en Is A New Banking Crisis Imminent? Recent Rise In Delinquency Rates Is Shocking <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Olav Dirkmaat via UFM Market Trends,</em></a></p> <p>The delinquency rate on loans is key in understanding banking. It answers one question: what percentage of loans is overdue for payment? <strong>The delinquency rate is by far the most useful indicator for &ldquo;credit stress.&rdquo;</strong> It seems, however, as if delinquency no longer counts. Few are paying attention to the quick and sudden rise of the delinquency rate. <strong><em>What does it tell us and is a new banking crisis imminent?</em></strong></p> <h2><span style="text-decoration: underline;">This Is What Happened after Janet Yellen Hiked the Fed Funds Rate in December</span></h2> <p>I have said it many times over and I will repeat it here: the last time around, it took Fed-chairman Alan Greenspan <strong>over two years and seventeen rate hikes</strong> to bring the Fed funds rate from a then all-time-low of 1% to 5.25%, before the U.S. economy suffered the worst recession since the 1930s. We are not so lucky this time.</p> <p>Greenspan&rsquo;s rate hikes didn&rsquo;t affect delinquency rates straight away. Credit stress was subdued until a year after Greenspan&rsquo;s last hike. Only in the first quarter of 2007, delinquency rates began to move higher. The reason is as clear as the water surrounding the Bahamas: in the years preceding the Great Recession credit growth was mainly focused on the U.S. housing market.</p> <p>Credit growth was mostly driven by mortgage lending. Mortgages were generously provided by banks, but increasingly to subprime borrowers (subprime referring to their poor credit). Yet these subprime borrowers didn&rsquo;t pay higher interest rates on their mortgages the moment Alan Greenspan began hiking rates. But as soon as their (promotional) teaser rates resetted, they started &ldquo;feeling the Alan.&rdquo; Delinquency rates went through the roof and the U.S. economy into recession.</p> <p>Teaser rates, the low initial interest rate a borrower pays for the first few years, were responsible for the lag between Greenspan&rsquo;s rate hikes and the 2008 recession.</p> <h3><span style="text-decoration: underline;">More Fragile</span></h3> <p>Today, <strong>the Federal Reserve is ignoring a very inconvenient truth</strong>: the global economy is much more fragile than the last time around. And we have no teaser rates in today&rsquo;s subprime credit (unless we of course consider oil producers that hedged oil prices by buying futures as something akin to &ldquo;teaser rates&rdquo;).</p> <p>This time around, we will certainly <strong>not</strong> need seventeen rate hikes or three years before pushing the economy into recession.</p> <p>In fact, we now know what happened after Janet Yellen increased the Fed funds rate with a mere quarter-percentage point: <strong>the delinquency rate on commercial and industrial loans increased 50%</strong>. That is right. In a single quarter delinquency rates in the U.S. banking sector exploded from 1% to 1.5%. The cycle has turned.</p> <h2><span style="text-decoration: underline;">This Is Why Nobody Is Paying Attention</span></h2> <p>Why is nobody paying attention to this seemingly undeniable shift in the credit cycle? Why does the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) not even mention it? Why are the alarm bells not ringing in both Fed board rooms and the financial press?</p> <p>The only answer to these questions is that the Fed is committing a capital sin. The headline number, the delinquency rate on <em>all</em> loans, decreased in the first quarter of 2016 from 2.20% to 2.17%. That ignores, however, the underlying pressures building up inside banks&rsquo; balance sheets. Fed-officials seem to focus on the headline number, while ignoring the deteriorating fundamentals.</p> <p>With rising home prices, a vibrant housing market, increasing employment and interest rates at the lowest levels in world history, defaults on mortgage and credit card debt are reaching all-time lows. Yet delinquency on mortgages and credit cards tend to lag the business cycle. Typically, they only rise when we already <em>are</em> in recession, just as unemployment tends to be a lagging indicator.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="Delinquency Rate: Do Not Focus on the Headline Number" class="img-responsive aligncenter wp-image-845" height="368" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em><sup>The headline number is fooling Fed-officials; delinquency rates are still declining. But the delinquency rate on <strong>all</strong> bank loans (the headline number) has no predictive power; it just follows a random pattern. Source: St Louis Fed</sup></em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>Even if we are on the verge of a new banking crisis, the headline number will never tell us so.</p> <h2><u>Which Loans Are Increasingly Overdue?</u></h2> <p>If delinquency rates on consumer credit (mortgages and credit card debt) will not help us in estimating how probable a new banking crisis is, then which delinquency rates do matter? And why did I call them &ldquo;shocking&rdquo;?</p> <p>Let&rsquo;s first break down a bank portfolio. Bank loans can we divided into three groups:</p> <ul> <li>Consumers</li> <li>Businesses</li> <li>Real estate (both commercial and residential)</li> </ul> <p>(Just for the sake of comparison, U.S. banks currently hold $1,300 billion in consumer debt, $1,810 billion in commercial and industrial debt, and over $3,000 billion in real estate debt.)</p> <p>Banks lend money to consumers for buying homes (mortgages) or consumer goods (credit card debt). We concluded that delinquency rates on those loans tend to lag the business cycle.</p> <p>What&rsquo;s left?</p> <p>Loans to businesses, in whatever form or shape they come. Most of these loans are pegged to an interest rate benchmark, for instance the LIBOR. After the Fed&rsquo;s first rate hike in December, the U.S. dollar 12-month LIBOR went up from approximately 0.8% to 1.3%. <strong>Marginal borrowers are slowly getting pushed into bankruptcy</strong>.</p> <p>December&rsquo;s rate hike clearly resulted in a change of tides: delinquency rates have bottomed and are on their way up. And do not forget the following: the fact that delinquency rates no longer decrease but began to increase, <strong>has always been a clear warning signal for a recession </strong>&mdash; at least during the past twenty years. And over that same period, this indicator never gave a &ldquo;false positive,&rdquo; in contrast to many other (recession) indicators.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="Delinquency rate on bank loans is skyrocketing in the US" class="img-responsive aligncenter wp-image-846" height="361" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em><sup>A clear danger sign: delinquency rates on commercial and industrial loans are creeping up.&nbsp;Source: St Louis Fed</sup></em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="The dollar amount of delinquencies is already skyhigh" class="img-responsive alignnone wp-image-853" height="364" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em><sup>In dollar terms the shift is even more pronounced. This is of course the result of our staggering debt levels, which are not apparent in the relative numbers.&nbsp;Source: St Louis Fed</sup></em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="Charge-off rates on bank loans are starting to pick up as well" class="img-responsive aligncenter wp-image-854" height="364" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em><sup>In line with increasing loan delinquencies, charge-off rates on commercial and industrial loans are picking up as well (charge-off rates tend to lag somewhat). Source: St Louis Fed</sup></em></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <h2><u>Delinquency Rates in Europe</u></h2> <p>The delinquency rate in Europe is also on the rise. Yet, we do have to single out the countries that skew this eurozone average. Italian banks in particular are suffering from an unbelievably high delinquency rate. The delinquency rate in Italy is at such extreme levels that the country might turn the euro crisis in front page news again (if for once Greece remains on the sidelines).