Unless you have been under a rock the past few weeks, you know that the major news story has been Russia's invasion of the Ukraine. You have been blasted with a media narrative which does have some ring of truth. But it isn't the whole truth and what you may have missed is a threat to your future, your finances, and also to your Liberty. By the way, I've been warning about what we are watching unfold for quite some time. In 2013, I authored the cover story for The Counter Terrorist Magazine. It's turned out to have been frighteningly accurate.
Beyond those very important considerations, there are three important points you must grasp if you want to understand the war underway and learn how to protect your family.
- First, this is primarily an Economic War, at least as the West is waging it. We've warned about this for over a decade and now we see multiple headlines validating our analysis.
- Second, while the Ukrainian people are suffering the consequences, there is a broader war between two different world views and neither of them is good for Liberty. In fact, there are two dystopian visions, and if either were to get the upper hand, we will lose our freedoms. Both are bad.
- Third, the short- and long-term implications are much greater than you may have imagined. This conflict, seemingly half a world away, could impact everything, changing our relationship with China, accelerating some trends we've highlighted, altering the course of history, and making millionaires of some and paupers of others. How you react will make all the difference.
Point #1, the world has changed in some dramatic unseen ways. We started warning about it almost 15 years ago and I had the task of educating our government on the new form of conflict we call Global Economic Warfare. The paradigm has shifted completely from what our defense community once believed and it's important that you understand it.
To illustrate the point, here are a few headlines gathered recently:
From the UK Guardian:
The west has declared all-out financial war with Russia. What does this mean?
From the New Statesman:
The economic weapon
To Punish Putin, the World Turned Finance Into a Weapon of War
The West is trying to destroy Russia's economy. And analysts think it could succeed
From the Globe and Mail:
West wages economic war on Russia with unprecedented sanctions
From National Review:
Watching the Russian Economy Collapse before Our Eyes
From the New York Times:
Investors Weigh the Effects of the Economic War on Russia
The West declares economic war on Russia
It doesn't matter if you are leftist or a right winger, American, Asian, or European. To anyone paying attention, the West is applying the very sort of Economic Warfare that I've taught about for years. And it is happening just as we predicted.
This is an important understanding. But what is interesting is that while the West is waging all-out economic warfare, the Russians are (currently) rolling tanks with the Ukrainians fighting for their lives. It is literally a clash between 21st Century and 20th Century Warfare with Ukraine caught between. Russia undoubtedly has undertaken or will undertake cyber warfare but the impact has yet to be seen.
Bottom line? This just might be the beginnings of World War 3. We have yet to see the outcome regarding whether or not tanks can beat economic sanctions and the role cyber will take. Each has their strengths and weaknesses. And it is only a matter off time before the Economic Attacks start against the West. We covered this in our "Winds of War" series in 2018 (Part One, Part Two, Part Three, and Part Four). So if you are a regular reader, none of this should be a surprise. The questions include, "What does China do after watching the West push back against Putin?" And, "Will forces inside Russia force Putin out before he achieves his mission?"
In 2014, I wrote a book titled: Game Plan, How to Protect Yourself from the Coming Cyber Economic Attack. If you haven't yet read it, you should pick up a copy. I re-read it recently and it remains remarkably current in many respects. What is understated, however, is the degree to which a government might use the same Economic and Financial Weapons against individuals to coerce their desired outcome.
For example, the very same weapons being used by the West were brandished recently internally by Trudeau in Canada against the Trucker Convoy. He relented rather quickly but the statement was clear. "If you don't bow to the government, you will be cut off from polite society and also from any economic connections." Someone probably should have told him that COVID was the LAST serious crisis, and an Economic War with Russia over Ukraine was our next scheduled focus. But don't miss the point. The Western governments are intent on using Economic Weapons against individuals and foreign governments alike.
If you say the wrong thing, do the wrong thing, or even think the wrong way, you will find yourself on the receiving end of an Economic Onslaught. For individuals, that means you would lose your job. Think I'm kidding? People were forced out for supporting Proposition 8 in California even though it won in that ultra-liberal state not that long ago, making marriage between one man and one woman in the Golden State. Say that now and you are labeled as a "hater," and may lose your job. In addition, you can be removed from social media. Restaurants may refuse to serve you. But that's OK because banks will cut you off and if people feel sorry for you and want to help pay your bills, your GoFundMe account will be confiscated. So, you really won't be able to eat out anyway. It is all rather intimidating and that's by design.
