Both

crisis1

Oil at sixty bucks a barrel. The TSX at 10,000. Investors making 10% returns – per month. At the same time, Hitachi loses $8 billion for Japan’s biggest-ever corporate dump, while bankruptcies and business failures soar in Canada.

Welcome to a world of contrasts and contradictions which will continue for months, if not years. Deflation and inflation at the same time. Danger and opportunity. Growth and recession. Fear and greed.

As reported here by a visitor a couple of days ago, a big box grocery store in suburban west Toronto had a limited half-price sale on the weekend. Staff had to lock the doors twice because of overcapacity crowds. By end of day, the place looked like a war zone – a suburban battlefield where middle class shoppers had been desperate to save a few dollars.

On a macro level, things are stabilizing. Banks arn’t collapsing. Credit is flowing. Governments are cooperating and propping.

On a micro level, things are deteriorating. Job opportunities are zilch. Family finances are awful. Plazas, strip malls and industrial units are quietly emptying.

Some time ago I said the stock market would continue to be a leading indicator in times such as these, and be the first to recover. Energy prices, I added, would soon follow. This is still the plan, although all investors should expect both could plunge again for days or weeks.

But nobody should take a market advance as a sign the real economy is improving – that this is the moment to buy houses or take on new debt. As I’ve indicated in the last couple of posts, there are serious reasons why the next few years will be full of turmoil for the struggling middle class. Tradespeople will go unemployed. Young grads will be underemployed. Many boomers will be finished.

Danger and fear. But also opportunity and greed.

In the coming days, I’ll dish both.

97 comments ↓

#1 Phil on 05.12.09 at 10:22 pm

Good post Garth but perhaps the stock market is no longer a leading indicator. Here is an interesting article:

http://tinyurl.com/pawfeg

“Many pundits … point to the stock market as a leading indicator. That is, the market recovers before Main Street does. These pundits are using out dated models.”

#2 gloom and doom on 05.12.09 at 10:23 pm

“On a micro level, things are deteriorating. Job opportunities are zilch. Family finances are awful. Plazas, strip malls and industrial units are quietly emptying.”

Can’t really say I have noticed this. You are a bit of a drama queen.

#3 lgre on 05.12.09 at 10:34 pm

Stock markets lead, they indicate nothing. They are leading based on optimism..as we seen in the last 2 days, the optimism is wearing off.

BUT, there are some excellent stocks out there for really good value right now, if the time horizon is 5+ years then its a good time to buy.

#4 Too Old Bob$ on 05.12.09 at 10:38 pm

I agree Garth. Do what the rich do. Those who don’t need the money (day to day), put their money where there is pessimism. They’ve done the real estate thing and some people still think this is where to go for investing. I say put it in the markets, but be careful what you choose.
Since this correction was initiated, I have continued to make small increments into the markets. Some of my stock has dropped 43%, yet I’m still ahead because I bought many years ago at lower prices. One stock I have is still paying a quarterly dividend, which it always has. Yield right now is about 8.3% due to the price.
So if you can afford it and have the balls, then sneak it into the markets, but as I said before. Choose wisely.

PS. no I don’t use brokers.

#5 U.S.$fromA$iaComming home= inflation on 05.12.09 at 10:40 pm

Yum gold! Mmmm.+7% and financials -2% :P

#6 Da HK Kid on 05.12.09 at 10:54 pm

Bang On Garth, we are all going to have to STC (Surf The Chaos) on this one. All, here is a good article by the WSP titled;

Was It a Sucker’s Rally?
You can have a jobless recovery but you can’t have a profitless one.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124208415028908497.html

Also, my man Gary Shilling on the RE market (it’s a month old but a great reminder of what is really going on)

Real Estate Expert: When will the housing crisis end?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wC315YLcbSw

Focuses on excess inventories and the downward spiral! He doesnt mention the shadow inventories but the challenge of what is coming. No recovery in housing and another 20% down into 2011 for the US.

#7 nonplused on 05.12.09 at 11:01 pm

US financials had a spectacular rally off a collapse, but I remember the Nortel chart and the big bounce it had. Too many people trying to pick a bottom because “this is a $100 stock!” Stay away.

It should be remembered that the US banking system has virtually collapsed, and it would have collapsed without a trillion in low cost loans from the public treasury. This will take 20 years to sort out just like Japan. Welcome to the world of zombie banking.

I wonder if quantitative easing is going to set up a big carry trade in US dollars the way it did in Japan (borrow in yen to buy USD assets, only now it will be borrow in USD to buy some other asset class.)

I guess they had to save the banks to preserve our largely electronic transaction system, but that doesn’t mean it will spark a recovery. It averted a national disaster (which is what it would be if the money system broke down overnight), but it hasn’t addressed the problem of far too much leverage in the system and serious economic problems on main street.

I read on Boomberg earlier today that US housing prices had their largest one month drop last month but now I can’t find the link. Sales are rising but in the US they count the foreclosure as a sale and then if the bank manages to dump it it’s a sale again.

None of the problems are fixed, and they can’t be fixed until the debt is written down either through default or inflation. I believe the goal is inflation, but if 2 trillion hasn’t done it yet, what’s it going to take? Maybe we get both.

#8 ts harpoon on 05.12.09 at 11:06 pm

Oil at 60 bucks a barrel. Still seems like a pretty cheap price to me as this commodity affects EVERYTHING. I stress the need for Canadians to appreciate the coming oil shock; the impediment to growth and a recovery. The evidence is overwhelming and the government of Canada does not have a plan.

These sites detail how serious it can be:

#9 Vancouver_Renter on 05.12.09 at 11:06 pm

Looking for opportunity? I’ve said this before on this blog but it is worth repeating because nobody else is…. Gold stocks have more than doubled since their insane November 2008 sell-off lows. They are doing exactly what they did in the Great Depressions of 1929, 1873, 1825, 1772, 1720.

Gold STOCKS – not gold bullion – were the best performing asset class in the Great Depression. In the first year of the depression, 1929, they sold off just like they did in 2008. But by 1931, the party was on and they climbed exponentially higher while everything else was in a free fall.

Gold prices hold up during deflationary periods while the cost of doing business plunges for gold miners, resulting in ever increasing margins while all other sectors are losing money. Gold bullion need not rise for gold stocks to increase dramatically in value. Junior gold producers and developers offer the best opportunity – and highest risk/volatility.

Tell a group that you are investing in real-estate, and eyes will light up. Some will support you while others will argue the pitfalls.

Tell the same group you are investing in gold stocks, and every last one of them will look at you as if you just mumbled a four-letter word in church. Several contributors on this blog have been discussing the pros and cons of gold bullion, but I’ve noticed that nobody else has been bringing up the “golden” opportunity in gold stocks. For a contrarian like myself, that’s reassuring.

But if you get involved, hold on. It will be the wildest ride of your life, given this sector is insanely volatile. Gold stocks will do everything in their power to buck you off the ride – at a loss. The price swings will test your emotions to the limit. You have to do your homework and understand WHY you own these shares, in order to weather the storms without selling in a panic.

It’s best to follow one or more gold stock newsletters to hold your hand and give you specific stock picks and timing advice (For newsletters Google newsletters such as J Taylor’s Gold & Tech Stocks, Ormetal, Coffin’s Hard Rock Analyst, John Kaiser, Lawrence Roulston, etc). If you want someone to do the work for you, look into Canadian gold stock ETFs like CMP Gold Trust, currently trading at a huge discount to Net Asset Value (spend $100 to buy units and get entitlement to $160 in gold stocks and bullion. This is indicative of how out-of-favor gold stocks are.)