</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="Delinquency rates in the Eurozone have been on the rise too" class="img-responsive aligncenter wp-image-855" height="353" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em><sup>The delinquency rate on bank loans in Europe is also on the rise; here too, at least in the periphery countries, it appears the credit cycle has turned. Source: European Central Bank (CBD2, &lsquo;gross non-performing debt instruments&rsquo;)</sup></em></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;</p> <h2><u>Keep a Close Eye on Delinquency</u></h2> <p>What is next? We will have to wait and see to find out what delinquency rates have done in the second quarter. <strong>However, it is clear that the tide has turned</strong>. It is irrelevant whether the Federal Reserve will hike rates in July or September. Consensus currently says we should expect two more rate hikes this year. <strong>If that is true, we can expect delinquency rates to move up further in the coming quarters.</strong></p> <p>In 2006 it was exactly twelve months after delinquency rates bottomed that the recession began. If the same period applies, <strong>we are due for a recession</strong>. In the first quarter of the Great Recession in 2008, delinquency rates were only 1.45%. We are already above that level. On the flipside, however, we should not ignore that it took three years of rising delinquency rates before the economy entered into recession in 2001. Credit cycles are not an exact science. Yet the trend is clear and Fed chair Janet Yellen should be terrified about this disturbing development.</p> <p>The fact that increasing loan delinquency coincides with mountains of debt maturing in 2016 and 2017 is a topic for next time.</p> Alan Greenspan Consumer Credit European Central Bank Eurozone Federal Reserve Global Economy Greece Housing Market Italy Janet Yellen LIBOR Real estate Recession St Louis Fed St. Louis Fed Unemployment Wed, 29 Jun 2016 08:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564749 at This Is Where Whites In America Are A Minority <p>New research out by the Pew Research Center <a href=";utm_medium=social&amp;;utm_campaign=buffer">shows</a> an interesting development in the United States. Using Census Bureau information released with 2014 population estimates, Pew found that the US is becoming ever more diverse, at the local level as well as nationally.</p> <p><strong>In 2014, 364 counties, independent cities and other county-level equivalents did not have non-Hispanic white majorities, the most in modern history, <span style="text-decoration: underline;">and more than twice the level in 1980.</span></strong></p> <p><a href=""><img height="1028" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p>The increase in the number of counties that did not have a non-Hispanic white majority was due in large part to the growth of the Hispanic population.</p> <p>From <a href=";utm_medium=social&amp;;utm_campaign=buffer">Pew Research</a></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>That year &ndash; the first decennial enumeration in which the nation&rsquo;s Hispanic population was comprehensively counted &ndash; non-Hispanic whites were majorities in all but 171 out of 3,141 counties (5.4%), according to our analysis. The 1990 census was the first to break out non-Hispanic whites as a separate category; that year, they made up the majority in all but 186 counties, or 5.9% of the total. (The Census Bureau considers Hispanic to be an ethnicity rather than a race; accordingly, Hispanics can be of any race.)</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Since then, the nation&rsquo;s Hispanic population has more than doubled, from 22.4 million to 55.4 million, powering the increase in majority-minority counties</strong>. Last year, 94 counties had Hispanic majorities &ndash; just over twice the number of majority-Hispanic counties in 1990 (45), and one more than the number of counties last year with non-Hispanic black majorities</p> </blockquote> <p>Overall, non-Hispanic whites are less than a majority in four states, and in a further indication of just how diverse the US is becoming, in none of those states does a single racial or ethnic group have a majority.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>All in all, non-Hispanic whites are less than a majority in four states &ndash; <strong>California, Texas, New Mexico and Hawaii &ndash; as well as the District of Columbia</strong>.<span style="text-decoration: underline;"> In fact, in none of those places does a single racial or ethnic group have a majority</span>: California has almost equal shares of Hispanics (38.6%) and non-Hispanic whites (38.5%); non-Hispanic whites are the plurality in Texas (43.5%); Hispanics in New Mexico (47.7%); blacks in D.C. (47.4%); and Asians in Hawaii (36.4%).</p> </blockquote> <p><a href=""><img height="536" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p>* * *</p> <p>This is an important development to pay attention to because as the US becomes more diverse, everything from the economy (consumer preferences, etc) to the political landscape can be significantly impacted... <em><strong>for instance, election advertising spend and wall-building jobs.</strong></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="655" height="585" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Census Bureau ETC Mexico None Wed, 29 Jun 2016 07:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564744 at 16 Reasons To Celebrate Brexit's Win <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Doug Bandow via,</em></a></p> <p><strong>Watching the Brexit campaign generated mixed feelings: it was a little like the man who saw his mother-in-law drive his new Mercedes off a cliff. </strong>In the United Kingdom, some people who hated free trade, immigration and market innovation challenged the officious, wannabe superstate headquartered in Brussels. Who to cheer for?</p> <p><strong>We should cheer for the Brexiteers, who deserve at least a couple of hurrahs. </strong>The European Union created a common market throughout the continent, an undoubted good, but since then has focused on becoming a meddling Leviathan like Washington, DC. For Britain, the virtues of remaining appeared to pale in comparison to the likely costs of continued subservience to Brussels.<em><strong> In a variety of imperfect ways, Brexit promoted liberty, community, democracy and the rule of law. In short, the good guys won.</strong></em></p> <p>Here are sixteen reasons why the United Kingdom was better off Brexiting:</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>1. Average folks took on the commanding heights of politics, business, journalism and academia and triumphed.</strong> Obviously, the &ldquo;little guy&rdquo; isn&rsquo;t always right, but the fact he can win demonstrates that a system whose pathways remain open to those the Bible refer to as &ldquo;the least of these.&rdquo; The wealthiest, best-organized and most publicized factions don&rsquo;t always win.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>2. Told to choose between economic bounty and self-governance, a majority of Britons chose the latter.</strong> It&rsquo;s a false choice in this case, but people recognized that the sum of human existence is not material. The problem is not just the decisions previously taken away from those elected to govern the UK; it&rsquo;s also the decisions that would have been taken away in the future had &ldquo;Remain&rdquo; won.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>3. Those governed decided that they should make fundamental decisions about who would rule over them.</strong> The Eurocrats, a gaggle of politicians, bureaucrats, journalists, academics, lobbyists and businessmen were determined to achieve their ends no matter what the European people thought. A constitution rejected? Use a treaty. A treaty rejected? Vote again. A busted monetary union? Force a political union. And never, ever consult the public. No longer, said the British.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>4. The rule of law will be respected&mdash;or at least not flagrantly flouted. </strong>Those signing up as EU members did not realize that the EU would be a transfer union. At least some countries likely would not have ratified the Lisbon Treaty, expanding Brussels&rsquo; writ, had they realized that explicit strictures against bailouts would be ostentatiously ignored. No doubt the usual suspects believed they were doing the Lord&rsquo;s work by violating legal guarantees. But today no one living under the EU has any assurance that laws made, rules issued and promises offered would be kept.