porkosaurus rex has escaped the enclosure.

And with the stroke of a pen, the government injects a hundred-odd tractor trailer loads full of monopoly money into the economy–all of it borrowed, of course, since they don’t have an extra three quarter trillion bucks in the till over at the Treasury.

I don’t know how this is all going to pan out–I’m hoping for the best, and preparing for the worst–but I do know this: our kids and grandkids are going to hate us for saddling them with the bill.

I also know that the Republican cries of “fiscal irresponsibility” and “deficit spending orgy” would be a whole lot more credible if they hadn’t put a trillion-dollar bill for two wars and a massive fed.gov expansion on the same national charge card just one administration ago.

This nonsense proves once again that nobody in Washington has the fiscal acumen to balance a checkbook.  (It also proves that the majority of the electorate doesn’t, either.)  I read the other day that one of the architects of Zimbabwe’s record inflation rate (over a quadrillion percent at latest count) was their finance minister, who went into the bank computers once they were under government control, and simply added strings of zeros to the balances in the government accounts…as if you can just magically multiply your wealth by shifting a comma in a computer, or printing bills with bigger numbers.

Stock up on wheelbarrows, friends and neighbors.  If things keep going the way they’re going, we’ll need ’em soon to cart around the cash needed to buy a loaf of bread and a gallon of milk.  I hope I’m wrong, I really do.


48 thoughts on “porkosaurus rex has escaped the enclosure.

  1. llabesab says:

    To all Liberals:

    1. Take sheet of paper.
    2. On sheet of paper write, “..Why, oh why did I
    vote for Obama?”
    3. Place sheet in envelope.
    4. Seal envelope.
    5. Write on envelope. “To be opened on February
    16, 2010, while on way to Unemployment

  2. Marko says:

    Oh, the Conservatives voting for Bush back in 2000 and 2004 didn’t really help the national debt either, to put it mildly.

  3. Brandon says:

    The Dow was stimulated to the tune of -297.81 points today. I’m thinking my income will be stimulated in a similar fashion soon enough, via either taxation or loss of employment.

  4. MarkHB says:

    Wonder what they’ll call the new currency? I think they should use “groats” we haven’t had groats for ages.

  5. Marko says:

    Things get bad enough, the new currency will be called “canned ravioli”, and “rimfire ammo”.

  6. Tam says:

    I also know that the Republican cries of “fiscal irresponsibility” and “deficit spending orgy” would be a whole lot more credible if they hadn’t put a trillion-dollar bill for two wars and a massive fed.gov expansion on the same national charge card just one administration ago.

    The main difference is one of scale: The party that took Congress in ’06 on a platform of “fiscal responsibility” has managed to incinerate more Monopoly money in one pen-stroke than Shrubya managed to burn up in six years of playing Global Sheriff.

    (Plus, dropping welfare recipients on Al Qaeda strongpoints, while amusing, is less than completely effective…)

    I’ve spent the last 20 years “disgruntled”, but now I’m officially “disgusted”. Not quite “clingy” yet, but definitely “bitter”.

  7. if your view is that the “trillion dollar bill for two wars” is no more justified than the black hole of “stimulus” that was activated today, then your understanding of the purpose and role of fedgov and mine are quite disparate.


  8. Marko says:

    Whether the expense was justified or not, the fact remains that it was spent on credit.

    We spent 10% of that money to kick the hell out of Saddam and defeat his army, and 90% on rebuilding said Iraqi army, and the Iraqi infrastructure. If you think that the Fed’s purpose and role is to rack up debt to fix up foreign countries rather than our own place, your understanding of the proper purpose and role of the fed.gov is indeed very different from mine.

    At least the Monopoly money they allocated today is going to New York and California, not dumped into a hole in the sand over in the Middle East.

  9. Tam says:

    I must have missed the part where I said it was (and I quote) “justified”.

    Shall we go search posts on THR from early ’93 under username “Tamara”?

  10. Tam says:

    EDIT: My bad. I see you were replying to JTC and not me.

    I am sorry for being snippy.

  11. Tam says:

    PPS: …but it’s all about ME!!!!


  12. Marko says:

    Early ’93? I don’t think THR was an entity yet back in the BBS days.

    What kerfuffle were we in back in ’93, anyway? Oh, yeah…Somalia. I am kind of catching on to conservative logic, though…since Bubba was in charge back then, it was a pointless and expensive clusterfuck, and a waste of lives. If a Republican had been POTUS, it would have been Vital To National Security, and worthy of unlimited deficit spending.

    (That last paragraph wasn’t specifically addressed to you, Tam, just a general observation.)

