NO ONE TOLD YOU WHEN TO RUN, YOU MISSED THE STARTING GUN

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Posted on 20th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Ticking away the moments that make up a dull day
You fritter and waste the hours in an offhand way.
Kicking around on a piece of ground in your home town
Waiting for someone or something to show you the way.

Tired of lying in the sunshine staying home to watch the rain.
You are young and life is long and there is time to kill today.
And then one day you find ten years have got behind you.
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun.

Pink Floyd – Time

I stumbled across two mind blowing charts yesterday that had me pondering how generations of Americans had frittered their lives away, spending money they didn’t have  on things they didn’t need, utilizing easy to acquire debt, and saving virtually nothing for their futures or a rainy day. We are a nation of Peter Pans who never grew up. While I was driving home from work, one of my favorite Pink Floyd tunes came on the radio and the lyrics to Time seemed to fit perfectly with the charts I had just discovered.

We were all young once. Old age and retirement don’t even enter your thought process when you are young. Most people aren’t sure what they want to do for the rest of their lives when they are in their early twenties. Slaving away at your entry level low paying job, chasing the opposite sex, getting drunk, and having fun on the weekends is the standard for most young people. But you eventually have to grow up. Because one day you find ten years have got behind you. No one tells you when to grow up. And based on the charts below, tens of millions missed the starting gun.

I graduated college in 1986 and started my entry level CPA firm job, making $18,000 per year. I did live at home for a year and a half before getting an apartment with a friend. I was able to buy a car, pay off my modest student loan debt, go out on the weekends, and still save some money. I was in my early 20’s and had opened a mutual fund account at Vanguard. Anyone who entered the job market from the mid 1970s through the mid 1980’s, which would be the late Baby Boomers and early Generation Xers, had job opportunities and the benefit of low stock market valuations.

P/E ratios of the market were single digits in the late 70s and early 80s, versus 20 today. Dividend yields on stocks averaged 5% for the S&P 500, versus 1.9% today. The Dow bottomed out at 759 in 1980, while the S&P 500 bottomed at 98. A 20 year secular bull market was about to get under way. Baby Boomers and Generation Xers had the opportunity of a lifetime. Even after six years of the bull, when I graduated from college the Dow stood at 1,786 and the S&P 500 stood at 521. I had just begun to invest when the 1987 crash wiped out 20% in one day. It meant nothing to me. I didn’t have much to lose, so I just kept investing.

The 20 year bull market took the Dow from 759 to 11,722 by January 2000. The S&P 500 rose from 98 to 1,552 by March 2000. You also averaged about a 3% dividend yield per year over the entire 20 years. Your average annual return, including reinvested dividends, exceeded 17%. Anyone who even saved a minimal amount of money on a monthly basis, would have built a substantial nest egg for retirement. If you had invested in 10 Year Treasuries, your annual return would have exceeded 11% over the 20 years. Even an ultra-conservative investor who only put their money into 5 year CDs would have averaged better than 7% per year over the 20 years.

Even with the two stock market collapses since 2000, your average annual return in the stock market since 1980 still exceeds 11%. That’s 34 years with an average annual total return of better than 11%. Every person who had a job over this time frame should have accumulated a decent level of retirement savings. That is why the chart below is so shocking. Over 15% of all people 60 and older and 23% of people 45 to 59 years old have NO retirement savings. None. Nada. Zilch. This means 25 million Boomers and Xers are stuck living off a Social Security pittance and choosing between keeping the heat on or eating a feast of Ramen noodles and Friskies. It seems they let 30 years get behind them. They missed the starting gun.

http://www.mybudget360.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/retirement-savings.png