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>5. Routine incantations of the need for &ldquo;more Europe&rdquo; and importance of &ldquo;European solidarity&rdquo; no longer will be confused with arguments. </strong>Those in charge always want more&mdash;more money to distribute, publicity to satisfy, rules to enforce and power to wield. Their vision of &ldquo;more Europe&rdquo; is Europe giving them more. &ldquo;European solidarity&rdquo; means others caring for them after they have wasted everything under their control.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>6. Democracy will have triumphed over bureaucratic inertia. </strong>The EU is known for its &ldquo;democratic deficit&rdquo;, a Hydra-headed, unelected executive and a parliament chosen by people usually voting on domestic issues, using the polls for the European Parliament to punish errant governments at home. The Brussels bureaucracy has become the perfect means to impose policies that lack political support among member governments and peoples.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>7. The pretensions of the EU as Weltmacht never looked so silly. </strong>There is a flag that no one salutes, and an anthem no one sings. There are multiple presidents: three, four or five? There is enervating duplication, including an EU foreign minister and diplomatic service along with those representing twenty-eight individual member states. Constant talk of creating a continental military while countries steadily shrink military outlays. Insistence that all which is good and decent comes from the EU as ever more people organize and vote against it.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>8. The great satisfaction of watching smug smiles disappear from the faces of Eurocrats on both sides of the English Channel.</strong> The Brexit battle never was supposed to be a fair contest. It was intended to solve a Tory political problem, allowing the irreconcilables to make fools of themselves while the best and brightest led voters to the light. But it didn&rsquo;t work out that way.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>9. Demonstrating that other EU members can throw off the cloak of, if not tyranny, bureaucratic obsession.</strong> Most previous continental episodes of unplanned independent thinking were crushed&mdash;the French and Dutch votes against the constitution, the Irish vote <a href="">against</a> the Treaty of Lisbon, opposition to bailouts and European Central Bank abuses. The Eurocrats always seemed to win. Until now.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>10. The recognition that most human decisions are not wrong but different, and need not be uniform across a continent, especially one made up of such diverse peoples.</strong> Common economic regulations, currencies, employment policies, weights and measures, farm programs and legal rights are convenient. However, convenience is not the highest good. People often value different approaches and standards and are entitled to live their lives as they wish, even if inconsistent with the continent&rsquo;s most progressive thinking.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>11. England, which pays most of the bills, ignored political blackmail from Scotland, which threatened to hold another independence referendum.</strong> It&rsquo;s not clear why the Scots <a href="">didn&rsquo;t choose to leave</a> in 2014. One suspects too many of them were hooked on subsidies from London, which raised the question why the English were so determined for the Scots to stay. Anyway, in the EU poll the English felt as free as the Scots to vote as they wished.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>12. The Brits ignored silly scaremongering about how Europe and, indeed, Western civilization, would be threatened if the UK left the EU.</strong> Britain would still be a member of NATO&mdash;just as Turkey belongs to the military alliance but not the EU. The latter is irrelevant to security: Proposals for an EU military have gone nowhere, in part due to steadfast British opposition. At the margin a more hawkish London might push the EU in a slightly more hawkish direction in the few cases, like Russia, when the continent moved together. But if Vladimir Putin really were the next Hitler, slightly less anemic sanctions wouldn&rsquo;t stop him. World peace does not depend on Britain in or out of the EU.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>13. Schadenfreude is a terrible thing, but almost all of us glory in the misfortune of at least some others.</strong> The recriminations among the Remain camp in Britain are terrible to behold. Labour Party tribunes blame their leader Jeremy Corbyn, whose Euroskeptic past created suspicions inflamed by his criticisms of the EU while nominally praising it. His supporters blame the Scottish nationalists for not turning out their voters. Former Liberal-Democrat Party leader and deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg <a href="">trashed</a> Cameron and Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne for seeking political advantage by holding the referendum. The Scots are mad at the English. Irish &ldquo;republicans&rdquo; in Northern Ireland also are denouncing the English, while their longtime unionist rivals are trashing the republicans. The young are blaming the old for ruining their futures. Apparently, America isn&rsquo;t the only home for myopic bickering.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>14. Sometimes the advocate of a lost cause triumphs.</strong> Nigel Farage has been campaigning against the EU forever, it seems. Yet every advance appeared to trigger a retreat. His United Kingdom Independence Party picked up support, but then had to shed some of those whose views really were beyond the pale. UKIP was able to break into the European Parliament, which it hated, but won <a href="">only one seat</a> at Westminster, despite receiving 3.9 million votes, or 12.6 percent of the total, in last year&rsquo;s election. One reason was that Cameron and the Tories stole his issue, promising a referendum on the EU&mdash;in which they then <em>opposed</em> separation. Election night he admitted that it looked like the UK would choose to remain. Except the British people ended up taking his advice.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>15. A bracing reminder that people want to believe that their views matter, that what they do actually makes a difference and those claiming to represent them actually listen.</strong> Today&rsquo;s political consensus, in which certain concerns are treated as inappropriate for polite company, drive otherwise normal decent folk to the fringes to find political champions willing to speak for them. Debating such ideas might threaten values and policies held by those steeped in modernity and liberalism, including people like me. But otherwise frustration will boil over in far more dangerous ways.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>16. The pleasure of disrupting a choreographed ending amid much crying and gnashing of teeth. </strong>Election night began with the comfortable assumption among those at the top of the social pyramid that the forces of tolerance, diversity and rationality had carried the day. Then came the shock of watching Brexit improbably take the lead in early returns. Remain &ldquo;victory&rdquo; parties emptied and politicians who orchestrated the Remain campaign contemplated the ruin of their careers. Those at the top suddenly found themselves in the political queue well behind their rural and working class compatriots.</p> </blockquote> <p><strong>Could Brexit turn out to be a mistake? Yes. Unfortunately, we live in an uncertain world with imperfect knowledge.</strong> We can only guess at the future. Both the UK and EU must handle separation with maturity unusual for politicians, especially those in Brussels. Europeans should apply the important lessons learned in changing EU policy and operations. The Brits must unilaterally follow an outward economic and political policy. None of these will be easy and much could go wrong.</p> <p><strong>However, Britain has been capably governing itself for hundreds if not thousands of years. In that light, Brexit appears likely promote the right people and ends.</strong> At its best, Britain&rsquo;s departure will revive the UK&rsquo;s most basic principles of self-governance and spur EU members to rethink the &ldquo;European Project&rsquo;s&rdquo; attempt to create a superstate by stealth. Those wouldn&rsquo;t be bad results for a measure that was never supposed to have much chance of passing.