#10 ts harpoon on 05.12.09 at 11:07 pm

Peak Oil Sites:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6430041059291052210

http://www.simmonsco-intl.com/files/OTC%20Topical%20Luncheon.pdf

http://www.simmonsco-intl.com/default.asp

#11 Gord In Vancouver on 05.12.09 at 11:16 pm

Don’t become a statistic

Live within your means.

http://www.chtv.com/ch/cheknews/story.html?id=1507352

#12 Ruhh on 05.12.09 at 11:30 pm

Dish both?
What the danger and fear or the opportunities and greed?

I know you’ve got your teeth firmly planted in the deflationary camp but what do you think about China internationalizing the Yuan?

http://cluborlov.blogspot.com/2009/05/new-new-money.html

#13 tjmikey on 05.12.09 at 11:41 pm

Welcome to the wider base class system.

More and more poor, fewer rich, nothing in the middle.

Cash rich vultures will dominate in the decade to come.

#14 Paul Miltom - Condo sales 73% Decline! on 05.12.09 at 11:42 pm

73% Decline
National Post
Published: Tuesday, May 12, 2009

http://www.wheels.ca/reviews/article/548527

#15 The Coming Depression on 05.13.09 at 12:10 am

Garth your in la la land. The stock market is not recovering, thats a joke. Its called a blip in a bear market. Check the 1929-1932 graph its repeating itself. The bulls are going to get sucker punched as reported on my blog. AND The Federal Reserve just lost 9 trillion dollars! Real Estate in the US lost more in the last quarter than any time in the last few years! Shipping has collapsed as scrap companies are pulling ships apart by the THOUSANDS and selling the metal. The list goes on and on…

#16 rory on 05.13.09 at 12:15 am

Hmmm …danger and fear…do we need 007 …mayhem, corruption, hope and a huge carrot …is it an illusion or is it real…do I grab the ring or pass it by…what would James do…heck, what would Kirk or even Spock do…will 000GT be able to satisfy M (or D, whatever) or even to save the world from those super bad, super ass superthugs – Politicians and Bankers ….stay tuned …same time, same channel …car 44 where the hell are you…book ’em Dano…fade to black …okay all ‘cut’.

Jeez Garth …quit idling the Lincoln…gas is money… …will somebody please get rid of that dumpster smell …cripes this is costing way too much …the rental company is going to be pissed …hell, even Air Canada may notice….fade to empty scotch bottles littered on the aircraft floor.

Awaiting, breathless, for the ‘dish’…fade to black for the next 6 RE years.

#17 Grumpydawgs on 05.13.09 at 12:57 am

A friend in the tech biz told me today that another big chopping bomb went off in a very large company today. However, because of the carnage, the people that are left standing have been given new authorities and powers beyond anything that would have occured if all the current chaos had not occured. These ‘new giants’ have all recieved very large raises along with the global expansion of thier corporate authority.

Businesses are getting a makeover, becoming stronger by way of a ruthless reorganization unlike any restructuring that has ever taken place before. A pure play on individual Darwinism; it’s fascinating. The marginal players are screwed, only the very best have survived.

The BC election is over, the bad news about real jobs loss numbers etcetera in BC are about to come flooding out. Don’t forget that a political party airs all it’s dirty laundry in the first six months of a new mandate. With a majority the Libs have nothing to fear from the facts.

#18 rick in Surrey on 05.13.09 at 1:15 am

I am hearing more and more information from prominent analysts that the stock market is going to crash and crash hard at some point over the summer. This has definately been a Bear Market rally and it is coming to an end shortly. I have sold most of my stocks and made some very nice profits during this period, but I will be more than content to sit in a cash position to ride out the storm. The markets rallied to fast and to high to be sustainable. The analysts are saying the DJIA, NASDAQ, TSX, etc will fall substantially lower than they did last fall. So be ware that something wicked this way comes! Don’t fall into the sucker RE market either or you will lose your shirts, just sit tight folks. There will be plenty of buying opportunities later and at much cheaper prices.
GLTA

#19 Jack the Lad on 05.13.09 at 4:06 am

I own my house clear and am otherwise debt free. My income is reasonably high.

I was thinking about burrowing $100,000 to buy oil and commodities on my line of credit.

I thinking I’ll wait till this bear market rally dips (I’m sure it will).

But it’s tough… there’s nothing more satisfying than having no debt over your head….

I do pity the 20 somethings who are mortgaging their lives away…. I don’t know how some of them sleep at night.

#20 Future Expatriate on 05.13.09 at 4:11 am

Hyperstagflation… the worst of all possible worlds.

Food, energy, sundries and necessities hyperinflate;

Real Estate, clothing, electronics and useless crap hyperdeflate.

Takes real genius pull that off… or maybe genius counting on greed and ignorance run amok.

#21 David Pylyp on 05.13.09 at 5:34 am

But Garth……
New home LTT rebates,
Additional taxes from harmonized GST now HST, lowest interest rates in decades (lower than the sixties).
People who have no housing need housing.
Interest rates will increase because of massive global borrowing.

That is not greed That is providing for your family and situation.

Would you prefer to see life term tenants, bicycles with training wheels that become substituted with walkers, in the Toronto Rental buildings? Is that what you propose?

People need to live somewhere.

My father told me even a broken clock is right twice a day.

David Pylyp

Nice to have a successful Re/Max agent add his compelling argument. — Garth

#22 David Bakody on 05.13.09 at 6:13 am

As I mentioned the new world order is in full Spring Bloom …… 40%-20%-20%*-20% is taking shape …. the governments announcement of 35,000 new self employed is the filling the 20%* the system is complex but simple in nature. Think? “Less is More” (Less people working more for less wages = high and secure profit) + a daily fight to keep ones job fuels productivity with giant carrot being advancement to the top 40% who have good highly paid secure jobs…. gone are days of instant job security via a piece of paper from what now is multi billion dollar business called higher education where the students are seen as cash flow only except for top 10% who have been ear marked years before.

AND ….. remember that the Forbes 500 list dropped 355 billionaires from the list this year who’s spoils went to the remainder ( at deep discounts). Now the remainder must watch their backs big time!

Are we starting to see the whole picture ladies and gentlemen? And to think most people get all upset over tired old politicians fighting over the same old garbage when you should be listening and reading more and looking after #1 ….”Looking after.. number one ” sing it!

#23 Across The Fence on 05.13.09 at 6:42 am

As we already explained in GEAB N°28, the crisis will affect in different ways the different regions of the world. However, and LEAP/E2020 wishes to be very clear on that aspect, contrary to the dominant stance today (coming from those experts who denied the fact that a crisis was coming up three years ago, who denied that it was global two years ago, and who denied the fact that it was systemic six months ago), we anticipate that the minimum duration of the decanting phase of the crisis is 3 years [1]. It shall be finished neither in spring 2009, nor in summer 2009, nor at the beginning of 2010. It is only towards the end of 2010 that the situation will start stabilizing again and improving a little in some regions of the world, i.e. Asia and the Eurozone, as well as in countries producing energy, mineral and food commodities [2]. Elsewhere, it will continue; in particular in the US and UK, and in all the countries depending on their economy, were the duration could approximate a decade. In fact these countries should not expect any real return to growth before 2018.

#24 wjp on 05.13.09 at 7:39 am

One man’s view…but informed!
http://www.reuters.com/article/GCA-Economy/idUSTRE54B7HF20090513

#25 dd on 05.13.09 at 7:40 am

#15 The Coming Depression

“The stock market is not recovering, thats a joke. Its called a blip in a bear market.”