For nations, it's the same playbook only on a grander scale. The impact of cutting off Russian exports and access to financial markets is astounding. Some estimate that the Russian economy will be cut in half. That is beyond a depression. Assets in the West have been frozen. Disney cutting off Russian movies? Russian television banned? And to top it off, the International competitions will no longer allow people to enter Russian cat breeds into cat shows. No. I'm not kidding.
Will the sanctions win before the tanks take over? That remains to be seen. Maybe banning the cats will hold them off for a bit? More seriously, the economic sanctions are taking a toll and the Chinese are watching so they can better plan their desired acquisition of Taiwan.
Here's the funny thing. While Vladimir Putin is putting his nuclear forces on high alert and is moving a real army, our armed forces remain focused on sensitivity training and getting a service member's pronouns right. The focus is on Trans Rights rather than military readiness. Have you ever wondered whether the soldiers from a prior era could beat a modern fighting force? Well, that's sort of playing out right now. Only the difference is that they are firing live rounds while we are closing bank accounts.
It is important to note that Putin and his cronies knew we'd resort to economic weaponry, and they war gamed it. Russia decreased their dollar holdings and ramped up ties with China. Sure, their stock market has crashed but the value of their oil has risen sharply if they can find buyers. They have laid foundational relations with countries that don't care what America thinks. And they have been intent on building a coalition capable of challenging the West.
Remember that in 2008, Vladimir Putin ordered a financial attack on America. We saw Russia dump their Treasury-related holdings of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to cripple us in the bursting of the Housing Bubble. Russia claimed that it eliminated its public debt, built up its gold reserves, and understands that America owes $30 trillion and depends on foreign lenders and also foreign energy. Further, he sees our modern financial system as vulnerable to sophisticated cyber-attacks, the type that Russian hackers specialize in.
Here's the problem. We, in the end, may prove more vulnerable than Russia to Economic Warfare due to the size and nature of our economy. It's just that no one other than China has dared to unleash it on us yet. And that may well be the other shoe to drop. So rather than becoming smug about our recent economic success we should be extremely cautious and somewhat introspective. If the hot war heats up, we will be challenged severely. If the cyber-economic war is unleashed on us, we may learn just how vulnerable we are. So far, China has held back, preferring Western wrath be focused on Mother Russia. But the final acts have yet to take place. We already see efforts to undermine the petrodollar and that remains a top goal for Putin and China.
We mustn't forget that our use of sanctions risks blowback effects. We are already reeling from a 7.9% inflation rate, the highest in decades. What happens when the much higher oil and gasoline prices really start to hit home? Fertilizer prices are going through the roof and that will show up in substantially higher food costs. Add to that the reality that the Federal Reserve will be slow to raise interest rates in a war environment and the stage is set for mammoth inflation. This could make the 1970s look like a picnic, exacerbating all the struggles we face. Both Putin and Xi Jinping understand these realities. While we remain arrogant, assuming that we rule the world, our enemies recognize our vulnerabilities and have strategized how best to exploit them.
This will ultimately impact you, your family, and your finances. Don't be caught off guard.
The important thing to understand is that there are two dystopian forces battling to the death with the Ukrainian people caught in the middle. Don't mistake what I'm about to say as a defense of Vladimir Putin or Russia in any way. Putin is a KGB thug who will do whatever it takes to get what he wants. He once even stole Robert Kraft's (owner of the New England Patriots) Super Bowl ring. He asked to see it and then just took it. That's a tiny illustration of how he thinks.
Over the past decade or so, I've written or spoken multiple times about how dangerous Putin really is. Here are two examples:
Putin wants Russia and China to join forces against the West
‘The Bear is Back': Center's New Book Warns of ‘Putin's Reset' — and What America Must Do in Response
But I've also made clear that China looms as the larger threat that must not be ignored. And Russia and China together are lethal. We should have separated them when we had the opportunity during the Trump Administration. Sadly, we couldn't, due to the whole Russian collusion narrative pushed by the anti-Trump forces inside and outside the government. But it is what we should have done as explained here:
If This Isn't the Trump Doctrine, It Should Be
But "PUTIN BAD/RUSSIA EVIL," is nowhere near the whole story. The media wants to force a single narrative that will push their agenda. I'm here to share the whole truth and help it make sense.
By the way, just as an aside on the "PUTIN BAD/RUSSIA EVIL" mantra, you should know how absurd it's getting. Cat Shows banning Russian breeds from participating is just a tiny example.
