2019: The Crackup Begins
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2018-12-31 01:00 by Karl Denninger
in Editorial , 5543 references Ignore this thread
2019: The Crackup Begins
[Comments enabled]

Last year I did not do much of a "2018" prediction post, and with good reason.

Nobody gives a crap.

But I did say that Trump's tax cuts were going to massively accelerate the deficit ramp job.  I was dead-on with that; what's even worse is that Trump knows damn well it's going to blow up in everyone's face but he doesn't care because he thinks he'll be out of office first.

Federal debt expansion last fiscal year was a stunning 6.2% of the economy.  To put this in perspective to have a "neutral" Fed Funds rate it would have to be at least 6.2%.  It isn't, of course, and Trump has been throwing a hissy fit over the fact that rates aren't lower than they are and is now issuing thinly-veiled threats that he might fire the head of the Fed.

Whether he can is a matter of some dispute, as the law says he can only do so for "cause".  What's cause?  Good question.

But, here we are a year later and nobody gives a crap.

Never mind that The Fed itself says that some 40% of Americans couldn't fork up $400 in an emergency, such as for a car repair, without going into debt or selling something -- right here and now.  The bad news of course is that "forced sales" are never at advantageous prices or reasonable terms; most people wind up hocking something or taking a "payday" loan at ridiculous interest rates from which they often never escape.

Nobody connects the first with the second, yet that's why it happens.  We went from a society in the 1950s-1970s where one person in a family of four could go off to work and make enough for everyone else to be ok -- with health care, food, transportation and housing.  In the last 30 years health care has expanded in price on an "inflation adjusted" basis by five hundred percent or more and property taxes (which simply reflect the health care expenses of government employees) have more than doubled in the last decade in many areas, resulting in an outrageous increase in the cost of housing.  Then there's student loans; college prices have gone up about as fast as health care; you used to be able to spin pizzas to pay for school including tuition, room, board, books and fees but that's impossible now.

As I look around me in the store and on the streets all I see are more and more people who can't see their pubic hair (or what's under it when they shave it off) when standing straight-up in the shower.  The majority of Americans over the age of 18 are metabolically compromised and a shocking percentage of kids under 10 are too.  More than a few could use their belly roll as a concealed carry holster.  The media just "celebrated" the birth of the largest baby in Texas history, never mentioning that the most-likely reason for such a giant baby is uncontrolled diabetes in the mother -- and that both she and her husband are the size of refrigerators, leading one to question exactly how did they have procreative sex?  That's not proof but it sure fits the pattern -- and guess who's going to get the bill for all three of these jokers in a few years?

You.

I've dealt with some family crap this year and picked up 10lbs doing it -- and I know exactly how too.  They're called carbs and they're a slow poison.  Nope, nope and no more of that ****.  Don't kid yourself -- there's no way around the facts on this, nor do the lies become less of a lie if someone who has some sort of bull**** "degree" enunciates them at you, no matter how often.

The problem with playing the "feel good" binge consumption game, whether it be carbs, booze or drugs, is the same: Eventually, if you don't cut that crap out, you have one too many and die -- and long before that you crank out bills that you'll then try to send to someone else -- either before or after they bankrupt you.

My sister did exactly that this year; rather than deal with what she had going on in her head and whatever else when my Mom passed she blew what she had in her hand in terms of funds on booze and drugs, and then apparently hocked something or another to get even more.  That was one too many and now she's in an urn.

No, I'm not sorry or even sad.  She had been doing that crap for decades and had been warned more times than anyone can count about what was going to happen both by people like myself and medical professionals.  Never mind more than two years of knowing Mom was not well, would eventually pass as everyone eventually does and having a free place to both live and all expenses paid while collecting more than $1,000 a month in SSDI, forcibly stolen from every person who has ever worked and paid FICA tax in America.  The total amount she socked back was not only zero she was scheming upwards of a grand a month soaking my mother's remaining funds in addition to that SSDI, all feeding addictions of one sort or another.  Not all that long ago she did a nice stint in the hospital after back surgery that no doctor should have ever done but heh, Medicare was willing to pay for it (due to being on SSDI for more than 2 years as a result of drinking and drugging herself half-to-death) -- whether said surgery goes well or very poorly.

