Ayn Rand or US Congress? Directive 10-289: "All business establishments of any nature whatsoever shall henceforth remain in operation, and the owners of such establishments shall not quit nor leave, nor close, sell or transfer their business..." H.R. 5445: "Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no mail processing facility operating as of September 1, 2014, may be closed or consolidated prior to December 31, 2015."
What has happened to America?
Some asset managers, such as Pension funds, have a specific bogey they have to hit every single year, in order to maintain a mandated increase in their assets or else suffer the wrath of disgruntled pensioners and overseers. Which probably explains why as Pension360 reports, the Chief Investment Officer of one such pension fund decided to do the unthinkable: daytrade, i.e. gamble, its assets, which happen to be the lifetime savings of hard workers who just happen to be naive enough to believe their retirement money is entrusted into safe hands. Little did they know that instead they have handed the fruit of their lives' labor over to the E-trade baby.
While we are not predicting that the proverbial "wheels are about the come off the cart," today, this is another in a long list of indications that value in the stock market is no longer present. Of course, this would also suggest this might be, just maybe, a time to start considering "selling high." Of course, such a suggestion is wildly ludicrous and absolutely illogical since it is widely believed that the markets will never go down...ever.
Early kneejerk exuberance in Cable and European bond risk is rapidly unwinding as the reality of a revolting youth raise concerns over social stability. Nowhere is that more evident than in Spain this morning as pro-Catalan independence supporters push the government for a referendum on their secession in November:
- *CATALANS SAYING LOUDLY BUT GENTLY THEY WANT TO DECIDE: MAS
- *SPAIN GOVT OPEN TO DIALOG, HAS TO COMPLY WITH LAW: SAENZ
- *REFERENDUMS ARE NOT POSSIBLE IN SPANISH LAW, DEPUTY PM SAYS
Catalan President Artur Mas says it is a mistake to think the Scottish "No" votes casts a shadow over Catalonia and is threatening Rajoy if he blocks the vote. Spanish bond risk is up 12bps off the lows of the day.
So much for any Scottish referendum vote "surprise": the people came, they voted, and they decided to stay in the 307-year-old union by a far wider margin, some 55% to 45%, than most polls had forecast, even as 3.6 million votes, a record 85% turnout, expressed their opinion. The gloating began shortly thereafter, first and foremost by David Cameron who said "There can be no disputes, no re-runs, we have heard the settled will of the Scottish people." Queen Elizabeth II, who is at her Scottish castle in Balmoral, is expected to make a rare comment on Friday. But while a No vote was where the smart betting money was ahead of the vote anyway, and is thus hardly a surprise, the most curious thing overnight was the complete roundtrip of cable, which was bought on the rumor and then sold off on the news, roundtripping by nearly 200 pips.
In modern times, war is never what it seems. Mainstream historians preach endlessly about grand conflicts over territory, resources, political impasse, and revenge, but the cold hard reality is that all of these “motivations” are actually secondary, if they are relevant at all. If you really want to understand the past, or the intricacies of war, you will be lost unless you accept that most conflicts are designed; they are not random or natural. They are not the product of too much national sovereignty or individual liberty. No; traditional war is a tool for the organized ruling class. It always has been and always will be.
The present global financial ‘crisis’ began in 2007-8. It is not nearly over. And that simple fact is a problem. Not because of the life-choking misery it inflicts on the lives of millions who had no part in its creation, but because the chances of another crisis beginning before this one ends, is increasing. What ‘tools’ - those famous tools the central bankers are always telling us they have – will our dear leaders use to tackle a new crisis when all those tools are already being used to little or no positive effect on this one?
...when the cops have to Call 911.
It’s Not Just The Police – The Feds Are Also Militarizing Public Schools With Grenade Launchers, M16s & TanksSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 09/17/2014 22:57 -0400
"A federal program that has drawn criticism in recent weeks for supplying surplus military gear to local police has also provided high-powered rifles, armored vehicles and other equipment to police at public schools, some of whom were unprepared for what they were getting... The Los Angeles Unified School District stocked up on grenade launchers, M16 rifles and even a multi-ton armored vehicle from the program... Mr. Zipperman said his department thought it could be useful for evacuations and to save lives in a "sustained incident.""
Eritrea - a tiny, mostly unheard-of country in East Africa - taxes its citizens who live abroad. Nearly every other country in the world bases its tax system on residency rather than citizenship. This practice has been condemned as “extortion” and a "repressive" measure by an 'authoritarian' government by the media. In Resolution 2023, the UN Security Council condemned Eritrea for "using extortion, threats of violence, fraud and other illicit means to collect taxes outside of Eritrea from its nationals." You may be thinking, "What's the controversy? Eritrea is getting criticized, and rightly so.” But there's another country that does the same...
What if it had gone differently? What if, six years ago, in the throes of the financial crisis, the political leaders in D.C. had decided that enough was enough, and they were going to seize the opportunity to make real and meaningful positive changes?
"Downgrade risks have increased: France has been rated Aa1 with a negative outlook by Moody’s since November 2012. Given recent economic performance and various revisions to deficit projections, we believe it is now less likely that Moody’s revises its outlook to stable on Friday. Instead, we believe it is more likely that Moody’s puts France formally on a “review for possible downgrade” with a conclusion probably coming after the budget (due on 1st October)."
Who could have seen this coming? In yet another example of untruthiness, it appears, according to Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey, testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee this morning, President Obama would back U.S. advisers accompanying Iraqi troops in battle to combat Islamic State militants if necessary. For now, Dempsey noted, Iraqi security forces are "doing fine," but as Republican, Sen. Jim Inhofe noted, "it is foolhardy for the Obama administration to tie its hands and so firmly rule out the possibility of special operators on the ground." Following Hagel's remarks that the fight will "not be an easy or a brief effort," Dempsey said if it doesn’t succeed, he would not rule out advising Obama to use U.S. ground forces.