Bottom line? Let's state unequivocally that the Vladimir Putin and Russia are the bad guys. And let's also state that the Ukrainian people and their leadership under attack are clearly victims. Beyond that, I am not opposed to using economic warfare against Russia. But again, that is not the whole story. What most people are missing is that this is a worldwide struggle for power between two dystopian forces with Ukraine at the center of the battle.
Putin claims he's the good guy, marching in to defend Christianity. But Putin is defending Christianity about as much as Xi Jinping is doing so in China. The reality is that Putin wants control in the Orwellian sense of the word. Like the book 1984. Like Animal Farm. Big brother controlling everything but with the elites at the top enjoying the good life. In Animal Farm, it's the Pigs who run everything and get all the special goodies. In China, it's Xi Jinping and the Chinese Communist Party. In Russia, it's Vladimir Putin and the Oligarchs. World domination is on the table, and it will be a strictly controlled society using technology far beyond what Big Brother from the book 1984 could ever dream. The people are controlled through a mass surveillance state combined with Social Credit Scores.
In the Orwellian nightmare, sex is tightly controlled. That's true for Xi's China and Putin's Russia as well. All three (Orwellian dystopia, China, Russia) despise any form of promiscuity and look down on homosexuality. Let me quote from an essay titled, "Sex And Love In George Orwell's 1984."
"Through its control of marriages and sexual mores, the Party resembles a conservative religious institution. By attempting to control people's loyalties and loves, and redirect those towards itself, the Party posits itself as the end and the ultimate salvation."
In reality, it's all about complete control and manipulation. Putin isn't defending Christianity or morals even though he adopts the language. Rather, he's grabbing power and control. The same is true in China. This is Orwellian dystopia, and it is distinctly different from Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. Opposing Big Brother is a good thing unless you intend to supplant it with another dystopian nightmare.
Unfortunately, that is the case. And this is a battle that has been raging for nearly a century. In the 1930s, Aldous Huxley wrote a book that I had to read in High School titled Brave New World. It was weird and scary and futuristic. Nothing like the science fiction of Star Trek or Star Wars that I loved. Instead, it told of a society where a big global government called the World State runs everything. The total control aspect was similar to Orwell's books that would appear in the 1940s but how the World State got there was quite different. In fact, it was so different that it sparked a debate between the authors Huxley and Orwell as noted in The New York Times:
"In a 1949 letter, thanking Orwell for sending him a copy of 1984,' he (Huxley) wrote that he really didn't think all that torture and jackbooting was necessary to subdue a population, and that he believed his own book offered a better solution. All you need to do, he said, is teach people to love their servitude. The totalitarian rulers in Huxley's book do this not by oppressing their citizens but by giving them exactly what they want, or what they think they want — which is basically sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll — and lulling them into complacency."
In Brave New World, drugs are not only legalized, but they are also highly encouraged. So is sex with as much promiscuity, orgies, and exploration as possible. The goal is best described as…well a worldwide Open Society without national borders. Be whoever you want to be, male, female, it doesn't matter. And by all means, the Brave New World indoctrinates children into eroticism as early as possible. If you accidently get pregnant, have an abortion. This world doesn't need extra babies from this view.
Is any of this sounding familiar? It really is what we are seeing in the West right now. Let me quote from a commentary written seven years ago:
Orwell's 1984 or Huxley's Brave New World? Competing Visions for a Dystopian Future
"This "Brave New World" is conceived by Aldous Huxley as a totalitarian technocracy, which is characterised by rigid and clearly demarcated social stratification, with cradle to the grave brainwashing through "hypnopaedic sleep teaching", the negation of the motivation to rebellion through the absence of war and conflict, and the destruction of the family unit with mother and father figures absent and life-long relationships non-existent.
Personal freedoms are therefore sacrificed for safety and the pleasure principle, reinforced by the use of drugs ("Soma"), "feelies" and by unconstrained sexual gratification without emotional context. Science is thus used by a ruthless and faceless government as the ultimate weapon to subvert the individual's desire for self-determination…"
In other words, it's all about a society controlled by science and scientists for your safety and the willing exchange of personal liberty as long as you get open sex and legal drugs to feel good. There's a prescription for everything and you are required to take it. This creates a dictatorship and global concentration camp that people willingly adopt. Science is the religion. There is no individual ownership because everyone belongs to everyone else.
