Forget the Virus: Fear The Greater Depression

High-level view first today:  I’m going to show you a number of charts and make the case that while the COVID-19 virus IS something to be concerned about, there is a much greater threat to humans:  The arrival of a Global Depression.

Let’s begin with the present 30-day change-rate of the spread.

(These graphics will be a bit slower than usual because several readers have asked for higher resolution to reduce digital fuzz…)

As you can see, the virus 30-day change rate has not started to decline, yet.  In fact, what I expect we’re seeing is something  closer to the truth about rate of spread.  Likely, this kind of change-rate was happening in China…and for all we know, still may be.  As my son-in-law offered “Mighty suspect about the virus ‘hotel’ collapsing…no better way to hide bodies, you think?

Looking at the change rate picking up in the 30-day outlook, we can also see it swelling the number of cases we would expect to hear about as we get closer to the Fourth of July:

As you can see, we’ve moved the forecast up to where 6-1/2 MILLION cases worldwide is a revised–higher expectation level by Independence Day.

As the case count outlook increases, so does the death toll prospect:

While the death count is high (mentally note a quarter-million dead globally) that’s still less than half of what influenza kills each year), the real focus is on mortality rate which is now bumping up on the 3.5% level.

The good news (such as it is) offers that the data sets are still “noisy” and likely will be for some time into the future because of the lack of kits, the lack of data collection, and so forth.

So far, the main thing to be considering is the story in the NY Post today that says the disease has a “tipping point.”  In survivors, the bug stayed in the nose and upper throat.  It was when tdhe bug “went deep” and dropped into the lungs, that the cases moved into the critical column with a very much reduced survival rate.

Why to Fear The Second Depression MORE

We have been writing about this outbreak and how you are in a window – even RIGHT NOW – TODAY – where you can still grab hold of your Fate and make important decisions.

Because one of the main problems from this disease is not what it’s doing to people….it’s how it’s LIKELY to BLOW-OVER THE GLOBAL ECONOMY.

People who don’t grok this are likely to not only face disease dangers, but they could be headed into a Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome kind of world on the backside of all this.  Yeah, the Biblical 7-years of Tribulation may be more that metaphorical.

As you may have read in our comments section, a lot of readers are reporting that supplies have been disappearing of things like hand sanitizers and toilet paper.  Especially on areas where the land is not “self-sufficient” and adequately industrialized.  (Sorry Hawaii!)

When (it’s become less a question of “IF” today) the global economy implodes, what will you have access to?

Let’s see what the roll-out of Financial Panic looks, like, shall we?

Top of the page in the NY Times today:

“Markets Plunge Over Coronavirus and Oil, Setting a Bleak Stage for Wall StreetMarkets Plunge Over Coronavirus and Oil, Setting a Bleak Stage for Wall Street…

They go on to sub-head it as:

“European shares opened sharply lower. Oil prices and bond yields tumbled. France’s foreign minister called for a stimulus package.  Right Now:  Some world markets, but not yet the U.S., are flirting with bear market territory.”

Sorry to report, the NY Times has maybe sipped the financial Kool-Aid a bit on this.  As shrill as it might seem, the actual picture is far, far worse than they’re letting on:

Let’s begin with our Aggregate Index of the US Market.  This one is looking very much like economic collapse:

See the problem???

The New York Times piece doesn’t say whichg bear market.  There are MANY and which one really depends on what kind of market player you are.

In our Aggregate markets work, we have been in a bear market now for several weeks, if you consider the all-time high on a daily basis came before this last bounce (last week):

How much worse will it get?  Oh…not a long-term reader, eh?

While there will be a lot more in Wednesday’s (rather dark) look-ahead on the Peoplenomics side, let’s just offer than in Elliott wave theory what this looks like is a wave 1 down (from the top) a minor bounced (possibly a wave 2, but we don’t know that yet).  So if that was 1 down and 2 up, then the leg we are entering now could be a 3 Down and these are typically  1.5, 1.6, 1.75, 2, 2.5…and sometimes more the size of the Wave 1 down.

At a minimum, therefore, you might be wondering how your porfolio will be if/when the Dow drops to around 21,181 in a couple of weeks.

If this really is THE BIG ONE, then around 21,000 on the Dow, we would get a month, maybe more, of rallies and fails, and then we’d go down for another 6-thought points.  Which could hit us into the Dopw 17,500 kind of range.

