- The second coming of Obamacare website - will it work? (Reuters)
- Winter Storm Moves North as Macy’s Waits to Make Parade Call (BBG)
- Eyeing holiday sales, more U.S. retailers to open on Thanksgiving (Reuters)
- It's all Verizon's fault: H-P Will Replace Verizon in Hosting HealthCare.gov Website (WSJ)
- Bitcoin Service Targets Kenya Remittances With Cut-Rate Fees (BBG)
- Embattled Thai PM easily survives no-confidence vote, protests persist (Reuters)
- For U.S. stores it is ugly out there: in more ways than one (Reuters)
- Japan and S Korea military flout China air zone rules (FT)
- UBS Restructuring Forex Unit (WSJ)
- Trader Messages Scrutinized as UBS Bans Chats Among Firms (BBG)
- ECB warns on external risks to eurozone financial system (FT)
More than 100,000 protesters congregated at Democracy Monument in Bangkok yesterday to protest Thai PM Yingluck Shiniwatra’s consideration of an amnesty bill to pardon her banned brother Thaksin Shiniwatra, the former Thai PM ousted from the country in a 2006 coup.
While some have proclaimed the 36,000 enrollment in The Affordable Care Act "a good start," the online marketplaces that Obamacare has become more infamous for have been plagued with problems in the brief two weeks since launch. Politico provides 25 of the most telling and colorful comments made about the "glitches" the online exchanges have faced...
Doug Casey first met Ron Paul 30 years ago. In this wide-ranging interview, Casey discusses how the "born libertarian's" ideas have changed in that time...
BofA's breakdown: "The shutdown will likely add to the budget deficit. It is costly to stop and start programs. The 1995-96 shutdown directly added $1.4 bn to the deficit (about $2.5 bn in today’s dollars) Moreover, the shock to growth will undercut tax revenues. In addition, ironically it does not impact the implementation of Obamacare since it is an entitlement similar to Medicare. However, there is some chance it could delay US economic data releases: in 1996, the December employment report was delayed two weeks as a result of the shutdown then. The Federal Reserve and the Post Office, both of which do not depend on Congressional appropriations, will not see any cutbacks due to a shutdown."
Yesterday we highlighted the plight of Tom Palome and his cohorts as they face a need to work well into once-thought-retirement age. However, there are hundreds of formerly prosperous communities all over America that are being steadily transformed into rotting, decaying hellholes. The good paying middle class jobs that once supported those communities are long gone, and they have been replaced with low paying service jobs if they have been replaced at all. When you visit those communities, it is almost as if all of the hope has been sucked right out of the air. The following are 20 quotes from ordinary Americans about the economic despair that is rapidly growing around them.
Privacy has been traded in for corporate profits, governmental controls, spookily personalized ads, and harebrained hype about increased security
With the NSA already combing through and recording every form of electronic communication (or 1.6% of all global internet traffic to be precise), it was only a matter of time before a scare involving plain vanilla physical mail took place. Such as what just happened at JFK airport at 9 am this morning, when as ABC reports (with a substantial delay) that "Two postal inspectors at JFK Airport were sickened Sunday after opening a package at a postal processing facility. Field tests showed an initial finding of nerve gas, though authorities believe it's a low likelihood that it's actually nerve gas. It is more likely a standard-use chemical that shouldn't have been in the mail like a solvent or degreaser. The FBI was called in and additional testing is underway. The condition of the customs agents is not yet known."
If S&P had any guts it would lower the US another notch.
Meet General Keith Alexander, "a man few even in Washington would likely recognize", which is troubling because Alexander is now quite possibly the most powerful person in the world, whom nobody talks about. Which is just the way he likes it. ... And also meet Bonesaw: "Bonesaw is the ability to map, basically every device connected to the Internet and what hardware and software it is."
When over four years ago we put together our "How To [Read/Tip Off] Zero Hedge Without Attracting The Interest Of [Human Resources/The Treasury/Black Helicopters]" Guide", many thought we were being paranoid. We weren't, as last week's revelations by Edward Snowden demonstrated to the entire world. And yet, besides those from the intelligence community, few realized just how deep the reach of the Turnkey Totalitarian Tyranny ("TTT" or the Orwellian Banana Republic) truly goes. So as the Snowden enthusiasm spreads and more and more insiders with intimate knowledge of the broken system step up to expose the unconstitutional actions and illegal deeds that occur each and every day in the dark corner of US society well on its route to inevitable dissolution (ref USSR and WB Yeats), the question arises: how to do it - How to leak information to the press and other distribution agents without tipping off the very espionage agency at the nexus of it all? Luckily while information may be intercepted at every electronic turn, it still is largely free (at least until the advent of the Internet kill switch). So for all you wannabe Snowdens out there, here from Wired's Nicholas Weaver, is the perfectly timed "The Whistleblower’s Guide to the Orwellian Galaxy: How to Leak to the Press", which should answer all the 30,000 foot-level questions...
Margaret Thatcher might have been the perfect housewife that got Britain off to a good start or at least that’s what she would have liked us all to have believed when she was in power. The prefect Grantham housewife, so simple: never spend more than you earn, the defender of good management of budgetary finances. But that was all part of the ruse, wasn’t it?
After reading the Spiegel article below, which reveals so much about German thinking, it becomes very clear that not only is Cyprus the "benchmark", but that the second some other PIIG country runs into trouble again, and its soaring non-performing loans inevitably demand a liability "resolution" a la Cyprus, it will be Germany once again at the helm, demanding more of the same equity, unsecured debt and ultimately depositor impairment. As the following punchline from Spiegel summarizes, "It would be more sensible -- and fairer -- for the crisis-ridden countries to exercise their own power to reduce their debts, namely by reaching for the assets of their citizens more than they have so far. As the most recent ECB study shows, there is certainly enough money available to do this." And that is the crux of the wealth-disparity demand of the European Disunion.
In the past six years the Post Office has lost $41 BILLION and they have a cumulative deficit of $36 billion.
The Post Office will lose another $10 to $15 billion this fiscal year.
They have $15 billion of debt on their balance sheet, with $9.5 billion payable in the next 9 months.
$33.9 Billion of payments for pension and health benefits for retirees, all due within the next 5 years.
$25 billion for workers compensation and sick leave payments.
Hope is dying in the US. The performance of financial markets affects everyone. For savers and investors, these markets represent the means to an improved life, at least as they define it. We are twelve years into this new century and Americans are losing their hopes, dreams and aspirations. Twelve years in, the S&P 500 has returned a total of 14%. That puny return has not come close to covering the decline in purchasing power of the dollar during the same period. The country's financial condition is deplorable and cannot continue much longer. So, too is virtually everything else the government has touched whether it be education, Amtrak, the post office, Social Security, Medicare, ad nauseum. Nothing government has done has not been a Ponzi scheme dependent upon additional theft from taxpayers to keep going. The system is now broken. There is no one to blame for this other than government. Despite this obvious conclusion, government is still seen to be a savior by a large proportion of the country.