing a carpet color – I’m just no good at it. The converse is true of some other people I’ve met. Given that realtors style themselves as experts, I think it is reasonable to expect that someone who is as weak in finance as I am in interior design would trust their realtor and banker at least to the extent I trust my interior designer.

In addition to direct influence, we also know that people can be, on the average, influenced on the subconcious level through marketing. This is both why tobacco companies spent billions of dollars supporting sporting events before the practice was outlawed, and why it was outlawed. We have seen real estate associations make direct statements that are at least as false and dangerous as the implied statement of the Marlborough Man on his horse.

So, given these facts, I have to assume that your statement was normative – it describes the world as you wish it were. So here’s my question: what moral obligations would you want to see imposed on sellers in general, if any? Should it be complete law of the jungle, or should there be some ethical limits on the influence specialty vendors (doctors, lawyers, realestate agents, auto mechanics etc.) are permitted to exert or attempt to exert on the general public? If you advocate law of the jungle, have you considered the impact of the increased “economic friction” (technically, transaction costs) that results from reduced levels of trust on the health of the economy as a whole? Would the benefits outweigh the impact of increased friction?

#18 MrC on 04.27.09 at 12:07 pm

So if over 50% of manufactoring jobs directly working for GM are going to be laid off, how many workers in the feeder plants are going to be affected. And Chrysler hasn’t even made any announced cuts yet. Someone explain why the government found it necessary to bail out these companies?

#19 PTDBD on 04.27.09 at 12:09 pm

These scientists are really incredible aren’t they? They were able to code the genetic makeup of the virus, isolate the immune system trigger, and then published the information for anyone to reproduce.

Recipe for Destruction By RAY KURZWEIL and BILL JOY

Incredible.

#20 squidly77 on 04.27.09 at 12:09 pm

Foreclosure rates are soaring in Alberta and British Columbia. About half of those affected received mortgages they couldn’t really afford from lenders who were willing to finance borrowers who would be considered too risky by mainstream lenders.

The rate of foreclosure proceedings has doubled in Alberta in the past two years and subprime lenders made up 56% of foreclosures last year. In British Columbia subprime lenders were responsible for 42% of foreclosures last year.

Foreclosure bargains will increase as owners become desperate to sell according to one property investor
http://www.propertywire.com/news/north-america/canada-foreclosures-200904172959.html

where have all the bulls gone
vultur you out there buddy..hello

#21 Bob Bagina on 04.27.09 at 12:21 pm

#15 Kurt – Each time you point a finger three more point back in your direction.

One for the unscrupulous tyrants, three to the buyer.

#22 Anonymous on 04.27.09 at 12:33 pm

I got long some drug (vaccine) stocks this morning on the swine flu news. I don’t think it’s going to be that serious, but if it is… this provides a nice hedge. Unless, I’m dead of course.

#23 Popping Bubbles on 04.27.09 at 12:40 pm

House prices
Apr 16th 2009
From The Economist print edition

http://www.economist.com/markets/indicators/displaystory.cfm?story_id=13496527

Thankfully things are different here in Canada!

#24 Increasing that 1% on 04.27.09 at 12:58 pm

We’re definitely being prepared for something.

If in healthcare this needs to be taken seriously.

All people should be aware of precautions to take allready, in relation to the spread of tuberculosis, and multi-drug resistant tuberculosis, which is alive and well here in esp. more populated areas in Canada.

Sounds like swine flu is spread same way.

As for # 1. ‘Grumydawgs’ comments,…don’t forget to mention the Nurse that died, and the Dr., and the many that did get sick, and were quarantined, and that did risk their, and their families’ health, for what? a paycheck? They’re not on the battlefields, as their calling…They’re barely protected themselves, employers too cheap to provide proper conditions, masks (proper masks and amounts)…

#25 Got A Watch on 04.27.09 at 1:32 pm

I figure we are about 25% through this crisis, which points to about 5-6 years to go before there is any hope of a real economic recovery.

So anybody rushing to buy anything right now in a vulture strategy is probably way too early.

Even when we do start to “recover” it will be weak in the jobs department, which means consumer spending may likely never rebound to the excess levels of 2006. That era is finished, we are into a new era of frugality and green consumption.

It’s just not cool to flaunt your wealth anymore. If you do have money, better start wearing dirty jeans and driving a beater. Driving a luxury car with the $3,000 rims just makes you a target for the less well-off, and they will be getting more aggressive. Crime always rises in a bad economy.

#26 Kurt on 04.27.09 at 1:50 pm

#21 – Bob: I very carefully posed a serious, positive (not normative) question about trust and economic performance. You have responded with moralizing. Please stop and think. If you can, attack my premises, attack my reasoning, or produce a well-supported alternative interpretation of the facts that renders my question either irrelevant or non-sensical. Try to work it in positive rather than normative terms. You’ll find it easier if you avoid cliches, as they often cover up fuzzy thinking and unconcious moralizing.

#27 David Bakody on 04.27.09 at 2:52 pm

Say this is not so …..”Our Economy is as strong as the Canadian Shield” so sayeth the King and his court of circus sheep.

#28 Fool me once... on 04.27.09 at 2:52 pm

Garth,
A point I’ve heard little discussion on is regarding GM’s tremendous involvement in manufacturing military vehicles for the US government. I would imagine that this would be of great interest to the Defense Ministry. Especially when many are simply saying “let it fail, someone else will buy it”.

#29 Bill on 04.27.09 at 2:57 pm

No signs of recession in Alberta.

In Edmonton, stores are packed with people. Lots of Audi’s and Lexus vehicles.

Construction still steam rolling ahead here.

So, in a nutshell, I don’t know what the doom-and-gloom is about.

