http://www.zerohedge.com/fullrss2.xml/article/article/%3Ca%20href%3D en Trump Tax Cuts To Add As Much As $7 Trillion In Debt http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/trump-tax-cuts-add-much-7-trillion-debt <p>While today's "tremendously" vague one-page summary of Trump's tax plan had barely any detail - it did not even include the income ranges for the three personal income tax brackets - it did contain enough information for the <a href="http://www.crfb.org/blogs/fiscal-factcheck-how-much-will-trumps-tax-plan-cost#.WQEGJxoMYJE.twitter">CRFB to be able to score it</a>, and calculate how much it would cost, or in other words assuming little or no offsetting revenues, this is how much additional debt it would add to the existing upward trajectory in US national debt. </p> <p>While it is in a way amusing that after 8 years and $10 trilion in debt accumulated under the Obama administration, US sovereign debt suddenly matters, we admit that the CRFB's findings are troubling. This is how the CRFB phrased it: "the White House released principles and a framework for tax reform today. We applaud the President's focus on tax reform, but the plan includes far more detail on how the Administration would cut taxes than on how they would pay for those cuts. <strong>Based on what we know so far, the plan could cost $3 to $7 trillion over a decade– our base-case estimate is $5.5 trillion in revenue loss over a decade. Without adequate offsets, tax reform could drive up the federal debt, harming economic growth instead of boosting it.</strong>"</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>The framework proposes a number of specific changes including: consolidating and reducing individual income tax rates to 10, 25, and 35 percent; doubling the standard deduction; cutting the business tax rate to 15 percent on both corporations and pass-through businesses; repealing the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT) and estate tax; repealing the 3.8 percent investment surtax from the Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare"); moving to a territorial tax system; and imposing a one-time tax on money held overseas. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The plan also includes some vaguer proposals, including "providing tax relief for families with child and dependent care expenses" and eliminating "targeted tax breaks that mainly benefit the wealthiest taxpayers." Although the framework itself is vague on the latter, at their press conference Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin and National Economic Director Gary Cohn seemed to imply it meant repealing all individual deductions unrelated to savings, charitable giving, or mortgage interest (revenue would come mostly from repealing the state and local tax deduction).</p> </blockquote> <p>While the CRFB admits that even with the detailed portions of the plan, there are not enough parameters specified to provide a certain revenue estimate of the tax plan, the agency said that "making some assumptions based on prior proposals, our best rough estimate suggests <strong>the specified parts of the plan would cost $5.5 trillion. Assuming tax break limits only apply only to higher earners, that cost could be as high as $7 trillion; assuming credits and exclusions are eliminated as well as deductions, it would cost $3 trillion.</strong>"</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/crfb%20chart%201.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/crfb%20chart%201_0.jpg" width="500" height="344" /></a></p> <p>The conclusion: adding interest costs, <strong>a $5.5 trillion tax plan would be enough to increase debt to 111 percent of Gross Domestic Product (compared to 89 percent of GDP in CBO's baseline) by 2027. </strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>That would be higher than any time in U.S. history, and no achievable amount of economic growth could finance it.</strong></span></p> </blockquote> <p>Here we go back to our original cynical observation: suddenly, after years and years and trillions of new debt, the experts - especially those on the left - are suddenly <em><strong>so very </strong></em>concerned about it. That aside, at 77 percent of GDP, debt is currently higher than at any time in history outside of World War II and its aftermath. <strong>Even under current law, debt will rise to 89 percent of GDP by 2027. </strong>Based on the details of what has been put forward by the Trump Administration so far, <strong>debt could rise to 111 percent of GDP by 2027 – a new historical record. </strong>In dollar terms under this estimate, <strong>debt held by the public would total $31 trillion in 2027 and gross debt would total $36 trillion.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/CRFB%20debt%20chart.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/CRFB%20debt%20chart_0.jpg" width="500" height="374" /></a></p> <p>Of course, one look at the chart above - assuming Trump does not come up with offsetting revenue measures, which so far he has not proposed - means that it has a snowball's chance in hell of passing Congress. As Reuters more politely puts it, "Trump's proposal may be unpalatable to party fiscal hawks. It lacks plans for raising new revenue and could potentially add billions of dollars to the federal deficit." </p> <p>Finally, here are some analysts quoted by Reuters, on the opinion of the proposed plan.</p> <p><strong>GREG MCBRIDE, CFA, BANKRATE.COM CHIEF FINANCIAL ANALYST, WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA: </strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">"In the eyes of financial markets, apparently all the concerns about North Korea, Syria, etc have been vanquished as the euphoria about tax reform has taken over. Wake me when something actually gets signed into law."</p> <p><strong>DAVID LEFKOWITZ, SENIOR EQUITY STRATEGIST AT UBS WEALTH MANAGEMENT AMERICAS IN NEW YORK:</strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">“A lot to digest on the tax side and to be honest we don’t have a lot of details at this point aside from just a few bullet points from the press conference. The key question really is what is doable from a budgetary and political perspective in Congress and this is going to be a bit of an uphill fight to get this plan enacted into law. But it is early innings, early days and the White House is going to have to try to convince a lot of people this is the right way to go.”</p> <p><strong>MICHAEL PURVES, CHIEF GLOBAL STRATEGIST AT WEEDEN &amp; CO, IN NEW YORK:</strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">“There’s no question that lower taxes means higher earnings and stronger balance sheets. From a market perspective its a positive. From an economic perspective for the country its much more complicated.<br />“There’s a long way to go between now and a done deal. The fact the market has gone nowhere today is telling you something. </p> <p><strong>JOE MANIMBO, SENIOR MARKET ANALYST AT WESTERN UNION BUSINESS SOLUTIONS IN WASHINGTON DC:</strong></p> <p style="padding-left: 30px;">“The lack of specificity with regard to the tax announcement offered little for dollar bulls to get excited about. If anything, it dimmed the spotlight on Europe and it put the focus back on ‘Trumponomics’ that could ultimately benefit the dollar. I think the market still has a bad taste in its mouth for how the healthcare reform went, so there’s a degree of skepticism in how soon we could see tax relief.”