Jeb Bush Believes Unconstitutional NSA Spying Is "Hugely Important"

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who is seriously considering a run for the White House in 2016, said Wednesday that the National Security Agency’s program that collects bulk telephone records was “hugely important,” throwing his support behind the practice as Congress debates whether to reauthorize or limit it. At an event on foreign policy hosted by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Mr. Bush, a Republican, said, “For the life of me, I don’t understand the debate” over the metadata program.

What Happens When A Traditional Muslim Goes For A Walk In Milan

An Egyptian student living in Milan, who walked around the city for five hours dressed as an imam, has released a video showing how he was insulted along the way. Dressed in an imam’s robe and carrying a copy of the Koran, Hamdy Mahisen made the video below, published by La Repubblica, as part of a social experiment to see how tolerant people in Milan are of Muslims. Along the way, he attracted odd stares and insults such as "Taliban shit!". One onlooker said, "Shit, have you seen the Isis?" while another remarked, "Imagine if he has a gun under his tunic".

"Holy Grail Of Trading" Crosses Into The Twilight Zone: HFT Firm Virtu Has Lost Money Once In 1,485 Trading Days

"The chart below illustrates our daily Adjusted Net Trading Income from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2014. The overall breadth and diversity of our market making activities, together with our real-time risk management strategy and technology, have enabled us to have only one overall losing trading day during the period depicted, a total of 1,485 trading days..."

There's No Way Out Now: "That Choice Was Yours"

The overwhelming mainstream media message continues to be everything is strong and the future is absolutely as bright as ever, as measured by the all time high markets; but the facts and the data clearly tell a different story. While memories are short, 2008/9 (and 199/2000) taught us that pundits will always tout the ‘everything is great’ story until it is too late. They laugh and ostracize anyone who attempts to rock the boat with a message of reality. And they do it to deter others from delivering such a message. That message is that there exists no catalyst mechanism to pull us out of this economic slumber. So you can listen to and laugh along with the ‘all knowing’ pundits or you can take heed of history and protect yourself now. But do remember the choice was yours. You will have nobody to blame but yourself when and if it all comes tumbling down and you were too busy laughing.

Tesla: Bonfire Of The Money Printers' Vanities

The trouble with the money printing madness in the Eccles Building is that it generates huge deformations, misallocations and speculative excesses in the financial markets. Eventually these bubbles splatter, as they have twice this century.  The resulting carnage, needless to say, is not small. Combined financial and real estate asset markdowns totaled about $7 trillion after the dotcom bust and $15 trillion during the 2008-2009 financial crisis. The Wall Street casino is now festooned with giant deadweight losses waiting to happen. But perhaps none is more egregious than Tesla - a crony capitalist con job that has long been insolvent, and has survived only by dint of prodigious taxpayer subsidies and billions of free money from the Fed’s Wall Street casino.

"The Smart Money Is Selling, Not Buying" Goldman Warns With Valuations In The "99th Percentile"

"The median stock sports a P/E and EV/EBITDA of 18.0x and 11.0x, respectively. These valuations rank in the 99th percentile of both P/E and EV/EBITDA multiples since 1976.  The proverbial “smart money” is selling, not buying. Completed private equity sales through M&A and via follow-on offerings have both surged to record levels measured by both number of deals and by transaction value. A total of 350 follow-on sales by private equity firms were completed in 2013 and 2014, a 70% jump from the 210 transactions completed in 2011 and 2012."

A Close Encounter With Jon Corzine

Jon Corzine had an illustrious career in investment banking, rising to the very top of Goldman Sachs, until he got pushed out in 1999. He subsequently decided to try his luck in politics, and was eventually elected as a Senator from New Jersey in 2001, then Governor in 2006. After losing to Chris Christie in 2010, Corzine was promptly hired as the CEO of MF Global. He was back in the game of finance - and with something to prove. While the majority of voters in New Jersey breathed a sigh of relief, the clients of MF Global could not imagine the disaster that would unfold.

Germany Gives Greece Just Enough Rope: Varoufakis Says If Troika Rejects Reforms "The Deal Is Dead And Buried"

Here is what Schauble meant when he said that the "Greeks Certainly Will Have A Difficult Time To Explain The Deal To Their Voters": under the conditionality of the Troika's approval, the Tsipras government now has to walk back essentially all the promises it made to the Greek people - promises which by some accounts amount to over €20 billion in additional spending - or the Troika, pardon Institutions, will yank the entire deal and the Grexit can then commence. And that's the bottom line. It's also the reason Schauble was gloating: because he gave the Greek government just enough rope with which to hang itself.

The "War On Terror" Turns Inward – DHS Report Warns Of Right Wing Terror Threat

And so it begins... the intentional demonization of a growing segment of the U.S. population that rightly believes the government is run by a collective of thieving, corrupt, immoral sociopaths. Commingling dissent, violence and “right wing” ideology will be key in the ultimate division of government critics in these United States, and a successful attempt to scare people away from questioning a clearly degraded and parasitic status quo.

Europe "Isolates" Putin? Considers "Reframing" Energy Relations With Russia

It appears President Obama's "costs" imposed on Russia have boomerang'd just too much for Europe to take. As Reuters reports, The EU is seeking to create a single energy market, based on cross-border connections to improve security of supply and reduce dependence on Russia, which supplies roughly one third of EU energy. The headline pivot away from Putin, likely misses the fact that there is very little a stagnating Europe can do, even in the medium term, to 'reduce' dependence on Washington's nemesis.

Why European Bondholders Refuse To Sell To The ECB

Just weeks before Mario Draghi's "whatever it takes" trillion-euro Q€ bond-buying-fest is set to come true, The ECB faces a problem they likely never expected - unwilling sellers. On the heels of our analysis showing central banks will monetize over 100% of government bond issuance this year, Reuters reports that mere weeks before the ECB begins their program, banks, pension funds and insurers across the continent are hoarding them for regulatory or accounting reasons. "We prefer to hold on to them," said Antoine Lissowski, deputy CEO at French insurer CNP Assurances. "The ECB's policy ... is reaching its limits now."

Are You Ready For Total Currency War?

Right now there is a world war taking place right in front of us but all we see on cable news are the nightly military skirmishes on the periphery of the conflict. The real war is economic, financial and currency related and the empire is already over-extended in debt, military operations and financial manipulation. Surely the near-term dollar strength is evidence that while defeat is not imminent and that all markets can be manipulated for a season, ultimately real global market forces will prevail. Just remember that all empires eventually become over-extended financially, economically or militarily and the consequences of retribution and blowback are real and deadly to innocent populations.

The Signals Are Clear

The signals are clear: the world has already entered a downturn in economic activity. Therefore we can expect accelerated money-printing and the imposition of more negative interest rates in a forlorn attempt to avert economic reality.

The Lack Of Volume Is Deafening

We know, we know... volume doesn't matter... but if "There Is No Alternative" and there is mountains of "money on the sidelines" then why is average trade size plunging (cough algos cough) and volume collapsing in lockstep with each and every new record high in stocks?

The Are Two Big Problems With Deutsche Bank Failing The Fed's Stress Test

A bank which has €54.7 trillion, or a little over $62 trillion at today's exchange rate, in derivatives - a number that is 20 times greater than the GDP of Germany -  just failed a central bank stress test due to lacking governance and risk management controls and, just maybe, has insufficient capital? What can possibly go wrong.