#30 Dawn in Calgary on 04.27.09 at 2:59 pm

The real estate agents are now spinning to save their jobs, because, you know, they’re VITAL to the economy. BUY A HOUSE, PEOPLE!! BUY A HOUSE, FOR THE GOOD OF THE ECONOMY!

http://www.calgaryherald.com/business/real-estate/Canada+resale+housing+sector+created+jobs+from+report+says/1538546/story.html

“Real estate continues to be one of the major engines driving Canada’s economy,” said CREA president Dale Ripplinger in a news release. “This study shows the tremendous contributions Canada’s resale housing industry makes to the economy. When Canadians move, they typically buy new appliances or furnishings, and renovate in various ways to tailor their home to their specific requirements.”

The resale housing industry in Canada generated more than 202,000 jobs and an average of $22.3 billion annually in various economic spinoffs in the period from 2006 and 2008, according to a study prepared for the Canadian Real Estate Association by Altus Clayton.

Purchases and sales of homes trigger additional expenditures that have broad economic impacts, said CREA chief economist Gregory Klump.

#31 TheRatRaceHasBeenCancelled on 04.27.09 at 3:53 pm

It is a whole new ball game out there. Soon conspicuous consumption will be as socially reprehensible as smoking in public has become.

Then what will we do with all the three car garage Mc Mansions? Who will care about the latest fashions, gadgets and toys? How will we be able to enjoy our latest holiday to warmer climes?

All of this evidence of “success” will be like a target on our backs. It already is, as evidenced by the targeting of the twin towers, monuments to an excessive, unsustainable lifestyle.

Since we can not seem to control ourselves in the material sphere of life, laws will be passed to limit our consumption. Let us hope that we are not limited to just our fair share.

That would entail a massive cut to current lifestyles that would cripple softened, corpulent north americans that would rather die than live without the second 5000 sq ft house or the third car. Chances are they will get their wish.

Free yourselves. Lower your expectations. If the economy will crash without endless desire and destruction, then let the economy crash.

As far as I know you can’t get the flu from gardening in the back forty. A sore back and callouses, perhaps, but those don’t kill you. Be happy, live with less.

#32 glw on 04.27.09 at 4:05 pm

Here’s confidence for ya’ :

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/GM-employee-stock-fund-dumps-apf-15032782.html

WASHINGTON (AP) — The manager of General Motors’ employee stock fund has sold off all remaining shares of the troubled auto maker, which is closing plants and slashing costs in a bid to avoid bankruptcy.

#33 The Tallyman on 04.27.09 at 4:07 pm

Swine Ifluenza, the ultimate Bilderberg gag order.
Slap some masks over the masses whining pie holes and get em to shut up.
Guess they figure when your worried about your life… the raping & pillaging ain’t so bad… ya right.

Just when everybody thought it was safe to go back into the Wall St. cesspool.
Time to relocate to Xurbia people!

#34 Dave on 04.27.09 at 4:44 pm

Garth, I heard about this solar generator. I don’t know much about these things but a reliable source said this is a good one…who knows

http://www.mysolarbackup.com/

#35 Carole AB on 04.27.09 at 5:52 pm

After reading the book “The Great Influenza”, which I recommend for anyone interested, I believe Swine Influenza is a naturally occuring phenomenon, which health organizations have tried to track and prevent since the onset of avian flu. Its timing is of course really bad. If it turns into the pandemic which Doctors, nurses and world health authorities have been expecting, and preparing for, there is need for concern, particulary since the avian flu forms part of this new strain, (pigs act as a mixing vessel for Swine, Avian, human influenzas) With the Spanish flu the first wave occuring in the spring was relatively mild. Subsequently, in the fall it became more lethal. Young healthy people were particulary vulnerable. (This is one factor is setting off alarm bells with the situation in Mexico) The large no. of soldiers, travelling and living in close quarters in 1918 made it difficult to manage the spread of the disease.

From the “Great Influenza, the epic story of the deadliest plague in history” by John M. Barry

“In the winter of 1918, the coldest the American Midwest had ever endured, history’s most lethal influenza virus was born. Over the next year it flourished, killing as many as 100 million people. It killed more people in 24 weeks than Aids has killed in 24 years, more people in a year than the Black Death of the Middle Ages killed in a century. There were many echoes of the Middle Ages in 1918: victims turned blue-black and priests in some of the world’s most modern cities drove horse-drawn carts down the streets, calling upon people to bring out their dead.”

The good news is that if it is a similar type of pandemic we have antiviral drugs such as Tamiflu and new vaccines are being developed as we speak.

#36 gold bugger on 04.27.09 at 5:57 pm

@ Kurt: Fair enough.

Firstly, I’ll reassert: Nobody forces anybody to buy anything. That’s not the way I’d like it to be. That’s a fact. No amount of dressing it up in new-age, liberal-speak, psycho-analytical, mumbo-jumbo can change that. If you bought a property, you did so by your own free will. Unless, of course, you’re among the few who inhabit this and other RE comment boards who have suffered the cruel fate of being forced to sign a purchase agreement at the end of a handgun. To those people, I apologize for being so insensitive.

I believe in free will. I also believe in caveat emptor. But I also, I admit, believe in laws regarding fraud, negligence and misrepresentation.

The RE cartel (i.e., boards and their paid lackeys) makes statements that some people rely on when making purchasing decisions. If you or a group of like-minded individuals feel it is appropriate, you should initiate a class-action lawsuit against such agencies.

SOME realtors will represent properties in a fraudulent or negligent manner. Aggrieved parties should sue these realtors. Do not bother complaining to their boards. The board is just a collection of realtors and it exists to serve realtors. Similarly, self-regulation of realtors at the provincial level – as with self-regulation of doctors, dentists, lawyers, et al – exists to serve the people who pay the professional dues, not the public.

You ask, fairly, what moral obligations would I want to see imposed on sellers.

You can’t impose moral obligations. There are fairly extensive legal obligations on sellers already. I’m thinking of the Latent Material Disclosure statement required in B.C., for one thing. Personally, I do not agree with that requirement. You cannot account for all things that might be wrong, that might be wrong that you have not or have failed to discover, or that might go wrong. This is what the public increasingly expects government (ie. nanny state) to protect them from. Once we account for fraud and negligence, transactions should be governed strictly by caveat emptor. Buyer beware. Conduct your own due diligence. Make a decision born of your own free will.

