Have You Heard of This Scam?
Andy Snyder|June 22, 2022
The gypsies stopped by the other day.
They honked their horn a few times as they pulled in the driveway.
Clearly, they were in a hurry.
“We’re working up the road and have some extra asphalt,” the overweight and overly tan man yelled out his truck’s window. “We need a place to put in quickly.”
“No, thanks,” we replied as we motioned for the scammers to keep moving.
“We’ll give you a great deal,” he said, putting the truck in reverse.
We said nothing and pointed with an outstretched arm to the road. He got the hint.
A Lousy Deal
Their scam is simple.
They put low-grade asphalt down, and just about halfway through the job, they say they don’t have enough material to finish. They’ll have to go get more… and charge out the nose for it.
The victim either pays what they demand… or gets a half-paved driveway.
They’re crooks who break no laws. Just ask the young couple down the street from us. They have a half-finished driveway with a big bump in the middle of it.
Meanwhile, in the world of economics… the law-bending gypsies are canvassing the nation’s neighborhoods like never before.
Gas tax holidays…
Student loan forgiveness…
Even a proxy war in Ukraine.
It’s urgent and we need to do something right now, they tell us. The press falls for it. The people fall for it. Only then do they say there is more to the story.
Take the trillion-dollar infrastructure spending bill that was all the rage a year ago.
Few Americans remember the urgency with which it was peddled. They’ve forgotten all about it.
But the gypsy boss is knocking at the door… and he needs a check.
It was a good deal, they said. The roads will be fixed. The economy will be strong. And the darn thing will practically pay for itself.
Well… there’s a bump in the road.
And to fix it, we’ll all have to pay more.
The Worst Is Yet to Come
It turns out that costs for these projects are now coming in 20% higher than the government’s estimates, on average.
The gypsies promised one thing and are delivering another.
They forgot to tell us that labor prices soar when the entire country decides to fix its roads at once.
The infrastructure plan will create more than 825,000 jobs.
That’s great… until you talk with somebody charged with trying to hire that many folks in an era of record-low unemployment.
It used to be that construction workers went to where the jobs were. A bridge project in El Paso would bring folks from Newark. A tunnel job in San Diego would lure folks from Denver.
We had pals who packed up and went to Alaska to help weld the pipeline together.
Today, things have changed.
Now it’s a bidding war.
Companies are luring workers with big bonuses, promises of year-round work and even new “employee advocate” roles, where full-time workers get the help of a company-funded assistant who helps schedule personal appointments and manage a worker’s very in-demand time.
It’s all good… until economists like us say we won’t see a turnaround in stocks until inflation reaches its peak.
Famed economic data wonk Ed Yardeni hit the press with the idea this week. The pain won’t be over until food and energy prices start to fall, he said, giving a nod to next year.
Even his thought that inflation could rise through the next eight months looks a bit optimistic when we realize the gypsies in D.C. won’t start writing the bulk of their infrastructure checks until the fourth quarter of 2025.
By then, filling potholes just might be a six-figure job that comes with its own executive assistant.
Add in a host of other gypsy trinkets – things like student loan forgiveness, gas rebates and the slashing of critical tariffs – and it’s clear that it’s all quite a scam.
We’ll be promised something new and shiny… but the real cost will be truly unaffordable.
Investors will soon get the deal of their lifetimes. But it will come at a steep price.
Many will succumb to the tantalizing charms and persuasive talents of those transient, four-year gypsies.
Next time they come knocking… quickly send them on their way.
They only bring trouble.
Andy Snyder is the founder of Manward Press, the nation’s premier source of unfiltered, unorthodox views on money and what it means for a free society. An American author, investor and serial entrepreneur, Andy cut his teeth at an esteemed financial firm with nearly $100 billion in assets under management. Andy and his ideas have been featured on Fox News, on countless radio stations, and in numerous print and online outlets. He’s been a keynote speaker and panelist at events all over the world, from four-star ballrooms to Capitol hearing rooms. Today, Andy’s dissident thoughts on life, liberty and investing can be found in his popular daily newsletter, Manward Financial Digest.