  13. Phillip says:

    Marko, I don’t know why I seem to end up thinking of my religious upbringing when I read your posts, but your last paragraph starting with “Stock up on wheelbarrows” reminded me of something I heard from a person talking about the “End days” prophecies when I was growing up. The gist of it was that it would take a wheelbarrow of cash to buy a loaf of bread.

    I actually tracked it down, and it’s from Rev. 6:5-6.

  14. Marko says:

    Well, I was more thinking Weimar Germany in 1923, or current-day Zimbabwe. I don’t think the End Days are upon us, because I don’t believe there is, or will be, such an event, at least not as laid out in Revelations.

    However, I don’t think we’ve seen the worst of this economic mess yet, and the spending of a three-quarter trillion bucks we don’t have is not going to “stimulate” jack squat.

  15. Tam says:

    (That last paragraph wasn’t specifically addressed to you, Tam, just a general observation.)

    Good, because I’d hate it if the last ‘graph was based on my right ring finger hitting the “9” instead of the “0”.

    I’m comfortable with my record, despite some folks recently trying to turn me into some Jeebus-lovin’ (laughingly-misnamed)P.A.T.R.I.O.T-Act apologist, despite all the available evidence. 😉

  16. Matt in Portland says:

    Sigh, I think I’ll be buying some gold to fight the inevitable devaluing of the dollar. Then I’m going to dig a moat and fill it with weasels to keep my gold stash safe.

  17. MarkHB says:

    You mean “your groat stash”.

    I just hope the bloody thing works. I’ve got some pretty sincere doubts – further bolstered by the number of Republicans in the house who’d rather see Obama fail than see the country’s economy fixed. That’s a big fat failed SAN check right there.

  18. Tam says:

    rather see Obama fail than see the country’s economy fixed.

    That’s because anybody who’s read von Mises knows what they’re looking at.

    If I don’t want the bus to go over the cliff, why in ghu’s name would I cheer for the guy who’s steering it towards the edge and mumble platitudes about “Wishing for his success”?

  19. MarkHB says:

    I was more thinking about the Tom and Jerry cartoon when Tom’s sat on the far end of the branch he’s sawing frantically at.

  20. Jay G. says:

    You know things are bad when a German is worried about needing a wheelbarrow to fight inflation…

    (Sorry, it had to be said…)

  21. emdfl says:

    The problem I always have with the buy gold/silver/precious metals arguement is, who gets to decide how many beans or bullets or cords of firewood any given unit of those precious metals is worth at the end of the day?

    (Ever try to eat metal?)

  22. misbeHaven says:


    That argument will be decided the way it always has: by how badly the dude with the beans wants the gold, and how badly the dude with the gold wants the beans.

  23. “Whether the expense was justified or not, the fact remains that it was spent on credit.”

    didn’t say it was justified; the critical point was that regardless of the source of funds, you lumped the legitimate function of fedgov ie: national defense, with the distinctly illegitimate one of, shall we say, apportionment.

    “We spent 10% of that money to kick the hell out of Saddam and defeat his army, and 90% on rebuilding said Iraqi army, and the Iraqi infrastructure. If you think that the Fed’s purpose and role is to rack up debt to fix up foreign countries rather than our own place, your understanding of the proper purpose and role of the fed.gov is indeed very different from mine.”

    don’t know about your percentages, i hope that’s not accurate. but even if it is, out of that 90% a good portion was to maintain a foreign base of operations to keep the war there and not here. the rest was to appease those who decried the suffering of “innocent civilians”. and of course reconstruction is not without precedent; think the late 1940’s…that worked out pretty well, yes?

    “At least the Monopoly money they allocated today is going to New York and California, not dumped into a hole in the sand over in the Middle East.”

    eh…sand hole, black hole…a hole’s a hole.


  24. Marko says:

    “Keep the war there and not here”…come on, you’re too smart to parrot that “We fight them there, so we don’t have to fight them here” nonsense.

    Are you honestly trying to tell me that the Jihadis don’t come over here and shoot up shopping malls because they’d rather go toe-to-toe with our military Over There?

    Invading and occupying Iraq was most emphatically *not* national defense. Iraq had not a thing to do with 9/11…even the Bush administration conceded as much. Kicking the snot out of the Taliban was demonstrably good and proper, but Iraq was an unnecessary diversion that made us the owners of a broken country that (rightfully) looked to us to make it unbroken again. We also created a power vacuum there, and now we’ll have to stay in Iraq and rebuild *their* shit for the next fifty years to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars per year, lest the Iranians move in and turn the place into Iran West.