Caveat emptor governed transactions for thousands of years. Government meddling in the name of “protecting consumers” has made transactions more treacherous, not less so. Check out the concept of “moral hazard” or “The Law of Unintended Consequences.”

You ask: “Should it be complete law of the jungle, or should there be some ethical limits on the influence specialty vendors (doctors, lawyers, realestate agents, auto mechanics etc.) are permitted to exert or attempt to exert on the general public?”

You cannot legislate ethics. However, there are Laws of Agency that govern when a consumer relies on the opinion of an expert. I will not attempt to explain them. You’ll have to pay your $250 an hour and get your lawyer to do so. Alternatively, any good library would have books explaining Laws of Agency in Canada. Or the Googles.

You conclude: “If you advocate law of the jungle, have you considered the impact of the increased “economic friction” (technically, transaction costs) that results from reduced levels of trust on the health of the economy as a whole? Would the benefits outweigh the impact of increased friction?”

I would argue that the interference in the free market that you advocate is what produces friction and costs consumers dearly. I recommend you read Milton Friedman, to start. Then move on to Hazlitt, Hayek and Mises.

In conclusion, assuming we’re not talking about a monopoly situation such as the old Bell telephone system or the government and its tax collectors, consumers have a choice. Whether to take public transit or purchase a car from any number of manufacturers. Whether to marry the rich ugly girl or the poor beautiful one. Whether to live at home, rent an apartment or purchase a house whether new or used. Whether to employ the services of a realtor or to sell your home yourself or search for a house yourself. Whether to trust the advice you are getting, to discount it, or to dismiss is completely.

Free will. Powerful stuff.

#37 Shifty on 04.27.09 at 6:03 pm

Pontiac is gone.
Ohhhh well I still have memories of that 74 Trans am even though it almost killed me twice. Those days were sure care free and gone for ever. May be a Harley.

#38 Darryl on 04.27.09 at 6:08 pm

34 Dave.

It,s a 75 watt solar panel with a battery pack/ inverter. Where’s the break through ?

#39 Chris in England at the moment on 04.27.09 at 6:17 pm

“…this scare is the kind of event economists and governments have been secretly dreading.

Is it? As the old BLiar government in the UK would say: It’s a good day to bury bad news. The more we run around shrieking about swine fever and Mexican flu, the less we notice what they are doing. I don’t doubt it “could” turn into the pandemic they have been talking about for decades, but it might just as easily fizzle out. Meanwhile, I am watching carefully, and not just the coughs and sneezes.

#40 jwkimb on 04.27.09 at 7:12 pm

Bondholders of GM have no choice but to accept 225 shares per $1000 of bonds…otherwise GM threatens to go Chapter 11.
How long would you hold these shares if you were a present bond holder?
————————-
A large percent of GM boindholders also hold insurance (through things like CDS sold by AIG!) on those bonds. If they trade in their bonds for shares they get nothing as shareholders are last in line when a company goes under.

However, if they hang on to their bonds and the company goes under- ka ching!- insurance kicks in and AIG (via the feds of course) will pay them FULL FACE VALUE of the bonds. So many bondholders would rather GM went under now. How many? We’ll see how many take the offer to convert to shares…the rest have insurance.

#41 George Popovic on 04.27.09 at 7:14 pm

Governments everywhere, led by the US are falling all over themselves to rescue the Status Quo. They are having some degree of success as I see many people who have not recognized the severity of the mess we are in.

I see new SUVs and little attempt to reduce debt loads. The markets are heading up and all around there are comments on how the worst is behind us.

I find it interesting that there are two distinct opinions in talking with various people. There are those on this blog who see a fairly bleak picture, the one I happen to share. Then, there are those who are convinced that the good old days are just around the corner.

It will be interesting to see who is right.

#42 Da HK Kid on 04.27.09 at 7:21 pm

It will be very interesting how Asian market respond today as the US raises caution on the Swine!

We arrived in HK during SARS and it was an interesting time to say the least. Then further on it was the scare of BirdFlu.

Remember, where you see one cockroach, there are another 100 close by that you cant see!

I would expect travel to fall off big time shortly! Also, associated stocks quickly.

Whether you believed in the Bear of not, it will awaken shortly, maybe too cranky from oversleeping.

I still have over 100 masks left over from SARS and BirdFlu, now where did I put them? Oh yeah, right beside that stack of cash!!!!

#43 Dave on 04.27.09 at 7:37 pm

34 Dave.

It,s a 75 watt solar panel with a battery pack/ inverter. Where’s the break through ?

——————————————

I don’t know a thing about these things. Where do I get more information?

#44 Kurt on 04.27.09 at 8:27 pm

#36 Gold Bugger: I am honored – you obviously put a lot of thought and effort into your reply and you’ve given me some interesting leads to follow up. (Bob Bagina, take note: Gold has restated the question in terms of free will and agency, a very fertile field for discussion.) I am not convinced, and would like to respond to you in kind, but I fear this thread might close and I wanted to recognize your efforts in context. Thanks, GB!

#45 john m on 04.27.09 at 8:29 pm

Scary thought! ……….what next? …………ive been feeling ill for a couple of years from the sheeple walking amongst us (cowering and silent)……..hmmmmmmm if this turns into an epidemic………..will the sheeple stop cowering and look after us??????? Can you catch this from sheeple????

#46 . . . fried eggs and spam . . . on 04.27.09 at 9:12 pm

#13 PTDBD at 11:43 am — “1918 pandemic – 50 million deaths”

Just suppose this pandemic is designed to grow out of all proportion, the US, Mexican and Cdn. govts. are forced to close their borders to all outsiders — no one gets in, no one leaves and “No One Here Gets Out Alive!”

In tandem with home foreclosures on this continent, this is one way to downsize and control the population.

The ‘Elite’ would be quite impressed with the orderly and efficient manner in which this is being accomplished! — http://tinyurl.com/d2qh4d

Don’t understand why sheeple are so terrified of a perfectly normal experience. Birth – Life – Death or Beginning – Middle – End.

