Four Unbelievable Narratives – James Rickards 7/8/24


Everyday Americans and investors in particular are confronted with “narratives” daily. Many include hidden agendas that are politically, ideologically or financially driven.

The key for investors is to see the narrative for what it is, avoid the mass psychosis, position yourself for reality and succeed in the end.

Following are four reigning narratives.

In each case, I sketch these narratives (and what the media wants you to believe), then contrast that sketch with reality supported by hard data.

COVID: The Narrative

The pandemic narrative was straightforward: It was caused by a virus of natural origin that passed from animals to humans through exotic game, such as bats and pangolins, that were sold in a wet market in Wuhan, China. It spread quickly and was highly fatal.

The solution was to isolate individuals through lockdowns, social distancing, school closures and masks. Eventually a vaccine became available that would “stop the spread.” Over time, the virus mutated into less dangerous forms, immunity from the vaccine increased and the restrictions were relaxed.

The heroes were Anthony Fauci, who led the lockdown response, and Joe Biden, who forced mass vaccination programs on everyday Americans. The economic costs were worth it. Today, all is well.

The Reality

The virus was created by Communist Chinese scientist Shi Zhengli, known as the “Bat Woman of Wuhan.” It leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology. China immediately banned academic papers pointing to their culpability and created the “wet market” myth.

The Wuhan gain-of-function research that created the virus was funded by Anthony Fauci using a cutout called EcoHealth Alliance. Once the virus leaked, Fauci spent more time covering up his involvement than helping Americans cope with the disease.

Fauci closed schools and workplaces and destroyed the economy all for no good reason. The pandemic policy response was the greatest, most dangerous and costliest hoax in human history.

Ukraine: The Narrative

Since the beginning of the Russian Special Military Operation in Ukraine in February 2022, the narrative has been that Russia began the war as part of a wider ambition to recapture all of Eastern Europe and the Baltic states.

It was essential that the U.S. and NATO allies support Ukraine with as much money and materiel as needed to defeat Russian ambitions. The West was considered to be fighting for democracy and freedom in Ukraine.

The unrelenting financial and weapons support combined with the impact of sanctions and Russian incompetence would lead to an ultimate Ukrainian victory.

Russian dissatisfaction with Putin would lead to a popular uprising that would overthrow him and make Russia a more democratic country friendly to the U.S.

The Reality

Russia didn’t provoke the war. It was provoked by the U.S. in 2008 with George W. Bush’s Bucharest Declaration that Ukraine should join NATO. The provocation continued through a U.S./U.K.-sponsored coup d’etat in 2014 that overthrew a duly elected president and replaced him with a U.S. puppet regime.

The U.S. and NATO then lied to the Russians in the course of negotiating the Minsk agreements in 2014 and 2015, which German Chancellor Angela Merkel admitted the West had no intention of honoring.

The idea that the U.S. is fighting for democracy in Ukraine is a farce. President Zelenskyy declared martial law, suspended elections and imprisoned his political opponents. Zelenskyy’s elected term expired in May 2024, so he now rules as an unelected dictator propped up by a corrupt military.

Meanwhile, U.S. and NATO financial sanctions on Russia due to the war in Ukraine have failed miserably. Russian growth now exceeds U.S. growth. Russia is growing at 5.4% (annualized) while U.S. growth in the most recent quarter was only 1.4%.

Unemployment in Russia is only 2.7% while the unemployment rate in the U.S. is 4.1%. The most recent growth forecasts for 2024 from the IMF show Russia growing at 3.2% and the U.S. growing only 2.7%.

The war isn’t over but Russia will clearly win. The remnants of Ukraine will be a landlocked rump state with no productive economy….

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