A Few Words of Advice
[See my comments at the end. - HAC]
Berlusconi Says Leaders May Close World's Markets
By Steve Scherer
Oct. 10 (Bloomberg) -- Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi said political leaders are discussing the idea of closing the world's financial markets while they ``rewrite the rules of international finance.''
``The idea of suspending the markets for the time it takes to rewrite the rules is being discussed,'' Berlusconi said today after a Cabinet meeting in Naples, Italy. A solution to the financial crisis ``can't just be for one country, or even just for Europe, but global.''
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell as much 8.1 percent in early trading and pared most of those losses after Berlusconi's remarks. The Dow was down 0.5 percent to 8540.52 at 10:10 in New York.
Group of Seven finance ministers and central bankers are meeting in Washington today, and will stay in town for the International Monetary Fund and World Bank meetings this weekend. European Union leaders may gather in Paris on Oct. 12, three days before a scheduled summit in Brussels, Berlusconi said today, while Group of Eight leaders may hold a meeting on the crisis ``in coming days,'' he said.
Berlusconi didn't give any details about what kind of rules leaders were looking to change, except to say that leaders are ``talking about a new Bretton Woods
The Bretton Woods Agreements were adopted to rebuild the international economic system after World War II in a hotel in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. The aim of the agreements was to establish a monetary management system, initially by pegging currencies to gold. The IMF was set up later to help manage the international financial system.
Okay, I always swore I would never stoop to anything like investment advice. Entirely too many right-wing and allegedly racial groups are nothing more or less than scams to get at old people's savings. But I am going to violate that personal policy now.
Silvio Berlusconi is not some crank rite-wing newsletter writer, he is a multi-billionaire and financier in his own right. He is extremely well connected and in a position to know whereof he speaks. He's not just babbling about mama mia! atsa some spicy meatball! In light of the above, I advise you that if you have significant amounts of money in anything like stocks, bonds, mutual funds, derivatives, muncipal bonds, anything like that--get out now, because your investments therein may not survive the "restructuring" or else they may survive only at 20 cents on the dollar or something of the kind.
Furthermore, during this unspecified "restructuring," upon which you will note there is no timeline, your money most likely will be frozen and unavailable to you.
I hesitate to advise you to take your money out of these things and stuff the cash in your mattress, this creating problems that should be obvious. I am also hesitant to advise you to buy gold or silver or platinum, since I don't understand enough about these things to know what the hell I'm talking about, and "precious metals" are all too often some kind of scam or racket anyway. Besides, you can't eat a Krugerrand. You can cast silver into bullets, I suppose, but unless you're hunting werewolves it makes more sense to stock up on practical things.
None of this applies to me, but then I don't have any money. Some of you may have money, and for some reason I have been unable to persuade you to give it to me. So here's what I suggest:
*Pay up your rent or mortgage as much in advance as you can, so along about next February when the times get really hardscrabble and your job is gone, you'll at least have a roof over your head. Ditto the electric company or gas company or heating oil supplier, so you will at least be able to make it through the winter without freezing. Remember: in February you may not have a paycheck any more.
*Stock up on canned goods and non-perishable food items so you can at least eat through the winter. Maybe not eat well, but when your kids are hungry Spam and rice and beans will do just as well as eggos and chipotle-flavored chips. At least it will keep body and soul together.
*One trick I have learned down through the years, living on this very level many of you are about to experience, is to get a large stock pot and keep a kind of running soup or stew festering on the stove for several days at a time, what the Germans call eintopf, made with whatever little bits and pieces you can get cheap at the grocery store, and loaded up with garlic and pepper and chili powder to disguise the bland and greasy taste.
*If you have facilities to stock up on gas or other fuel, do so. We don't know what the world will be like in the spring.
*You'll need a basic stock of firearms and ammunition, but unless you really do plan on forming the NVA, you don't need huge stockpiles of weapons you know damned well you are never going to fire at the enemy, and you don't need enough ammunition to overthrow Paraguay. Large stockpiles of weapons and ammo are an attractive nuisance and draw feds and Movement weirdos like honey draws flies, at a time when you should be avoiding the attention of both. Since we've wasted the past 50 years and are completely unprepared politically and morally and spiritually for the Balloon to Go Up, it's better to lie low than get involved in stupid, silly stuff that's just going to throw us into the mincing machine to no purpose. The System is starting to slide, but it's not down, not by a long shot. This is the beginning of the end, but only the beginning, and the Beast still has life enough left in it to lash out, and will do for some time.