However some investors just may 30% in the last month. Sure it is a head fake … but what a nice return.

#26 Samantha on 05.13.09 at 7:45 am

A novel way to invest – via CRA. Overpayments to CRA pay well. Here’s the link from the Globe & Mail:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090513.wauditor13art2232/BNStory/politics/home

#27 dd on 05.13.09 at 7:53 am

#3 lgre

Stock markets lead, they indicate nothing.

… it indicates hope. Misplaced hope but hope none the less.

#28 Gerry on 05.13.09 at 7:54 am

Local strip malls are quickly emptying around my home and work. I’ve seen the local Quiznos, Starbucks, and Boston Pizza close up in the last three weeks. There are a few more stores in the local mall that look to be pretty sure bets to go under in the next few months too. I don’t miss the restaurants but it is certainly impacting the former employees lives. And that will affect all of us, in the end.

#29 dd on 05.13.09 at 7:56 am

#9 Vancouver_Renter

Golds dead money. It did its job in Oct and March. It held value. The only reason it was down in oct was because funds had to dump it to come up with money.

#30 lgre on 05.13.09 at 8:11 am

David Pylyp – get your seller to replace the garage doors and and replace that cheap siding with brick, before you ask $850k. Nobody needs to live in an $850k house….that’s an illusion that was created by realtors and bankers.

#31 Grantmi on 05.13.09 at 8:20 am

Now the Vancouver Sun has resorted to NON-descriptive paid news stories in their paper.

On page C7 you have this great piece about what a wonderful thing developer David Steele is doing by reducing his homes on Qualicum Beach on Vancouver Island, and then on page C8 you have a COLOR (non the less) 1/8th page ad talking about the low, low prices on his homes… and that you can save up to $1/4 Million bucks on a home there!!!

WOW! The SUN is getting very desperate! All that’s missing on top of Derrick Penner’s piece is – “This is a paid ad-itorial article by the advertiser”

“Move along…. nothing to see here!!”

;-)

#32 PTDBD on 05.13.09 at 9:03 am

This will certainly not enhance our reputation, and his timing really sucks, dishing up unwelcome memories of “Bullet to Bejing”:

Winnipeg researcher charged with smuggling biological material into U.S. (from CBCnews.ca)
(Mandatory, soothing disclaimer – No public health risk, national health agency says)

Garth, what do the two Chinese characters stand for?

#33 Canadian Army guy on 05.13.09 at 9:05 am

Oil now at over $60 US a barrel…
Hmmm… Why is gas at $0.93 a liter right now at the pump in Kingston? Monday it was set at $0.84 on average…
According to gasbuddy.com, gas at the pump is at $0.79 in Belleville 20 minutes from here?

Why?

When oil was at $147 a barrel last summer we paid 1% of that price ($1.40’s) at the pump per liter.

So… if oil’s at $60 shouldn’t we pay in the $0.60’s at the pump then?

Gauging?

In the past few months I have noticed that all of the retailers here in Kingston hike their prices by 5 to 9 cents at the same time on Wednesdays and gradually bring the prices down to where they were previously by the Monday… Regardless that prices for oil was stable at $50.
Isn’t this price fixing?
Why are consumers being blatantly abused?
Any thought?

#34 Cara on 05.13.09 at 9:23 am

My husband has been watching the markets go up and down. He’s picked a couple of US Bank stocks, and has played them mentally using our $200,000 HELOC. To date, playing only the daily bounce with the rule that he would “cash out” at the end of every day, he WOULD HAVE made about $148,000 in profit.

I won’t let him do this, because I don’t think you should be speculating in the markets with money you can’t afford to lose. Though I think if I said, “go for it” he probably would. What is with men? Is this what “day trading” means?

I’m old fashioned, I’d rather have no debt and a chunk of cash and not play the stock market like a slot machine.

#35 ally ally oxycontin free on 05.13.09 at 9:53 am

Alarm Sounded On Social Security

Report Also Warns Of Medicare Collapse

Amy Goldstein–Washington Post

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/05/12/AR2009051200252.html?wpisrc=newsletter&wpisrc=newsletter

Sounds like a “mark to market, book ’em Danno!” to me. Is a $gazillion$ more than a $trillion$?

‘Spose I should be asking Bob Mugabe in Zimbabwe.

#36 Munch on 05.13.09 at 10:05 am

Stock markets discount the future?

No, they don’t!

They discount the market’s perception of the future, from all available information.

Big difference – no man nor beats knows the future: if they claim otherwise they lie

Be careful – there be Thief all around you.

Regards

Munch from South Africa

#37 smw on 05.13.09 at 10:24 am

Well Garth you finally got it right on asset deflation and consumer price inflation. The deflation dream is over.

Of course in housing, you can expect sideways movement at best over the next couple years, not keeping up with inflation. And there is going to be more then the 3% target inflation.

If Paulson/Obama hadn’t given the banks a blank cheques, we would have seen a further drop in the stock markets. I expected the DOW to touch the top of 5000 but the governments were effective in creating enough inflation to prevent further drops… I believe the banks were the big buyers, but watch for the DOW to gold ratio to shrink.

The sell off of the American dollar is pushing up all commodities and commodity based currencies.

Natural gas up a dollar in the run of a couple weeks?

The Looney at $.86.

This will allow a little downward pressure on the cost of the essentials priced in USD for Canadians, but its going to put the final fork in manufacturing.

Expect a lot more “self employed” folks, and the downside to that is expect a huge rise in small corporations going tits up.

Anyone named “Vancouver Renter” has to be a fairly smart fellow, and I agree, gold stocks were it, and will deffinately post some good returns, but there are some oil and gas trusts still available at P/E of less than 7 and with 0 debt. My concern is the threat to change the rules of trusts…

The future is bleak as best right now, but there is so much oppurtunity for Canada once we remove our lips from the teet of America.

Hedge your bets at the gas pump and the furnace, buy Canadian resource based stocks or funds that pay a dividend/DRIP…

#38 smw on 05.13.09 at 10:29 am

#33 Canadian Army guy

To add, the Canadian dollar has gone up which puts the cost of oil lower for Canadians.

But its not “peak oil” you have to worry about, its peak refining capacity, remember last year when retialers in Alberta and Manitoba didn’t have gas to sell?

Some retailers had to ship in gas from Ontario, man that’s irony.

#39 Mike B formerly just Mike on 05.13.09 at 10:39 am

Igre 3 10000% correct about the stock market… leading to nothing except false hope… Armageddon.. perhaps not but something close to that… everyone is shorting the market as no one is dumb enough to get in after a 30% rally,, bull or bearish rally. Most importantly the US is still at a level two insolvency and getting worse by the day. Retail sales are still down in the US. so anyone with a molecule of brain matter should be ultra cautious unless you are playing with someone elses money….
Real estate in Toronto still flying for sure… People have no fear of debt whatsoever even with a huge increase in bankruptcies year over year. I think if people need a home now and have the cash they should buy but not get into a war… If you have little cash do not buy because if you over extend and the market contracts and you have to sell you are cooked. Saw a house that has two mortgages on it that has dropped in value over 150K … They need to sell at full ask price just to pay off everyone.. You don’t think that will happen in greater numbers in two years. I do

#40 Alex on 05.13.09 at 11:25 am

Don’t invest in stocks and paper, they are still toxic!

Basically there are few if any financial havens at this time. If we could find several currencies that would survive a USD collapse, maybe we would get some. But which ones will survive this?

