Painted into a Corner
John Bertrand is no ordinary guy; aged 15, he saw how his father, grandfather and great-grandfather all died in the span of one year. All of the males in his family were gone and that does something to your psyche.
He would later say it shaped him and made his life crazy, but in a good way. It was John Bertrand who fell in love with sailing in 1962, when listening on his little transistor to commentary of America’s Cup yacht race, where Australia was attempting to beat the undefeated New York Yacht Club, representing the United States of America.
For 132 years, going back to the mid-1800s, no one had ever snatched victory from the jaws of the Americans – it was the longest-standing win streak in international sports.
John said of himself that under the veneer of being a normal person, he had a fire in him that drove him to extraordinary lengths, when he set his sights on ending America’s winning streak against the then legendary Dennis Conner, who had won 38 straight races and was considered the most gifted sailor in the world.
Conner had used the funding of the affluent New York Yacht Club to win the race, held in Newport, Rhode Island. With their backing, he enlisted the help of the Navy, as well as the aerospace industry to design his boats.
Bertrand got help from Australian real estate speculator Alan Bond, who wanted to sign his name in the history books and finance an Australian team that could challenge the almost monopolized turf of America’s Cup.
They brought on an artist with only three years of formal schooling, a guy by the name of Ben Lexcen, to design the 12-meter boat that would rival that of the Americans, put together by the Navy and engineers in the aerospace field.
For nearly 80 years, people around the globe had already been manufacturing 12-meter boats, but Ben Lexcen was supposed to find a way to perfect his, against the almighty and experienced USA professionals.
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Ben Lexcen invented the winged-keel, the most ingenious peace of ingenuity introduced to this industry in decades and helped the Australians come back from being down 3 to 1 in a best-of-7 series and clinch victory and take the cup!
Against all odds, after 132 years, America lost.
Today, we see the Federal Reserve and the other central banks across the planet raising interest rates to levels that cripple the entire credit of the world, at large.
How can you have inflation, if the central bank is making it unbearable to borrow funds?
Yet, even after raising the FED Funds Rate to 5.25%-5.50%, oil is breaking out again, as well as gold, while the signs point to the last rate hike being the end of their run and that they’ll leave it here until March or May 2024, when the first cut will occur.
Just as no one had believed in the Australians, who came into the race with their weird-looking keel, no one is forecasting inflationary re-breakout, but I think that all the central banks did was contain the issue and “buy time,” but not solve the actual underlying reasons that the world is more expensive.
Inflation will be the unpleasant surprise of 2024, and I believe that those who aren’t prepared for this will suffer immensely. He who doesn’t own precious metals does not respect history, and is doomed to repeat its mistakes.
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