Get a grip

Yesterday my bud and fancy portfolio manager Ryan wrote about risk. His job is to mitigate it. He’s a pro. People who give guys like us money have two main goals. (a) Don’t lose any, and (b) make a decent return on it. Yes, there are other concerns – like reducing tax and ensuring lifelong security – but those two dominate the way most investors look at things. So Ryan gave you insights into how portfolios are gently de-risked when conditions change, while still growing the funds.

The comments this weekend have been poignant. ‘When advisors start to worry at all,’ one person suggested, ‘markets are going to crash.’ And, of course, we heard from the usual buy-land-and-gold crowd who believe the world’s going to dogpoop. In that vein, others take sustained low interest rates and high debts as a sign of impending financial collapse. Plus, let’s not forget Iran, Syria, Putin, Beijing, Boris, Trump or El Paso and Dayton. Yup. Many things could be better.

Here are some thoughts on risk.

It’s everywhere, always has been and will continue. Every investor has to accept it, and the more you shoulder the larger the gains or losses are likely to be. The idea of a balanced portfolio (with growth assets and safe ones) which is also diversified (multiple securities, different assets and regions) is to reduce risk but still have growth. When some assets (like stocks) fall, others (like bonds) rise. When the Canada’s weak, Asia may be strong. When the pound drops, the greenback lifts.

In good times of expansion and growth, the goal is to build wealth fast enough to outpace inflation and fulfill life goals (buy a house, support your family, retire in dignity). In bad times the goal is to reduce or eliminate losses. Fortunately history shows more than 70% of the time growth is the norm. But it seems many folks spend 100% of their time worrying about the 30%. So they make bad choices.

The 2008-10 financial crisis was classic. Those who panicked and sold, thinking everything would get worse, sustained great losses as markets shed half their value. People who ignored it lost nothing. All-stock portfolios regained everything in seven years. The balanced portfolios Ryan and I build were restored in one year. That’s what risk management is all about. Those burying their wealth in land or cash avoided losses, but they also eschewed growth before and after the event. As this blog has said so many times, the risk most of us face is running out of money. Not losing it.

But some things never change. One of them is this: people really want to believe they live in extraordinary times. That no society in the past has experienced these threats. That it will end badly, and they must act. It becomes a cover for fear and sometimes personal failure.

After ten years of economic recovery, a recession of some kind’s inevitable. We all know that. Markets will dip, unemployment will rise, central banks will respond and after a year or so, it’ll be over. A professional portfolio manager’s job is to blunt the drop after harvesting the gains. That’s what he’s paid for.

But get a grip. This is not the beginning of an end. The threats, risks and uncertainties of the past – world wars, a global depression, pandemics or nuclear proliferation – far outweigh an inverted yield curve or record government deficits. Or Trump’s trade war. Or Brexit. Never in human history have so many lived in such comfort with such rampant and beneficial technological advance and social wealth.

Yes, climate change is scary. And the doubling of the human population in my lifetime is shocking. We are adding systemic risks that may make your grandchildren wonder what you were thinking. But this is today. It’s like yesterday. Only better.

Did you see this blog comment? “I was born in 1950,” it read. “There wasn’t much fear taken out on my behalf, as I recall. Kids my age were still getting polio because Salk vaccine was suspect and not yet in widespread use. The Asian Flu pandemic of 1957 was ugly. Most of us got it. A lot of grandparents died.

“Cars were “coffins on wheels” with zero safety features. Even seat belts were decades away. No one seemed concerned. Adults and children alike went through windshields. The prevailing wisdom was that you were better off being “tossed clear” of a road accident. (Then, as now, a lot of folks were none too bright).

“In school we played with asbestos. I mix up a ball of it with glue and baked it in an oven. It made a dandy little puppet head. We were proud of asbestos. It was an important Canadian export. Kids were strapped regularly in school for minor infractions and then disciplined a second time at home. That was business as usual. No child’s advocacy groups cried for justice.”

Fear’s fine. It keeps you out of trouble. But today we live in a dare-I-eat-a-peach world amid a social media cacophony leading so many astray. Just invest wisely for when you need it. Until then relish the one thing you can never earn, borrow or regain.

 

101 comments ↓

#1 Flop... on 08.04.19 at 2:09 pm

Does this blog have the function or capability where I just press something and Morgan Freeman calmly reads to me the new entry each day…

M45BC

#2 Flop... on 08.04.19 at 2:10 pm

Public holiday tomorrow?

I’m going to work.

A while ago I wrote a post about how the next couple of years in Vancouver we shall see who really has the money, and who is pretending to have money.

Last year at Xmas time, the client was busting to get in because she didn’t want to pay $5000 a month for rent anymore.

We’re talking a client of a four year build, estimated market value somewhere between 6-7 million.

5000k a month to rent a house for someone building this type of structure, when lots of average folk are paying almost half of that, should have been a pittance.

My newest client asked me around 20th of July if his family could be in at the end of the month.

August? I replied.

No, July.

I told him he better find a short term rental.

Not my job to be telling him these things as I am down the bottom of the totem pole.

Found out a couple of days ago they want in on the 15th of August.

No carpet in the house yet,plenty of painting and lighting fixtures to be finished off.

Removal of Ram board and detailed cleaning, etc.

Not to mention have to pass all inspections.

I will try my best but I think I will be knocking on their door at 7.30 in the morning annoying them for the first few weeks of their occupancy.

Nice family, he is a dentist.

He has given me a few construction tips where I have had then to explain the reasoning behind the way certain things are done.

I have removed some plaque from my teeth before.

Doesn’t make me a dentist…

M45BC

#3 Bdwy on 08.04.19 at 2:40 pm

Is that pic from howe sound, and the hills above Gibsons?
Sure looks like the same from where I am sitting in Gibson’s marina .
Taken from in front of our cabin on keats isl I think.

#4 Isthatso on 08.04.19 at 2:44 pm

“When some assets (like stocks) fall, others (like bonds) rise.”

Can you show factual proof that this still holds true in today’s world? The negative correlations that used to be high since 2010 have been getting smaller and smaller, with no end in sight, right?

Sure. Q4 of 2018. – Garth

#5 Greater fool on 08.04.19 at 2:46 pm

Is it wise to use a margin account in a balanced portfolio?

#6 Vanguy on 08.04.19 at 3:06 pm

DELETED

#7 crowdedelevatorfartz on 08.04.19 at 3:15 pm

Chicken Little 2019
It’s time to dust off the “prepare” speech…
It’s only been a day since your last dire warnings…

#8 Prince Polo on 08.04.19 at 3:27 pm

Garth – why are you so saintly?

I always love the posts where you remind us that time is our most precious resource.

Cheers to you, Dorothy, & Bandit on this lovely & sun-soaked long weekend.

#9 Shawn Allen on 08.04.19 at 3:37 pm

Teacher Retires None Too Soon

#79 Bruce Allen on 08.04.19 at 2:25 pm said

I spent 33+ year as an educator. No comparing the generation today. Apples to oranges. This current crop of youth is one of the most uncouth and out-of-control I ever had the misfortune of teaching.

**************************
Thank goodness pensions allow teachers to retire.

Perhaps I live in a bubble. Relatively affluent bedroom community of Edmonton. The kids I met here going back to 6 year olds circa 2001 to 24 year olds today have impressed me almost without exception. Kids my kids played sports with. Their friends from school. Kids I saw at my door on Halloween. Our friend’s kids. The kid’s friends from university (in Nova Scotia and B.C.)

I found that these kids had it good but knew they did and were grateful for it. Respectful. Polite. That’s what I saw and see. Most of them now getting established in the workplace. Becoming independent. Some getting married.

Also, I had no complaints about the teachers my kids had. I have great respect for the teachers I encountered.