</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="736" height="551" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/CRFB%20debt%20chart.jpg?1493256433" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/trump-tax-cuts-add-much-7-trillion-debt#comments Alternative minimum tax Business Congress CRFB Economic policy of Donald Trump Economy Economy of the United States Estate tax in the United States ETC Federal Deficit Florida Government debt Gross Domestic Product Income tax in the United States National Debt National debt of the United States North Korea Obama Administration Obama administration Obamacare Personal Income Presidency of Barack Obama Presidency of George W. Bush Reuters Sovereign Debt Trump Administration United States Value-added tax White House White House Thu, 27 Apr 2017 01:28:52 +0000 Tyler Durden 594456 at http://www.zerohedge.com India Faces A New Challenge: Jihadist Radicalization http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/india-faces-new-challenge-jihadist-radicalization <p><em><a href="http://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/04/26/india-faces-new-challenge-jihadist-radicalization.html">Authored by Vinay Kaura via The Strategic Culture Foundation,</a></em></p> <p><em><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_india.jpg"><img height="331" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_india.jpg" width="600" /></a></em></p> <p>Jihadist terrorism in India is on the verge of acquiring a global footprint, as <strong>radicalization and recruitment have become more sophisticated</strong> thanks to social media and the Internet. This marks a clear departure from the past when <strong>jihadist terrorism was almost synonymous with the insurgency in Kashmir.</strong></p> <p>It was often held that ideologically motivated Islamist terror had bypassed mainland India and that even though there had been a separatist insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir state, Muslims in the rest of the country&nbsp;had spurned the radical revivalist movements plaguing other Islamic countries. This is no longer the case, as <strong>a growing number of Muslims from mainland India are becoming radicalized.</strong></p> <p>Last week, in a joint anti-terror operation by the police teams of five states, <strong>an allegedly ISIS-inspired terror module spanning Maharashtra, Punjab, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh was&nbsp;busted</strong> with the arrest of three suspected terrorists.</p> <div> <div>The police had received intelligence that some known terror suspects in Uttar Pradesh had become active and were trying to recruit new members to launch a major terror attack in the country. Initial investigations into the Bhopal-Ujjain passenger train blast in March convinced the security agencies that it was first major ISIS operation in India.</div> </div> <p>Saifullah, the alleged ISIS-inspired terrorist killed in a shootout with police in the first week of March in Lucknow, had also been tasked with securing arms and training facilities for a new ISIS-linked terror cell in Uttar Pradesh. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) first came to know of Saifullah from Mudabbir Mushtaq Sheikh, a resident of Maharashtra state. Mudabbir is now facing trial for his alleged role as chief of the Jund-ul-Khalifa-ul-Hind, an organization of Indian jihadists inspired by ISIS.</p> <p><strong>It is feared that India may become a soft target in the global jihadist plan of outfits such as al-Qaeda and ISIS, </strong>which are not only instigating violence through sleeper modules, but are also attracting educated Muslim youths through the Internet to spread their agenda. Though ISIS has declared its intention to expand its footprint in the subcontinent, it has not managed to make considerable headway in India. However, it is also an undeniable fact that a few of India&rsquo;s misguided Muslim youth are being&nbsp;swayed by Wahhabist propaganda.</p> <p>What has been most surprising is that many of the individuals arrested for involvement in some recent attacks are <strong>young men with good educations and prestigious occupations, such as doctors and engineers.</strong> These men are often motivated through the Internet or through Pakistan-based terrorist networks.</p> <p>The majority of the home-grown terrorists are apparently <strong>self-radicalized, self-motivated and inspired by the extreme jihadist ideology of ISIS as well as by local grievances.</strong> The groups formed to carry out attacks are loose conglomerations, and it is still unclear whether there is an overarching commanding element directing the different cells.</p> <p>To compound the challenge emanating from Pakistan-based jihadist outfits, <strong>there are believed to be many Indian Muslim youths fighting for ISIS in Iraq and Syria. </strong>The Indian Intelligence Bureau estimated in 2016 that ISIS&rsquo; Indian cell engaged more than 700 people in conversation &ndash;&nbsp;and raised more than 20 identified volunteers.</p> <p>During the past two years, the NIA has arrested several persons accused of forming ISIS modules, whose members use social-media platforms for plotting terrorist attacks. The data suggest that people subscribing to ISIS ideology are present across India, making it increasingly difficult for the law-enforcement agencies to keep track of them.</p> <p>The Ministry of Home Affairs informed the Rajya Sabha, upper house of the Parliament of India, in March that 75 people had been arrested for suspected links to the ISIS terror network. Of these 75 persons, 21 were from Kerala, 16 from Telangana, nine&nbsp;from Karnataka, eight&nbsp;from Maharashtra, six from Madhya Pradesh, four from Uttarakhand, three&nbsp; from Uttar Pradesh, two from Rajasthan, four&nbsp;from Tamil Nadu and one each from Jammu and&nbsp;Kashmir and West Bengal.</p> <p>The <strong>NIA has also revealed that it arrested 52 people for allegedly being ISIS terrorists last year,</strong> including a few converts from Hinduism and Christianity. While releasing data on the arrests, the NIA gave details of the religious affiliations of the accused: 50 per cent belonged to Ahle Hadith, 30 per cent to Tabligi Jammat, and 20 per cent followed Deobandi ideology.</p> <p><u><strong>Indian security agencies need to be worried on three accounts.</strong></u> First is the risk of&nbsp;a &ldquo;lone actor&rdquo; attack, similar to some recent terror attacks in European cities, including one in Paris just a few days before the first round of French presidential elections. Second is&nbsp;the presence of distinct terror modules that&nbsp;could be activated at short notice. And third, there is the concern of radicalized youth approaching other terror organizations for logistical support.</p> <p><strong>Because of these factors, ISIS is seen as posing a serious security threat, as its ideologues are not part of an organized syndicate such as the Indian Mujahedeen, which was relatively easy to crack.</strong> ISIS is a different phenomenon, as every module is different and is handled by different operators abroad. As ISIS has been under pressure&nbsp;in Iraq and Syria and many of its&nbsp;members are on the run, a major&nbsp;worry of security agencies is about their return to India.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="629" height="347" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170426_india.jpg?1493250570" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/india-faces-new-challenge-jihadist-radicalization#comments Al-Qaeda al-Qaeda Criticism of Islam India Indian Intelligence Bureau Indian Mujahideen Iraq Irregular military ISIS Islam Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant Islamic terrorism Jihadist National Investigation Agency National Investigation Agency Parliament of India Politics Religious terrorism Saifullah Strategic Culture Foundation Terrorism Terrorism in India War Thu, 27 Apr 2017 01:25:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594442 at http://www.zerohedge.com Trump Adminstration Begins Probe Into Aluminum Imports' "National Security Threat" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/trump-adminstration-begins-probe-aluminum-imports-national-security-threat <p>Having <strong>slapped Canadian softwood with tariffs, and begun investigating steel imports last week,</strong> it appears - as Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross promised - the Trump adminstration has shifte its focus to aluminum imports. Specifically,<a href="http://bigstory.ap.org/article/eb667b51f7d84992a29108869508bf6b/trump-order-probe-aluminum-imports"> as AP reports,</a> Washington has begun an<strong> investigation into whether aluminum imports are jeaoparding national security</strong>.