Author Archives: CRONKITE
This article was based on today’s exclusive interview with Kevin Annett of the International Tribunal into Crimes of Church and State on this week’s litigation in the Brussels Common Law Court of Justice. Five judges and 27 jury members from six countries including the USA, considered evidence on over 50,000 missing Canadian, US, Argentine and European children who were suspected victims of an international child sacrificial cult referred to as the Ninth Circle.
Two adolescent women claimed that Pope Francis raped them while participating in child sacrifices. Eight eyewitnesses confirmed the allegations according to evidence presented this week at a Brussels Common Law Court of Justice. The Ninth Circle Satanic child sacrifice rituals were said to take place during the Springs of 2009 and 2010 in rural Holland and Belgium.
Pope Francis was also a perpetrator in satanic child sacrifice rites while acting as an Argentine priest and Bishop according to records obtained from the Vatican archives. A prominent Vatican official and former Vatican Curia employee obtained the sealed documents for use by the court. This was not the first time satanic activities were suspected to be at the Vatican according to this ABC news story.
Another witness was set to testify that they were present during Pope Francis’ meetings with the military Junta during Argentine’s 1970′s Dirty War. According to the witness, Pope Francis helped traffic children of missing political prisoners into an international child exploitation ring run by an office at the Vatican.
Evidence of a Catholic Jesuit Order document called the “Magisterial Privilege” was presented in court by the Chief Prosecutor. The record dated Dec. 25 1967 was said to show that every new Pope was required to participate in Ninth Circle Satanic ritual sacrifices of newborn children, including drinking their blood.
“Documents from Vatican secret archives presented to court clearly indicate that for centuries the Jesuits had a premeditated plan to ritually murder kidnapped newborn babies and then consume their blood,” the Chief Prosecutor told the five international judges and 27 jury members. “The plan was born of a twisted notion to derive spiritual power from the lifeblood of the innocent, thereby assuring political stability of the Papacy in Rome. These acts are not only genocidal but systemic and institutionalized in nature. Since at least 1773, they appear to have been performed by the Roman Catholic Church, Jesuits and every Pope.”
Two witnesses claimed that as children they were at child sacrifices with the former Pope Joseph Ratzinger. Since at least 1962 Ratzinger participated in child sacrifices as a member of the Knights of Darkness according to the Vatican records presented at court. Ratzinger was an S.S. Chaplain’s assistant at the German Ravensbruck Concentration Camp during World War II. The children to be killed were supplied from prisoners at the death camp. The Nazi Waffen S.S. Division Knights of Darkness was established by Hitler in 1933 and embraced ancient pagan occult beliefs in human sacrifice.
Dutch Therapist-ritual abuse survivor Toos Nijenhuis testified of her witness to child sacrifice in this video. “Survivors of these rituals describe newborn babies being chopped to pieces on stone altars and their remains consumed by participants” the Chief Prosecutor said.”During the 1960′s the survivor-witnesses were forced to rape and mutilate other children and then cut their throats with ceremonial daggers.”
According to witnesses Pope Francis, former Pope Joseph Ratzinger, Jesuit Superior General Adolfo Pachon and Anglican Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby were participants in the Ninth Circle Satanic child sacrifice cult rape and killing of children. Evidence also could link to cult ceremonies UK High Court Justice Judge Fulford, members of the British Royal Family including Prince Phillip, Dutch Cardinal Alfrink, Dutch Queen Wilhemina, her family and consort King Hendrick, Belgian Royals and Bilderberger founder Crown Prince Bernhard….”
“The Federal Reserve has exposed itself to massive interest rate risk, warns Scott Hein, a former St. Louis Fed senior economist.
In fact, if it was a commercial bank, it would probably flunk its own stress tests, Hein writes in an article for the American Banker.
Its quantitative easing program (QE), which entails borrowing short term to purchase huge amounts of long-term bonds, has created that severe risk, explains Hein, now at Texas Tech University.
If a top-30 bank had that kind of risk on its balance sheet, it would be taken to task by examiners and shunned by investors,” he notes
Previously, the Fed would create reserves to finances its purchases. Banks would then use those reserves to support new deposits created when making new loans.
With QE, the Fed began paying banks a 0.25 percent rate on its reserves, essentially buying reserves to pay for its QE purchases, Hein explains. “As such, it is operating like any other bank today, buying funds from one part of the economy and lending them to another.”
