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US Senate Shows It Has Its Priorities Straight...

Tyler Durden's picture


Submitted by Simon Black of Sovereign Man blog,

Well, you have to admit one thing - the United States Senate certainly has its priorities straight.

Early last week they passed S.743, the Marketplace Fairness Act. This bill requires US-based online merchants to charge, collect, report, and pay sales tax to the roughly 9,646 jurisdictions within the Land of the Free which levy such a tax.

And while grounded in well-intended socialist dogma as a means to ‘level the playing field’, all the bill will really do is stick consumers with a higher price tag on the products they currently purchase online.

Curiously, though, the Senate then introduced S.958 this week. This bill actually aims to DECREASE certain taxes that are currently charged… on beer.

Not to be outdone by such wisdom, though, the government of Spain announced a plan this week to seize homes that have been foreclosed on by banks and developers.

Politicians will then let Spanish families stay rent-free in those homes for up to three years.

It’s a bit of a reverse-Cyprus situation; instead of confiscating assets from bank customers, the government wants to confiscate assets from banks.

Again, well-intended. But this will likely destroy the mortgage market in Spain; who in their right mind would want to make home loans in that country anymore knowing that the foreclosure mechanism is unenforceable?

The plan should also do a great job scaring off foreign investors; remember, the Spanish government is desperate to reduce the excess housing inventory, and they recently announced a program offering residency to any foreigner who spends about $200,000 on Spanish property.

But instead of rolling out the red carpet for foreign investors, they’re now broadcasting a very loud message: “We do not respect private property rights.”

Again, just like the IRS targeting opposition political groups and illegally seizing the medical records of millions of Americans, or the Justice Department seizing phone records from the AP, this sort of Marxist land grab is something that you’d expect in Belarus or Venezuela.

So basically what governments in Europe and the Land of the Free are telling us is – Beer and Populism: good. Private property rights, freedom, privacy, business, price stability: bad.

These people clearly have their priorities straight.

Before signing off for the week, I wanted to give you a few more thoughts on Bangladesh.

Bottom line, there are definitely opportunities in this country. With such a huge population, cheap work force, and abundant resources, the potential is evident.

At the moment, though, most of the great investments in Bangladesh are private deals. This is the same case as Myanmar.

Public market investing in Bangladesh is fairly uninteresting. The stock market in Dhaka trades at about 17-times earnings with no dividend yield. Right now it’s down about 50% from it’s all-time high, but it still doesn’t strike me as cheap.

One lucrative opportunity is in private lending. So many locals have been shut out of the banking system because of bad policy and tight liquidity, but the need for capital is very strong.

For similar reasons, my colleagues in Mongolia set up a private lending business there, and they’re currently making 3% to 4% per MONTH lending to local businesses who cannot obtain loans through the Mongolian banking system.

Given the need for capital and the appetite for development that I’ve seen on the ground in Bangladesh, I suspect that figure can be exceeded here.

Agriculture is also interesting. Land leases are quite cheap. And the soil is incredibly fertile since the majority of the country is in an alluvial floodplain.

But the prevalence of natural disasters and government policy that inhibits large-scale farming operations really increases the risk level. On a risk-adjusted basis, it’s very hard to beat South America for agriculture returns.


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Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:23 | 3574467 knukles
knukles's picture

Beer and circuses foreveah!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:25 | 3574474 ACP
ACP's picture

And free money for strip clubs!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:33 | 3574485 knukles
knukles's picture

Ya know, that micro lending and crowd sourcing he refers to is nothing but fucking Vig money.  3% to 4% per month translates to 42.5% to 60% on an annualized basis.

Fucking Vig money

Yo' you Mongoloid fuck, break youse and yo camel's legs n' burn yer Yurt you pay me tomorrow....
Jesus Christ, Simon...

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:42 | 3574511 Dr Benway
Dr Benway's picture

Simon Black, international loan shark, strikes again.


Maybe he can start business with Sharky in Thailand.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:56 | 3574829 Pool Shark
Pool Shark's picture



Bangladesh?  Seriously, Simon?...



Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:43 | 3574520 ACP
ACP's picture

And some is definitely vag money...

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:18 | 3574596 Room 101
Room 101's picture

So this asshole thinks usury is a great thing.  So why is he any better than a bankster?  

