Sree Iyer: Namaskar, welcome to episode 69 of Daily Global insights. I am with Sridhar Chityala, it is the 7th of January 2021. Sridharji, namaskar and welcome PGurus Channel
Sridhar Chityala: Namaskar and good morning to all and looking forward to a very interesting next half an hour and 20 minutes, whatever the time is.
Sree Iyer: Sridharji, what happened yesterday in the capitol? It was a monumental mistake on part of Donald Trump to convene this meeting right outside the Capitol Building. What are your thoughts, sir? Four people dead and perhaps many more injured and now claims are coming that others may have come and disrupted and taken over the protest. But, all that could have been avoided if and I’d like you to take a perspective on how perhaps, Trump could have played this thing differently because it looks like now the Republican party has gone on the defensive.
Sridhar Chityala: Well, I call it as the momentary lapse of judgment and monumental failure in terms of the execution of actions that prevailed yesterday. I think we discussed yesterday morning, as well as a day before as to what exactly is January 6, when he said I would be presenting the evidence and everybody kind of be there and be supportive.
What turned out was a complete forecast, all the good work that Trump has done whether you love him or hate him, whatever the situation is, you know all the great work and good work that he has done, all the leaders who had placed faith in him. He just kind of blew it away, in a naiveté of the display, must recognize his Washington DC if its Washington DC, Chicago, New York, Seattle, Portland, Minnesota any of this City’s, we have seen in the past. In 2020, we have seen lots of activities, you know, which resulted in mayhems. So, therefore, the potential for that to happen is very high.
And we also saw it in December, the party that he had when he had all of the members, this is pre-elections. All of the members of the House and the Senate visiting the White House and when the people left the party the amount of inconvenience as well as the harassment that they were subjected to by protesters. In fact, they went on to say we won’t allow the Trump supporters to vote, we want to allow these guys to leave etcetera, so lots of things. So, there was enough warning for him not to get into what he got into yesterday. But, having got into to that, he should have basically completed the presentation and asked the people to disperse rather than ask them to march to Capitol Hill. What followed is one of the most disgraceful moments in any country’s history, it will go down. People barging into buildings and climbing walls and throwing stuff and fighting with police. There also seems to be some video showing some people colluding and allowing these people to, showing the way to go up but, whatever it is. It’s just not expected of a leader of first world country and one of the most powerful nations in the world. It was a despicable picture.
Sree Iyer: And what played out after that was almost like a formality even though there were some Senators who objected to the Electoral College count over half of the elected GOP congressmen/women also objected in the Congress but, Pence punted, he stood firm and he said that the law does not allow him to do anything at this point. So, off the four options or five options that we had discussed, he took the one that was perhaps, the most expedient easiest for him. I don’t know he probably is entertaining thoughts of running for President four years from now, who knows. But, Mike Pence did not listen to his boss and now we are seeing a few more resignations from the White House that is, after the fact. Now, it’s all over the political saga of Trump as a politician, I think, my personal opinions, sir, I could be wrong about this, I think this has come to an end now, he should just let the process play outlet the nation heal and move forward, this is my inputs. There are still a lot of questions that remain unanswered. For example, what happened in the AT&T blasts what happened in the election? All the different observations that have been made by many people all those things don’t go away, Hunter Biden’s corruption charges. So, this is just the beginning, although at this point, as you said correctly the Republicans look like they are on the defensive. How do you see them picking themselves up from where they are now and moving forward and working as an effective opposition, Sridharji?
Sridhar Chityala: Well, I think it’s going to be very fascinating in terms of, it’s like dropping balls, You know, there’s going to be a slew of issues that are going to be propping up in the House and the Senate. So, you got a very divided Senate in the Republican leadership, but a far more unified House because you could see that in yesterday’s debate. The House was far more unified relative to the Senate. So, they Therefore you’re going to have some challenges in terms of how they’re going to balance various issues that are going to emanate, that’s number one.
Number two, Trump has been a very dominant figure, has been very dominant figure as a leader in the past four years that was visible, when you had people across 17 States involuntarily, going around and silently offering protest in the respective state capital houses, so you could see that. So, therefore, the Republican party must first determine, is it going to be Trump continuing or is it going to be someone else stepping in and if so, how are they going to reach out to the community and demonstrate leadership qualities to address this 72 to 74 million people who voted for them, which is highest number ever that they could muster, highest number 74 million people have voted for the Republican party, notwithstanding these 80 million people who voted for Mr Biden. So, therefore, I think it’s a huge challenge that confronts them. The fact is his own election as a leader when you go back to 2016 as a nomination was contentious. He was never expected to be picked and he just came through the huddle and even within his own party took some time for him to embrace and he himself was trying to come to grips with the various facets of various people.
