Thoughts On The “New Normal” And The Things That We Are Losing As A Society…

The last two years have greatly shaken America, and our country will never be the same as a result.  If you would have told someone two years ago that in 2021 millions of people would run around wearing masks all day and that the federal government would be relentlessly pushing a large scale mass injection campaign, that person probably would have thought that you were nuts.  But now this is the “new normal”.  Our freedoms and liberties have been permanently eroded, and now that they have gotten away with pushing the envelope so dramatically, government entities on all levels will be ready to flex their muscles again once the next major crisis comes along.

You could argue that we should just vote out the politicians that are running things on the state and federal levels, but exactly how are we supposed to do that?

After what we witnessed last November, tens of millions of Americans won’t believe that our system of choosing leaders is legitimate ever again.

Of course those that are currently running things could attempt to restore faith in the system by getting rid of all the voting machines and by instituting real reforms that would make the process as transparent as possible, but we all know that they will never do that.

The last couple of years have been extremely painful for our economy as well.  More than 70 million Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits last year, homeless encampments started popping up like mushrooms all over the country, and countless numbers of small businesses shut down permanently.  In fact, most Americans say that they have lost a favorite local business as a result of the pandemic

Few people have escaped the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic and that’s especially true for local ‘mom and pop’ shops. A new study finds half of Americans have witnessed their favorite local businesses close down because of COVID-19.

A survey of 2,000 people reveals 68 percent personally know a local business owner impacted by the pandemic. According to respondents, the most commonly impacted businesses include cafes (62%), retail shops (58%), gaming shops (55%), and book stores (54%).

On Thursday, we learned that another 444,000 Americans filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week.

In 2019, such a number would have been considered catastrophic.

But in the “new normal”, that number is actually considered to be “good news”.

Our politicians have tried to make everyone feel better by sending out waves of huge government checks, but that has just created rampant inflation and widespread shortages.

We are also losing the peace on our streets.  Murder rates were way up in major cities all over America in 2020, and in most of those cities they are even higher this year.

And it isn’t just men that are shooting men.  Today, I came across an article about an “eight-woman brawl” that resulted in a pregnant mother being gunned down…

A pregnant mother was shot and killed while she sat in her car close to an eight-woman brawl that erupted in gunfire.

The deadly confrontation took place just before 6pm Tuesday in the 1200 block of Valencia Avenue in Hemet, which is located 75 miles southeast of Los Angeles.

Family members identified the 27-year-old who had been shot in the head and died after being flown to a county trauma center as Tamika Haynes.

What in the world is happening to us?

You would have never read about such a thing happening on the streets of America in 1950.

These days, we seem to be losing control of just about everything, and that even includes the technology that we have become so dependent upon.  Hackers are causing nightmares for large entities all over the U.S., and in many cases absolutely enormous ransoms are being paid out

CNA Financial Corp., among the largest insurance companies in the U.S., paid $40 million in late March to regain control of its network after a ransomware attack, according to people with knowledge of the attack.

The Chicago-based company paid the hackers about two weeks after a trove of company data was stolen, and CNA officials were locked out of their network, according to two people familiar with the attack who asked not to be named because they weren’t authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

Criminals seem to have the upper hand on the Internet, in our streets and in the halls of power in Washington and on Wall Street.

In previous times, we could rely on law enforcement to restore order, but now law enforcement authorities are being relentlessly demonized in our society.

In fact, it has gotten so bad that large numbers of law enforcement officers are permanently walking away from their careers.  For example, it is being reported that nearly 20 percent of all police officers in Seattle have quit over the past year.

Police departments all over the nation are having an exceedingly difficult time recruiting replacements for those that are leaving, and that is going to continue to be the case as long as we are treating police officers like human garbage.

Speaking of human garbage, just check out the bill that was just passed in the Wisconsin Senate

Wisconsin senators approved a bill earlier this week allowing dead bodies to be dissolved in a chemical bath and disposed like sewage.

The bill, Senate Bill 228, authorizes a practice called alkaline hydrolysis, or “water cremation,” which liquifies the human body using a mixture of water, heat, and chemical agents, leaving only bones behind. The liquid is then dumped into the sewage system or boiled off, and bones can be crushed and deposited in an urn.