</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="670" height="401" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> European Central Bank European Union Ireland None Turkey United Kingdom Vladimir Putin Wed, 29 Jun 2016 06:00:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564747 at Bernie Sanders: The World Is Rejecting Globalization <p><a href=""><em>Authored by Bernie Sanders, originally posted Op-Ed via The NY Times,</em></a></p> <p class="p-block"><strong>Surprise, surprise. Workers in Britain, many of whom have seen a decline in their standard of living while the very rich in their country have become much richer, have turned their backs on the European Union and a globalized economy that is failing them and their children.</strong></p> <p class="p-block"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>And it&rsquo;s not just the British who are suffering. </strong></span>That increasingly globalized economy, established and maintained by the world&rsquo;s economic elite, is failing people everywhere. Incredibly, <a href="">the wealthiest 62 people on this planet own</a> as much wealth as the bottom half of the world&rsquo;s population &mdash; around 3.6 billion people. The top 1 percent now owns more wealth than the whole of the bottom 99 percent. The very, very rich enjoy unimaginable luxury while billions of people endure abject poverty, unemployment, and inadequate health care, education, housing and drinking water.</p> <p class="p-block"><strong>Could this rejection of the current form of the global economy happen in the United States? You bet it could.</strong></p> <p class="p-block">During my campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination, I&rsquo;ve visited 46 states. <u><strong>What I saw and heard on too many occasions were painful realities that the political and media establishment fail even to recognize</strong></u>.</p> <p class="p-block">In the last 15 years, nearly 60,000 factories in this country have closed, and <strong><a href=""> more than 4.8 million</a> well-paid manufacturing jobs have disappeared</strong>. Much of this is related to disastrous trade agreements that encourage corporations to move to low-wage countries.</p> <p class="p-block">Despite major increases in productivity, the<strong> <a href="">median male worker</a> in America today is making $726 dollars less than he did in 1973</strong>, while the median female worker is making $1,154 less than she did in 2007, after adjusting for inflation.</p> <p class="p-block"><strong><em>Nearly 47 million Americans live in poverty. An estimated <a href="">28</a><a href=""> million</a> have no health insurance, while many others are underinsured. Millions of people are struggling with outrageous levels of student debt. For perhaps the first time in modern history, our younger generation will probably have a lower standard of living than their parents. Frighteningly, millions of poorly educated Americans will have a shorter life span than the previous generation as they succumb to despair, drugs and alcohol.</em></strong></p> <p class="p-block"><u><strong>Meanwhile, in our country the top one-tenth of 1 percent now owns almost as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent.</strong></u> <a href="">Fifty-eight percent</a> of all new income is going to the top 1 percent. Wall Street and billionaires, through their &ldquo;super PACs,&rdquo; are able to buy elections.<span style="max-width: 300px;"> </span></p> <p class="p-block">On my campaign, I&rsquo;ve talked to workers unable to make it on $8 or $9 an hour; retirees struggling to purchase the medicine they need on $9,000 a year of Social Security; young people unable to afford college. I also visited the American citizens of Puerto Rico, where some 58 percent of the children live in poverty and only a little more than 40 percent of the adult population has a job or is seeking one.</p> <p class="p-block"><u><strong>Let&rsquo;s be clear. The global economy is not working for the majority of people in our country and the world. This is an economic model developed by the economic elite to benefit the economic elite. We need real change.</strong></u></p> <p class="p-block">But we do not need change based on the demagogy, bigotry and anti-immigrant sentiment that punctuated so much of the Leave campaign&rsquo;s rhetoric &mdash; and is central to Donald J. Trump&rsquo;s message.</p> <p class="p-block">We need a president who will vigorously support international cooperation that brings the people of the world closer together, reduces hypernationalism and decreases the possibility of war. <strong>We also need a president who respects the democratic rights of the people, and who will fight for an economy that protects the interests of working people, not just Wall Street, the drug companies and other powerful special interests.</strong></p> <p class="p-block"><strong>We need to fundamentally reject our &ldquo;free trade&rdquo; policies and move to fair trade. </strong>Americans should not have to compete against workers in low-wage countries who earn pennies an hour. We must defeat the Trans-Pacific Partnership. We must help poor countries develop sustainable economic models.</p> <p class="p-block">We need to end the international scandal in which <strong>large corporations and the wealthy avoid paying trillions of dollars in taxes</strong> to their national governments.</p> <p class="p-block">We need to create tens of millions of jobs worldwide by combating global climate change and by transforming the world&rsquo;s energy system away from fossil fuels.</p> <p class="p-block"><strong>We need international efforts to cut military spending around the globe and address the causes of war: poverty, hatred, hopelessness and ignorance.</strong></p> <p class="p-block"><u><strong>The notion that Donald Trump could benefit from the same forces that gave the Leave proponents a majority in Britain should sound an alarm for the Democratic Party in the United States</strong></u>. Millions of American voters, like the Leave supporters, are understandably angry and frustrated by the economic forces that are destroying the middle class.</p> <p class="p-block">In this pivotal moment, the Democratic Party and a new Democratic president need to make clear that we stand with those who are struggling and who have been left behind. <u><em><strong>We must create national and global economies that work for all, not just a handful of billionaires.</strong></em></u></p> <p>* * *</p> <p>In other words - unless Hillary can put her special interest crony-capitalist history behind her (and impossible task against Trump&#39;s &#39;take no prisoners&#39; approach) she will have to distract (to standa chance) by putting Bernie on the ticket as VP... Or Trump&#39;s gonna win.</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="612" height="342" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Bernie Sanders Donald Trump European Union Fail Global Economy Nomination Puerto Rico Unemployment Wed, 29 Jun 2016 03:20:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564746 at "We The Prisoners": The Demise Of The Fourth Amendment <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by John Whitehead via The Rutherford Institute,</em></a></p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&ldquo;Our carceral state banishes American citizens to a gray wasteland far beyond the promises and protections the government grants its other citizens&hellip; When the doors finally close and one finds oneself facing <a href="">banishment to the carceral state</a>&mdash;the years, the walls, the rules, the guards, the inmates&hellip;the incarcerated begins to adjust to the fact that he or she is, indeed, a prisoner. New social ties are cultivated. New rules must be understood.&rdquo;</p> <p>- Ta-Nehisi Coates, <em>The Atlantic</em></p> </blockquote> <p>In a carceral state - a.k.a. a prison state or a police state - there is no Fourth Amendment<strong> to protect you from the overreaches, abuses, searches and probing eyes of government overlords</strong>.</p> <p>In a carceral state, there is no difference between the treatment meted out to a law-abiding citizen and a convicted felon: both are equally suspect and treated as criminals, without any of the special rights and privileges reserved for the governing elite.</p> <p><strong>In a carceral state, there are only two kinds of people: the prisoners and the prison guards.</strong></p> <p>With every new law enacted by federal and state legislatures, every new ruling handed down by government courts, and every new military weapon, invasive tactic and egregious protocol employed by government agents, &ldquo;we the people&rdquo;&mdash;the prisoners of the American police state&mdash;are being pushed that much further into a corner, our backs against the prison wall.