And yesterday some of the statements that he made, he tells you, for example, I did not know Mr Kemp and I made and look what he turned out to be. I supported Mr McConnell and see what he turned up. So, you’re finding this kind of big gaps right now. So, the question, therefore, to the leadership is who he is the leader and is that leader does he have a voice within the community and if so, How are they going to shape the narrative?
They will be eventually pick up this thread, but the question is that it is going to be how? That’s the challenge, so, we will know. If Trump kind of says hey, you know which is very much possible. I just don’t think, this is the end of the day for him. I don’t believe so, I think that he’s made one statement yesterday which is to say, this is not over and I’m coming back. This is even the early hours of this morning. By the way three things, he is off facebook, off Twitter and I think he’s also off Instagram, so, he’s off channels. So the only way he can communicate with his audiences is through his media group. So I’m sure we’ll hear from him today, which we may be able to talk about tomorrow, what he’s planning to do? Mind you let’s not forget, both Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump and Ivanka Trump have also been raising a lot of noise. Is this going to be Donald Trump basically saying, I’m taking charge with Kimberly. We don’t know.
Sree Iyer: You mean Donald Trump Jr?
Sridhar Chityala: Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly, they’ve been very active in the political system.
Sree Iyer: Yes. So, Republicans do need leadership and in what shape, form and way, it’s going to evolve we’ll have to wait and see. The Democrats are chomping at the bit, now, you have Vice president-elect Kamala Devi Harris as the person, who would be casting the deciding vote, should the Senate divide along party lines 50/50. It is now official, the two Georgia runoff seats have been won by the Democrats. So, it’s 50/50 in the Senate. So, we have to you know, there’s a small window of two years in which a lot of legislation can be carried forward by the Biden Administration. From the looks of it, it looks as if they really really want to hit the ground running and pass a lot of legislation, some of which may alarm the people who may even have voted for the Democrats. We have to wait and see, we are going to be watching this thing.
From tomorrow, it’s a new chapter for PGurus, as we move forward and try and make sense of what this government is going to start doing. Now, the next thing sir, you mention that Twitter put restrictions, Facebook also restricted Trump and so did Instagram. The defence Bill, what is the status now? I’m sorry. I’m going off script a little bit, I’m just curious because there was that rider where Trump wanted to see the end of section 230 in the Communications Bill. So, what is the status on that? Do you have any update for that?
Sridhar Chityala: Section 230 has not been, you remember that Defence bill was tied to that $2,000 stimulus. Ok, the $2,000 stimulus, the way House approved $2,000 was approved, they said they were receptive to conduct an inquiry and on the elections, but they are also open to either completely dismantling 230 or watering it down. Mitch McConnell vetoed that if you recall. That is why $2,000 did not make it and which became one of the big items, vote for us, you get $2,000 and everybody when you look at people in interviewed in Georgia, they will say you know, we are affected the small businesses are affected, we can’t get, this is the time we need help both on the small business side as well as the People, individual side, we need the extra fund which helps us to get through. So, it in my view was another blunder not by the President. President said, I want a bigger stimulus but it’s another blunder that was committed by the Republicans in the Senate when Mr McConnell stood, you know stubborn against the interests of the people, right? So therefore where does it stand to answer your question? It stands in limbo land and who are the biggest funders of those 400 million dollars of which good chunk of it went to the Democrats, who were the biggest funders, especially Ossoff, the Microsoft, the big tech boys in the Silicon Valley where the people, who are the sponsors and they put big money into the Senator runoffs, which is not typically happened. And they’ve also been allies in this what you call the media blast that is gripping the world.
Sree Iyer: Just to add to what you said sir, viewers, we had mentioned about the fact that 400 million dollars were put into the Georgia runoff races, this was from a hangout, I had with an on-the-ground volunteer working for the Republican party and she alleged that 400 million dollars were in play, people are getting $500 a day just to do the volunteering work for a fair amount of time, that’s a lot of money. On the back of envelope calculations, we arrived at if you assume 240 working days in a year, it comes out $120,000 salary, that is like a very good salary. So, a lot of money, money flowed like water and this nobody will tell you that but, today you heard it from PGurus. Now, watch see how many people are going to say who funded the 400 million dollars and this is insane for just two Senate seats, you spend so much and as similar large sums of money were spent to try and you know, unseat Graham and McConnell whatever disagreements you may have with their approach, with their philosophy, with their actions, this kind of money hooting being in to try and get take a certain individual out, is insane and I think Republicans need to realize that, the money of unimaginable magnitude has played in the 2020 elections. Any thoughts going forward sir, if Biden will order a national election commission or at least seat a blue-ribbon commission, which will start looking into how to make the US Elections more seamless, more sincere, more fair, more straightforward only for the citizens of the United States?
