en Trump Asks Why Intelligence Committee Isn't Probing The Clintons <p>Following a day of drama involving the Chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Devin Nunes, who has been under constant onslaught by Democrats ever since his disclosure last week that Trump had indeed been the object of surveillance, and whose Democrat peer at the Intel panel, Adam Schiff, on Monday night <a href="">called for Nunes to recuse himself</a>, moments ago Trump waded into the news cycle when he asked on Twitter why the House Intelligence Committee is not investigating the Clintons for various ties of their own to Russia. He then slammed the ongoing anti-Russian witch hunt, saying "the Russia story is a hoax."</p> <p>“Why isn't the House Intelligence Committee looking into the Bill &amp; Hillary deal that allowed big Uranium to go to Russia, Russian speech, money to Bill, the Hillary Russian ‘reset,’ praise of Russia by Hillary, or Podesta Russian Company. Trump Russia story is a hoax. #MAGA!” Trump wrote in two tweets Monday night. </p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Why isn't the House Intelligence Committee looking into the Bill &amp; Hillary deal that allowed big Uranium to go to Russia, Russian speech....</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="">March 28, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p dir="ltr" lang="en"> to Bill, the Hillary Russian "reset," praise of Russia by Hillary, or Podesta Russian Company. Trump Russia story is a hoax. <a href="">#MAGA</a>!</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="">March 28, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><p>Trump's rhetorical questions come amid a news cycle which as discussed on various occasions today has focused on the Republican chair of the Intel Committee, Nunes, who is under fire for briefing Trump about classified material he reviewed last week without sharing the information with committee Democrats. On Monday it was revealed that Nunes had secretly visited the White House grounds one day before announcing incidental surveillance of President Trump’s transition team. His visit raised questions about whether the White House could have been was the source of the intelligence Nunes reviewed. </p> <p>Democratic lawmakers have now called on Nunes to recuse himself from the committee’s probe into Russia’s interference in the United States presidential election. Nunes on Monday evening said the chairman would not step aside from the investigation. </p> <p>The republican lawmaker has claimed that his findings had no relevance to the Russia probe, even as the committee examines the unmasking and leaking of surveillance information as part of that investigation.</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>In a follow up tweet, Trump took another stab at the House Freedom Caucus, who he said snatched "defeat from the jaws of victory" - following Friday's failure to repeal and replace plan for ObamaCare.&nbsp; That followed a Sunday tweet in which he said the conservative House Freedom Caucus, along with the Club for Growth and Heritage Action for America, had “saved” Planned Parenthood and ObamaCare.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">The Republican House Freedom Caucus was able to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. After so many bad years they were ready for a win!</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="">March 28, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><p>Finally, Trump brought it full circle, touching on Friday's failure to repeal Obamacare, saying "the Democrats will make a deal with me on healthcare as soon as ObamaCare folds - not long. Do not worry, we are in very&nbsp; good shape!</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">The Democrats will make a deal with me on healthcare as soon as ObamaCare folds - not long. Do not worry, we are in very good shape!</p> <p>— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) <a href="">March 28, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script> <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="1600" height="800" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> American people of German descent Climate change skepticism and denial Club for Growth and Heritage Action for America Devin Nunes Donald Trump Donald Trump presidential campaign House Intelligence Committee Obamacare Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act replacement proposals Politics Politics of the United States Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections The Apprentice Twitter Twitter United States Uranium White House White House WWE Hall of Fame Tue, 28 Mar 2017 02:19:04 +0000 Tyler Durden 591869 at The Next Clash Emerges: Trump-Ryan Deeply Divided Over Tax 'Cuts' <p>After failing to achieve Republican agreement over healthcare reform, <a href="">The Washington Post reports</a> that while President Trump and House Speaker Paul D. Ryan both want to rewrite the tax code, they are<strong> deeply divided over how much tax relief to give the middle class</strong>.</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="290" scrolling="no" src="//" width="480"></iframe></p> <p><a href="">As WaPo details</a>, Trump proposed a plan that would have reduced taxes drastically, especially for&nbsp;the wealthy but also&nbsp;for the poor and working class. Meanwhile, <strong>Ryan and&nbsp;his colleagues put together a plan that was equally generous to the rich but that would give poor and middle-class taxpayers less of a break</strong>. The speaker&#39;s plan would even have increased taxes on some in the upper middle class. <strong>The richest 0.1 percent of households would receive similar benefits from both politicians</strong>: an average of $1.4 million per household a year under Ryan&#39;s plan and $1.5 million annually under Trump&#39;s plan.</p> <p><a href=""><img alt="" src="" style="width: 480px; height: 463px;" /></a></p> <p><strong>After a decade,&nbsp;<a href="">99.6 percent</a>&nbsp;of the tax relief Ryan proposed would have accrued to the wealthiest&nbsp;1 percent&nbsp;of the&nbsp;country.</strong> In Trump&#39;s plan,&nbsp;<a href="">50.8 percent</a>&nbsp;of the relief would have gone to that group, according to analyses by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center. Most notably given the divisions within the Republican Party (i.e. fiscal conservatives rejection of the healthcare reform bill), Trump&#39;s plan would be extremely costly for the government, reflecting his conservative populist comments in the past that suggest he would be <strong>willing to put the federal government deeper into debt to fund breaks for the middle class</strong>.</p> <p><strong>Ryan&#39;s plan would instead simplify and streamline the tax code</strong> in accordance with conservative orthodoxy, <strong>eliminating the goodies for households with modest incomes</strong> that Trump would preserve or expand.</p> <p>It&#39;s not all bad though as the two tax plans have <strong>important features in common</strong>, <a href="">as WaPo&#39;s Max Ehrenfreund reports</a>,</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>In terms of taxes on the rich, <strong>both plans would reduce the marginal rate paid by the wealthiest</strong> taxpayers on individual income from 39.6 percent to 33 percent.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The two plans would <strong>repeal some of the taxes that Obamacare imposed on the rich</strong>, and both plans also <strong>repeal the estate tax</strong>, which rich families pay when one of their members dies. Repealing the tax would return $300 billion or so to those families over a decade, according to the center, depending on the details of the plan.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Meanwhile, <strong>both plans would increase the amount that many families can earn without paying taxes</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>The biggest reason for the <strong>discrepancy </strong>in the effects of the plans on the middle class is <strong>how Ryan&#39;s proposal would affect imports and exports</strong>.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>The plan includes a complex and controversial provision known as a &quot;border adjustment&quot;,</strong> which some economists think would increase prices for goods and services imported from overseas.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Eric Toder, an economist at the Tax Policy Center, said the group&#39;s initial analysis of this aspect of the plan treated it as a <strong>kind of tax on households&#39; purchases</strong>, but many experts believe that Ryan&#39;s proposal would not have that effect over the long term.