#10 Brian Ripley on 08.04.19 at 3:45 pm

My Yield Curve chart is published with the July data:
http://www.chpc.biz/yield-curve.html

In July 2019 the 10yr less 2yr spread (purple dotted plot line) inverted with a 6 beep negative print.

In November 2006 it was 4 bps away from inversion and six months later in May, June and July 2007, the metric inverted and widened to negative 11 beeps and the TSX Real Estate Index tipped over into plunge-ville.

​Back then the bank rate was 4.5% and about to briefly foray into 4.8% territory until the BoC freaked and began heading towards zirpiness. The bank rate now is 2%.

Now after 10.4 years of ZIRP and NIRP, is it about time for global governments to start replacing monetary policy with fiscal policy? I don’t think our social well being should be in the hands of knob twiddlers.

#11 Bo Diddley on 08.04.19 at 4:07 pm

All throughout history, empires have risen and fallen. Personally, I think the West’s dominance has run the course. Its days as a major player on the world stage are over. We saw growth and expansion that lasted for nearly 70yrs following the huge post-war boom, which was a time of great prosperity and growth. However, the party’s winding down as we see income disparity and income inequality now rearing its ugly head all over the world. There’s an old saying (one which I’ve heard my entire life) that society ultimately reaps what it sows.

Global income disparity is narrowing, not growing. – Garth

#12 Yanniel on 08.04.19 at 4:08 pm

“The idea of a balanced portfolio (with growth assets and safe ones) which is also diversified (multiple securities, different assets and regions) is to reduce risk but still have growth. When some assets (like stocks) fall, others (like bonds) rise.”

I have read about the 70ths. A decade where bonds and cash gave “negative” real returns. Stocks danced around “zero” (in real terms) with the typical volatility.

Bonds (TIPS –did not exist back then-) were not safe when accounting for inflation even if held to maturity.

Stocks were risky and volatile as usual and people were not compensated for holding them.

In such a period the “buy-land-and-gold crowd” was not to be taken so lightly.

#13 Bruce Allen on 08.04.19 at 4:25 pm

#9 Shawn Allen, (interesting we share the same last name-lol)

I’m glad that your experiences have been positive. You mentioned that you live in a rather affluent area of Edmonton, so perhaps that speaks for itself. I taught in a small town (population of roughly 40,000) in Ontario. Over half the student body at the high school I taught in are were on drugs. Fights and confrontations were common, so were arrests, drug busts, etc. It reached the point where the district had to install metal detectors in all the entrance ways and had weekly police walk throughs. Speaking with other teachers in the same district, this story and scenario was repeated over and again. One more than once occasion, several of my colleagues feared for their own personal safety and that of the student body. Even the principal in one of the largest high schools in my area ended up resigning because he couldn’t handle the stress anymore. This isn’t unique to the school I taught in, but appears to be a trend across Ontario as a whole:

https://globalnews.ca/news/3983569/ontario-elementary-educators-union-classroom-violence-survey/

#14 JacqueShellacque on 08.04.19 at 4:27 pm

I’d recommend worrywarts read Rolf Dobelli. The root of so many of our anxieties is that our species is wired to survive hunting and gathering in groups. We worry too much about what others think, we have a tendency to herd mentality when contrarianism serves us better, we fear things that really shouldn’t be that scary to us personally, we scoff at things like compound growth that we aren’t evolved to understand intuitively. Really the list of things you really care about should not be longer than 3 or 4 items.

#15 dakkie on 08.04.19 at 4:38 pm

Hottest, Most Expensive Rental Markets Unwind

https://www.investmentwatchblog.com/hottest-most-expensive-rental-markets-unwind/

#16 Bill Grable on 08.04.19 at 4:40 pm

A brilliant and timely post.

Time – the most valuable commodity….and I liked how you explained how it is NOT smart to freak out and run, at the latest hiccup.

Thank you, Mr. Turner.

#17 Betty Hillmanson on 08.04.19 at 4:43 pm

Garth, Warren Buffet ended Q2 with $122 Billion in Cash (Berkshire). Most in their History. Why do you think they are holding record levels with the economy where it is?

Maybe he owns enough. – Garth

#18 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 4:49 pm

“Global income disparity is narrowing, not growing. – Garth”

Nice Boomer straw-man argument Garth, but my generation sees right through it.

Thanks to the Boomers outsourcing jobs to developing countries, it is true that global income levels are getting closer to those of the West.

Except that here, in Canada and the USA, income disparity is now getting much worse. The 1% are getting richer, everyone else has been stagnant since your generation took control 40 years ago. (You remember those days, with that alt-right idiot President Reagan – the guy who called black people “monkeys” talking with Nixon?)

So, nice attempt at distraction by “internationalizing” the issue.

But here, in Canada, income disparity has become much, much worse.

Facts first.

And, of course, it’s all about you. – Garth

#19 Bo Diddley on 08.04.19 at 4:52 pm

“Global income disparity is narrowing, not growing. – Garth”

Sure, if you’re in the 1%…

#20 Flop... on 08.04.19 at 5:15 pm

Wealth inequality?

Let me just check my card here to see if I’ve got all the numbers.

I call Bingo!

Pork chops at 15.99 a kilo.

It’s cheaper to kill yourself…

M45BC

“Mapping Out the ‘Filthy Rich’ In Each State.

The U.S. is a nation of millionaires and billionaires. Among its population of 323 million people, there are 607 billionaires and 11.8 million individuals with a net worth of at least $1 million. This translates to roughly 3.65% of the country. So who has the most money? That’s the topic of our latest visualization, which highlights the richest person by net worth in each state.

According to Forbes, the richest individuals in each state have a combined net worth of $875 billion.
The industries represented in this visualization are as varied as finance, technology, consumer goods, real estate, and retail.

Forbes calculated that 60% of the richest individuals in each state earned their own fortunes, 21% inherited their money, and 19% became rich by expanding an existing business.

Jeff Bezos is not only the richest person in Washington state; he is also the richest person in the world.
Even though Bezos is the richest man in the world, his family is not the richest one. The Walton family (of Walmart fame) earns that distinction. In the visualization, Jim Walton and Alice Walton are represented as the richest individuals in their respective states.

The information in this visualization comes from the most recent Forbes ranking of the richest individuals in each state, as of June 2019. The individuals are ranked by their net worth. The visualization above is shaped like a map of the U.S., with each state represented by a picture of the richest person within that state. The person’s name and net worth are listed below their picture, and the source of their wealth is listed above the picture. In addition, the background for each picture is a shade of green, with the darker shades representing higher net worth and the lighter shades representing lower net worth.

Top 10 States with the Highest Net-Worth Individuals

1. Washington: Jeff Bezos & family – $157 billion – Amazon
2. Nebraska: Warren Buffett – $85 billion – Berkshire Hathaway
3. California: Mark Zuckerberg – $71 billion – Facebook
4. New York: Michael Bloomberg – $53.8 billion – Bloomberg LP
5. Arkansas: Jim Walton – $51.1 billion – Walmart
6. Texas: Alice Walton – $50.1 billion – Walmart
7. Kansas: Charles Koch – $42 billion – Koch industries
8. Nevada: Sheldon Adelson – $35.7 billion – Casinos
9. Oregon: Phil Knight & family – $35 billion – Nike
10. Virginia: Jacqueline Mars – $28.1 billion – Candy, pet food

Interestingly, while certain states like California and New York are home to multiple billionaires, other states like Alabama, Alaska, Delaware, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and Vermont only have centimillionaires (people with a net worth of hundreds of millions). As the wealth gap continues to widen and the average S&P 500 CEO makes 287 times what a typical American worker makes, the unequal distribution of wealth will continue to be a hot-button issue, especially for the upcoming election.”