</p> <p>Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says the president will sign a memo ordering him to determine the impact of rising aluminum imports.<strong> High-purity aluminum is used in a number of defense applications, including military planes and the armor-plating of military vehicles.</strong></p> <p>Ross says there is <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>only one American smelter that produces high-purity, aerospace-quality aluminum</strong></span>.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>He says,<strong><em> "It's very, very dangerous, obviously from a national defense point of view, to only have one supplier of an absolutely critical material."</em></strong></p> </blockquote> <p>This is the president's second such move. He initiated an<strong> investigation into steel imports last week.</strong></p> <p><strong>The investigation could lead to tariffs on aluminum imports. </strong></p> <p><strong></strong>Ironically, just as with lumber, and <strong>steel...</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_steel.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_steel_0.jpg" width="600" height="318" /></a></p> <p>Prices for the commodity have been surging recently (despite a broad-based commodity selloff worldwide).</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_alum1.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_alum1_0.jpg" width="600" height="313" /></a></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="239" height="125" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170426_alum2.jpg?1493256117" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/trump-adminstration-begins-probe-aluminum-imports-national-security-threat#comments American people of German descent Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Finance national security Steel Imports The Apprentice United States Wilbur Wilbur Ross Wilbur Ross WWE Hall of Fame Thu, 27 Apr 2017 01:24:21 +0000 Tyler Durden 594455 at http://www.zerohedge.com Who Will Really Pay? Mexico Plans Retaliation Over Trump's Border Wall But Ted Cruz Has A Cunning Plan http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/who-will-really-pay-mexico-plans-retaliation-over-trumps-border-wall-ted-cruz-has-cu <p>As President Trump <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/trump-flip-flopped-wall-funding-dems-demand-more-avert-friday-shutdown">appears to fold on his funding request for a border wall,</a> though tweet-xclaiming <em>&quot;it will get built and help stop drugs, human trafficking etc.,&quot;</em> a top Mexican official on Tuesday said that <strong>Mexico may consider charging a fee for Americans entering the country</strong> in what could be seen as a <strong>retaliation </strong>to President Trump&#39;s posturing.</p> <p><img height="338" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_border_0.jpg" width="600" /></p> <p>Trump has asked congress to include a down payment on the wall in the spending bill but because of scrutiny from both sides, the President announced Monday that he&rsquo;d be willing to wait until September to revisit the issue of funding; however, his stance on Mexico&rsquo;s role in paying for the wall hasn&rsquo;t changed. <a href="http://www.foxnews.com/world/2017/04/26/miffed-over-border-wall-talk-top-mexican-official-floats-american-entry-fee.html"><em>And as Fox News reports,</em></a> <strong>Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray, in a meeting with Mexico&#39;s top legislators, called Trump&#39;s plan an &quot;unfriendly, hostile&quot; act, and called on his colleagues to consider the entry fee</strong>.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&quot;We could explore - not necessarily a visa, that could impede a lot of people from coming to Mexico - but we could <strong>perhaps (have) a fee associated with entry,</strong>&rdquo; Videgaray said.<strong><em> &ldquo;This is something that I&#39;m sure will be part of our discussion, and I believe we can find points of agreement.&quot;</em></strong></p> </blockquote> <p><strong>Videgaray went on to say that Mexico would not pay a cent towards the wall. </strong>He said if talks between the U.S. and Mexico fail to satisfy both countries, the Mexican government would consider reducing security cooperation.&nbsp;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&quot;If the negotiation on other themes &mdash; immigration, the border, trade &mdash; isn&#39;t satisfactory to Mexico&#39;s interests, we will have to review our existing cooperation,&quot; Videgaray said. &quot;This would be especially in the security areas ... and that involves the national immigration agency, the federal police and of course, the armed forces.&quot;</p> </blockquote> <p>So, trade deficits, tax plans, and budget decisions aside, who will really pay for the wall? American tourists via a transfer tax on entry to Mexico? <strong>Well Ted Cruz has an even more cunning plan</strong>. <a href="https://www.rt.com/usa/386192-cruz-el-chapo-act-wall/">As RT reports</a>, President Donald Trump&rsquo;s much vaunted Mexican border wall could be built using the fortune of a notorious drug kingpin, according to Republican Senator Ted Cruz, who has proposed the &lsquo;El Chapo Act&rsquo;.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_border1.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_border1_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 362px;" /></a></p> <p>Cruz, a one time political rival to Trump, has backed the president&rsquo;s desire to build a 1,000 mile-long (1600km) barrier between the US and Mexico.</p> <p>Cruz has now gone a step further by proposing the so-called &lsquo;El Chapo Act&rsquo;, or the Collection of Hidden Assets to Provide Order, which would use any of the $14 billion being sought by the US government in a case against Mexican drug boss Joaquín Guzmán, to construct the barrier.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_border2.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_border2.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 248px;" /></a></p> <p>The US indictment alleges the 59-year-old, who was previously given a 20-year sentence in his homeland for murder and drug offences, led the violent Sinaloa Cartel and<strong> amassed &ldquo;$14 billion from narcotics sales throughout the United States and Canada.&rdquo;</strong></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><em><strong>&ldquo;Fourteen billion dollars will go a long way toward building a wall that will keep Americans safe and hinder the illegal flow of drugs, weapons, and individuals across our southern border,&rdquo; </strong></em>Cruz said in a statement.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&ldquo;Ensuring the safety and security of Texans is one of my top priorities. We must also be mindful of the impact on the federal budget. By leveraging any criminally forfeited assets of El Chapo and his ilk, we can offset the wall&rsquo;s cost and make meaningful progress toward achieving President Trump&rsquo;s stated border security objectives.&rdquo;</p> </blockquote> <p>Now that is a border wall funding plan we suspect many could get behind.