</p> <p><em><strong>This concept of a carceral state in which we possess no rights except for that which the government grants on an as-needed basis is the only way I can begin to comprehend, let alone articulate, the irrational, surreal, topsy-turvy, through-the-looking-glass state of affairs that is being imposed upon us in America today.</strong></em></p> <p>As I point out in my book <a href=""><em>Battlefield America: The War on the American People</em></a>, <strong>we who pretend we are free are no different from those who spend their lives behind bars.</strong></p> <p>Indeed, we are experiencing much the same phenomenon that journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates ascribes to those who are banished to a &ldquo;<a href="">gray wasteland far beyond the promises and protections the government grants its other citizens</a>&rdquo; : a sickening feeling, a desire to sleep, hopelessness, shame, rage, disbelief, clinginess to the past and that which is familiar, and then eventually resignation and acceptance of our new &ldquo;normal.&rdquo;</p> <p>All that we are experiencing&mdash;the sense of dread at what is coming down the pike, the desperation, the apathy about government corruption, the deeply divided partisanship, the carnivalesque political spectacles, the public displays of violence, the nostalgia for the past&mdash;are part of the dying refrain of an America that is fading fast.</p> <p><strong>No longer must the government obey the law.</strong></p> <p>Likewise, &ldquo;we the people&rdquo; are no longer shielded by the rule of law.</p> <p><u><strong>While the First Amendment&mdash;which gives us a voice&mdash;is being muzzled, the Fourth Amendment&mdash;which protects us from being bullied, badgered, beaten, broken and spied on by government agents&mdash;is being disemboweled.</strong></u></p> <p>For instance, in a recent <a href="">5-3 ruling in <em>Utah v. Strieff</em></a>, the U.S. Supreme Court opened the door for police to stop, arrest and search citizens without reasonable suspicion or probable cause, effectively giving police a green light to embark on a fishing expedition of one&rsquo;s person and property, rendering Americans completely vulnerable to the whims of any cop on the beat.</p> <p>In a blistering dissent, Justice Sonia Sotomayor blasted the court: &ldquo;This case allows the police to stop you on the street, demand your identification, and check it for outstanding traffic warrants&mdash;<a href="">even if you are doing nothing wrong</a>&hellip; So long as the target is one of the many millions of people in this country with an outstanding arrest warrant, anything the officer finds in a search is fair game for use in a criminal prosecution. The officer&rsquo;s incentive to violate the Constitution thus increases...&rdquo;</p> <p>Just consider some of the many other ways in which the Fourth Amendment&mdash;which ensures that the government can&rsquo;t harass you, let alone even investigate you, without probable cause&mdash;has been weakened and undermined by the courts, the legislatures and various government agencies and operatives.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p><strong>Americans have no protection against mandatory breathalyzer tests at a police checkpoint</strong>, although mandatory blood draws violate the Fourth Amendment.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Ignorance of the law is defensible if you work for the government.</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police officers can use lethal force in car chases without fear of lawsuits</strong>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police can perform a &ldquo;no-knock&rdquo; raid</strong> as long as they have a reasonable suspicion that knocking and announcing their presence would be dangerous or futile.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police can carry out warrantless searches on homes, cars, persons and property</strong> based on a &ldquo;reasonable&rdquo; concern that a suspect (or occupant) might be attempting to flee or destroy evidence.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police </strong><strong>can forcibly take your DNA</strong>, whether or not you&rsquo;ve been convicted of a crime.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police can subject Americans to virtual strip searches, no matter the &ldquo;offense.&rdquo;</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police have free reign to use drug-sniffing dogs as &ldquo;search warrants on leashes.&rdquo;</strong></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police can conduct sobriety and &ldquo;information-seeking&rdquo; checkpoints</strong>.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police officers are free to board a bus, question passengers,</strong> and ask for consent to search without notifying them of their right to refuse.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police can arrest you for minor criminal offenses,</strong> such as a misdemeanor seatbelt violation, punishable only by a fine.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Refusing to answer when a policeman asks &ldquo;What&rsquo;s your name?&rdquo; can rightfully be considered a crime.</strong> No longer do Americans, even those not charged with any crime, have the right to remain altogether silent when stopped and questioned by a police officer.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police may stop any vehicle</strong> as long as they have reasonable cause to believe that a traffic violation occurred. A vehicle can be stopped even if the driver has not committed a traffic offense.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Police officers can stop cars based only on &ldquo;anonymous&rdquo; tips</strong>. Police can also pull you over if you are driving too carefully, with a rigid posture, taking a scenic route, and have acne.</p> </blockquote> <p><u><strong>What many Americans fail to understand is the devastating amount of damage that can be done to one&rsquo;s freedoms long before a case ever makes its way to court by government agents who are violating the Fourth Amendment at every turn. </strong></u>This is how freedoms, long undermined, can give way to tyranny through constant erosion and become part of the fabric of the police state through constant use.</p> <p>Phone and email surveillance, databases for dissidents, threat assessments, terror watch lists, militarized police, SWAT team raids, security checkpoints, lockdowns, roadside strip searches: there was a time when any one of these encroachments on our Fourth Amendment rights would have roused the public to outrage. Today, such violations are shrugged off matter-of-factly by Americans who have been assiduously groomed to accept the intrusions of the police state into their private lives.</p> <p>So when you hear about the <a href="">FBI hacking into Americans&rsquo; computers without a warrant</a> with the blessing of the courts, or states assembling and <a href="">making public terror watch lists</a> containing the names of those who are merely deemed suspicious, or the <a href="">police knocking on the doors of activists in advance of political gatherings</a> to ascertain their plans for future protests, or administrative government agencies (such as the FDA, Small Business Administration, Smithsonian, Social Security, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Mint, and Department of Education) <a href="">spending millions on guns and ammunition</a>, don&rsquo;t just matter-of-factly file it away in that part of your brain reserved for things you may not like but over which you have no control.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s true that there may be little the average person can do to push back against the police state on a national level, but there remains some hope at the local level as long as we recognize that the only way the police state can truly acquire and retain power is if we relinquish it through our negligence, complacence and ignorance.</p> <p><strong>Unfortunately, we have been utterly brainwashed into believing the government&rsquo;s propaganda and lies</strong>. Americans actually celebrate with perfect sincerity the anniversary of our independence from Great Britain without ever owning up to the fact that we are as oppressed now&mdash;more so, perhaps, thanks to advances in technology&mdash;than we ever were when Redcoats stormed through doorways and subjected colonists to the vagaries of a police state.