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Ryan&#39;s plan would be better for the middle class on that more optimistic assumption. &ldquo;When we do it that way, there actually is a bit of a cut for the middle class,&rdquo; </strong>Toder said.</p> </blockquote> <p>So get ready America, it will be hard for Trump to temper his on-again, off-again support for Speaker Ryan if this division grows - and ironically, Trump may find more support from the other side of the aisle for his &#39;middle-class tax cuts&#39; as the GOP splinters further.</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="271" height="152" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> American people of German descent Business Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Economic policy of Donald Trump Economy of the United States Estate tax in the United States federal government Obamacare Political debates about the United States federal budget Politics Republican Party Social Issues The Apprentice United States WWE Hall of Fame Tue, 28 Mar 2017 02:18:03 +0000 Tyler Durden 591868 at Thousands Of Americans Are Fleeing The Big Cities <p><a href=""><em>Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,</em></a></p> <p><img alt="" src="" style="width: 409px; height: 253px;" /></p> <p><strong>Why are so many people suddenly moving away from major U.S. cities?&nbsp;</strong> Recently, I wrote about the mass exodus that is happening <a href="" title="out of the state of California">out of the state of California</a>, but the truth is that what is happening there is just part of a national phenomenon.&nbsp; <strong>The populations of some of our largest cities are steadily shrinking, </strong>and many experts are completely mystified by the seismic demographic shifts that we are now witnessing.&nbsp; Of course there are a whole host of reasons why people would want to move away from huge cities such as Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore and Cleveland.&nbsp; For some families, it simply comes down to wanting a better life for their children.&nbsp; But as you will see below, <strong>there are others that believe that things in this country are about to take an apocalyptic turn,</strong> and the big cities will not be a place that you want to be when economic collapse, rioting, looting, civil unrest and crime are all spiraling out of control.</p> <p>According to data just released by the U.S. Census Bureau, <strong>Chicago took the prize for the biggest population loss from 2015 to 2016,</strong> and it was followed by <a href="" target="_blank" title="Detroit and Baltimore">Detroit and Baltimore</a>&hellip;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The counties containing Chicago, Detroit and the independent city of Baltimore were the biggest population losers in the United States from 2015 to 2016, <a href="" target="_blank" title="according to data released today by the Census Bureau">according to data released today by the Census Bureau</a>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Cook County, Ill., where Chicago is the county seat, had the largest population loss of any county in the country from 2015 and 2016.</p> </blockquote> <p>Cook County alone had a &ldquo;domestic migration&rdquo; loss of more than 66,000 people.&nbsp; That is a staggering number of people to lose in a single year.</p> <p><strong>Cleveland and Milwaukee were also very high on the list, and some are pointing out that all of these cities are in relatively colder climates and are all struggling economically.</strong></p> <p>So you certainly can&rsquo;t blame people living in these cities for wanting to find somewhere warmer and more economically prosperous to live.</p> <p>But others that are moving away from large cities are deeply concerned about where things are ultimately headed in this country.&nbsp; It doesn&rsquo;t take a genius to see that anger, frustration and hatred are rising all around us, and many believe that conditions are ripe for civil unrest and civil conflict.&nbsp; In fact, best-selling author Doug Casey believes that we could soon see a <a href="" target="_blank" title="“civil war”">&ldquo;civil war&rdquo;</a> that is set off by a &ldquo;financial collapse&rdquo;&hellip;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Best-selling author Doug Casey wrote &ldquo;<a href="" target="_blank" title="Crisis Investing">Crisis Investing</a>&rdquo; at the time when the U.S. political landscape was transitioning from the Carter Administration to the Reagan Administration. Now, Casey sees a coming crisis that is equal or worse than the Civil War.&nbsp; Casey explains, &ldquo;In the U.S. right now, there seems to be so much antagonism it&rsquo;s almost like pre-Civil War.&nbsp; There is actually hatred in the U.S. at this point. &nbsp;It used to be the Republicans and Democrats could disagree, but they could have a civil conversation about a difference of opinion.&nbsp; Now, it&rsquo;s active hatred between these two groups. &nbsp;This is not going to end well.&rdquo;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Casey thinks the coming financial collapse will be the trigger. Casey says, &ldquo;It&rsquo;s going to come down eventually.&nbsp; I am worried about that, but we are in a situation where the country seem like it is just before a civil war.&nbsp; It will be more serious than just a financial collapse, and it is likely to be set off by a financial collapse.&rdquo;</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Without a doubt, <em><strong>our financial system is <a href="" title="certainly primed">certainly primed</a> for a financial collapse, </strong></em>and when things get really, really bad in this country how will people respond?</p> <p>Many have decided that they want to get away from the major population centers before we find out the answer to that question.</p> <p>For example, not too long ago <a href="" target="_blank" title="the Chicago Tribune">the Chicago Tribune</a> ran a story about<strong> why so many preppers are moving to the Great Northwest.</strong>&nbsp; One of the individuals profiled was an ex-resident of California named Trevor Treller who moved up to north Idaho prior to the recent election&hellip;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Trevor Treller, 44, who carries a small Smith &amp; Wesson pistol on his hip, moved to north Idaho last year from Long Beach, California, and recently paid a little less than $400,000 for a defensible three-bedroom house on five wooded acres.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Treller, a sommelier at a local resort, said Obama was a key factor in his decision. He said the president has inflamed racial tensions in America, presided over a dangerous expansion of the national debt, been &ldquo;hostile&rdquo; to Second Amendment rights and failed to curtail the nuclear ambitions of North Korea and Iran.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Treller said any one of those factors could lead to crippling chaos, so he and his wife have laid in food, weapons and ammunition and are installing an iron gate across their long gravel driveway.Of course it isn&rsquo;t just ordinary Americans such as Treller that are deeply concerned about what is coming.</p> </blockquote> <p>Less than a week ago, CNN ran an article entitled &ldquo;<a href="" target="_blank" title="Billionaire bunkers: How the 1% are preparing for the apocalypse">Billionaire bunkers: How the 1% are preparing for the apocalypse</a>&ldquo;&hellip;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Many of the world&rsquo;s elite, including hedge fund managers, sports stars and tech executives (Bill Gates is rumored to have bunkers at all his properties) have chosen to design their own secret shelters to house their families and staff.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Gary Lynch, general manager of Texas-based Rising S Company, says 2016 sales for their custom high-end underground bunkers <strong>grew 700%</strong> compared to 2015, while overall sales have <strong>grown 300%</strong> since the November US presidential election alone.</p> </blockquote> <p><em><strong>So why are Bill Gates and his billionaire friends so interested in buying luxury survival bunkers if everything is going to be just fine?</strong></em></p> <p><em><strong>Can someone explain that one to me?</strong></em></p> <p>Everywhere you look, retail stores <a href="" title="are closing">are closing</a> and <strong>economic warning signs <a href="" title="are flashing red">are flashing red</a>,</strong> but those that sell survival bunkers to the elite are making tremendous amounts of money.