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:57 | 3574696 malikai
malikai's picture

Is there something wrong with market interest rates?

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 18:00 | 3576489 Balanced Integer
Balanced Integer's picture

Yes. Obviously, anyone who invests in a foreign market must not charge any interest for the risk and expect only to receive his/her principal in return. Indeed, one should be willing to take a haircut on the principal as well. See: General Motors, Greece, Cyprus.


Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:51 | 3574680 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

The US Senate...

What do you expect from an organization led by such a despicable wussy cretin as Harry Reid?

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:28 | 3574481 The Heart
The Heart's picture

What's on TV?

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:02 | 3574535 the Absurd
the Absurd's picture

Diane Sawyer reported as her second "story" that the Powerball jackpot has exceeded $600 million.

It only takes one to win.

Then I can buy Jamie Dimon, at least according to his worth.

I have no understanding of statistics, so I spent $100 on tickets.

When I win, I'll donate most to charity.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:31 | 3574490 Jayda1850
Jayda1850's picture

So sad to see beer caught up in politics. Of course the European comission has basically annexed belgium for their own personal uses, though they still do  have the best beer in the world.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:01 | 3574559 Jekyll_n_Hyde_Island
Jekyll_n_Hyde_Island's picture

Belgium does most definitely have the best beer in the world.

  Nothing beats the Trappist Monastary, (excluding Koeningshoeven) Saisons, Farmhouse and Artisinal ales that Americans try to recreate in vain. 

  The only other beers that hold a candle are Unibroue in Canada and Traquair House from the oldest inhabited house in Scotland.

  Good job Jayda.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:07 | 3574569 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:46 | 3574652 wee-weed up
wee-weed up's picture

Nectar of the gods! I indulge in at least one every day!

The Torpedo is damn good too! Has a very nice "hops-bite" to it.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:41 | 3574657 Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill's picture

Some American beer is much better than it was,however

There are more hops in a dead frog than in a Budweiser.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:03 | 3574705 1C3-N1N3
1C3-N1N3's picture

I like to drop a single hops pellet into the glass/bottle and wait 2 minutes before drinking. Gives it some extra kick.

Sierra Nevada uses Cascade hops in their Pale Ale, while Torpedo uses Citra hops -- though I'll go with Simcoe hops when I can get them, Centennial is decent too.

Best not to drink/eat the pellet, though... *shudder*

Mon, 05/20/2013 - 10:52 | 3580222 Jekyll_n_Hyde_Island
Jekyll_n_Hyde_Island's picture

  Hop pellets are a hypocraful creation. The only reason why a brewer would use a hop pellet is to push more than is necessary into the opening of the brewing kettle, or cheapness/laziness.  Fresh hops should always be used -- even if you're dry hopping.

  What American hop-heads don't understand is that hops are not supposed to be the central component of your beer, the malted barley and yeast are much more important.

  We think it is "American" to over hop our beer in the IPA and Pale Ale styles, when really it's just ignorant.


Sat, 05/18/2013 - 06:39 | 3575451 Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill's picture

Some American beer is much better than it was,however

There are more hops in a dead frog than in a Budweiser.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:23 | 3574761 taniquetil
taniquetil's picture

As a fan of the Belgian Abbey Ales, I have to agree.


Trappist Rochefort 10 if my favorite beer in the world.

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 09:35 | 3575582 malikai
malikai's picture

I don't normally drink at all, but that right there is one damn fine beer.

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 01:19 | 3575305 virgule
virgule's picture

As someone who actually does business in Bangladesh on regualr basis, I would NOT advise you to go and invest there, unless you are the cow-boy type, prepared to shoot to survive and/or to loose it all when you are out of luck on a bad day. In theory, yes, there is potential, but you'd better have a damm good plan and a ton of patience...

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 01:48 | 3575318 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Beer is liquid bread.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:26 | 3574475 stinkhammer
stinkhammer's picture

tune in, turn on and drop out!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:31 | 3574491 B2u
B2u's picture

Free trips to Vegas baby !!!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:35 | 3574495 world_debt_slave
world_debt_slave's picture

The US Senate is no different from the corrupt Roman Empire Senate of bygone eras.


Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:20 | 3574597 logicalman
logicalman's picture

Caligula made a horse (Incitatus) a senator.

The US senate is filled with horses arses - so, I guess you are nearly correct!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:30 | 3574624 monad
monad's picture

Yes, but did Caligula do this to his horse?

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:36 | 3574640 logicalman
logicalman's picture

Waste of a comment.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 22:38 | 3575069 logicalman
logicalman's picture

waste of a comment.

2 hour broadcast - I gave it 20 minutes - most of it was rambling bullshit.

I don't have that mch time to waste - too much to learn, and that wasn't teaching me anything.


Fri, 05/17/2013 - 23:04 | 3575103 monad
monad's picture

I know what you believe. I wasn't trying to confuse you with facts, or exacerbate your flimsy narcistic dementia. I am leaving evidence for the others.
61:52 you black duck.

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 09:43 | 3575597 logicalman
logicalman's picture

Arrogant fuck.

You have no idea what I believe or how much I know.

As for narcisistic or demented, you couldn't be further from the truth.

Have a nice day!

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 11:33 | 3575775 monad
monad's picture

I call. I'm a soldier. I laid my life down for you to have the right to be free, which includes the right to tell me I'm wrong. In my duty, to my values, I have caused the death of a lot of people, some of which I regret, but I have protected you. Today. Right now. Now you try to get your head around that, pinhead. I am a cryptanalyst, for the good cause. You are free to do the same; I gave you that.

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 18:23 | 3576525 Balanced Integer
Balanced Integer's picture


I sense...a bit of history between you two. Gonna have to initiate a search algorithm. I'll bet there are some epic threads in the backlogs of ZH history.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:37 | 3574499 THE DORK OF CORK
THE DORK OF CORK's picture

There is no need to provide loans for houses in Spain !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


There is a fucking glut ................the stuff has been constructed already remember ?


Its a cash market or at least should be........


The mortgages remaining mean nothing - give people the keys and deeds , turn the deposits into national equity money.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:21 | 3574601 Room 101
Room 101's picture

B-b-but that would be communism!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:33 | 3574784 BidnessMan
BidnessMan's picture

Debt Jubilee is inevitable

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 09:37 | 3575586 malikai
malikai's picture

Almost agree with everything, but wtf is National Equity Money supposed to acheive?

Seems the same net result.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:40 | 3574507 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

     I had to post this little 'Rabbit Turd' From RanSquawk. (nothing against RanSquawk)

  US Treasury Secretary Lew says sees US economic growth exceeding 3%...    Are you kidding me? "Timmah Junior", has the podium...

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:41 | 3574508 THE DORK OF CORK
THE DORK OF CORK's picture

Imagine trying to charge rent on something with no scarcity !!!!!!!


The sheer gal of this man.


On top of this he calls himself Sovereign


He has no shame.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:42 | 3574515 knukles
knukles's picture

I wuz just thnkin' of reporting those fucks testifying in front of congress to Tyler for "offensive comments" but figure ....

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:53 | 3574534 THE DORK OF CORK
THE DORK OF CORK's picture

And also 

Beer = wages.............wages = beer


It was always so.

Going back to the days of Babylon.


There is nothing populist about beer.

It is a life and death matter.

starts 4.30

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:50 | 3574536 MrBoompi
MrBoompi's picture

Lets get this straight. When a bank makes a loan, it is not using its own money. The digits are just created with keystrokes. Please admit there is absolutely no risk to a bank when they issue a mortgage loan, even if the government wants to take the house back itself!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:18 | 3574594 The Thunder Child
The Thunder Child's picture

Fired up the PC just to log on and bump this comment which is absolutely 100% correct. The money is created upon issuance of the loan, same goes for credit cards, mortgages, car loans you name it.

Banks create the money from nothing then scoop in and take your hard assets (car/house) when you default.



Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:24 | 3574612 logicalman
logicalman's picture

Worse than that, only the principal comes into existence.

Q - Where does the interest come from?

A - Those who default and lose the collateral.

Then the magic of fractional reserve enables the banks to loan out 10 times as much and charge interest on the whole lot.

Can you type 'THEFT & FRAUD'?



Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:03 | 3574544 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Just a reminder , the miltary claims that it needs no presidential order to quell civil disobedience.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:34 | 3574632 Dr.Vannostrand
Dr.Vannostrand's picture

For quelling the FSA once BO is removed from office? Just kicking around ideas, in no way a supporter of the shredding of the constitution and the modern police state.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:49 | 3574673 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

Let's hope they are beholden to their constitutional duties.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 18:59 | 3574551 Kreditanstalt
Kreditanstalt's picture

"But instead of rolling out the red carpet for foreign investors, they’re now broadcasting a very loud message: “We do not respect private property rights.”

And the masses support this. 

After all, in the name of ""fairness" it is only the "evil rich", the "banksters" and the "corporations" whose property must be "redistributed" to the people and taxed, right? 

Socialism is coming.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:15 | 3574577 moonshadow
moonshadow's picture


Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:23 | 3574589 Kreditanstalt
Kreditanstalt's picture

Correct.  Moar socialism is coming...and VENEZUELA is coming, then.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:07 | 3574570 WTFUD
WTFUD's picture

used to visit ussa every year but am fucked if i am going to prop up a dictatorship with my hard ( and getting harder ) earned. still like the folks though!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:11 | 3574571 THE DORK OF CORK
THE DORK OF CORK's picture


What !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The banks created the deposits............. the assets was a criminal enterprise.


You wish to mix up fiat with credit money.


Why ?

Socialism is when you mix up these two types of money.


Socialism in the industrial age is when you put people on ice to pay back hyperinflated credit.



Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:25 | 3574585 Kreditanstalt
Kreditanstalt's picture

I do not wish to get into a side debate here about whether housing "wealth" was real or not...or over the respective faults of the financial sector lenders and the public as borrowers.

Merely pointing out that the masses will readily use their governments to confiscate the property of anyone deemed "rich", while the "99%" are protected from personal responsibility as virtuous.   Because of government, it has become profitable for them to portray themselves as "victims"...

Hence the "beer and populism"...


Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:34 | 3574631 logicalman
logicalman's picture

If anyone is making only $10 an hour, Nobody is worth a Billion a year.

The gap is simply too big.

Most of the uber rich produce less than the average McDonalds employee anyway.

Don't eat the rich, you'll be poisoned by 'em

The use of the word 'socialism' by most people just tells me they don't understand the word.

I've always worked for what I've got, and would hate to have to accept money I haven't earned from others, but I think people should have some kind of safety net, just for those times when the universe decides to shit on them.

I have no sympathy for anyone abusing the system.

Ask yourself who abuses the system the most - the aforementioned 'uber rich' is the answer you are looking for - without them, almost everyone else on planet earth would be doing at least 'OK".


Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:28 | 3574616 monad
monad's picture

How did your representives vote? S.743

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:29 | 3574620 THE DORK OF CORK
THE DORK OF CORK's picture

The value of the property can be judged by its fiat (utility value)

How real it is can then be judged.


Confiscate what ?

Loans ?

or property ?

Two very different thingies .

The loans are messing up the money supply.............period.


Get rid of them.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:39 | 3574651 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Thems is fighting words. This means war. Somebody with some money that gives a fuck is going to have to do something. I'm going jogging. Fuck everything.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:48 | 3574669 max2205
max2205's picture

All engines firing on all cylinders. ...keep moving....

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 19:59 | 3574700 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

     Thanks for the 'Open Thread' Tyler. I feel like I'm in a > Starship traveling back in time... (next stop--- 10-29-1929)

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:12 | 3574728 reTARD
reTARD's picture

What privacy?

Hi FBI! I'm waiting for you. But BYOB, it's not a free party at my house!

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:25 | 3574764 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

  In Boston you get arrested for not having a " SWAT Ready keg", in the fridge...

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:36 | 3574791 reTARD
reTARD's picture

LOL. No worries, at least there's a Dunkin Donuts near by where I live. They'll be preoccupied til I'm "SWAT Ready."

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 21:15 | 3574857 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

  You're the "Ultimate Prepper". Can you steal some ammo for us? (after you get the cops doped up on powdered sugar)

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 20:15 | 3574737 Element
Element's picture

it's not just along road-sides ... we're all squatters now  ... got title?

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 21:13 | 3574855 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Apparently privacy only matters when theirs is violated. Remember dickbags whatever you allow to be perpetrated on others eventually is done to you.

California congressman Devin Nunes made the claim yesterday that the Justice Department wiretapped telephones in the House of Representative's Cloak Room, an exclusive part of the Capitol where members are able to privately interact with one another. Nunes made the claim on Hugh Hewitt's radio show.

"I don’t trust the Department of Justice on this," said Hewitt, referring to the subpoenas the Justice Department to obtain the Associated Press's phone records. "Do you, Congressman Nunes?"

"No, I absolutely do not, especially after this wiretapping incident, essentially, of the House of Representative. I don’t think people are focusing on the right thing when they talk about going after the AP reporters. The big problem that I see is that they actually tapped right where I’m sitting right now, the Cloak Room," Nunes respond.

Hewitt was surprised. "Wait a minute, this is news to me," he said.

"The Cloak Room in the House of Representatives," Nunes repeated.

Hewitt again expressed surprise. "I have no idea what you’re talking about," said the radio host.


"So when they went after the AP reporters, right? Went after all of their phone records, they went after the phone records, including right up here in the House Gallery, right up from where I’m sitting right now. So you have a real separation of powers issue that did this really rise to the level that you would have to get phone records that would, that would most likely include members of Congress, because as you know," Nunes claimed. 

Hewitt responded by saying, "Wow."

UPDATE: Jack Langer, Rep. Nunes's communications director, emails this clarification:

I wanted to make a clarification for your article. What Rep. Nunes meant by “tapped” was that the DOJ seized the phone records, as has been widely reported. There was a little confusion between him and the host during the conversation: He did not mean to refer to phone records of the cloakroom itself, but of the Capitol. This refers to the phone records from the AP’s desk in the press gallery, which the DOJ admitted to looking at. He was explaining that if those phone records were seized, they would reveal a lot of conversations between the press and members of Congress, since reporters often speak to Members from the press gallery phones. The notion of the DOJ looking at phone records from the Capitol of conversations between Members of Congress and reporters is something that concerns Rep. Nunes, bringing up issues related to the separation of powers.

Although his comments were a bit unclear, he clarified soon after in the interview:

DN: So when they went after the AP reporters, right? Went after all of their phone records, they went after the phone records, including right up here in the House Gallery, right up from where I’m sitting right now. So you have a real separation of powers issue that did this really rise to the level that you would have to get phone records that would, that would most likely include members of Congress, because as you know…

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 21:15 | 3574859 Dewey Cheatum Howe
Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

And now you know why they are making a big deal out of the AP phone records. These people don't give a fuck about your rights being violated until they get their asses penetrated in the same manner then all of a sudden they start caring.

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 22:03 | 3574950 nobodyimportant
nobodyimportant's picture

"Justice Department seizing phone records from the AP, this sort of Marxist land grab is something that you’d expect in Belarus or Venezuela."


This is standard operating procedure in the USA.  Why do you want to bad mouth Belarus and Venezula when the most corrupt government in the world is right here?

Fri, 05/17/2013 - 23:48 | 3575197 ak_khanna
ak_khanna's picture

llusion of Democracy today.

People sponsored by the rich, make false promises to the masses to get elected. Distribute national wealth amongst themselves and their sponsors (Industrialists) and when that is not enough borrow money from rest of the world and continue the distribution process. The borrowed money has to be paid back by taxing the masses keeping in mind that tax rules are made such that the politicians and their sponsors pay minimum or no taxes.

End of political tenure, rinse and repeat till the whole system breaks down and the world wealth is cornered by a minuscule of the population.

Having deprived a majority of the population of their wealth and the means to earn a living, the politicians need unlimited access to the military to control the probability of a revolt by the victims of their crimes.

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 00:32 | 3575269 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

Ah yes, the elite'r half of the U.S.S.A. CONgress.

Bigger bribes, bigger lies.

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 05:41 | 3575429 cpzimmon
cpzimmon's picture

I don't know about you, but with all the conflicting stories with regard to the metals,  I'm so dizzy that I don't know which way is down...or up. But I'm not so dizzy that I don't know that stacking and storing ammo is the best way to reset your compass.

Sat, 05/18/2013 - 05:43 | 3575431 Bearwagon
Bearwagon's picture

Let's head 'em off at the pass!

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