</p> <p>You see, by gradually whittling away at our freedoms&mdash;free speech, assembly, due process, privacy, etc.&mdash;the government has, in effect, liberated itself from its contractual agreement to respect our constitutional rights while resetting the calendar back to a time when we had no Bill of Rights to protect us from the long arm of the government.</p> <p>Aided and abetted by the legislatures, the courts and Corporate America, the government has been <strong>busily rewriting the contract (a.k.a. the Constitution) that establishes the citizenry as the masters and agents of the government as the servants</strong>. We are now only as good as we are useful, and our usefulness is calculated on an economic scale by how much we are worth - in terms of profit and resale value - to our &ldquo;owners.&rdquo;</p> <p>Under the new terms of this one-sided agreement, <em><strong>the government and its many operatives have all the privileges and rights and &ldquo;we the prisoners&rdquo; have none.</strong></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="273" height="155" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Corporate America Corruption ETC Fail FBI First Amendment None Wed, 29 Jun 2016 02:50:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564745 at Farage Slams The EU Parliament: "You're Not Laughing Now Are You?" <p>In his first appearance in European Parliament since the Brexit vote, UKIP leader Nigel Farage was <strong>greeted with raucous jeers and boos</strong> (presumably for enabling The Brits to exercise their democratic right to self-determination). Once <a href="">EU President Martin Schulz had demanded (ironically) </a>that they listen, Farage began his 'victory' speech by reminding his so-called peers of their laughter when he first suggested UK should leave The EU -<em><strong> "you're not laughing now... are you!"</strong></em></p> <p><em><strong>"..and the reason you're so upset, the reason you're so angry, the reason you're not laughing is simple - you as a political project are in denial"<br /></strong></em></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <p>Other MEPs were vocal...</p> <p><strong>Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission</strong></p> <p><em>"Europe isn't exclusively a cerebral affair. Obviously we have to think but equally when you're sad, it's acceptable to be sad and I am sad after this vote in the UK and I make no secret of it. The British vote has cut off one of our wings, as it were, but we're still flying."</em></p> <p><strong>Guy Verhofstadt, leader of the EU Liberal group</strong></p> <p><em>"What makes it so hard for the way it succeeded. The absolutely negative campaign. Mr Farage's posters showing refugees like in Nazi propaganda, which he copied at that moment. I never thought it was possible that somebody in this house should do a thing like that."</em></p> <p><strong>Marine Le Pen, leader of the far-right French National Front</strong></p> <p><em>"The British have chosen a route which it was thought was closed for all time and you were some of those who believed it was closed. Those who said 'It's all irreversible, the European Union is irreversible', well, the British people have told you where to get off."</em></p> <p><strong>Martina Anderson, MEP for Irish republican party Sinn Fein</strong></p> <p><em>"If English votes drag us out of the EU that would be like Britannia waives the rules. There was a democratic vote. We voted to remain. I tell you that the last thing that the people of Ireland need is an EU border with 27 member states stuck right in the middle of it."</em></p> <p><strong>Alyn Smith, MEP for the Scottish Green Party</strong></p> <p><em>"We will need cool heads and warm hearts but please remember this - Scotland did not let you down. I beg you: do not let Scotland down now."</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="448" height="224" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> European Union Ireland Wed, 29 Jun 2016 02:45:39 +0000 Tyler Durden 564698 at Nigel Farage Batters Obama: "He Came To Britain And Behaved Disgracefully" <p>Back in April President Obama took a trip over to the UK in order to lecture another country on how to vote - Obama of course was staunchly in the Remain camp. Obama <a href="">even penned an op-ed</a> titled: &quot;As your friend, let me say that the EU makes Britain even greater.&quot;</p> <p>Of course, we all know the historic outcome of the Brexit vote, and <strong><a href="">we have even asked </a>if it was Barack Obama who actually was the deciding factor:</strong></p> <p><a href=""><img height="318" src="" width="600" /></a></p> <p>UKIP leader Nigel Farage has never been shy of course, but lately has been making sure to remember all of those who tried to downplay or influence the vote. For example, in his first appearance in the European Parliament since the Brexit vote,<a href=""> Farage took the time </a>to make sure the audience knew he hadn&#39;t forgotten that everyone laughed when Farage said that he was going to lead a campaign to get Britain to leave the EU, saying &quot;You&#39;re not laughing now are you.&quot;</p> <p>Farage hadn&#39;t forgotten Obama&#39;s attempt to influence the vote either. In a recent interview with Fox News, Farage was asked what can be done about Putin if the UK isn&#39;t in the EU, to which Farage raged that Obama had behaved disgracefully when compared to Putin.</p> <blockquote><div class="quote_start"><div></div></div><div class="quote_end"><div></div></div><p>&quot;<strong>Well ultimately let me say this, Vladimir Putin behaved in a more statesmanlike manner than President Obama did in this referendum campaign</strong>. <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Obama came to Britain and I think behaved disgracefully, telling us we&#39;d be at the back of the queue</strong></span>. Treating us, America&#39;s strongest, oldest ally, in this extraordinary way. Vladimir Putin maintained his silence throughout the whole campaign.&quot;</p> </blockquote> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560"></iframe></p> <p>* * *</p> <p>Oh that does it, Obama won&#39;t be inviting Farage on any of the remaining 36-hold golf outings!</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="724" height="384" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Barack Obama Fox News President Obama Vladimir Putin Wed, 29 Jun 2016 02:20:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564734 at Doug Casey Debunks The Common Excuses for "Staying" In One Country <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Doug Casey via,</em></a></p> <p>Tell a person that it&#39;s a big beautiful world, full of fresh opportunities and a sense of freedom that is just not available by staying put and you will <strong>inevitably be treated to a litany of reasons why expanding your life into more than one country just isn&#39;t practical</strong>.</p> <p>Let&#39;s consider some of those commonly stated reasons, and why they might be unjustified. While largely directed at Americans, these are also applicable to pretty much anyone from any country (for example, Britain... or Germany).</p> <p><strong>&quot;America is the best country in the world. I&#39;d be a fool to leave.&quot;</strong></p> <p>That was absolutely true, not so very long ago. America certainly was the best &ndash; and it was unique. But it no longer exists, except as an ideal. The geography it occupied has been co-opted by the United States, which today is just another nation-state. And, most unfortunately, one that&#39;s become especially predatory toward its citizens.</p> <p><strong>&quot;My parents and grandparents were born here; I have roots in this country.&quot;</strong></p> <p>An understandable emotion; everyone has an atavistic affinity for his place of birth, including your most distant relatives born long, long ago, and far, far away. I suppose if Lucy, apparently the first more-or-less human we know of, had been able to speak, she might have pled roots if you&#39;d asked her to leave her valley in East Africa. If you buy this argument, then it&#39;s clear your forefathers, who came from Europe, Asia, or Africa, were made of sterner stuff than you are.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I&#39;m not going to be unpatriotic.&quot;</strong></p> <p>Patriotism is one of those things very few even question and even fewer examine closely. I&#39;m a patriot, you&#39;re a nationalist, he&#39;s a jingoist. But let&#39;s put such a tendentious and emotion-laden subject aside. Today a true patriot &ndash; an effective patriot &ndash; would be accumulating capital elsewhere, to have assets he can repatriate and use for rebuilding when the time is right. And a real patriot understands that America is not a place; it&#39;s an idea. It deserves to be spread.