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Orwell Was Only Wrong About The Date

Presented with no comment...



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"Ebola Cruise" Returns To Texas After Suspected Healthcare Worker Cleared

In a tumultuous week for Ebola updates (which are only set to get worse with flu season about to unfold, and where every sneeze and fever will be interpreted as an early symptom of the deadly disease, likely choking hospitals and ERs around the nation), Friday brought us one of the more disturbing updates when it was revealed that an Ebola-handling healthcare worker had decided to break the "self-watch" protocol and had gone on a Caranival cruise in the Caribbean. Fast forward to this morning, when after what one assumes was a negative blood test, the Carnival Magic ship carrying the suspect, was cleared to return to port in Galveston, TX this morning. As AP reports, "The unidentified woman who is being monitored disembarked the Carnival Magic with her husband shortly after the ship returned to Galveston, Texas, about 6 a.m. EDT, said Vicky Rey, vice president of guest care for Carnival Cruise Lines. Rey said the couple drove themselves home, but offered no further details.



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What Happens When 30,000 People Run The Beijing "Airpocalypse" Marathon In "Hazardous" Smog

Some 30,000 participants were wondering if the organizers of today's 34th Beijing International Marathon would cancel the event after "a toxic fog enveloped the Chinese capital and smog levels soared to “hazardous” levels." Adding to the confusion, and concerns, even the People’s Daily, the Communist Party’s mouthpiece newspaper, cautioned athletes against taking part in the 26.2-mile race, reporting that Beijing’s air was “not suitable for outdoor activities”.  As the Telegraph reports, "Beijing authorities admitted their city’s air was "severely polluted” on Sunday while the US embassy, which also monitors smog levels, described the situation as "hazardous". The Marathon organizers' answer, however, was that the Marathon would proceed as scheduled. The end result was a surreal photo album of the "airpocalypse" marathon, perhaps the best harbinger of the globalized future, as of thousands of people jogged across downtown Beijing in gasmasks.



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Why Airport Screening Won't Stop Ebola, The Economist Explains

Those who got sick, and there were many, developed large, dark blisters that oozed pus and blood. Later came fever and bloody vomiting. Long before Ebola, there was the Black Death, which killed millions in the 14th century. And as with Ebola, nervous officials tried to keep the sick from entering their cities. Venetian authorities held ships at bay for 40 days - hence the word quarantine - to check for infections. Still, the disease ravaged the republic. Today countries are screening air passengers arriving from the places affected by Ebola. Will these efforts prove more effective?



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Wealth Inequality Is Not A Problem, It’s A Symptom

If someone would suggest today to break up the USA, because its present status contradicts that which the Founding Fathers had in mind (and there are plenty of arguments to be made that such contradictions exist in plain view), (s)he would not even be sent to a nuthouse, because no-one would take him/her serious enough to do so. But wealth inequality still rises rapidly within America, and it doesn’t serve the people. So why does it happen, and why do we let it? Because the inequality that matters most is not wealth, but power. And we’ve been made to believe that we still have that power, but we don’t. Voting in elections has the same function today as singing around a Christmas tree: everyone feels a strong emotional connection, but it’s all just become one giant TV commercial...



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Reading The Road Map To A Police State

"There is no crueler tyranny than that which is perpetuated under the shield of law and in the name of justice." —Charles de Montesquieu

If there was any silver lining to the horrifying events that took place in Ferguson, Missouri which riled the month of August, it has finally brought the issue of police militarization to the forefront. How did this happen?



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Why Abenomics Failed: There Was A "Blind Spot From The Outset", Goldman Apologizes

Ever since Abenomics was announced in late 2012, we have explained very clearly that the whole "shock and awe" approach to stimulating the economy by sending inflation into borderline "hyper" mode was doomed to failure. Very serious sellsiders, economists and pundits disagreed and commended Abe on his second attempt at fixing the country by doing more of what has not only failed to work for 30 years, but made the problem worse and worse. Well, nearly two years later, or roughly the usual delay before the rest of the world catches up to this website's "conspiratorial" ramblings, the leader of the very serious economist crew, none other than Goldman Sachs, formally admits that Abenomics was a failure. So what happened with Abenomics, and why did Goldman, initially a fervent supporter and huge fan - and beneficiary because those trillions in fungible BOJ liquidity injections made their way first and foremost into Goldman year end bonuses  - change its tune so dramatically? Here is the answer from Goldman Sachs.