It’s been hugely profitable for the Fed. It’s paying 0.25 percent on the reserves used to the buy the assets that are earning about 3 percent.
However, the scenario seems a lot like the savings and loans crisis in the 1980s, Hein cautions. The S&Ls used short-term loans to provide 30-year fixed-rate loans to homeowners.
“As with the Fed today, this strategy was initially profitable. However, when interest rates began to rise, the losses quickly piled up. The Fed today is exposing itself to similar financial losses should interest rates rise.”
The Fed has said short-term rates will remain low for an extended period, but it hasn’t done a good job forecasting the economy, Hein notes. For instance, short-term interest rates fell much more than expected after the financial crisis and stayed low much longer than expected…..”
“As markets head for summer doldrums, analysts are becoming more concerned that the long bull market in stocks is ripe for a correction.
“We’re in a period where equity markets generally want to go up, but they went up so much last year, that they’re having a bit of a holiday,” Richard Harris, CEO of Port Shelter Investment Management, told CNBC.
“This is a kind of a lull in an ongoing bull market and as a result there is some sensitivity to subtle bits of bad news,” he said. “While the markets are not quite too sure, not quite too confident in themselves, this is the time we might have a little (rapid correction).”
The S&P is now nearly 1 percent higher for the year, after rising around 30 percent last year, but it is still down over 1 percent from the all-time high it touched in early April.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average is off around 1 percent this year, after climbing over 22 percent last year.
Harris expects the market could “take fright” from any number of factors, such as an escalation of tensions in Ukraine, deleveraging in China or even if the Federal Reserve’s moves to taper its asset purchases prove to be too fast….”
“(Reuters) – M&A talk in the pharmaceutical sector lifted European shares on Tuesday, but failed to support the euro, which dipped to a two-week low against the dollar as ECB policymakers renewed efforts to weaken it.
British newspaper the Sunday Times said U.S. pharmaceutical giant Pfizer had approached British rival AstraZeneca to propose a 60 billion pound ($101 billion) takeover. Both companies declined comment to Reuters.
Eli Lilly and Co said on Tuesday it would buy Novartis AG’s animal health business for $5.4 billion in cash to strengthen and diversify its Elanco unit.
The FTSEurofirst 300 index of top European shares was up 1 percent at 1,342.38 points, building on last week’s gains on the back of largely better-than-expected results by U.S. companies. U.S. stock futures suggested a higher open in New York as well.
“There’s strong corporate activity which gives some energy to the market,” said Hans Peterson, global head of asset allocation at SEB Investment Management.
The stronger European stock market failed to lift the euro, which dipped to a two-week low of $1.3783, although it remained close to its strongest levels this year.
European Central Bank executive board member Benoit Coeure said on Tuesday that the strength of the euro could be keeping inflation too low and that there was further margin to reduce the main interest rate below 0.25 percent.
The comments were the latest in a series of efforts by ECB policymakers, including President Mario Draghi, to talk down the euro currency as they try to fight ultra-low inflation and keep the currency union’s economic recovery on track.
Euro zone inflation is running at 0.5 percent, far below the ECB’s target of just under 2 percent over the medium term, keeping speculation rife that the ECB may soon turn on the money printing presses and launch a program of asset purchases.
Business sentiment surveys such as the euro zone PMIs and the German Ifo could alter those expectations this week. Draghi is also due to give a keynote speech in Amsterdam on Thursday.
“Euro/dollar is likely to trade with a weaker bias this week given the German IFO and Draghi’s speech coming up,” said Yujiro Goto, currency analyst at Nomura.”
The ECB was not the only one hoping for a weaker currency.
China’s yuan fell to its softest against the dollar in 14 months, after the central bank set a lower official midpoint of its trading range, highlighting its desire for a weaker currency to manage an economic slowdown.
The ECB outlook is a key factor behind this year’s rally in lower-rated euro zone government bonds. Junk-rated Portugal will sell up to 750 million euros in 10-year bonds on Wednesday in its first bond auction since April 2011, pursuing a full return to market financing as the end of its EU/IMF bailout approaches…..”
“William Patalon writes: During the 30 years I’ve spent as a business journalist and financial columnist, I’ve developed a long list of personal axioms that have helped me identify “Best of Breed” investments.