It went very poorly and damn near killed her.  But she didn't get the bill (nor does her estate) so who gives a crap, right?

You and I got to write the check for that bull**** and we have already had it taken from us with a gun up our nose by a bunch of crooked doctors and crooked politicians.  It's not like anyone has to foot the bill for their own actions anymore; just whine loudly enough about this or that and the government will shove a gun up everyone's nose and make them pay for whatever you demand.

Of course she was told then, over a year ago, by the docs to cut the crap -- and the booze.  It wasn't the first time just like the market crash in 2008 wasn't the first time we've seen what happens when you blow financial bubbles.  Spring of 2000 anyone?  I watched that ****show start in a a nice hotel room at the SanDestin Hilton on CNBC in the spring of 2000.

I chuckled on "The Naz blows up" morning, turned the TV off and went back to sleep.

But my sister didn't care any more than you do when it comes to your body mass or federal deficit spending and Fed bubble blowing, both of which are caused at their root by medical monopolies and your insistence that if you can't see your dick or v-jay under the flab you voluntarily put there that you must have your self-inflicted "pre-existing" conditions "covered" at whatever monopolist price a bunch of jackasses dream up and send the bill to someone else -- an utterly insane demand equivalent to being able to make someone else pay for the fire insurance on your house after you throw a gallon of gas all over the living room and strike a match!

No, despite over a decade of my raising hell on this exact point here in these pages and in fact doing so since the 1990s when I ran MCSNet as a matter of public policy the people of this nation won't get off their collective asses and demand that (1) everyone pay their own damned bill and (2) the bill be reasonable and able to be determined in advance just like you know exactly how much a gallon of gasoline costs before you pump it for the explicit reason of allowing this hoary thing called competition to take root and both drive down cost and improve performance.

Do you get to intentionally not check the engine oil in your car, have the engine seize on the highway due to running out of oil and then demand the insurance company buy you a new engine?  Of course not.  You were the dumbass that both didn't check the oil for months and paid no attention to the flickering light on the dashboard!  But even so, having been a dumbass, it's still illegal for the car repair shop to not tell you how much a new engine costs until after they put it in!

Due to all this bull**** your property taxes have skyrocketed, health "insurance" has a cost structure north of the orbit of Mars and then you have "deductibles" that make your so-called "insurance" worthless 90% of the time, never mind drugs that cost $1,000 across a border costing $80,000 here in the United States.

The direct result of this garbage can be seen here -- a family who did go get two real jobs, earns a decent wage -- $100,000 between them -- and are on the verge of going broke anyway even though they have so-called "health insurance"!  Do any of them have some major catastrophic condition?  Nope -- they just had a routine childbirth.  Oh, by the way, they do eat a bunch of carbs, judging from their pictures..... what do you think is to come in the future and why were those bills so damn high for them now?  Go back and read this from the top again.

Then to top it off we have half the nation that refuses to close or border to "refugees" and "asylum seekers", say much less sending home all the illegals who are already here.  Indeed they want more of these uneducated, low-skilled individuals and families here who can't carry their own weight economically, and some of them bring nasty, communicable (and expensive) diseases in with them or are violent, felonious thugs who rape, rob and murder.  Yet we're told that even though a family of three can't make it work on $100,000 in income due to all this crap we must depress wages even more and add even more welfare expense to be paid for by all those legal immigrants and citizens through allowing more of these people in!

Instead of a general strike from the population demanding all this garbage cease right now or an even more-forceful NO! (when you get out-protested by France you're in trouble folks) we are treated to whining and politicians kowtowing to whatever crazy, unfundable and impossible scheme they dream up next.

Only an Occasional Cortex is possibly in use here since actual thought would lead any of these clowns to immediately realize that they're condemning a third or more of the nation to literally die and our economy to be reduced to a smoking heap -- and the day of The Grim Reaper is no longer decades off but now is just a few short years away -- if we're lucky.

