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Tales from the Fed, the Porkulus Bill, and the mysterious Silver Bandits

Written By | Feb 25, 2021
Fed, Porkulus Bill, Silver Bandits

Cartoon by Branco. Reproduced with permission and by arrangement with Legal Insurrection. Resized to fit current CDN format. 

WASHINGTON – Wednesday morning action on Wall Street looked pretty sad at the opening bell. But, just a bit later in the day, it dawned on traders that Fed Chair Jay Powell was in no mood to put the clamps on credit now that interest rates have started to climb. Meanwhile, signals grew louder that the House Democrats planned to pass that long-rumored 1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill Friday. You know, the Democrats’ latest Porkulus Bill that contains far more $$ and other goodies for their supporters than it does for America’s taxpayers. Bonus Feature today: Some inside dope on those mysterious Silver Bandits.

Let’s begin.

Also Read: Fun with GameStop shares and adventures with a cannabis ETF

Here comes coronavirus “relief”: AKA, the 2020 Porkulus Bill

The easy money regime, confirmed Wednesday by the Fed, was Wednesday’s first glimmer of good news. The Congressional Money Machine tentatively weighed in not long thereafter, with the House lighting a fire under the heretofore lukewarm Mr Market by declaring its Porkulus Bill — erm, its Covid Relief Bill— would pass during Friday’s legislative session..

Given that it’s swampy Washington, let’s remember that the Porkulus Bill still has to get through the Senate, where it might be amended a bit. But most likely not by powerless Republicans who threw their majority away by refusing to back Donald Trump in the dubious finale to Election 2020. No, Senate Democrats may have an amendment or three to offer – probably involving the delivery of more pork to public employee unions and big corporate donors. Hence, the Porkulus Bill.

Then both houses will then play the “reconciliation” game, pass what remains and send it on to Joe Biden for his robo-signature, and voilà! Even more debt for our kids and grandkids to pay off. What a country!

CNBC’s Jacob Pramuk gives us the dollars. Minus the sense in the latest pending relief legislation.

“The package includes $1,400 direct payments to most Americans, a $400 per week jobless benefit supplement and an extension of programs making millions more Americans eligible for unemployment insurance. It also puts $20 billion into Covid-19 vaccinations, $50 billion into testing, and $350 billion into state, local and tribal government relief.

“The plan as of now would hike the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. The provision may not survive in the final bill.”

What’s not mentioned is that the majority of funding in the Porkulus Bill goes not to you, me, and small businesses, this nation’s real and suffering taxpayers. It goes to the bigwigs and virtue signaling mega-corporations that funded the vastly complex theft of Election 2020. (He said, “without evidence.”)

As I’ve noted, Congress does have to deal with that small matter of “reconciliation,” another creative Washington for of a once meaningful term. This artful dodge eliminates any chance that the GOP will have much, if any, effect on the final Porkulus project.

“Democrats have moved to pass the legislation on their own through budget reconciliation, which requires a simple majority in a Senate divided 50-50 by party. They have argued they cannot wait to ease economic pain while they try to strike a deal with the GOP.”

The Porkulus Bill will get through the Congressional maze. Mostly.

Of course. Just like they did with Obamacare. Screw bipartisanship. The hell with “unity.” None of this matters to the Democrats, and particularly Pelosi, even if they lose seats in 2022. They know their friendly Deep State pals will rescue them again in the next presidential election year. Even though it took them 8 years to get the House back after 2010. It’s a minor matter to Washington’s permanent Marxist revolutionaries.

It does look like the asinine $15 minimum wage hike will not quite happen. Enforcing this hike on a nationwide basis would finish off even more small American businesses than the equally asinine coronavirus lockdowns have. Bad optics. For now. Mega-wealthy mega-corporations plan to rub Mom and Pop out anyway on their way to Globalist Nirvana.

That said, look for some kind of hike to that minimum wage anyway, maybe to $10 over a specified period of time.

Minimum wage hypocrisy

Regarding the minimum wage hike game, we should remember that this whole House of Mirrors creation is actually a Democrat feature, not a bug. Rich corporate bigwigs, the turncoat Chamber of Commerce jerks, and anyone else who benefits from continuing (though illegal and suicidal) mass “immigration” wants to keep wages down for everyone. Unimpeded illegal immigration is a great way to do just that.

On the other hand, by means of their never-ending minimum wage propaganda, Democrats and their fat cat supporters still hypocritically virtual signal to minimum wage American citizens and legal immigrants (who’ll probably lose their jobs anyway) that they really, really care for them and feel their pain. Rinse, repeat.

We must remember that Barack Obama famously wrote off the American working class vote after he won Election 2008. (Just a bunch of unionized white guys, who cares?) Since Barry’s back running the White House again, this time via proxy (aka Susan Rice), why wouldn’t he get right back to fundamentally transforming America right off the map? A minimum wage compromise slight-of-hand to fool the rubes, and we’re on our way. Open those immigration floodgates!