If this were only a severe recession, without a risk of USD devaluation, then sitting in cash is ok, and pending a recovery etc, then quality corporate bonds with dividends are a good bet. But, again, this is not a normal severe recession. And we have a prospect of a USD devaluation. So this is not your normal ‘buy the discounted stocks and such’ because there are bigger problems out there than a mere severe recession.

Frankly, at this stage, the only sure way to protect wealth, in my non professional opinion, is in paid off assets and maybe some gold/precious metals, should there be a USD devaluation. The ‘price’of these might fall now, but their value is still its value (utility), and price is a relative thing. This is why I like paid off real things. And possibly precious metal stocks. Again I would stay away from base commodities, and the energy complex is falling apart right now and is in disarray, just like OPEC is.

If you have a paid off house, or building, vehicle, useful things like generators, physical value in things physical, and in your possession, then you have wealth. If a new currency is unveiled, you can then sell these back and get some new currency. If you only have say USD, that will likely be changed out at 10 or 20 USD to 1 for the new currency: Ie 10 USD for 1 ‘new currency’.

I am NOT saying the USD is going to devalue in 09. I am saying it’s possible. This is NOT a normal economic recession. This is an emerging depression and possible USD devaluation.

But, getting back to real things, if you have a generator for example, when the new currency settles in, you will get the true value of the generator in that new currency if you wanted to sell it, because it’s a useful real thing. We all can think of useful things we know the value of to buy and store wealth in. Yes I am serious. In my case for example, I know what good generators are and are worth. Gold is not the only option here. Of course, we are in a deflationary environment, so ‘prices’ fall. So don’t go crazy on this. You can also pick small things of real value. Everyone has knowledge of some useful real things and their value.

Real things are worth what they were before the collapse. All that happens is the new currency resets to some price others are willing to offer for the generator, for example. Things that have a long life and are useful are the way to get past a currency crisis. They are inherently valuable and useful.

#41 Calgary_Police on 05.13.09 at 11:39 am

Job opportunities are zilch. Family finances are awful. Plazas, strip malls and industrial units are quietly emptying.

In Ontario, not in Alberta Garth.

In Calgary its still a boom. Look at the mls stats. 1500 houses sell every month. Who are these buyers spending downpayments supporting a house price $200K+ in excess of reality?

The fast tuner cars arent the problem. Its the natives that dont have a clue. They actually think their shacks are worth $400K. What a joke!!! People in Calgary need to realize its the New York City of the north, and act accordingly. Learn how to drive and react quickly. That isnt happening, so of course you may see the lack of jobs and crisis, but who sees that here?

Its gridlock and more gridlock. To further explain the stupidness, look at Nose Hill Park in NW Calgary. They call this a historic park. What a joke!!! Its a waste of space. They should instead just put houses and/or roads. If houses were put in there maybe the housing market would plummet back to reality.

All of the above is unlikely to happen. Let the conservatives in Calgary hope their house prices remain ridiculous to keep all outsiders out and continue the current delusion of progressive conservatives and Ed Stelmach’s. May the bs continue…

#42 Dave on 05.13.09 at 11:39 am

Tell the same group you are investing in gold stocks, and every last one of them will look at you as if you just mumbled a four-letter word in church. Several contributors on this blog have been discussing the pros and cons of gold bullion, but I’ve noticed that nobody else has been bringing up the “golden” opportunity in gold stocks. For a contrarian like myself, that’s reassuring.

—————————————————–

you haven’t read my posts then. One thing I do like is gold/silver stocks for the same reason you do. Yes, most people haven’t noticed and haven’t done research. On this site though, Garth has given his opinion on gold bullion. 90% of the people on here are like cult followers. They don’t have an opinion and assume everything associated with the word “gold” is bad because Garth says so.

big gains to be made in this sector. I’ve made killings in the last few months because of my research. Don’t bother trying to tell people on here what is good unless Garth delivers the message for you.

cheers

#43 wjp on 05.13.09 at 11:56 am

#34….sounds like day trader material to me…
What will he do the day he has to cough up $300.000?
If it was that easy, we’d all be doing it.
Trading without information (correspondent) is playing with dynamite!
Tell him to play free online poker instead, at least that way, you will have a home!

#44 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 11:59 am

Okay folks, we can forget all about our widdle economic troubles and start focusing on a REAL threat beyond anyone’s control.

NOAA Predicts Solar Cycle 24

Earth could get hit by a devastating solar storm at any time, with potential damages from the most severe level of storm exceeding $1 trillion. NASA funds the prediction panel.

Solar storms are eruptions of energy and matter that escape from the sun and may head toward Earth, where even a weak storm can damage satellites and power grids, disrupting communications, the electric power supply and GPS. A single strong blast of solar wind can threaten national security, transportation, financial services and other essential functions.

“The strongest solar storm on record occurred in 1859 during another below-average cycle similar to the one we are predicting.”

The 1859 storm shorted out telegraph wires, causing fires in North America and Europe, sent readings of Earth’s magnetic field soaring, and produced northern lights so bright that people read newspapers by their light.

A recent report by the National Academy of Sciences found that if a storm that severe occurred today, it could cause $1-2 trillion in damages the first year and require four to ten years for recovery, compared to $80-125 billion that resulted from Hurricane Katrina.

There you have it, your Fear du Jour! Have a nice day :-)

#45 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 12:05 pm

I’m old fashioned, I’d rather have no debt and a chunk of cash and not play the stock market like a slot machine.

#34 Cara

Oh, you are just not a Player and like the Lotto teaches ‘You can’t win if you don’t play!’ ;-)

Besides addicts love company and feel very depressed when others won’t join them in their insane addiction.

Remember, if you can’t play the ‘markets’ there is always a Casino to go to, or a horse racing track, or your local Lotto retailer with gobs of Games of Chance, not to mention those VLT’s some provinces have! Your government is counting on you to participate to fund their lifestyle.

#46 rory on 05.13.09 at 12:15 pm

Sorry all I can not let posts like this pass …

#88 Avenge_Gerald_Bull from previous blog …you said:

“Decades ago, a friend of mine and myself would take our 3- to 5- year old dogs out squirrel and gopher hunting (using large-caliber big game rifles..good for target practice, you know)”

Hey Avenger…killing animals for the sake of target practice or sport is nothing short of criminal …words like disgusting, exasperated, creep all come to mind …killing something for food and sustenance is one thing, the other reprehensible.

I am hoping you are one reformed dude and regret those bad boy days…some people just don’t get it but a lot of people are just plain mean ..what are you Avenger?

#47 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 12:19 pm

#33 Canadian Army guy

I asked a local Esso dealer how it works and here is what I was told.

When the distributor (aka refinery/oil company) gets an order from a retailer they wait until Wednesday night to create the invoice. That is when the price changes usually happen.

The retailer must pay in advance for the product and to fill a facilitiy’s storage tanks that comes to about $75,000 cash on the barrel head before delivery.

The retailer has very little control over the retail price except a few cents. They are also at the mercy of the distributor as well. Is there collusion? Do bears crap in the woods? Do fish swim? Do birds fly? Yes, especially the company owned outlets which dictate to the retailer what the price will be. even the Loblaw’s Independent Gas Bars have their price set by company HQ in Montreal, and those retailers are in Ontario.

The few independents left have a little more latitude, but also pay a higher price to the distributor for the product.

Now, remembering that the fuel in the ground (storgae tanks) may have been purchased at a higher price than the day’s market indicates, the retailer is stuck with the fuel until the next fill comes from the distributor.

So, who is the culprit? First and foremost are the commodities market traders, then the distributors, and then the producers, aka, refineries/oil companies.