As each individual will see for themselves when their lifecycles conclude, we already know what the continuation of life without these clay temples (physical bodies) is like.
——
It would be curious to co-relate countries’ rapid economic declines with rising food / fuel and other costs plus the combination pig / bird / human flu, which now look to hover somewhere in the trillions, especially if pandemics occur worldwide. — http://tinyurl.com/djwddh
——
Re: Climate change. Longer, colder, snowier winters; shorter, cooler summers; spring and fall a few degrees cooler. I’m still wearing a light sweater, and most of the gardens have not been planted yet.

More electricity and other sources of heat needed, just in time to crash the entire system! — http://tinyurl.com/cvsb9g
——
Guess who has found more oil and gas fields? That’s right . . . — http://tinyurl.com/d87mfa
——
How are things worldwide economically? Consider. — http://tinyurl.com/d3tr3x | http://tinyurl.com/cvblo8 | http://tinyurl.com/ckr9x7

#47 Gord In Vancouver on 04.27.09 at 9:30 pm

Hopefully, this flu scares the heck out of those who refuse to wash their hands, lick their fingers before turning pages, and refuse to take sick days. Karma sucks, doesn’t it?

#48 Reg on 04.27.09 at 9:38 pm

To those that believe the RE representatives when they say things like now is a great time to buy, or the time has never been better to buy… ask them to put in writing that if the value of the RE you are about to purchase drops within the next 10 to 12 months, they’ll reimburse you the difference.

I think you might have trouble finding an Realtor that is willing to put their money where their mouth is.

#49 Rural Rick on 04.27.09 at 9:38 pm

Expecting the people who caused the problem to solve it is like waiting for the pigs to fly.
And look there they go…
Must be the avian component of swine flu that lets those guys get air like that.
Definitely Snowbird material.
Bread and circuses.
Any thing to draw attention away from the incompetence that caused our economic problems.
It is also a great non tariff trade barrier.
We support Free Trade but buy locally to prevent pigs from flying I mean flu.

#50 Farmer Ben on 04.27.09 at 9:40 pm

To all Garth blog readers.
Please look at the *Dust Masks* People are wearing to protect them from Swine Influenza.
Virus sizes are- 8 to just over 300 nanometers. I wonder if the people at the airport wonder?
Drugs- 3- very little testing on pregnant women.

New Flash! One more cruise ship line today said good bye to Vancouver.
Car makers on welfare. Do people still think Garth is kidding them? He is NOT.

#51 Future Expatriate on 04.27.09 at 10:29 pm

#13 –

Here’s the math:

1918 Pandemic… 100,000 deaths worldwide.

World population at the time: 1,800,000,000

Main method of world travel: Ship

Current world population: 6,776,211,893

Estimated deaths worldwide at same rate of 1918 pandemic: 406,572

Current mode of world travel: Air

Taking in account air travel, deaths from a current flu pandemic could double the rate of spread of 1918, to top 1 million.

Easily.

#52 young & foolish on 04.27.09 at 10:32 pm

we are in a period of transition …. and as Garth notes, such periods are fraught with turbulence that produces winners and losers …. pay attention, but don’t believe that the world will end tomorrow

#53 dean on 04.27.09 at 11:07 pm

hey I thought I was MR.Knowitall!!

#54 nonplused on 04.27.09 at 11:12 pm

Why haven’t we heard about all the sick pigs? With the avian flu they were culling birds by the thousands because they were getting sick. If it truly is a swine flu there should be sick pigs.

Or is this a media diversion from all the talk going on of indicting Paulson, Bernanke, etc.?

#29 Bill

90% of the rigs in Alberta are lying down. We are shedding jobs faster per capita than Ontario. The government went from a surplus to a record deficit in one year. What exactly do we need to have happen to call this a recession?

The malls are still busy, true. Not everyone’s UI has run out yet and unemployment rates are still low when compared to some areas. But the trend is troubling. But new cars aren’t selling. Cochrane Dodge will give you a free car if you buy a truck or Jeep. They don’t do that during boom times.

#34 Dave

Garth already sells a Power Hub (and you can order them from Canadian Tire – or at least you used to be able to) which has much bigger battery capacity when fitted out (up to 4 100 Amp hour batteries with the extra battery box).

But the main limitation of this sort of system is that you need a whack of panels and lots of batteries to run anything close to a sufficient backup system. A 75 watt panel won’t even keep a small deep freeze going for more than a few hours. These systems are grossly undersized for what they are advertised to do. 750 watts of solar power might get you going for limited power consumption (freezer, florescent lights, and intermittent furnace use. Computer if the internet is still up, which it won’t be for long.)

#55 Barb the proof reader on 04.27.09 at 11:32 pm

“”No signs of recession in Alberta.””
–#29 Bill

That’s B.S. !!

I bought a $200 pair of shoes today for $20 — the store is closing Friday. Businesses in Calgary are suffering, sales are down everywhere. Many have lost jobs. Housing prices are down substantially. Construction slow and contractors are available and searching for work.

——————————-

Garth,

I just passed my 1 year anniversary of reading your blog. You have been 100% correct and honest every step of the way. Thanks for your much needed straight talk to Canadians. Your service to this country is greatly appreciated. Your sense of humour, thoughtfulness and timing are divine.

#56 . . . fried eggs and spam . . . on 04.28.09 at 12:52 am

Other Use For Bra — It makes great cell phone holder. Hands free! — http://tinyurl.com/d4af2f
——
Cutting hospital staff goes a long way to ensure sick people don’t get the help they need. Accident waiting to happen? — http://tinyurl.com/dgdeap
——
“Record Expansion of the Fed’s Balance Sheet and M2” — http://tinyurl.com/dd88an

Do I smell inflation? Wendy’s Baconaters are scrumptious, Highly Developed and Tasty Nutritious Meals!
——
Husky Had A Hiccup; Alberta may have more sheeple than other provinces! — http://tinyurl.com/ckun8e

#57 Dave on 04.28.09 at 1:46 am

Here’s the math:

1918 Pandemic… 100,000 deaths worldwide.

World population at the time: 1,800,000,000

Main method of world travel: Ship

Current world population: 6,776,211,893

Estimated deaths worldwide at same rate of 1918 pandemic: 406,572

Current mode of world travel: Air

Taking in account air travel, deaths from a current flu pandemic could double the rate of spread of 1918, to top 1 million.