You have got to be pretty sick to want to liquify Grandma and Grandpa before dumping their remains into the sewer.

But that is who we are.

On all levels, we no longer respect life, and that is because as a society we are abandoning our faith.  Just check out these numbers

The American Worldview Inventory (AWVI) 2021, an annual survey that examines the perspectives of adults aged 18 and over in the United States, found that while 57 percent of Millennials (born 1984-2002) consider themselves to be Christian, 43 percent “don’t know, care, or believe that God exists.”

Comparatively, 70 percent of Generation X (Gen X) Americans (born 1965-1983), 79 percent of Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964), and 83 percent of the Builder Generation (born 1927-1945) consider themselves to be Christian, while 31, 28, and 27 percent, respectively, “don’t know, care, or believe that God exists.”

America no longer resembles the nation that our founders sacrificed so much to establish, and if we stay on the path that we are currently on there is no future ahead for us.

But even though voices such as mine have been crying out for change for years, most of the population continues to sprint in the other direction.

We have already lost so much, and the “new normal” truly is horrible, but if America does not wake up things are only going to get worse.

***Michael’s new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.***

About the Author: My name is Michael Snyder and my brand new book entitled “Lost Prophecies Of The Future Of America” is now available on Amazon.com.  In addition to my new book, I have written four others that are available on Amazon.com including The Beginning Of The EndGet Prepared Now, and Living A Life That Really Matters. (#CommissionsEarned)  By purchasing the books you help to support the work that my wife and I are doing, and by giving it to others you help to multiply the impact that we are having on people all over the globe.  I have published thousands of articles on The Economic Collapse BlogEnd Of The American Dream and The Most Important News, and the articles that I publish on those sites are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the globe.  I always freely and happily allow others to republish my articles on their own websites, but I also ask that they include this “About the Author” section with each article.  The material contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and readers should consult licensed professionals before making any legal, business, financial or health decisions.  I encourage you to follow me on social media on FacebookTwitter and Parler, and any way that you can share these articles with others is a great help.  During these very challenging times, people will need hope more than ever before, and it is our goal to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as we possibly can.

Welcome To The New Normal: The Dow Crashes Another 390 Points And Wal-Mart Closes 269 Stores

Welcome to the new normalDid you know that 15 trillion dollars of global stock market wealth has been wiped out since last June?  The worldwide financial crisis that began in the middle of last year is starting to spin wildly out of control.  On Friday, the Dow plunged another 390 points, and it is now down a total of 1,437 points since the beginning of this calendar year.  Never before in U.S. history have stocks ever started a year this badly.  The same thing can be said in Europe, where stocks have now officially entered bear market territory.  As I discussed yesterday, the economic slowdown and financial unraveling that we are witnessing are truly global in scope.  Banks are failing all over the continent, and I expect major European banks to start making some huge headlines not too long from now.  And of course let us not forget about China.  On Friday the Shanghai Composite declined another 3.6 percent, and overall it is now down more than 20 percent from its December high.  Much of this chaos has been driven by the continuing crash of the price of oil.  As I write this article, it has dipped below 30 dollars a barrel, and many of the big banks are projecting that it still has much farther to fall.

The other night, Barack Obama got up in front of the American people and proclaimed that anyone that was saying that the economy was not recovering was peddling fiction.  Well, if the U.S. economy is doing so great, then why in the world has Wal-Mart decided to shut down 269 stores?…

Walmart (WMT) will close 269 stores around the world in a strategic move to focus more on its supercenters and e-commerce business, the company said Friday.

The closures include 154 U.S. locations, encompassing Walmart’s entire fleet of 102 ‘Express’ format stores, its smallest stores that have been in pilot testing since 2011. Some supercenters, Sam’s Club locations and Neighborhood Markets will also close, plus 115 stores in Latin American markets. The closures were decided based on financial performance and how well the locations fit with Walmart’s broader strategy, says Greg Hitt, a company spokesman.

We have grown accustomed to other major retailers shutting down stores, but this is Wal-Mart.

Wal-Mart doesn’t retreat.  For decades, Wal-Mart has been on a relentless march forward.  They have been an unstoppable juggernaut that has expanded extremely aggressively and that has ruthlessly crushed the competition.