That’s Where the Danger Is

How so?  Well, remember that market wave functions are NESTED.

In other words, we can pretty clearly see how the market clould blow off another 5-thousand Dow points to the downside.

It would be nice  if we bounced from there, what what if not?

What IF this whole pending move down to the 17,500 area on the Dow is – itself – an even LARGER Wave 1 Down?  The kind that unravels 200 years of trading and globalism.  Something bigger than the East India Co.-South Sea Bubble or Tulip Mania collapses?

There are a number of long-wave economic studies – where we go back and look at prices and values over time – and the argue that we have hung as much debt on the US dollar as will ever be possible.  That we’re still at the leading edge of utter collapse of the currency, the Internet, the economy, globalism, and oh yeah…the country.

No, it’s not a pretty picture how it can all unravel from here.  But the good news is that there’s a lesson in here:  It may not come to pass.

At least, not yet.

That is?  Well, in classical bubbles, there was seldom such a massive “left field event” as a driver.  The markets fell, but there were only internal dynamics failing (called endogenous market drivers) while the present case involved an “exogenous” (not arising within the markets themselves).

What we really see, spread before us like a banquet for breakfast, is the idea that it may well be that there is a declining ability of markets to resist exogenous shocks the closer they get to endogenous (internal) extremes of manipulation.

That, pal, is some really, really, scary shit.  Because we have an entire world  hanging on the belief of “ink on paper” as a storehouse of value.

Over history, such examples of “fiat money” have worked – and very well, indeed, as long as the signators could stand for Good Delivery .

In other words, when your word is not your bond that’s when things call become a global crisis.

Bank Herstatt Is About to Matter

In 1976, a smallish bank called Herstatt failed in a most spectacular way.  Here’s what the Wikipedia article gives and it’s worth the time to study as it’s potentially “useful forward guidance…”

“Herstatt Bank was founded in 1955 by Ivan David Herstatt, with financial assistance from Herbert Quandt, Emil Bührle and Hans Gerling, the head of an insurance company who took a majority share.[2] By 1974 the bank had assets of over DM2 billion, making it the 35th largest bank in Germany. Herstatt Bank became a significant participant in the foreign exchange markets. During 1973 and 1974, the U.S. dollar experienced significant volatility. The bank made wrong bets on the direction of the dollar, and by June 1974 had accumulated DM470 million in losses, compared with capital of only DM44 million.

On 26 June 1974, German regulators forced the troubled Bank Herstatt into liquidation. That day, a number of banks had released payment of Deutsche Marks (DEM) to Herstatt in Frankfurt in exchange for US dollars (USD) that were to be delivered in New York. The bank was closed at 16:30 German time, which was 10:30 New York time. Because of time zone differences, Herstatt ceased operations between the times of the respective payments. The counterparty banks did not receive their USD payments.

Essentially, in the derivatives world, the whole system was subject to global lock-up on the failure of one critical player (Herstatt, in this case).

The crisis was averted and a process called “continuous settlement” seemed to resolve things going forward.

EXCEPT:  We have at least one (initials might be DB) which has only a hollowed-out core of a once-vibrant derivatives trading operation.  With the arrival of another viscious leg down (come back after today’s trading and call me wrong, please) we are so far outside the normal stastical variances that derivatives can handle (or swaps or…) that ANYTHING CAN LET LOOSE.

Captain’ I’m giving her all she’s got!”  said Mr. Scott famously.

We have gone over the “event horizon” into global pandemic.  But our caution is that in Wave terms, that might only be the first leg down.

The hand sanitizers being out of stock matters, but there’s the larger “When the Internet goes down” due to financial panic and then, where will your wealth reside when there’s no web and you cut off those politically incorrect paper bank statement deliveries?

Yes, I get monthly bank statements and yes, there are no credit cards going more than 24-hours before being zero’ed.  Because in the world of what’s coming, we have made a serious choice to get to a roll-out zone:  Where our consumption will cease and we’ll; be able to run for a couple of years on what hasn’t been used to stock up.

For now, it seems like a nightmare…Ure on a bad trip.

I hope to be wrong, but my track record on “playing the future” hasn’t been bad, so far.

NY Fed just popped $113-billion into repos this morning and the coinsters are still finding buyers for Bitcoin, though they’re now down to $7,840.  Remember who told you under $4,000 on  BTC’s this year and how certain readers laughed and pointed?