But NO -- we must have just one more hit of that cheap money and fraud -- right?

One more turn of the crank.

One more $1.27 trillion plus actual deficit -- not the bull**** they "officially" report, awful though that was.

MAGA! MAGA! MAGA!  MMMMAAAAAGGGGAAAAA!  Or, if you prefer, PEEEELLLOOOOSSSSIIIIII!

Just.
One.
More.
{Drink|Hit|Toke|Shot}.

It'll all be ok.  I'm sure of it.  Just one more.  C'mon man, you're being an ******* bogarting that thing.  Fork over whatever I want to spend on meeeeeee or I'll call you a racist and demand you be de-platformed you *******!

Look at SpAmazon's stock price fly!  Or Netfux.  Or Facesucker.  Or......

Oh wait -- how are they doing about now?  Not so good, right?

But it's just a correction and then we're going to new all-time highs!

Uh huh.

Just like my sister was.

All is fine; just one more drink.  "The cats need food and I'm broke" -- yeah?

And then 4:00 AM on the fateful day comes a week later and she ****s herself in bed, manages to haul her ass to the toilet where the folks who nicely show up after 911 is called find her.  She arrests on the ****ter while talking to a lady cop that responded to the call and is done before they can stuff her in an ambulance and reach the hospital.  So I was told by the EMS people who were there.

But it was just one more drink.

NOW HER ASHES ARE IN A ****ING URN.

Just one more fraud, one more year, the market won't crash, the economy is strong.

Yeah.

Sure.

So with all that, you can summarize my 2019 predictions thus:

Here's your urn folks.
I bought it for a buck at the Dollar Store, right next to all the highly-processed carbs.
It's cheap plastic and was made in China by a grinning Communist.  I think his name is Xi.
If you say "pretty please" I might not use your ashes as catbox filler first.

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User Info 2019: The Crackup Begins in forum [Market-Ticker]
Contrarian
Posts: 5
Incept: 2008-05-03

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Come on Karl, tell us what you really think! :-)
Cthulhu
Posts: 19
Incept: 2009-08-09

Silicon Valley
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There is nothing factually incorrect with your post......and, yes, things are dire.....but it is my opinion that you need a vacation. When things start to unravel, you will need to react fluidly and smoothly.
Xanii
Posts: 114
Incept: 2011-05-09

Espoo, Finland
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Damn that was dark. But then on the other hand i am over 40 myself now and this **** has been going on since i was a single young man so... **** it. It is the truth. And the story about the sister can be re-told in many versions from my perspective too. We all probably can.
Aztrader
Posts: 8179
Incept: 2007-09-10

Scottsdale, AZ
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Couldn't agree more with Karl on these issues. America is turning into Europe with so many people getting government benefits that it's bankrupting us. Because of Obamacare, millions of people either aren't working or simply working under the table in order to avoid the extortion tax or get massive subsidies in their premiums. The ones that are subsidized don't care about the coverage, but are more interested in not paying the premiums. The extortion tax dies tomorrow and we will see the result in about six months. I personally believe if your paying insane premiums and have a deductible of $5k or more, then walk away. Put the same premiums into a MSA and keep the money for yourself if you need it. Don't make the insurance companies rich with your money. Still betting the left will try to reboot the penalty somehow. They need this welfare program alive to keep power.

I am wondering how much of the deficit is actually coming from Obamacare. How much has expanded Medicaid increased and what are the subsidies costing us. Haven't seen these numbers and am betting that they are a part of the deficit problem. We know that SSDI increased substantially under Obama.
Aquapura
Posts: 804
Incept: 2012-04-19

South of Canada
Online
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I had a cousin who was on SSDI for depression and fleecing the taxpayer for $1000/mo. He did himself in a few years ago with pills rather than drink but similar story. My folks took it hard because they weren't able to save him but clearly his mind was made up and honestly, depending on your vision of the afterlife, he's probably better off now. Every human tragedy is unique in detail but they are all the same.