I was absolutely stunned when I saw that they were going to close down 269 stores.  If you want to know if your local store is in danger, you can view the full list right here.

Overall, 10,000 Wal-Mart employees will be affected.  I could understand closing down a few underperforming stores, but if the U.S. economy truly is in great shape then it wouldn’t make any sense at all to shut down hundreds of stores.

What in the name of Sam Walton is going on out there?

The truth, of course, is that the U.S. economy is in great danger.  We have now entered the next great crisis, but most communities around the country never even recovered from the last one.  In fact, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that a whopping 93 percent of all counties in the United States “have failed to fully recover” from the last recession…

More than six years after the economic expansion began, 93% of counties in the U.S. have failed to fully recover from the blow they suffered during the recession.

Nationwide, 214 counties, or 7% of 3,069, had recovered last year to prerecession levels on four indicators: total employment, the unemployment rate, size of the economy and home values, a study from the National Association of Counties released Tuesday found.

The next few weeks are going to be very interesting to watch.  The economic fundamentals continue to deteriorate, and the financial markets are finally starting to catch up with economic reality.

As the collapse on Wall Street accelerates, we are going to increasingly see panic selling and forced liquidations.  In the past, it was mostly humans that had their hands on the controls during market crashes, but today the machines are making more of the decisions than ever before.  The following comes from CNBC

The new market age is decidedly different: Rather than that seething cacophony, aggressive corrections like the current ones are directed by a faceless metronome of computer-generated orders, triggering irresistible momentum and trillions in losses.

Amid it all, market veterans are left to ponder when the script will flip and market direction will turn not by newfound optimism among traders in the pits, but rather by algorithms that generate “buy” rather than “sell” signals.

It feels like sell program after sell program,” said Michael Cohn, chief market strategist at Atlantis Asset Management, a boutique firm in New York. “It seems to happen first thing in the morning, and then however the market transpires during the day is how they close it. If it looks like it’s coming back, they’ll take it at the end. If if looks like it’s heading lower, they’ll slam it at the end of the day.”

Earlier today, an article authored by Michael Pento entitled “A recession worse than 2008 is coming” was posted on CNBC.  Here is a short excerpt…

But a recession has occurred in the U.S. about every five years, on average, since the end of WWII; and it has been seven years since the last one — we are overdue.

Most importantly, the average market drop during the peak to trough of the last 6 recessions has been 37 percent. That would take the S&P 500 down to 1,300; if this next recession were to be just of the average variety.

But this one will be worse.

If stocks do drop a total of 37 percent, that would just bring them back to levels that would be considered “normal” or “average” by historical standards.  There is certainly the possibility that they could fall much farther than that.

And of course the markets are so incredibly fragile at this point that any sort of a “trigger event” could cause a collapse of epic proportions.

All it is going to take is a major disaster or emergency of some sort.

Do you have a feeling that something really bad is about to happen?  This is something that I have been hearing from people that I respect, and I would like to know if it is a phenomenon that is more widespread.  If you have been feeling something like this, please feel free to share it with us by posting a comment below…

The Stock Market Will Start To Fall In July? The Dow Plummeted More Than 500 Points Last Week

Falling - Public DomainWas last week a preview of things to come? There are quite a few people out there that believe that the stock market would begin to decline in July, and that appears to be precisely what is happening. Last week, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by more than 530 points. It was the biggest one week decline that we have seen so far in 2015, and some are suggesting that this could only be just the beginning. By just about any measurement that you might want to use, the stock market is overvalued. But we have been in this bubble for so long that many people have come to believe that this is “the new normal”. In fact, earlier today someone that I know dropped me a line and suggested that our financial overlords may be able to use the tools at their disposal to get this current bubble to persist indefinitely. Unfortunately, the truth is that no financial bubble ever lasts forever, and right now some very alarming things are starting to happen behind the scenes. Over the past couple of weeks, the smart money has been dumping stocks like crazy, and the lack of liquidity in the bond markets is beginning to become acute.  Could it be possible that another great financial crisis is just around the corner?