I’m not shocked that over 50% of 18 to 29 year olds have no retirement savings. With the terrible job market, declining real wages, massive levels of student loan debt, two stock market crashes in the space of eight years, and 4% annual returns since 2000, young people today have neither the means nor trust in the system to save for retirement. Their elders had no such excuse. Just a minimal amount per paycheck saved over the last 30 years would have compounded to well over $100,000, even at modest salary levels. It is disgraceful that 25 million people over the age of 45 have saved nothing for their retirement. Far more disgraceful is the median household retirement balance of $3,000 for all working age households. There are 122 million households in this country and 61 million of them have $3,000 or less in retirement savings.

http://www.mybudget360.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/20130620__figure9.jpg

The far worse data points are the $12,000 median retirement balance of aged 55 to 64 households and the $10,100 median retirement balance of aged 45 to 54 households. These people are on the edge of retirement and have less than one year’s expenses saved. There is no legitimate excuse for this pitiful display of planning. These people had decades to save, strong financial market returns, and if they worked for a decent size organization – matching contributions to their retirement accounts. They didn’t need a huge salary. They didn’t need to save 20% of their salary. They didn’t have to be an investing genius. A savings allocation of just 3% to 5% would have grown into a decent sized nest egg after a few decades of compounding.

We know from the data in the chart, it didn’t happen. The concept of delayed gratification is unknown to the millions of nearly broke Boomers and Xers, shuffling towards an old age of poverty, misery and regret. A 64 year old has a life expectancy of about 20 years. They’ll have to budget “very” frugally to make that $12,000 last. The question is how did it happen. I don’t buy the load of crap that you can’t judge people as groups. I judge people by their actions, not their words. I know you can’t lump every Boomer and Xer into one box. Individuals in every generation have bucked the trend, lived within their means, saved for the future, and accumulated significant nest eggs for their retirement. But the aggregate numbers don’t lie. The majority of those over the age of 45 have squandered their chance at a relatively comfortable retirement. These are the people who most vociferously insist the government do something about their self created plight. It’s their right to free healthcare, free food, subsidized housing, free utilities, higher minimum wages, and a comfortable government subsidized retirement. They are wrong. They had a right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. It was up to them to educate themselves, get a job, work hard, and accumulate savings.

The generations of live for today, don’t worry about tomorrow Americans over the age of 45 have no one to blame but themselves. They bought those 4,500 sq foot McMansions with negative amortization 0% down mortgages. They had to keep up with the Jones-es by putting in granite counter-tops, stainless steel appliances, home theaters, Olympic sized swimming pools, and enormous decks. They have HDTVs in every room in their house and must have every premium cable channel, along with the NFL package. They upgrade their phones every time Apple rolls out a new and improved version. They pay landscapers to manicure their properties. They lease new BMWs every three years. They have taken exotic vacations on an annual basis. They haven’t packed a lunch for themselves since they were 16 years old. Eating out for lunch and dinner has been a staple of their existence for decades. That morning Starbucks coffee is a given. A new wardrobe of name brand stylish clothes for every season is a requirement because your neighbors and co-workers are constantly judging you. Nothing proves you’re a success like a Rolex watch, Canali suit, Versace boots, or Gucci handbag. The have it now generations got it then and have virtually nothing now because they acquired all of these things with debt.

Real cumulative household income is up 10% since 1980. Consumer debt outstanding has risen from $350 billion in 1980 to $3.267 trillion today. That is a 933% increase. We’ve had decades of faux prosperity aided and abetted by Wall Street shysters, corrupt politicians, mega-corporation mass merchandisers, and Madison Avenue maggots trained in the methods of Edward Bernays to convince willfully ignorant consumers to consume. And consume we did. Saving, not so much. You can blame the oligarchs, bankers, retailers, and politicians for the fact you didn’t save, but it rings hollow. No matter how much propaganda is spewed by the ruling class, we are still individuals with free will. The older generations had choices. Saving money requires only one thing – spending less than you make. Most Boomers and Xers chose to spend more than they made and financed the difference. When the average credit card balance is five times greater than the median retirement account balance, you’ve got a problem. The facts about our consumer empire of debt are unequivocal as can be seen in these statistics:

  • Average credit card debt: $15,593
  • Average mortgage debt: $153,184
  • Average student loan debt: $32,511
  • $11.62 trillion in total debt
  • $880.3 billion in credit card debt
  • $8.05 trillion in mortgages
  • $1.12 trillion in student loans

I don’t blame those in their 20’s and 30’s for not having retirement savings. Anyone who entered the workforce around the year 2000 has good reason to not trust the system or their elders. There have been two stock market collapses and every asset class is now extremely overvalued due to the criminal machinations of the Federal Reserve. There are far less good paying jobs. Real wages keep declining. They were convinced by their elders to load up on student loan debt, leaving them as debt serfs. The Wall Street/Federal Reserve scheme to boost home prices and repair their insolvent balance sheets has successfully kept young people from ever being able to afford a home. So you have young people unable to save, invest or spend. You have middle aged and older Americans with little or no savings, mountains of debt, low paying service jobs, and an inability to spend. The only people left with resources are the .1% who have captured the system, peddle the debt, and reap the rewards of consumption versus saving. They may be able to engineer a stock market rally to further enrich themselves, but they can not propel the real economy of 318 million people. Our consumer society is dying – asphyxiated by debt – shorter of breath and one day closer to death.

I’d love to offer some sage advice on how to fix this problem, but it’s too late. Too many people missed the starting gun. More than ten years got behind them. No one is going to come to the rescue of people who never saved for their future. The Federal government has already made $200 trillion of entitlement promises it can’t keep. State governments have made tens of trillions in pension promises they can’t keep. They can’t tax young people who don’t have jobs. Older generations who think the government is going to rescue them from their foolish shortsighted choices are badly mistaken. Their benefits are likely to be reduced because the unsustainable will not be sustained. The 45 to 64 year old cohort who chose not to save can run and run to try and catch up with the sun, but it’s too late. It’s sinking. Their plans have come to naught. They are destined for lives of quiet desperation. There is nothing more to say.

So you run and you run to catch up with the sun but it’s sinking
Racing around to come up behind you again.
The sun is the same in a relative way but you’re older,
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death.

Every year is getting shorter; never seem to find the time.
Plans that either come to naught or half a page of scribbled lines
Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way
The time is gone, the song is over,
Thought I’d something more to say.

Pink Floyd – Time

I HAVE A NIGHTMARE

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Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Via Investors.com

RAMBLIN’ MAN

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Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

FERGUSON VERDICT REACTION IN GUN COUNTRY

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Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Email from Jack M describing his evening at the bar last night. He is a sarcastic SOB:

Mike please don’t brother me tonight

The Ferguson verdict has depressed me … I feel like … I don’t know …. Robbing a liquor store

I was at my drinking club tonight … It was a prison guard, the local masons (they always try to recruit me ) and a dude and his girlfriend came in.

So I went there to get our (me and my brother’s) 2015 membership cards that I paid for last week.

Had a few since I was there and went like 3 miles today exercising.

So the girl says – can you turn on a news station .. The Ferguson decision is coming down.

Historically tonight — there are TWO Monday night football games. It has NEVER happened before …Cause Buffalo got SNOWED out … SO MASSIVE BETTING.

So EVERYBODY in the bar has bet the parley. You have to pick which TWO teams will win TONIGHT.

So basically it was “are you f-ing kidding me?”

She said, “aren’t you guys afraid of going home if they don’t indict ???”

Everybody – “NO!!!”

She stupidly said “well, I hope you all have Guns … Cause you MAY need them” (like with authority).

Her boyfriend put his head in his hands … And of course I had to break the ice and said, “you KNOW you’re in Western Pennsylvania right ?” and EVERYBODY laughed.

She said, “what does THAT have anything to do with it?”

Another guy I went to high school said, “honey there are only TWO people in this bar who MIGHT not have a gun on them.”

She said, “are you KIDDING ME???”

