Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Fear mongering

Do you grow weary of the persistent use of fear mongering as a tool by the financial media to attract an audience?

According to - fear mongering (or scaremongering) is the use of fear to influence the opinions and actions of others towards some specific end. The feared object or subject is sometimes exaggerated, and the pattern of fear mongering is usually one of repetition, in order to continuously reinforce the intended effects of this tactic.

Inciting fear is a technique to gain notoriety and influence. Some financial advisors and money managers use fear mongering as a means to prospect for new clients - to attract investors to the safely of their enterprise and away from their current and dangerous advisor.

I recall a "Night With The Bears" April 7, 2009 in Toronto, a speaker's series organized by Sprott Asset Management. Guests include Eric Sprott, Meredith Whitney of Meredith Whitney Advisory Group, Nouriel Roubini of New York University and Ian Gordon, author of The Long Wave Analyst newsletters. My invitation said this is the first time these "four spectacular Bears", (Roubini, Sprott, Whitney and Gordon) will be together on stage discussing the economy

A packed house gasped as "lunatic fringe" cycle expert Ian Gordon predicted the Dow Industrials would hit 1000 before this downturn is over. Gordon's analysis is based on the Kondratiev long wave or K-wave which spans about 50+ years as measured from trough to trough.

So as investors we must fear the worst - avoid any type of risk - don't invest - don't buy a house - don't change jobs - don't trust anyone - don't borrow - don't believe in our way of life - hide or you get H1N1

The following is a quote from the classic publication, Reminiscences of a Stock Operator by Edwin Lefavre

Among the hazards of speculation the happening of the unexpected – I might even say of the un-expectable - ranks high. There are certain chances that the most prudent man is justified in taking – chances that he must take if he wishes to be more than a mercantile mollusc. Normal business hazards are no worse than the risk a man runs when he goes out of his house into the street or sets out on a railway journey. When I lose money by reason of some development which nobody could foresee I think no more vindictively of it than I do of an inconveniently timed storm.

Life itself from the cradle to the grave is a gamble and what happens to me because I do not possess the gift of second sight I can bear undisturbed.

I rest my case.

1 comment:

Bob Griffin said...

I love that book, holds truths even in today's market