Reminds me of an ad that appeared in Popular Mechanics in the 1950’s.  It was an ad selling a self-teaching Piano Course.  The headline is what strikes me now:

“They laughed when he sat down to play the piano…”

There’s a reason for the 7.62 x 39 cans and living among good people in the woods, in a double-wide with a tiller and seeds, no less.

“They laughed as he picked up his charts…”

Ask me next year.  We’ll do a laugh check.

Write when you get rich,

42 thoughts on “Forget the Virus: Fear The Greater Depression”

  1. Wow, George! Just, flat – W-O-W. The market futures are staying a solid negative 1255 in the futures this morning and Goldman is reported on ZH that Brent crude is possibly headed into the TEENS. Brent crude! We are living in interesting times!

    I’m enlisting the help of some friends that know a little about gardening so we can put in a community garden at the ranch to help as many people as possible. It probably won’t be a going concern until next year or whenever people start to get hungry but it’s time to get ‘r done. I’m death on anything green so I need to learn.

    Haven’t felt this kind of tingle up my spine since I was a kid on my first deer hunt by myself.

  2. Yes, the virus is NOT the problem here. In fact, I have a great immune system and would not fear ANY virus. I do fear a global meltdown that will bring untold panic to the global economy and eventually bring on street violence. The policy makers have chosen to politicize this virus rather than to take measured and reasonable steps to contain a COLD virus that threatens the elderly and immunocompromised people who are ALWAYS at risk for any virus. Hopefully, the adults in the room step forward soon. Very sad state of affairs.

    • Lol what adults there haven’t been any in the room for years as they have piled on the debt, to keep the American God known as the stock market in its holy place with all the greed within it,to many the stock market is the holy grail,a place to make money regardless of anything,money they really don’t have to work for.

      We base our elections on who is the greatest speaker who promises that that they can’t keep, nor have any intention of keeping,we have a con man in the white house and flapper Joe who can’t remember his own name coming down the back field, and then we wonder why the countries in the shape its in.!!!

  3. Stocks dropped all right. I am not in cash…so pretty much stuck in a hold pattern hoping Schwab can hold off any margin call. Nearly 2,000 in one day and a 6,000 point drop since the $29,568.57 high in February….a nearly 20% drop.

    Circuit breakers are in place as trading is temporarily halted.

    George…Is this your Re-play of 1929? Black Monday saw a loss of 13%, while Black Tuesday took another 12% hit….but that’s when the Dow was at it’s peak only $381.17. Today, you have bigger numbers, more diverse offerings and real time metrics. It could get worse. Rather than invest in a commune, as I stated yesterday…we all may have to go live in one.

    An empowered Russia and a virus at the core of the problem. I smell the stink of war. And this time, it could get ugly…if we are not already suffering the first wave right now. When is Elon Musk’s Mars transport ready for lift off?

    • Russia at the core of the problem? I am afraid the Russians are a extremely small part of the problem. The Russian economy is extremely small in comparison with Global GDP and the vast amount of debt and leverage in the global markets is the real culprit. The entire ‘Russian thing’ is so ridiculous. Let’s go back to basics here. If you create a vast amount of debt and leverage it comes back to bite you. It was true in Roman times, it was true in the 1600’s during the tulip mania, it was true in 1929, and it is true today. People thought the days of reckoning would never come.

      • “Russia at the core of the problem?”

        OMG… I know.. Just ask the Demoralcraps Stephen… its all Russia’s fault.. and Trumps behind it to…. dam .. if he wasn’t in office none of this would have ever happened …
        I was listening to talk radio this morning and there was someone on that said the IMF was talking about gold confiscation because of the troubles that are going on.. oops.. now you have it … now you don’t…if they do that..

    • Mark, I have a proposition. You want to partner up with me and we can sell this commune idea in an informercial. Sell it as a 6 DVD set.

      I mean if the Thigh master can profit over $100 million dollars??? I’m sure we could sell the idea of how to create a thriving commune. Put together some ineterview process and what to look for in people joining your commune process. What kind of skills are useful for the community, IE: a driver, one as chef or cook, one as network technician and one as a mechanic, one as a teacher and one as construction worker, one that works at a store that gets employee discounts. How to purchase a house? How to purchase a house with 6-10 other people, who all have an equal share of ownership, Rotation of Leadership, man at arms, secretary, treasurer, etc. etc. and what to look for, a couple courses on Hydroponics, Solar, do it yourself small electronic repair, home health remedy starter ideas, stuff like emergency health fixes (bandaids, super glue instead of sitches, etc. etc. raising small feed animals, community rules, scheduled meetings, interview process, consequences for breaking rules, contract that if someone is physically violent or some other bad thing that they forfeit there ownership of the house and have to leave within 24 hours etc. etc. etc.