</p> <p>And I certainly wish that I could afford one of these survival bunkers, because <a href="" target="_blank" title="they sound quite appealing">they sound quite appealing</a>&hellip;</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>One of those shelters, Vivos xPoint, is near the Black Hills of South Dakota, and consists of 575 military bunkers that served as an Army Munitions Depot until 1967.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Presently being converted into a facility that will accommodate about 5,000 people, the interiors of each bunker are outfitted by the owners at a cost of between $25,000 to $200,000 each. The price depends on whether they want a minimalist space or a home with high-end finishes.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The compound itself will be equipped with all the comforts of a small town, <strong>including a community theater, classrooms, hydroponic gardens, a medical clinic, a spa and a gym</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>These elitists plan to ride out the coming American apocalypse in style while the world above them is literally going insane.</p> <p><u><em><strong>Meanwhile, most of the general population continues to be completely oblivious to what is about to happen to them, and so the events that are coming will close upon them suddenly like a trap and there will be no escape.</strong></em></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="409" height="253" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Bill Gates Bunker Carter administration Census Bureau Detroit Iran National Debt north Idaho North Korea Northwest Politics Reagan Administration Survivalism Tribune U.S. Census Bureau Union War Tue, 28 Mar 2017 02:16:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 591851 at Trump To Sign 'Energy Independence' Order Tomorrow Rolling Back Obama Climate Change Initiatives <p>Coming off a brutal Trumpcare defeat, delivered by members of his own party no less, Trump has decided to return to a strategy of progressing his policy initiatives through executive order.&nbsp; As such, tomorrow <strong>President Trump is set to sign a sweeping new order aimed at promoting domestic oil, coal and natural gas by reversing much of Obama's efforts to address climate change.</strong></p> <p>The order is expected to lay out a broad blueprint for the Trump administration to dismantle the architecture that Obama built to combat Climate Change, which Trump argued throughout the 2016 campaign season only serves to kill 1,000s of energy jobs in the U.S.</p> <p>Obama’s Clean Power Plan was designed to cut carbon dioxide emissions from electricity by 32% by 2030 compared to 2005 levels and resulted in the collapse of the coal industry, including several large bankruptcies.&nbsp; That said, the initiative has been in legal limbo since the Supreme Court stayed it while it was reviewed by a federal appeals court. The Trump administration now is expected ask that court to put the matter on hold to allow it time to revise or undo the measure -- an action environmentalists have vowed to challenge.&nbsp; Per <a href="">Bloomberg:</a></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>Trump’s executive order also is set to revoke six specific directives from his predecessor, including Obama’s broad strategy for paring emissions of methane released from oil and gas operations.</strong> Other Obama directives targeted for repeal include one on climate change and national security, as well as a pair of directives from June 2013 that laid out his climate plans.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>The removal of the Clean Power Plan could halt coal’s decline as a source of electricity during the next two decades,</strong> according to projections from the Energy Information Administration. More coal use would mean less natural gas use, EIA said.</p> </blockquote> <p>Speaking with George Stephanopoulos over the weekend, EPA Chief Scott Pruitt said that, among other things, Trump's forthcoming executive order would "address the past administration's effort to kill jobs across this country through the clean power plan."</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>"This is about making sure we have a pro-growth and pro-environment approach to how we do regulation in this country.</strong>&nbsp; For too long, over the last several years, we've accepted the narrative that if you're pro-growth, pro-jobs you're anti-environment and that's just not where we've been in the country.&nbsp; <strong>And the executive order is going to address the past administration's effort to kill jobs across this country through the clean power plan."</strong></p> </blockquote> <p><iframe src="" width="600" height="337" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Among other things, Trump's new executive order will give the heads of various federal agencies broad authority to suspend, revise or rescind the policies that could burden the production or use of domestic energy resources.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>It also will toss out two Obama-era directives that gave consideration of climate change a prominent role in federal rule making. </strong>One advised government agencies to factor climate change into environmental reviews, such as those governing where oil drilling should take place. The other, called the “social cost of carbon,” is a metric reflecting the potential economic damage from climate change that was used by the Obama administration to justify a suite of regulations. </p><p>&nbsp;</p> <p>The order also is set to include a targeted assault on a handful of specific Obama-era regulations.<strong> It will require the Interior Department to lift a moratorium on the sale of new coal leases on federal land </strong>and compel the EPA to review, and, “if appropriate,” begin proceedings to suspend, revise or rescind regulations designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.</p> </blockquote> <p>And just like that, the lawyers of the Natural Resources Defense Council were just guaranteed millions of dollars of incremental fees...we can't only assume, at this point, that <a href="">Eric Holder</a> is getting his 'fair share.' </p> <p>But energy isn't the only focus, Trump will also be signing 4 other initiatives aimed at relaxing land-use rules from the Bureau of Land Management, Education Department rules on school accountability and a 'blacklisting' rule that required federal contractors to disclose labor violations as part of their bidding procedures.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">4 bills Trump signs today reverse Obama on:<br />-disclosure of labor violations<br />-Planning 2.0 rule<br />-school standards<br />-reporting on teacher prep. <a href=""></a></p> <p>— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) <a href="">March 27, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script> <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="707" height="398" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Barack Obama Bureau of Land Management Clean Power Plan Climate change policy in the United States Department of Education Department of the Interior Donald Trump Energy Information Administration Environment Environmental policy in the United States Environmental policy under the Trump administration Environmental Protection Agency national security Natural Gas Natural Resources Defense Council Obama Administration Obama administration Political positions of Donald Trump Politics Presidency of Barack Obama Presidency of Donald Trump Supreme Court Trump Administration Twitter Twitter United States United States Environmental Protection Agency Tue, 28 Mar 2017 02:15:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 591807 at This '60 Minutes Segment' On "Fake News" Illustrates Why And How The MSM Is Losing The Media War <p><a href=""><em>Authored by Duane Norman via Free Market Shooter,</em></a></p> <p><em><a href=""><img height="319" src="" width="500" /></a></em></p> <p>Yesterday, 60 Minutes aired a segment on &ldquo;fake news,&rdquo; which featured correspondent Scott Pelley interviewing several guests as per their typical style.&nbsp; Regarding the guests, it was shocking to see Mike Cernovich of <a href="" target="_blank">Danger &amp; Play</a> invited to be a part of the segment&hellip; and that he accepted.&nbsp; He clearly knew 60 Minutes would not paint him in a fair light with their editing, but it was shocking to see <a href="" target="_blank">60 Minutes air a portion of the interview</a> near the end of the segment where he said as much:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Michael Cernovich: I&rsquo;m a skeptical person. And I know that there&rsquo;s a lotta people gunnin&rsquo; for me. So I&rsquo;m not gonna be reckless.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Scott Pelley: Who&rsquo;s gunning for you?</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Michael Cernovich: You are! I&rsquo;m on 60 Minutes<em>!</em> Right?</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Scott Pelley: What do you mean we&rsquo;re gunning for you?</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Michael Cernovich: Do I really think that you guys are gonna tell the story that I would like to have told? No. Your story&rsquo;s gonna be, &ldquo;Here&rsquo;s a guy, spreads fake news, uses social media and these social media people better,&rdquo; I know the story you guys are doing before you do it.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>It was hardly the only one-sided story told in the segment.&nbsp; The segment began with the story of a nutcase who tried to barge into Comet Pizza, owned by James Alefantis, in response to <a href="" target="_blank">the &ldquo;Pizzagate&rdquo; story</a> that was trending at the time.&nbsp; Predictably, CBS painted the story as &ldquo;fake news&rdquo;:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The story of Secretary Clinton&rsquo;s child sex-trafficking operation, in a pizzeria, was invented before the election by fraudulent news sites and shared by millions. James Alefantis owns the restaurant.</p> </blockquote> <p><img class="size-full wp-image-1577 aligncenter" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 282px;" /></p> <p><strong>The introduction to the segment portrayed Alefantis as &ldquo;just another guy&rdquo; who happens to own a pizzeria at the heart of an internet conspiracy.&nbsp;</strong> The reality about Alefantis couldn&rsquo;t be further from the truth.&nbsp; As I detailed in <a href="" target="_blank">my original Pizzagate article</a>, Alefantis is listed as the 49th most powerful person in DC, is very close with the Podesta brothers (John Podesta did run Hillary&rsquo;s campaign), has visited the White House at least five times during Obama&rsquo;s presidency, once posting a picture of Obama playing ping-pong with a child in the oval office.</p> <p><img class="size-large wp-image-1024 aligncenter" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 375px;" /></p> <p>And, perhaps most importantly, he used to <a href="" target="_blank">run the Instagram account &ldquo;jimmycomet&rdquo;</a> and not only did he post images of himself hobnobbing with the nation&rsquo;s elite,<strong> there were many disturbing images connected to his Instagram account and the Comet Ping-Pong pizzeria he owns, which is known to cater to hosting parties for children</strong>.</p> <p><img alt="sdkrbs" class="aligncenter" src="" style="width: 501px; height: 319px;" /></p> <p><img alt="ifs0bu" class="aligncenter" src="" style="width: 499px; height: 297px;" /></p> <p><img alt="Image result for alefantis child taped to table" class="aligncenter" src=";ssl=1" style="width: 501px; height: 319px;" /></p> <p><strong>There&rsquo;s a whole backstory on Alefantis and Comet Pizza <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">here</a>, but it should go without saying that he is anything but the &ldquo;casual pizzeria owner&rdquo; he was depicted as at the start of the 60 Minutes segment.</strong>&nbsp; And while I&rsquo;m not condoning the actions of a random idiot shooting up Comet Pizza to &ldquo;save the children&rdquo;, 60 Minutes is going out of their way to represent Alefantis as &ldquo;just another guy,&rdquo; willfully choosing to omit details about Alefantis&rsquo; scandalous history that might cause their viewers to think otherwise about the man.</p> <p>Turning to a portion of the interview with Cernovich, and to their credit, 60 Minutes (rightfully) focused on the news stories Cernovich publishes on his website, avoiding an all-out character assassination which would have brought up many other articles and Tweets in the &ldquo;manosphere&rdquo; that Cernovich has been responsible for.&nbsp; While they earned some credibility by avoiding commentary on Cernovich&rsquo;s unrelated publishing history, as well as <a href="" target="_blank">a false rape accusation against him</a> that has shaped his views on the topic, they quickly lost it by how they questioned <a href="" target="_blank">his story</a> on <a href="" target="_blank">Hillary&rsquo;s health</a>.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Michael Cernovich: She had a seizure and froze up walking into her motorcade that day.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Scott Pelley: Well, she had pneumonia. I mean&ndash;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Michael Cernovich: How do you know? Who told you that?</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Scott Pelley: Well, the campaign told us that.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Michael Cernovich: Why would you trust the campaign?</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Scott Pelley: The point is you didn&rsquo;t talk to anybody who&rsquo;d ever examined Hillary Clinton.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Michael Cernovich: I don&rsquo;t take anything Hillary Clinton is gonna say at all as true. I&rsquo;m not gonna take her on her word. The media says we&rsquo;re not gonna take Donald Trump on his word. And that&rsquo;s why we are in these different universes.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>&nbsp;</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">When <a href="">@Cernovich</a> has <a href="">@ScottPelley</a> stuttering and fumbling over his words, you&#39;ve won ???????????????????? <a href=""></a></p> <p>&mdash; Luke (@SwaggyHammer) <a href="">March 27, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script><p><strong><em>So when <a href="" target="_blank">NY Daily News</a> writer Gersh Kuntzman (notable for an article he wrote on how firing <a href="" target="_blank">an AR-15</a> was <a href="" target="_blank">a &ldquo;traumatizing&rdquo; expierence which left him with &ldquo;a temporary form of PTSD&rdquo;</a>) publishes <a href="" target="_blank">an article detailing how President Trump has &ldquo;classic sings of mental illness&rdquo;</a> without speaking with anyone who has examined him, that is real news and not worth mention on 60 Minutes.&nbsp;</em></strong> But when Cernovich writes his article about Hillary&rsquo;s health without speaking with anyone who examined Hillary, that is &ldquo;fake news&rdquo; that he needs to answer for.&nbsp; Why wasn&rsquo;t the NY Daily News mentioned in addition to Danger &amp; Play as &ldquo;fake news&rdquo;?</p> <p>And in case you didn&rsquo;t believe that 60 Minutes was that dismissive of Cernovich, here&rsquo;s what Scott Pelley said into the camera immediately following Cernovich&rsquo;s commented highlighted above:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>Cernovich&rsquo;s website is just one of hundreds publishing nonsense on the right and on the left.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>The segment went on to interview Jestin Coler, a liberal Democrat from Culver City, California who is allegedly the &ldquo;godfather&rdquo; of &ldquo;fake news&rdquo;, using bots to both push his stories and to make them seem more popular than they are.&nbsp; He has given interviews to liberal outlets, including <a href="" target="_blank">MSNBC</a>, <a href="" target="_blank">NPR</a>, and <a href="" target="_blank">Vanity Fair</a>, but it took <a href="" target="_blank">Breitbart to really unmask him for what he was</a> &ndash; a Hillary voter who pushed <em>actual</em> fake news stories in an attempt to subvert the right:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Once Coler agreed to an interview, he told NPR that the purpose of starting his fake news empire in 2013 was &ldquo;to highlight the extremism of the white nationalist alt-right&rdquo; &mdash; or, in Coler&rsquo;s exact words:&nbsp;<strong>&ldquo;The whole idea from the start was to build a site that could infiltrate the echo chambers of the alt-right, publish blatantly false or fictional stories, and then be able to publicly denounce those stories and point out the fact that they were fiction.&rdquo;</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>Does he strike you as the kind of guy who would promote a story on a right-wing article if it were 100% true?&nbsp; But still, this is the &ldquo;unbiased&rdquo; source 60 Minutes chose to interview.</p> <p>60 Minutes then <em><strong>spoke with Phil Howard, who &ldquo;leads the Internet Institute at the University of Oxford which examines misinformation on social media,&rdquo;</strong></em> and notably stated the following:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>The junk news with stories that had not been fact-checked and that came from organizations that were <strong>not professional journalism organizations</strong>, was about as much as the amount of content coming from the professional news organizations.</p> </blockquote> <p>Yes, CBS and 60 Minutes are the <strong>pinnacle of &ldquo;professional&rdquo; journalism, which dismissed Cernovich&rsquo;s claims about Hillary&rsquo;s health as &ldquo;nonsense&rdquo;&nbsp;</strong> by providing no factual evidence whatsoever to refute them beyond stating to the viewers that &ldquo;the campaign told us that.&rdquo;</p> <p>The segment ended with the following commentary from Cernovich and Pelley and one last &ldquo;zing&rdquo; from 60 Minutes:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>Michael Cernovich: Do I really think that you guys are gonna tell the story that I would like to have told? No. Your story&rsquo;s gonna be, &ldquo;Here&rsquo;s a guy, spreads fake news, uses social media and these social media people better,&rdquo; I know the story you guys are doing before you do it.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Scott Pelley: What&rsquo;s wrong with that story?</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Michael Cernovich: Because it is an agenda. Another story is, &ldquo;Here is a person who is able to bypass traditional media outlets, reach people directly, to tell a story. Maybe he&rsquo;s a good guy, maybe he&rsquo;s not.&rdquo; I&rsquo;m not going to serve as a mouthpiece for anybody.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Never in human history has more information been available to more people. But it&rsquo;s also true that never in history has more <em>bad </em>information been available to more people. And once it&rsquo;s online, it is &ldquo;news&rdquo; forever.</strong></p> </blockquote> <p>The last line of the segment seems to be a parting shot designed to scare those who would dare to publish content on the web who are &ldquo;not a part&rdquo; of traditional news outlets.&nbsp; Yet, the comment in and of itself, as well as Cernovich&rsquo;s &ldquo;story&rdquo; about himself, is demonstrative of the truth regarding media today &ndash;<strong> the traditional mainstream media outlets are <a href="" target="_blank">losing the monopoly they have held for decades</a>, and they are fighting a losing battle to save their own hides, while dismissing anyone who dares to compete with them as &ldquo;nonsense&rdquo; from their ivory towers.&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>For the record, I like Cernovich&rsquo;s alternative angle on the news, as well as a lot of the content he publishes.&nbsp; But just like the mainstream media, I certainly don&rsquo;t believe everything Cernovich says, nor would I take anything he publishes as gospel.&nbsp; But, like him or not, he and so many others like him all across the political spectrum are popular because they are bypassing the &ldquo;filter&rdquo; of traditional mainstream media to reach people directly.</p> <p>Gone are the days where the only national news you were able to get was at 6:30PM on one of several different networks &ndash; nowadays, the news is constant, anyone with an internet connection (including Free Market Shooter) can tell their story, and it is up to the readers to interpret the &ldquo;real&rdquo; and &ldquo;fake&rdquo; stories as they see fit.&nbsp; Youtube upstarts are reaching more and more people than traditional media, with less and less legacy costs, despite <a href="" target="_blank">attempts to subvert their right-leaning politics</a>.&nbsp; The business model in media is changing, and it is changing at a pace and in a way that has left the legacy mainstream media outlets unable to adapt and compete.</p> <p><strong>The fact that 60 Minutes feels they need to do a segment, with their as-usual ridiculous bias masquerading as &ldquo;professional&rdquo; journalism, is proof enough &ndash; they are scared to death that alternative media will put them out of business.&nbsp; They are fighting back against <em>the</em> threat to their business model, but if you watched the segment, you&rsquo;d realize that their efforts will be in vain.&nbsp; The internet has made traditional news outlets a relic, who mostly all repeat the same story from the same source, oftentimes from a &ldquo;source&rdquo; who will only continue sharing content and information as long as the stories are told the way the source wants/needs them told.&nbsp; </strong></p> <p><img class="size-full wp-image-1123 aligncenter" src="" style="width: 500px; height: 270px;" /></p> <p><strong>It is only a matter of time until this business model explodes, and it can&rsquo;t happen soon enough.&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</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="575" height="367" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Alt-right Deception Donald Trump Entertainment Fake news Journalism Media manipulation Mike Cernovich MSNBC Politics of the United States Propaganda in the United States Propaganda techniques Reality Save the Children Twitter Twitter White House White House Tue, 28 Mar 2017 01:50:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 591860 at Mexican Archdiocese Blasts "Immoral" Companies Building Border Wall As "Traitors To Homeland" <p>Last week we noted that Mexico's Economy Minister, Ildefonso Guajardo, was somewhat less than completely supportive of Trump's <a href="">impenetrable, yet "aesthetically pleasing", 30-foot border wall</a> and issued a stark warning to Mexican companies that it would not be in their best "interests" to participate in the project even though there would be no explicit legal restrictions or sanctions to stop them if they tried.&nbsp; Per <a href="">Reuters</a>:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>"We're not going to have laws to restrict (companies), but I believe considering your reputation it would undoubtedly be in your interest to not participate in the construction of the wall,"</strong> said Mexican Economy Minister Ildefonso Guajardo.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>"There won't be a law with sanctions, but Mexicans and Mexican consumers will know how to value those companies that are loyal to our national identity and those that are not,"</strong> Guajardo added.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>His comments echo those of Mexico's foreign minister Luis Videgaray, who said on Friday that Mexican companies that see a business opportunity in the wall should "check their conscience" first.</p> </blockquote> <p>Now, in a stunningly candid editorial, Mexico's biggest Archdiocese has ramped up pressure against Mexican companies like Cemex who have expressed interest in providing supplies for the construction of the wall saying that such support would be "immoral" and shareholders of such companies<strong> "should be considered traitors to the homeland."</strong>&nbsp; Per <a href="">Yahoo News</a>: </p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>In a provocative editorial, the country's biggest Archdiocese sought to increase pressure on the government to take a tougher line on companies aiming to profit from the wall, which has strained relations between Trump and the Mexican government.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>"Any company intending to invest in the wall of the fanatic Trump would be immoral, but above all, its shareholders and owners should be considered traitors to the homeland,"</strong> said the editorial in Desde la fe, the Archdiocese's weekly publication.</p> </blockquote> <p><img src="" alt="Arch" width="600" height="351" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Meanwhile, according to a spokesman for the Archdiocese, which centers on Mexico City and is presided over by the country's foremost Roman Catholic cleric, Cardinal Norberto Rivera, the editorial was not just the ramblings of one disaffected priest but rather represented the views of the diocese.&nbsp; Therefore, we can only presume by their own words that the Catholic Church is of the belief that enforcing borders, in any fashion, is tantamount to an act of "terror."</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>The Desde la fe editorial, which was published online, said the barrier would only feed prejudice and discrimination.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>"In practice, signing up for a project that is a serious affront to dignity is shooting yourself in the foot,"</strong> it wrote.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>"Any deportation, when there is no proven crime and administrative failure justified according to law, is a sign of terror,</strong> and the wall is a monument of intimidation and silence, xenophobic hatred to silence the voices of poorly paid and ill-treated workers, unprotected families and Of abused persons."</p> </blockquote> <p>Of course, we would be remiss if we didn't point out the inherent irony of Catholic opposition to border walls given the monstrosity of the structure surrounding the Vatican.&nbsp; </p> <p><img src="" alt="Vatican" width="600" height="413" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Below is a loose translation of the <a href=";z=40">full editorial</a> courtesy of Google translate:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><em>As the months go by, Donald Trump's immigration policies face reality. Demagoguery was easy in the campaign, but actions, in practice, become difficult in the face of the remarkable opposition of civil society, churches and activists, who are faced with an erratic government whose promises are not easy to consolidate.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Trump allocated a budget of two billion dollars for the construction of the wall, which should have solid infrastructure features and soft aesthetics to hide, under paint and lights, hatred, mutilation and division.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>What is regrettable is that, on this side of the border, Mexicans are ready to collaborate with a fanatical project that annihilates the good relationship in the concert of two nations that share a common border.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>In recent days, some companies with Mexican capital raised their hands to participate in the tenders, and offer technical and expertise to deal with specific aspects in the construction of the wall of ignominy, providing cement, materials, luminaires and painting; Under the good argument of being companies that generate jobs, these companies seek to make a profit, regardless of the consequences, and consolidate their presence in the industry they exploit. It is not two or three, but more than 500 companies that seek to obtain good economic slices. For them, the end justifies the means.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>However, what is most surprising is the lukewarmness of the Mexican government's economic authorities, which have not shown any firmness against these entrepreneurs.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Some have pointed out that the United States has the inalienable right to build the wall and do whatever it wishes to do, even if it violates the dignity of the people. It is those same myopes who fail to see that the wall is a frank threat that violates social relations and peace.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Recall that, in the name of ideology, entire nations and continents were divided, plunging thousands into uncertainty. The only prevailing voice was that of arms, bullets, repression and legal murder for anyone who dared to cross a border in search of freedom.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>The investment of Mexican companies in the wall will end up nurturing all those forms of discrimination that throughout history have subjected millions of human beings. Virtually, joining a project that is a serious affront to dignity, is to be shot in the foot.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Any deportation, when there is no proven crime and administrative failure justified according to law, is a sign of terror, and the wall is a monument of intimidation and silence, xenophobic hatred to silence the voices of poorly paid and ill-treated workers, unprotected families and Of abused persons; It is a retreat from the noblest longings of mankind, by which much blood has been shed; Is a prelude to the destruction of the values ??of democracy and social rights.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>The wall represents the predominance of a country that is considered good with the manifest destiny to overwhelm a nationality that has considered perverted and corrupt: the Mexican.</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Pope Francis appeals to forge peace between nations. In February 2017, during a weekly catechesis, he said: "In the social and civil context, I appeal not to create walls, but to build bridges. Do not respond to evil with evil. They defeat evil with good, to offense with forgiveness."</em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><em>Any company intent on investing in the wall of the Trump fanatic would be immoral, but above all, its shareholders and owners should be considered as traitors to the motherland.</em></p> </blockquote> <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="678" height="397" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> American people of German descent Catholic Church civil society Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump Fail Google Guajardo Luis Videgaray Caso Mexican government Mexicans Mexico Mexico Politics Politics of the United States Reality Reuters The Apprentice United States WWE Hall of Fame Tue, 28 Mar 2017 01:25:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 591824 at NY Fed: "Oil Prices Fell Due To Weakening Demand" <p>When it comes to the price of oil, both the sellside and oil producers have been adamant that the only variable that matters is supply, i.e., how much oil is produced at any given moment which was also the justification behind the Vienna production cut deal: reduce supply enough, and the record global inventory glut will decline by bringing markets into equilibrium, boosting prices in the process. Alternatively, another explanation has been the recent liquidation of oil positions by speculators (read hedge funds), who tend to amplify moves in the world's most financialized commodity. Indeed, the sharp move lower over the past three weeks was largely attributed to selling be levered entities who unable to push the price of oil higher, had no choice but to take the other side of the trade. </p> <p>Throughout this, one aspect of price formation that is rarely mentioned is demand, which is generally assumed to be unwavering and trending higher with barely a hiccup. The reason for this somewhat myopic take is that while OPEC has control over supply, demand is a function of global economic growth and trade (or lack thereof) over which oil producers have little, if any control. </p> <p>And yet, according to the latest oil price dynamics report issued by the Fed, it was declining global demand that pushed prices lower in the most recent, volatile period.</p> <p>As the New York Fed <a href="">report in its March 27 report</a>, "<strong>Oil prices fell owing to weakening demand</strong>" and explains as follows: "<strong>A decline in demand expectations together with a decreasing residual drove oil prices down over the past week</strong>."</p> <p>While there was some good news, namely that "in 2016:Q4, oil prices increased on net as a consequence of steadily contracting supply and strengthening, albeit volatile, global demand" offsetting the "modest decline in oil prices during 2016:Q3 <strong>caused by weakening global demand expectations and loosening supply conditions</strong>," the Fed's troubling finding is that the big move lower since 2014 has been a function of rising supply <strong>as well as </strong>declining demand:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p>Overall, since the end of 2014:Q2, <strong>both lower global demand expectations and looser supply have held oil prices down</strong>.</p> </blockquote> <p>And while this trend appeared to have reversed in 2016:Q2 and 2016:Q4, recent indications suggest that demand may once again be slowing, which in turn has pressured oil prices back to levels last seen shortly after OPEC's Vienna deal.</p> <p>The Fed shares the following decomposition table on imputed supply/demand recent data:</p> <p><img src="" width="500" height="195" /></p> <p>It is curious that according to the NY Fed, at a time when OPEC vows it is cutting production, the Fed has instead found "loose" supply to be among the biggest contributors to the latest decline in oil prices.</p> <p>But what may be concering to oil bulls is that as the decomposition chart below shows, while oil demand was solidly in the green ever since Trump's election victory, in recent weeks it appears to have also tapered off along with the supply contribution to declining oil prices. </p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="207" /></a></p> <p>This seems to suggest that along with most other "animal spirits" that were ignited following the Trump victory, only to gradually fade, oil demand, and thus price, may be the next to take another leg lower unless of course Trump manages to reignite the Trumpflation trade which, however, over the past month appears to have completely faded. Finally, in an environment of rising interest rates, and with Obamacare repeal delayed indefinitely - which as a reminder will soak up potential discretionary spending on other goods and services - one can argue that the decline in demand observed going into last year, coupled with a potential disappointment from the failure of Trump to implement his full fiscal policy, the decline in demand will only accelerate in the coming weeks.