These axioms touch on such topic areas as finance, marketing, intellectual property, and even competitive threats. But some of the most important of my personal investment aphorisms have to do with leadership and a company’s management team.
And leadership starts with the CEO.
As one of my precepts holds, “A good CEO can create a very strong company. But a great CEO can create an empire.”
Just like these…
Build an Empire of Profits
The example I usually use to illustrate this axiom is John F. “Jack” Welch Jr., who ran General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) from 1981 to 2001.
Welch had already been with GE for two decades prior to becoming the head honcho and had a well-earned reputation as a maverick.
When he took over as chairman and CEO in 1981, he inherited a moribund industrial company with a stultifying bureaucracy, an oversized workforce, and many laggard businesses. One of his edicts stated that every GE business had to be either No. 1 or No. 2 in its respective market; those that couldn’t meet this requirement would be sold, broken up, or shut down.
In the years to come, Welch restructured GE’s business holdings, bought some businesses and sold others, and carved out unneeded layers of management. He also slashed business-unit work forces while leaving the underlying business alone – a corporate version of the “Neutron Bomb” invention of the time. The parallels earned Welch his “Neutron Jack” sobriquet, a nickname he was said to despise.
Welch’s results ultimately silenced any critics: During his tenure at GE, the company’s value rose 4,000%. His retirement came with a severance of $417 million – the largest in history. And GE hasn’t been the same company since.
As I’ve mentioned in past Private Briefing columns, I had the opportunity to interview Welch. And I followed his career – and results – with a deep interest. And when I related this story to a colleague a week or so ago, it served as a bit of inspiration… giving me an idea of something we could do here – for you.
It’s something I believe will put some real money in your pocket.
So let’s take a look …
An Intriguing Conversation…
A week or so ago, I related this story about Welch to Radical Technology Profits Editor Michael Robinson. Like me, he had an earlier career as a journalist, so we were quickly in synch in analyzing the importance of leadership.
Wanting to capitalize on Michael’s tech-sector expertise, I ended up issuing a bit of a challenge.
“We see the long-term gains that Welch was able to generate for his shareholders,” I told Michael. “So, what if we turn our attention to the tech sector – your bailiwick – and ‘handicap’ the five CEOs that we’d want to take the same kind of long-term trip with? A lot of these companies have probably enjoyed some pretty dramatic gains already. But those are the ‘trees’… and we can’t lose sight of the reality that the kind of long-term returns that Welch generated for GE shareholders are actually the ‘forest.’ I’m betting that if we use your insights into the global tech sector, we could identify the ‘Neutron Jacks’ of the digital world – folks with vision and the ability to create a venture that can evolve, adapt, and grow with the changes technology brings.”
I could tell that Michael was locked in on what I was saying, because he immediately added: “And the great thing, Bill, is that – with GE, as great as it was at the time – you’re still talking about an industrial company. Here we’ll be talking about tech firms. And, for that reason alone, you’d have to think that, over the same long-haul period, the returns that we’ll be talking about will be much, much more than were realized by Welch.”
Three final thoughts: First, we decided to handicap five CEOs instead of just one in the interest of diversification… not every one of these will play all the way out. And, second, we chose established CEOs – those with a track record already. A startup might generate stratospheric returns, but that wasn’t the point of this exercise. Finally, we wanted to do this now, reasoning that any kind of an extended sell-off might give you the chance to establish positions in these stocks at even lower prices than they’re trading at today.
The breakdown I present now is the result of a lot of legwork by Michael – with a few contributions from me…
Top Tech CEO No. 1
Elon Musk, of Tesla Motors
Best known as a co-founder of electric-vehicle (EV) firm Tesla Motors Inc. (Nasdaq: TSLA), Musk showed a burning desire to turn his technical talents into money very early in life.
Raised in his native South Africa and later in Canada, Musk learned computer programming at age 12. Working by himself, he programmed a video game that he then sold for $500.
Peanuts, to be sure, but the experience was an inspiration to Musk – an epiphany, in fact, that high-tech was the pathway to success – and wealth.
After earning his physics degree from the University of Pennsylvania and business degree from Wharton, Musk turned his passion for business into a string of successes.
He helped launch Zip2, a software company later sold for $305 million, netting Musk $22 million for his shares. He then developed PayPal, which later sold to eBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) for $1.5 billion. At the time, Musk owned 11.7% of the company, making his stake worth roughly $175 million.
