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Cataclysm
cataclysm, n. -- Syn. upheaval, disturbance, disaster, ...
Webster's New World Thesaurus, Third Edition


As You might have noticed I am always warning people for coming disasters and threats.
I have been warning for the Soviet Union, Socialism in general, The Debt Crises and Bank Chrashes, defence of the fixed exchange rate, The European Single Currency and The emerging European Superstate.

Each of the things to the left are unpleasant.
It will be even worse if they happen to occur more or less at the same time...

A reasonable sequence can go like this: The dollar drops, the inflation goes up, the bonds go down, i.e. interest rates up,
houseprices and stock market down, euro up, EU unemployment goes up and the EMU goes pop.

Rolf Englund
Stockholm, June 10, 2005
Have a nice day!


Here Comes The Red Swan And Other Reasons To Be Very Afraid
China is a monumental doomsday machine that bears no more resemblance
to anything that could be called stable, sustainable capitalism
than did Lenin’s New Economic Policy of the early 1920s.
David Stockman 25 February 2016


RBS has advised clients to brace for a “cataclysmic year” and a global deflationary crisis,
warning that major stock markets could fall by a fifth and oil may plummet to $16 a barrel.
Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, 11 Jan 2016


Party Now, Apocalypse Later
Valuations are going to revert to the mean. They always do.

And when they do, they’ll overshoot in the process. The business cycle still exists.
Wolf Richter, November 19, 2014


China is not a $10 trillion growth miracle with transition challenges;
it is a quasi-totalitarian nation gone mad digging, building, borrowing, spending and speculating
in a magnitude that has no historical parallel.
David Stockman 27 January 2016


With the EU’s politicians unable or unwilling to act, everything depends on the European Central Bank and its chief, Mario Draghi.
The EU’s political leadership understands that a Spanish default would be a cataclysm -- including for Germany
The ECB has to step up. It wasn’t easy for the Fed to enlarge its role in this way, and it will be even harder for the ECB, which operates under tighter legal restraints.
There’s no alternative. We will know one way or the other within days. EU leaders have a summit meeting scheduled at the end of the month
Clive Crook, Bloomberg, June 20, 2012


Global economic meltdown, a rapidly spreading virus
That was 2009. Since then Johnson, former IMF chief economist, co-wrote last year’s bestseller “13 Bankers: The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown” and the new “White House Burning.”
Other new books echo the same doomsday warning: Peter Schiff’s “The Real Crash: America’s Coming Bankruptcy” … Paul Krugman’s “End This Depression Now” … James Rickards’s “Currency Wars” … Philip Coogan’s “Paper Promises” … Joseph Stiglitz, “The Price of Inequity” … Ian Bremmer, “Every Nation For Itself,” and other reminders of doomsday.
MarketWatch 19 June 2012

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EMU Replay of the 30´s
Click here


The long shadow of the 1930s
Could things go bad again?
I mean really bad – Great Depression bad, world war bad?
The kind of cataclysmic event my generation has learned to think belongs only in the history books.
Gideon Rachman, Financial Times, November 28, 2011


Bank of England Governor Sir Mervyn King
Banks should brace themselves to withstand the "extraordinarily serious and threatening" economic situation
Eurozone crisis was the biggest threat to the UK's banking system.
King said the Bank itself was making "contingency plans" in case of a eurozone break-up.
BBC 1 December 2011


Once the crisis hit Italy, followed by an absolutely inadequate policy response of the Italian government, the crisis has reached a point of No return.

Italy is too big to save with the current set of instruments, including ECB bond purchases, and in the absence of a credible programme of eurobonds,

he concludes that a breakup of the eurozone must now be considered as a probable scenario.

The question is now whether and how the EU can survive such a cataclysmic event.

Wolfgang Münchau in his column in FT Deutschland, ref. by Eurointelligence 21 September 2011

Italy - Doom - Top of page


Specter of Years of Stagnating Wages Haunts the Globe
Median male real US earnings have not risen since 1975
Chris Giles, Financial Times, 28 Jun 2011, via CNBC

Nearly three years after the start of the economic crisis, a new spectre is haunting the world’s most advanced economies: the prospect that the majority of their citizens will face years of stagnant wages.

In the postwar years, there was a belief in developed economies that each generation could expect to have materially better living standards than their parents. Yet the outlook for income growth has rarely looked worse than it does today.

For some middle-income groups, the idea of stationary or declining incomes is not new. Fork-lift truck drivers in Britain could expect to earn 19,068 pounds in 2010, about 5 percent lower than in 1978, after adjusting for inflation.

Median male real US earnings have not risen since 1975.

Average real Japanese household incomes after taxation fell in the decade to mid-2000s.

And those in Germany have been falling in the past 10 years.

Some of this pressure on the middle income households was masked – at least temporarily – by the credit boom, which allowed families to spend more than they earned.

Now, three years after the end of the cheap money era – and with developed countries struggling to get their economies growing again – middle classes around the globe are feeling the squeeze.