Eliminate the commodities market gouging and speculation and you have stable fuel pricing. Will government legislate such a move? When Hell Freezes Over and the politicians are looking at Madame Guillotine. The oil on the ground is the same as yesterday and thousand years ago. Only mankind’s greed changes.

One thing I noted yesterday while driving north from Barrie, the price rangedfrom $0.967 to $0.869. It was $0.825 two days ago locally. That tells me the economy is definitely affecting the retailers and there is a modest price war going on. The GTA price is undoubtedly higher.

#48 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 12:21 pm

#28 Gerry

You can almost count on the franchised operations closing because the parent companies are going to be hurting and increasing their take.

#49 Watching from the sidelines on 05.13.09 at 12:35 pm

The characters :wei Ji crisis

#50 My_View on 05.13.09 at 12:37 pm

I work for a property management company, over 4 million square feet of mixed retail & industrial. Our vacancy has been holding steady and in fact some existing tenants have upsized/reconstructed in our industrial and new prospects are still coming in. The retail side is 100% occupied and we our still getting inquires for space. Tradesmen are still in demand; in fact there will be a shortage in the coming years. Life goes on, get out of the bubble.

#51 ts harpoon on 05.13.09 at 12:39 pm

This is not my favorite field of discussion but it looks mighty interesting:

“… even as Bond Vigilantes drive interest rates higher, the US Treasury is actively purchasing securities in the open market. This is, by any measure, an epic battle, one taking place almost sight unseen and one with very high stakes: can Ben Bernanke and the yet unseen US economic recovery tolerate higher bond yields?”

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601009&sid=akrv15syzPy0&refer=bond

#52 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 1:09 pm

#46 rory

The very statement of using a ‘large-caliber big game rifles’ to hunt squirrels tells clearly they neither are hunters nor after the meat.

I hunted squirrels twice years ago using a .22 caliber rifle. That is suitable and requires true marksmanship. The amount of meat is small and the taste is not exciting, besides they are cute and fun to watch.

I’m surprised they didn’t use a 12 gauge shotgun with deer slugs to satisfy their machismo needs?

I would love to get them out on the range, the 1KM range and see if they actually know anything about shooting? We qualified, with iron sights, at 1200 metres in the Marines in the prone position using the NATO 7.62 x 51mm M-14. Muzzle velocity was 2800 fps.

My old Argentine Mauser, 7.65 mm, had a muzzle velocity of 3,280 fps and it demolished a crow at 3/4 mile due to the supersonic shockwave. MACH 1 is 1,100 fps at sea level. At such velocities you need not even hit the target, just get the bullet close and the sonic energy will do a lot of damage to a small target.

Now for real fun try the A-10 Warthog’s 30mm cannon at 4,630 rounds per minute. Able to penetrate 8 inches of Soviet armour plate at a half mile. LOL

Taliban hideout, er was!

Here is what it sounds like

#53 Canadian Army guy on 05.13.09 at 1:15 pm

Thank you Bill Muskoka for the info.

The government should then regulate the fuel distributors.
Buying gas at close to $0.95 a liter when oil is at $60 US a barrel (price is for NEXT month deliveries) is nothin g short of a scam…

#54 Munch on 05.13.09 at 1:20 pm

@ #45

Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM – aka “Why be different?” – well?

Once a trend gets going, then it’s “step back bay-bee, I don’t know how big this thing gets” is the prudent reaction.

To quote the great Winston Churchill on the matter (we,, sorta!):

“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”

Regards

Munch, South Africa

#55 Greg W., Oakville on 05.13.09 at 1:31 pm

Hi Garth, Just in case persons don’t go back and look at added post comments under yesterday.

FYI, Peak-oil issue
In 2007 the world used 1 cubic mile of oil for the first time.
See yesterdays post #93 under ‘the ride’ for link to an artical and graphic picture of equivalent energy sources that would be needed to replace it.

#56 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 1:32 pm

#53 Canadian Army guy

You are most welcome. My feelings exactly, as well as the reason we need to reinstate NEP.

Semper Fi

#57 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 1:33 pm

#53 Canadian Army guy

Oh, and diesel was at $0.775! Go figure, eh?

#58 PTDBD on 05.13.09 at 1:41 pm

speaking of sure things…
would you like to be a Dealer that can buy 10-year Treasury note yielding more than 3% and borrow at the Fed at the overnight repo rate of 0.2%?

According to this article and quotes from Bloomberg.com, this is why American large banks are showing profits.
The Great Geithner Giveaway, Part II By Michael M. Thomas May 12, 2009 | 7:04 p.m

How can Banks possibly lose money when they can borrow for free and lend out at huge spreads?

#59 Shifty on 05.13.09 at 2:09 pm

I just don’t get it, stock markets going up in these troubled times, I just don’t see a fix that I would gamble money on. Am I the fool or are they?

#60 Bill on 05.13.09 at 2:15 pm

I’m looking forward to a downturn in the stock market.

Like to get me hands on some good ol’ resource stocks with dividends (oil, gas, utilities, mining), as well as some Canadian Banks.

Keep selling off folks, and I’ll be buying!

Yee-haw!

#61 Vancouver_Renter on 05.13.09 at 2:38 pm

#40 said, “This is NOT a normal economic recession. This is an emerging depression and possible USD devaluation.”

Let’s assume that this is not a normal economic recession, as you suggest, but a once every 50-80 year post debt-bubble deflationary depression, like in 1929, 1873, 1825, 1772, and 1720.

In predicting what will happen going forward you can either:

1. Use logic and common sense to determine what SHOULD happen or
2. Study history and look at what DID happen in the last five Great Depressions.

Most analysts, writers, and businesses choose #1. They see the US bankrupt and the desperate printing of money and conclude that the US dollar must devalue. They ignore history.

But if you do #2 instead, you discover something quite unexpected and initially counter-intuitive. In history, the senior currency of the day (today it is the US$) actually INCREASES in value during a depression. Why? Because throughout the bubble people borrow money to buy assets. That is equivalent to shorting the dollar. But in the depression, people must now repurchase dollars to pay off debt. That’s a classic “short squeeze” and it results in the senior currency going up in value.

By the way, all five of the previous Great Depressions had a sucker’s rally out to spring of the 2nd year (just like we are having) before the next stage of market freefall and fear.

Once Act II of the stock market meltdown resumes in the 2nd half of 2009, I’m expecting the US$ to rise substantially in value – not fall.

But, maybe I’m wrong. ;-)

#62 Dan in Victoria on 05.13.09 at 3:29 pm

Post#33 Canadian Army Guy,hell thats cheap we’re at 1.03 a litre in Victoria,and out on the west coast in Bamfield its 1.15 a litre just in time for fishing season.

#63 dbg on 05.13.09 at 3:38 pm

THE COMING DEPRESSION – “Shipping has collapsed as scrap companies are pulling ships apart by the THOUSANDS and selling the metal. The list goes on and on..”

You are a nutter.

#64 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 4:05 pm

#58 PTDBD

How can they? Well, using the accural method of accounting they can legally say ‘We have this many assets.’, but the reality is they have debt vouchers, not actual cash in hand.

The same accounting practices that led to the problem. I call it Wimpy (Burger now, pay later) Economics.

#65 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.13.09 at 4:07 pm

#61 Vancouver_Renter

Time will tell! Maybe the slots will pay off at the Casino too? Am I going to go find out with my cash reserves? No!

#66 jess on 05.13.09 at 4:44 pm

bill

beware of investment strategist/ historians dressed up like scientists that speculate on futures
April 1, 2009: The sunspot cycle is behaving a little like the stock market. Just when you think it has hit bottom, it goes even lower.