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I can&#39;t leave my aging mother behind.&quot;</strong></p> <p>Not to sound callous, but your aging parent will soon leave you behind. Why not offer her the chance to come along, though? She might enjoy a good live-in maid in your own house (which I challenge you to get in the U.S.) more than a sterile, dismal, and overpriced old people&#39;s home, where she&#39;s likely to wind up.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I might not be able to earn a living.&quot;</strong></p> <p>Spoken like a person with little imagination and even less self-confidence. And likely little experience or knowledge of economics. Everyone, everywhere, has to produce at least as much as he consumes &ndash; that won&#39;t change whether you stay in your living room or go to Timbuktu. In point of fact, though, it tends to be easier to earn big money in a foreign country, because you will have knowledge, experience, skills, and connections the locals don&#39;t.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I don&#39;t have enough capital to make a move.&quot;</strong></p> <p>Well, that was one thing that kept serfs down on the farm. Capital gives you freedom. On the other hand, a certain amount of poverty can underwrite your freedom, since possessions act as chains for many.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I&#39;m afraid I won&#39;t fit in.&quot;</strong></p> <p>The real danger that&#39;s headed your way is not fitting in at home. This objection is often proffered by people who&#39;ve never traveled abroad. Here&#39;s a suggestion. If you don&#39;t have a valid passport, apply for one tomorrow morning. Then, at the next opportunity, book a trip to somewhere that seems interesting. Make an effort to meet people. Find out if you&#39;re really as abject a wallflower as you fear.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I don&#39;t speak the language.&quot;</strong></p> <p>It&#39;s said that Sir Richard Burton, the 19th century explorer, spoke 10 languages fluently and 15 more &quot;reasonably well.&quot; I&#39;ve always liked that distinction although, personally, I&#39;m not a good linguist. And it gets harder to learn a language as you get older &ndash; although it&#39;s also true that learning a new language actually keeps your brain limber. In point of fact, though, English is the world&#39;s language. Almost anyone who is anyone, and the typical school kid, has some grasp of it.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I&#39;m too old to make such a big change.&quot;</strong></p> <p>Yes, I guess it makes more sense to just take a seat and await the arrival of the Grim Reaper. Or perhaps, is your life already so exciting and wonderful that you can&#39;t handle a little change? Better, I think, that you might adopt the attitude of the 85-year-old woman who has just transplanted herself to Argentina from the frozen north. Even after many years of adventure, she simply feels ready for a change and was getting tired of the same old people with the same old stories and habits.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I&#39;ve got to wait until the kids are out of school. It would disrupt their lives.&quot;</strong></p> <p>This is actually one of the lamest excuses in the book. I&#39;m sympathetic to the view that kids ought to live with wolves for a couple of years to get a proper grounding in life &ndash; although I&#39;m not advocating anything that radical. It&#39;s one of the greatest gifts you can give your kids: to live in another culture, learn a new language, and associate with a better class of people (as an expat, you&#39;ll almost automatically move to the upper rungs &ndash; arguably a big plus). After a little whining, the kids will love it. When they&#39;re grown, if they discover you passed up the opportunity, they won&#39;t forgive you.</p> <p><strong>&quot;I don&#39;t want to give up my U.S. citizenship.&quot;</strong></p> <p>There&#39;s no need to. Anyway, if you have a lot of deferred income and untaxed gains, it can be punitive to do so; the U.S. government wants to keep you as a milk cow. But then, you may cotton to the idea of living free of any taxing government while having the travel documents offered by several. And you may want to save your children from becoming cannon fodder or indentured servants should the U.S. re-institute the draft or start a program of &quot;national service&quot; &ndash; which is not unlikely.</p> <p><u><strong>But these arguments are unimportant. The real problem is one of psychology.</strong></u> In that regard, I like to point to my old friend Paul Terhorst, who 30 years ago was the youngest partner at a national accounting firm. He and his wife, Vicki, decided that &quot;keeping up with the Joneses&quot; for the rest of their lives just wasn&#39;t for them. They sold everything &ndash; cars, house, clothes, artwork, the works &ndash; and decided to live around the world. Paul then had the time to read books, play chess, and generally enjoy himself. He wrote about it in&nbsp;<em>Cashing In on the American Dream: How to Retire at 35</em>. As a bonus, the advantages of not being a tax resident anywhere and having time to scope out proper investments has put Paul way ahead in the money game. He typically spends about half his year in Argentina; we usually have lunch every week when in residence.</p> <p><u><strong>I could go on. But perhaps it&#39;s pointless to offer rational counters to irrational fears and preconceptions.</strong></u> As Gibbon noted with his signature brand of irony,<em><strong> &quot;The power of instruction is seldom of much efficacy, except in those happy dispositions where it is almost superfluous.&quot;</strong></em></p> <p>Let me be clear: <u><em><strong>in my view, the time to internationally diversify your life is getting short. And the reasons for looking abroad are changing.</strong></em></u></p> <p>In the past, the best argument for expatriation was an automatic increase in one&#39;s standard of living. In the &#39;50s and &#39;60s, a book called&nbsp;<em>Europe on $5 a Day</em> accurately reflected all-in costs for a tourist. In those days a middle-class American could live like a king in Europe. But those days are long gone. Now it&#39;s the rare American who can afford to visit Europe except on a cheesy package tour. That situation may actually improve soon, if only because the standard of living in Europe is likely to fall even faster than in the U.S. But the improvement will be temporary. One thing you can plan your life around is that, for the average American, foreign travel is going to become much more expensive in the next few years as the dollar loses value at an accelerating rate.</p> <p>Affordability is going to be a real problem for Americans, who&#39;ve long been used to being the world&#39;s &quot;rich guys.&quot; But an even bigger problem will be presented by foreign exchange controls of some nature, which the government will impose in its efforts to &quot;do something.&quot; FX controls &ndash; perhaps in the form of taxes on money that goes abroad, perhaps restrictions on amounts and reasons, perhaps the requirement of official approval, perhaps all of these things &ndash; are a natural progression during the next stage of the crisis. After all, only rich people can afford to send money abroad, and only the unpatriotic would think of doing so.</p> <h3><u><strong>How and Where</strong></u></h3> <p>I would like to reemphasize that it&rsquo;s pure foolishness to have your loyalties dictated by the lines on a map or the dictates of some ruler.<strong> The nation-state itself is on its way out.</strong> The world will increasingly be aligned with what we call phyles, groups of people who consider themselves countrymen based on their interests and values, not on which government&#39;s ID they share. I believe the sooner you start thinking that way, the freer, the richer, and the more secure you will become.</p> <p><strong>The most important first step is to get out of the danger zone.</strong> Let&rsquo;s list the steps in order of importance.</p> <ol> <li> <p>Establish a financial account in a second country and transfer assets to it immediately.</p> </li> <li> <p>Purchase a crib in a suitable third country, somewhere you might enjoy whether in good times or bad.