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Tyskland - Japan - USA

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The western world is in serious economic and political trouble
Europe is ensnared in a debt crisis that threatens the future of its single currency, and the social stability of the European Union.
The US cannot control its budget deficit and must contend with infantile politics and a palpable sense of national decline.
Gideon Rachman "In defence of gloomy columnists" FT 23 May 2011

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Gideon Rachman, Zero-sum World: Power and Politics After the Crash
At Amazon UK

Matt Ridley, The Rational Optimist
At Amazon UK

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Bra film av Johan Norberg om finanskrisen, men utan svar
"Överdos - en film om nästa finanskris"
Rolf Englund blog 2010-05-04


US economic, military and political dominance is likely to decline over the next two decades
The National Intelligence Council (NIC) predicts China, India and Russia will increasingly challenge US influence.
It also says the dollar will no longer be the world's major currency, and food and water shortages will fuel conflict.
BBC 21 November 2008

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Is it possible for the vast mass of humanity to enjoy the living standards of today’s high-income countries?
This is, arguably, the biggest question confronting humanity in the 21st century.
Martin Wolf, Financial Times June 10 2008


Here is exactly what we are facing, right now:
Depression in the housing market;
retail inflation (due entirely to the price of oil and the plummeting dollar),
credit availability all but shut down, and today we discover that grain stores are at their lowest point since they began measuring in 1960: 53 days.
Michael Fox February 22, 2008

According to the CEO of Potash Corp., the Canadian fertilizer giant, if there is any disruption to this year’s grain harvest, the world will be facing famine in 2009.

And this is not a question of the rock-concert-for-third-world-countries famine, folks.

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Wake up to the dangers of a deepening crisis
The odds now favour a US recession that slows growth significantly on a global basis.
There is the risk that the adverse impacts will be felt for the rest of this decade and beyond.
In such an environment, economic policy needs to be governed by the clear and public recognition that restoring the normal functioning of the financial system and containing any damage its breakdown may do the real economy is the central macro-economic and financial challenge facing the US.
First, maintaining demand must be the over-arching macro-economic priority.
All of this may not be enough to avert a recession.
But it is much more than is under way right now.
Lawrence Summers, FT November 25 2007


The world economy can now look forward to confronting four ugly and partly interrelated shocks at the same time:
a US economy heading for the rocks, a rise in global inflation, a collapse in the dollar’s exchange rate and a credit market crisis.
Wolfgang Munchau, FT November 11 2007

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John Rubino 7/20/2007:
In “The Coming Collapse of the Dollar,” James Turk and I said this about the effect of a falling dollar on other countries:

The only reason Japan or Europe can generate even their current meager rates of growth is the willingness of U.S. consumers to buy their Hondas and BMWs.
As the dollar plunges, Japanese and European goods, priced in suddenly-appreciating currencies, will become prohibitively expensive for U.S. consumers, who will respond by buying U.S.-made alternatives or nothing at all.

Correctly interpreting this change in buying patterns as a threat to their vital export sectors, European and Japanese leaders will respond with the only weapon they have left: monetary inflation. They’ll cut interest rates and buy dollars with their currencies, flooding the world with euros and yen the way the U.S. now floods the world with dollars.

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The Long Emergency: Surviving the End of Oil, Climate Change, and Other
Converging Catastrophes of the Twenty-First Century

book by James Howard Kunstler


See also: Det är långt kvar till 2010
Conundrum

"There is no means of avoiding the final collapse of a boom brought about by credit expansion. The alternative is only whether the crisis should come sooner as a result of a voluntary abandonment of further credit expansion, or later as a final and total catastrophe of the currency system involved.
Ludwig von Mises

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Is the world facing fundamental changes?
Many see the euro - in its current guise at least - to be sustainable only if the euro countries are prepared to issue common eurobonds.
Interest rates look set to stay extremely low for the foreseeable future. China is accused of having an undervalued currency and continues to battle to cool near double-digit growth.
Viewpoint by Chris Williamson, BBC 18 August 2011

Many see the current emphasis on inflation targeting to have failed,

The viability of the euro has always been in question, with its creation having been seen by many to have been driven by political rather than economic reasoning.

China has the opposite problems to the West in many respects. It is accused of having an undervalued currency and continues to battle to cool near double-digit growth.

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More new articles


The Greenspan Warnings
Nick Barisheff November 22, 2005

Derivatives Dangers In remarks to Congress in October, 1998

The Potential Drop in Asset Values, Jackson Hole, Wyoming on August 26, 2005

The Housing Bubble, Jackson Hole on August 27, 2005

The Coming Crisis in Social Security, US House of Representatives, February 11, 2004

Oil Supply Risks, Washington, D.C., October 15, 2004

The Rising Budget Deficit, US House of Representatives, July 20, 2005

Rising Long-Term Interest Rates, in Germany, November 19, 2004

The Record-High Current Account Deficit, US House of Representatives, February 11, 2004

Read more here


Cataclysm has never been far away from the thoughts of mortals,
as Simon Pearson recounts in A Brief History of The End of the World.

This is an entertaining, though superficial, romp through “end-time myths” from the Flood through the early Christian mystics to the visions of nuclear Armageddon that invaded our nightmares last century. Pearson marshals a convincing breadth of examples to show how pervasive this idea is, with some brief thoughts on why it may be such a deep-seated psychological need.
How climate change became a burning issue, Fiona Harvey, Financial Times, September 22 2006

The book at Amazon UK


I often feel like Cassandra
Cassandra was doomed to tell the truth, but never to be believed.

Austria-Hungary early became reconciled with Germany and joined the Three Emperors' League . At the Congress of Berlin (1878; see Berlin, Congress of ) Count Andrássy, the foreign minister, secured a mandate over Bosnia and Herzegovina . In 1879 he entered an alliance with Germany, joined also by Italy in 1882 (see Triple Alliance and Triple Entente ). The formation of the Triple Entente (France, England, Russia) to oppose this alliance led to the tense diplomatic situation that preceded World War I . The foreign policy of Graf von Aehrenthal led to the Bosnian crisis of 1908-9, and the reckless demands that his successor, Graf von Berchtold , made on Serbia after the assassination of Francis Ferdinand helped to precipitate the cataclysm.
Click for The Columbia Encyclopedia


Cataclysm! : Compelling Evidence of a Cosmic Catastrophe in 9500 B.C.
Click for Amazon