2008 was a bear. There were no sunspots observed on 266 of the year’s 366 days (73%). To find a year with more blank suns, you have to go all the way back to 1913, which had 311 spotless days: plot. Prompted by these numbers, some observers suggested that the solar cycle had hit bottom in 2008.

Maybe not. Sunspot counts for 2009 have dropped even lower. As of March 31st, there were no sunspots on 78 of the year’s 90 days (87%).

It adds up to one inescapable conclusion: “We’re experiencing a very deep solar minimum,” says solar physicist Dean Pesnell of the Goddard Space Flight Center.

“This is the quietest sun we’ve seen in almost a century,” agrees sunspot expert David Hathaway of the Marshall Space Flight Center.
http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2009/01apr_deepsolarminimum.htm

————

#67 gold bugger on 05.13.09 at 4:44 pm

The NEP? The NEP? I know Garth will jump all over me for being a western alarmist, or whatever he comes up with to stoke the flames, but jeebus, Muskoka Bill, put down your “Tribute to PET” video and your dog-eared copy of The Communist Manifesto.

“The oil on the ground is the same as yesterday and thousand years ago. Only mankind’s greed changes,” is classic Marxism. Everything should be valued according to its utility. A utility that, conveniently, the Marxists themselves figure they should determine. Profit-seeking actors are “greedy,” and therefore “evil.”

Visit a library, Bill. Full of economics texts. Lots of good stuff on the AlGore, too.

#68 Vancouver_Renter on 05.13.09 at 5:02 pm

#65… “Time will tell! Maybe the slots will pay off at the Casino too? Am I going to go find out with my cash reserves? No!”

To truly get ahead, I’ve had to do independent research and take risks against the advice of the herd all through my life. If I didn’t do that, I’d have gotten nowhere. I’ve lost many times but have learned from those mistakes. All that matters is that I win more than I lose.

The only people who have got away with not having to think outside the box are the Boomers. ;-) On second thought, let’s not get into that again…

#69 Nostradamus Jr.'s Analyst on 05.13.09 at 5:12 pm

#19 Jack the lad

>>I do pity the 20 somethings who are mortgaging their lives away…. I don’t know how some of them sleep at night.<<

It’s called alcohol.

And stock market rally my ass.
DOW 5000 by November.

I predicted this nearly 500 days ago.

#70 squidly77 on 05.13.09 at 5:24 pm

When times were good, shipping companies ordered huge numbers of new steel behemoths to ply the oceans. Now though, many of those same container lines are eager to get rid of their ships. The scrapping business in South Asia is booming.
http://www.spiegel.de/international/business/0,1518,623250,00.html

#71 Barb the proof reader on 05.13.09 at 5:42 pm

#32 PTDBD

Pecked,

危機 stands for crisis.

Garth’s image description (right click image) has the word crisis in it, and sure enough, using Google Translation tools, the word crisis translated from English to Chinese Traditional brings up those two characters.

#72 jess on 05.13.09 at 5:58 pm

…”easy peasy like a money machine”
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/madoff/view/bienes.html

rationalization is the saviour of self respect!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

#73 Nostradamus Jr.'s Analyst on 05.13.09 at 6:04 pm

危 = HOLY
æ©Ÿ = SHIT

#74 . . . fried eggs and spam . . . on 05.13.09 at 8:51 pm

#12 Ruhh on 05.12.09 at 11:30 pm — ” . . . China internationalizing the Yuan?”

This is one very large part which may lead to fisticuffs between countries, as the US is fast losing it’s position as “The World’s Policeman”, and has to form new alliances to maintain their standard.

One of the reasons why dubya, etc. went into Iraq was to prevent Iraq going to the Ruble or Yuan, thereby dumping the US$. They ‘justified’ the invasion based on Sadaam’s WMD.

Iran, Russia and a few other countries want to put space between themselves and the west; now they can do that.

#44 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) at 11:59 am — “. . . solar storms would start in March 2008 and peak in late 2011 or mid-2012. . . .”

This (somewhat) corresponds to what I said a day or two ago. Two major pole shifts, one north – south, which turns us upside – down, the second east – west which turns us inside – out.

Because none of us will know where we are or what we’re doing anymore, that’s when the real fun 8-) (re: confusion) kicks in!

Here is where our old friend Pork ‘Swine Flu’ Pie hairy the Abominable Matrix has volunteered to ‘Twist and Shout’ for everyone, by morphing into an Unknown Quantum Theory. I’m sure it will be happy!

#66 jess at 4:44 pm — “. . . There were no sunspots observed on 266 of the year’s 366 days (73%). To find a year with more blank suns, you have to go all the way back to 1913, . . .”

The Fed was created in 1913 as a private institution, then WWI began in 1914. WW2 helped lotsa countries / citizens get over GD1, as they were too busy bombing / fighting one another so will history repeat?

Well — http://tinyurl.com/pjm8wm /\ http://tinyurl.com/r2tqfd– It could be time to ask Nostradamus Jr. to provide further details if willing!
——
Other than Cdn. equities, this is a decent place to invest in. — http://tinyurl.com/paqfem — “I’m speaking, of course, about Canada. Canadian oil-and-gas investments are attractive for three reasons.”
——
The second wave of home and commercial foreclosures have begun, along with bank profits reversing quickly (and closures), consumer spending and retail sales are plummeting, unemployment is going through the roof, etc., etc.

As our beloved PM and Fartance Minister told us, Canada is as strong as the Northern Lights (or something similar).

If the ‘stress tests’ lead to the demise of plenty of US banks, what of the fall-out to Cdn. banks? Are they, too as strong as Bre-X, a magnificently-managed company?

The bigger the bubble, the more the fall-out (recession / depression) is. That’s why the m$m tarts (not jam tarts) are here to comfort us, bringing us words of wisdom and tidings of great joy.

Listen to them, follow their instructions and you, too can be a first-class Zombie laden Shoople’shroom!

BTW, don’t forget that the US Social Security system is akin to WackoJacko, which means CPP / OAS / GIS is already dancing on our graves!

#75 Da HK Kid on 05.13.09 at 9:17 pm

#54 Munch, good call all the way from Joberg!

#76 taxpayer like you on 05.13.09 at 9:19 pm

22 Dave B said:

“AND ….. remember that the Forbes 500 list dropped
355 billionaires from the list this year who’s spoils went to the remainder ( at deep discounts). Now the remainder must watch their backs big time! ”

Discounts to the remainder?? WTF??

Most of these people derive their wealth from equity positions is closely held companies or public companies in which they have large stakes – ex Gates, Buffett. If the markets drop, their wealth drops. No biggie, they still own what they own. Its just a number. They lose nothing.

I wouldnt lose sleep if I went from $1.2B to $900M
since last year……

#77 Val Mel on 05.13.09 at 10:49 pm

Gerry, #28

Where do you live?

A Boston Pizza shut down?

Wow – that is a hot brand.

#78 john on 05.13.09 at 11:05 pm

Hey Garth,

Something is wrong with your site. Please check it out and fix. Please give us a new posting.

Do you need bailout money too?

The server went down Wednesday night. — Garth

#79 905er & Spouse on 05.13.09 at 11:28 pm

Okay check this our…new polling from Nanos Research states that:

“53% of Canadians thought the value of real estate in their neighbourhood will stay the same in the next six months (up 9 points from February 2009) and 26% thought the value would increase (up 14 points from February 2009).”

So 79% of Canadians think housing will stay the same or go up I just don’t get it.

