Category Archives: Economy

Greece Default, Euro Crisis, the 11th Catastrophe of 2011?

Scene from movie "Zorba the Greek".

UPDATE: November 9, 2011:

This article below was posted eight days ago on 2 November. As I read it again today, I see little reason to refresh the page because much of what I predicted back then is happening and further forecasts continue to happen in the developing story of the euro crisis, being that the financial farce of the Greek default crisis spreads uncertainty that Italy, as I predicted below last week, will be next.  Currently, governments in both countries are playing musical chairs, but their problems remain.

Italian leader, Berlusconi, pledges to to step down, but will a shuffling of politicians in Italy end the crisis? Doubtful.

What is also significant today is the fulfillment of Wall Street catching the euro union default cold with a significant market plunge of -389.24 points. Italy, the third biggest market in the Euro zone after Germany and France and the country with the third largest debt in the world is next. It would seem the Euro financial crisis is set to become the 11th catastrophe for the year 2011 happening in its 11th month. This may lead to the breakup of the Euro monetary union in 2012.

I am saving my oracle’s detailed prediction about this for a chapter about next year’s global economic fate, which I intend to publish in early December for Predictions for 2012. I am very busy with finishing that book right now, so it is with some dubious relief that the accuracy of my 2 November posting of this article (below) requires I pull myself away only for an hour to add this update today.

Before I get back to 2012, I must mention the other big news item: all the recent saber rattling over Iran because of the recent IAEA report that at least vindicates what my oracle said is Iran’s real effort, to at least gain enough knowledge through weapons experiments to someday build nuclear weapons. The capability to make such is still four years down future history’s road (see Nostradamus Iran predictions).

Israel bristles and threatens. Netanyahu, who once promised to strike Iran if made prime minister again,  ordered a successful test firing of a Jericho ballistic missile capable of striking Iran with conventional or nuclear warheads. He resumed drills of the Israeli  Air Force. Jet engines thunder over the eastern Mediterranean as they are once again put through bombing drills in a frequency not seen since 2006-2007. Many of you are asking, Is war imminent?

My answer is still no. The war is four years away, according to the astrology of Nostradamus’ prophecies about it. I am concerned though with astrological aspects in the summer of 2012 that might bring that window of war far closer than my oracle believes. You will read my augured findings when I publish my annual e-book  almanac, hopefully in early December, in a chapter entitled “Hot Crises in a Cold Depression”. Read more about how you can reserve your special donator’s edition copy of the book by clicking on Predictions for 2012.

Now back to the  article published on 2 November:

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Iran I must get back to my marathon, writing and designing Predictions for 2012

Friends,
November 1st was once the real Halloween (All Souls Day). It begins the month with a far scarier story of economic tricks in Europe running out of euro treats. Something I have been warning would be one of the next of 12 catastrophes of the year 2011.

There have been many upheavals this year but beyond that events that break some historic record or send history into uncharted territories not seen in living memory of people and in some cases even the memory of nations has taken place every month in 2012. The catastrophes have been natural, political, climate changed or economic disasters. For instance:

January: Queensland Australia inundated by monster floods, 200,000 people displaced.

February: Arab revolutions spread across the Middle East.

March: The fifth largest earthquake in recorded history; a 9.0 earthquake followed by a giant tsunami, rocks, then drowns then irradiates Japan in the island nation’s worst disaster since the devastation of the Second World War. The waves cause reactors at Fukushima to meltdown. Fukushima becomes the worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl in 1986.

April: Catastrophic super-cell tornadoes kill hundreds across Alabama and the southern US States leaving behind death tolls and damage not seen since the 1920s.

May: the Mississippi River suffers worst flooding in 70 years. Two hundred thousand acres of prime farmland crops destroyed, Memphis flooded as well as the states of Missouri, Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas and large parts of Louisiana in the path of the damns on Mississippi levies opened to save New Orleans.

June: The Missouri River floods to record levels. Waters surmount sandbags at a nuclear reactor at Fort Calhoun, Nebraska and for a few hours America, nearly has its own Fukushima disaster. Mainstream new avoids the story.

July: Triple-digit, 100-plus degree Fahrenheit drought in Texas destroys its corn, wheat and peanut crops to an estimated $5 billion loss. North America’s summer-long heat waves by July have clocked 1,400 triple-digit record-breaking temperature reports across the US Midwest and Southwest. Some cities in Texas endure triple-digit temperatures for over 40 days straight

August: US leadership suffers a historic loss of credibility when a debate about the US debt ceiling being raised nearly saw the US government default on its debt on August 1. The consequences: the worst stock market drop since the Great Recession began in 2008 and the US losing its premium credit rating for the first time in its history.