Easily.
—————————————————–

I counter your “math” argument with my “information” argument in that information travels millions of times faster than it did in 1918.

Dave 1 You 0

#58 Dave on 04.28.09 at 1:50 am

#34 Dave

Garth already sells a Power Hub (and you can order them from Canadian Tire – or at least you used to be able to) which has much bigger battery capacity when fitted out (up to 4 100 Amp hour batteries with the extra battery box).

But the main limitation of this sort of system is that you need a whack of panels and lots of batteries to run anything close to a sufficient backup system. A 75 watt panel won’t even keep a small deep freeze going for more than a few hours. These systems are grossly undersized for what they are advertised to do. 750 watts of solar power might get you going for limited power consumption (freezer, florescent lights, and intermittent furnace use. Computer if the internet is still up, which it won’t be for long.)
———————————————–

thank you very much for that. Not sure why you think the internet won’t be up for much longer though

#59 Da HK Kid on 04.28.09 at 1:56 am

Ha Ha, GOVERNMENT MOTORS!

#60 Da HK Kid on 04.28.09 at 2:10 am

Here are just six of the most egregious lies from our leaders:

1. The government is conducting stress tests on the nation’s 19 largest banks, assuming a worst-case scenario.
2. “Most U.S. banking organizations currently have capital levels well in excess of the amounts required to be well capitalized.”
3. Big banks made solid profits in the fourth quarter.
4. Your insurance is safe. And even if your insurance company fails, your state insurance guaranty association will back it up.
5. The economy is showing signs of recovery.
6. Since your stocks will eventually recover, you should just hold on through thick and thin.

The truth hurts. But it also heals.

That’s the lesson of the Great Depression of the 1930s, the S&L disaster of the 1980s, the giant insurance failures of the 1990s, and the tech wreck of the early 2000s.

As long as Wall Street and Washington hid the real facts and lied about their true consequences, the crisis lingered and deepened. It wasn’t until they confessed to past blunders, flushed out the bad assets, and let the marketplace determine their true values that the crisis finally began to end.

Our leaders know this. Yet they do nothing about it.

#61 Mr.Calgary on 04.28.09 at 2:26 am

Barb the proof reader

Which store?

#62 Bruce on 04.28.09 at 3:51 am

For what it’s worth, I live in a fairly modest part of town. Since January, there have been four business failures just on one block alone. A local pizza joint, a kitchen & bath centre, a video rental shop, and a photographer have all closed up shop, some of them literally overnight with no warning or impending signs that they were closing(this usually signals that they broke the lease).

I’ve also noticed how stores like Value Village and The Bargain! Shop have increased their business. Hell, even at Sears, I bought an $80 pair of jeans marked down to $20. The entire mall was dead. The workers were all standing around with very worried/anxious looks on their faces as if they somehow knew their days were numbered. Even the local newspaper has ceased publication on Mondays…

The last thing the global economy needed at this point was a widespread flu pandemic. Ironic thing is, I made a prediction over Christmas dinner that 2008 was going to be the beginning of the end, and that 2009 would see an event that would bring the world to its knees. I tend to agree with forecasters like Gerald Celente(nearly a 100% accuracy rate) and Peter Schiff. We are only one more major event away from a complete collapse and a new Great Depression. Could this be “it”? I guess we’ll all find out soon enough.

Good luck and Godspeed to all the bloggers out there. I have a feeling we’re gonna need it.

#63 The Tallyman on 04.28.09 at 4:10 am

Hey while everyone is wearing those stupid masks…
Wouldn’t it be a great time to be pulling Bank Jobs.

#64 wjp on 04.28.09 at 5:04 am

# 40…not all bondholders have insurance through AIG, in fact, one retiree invested $200,000 @ 7.2% and the income was more than 50% of he and his wife’s income. That story I read yesterday. Even if they are insured, the taxpayer will be bailing them out ultimately. I say no bailouts period…I don’t care what company it goes to, at least in Canada where I vote. Why should my grandchildren pay for failed companies…I didn’t see any of those sweet executive compensation bonuses coming their way in the good times? In fact, I think it borders on criminal that fat cat executives drove their companies into the ground while still living high on the hog.
Are we in Canada going to bailout GM to lose 57% of their jobs, not the mention the job losses at the dealers and related industries. Those crying for bailouts keep yelling us it will be a disaster if we let them restructure under Chapter 11. I think it already is! Buy GM, not a chance!

#65 wjp on 04.28.09 at 6:07 am

Here’s another little tidbit on how the bloodsucker corporations are attempting the screw the public. On Global news last night, seems American Express is deflecting claims for prepaid Conquest bookings onto Tico. Only when the SOS guy from Global contacted them did things get moving. I suppose they plan to pay executive bonuses with those funds, how dare the minions claim for services not rendered! The average person is only there to pay interest charges and card fees.

#66 Sam Mcboldon on 04.28.09 at 6:08 am

Alberta gambling revenue expected to outstrip oilsands royalties

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/calgary/story/2009/04/27/cgy-alberta-gambling-revenues.html

#67 Munch on 04.28.09 at 6:09 am

My what a wonderful finger!

No?

It’s not a wonderful finger!

The statement is pointless – the finger is speechless!