    We have most of our military’s combat strength tied up in Iraq, we’ve suffered 4,000+ KIA and 15,000 wounded, our military is pulverizing its equipment through a half-decade of continuous use, and we’ve spent a trillion bucks of borrowed money on the whole affair. What, other than the fleeting satisfaction of getting to see Saddam turned into a yo-yo, did we get out of that kind of expenditure, and how many more such “national defense” excursions can we afford? There are more tinpot dictators playing with uranium in the world than there are combat divisions in the U.S. Army.

    (And don’t say we got out of it that “we didn’t get attacked again”. Iraq didn’t turn into the regional jihadi training academy until we moved into the place.)

  25. MarkHB says:

    No good at your wars of aggression, America. England or Germany, now they know how to turn a profit on Imperialism. It’s like seeing a eunuch in a brothel, the US Army amid all those oilfields… 😉

  26. no one could argue that the original plan was to spend ten years in that shit hole, expending untold assets just as those assets would be needed to offset other external (and, more problematically, internal) threats.

    but glib repartee is made easy with hindsight, and throwing around unsubstantiated certitudes is not debate-worthy. for what it’s worth, i don’t think the existence or non of wmd was ever a factor, and i do think that the removal of saddam was just a ruse. and the estimation of the internal hatred and internecine war that has preoccupied so much of our resources was completely missed, though history sure as hell should have shown otherwise.

    and a vacuum certainly was created -by design i think- one that sucked in, exposed, and decimated many of the myriad (not just taliban) who have as their second-highest priority the destruction of America.

    was this effort misguided and mishandled? the apparent answer is yes. but unknown is the effect that its waging had on what otherwise might well have been an ongoing orchestrated series of attacks on our civilian targets, our homes, our children. and the last i heard (yesterday) strikes carried out -from bases in iraq- into peripheral pakistan and afghanistan were pretty targeted and effective.

    it’s a cheap device to attempt to preemptively belittle and remove from discussion what is self-evident and central…that iraq is the jihadi training ground and iran will likely also be sucked into that vacuum was precisely the plan, and that portion of the strategy has very demonstrably worked perfectly.

    but, to your original premise, which apparently was that the waging of war (whether or not you or i approve of its methods and effects), is on equal footing with forced socialist redistribution of wealth in terms of the mission of federal government. i would willingly commit my funds, my kids’ funds, and their kids’ funds to the effort to protect me and them from the evil bastards of the world outside America who would enslave them, rather than have those funds usurped for use by the evil bastards of the world inside America who would do the same.


  27. MarkHB says:

    Blimey, pawn – quit listening to Rush Limaugh will you? You were making perfect sense right up ’til the “what lives might have been saved bit”. At that point logic and reason went in the chipper-shredder. The absolute best “they” could do was about 3,000 deaths on 9/11 – 25% fewer than the number of our troops already killed in Iraq.

    The number of tangoes who’ve been spawned by the Widescreen War, however, is sobering. And I say that as a career drinker. Would the 7/7 attacks have happenned in London without Gulf War II? I can’t say. Tell ya, though, radical fundies weren’t very welcome in Iraq under the previous management. Now they seem to be sprouting like weeds. Everywhere.

    I’m not a huge fan of this “stimulus” package, and in it’s current hog-belly form it’s a bad joke – and yeah, the Dems have got their share of bunk-humping and doubtless will continue to do so. But Iraq was a terrible waste of lives and money with not even a single tactical or strategic reason behind it. Worse, it really does seem that the previous lot knew it.

    Long story short: Current shituation – FUBAR.

  28. Desertrat says:

    On an annual basis, the money spent on the Iraq war was about a third of the average federal deficit. Comparatively, chump change. Per StratFor, the war wiped out the CenCom of Al Qaida, and the Saudis estimate it killed some 5,000 Saudi Al Qaida types, helping stabilize their politics somewhat.

    I note that Saudi oil is rather important in the grand scheme of staying alive, since without oil you die. Ergo, stability in Saudi Arabia is a Good Thing.

    The only real difference between now and the 1930s or between us and the Japanese experience of 1990-now is that we are getting into this mess with heavy private sector debt and no savings. And, public sector debt as well, obviously. We know what happened in the 1930s as a result of Obama’s–oops, FDR’s–ideas, although fewer seem to be aware of Japan’s current misery.

    We are only beginning our economic woes, and this bailout + paper printing is sowing the seeds of hperinflation. I just hope to God nobody takes up fertilizing and cultivating, although I’m not sanguine about the odds. Consumer price inflation historically and inevitably has followed inflating the currency.

    So when oil heads back up, later this year or next year, hang on to your butt.

    Food/fuel/gold: They ain’t gonna be cheap.