Brave New World sure sounds like what we are seeing in the West today with the Great Reset, global governance, the LGBTQ movement indoctrinating children, the push to legalize drugs, a pharmacological solution for every ailment, sex without babies, and the push to "follow the science" that forms a sort of mass psychosis. This represents the Joe Biden, George Soros, Anthony Fauci, Klaus Schwab approach. They appear to literally be following the Brave New World roadmap. If people get out of line, you don't kill them. Just cut them off from society.
When you step back, it's obvious that this is the clash happening right now over Ukraine. Putin claims he is invading to protect Christianity and by that he openly means he wants a rigid and, on his terms, a moral society from his Big Brother viewpoint. He will enforce order with brutality as needed. That's Orwell's 1984 and Animal Farm.
On the other side, we have the Western powers openly admitting that they want to defend Ukraine in order to establish and preserve LGBTQ rights and enforce the scientific dictatorship needed to stop climate change. They don't want to fight a real war. They prefer economic sanctions to cut the bad actors out of polite society. No Russian cats allowed at cat shows and all that.
Here are a few recent quotes to consider:
- From Vanity Fair: "The Fight for Ukraine Is Also a Fight for LGBTQ Rights." https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2022/03/the-fight-for-ukraine-is-also-a-fight-for-lgbtq-rights
- From LA Times: "Will Russia bring its war on LGBTQ people to Ukraine?" https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2022-03-03/lgbt-ukrainians-are-terrified-of-a-life-under-russia-where-homophobia
- And even from Britain's MI6: "Head Of UK Intelligence Service Says Ukraine War Is About LGBT Rights" https://en-volve.com/2022/03/05/watch-head-of-uk-intelligence-service-says-ukraine-war-is-about-lgbt-rights-then-sleepy-joe-says-putin-invaded-russia/
- "CBS: ‘Forget The Bloodbath – What About Trans Rights In Ukraine?'" https://www.blabber.buzz/blab/pop/1035579-cbs-forget-the-bloodbath-what-about-trans-rights-in-ukraine
Let me ask, does it seem strange to make this issue so very front and center? Absolutely, it is horrible that Putin wants to attack LGBTQ individuals or any people. And it is important for the West to defend humans and human rights. But the primary focus on LGBTQ exposes one of the sharpest differences between worldviews. The West is following Huxley while Russia and China follow Orwell.
By the way, it is both interesting and validating to see George Soros call out both Russia and China of late. He knows they are Orwellian and a threat to his desire for an Open Society. You can catch the same worldview clash in comments made by former Senator, Presidential candidate, Secretary of State, and now Climate Czar John Kerry. Instead of being worried about the loss of life in Ukraine, in an interview, Kerry seemed much more concerned that the world would lose focus on climate change. Russia doesn't care about Climate Change. They pump and sell fossil fuels.
By the way, I don't think George Soros, John Kerry, or the Brave New World Order really care that much about the climate either. They just like the scientific dictatorship it provides them. If John Kerry really cared about the environment, he wouldn't travel everywhere on his private jet. It really is all about control. And they are using ESG investing to enforce their form of dictatorship.
ESG is one big part of the very real clash of dystopian visions. And tragically, Ukraine is caught in the middle. The West seeks to install their vision via sanctions and has plotted a color revolution inside Russia to overthrow Putin and China's Xi. They are hoping to tempt China to move their direction.
By contrast, Putin and Xi Jinping are collaborating to defeat the west. They have developed parallel systems to evade the economic sanctions and will use military force and any means necessary to achieve their objectives. This is essentially Unrestricted Warfare and could include cyber-attacks, espionage, destroying the Western power grid, or cratering our financial system. Our Intelligence Community knows all of this and is right now warning of such attacks. After all, if Russia will shell the world's largest nuclear power plant, what else might they do?
These are clearly dangerous times. Putin claims to be defending Christianity while killing innocent people and plotting to rule the planet with an iron fist. The West claims to be defending freedom with a sinister plot to entice the world into a technocratic collectivist nightmare.
So, what to do about it?
First. I suggest we all stop and pray for the Ukrainian people. They are literally caught in a war between two powerful opposing forces. I fully agree that we should stand against Putin's aggression and even use the economic weapons at our disposal. But our motive should be to preserve individual liberty, not to enforce a Brave New World Order.
I don't know how it will all turn out. But I do know there are serious threats from both sides. Here's how to protect your money, your family, and our culture.