#68 Jeff Smith on 04.28.09 at 8:29 am

> #12 Future Expatriate on 04.27.09 at 11:25 am
>
> Anyone who thinks that pandemics are a joke or plot are paperpushers and pa
perholders afraid theyÆre going to be wiped out. News flash; you are; it was eve
r so.
>
> All bets are off. The reaction to this is not a joke, itÆs severely and rid
iculously restrained, and already a case of too little, too late.
>
> Scientists have been predicting a global influenza pandemic bigger than 191
8 (more air travel and US illegal immigration) for decades now. This is not some
ôshadow governmentö scam. ItÆs the real thing, although it might go underground
for a few weeks and come back with a vengeance once it mutates yet again (as di
d the 1918 strain.)
>
> This one of the final nails on the paper coffin and any further sham ôrecov
eryö. Take care of yourself and your families. In EVERY way.

Better stop eating pork just to be safe. I ate some the other day and now I am having a slight … Hope it won’t get worse :(

Also get yourself travel plans to sparsely populated region of Canada (e.g. Yukon, Nunavut, northern Quebec etc) just in case it gets really bad and people start to drop like flies around your neighborhood. Be prepared to hunt seals and other proteins e.g. squirrels to survive for a year or so. Yes a year or so at least before the virus finish its course through the world’s population. This is serious matter. Ahem!

#69 Greg W., Oakville on 04.28.09 at 8:36 am

Hi #63 The Tallyman on 04.28.09 at 4:10 am

“Hey while everyone is wearing those stupid masks…”
Can the type of mask you use actually block the small partial size of a virus?

“Wouldn’t it be a great time to be pulling Bank Jobs.”
Have you seen this tool yet, for going through concert, bank walls? see the 2nd ‘breaking concert’ video at;
http://www.ezebreak.com/video/movies_alt.htm
(make sure you get the ok, before trying this at your local bank vaults.) 7min.

#70 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 8:44 am

No happy campers here …

1. Jason Kenney endorses Tim Hudak as leader of the Ontario PC party

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090424.wonttories24art2236/CommentStory/politics/home#comment3478993

2. “Cannot Recall” statement by Fred Doucet fails the test for truthiness at Oliphant inquiry. Amnesiac of prior century award pending.

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2009/04/27/doucet-inquiry.html?
Authorized=1&AuthenticationKey=1_9_1a6762f5-5820-40e8-a54a-ca6573b20c35.pakceabnbholai#articlecomments

3. Daimler pulls out of association with former girlfriend Cerberus / Chrysler with forgiveness of bond indebtedness offered as reverse cherry and $600 million delayed staged contributions to union pensions.

http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009904270424

4. CHRYSLER / U.A.W. CRISIS REVISIONS TO 2007 LABOUR CONTRACT

http://download.gannett.edgesuite.net/detnews/2009/pdf/UAWChrysler.pdf

#71 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 8:52 am

How to view isolation in a flu pandemic

http://multimedia.thestar.com/images/3f/a9/f8614283455cb5745752dacb8b55.jpeg

#72 $fromA$ia on 04.28.09 at 8:52 am

Again a drop in the spot price in the U.S. trading day.

U.S.A. is where this economic crisis started, so why is gold dropping?

Chinese are adding gold for their reserves, I bet the U.S. is flogging thier gold to the Chinese to make up for those ponzi American treasuries oh and while their add it they are thowing some into circulation to push the spot down.

Garth, you think Gocernments are capable of this kind of minipulation? I bet you believe that the Conservatives are guilty of it!

#73 frustrated citizen on 04.28.09 at 9:17 am

Negative interest now? Is it just me or are the Fed’s actions more and more akin to that of a heroin addict: pushing failed monetary policies to the point of crash and burn?

Financial Times: Fed study puts ideal US interest rate at -5%

#74 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 9:25 am

Chrysler Creditors Agree to Deal With Treasury

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/04/28/AR2009042801241.html?hpid=topnews

#75 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 9:34 am

Assessing Obama’s first 100 days

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/video/2009/04/27/VI2009042703062.html?hpid=artslot

#76 canuck99 on 04.28.09 at 9:36 am

ah… belay that last request, garth… apparently my “frustrated citizen” post made it through the blockade.

#77 smwhite on 04.28.09 at 9:43 am

Here is Garth’s interview on CFRA…

http://www.cfra.com/chum_audio/Garth_Turner_Apr27.mp3

Your brave walking into the Lion’s den Garth. CRFA is very pro “Harper”.

#78 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 9:48 am

Washington Post video coverage—swine flu response
( series )

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/video/2009/04/27/VI2009042702810.html

#79 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 10:08 am

“The Wall Street crowd didn’t look too far past the headlines last week when Caterpillar reported a big loss … the first quarterly loss in 17 years. And Caterpillar CEO, Jim Owens, painted a big pessimistic exclamation mark on those headlines with this ugly quote:

“A great deal of uncertainty exists in the global economy, making it extremely difficult to know how our customers will respond during the remainder of 2009.”

The numbers backed up his dreary forecast.”

http://www.moneyandmarkets.com/a-little-digging-often-leads-to-great-treasures-3-33430

#80 VOODOO on 04.28.09 at 10:38 am

Annual # deaths due to influenza in Canada=4000

Number of swine influenza infections in Canada=6

No Worries=Priceless.

by the way, masks are worn to prevent aerosol inhalation (aersols are much bigger than viruses and are produced by coughs and sneezes. They can carry a hefty dose of virus particles)

#81 Paul Fist In Your Face on 04.28.09 at 10:38 am

The pigs are back at the trough. Maybe these swine will all get swine flu and get turned into Zombies. Hey! Zombie managers at Zombie banks. I see a movie starring Ben Afflect as Ben Bernanke in this some where. Night of the Living Dead Ass Bankers.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/27/opinion/27krugman.html?_r=1

#82 squidly77 on 04.28.09 at 10:46 am

Or is this a media diversion from all the talk going on of indicting Paulson, Bernanke, etc.?

yup..