September: A month of Historic floods! They inundate the Atlantic seaboard states and New England falling from the remains of Hurricane Irene. The following week a second wave of floods visit the same region from remnants of Tropical Storm Lee. Over in Asia Typhoon Roke sends storm surges and mudslides over the regions of Japan devastated by the March quake and tsunami. The floods across the US Atlantic states made the Irene-Lee event one of the ten costliest property damage disasters in US history.

October: Monsoon fury drenches Eastern India (as I predicted would happen in Predictions for 2011). Three quarters of Thailand were inundated in the nation’s worst natural disaster in its history.

Some of my American readers might argue that the rare and unseasonal Halloween Nor’easter blizzard sending millions of households in 15 Atlantic and New England States in the dark should be 2011’s disaster number 10 for October. Three climate changing punches to the US northeast: Irene, Lee now this! Moreover, 1.5 million homes across 15 states were still out of power when November came. Now even the right-wing climate change debunking, billionaire Koch brothers’ financed investigation into the world’s weirding weather has concluded that climate change is real and leading civilization to an uncertain sustainable future.

Debris from Japanese tsunami, catastrophe number 3 in a year of 12 expected catastrophes.

And now November’s big disaster… What will it be?

Perhaps it will be something I wrote about over a year before when preparing Predictions for 2011:

The contagion of a European bank crisis in 2011 could easily spread around the world infecting the interconnected US and Chinese banks. If Europe goes deeper into recession, it affects Chinese imports and US business. Wrestling with a zombie EU Bank crisis, European leaders will test the waters of austerity programs finding they make for a more shaky European banking system.

Predictions for 2011
A Cold Depression, like a Cold War

Since writing the above, I have watched the global casino economies of Europe change the house rules of their gambling addictions to postpone an inevitable reality. Beware of Greeks bearing euros. Greece will default on its debt.

I have watched the markets fly into the stratosphere when the gaming pumped up the market with Trojan horse hopes only to plummet when the bubble of hope burst an Achilles’ tendon against mathematical realities. (Now there’s a mixed metaphor!).

Don’t get me wrong. I love Greece and its people but the Greek economic philosophy of live high and pay later (if at all) reminds me too much of the impossible schemes and scams of my favorite mythological man from Hellas, Zorba the Greek, all falling down into a great catastrophe worthy of celebrating afterwards with a dance on the beach. The Greek economy is a problem that cannot be salvaged. The people of Hellas will have to go, like Orpheus, bravely, playing music from a harp and dancing if possible, down into and eventually out of the darkness of Pluto’s economic underworld paying more than a few golden coins to the German bankers playing the boatman Charon for water taxi trip across the river Styx to debtor’s Hades.

Metaphorically speaking, Greece once had three pillars to hold up its Parthenon temple to the Goddess-bitch of excessive spending beyond her means. The first financial pillar – or pillory – sustaining the Modern Greek state was its heavily aided status as a bulwark for European nations against the spread of the Ottoman Empire. Then, after the Ottoman Empire collapsed at the end of the First World War, the Greeks once again became a bulwark after the Second World War, against the spread of communism. It eventually received billions throughout the long, and cold, war in US aid to shore up its economy and keep the commies out. Ship building was Greece’s second “pillar” sustaining it through the rest of the 20th century as was the third: tourism.

On comes the 21st century. The cold war had ended. Communism collapsed and with it, Greece stopped getting cold war aid. What about being a bulwark against Turkey once again? Tensions continued with Turkey, true, but the latter was a NATO ally and being wooed by the European Union. There goes the first pillar.

Greece by the time of the new century had lost its second pillar too, container ship manufacturing. That happens now in the shipyards of Asia and China.

That leaves one last pillar holding the completely rotten economic temple in the air, tourism and that pillar is not enough to keep the Greek economy from collapse.

So here are the hard facts that all Euro bankers and leaders must face eventually. Greece will eventually leave the monetary union. The immediate impact will be a financial haircut for other euro nations that invested in Greek banks to the tune of staunching the bleeding of the euro bank system with 400 billion euros. Once Greece has departed for Hades, the wealthier euro toting nations like Germany, Holland and France will have to find, or print another infusion of 2 trillion Euros to prevent Italy and Spain following Greece into Dante’s Inferno.

