William Thien

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A lot of pundits and Washington types have said Trump is playing the North Korea situation all wrong.

I disagree. Trump has made an overture to meet with North Korea’s leadership personally. What he is saying is that he is willing to do anything and everything he can to avert a nuclear exchange. What more could the country ask for on this matter? You really can’t ask for more than that.

Copyright © William Thien 2017

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Decades long (Greenspan to Yellen) monetary policy aimed at continually diminishing the strength of the currency for the regular population is in and of itself justification enough to respond.

I believe Washington has chosen monetary policy that forces the public to work longer hours for less income with the desire of increasing productivity at the expense of American working classes and their quality of life.

It has nothing to do with the general economy. The labor statistics coming out of Washington are false.  We’ve all known that for many years. The statistics don’t include the perpetually unemployed or the unaccounted for in industrially blighted urban areas. Therefor, the numbers are unreliable. So why the constant attempt to weaken the dollar?

Is it about selling more American made goods overseas? Somewhat, yes. But in my opinion it is more about squeezing the American working classes to get them to work harder for less, increasing the speed of the treadmill so to speak through weakening the dollar, thereby increasing productivity.

Again, if you weaken the dollar, if you systematically do so while steadily increasing inflation, a person needs to work harder and/or longer hours to get what they want or need or they must borrow more. A weaker dollar buys less and it buys less everywhere you use it even at home, not just overseas when you travel. The thing of it is, it’s not a function of the economy, it’s not happening on its own. It’s policy!

That’s what the FED has been up to starting with Greenspan, what the parties have been up to starting with Clinton, NAFTA and MFN for China, and the dollar.

You are getting squeezed by the FED/Washington establishment and the same people you elected. If money is speech as the Supreme Court determined, by weakening the dollar your voice is also being muffled. Directly.

The dollar isn’t too strong. Rather, Washington may be too powerful, too disingenuous.

I heard a debate on the radio this morning on the way to work. During the broadcast they were talking about a Constitutional Convention. Maybe it’s not such a bad idea.

I myself say, “What do you mean I don’t sound like a conservative? You are full of it. You can be a conservative and still be a working stiff! Conservatism isn’t just for the very wealthy. That’s something else altogether. That’s the monetary policy we have now.”

Copyright © William Thien 2017

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This morning I wrote to you to describe why policy that weakens the dollar is bad for the US consumer. Now I will explain why it is also probably not so good for producers when the dollar is weakened.

The cost of living in America is so much higher than it is in many other countries that it is unlikely except through enhanced production techniques and other methods such as more efficient distribution that American laborers will be able to produce goods at an equivalent cost of production to those goods manufactured elsewhere, where the cost of living is much lower, and as result so is the cost of labor.

If the dollar is weakened then one can only afford to purchase products produced elsewhere as Americans, due to the weakened dollar, their own currency, cannot afford to buy Made in America any longer. It’s too expensive.

So, if as the current administration has said after meeting with members of the country he branded “currency manipulators” and he did a complete 180 and deemed them not so, and then even followed that statement after the meeting with “the dollar is too strong,” (wow, this is getting really twisted, though I said this would happen) which he did, there is something unusual occurring that ultimately will not benefit either the US consumer or the US producer. Could it be sheer ignorance about monetary policy? Could it be some form of economic collusion between countries? Does it even matter to those of us that use dollars? If you have an unlimited income, no. If you are a working stiff, yes.

Why?

If you weaken my dollars and your dollars, which is what has been happening for an extended period of time now (Greenspan straight through to Yellen), then you make it much less likely for me to purchase products manufactured by Americans every chance I get. The American cost of living is too high and as a result so is the cost of production. Eventually, with more efforts to weaken the dollar the only consumer products I will be able to afford are those manufactured by “the currency manipulators.” Checked the label lately?

America is still the world’s largest consumer market and if you weaken the currency of the citizens of that market ultimately you will weaken that market as well. One follows the other.

If you want Americans to “Buy American” you have to make it possible for Americans to afford “Made in America.”

Right now many cannot.

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I am always a bit puzzled (not entirely, just a bit) when I hear our country’s leadership say things like “the dollar is too strong” or “we need to make the dollar more attractive in the foreign currency markets.”

What they are saying essentially is that American made products aren’t as attractive in overseas markets if the dollar is strong because the American products become too expensive or less attractive price-wise for foreign consumers.