#83 squidly77 on 04.28.09 at 10:54 am

paulson strong arming lewis and lewis folding like a cheap beach chair while bernanke watched on has been a fraud of epic proportions..literally the crime of the century

thousands will be dispatched in order to bury the story

#84 Mel on 04.28.09 at 11:20 am

Nice interview with you on Politics with Don Neuman yesterday….

http://www.cbc.ca/politics/

#85 905er & Spouse on 04.28.09 at 11:34 am

This swine flu is worrisome. It has been predicted that there will be a major flu soon in the next few years that will have devastating effects on the population worldwide.

Might be time to make an addition to your bad day box: N95 masks, maybe gloves and gowns too like healthcare workers use. If you wait until you want them, there probably won’t be enough to go around. Also extra hand sanitizer. I think the places that sell industrial masks also sell the N95 masks.

#86 905er & Spouse on 04.28.09 at 11:49 am

#80 VOO DOO
As someone who is a healthcare professional and has used the masks: the N95 mask does protect against viruses. You have to pinch the nose area (wire reinforced around your nose). They have done testing on these I believe and they will protect most of the population.

#87 supersocco on 04.28.09 at 12:05 pm

This Could Be The Buying Opportunity Of A Lifetime!
http://www.canadianbusiness.com/canadian_business_magazine/index.jsp

#88 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 12:12 pm

Specter To Switch Parties

Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter will switch his party affiliation from Republican to Democrat and announced today that he will run in 2010 as a Democrat, according to a statement he released this morning.

Specter’s decision would give Democrats a 60 seat filibuster proof majority in the Senate assuming Democrat Al Franken is eventually sworn in as the next senator from Minnesota. (Former senator Norm Coleman is appealing Franken’s victory in the state Supreme Court.)

“I have decided to run for re-election in 2010 in the Democratic primary,” said Specter in a statement. “I am ready, willing and anxious to take on all comers and have my candidacy for re-election determined in a general election.”

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/senate/specter-to-switch-parties.html?hpid=topnews

#89 Paul Fist In Your Face on 04.28.09 at 12:34 pm

“And these little piggies went to market..”

http://www.wealthdaily.com/report/the-architects-of-destruction/391

#90 Darryl on 04.28.09 at 1:18 pm

Dave

I think the death toll for 1918 was 30 to 50 million.Not 100k
That should up your estimate a bit.

#91 VOODOO on 04.28.09 at 1:21 pm

http://www.canada.com/health/story.html?id=E4ABDBC6-7C14-4B23-BE1D-1BF381D9546B

“..only the N95 model, said by the U.S. government to keep out 95 per cent of particulates..”

#92 pbrasseur on 04.28.09 at 1:32 pm

“Specter To Switch Parties”

Did he have a blog :-)

#93 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 1:35 pm

The new natural gas model

Fiat has just released the new Ducato 140 Natural Power natural gas model, a 3-litre engine, developing EC maximum 136 HP (100 kW), with 2,750-3,500 rpm, and maximum torque of 350 Nm at 1,500 rpm. The Maxi Van – Medium Wheelbase – High Roof configuration can hit a top speed of 155km/h, with acceleration of 0-100 km/h in 13.9 seconds, and pick-up of 60-100 km/h (in fifth gear) in 10.1 seconds, says Fiat. It is also able to negotiate a 21.5% gradient when fully loaded. Fiat goes on to say that this new vehicle boasts reduced fuel consumption (8.8 kg of natural gas per 100 km in the combined cycle) and lower CO2 emissions (239 g/km).

The vehicle is configured to default to natural gas. Petrol supply is provided automatically only when the natural gas is about to run out: the petrol tank holds 15 litres in recovery mode to assure 100 km driving distance to reach the nearest natural gas station.

The Fiat Ducato recently achieved a major milestone as its production total rose to two million units since the launch of the first version in 1981. For information visit Fiatcamper.

David Greig

http://www.gizmag.com/ducato-motorhome-base-vehicle-award/11440/

http://www.fiatcamper.com/homepage.php?lang=en

#94 ally ally oxycontin free on 04.28.09 at 1:46 pm

Alberta sees biggest EI increase in Canada

http://www.calgaryherald.com/Business/Alberta+sees+biggest+increase+Canada/1542175/story.html

#95 Future Expatriate on 04.28.09 at 1:55 pm

#57 – “Dave”, information isn’t going to keep you or anyone else from becoming infected. This bug is infinitely more virulent than Mexico is letting on to keep their number one industry (tourism) from being completely decimated.

It’s already too large and too widespread worldwide to effectively quarantine, which is what scientists and the CDC have been predicting for decades.

Last night on the most prominent overnight radio show in the US, experts were predicting not a million deaths, but over a hundred million.

So my estimates are quite conservative, and your “information” is utterly worthless.

Only idiots listen to someone who scores themselves.

#96 Future Expatriate on 04.28.09 at 1:57 pm

#68 – “Jeff Smith” and his family… the first pooh-poohers to die in ANY pandemic.

#97 Future Expatriate on 04.28.09 at 2:12 pm

To get back to real estate:

Banks are BULLDOZING BRAND NEW MODEL HOMES in Southern California.

a href=”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvrc7x3Amps&annotation_id=annotation_569411&feature=iv”Here.

#98 Chris in England at the moment on 04.28.09 at 2:30 pm

Gord in Vancouver #47: “Hopefully, this flu scares the heck out of those who refuse to wash their hands, lick their fingers before turning pages, ”

I hate those finger-licking page turners! They should definitely be quarantined.

#99 Check your "math" on 04.28.09 at 2:30 pm

Future Expat

I see you allowed for increases in technology for virus transmission, in what you call “doing the math”.

You forgot to adjust for the technology on the prevention and treatment side of things. Unless you think the field of medicine hasn’t advanced since 1918??

#100 Check your "math" on 04.28.09 at 2:32 pm

#57 – “Dave”, information isn’t going to keep you or anyone else from becoming infected. This bug is infinitely more virulent than Mexico is letting on to keep their number one industry (tourism) from being completely decimated.

Proof?