17 July 2019

Visualization

https://howmuch.net/articles/the-richest-person-in-every-state-2019

#21 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 5:16 pm

“And, of course, it’s all about you. – Garth”

No, actually, Canadian income disparity is all about YOU, the Boomer generation who have gutted our middle class to make themselves richer, by outsourcing jobs and production elsewhere.

Even when this has involved ridiculous environmental costs, like shipping garbage to Asia and importing cheap goods across the ocean again to sell in dollar stores here, you Boomers made this happen in the name of profit. Yours.

And it wasn’t ever about “sharing the wealth” or making poorer countries better by giving them a few crappy jobs paying dollars a day. Never. Don’t kid yourselves, Boomers.

It has always been about simply making the profit margin better for Boomers investors and executives here, the entitled 1%.

To hell with Canadians and the next generation, or now the millennials.

That has been the ethos behind the Boomer Betrayal.

To suggest the opposite, as you appear to be doing, is just such vapid virtue signalling, it is comedic.

This is precisely why Millennials will be taking over everything and making dramatic changes soon.

Be part of the change, Boomers.

Or be run over by it.

#22 Linda on 08.04.19 at 5:26 pm

Fear, like sex, sells. Or at least grabs the attention. News thrives on fear & of course, anyone who makes a dramatic, push the fear button statement is automatically granted a headline.

Thing is that button has been pressed so often that these days my response (besides irritation) is an automatic questioning of why person X is saying Y. I’m looking for the ‘what’s in it for them’ & ‘what are they trying to hide’ factors. Yet so many still seem willing to fall for what is generally nothing but a steaming pile of meadow muffins. Bah, humbug!

#23 Another Deckchair on 08.04.19 at 5:29 pm

Hey #18 Millennial Realist;

Reading your comment reminded me of a Mark Twain saying:

“Never argue with an idiot. They will drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.”

Fortunately, the Millennials that I know are not idiots. How can that be?

Enough said.

#24 Retired Boomer on 08.04.19 at 5:52 pm

#21 Millenial Realist.
Wow. Quite the entitled and hard done by attitude you’ve got going there. Good luck with that

#25 yvr_lurker on 08.04.19 at 5:53 pm

#21 blah..blah…blah…
——————————

I am a late Boomer and generally left-leaning on most items. Made it somewhere starting from zilch. Raised in a single-parent household with mother barely above the poverty line with an absent dad that never paid a nickel in child support.

I think you need to tone down the rhetoric. My biggest concern is the run-away housing prices in our major cities due largely to parasitic foreign “investment” being the “fuel”. For those young people who have an advanced education and training and need to be near a big city to get a job fitting of their training, they have been largely screwed over by the Gov’t, as it is much harder than in the past. This is a fact. Any Gov’t measure to restrict accesss of our housing market to local people and to restrict speculation I am in for. Restrict locals doing AirBNB, no purchases from dudes sitting at a computer in Shanghai or Moscow or wherever. Period. Full stop.
However, on the other hand, if you are thinking that there is going to be some revolution and that you will somehow become enriched and get a free ride without having to plan your future, and be smart and disciplined, and working hard, it ain’t going to happen. There will be no Mugabe riding on a horse set to extropriate land and farms and give it to the masses. Focus on what you can do through your own effort and vote for those who you think will help. Cancel your membership in the 4/20 crowd.

#26 Shawn Allen on 08.04.19 at 6:11 pm

Buffett’s cash hoard

#17 Betty Hillmanson on 08.04.19 at 4:43 pm
Garth, Warren Buffet ended Q2 with $122 Billion in Cash (Berkshire). Most in their History. Why do you think they are holding record levels with the economy where it is?

Maybe he owns enough. – Garth

************************
Berkshire does own a lot. But he’d like to own a lot more if the price were right.

He has uniquely positioned Berkshire to withstand market corrections. Uniquely always favors a lumpy 10% over a smooth 8%.

Does not like the idea of holding bonds for ten years such as to maturity, therefore will not even think about holding them for ten minutes.

Buffett marches to his own tune.

His universe of equities and companies to buy is now tiny because it has to be in the billions (and he’d prefer more than $25 billion) to move the needle.

Also he says he NEVER thinks about where the economy is when looking to buy things. It’s ALL about long term prospers for the company he might buy versus its price.

Read what Buffett himself says about his cash. Read where he says there are no called strikes in investing. He can stand at the plate and not swing for as long as it takes for a nice bargain to come along. Do not make any assumptions. Do not believe any speculations about his reasons.

Buffett also uniquely positioned Berkshire in a way that he can do whatever he pleases. There are no analyst calls to deal with. No plans to issue any shares so never any hurry to push the stock price up. No stock options for management either. Again, unique.

#27 baloney Sandwitch on 08.04.19 at 6:12 pm

Great post today. Specially the stuff about FEAR. Fear is said to be emotion 2 times stronger than GREED. I think its 3 – 4 x. I looked back at my portfolio, I recovered from the 2009 crash in 1.5 years (the second worst in modern history).

#28 Shawn Allen on 08.04.19 at 6:16 pm

Buffett

He happens not to like bonds at like 2%. Refuses to buy.

Therefore what else is there that can give risk-free stability? That would be treasury bills. Cash gives him stability today plus “dry powder” for when he buy more companies at good prices.

#29 Ej on 08.04.19 at 6:19 pm

Thanks for the reality check. I made me think that perhaps it is the great prevalence of high standards of living (along with a Social media) which allows such a large number of cratchety grippers to post–in years past they would be struggling too hard and wouldn’t have the luxury. Thus, perhaps the volume of negative blog comments is a marker of “success”…

#30 Shawn Allen on 08.04.19 at 6:22 pm

Boomers

#21 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 5:16 pm

***************
You make it sound like Boomers operated as some big team. No, like basically all people, boomers (like me) made economic choices on what would benefit each of them personally the most.

Also there is a lot of survivor bias when boomers are discussed. Not every boomer is well off by any means.

Now it is your turn. You live in a country of great opportunity. Make your own choices. Live with the consequences of your past and future choices. You have no choice.

What good will whining about boomers do you?

#31 TurnerNation on 08.04.19 at 6:27 pm

I’m taking the day off work tomorrow due to my Climate Anxiety (per the CBC).
Magically this affliction only hits people of my culture. My Right Guilt cross to bear :(

#32 DON on 08.04.19 at 6:32 pm

I think China will not give in so easily and both parties are seeking deals with other countries behind the scenes. Ex.c soya beans, China/Russia.

Driving without seat belts. CARS were metal and most couldn’t go that fast…but I can’t believe we didn’t have car seats or seat belts at one point. Now all cars can go pretty fast and are made of fiber glass or thin metal…Up until 2006 I drove a car that still doesn’t require seat belts…neat feeling but not worth the risk on road today.

The world’s going to Hell and I’m going fishing.

MR…I think the daily financial pressures are slowly getting to folks especially those who are nervously over leveraged. A slowdown in New builds or renos can set the ball in motion. There are reasons why the divorce rates are high. I have a younger friend who is getting a divorce and trying to sell the house…no kids involved…but they were ‘going to last forever’…

In Vancouver sales of houses increased from the worst year in 18 years (last years), listings increased but prices down.

In my neck of the woods finding a ‘sold’ sign is like finding Waldo.

Getting that stagnant feeling out there.

#33 Sail Away on 08.04.19 at 6:40 pm

#21 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 5:16 pm

————————

You entitled wuss. Get out there and create some value for the world instead of blaming everybody else.

