This week was interesting to say the least and it is ending with a bang. We are covering a number of brief subjects this week. I hope you enjoy them.
Want to hear the worst idea in the history of horrible ideas? How about we take the industry responsible for destroying the U.S. economy and wrecking the lives of tens of millions of people, and then allow it to create a “government-industry cyber war council.” It appears that trillions in taxpayer bailouts simply wasn’t enough for Wall Street. Noting that it can seemingly get whatever it wants whenever it wants, the industry is now positioning itself to overtly control U.S. “cyber” policy. What could go wrong?
As if having to pay the highest price of gas since 2008 for the Independence Day weekend wasn't bad enough, millions of traveling east coasters will now have to deal with what may develop into a hurricane as well, and will certainly result in less than perfect weather conditions as the holiday weekend unrolls. Presenting Tropical Storm Arthur. According to NBC, a hurricane watch was issued Wednesday for part of North Carolina as the first named tropical storm of the season gathered strength and threatened July Fourth celebrations along the East Coast. Negative impact to Q3 GDP? Still unknown.
- France's Sarkozy faces corruption probe in blow to comeback hopes (Reuters)
- Ukraine Says Military Offensive Against Rebels Yielding Results (WSJ)
- JPMorgan Investors Show Support for Dimon in Cancer Fight (BBG)
- World’s ATM Moves to Frankfurt as Yellen’s Fed Slows Cash (BBG)
- Argentina Seen Backtracking on Fernandez Vows as Legacy at Risk (BBG)
- Palestinian teen killed in possible revenge attack (Reuters)
- The Bill and Hillary Clinton Money Machine Taps Corporate Cash (WSJ)
- London House Prices Surge the Most Since 1987, Nationwide Says (BBG)
- Last Jew in Afghanistan faces ruin as kebabs fail to sell (Reuters)
A recent court ruling giving cities and towns in New York State the authority to ban hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) represents an enormous blow to the shale gas industry, which has been hoping to expand operations into the state for several years.
The number of SWAT team raids in the United States every year is now more than 25 times higher than it was back in 1980. As America has conducted wars overseas in recent years, our police forces have become increasingly militarized as well. And without a doubt, many of our cities have become much more dangerous places. Once upon a time, police in America were helpful and friendly and the public generally trusted them. But now our police forces are being transformed into military-style units that often act like they are in the middle of Iraq or Afghanistan. The following are 10 facts about the SWATification of America that everyone should know…
Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im), the federally-backed bank which has been around since 1934, faces a very serious threat to its survival. The most important aspect of this entire fight is the fact that on opposite sides of the debate are not Democrats versus Republicans, but once again Republicans vs. Republicans. We again see tea party Republicans facing off against establishment RINOs. On one side we hear claims by the tea party wing that the Ex-Im merely serves as a conduit for crony capitalism and favoritism to large corporations, or those willing to bribe officials. On the other side, we see establishment Republicans, who are extremely cozy with mega-corporations, maintaing that the institution plays a crucial role in financing American exports to make them competitive. The battle against the Ex-Im bank, a 80 year old institution, is just another example of the sort of changes that happen in Fourth-Turnings. So what does Barack Obama think of the Export-Import bank? As usual, it depends on who you ask, Presidential-candidate Obama, or President-elect Obama.
The only thing that can be said about Janet Yellen’s simple-minded paint-by-the-numbers performance yesterday is that the Keynesian apotheosis is complete. American capitalism and all political life, too, is now ruled by a 12-member monetary politburo, which is essentially accountable to no one except its own misbegotten doctrine that prosperity flows from the end of a printing press.
Idiot central-planner and economist "justifications" for always being wrong aside, the reality is that El Nino is on its way even if the slowdown in the economy will be due to every other factor except the weather (start with the Fed) which just so happens is a "recurring" event. So upcoming GDP collapse (that nobody could have foreseen earlier, nobody, certainly not the Fed) notwithstanding, here is what one should really expect as a result of the unique weather formation which whose temperature and precipitation impacts across the United States occur during the cold half of the year, from October through March.
The feds are so concerned that more truth about the VA scandal will get out there they have resorted to subpoenas to cover up as much as possible. Of course, considering that the entire Administration, and indeed the entire status quo in America, appears to be essentially a criminal syndicate, there is a naturally an endless stream of abuses that must be concealed from the plebs. One thing that has become entirely clear since the Snowden revelations is the fact that the status quo in both political parties has absolutely zero intent on rolling back unconstitutional surveillance whatsoever. This became completely obvious recently when: Congress Gutted Anti-NSA Spying Bill Beyond Recognition; Original Cosponsor Justin Amash Voted No. Fortunately for those of us interested in transparency, some additional information is starting to come out regarding just how far these crooks are willing to go in order to spy on your every move and conversation.
The “war on compassion” when it comes to the homeless in America continues. There are many reasons we find this topic to be of such tremendous importance. First and foremost, we think that if we want to see how the state and crony corporate status quo will treat everyone in the future, all you have to do is look at how the homeless are being “dealt with.” Secondly, random groups feeding the homeless in various venues is a great example of decentralized compassion. Political power hates decentralization and is quite intentionally trying to corral the homeless into the centralized bureaucratic channels over which it has total control. So this isn’t merely a humanitarian issue, it is also a front line battle in the key war of our time: Decentralization vs. Centralization.
In December 2012, 70% of those polled viewed Hillary Clinton favorably; in March 2014 it was down to 56%; and now, as President Obama's approval rating hits record lows, only 52% view Hillary Clinton favorably. "She is down across the board," notes the poll, "even with groups that have been her most ardent supporters." As Bloomberg reports, among likely 2016 voters, Clinton remains ahead with 47% support compared to 38% for each of her potential opponents.
just who is America's police force, and by extension the Obama administration, which is behind this quiet militarization of local police forces with weapons that would normally be seen in a warzone, preparing for war against?
Moments ago, St. Louis Fed president Bullard gave one of his signature yellow-backgrounded presentations to the Tennessee Bankers Association Annual Meeting taking place at the favorited by 1%-ers everywhere Breakers hotel in Palm Beach, Florida. The bulk of his presentation is the usual trite platitudes, but he did have some chose comments, such as:
- BULLARD: FED SHOULDN'T BE `INTERVENING' ALL THE TIME IN MARKETS
So just intervene from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm in the US equity market? But what will those who have been screaming about rigged, manipulated, broken US equity markets rail about if the Fed isn't intervening all the time in "markets", and if some semblance of normalcy, even if highly crashy, returns?
The massive consolidation of wealth, combined with the removal of any limits on money in campaigns, has allowed for the purchase of our government. Americans know that something is wrong, deeply wrong. They see signs of the problem everywhere: income inequality, growing concentration and power of mega corporations, political donations/corruption, the absence of jobs with decent salaries, the explosion of the US prison population, healthcare costs, student loan debt, homelessness, etc. etc. However, the true causes and benefactors behind these problems are purposely hidden from view. What Americans see is Kabuki Theater of a functioning form of capitalism and democracy, but beyond this veneer our country has devolved into the exact opposite.