Signs Of The Time

Signs Of The Time, Part 111

Truly a sign for once in this long-running series of posts.

Seen in Muncie, Indiana, recently was a billboard displaying the following:

Hate Cops?
The Next Time You Need Help
Call A Crackhead.

I understand the “advice” has since been withdrawn from the billboard after some person(s) was offended.

Others are citing this “retreat” as one more example of political correctness run amok, and are gladly offering to assist said person(s) back to their “safe space”…

“South Park- Safe Space- ‘In My Safe Space’”
YouTube Video

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Signs Of The Time, Part 110

The most sobering article I’ve read yet about the deteriorating state of affairs in Venezuela. From Hannah Dreier of the Associated Press yesterday:

Tebie Gonzalez and Ramiro Ramirez still have their sleek apartment, a fridge covered with souvenir magnets from vacations abroad, and closets full of name brand clothes. But they feel hunger drawing near.

So when the Venezuelan government opened the long-closed border with Colombia this weekend, the couple decided to drain what remained of the savings they put away before the country spun into economic crisis and stock up on food. They left their two young sons with relatives and joined more than 100,000 other Venezuelans trudging across what Colombian officials are calling a “humanitarian corridor” to buy as many basic goods as possible…

Some fear what’s taking place in the “socialist paradise” is coming to the United States. I sure as hell hope not, as the International Monetary Fund is predicting 1,600% inflation for the South American country next year.

Regrettably, I do think hyperinflation could be in the cards for us down the road.

“Signs Of A Coming Time”?

An insightful piece by Dreier, which you can read over on the ABC News website here.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Signs Of The Time, Part 109

I heard about the following YouTube video the other day and had to check it out for myself. It’s reportedly a “slam poem” by a 14-year-old Atlanta student in which he apologizes for his so-called “white privilege”:

“Royce Mann, Age 14, ‘White Boy Privilege’, Slam Poem”
YouTube Video

Just a tad bit heavy on the generalizations?

I understand the teen won first place for the effort.

Didn’t hear if everyone else at least got participation trophies…

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Wednesday, July 13th, 2016 Education, Racism, Signs Of The Time No Comments

Signs Of The Time, Part 108

After blogging back on June 21 about the next round of property tax bills due to hit Cook County, Illinois, residents’ mailboxes in the coming days, I told my girlfriend to pay attention to the local mainstream news outlets as there would be no shortage of pissed-off Chicago homeowners (their hit an average 13 percent higher than last year) airing their grievances.

Sure enough, I was watching Chicago ABC affiliate Channel 7 Tuesday when the following segment appeared near the top of the evening news broadcast:

“Cook County Property Tax Bills Cause Outrage”
ABC Chicago Video

“Higher/new fees, fines, and taxes in conjunction with reduced government services going forward”

Truly a sign of the times for Chicagoans… and an increasing number of other Americans.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Signs Of The Time, Part 107

Personally, I believe that whoever wins the White House in November will be inheriting a “poisoned chalice” when it comes to the economy.

I strongly suspect the United States will enter into recession (if it’s not already in one) shortly.

And I fear the next (final?) stage of a U.S. financial crash I first started warning about back on Memorial Day Weekend 2007 may be helped along with the election of one particular candidate to the highest political office in the land after spotting the following this morning on the CNBC website.

John Harwood reported Monday:

One of President Barack Obama’s economic advisers will join Hillary Clinton’s campaign in another sign of close coordination between the White House and the presumptive Democratic nominee.

Jacob Leibenluft, deputy director of the National Economic Council, will become a senior policy adviser as Clinton prepares to fill out her economic agenda for the general election…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Anyone looking forward to four (eight?) more years of “Obamanomics”?

If so, it sounds like that could very well be what’s in store for the country again after November 8, based on this news and other developments I’ve been following.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Harwood, John. “Hillary Clinton to add Jacob Leibenluft, Obama’s long-time economic adviser, to campaign team.” 20 June 2016. ( 21 June 2016.

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Signs Of The Time, Part 106

From the celebrity news website TMZ this morning:

The Game believes he’s dodging real bullets in Chicago now that a judge has granted his request to postpone a court hearing.