#34 NoName on 08.04.19 at 6:42 pm

Press play, human, monkeys and dogs.

https://twitter.com/NatashaFatah/status/1158137759112060934

#35 Sail Away on 08.04.19 at 6:47 pm

A favourite quote of mine is JP Morgan’s response to being asked his prediction of the stock market:

“It will fluctuate”

#36 Win not Lose on 08.04.19 at 6:55 pm

#20 Flop… on 08.04.19 at 5:15 pm

Lower Mainland BC food prices:

No Frills Store:

Boneless Pork Half Loin $2/lb or $4.41/kg
Cut your own chops!
Frozen Chicken legs and thighs $1/lb $2.20/kg
Happy BBQ’ing

#37 GenXer on 08.04.19 at 6:59 pm

Re. Millennial Unrealist

“This is precisely why Millennials will be taking over everything and making dramatic changes soon.”

When’s the last time I heard that rhetoric? Oh yeah, in the 1970’s, from young boomers who certain The Revolution was at hand. LOL.

If you think your gen will be any different, you’re delusional. Read some history, you’ll quickly discover that greed is multi-generational. Same as it ever was, same as it ever was.

#38 Annick Dotal on 08.04.19 at 7:23 pm

#9 Shawn Allen
#13 Bruce Allen

I had to chime in on this topic. I know 2 high school principals that work in the same GTA region, but in adjacent communities. The problems that plague these 2 Catholic high schools are vastly different. In my community where the average household income is a bit higher and the population is more diverse, the main student problems centre around mental health issues, academic cheating, and adderall (the study drug). Lots of pressure to perform well academically and (I guess) the money to pay someone else to write papers, steal exams, buy study drugs etc. In the other community, which has a slightly lower household income but is less culturally diverse, the schools are dealing with violence, petty crimes, and hard drugs. A metal detector had to be installed to ferret out knives and, more recently, guns. This info rarely gets into the local paper.

#39 Flop... on 08.04.19 at 7:36 pm

#36 Win not Lose on 08.04.19 at 6:55 pm
#20 Flop… on 08.04.19 at 5:15 pm

Lower Mainland BC food prices:

No Frills Store:

Boneless Pork Half Loin $2/lb or $4.41/kg
Cut your own chops!
Frozen Chicken legs and thighs $1/lb $2.20/kg
Happy BBQ’ing

//////////////////////

O.k, I will explain that line.

Growing up in Tasmania, the big smoke to us was Melbourne.

There was no McDonalds in Tasmania when I was a kid.

To get a Thickshake you had to get on a plane.

Also we had no professional football teams so if you wanted to see a game that also involved a flight.

I recall one time there was a national airline strike.

We were stuck on the island and so after a while the Air Force stepped in.

We were loading into the back of a cargo/parachute type plane and given ear muffs and life jackets to wear the whole trip.

Normally a 45 minute trip, this one was slightly longer.

This is an experience you don’t forget.

Melbourne had skyscrapers and all the big city problems that go along with a city of that size.

We often stayed at the same hotel and as I became a teenager my brother and I were allowed to split up from my parents at certain times to give them a break from the kids.

There was a big gray warehouse near the hotel that I used as a landmark to know where I was.

On one trip I came around the corner and noticed someone had graffitied the building in bright red lettering that looked like dripping blood.

I read it and took a mental picture.

“Pork chops at 15.99 a kilo, it’s cheaper to kill yourself.”

I probably ate the expensive pork, but declined the suicide part.

Apparently things were bad in the 80’s as well…

M45BC

#40 T on 08.04.19 at 7:45 pm

#21 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 5:16 pm

Who let SCM back in? Get lost. Even more than you already are.

Garth, thank you so much for sharing your time with us all. Many of us millenials are very appreciative of your time and wisdom, enlightening many of us, helping us straighten out our priorities and live a more meaningful life.

#41 Nonplused on 08.04.19 at 7:52 pm

“Cars were “coffins on wheels” with zero safety features. Even seat belts were decades away.”

Part of this has to do with the evolution of the automobile. The original cars weren’t much more than a horse wagon with an engine Jerry-rigged to propel it. If it flipped over you were better off getting thrown clear because there was no roof or maybe a fabric tent on top. Seat belts weren’t necessary as 30 mph was top speed for many years. You don’t really need a seat belt or a helmet until you are going faster than you can run, unless you are doing things like running into a 350 pound lineman.

Safety equipment in cars lagged improvements in speed mostly due to marking and profitability concerns. Seat belts for example, were originally panned by the automakers because one it costs them something to install thereby raising the price of the vehicle and two because it was thought to imply that cars weren’t safe. Even disk brakes were slow to be adopted as speeds increased. And things like anti-lock brakes simply were not feasible until about 25 years ago, and also offered only limited improvements in safety over a trained driver at considerable additional expense. “Crumple zones” did not become a thing until automakers had moved to uni-body designs for other reasons. It was shorthand for “there is no frame anymore so your car is screwed if you hit something hard”.

So there are some things that actually do need to be regulated to be adopted. Until the government mandated seat belts manufacturers were reluctant to put them in. But regulation can go too far, now airbags are mandatory as well but it’s hard to say if they actually save lives if a three-point seat belt is already in use. And when they first came out it resulted in a reduction of seat belt use. It was a redundant system and many people assumed they didn’t need to wear their seat belt if they had airbags. That’s how people think. So, after mandating airbags, the government had to turn around and mandate wearing your seat belt.

Anyway I am not sure all this nostalgia has a point. Life expectancy has gone way up in the last 100 years and it is because of things like polio vaccines and seat belts. 75 years ago deciding not to smoke or drink or eat bacon because of life expectancy was silly because hardly anyone lived long enough to get lung cancer. But science and technology has increased life expectancy (and improved a lot of other things) considerably so now we worry about these things.

Even bacon is a good example of how technology has changed our fortunes. In 1850 preserving meat was hard, and there were only really 2 technologies to do it, salt and smoke drying (and canning I suppose). So bacon and ham provided an important life enhancing feature, meat that lasted more than a few days after being butchered. Hence the rise of salty dried meats, which is still with us to this day. Now we are told to avoid salt because it leads to high blood pressure, but before refrigeration nobody cared about that rotting meat was a much bigger concern.

Now things have swung so far that many people only drink bottled water because they don’t want to ingest the small amounts of chlorine there is in municipal tap water. But the introduction of chlorination to municipal water supplies has saved untold millions of lives and increased life expectancy considerably.

The “good old days” just weren’t all that good. A lot of people died from things we would consider to be easily preventable today. The reason social security or CPP seemed like a good idea at the time was because on average people only spent 2 years in retirement before they croaked. Almost half the people didn’t make it to retirement. Today, at least in the first world and even much of the second world, is much better than yesterday was.

And strapping children or otherwise beating them was never a good idea. What happens when you beat a dog? You either get an extremely aggressive or an extremely cowering dog. The same thing happens when you beat a kid. You don’t want to raise your children to have a “fight or flight” response to their own parents and guardians. Bad idea. And no the bible doesn’t encourage it. “Spare not your child the staff or the rod” is a reference to shepherding, and shepherds do not beat their sheep. They use the staff to guide them. If they beat the sheep, the sheep would go take their chances with the wolves. And as anyone who has raised animals before knows, physical discipline does not work, because the animal can seldom associate the beating with the behavior. Well guess what? Kids are the same. I can’t remember how many times my dad beat me with a belt when he got home from work because my mother was pissed, and I don’t think either me or my dad ever knew why. But I am still adverse to being around either of them, even though they are too old to do any damage at this point.

#42 Linda on 08.04.19 at 7:54 pm

I don’t know if I’ll live long enough to find out, but sure will be interesting to hear what the children of the Millennial generation will have to say about their parents. Wonder if they will be blaming them for all the ills of the world they live in? After all, Millennials now are the largest generation so presumably they will now take the heat for everything that future generations think is wrong with the world:)

#43 Leo Trollstoy on 08.04.19 at 8:08 pm

During the GFC investors should have loaded up on US RE

32 unit FL MF sold to me for 40k C$ a door now valued at 150k US$ a door

Too bad Canadians can’t 1031

#44 Reminds me ... on 08.04.19 at 8:21 pm

#35 Sail Away on 08.04.19 at 6:47 pm
A favourite quote of mine is JP Morgan’s response to being asked his prediction of the stock market:
“It will fluctuate”

of an old rancher I knew who never learned to read or write but when asked a question would ponder for a spell and then reply … “could go either way.” Somehow the guy lived a full and colorful life without even being able to count money or sign his name. His handshake was all that was needed. Those days are gone.