Sridhar Chityala: Sir. I’ll give you my honest answer if I am advising Joe Biden, I’ll tell Joe Biden the system worked, the process worked. The judicial system worked. You can amend and change rules. There’s precedence. You can basically allow and change people to vote. You can have everybody doing absentee vote. Why would I change anything? I would not change anything. I’ll preserve the status quo and continue because you read the narrative in the media, the media continues to say alleged discredited statement that Trump has relied on being an election fraud that is what he has indicated. So should that be the case, why would I change anything? The only thing that I would change is all the illegal aliens would be now allowed to also, that was the contention that they had those who are here, they should be allowed to vote and there are 12 million people who still did not vote. We don’t know whether they voted or not. These are the 12 million people, illegal aliens who are here in the shores. So I think that you may not see much change. The only thing that you may see is, that is very very possible is, removing this Electoral College concept. Now for that, you need 2/3rds, I just don’t see that happening.
Sree Iyer: Irony of irony is the Chinese Communist Party now says Biden is the new window of hope and China is also combating covid now, version 2 – 3 who knows, they rarely put out any information about that. Sir, there were two pipe bombs found outside the RNC building that got detonated and the diffused so there is a lot at play, isn’t it? Trump did say a few days back that he was going to organize his ally in DC. So if there were any disruptive elements who wanted to do something they had the time. right?
Sridhar Chityala: Well, I think this whole thing has turned into a Fiasco, making announcements, grandiose announcements, well well ahead of time and big show and pomp that occurred and you can expect any kind of disruptions that one can conceive of, there were skirmishes even prior. They all assembled, the day before yesterday evening onwards. I think this whole, whether you can find this pipe, it’s obviously reported. They were two pipe bombs found near the RNC office diffused and RNC is the Republican National Committee and DNC is the Democratic National Committee, both the offices were evacuated. All this mayhem that you can expect because the objective is to discredit, the objective is always to discredit. That’s what we saw, the whole defund police movement and all these kinds of things is the objective, is to discredit the state. That’s the intent. That’s what happens to the extent that, as you rightly pointed out, Chinese are saying this, ‘when we look at the demonstrations it very much looks like that the protests in Hong Kong. So we are therefore justified to put the descent but it is not the Chinese foreign Ministry from Beijing, it is some spokesman from Hong Kong or somewhere making this statement, which is now carried in mainstream media, which is to say, ‘this very much resembles that.’ So you can see how the rest of the world and the outside world is trying to rationalize in leveraging this moment of madness that happened yesterday turning the flip side and say ‘this happens in the United States. So, therefore, hey, you know don’t come and tell us about the morals.
Sree Iyer: And building on that Global News, Vietnam has jailed a journalist for propaganda critical of the State. We know that Vietnam is also a communist state, but this is the first time that the media’s voice is being muzzled, isn’t it?
Sridhar Chityala: It is, I think that’s why we will begin to see a format or an epidemic, not a pandemic, but we may see an epidemic of such activity. It will be interesting to see what happens in the Himalayan region. It will be interesting to see what happens in the South China Seas, it will be very interesting to see what happens in Mainland Europe, etc etc. So what you are going to witness is, what you’re witnessing is, this is a very unfortunate event the Vietnamese raising and putting them behind bars, for any voice of dissent that’s very very unfortunate.
Sree Iyer: Now, Iran is denying that deceased Korean ship and crew are being held as hostages. We all should remember in 1979 Iran holding the people who are working in the United States consulate as hostages resulted in Jimmy Carter losing his election. There were lots of things that happened, so anytime the statement that Iran is holding somebody as hostage especially foreigners that raises the shackles of everyone. What are your thoughts on what is playing out in that part of the world sir?
Sridhar Chityala: Three specific issues. First and foremost is that Iran says the South Korean tanker spilt into the border, into its Iranian border. So that’s the first issue which the Korean tankers are denying. The second, they were saying they were becoming an environmental hazard because a ship is spilling oil so that again doesn’t seem to be holding water. The third, the people basically mentioned that these fellows were armed and stormed and wanted to take prisoners which again the Iranians have denied and if I have to add the fourth one, which is new, apparently South Korea has frozen $7 billion dollars of Iranian funds as part of these sanctions and they were saying these people are being held ransom for releasing those funds which again Iran has denied. The net result of all this is all these areas, the Korea, Iran and parts of China. I mean, we know that in the Bohai Sea, Australian tankers, Indian tankers, they’re all held up saying that because these people could be potentially be inflicted with covid and so they won’t be allowed to enter the mainland and these things are standing there. So these countries don’t have conventional kind of compassionate measures or protocols, and one is better off or better advised to stay away and then you go coming to the Indian Ocean, you have these very famous pirates who are still hanging around. But yet these guys want to take risks and navigate in these waters. And so, they are bound to be conflicted or confronted with these types of risks that you are seeing. That whole area, especially the Persian Gulf and Hormuz straits is really contentious just as what we saw in Taiwan straits, which is a very narrow mainline which separates mainland China from Taiwan and also not too far from Japan. So these are all waters where you are looking for trouble, but people do have to, carry forward the trade and so they carry all these different consignments loaded with risks.
