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Doom, Gloom or Boom? Or Maybe All Three?

August 21, 2009 by  

Doom, Gloom or Boom? Or Maybe All Three?

More than 750 worried investors gathered at the historic Fairmont Vancouver last month to hear what a group of experts had to say about the fate of our economy. They wanted to know which investments would protect their wealth the best… and just maybe help them recover some of their losses.

We were in the beautiful city of Vancouver, British Columbia, for the 10th annual Agora Financial Investment Symposium. Not so coincidentally, the event also marked 10 years since Agora’s founder, Bill Bonner, launched a curious Internet experiment called The Daily Reckoning. This rant and rumination now goes out to nearly half-a-million people every day.

I was delighted to be invited once again to serve as Master of Ceremonies. The theme of the conference was set in the opening talk by Dr. Marc Faber. The editor of The Doom, Gloom, and Boom Report used enough charts and graphs to make your head spin, while explaining why things must get a lot worse before they will get any better. Don’t look for a recovery in the stock market, housing market, commercial real estate or anywhere else anytime soon, he warned. But he also shared why he is convinced things will get better—a whole lot better—once the market is allowed to cleanse itself of the toxic poisons in the system.

The Agora Symposium included many first-time speakers. But none captured the attention of the audience more than Juan Enriquez, an early-stage venture capitalist specializing in biotechnology discoveries. The crowd listened spellbound as Dr. Enriquez described how bioengineered goats now produce milk that battles cancer; how a woman re-grew her own trachea after a horrific bout with cancer; and how a tiny salamander may help people grow new limbs to replace ones they’ve lost. Truly amazing stuff.

Next up was Rick Rule, whom Bill Bonner has described as “the best resource investor I know.” Rule got the crowd excited when he declared that we’re in the first leg of a resource super-bull market. He pointed to the inevitable rise of emerging economies like China and India. When those people get wealthier, they buy more and more things—things that require raw materials to be made. So he sees a huge rise in demand for these resources—and thus, the prices of the underlying commodities and the companies that produce them.

Rule said another huge bull market would be alternative energy—even “stupid stuff” like biofuels. Although many of the Greenies’ favorites will never be economic, Rule said there is one source that should please everyone—even profit-hungry investors.

That one is geothermal. While the costs to build a geothermal plant are high, it should produce ultra-clean energy for 100 years or more.

Next up was Frank Holmes, the CEO of mutual-fund giant U.S. Global Investors. Holmes’ funds have won more awards than I can list here. He is especially proud of the performances (and holdings) of his natural-resource and emerging markets funds.

Holmes had the audience laughing and applauding when he shared Holmes’ Rule #1 for bad government. “The higher the percentage of lawyers who hold office,” he told the appreciative crowd, “the more decrepit the financial system they devise.” Amen to that, brother.

Chuck Butler, the president of EverBank World Markets, was one of several speakers to sound a very similar theme: Barack Obama is the most aggressively leftist president this country has seen since FDR. The results may be horrible for our deficits and the dollar, but they’re going to be mighty good for gold.

“Trade dollars for gold” was Butler’s top recommendation. It was a suggestion we heard many times in Vancouver. In fact, Bonner said he had first proposed his “trade of the decade” nine years ago. It was simplicity itself: Sell stocks, buy gold. “We’re almost at the end of the decade,” he noted, “and I wouldn’t change a word of that advice.”

EverBank has created many unique products to serve contrarian investors, from foreign currency CDs (you can invest in the Norwegian krona and New Zealand dollar, with the same FDIC protection as the U.S. dollar) to commodity indexes owning gold, silver and other metals.

I’m running out of space, so there’s no room to tell you about Byron King’s captivating presentation, “Is God Brazilian?” Or Doug Casey’s rant about the utter hopelessness of the situation—and why it’s not really all that serious. Or Bonner’s closing exhortation to remember the lessons of history: There is no such thing as a free lunch. Or two dozen other informative presentations, each one loaded with practical advice and specific stock recommendations.