In 2002, he founded SpaceX with $100 million of his own money. Less than six years later, the company received a $1.6 billion NASA contract. In 2012, the firm made history as the first commercial company to launch and dock a vehicle at the International Space Station (ISS).
Besides serving as Tesla’s CEO, Musk is chairman of the board at SolarCity Corp. (Nasdaq: SCTY). Over his career, he’s received countless awards.
In 2007, Inc. magazine named him “Entrepreneur of the Year” for his involvement with Tesla and SpaceX. And in 2011, Forbes named him one of “America’s 20 Most Powerful CEOs 40 and Under.”
Along the way, Tesla’s shareholders have done extremely well. Since Tesla’s initial public offering (IPO) back in 2010, the stock has returned nearly 1,100%.
Tesla’s shares have sold off sharply of late. But the lower they go, the more interested we get. Musk is a proven builder. And he’s still standing at the starting line of what we believe will be a very profitable career for those willing to go along for the ride.
Top Tech CEO No. 2
Reed Hastings, of Netflix
A natural whiz at math, Hastings didn’t start out in business. Instead, he joined the Peace Corps, serving in places like Switzerland and Africa.
With public service under his belt, Hastings went back to school, eventually receiving a Master’s Degree in computer science from Stanford. In 1991, he founded Pure Software, which provided debugging and troubleshooting services.
Then came Netflix…
Hastings founded the company in 1998, as a through-the-mail movie-rental business. The company began with a subscription format focused on physical media like videotapes and DVDs.
It was here that Hastings showed he was a visionary exec, and not a caretaker.
The “experts” up on Wall Street thought the company would have a tough time moving to a web-based platform.
Hastings proved them wrong.
He recast Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) as a dominant player in the burgeoning market for online movies. And the company has won awards for its original TV shows.
Hastings also is pushing the boundaries of the format by moving Netflix into ultra-high-definition TV (UHDTV), a Next-Big-Thing technology that could ignite the next spending boom in broadcasting. (Indeed, one of our favorite recommendations – which allowed Private Briefing subscribers to double their money in just a few months last year – is a play on this “4K” technology.)
Today, Netflix has 44 million subscribers in more than 40 countries around the world. The stunner: The company says its subscribers watch more than a billion hours of its streaming service each month.
Hastings has done incredibly well by his shareholders. With a $22 billion market cap, the stock trades at $378 a share. Over the past five years, it’s gained 920%.
Top Tech CEO No. 3
Jeff Bezos, of Amazon.com…..”
The pressure is on for those earnings to support the market’s current valuations, after weeks of choppy trading. It’s also crunch time to see whether it really was the harsh winter weather that slowed profit growth—and the economy—or something else.
“Does spring make a difference? And in what industries does it make a difference? If that doesn’t come across, it may raise some confusion about what the economic data is telling us,” said Art Cashin, director of floor operations at UBS.
About 150 S&P 500 companies are scheduled to release quarterly results through Friday, in an earnings season that has been so far mediocre, though nearly two-thirds of companies are beating Wall Street estimates. On the economic front, there is housing data with existing home sales Tuesday and new home sales Wednesday, and durable goods are reported Thursday.
Developments in Ukraine will also be watched, after signs of progress Thursday. Diplomats negotiating in Geneva announced an agreement to refrain from violence on all sides, disarm militants and release seized buildings.
Corporate profits though will be the key test for a stock market that ended the past week higher, after a violent shakeout in high flying biotech and tech momentum names. Nasdaq, down the prior three weeks, ended the week more than 1 percent higher at 4095, after coming to the brink of correction territory with a total 9.7 percent decline by Tuesday.
The Dow, off slightly Friday, was up 2.4 percent for the week at 16,408, and the S&P 500 ended the four-day trading week up 2.7 percent, at 1864……”
“The Average Stock Is More Expensive Now Than It Was At The Peak Of The Dotcom Bubble In 2000….
The unsettling market plunges of two weeks ago have stopped (at least for now), and stock prices have recovered a bit. So now everyone’s getting cautiously bullish again.
Everyone except me.
I still think stocks are poised to have a decade or more of lousy returns.
Three simple reasons:
- Stocks are very expensive
- Corporate profit margins are at record highs
- The Fed is now tightening
I’ll go through this logic in detail below.
But first, a quick description of what I mean by “a decade or more of lousy returns” — and a note on how I am positioning my own portfolio in light of this view.
