Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Gold vs Cash in a Financial Crisis - Richard_Mills
2.Current Stock Market Rally Similarities To 1999 - Chris_Vermeulen
3.America See You On The Dark Side Of The Moon - Part2 - James_Quinn
4.Stock Market Trend Forecast Outlook for 2020 - Nadeem_Walayat
5.Who Said Stock Market Traders and Investor are Emotional Right Now? - Chris_Vermeulen
6.Gold Upswing and Lessons from Gold Tops - P_Radomski_CFA
7.Economic Tribulation is Coming, and Here is Why - Michael_Pento
8.What to Expect in Our Next Recession/Depression? - Raymond_Matison
9.The Fed Celebrates While Americans Drown in Financial Despair - John_Mauldin
10.Hi-yo Silver Away! - Richard_Mills
Last 7 days
Stock Market Deviation from Overall Outlook for 2020 - 22nd Feb 20
The Shanghai Composite and Coronavirus: A Revealing Perspective - 22nd Feb 20
Baltic Dry, Copper, Oil, Tech and China Continue Call for Stock Market Crash Soon - 22nd Feb 20
Gold Warning – This is Not a Buying Opportunity - 22nd Feb 20
Is The Technology Sector FANG Stocks Setting Up For A Market Crash? - 22nd Feb 20
Coronavirus China Infection Statistics Analysis, Probability Forecasts 1/2 Million Infected - 21st Feb 20
Is Crude Oil Firmly on the Upswing Now? - 20th Feb 20
What Can Stop the Stocks Bull – Or At Least, Make It Pause? - 20th Feb 20
Trump and Economic News That Drive Gold, Not Just Coronavirus - 20th Feb 20
Coronavirus COVID19 UK Infection Prevention, Boosting Immune Systems, Birmingham, Sheffield - 20th Feb 20
Silver’s Valuable Insights Into the Upcoming PMs Rally - 20th Feb 20
Coronavirus Coming Storm Act Now to Protect Yourselves and Family to Survive COVID-19 Pandemic - 19th Feb 20
Future Silver Prices Will Shock People, and They’ll Kick Themselves for Not Buying Under $20… - 19th Feb 20
What Alexis Kennedy Learned from Launching Cultist Simulator - 19th Feb 20
Stock Market Potential Short-term top - 18th Feb 20
Coronavirus Fourth Turning - No One Gets Out Of Here Alive! - 18th Feb 20
The Stocks Hit Worst From the Coronavirus - 18th Feb 20
Tips on Pest Control: How to Prevent Pests and Rodents - 18th Feb 20
Buying a Custom Built Gaming PC From Overclockers.co.uk - 1. Delivery and Unboxing - 17th Feb 20
BAIDU (BIDU) Illustrates Why You Should NOT Invest in Chinese Stocks - 17th Feb 20
Financial Markets News Report: February 17, 2020 - February 21, 2020 - 17th Feb 20
NVIDIA (NVDA) GPU King For AI Mega-trend Tech Stocks Investing 2020 - 17th Feb 20
Stock Market Bubble - No One Gets Out Of Here Alive! - 17th Feb 20
British Pound GBP Trend Forecast 2020 - 16th Feb 20
SAMSUNG AI Mega-trend Tech Stocks Investing 2020 - 16th Feb 20
Ignore the Polls, the Markets Have Already Told You Who Wins in 2020 - 16th Feb 20
UK Coronavirus COVID-19 Pandemic WARNING! Sheffield, Manchester, Birmingham Outbreaks Probable - 16th Feb 20
iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF IBB AI Mega-trend Tech Stocks Investing 2020 - 15th Feb 20
Gold Stocks Still Stalled - 15th Feb 20
Is The Technology Stocks Sector Setting Up For A Crash? - 15th Feb 20
UK Calm Before Corona Virus Storm - Infections Forecast into End March 2020 - 15th Feb 20
The Growing Weaponization of Space - 14th Feb 20
Will the 2020s Be Good or Bad for the Gold Market? - 14th Feb 20
Predictive Modeling Suggests Gold Price Will Break Above $1650 Within 15~30 Days - 14th Feb 20
UK Coronavirus COVID-19 Infections and Deaths Trend Forecast 2020 - 14th Feb 20
Coronavirus, Powell and Gold - 14th Feb 20
How the Corona Virus is Affecting Global Stock Markets - 14th Feb 20
British Pound GBP Trend and Elliott Wave Analysis - 13th Feb 20
Owning and Driving a Land Rover Discovery Sport in 2020 - 2 YEAR Review - 13th Feb 20
Shipping Rates Plunge, Commodities and Stocks May Follow - 13th Feb 20
Powell says Fed will aggressively use QE to fight next recession - 13th Feb 20
PALLADIUM - THIS Is What a Run on the Bank for Precious Metals Looks Like… - 13th Feb 20
Bitcoin: "Is it too late to get in?" Get Answers Now - 13th Feb 20
China Coronavirus Infections Soar by 1/3rd to 60,000, Deaths Jump to 1,367 - 13th Feb 20
Crude Oil Price Action – Like a Coiled Spring Already? - 13th Feb 20

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

Nadeem Walayat Financial Markets Analysiis and Trend Forecasts

Conspiracy Theories Are Killing This Nation

Politics / Conspiracy Theory Nov 30, 2019 - 04:01 PM GMT

By: Jared_Dillian

Politics

There is a burgeoning conspiracy theory that Jeffrey Epstein was murdered in his jail cell.

