As we’ve seen this week, more and more things are happening around the world – things that should not make us feel particulary comfortable.
The US and the UK have embarked on another major offensive in Afghanistan, with Britain announcing the loss of the highest ranking officer killed in action since the Falklands War.
Meanwhile as bank doors closed across America yesterday night for the fourth of July holiday weekend, the FDIC got busy. Founders Bank of Worth, IL, was the seventh US bank to be shut down last night, the 52nd this year. Earlier in the night the FDIC had already closed down Millenium State Bank of Texas, First National Bank of Danville, Elizabeth State Bank, Rock River Bank, First State Bank of Winchester, and John Warner Bank. BankImplode.com has the details.
Also this week Feds arrested the founders of Liberty Dollar, a currency they alleged set out to ‘compete’ with the lawful currency of the USA.
Whilst the above certainly doesn’t reinforce confidence in any talk of ‘green shoots’ or even of the survival of the dollar in the short to medium term, at least we can take comfort in the fact that it’s not just the USA that’s against currency competition… China too officially banned this week the use of so-called virtual currency for real world transactions. The Register has the full details of that one. China, of course, controls the US dollar anyway.
The Register has some well-informed readers and the comments section at the bottom of that article is worth reading. We like this comment, simple and to the point: “All money is virtual, a concept that too few people understand.” Another reader is “surprised they [the Chinese government] are being quite so restrained over it all. Liberty Dollar and eGold have been raided (the former loosing lots of precious metal to the feds in the process) and criminal charges brought against their owners in the US for daring to offer a stable alternative to fiat national currencies.”
Meanwhile you’ve got to admire the brass of our public health officials who all gathered in Cancun this week to talk about Swine flu. According to a Yahoo news article filed by Associated Press World Health Officials Tackle Swine Flu Challenges, “Mexican officials wanted the meeting held in the Caribbean resort city of Cancun – where tourism has plunged – to highlight the country’s success in controlling its epidemic with a five-day national shutdown of schools and businesses in May.”
The UK, according to the above article, is expecting to have 100,000 cases of Swine flu daily by the end of August, though they admit that many of the people who are infected won’t even know it. “It seems like a lot of mathematical modeling and not too much common sense,” said John Oxford, a professor of virology at St. Bart’s and Royal London Hospital, is quoted as saying in the Yahoo/AP article. Still, it’s enough justification for the UK to buy 60 million doses of Tamiflu with taxpayers’ money.
With that, we will leave our American cousins with best wishes for their holiday weekend and try to forget about economic woes to enjoy a few days with family. And belated greetings for Canada Day!