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="491" height="203" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170426_border2.jpg?1493212711" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/who-will-really-pay-mexico-plans-retaliation-over-trumps-border-wall-ted-cruz-has-cu#comments Border barrier Donald Trump Donald Trump Enrique Peña Nieto ETC Executive Order 13767 Fail Federal police Fox News Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán Luis Videgaray Caso Mexican government Mexico Mexico Mexico–United States border national immigration agency Politics Politics Ted Cruz United States US government Thu, 27 Apr 2017 01:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594360 at http://www.zerohedge.com Mapping The World's Great Divides: "Chasms Are Widening Too Fast And Too Much" http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/mapping-worlds-great-divides-chasms-are-widening-too-fast-and-too-much <p><a href="https://www.theautomaticearth.com/2017/04/the-great-divides/"><em>Authored by Raul Ilargi Meijer via The Automatic Earth blog,</em></a></p> <p>Something hit me this week. The maps which came out on Monday and detailed the outcome of the French elections, were telling a story, and a familiar one by now. <strong>A story of deep division.</strong> There are a number of such maps now <strong>depicting the Brexit vote in the UK, the US presidential elections, and its French counterpart.</strong></p> <p>In all three cases they leave me wondering something along the lines of:<em><strong> &lsquo;Are you guys sure you want to remain in the same country with each other?&rsquo; </strong></em>Because to me that is not all that obvious, and I think it&rsquo;ll get less so as time passes. For instance in the case of France, the &lsquo;ideological&rsquo; differences between Macron and Le Pen are substantial to say the least, they&rsquo;re worlds apart.</p> <p><strong>And if you&rsquo;re worlds apart, why live in the same country? </strong>Here&rsquo;s that French map:</p> <p><a href="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/FranceDividedNation.jpg" target="new"><img src="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/FranceDividedNation-550.jpg" style="border-width: 0px; border-style: solid; height: 576px; width: 500px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>As you see,<strong> the country is sharply divided between west (Macron) and east (Le Pen). </strong>So much so that you wonder what these people still have in common, other than their language. There&rsquo;s no doubt it&rsquo;s also a dividing line between the richer part of the country, and the poorer.</p> <p>Thing is, that same dividing line is visible in a similar map of the November 8, 2016 US election results, in a slightly different way.</p> <p><a href="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/2016USElectionmap.jpg" target="new"><img src="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/2016USElectionmap-600.jpg" style="border-width: 0px; border-style: solid; height: 325px; width: 500px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>In the US it&rsquo;s not east versus west, it&rsquo;s coast versus interior (flyover land). But the difference is equally clear and sharp.</strong> In fact, probably what we&rsquo;re looking at is that France has only one coastline, while the US has two, and in both countries people living close to the ocean are on average richer than those who live more inland.</p> <p>And in both cases there is no doubt that wealth is a deciding factor in dividing the nations to the extent that they are. We see that in an &lsquo;urban versus rural area&rsquo; comparison as well. Cities like New York, LA and Paris are strongholds for the incumbent and establishment, the parties that represent the rich.</p> <p><strong>There can be no doubt that we&rsquo;ll see more of that going forward.</strong> It won&rsquo;t be there in smaller countries, Holland for instance is not nearly large enough for such dynamics. But Italy very well might. It&rsquo;s always had a strong north-south-divide, and its present crisis has undoubtedly deepened that chasm.</p> <p>Looking at things that way, it&rsquo;s also glaringly obvious that Macron is Obama (and is Renzi is Cameron etc.). A well-trained good looking mediagenic puppet with a gift of teleprompter gab, fabricated and cultivated by the ruling financial and industrial world to do their bidding. Macron, to me, looks the most artificial of the crop so far, the Obama, Rutte, Cameron, Renzi crop. There will be more, and they will get more artificial. Edward Bernays is just getting started.</p> <p>Of course there is also a strong move away from established parties. It is more pronounced in France -where they were eradicated at least in the presidential elections- than in the US or UK, but that may be more of a superficial thing. Trump and Bernie Sanders are simply America&rsquo;s version of France&rsquo;s &lsquo;ultra&rsquo; right wing Le Pen and &lsquo;ultra&rsquo; left wing Melenchon. And Trump is running into problems with the remnants of the established parties as much as Macron will if he&rsquo;s elected president.</p> <p>Anglo countries seem to take longer diversifying away from tradition than others, but they too will get there. The various deteriorating economies will make sure of that.</p> <p><strong>A third map is of the UK Brexit vote. Once again, a sharp division, and once again with a &lsquo;character&rsquo; of its own.</strong> If you ignore Scotland for a moment, what you see is blue=poor and yellow=rich. Broad strokes, I know, but I&rsquo;ve been doing that with the first two maps too. There are only a few pockets of yellow=rich=remain. But yeah, fewer people live there. Same thing as in the US and France.</p> <p>That the whole Brexit thing should now be negotiated by the Tories is a cynical irony the country owes to its adherence to tradition. That is how that backfires, too little flexibility. How the UK will solve its many ignored issues is anyone&rsquo;s guess. <strong><em>Will Scotland leave the no-longer-very United Kingdom? Will voters wake up in time to not present the Tories with a free hand to make the rich-poor divide even worse?</em></strong></p> <p><a href="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/BrexitResults.jpg" target="new"><img src="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/BrexitResults-456.jpg" style="border-width: 0px; border-style: solid; height: 603px; width: 500px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>There&rsquo;s one more, and more detailed, map of France, which shows even better to what extent &lsquo;Le Pen country&rsquo; is eerily similar to America&rsquo;s flyover land.</strong> It&rsquo;s almost poetic, a poem about how countries fall apart, about centers that cannot hold. It also makes me think of a locust invasion, by the way.</p> <p><a href="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/France-LePenCountry.jpg" target="new"><img src="http://3r8md7174doo44lgpk3kou79-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/France-LePenCountry-600.jpg" style="border-width: 0px; border-style: solid; height: 467px; width: 500px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Every French and European body and their pet hamster is presently telling voters in France to please please not vote for Le Pen, in a move that resembles similar calls against Trump and Brexit. </strong>And who knows, it might work this time around. The anti-Le Pen frenzy is even stronger than the others, and it has Marine&rsquo;s crazy father to use as a warning sign.</p> <p>But as these maps show, it&rsquo;s not about Le Pen, or Trump, or Nigel Farage. It&rsquo;s about people being left behind in ever larger numbers, susceptible to voices other than the ones they&rsquo;ve known for a long time and who never listened to them. And nothing is being done to address these people&rsquo;s claims; on the contrary, things are only getting worse for them.</p> <p><strong>I saw a headline today that said ECB president Mario Draghi&rsquo;s &ldquo;Stimulus Could Blunt Populism as Unemployment Declines&rdquo;. There&rsquo;s only one possible reaction to that: what happens when he stops his stimulus?