But thanks to the miracle of modern technology, you can hear every word of every presentation via CDs or MP3s. All of the main session speeches were professionally recorded and are now available. To order the complete set, simply click here.

Or you could skip all the palaver and just implement the bottom-line recommendation uttered so often at the conference: trade dollars for gold. One precious metals specialist we recommend is Asset Strategies International. Check them out on the web at Or give one of their friendly and knowledgeable staff a call at 1-800-831-0007 or 301-881-8600. They will be delighted to help you turn dollars into gold, silver or platinum, or even your favorite foreign currency.

Here’s one last suggestion: Do it soon, before Obama and his cronies devalue the dollar even further. There is still nothing that’s as good as gold… except maybe silver.

Until next time, keep some powder dry. And some gold handy.

Chip Wood

is the geopolitical editor of He is the founder of Soundview Publications, in Atlanta, where he was also the host of an award-winning radio talk show for many years. He was the publisher of several bestselling books, including Crisis Investing by Doug Casey, None Dare Call It Conspiracy by Gary Allen and Larry Abraham and The War on Gold by Anthony Sutton. Chip is well known on the investment conference circuit where he has served as Master of Ceremonies for FreedomFest, The New Orleans Investment Conference, Sovereign Society, and The Atlanta Investment Conference.

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  • http://PersonalLibertyDigest John Morrow

    GREAT, Chip. Keep it up. John

  • TeresaE

    Sadly, other than attempting to make money in stocks, I don’t see an upside to selling our natural resources from under our feet to China.

    I see them owning us from the ground, to the air, to the media we watch on tv.

    And, I wonder for my daughter, then what?

    What comes AFTER China has the jobs, resources, cash and power?

    What does this leave our children? Green energy and no money to buy electrical appliances, from China?

    Just random thoughts on a day my faith in any system is completely shredded.

  • Eric g

    I agree buy gold ,I wanted Platinum instead becuase it is also heavily used in polution reduction and may hold value better in a down market .
    I decided to protect my wealth by buying Hogs , At least I can eat Hogs . I cant eat gold or platinum . So far I have lots more pigs than I can eat . I guess it would be alittle cheaper to store gold . I’am going to try wheat , I understand the wheat storied by Egyptians be fore Christs birth was still good now . I think It maybe very hard to protect your wealth or life in a country heading backwards .

  • Clarence

    To bring a little “balance” regarding Gold I quote Cliff Pletschet who publishes the “Investment Educator”. “Gold is hot right now because the gold bugs still believe in the myth and they hope that investors do, too. Gold is “in the news” today because the bugs are pushing it in TV ads. Gold doesn’t sell itself, which is a sad commentary on any investment.” As the man said, “At least I can eat Hogs.”

  • flash

    I agree with most people that gold or silver is a good hedge against the invitable collaps of the dollar. True you cant eat it when your hungry, so its important to diversify investments. Having chickens, hogs, gardens etc. is a great way to ensure your getting quality food without all the genetically modified poisons that MONSANTO is producing for our new world. There are certain things that never go down in value like firearms and ammunition as well. Peace and hair grease!

  • John

    Monsanto is not poisoning our world. They are increasing the carrying capacity of Earth and making life better for everyone.

    The belief that Agriculture in its modern form is evil is a dialectic of the Left (communists, and ignorant environmentalists).
    Evil hearted people have for too long been preaching untruths about Genetically Modified Organisms, Chemistry, and modern Agriculture because they have a particular agenda they are selling to primarily ignorant people. Do not be fooled by these charletins. The number one Gene modifier is the Sun (Radition). The chemical ingredient in Roundup, which is the number one chemical used in No-Till farming, was discovered accidentally,and is nothing more than a surfactant that happened to disrupt EPSP synthesis in plants. It has no toxicity to other forms of life.