Her boyfriend said, “let’s go”.

She was protesting as he dragged her out

We took a vote – anyone NOT carrying had to raise their hand.

… No one did

In Defense of Obamacare’s Jonathan Gruber

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Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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The Divinely Appointed and the Elected

US stocks hit new highs last week. Gold fell back below the $1,200-an-ounce mark…

… and MIT economics professor Jonathan Gruber came dangerously close to committing truth.

The ancient Egyptians believed Pharaoh was divine. They called him a god. That gave him the right to tell people what to do.

And in Britain up until the Revolution of 1688, and in France up until its revolution a century later, people believed their king was divinely appointed. He wasn’t a god. But God had given him the divine right to tell others what to do.

Now people believe that God has nothing to do with it. Voters elect their leaders, who do what the public wants them to do.

 

cali

Malcolm McDowell as Caligula (1979)

 

 

Popular Myths

All of these descriptions of government are popular myths. Diary readers will recognize a drop of fresh water in the murky puddle of political fantasy in the recent remarks of Mr. Gruber who, as a consultant, helped put together the Obamacare bill:

 

“Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage and basically, you know, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically, that was really, really critical to getting this thing to pass.

If you have a law that makes explicit that healthy people pay in and sick people get money, it wouldn’t have passed.”

 

Poor Gruber is getting little support or appreciation. Instead of being thanked for helping us understand how the system really works, he is being assailed from right and left.

To the right, he is a slick political operative, deceiving the public to get what he wants. To the left, he is a dumbbell and a traitor, who has revealed a few too many unsavory ingredients in the Democrats’ sausages.

What can we do but rise in defense of Gruber, as we do with all underdogs, diehards and mental defectives? He is wrong about the stupidity of the American people. The typical voter is no dumber than the typical person he votes for.

Voters have better things to do than to study the rampant folderol of the legislative process. It would be time wasted, anyway, because he can do nothing about it. Besides, he is just doing what he should do: playing his role in the fantasy.

 

jonathan-gruber-ap#Grubered: admittedly the hashtag-spawning Dr. Gruber has greatly enhanced the entertainment value of the political circus

(Photo credit: Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP Photo)

 

A More Corrupt World

French king Louis XIV reportedly believed God gave him his job assignment. The king was supposed to rule; the population of France was supposed to submit to his rule. Each had a role to play.

Likewise in today’s America, the elite who control the workings of the government are supposed to pretend they are acting on behalf of the voters. Voters are supposed to believe it.

Voters could perfectly well understand what is going on if they invested the time and energy to look at it closely. But what would be the point? The system depends on the cooperation of the conniving Grubers as well as the “stupid” goobers. Both must work together to make a more corrupt world.

USA Today helped elucidate the mechanics of the fantasy in an article on “dark money” last week. Big Pharma sets up “advocacy groups” that pretend to be genuine public interest outfits, but whose real purpose is to push drugs.

The nuclear power industry operates a “Clean and Safe Energy Coalition.” It sounds like a citizens’ lobby; in reality it is an extension of the industry’s lobbying efforts.

And the Center for Consumer Freedom is a front for the junk-food industry, says USA Today. The newspaper doesn’t seem to like “dark money.” It wants the elite to do something to stop it. Why?

Like an alarm at 5 a.m., it disturbs the dream.

 

alarmclock

Dream-disturbing device

 

The above article is taken from the Diary of a Rogue Economist originally written for Bonner & Partners. Bill Bonner founded Agora, Inc in 1978. It has since grown into one of the largest independent newsletter publishing companies in the world. He has also written three New York Times bestselling books, Financial Reckoning Day, Empire of Debt and Mobs, Messiahs and Markets.