#45 short horses on 08.04.19 at 8:24 pm

#21 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 5:16 pm

“No, actually, Canadian income disparity is all about YOU, the Boomer generation who have gutted our middle class to make themselves richer, by outsourcing jobs and production elsewhere.”

Outsourcing as a business practice is older than you may think. The term dates to the 1970s, when boomers were burning bras, dodging drafts, and pedaling their bikes to high school (and primary school — the generational cohort is huge).

Manufacturing companies seeking efficiency hire outside firms to manage less-than-essential processes. Many organizations outsource their entire back office operations, including human resources, payroll and accounting and large companies outsource half their IT operations. Outsourcing works: consumer choices increase, product costs drop, and workers’ roles change.

Should be music to the ears of folks reading an investment blog…

#46 Randy on 08.04.19 at 8:47 pm

Carnivore Aurelius ©
@KetoAurelius

The worst addiction in the world is comfort

Nobody wants to be cold. Nobody wants to try a hard diet. Nobody wants to exercise hard

They want to click a button and have all their needs satisfied

But all growth happens with discomfort

Our society has made everybody soft

#47 Ace Goodheart on 08.04.19 at 8:51 pm

#17 Betty Hillmanson:

If Buffett’s holding cash it’s because he’s waiting to buy something. Something that’s too expensive now but that he believes will soon go on sale…..

#48 Paul on 08.04.19 at 8:58 pm

An excerpt from “Timeless Simplicity” by John Lane:

The industrialist was horrified to find the fisherman lying beside his boat, smoking a pipe.

“Why aren’t you fishing?” asked the industrialist.

“Because I’ve caught enough fish for the day.”

“Why don’t you catch some more?”

“What would I do with them?”

“Earn more money. Then you could have a motor fixed to your boat and go into deeper waters and catch more fish. That would bring you money to buy nylon nets, so more fish, more money. Soon you would have enough to buy two boats, even a fleet of boats, then you could be rich like me.”

“What would I do then?”

“Then you could sit back and enjoy life.”

“What do you think I’m doing now?”

#49 Jonathan Parker on 08.04.19 at 9:02 pm

Succinct post Garth.

#50 SmallTownSteve on 08.04.19 at 9:03 pm

#21
Sounds like you would be really happy living in North Korea, everyone is equal there. Equally starving, equally oppressed, equality for all. Except of course even there some people are more equal than others….

#51 MF on 08.04.19 at 9:18 pm

I read that comment and agreed with it like most I assume.

While it is true what Garth wrote, you can’t forget that the it’s always the most upset, frustrated, miserable, cynical etc. who are the most vocal.

#46 Randy on 08.04.19 at 8:47 pm

Don’t know if I totally agree. Just look at the economic expansion and tons of improvements to quality of life that have occurred since WW2. Capitalism should provide enough motivation to improve one’s situation by itself.

MF

#52 Shawn Allen on 08.04.19 at 9:19 pm

Opportunities Seized and Missed in Florida and other USA

#43 Leo Trollstoy on 08.04.19 at 8:08 pm
During the GFC investors should have loaded up on US RE

32 unit FL MF sold to me for 40k C$ a door now valued at 150k US$ a door

Too bad Canadians can’t 1031

****************************
And I recall Leo told this blog about that purchase at the time or not long after. House prices bottomed several years after the great financial prices I believe.

MANY on this blog were convinced right at the bottom of the US housing collapse that the prices would only keep going down.

I believe Garth and many of us said at the time it was a golden opportunity for Canadian snowbirds to buy real estate in the U.S. Dollar was near par too.

Close relative of mine, retired, who spent a month or two in Florida most winters bought a “short sale” house from a bank in 2011. Has enjoyed the house immensely ever since.

Not all investors were in a position to buy a house in the U.S.A. I don’t often head to USA in winter so buying a house was not for me. But I bought a U.S. Home Builder stock and did well on that.

#53 DON on 08.04.19 at 9:34 pm

#37 GenXer on 08.04.19 at 6:59 pm

Re. Millennial Unrealist

“This is precisely why Millennials will be taking over everything and making dramatic changes soon.”

When’s the last time I heard that rhetoric? Oh yeah, in the 1970’s, from young boomers who certain The Revolution was at hand. LOL.

If you think your gen will be any different, you’re delusional. Read some history, you’ll quickly discover that greed is multi-generational. Same as it ever was, same as it ever was.

********************

Millenial needs to watch ‘All in the Family’.

Same old same old>>ROW Row Row your boat gently down the stream…

#54 Out Of Work CEO, Will Travel on 08.04.19 at 9:53 pm

The week gallops by except in Canada the donkey looks both ways; apologizes; and then has to gab with all the traffic forever about which way the wind is blowing. The nice shiney new pipeline is about to get put in the ground after we were on our knees for it seems like a millinnea apologizing to Greenpeace and any other offended duck in our great and far reaching arctic. Our looney globally known as a “Petro Currency” is a bird heavy with parasitic tendencies could drop more than a few barrels of petrol before our oil oligarchs write any more editorials in the major dailies.

#55 Entrepreneur on 08.04.19 at 10:12 pm

I think it is called “globalization”#21 Millennial Realist and the working taxpayers of a country are seeing it, cannot climb the ladder, blocked. The lower to middle class have a difficult time competing if they can or give up. Why Brexit, why Trump?

Why send our garbage overseas and not deal with it properly here since we are environmentally intelligent?Why not correct the problem by addressing it? And as with the Dollar Store products, heard on the news several times, questionable.

I would like to see jobs for Canadians in Canada and products made by Canadians in Canada, the intelligent way. The Canadian Way. And if a company cannot find Canadians to work for them, there is a reason.

And Canadians are very wise especially the youth, environmentally second nature.

In the early seventies people I knew made things, some went into business but that kind of thinking, dreams are gone. Many have moved to Alberta or the States.

Drop the name calling, go a lot further in your arguments.

Like I have said that the taxpayers of a country come first, listen to their concerns, address it correctly. Or what is the point of having a country with borders.

#56 TRUMP2020 on 08.04.19 at 10:20 pm

GARTH “W.BUFFETT” TURNER.

Now your talking like a business owner which is how an Investor should think and act like.

Valuations of a piece of land, house, or business will ebb and flow with the wind but there is nothing more prevalent than the cashflow rendered from a profitable enterprise.

It’s very simple – at the end of the day how much cash does the business generate and what does it take to make that happen?

#57 Armpit on 08.04.19 at 10:21 pm

Recessions are the cleansing of the meek and mild companies. Some will die, some will thrive, and most will have to re-invent themselves.

In my opinion, I sense this next one will be a humdinger. When the dust settles, we will not recognize the next revolution … as it will be created by artificial intelligence in our everyday lives. Smart cars, smart homes, A.I. monitors.

And Boom we go.. until Boomers are no longer.

Again… no facts to support this… only my opinion. Ha!

#58 Greenham for Mayor on 08.04.19 at 10:37 pm

Garth, just wondering what you think of the trillions of neagative yielding bonds in the world. How sustainable are they? Eventually someone will get stuck with them when the music stops eh?