</strong></p> <p>The growing divides that all these maps bear witness to will keep growing, unless someone decides that neo-liberalism has gone too far. But the only person who could make such a decision would have to be one who neo-liberalism itself has made rich and powerful. So don&rsquo;t count on that happening.</p> <p><u><strong>Count instead on more Trumps and Le Pens and Sanders&rsquo;s.</strong></u> And also on more Obama&rsquo;s and Macrons for the rich to deploy to protect their power and hold on to their riches. Increasingly it would seem they have to limit democracy -even further- to remain in power. So count on that happening too.</p> <p><u><strong>But don&rsquo;t count on all these countries surviving as sovereign nations. The chasms are widening too fast and too much.</strong></u></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="221" height="144" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170426_divided.jpg?1493220898" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/mapping-worlds-great-divides-chasms-are-widening-too-fast-and-too-much#comments Bernie Sanders Brexit Donald Trump ETC European Central Bank Euroscepticism Euroscepticism in the United Kingdom France Italy Matteo Renzi Nigel Farage Politics Tories Unemployment United Kingdom United Kingdom European Union membership referendum Thu, 27 Apr 2017 00:35:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594384 at http://www.zerohedge.com US Consumers Tap Out: Credit Card Defaults Surge To 4 Year High And It's Getting Worse http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/us-consumers-tap-out-credit-card-defaults-surge-4-year-high-and-its-getting-worse <p>Two weeks ago, <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-13/jpm-beats-ficc-revenues-jump-offset-troubling-spike-credit-card-charge-offs">when JPMorgan launched Q1 earnings season</a>, we noted that while the results were generally good, one red flag emerged: the company's credit card charge offs rose to just shy of $1 billion, the highest in four years.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/03/27/JPM%20charge%20offs.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/03/27/JPM%20charge%20offs_0.jpg" width="547" height="401" /></a></p> <p>It wasn't just JPM: all other money-center banks reported similar trends, so we decided to look into it. </p> <p>What we found was not pretty. According to the latest data from the <a href="https://us.spindices.com/indices/specialty/sp-experian-bankcard-default-index">S&amp;P/Experian Bankcard Default Index</a>, as of March 2017, the default rate on US credit cards had jumped to 3.31%, an increase of 13% from a year ago, and the highest default rate since June 2013. </p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/credit%20car%20default.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/credit%20car%20default_0.jpg" width="500" height="299" /></a></p> <p>This is how S&amp;P/Experian <a href="http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/spexperian-consumer-credit-default-indices-show-bank-card-default-rate-rises-five-straight-months-in-march-2017-300440921.html">explained </a>the recent 5 consecutive month surge in bank card default rates:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>The bank card default rate recorded a 3.31% default rate, up nine basis points from February. Auto loan defaults came in at 1.00%, down five basis points from the previous month. The first mortgage default rate came in at 0.75%, up one basis point from February and reaching a one-year high. </p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The National bank card default rate of 3.31% in March sets a 45-month high. When comparing the bank card default rate among the four census divisions, the bank card default rate in the South is considerably higher than the other three census divisions. Upon further analysis to the South's three census regions, East South Central – comprised of Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi – has the highest bank card default rate.&nbsp; </p> </blockquote> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/default%20rate%20census.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/default%20rate%20census_0.jpg" width="500" height="322" /></a></p> <p>"Currently the debt service ratio for consumer credit – the percentage of disposable income required to service consumer credit debt – is 5.58%, up from its recent low of 4.92% in 2012 but lower than the 6.01% peak seen shortly before the financial crisis.&nbsp; <strong>The higher interest rates that most analysts expect over 2017-2018 are likely to combine with continued growth in consumer credit to push the debt service ratio back towards the 6% level</strong>," said David M. Blitzer, Managing Director and Chairman of the Index Committee at S&amp;P Dow Jones Indices</p> <p>Making matters worse, based on the latest credit card data reported overnight from pure-plays Discover and CapitalOne, the deteriorating trends are rapidly accelerating (resulting in the stock of both DFS and COF getting slammed).</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/COF%20chart%201_2.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/COF%20chart%201_2_0.jpg" width="500" height="299" /></a></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/Discover%20chart%201_1.jpg"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/2017/04/19/Discover%20chart%201_1_0.jpg" width="500" height="299" /></a></p> <p>Add to this what CoreLogic <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/corelogic-mortgage-performance-beginning-deteriorate">warned earlier in the day</a>, namely that that stalwart of any viable business cycle, mortgage performance, has finally started to deteriorate...</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>While loan performance improved across various loan types throughout the first five years of the expansion, <strong>over the last year three of the four major types of loans began experiencing a deterioration in loan performance</strong>. The exception to the deterioration in credit performance was real estate, which continues to improve. <strong>However, a closer look reveals performance is deteriorating, albeit from pristine levels of performance. </strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>... <strong>While performance for the 2016 vintage is still very good from relative to the last two decades, it is beginning to worsen</strong>. Historically, when the mortgage credit cycle begins to deteriorate it continues to do so until the economy bottoms and the credit cycle begins to improve again.</p> </blockquote> <p>... and it is becoming clear that the US consumer, responsible for 70% of US economic growth, has finally rolled over.</p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="821" height="491" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user5/imageroot/credit%20car%20default.jpg?1493252456" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/us-consumers-tap-out-credit-card-defaults-surge-4-year-high-and-its-getting-worse#comments Bank Business Consumer Credit Credit Credit card Debt default Default Rate Economy Finance Financial crisis of 2007–2008 Great Recession Index Committee Loans Money Mortgage loan Real estate S&P S&P Dow Jones Systemic risk Thu, 27 Apr 2017 00:21:32 +0000 Tyler Durden 594446 at http://www.zerohedge.com ViVa MaRooN…MaCRoN... http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/viva-maroon%E2%80%A6macron <p><a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/expd/34160093191/in/dateposted-public/" title="VIVA MACRON"><img src="https://c1.staticflickr.com/3/2807/34160093191_c0af110bed_b.jpg" alt="VIVA MACRON" width="1000" height="799" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" /></a></p> <script src="//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js"></script> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/viva-maroon%E2%80%A6macron#comments Baseball Hall of Fame balloting Education Politics Thu, 27 Apr 2017 00:04:38 +0000 williambanzai7 594444 at http://www.zerohedge.com The Main Highlights In Trump's Sweeping Tax Reform Proposal http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/mnuchincohn-unveil-trumps-biggest-tax-cut-ever-tax-reform-plan-live-feed <p>In brief, the tax reform was largely in line with what was leaked and what was expected. Small surprises: the tax bracket for high income earners was 2% more (at 35%) than what Trump campaigned on, and the standard deduction has been doubled so that no married couple pays tax on their first 24k earned, Citi notes.