We must expect cyber-attacks from the Russian camp and maybe even supported by the Chinese. Look for an attack on our financial structure because that is the weapon that we are using against them. Putin has long desired to overthrow our Western dollar-based system. I wrote about this extensively in my 2014 book titled, "Game Plan, How to Protect Yourself From the Coming Cyber-Economic Attack." In it, I recommended a few simple things like keeping paper copies of your bank and brokerage statements. These can serve as proof of your holdings if things get shut down for a while. After 9/11, Wall Street shut down. I showed paper copies of my statements to access cash that I needed to make payroll. I'm glad I didn't solely rely on electronic records.
You also should consider how your investments are allocated. The book has chapters on an inflationary environment and how to respond. We do not give specific advice because there's no way to know each reader's (viewer's) individual situation. But there are some general concepts that tend to work in various scenarios. For example, portfolios with energy, materials, precious metals, and defense stocks tend to outperform during periods of global tension and higher inflation. That has certainly proven to be the case this year.
While there could be a brief "cease fire," I do not expect the conflict in Ukraine to be resolved simply. In fact, if this is the gigantic clash of dystopian worldviews that we believe it to be, Ukraine is just the first battle in a potentially very long war. That is why we strongly suggest you find a like-minded financial advisor who is well versed in all these issues and ready to help you address them.
Unfortunately, there aren't that many advisors who understand what is really going on. That's why we are launching our Economic War Room Advisor training. If you have a financial advisor you like, please nominate him or her for training at https://www.economicwarroom.com/advisor. If you don't have an advisor, find one and send him or her to us for training.
In terms of protecting your family, the Appendix in Game Plan has some important thoughts about making certain your priorities are right. This isn't window dressing. Having the right mindset is necessary if you want to make it through the challenges ahead. The book also has some suggestions of things to stockpile in case of a short-term emergency (found on page 217). We went into much greater depth of what you might want to keep on hand in Episode #106 of the Economic War Room. Here's a link to the Economic Battle Plan™ (you can find the list starting page 66 of the PDF which is marked as page 34 of the Citizen's Guide included at the back of the PDF). You'll want water, some cash on hand, extra food, medicine, toilet paper, pet food, access to power, and so forth. You may even want to have some iodine pills on hand. I hope you never need it. But a power outage or an attack could turn these items into life savers.
In terms of protecting our culture, you have to be a part of the "small ships" that stand up, speak out, and work together to promote Constitutional Liberty from a Judeo-Christian, family-oriented worldview. It's OK to reject both the Huxley and Orwellian dystopia. They are both evil. One is sort of the enemy within, and the other is the enemy on the outside. As the oath says, we must protect the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic.
While Wall Street is promoting the Brave New World Order through ESG Investing, we recommend LSV, which stands for Liberty, Security, and Values. You can help promote all three, Liberty, Security, and Values with your investments. Again, this is why you need a good financial advisor. Navigating the complexities of ESG vs. LSV is essential, but it's not easy. This is all a part of "weaponizing your money," which includes your giving, spending, and investing.
We will also need to listen for the codewords of politicians as we approach the midterm elections. Remember that "follow the science" sounds good but may be used as a cover for instituting an elitist technocracy. We've seen that the science seems to change when the political winds shift. And, just as we predicted in our first Economic War Room episode of the New Year (Episode #171), the science is now reluctantly telling us that Covid is over. The new threat is Russia and Climate Change. Amazing how that happened.
Learn where candidates stand on the issue of individual liberty vs. the collective. Do they use Orwellian or Brave New World terminology to threaten or seduce you? Look for candidates who support the Constitution as written rather than selectively interpreted.
Limited government, individual liberty, economic freedom, support for families, belief in national sovereignty. These are all strong signals. And we want to avoid unnecessary foreign wars whenever possible. We certainly don't want to be caught in the clash of dystopias. Instead, we ought to make our case to Russia and China and Europe and even at home. Not for some Brave New World approach and certainly not Orwellian. But the virtues of Liberty can stand tall as the hope of the world. Of course, we can't be bullied either. We shouldn't look for a fight, but we mustn't back down when one comes our way.
So, here's the recap. We are in an Economic War. There's a battle between two dystopian visions, neither of which is good for you or your family. We must prepare and we can fight back with economic weapons of our own. You can watch this as an Economic War Room Episode and get a FREE copy of this episode's Economic Battle Plan™ at EconomicWarRoom.com. It will recap the show and provide specific Action Steps to protect your investments and more importantly your family.