#59 Leo Trollstoy on 08.04.19 at 10:41 pm

Cash is $hit until $hit hits the fan, then cash is king

Buffett knows this because it’s obvious

“He thinks of cash differently than conventional investors. He thinks of cash as a call option with no expiration date, an option on every asset class, with no strike price. Once an investor looks at cash as an option — in essence, the price of being able to scoop up a bargain when it becomes available — it is less tempting to be bothered by the fact that in the short term, it earns almost nothing.”
https://www.barrons.com/articles/what-warren-buffett-likes-about-cash-1473286224

#60 Leo Trollstoy on 08.04.19 at 10:43 pm

Millennials don’t matter cuz millennials are poor

Once they become not-poor they will be the new Boomers

Rinse and repeat

#61 meslippery on 08.04.19 at 10:46 pm

#37 GenXer on 08.04.19 at 6:59 pm

Re. Millennial Unrealist

“This is precisely why Millennials will be taking over everything and making dramatic changes soon.”

When’s the last time I heard that rhetoric? Oh yeah, in the 1970’s, from young boomers who certain The Revolution was at hand. LOL.

If you think your gen will be any different, you’re delusional. Read some history, you’ll quickly discover that greed is multi-generational. Same as it ever was, same as it ever was.

********************

Millenial needs to watch ‘All in the Family’.

Same old same old>>ROW Row Row your boat gently down the stream

—————-
Some say “All in the family ” could not air today…
To me that”s scary.
Clean enough for TV then but not now WOW ideas and words.
Also kids jumping and playing in the back of a station wagon doing 70 plus miles per hour on the 401 both Mom and Dad smoking windows up.
By today,s standards I should not be alive, yet I,am.

“Global income disparity is narrowing, not growing. – Garth”
—–
True but USA and Canada is. Think maybe that,s why the USA voted Trump.

#62 Lizard Man on 08.05.19 at 1:12 am

My American insurance broker decided I need this in order to protect my assets in Canada. I am covered by Federal Statute in the United States but insurance brokers in the United States now view Canada as “high risk”. I agree.

https://www.cii.co.uk/fact-files/insurances/war-risks-and-terrorism-insurance/#

You have CDIP on balances below $100,000. But the Canadian government offers no protection against a terrorist strike on your assets. Read your insurance policy and see that increased percieved but known and acknowleged hazard , has already voided your policy . In other words, you need to buy additional hazard insurance due to shifting political considerations in Canada.

#63 Jewish Defence League on 08.05.19 at 1:25 am

DELETED

#64 Jewish Defence League on 08.05.19 at 1:40 am

DELETED

#65 JDL on 08.05.19 at 1:42 am

DELETED

#66 Sail Away on 08.05.19 at 2:48 am

#54 Out Of Work CEO, Will Travel on 08.04.19 at 9:53 pm

The nice shiney new pipeline is about to get put in the ground

————————————————–

Really? You actually think the pipeline will be built?

Maybe climate change will give us a cold day in hell….

#67 Dolce Vita on 08.05.19 at 3:50 am

#33 Sail Away

“You entitled wuss.”

THAT was good.

Still killing myself laughing.

Haven’t read “wuss” being used in prose that Zen effectively in quite some time.

Thank you.

————————————

#25 yvr_lurker

Advice from one Conspiracy Theorist to another.

However, a Silver Lining:

“…if you are thinking that there is going to be some revolution and that you will somehow become enriched and get a free ride without having to plan your future, and be smart and disciplined, and working hard, it ain’t going to happen.”

THAT was well written, indeed it was.

#68 Dolce Vita on 08.05.19 at 3:59 am

#33 Sail Away

Why I died laughing at your “wuss” comment is because it reminded me of SNL’s “Weekend Update” when Akroyd said to Curtin (during the skits “Point/Counterpoint” segment):

“Jane, You Ignorant Slut”.

Imagine saying that today?

Telling at how positively ridiculous the Progressive Left have become at brainwashing generations with their nonsense, the few of them that there are, yet unfortunately they dominate MSM and film.

#69 Bytor the Snow Dog on 08.05.19 at 8:17 am

@30 Shawn Allen-

WHAT? You missed the Boomer Meeting? You know, the one where us Boomers get together and discuss how to screw over Millennials?

It was last Tuesday right after the Patriarchy Meeting. You shoulda seen the agenda at that one!

#70 IHCTD9 on 08.05.19 at 8:33 am

#21 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 5:16 pm
———

You’ve got a big disappointment coming your way bud.

#71 FAKE NEWS on 08.05.19 at 8:34 am

There is “NOTHING WRONG” with holding onto CASH.

As long as you deploy it properly when the opportunity presents itself.

MONEY MANAGERS however are forbidden to do this because they make their money (fees) by actively trading your money to prove their worth.

That’s why money manager can’t be cash heavy.

Wrong. All our actively-managed portfolios hold cash, since it is a defensive asset. We make zero money on trades, since they are always free to the client. You’re embarrassing yourself. – Garth

#72 crowdedelevatorfartz on 08.05.19 at 8:34 am

@Millenial Be-for-realist
Still blaming Boomers for your crappy life I see.

Have you voiced your opinion of Boomers to your Boomer parents or are you still expecting (nay…In your case, demanding) to receive the inheritance….?

Hurry!.
Speak your opinion or wallow in self pity when the old folks home vacuums up the last of the estate…. the unfairness of it all.

#73 Bytor the Snow Dog on 08.05.19 at 8:40 am

@68 Dolce Vita-

Ever seen the “Sofa King” skit? Or the “Cork Soaker” skit?

Now those were classic.

If you really want to see pushing the envelope TV, look up the Living Color “Caulk” skit.

#74 jess on 08.05.19 at 8:44 am

P2P transfers –

“even those who have not signed up … may be scammed. “Criminals — potentially using stolen online banking credentials or credential stuffing attacks — add a cellphone they control to the user’s profile, then send money to the hacker’s account,” consumer advocate Bob Sullivan found. (Apparently, hackers have discovered how to access fintech accounts without passwords, although they can also use stolen credentials to gain access.)

“After the hacker’s mobile number is added to the bank account,” Sullivan said, “the banks’ confirmation code to verify the transaction is misdirected to that fraudulent number, and the hacker confirms the transaction. So once the account is compromised, a fraudster is able to transfer money out of the account.”

Money transfers can also be transacted with surprisingly little information and little or no confirmation protection, as is required with a bank electronic funds transfer….from:
By John F. Wasik, RealClearInvestigations
July 31, 2019

#75 sxpat on 08.05.19 at 9:06 am

To me it’s about risk.

Are you risk averse or a risk taker?

After seeing China’s response this Monday morning IMHO it’s time to de-risk.

A better entry point to the markets exists. It sure as hell isn’t now. After a 20% lift this year it’s time to take profits inho.
I did.

Yeah I know, but you will miss out…..

Do I miss out on a 20% downdraft as traders panic? Or a 20% lift from trade tensions easing…

World trade is collapsing and profits are plummetting

I always invest, but to me, this is time to stand back and wait for clarity.
Bonds look great though as central banks go to negative rate policy and the move to e-currency and the removal of cash.

Just my opinion.

#76 dharma bum on 08.05.19 at 9:07 am

#21 Millennial Realist

This is precisely why Millennials will be taking over everything and making dramatic changes soon.
——————————————————————–

Yah. They’re gonna change things so the millennials become exactly what the boomers were.

Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SlxrfaHgJKU

#77 Material Girl on 08.05.19 at 9:25 am

Panic sets in. Let’s see who survives.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/08/05/gold-bonds-and-currencies-investors-rush-to-safer-assets-amid-trade-war-fears.html

Some things never change. Like human overreaction. – Garth

#78 akashic record on 08.05.19 at 10:15 am

Cars got seat belts when the patent expired and car makers didn’t have to pay a penny for the (Canadian) inventor.

Is there any lesson in that?