But a weaker or weakened dollar also means that I have to spend more of my dollars to get what I want. If you don’t make that many dollars or as many as you’d like, if you are in the lower to lower middle income brackets, the argument that the dollar is too strong is a somewhat punitive statement and it means that action to bring down the value of the dollar will have a direct impact on your buying power, decreasing your buying power.

Few would disagree that America needs to sell more products in foreign markets but you would hope that our country’s leadership would find other ways to make sure such sales increase such as instituting quality controls on production or some other method rather than simply selling everything on the cheap and making everything more expensive for the American consumer, punishing the American consumer, which is what they are doing.

Manipulating currency may be easy on American producers but it is also hard on American consumers as it is the same as taxing their dollars so they have less or simply reaching into their pocketbooks and taking the money right out by decreasing their buying power.

Have you seen the price of a new car or house lately? Maybe the dollar is weak enough already.

Copyright © William Thien 2017

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While watching Chuck Todd interview Senator John McCain (R-AZ) this morning on Meet the Press Todd asked McCain if he thought the current administration’s flip-flopping from campaign positions to his current positions had something to do with Trump “being sucked in by the Washington establishment?”

McCain’s answer was to chuckle and say, “well, I hope so.”

To me this is proof that not only IS there a Washington establishment, it is proof that our elected know there is a Washington establishment and that perhaps our elected even provide support materially and vocally (obviously McCain supports it vocally in his response to Todd) to the Washington establishment.

Other elected officials were asked about Trump’s positional re-orientations throughout the week and the most common response was, “maybe he is ‘growing’ into the position.” Growing into the position? What a load of b.s.

To be sure, Trump doesn’t have to change his campaign positions. Something is forcing him to do so and it’s not that he “growing into the position.” He is there to implement the will of the people, not to “grow.” He isn’t on a weekend retreat. He is now the President of The United States.

I wrote earlier that it would only be a matter of time before Trump switched his campaign positions due to the Washington establishment and we see now that is exactly what is happening. You can read that post here: What’s Next for Conservatives?

The most disgusting aspect of the “Washington establishment” is that what it means is that those entrenched there in Washington are there to ensure that whomever is elected cannot implement the will of the people without the express consent of “the Washington establishment.”

Ultimately what a “Washington establishment” means is that the will of the people has been effectively thwarted, seemingly in perpetuity, by a bureaucratic element entrenched in our nation’s capital and that there is nothing, either voting for a Republican or voting for a Democrat, that the people can do about it.

What is the solution?

The two major parties take great pains to make sure the public is nearly equally divided (we see this in the election results) right down the middle when it comes to major elections and national issues. The parties talk about the base of the Republican party and the base The Democratic party in their political calculus.

Maybe it’s time that the bases of both parties come together for a new political calculus, disregarding the respective party apparatus so the country can really “drain the swamp” as Trump promised during the election and take care of the needs of the people and not that of “the Washington establishment,” which is what he is now doing.

There are common goals among the bases of both parties. Maybe it’s time we come together and focus on those common goals primarily and forget about our differences, such as abortion and gun rights for example, just once, and see what happens.

Maybe we can set those and other differences aside in order to bring the changes the country requires. Or maybe “the Washington establishment” can deal with that, too. And you know what that means? Think about it.

Because we now have proof that there is indeed a “Washington establishment” and it is working against us, working against us all.

Copyright © William Thien 2017

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Contact your Congress person and tell them you will not vote for them if they pass this Senate Bill allowing your Internet Service Provider to wholesale your personal information: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/03/senate-votes-to-let-isps-sell-your-web-browsing-history-to-advertisers/

What is really disturbing about this is that as a conservative, it’s the Republicans that keep writing this kind of legislation or regulatory change. This leads to the term I have for many Republicans, “big business robot frontmen.”

Maybe it’s time for conservatives to take care of their side of the aisle and start pulling the plug on the robots. If you ask me, allowing the ISP’s to sell information such as the surfing habits of your children and wives along with their most personal information is tantamount to a modern day atrocity in the internet age.

In the internet age privacy is everything.

You can contact your legislator through this link: http://www.house.gov/representatives/find/

Copyright © William Thien 2017

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Here is an interesting statistic. The United States spends $3 Trillion annually on health care, more than 10 other wealthy nations, but has the lowest life expectancy and highest infant mortality rate of the 10 wealthy nations: http://fingfx.thomsonreuters.com/gfx/rngs/USA-OBAMACARE/010040BL0Q1/index.html

If you look at the numbers, it would appear that both Italy and Spain are doing something right. Both are in the top five for longevity but their costs are way down compared to other countries with Italy in tenth place for cost and Spain in eleventh.

 


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