It's not an accident that the New York Post has likened Gerald Celente to a modern Nostradamus. These days, in fact, Celente almost makes Nostradamus look like an optimist.
As he bounces from one media appearance to another, Celente has predicted that the economic crisis will not only worsen, but lead to food riots and a tax revolt. He ridicules the Consumer Price Index because it fails to include food and fuel and calls the Obama administration's stimulus program "facism."
No wonder conservative talk show hosts love him.
Nevertheless, Celente has achieved a certain degree of credibility with some of his earlier predictions, all filtered thorugh the Rhinebeck, NY-based Trends Research Institute. He was on record as predicting the current fiscal malaise as early as the fall of November, 2007, and bought the Internet domain name Panicof08.com that month.
Celente's detractors claim that some of his other predictions are undocumented, and he has been dubbed "Dr. Doom" by those who feel his current take on the immediate future is too dark. Yet his accuracy has been hailed by pundits ranging from Oprah Winfrey to Bill O'Reilly.
A native of The Bronx (born Nov. 29, 1946), Celente began making predictions as a professor at St. John's University. Later, after a period working as an executive assistant to the Secretary of the New York State Senate and a stint with a chemical company, Celente made some fortuitous investments in oil shortly after hearing President Carter refer to the Shah of Iran as "A bastion of stability in the Middle East." A visitor to Iran not long before, Celente had seen a country ripe for revolt.
With his windfall from the leap in oil prices that followed the fall of the Shah, he founded his institute in the Hudson Valley community of Rhinebeck. The Institute website declares "Our research distinguishes fact from fantasies, trends from fads and assesses the new opportunities required to create the future..."
Celente, who characterizes himself as a "political atheist" who "sees things as they are and not the way I wish they would be," doesn’t like the future for 2009.
In an interview with humanevents.com, he said: "The boys at the Fed re-inflated the economy by lowering interest rates to a 46-year low - and in turn created the real estate bubble, much bigger than the dot com bubble. Now they’re creating the bailout bubble, which will ultimately dwarf the real estate bubble. It will cause the implosion of the global economy world wide - which will not be able to be repaired by creating yet another bubble. Every time the government fails, it tells a bigger lie and then a still bigger lie. These previous bubbles were not allowed to pop -- but they didn't destroy the infrastructure of the country. This bailout bubble will."
The only hope, Celente added, is for American society to return to the virtues of personal responsibility and hard work. Meanwhile, he has been critical of the country's politicians, foreign policy, amusements, and even diet.
A staunch champion of the gold standard, Celente sees an even worse depression in 2011, following the "failed recovery" of 2010.