According to legal docs, the rapper asked the judge to push a June 16 hearing for his sexual assault lawsuit in Illinois. He cited a massive outbreak of violence over Memorial Day weekend in the city … where about 70 people were shot and 6 died.

Game thinks it’s likely there will be a bunch of revenge shootings, and fears he could be caught in the crossfire…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

According to TMZ, the plaintiff didn’t oppose The Game’s request and the judge has signed-off on it as well.

You can read the entire piece on here.

By Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Signs Of The Time, Part 105

Lausanne, Switzerland-based IMD World Competitiveness Center, publisher of the World Competitiveness Yearbook, “the leading annual report on the competitiveness of countries,” has just released its 28th edition of the publication. From their website:

The USA toppled as world’s most competitive economy
IMD World Competitiveness rankings released

30 May 2016 – The USA has surrendered its status as the world’s most competitive economy after being overtaken by China Hong Kong and Switzerland, according to the IMD World Competitiveness Center.

The sheer power of the economy of the USA is no longer sufficient to keep it at the top of the prestigious World Competitiveness Ranking, which it has led for the past three years.

The IMD World Competitiveness Center, a research group within IMD business school, has published the ranking each year since 1989 and it is widely regarded as the foremost annual assessment of the competitiveness of countries.

The 2016 edition ranks China Hong Kong first, Switzerland second and the USA third, with Singapore, Sweden, Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway and Canada completing the top 10…

“USA third”

Disappointing to hear, but not altogether shocking.

You can read the entire piece on IMD’s website here.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Wednesday, June 1st, 2016 Asia, Europe, North America, Signs Of The Time No Comments

Signs Of The Time, Part 104

In the May 2016 issue of The Atlantic there’s an article entitled “The Secret Shame of Middle-Class Americans.” Neal Gabler writes:

Since 2013, the Federal Reserve Board has conducted a survey to “monitor the financial and economic status of American consumers.” Most of the data in the latest survey, frankly, are less than earth-shattering: 49 percent of part-time workers would prefer to work more hours at their current wage; 29 percent of Americans expect to earn a higher income in the coming year; 43 percent of homeowners who have owned their home for at least a year believe its value has increased. But the answer to one question was astonishing. The Fed asked respondents how they would pay for a $400 emergency. The answer: 47 percent of respondents said that either they would cover the expense by borrowing or selling something, or they would not be able to come up with the $400 at all. Four hundred dollars! Who knew?

I didn’t know.

But I’m really not surprised to learn of it either.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Gabler, Neal. “The Secret Shame of Middle-Class Americans.” The Atlantic. May 2016. ( 24 May 2016.


Signs Of The Time, Part 103

Last week I saw the following e-mail from Crain’s Chicago Business in my inbox. The subject line was:

Chicago is in crisis. Let’s talk. Be there.

And the body of the e-mail:

Crain’s Future Of Chicago Conference

Chicago is at a tipping point and the world spotlight is directed squarely on us

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Been warning about this situation for how many years now?

There was also this:

Business, government, education and civic leaders are coming together at this pivotal point to forge a way forward at a Crain’s conference like no other…

I wonder how many of these “leaders” helped bring about the present crisis? And if they were involved in the debacle, does it really make sense they should be relied upon to fix it?

I won’t be attending the conference, but I wish participants the best of luck with their attempt to “forge a way forward.” They’re going to need it.

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Wednesday, May 18th, 2016 Debt Crisis, Signs Of The Time No Comments

Signs Of The Time, Part 102

From the official website of the National Association of REALTORS- this past Tuesday:

“Prepping for Doomsday: Bunkers, Panic Rooms, and Going Off the Grid”

Excerpts from the article included:

“If the booming sales of panic rooms are any indication, more and more city dwellers these days are obsessively worrying about everything from home invasions to terror attacks…”

“Some real estate companies are seeing big increases by specializing in ‘survivalist properties’…”

“Survivalists are also particularly hungry for metal containers they can convert into shelters and bury underground…”

While there’s the expected mocking tone to the piece (“Welcome to the brave (and for some, highly profitable) new world of paranoia”), it’s still an interesting look at what’s going on with panic/safe rooms, survival real estate, and (underground) shelters- topics I’ve blogged about from time to time over the last several years.

You can read the entire article on here.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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