Here we go again.
The clock is ticking down to another US debt ceiling battle.
Somewhat lost in the chaos of the DC protests was the fact that Democrats won both Georgia Senate runoff races. That effectively gives the Democrats control of both houses of Congress. In his podcast, Peter Schiff made the case that Congress is the real threat to America, not the protesters who broke into the Capitol building.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg experienced the big-boy version of getting called into the principal’s office this week. He spent about 10 hours testifying before Congress after news came out that a data firm accessed Facebook user information.
The iconic image from the hearing was Zuckerberg perched on a booster cushion. He looked like Dennis the Menace sitting in front of an entire room full of Mr. and Mrs. Wilson clones.
In all of the talk about tax reform, nobody is considering the more fundamental problem facing America – the size and scope of the federal government.
Peter Schiff has described the Republican tax plan as “tax cuts masquerading as reform.” When it’s all said and done, Americans aren’t going to get tax relief. They are going to get big government on a credit card. The balance will come due down the road.
The real issue is the total cost of government. In an article originally published on the Mises Wire, Ryan McMaken argues that if Republicans really want to ease the burden of government, they need to cut spending.
There’s a lot of optimism out there that passage of the Trump tax plan will juice the economy. Many analysts say tax cut optimism is one of the factors that continue to push stocks up, and that has created headwinds for gold and silver. But as we’ve pointed out, there are reasons to question this mainstream narrative.
Now some in the mainstream are even starting to question the mainstream narrative.
Obamacare repeal 3.0 went down in flames Tuesday. According to Bloomberg, opposition from three Republican Senators derailed the latest attempt to dismantle the Affordable Care Act.
Leaders decided the Senate won’t vote before Saturday’s deadline to use a fast-track procedure to keep Democrats from blocking a GOP-only bill. On Monday, Republican Senator Susan Collins of Maine added her opposition to that of GOP Senators John McCain of Arizona and Rand Paul of Kentucky, enough to sink the legislation in the 52-48 Senate.”
This raises broader questions: Can Republicans get anything done? Is there any chance of Trump pushing through his ambitious economic agenda?
When we consider geopolitical risk, we tend to focus on things that are “out there.” We might think of military tensions between the US and North Korea, or war in the Middle East, or Brexit. But more and more, analysts are looking to the US as a significant source of geopolitical risk.