</p> <p>As expected, no mention of border adjustment taxes. The plan also looks to repeal real estate taxes, alternative minimum tax and the death tax. Territorial taxes are also included. As we type, Mnuchin and Cohn are answering their last question.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_tax_1.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_tax_1.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 301px;" /></a></p> <p>Below is the actual tax from the White House:</p> <h3><u>2017 Tax Reform for Economic Growth and American Jobs</u></h3> <p><strong>The Biggest Individual And Business Tax Cut in American History</strong></p> <h3><u>Goals For Tax Reform</u></h3> <ul> <li>Grow the economy and create millions of jobs</li> <li>Simplify our burdensome tax code</li> <li>Provide tax relief to American families&mdash;especially middle-income families</li> <li>Lower the business tax rate from one of the highest in the world to one of the lowest</li> </ul> <h3><u>Individual Reform</u></h3> <ul> <li>Tax relief for American families, especially middle-income families: <ul> <li>Reducing the 7 tax brackets to 3 tax brackets of to%, 25% and 35%</li> <li>Doubling the standard deduction</li> <li>Providing tax relief for families with child and dependent care expenses</li> </ul> </li> <li>Simplification: <ul> <li>Eliminate targeted tax breaks that mainly benefit the wealthiest taxpayers</li> <li>Protect the home ownership and charitable gift tax deductions</li> <li>Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax</li> <li>Repeal the death tax</li> </ul> </li> <li>Repeal the 3.8% Obamacare tax that hits small businesses and investment income</li> </ul> <h3><u>Business Reform</u></h3> <ul> <li>15% business tax rate</li> <li>Territorial tax system to level the playing field for American companies</li> <li>One-time tax on trillions of dollars held overseas</li> <li>Eliminate tax breaks for special interests</li> </ul> <h3><u>Process</u></h3> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Throughout the month of May, the Trump Administration will hold listening sessions with stakeholders to receive their input and will continue working with the House and Senate to develop the details of a plan that provides massive tax relief, creates jobs, and makes America more competitive&mdash;and can pass both chambers.</p> </blockquote> <p>A few additional observations from Citi:</p> <p><strong>What didn&rsquo;t Mnuchin or Cohn tell us, in addition to the details noted above:</strong></p> <ul> <li>Did not specify if the plan would be &ldquo;revenue neutral,&rdquo; which is needed to get permanent policy.</li> <li>Mnuchin didn&rsquo;t talk about how dynamic scoring could play a hand in implementation during the official press conference but he did touch on this in an earlier appearance for The Hill. Dynamic analysis accounts for the macroeconomic impacts of tax, spending, and regulatory policy, while dynamic scoring uses dynamic analysis in estimating the budgetary impact of proposed policy changes. Ultimately, the Trump Administration believes policies will generate growth above 3.0%YoY, which can pay for the plan. The challenge is that it has to sell this view to Congress.</li> <li>Did not discuss border adjustment taxes (BAT) during the official conference but did brush on this during his appearance on The Hill.&nbsp; Mnuchin said &quot;we don&#39;t think it works in its current form&quot; but there will be ongoing discussions on this. Ryan also acknowledged the BAT needed work.</li> </ul> <p>When asked by The Hill editor-in-chief as to whether or not he&#39;s reached out to any centrist Democrats for input on the plan, Mnuchin declined to comment on the &quot;specifics.&quot; He &quot;hopes Democrats won&#39;t get in way.&quot;</p> <p>Ryan said several times Wednesday that Republicans plan to use reconciliation as a vehicle for tax reform. This point is very important but to illustrate this, one has to understand the reconciliation process.</p> <p>The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities helps define it. Created by the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, reconciliation allows for expedited consideration of certain tax, spending, and debt limit legislation. In the Senate, reconciliation bills are approved with a simple majority of 51. To start the reconciliation process, the House and Senate must agree on a budget resolution that includes &ldquo;reconciliation directives&rdquo; for specified committees in the House and Senate. Those committees must report legislation by a certain date that does one or more of the following:</p> <ul> <li>Increases or decreases spending (outlays) by specified amounts over a specified time;</li> <li>Increases or decreases revenues by specified amounts over a specified time</li> <li>Raises or lowers the public debt limit by a specified amount.</li> </ul> <p>Republicans could pursue tax reform under the budget reconciliation process, meaning the Senate could pass bills related to the budget &ndash; but reconciliation requires the long-term savings. Post 10y, scoring has to indicate that the bill will be revenue neutral or revenue positive or it doesn&rsquo;t work. &nbsp;</p> <p>That looks to be exactly why Republicans wanted to prioritize healthcare reform: the Congressional Budget Office estimated the American Health Care Act would reduce federal deficits by USD337 billion over the next 10y. Given that tax reform estimates signal a revenue burden, various political analysts posit that Republicans have been looking to repeal Obamacare to pay for some parts of tax reform.</p> <p>Without healthcare reform, Republicans could face challenges getting a revenue neutral, long-term tax reform.</p> <ul> <li>The Tax Policy Center estimates Trump&#39;s plan for a 15% corporate tax rate would decrease federal revenues by USD2.3tn between 2016 and 2026. Trump&#39;s campaign tax plan for corporations and individuals could cause revenue to drop by roughly USD6tn between 2016 and 2026, according to the projections.</li> <li>The Tax Policy Center is left-leaning but is being heard out. Even Senate Finance Chairman Orrin Hatch has said a 15% corporate tax would increase the deficit and if the overall plan doesn&rsquo;t include border adjustment tax &ndash; or borrow funds via healthcare reform &ndash; Republicans will have to find revenue streams.</li> </ul> <p>* * *</p> <p>Some parting thoughts:: as Time&#39;s Zeke Miller notes this Trump tax plan is the same as the one released last fall. &quot;If his team has been working on it for the last 6mos, we didn&#39;t see it 2day.&quot;</p> <p>Additionally, while the proposed tax plan does not raise taxes on hedge fund managers, as Trump vowed during his campaign, courtesy of the cut in LLC tax rates, it will likely lower the taxes many if not all HF managers pay.</p> <p>And, of course, with the state deduction gone, it means that for many Americans the net effect will be to raise, not lower the amount of tax owed.</p> <p>* * *</p> <p>Of course the crucial question is - with The White House targeting deductions to help pay for tax plan (but mortgage/charitable are protected), how does this not blow up deficit?