  29. Kristopher says:

    Marko: you can get $500 face value worth of junk silver pre-1964 US coins for about $4000 right now.

    That 1963 silver quarter bought a loaf of bread in 1963.

    It will buy a loaf of bread after conversion to cash right now.

    It will still buy a loaf of bread ( or more ) after you need a wheelbarrow full of FRNs to buy one for your shit sandwich.

  30. MarkHB says:

    Gnnnfr! Must not get sucked into blamestorming!

    The plane is on fire. Putting the plane out before the plane digs one of those farms with the stones and the flowers is more important than apportioning blame. Even to people who really deserve it.

    Must make money. Must make money. Must make money.

  31. not that it’s likely to matter much to your brit-pickled viewpoint, mhb, but here’s a bit of comeuppance for you…i’ve never listened to a single installment of limbaugh, not one. i choose to develop opinions and attitudes of my own, as opposed to, you know, what you seem to do. blimey, indeed.

    and kristopher: your market awareness needs a little updating…the $150 face silver i sent to my refiner today brought $10.40 per., sterling scrap brought $11.50 ozt., and although as a dealer in precious metals i never “speculate” (i buy/sell daily on a 5-10% margin), the outlook, one might say, is distinctly up.


  32. MarkHB says:


    Yeah. Sure. Have fun, sir. Me, I’m going to just wish you well, and focus on making some frakkin’ money. Bailouts, governments, wars – load of shite. The only person I can depend on to be there for me tomorrow, is me. And all I know how to do is make money. I’ll just focus on doing that. You have fun with your governments and your blamestorming and your other things. Right now I only see simple things to do.

    Hunker down. Defend. Make money.

    I don’t have time to waste on who is to blame. I have a family to save. I know who I blame for fucking things up in the first place, and I don’t have time to waste on you while I’m trying to keep the people I love breathing.

    I’m glad you have the time. Enjoy.

  33. Tam says:

    Bailouts, governments, wars – load of shite.

    I’m calling bullshite on that. 48 hours ago, it was the most important element of your posts. Now it’s your guy in the crosshairs, and all of a sudden…

    And all I know how to do is make money. I’ll just focus on doing that.

    Yeah, well, we’ve got a plan to fix that.

    It’s funny… For some reason I’d thought you were a Randian capitalist, but I’ve recently had it hammered home that an English “Conservative” is still economically somewhat to the left of Ted Kennedy.

  34. Rusty P. Bucket says:

    Hi all~for those of you that bought into the obama myth, and lost your shirts – all I can say is that it serves you right. For those of you that bought homes and took out loans you couldn’t afford, well that serves you right too.

    There is good and bad in everything. The kids today will not be the spoiled self centred brats that their parents are. They will grow up knowing the value of a dollar and the difference between a republican and a democrat. They will be alot smarter and stronger as a result of the tough times and that is good for everyone.

    I am sorry everyone but I just can’t resist:

    I told ya so!

    Ha ha!

  35. Kristopher says:

    Pawnbroker: I like expensive bread.

    Especially when the feds insist I spread shit on it.

    And I ain’t surprised the cost of junk silver is soaring … I shoulda bought that bag of it back in January.

  36. MarkHB says:


    I want Obama’s plan to work because it’s already been enacted, in some form or another. Because I’d rather see America healthy than America fucked. You know, it’s where I was born, that kind of thing. Sentimental, maybe. Maybe just plain realistic. Regarding “Ooooh, this trillion bad! Previous billion OK!” Again, realistic. Really. They’re both a trillion. Read that for me again? Did I miss something? Why is the other trillion good? I don’t think this trillion’s good either. But having spent it, I’d like it to stop the US economy smashing a hole in the ground, because I like making a profit.

    Again, Governments – bullshit. They’re entirely separated from line animals trying to make ends meet and turn a profit without fucking anyone else over.

    If this doesn’t fit your… er.. whatever shape definition (damned if I know what you mean, I just want to be left alone to make pretty and sell pretty for good money) then I’m sorry to have disappointed you. I’m increasingly dissilusioned with the whole process. I had this thing in my brain that being really good at a really difficult thing that lots of people wanted meant you could make a bunch of money.

    *looks blank for a second*

    No, really, the above statement succeeds self-analysis. I want Obama’s stimulus package to succeed, because if it does, then the economy gets to get back to doing business and making money, instead of imploding. If it does implode, we all lose. If it works, we all can go back to working hard and making money. If it fails, we all get to cart wheelbarrows of useless paper to buy a tin of beans.

    *thinks for another few seconds*

    Anyone got a third option? Anyone?

  37. MarkHB says:

    Again, sanity test:

    “I want Obama to fail!”