</p> </li> <li> <p>Get moving toward an alternative citizenship in a fourth country; you don&#39;t want to be stuck geographically, and you don&#39;t want to live like a refugee.</p> </li> <li> <p>Keep your eyes open for business and investment opportunities in those four countries, plus the other 195; you&#39;ll greatly increase your perspective and your chances of success.</p> </li> </ol> <p>Where to go?</p> <p>The personal conclusion I came to was Argentina (followed by Uruguay), where I spend a good part of my year and even more now that my house at&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">La Estancia de Cafayate</a>&nbsp;is completed.</p> <p><strong><em>In general, I would suggest you look most seriously at countries whose governments aren&#39;t overly cozy with the U.S. and whose people maintain an inbred suspicion of the police, the military, and the fiscal authorities. These criteria tilt the scales against past favorites like Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the UK.</em></strong></p> <p>And one more piece of sage advice: stop thinking like your neighbors, which is to say stop thinking and acting like a serf. Most people &ndash; although they can be perfectly affable and even seem sensible &ndash; have the attitudes of medieval peasants that objected to going further than a day&#39;s round-trip from their hut, for fear the stories of dragons that live over the hill might be true. We covered the modern versions of that objection a bit earlier.</p> <p>I&#39;m not saying that you&#39;ll make your fortune and find happiness by venturing out. But you&#39;ll greatly increase your odds of doing so, greatly increase your security, and, I suspect, have a much more interesting time.</p> <p>Let me end by reminding you what Rick Blaine, Bogart&#39;s character in&nbsp;<em>Casablanca</em>, had to say in only a slightly different context. Appropriately, Rick was an early but also an archetypical international man. Let&#39;s just imagine he&#39;s talking about what will happen if you don&#39;t effectively internationalize yourself now. He said:<em><strong> &quot;You may not regret it now, but you&#39;ll regret it soon. And for the rest of your life.&quot;</strong></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="576" height="357" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Australia Germany New Zealand Wed, 29 Jun 2016 01:50:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564743 at In Gold We Trust, 2016 Edition <p><a href=""><em>Submitted by Pater Tenebrarum via,</em></a></p> <h3><strong>The 10<sup>th</sup> Anniversary Edition of the &ldquo;In Gold We Trust&rdquo; Report</strong></h3> <p>As every year at the end of June, our good friends Ronald Stoeferle and Mark Valek, the managers of the Incrementum funds, have released the <em>In Gold We Trust</em> report, one of the most comprehensive and most widely read gold reports in the world. The report can be downloaded further below.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Gold, daily" class="aligncenter wp-image-45615" height="435" src="" width="640" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;">Gold, daily, over the past year &ndash; click to enlarge.</p> <p>The report celebrates its 10<sup>th</sup> anniversary this year. As always, a wide variety of gold-related topics is discussed, providing readers with a wealth of valuable and intellectually stimulating information. <strong>This year&rsquo;s report inter alia includes a detailed discussion of gold&rsquo;s properties in terms of Nicholas Nassim Taleb&rsquo;s &ldquo;fragility/ robustness/ anti-fragility&rdquo; matrix, as well as close look at the last resort of mad-cap central planners that goes by the moniker &ldquo;helicopter money&rdquo;.</strong></p> <p>Since falling to a new multi-year low amid growing despondency and a crescendo of bearishness late last year,&nbsp; gold has celebrated a rather noteworthy comeback. As our regular readers know, we pointed to many subtle signs that indicated to us that a trend change might soon be afoot as the low approached (particularly in gold stocks, see e.g. &ldquo;<a href="">Gold and Gold Stocks, it Gets Even More Interesting</a>&rdquo; or &ldquo;<a href="">The Canary in the Gold Mine</a>&rdquo; for some color on this).</p> <p>Ronald and Mark are <em>inter alia</em> looking into the <strong>question whether gold&rsquo;s recent comeback marks the resumption of the secular bull market, and which factors are likely to drive precious metals in coming years</strong>. As they correctly argue, the increasing desperation of central bankers and their willingness to boost inflation at all cost is going to lead to a plethora of unintended consequences, all of which are likely to boost the gold price.</p> <p>They also shed light on one issue that&nbsp; &ndash; apart from a handful of exceptions &ndash;&nbsp; is clearly not on anyone&rsquo;s radar screen at the moment: namely the possibility that central banks might finally &ldquo;succeed&rdquo;. In other words, the possibility that gold&rsquo;s recent rise is actually the harbinger of another event widely regarded as &ldquo;impossible&rdquo; &ndash; the return of price inflation.</p> <p>In this context, we want to reproduce a chart from the report, which <strong>shows the proprietary Incrementum inflation signal vs. the gold price and a number of other inflation-sensitive assets. </strong>As can be seen, the signal has flipped rather forcefully toward inflation, after having been stuck for several years in &ldquo;disinflation/ deflation&rdquo; territory.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="Incrementum signal" class="aligncenter wp-image-45616" height="366" src="" width="640" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;">The Incrementum Inflation Signal vs. inflation-sensitive assets &ndash; click to enlarge.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>This incidentally jibes with the <em>ECRI Future Inflation Gauge,</em> which has recently reached a new multi-year high as well.</strong> As can probably be imagined, if the message of these signals is actually borne out, central banks will be facing quite a quandary. It also has potentially far-reaching implications for investors of all stripes, which the report discusses extensively as well.</p> <p><strong>&nbsp;</strong></p> <h3><strong>Conclusion and Download Link</strong></h3> <p>We are certain that our readers will find this year&rsquo;s <em>In Gold We Trust</em> report just as interesting and entertaining as its predecessors. In fact, we believe the anniversary report is an especially well done issue. Enjoy!</p> <p><a href="">Full PDF can be downloaded here,</a> or read below...</p> <p style="margin: 12px auto 6px auto; font-family: Helvetica,Arial,Sans-serif; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; font-weight: normal; font-size: 14px; line-height: normal; font-size-adjust: none; font-stretch: normal; display: block;"><a href="" style="text-decoration: underline;" title="View In Gold We Trust 2016-Extended Version on Scribd">In Gold We Trust 2016-Extended Version</a></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="600" scrolling="no" src=";view_mode=scroll&amp;show_recommendations=true&amp;show_upsell=true" width="100%"></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="586" height="357" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Central Banks Nassim Taleb Precious Metals Wed, 29 Jun 2016 00:50:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564742 at WTF Chart Of The Day: When Central Planning Fails <p>Things have not been going according to plan for Kuroda-san and his policy-making 'Peter-Pan's in Japan. Since The Bank of Japan unleashed NIRP on its 'saving' community - which, according to the textbooks would force money to reach for riskier investments, pumping stocks up, or flush cash into inflationary consumption - stock prices have collapsed and bond prices have exploded... <em><strong>In fact, in six months, bonds are outperforming stocks by a central-bank-credibility-crushing 70%!!!</strong></em></p> <p>Rate cuts...not working</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="318" /></a></p> <p><em>h/t @jsblokland</em></p> <p>And it's not just The BoJ that is struggling - since The Fed hiked rates, The S&amp;P is down 3.5% and Treasuries are up 16%!!</p> <p><a href=""><img src="" width="600" height="316" /></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>2016 - The year when the central-planners were finally exposed!!</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="959" height="508" alt="" src="" /> </div> </div> </div> Bank of Japan Bond Japan Wed, 29 Jun 2016 00:20:00 +0000 Tyler Durden 564733 at