</p> <p>Perhaps the most concerning aspect is the apparent <strong>expectations management</strong> that is being undertaken this morning:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The White House&#39;s <strong>presentation will be&nbsp;&quot;pretty broad in the principles,&quot;</strong>&nbsp;said Marc Short, Trump&#39;s director of legislative affairs.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>In the coming weeks, Trump will solicit more ideas on how to improve it, Short said. The&nbsp;<strong>specifics should start to come this summer.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Short said the <strong>administration&nbsp;did not want to set a firm timeline,</strong>&nbsp;after demanding a quick House vote on a health care bill and watching it fail.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>But, Short added,<strong><em>&nbsp;&quot;I don&#39;t see this sliding into 2018.&quot;</em></strong></p> </blockquote> <p>The biggest question is - will this be enough to satisfy the market? For now the answer is no, because as Citi adds the market isn&#39;t jumping around on this but there is a bid in US fixed income, taking USDJPY down towards 111.25. All in all, a classic buy the rumor, sell the news on an underdelivered (but fairly presented as such) &quot;big announcement&quot; from the Trump Administration.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_tax12.jpg"><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_tax12_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 339px;" /></a></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="727" height="365" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170426_tax.jpg?1493225377" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/mnuchincohn-unveil-trumps-biggest-tax-cut-ever-tax-reform-plan-live-feed#comments Alternative minimum tax American Health Care Act Business Business Center on Budget Congress Congressional Budget Office Congressional Budget Office Donald Trump Draft:Modern Tax Policy Economy Economy of the United States Estate tax in the United States Fail fixed Flat tax Internal Revenue Code Itemized deduction Obamacare Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Politics Presidency of Barack Obama Real estate Senate Social Issues Steven Mnuchin Tax Tax Policy Center Tax reform Taxation in the United States Trump Administration United States Value-added tax Wealth in the United States White House White House Wed, 26 Apr 2017 23:45:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594398 at http://www.zerohedge.com Doug Casey On Why It's OK To Discriminate http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/doug-casey-why-its-ok-discriminate <p><a href="http://www.caseyresearch.com/articles/doug-casey-on-why-its-ok-to-discriminate"><em>Via CaseyResearch.com,</em></a></p> <p><u><strong>It was the worst article I&rsquo;ve ever read.</strong></u><strong><u> </u></strong>The piece was titled<strong><em> &ldquo;Could It Be Time To Deny White Men The Franchise?&rdquo; </em></strong>In it, the <strong>author argued why white men should no longer be allowed to vote.</strong></p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_marx1.jpg"><strong><img alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/2017/04/21/20170426_marx1_0.jpg" style="width: 600px; height: 179px;" /></strong></a></p> <p><em>(The Huffington Post has since pulled the original article down claiming that the author &ldquo;<a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.co.za/shelley-garland/could-it-be-time-to-deny-white-men-the-franchise_a_22036640/" target="_blank">cannot be traced and appears not to exist</a>.&rdquo; Luckily, we were able to track down the original article. You can read it <a href="https://web-beta.archive.org/web/20170413112251/http:/www.huffingtonpost.co.za/shelley-garland/could-it-be-time-to-deny-white-men-the-franchise_a_22036640/" target="_blank">here.)</a></em></p> <p>As soon as I finished reading the article, I sent it to Casey Research founder Doug Casey. He replied:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><em><strong>&ldquo;Fascinating. At first, it seemed like a comedy piece. But it&#39;s clear she&#39;s serious.&rdquo;</strong></em></p> </blockquote> <p>A few days later, Doug and I chatted about the article.</p> <p><strong>Below is a transcript of our conversation. We hope you enjoy it.</strong></p> <p>*&nbsp; *&nbsp; *</p> <p><strong>Justin:</strong> Doug what did you think of that <em>Huffington Post</em> article I sent you?</p> <p><strong>Doug:</strong> I read the article when it was still up, and it was absolutely incredible. That&rsquo;s not just a figure of speech. I mean it beggared belief. I urge everyone reading this to <a href="https://web-beta.archive.org/web/20170413112251/http:/www.huffingtonpost.co.za/shelley-garland/could-it-be-time-to-deny-white-men-the-franchise_a_22036640/" target="_blank">hit the link</a>. <strong>These people don&rsquo;t seem to realize that they&rsquo;re actually parodies of themselves. I mean, they&rsquo;re always talking about racism and xenophobia and sexism and ageism and the like. They don&rsquo;t look at people as individuals, they look at people as members of classes. That&rsquo;s why it&rsquo;s called &ldquo;identity politics&rdquo;&mdash;you don&rsquo;t identify as an individual, but as a member of a group or a class. And, of course, their philosophical background is cultural Marxism. Because, you know, one of the central points of Marxism is that people are all members of classes.</strong></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody">But it&rsquo;s actually gone beyond that. It&rsquo;s become fashionable now to hate white males in particular. <strong>They say that women, blacks, Muslims&mdash;pick a group, any group except for white males&mdash;are all discriminated against.</strong></span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody">I would say, in the first place, there&rsquo;s absolutely nothing wrong with discrimination in itself<strong>. Discrimination can be rational.</strong> Discrimination can be intelligent. It&rsquo;s often necessary. It&rsquo;s a matter of what you&rsquo;re basing your discrimination on.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody"><strong>You have to discriminate between things that will help you and things that will hurt you. </strong>And that can include other groups or even other people. It&rsquo;s a genetic trait to be more favorably inclined towards people like yourself. Tribes usually identify themselves as &ldquo;the people&rdquo;, and everybody else is &ldquo;other&rdquo;, a potential enemy. It makes sense to recognize facts of reality. Different ethnic and religious groups have different beliefs, customs, and ethics. Until you can get to know them as individuals it makes sense to generalize.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody"><strong>But it goes deeper than that with this insane article.</strong> What these people really hate is Western Civilization and everything it represents. The question is: <strong><em>Why do these people think it&rsquo;s virtuous to discriminate against white males?</em></strong> White males are largely responsible for Western Civilization. Which is shorthand for things like individualism, free markets, free thought, science, literature, industry, and about everything that&rsquo;s allowed mankind to rise out of the muck and look to conquer the planets.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody">That&rsquo;s what this article really hates.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody"><strong>So, it&rsquo;s fascinating not so much that somebody wrote an article as stupid as that. But that a large outlet like <em>Huffington</em> would actually publish it. It&rsquo;s a sign of how degraded things are.