War Now “Inevitable”, To Restore U.S. GDP Growth

13 Sep

I recommend following the link to read this article in full. There are a number of charts and related information that are well worth studying, to properly understand the whole argument.

From Zero Hedge (bold and italics in original, red font mine):

In a moment of surprising clarity, Deutsche Bank’s Jim Reid pointed out what is largely taboo in the financial industry – the truth. “Looking back, real GDP growth in the US through the latter half of the 2000s and the 2010s has been at the lowest levels since the cyclically scarred decades of the Great Depression and the First World War.”

What is amusing, is the constant state of shock of supposedly serious people who are stunned that despite the Fed being constantly in the markets, and buying up trillions in securities, the US economy has not responded in a favorable manner. Of course, nobody has pointed out that if all it took to generate growth out of thin air without consequences was for the Fed to print, i.e., monetize debt, this would have started 100 years ago in 1913, and by now the US economy would be so advanced it would be colonizing Uranus. Logic, however, is not a Keynesian economist’s best friend.

That said, the reasons surrounding the lack of US growth are secondary for the time being. A bigger question is what happens from here, now that even respected banks, and even ivory tower economists have admitted that QE has been a complete failure for the broader economy, and the common American, benefiting only the uber-wealthy. Which leads us to a different topic. Syria.

In an uncanny historical analogue of the current economic predicament, we have to go back only 70 years or so back, to the time of the first Great Depression: that was the first and ostensibly last time, when the US economy was performing in a comparably subpar fashion to trendline.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

So in an extreme (if logically forthcoming) scenario when the Fed’s final proposed fallback strategy of “forward guidance” which is destined to replace QE now that tapering is on the table, were to fail, as many already suggest it will (just look at the BOE), the final solution for the US central bank is one – Nominal GDP Targetting, which stripped of its fancy title is really a euphemism for “print until you drop”, or rather monetize securities and inject money without regard for inflation (paradropping bundles cash may well be allowed as Ben Bernanke would be happy to admit), with the only intention of promoting growth at any cost.

But will “Nominal GDP Targetting” work?

After quite a detailed analysis, including multiple charts, we get to the answer, and the crux of the article:

In other words, targeting GDP for the sake of GDP, concerns about inflation aside, when soaring inflation would also lead to surging interest rates, has become impossible.

So what is the only possible way out left for a country in which monetary policy has failed on all fronts except to inflate asset prices to stratospheric levels, and yet the economy still refuses to budge? For the answer we go to Deutsche Bank one last time:

During the US Great Depression the huge declines in consumer and businesses confidence in the face of mass unemployment can be seen in the extremely and persistently low level of velocity…. As it turned out, the US economy managed to grow at an average of 13.5% a year over the next 10 years and was back on ‘target’ by 1944….  Velocity also moved during the recovery from the Great Depression as the US war machine swung into action in the early 1940s.

In other words, at a time when the US was in almost an identical predicament and GDP catch up would have been impossible by any other means, what happened? World War. Luckily, for the US it generated unprecedented growth and cemented its status as the world’s super power, and the USD as the reserve currency. Others were not so lucky.

Are we the only ones who suggest that the only outcome is a military one? No. Recall from Kyle Bass:

 Trillions of dollars of debts will be restructured and millions of financially prudent savers will lose large percentages of their real purchasing power at exactly the wrong time in their lives. Again, the world will not end, but the social fabric of the profligate nations will be stretched and in some cases torn. Sadly, looking back through economic history, all too often war is the manifestation of simple economic entropy played to its logical conclusion. We believe that war is an inevitable consequence of the current global economic situation.


Which also means preconceived from the start. So despite a recent sense of detente in Syria, pay close attention: never since the cold war has the world been so close to the edge of a full-blown global military conflict. Whether or not the Syria “trigger” has been produced as the catalyst that will spark growth, or is merely a precursor to such an event is still unclear. However with every passing day, the US economy lags ever more behind its “trendline” and the common man gets left ever further behind the superclass of financial asset oligarchs, a state which the president opined recently was unacceptable. The question is whether millions of war casualties for the sake of yet another economic “golden age” aren’t.