To be clear: I don’t know what stocks are going to do next. They could go higher from today’s already high prices, the way they did from similar levels in the late 1990s. They could crash, the way they did in 2000, 2007, and many other periods in which prices were (almost) this high. They could stay flat for years, the way they did in the late 1960s and 1970s. All I know is, unless “it’s different this time” — the four most expensive words in the English language — stocks are priced to return only about 2.5% per year for the next decade, a far cry from the 10%-per-year long-term average.
I own lots of stocks, though, and I’m not selling them. Why not? Many reasons, including:
- I have a diversified portfolio (stocks, bonds, cash, real-estate), which will cushion the blow of a crash
- I am psychologically comfortable with the possibility of a 40%-50% market crash, and I know exactly what I will do if we get one (buy stocks). If you aren’t comfortable with the possibility of a crash of this magnitude, you should either get comfortable with it or reduce your stockholdings. Otherwise, you might panic and sellafter a crash, which is the worst thing you can do.
- No other asset classes are attractively priced, either. Unfortunately, it looks as though we’re set up to have one of the worst decades in history in terms of the performance of financial assets.
Cheers on your weekend!
WHILE EVIDENCE THAT THE ‘GOVERNMENT’ IS JUST A COMMERCIAL ENTERPRISE IS EVERYWHERE, WE HAVE BEEN ‘CONDITIONED’ NOT TO SEE IT!
Did you know that 98% of the Law Schools in America and England do not include Constitutional Law as a part of their law curriculum? The reason for this phenomenon is because Constitutional Law does not apply to or affect the enforcement of statutes, codes or administrative regulations, which have replaced constitutional law, the common law, public law and penal law and which have been designed to control you.
(Pg 8, Judge Dale’s The Matrix and the Constitution)
Retired Judge Dale has exposed the truth about our history and our legal system. From Judge Dale’s The Great American Adventure:
The Federal and State Governments are not real. They are privately owned corporations [listed on Dun and Bradstreet] called governments. . . and the law is nothing more than their corporate regulations called statutes.
These corporate laws and regulations are called statutes and their affect and control over human beings is deceptively obtained by consent through civil contracts. [See #5 below.]
Everything they have been doing is one gigantic fraud and all of it at our expense!….”
“Sometimes pictures are far more effective in communicating an important point. They are extremely effective in undermining respect and confidence, when in the cartoon format. A sequence of graphics struck the cognitive circuits recently. Long explanations will not serve well. The US Federal Reserve has been printing money since 2011 to cover USGovt debt securities in a frenetic manner. They have lost control. They call it stimulus, when it is actually the opposite. It does assist the speculators with nearly zero cost money to borrow, but one must be a club member to win loan grants.
The Quantitative Easing programs are deceptive. When the program was initially announced, the Jackass claimed it would be part of an endless sequence. With QE1 and QE2 and Operation Twist and QE3, following the failed trial balloon called Taper Talk, it is quite clear to anyone with an active brain stem and absent rose colored glasses that the USFed is caught in a trap called QE to Infinity. It is not stimulative. Instead, the uncontrollable bond monetization causes capital destruction. It causes economic degradation. It causes lost jobs and vanished income. It is a gigantic wet blanket to smother and destroy the USEconomy slowly, amidst unending propaganda. QE is the device that will result in Systemic Failure, which is already flashing signals of its arrival.
MONEY VELOCITY FALLING RAPIDLY
Money Velocity continues to fall rapidly in both the USEconomy and that of Canada, reaching 50-year lows in the Untied States. The indication is failure in monetary policy, as hyper inflation has killed capital on an extensive basis. The capital destruction is in its fourth year, probably having reached critical mass. Compared and contrasted with fast rising money supply, the systemic failure is obvious to conclude. The exception is to morons, Wall Street junkies, Big Bank criminal elite, and USGovt hacks. The fast decline in Money Velocity means that it is not moving in the body economic. The reason is simple. The blood system is contaminated with the USDollar, a toxic currency with no backing in a hard asset. The new money is toxic currency under phenomenal debasement by its own steward, the USFed itself. They redouble their harmful policy instead of abandoning it.