WHAT I LEARNED FROM FERGUSON

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Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Guest Post by Hope@ZeroKelvin

 

1. Several generations of liberal progressive policies RE the black community have created a critical mass of impoverished, illiterate and perpetually aggrieved black folks that can be ginned up and pointed at the enemies of the Regime – or just let loose to wreak havoc/chaos on anybody unlucky enough to be in their way. Please note that Ferguson and all the other big protests last night were in BLUE cities/counties.

2. This liberal progressive brainwashing has affected whites as well RE the whole “white privilege” narrative and the idea that violence of the “oppressed” (=nonwhite) against the “oppressor” (= always white, heterosexual, Judeo-Christrians) is justifiable payback in some cosmic sense. This is nonsense spewed by the liberal progressive moonbats like the man-boobed metrosexual Chris Hays of MSNBC and watching him scurry away when he heard gunfire coming from his “comrades in arms” was an image I shall treasure for years.

3. When the uniforms go away, the thugs come out to play. Sorry, but the National Guard should have come down hard on the looters/arsonists, ie, shoot to kill, tear gas, the whole nine yards. There are clearly people in this world that care nothing for “justice”, the rule of law or civilized society. They can’t be reasoned with, or bargained with and they don’t feel pity or remorse. They don’t even care for the stuff they loot – they just want to watch the world burn. Better to get them out of the gene pool sooner rather than later. This principle applies to the chaos that has been unleashed upon the world with America’s military withdrawal from it, but that is a post for another day.

4. There are good people of all races/creeds/colors/whatever that want to just live and let live. Seek out those people, give them a voice, cherish them. Or, as we say in the prepper community – prep, train and form teams.

5. Now that the economic heart of the Ferguson community has been burned to the ground, we will likely see yet another self serving black politician like Maxine Waters (Watts riots) come to power promising all kinds of rainbow pooping unicorn lollipop goodies while Ferguson morphs into Detroit.

6. If you are a business owner close to a large mass of illiterate, impoverished and perpetually aggrieved people – tough shit. You are clearly on your own in a riot as the police/fire will not come to protect/help you.

Here’s a thought: When black people riot they burn down their own neighborhoods. When white people riot, they burn down entire continents.

7. Our preezy, the AG and most of the MSM are actively engaged in a race/civilizational war against white/Judeo-Christian/heterosexuals, aka Western Civilization. I can think of no other reason for Obama to speak this way in the midst of this chaos, embrace Al Sharpton as his go-to man on race, put up Loretta Lynch as the new AG, and the rest of the clapping-seal-stay-on-script MSM to act as enablers and cheerleaders to this madness. Personally, I don’t want my country to look like Mogadishu or Detroit but things are certainly headed that way.

8. Events in Ferguson are a great cover to avoid talking about the holocaust that has consumed so many black lives, a holocaust of crime, illegitimacy, poverty and dysfunction that can be laid solely and completely at the feet of those supporters of The Great Society. Racism? You bet. The soft racism of diminished expectations, no demands for accountability and lack of personal responsibility for a person solely based on the color of their skin. See also: Marion Barry (good riddance to bad rubbish).

9. Given the well coordinated nature of these multiple demonstrations after the grand jury, there is clearly a “Fifth Column” of commie rat bastards intent on the destruction the USA and the Rule of Law, using race (and black people as cannon fodder) as cover. Sadly, many of these scumbags are either part of the fed.gov or actively supported by them. Worse, these douchebags infest most of our elite universities, able to poison the minds of millions of young people. (Why do you think Obama has spoken almost exclusively to handpicked audiences of university students since about 2010?) If these people are not exposed and stopped, we are looking at a potential Reign of Terror here, a la the French Revolution. Google the commie “reporter” asking questions of Jay Nixon during his pre-verdict news confab.

10. Embrace the Doom. The (FU) USA is a powder keg into which the Obama Admin and the libtard proglodytes are throwing as many sparks as possible. Toss in a pinch of radical Islam and it’s gonna be Epic. In their hubris and their insanity, they truly believe they can burn it all down and build something better. They cannot be reasoned with, they cannot be bargained with and they will not stop until the advocates of Western Civilization are all metaphorically and literally dead.

