A most extraordinary thing happened Monday evening. It was so remarkable that when I read the headlines late that night, I thought they could not possibly be true.
The headline read that a group of FBI agents raided former President Donald Trump's Mar A Largo home. Preposterous, I thought. Such an idea was unthinkable. Maybe other, less advanced countries might behave in such a manner, but not the United States of America.
I woke the following day to find that the FBI had raided President Trump's home. They spent hours and hours riffling through closets and private quarters, even breaking into the President's confidential safe.
As I read through the accounts of what happened, now pouring in from around the world, I sat stunned. What could be the meaning of all this? Why was such action taken? This action was far beyond anything done to a former President before.
I remember well when Richard Nixon left the Oval Office in total disgrace. He had resigned instead of facing an Impeachment Trial in front of the Senate. Most of the nation despised him.
And yet he gave that final wave from the Marine 1 Helicopter and was never bothered again. He lived out his life in the peace and serenity of his San Clemente estate. And he never had to fear that armed agents would raid his home.
The same is not valid for Donald Trump. A man who garnered the second most number of votes for President in history. He served his country honorably for four years and deserved the peace and security of any former President.
This Raid was carefully designed and orchestrated for maximum visibility. President Trump is slandered by the innuendo of such a Raid, calculated to take place when Trump and his Secret Service Detail are away. They were unable to protect their property or their legal prerogatives.
The Raid, in and of itself, is an accusation of wrongdoing. In standard terms, a case of slander. The implication is that Trump broke the law. But no formal charges have been brought. By most accounts, a Trump lawyer who was on-site at the time was not allowed to keep a copy of the Search Warrant.
Today is Friday, and it's been five long days since this egregious action occurred. Still, there is not a word from Washington. Not one explanation as to why they treated a former President like this. Is Trump under indictment? If so, we'd like to see the charges. Has he committed some grievous wrong? Show us.
It was the FBI that brought this matter out into the open. That ripped off the cover of whatever investigation may be occurring. After showing all the world that something has happened with this President, the FBI does not have a right to go back into hiding. This game of attack and hide that the Bureau is engaged in must end.
When last I looked at our nation's org chart, the FBI reports to the Attorney General, who in turn reports to the President. It is time for one Joseph Robinette Biden, 46th President of the United States, to step forward and explain to the American voters what's happening here.
It was under his watch that these actions occurred. And if he doesn't know what happened, as some reports claim, he needs to get to the bottom of this personally.
President Biden owes the American Public and Donald Trump an explanation. There should be no more prevarication.
Precise and thorough detailing of just what has occurred. Is President Trump under investigation? Now is the time to let the world know. Not in dribs and drabs. Not by innuendo. Not by cleverly designed raids aimed at casting aspersions.
This responsibility lies solidly with President Biden.
When Harry Truman sat in that Oval Office, he commented that the "buck stopped with him." It was an acknowledgment that the responsibility and authority of the Presidency were his alone. Today that high office is in Joe Biden's hands.
Will you, Mr. President, rise to this occasion?
While you and I slept, it's been a massive night for economic news worldwide. It paints a picture of runaway inflation for some and the whiff of deflation for others.
We begin with the incomprehensible: Argentina. Argentina is a country with a long history of inflation, but currently, they are at levels that defy understanding. Last night the Central Bank of Argentina raised interest rates to 69 1/2%, which still did not match the runaway 71% inflation that they are enduring in that South American Country.
Then I guess you can get some sense of the mood over Fleet Street when the headline reads British Economy not as bad as feared. Really? It was reported that the British Economy did shrink last quarter, but only by a tenth percent. So I suppose that's a victory of sorts.
Deflation? Yesterday the US reported that inflation at the Producer Level declined for July, falling by half a percent. Spain matched those lower price levels when it announced its consumer prices fell by three-tenths percent. These price drops combined with the report that prices at the consumer level for Americans were flat. Indicates that we may experience a dramatic shift in inflation. It was driven, of course, by those lower gasoline prices. Lower prices are one of the most significant economic trends to watch.
In reports today, the headline number will be the latest survey by the University of Michigan on Consumer sentiment. Remember, this report hit a record low in June. Today it is expected to show that the country's mood is improving, but just modestly.
And then we'll get one of those overlooked reports. One that I think is the best measure of the oil industry's current outlook. It's the number of active oil wells in the country. Just three years ago, there were nearly 900 wells actively drilling, and the price of oil was low. The pandemic hit, and the number of active wells fell to fewer than 200. Since that low, the number of active wells has been steadily increasing. It was rising to just over 600, until this month. That first week in August saw drilling decrease, and I expect that to repeat this week. Fewer active oil wells do not bode well for future prices at the gas pump.
A Light day in earnings, leading off this morning, has been Broadridge Financial Solutions, the stock trading slightly higher.