The Money Velocity picture is not pretty. The declining rate has broken lows set 50 years ago. Technically, the velocity of money is the frequency at which one unit of currency is used to purchase domestically produced goods and services within a given time period, like an inventory cycle time. In other words, it is the number of times one dollar is spent to buy goods and services per unit of time. If the velocity of money is increasing, then more transactions are occurring between individuals in an economy. The result would be that growth (as measured in GDP) should be rising. With falling velocity of money, then fewer transactions are occurring and a recession is indicated. Such is the present case in astonishing rapid deterioration. Consumers and business are holding firm their money rather than investing it, as they see poor prospects. New capital formation is not occurring inside the USEconomy, or pitifully little. Debts are being dissolved, usually in default. It should be noted that the velocity of money has also been falling in the EU and Japan. The entire global economy is in recession, the pathogenesis shared.
DESTRUCTION OF CAPITAL
The claim that the QE bond monetization is stimulus is pure propaganda, and could not be further from the truth. The claim disguises the nature of the hidden Wall Street bailout, which is to cover their worthless mortgage bonds, and to cover all manner of derivatives, in addition to the obvious coverage of USTreasury Bond sales. Nobody wants the USGovt bonds anymore, except for Belgium operating as hidey hole on behalf of the Euro Central Bank, and for Japan operating as the usual lackey servant. The claim of stimulus is 180 degrees wrong. The bond monetization is pure unsterilized monetary inflation, free money shoved into the system without offset. To be sure, Bernanke had a machine to produce money at no cost, except that like with acid it ruins capital. The result is pure inflation, and extreme motivation for the entire world to take on hedge positions with energy, metals, farmland, and more in order to protect themselves from the ruin of money. The effect is felt as a rising cost structure, felt across the world, and thus shrinking profit margins for the entire global business sector.
As businesses realize the lost profitability, they shut down and retire their capital. They turn idle their factor machinery, their design workstations, their office computers, their transportation vehicles, their company buildings and offices. The destruction of capital is the ugliest dirty secret behind the official New Normal of central bank monetary policy. They are killing the system, so as to avoid liquidating the big banks. By refusing to take the proper capitalism path in liquidating failed corporate structures, they have instead chosen to kill capital, force income engines to the sidelines, generate capital formation in other nations (like the East & Asia), and destroy the USEconomy. The US and West has forgotten capitalism and embraced socialism with a fascist twist.
RAMPANT MONETARY GROWTH
Contrast the declining Money Velocity with fast rising Money Supply growth (presented in March). The conclusion is both galloping economic recession and systemic failure, hardly a reward. Yet it continues without interruption, only the promise of interruption. The systemic failure and breakdown is upon us, the evidence stacking up, the message no longer escapable. The two charts back to back make the point convincingly. New money is wrecking the financial structures and economic systems by destroying capital. The USFed balance sheet is well over $3 trillion, and continues to grow. The new money is going largely in a hidden Wall Street bailout of their bonds and derivatives. The USFed is a grand liar, as their QE volume is growing, not tapering. They are using proxies and back doors, in addition to airborne dirigibles like the Interest Rate Swap contract. Like with the Hindenburg, the floating monsters will explode someday. The growth in money supply is frightening and alarming, evidence of the wrecked capital and wrecked system. Many have called the Jackass a lunatic and alarmist, but they seem incapable to explain the fast rise in monetary base, yet fast decline in money velocity. Monetary policy is a failure. The fiat paper money is toxic. The big banks are insolvent. The global franchise system of central banks should be shut down, except they control the governments, control the finance ministries, control the central banks, control the regulators, and control the militaries.
LOST CRITICAL MASS IN INDUSTRY
It is very confusing that money velocity is falling fast, yet central banks are creating new money very rapidly. Imagine a Ferrari or Lamborghini race car spinning its gears, burning its engine out, running out of oil, making no movement. It aint working, started by Alan Greenspan, amplified by Benjamin Bernanke, and to be continued by Janet Yellen. They are stuck with failed monetary policy, and cannot alter the destructive course. The Jackass has maintained that a critical error was committed by granting China the Most Favored Nation status for trade. It was actually a fatal error. The industrial investment is taking place in Asia, led by China. Wall Street and the USGovt leadership at the time, under President Clinton and Robert Rubin, betrayed the nation. They leased gold from the Chinese, in order to perpetuate the fiat paper USDollar regime. They deployed the lunatic Rubin Doctrine, to wreck next year for a few more tomorrows. In doing so, the Chinese benefited from $23 billion in foreign direct investment in the space of a mere two to three years. But the blowback was fatal. The USEconomy lost its industrial critical mass, and has inadequate traction from monetary policy in accommodation. It still has some industry, but not enough. The ultra-low interest rate makes borrowing costs low, but grotesquely inadequate new capital formation has taken place in the USEconomy. It is being done in Asia. Worse, the new industrial parks are springing up across the US landscape, operated by Chinese industrial masters. The QE is not stimulating the USEconomy because 1) the US lacks critical mass industrially, 2) the regulator burden and corporate tax burden and ObamaCare burden are too great, and 3) the nation is too busy with court cases against the big banks and waging war against fabricated enemies. This is Game Over !!!