The battle lines have been drawn, the battle space prep is complete, are you ready?

Deus Vult.

We Are the Enemy: Is This the Lesson of Ferguson?

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Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Guest Post by John W. Whitehead

If you dress police officers up as soldiers and you put them in military vehicles and you give them military weapons, they adopt a warrior mentality. We fight wars against enemies, and the enemies are the people who live in our cities—particularly in communities of color.—Thomas Nolan, criminology professor and former police officer

Should police officer Darren Wilson be held accountable for the shooting death of unarmed citizen Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, on August 9, 2014?

That the police officer was white and his victim black should make no difference. In a perfect world, it would not matter. In an imperfect world such as ours, however, racism is an effective propaganda tool used by the government and the media to distract us from the real issues.

As a result, the national dialogue about the dangers of militarized, weaponized police officers being trained to act like soldiers on the battlefield, shooting first and asking questions later, has shifted into a largely unspoken debate over race wars, class perceptions and longstanding, deep-seated notions of who deserves our unquestioning loyalty and who does not.

Putting aside our prejudices, however, let’s not overlook the importance of Ferguson and this grand jury verdict. Tasked with determining whether Wilson should stand trial for Brown’s shooting, the grand jury ruled that the police officer will not face charges for the fatal shooting.

However, the greater question—whether anything will really change to rein in militarized police, police shootings, lack of accountability and oversight, and a military industrial complex with a vested interest in turning America into a war zone—remains unanswered.

Ferguson matters because it provides us with a foretaste of what is to come. It is the shot across the bow, so to speak, a warning that this is how we will all be treated if we do not tread cautiously in challenging the police state, and it won’t matter whether we’re black or white, rich or poor, Republican or Democrat. In the eyes of the corporate state, we are all the enemy.

This is the lesson of Ferguson.

Remember that in the wake of the shooting, Ferguson police officers clad in body armor, their faces covered with masks, equipped with assault rifles and snipers and riding armored vehicles, showed up in force to deal with protesters. Describing that show of force by police in Ferguson, Senator Claire McCaskill, Democrat of Missouri, stated, “This was a military force, and they were facing down an enemy.”

Yes, we are the enemy. As I point out in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, since those first towers fell on 9/11, the American people have been treated like enemy combatants, to be spied on, tracked, scanned, frisked, searched, subjected to all manner of intrusions, intimidated, invaded, raided, manhandled, censored, silenced, shot at, locked up, and denied due process.

There was a moment of hope after Ferguson that perhaps things might change. Perhaps the balance would be restored between the citizenry and their supposed guardians, the police. Perhaps our elected officials would take our side for a change and oppose the militarization of the police. Perhaps warfare would take a backseat to more pressing national concerns.

That hope was short-lived.

It wasn’t long before the media moved on to other, more titillating stories. The disappearance of a University of Virginia college student and the search for her alleged abductor, the weeks-long man-hunt for an accused cop killer, the Republican electoral upset, a Rolling Stone expose on gang rapes at fraternity parties, Obama’s immigration amnesty plan, and the rape charges against Bill Cosby are just a few of the stories that have dominated the news cycle since the Ferguson standoff between police and protesters.

It wasn’t long before the American public, easily acclimated to news of government wrongdoing (case in point: the national yawn over the NSA’s ongoing domestic surveillance), ceased to be shocked, outraged or alarmed by reports of police shootings. In fact, the issue was nowhere to be found in this year’s run-up to Election Day, which was largely devoid of any pressing matters of national concern.

And with nary a hiccup, the police state marched steadily forth. In fact, aided and abetted by the citizenry’s short attention span, its easily distracted nature, and its desensitization to anything that occupies the news cycle for too long, it has been business as usual in terms of police shootings, the amassing of military weapons, and the government’s sanctioning of police misconduct. Most recently, Ohio police shot and killed a 12-year-old boy who was seen waving a toy gun at a playground.