4 Responses to “War Now “Inevitable”, To Restore U.S. GDP Growth”

  1. Tomorrows Serf September 14, 2013 at 8:32 am #

    We’re witnessing the End Game of a global, debt-based, fiat currency system, a system in which the inmates appear to have taken over the asylum.

    Not a pretty sight.

  2. Ross Johnson September 14, 2013 at 11:37 am #

    Promoting war as a solution to an economic malaise is the grandest lie. Weapons destroy infrastructure and cannot produce goods we consume. How is concentrating energy and resources in few hands via imperialism, going to promote competition and affordable products in our market economy?

    The real reason the Neo-cons want war is to concentrate more wealth in fewer hands. War also silences descent and the elites feel more threatened by our growing awareness than any threat from Russia/China.

  3. Kevin Moore September 17, 2013 at 6:54 am #

    Part of an email sent to a British MP –

    Politicians always speak of the importance of “transparency” and “openness”, I look forward to your timely, full and complete response.

    Look who is doing rather well since the conflict escalated and what do they sell ? The links should take you to a 12 month graph of the share price(s).
    Lockheed Martin Corporation (LMT)-NYSE
    BAE Systems PLC (BA.L)-LSE

    PS you may have gathered that we the people are sick of being lied to, sick of being manipulated and paying for wars started but never fought in by political classes who pose a far greater danger to our wellbeing and health than any terrorist.

    PS I suggest you Google “game theory warfare”.

  4. Kevin Moore September 21, 2013 at 9:27 am #

    Net importing countries are essential to world economic growth – think Holden.
    “…..The present reality must be acknowledged: The world economy currently cannot exist without the United States of America. Collectively, the United States buys 20 percent of all imports. Though this may sound insignificant, compare this figure to the EU, standing at 16 percent of all imports, or Japan at 5 percent of all imports. Emerging economies like China are net exporters, with some 60 percent of their GDP from exports; therefore, their total contribution to world economic growth is small. When trade is broken down by development category, the United States takes nearly half of developing nations’ exports.[1] But foreign dependency on the US economy extends far beyond mere trade connections. Foreign assets in the United States total $23 trillion, of which $4 trillion are securities.[2] Foreign-owned companies in the United States now claim $3.1 trillion in annual receipts.[3] Russia alone has 45 percent of its currency reserves in US Dollars.
    Countries like the United Kingdom and Japan repatriate 20 percent of these revenues, making their American operations economically vital. Because of these interrelationships it can be deduced that a decline in US consumer spending would have dire consequences for many nations worldwide. The present financial crisis has proven this much. Just as economists were telling the world that growth was “decoupling” from the American business cycle, the US housing bubble burst, spurring mini-bailouts in many industrial countries, and even China. Indeed, a new International Monetary Fund (IMF) report demonstrates that the world economy is still very much intertwined with US consumer trends. G-7 recessions are still 60 percent correlated with US recessions, and the stock prices of industrial nations are still 70 percent correlated with the S&P 500.[4] The world is hopelessly dependent on America.
    How then, can Russia maintain financial independence, and still support the Dollar, which seemingly perpetuates the hopelessly disproportionate leverage of the American banking elite in relation to the rest of the world?
    Russia must encourage the development of new consumer markets and incentivize higher levels of consumption in its sphere of influence, which will gradually reduce the dependency of many export-dependent economies on U.S. consumer spending. The new flat tax system installed by the Federation is a good first step in creating the conditions for a consumer class.
    A nation without control of its money is a nation without any real power. How can a nation project power without the ability to guarantee the liquidity necessary to mobilize military elements? If the monetary system is globalized, the locus of power will also be globalized, portending an end to Russian leadership in every respect. Efforts to destroy the present financial system in order to realize the fantasies of detached intellectuals must be resisted at all costs. If prosperity and economic well-being are the object, monetary union should be opposed. Surrender of sovereignty is not easily undone.”

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