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Mind "The Asian Dollar Short" - Another Ticking Time Bomb Gifted By The Central Banks

Not everything is as it seems. While the PBOC may be taking a stand on monetarism and its character, it has been very curious that the yuan has not fully participated in the dollar turmoil marking so many other “dollar” dependent nations. While the yuan’s appreciation trend may have been altered, that has not led again to the kind of disorder that marked the currency earlier in the year. Maybe that is due, at least in part, to these expectations that the PBOC will eventually relent on its new approach, but we also think that the PBOC is at least looking the other way on some of the “old tricks” that supported the Chinese version of the dollar short.



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Because This Time Is Never Different, In 100 Year Old Cartoons

Any time you feel like all the endless crime, rigging and cronyism on Wall Street and its lobbied puppets in the Capitol is something new, look at these cartoons from about 100 years ago. You will feel better that this time is not different... and much worse that in 100 years absolutely nothing has changed.



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Market Uncertainty Has Never Been Higher

The CBOE's VVIX Index, "an indicator of the expected volatility of the 30-day forward price of the VIX" reached extreme levels this week. While all eyes are firmly focused on the to-ing and fro-ing of VIX (the so-called 'fear' indicator), it is the uncertainty of that fear (or greed) that is exploding as VVIX measures. Simply put, the chance of VIX doubling, or tripling, in the next 30 days (which include the final POMO and Fed 'end of QE' meeting), has never been higher.



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Markets & Ebola: Confusion, Containment, & Complexity

The level of micro-management by the Fed appears to have reached a new shockingly high plateau. Recently prices have been driven more by liquidity, fear, greed, and Fed policy, than by valuation.  It is time that the Fed stops being a source of interference and confusion. There are also two less obvious or less discussed economic reasons why the Obama administration may be urgently focusing more on the Ebola crises.



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Welcome To Arcadia – The California Suburb Where Rich Chinese Stash Cash In McMansions

The surge in foreigners buying up U.S. real estate has been well documented in recent years. Of all this buying, no nation has demonstrated a bigger increase in purchases than China. In fact, it is estimated that 24% of all foreign purchases of domestic real estate this year have come from China, up 72% from last year. In some California communities, 90% of real estate buyers are from China. Yes, 90%. Naturally, many of them are buying multi-million dollar homes in “all cash” transactions. Well it appears that one of those communities is the 57,000 person Los Angeles suburb known as Arcadia. The suburb had a relatively insignificant Asian population of 4% in 1980, but it is now 59%.



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FEMA Conducting Pandemic Drills Amidst Ebola Crisis

Regardless of the origins of the Ebola crisis, whether it be conspiracy or gross incompetence, there are a number of aspects to the entire situation which simply do not add up. While one would not argue that preparedness on the part of the federal government regarding a possible pandemic is a bad thing, its behavior thus far has exuded anything but preparedness. Considering America’s sordid history with national emergency exercises, the ongoing FEMA pandemic exercise cannot help but raise red flags.



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This Wasn't Supposed To Happen

From exuberant escape velocity 'expansion' hopes and dreams in June, to 'slowing' in September, and 'drastic downward revisions' in early October, the Goldman Sachs Global Leading Indicator has had a very troubled recent past (as QE is just 4 POMOs away from coming to an end). But nothing could prepare the avid reader for what happened to the infamous Goldman "swirlogram" this month - an epic, total collapse. As Goldman 'politely' notes, "the October Advanced reading places the global cycle deeper in the ‘Slowdown’ phase, with momentum (barely) positive and declining."



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Jim Chanos: "The Lesson That Shaped My Understanding Of How Fragile The System Is"

"Yes, we did extremely well in 1987... What really scared me in October of 1987 was that after Monday’s crash, there was a lot of concern about not getting paid, that brokerage firms would have to liquidate. That was a wake-up call that really helped us to protect ourselves later during the crisis in 2008... [because] you are an unsecured creditor of a brokerage firm... That lesson also shaped my understanding of how fragile the system was. I believe the system was much closer to going down in two days in 1987 than at any point in 2008."



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