Sree Iyer: And Hong Kong has arrested some more leaders, 50 leaders and this doesn’t seem to show any signs of stopping and the United States now needs to start acting finding its voice. And what is the United States going to do? In your opinion, sir, what do you think is going to play out?
Sridhar Chityala: Well, Mike Pompeo just issued a statement last night, early hours of this morning condemning DRS and indicating that they will be further sanctions. I’m not sure how many more sanctions you can go on doing? China is not going to listen. So more sanctions and this just demonstrates the way CCP behaves. In his statement that he has issued on this 50 new arrests of these Democratic legislators who are protesting against this new law that is being imposed on them. So what can I say? I mean the companies have been sanctioned, money has been sanctioned, the destination has been sanctioned officials who are communist, CCP officials, who are engaged influential, they’re being sanctioned. So I think you have gone to a stage where none of these things seems to matter and they continue to engage in what they believe in, creating problems.
Sree Iyer: Let’s take a quick look at markets. Yesterday, despite all the rioting going on in the capital, in and around the Capitol Hill building, the markets first went down and then they showed remarkable recovery and I don’t know how the Futures look like today, but I want you to touch upon the New York Stock Exchange decision to reimpose or re-de-list the three Chinese telecom companies. So you have had these flip-flops going back and forth. Perhaps you can explain the rationale. I don’t know if you can, how this is happening or is it just that there’s an embedded deep state inside NYSE that is trying to align things to go on a certain way. Please enlighten us a little bit about what happened – sir.
Sridhar Chityala: Let me first respond to the second question, which is these three telecom companies, the sanctions were imposed that they should be delisted, so they were delisted first, following the order. Somebody from the office of foreign currency and assets seems to have indicated, ‘I don’t seem to have this order from the state department which says they should be delisted. So, therefore, they say, ‘oh no, we have we talked to Office of the foreign currency and foreign assets. They said there’s no delisting order.’ This is a bureaucratic failure. So they basically delisted, then relisted them. Then what happened. Once the state department got wind of it they said ‘hey man, we have issued the order haven’t you got the papers so they probably sent the papers because Mike Pompeo has, whatever it is, this is a bureaucratic bungle. This is another kind of thing that happens in large democracies where you have, A doesn’t know what B is doing, or between A and B, the paper moves take time and people make decisions ahead of the paper moves and then you have this problem. Mind you, this is well ahead of time. So then what happened, the confirmation came, they said a no-no, we’re going to basically delist them as we planned. So this is what has happened in the case of those three companies.
As far as the markets are concerned, today as we look at the markets, the Dow, Futures is up about 0.37% or 0.4%. And then the S&P is about 0.55%. And then the NASDAQ is always the tech, yesterday the tech was down, Bank stocks and energy stocks and Pharma was up. Today the tech stock seem to be making their way up because their feeling is that the Democrats would be a lot more sympathetic to the tech in terms of the breaking off or whatever it is, the imposition.
Now the question that can be asked is why are the markets up? The markets are up; basically, they believe that there are more cash and more liquidity coming into the system for the next 12 months and Goldman Sachs has predicted that there will be an immediate release of $600 billion maybe the $2,000 that is going to be released plus some more and they may also offer money to those other categories of people who were left neglected in the first half, so there could be a couple of tranches of money coming in, and there is also more stimulus coming in which is for the Paris Accord and some of these agencies and also for $2 trillion is the number that I saw for making these buildings environmentally compliant. This was denied in the election, but I saw the number is listed by the Biden team. So this another $4-5 trillion dollars of cash that are expected to come into the system. So if you are in stocks, US Stocks 2020 looks pretty good in terms of good performance and a good outcome.
Sree Iyer: Thank you very much Sridharji, will be back, same time tomorrow with news around the world and thanks for joining viewers. Today was a Gang Buster day. Namaskar and see you all tomorrow.
Sridhar Chityala: Namaskar and thank you so much. Have a wonderful day.