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou has been so politically damaged by weeks of rioting in Athens and his midnight votes on EU union austerity cuts and taxes on his people that such draconian measures might lead to Greeks demanding a return to the drachma. He tossed the future of his government into the air this week by requesting an up or down referendum vote by the Greek people whether they want to stay in the euro union or return to the drachma. If the referendum happens at all it may not take place until January, leaving months of financial uncertainty for Europe and the global economy. The Greek people in general view the referendum with cynicism feeling damned if they do stay with the euro because that would lock in the austerity debt reduction programs, or damned if they don’t stay with the euro, for that brings default and economic collapse. Before any referendum can go forward, the Papandreou government may be soon out of a job because they face a no-confidence vote this Friday

Greeks rioted in Athens off and on since June 2011 over draconian austerity measures announced by their government to keep the country from economic collapse.

Rumor has it in Athens that the no confidence vote will be a Greek tragedy in the making, dooming the Papandreou government. Greeks will then gather to the ballot boxes on a temporary break from national strikes and rioting to vote in a new government with unknown consequences. The 17 nations using the euro currency wait for the no-confidence vote coming Friday. Papendreou’s defeat would threaten Greek default if voters reject his government. In the meantime, the euro’s value falls. Chinese manufacturing slows and as European bankers sneeze, Wall Street catches the cold depression with a nearly 300 point drop in the Dow Jones Tuesday, which together with Monday’s plunge totals one of the worst two-day drops since August 2011 when America lost its top credit status.

The disastrous black Monday and Tuesday market drops on Halloween and All Soul’s Day are perhaps a reaction in the markets to the first US investment bank casualty of euro uncertainty, MF Global, which filed for bankruptcy early this week after disclosing a euro debt of $6.4 billion. It is the seventh largest bankruptcy by assets in US history. Thus shares in Deutcshe Bank and JPMorgan, its chief creditors, took a dive at the news because MF Global owes them 2.2 billion. It smells like the beginning of a US banking crisis the likes of which happened in 2008, though this time caused by a financial crisis outside of America. MF Global may be the new Lehman Brothers causing a Lehman-like Lemming charge of bankster hamsters over the insolvency cliff if (when) Greece defaults.

A year ago, I wrote about the American economy’s susceptibility to a euro banking crisis as the key to a return to double-dip recession. I have described our current economic era as a Cold Depression. The global economy since the Great Recession began in 2008 is like a cold war in a standoff mode, perhaps for decades to come. Just one wrong move in the markets or in banking circles or in nations like Greece, or Italy defaulting on their debts can make along and cold depression go suddenly “hot” like the Great Depression of the 1930s. In my essay published on 21 December 2010, I pinpointed the Cold Depression’s economic hot spots that are comparable to regional hot spots one saw in the US-Soviet standoff of decade’s duration:

The new “Middle East” of a Cold Depression is the EU and the United States. The world will focus on them, obsess on their gridlocked stances on economic issues, etc. and worry that these monetary and industrial flash points can heat the whole Cold Depression hot for everyone else if the rest of the world doesn’t get more involved in helping them settle their disputes.

Cold Depressions will have “money wars”. The Fed tampering with US dollar devaluation and frictions about the Chinese Renminbi being too undervalued, are factors for economic crisis moving beyond the window I predicted opening in October 2010, deep into the times of 2011 to 2012.

Predictions for 2011
A Cold Depression, like a Cold War

2012 is coming. The Maya may have marked it as history’s real turn of the millennium. The rest of the prophetic time clocks may have been wrong by a dozen years. It certainly seems that way with euro banks foundering to riverbanks flooding, super-cell tornados rampaging. Typhoons hitting countries like the Philippines with a one-two punch in invasions of storm less than four days apart.

What is happening? Have the Mayan prophecies been vindicated or will we make 2012 one of the most significant years in human memory because of our actions leading to apocalyptic as well as revelatory reactions?

Right now my oracle has me feverishly working on a forecast for next year that will appear in my next new e-book Predictions for 2012.

John Hogue
(02 November 2011)

PS—I will end today’s article inviting you all to meditate on one of my favorite sayings of Zorba the Greek related by the narrator character of Nikos Kazantzakis’ classic novel:

The reverse side of the Nikos Kazantzakis €10 Greek coin minted in 2007, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the death of the author of “Zorba the Greek” and “The Last Temptations of Christ”.

“The aim of man and matter is to create joy, according to Zorba – others would say ‘to create spirit,’ but that comes to the same thing on another plane. But why? With what object? And when the body dissolves, does anything at all remain of what we have called the soul? Or does nothing remain, and does our unquenchable desire for immortality spring, not from the fact that we are immortal, but from the fact that during the short span of our life we are in the service of something immortal?”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read my Predictions for 2012:

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