Quote:
The Fed itself says that some 40% of Americans couldn't fork up $400 in an emergency


Like the Chinese peasant that moves to the city for the better life and ends up in modern slavery at a Foxconn plant many American's bought the politicians bull**** and ended up indebted and barely squeaking by, or on some gov't assistance just to survive. I get why people want to get high. Why they don't care if their life is shortened due to drugs or alcohol or cake eating. They've given up. The "good life" is an enigma. They were sold nothing but lie after lie and the pol's are perfectly happy the populace are too drugged or fat to fight. A docile population is perfect for the shearing we've been taking the past generation.

Trump won by carrying decimated rust-belt states. For a hot minute I thought there was some fire left in American's to fight. Gave up on that in 2017. This year was status quo and 2019 will likely be more of the same.
I'm not counting on a revolution until the gov't checks stop coming. Even then I think we get a mass of zombies looting and rioting for more drink/drug/food rather than to effect change at the statehouse or dee-cee. That's the world I see.

Happy New Year - godspeed.
Elkad
Posts: 517
Incept: 2009-09-04

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I'm not ready financially.
About a third ready physically (I was down 33lbs for the year as of mid-Nov, gained 8 back in the last 6 weeks - eggnog should be a controlled substance.) Wife has lost FIFTY-THREE pounds this year (insert !*53) - including losing 2 lbs while I was gaining on holiday binging.
But I'm ready mentally. A good part of my awakening is from here.

Send it. Send it hard and dry in the dark of the night. I'll ****ing manage.
Zappafan
Posts: 3180
Incept: 2007-11-30

Atlanta
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Karl - first of all I am sorry to hear about your family stuff, sounds like 2018 was an "annus horribilus" for you. There is nothing I can write here to make it any better, but by writing about it you are helping others face what is coming. I am a few years younger than you but unless I get my own ticket to the ash can first, I will be dealing with similar stuff with my own family as I am the oldest son with two aging parents.

You did what any real man would - take care of your family to the best of your ability. That's something to be proud of.

Now as far as the larger crap-show around us, 2019 awaits in a few hours and I have no idea whether "one last hit of the crack pipe" will "work" as a tactic (at least until we ring in 2020.) My best guess is no, it won't, and this is the year the dealer cuts off our supply. Whether the dealer is the fed, simple math, or just fate. But since we've long since past the point where any kind of "political solution" would stop what's coming, and we have a majority who deny basic math and common sense, it really doesn't matter.

Just sit back and try to enjoy life, prepare and wait for father time to take care of matters. My New Year's wish for all here is we get to take in some nice scenery, and maybe a good adult beverage or two right before the train goes off the cliff and down into the abyss.




----------
"Americans like to talk about (or be told about) Democracy but, when put to the test, usually find it to be an inconvenience. We have opted instead for an authoritarian system disguised as a Democracy. We pay through the nose for an enormous gvrnment, let it push us around, and then wonder how all those .. got there"
Smacktle
Posts: 1907
Incept: 2009-01-20

Texas
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Karl, a big hug for you man. I've never met you but will always love you. Your contribution to me and my family is greatly appreciated.

I'm ready mentally for whatever is coming our way. Not sure anybody can be completely ready in a physical way. Whether it be staying in shape or having enough ammo etc...

I wish all TF readers a Happy New Year. I'm glad 2018 is over. One of the worst years of my life. Looking forward to a new year and whatever perils and pleasant surprises it may entail.

----------
The faults of the burglar are the qualities of the financier.
- George Bernard Shaw
Captainkidd
Posts: 1225
Incept: 2010-05-25

Houston, Texas
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Aquapura said:
Quote:
I'm not counting on a revolution until the gov't checks stop coming. Even then I think we get a mass of zombies looting and rioting for more drink/drug/food rather than to effect change at the statehouse or dee-cee. That's the world I see.