    • DaveH

      That is an awful lot of name-calling. If you want people to seriously consider your input, I suggest you scale way back on the ridicule.
      You can drink Roundup, but I’ll pass. All living cells are very similar. If a substance can disrupt normal activity in one specie’s cells, who can say that it won’t have a detrimental effect on others? I’m not by any means an environmental fanatic, but I certainly think you can’t make the statement that it has no toxicity to other forms of life.
      We evolved on non-genetically-modified food. Who knows what kinds of problems might be caused by GMFs? I wouldn’t support a ban, but I would like to know if I may be eating a GMF so I have the choice of refusal.

      • s c

        Why would anyone trust Monsanto? Their government pals are paid to watch their backs 24/7. Monsanto finally had to realize that Europe has no use for GMF. I would be glad to give Europe the benefit of the doubt. Monsanto can shove it.
        Monsanto and other huge ag corporations seem to worship at the altar of profit. The love of money has a nasty habit of turning a sound mind into a dung pile. While I am not a corporation hater, some corporations are not to be trusted.
        Remember, dioxin in Vietnam was seen as an easy way to strip trees and all other foliage so the VC wouldn’t have any place to hide. It was OKed the sme way many prescription drugs are OKed (if it makes money, IT”S OK!). Arrogance and paranoia are poor substitutes for common sense – unless you happen to work for a corporation like Monsanto.

  • Sunshine

    I agree that anything you can invest in to substitute the dollar is a good idea, and gold is good to hold IF you have dollars to invest. However, look back at history when gold was confiscated by our government. Don’t ever think for one moment it can’t happen again. My suggestion would be to buy silver, especially “junk” silver, not from an investment standpoint but because you can purchase small necessities with it, such as bread. Also, when there is a food shortage, seed are great for bartering! How can you buy a loaf of bread with a gold ingot, or even a gold coin that might have an investment value of $1000. per ounce? Would you really expect to get “change”?
    From a survival standpoint, one item I’ve never seen mentioned as an investment is Heirloom or Organic Seed. There’s nothing like having a garden of your own, especially during hyperinflation and lack of produce in the markets. As far as eating “food” that is mass produced by our giant food conglomerates such as ADM and Monsanto, John, you need to do your homework before you start trying to sell the rest of us on the advantages of eating mass produced “food”, which in actuality is “dead”, over-processed, and full of artificial colors, flavors, and synthetics our bodies don’t recognize as “food”! And we wonder why we have a HEALTH problem? NUTRITION, (Natural Nutrition), is the KEY TO GOOD HEALTH !!

  • Matt

    It is so funny to see the paranoia with Monsanto and Agriculture in general. I am a farmer, dairy for that matter, if any of you were even within a generation of farming and knew what you were talking about would be amazing. If you knew of the effeciences we have made over the last century even the last twenty years thanks to monsanto. Biotech and technology have made it possible to grow more bushels of grains with less acres, more milk with less cows I could go on and on. You want to talk GM foods, here is a news flash, farmers have been doing it forever, when they find a more drought resisant corn plant they breed that plant into the corn they had been using when they find a plant that has high yield then they breed that in eventual in hopes of making the perfect plant for their climate. The only difference now is it can be done in a lab instead of the field. It is ludacris to see these greenies/global warming/enviro-mentals oppose bio tech advances, they want Organics that will put us backwards 20 years. If you saw how many more cows it would take to produce the amount of gallons of milk we do today and how many more acres of land to support those extra cows not to mention extra acres to feed all those extra cows the numbers are astounding, and the carbon footprint of all those extra cows. This really seems to me the liberal hippies coming back to haunt us. We have more regulation from the FDA and USDA inspectors than any other industry in the world. We farmers cant win between the global warming fools(that want less cows) and the Organic movement(that would require more cows) unless everybody wants to pay three times as much for there food. You spend 10 percent of your disposable income on food ( which is the least in the world) and are the fattest people in the world, and still bitching, you cant have it both ways. Why cant you trust agriculture? why would we want to poison or kill our customers, ask yourself why would we want to ruin the fields we grow in, we make our living on. Sorry for the rant or offending anybody but it is the truth something people dont hear much anymore.


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