…and…

“66% of Canadians described their job as secure or somewhat secure (down 1 point since February 2009), while 19% described their jobs as somewhat not secure or not at all secure (NC)”

All I can say is that a lot of people are going to be really disappointed come December.

I think I will post this data again on the new blog for people to see.

#80 dbg on 05.13.09 at 11:39 pm

Squidly77

Nice try! You and the coming depression are selective readers.

“The shipping companies must dump their old freighters to tackle a dilemma. During the global economic boom they ordered new vessels non-stop, creating over capacity in much the same way as that troubling the car sector. In cases where orders can’t be cancelled, new ships are coming off the conveyer belts just as demand declines. It makes the need for selling old ships as scrap all the more pressing.”

They have been scrapping old ships for years in south asia. Many articles have been written about the safety conditions of the work sites.

Nice spin ……

Golly gee I sure like surfing the internet sites and reinforcing my narcissistic view.

Forget get it guys your golds worthless and so is your doom and gloom croon.

#81 nonplused on 05.13.09 at 11:51 pm

#9 Vancouver_Renter

Gold bullion did not rise significantly in the 30’s because the dollar was gold backed, or more appropriately “gold fixed”. An ounce of gold was redeemable for $20 US and then later after the revaluation $33 US no matter what. It could not rise, because the dollar was a managed gold derivative.

The dollar is now free to float against gold (hence $900 per ounce), so that limit is removed. Further, in inflation, gold can soar but if oil is soaring too then mining is still difficult. This time around miners are not seeing deflation in expenses, unless you count the recent crash in oil prices.

Plus with miners you get stock option delusion, management risk (ie. There are crooks there too, just ask Bre-X shareholders), problems with reserve estimates, rock falls, environmental protesters, credit availability problems, tax changes, etc. There is less safety than a triple A subprime derivative squared. Know your miner before you buy, and only use risk money.

#33 Canadian Army guy

Oil is not gasoline. There are refining costs and a lot of taxes that are fixed. To get a relationship between crude and gas you need to know the fixed costs or do a linear regression, and even then it won’t be pretty because refiners change their charge based on demand for refining. But it’s not one for one in any case.

If anyone is gouging, it’s the government, as always. In most parts of Canada the top rate is near 50% and then you pay property tax, GST, and a myriad of other fees out of the half they left you.

And they are still going to print a huge deficit this year! The leviathan must be stopped.

#44 Bill-Muskoka (NAM)

You’d like this site: http://www.thisistheend.com

#46 rory

Around here the ranchers love city folks who want to shoot gophers (with small caliper rifles). Pesky critters dig holes that are hazardous to cows and horses, and they inundate the fields with piles of loose dirt. Don’t be so narrow. What do you want the ranchers to have to poison them all?

#50 My_View

Hang on tight to that dream.

#57 Bill-Muskoka (NAM)

Diesel is usually cheaper than gasoline. You get more of it out of the frac easier. That’s why they run the big trucks and trains on it rather than gas.

#62 Dan in Victoria

Taxes. BC is highest in NA. Love it or leave it.

#82 Dee on 05.14.09 at 12:21 am

There will be some opportunities. We have to think differently on how we make money. Those who insist on thinking the ‘old way’ will consistently get squeezed.

I’m enjoying the debates among same ole’ same ole’ economists who insist on looking at the demand side of the economy. Best one I’ve heard was to loan U.S. citizens at negative interest rates. Most of them have tunnel vision imho. Politicians and Corps can try to manipulate but you can’t get people to spend, spend, spend something they can’t afford to buy. Not with food and fuel inflation in the horizon, job cuts or wage reductions.

I imagine Canada’s government will be cutting taxes again as a form of increasing money supply and trying to stimulate demand or inflation. Worked so well in the U.S. didn’t it?

The green shoots? Smoked. Seems the masses are moving to U.S. treasuries. Surprise, surprise.

Msm is in a tizzy about negative ads. Better spending all the dosh and time on adverts then bumping up the EI benefits, eh?

Gardening tip for all of you: Mix carrot and radish seeds and plant together. Radish harvest earlier and create room for the carrots to grow.

#83 ally ally oxycontin free on 05.14.09 at 8:30 am

TSX Last: 9,709.510 Net Change:-368.190 % -3.65%

More to come?

http://images.moneyandmarkets.com/1356/a93995-1.html

http://www.moneyandmarkets.com/etfs-for-every-investor-33745

http://www.fabianshighmonthlyincome.com/visitor.php?offer=382

It’s a bit like watching a RE agent humping a 4-Sale sign.

#84 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 10:33 am

#68 Vancouver_Renter

Ah, most people learn from others, but you are above all that. We Boomers are probably responsible for your girlfriend/wife getting pregnant too because it was an unbefore heard of consequence to intercourse.

I guess someone in the Boomer generation is guilty for all your problems because, afterall, your parents were probably Boomers? Look at how that mistake turned out!

#85 Dan in Victoria on 05.14.09 at 10:33 am

Post #81 Nonplused We’ve always called it “scenery tax”

#86 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 10:41 am

Diesel is usually cheaper than gasoline. You get more of it out of the frac easier. That’s why they run the big trucks and trains on it rather than gas.

#81 nonplused

No, really? Well, perhaps someone forgot to tell the retailers here for a long time because diesel was more expensive than gasoline until recently. Heating oil was higher than gas as well this winter.

#87 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 10:54 am

#66 jess

Having studied statistics in university I am well aware how data can be manipulated to say whatever one desires. Just like the ‘polls’ the morons in Oddawahaha rely on. They’d be better off using Tea Leaves I think.

I trust neither investment ‘advisers’ or most scientists. The days of Science as a god are over as far as I am concerned. Perhaps that comes from working in the field and seeing, repeatedly, how bogus much of the so-called credible research has been.

But then I was freed from the Matrix long ago! My steak is REAL not a programmed experience. LOL

What is interesting is the correlation between sun spot activity and human behaviour. Thanks for the link.

I have long believed there are regions of space we pass through that have a direct effect on people’s attitudes and thinking. We are constantly passing through all types of energy fields, and that will one day be found to explain a number of world events involving mankind.

BTW, how many had a somewhat down feeling or a collection of downers (feelings not pills) beginning around Easter and lasting a week or so after? Did you find people you know rather difficult or changed?

#88 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 10:56 am

#67 gold bugger

That’s right GB! Everything that goes against your grain or ideology is Marxist. You really would be right at home on the Fox News staff. Send in your application right away. You might become famous. Don’t wait…send it now!

#89 Greg W., Oakville on 05.14.09 at 11:09 am

Hi #74 . . . fried eggs and spam . . . on 05.13.09 at 8:51 pm,

“One of the reasons why dubya, etc. went into Iraq was to prevent Iraq going to the Ruble or Yuan, thereby dumping the US$. They ‘justified’ the invasion based on Sadaam’s WMD.”

The Oil/USA Dollar/Wars/Euro and other currency connection is expand well in this show;

“Robert Newmans History of Oil” 45min
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-5267640865741878159

#90 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 11:21 am

#76 taxpayer like you

You’ve got that right. Just numbers. Paper wealth which may or may not be able to be converted into cash in hand. It is really just their potential line of credit. Nothing more than what gamblers have at a casino from the House.

I remember asking my CPA when I had a corporation how he figured I was worth over a million when my company’s cash on hand was so low?

After he donned his Karnak The Magnificient hat and gold trimmed robe who explained how he, as a Certified Public Accountant, had the magick of numbers.