I agree. I think a breakdown will end up being less a revolution and more a "Zombie Apocalypse" with the "Zombies" being the inner city leeches, thugs, and members of the FSA expanding outward to take what they aren't being given anymore....
With small enclaves of those of us who can provide for ourselves and have decided that we will kill or die to defend our family, property, and supplies.
I don't see a bright, shiny country emerging from the other side of this reset....
I'm not sure what will emerge, but I don't think it will be anything resembling what it was 100 years ago.

But, that's just me.

----------
A lawyer with a briefcase can steal more than a thousand men with guns. --Mario Puzo

It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning. -- Henry Ford
Oldno7
Posts: 2670
Incept: 2008-11-14

RECALL STATE USA
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All you say is true and very depressing to say the least. Everyone should view the videos of SD Traveler to help you get through these times. SD is an amazing young women and you (Karl) should be proud to have such an amazing daughter so look on the bright side and focus on the things that really matter. I am 74 and what ever happens just happens and at this point I don't give a ****. I have been to Jefferson City, TN a number of times and that's an area I would go to if I were alone but we will stick to our city where all the family is. So hope everyone has a Safe New Year. See you on the other side.

----------
IT'S THE SPENDING STUPID The US must become less a government of men, and more a government of LAW.When people lose everything and have nothing left to lose they lose it -Gerald Celente
Teaser
Posts: 28
Incept: 2010-09-27

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You need a vacation.

And one of those cool popcorn makers with butter flavored coconut oil
And flavocal. Like the movie theatre popcorn, but for pennies for a bowl.

Happy new year!

I cant really control what happens. Just protect yourself at all times.
Click
Posts: 398
Incept: 2017-06-26

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Whether or not 2019 is the year of the Big One remains to be seen. And by Big One I mean America's day of reckoning arrives and even the most dimwitted realize that the entire economic paradigm has changed and America isn't going to be great again for a long, long time, if ever....

The credit-expansion game and thin-air money racket (both run by central banks) would have to totally collapse before a complete economic meltdown occurres. And even after a currency crisis a recovery is possible so long as the ignorant masses are supplied with enough food.

The Roman Empire ran on bread (carbs) olive oil and wine. For example, the average Roman consumed over a pound of bread per day, yet the Empire's persisted dispute high carbs, lead poisoning, untreated drinking waiter and host of other major health issues.

Technology has made it possible to avoid a Malthusian die-off. For example, the Haber-Bosch process was a complete game changer. Nitrogen fixation is what feeds America. And with such an almost unlimited supply of nitrogen the American Empire can avoid a total collapse for quite some time. me

How much longer can America go before its population collapses from all of the **** that people shove down their throats remains an open question. America isn't Rome, so the comparability between the two can only be extrapolated so far.

The greatest danger for a total collapse Western Civilization is nuclear war, EMPs ( either solar or man-made) or some kind of a plague.

The event that poses the greatest danger is the one which stops the Just-in-Time delivery system.

No bread, no Empire.
Videobot
Posts: 2
Incept: 2018-01-22

Grapevine, TX
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A sad story to be sure. I rarely post but do appreciate your point of view although I find it somewhat extreme sometimes. I do hope the new year finds you well and making do with what you have which is what we all must do. I did vote for Trump and am disappointed in his lack of action on health care. We do see things the same there. I expect when almost no one can afford decent healthcare that things will change. We are certainly close to that now. Take care and have a good 2019.
Maynard
Posts: 914
Incept: 2007-11-27

gig harbor wa
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Sorry Video.
Quote:
I expect when almost no one can afford decent healthcare that things will change.

we are there
Had an emergency in france (of all places). Ultrasound, blood work, etc. Walked out with drugs for under $200. Same for Costa Rica. Bud tore his shoulder, walked out with a brace for about $100.
People that are working are doing it for health care, and those that aren't full time (me) are skating just below the line on PURPOSE for free.
Gauntlet33
Posts: 77
Incept: 2009-03-30

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Yeah, it's pretty sad and depressing. Like others have said here, sometimes I wish IT would just come already so we could start living in the new reality, but my more logical side knows that TSHF now will not be good.