#101 R on 04.28.09 at 2:52 pm

I was at the mall the other day. Went to use the public washroom . People coming out of the stalls and not washing their hands. Just bypassing the sinks then off to the stores to touch everything. WASH YOUR HANDS PEOPLE! We have a flu outbreak every year. My guess is that the people who have died probably had a pre existing medical condition. I think this is a new way to get us to spend. Lets all run around and run up our credit cards . Lets all run around and buy all the things we always wanted. This week might be our last. Please remember to wash your hands before and after donning the mask and gloves.

#102 Danforth on 04.28.09 at 3:13 pm

Future Expatriate…

Here is the correct URL for the demolition of model homes in SoCal:

http://www.youtube.com/user/visionvictory
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvrc7x3Amps

#103 dd on 04.28.09 at 3:22 pm

#29 Bill

“So, in a nutshell, I don’t know what the doom-and-gloom is about.”

You talked to any layed off workers lately?

#104 JoeCalgary on 04.28.09 at 3:44 pm

For those considering and discussing masks, the majority of emergency and emergency ward workers do not wear N95’s.

For those doctors presently saying “the food is safe,” please consider who picks and packages the majority of fruits and vegetables throughout NA and what their personal hygiene practices might be. If the virus is aerosolized and transferable via fomites, eating raw fruits and vegetables without thoroughly sterilizing them first might not be a wise idea.

#105 Davinci on 04.28.09 at 4:15 pm

People ask me all the time what is the exit Strategy for gold and silver?
I have to answer the question with a question…
What is their exit strategy for paper currency?

Check out my video on the subject…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C1OBrYzRDrA

For 6000 years and even today, no other form of money is safer than gold. You can put your savings into gold and silver coins and know with 100% confidence that the price of things you need such as food, energy, clothing and rent will be virtually the same or lower when priced in silver or gold.

Many ask me should I invest in gold and silver, that’s like asking me, should you invest in currency. Money is not an investment.

All my life I have had 7 investment advisers and not one, I REPEAT NOT ONE told me to buy gold or silver when I asked the question. Why can’t I just save?

Ron Paul, a politician saved my life and changed my financial future forever.

You may wonder why I am here spouting the virtues of gold. Well I know that one day in our life times people will look back and wonder why people accepted paper or electronic credits that anyone can create by taking out a loan, as payment of real goods and services. It is truly unreal how the whole world was fooled.

Someone has to educate the masses, the clarity of the obvious.
“Gold is money and nothing else!” JP Morgan
“Paper is paper money is money.” a Farmer 100 years ago.

#106 Marc on 04.28.09 at 4:17 pm

#101 R on 04.28.09 at 2:52 pm

Try going to a hockey game. A few times I have seen people eating hot dogs while using a urinal. I would never consider bringing food into a washroom, let alone eat it in there, or even afterwards. That has to be the epitome of disgusting.

#107 the Coming Depression on 04.28.09 at 4:40 pm

Danforth: I guess people are reading my blog for the REAL TRUTH

#108 Future Expatriate on 04.28.09 at 5:22 pm

#100- One doctor in a town in Mexico is reporting 87 deaths in his town alone, and being asked by officials to put any other cause of death possible on the certificates.

The internet is complete afire with people reporting vast differences from mainstream media and official reports.

Of course, ostriches will never read such things.

#109 Future Expatriate on 04.28.09 at 5:23 pm

#102 Thanks! Strangely enough in the preview it showed up accurately.

#110 Increasing that 1% on 04.28.09 at 7:28 pm

# 104. Joe Calgary

“For those considering and discussing masks, the majority of emergency and emergency ward workers do not wear N95’s”
———————————————————

Yeah, and they’re actually being put at increased risk if someone is forcefully coughing, and they breathe in whatever that person may have and their immune system doesn’t happen to protect them that day.
Granted the risk may be low, but it depends on one’s comfort level….something like financial investing

Actually N95 masks for healthcare workers at high risk, are also fitted annually, and must be worn properly, ensuring seal, replaced if wet.

#111 dbg on 04.28.09 at 10:53 pm

107 The Coming Depression – “the REAL TRUTH”

I guess the truth isn’t enough it has to be “REAL”

You are hilarious!

How about a selling some of that gold and buying a real dictionary. Not one of those huckster’s vocabulary books.

#112 Davinci on 04.29.09 at 11:05 am

#111 dbg

There are 3 different kinds of truths:
1. The truth you believe.
2. The truth someone tells you.
3. The real truth that remains true forever.

Generally people hate an absolute truth, we want to get around it and not face it. We do so by denying it, ridiculing it and thank god we stopped persecuting it. Yes that’s right it was death to state that the world revolved around the Sun. Yet that REAL TRUTH has remained the same forever like gold IS MONEY.

Today we do not kill the person speaking the truth, we try to find faults in the individual and not the message. This gives you satisfaction that the message is in correct if there is something wrong with the person providing it. It also prevents anyone curious enough to ask questions fearing they fall victim to a public scrutiny. Well, that’s not death and I am not afraid of you making jokes at my expense. It causes me no pain or anger.

#113 Barb the proof reader on 04.29.09 at 5:27 pm

#61 Mr.Calgary “Which store?”

Foot Solutions.

Just got back from travel in Hawaii.. stunning how many businesses are closed.

#114 Doug Plumb on 04.30.09 at 7:07 am

There is no doubt in my mind about the flu virus being engineered. We will all be required to take shots as we enter the second guilded age. The Rockefellers and Monsanto will be in control of what goes into your mouth and veins.

As far as the economy goes, its going to crash. It was engineered just like all the other ones. Recessions don’t create a loss or gain of wealth – they transfer wealth from the middle class to the top.

When they sell GM, all the machine tools we have will go to China. We will only know how to build prisons and train police and military. We will keep those Chinese in line and paying their taxes with our guns while they supply us with some of the goods they make – for those of us that will be able to afford it.

Lots of jobs for young people – be a police officer or join the military. Enforcement is required for this new interdependent age of Aquarius.

It will all be under the auspices of saving the planet from global warming and that dreadful photo-synthesis process.

Your meds are on the ledge above the kitchen sink. — Garth