Last week took a lot of investors by surprise. The following is how Zero Hedge summarized the carnage…

-Russell 2000 -3.1% – worst week since Oct 2014 (Bullard)
-Dow -2.8% – worst week since Dec 2014
-S&P -2.1% – worst week since Jan 2015
-Trannies -2.8% – worst week since Mar 2015
-Nasdaq -2.2% – worst week since Mar 2015

The talking heads on television were not quite sure what to make of this sudden downturn. On CNBC, analysts mainly blamed the usual suspects…

“I think the market’s very much concerned about the commodity (decline),” said John Lonski, chief economist at Moody’s. “The contraction in China manufacturing activity is gaining momentum and the credit market has yet to signal that rates are not about to go higher.”

He also noted a surprising decline in new home sales and continued lack of revenue growth in earnings. Nearly all the commodities are in a bear market and gold and crude settled at lows Friday.

“You’ve got some major growth concerns and that is what’s weighing on investors minds,” said Peter Boockvar, chief market strategist at The Lindsey Group.

And without a doubt, there are some new numbers that are deeply troubling for Wall Street. For example, it is being projected that S&P 500 companies will collectively report a 2.2 percent decline in earnings for the second quarter of 2015. If this comes to pass, it will be the first drop that we have seen since the third quarter of 2012.

The biggest reason for this decline in earnings is the implosion of U.S. energy companies due to the crash in oil prices. The following comes from CNBC

Thanks to a collapse in the price of oil, the energy sector is slated to report a monster 54 percent drop in earnings and 28 percent swoon in revenue, compared to the second quarter in the year prior.

Hmm – unlike what so many others were saying initially, it turns out that the oil crash is bad for the U.S. economy after all.

But just like at this time of the year in 2008, most people fully expect that everything is going to be just fine. So many of the exact same patterns that we witnessed the last time around are playing out once again, and yet most of the “experts” refuse to see what is happening right in front of their eyes.

When things crash this time, it won’t just be stocks that collapse. As I have been writing about so frequently, we are also headed for an implosion of the bond markets as well. The following comes from Dr. David Eifrig

In the U.S. Treasury securities market, financial-services giant JPMorgan Chase estimates that five years ago, you could move about $280 million worth of Treasury securities before your trades moved the market’s price. Now, that’s down to $80 million… a decline of more than 70%.

When a panic sets in, reduced liquidity can cause big swings in market prices.

There is that word “liquidity” again. This is something that I have repeatedly been taking about. Just check out this article from a little over a month ago. A bond is only worth what someone else is willing to pay for it, and if the market runs out of buyers that can cause seismic shifts in price very rapidly. Here is more from Eifrig

In a run-of-the-mill bear market, you just have a downward trend… When enough investors are selling bonds, it drives down prices. Falling prices lead more investors to start selling. We see that all the time.

A liquidity crisis goes even further. It’s like a classic run on a bank… Without sufficient liquidity, the sellers don’t just see lower prices… they see no prices. Since no one wants to buy bonds at this particular time, the price for them effectively becomes zero.

There has been a lot of speculation about what will happen in the second half of 2015.

We only have a little over five months to go in the year, so it won’t be too long before we see who was right and who was wrong.

Our perceptions of the future are very much shaped by our worldviews. All the time, I get “Obamabots” that come to my website and leave comments on my articles telling me how Barack Obama has “turned the economy around” and has set the stage for a new era of prosperity in America.

Despite all the evidence to the contrary, they choose to believe that things are in great shape because that is what they want to believe. Just check out the results from one recent survey

While 55 percent of Democrats reported feeling positive about the economy, for example, just 25 percent of Republicans felt the same from March 25 to May 27.

When asked if they thought the economy would improve over the next 12 months, 53 percent of Democrats said yes. Only 23 percent of the Republicans in the survey agreed.

The same perception gap extends to the far future, with 41 percent of Democrats believing that the next generation will be better off than their parents, and just 24 percent of Republicans saying the same.

To me, those numbers are quite striking.

Many Democrats very much want to believe that things are getting better because Barack Obama is in the White House.

Many Republicans very much want to believe that things are totally falling apart because Barack Obama is in the White House.

So who is right and who is wrong?