</strong> I&rsquo;d say the author suffers from a serious psychological aberration. The editor who posted it is clearly a graduate of some PC US university, probably a major in Gender Studies.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody">It&rsquo;s too bad that they took it down because it should be put on display, as a warning. Unless they repost it in <em>The Onion</em>.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody"><strong>Justin:</strong> I totally agree, Doug. I&rsquo;ve also noticed that these people don&rsquo;t really want equality for all. <strong>They want equality for some</strong>. It&rsquo;s incredibly hypocritical.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody"><strong>Doug: </strong>It&rsquo;s <strong>actually all about envy. Envy is a vice&mdash;it&rsquo;s different from jealousy, another vice. Jealousy is a vice that says, &ldquo;You have something, I want it, I&rsquo;ll take it away from you.&rdquo; Envy is even worse. It says, &ldquo;You have something that I want, I can&rsquo;t get it, so I&rsquo;ll destroy it, so you can&rsquo;t have it either.&rdquo; These people aren&rsquo;t just misguided. They&rsquo;re mentally ill. </strong>They&rsquo;re actually evil. But they&rsquo;re not just taken seriously, they&rsquo;re treated with respect. And they&rsquo;re endemic to society at this point. This is cause for great pessimism.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody"><strong>Justin: </strong>It&rsquo;s certainly not the only reason to be pessimistic, either. But that&rsquo;s it for today. Thank you for taking the time to speak with me.</span></span></p> <p><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody"><strong>Doug: </strong>You&rsquo;re welcome.</span></span></p> <p>*&nbsp; *&nbsp; *</p> <p><em><span itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/Article"><span itemprop="articleBody">Doug and his team just released a new video presentation that explains a unique way to get paid every month on autopilot. Thanks to a brand-new initiative started by the US government, you can potentially earn an extra $10,000 to $40,000 over the next three years. If you&#39;re interested, you can watch it <a href="http://www.caseyresearch.com/go/trc5b-2/CDD" target="_blank">right here</a>.</span></span></em></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="473" height="246" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user3303/imageroot/20170426_marx.jpg?1493241064" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/doug-casey-why-its-ok-discriminate#comments 11:59 Cinema of the United States English-language films Films Neo-noir Reality Rise: Blood Hunter Social Issues The Onion US government You Got to Move Wed, 26 Apr 2017 23:45:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594427 at http://www.zerohedge.com The New America: Rich Get Richer, Poor Get Replaced By Robots http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/new-america-rich-get-richer-poor-get-replaced-robots <p>Trump has spent a lot of time during his first couple of months in the White House ramping up the rhetoric over all the jobs that are flowing out of the country into lower-cost labor markets like Mexico, China and elsewhere.&nbsp; And while that may be true, as we've pointed out multiple times in the past, <strong>part of the issue is also related to good old-fashioned capital allocation decisions whereby the combination of rising labor costs in the U.S. and declining technology costs makes capital investments in automation much more attractive.</strong></p> <p>The problem, of course, is that low-skilled labor (e.g. making a Big Mac or taking an order at McDonald's) is much more susceptible to automation than higher-skilled positions which results in expanding income disparity.&nbsp;</p> <p>In fact, as <a href="https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-26/america-s-rich-poor-divide-keeps-ballooning-as-robots-take-jobs">Bloomberg</a> points out in a series of charts today, the growing income divide, just since 2010, is fairly staggering.&nbsp; The rich-poor gap - the difference in annual income between households in the top 20% and those in the bottom 20% - ballooned by just over $29,000 between 2010 and 2015.&nbsp; </p> <p>High-tech hubs were among the five metropolitan statistical areas where the gap between the highest- and lowest-income households expanded the most:&nbsp;two in California, San Francisco and San Jose, as well as Austin and&nbsp;Seattle.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/04/26/2017.04.26 - Robots 1.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/04/26/2017.04.26%20-%20Robots%201_0.JPG" style="width: 600px; height: 310px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The gap between the super rich (top 5%) and the middle class (the middle 20%) is also surging.</p> <p><a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/04/26/2017.04.26 - Robots 1.JPG"><img src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2017/04/26/2017.04.26%20-%20Robots%202_0.JPG" style="width: 600px; height: 311px;" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Meanwhile, as a new study from PWC points out, this trend is unlikely to reverse anytime in the near future as they estimate that 38% of U.S. jobs could be at risk of automation just over the next 15 years.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>“Technological developments have increasingly replaced low- and mid-skilled jobs while complementing higher-skilled jobs,”</strong> said Chad Sparber, an associate professor and chair of the economic department at Colgate University.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This shift is predicted to continue. <strong>About 38 percent of U.S. jobs could be at high risk of automation by the early 2030s,</strong> according to a <a href="http://www.pwc.co.uk/economic-services/ukeo/pwcukeo-section-4-automation-march-2017-v2.pdf" target="_blank" title="Link to Study" rel="nofollow noopener">study</a> by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. The “most-exposed” industries include retail and wholesale trade, transportation and storage, and manufacturing, with less-educated workers facing the biggest challenges.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>“Companies are doubling down on costs cuts and streamlining their operations,”</strong> said Chris Rupkey, chief financial economist at MUFG Union Bank in New York. Workers “at the bottom have not seen as much improvement as those at the very top of society.”</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>Of course, when demand for a product, low-skilled labor in this case, is declining, the worst thing you can do is raise the price for that product.&nbsp; </strong>Unfortunately, <a href="http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-24/bernie-introduce-15-federal-minimum-wage-legislation-wednesday">as we pointed out a couple of days ago</a>, that is <strong>exactly what Bernie Sanders and other liberals are doing with their recently released legislation calling for a $15 federal minimum wage.</strong></p> <p><iframe src="https://www.bloomberg.com/api/embed/iframe?id=651d54f6-e6c1-4b63-830c-05cfe75a1631" width="600" height="337" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_teaser" width="833" height="490" alt="" src="http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/Robots_0.JPG?1493212272" /> </div> </div> </div> http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-26/new-america-rich-get-richer-poor-get-replaced-robots#comments Automation Bernie Sanders Causes of unemployment in the United States China Colgate University Distribution of wealth Economic globalization Economic inequality Economy Income distribution Labour relations Mexico Minimum wage Rust Belt Social inequality Structure White House White House Wed, 26 Apr 2017 23:20:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 594365 at http://www.zerohedge.com