The world won't end. For real, it won't.
My last blog sure raised more of a ruckus than I thought. I thank everybody who replied, and while I skimmed in the last hour the replies, i cannot have time tonight to reply to all 100 folks. In writing that blog, and my blog about "fighting the cult of negativity", in no way was I trying to mock the bears or refute the fact that they have gotten alot of stuff right. And, ... to my personal loss, I am hardly a permabull. To date I'd be considerably better off if I hadn't been cautious over my time in the market. Forget reading my old blogs, just scan the titles and that will be clear.
I am grateful for the couple of compliments I got in the "cult" blog about "my well thought out thesis". I wish. All these blogs are typed on the fly and thought out at the same time, although often concieved at some random point while thinking about markets and life and what not. They are not proofread, which no doubt leads some onlooker or other to conclude that I am beyond hope.
In any case, the last post hoped to say this one point:
If you choose to live in the US, you will, at least if your experience is even remotely close to mine, ALWAYS be faced with people talking down on the country, down on the world, down on the future, down on everything. There will ALWAYS be cases presented which are more than less doomsday cases. You will always be told, by some, that a crisis lies in wait, that your way of life is soon over, that we are doomed, we are scrweed, other cultures are better, this is messed up, we are all forked-senseless on and on and on and on and on.
In good times people panic about contrived things, in bad times they panic about the matters at hand, in no time do they really bother to stop panicking. Its just what some people do. SOMETIMES, the panic is justified, but USUALLY it is not. We have recently had both times when the doomsday cults were right, and when they were wrong.
The fact of the matter is that people are ... for all of our undeniable flaws, relatively remarkable things. Said I to the neighbor kids who are over here basically every other day, because I cook a mean egg sandwich, when we were on our way to the movies a month ago: "ok, gents, question. who is the toughest animal that ever lived?". Heated debate ensued, amongst 6-11 year olds. A T-rex they ultimately concluded, must be the biggest bad-arse ever. One kid apparently is an encyclopedia of dinosaur knowledge, and pointed out that some reptile or other was much larger than t-rex, but whatever that animal was it wasn't famous so the other kids weren't moved. "thats just silly", said I, "you are obviously the toughest animal that ever lived". No way! You're crazy! I'm just a kid! "Yes", said I, "but, if dinosaurs still lived today, would we have them in a zoo? Would they have us in a zoo?" As they got my point they shone like lightbulbs, chests out, lol. Its true, though, we are pretty much (again, for all of our admittedly vast and broad flaws) the shyte. We muddle through, with these incredible moments of brilliance that get us MORE than by. On the back of Edison, Einstein, Jobs & Woz, and all of the others we ride, most gloriously, always to better days (eventually).
When a problem actually surfaces, we do actually tend to deal with it. Smog is way down in LA, but the # of cars sure isn't! I remember that drama from when I was a kid. Nobody in a major city would live to 50, they'd all die from pollution. Ozone layer, wasn't that healing last time somebody told me? That was FOR SURE going to end the world. On and on and on and on and on.
It is literally a swamp of negativity that we live in, I hoped to observe that as far as I can tell, the world has gone on. And here in the world of markets and economics and investing, we are swamped with sooo much negativity. Eloquent, elaborate, long-written negativity. Infomercials even, scammish websites. Often repeating the same basic "party line" that everybody else is using, changing its story over time but always telling us that soon we will perish. But not before we lose all of our money.
And soooooooo often, the bears resort to hyperbolic ventures far off the path of fact, and in my view far too often they present those views as fact. It drives me nuts. People defend the honor of Peter Schiff... wonder why people get annoyed with him... I can't make it through one of his videos without rolling my eyes as he ventures into wild conjecture or even mistruth, always while presenting it as fact. This is a fact: CSCO has a p/e of about 14. This is not: the US is zimbabwe. Fact: buying a market down 55% has never been a bad idea, ever, over a couple-few-year timeframe. Not fact: the US will have hyperinflation, huge inflation, huge deflation, the S&P will hit 250, the market would be fair valued at 400, gold is going to 5000, fiat currency will die, the US dollar will collapse very soon, the US is a banana republic, we are in a depression, nobody has a job, and all of the other DRAMATIC stuff that gets repeatedly said. Its got to be 1:10, wildly bullish blogs + replies to wildly bearish.
If one is to successfully participate in the markets, we will eventually have to just get used to that fact, and learn to tune it out. Hopefully the never ending chrous of would be sorrows won't cause people to ignore it the next time it makes sense. Like the next time someting really serious IS ABOUT to happen.
We will ALSO have to, somehow, in and among the endless rain of dire predictions, manage to pay attention to the ones that really matter. That becomes the responsibility of the bulls. All the noise will only serve to make it really difficult.
None of that blog was meant as a bullish rant. I am, as well noted in the last month, really not that bullish right now, and as noted last week, I acknolwedge the potential problems of coked-up speculators running oil to 140 on mid-east panic. And I acknowledge that the market is no longer "cheap", but probably roughly fair valued. I'm not bearish either, I'm still net long, just with a big cash cushion. And there is, I really think, one more important chapter (at least) to this secular bear, which I have many times said will become the biggest in 70 years... There will be another time for the bears to shine - I am sure of it - before the next secular bull.
Per my vow, I will buy drinks for an entire casino should the opportunity present itself. I'd just as soon do it in Reno, as I've never been, and Starfire lives there. And I will note that I am pretty sure that I'll blog all about me blowing my portfolio up, if it happens. But it won't... ;)
The video was of Danny Macaskill, a vid I randomly stumbled across on youtube while watching "band of horses" vids. It is probably the most awesome thing I have ever seen on youtube, actually I know it is.