Also, who else here has noticed homeless people where you previously hadn't seen them?

And another thought...it used to be a well-known cliche that you shouldn't discuss religion and politics with friends or on dates to avoid potential conflict. I'll add a third...finances...if you're making money or have accumulated wealth, don't go telling others (even your closest friends), as you will at some point be ostracized. Other dividing factors will follow...race is already one of them. And social media is doing nothing but marking (in many cases voluntarily) which side of the line you're on. If you wish to keep your opinions to yourself and not be branded the bad guy for each opinion someone disagrees with, get off social media like YESTERDAY.
Jal
Posts: 650
Incept: 2009-03-25

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If a pension plan does not have the money to give you a pension, then you will need to depend on the food from your garden, until you starve.
If your cash flow from loans stops, then you will need to depend on the food from your garden, until you starve.
If you use your gun to put food on the table, then you will need to depend on the food from everyone elses garden, until they starve.
Who did you think was going to be the last man standing?
Who wants to live as the last man standing in the wreckage of our social/economic system?
Ebt
Posts: 1
Incept: 2018-12-22

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This time, there is no good will between the opposing sides. In 2008, Hank Paulson was able to get assistanceto keep the system afloat, and Bernanke cooperated.

This time its more systemic. It challenges untrue assumptions that have been relied on for many years.

With Trump, there will be no goodwill, no cooperation of any sort. The full effects of this will be felt...and its something hardly anyone is ready for.
Elkad
Posts: 517
Incept: 2009-09-04

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The pending pension explosion makes me wonder.

If they have a buyout option, might be better to take it, on the theory it won't be solvent enough to survive. 30% of the 25year money is better than getting 3-5 years and then getting cut off completely.

Or take out a massive loan against your pension?
Zappafan
Posts: 3180
Incept: 2007-11-30

Atlanta
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Lately I have also observed homeless folk meandering into more affluent areas than usual.

Perhaps a sign ... recession is overdue.

----------
"Americans like to talk about (or be told about) Democracy but, when put to the test, usually find it to be an inconvenience. We have opted instead for an authoritarian system disguised as a Democracy. We pay through the nose for an enormous gvrnment, let it push us around, and then wonder how all those .. got there"
Skybluepink
Posts: 409
Incept: 2007-10-20

RI
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I'm sorry for all you've had to go through this year. Thank you for still sharing your wisdom, even though the masses will never get it. Please know you have made a difference in the lives of many of your readers over the years. Thank you.
Mr_clueless
Posts: 54
Incept: 2009-06-04

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IMO, health is 90+% genetics and < 10% diet & lifestyle. I have seen folks with amazingly good health that eat very poorly and have intense lifestyles, and they are still totally fine. On the other hand, I have seen many health nuts come down with horrible illnesses like cancer.
Mr_clueless
Posts: 54
Incept: 2009-06-04

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To support my previous post...

109-year old WWII vet -- smokes cigars and drinks whiskey daily. Also eats icecream daily.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXyfCGDn....
How to explain that?
(He recently died at 112.)

Warren buffet eats like a 6 year old.
https://www.businessinsider.com/warren-b....
Generalee
Posts: 17
Incept: 2011-04-30

S.W. Ga
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Read just Friday that SNAP benefits may not be available come Feb 2019. If that is the case then here comes the fan.
Kochevnik
Posts: 721
Incept: 2007-07-30

NE WA state
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Karl's an optimist :)

And I think even most of the people here don't really grok how very bad all of this is going to be.

And yes, 2019 is almost certainly the year it all goes sideways for Real - you can almost SMELL it in the air - I took a whole 18 months off starting this last summer just to catch up on what I can do to my place to prepare in any way I can for what is clearly coming our way. Been working every single day 8 10 12 hours on tons of projects in the pipeline - cut 20+ cords of firewood in the last month alone on top of all the other work.

One more thank you from me, Karl - appreciate all you did - gonna be a helluva show the next couple of years, a zombie movie all of us get roles in.

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