Dangerous times…Not | John Mangun

Pick a topic and it is easy to find raging hysteria. What shall we start with first—the election, inflation, Ukraine?

Realize that whomever you choose to vote for is the best person to be the next president. Do not let anyone tell you differently. Further, the fact that your favored candidate might not get a plurality of the vote is not important. That a citizen can freely support a candidate who loses an election is the heart and soul of participatory democracy and the freedom of thought.

Note, though, no one really cares who you are going to vote for. When you post on SocMed that your presidential selection is Lian Matabungkay and everyone “Likes” with “Brilliant Choice,” do not take it personally. You have provided your friends with “Confirmation Bias.” They also want to see President Matabungkay in Malacañang, and you have confirmed that they made the right choice.

It works like this: Celebrity endorsements do not have the primary purpose of selling the product. The main reason is to confirm that you made the right choice. And if you did not like that shampoo, well, it’s your fault since fashion model Yewubdar Zendaya absolutely loves her hair. Celebrity and “expert” endorsements for candidates are no different.

Scare and panic tactics are an integral part of politics. The idea is that even if you do not like my candidate, the opponent is a hundred times worse. Imagine what would happen if a candidate said something like “My opponent is a capable person who should have your vote if I was not running for office.” That would be the end of civilization as we know it.

Systemic on-going inflation is not an economic event. It is a process resulting from a loss of confidence in government. You have heard me say a hundred times that Philippine inflation trends with global crude oil prices. That is a fact. Sometimes Philippine inflation leads and sometimes it lags oil prices. But the correlation is obvious to all, unless you are a politician.

The US politicians—the Federal Reserve being a political group as well—call current inflation
“transitory.” That may be the most nonsense description I have ever heard about almost anything. “Transitory” means “not permanent.” I am glad to know that the highest inflation in 40 years is not going to last forever. Maybe the US will have the highest inflation in 40 years until 2024—the next presidential election—but it will not last until your favorite deity comes in riding a golden duck. It’s only Transitory.

However, systemic inflation caused by a loss of confidence in government is horrific. Not trusting the government fuels inflation and other economic events, like the most recent crypto price surge.

You can argue who is entitled to own Ukraine just like Taiwan, Sabah, and Jammu/Kashmir. But Russia has it and Ukraine wants it, and Putin will not let that happen. The only way Ukraine can take it is if Nato—read US—backs a Ukrainian invasion with Nato military boots-on-the-ground. That will never happen. Even the Ukraine knows it. But what Ukraine was afraid of is that Putin might move in and pre-empt a Ukrainian attack. He is not that stupid. Why would Vladimir bother since he has Europe trembling just by having Russian troops nearby on his own Russian territory?

Biden has been saying for weeks Putin is going to invade “tomorrow.” That hysteria has been joined by the UK’s Boris Johnson—who is on his way there now—and by France’s Emmanuel Macron. Note, Biden has the worst approval rating for a president this recently inaugurated since the snake in the Garden of Eden. Macron’s approval rating was 37 percent three weeks ago before ‘Freedom Convoy’ truckers prepared to blockade Paris. Johnson “can win next election” but his government is fragile. Do you
notice a pattern?

And against all this chaos, “Crude oil futures sharply higher amid Russia invasion fears.” Go watch the “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” video on YouTube. Better use of your time than the hysteria.

E-mail me at [email protected] Follow me on Twitter @mangunonmarkets. PSE stock-market information and technical analysis provided by AAA Southeast Equities Inc.

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