#79 Stone on 08.05.19 at 11:07 am

#77 Material Girl on 08.05.19 at 9:25 am
Panic sets in. Let’s see who survives.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/08/05/gold-bonds-and-currencies-investors-rush-to-safer-assets-amid-trade-war-fears.html

Some things never change. Like human overreaction. – Garth

———

Yes, but it’s fun to watch. Especially when you make money off of it.

#80 Stone on 08.05.19 at 11:17 am

#78 akashic record on 08.05.19 at 10:15 am
Cars got seat belts when the patent expired and car makers didn’t have to pay a penny for the (Canadian) inventor.

Is there any lesson in that?

———

Yes. Companies will only do the bare minimum prescribed by law whether you are a customer or an employee (worse if there is no legislation in place). Never trust a company to put your health, safety, and wellbeing as a top priority. Ever!

You are always best to look after number 1 yourself.

#81 Lisa Reitman on 08.05.19 at 11:36 am

I hope China goes bankrupt. Just put more tariffs on them as they devalue their currency the Yuan. It is no magic wand though.

#82 saskatoon on 08.05.19 at 11:39 am

there was/is good reason to be wary.

salk vaccine created the AIDS epidemic by injecting (siv) infected live monkey organ kidney tissue into thousands.

see CBC 2004 documentary: “the origin of aids”

#83 oh bouy on 08.05.19 at 11:45 am

@
@#79 Bruce Allen on 08.04.19 at 2:25 pm
#53, thank-you.

The amount of “Mary Sunshines” who still don’t get it frankly astounds me, and it’s yet another example of why we’re circling the drain (check out George Carlin’s video on YouTube where he sums up the current sad states of affairs). Carlin NAILS IT.

I spent 33+ year as an educator. No comparing the generation today. Apples to oranges. This current crop of youth is one of the most uncouth and out-of-control I ever had the misfortune of teaching. I noticed a fundamental change in the student body when prayers were taken out of the classroom and leftist ideology took over the curriculum. The garbage they’re spoon these kids it’s a wonder of of them can function in today’s world. They no longer do any thinking, allowing their devices and gadgets to do all the thinking for them. Towards the end of my teaching career, I simply stopped caring, as did many of my fellow colleagues and faculty, some of whom suffered nervous breakdowns and had to take extended leaves as per their doctor’s advice…

Guys like Oh Buoy and MF who can’t see the train wreck coming will be the ones (along with 90% of the rest of the population) will be the ones standing there absolutely sh!tfaced when it all hits the fan. I am well prepared and have a contingency plan in place. It’s also why I’m glad I moved the hell out of the big city. You guys should also follow Karl Denninger’s blog over at market-ticker.org. Lots of good information posted over there from a guy who knows his stuff and calls it as he sees it.

Keep on the hitting the bong though. It dulls reality.
______________________________________

Bruce, have you ever considered you may be deficient in vitamin B12? affects the nervous system especially in older folks.

For an educator of 33+ years the tripe you spew on here is unbecoming. Using broad generalizations and blanket statements to further your narrative is just lazy.

life has never been better for most people in history. that is a fact.

have a nice day.
if thats at all possible for you :)

#84 oh bouy on 08.05.19 at 11:49 am

@#76 dharma bum on 08.05.19 at 9:07 am
#21 Millennial Realist

This is precisely why Millennials will be taking over everything and making dramatic changes soon.
——————————————————————–

Yah. They’re gonna change things so the millennials become exactly what the boomers were.

Meet the new boss. Same as the old boss!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SlxrfaHgJKU
___________________________

HAHA, maybe the first true thing you’ve said on here DB

#85 Gary Hampton on 08.05.19 at 11:58 am

China’s communists are showing their true nature, destroy other people’s lives. All they got is a currency devaluation.

This is the oldest trick in the book. It just goes to show that it is the same old crap under the sun. The new is only the old with different people and technology.

#86 Damifino on 08.05.19 at 12:43 pm

#41 Nonplused

Thank you for your illuminations on some of my points.

It remains true… we look back and see only progress. We look forward and see only ruin. Why is that?

#87 Shawn Allen on 08.05.19 at 12:44 pm

Canada First?

#55 Entrepreneur on 08.04.19 at 10:12 pm said:

I would like to see jobs for Canadians in Canada and products made by Canadians in Canada, the intelligent way. The Canadian Way. And if a company cannot find Canadians to work for them, there is a reason.

….

Like I have said that the taxpayers of a country come first, listen to their concerns, address it correctly. Or what is the point of having a country with borders.

************************
Your idea has appeal. Except that economic theory dictates that Canadians are better off on average when we maximize trade. Over time we must export about as much as we import in order to pay for the imports. In total, Canadians sell what we have or can make most efficiently to purchase what others have or can make more efficiently.

Your idea also has tribal roots suggesting that Canadians are sort of one big team. But in reality we compete as individuals.

And you ask what is the point of having a country with borders. THAT is an extremely great question. How far should any country go to favor only its own people? What level of restrictions on immigration are morally acceptable? If we owe some care to less well off fellow Canadians do we also morally owe some level of care and compassion to all humans?

Is America First okay? How about America Only? Is Trump America First or America Only?

Is the notion of 100% sovereign states an historic relic? Can humanity allow that in a nuclear age? Many threats are global. Therefore global rules are needed?

#88 Global Rules on 08.05.19 at 1:45 pm

#87 Shawn Allen – Global rules have always been in place since the League of Nations, The United Nations, and NATO. Now, if your indicating forced Globalisation under an unelected committee or world dictatorship you might be correct.

#89 Bruce Allen on 08.05.19 at 1:52 pm

#84

“Bruce, have you ever considered you may be deficient in vitamin B12? affects the nervous system especially in older folks.

For an educator of 33+ years the tripe you spew on here is unbecoming. Using broad generalizations and blanket statements to further your narrative is just lazy.”

No, I happen to be in perfect health at 72yrs old, thank-you. I neither smoke or drink. Never did.

The ‘tripe’ which you accuse me of spewing comes from life experience buddy, intuition. Something you probably don’t have much of as your continued assaults on my intelligence display.

You keep saying ‘life has been been better, blah blah blah’ That’s precisely my point. Tell that to my niece who live on a $900/month disability pension. Sure, life has never been better if you’re rolling in money. Heck, that’s all people have on their minds today. Cash, money, funds, their quest for more and more STUFF.

I’m not going to waste anymore time arguing with you since I’m wasting my time. Most of my colleagues and friends say that things are getting worse, socially and economically. So you take your rainbows and unicorns and STUFF it. I just have to laugh at you fools sometimes.

PS: I am having a ‘nice’ day as I watch the pundits on Wall and Bay Street howling in anguish as the get a nice tastes of their own medicine. Just the beginning of things to come.

#90 Dina Stratford on 08.05.19 at 2:58 pm

You know that globalism is just international, worldwide socialism. Like the song says, its just a little bit of history repeating. Naive and young but older educated professors live in lala land and have no idea how the real world works and real life has real time consequences.

#91 Sold Out on 08.05.19 at 3:19 pm

Hey Bruce Allen,

George Carlin died 11 years ago, therefore is hardly an authority on current affairs. He struggled with substance abuse for much of his life, and was a beacon for the counterculture that you disdain. How long have you been retired? 18 years, or so? I hope you took early retirement and spared another generation your pissy self-righteousness.

#92 jess on 08.05.19 at 3:35 pm

so buy your kid into college or this one: the catch is these parents are high earners too
Parents Are Giving Up Custody of Their Kids to Get Need-Based College Financial Aid
First, parents turn over guardianship of their teenagers to a friend or relative. Then the student declares financial independence to qualify for tuition aid and scholarships.

by Jodi S. Cohen and Melissa Sanchez July 29, 4:07 p.m. CDT

https://www.propublica.org/article/university-of-illinois-financial-aid-fafsa-parents-guardianship-children-students

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In the wake of a terrorist attack in London earlier this month, a U.S. congressman wrote a Facebook post in which he called for the slaughter of “radicalized” Muslims. “Hunt them, identify them, and kill them,” declared U.S. Rep. Clay Higgins, a Louisiana Republican. “Kill them all. For the sake of all that is good and righteous. Kill them all.”

