New York Times

Frontrunning: June 5

  • Europe shares set for worst week of 2015 (Reuters)
  • Jobs Report Not Likely to Trigger June Rate Hike (Hilsenrath)
  • U.S. jobs market seen firming despite lackluster growth (Reuters)
  • Gross Says Bond Rout Scary as Hell Even Without Bear Market (BBG)
  • Apple Is the New Pimco, and Tim Cook Is the New King of Bonds (BBG), which ZH said in 2013
  • In 'year of Apple Pay', many top retailers remain skeptical (Reuters)
  • OPEC Nations Signal Few Prospects for Oil-Production Change (BBG)
  • China regulator says amending rules on margin trading, short selling  (Reuters)

From Whence Cometh Our Wealth - The People's Labor Or The Fed’s Printing Press?

It is hard to believe that in these allegedly enlightened times this question even needs to be asked. Are there really educated adults who believe that by dropping helicopter money conjured from thin air, the central bank can actually make society wealthier? Well, yes there are. They spread this lunacy from the most respectable MSM platforms.

Greece Breaks America's Heart, Will Sign MOU With Russia For Gas Pipeline

Greece has received what The New York Times recently described as “dueling sales pitches” on two proposed natural gas pipelines, with the US pressing Athens to support The Southern Gas Corridor rather than Gazprom's Turkish Stream project. It appears Moscow may have made the more convincing case because, much to Washington's dismay, Greece is set to sign an MOU for the Greek portion of The Turkish Stream pipeline in June.

The Delusional World Of Imperial Washington

The first step in any 12-step imperial-overstretch recovery program would involve accepting the fact that American power is limited and global rule an impossible fantasy. Accepted as well would have to be this obvious reality: like it or not, the U.S. shares the planet with a coterie of other major powers -- none as strong as we are, but none so weak as to be intimidated by the threat of U.S. military intervention. Having absorbed a more realistic assessment of American power, Washington would then have to focus on how exactly to cohabit with such powers -- Russia, China, and Iran among them -- and manage its differences with them without igniting yet more disastrous regional firestorms.  But for any of this to happen, American policymakers would first have to abandon the pretense that the United States remains the sole global superpower -- and that may be too bitter a pill for the present American psyche (and for the political aspirations of certain Republican candidates) to swallow. From such denialism, it’s already clear, will only come further ill-conceived military adventures abroad and, sooner or later, under far grimmer circumstances, an American reckoning with reality.

Techno-Narcissism & The Real Limits To Growth

The banking problems we see all over the world are a direct expression of the limits to growth, specifically the limits to debt creation. We can’t continue to borrow from the future to pay for our comforts and conveniences today because we have no real conviction that these debts can ever be repaid. We certainly wish we could, and the central bankers running the money system would like to pretend that we could by making negligible the cost of borrowing money and engaging in pervasive accounting fraud. But that has only served to cripple the operation of markets and pervert the meaning of interest rates — and, really, as a final result, to destroy any sense of consequence among the people running things everywhere.

We Need Actual Free Trade, Not The TPP

There is no denying that the secret negotiations among unelected elites appointed by TPP members may result in the lowering of trade barriers for selected friends of the global regulators. This cronyist system of rewards and punishments for global favorites, however, should most certainly not be confused with free trade.

Europe Has A Solution For The Unemployment Problem: Fake Jobs

Candelia is one of a number of so-called “Potemkin” companies operating in France. Everything about these entities is imaginary from the customers, to the supply chain, to the banks, to the “wages” employees receive and while the idea used to be that the creation of a “parallel economic universe” would help to train the jobless and prepare them for real employment sometime in the future, these “occupations” are now serving simply as way for the out-of-work to suspend reality for eight hours a day.

The Clinton Foundation Paid Sidney Blumenthal $10K/Month As He Gave Horrible Libya Advice To State Dept

"While advising Mrs. Clinton on Libya, Mr. Blumenthal, who had been barred from a State Department job by aides to President Obama, was also employed by her family’s philanthropy, the Clinton Foundation, to help with research, “message guidance” and the planning of commemorative events, according to foundation officials... Much of the Libya intelligence that Mr. Blumenthal passed on to Mrs. Clinton appears to have come from a group of business associates he was advising as they sought to win contracts from the Libyan transitional government."

The Original Chechnya Bombers - The CIA, The Saudis And Bin Laden

What if Putin is Telling The Truth? On April 26 Russia’s main national TV station, Rossiya 1, featured President Vladimir Putin in a documentary to the Russian people on the events of the recent period including the annexation of Crimea, the US coup d’etat in Ukraine, and the general state of relations with the United States and the EU. His words were frank. And in the middle of his remarks the Russian former KGB chief dropped a political bombshell that was known by Russian intelligence two decades ago... Putin stated that the terror in Chechnya and in the Russian Caucasus in the early 1990’s was actively backed by the CIA and western Intelligence services to deliberately weaken Russia.

ISIS: Mapping A Militant Expansion

As the US moves closer to putting boots on the ground in Iraq and Syria to counter an ISIS "offensive", The New York Times is out with a series of graphics which document the group’s spread.

Austria Confirms Faith In Fiat Fading: Repatriates 110 Tons Of Gold From BOE

Six months ago we warned that Austria was considering it, and now, as Kronen-Zeitung reports, with no rigged Swiss-like referendum required, Austrian Central Bank Governor Edwald Nowotny has committed to repatriating 110 tonnes of gold. This is part of Nowotny's new "gold strategy" and with his position (on paper) as one of Draghi's foremost lieutenants, appears to be a huge stab in the back for super-Mario.  While gold withdrawals from the NY Fed are incessant, this time it appears the Bank of England faces the trust-fall as 80% of Vienna's gold is held there.

China Bails Out Brazil In $50 Billion Regional Power Grab

On the heels of pledging $46 billion in infrastructure aid to Pakistan, China is set to invest as much as $50 billion in Brazil including $10 billion on a cross-mountain railway that will connect Latin America's largest economy with Peru's ports in what Premier Li calls "a new road to Asia." The move is a dramatic example of China's growing foothold in what is ostensibly Washington's strongest sphere of influence.