</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="463" height="312" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Business Cartels Economy Energy crisis Energy economics New York Fed New York Fed NY Fed Obamacare OPEC OPEC Organization of Petroleum-Exporting Countries Peak oil Petroleum industry Petroleum politics Price of oil US Federal Reserve World oil market chronology from Tue, 28 Mar 2017 00:35:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 591853 at Schiff Calls On House Intel Chair To Recuse Himself From Russia Probe; Nunes Refuses <p>Update: Nunes has refused to step down from the Russia probe, <a href="">The Hill reports</a>. The chairman of the House Intelligence Committee told reporters Monday evening he will not step down from the committee's investigation into Russia's interference in the United States presidential election, despite a chorus of Democratic lawmakers demanding he recuse himself.&nbsp; </p> <p>"Everything is politics here," Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) said, as reported by a journalist from Voice of America.</p> <p>* * * </p> <p>Following similar calls by his ideological peers, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee Adam Schiff demanded on Monday evening that Committee Chair, Devin Nunes, should recuse himself from "any further involvement" into President Trump’s campaign ties with Russia. </p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="281" /></a></p> <p>"After much consideration I believe Chairman should recuse himself from involvement in investigation/oversight of Trump campaign &amp; transition,” Schiff tweeted on Monday evening, as Nunes was giving an interview to CNN about his visit to the White House grounds to view classified material last week.</p> <p>“This is not a recommendation I make lightly, as the chairman and I have worked together well for several years,” Schiff said in a statement and added that “I take this step with he knowledge of the solemn responsibility we have not he Intelligence committee to provide oversight on all intelligence matters, not just to conduct the investigation.... There was no legitimate justification for bringing that information to the White House instead of the committee. <strong>That it was also obtained at the White House makes this departure all the more concerning</strong>. In the interests of a fair and impartial investigation whose results will be respected by the public<strong>, the Chairman's recusal is more than warranted</strong>."</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">After much consideration I believe Chairman should recuse himself from involvement in investigation/oversight of Trump campaign &amp; transition <a href=""></a></p> <p>— Adam Schiff (@RepAdamSchiff) <a href="">March 27, 2017</a></p></blockquote> <script src="//"></script><p>Schiff's call for Nunes to recuse himself follows that of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, who on Monday said Speaker Paul Ryan should replace Nunes in order for the Russia probe to be “credible.” </p> <p>“Chairman Nunes is falling down on the job and seems to be more interested in protecting the president than in seeking the truth,” Schumer said on the Senate floor Monday. “If Speaker Ryan wants the House to have a credible investigation, he needs to replace Chairman Nunes.”</p> <p>Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), who also sits on the House Intelligence Committee, reiterated the call for Nunes to recuse himself, along side fellow California Democrat Eric Swalwell. Swalwell, the ranking member of an intelligence subcommittee, said, “Chairman Nunes should no longer be anywhere near this investigation, let alone leading it.&nbsp; </p> <p>"For the sake of our duty to independently find the truth, and for the sake of his ability to chair the committee in its other important duties, he should recuse himself from our committee's Russia investigation.”</p> <p>At the same time as Schiff made his statement, Nunes spoke to CNN on Monday evening after the <a href="">previously discussed revelation </a>that the republican had visited White House grounds the day prior last week's stunning announcement that members of Trump's campaign had been "accidentally" surveiled, to view confidential documents that allegedly prove potential surveillance of Trump team members. Nunes said that he was sure the West Wing was unaware of his visit to White House grounds to view said documents..&nbsp; </p> <p>Some have speculated that the White House was the source of the intelligence viewed by Nunes. He would not give details to CNN Monday evening, but maintained that he had to view the documents on White House grounds, as they could not be brought to the Capitol complex.</p> <p>Nunes on Monday denied that there was anything untoward in his Tuesday visit to the White House, pushing back on reports that the venture took place at night and calling the visit “pretty common.” </p> <p>“At least once a week, if not more than that, we have to go to the executive branch in order to read classified intelligence,” he told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.&nbsp; “The sun was out,” he said. “<strong>If I really wanted to I could have snuck onto the grounds late at night, but I wasn’t trying to hide.”</strong> </p> <p>Nunes said he was “quite certain that no one in the West Wing knew I was there.” </p> <p>But Democrats have accused Nunes of acting as an agent of the White House and say he can no longer lead a credible investigation.</p> <p>Perhaps the only silver lining to come out of this is that Nunes has become the Democrats top persona non grata, diverting attention from Trump, if only for the time being. </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="640" height="360" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Adam Schiff Chuck Schumer Devin Nunes Dismissal of United States Attorneys controversy Donald Trump House Intelligence Committee Intelligence committee Judicial disqualification Nunes Politics Politics Politics of the United States Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections Senate Twitter Twitter United States United States House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence White House White House Tue, 28 Mar 2017 00:28:03 +0000 Tyler Durden 591867 at Six Graphs That Reveal Big Problems For Student And Auto Loans <p><em><a href="">Authored by Jonathan Newman via The Mises Institute,</a></em></p> <div class="body-content body-content embedded-media clearfix"> <p>The New York Fed&rsquo;s most recent household debt report showed ballooning debt and delinquency in student and auto loans. <strong>Total household debt has just about reached its previous late-2008 high of over $12.5 trillion.</strong></p> <div class="ds-1col file file-image file-image-png view-mode-wide_player clearfix"> <div class="img img-responsive"><img alt="newman1_1.png" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 376px;" /></div> </div> <p>You&rsquo;ll notice that housing debt (blue) has not increased much since its 2013 low, meaning that the increases in total debt have mostly come from non-housing debt (red). A closer look at the composition of non-housing debt reveals that<strong> the biggest increases in debt have come from student and auto loans (red and green, below).</strong></p> <div class="ds-1col file file-image file-image-png view-mode-wide_player clearfix"> <div class="img img-responsive"><img alt="newman2_0.png" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 381px;" /></div> </div> <p><strong>In fact, the numbers make it look like the housing bubble was almost exactly replaced by new bubbles in education and cars.</strong> From 2008 to 2016, housing debt has decreased by $1.01 trillion, while student and auto loan debt together have increased by $1.04 trillion. The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve has an even higher estimate than the NY Fed for current student loan debt, at $1.41 trillion.