Higgins’ plea for violent revenge went untouched by Facebook workers who scour the social network deleting offensive speech.

But a May posting on Facebook by Boston poet and Black Lives Matter activist Didi Delgado drew a different response.

“All white people are racist. Start from this reference point, or you’ve already failed,” Delgado wrote. The post was removed and her Facebook account was disabled for seven days.

#93 Bo Diddley on 08.05.19 at 3:48 pm

I think terrible times are coming regardless. This notion that stock markets, the economy, jobs, finances, the ‘good life’, etc, can only go up and up is a pure and utter fantasy that has been indoctrinated into us from a young age by the powers that be who only want to increased the tax base.

I see things spiraling out of control more and more at a rate of which neither I or my elderly parents have ever witnessed before. Does anyone specifically recall what brought down the old Roman Empire? History ALWAYS repeats itself. I just researched what all the combined global debt now sits at. A staggering $260 trillion–and counting.

Perhaps this is what happens when a society has it ‘too easy’ and develops a false of security and complacency as a result? I’ve deduced that the majority of people today, ever being the good sheep little sheep they are, like to live in a comfort bubble, a ‘cocoon’ of sorts that shields them from the harsh reality of what’s coming.

Prepare, folks.

If the world did not spin out of control with two world wars, a depression or nuclear standoffs why would it happen now? Take a Valium. – Garth

#94 Phylis on 08.05.19 at 3:51 pm

Bruce sounds like a curmudgeon or he’s a little ”angie” at something. Have a nice day, even triggers him.

#95 oh bouy on 08.05.19 at 3:58 pm

@#89 Bruce Allen on 08.05.19 at 1:52 pm
#84

“Bruce, have you ever considered you may be deficient in vitamin B12? affects the nervous system especially in older folks.

For an educator of 33+ years the tripe you spew on here is unbecoming. Using broad generalizations and blanket statements to further your narrative is just lazy.”

No, I happen to be in perfect health at 72yrs old, thank-you. I neither smoke or drink. Never did.

The ‘tripe’ which you accuse me of spewing comes from life experience buddy, intuition. Something you probably don’t have much of as your continued assaults on my intelligence display.

You keep saying ‘life has been been better, blah blah blah’ That’s precisely my point. Tell that to my niece who live on a $900/month disability pension. Sure, life has never been better if you’re rolling in money. Heck, that’s all people have on their minds today. Cash, money, funds, their quest for more and more STUFF.

I’m not going to waste anymore time arguing with you since I’m wasting my time. Most of my colleagues and friends say that things are getting worse, socially and economically. So you take your rainbows and unicorns and STUFF it. I just have to laugh at you fools sometimes.

PS: I am having a ‘nice’ day as I watch the pundits on Wall and Bay Street howling in anguish as the get a nice tastes of their own medicine. Just the beginning of things to come.
______________________________________

I believe this may apply to you:
‘Better to Remain Silent and Be Thought a Fool than to Speak and Remove All Doubt’

Some friendly advice – maybe stay away from the ‘news’
can be depressing with their ‘if it bleeds it leads’ mindset.
maybe acquire a more positive circle of friends as well.

enjoy your schadenfreude i suppose.

#96 Tony on 08.05.19 at 4:16 pm

Re: #13 Bruce Allen on 08.04.19 at 4:25 pm

It’s the same everywhere in Ontario except the schools where the students are almost exclusively all Chinese.

#97 Bruce Allen on 08.05.19 at 4:50 pm

#96 Tony

You wouldn’t believe the amount of teachers on stress leave right now. I also know several being forced to teach in buildings that are falling apart, structurally unsound. I don’t think that helps matters when kids have to deal with water dripping on their heads from a burst pipe or using toilets that don’t flush. I specifically recall my last year teaching, we couldn’t even get the damn boiler fixed in time for winter. Instead, we had to resort to using electric heaters and telling students to wear their jackets and coats until repairs were finally made. I even remember years ago, I couldn’t even get the bulb replaced on the overhead projector. The list goes on and on. A lot of the BS stemmed from board politics as well. Too many self-serving idiots working at the administrative level.

Oh buoy: You have NO IDEA the things I saw and heard during the course of my career. It moulded me into the person I am today. I’m sorry if I sound like such a negative ‘nellie’, I’m only speaking from personal experience when I say that things today are MUCH worse off compared to when I first started teaching in 1973. Circling the drain, as George Carlin so eloquently stated. The few of my colleagues who remain in the profession can’t wait to get out. They’re merely marking off the days on the calendar until they can punch out for the last time. Just going through the motions now.

#98 Sold Out on 08.05.19 at 8:03 pm

#97 BA

It sounds as though you lost your interest in teaching about the same time that corporal punishment was banned in schools. Every school I attended through the 70’s and 80’s was seismically unstable, and had asbestos curtains in the auditorium. You couldn’t replace a light bulb? The horror!
It’s not your experiences that informed your beliefs; your experiences were simply coloured by your beliefs. 90% of my teachers were clearly doing the job for the pension and vacations. The ones that loved the job stood out clearly, and the students responded to them with respect and affection. No doubt teachers have more stressors today; virtually every profession has higher standards now, as compared to the 70’s. How many parents even went to parent-teacher conferences when you started your career? Now, helicopter parents are everywhere.
We have no control over current events, but we can control how we interpret and respond to them. You’re just cranky because your expectations aren’t being met, but it never occurred to you that your expectations just might be unreasonable.

#99 Sold Out on 08.05.19 at 8:32 pm

Sucking up makes me throw up in my mouth a little, but credit where credit is due – Garth, thank-you for graciously allowing me to post again. I apologize for the content of my offending post, and will be more respectful. When I see what I feel is misogyny, I will try to interpret and respond to it in a more thoughtful fashion.

#100 Coastal Zapper on 08.05.19 at 10:37 pm

#3 Bdwy

It definitely looks like BC but I’m not seeing Gibsons or Elphinstone but, I’m not looking from Keats that often anymore.

Any chance your initials are BB or your last name starts with B, just like that B Centre downtown?

Enjoy the sun

#101 Jesse on 08.06.19 at 11:35 am

#21 Millennial Realist on 08.04.19 at 5:16 pm
“And, of course, it’s all about you. – Garth”

No, actually, Canadian income disparity is all about YOU, the Boomer generation who have gutted our middle class to make themselves richer, by outsourcing jobs and production elsewhere.

Even when this has involved ridiculous environmental costs, like shipping garbage to Asia and importing cheap goods across the ocean again to sell in dollar stores here, you Boomers made this happen in the name of profit. Yours.

And it wasn’t ever about “sharing the wealth” or making poorer countries better by giving them a few crappy jobs paying dollars a day. Never. Don’t kid yourselves, Boomers.

It has always been about simply making the profit margin better for Boomers investors and executives here, the entitled 1%.

To hell with Canadians and the next generation, or now the millennials.

That has been the ethos behind the Boomer Betrayal.

To suggest the opposite, as you appear to be doing, is just such vapid virtue signalling, it is comedic.

This is precisely why Millennials will be taking over everything and making dramatic changes soon.

Be part of the change, Boomers.

Or be run over by it.
***********************

Oh great…another whiny millennial ranting on the internet about how the *entitled boomers* are ruining the world. I guess “Millennial Realist” forgot that the boomers he’s complaining about are the same boomers that sparked the counter-culture revolution in the 60s, peace and love, embraced socialism and protested a lot on college campuses and all that blah blah blah. Sounds a lot like millennial’s today. You know how I know this – I’m a millennial. The more things change, the more they stay the same.