According to Dunn & Bradstreet we were able to have credit up to $500,000 on my signature alone. It is all a psuedo game of numbers that when brought to ground means very little except to those who are players in the game. The masses accept the programming like the Sheeple they truly are.

Then reality hit in 1980-82 and the game plan changed. Here we are again, and they still haven’t learned.

As Max Dimont said in ‘Jews, God, and History’ regarding the Dark Ages ‘The wealthy and poor shared three things in common: ‘They were equally ignorant, illiterate, and superstitious.’ Some things never change!

#91 rory on 05.14.09 at 11:31 am

#81 Nonplused from the previous post – The Ride …

I didn’t know squirrels dug holes for cows to fall into – you kinda forgot to mention Avenger also liked to kill squirrels for fun …killing gophers is a terrible task (and sometimes required) but to give that ass Avenger a pass by slagging me makes you complicit with Avenger …having to kill gophers should not be an enjoyable event or even a sporting event…call it what it is …a cull…now go and beat up the bad guys …that would NOT be me in this circumstance.

And …

Nonplused said: “Diesel is usually cheaper than gasoline. You get more of it out of the frac easier. That’s why they run the big trucks and trains on it rather than gas.”
And I thought they used diesel because of the longer lasting engines, better fuel consumption and once upon a time diesel was cheaper…huh!

Nonplused said: “Taxes. BC is highest in NA. Love it or leave it.”
And I thought they were about the lowest … http://www.taxtips.ca if you don’t believe me … another huh!

I may be wrong on all counts but please do tell how listening to you will expand my narrow little mind…IMO.

#92 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 11:31 am

#74 . . . fried eggs and spam . . .

Holy Shit! Put the Bong down. Put it down NOW good friend! LOL

Actually, there was a pole shift eons ago. Just imagine the consequences? Australia would no longer be Down Under; The travel industry would be pushing travelling North; The U.S. would be our Northern Neighbor; the fight between the Protestants and Catholics would become Southern Ireland; No more apartheid except in North Africa; compasses would have to be remarked or replaced causing Boy and Girl Scouts everywhere to be lost and confused; we would be the proud owners of the Southeast Passage in the Canadian Antarctic, etc.

Talk about a marketing nightmare, eh? Okay, I’ll set my Bong down too! LMAO! (Actually I think it’s that SPAM you eat every day!) ;-)

#93 Vancouver_Renter on 05.15.09 at 12:05 am

#84…

“I guess someone in the Boomer generation is guilty for all your problems because, afterall, your parents were probably Boomers? Look at how that mistake turned out!”

My parents, born in the 1920s, are part of the greatest generation in the last century. They grew up with nothing in the Great Depression, served Canada selflessly in WWII (dad was a pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force), then worked hard to build a wonderful, prosperous, peaceful society… so the Baby Boomers could rebel, get high on dope, enjoy their love-ins, and establish the era of greed which ultimately produced the current economic crisis.

You just keep patting yourself on the back and telling yourself that Boomers are God’s gift to all the other generations, Bill. Those delusional beliefs are to be expected from a generation of pot-heads with melted brain cells.

#94 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.15.09 at 10:35 am

You bigotry shows your ignorance. I never have used drugs and served as well.

Your father’s efforts do not give you credence as a person. You earn that on your own merits.

Good luck with life VR.

#95 Dark Wettler on 05.16.09 at 4:07 pm

Recall that I said I would email your blog ‘The Inflators’ to you 12 months after it was written, a day too late for April Fools. But in the meantime….

You said,

‘Well, I may be wrong, but I’m betting on deflation stalkng the land for some time yet. As the economy stabilizes and expands a little, so will prices. Modest inflation will be with us in a year or two, resulting in higher interest rates.’

I made a case against complete deflation for inflationary pressures resulting in stagflation, to which you responded:

‘Deflation is where the price of a car falls. When wages and salaries fall. When pension and health care benefits cannot be met, and are reduced. When business input costs are reduced. When electronics costs tumble. When large corporations bankrupt, leaving rivers of unpaid supplier invoices. When tax rates decline. When 5.43 million Americans are on unemployment benefirs but the actual number of jobless is double. When, above all, there is the expectation that people will pay less for goods – houses included – in six months, than today. Deflation is not when your grocery bill goes up 5%, which is the result of an entirely different dynamic (exacerbated by credit woes). Tell me, exactly, how you are paying more for everything than you did two years ago. Gotta stop shopping at Holts, dude. — Garth’

Nice flip-flop. Dude.

For the rest of us who have time horizons greater than that of your average boiled potato, I lifted some stats to chew over. Keep in mind that these will lead to reduced tax receipts for the US Government.

– Endless War spending could subsidize every household in America with $1000 per year

– US banks loan loss reserves are at a 20-year low while profound losses continue

– Bernanke claims $2 trillion is needed by the big US banks, but they pass the Stress Test

– A shocking 20% of US homeowners have loan balances greater than their home values

– Jobs report for April revealed jobless level at 8.9% (massaged) and 15.8% (actual)

– FDIC requested $500 billion in additional funds to cover bank failures (giant failure coming)

– GM burned $1.3B in Q1, burns $113 million per day, unable to transition to green cars

– Business investment down 38% in Q1, a RELIABLE LEADING INDICATOR

– Cramdown Law rejection means open season on foreclosures, more huge bank losses

– Banks admit that home loan are not modified after all, a revolving door to foreclosure

– Option ARMs, Jumbos, and Commercial mortgage defaults are ramping up fast

– Commercial mortgage bonds have $70-100 billion that cannot be refinanced, sure to default

– Staggering decline in consumer credit, -80% in Q3, minus $31.7B in Q4/Q1

And regarding the markets as a ‘leading indicator’ (not historically correct), there’s this:

‘Insiders from New York Stock Exchange listed companies sold $8.32 worth of stock for every dollar bought in the first three weeks of April, according to Washington Service, which analyzes stock transactions of corporate insiders for more than 500 institutional clients. That is the fastest rate of selling since October 2007, when US stocks peaked and the 17-month bear market that wiped out more than half the market value of US companies began.’

Don’t believe what they tell you on TV.

#96 Live Within Your Means on 05.16.09 at 6:28 pm

Not sure to whom I’m addressing this msg. My Mom was born in 1912 & Dad a few years later. I just want to say that I’m a boomer. Actually 62. I grew up in a family of 6 children. My Dad immigrated at 17 from Denmark to Canada. He and his buddies took turns sleeping in one of 2 beds during the Depression. He did not serve in WW2 as he was a Mgr of a plant in PQ that made camouflage nets that protected the Hfx. harbour from subs during the war. The govt. said they needed his expertise. His Mom & Sis in Denmark & my Mom’s Norwegian family & my PIL’s family in France suffered great hardships during the war. And many Cdn families did as well.

I’m a boomer & did not have an easy childhood. And neither did most of my friends, refugees from Europe. I’m offended by people on this blog that diminish the contributions to Canada & taxes that we boomers paid during our working years. I feel extremely sad for the future employment potential of our youth. Are we to blame? No. I’m just a regular taxpayer. I know that we have always supported our nieces & nephews emotionally & financially.

Stop blaming the boomers. We actually paid off our mortgages, lived within our means & didn’t have granite countertops, etc.

#97 Live Within Your Means on 05.16.09 at 6:46 pm

#93 Vancouver_Renter on 05.15.09 at 12:05 am

You’re an arrogant SOB. Though I & friends tried a toke or 2 in the late 70’s, we were not pot-heads. You sound like a typical con who likes to denigrate anyone who doesn’t fit their social conservative ideology. We’re no longer living in the 19th century.