Monday, November 28, 2011

Is Obama Going to Bail Out Europe?

I just saw these headlines on Zerohedge, which came from their Bloomberg terminal:



It's hard to actually write a cogent critique of this as this is just such a horrible idea, it practically renders me speechless.  What exactly is our part?  Are we part of the Euro?  Wasn't the Euro created in part to be a competitor to the supremacy of the US Dollar?  So isn't it partly in our interest, in order to keep the US Dollar the world's reserve currency, to see the Euro fail horribly?  And one more question.  The money will come from where exactly?  Aren't we ourselves faced with a debt/GDP ratio of 100% with an annual deficit equal to 11% of GDP?  Where exactly are we going to find the hundreds of billions, if not trillions, of dollars necessary to stem this crisis?  There was a rumor this weekend that the IMF was readying a bailout of just Italy which could have totaled $800 billion, so if you add Spain, Portugal and Greece to the mix (and potentially France) the numbers get very serious very fast (of course the rumor was swiftly denied, I guess it was too early to mention that discussion point).  Even if Obama is simply referring to the bailout of Europe via the IMF, our "quota" is almost 18% of the funding so for Italy alone this could cost the American taxpayer $144 billion.  And chances are it would be much higher as Italy's quota is over 3% and all the countries smaller than Venezuela contribute 28% (how exactly do you ask third world countries to bailout out a lazy first world country?) so my guess is some IMF participants simply won't participate.   Try getting that through Congress.  Senate Democrats can't even pass a budget.

The Federal Reserve option just isn't much better.  So we are going to print money to buy European bonds now?  Our monetary base is $2.6 trillion right now so printing of the magnitude that would be required could have severe a severe inflationary impact, hurting American consumers as commodity prices will undoubtedly skyrocket.  As an extra kick in the face, the Euro will actually get even stronger as we will be printing massively at the same time the ECB isn't.  Just brilliant.

For once, it might be a good thing that Team Obama is in campaign mode 24/7.  As soon as they see their poll numbers dropping (and they will, like a rock), they will probably chicken out of any actual bailout and do nothing but the usual handwaving.  Unless they want to get to the point where even Ron Paul can beat them in the general election.

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