</p> <div class="ds-1col file file-image file-image-png view-mode-wide_player clearfix"> <div class="img img-responsive"><img alt="newman3.png" src="" style="width: 601px; height: 358px;" /></div> </div> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Shahein Nasiripour at <em>Bloomberg</em></a> showed <strong>the relative changes based on the same data this way:</strong></p> <div class="ds-1col file file-image file-image-png view-mode-wide_player clearfix"> <div class="img img-responsive"><img alt="newman5.png" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 327px;" /></div> </div> <p><strong>While both student and auto loan debt have increased substantially, delinquency rates are higher for student loans</strong>. In 2012, student loan delinquency spiked up enough to claim the top spot, probably due to the number of people who chose more school over searching for employment during the bust. The graph below shows that student and auto loan delinquency rates are the only ones not decreasing.</p> <div class="ds-1col file file-image file-image-png view-mode-wide_player clearfix"> <div class="img img-responsive"><img alt="newman6.png" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 381px;" /></div> </div> <p><strong>Of course, this is more of an intended feature than a flaw of the Fed&rsquo;s monetary policy since the housing bubble popped.</strong> Expansionary monetary policy can only replace bubbles with new bubbles. Malinvestments are not totally liquidated, but shift from one sector to another. Consumer debt is not directly paid off, but transferred from one type to another.</p> <p><strong>The redirection is mostly guided by new government interference in markets.</strong> Pre-2008, federal government programs to encourage new housing and mortgages, along with the low interest rates and new money from the Fed, created the housing bubble. Since 2008, programs like Cash for Clunkers, auto manufacturer bailouts, and income-based student loan repayment have funneled spending, borrowing, and increasing prices into education and autos.</p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Some recent headlines</a> already signal a <strong>collapse in used car prices this year.</strong> Meanwhile, <strong>college tuition increases are still the norm every year,</strong> despite the decreasing value of a diploma. According to <a href=";SECTION=HOME&amp;TEMPLATE=DEFAULT" target="_blank">this AP report</a>,<em><strong> &ldquo;the average amount owed per borrower rose to $30,650 in 2016, after rising steadily for years. In 2013, borrowers on average owed $26,300.&rdquo;</strong></em></p> <p><a href="" target="_blank">Another recent release by the NY Fed</a> contains data on labor outcomes for college graduates versus all other laborers. There have been dramatic swings in employment across the board since 2008, but comparing September 2008 to September 2016 on net, <u><em><strong>the unemployment rate for college graduates has increased while the unemployment rate for all other workers has decreased.</strong></em></u> The underemployment rate (&ldquo;defined as the share of graduates working in jobs that typically do not require a college degree&rdquo;) for recent graduates has hovered around 45% since 2008. An indexed measure of job postings indicates that demand for laborers with a college degree has not increased as much as demand for laborers that don&rsquo;t need a college degree, though both reached a peak late 2015.</p> <div class="ds-1col file file-image file-image-png view-mode-wide_player clearfix"> <div class="img img-responsive"><img alt="newman7.png" src="" style="width: 600px; height: 465px;" /></div> </div> <p>The overwhelming conclusion from all of this data is that <strong>we almost certainly have new bubbles in education and the auto industry. </strong>A trillion dollars of housing debt has been replaced by a trillion dollars (or more) of student and auto loan debt. Delinquency rates are increasing for student and auto loans, while other loan types have seen a decrease in delinquency. Finally, the value of both the university education and the automobiles people are buying don&rsquo;t seem to justify the amount being borrowed and spent, from a big picture perspective. <strong>Their prices are artificially inflated due to the Fed and the federal government teaming up to create new bubbles, just like they did to create the housing bubble.</strong></p> </div> <p>&nbsp;</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="696" height="306" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Board of Governors Business Cash For Clunkers Debt Economic bubble Economy Education federal government Federal Reserve Finance Financial crises headlines Household debt Housing Bubble Loans Mises Institute Mises Institute Monetary Policy Money New York Fed New York Fed NY Fed Real estate bubble Student debt Student loan Student Loans Subprime mortgage crisis Unemployment US Federal Reserve Tue, 28 Mar 2017 00:10:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 591843 at This Is What Trump's Revised Agenda Timeline Looks Like, In One Chart <p>Now that repealing Obamacare is out of the picture indefinitely, here is what the timeline looks like for the balance of Trump's policy agenda, which includes reform of Trade, Budget and Tax policy, courtesy of Barclays, which takes a pessimistic outlook for what is in store and writes "<em>Trump’s short-term agenda (reforms of healthcare, taxes, and trade policy) seems overly optimistic and has met resistance; healthcare’s lack of progress begs the question – <strong>is this GOP Congress an opposition party or a governing party?</strong></em>" We should know the answer once Trump/Ryan try to pass the next key item on the Trump agenda: the much anticipated tax reform. </p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="349" /></a></p> <p><em>Some additional thoughts from Barclays:</em></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"> <div></div> </div> <div class="quote_end"> <div></div> </div> <p><strong>Healthcare may negatively affect tax reform negotiation, as the GOP needs to transition from a party of opposition to a party that governs.</strong></p> <ul> <li><strong>Healthcare: House delays American Health Care Act (AHCA)</strong> – The GOP’s goal is to minimize intra-party struggles, re-focus on comprehensive tax reform, and leave the option to revisit healthcare <ul> <li>GOP calls to repeal and replace ACA over the past seven years were more political rhetoric than an actual plan. GOP has not resolved an internal dispute with healthcare’s three-legged stool – the individual mandate, providing subsidies, and enforcing the guarantee for pre-existing conditions – as removing any one of them requires trade-offs between cost and coverage</li> <li>We expect an intense intra-GOP fight, especially between the president and Speaker Ryan. There are concerns that the GOP domestic policy agenda could dissolve, but we think this delay will increase efforts to pass tax reform (or targeted tax cuts) before the Nov 2018 mid-term elections</li> </ul> </li> <li><strong>Tax Reform or Tax Cuts</strong>: GOP to re-focus immediately on taxes and pursue comprehensive reform, with a goal of passing legislation by August, well before the 2018 mid-terms <ul> <li><strong>Outlook</strong>: Comprehensive tax reform will very likely meet significant obstacles, as there are limited revenue raisers to offset the proposed substantial tax cuts. We think tax reform could evolve to tax cuts (corporate rates possibly from 35% to 20-30%) and a repatriation of foreign earnings (potentially taxed at 8-15%). The House-proposed border adjustment tax (BAT) faces hurdles, given concerns of price increases, WTO compliance, and possible domestic job losses. Current costs of individual tax cuts will likely alarm fiscal hawks; we expect a more muted plan than the current one</li> </ul> </li> <li><strong>Trade</strong>: Administration aims to implement protectionist measures (eg, tariffs), as they view this form of economic nationalism as spurring long-term growth <ul> <li>NAFTA process has started; expect formal notice to trading partners shortly</li> </ul> </li> </ul> </blockquote> <p>And as an added bonus chart, here is Barclays on its take of Trump's proposed Tax reform, which the GOP Aims for August, but expect late 2017 or early 2018: "<em>While GOP-led Congress aims to use budget reconciliation (FY2018) to pass tax reform, politics of ACA reform will complicate tax negotiations"</em></p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="500" height="356" /></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="1151" height="803" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> 115th United States Congress American Health Care Act American people of German descent Barclays Business Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump GOP Congress Health Internal Revenue Code Labor Law Nationalism Obamacare Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act Politics Republican Party Social Issues Statutory law Tax Tax reform The Apprentice United States World Trade Organization WWE Hall of Fame Mon, 27 Mar 2017 23:55:10 +0000 Tyler Durden 591863 at