A remarkably loud silence has underlined two recent reports. With the attention of our “news” minions seemingly inversely proportional to the real import of information these days, we herewith provide some thoughts generated by those reports for your amusement, boredom or as the kids put it, whatever.
In the first of these, the German Finance Minister asked the European Central Bank to begin unwinding its long running easy money policy, a request akin to inviting the happy host of a swinging, late night party to invite the police. The second report told of the decision of the Court of Appeals of Versailles stating that Israel is the legal occupant of the West Bank under international law, dismissing the arguments of the Palestinians. While appearing legally quite correct, that spits in the faces of some 70 nations trying to hand Israel to the Arabs at a U.N. sponsored meeting just ended in ironically, France. And none of this is news …
Returning to our first report: Finance Minister Schauble’s request to the ECB took place shortly after the U.S. Federal Reserve Reversed its long standing cheap money policy , raising questions about how far and how fast might be the return to a more normal U.S. economy. Are the Fed and the ECB coordinating?
While showering money onto Europe and the U.S. from helicopters has clearly failed to stimulate significant growth while inflating dangerous bubbles, politicians remember (though school teachers are not allowed to recall) that such monetary policy reversals have produced past market crashes with bank failures and depressions. Germany’s Merkel is expected to seek her fourth term in office this year, perhaps she is willing to assume that risk. In the U.S, perhaps the political maverick Donald Trump is expected to front the monetary unwinding following his hapless 1928 GOP predecessor Herbert Hoover. Or perhaps planetary history will be made with government economic meddling actually doing good rather than ill. (Bets?)
In Europe, Germany likes to talk financial rectitude but has sat still for “helping” southern European spenders such as Greece. Italy seems next and France follows, Will the hard-working Germans continue to support more carefree southerners? Is Schauble speaking for political effect, or does he mean what he has asked? In the U.S. will the Fed keep raising rates under President Trump, or ease off? We cannot know now, but that is probably the most important question of this moment.
After the French Court of Appeals of Versailles decided that Israel is the legal occupant of the West Bank, a group of over 70 U.N. members decided in Paris that Israel must abandon that territory to negotiate the Palestinians (and other Moslem Arabs) into ceasing their endless attacks upon innocent Israelis. Since the “peace” promoted by the U.N. folk would, by shrinking Israel, presently produce more Arabs than Jews there, it seems an unlikely “solution” to those observing from reality. Furthermore, we understand that our President-elect Trump does not favor the U.N. “solution.” As the Middle East, an anthill poked into frenzy by a U.S. stick, is threatening to destabilize Europe via throngs of migrants fleeing the mayhem, now seems an unproductive moment to impair the only stable, democratic economically productive state in the region. But we note that politics always trumps economics, not so?
Wrapping all of this, we recall historians pointing to the attempt at the Treaty of (an earlier) Versailles to yoke Germany to the rest of Europe. We note too, the perennially anti-Semitic history of both Europe and to a much lesser extent, its offspring in North America. Add that the Arabs, not the Jews, have all that oil. And add to all of that, the indubitable fact that in today’s politicized atmosphere, whatever we are told must necessarily serve someone’s political purpose. Bake all these ingredients in a high temperature oven, then serve. Maybe you will be able to compete with Fox News as Rupert Murdoch’s sons assume command, altering their father’s now outdated views. Or not.