Please feel free to share what you think by posting a comment below…

Ferguson Is A Perfect Example Of How Quickly The Streets Of America Can Descend Into Chaos

Ferguson RiotsRioting, looting, burning down stores and shooting police officers – is this about to become the “new normal” in America?  What we just witnessed happen in the streets of Ferguson, Missouri is a prime example of how quickly the streets of America can descend into chaos.  There is so much anger and frustration in this country, especially among our young people, that all it takes is a “trigger event” to spark a wildfire.  In this case, it was the shooting of an unarmed black teen by a police officer.  According to the police, 18-year-old Michael Brown got into a physical altercation with an officer and was subsequently shot.  Word spread quickly throughout the community, and protests were rapidly organized.  But the protests didn’t stay peaceful.  People started chanting “kill the police” and throwing rocks and bottles.  Store windows were smashed, the looting began, and people went absolutely crazy.  And it wasn’t just a few people that were doing the looting.  Huge mobs of people looted stores all over Ferguson.  At one point an ATM was even dragged out of a QuikTrip gas station and a while after that the store was set on fire.  But this is what happens when things descend into chaos.  The owners of those stores didn’t have anything to do with the shooting of Michael Brown, but the violence got directed at them anyway.  And someday when we see similar scenes erupt in major cities all over the nation, it won’t matter what your political beliefs are.  You just better not be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Ferguson is a little town just outside of St. Louis with a population of about 21,000 people.  You wouldn’t think that it would be possible to see such massive rioting in such a small community.  But that is precisely what happened.  On Monday, millions of Americans were absolutely mesmerized by the images coming out of Ferguson.  The following is how one news source described what happened…

Brian Schellman, with the St. Louis County Police Department, said close to 300 police officers from at least 15 different departments were called to Ferguson when angry mobs began smashing windows, setting fires and looting businesses in the area.

Schellman said a St. Louis County officer injured his knee while at a Foot Locker store during the rioting. He said another officer was injured when he had a brick thrown at him.

Throughout the evening, numerous cop cars sustained damage and Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson said someone in a yellow pickup truck fired shots at officers while circling a WalMart parking lot.  Chief Jackson said he got into a cop car to give chase to the truck but the truck got away.

Police said shots were also fired at a police helicopter in the area.

But words do not really accurately convey the level of craziness that was unleashed.  I would encourage you to watch some of the videos on YouTube of the rioting and looting that were going on in Ferguson.  The video posted below is just one example…

Sadly, this violence might continue for a while.

Just check out what one very angry 30-year-old man told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

DeAndre Smith, 30, of Ferguson was happy to justify the looting when a reporter asked him about it Monday morning.

“This is exactly what is supposed to be happening when an injustice is happening in your community,” he said, adding: “You have kids getting killed for nothing.”

Smith, who moved to St. Louis from New York in December, said there could be more to come.

I don’t think it’s over honestly,” he said. “I just think they got a taste of what fighting back means.”

Of course this is not the first time that we have seen this kind of thing happen.  Earlier this year, all it took was a snow storm for people in Atlanta to start behaving like crazed lunatics.  And late last year we saw rioting and looting all over the nation when a technical glitch caused the EBT system to go down for a short while.

Even though the economy has somewhat stabilized (at least for the moment), levels of anger and frustration have continued to grow in this country.  We have been taught to hate one another and to blame one another for our problems, and so now the U.S. is more divided than at any other point in recent memory.  For much more on this, please see my previous article entitled “America The Divided: Everyone Knows We Have Problems But There Is Very Little Agreement On Solutions“.

We live at a time when things are so tense that even a small spark can light an absolutely huge fire.  America has become a tinderbox.  Next time it might not be a racially-charged shooting.  Next time it might be an Ebola outbreak that sparks looting and panic.  Or it might be some sort of financial collapse.  We just don’t know.

But what we do know is that there are lots and lots of people that are willing to riot and loot and commit unspeakable crimes given the right circumstances.

Decades of social decay have gotten us to the point where the thin veneer of civilization that we all take for granted every single day is wearing dangerously thin.

The truth is that it is not going to take much to push this nation over the edge.

If this kind of rioting can take place in a community with just over 20,000 people, what would a full-blown riot look like in a city with millions of people?

That is a very sobering thing to think about.

Once upon a time in America, you could leave your doors unlocked at night and you could let your kids play in the streets without ever having to worry.

But now we are a sick, decaying nation that has millions of people ready to riot and loot at the drop of a hat.

Is there any hope for us?

The Economic Collapse