The only remarkable macroeconomic news overnight was out of Japan where we got the Q1 GDP print of 2.4% coming in well above consensus of 1.6%, and higher than the 1.1% in Q4. Did it not snow in Japan this winter? Does Japan already used double, and maybe triple, "seasonally-adjusted" data? We don't know, but we do know that both Japan and Europe have grown far faster than the US in the first quarter.
“These documents are jaw-dropping. No wonder we had to file more FOIA lawsuits and wait over two years for them. If the American people had known the truth – that Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and other top administration officials knew that the Benghazi attack was an al-Qaeda terrorist attack from the get-go – and yet lied and covered this fact up – Mitt Romney might very well be president."
"The public criticisms of the TPP have been vague. That’s by design—anyone who has read the text of the agreement could be jailed for disclosing its contents. I’ve actually read the TPP text provided to the government’s own advisors, and I’ve given the president an earful about how this trade deal will damage this nation. But I can’t share my criticisms with you. I can tell you that Elizabeth Warren is right about her criticism of the trade deal. We should be very concerned about what's hidden in this trade deal—and particularly how the Obama administration is keeping information secret even from those of us who are supposed to provide advice."
“When Edward Snowden revealed our intelligence secrets to the world in 2013, civil liberties extremists seized that moment to advance their own narrow agenda." Well the founding fathers were also “civil liberties extremists” with a narrow agenda. That agenda was laid out in a little something called the Constitution. The most dangerous part of Christie’s language is calling Snowden defenders “extremists.” Christie knows exactly what that term has come to mean, and he deliberately used it.
Having enabled billions of dollars worth of militarized equipment to be unloaded into every police department in the nation - only to have alienated the very Americans that hoped for change the most - it appears President Obama is ready to uncross another red line. Following unrest in U.S. cities over the deaths of black men at the hands of police officers, Reuters reports, during his triup to Camden NJ, Obama announced his plans to put in place new restrictions on the use of military equipment by police departments.
Ten Members of the U.S. Congress – along with 32 of their staff members – received secret payments from Azerbaijan’s state-owned oil company to travel to Baku in 2013, to cover the cost of travel, including souvenirs of “silk scarves, crystal tea sets and Azerbaijani rugs.”
Even as the establishment of new supranational lenders suggests the US-dominated multilateral institutions that have characterized the post-war world are proving unable to meet the needs of modernity, both Congress and the President have stymied IMF reform measures, sending a message to China and others that US hegemony will not die without a fight.
The US House of Representative just approved (by a vote of 269 to 151) the $612 billion National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) funding moar warmongery for fiscal year 2016. However, the vote came short of a veto-proof majority and since the administration opposes the defense policy bill - for its alleged budgeting "gimmicks," as well as its provisions for arming Ukrainian forces - we suspect President Obama is preparing to unleash the veto pen.
“Federal regulation and intervention cost American consumers and businesses an estimated $1.88 trillion in 2014 in lost economic productivity and higher prices. If U.S. federal regulation was a country, it would be the world’s 10th largest economy, ranking behind Russia and ahead of India. Economy-wide regulatory costs amount to an average of $14,976 per household – around 29% of an average family budget of $51,100."
"...if anyone didn’t think the president was going to f##k [the Pakistani military] they are out of their mind. He was always going to f##k them.... The White House has been very clever about this. They have gone after me personally. They don’t like me boo hoo hoo.... Don’t turn this into some sort of profound anti-American statement."
This should be good... as we explained earlier, analysts have pointed to a growing rift between the Obama administration and the Gulf’s Sunni states over the emerging nuclear deal with Iran as a chief reason for the snub, though the Saudi king, as well as his Bahraini counterpart, have denied such assertions.
Having been 'snubbed' by the new Saudi King Salman, it appears the uneasy relationshipo with our 'allies' in The Gulf is ebbing. In what the State Department will, we are sure, just brush off, Politico reports that the king of Bahrain has apparently also snubbed President Barack Obama, preferring instead to attend a horse show with Queen Elizabeth.
It looks like all those ‘conspiracy nuts’ who took issue with the “official” story following the President’s original announcement of bin Laden’s death were not so crazy after all. There’s a reason millions of Americans have lost trust in their government, and especially with the sitting President of the United States. It’s because we have been consistently lied to about anything and everything of any significance.