Although it’s not really burgeoning, is it? Most people really believe this. I think once a majority of people believe a conspiracy theory, it becomes fact.

Out of all conspiracy theories, this one is certainly plausible—Epstein potentially had a lot of damaging information on a lot of rich, powerful people.



But it is also plausible that Epstein lived a life of saturnalian excess and was not looking forward to the sparse and potentially brutal conditions in prison.

And it is also worth pointing out that corrections officers are not known for their empathy—or their grasp of social psychology and the broad political implications if Epstein was permitted to end his life. Never, ever bet against government incompetence.

I like that theory better than the theory where Spiderman parachutes into Epstein’s prison cell and gives him hemlock. That’s the thing with conspiracy theories—they assume there is a conspiracy, and conspiracies are difficult to hold together.

Do rich and powerful people conspire? If they do, how do they keep it secret?

I don’t know, but I do know this—the people who believe that rich and powerful people conspire tend not to be very successful people, because they are always blaming others for their problems.

The Mainstreaming of Conspiracy Theories

One thing I’ve banged on lately is the mainstreaming of conspiracy theories. I mean, even Trump himself tweets them out.

You would be surprised at how deeply conspiracy theories have been mainstreamed into the discourse of the financial industry.

Like, lots of people believe that the government buys stocks. That there is this thing called the Plunge Protection Team where there is a guy sitting in a closet in the Treasury building buying e-minis on a Dell computer whenever the market goes down.

There is a theory that JP Morgan, the bank, is short literally all the silver in the world to suppress silver prices. And so on.

You don’t find these things in the corners of the dark web. They are right out in the open. The biggest financial media outlets give these people a platform to share their beliefs.

The most disturbing thing about my industry, hands down, is that the vast majority of people working in the capital markets believe things that are simply not true.

On a micro level, there is no money to be made in conspiracy theories. If there really was a PPT (and yes, I know about the President’s Working Group on Financial Markets), then you should be able to make money off it in a systematic way.

But you can’t, so it’s just somebody to blame when things don’t go your way when you’re short. If you’re long a bunch of silver and it won’t go up, blame someone else for your problems.

If It Feels Like the Country is Falling Apart

On a macro level, belief in conspiracies is a direct result of loss of trust in institutions.

In Epstein’s case, the corrections officers failed at their job, the judicial system failed at its job, and the media failed at its job.

These are institutions, and the health of this country is based on the strength of its institutions. What makes extreme political beliefs possible anywhere in the world is a loss of trust in institutions.

The internet also tends to amplify fringe beliefs, which everyone knows by now.

I see Epstein memes in my own Facebook feed, from people who, up until this point, had been apolitical. Their first foray into politics is in the form of a conspiracy theory.

If I were a psychiatrist and I were presented with a patient who believed things that simply were not true, I would call that person delusional and I would prescribe an atypical antipsychotic. I take great interest in mental health—when the human mind malfunctions, what do you do? We have tools to deal with that.

What do you do when the country, collectively, believes things that aren’t true? Take a pill? Turn it off and turn it on again?

Sure, there has always been a fringe element in the US. But they were confined to the fringe, and that’s not so true anymore. The fringe is now the center.

Bernie Sanders—nobody else seems to have the courage to say this—is a large-C Communist. He is very popular. On the other side, there is a faction of Trump supporters called QAnon who do nothing but traffic in conspiracies.

If it feels like the country is coming apart, it’s because it is.

Like I said, there is no money to be made in this stuff. The money is made by staying in the sane center—and profiting off of the craziness. Negative interest rates would be crazy. The S&P 500 at 5,000 would be crazy. The VIX at 8 (or 80) would be crazy.

If volatility increases in politics and social psychology, it stands to reason that it might increase in financial markets. I haven’t been too high on tail risk in the last several years, but I am starting to come around.

Get Contrarian Investment Ideas from a Wall Street Veteran

Jared Dillian writes The 10th Mana free weekly newsletter for contrarian investorsEvery Thursday, he delivers a torpedo of incisive commentary that crushes consensus thinking and exposes the true workings of “Mr. Market.”  Subscribe now!

By Jared Dillian

© 2019 Copyright Jared Dillian - All Rights Reserved

Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.


© 2005-2019 http://www.MarketOracle.co.uk - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules