No, I don’t joke about serious matters like WW III. And I’ve been telling you for a good long time because it when when our “killing cycle” research suggests that we’ll be due for some truly gory headlines.
This idea of a cyclical “clock” to news events is hardly new: The idea has been around since men were walking around without iPhones and the whole business of astrology was a well-established fact of life long before electricity. And if figured into all the major “monumental projects of history” – things like Pyramids, and Machu Picchu.
Besides, Wednesday of this week is the anniversary of the birth of us Julius Caesar Scaliger (born April 23, 1484) who’s son (Joseph Justus Scaliger) was key in rewriting much of history into what is broadly accepted today as “how things were” since the Middle Ages scalawags destroyed as much source material as they could get their hands on. No point leaving the evidence around, but I digress.
April 23 may be something of a turn date in human affairs, because remember the Russians?
They were planning to wrap up their “military exercises” by April 21. At least, so went the storyline until this weekend.
This weekend, that all (somewhat predictably, I’m afraid) started going to shit. For one thing, the Russian foreign minister (the Lavrov dude) accused the Kiev government of violating the terms of last Thursday’s deal in Geneva. The upshot of that was both sides would disarm the people who were shooting and taking buildings and so on.
Ding! Ding! Ding! Not happening.
Even more worrisome for the US/West/EU, which passed out doughnuts in December in Kiev and started tipping what was otherwise a semi-stable “front” between Russia and the West, is that just when the “massive exercise” in Russia was supposed to be ending, out pops a report from “The Voice of Russia” website that “Russian Eastern Military District getting ready for Strategic Exercise.”
The key quote in the article cites a big cheese in the rus.mil ranks:
“More attention is now paid in combat training to long-distance redeployments, to marches with heavy weapons and regroupings by combined methods, to training marines and paratroops for beach landing, to the use of unmanned aerial vehicles and long-range precision weapons, and to other tasks,” he said…”
Also this weekend, the Russians said in no-uncertain terms, that they would move their own troops around their own country however they damn-well pleased, and THAT might be construed by the borderline paranoid as bringing up the possibility that those Eastern District Troops might make a run toward the West (NATO/EU frontier) and that’s about when a week of leave for the just-exercised border troops would be up and suddenly you’d have a huge force sitting at Ukraine’s border.
Which the Russians don’t recognize as having a government right now, so logically (to them) no legit border…
But the Russians are keeping up the pressure on the PR front too. Announcing this morning that NATO dolphins will soon be “patrolling” the Black Sea, which is – in Russia’s mind – its back yard.
The Western response?
Well, there are some, like senator Bob Corker who are calling for even more sanctions on Gazprom and Russian banks. Unfortunately, and with all due respect to the senator, the Russians are much better chess players and I would bet dollars to doughnuts that the Russian money has been gone for a week, or longer.
They’re not idiots, although that seems to be hard for the West to understand. Try to remembers Tesla didn’t come from Tennessee, Bob.
As I pointed out previously, the Russians can also count. Which is why scheduling a US military exercise with 150 soldiers is a joke. The Russians have 766-thousand active in their military. While it’s true that the USA has many more (1.37 million, in fact, so twice as many) the Russians are mainly in one country and ours are spread out all over the place: Africa, Asia, Europe, and the list was well over 100 countries when I looked.
We’re still wondering who cooks up the name for US exercises, like the ongoing US/South Korean exercise dubbed “Foal Eagle.” One’s a bird of prey (that’d be us, I suppose) and the other (foal) is a newborn horse not yet able to fend for itself, if I remember my biology right. And gotta love this: the US is off “exercising” in Cambodia with (the punchline): 139 US troops.
If I wasn’t such a straight-laced guy, I’d be lighting up a joint (in solidarity with Denverites this weekend) and wondering: “If the US is trying to scare Russia with troop exercises, do you think they will notice we have 11 more men scheduled to exercise in Poland than in Cambodia? Who dreams this shit up?”
But the further point of this morning’s note is to suggest that Putin has a pair of firecrackers taped to his ass:
Firecracker #1 is the plan for elections in Ukraine. Right now, there’s some question about whether Ukraine will be stable enough for those to be held next month. We’re one month and four days from that one going off.
Firecracker #2: is the Chinese are holding military exercises with the Pakistanis. This one (“Peace Angel”) would worry Putin sick because he’s worried about the long-term outlook for his whole Siberian region which is within walking distance of China.
Ure’s School for the Geographically Impaired: Step over to the map for a second: Russia’s best port on the Pacific is likely Vladivostok. Do you have any idea how close that is to Beijing, capital of the people Putin fears? Try 838 miles by air. That’s a short ride for mechanized forces.
Now, by comparison, you see how far off Moscow is from Vladivostok? 4,020 miles. That’s as far as getting on an airplane in Los Angeles, flying to Atlanta, and then without stopping, turning around flying all the way back to Los Angeles.
When it comes to war (with the exception of the push-button nuclear kind) size matters and so does the calendar. Oh, and (like our real estate friends insist) location, location, location…
So regardless of how the markets to today and tomorrow, it’s later this week that we’ll find out just how smart world leaders are.
My bet? Not especially….
I enjoy the study of longwave economics. But it’d be nice next month if we still had an economy to discuss and debate. A global economy with a series of “glowing holes in it” just wouldn’t be the same.
Forever. But then we’re half Fuk’ed already, douzo.
Climbing the “Wall of Worry”
I’m not the only one who is pessimistic in this period. My friend Robin Handler over at the Options Signal Service sent me a note, that sounds about as glum for prospects this week as my own outlook:
Well, George, here we are facing the worst week I have ever seen from my spiral forecast. On top of that we have the astrological Cardinal Cross. More earthquakes this last week, and another event that had to do with the sea (Korean Ferry). Situation in Ukraine will get worse. Other aggression/war events may surface, and the chance of another mega quake like Japan in 2011 is very possible. With “water” and “sea” being themes at the present, a tsunami has a strong chance of appearing.
I have decide to make the Spiral Forecast report available to the general public this week. Read it, and share with you readers if you wish. It can be found on the home page. Look for the red text. Contains the Spiral Forecast for over 100 stocks. http://oss.cc/
Remember, this is not financial advice…you’re a grown up and you know how the casino works, or at least you should before placing any bets.
In terms of economic news, the Baltic Dry index is down to 930 again this morning, so no relief there. And with Europe up, the flow of funds (flight to safety)_ looks like it’s making a four day weekend. And the economic data due out this morning (Leading Indicators) may not rock the boat too much. So we will keep looking for “left field events” since the market always wants to blame something besides greed…
Ebola Going Global?
A check of the World Health Organization website reveals nothing new on Ebola since their Thursday update last week (as of press time). But we’ll keep an eye on things because the death toll is up to 61 in Guinea now and even if the disease isn’t on a transcon heading our way yet, it could be just a matter of time.
Even if the disease hasn’t made it to Europe yet, it seems likely now that Time is headlining it, that it will “go viral” in media.
And there’s some discussion on the alt.news sites that the disease will be more difficult than past outbreaks because it is a new strain. The report last week that a suspected case has been reported in Italy is yet to be confirmed.
However, one report out of Italy (machine translated by Google Translate) informs us that
Fear , meanwhile, remains . The forty possible carriers of the virus ‘ Ebola have been subjected to all the tests required in high-risk situations . The Italian population , however, does not feel the climate of reassurance that high institutional positions and subjected try to transmit information through various channels , official and unofficial . The tension increases, although the Ministry of Health said that , in the remote case of an infection , in Rome and Milan would be ready to face the ‘ epidemic.
Still, we await more suitable reports than just these incidentals which are still over in the “possible” column until shown otherwise.
Going to Hawaii?
I’ll take first class, the champagne, and say, bring me that report on how this one got through TSA when it comes out, would you? A sleeping kid could have been something else…
BoMar: Flying Notes
No,. we didn’t get the Beechcrate up to Boston for this morning’s fly-over of the Boston Marathon. The Beech Aero Club plans for today are:
Arrive over Hopkinton, Massachusetts by 9:45am to see the start of the race.
This will be the biggest group of runners ever (25,000+).
Fly at 1400′ MSL and join the round turning counterclockwise.
Helicopters will be below you at 900′ and more above you at 2500′.
Watch out for the banners being towed all around you.
Watch out for the military fly-by at 9:50am.
Talk to other participating aircraft on multicom 122.9.
After about 30 minutes proceed to Norwood Airport (KOWD) and get in the van to ride to Wellesley on the racecourse to see the leaders run by. A sandwich lunch is traditional on the roadside in Wellesley.
This is unique to Boston and a lot of fun to see and participate in.
So those of us who fly “baby Beeches” will dip a wing in honor of…So that’s what all those planes will be doing in case you see them…sorry we didn’t have room in the schedule to take part…