As David Chapman points out, “It all seems counter-intuitive that the velocity of money should be falling even as the ECB, the Fed, the BOJ, and the Bank of Canada have been maintaining low interest rates for years in order to encourage borrowing and keep the cost of money low. The central banks have also pumped billions of dollars into the economy through QE and other stimulative measures. The result has been an explosion in the monetary base, a sharp rise in M1 but lower growth for M2 and sluggish M3. The economies are weighed down with debt, banks are reluctant to lend, consumers and corporations are unwilling to borrow. The money instead has been used for speculation, primarily going into risk assets such as the stock market. Corporations instead of investing in new plants and investment are sitting on cash hoards or buying back their own shares. Both are non-productive.”
CANADA DITTO ON FAILURE….”
“Financial sanctions against Russia could lead to a banking crisis in the West and even a military war, warns Harold James, a professor of history and international affairs at Princeton University.
Financial war could hurt the West’s highly complex and interconnected financial system much more than it would hurt Russia’s relatively isolated financial market, James writes in an article for Project Syndicate.
Just look at how Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy sparked the 2008 U.S. financial crisis to see how banking integration creates vulnerability. And Lehman was small compared with the Austrian, French and German banks that are extremely exposed to Russia, points out James, a specialist in German economic history and globalization.
“Given this, a Russian asset freeze could be catastrophic for European — indeed, global — financial markets.”
With that in mind, Russian President Vladimir Putin believes the West can’t possibly be serious about financial war, James writes. Putin hopes to destabilize Ukraine while simultaneously exploiting European financial vulnerabilities.
“Indeed, Putin sometimes likes to frame it as a contest pitting him against the power of financial markets.”
Based on past experience, financial war could presage real war, he cautions. That’s what happened before World War I.
Prompted by a dispute over control of Morocco in 1911, France organized a massive withdrawal of investments from Germany. But Germany was ready for the attack, he says.
“Indeed, German bankers proudly noted that the crisis of confidence hit the Paris market much harder than markets in Berlin or Hamburg.”
Recognizing the importance of financial warfare….”
“It didn’t take long for Putin to respond to the latest news from the west that NATO was about to boost its military presence in proximity to Russia. Specifically he said that Putin does not see a reason to fear NATO which was to be expected. But the even more predictable punchline: Russia must respond when NATO moves closer to country’s border, President Vladimir Putin says during annual televised call-in show.
The Russian president made his views clear during a nationally televised question-and-answer session in Moscow on Thursday, ahead of the Geneva two-day meeting during which the Ukraine problam is (again) supposed to get a diplomatic solution (it won’t). During the Q&A Putin also accused the Kiev government of committing “a serious crime” by sending in troops to quell unrest in Ukraine’s east, as a clash overnight left three pro-Russian protesters dead and 13 wounded. And just to make sure there is a solid enough soundbite, the former KGB spy accused the authorities in Kiev of plunging the country into an “abyss”.
“Instead of realizing that there is something wrong with the Ukrainian government and attempting dialogue, they made more threats of force … This is another very grave crime by Kiev’s current leaders,” Putin said in a televised question-and-answer session with the Russian public that has become an annual event.
“I hope that they are able to realize what a pit, what an abyss the current authorities are in and dragging the country into,” said Putin, who dismissed as “rubbish” accusations that Russian agents were acting in east Ukraine.
Among his other comments, Putin said that the East and South Ukraine were parts of the Russian empire until becoming part of Ukraine under the USSR, with a heavy hint that either the East and South would soon be part of Russia, or that the second coming of the USSR is in the cards, both of which should make the Ukraine government quite nervous.
