The QE Forever policies of the Federal Reserve are keeping the tycoons on Wall Street happy, but according to this piece in The Wall Street Journal, the whole reason behind it is to finance the federal government’s out of control spending. It’s kind of ironic, how they’re keeping the fat cats happy to avoid a depression, while keeping the working and middle class in a never-ending recession and saddling our children with unsustainable debt.
For now, the Fed is in the fortunate position of being able to mimic its World War II-era strategy. It can allow the Treasury to continue borrowing cheaply while the government expands its deficit spending and debt accumulation. As to places where investors can park their money safely, Europe and the euro have lost considerable credibility since 2008, while Japan has failed to restore any to the yen. China continues under one-party rule, India is still bound in red tape, Russia remains an enigma, Latin America is not yet quite reliable. Australia, Canada and Switzerland can absorb only so much of world-wide savings.
Still, the Treasury cannot count on lasting political support for a Fed policy that allows the government to pay down the national debt cheaply—however much this policy goal can be disguised by talk that the ultralow interest rates are really aimed at helping the U.S. economy. People trying to save for the future, and those who are already retired, can get only minuscule returns from their investments.
Meanwhile, millions of baby boomers are preparing to retire and receive money from unfunded entitlement programs, which will put even more pressure on government spending. It is far from clear that the economy will be able to grow as it did after World War II, or that the U.S. will remain a magnet for the flow of talent and capital from around the world. These factors suggest a diminished capacity to pay back the federal debt with stable dollars.
Present Federal Reserve policies haven’t got much to do with any novel monetary or “macro-stability” insights. They achieve what Fed policy achieved during and after World War II—cheap financing of the government’s deficits and debt, and the transfer of wealth from savers to recipients of government largess. But a day of reckoning cannot be postponed indefinitely.
This whole thing is a big scam. The savers are getting screwed while the gamblers are rewarded, until, that is, the whole thing comes crashing down. All Bernanke is doing is putting off the next Great Depression, and making it worse in the process, as someone is going to have to pay off all of this debt. For the most part, that would be the children who can’t vote. By the time they they can vote, the schools will have done their job to make sure the kids grow up to vote against their own interests.
My advice is to stock up necessities if you can afford it. When it does all fall apart it’s not going to be pretty. You may as well be prepared to feed yourself for a while.