Friday, June 19, 2009

Odds and ends.

It has rained a lot this season. I hope that hasn't inconvenienced any of you since I caused it all. You see, last year was a bit dry for the garden, and I tried to water it with an oscillating sprinkler, with modest success. But it was a huge pain. So this year, I set up a very sophisticated sprinkler irrigation system that is semi-permanently installed in the garden. Now, with the twist of the handle, I can water the entire garden and the orchard. I can even put it on the water timer so it shuts off automatically. My garden will not lack for water this year.

Of course, the astute reader will immediately recognize where this is going. This is like washing your car on a gorgeous saturday morning, just to have big rain clouds immediately roll up saturday afternoon. The causal relationship is so obvious.

OK, not really. Enough of the jesting.

I am dangerously close to finishing the drywall in the shop. Two and a half sheets will do it. Tonight may see the completion of the vast expanse of drywall, almost disappearing into the horizon.

OK, not really that much drywall, though it seemed like it at times.

Now I just have to cut some more wood so we can get our two years worth of firewood split and stacked. And fix the "big" trailer in anticipation of our vacation to missouri. I know a guy who has a couple of really old, really cheap VanNormam horizontal milling machines and a little collet lathe. He is a buyer and seller of equipment, plus a first rate mechanic on just about anything. But old milling machines are a little outside of his arena, and he would like them to go away. So, for a very reasonable fee, they are mine. But each machine probably weighs well over half a ton and they won't both fit in the mighty dodge pickup truck bed. So that means some cutting and welding and beefing up of the old trailer.

I continue to hear carefully worded propaganda on the popular mass media outlets regarding the fledgling economic recovery. This is, if not patently false, at least misleading. It would be shocking if the economy did not show some signs of growth after the injection of unprecedented amounts of public money. So, the fact that we have seen modest improvments in some of the economic indices is not surprising. My problem is the vast leap in analysis that the talking heads then make. Everything is rosy. All the worry is over. Things are just going to get better and better. Isn't it great how the government can just step in and fix things. Etc etc. It is my belief tht this moderate "improvement" is what the technical analysts in the stock market world call a "dead cat bounce". The implication being that the recovery may be short lived, and followed by something much worse. Peter Schiff said it much better than I could. You may watch it for yourself if you wish.

Please do not bet the literal or figurative farm on the impending good times. Pay your debts down. Reduce your financial risks in any way that you can. Increase your rainy day savings to a healthy 3-6 months of expenses.

It looks to me like we will go through a moderate deflationary period, which will superficially resemble a recovery, but which will freak out the Federal Reserve and the Obama administration. It will cause them to stomp on the cheap money/low interest economic accelerator pedal even harder, which will be very bad. The end result will be aggressive inflation. I believe the phrase that comes up in the Schiff interview is, "Watching us drive off a cliff..."

I hope and pray that I am wrong. You should do the same.

Finest regards,


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