Perhaps in an attempt to diffuse the tension, he noted he had been authorized by Russia’s parliament in early March to use force in Ukraine if necessary, “but I really hope that I do not have to exercise this right, and that through political and diplomatic means we will be able to solve the most acute problems in Ukraine today.” As the WSJ reports, Putin said Ukraine’s military effort showed the new government in Kiev was making no effort to respond to the demands of those in the heavily ethnic-Russian region.
In short: absolutely no de-escalation from the Russian.
Some of the other things he said:
- Russia will give Ukraine month to start paying for gas before demanding advance payment for supplies. However, Russia kep the gas price set at $485/kcm, knowing quite well Ukraine can’t afford it.
- Ukraine payments for gas stopped after new govt in Kiev took power, Putin says
- Moving Ukraine to prepayments may lead to disruptions in transit to Europe, Putin says….”
“There is no large Russian military presence in East Ukraine, head of EU intelligence, Commodore Georgij Alafuzoff, has said. The spy chief has dismissed multiple accusations from the West alleging Russian involvement in the unrest in the region.
In an interview with Finnish national news broadcaster, Yle, Alafuzoff said the Russian military had nothing to do with the seizing of government buildings in eastern Ukraine.
“In my opinion, it’s mostly people who live in the region who are not satisfied with the current state of affairs,” said Alafuzoff, referring to the situation in East Ukraine. He went on to say that the people are worried for the welfare of those who speak Russian as their first language in the region.
Alafuzoff echoed the words of the Russian government which has categorically denied interfering in the ongoing unrest. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in a press conference on Monday that Moscow is not interested in destabilizing Ukraine and wants the country to remain united.
Anti-Kiev activists in the southeast of Ukraine have seized local government buildings as a mark of protest against the coup-appointed Ukrainian government. In response to the unrest, Ukraine’s interim President Aleksandr Turchinov announced the beginning of an “anti-terrorist” operation in eastern Ukraine.
On Tuesday, military hardware and troops began to mass on the outskirts of the eastern city of Slavyansk. Sightings of groups of military vehicles have been reported in the neighboring Kharkov and Lugansk regions, where pro-Russian and anti-Kiev sentiment is high.
Moscow has condemned Kiev’s operation as “anti-constitutional” and “criminal” and indicative of the government’s unwillingness to open dialogue with the regions…..”
“A former U.S. diplomat and member of the Council on Foreign Relations, James Jeffrey, is calling for U.S. ground troops to be injected into the brewing civil war in Ukraine. Jeffery is a visiting fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, a beltway think tank controlled by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and associated with the neocon wing of the Republican Party.
“The best way to send Putin a tough message and possibly deflect a Russian campaign against more vulnerable NATO states is to back up our commitment to the sanctity of NATO territory with ground troops, the only military deployment that can make such commitments unequivocal,”Jeffrey writes for The Washington Post, an establishment newspaper often used by neocons to push pro-war propaganda and the concept of American exceptionalism, the philosophical basis for imperialism and warmongering.
Jeffrey believes a relatively small number of U.S. ground troops deployed to Eastern European nations would result in a generalized mustering of troops in those countries. This would likely result in heightened tension and the possibility of confrontation with Russia.
Few in Congress have suggested sending troops into Ukraine. Arizona Senator John McCain and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, however, have suggested supporting the coup government by sending weapons.
“We call on President Obama, together with our NATO allies, to immediately fulfill the Ukrainian government’s request for military assistance,” the neocon duo stated on March 28. “This assistance should include small arms, ammunition, and defensive weapons, such as anti-armor and anti-aircraft systems – as well as critical non-lethal support, such as protective equipment, medical supplies, spare parts, and intelligence sharing.”
In addition to providing arms to the unelected junta, McCain and Graham said the Crimean referendum “must be a wake-up call to NATO…..”
“The Internal Revenue Service is considering taxing the perks that many companies, especially those in the technology sector, are providing for employees.
That includes free shuttle service to and from work, meals, yoga and gym classes, Fox News Channel reports. Some tech companies go all out on the meals, with fancy cafeterias and top chefs.
Companies view the perks as necessary to attract and retain workers. They also say providing workers with food saves the employees’ time, allowing them to be more productive.
But the IRS is assessing whether the perks should be classified as fringe benefits, which would subject them to tax, according to Fox.
It reports that if the IRS does make the perks taxable, companies will compensate by increasing workers’ pay….”