WASHINGTON, January 31, 2016 – As we watch the virtual stock ticker today on a souped-up iMac, all three major averages are stretching their recently neglected cliff-diving routines. As we’re writing this column—2 p.m., Tuesday, January 31—the Dow is off a rather unpleasant 184 and threatening to sink further, losing close to 1 percent at the moment even after Monday’s drubbing.
The broader-based S&P 500 and the tech-heavy NASDAQ are both getting hit as well with the S&P down 12.32 and the NAZZ down 32, both off about 0.5 percent.
The online news buzz is that President Trump killed off the rally he inspired all by himself by what the media are regarding as an ill-timed, sloppy, temporary anti-Muslim travel ban that was announced over the weekend. That’s a convenient excuse for the market beating over the last couple of days and one that goes right along with the agreed-upon anti-Trump media narrative. In other words, Trump has killed the rally he inspired, proving he’s the dope the cognoscenti always knew he was.
It’s all fake news. The real news is quite different.
Although not executed through standard channels in many ways, Trump’s temporary ban on immigrants from certain countries is perfectly legal and within his enumerated powers as President. This temporary policy is not anti-Muslim (at least a dozen predominantly Muslim nations are not on the list). Need proof? The sainted President Obama pulled the same thing on Iraq for approximately 6 months during his presidency, without a whisper from the so-called major media, BTW. Even better—irony alert—Trump’s list of temporarily banned countries is the list the Obama administration had already compiled before the now ex-president left office.
This latest bout of anti-Trump hysteria is just more anti-deplorable hooey being generated by the usual suspects who fully intend to keep this nonsense up for the next 4 years. We have to take the manufactured outrage at its face value: It’s all a political operation already trying to prepare the ground for a Democrat takeover in the 2020 election. Philosophically, Bill Ayers is running it, with help from the ghosts of Antonio Gramsci and Saul Alinsky. The hell with getting America out of the Obama Era Slough of Despond. It’s all about politics.
With regard to the markets, already just as politicized as Washington, what we’re really seeing so far this week is a long-needed retracement, taking back some of the Trump rally in preparation for its resumption at some point. The Trump travel ban is just another excuse for the blow-dries to blather on and for the media to do what they do best: de- and re-construct current history on the fly to conform to the usual class-struggle narrative in which far left Democrats are the only heroes.
Which brings us to an interesting point. For a brief, shining moment, we thought the Trump Era would prove to be an amazing blessing for the job-deprived U.S. economy. And indeed, we still think this is the case. But nothing in life ever seems to travel in a straight line, particularly when that straight line intersects the mass of overpaid human barnacles that run official Washington. Trump is threatening the lifelong, overpaid tenure of these lazy hacks, including the lazy hacks in the media, and they’re not going to stand for it.
When Trump does something, anything—just as he seems to be doing every day—it’s immediately and viciously attacked. His recent temporary immigration ban is supported by over 57 percent of Americans according to the latest Rasmussen poll. But no matter. If you watch MSNBC or read the WaPo or the NY Times, everyone hates the ban and fears encroaching fascism. Too bad they didn’t worry about the real fascism that ruled from Washington over the last 8 years.
But with this constant, vicious point-counterpoint, aided and abetted by President The Donald’s Daily Tweet Outrage, has, at least temporarily, caused the market to revert to trading on headlines again, as opposed to the early part of the faltering post-election rally.
Given the violent give-and-take of daily headlines, we will likely see a violent back-and-forth action in the market, driven by those headline obsessed high-frequency traders (HFTs), who must be burning incense to the new president this week, given the markets’ high volatility and skittishness.
Trading and investing in this market is likely to remain extremely dangerous until the White House can get all its cabinet members vetted, something the always-helpful Democrats are delaying at every turn. Monday’s firing by Trump of acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates for insubordination was one reaction to this game.
As long as disloyal Obama leftists remain in acting charge of cabinet level positions—relatively traditional as new administrations await confirmation of their nominees—they, along with Congressional Democrats, will do everything they can to hobble the new administration, which is clearly antithetical to their Marxist-influenced, anti-U.S. globalist drive.
Yates, as AG, essentially told her subordinates not to take any action to support Trump’s legal temporary hold on immigration—a flagrant act of insubordination that Trump didn’t take long to remedy, just three hours by most accounts. Yates was either grandstanding or asking for this, as she’d eventually have to leave that post anyway, so she apparently decided (or colluded with Congressional Democrats and remaining Obama holdovers in the totally corrupted and politicized Justice Department) to go out in a blaze of leftist glory.
It was all like a political version of Suicide by Cop. Sitting in the White House now is the man who became famous by declaring, “You’re fired!” on TV. Trump’s reaction to Yates’ defiant showboating can have come as no surprise.
But, even as the media and Congressional Democrats wailed through the night and gnashed their teeth, the majority of Americans were delighted that someone in Washington was finally claiming heads. And Yates’ head is just the first one in Justice.
When Jeff Sessions finally assumes the AG position he should have assumed last week, he’ll need to transform himself into a latter-day Hercules, taking a fire hose and cleaning out the Augean Stables that the Justice Department became under the vicious lawbreaker Eric Holder and the Dumb and Dumber Loretta Lynch.
All this is playing out like a never-ending melodrama in the media, and it’s all now intruding on the stock market in a big way. And yet, simultaneously, what’s more likely behind this week’s viciously negative action is that prudent investors and traders alike have decided, for now, to take their YUGE post-election profits off the table.
When the entire Trump cabinet is installed and when the media hysteria runs its initial course, it will be good to have a bucket of cash left the better to catch the next wave of this rally whenever it decides to resume.