      All for the low low price of $29.99. If you order now?? we will throw in a variety pack of Heirloom seeds.

      What do ya think??? we could probably put it all together in less than 60 days and set up an informercial. There is 370 million people in the US. If you could get an easy 50,000 to buy it??? That’s $750K in each of our pocket minus TV time air time and DVD production.. which we can get for about $2 for a set.

      I’m down. I would even be the Spokes person on the informercial. I am really good at sales, not bad looking and I have a radio voice. I can hear it now. Are you tired of the working hard and barely making the bills? Struggling day in and day out to to make ends meat in these hard times? Since the Dawn of time from the Native Americans to the Tribes of Inda have formed communal living to weather the storms of life. As the saying goes, many hands make light work. Hello I am Andy and this my partner Mark, we have come up with a design for living that not only removes that heavy burden off your shoulders but gives you the freedom of time and money to take that dream vacation trip you always wanted some exotic island and not even have to worry about paying the bills that month, having to find someone to watch your pet, pick up your mail or water your plants. In our 6 disc DVD set you will discover how not only how to find relief from your financial worries, but create your own home environment filled with joy, laughter, fun and get rid of that depression, loneliness and despair. You will begin to work with other hard working people who just like yourself are tired of barely making it paycheck to paycheck. Never again having to worry about the power getting shut off because you miss a day of work because your sick. Let us help you shake off that old dusty coat of poverty and start ejoying a life worth living!

      what do you think??? Hell I could put it together in about 2 weeks. lol

      • “I have a proposition. You want to partner up with me and we can sell this commune idea”

        To late Andy… LOL….
        If I could talk the wife into it.. we would move into dancing rabbit community.. they have the layout and the social environment that I would personally appreciate in a lifestyle and home life….
        my plans are to give them my CEB press when I am done so people moving there can use it to build their own homes.. I also truly love the amish.. they have the right idea in my mind.. the mormons.. do in some ways but they are to self oriented.. and lack the old pioneer motivation .. although the yellow shirts do some pretty remarkable things..

      • Andy: I in for a DVD Set for $29.95. I always wanted to start a commune. I could buy a couple hundred acres in the mountains of NC & bring my flock home.

    • Sh!t, I know someone who could actually create an App for us so they could down load it on their phone and talk with other people who got the DVD set and what they tried and worked for them. Share ideas etc. Build sort of a Commune support network. lol

      Let me know. If your down, George has my permission to give you my email address.

      Everythings a business model.

      I honestly think we could sell 200 to 300K people on the idea a couple months from now. When their houses are worth penny’s on the dollar… they are laid off, drunk at 230am and don’t know how they are gonna make the mortgage…

      Make some money and help a lot of people out in the process… seems like a good idea to me.

      if your not down??? I think im gonna talk to a few friends I know. I offered it to you as a partnership because I got the idea from you. I am a man of my word and integrity.

      • “I know someone who could actually create an App for us so they could down load it on their phone and talk with other people ”

        Or they could just join FB and get on the homsite for communal living sites that are already there.. LOL…

        if they are in san fran.. they just have to run downtown and look for the tent cities LOL…I had read and even seen a sixty minute deal where there are apartment building with individual bed spaces available for ( a lot if you live in the rest of the world)

  4. There are Reasonable and Prudent steps, and then there are panicked, over-the-top, fear-driven, often wasteful steps.

    Everyone determines their particular response level.

    The Madness of the Mob is the real enemy here.

    Be cool. Take Reasonable steps, and don’t believe everything you hear on cable TeeVee.

    Also: accept the probability that you — you! — WILL get the virus at some point down the road. Plan accordingly. Be calm, reasonable, and logical. Qualify anything you hear for its truth content.

    If nothing happens (likely) you will have been prepared.

    If something happens, you’ll be prepared as best you can. Either one beats being caught stoopid and surprised. (..and without critical needed resources if the balloon does go up.)

    • LOL. I listend to Arlo Guthrie’s “Alice’s Restaurant” last night and had a good time remembering ‘way back when’.

  5. For those contemplating a double-wide in the woods, let me offer a way to make it last a lifetime. Prepare the site by pouring concrete runners under the beams and the “marriage wall”. 18″ wide for the beam runners, 5′ for the marriage wall. I also set the anchors into the cement before it set. That will keep the double-wide stable and free of cracks for a lifetime. I did that 30 years ago, and this double-wide is appreciating in value, not depreciating.

    • That idea’s catching on in NM, thanks unfortunately to MORE regulations for new installations. I’m not sure why such a wide runner is needed under the marriage wall, but that’s a detail. I do think that perimeter support matters too, even though the outriggers are supposed to take the weight. The perimeter walls and roof are all supported by those outriggers, so why not help them out a bit. I have a spare single wide that’s legal where it is, but it’s support needs some work. I’m not sure how to easily dig and pour foundation runners in that limited space, and moving it at all is out of the question. Another thing is to have sufficient ground clearance that you don’t have to be a caver to reach the infrastructure! That really matters if it’s snake country.

      If you’re doing a new installation, pay careful attention to drainage. You don’t want water ponding around or under the unit. It’s quite surprising how thoughtless some people are.

  6. My stock of dehydrated foods, rice and beans should last me several months at two meals a day. I’m obese so forced calorie restriction would actually be good for me. I am staying here in my apartment in the city and will keep my head down. I also have just increased my inventory of elderberry syrup and ionic silver. Another resident here is a close friend who is not prepping so I may help him survive if it comes to that. At least, he is younger and able to do manual work where I can’t. Together we may be able to ride it out whatever that means.

    I have the benefit of being cool and calm during crises and can usually help others do the same. This will be a test for all of us. Best of luck to all.

    • Good luck! I agree with having elderberry on hand, but think through taking it if/when you should actually get the coronavirus. I’ve read that it can exacerbate cytokine storming, FWIW. Either way, I think that most of us will get through it if we have a positive attitude and do our best to cover our bases. I trust that we’ll continue to exchange knowledge and experience as we all learn.

  7. the DEM controlled CITIES…will be the center of..’chaos and discontent’…stay clear of them ALL….

  8. George,
    Good job again, and yes, I do see the problem.
    But am kind of surprised that you are calling out the NYT for now going along too much with Trump’s incompetence, delusion and propaganda in understating aspects of the plague.
    Best, Mike.

    • Why would our following the data surprise anyone? I didn’t say he was incompetent.
      But look what his continuation of fortune depends on
      Occupancy rates at golf resorts?

    • I won’t second guess the president at this point. I’ll make my own calls in life though. The problem is that we MUST continue to function as a society or things will get much worse. Each of us needs to make our choices regarding engaging with society, living life, and protecting ourselves in whatever ways are reasonable for us as individuals. President Trump is trying to avoid excess reaction yet not trivialize the situation. It’s a rather difficult job. Where I am, wearing a mask and goggles is probably pointless since I’m isolated for the most part. Wearing protection on a subway or bus might make a lot of sense, though it’s not yet accepted in American culture. Storing more than 100 rolls of toilet paper per person is probably overreacting.

  9. Day 1 of “permanent work from home” mode. I ride the bus, so I’m voluntarily following the “suggestion” handed to us today.

    The company asked us to please stay away, how on earth can they ever ask us to return? There will be virus reports for the next several years at this rate, and a few reports is all that was needed for the extra caution of having us stay home now. When virus reports are all that anyone will see for the next many months, forgettabout using the office.

  10. “When the Internet goes down” due to financial panic and then, where will your wealth reside when there’s no web and you cut off those politically incorrect paper bank statement deliveries?”

    since banks are just numbers.. ( they actually don’t carry that much cash in perspective..) what if someone with a large number walks in and asks for his money.. of course the bank has up to what is it sixty days to get it for you.. but even then if there was a panic.. the banks would close.. and if they are charging five times what a product normally goes for.. it wouldn’t take much for there to be massive price gouging..just look at the cost of health care.. today compared to the sixties and seventies.. take ten cents worth of chemicals and charge thousands for it.. even though they still only charge the ten cents for it in another the end its all a numbers game..

  11. Closed on the lows.

    Easing into oil for a bounce myself.

    Don’t you guys love the bailout talk already. That’s how we can afford UBI.

  12. I’m in the suburbs and have a live trap.

    Rabbit is a lean meat, like chicken.
    Raccoon is a greasy meat like pork.

    Combined you can turn them into a nice spicy sausage and nobody will be asking questions after losing 40lbs from today. Don’t forget, people like to be lied too. “It tasted funny but I was hungry so ate it anyway.”

  13. Is there something wrong with my comments, or are they not getting through? I’ve had a few of them not get posted lately, one today, and I don’t generally think they were breaking any rules?

  14. Okay, this is silly. Would everyone please stop for a minute and consider the virus?

    The virus is scary because we don’t yet know its transmission or half-life (in either free air or a host), nor its method of propagation or rate of mutation. Within a few weeks, WE WILL!

    The virus should NOT be scary because some political hack, masquerading as a news anchor or reporter reads a piece of copy that’s specifically designed to elicit an emotional response and “push the buttons” of his(her) audience to cause them to panic.

    Our chances of getting COVID-19 are pretty high, over time. Our chances of contracting a fatal strain of it are almost nil. You’re more likely to die from dental anesthesia in the U.S. than you are, COVID-19, so quit’cherworryin’…

    The Trump Administration response to a potential COVID-19 pandemic is, as of right now, greater than the sum total of the White House responses for the SARS, MERS, swine flu, and bird flu “pandemics.”

    Am I going to ride the rails or the air, or take a bus to Topeka to hang out with Dorothy and the Straw Man? No, but I was not going to do so before this coronavirus reared its ugly head either. Do I have food, water, masks, TP, and supplements? Yes. I had them 20 years before SARS and nothing’s changed. Am I going to a hidey-hole to cower in fear until after the Election? No. I recognize the panic in the U.S. is being generated by the political Left and propagated by a bunch of failed Leftist lawyers who pretend to be media journalists, in an attempt to discredit Mr. Trump, because they can’t find a Democratic candidate who’s honest and stalwart enough to beat him in the General Election.

    When I wear wool, it is something I can remove. I refuse to grow it on my own skin…

  15. I am of the predilection that a market correction ‘had’ to happen. How, or whatever excuse was ultimately used, seems inconsequential to the deed that had to be done. Rates may appear to be in chaos. Stocks are tanking. Yet the cold, hard fact remains that a correction is happening. Whether premeditated, as in key actors causing it to occur, or unplanned, as in key actors ‘waiting’ for any viable excuse to drive the market lower, remains to be determined by economic historians. But the reality is we are in a major correction, planned/anticipated or not. Folks like George, who favor playing ‘short’ on the market, will fare better than the rest of us. I went into cash & money markets over a year, parking 80% of my capital sensing ‘something’ would cause a severe downturn. I did so 12 months too early, yet I fully admit that I never anticipated the catalyst would be a microscopic modern day plague. Thus the axiom, “expect the unexpected.” Economies have no such vaccinations, relying in this instance upon human microbiologists to raise our shields against the the coronavirus and restore the health of our economies in the process. Fingers are crossed.

  16. “I read the news today, oh boy…”

    Today’s Chinese media reported that the USA had actioned a fast-track removal of tariffs from medical facemasks and gloves where the process commenced not later than this past January 31st. Apparently this was in spite of there being USA manufacturers of the same, and even though consumer items like Apple gear addons were still awaiting review from application made last October.

    An aspect that offers pause for thought is that the first covid-19 patient who materialized on USA soil entered care with minor cold symptoms on January 20th. According to The New England Journal of Medicine the parient’s health did not take a serious turn for the worse until day 9 of care when pneumonia set in.

  17. Max debt!!! Lock em down!! Yep the ghost of the great kotratief lives. Yeeba short the guts of anything. Even on salty moriarty been listening to me !!! Yeehaaa

  18. I’m likely the least knowledgable person commenting here on economics, but I have tried to teach myself the basics to get a reasonable handle on whats transpiring that will hurt me… well, us actually in including my immediate family. Over the years I have tried to prepare as best I could while living with a life partner who never was really on board and sees acquiring tangible items as just “spending money”. Frankly, I would feel better having a room filled with cases of ammo that I could later barter or sell than bank statements showing I had FRNs that were increasingly worthless and that I may not even have access to one day.

    Well, we each have our own peculiar difficulties, don’t we? But I do appreciate learning something each and every day from those who know a lot more than I do. Partially ignorant, yes. Dumb ass, no. I can see whats coming down the track.

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