A New Social Contrast is Coming Our Way

Dear Reader,

The rich getting richer. The powerful seeking more power. The corrupt becoming more corrupt. It’s a storyline that’s as old as time.

Roman Emperors. Genghis Khan. Spanish Inquisition. Joseph Stalin. Adolf Hitler.

Some do it by brute force. Others are more subtle. They use their positions of privilege and authority to shape the agenda for their own means.

Al Gore has given us all a master class in how to manipulate the masses for personal enrichment and power. All it took was some footage of a chimney stack, melting ice and rising tides to creative a religious fervour over climate change (originally marketed as global warming).

The brilliance in the labelling of ‘climate change’ is a sad reflection of society’s stupidity.

The fact the climate is always changing — recall there was once a time call the Ice Age — is something no one can argue with.

Pure genius. Gore’s money and power have been derived from a dishonest representation of the facts.

Those with the means and motive will have watched and learned from Gore’s social experiment.

Create the unease and fear around an accepted ‘fact’. Give it an easy, roll-off-the-tongue label. Provide a solution (generously funded of course by government and you and me). Repeat the consistency of the message with a mixture of populist politicians, present and former members of the Royal family, Hollywood celebrities, a disturbed teenager and a compliant media.

Which brings us to next year’s meeting of the rich, privileged, influential and famous in Davos.

From the outside looking in it appears to be a gathering of woke tossers all peeing in each others’ pockets. However, behind the scenes plots are hatched, alliances formed and deals done.

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The horse called self-interest always wins by a nose

If anyone thinks this planning and scheming is being done for the good of humanity, they would do well to remember the wisdom in the old saying…‘in the horse race of life, the horse called self-interest always wins by a nose’.

Does anyone really believe these people will implement any plan that erodes their power or makes them poorer?

If you do, please call me, I have a sty full of flying pigs to sell you.

Recently a member of The Gowdie Advisory emailed me asking…

I was wondering what your thoughts are on the World Economic Forum’s “Reset 2021” conference in Davos, Switzerland in January 2021 and the implications for us.

Straight from the World Economic Forum’s marketing (emphasis added):

Drawing from the vision and vast expertise of the leaders engaged across the Forum’s communities, the Great Reset initiative has a set of dimensions to build a new social contract that honours the dignity of every human being.

A new social contract? Did anyone ask you about whether you wanted a new social contract? What’s the matter with the old one?

And for that matter, does anyone know what was in the old one that will be replaced by the new one?

It’s easy to make fun of those who indulge in what the late Kerry Packer would describe as an ‘intellectual wank’. But these people are deadly serious. There is serious money and power at stake here.

This was my edited response to the member’s email…

With regard to the Reset 2021, from what I’ve read, the thought of the global elites shaping and building a new social contract should be of concern to everyone.

Since time immortal, be it the church, state or large business, Trojan horses have been used as a means of hoodwinking the masses into believing that what’s being proposed is for the greater good.

In reality, the bottom line is always about money and power for the few at the expense of the many.

On a daily basis we are in “a boiling frog” type existence.

Google knows a little more each day. The State passes another piece of legislation. Central banks go a bit deeper into unconventional territory.

Rallying against this incremental erosion of liberty, sound financial principles and, in some cases, outright corruption and incompetence, is, for the majority, too hard and too mentally draining.

Extreme cases — when the powers that be push the agenda a little too hard — evoke a public outcry.

But it dies down and those that were chastened find another way to pursue their agenda…in bite size pieces at a slower pace.

Part of me is in the resignation camp…a kind of “can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em” mentality.

My focus is on controlling what I can influence and not wasting my time and emotional energy on causes beyond my influence.

The rich, powerful and well-connected are always going to be closest to the door the money comes out of. They will take a good portion of it. The remainder will be divvied up amongst the rest of us.

The four main areas that will participate — in varying degrees — from any new (or even, old) social contract will be…shares; property; fixed interest; precious metals.

The trick will be to invest in these asset classes during the period when the economic slump — which is when the siren call for the new social contract will be at its loudest and the majority will be only too eager to put on the ‘silks’ and ride the Trojan horse — offers these assets up to us at discount values.

Being invested in index funds means we do not have to second guess which companies will be the winners and losers from the new social contract. 

The winners will become a larger percentage of the index (like we’ve seen with the FANGs) and the losers a lesser percentage.

What we have to do is invest in the index when the market offers more reward than it does risk.

This is why I spend so much time on trawling over historical valuation measures.

As tempting as the narrative is at present about the Fed being able to exercise complete control over the fate of markets, history and mathematics are not supportive of that widely accepted belief.

Ultimately markets are a pricing mechanism for corporate earnings or the prospect of corporate earnings.

If earnings are stagnating or falling or do not materialise (as they could do in a severe economic downturn), there is only so much elastic in the price/earning multiple before it snaps back to a more realistic level.

Not even the Fed can stop a market that’s gripped by fear and doubts over the future profitability of corporations.

We’ve seen this play out in Japan and more recently in Europe.

No amount of money printing and interest rate manipulation (from those who will take centre stage in Davos) was able to prevent the will of the investors taking bourses lower.

Yes, I believe Reset 2021 is an elitist agenda designed to primarily line their pockets and concentrate power amongst those on the inside.

However, their self-serving actions will cause reactions in the marketplace.

Our aim is to be overweight in the asset classes that are likely to be the beneficiaries of their agenda.  

The looming period of deflation — which from all the data on unemployment, personal and business bankruptcies and mortgage delinquencies — appears to be gathering momentum beneath the surface, should present us with an opportunity to hitch our wagon to their Trojan horse.

Whether you want it or not, whether you agree with it or not, a new social contract is coming our way.

Look for the signs. Alarmist predictions. Catchy slogan. An evangelical zeal from the usual woke crowd. And, of course, a need for the haves (with the exception of the Davos haves and their mates) to share more with the have nots.

When you see this Trojan horse warming up in the mounting yard, it’ll be time to start placing your bets on the likely winners from this one-horse race.

Regards,

Vern Gowdie Signature

Vern Gowdie,
Editor, The Rum Rebellion


Vern has been involved in financial planning since 1986.

In 1999, Personal Investor magazine ranked Vern as one of Australia’s Top 50 financial planners.

His previous firm, Gowdie Financial Planning, was recognised in 2004, 2005, 2006 & 2007, by Independent Financial Adviser magazine as one of the top five financial planning firms in Australia.

In 2005, Vern commenced his writing career with the ‘Big Picture’ column for regional newspapers and was a commentator on financial matters for Prime Radio talkback.

In 2008, he sold his financial planning firm due to concerns about an impending economic downturn and the impact this would have on the investment industry.

In 2013, he joined Port Phillip Publishing as editor of Gowdie Family Wealth. In 2015, his book The End of Australia sold over 20,000 copies and launched his second premium newsletter, The Gowdie Letter.

Vern has since published two other books, A Parents Gift of Knowledge, all about the passing of investing intelligence from father to daughter, and How Much Bull can Investors Bear, an expose on the investment industry’s smoke and mirrors.

His contrarian views often place him at odds with the financial planning profession today, but Vern’s sole motivation is to help investors like you to protect their own and their family’s wealth.

Vern is Founder and Chairman of The Gowdie Advisory and The Gowdie Letter advisory service.


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