Smoke and mirrors. The Democrats are back in power, effectively unimpeded by the GOP. So this is probably what we’ll get from the Obama-Biden Politburo over the next four years.

Mr Market and the Silver Bandits resurgent?

We could continue with this rant, but let’s get back to Mr Market. He put 2 and 2 together today and decided to relaunch the 2021 market rally once again. For at least an afternoon. Bigtime traders and investors, hedge funds and major corporations liked hearing that they’ll soon be in line for big, heaping helpings of free money from the Feds. And that’s all the news and / or rumor they needed to goose market averages back into bullish action. Action that quickly kicked all three major averages upstairs by 1% or more.

The Silver Bandits: Still at it, dudes?

Let’s switch topics. Remember the big silver short squeeze we were supposed to get a couple weeks back. After the GameStop game stopped, the Redditors (and selected outside agitators) needed another game to play. And silver was it. Or was it?

The Dome of Silence quickly descended on this whole weird story. And, no surprise, Twitter’s censors, working 24/7 to deplatform any useful news, kept the wraps on things. But a fellow named JHANDERS just de-cloaked a cascade of info on the Silver Charades via the always lively ZeroHedge, dropping a ton of information on what has or has not happened to the big silver goose-fest that thus far hasn’t really happened.

A detailed look at the Silver Bandits via ZeroHedge

Here’s an excerpt.

“A few days ago I tweeted about a Silver Squeeze post I really liked on r/WallStreetBets.

“When I saw that the post had recently been removed and the user banned, I reached out on Twitter to offer my assistance so that others here on ZeroHedge could see the user’s post going forward given its popularity.

“The user, known as TheHappyHawaiian, responded via DM and I’m happy to announce we now have the post here on Zerohedge for anyone to view, and where it won’t risk being deleted, censored, or banned.

“This r/WallStreetBets user’s first silver post was cited as a contributing factor to the silly financial media-provoked silver surge we saw on February 1st, 2021 onwards. Physical silver subsequently sold out at retail locations across the country over that weekend, and that silver fever hasn’t let up since. Silver bullion and PSLV [NYSE: PSLV, the trading symbol for the Sprott Physical Silver Trust ETF] long fever has only grown virally since. Physical silver premiums are still trading at $5-$6 per ounce over the silver spot price and large-scale silver bullion drains are ongoing in London and elsewhere.

“TheHappyHawaiian also wrote an open letter to WSB [WallStreetBets] users and mods which I have included per his request, and which you can find here [in JHANDERS’ full ZH  text] if you are interested.

“It looks like just today the WSB Moderators have finally come to their better senses and reposted this viral Silver Squeeze WallStreetBets post again.

“I now leave it below for you to read and enjoy too here on ZH.”

What follows this executive summary is a huge, detailed breakdown of the current silver state of affairs. At least according to TheHappyHawaiian. There’s no way I can vouch for its accuracy. But via charts and impressively detailed information, this writeup adds considerable color to this incredible disappearing Silver Bandits story.

Will silver rise again? If so, when? And where are those short squeezing Silver Bandits hiding? Read all about it via our ZeroHedge link above. But, as always, caveat emptor. You actually can’t believe any news these days without verifying it yourself.

Full disclosure

I have a token position in SLV (NYSE: SLV), a widely traded ETF. Just for the hell of it. Actually, I’ve had this position for some time now, and it hovers continuously on the profit-loss line. It’s always a good idea to have at least a small position in precious metals. But I’ve never been very good with precious metals investing, indirect or otherwise. So this token position is just a defensive move at the moment. No one really knows what will happen here. Except maybe the mysterious Silver Bandits. But clearly, the fabled Plunge Protection Team has been keeping a lid on gold and silver for years. Like them or not, they’ve done an excellent job. But eventually, this kind and extent of market manipulation will not end well.

I’ve been saying that for at least 10 years now. But, as they often say, even a 100% negative prognosticator is eventually right. At least once.

Anyhow, Wednesday’s unexpected rally was fun. I’m up for another one Thursday . But Mr Market could still have other ideas. And, as of 11 a.m. Thursday morning, it looks like he wants to return to the Red Zone. All three major averages are down.

Stay tuned.

– Headline image: Cartoon by Branco. Reproduced with permission and by arrangement with Legal Insurrection.
Resized to fit current CDN format. 


Terry Ponick

Biographical Note: Dateline Award-winning music and theater critic for The Connection Newspapers and the Reston-Fairfax Times, Terry was the music critic for the Washington Times print edition (1994-2010) and online Communities (2010-2014). Since 2014, he has been the Senior Business and Entertainment Editor for Communities Digital News (CDN). A former stockbroker and a writer and editor with many interests, he served as editor under contract from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and continues to write on science and business topics. He is a graduate of Georgetown University (BA, MA) and the University of South Carolina where he was awarded a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and co-founded one of the earliest Writing Labs in the country. Twitter: @terryp17