    == “I want America to go bankrupt, enter a serious Depression, with millions out of work and starving, with companies failing left and right and working stiffs taking it up the arse from the few remaining companies for beans on toast whilst everything that can be outsourced, is”.

    That’s treason, frankly, you fuckers. I’d break your nose if you were in reach, and if I wasn’t busy trying to you know – be American by MAKING SOME FUCKING MONEY.

  38. Desertrat says:

    MarkHB, the problem is historical: What Bush/Obama, Bernanke, Paulson/Geithner have been doing is the same as what Hoover/FDR did–which didn’t work. The Japanese began the same deal in 1990–and they’re still in deep doo-doo, 19 years later.

    IOW, repeating the same experiment, expecting different results.

    The bad part of today’s kerfuffle is that we’ve begun with radically high levels of debt, whereas the 1930s and Japan began with reasonable-to-high levels of savings.

    Simplest put: Keynes was wrong; the Austrians were right.


  39. MarkHB says:

    Yeah. As I say, all I would like is to be left the frak alone with a functioning economy in which to do what I’m good at (computer graphics) and turn a tidy profit from it. All politicians appear to be bastard-coated bastards with bastard filling, with zero regard for their electors or indeed the Constitution which is meant to limit their powers.

    I had hoped that Obama might possibly pay a little more attention to it than his predecessor (and I can’t actually see anything in the Constitution telling him not to spend huge amounts of money, so at least it’s legal if not sensible), but my position on the “stimulus” is simple: I would like it to work. Whether it will or not, I’m not qualified to judge. I don’t do planet-scale finance, which is why I mess around on blogs rather than spending my spare time skiing down Mont Blanc or messing about in the Carribean on a boat.

    Wanting the stimulus to work is a simple function of self-preservation and sanity. To want it to fail on some kind of ideological grounds is daft, really. *shrugs* That’s about all I’ve got, kiddies – I would like a functioning economy so I can come home, do my damn job, and leave worrying about policy to the people who get paid to worry about that. I’ve got enough hair-thinning worries just living my own life.

  40. Tam says:

    Dude, all I’m saying is that if what you want is your house extinguished, cheering for the guy with the hose spraying gasoline on the blaze is… well… counterproductive.

    You don’t yell “Well, at least you’re trying!”, you yell “Turn off the goddam hose, you idiot!”

    All this, plus not a lick of progress in rolling back civil rights abuses of the previous administration.

    To want it to fail on some kind of ideological grounds is daft,

    Nobody here “wants it to fail on ideological grounds”, we just know what’s going to happen You can read the signs. We have been this way before. I don’t want the guy squirting gasoline on the fire to fail to extinguish it because I don’t like his ideology, I want him to cut it the hell out because gasoline doesn’t put out fires, no matter how much you Hope it does. That won’t Change.

  41. Tam says:


    Making cowardly threats to break my nose over the internet because you wanted to vote for a different guy than me?

    I don’t know who the fuck you are anymore.

    I’ll spring for the bus ticket from anywhere in CONUS for you to come here and take a swing, though.

  42. PhillipC says:

    While MarkHB’s comments are a little rough, his remark about “bastard-coated bastards with bastard filling” just made my wife laugh for a solid minute.

  43. re: mhb v. tam in the ring…will there be tickets? or at least payperview?


  44. Tam says:


    Dude, it’s not funny. I consider Mark a friend, and this outburst has me… to put it as “upset” is an understatement.


  45. tam:

    no, it’s not funny…neither was it funny to me when the gentleman made a similar threat to me and added an allusion to “wasting lead” when he felt the need to defend the honor of mw after i (dickishly) chided marko for gathering up his toys and going home after a dustup…

    mhb has a problem. he knows what it is, you know what it is, and i know what it is…and he seems bound and determined to make everyone aware of what it is…or worse, make one of those dumbass virtual threats to the wrong individual. and then instead of payperview it might be a feature on the evening news.

    my dark humor was intended as a wakeup call before that happens. i would have expected you to understand that.



  46. Kristopher says:

    This shit is making us all crazy.

    Get off the internet, and go punch a hippie, all of you.

  47. MarkHB says:


    I would never offer any female violence (unless she’d really, really been violent first), and I apologise for my comment. In fact, I apologise wholeheartedly to all concerned for that particular post.

    And yes, this crap is driving me crazy (my third week of being somewhat ill and drinking too much to try to numb the feeling of it is obviously helping as much as a crowbar to the nuts).

  48. MarkHB says:

    Though honestly compells me to state that there seems to be a language use disconnect here, between what I consider “strong speech” and everyone else considers a physical threat. I shall look to that.

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