Rubbing salt in our wounds, in the wake of Ferguson, police agencies not only continued to ramp up their military arsenals but have used them whenever possible. In fact, in anticipation of the grand jury’s ruling, St. Louis police actually purchased more equipment for its officers, including “civil disobedience equipment.”

Just a few weeks after the Ferguson showdown, law enforcement agencies took part in an $11 million manhunt in Pennsylvania for alleged cop killer Eric Frein. Without batting an eye, the news media switched from outraged “shock” over the military arsenal employed by police in Ferguson to respectful “awe” of the 48-day operation that cost taxpayers $1.4 million per week in order to carry out a round-the-clock dragnet search of an area with a 5-mile-radius.

The Frein operation brought together 1,000 officers from local, state and federal law enforcement, as well as SWAT teams and cutting edge military equipment (high-powered rifles, body armor, infrared sensors, armored trucks, helicopters and unmanned, silent surveillance blimps)—some of the very same weapons and tactics employed in Ferguson and, a year earlier, in Boston in the wake of the marathon bombing.

The manhunt was a well-timed, perfectly choreographed exercise in why Americans should welcome the police state: for our safety, of course, and to save the lives of police officers.

Opposed to any attempt to demilitarize America’s police forces, the Dept. of Homeland Security has been chanting this safety mantra in testimony before Congress: Remember 9/11. Remember Boston. Remember how unsafe the world was before police were equipped with automatic weapons, heavily armored trucks, night-vision goggles, and aircraft donated by the DHS.

Contrary to DHS rhetoric, however, militarized police—twitchy over perceived dangers, hyped up on their authority, and protected by their agencies, the legislatures and the courts—have actually made communities less safe at a time when violent crime is at an all-time low and lumberjacks, fishermen, airline pilots, roofers, construction workers, trash collectors, electricians and truck drivers all have a higher risk of on-the-job fatalities than police officers.

Moreover, as Senator Tom Coburn points out, the militarization of America’s police forces has actually “created some problems that wouldn’t have been there otherwise.” Among those problems: a rise in the use of SWAT team raids for routine law enforcement activities (averaging 80,000 a year), a rise in the use and abuse of asset forfeiture laws by police agencies, a profit-driven incentive to criminalize lawful activities and treat Americans as suspects, and a transformation of the nation’s citizenry into suspects.

Ferguson provided us with an opportunity to engage in a much-needed national dialogue over how police are trained, what authority they are given, what weaponry they are provided, and how they treat those whom they are entrusted with protecting.

Caught up in our personal politics, prejudices and class warfare, we have failed to answer that call. In so doing, we have played right into the hands of all those corporations who profit from turning America into a battlefield by selling the government mine-resistant vehicles, assault rifles, grenade launchers, and drones.

As long as we remain steeped in ignorance, there will be no reform.

As long as we remain divided by our irrational fear of each other, there will be no overhaul in the nation’s law enforcement system or institution of an oversight process whereby communities can ensure that local police departments are acting in accordance with their wishes and values.

And as long as we remain distracted by misguided loyalties to military operatives who are paid to play the part of the government’s henchmen, there will be no saving us when the events of Ferguson unfold in our own backyards.

When all is said and done, it doesn’t matter whose “side” you’re on as far as what transpired in Ferguson, whether you believe that Michael Brown was a victim or that Darren Wilson was justified in shooting first and asking questions later.

What matters is that we not allow politics and deep-rooted prejudices of any sort to divert our efforts to restore some level of safety, sanity and constitutional balance to the role that police officers play in our communities. If we fail to do so, we will have done a disservice to ourselves and every man, woman and child in this country who have become casualties of the American police state.

BURN & LOOT BUSINESSES IN YOUR COMMUNITY TO PROTEST – THE DETROIT METHOD

29 comments

Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

I thought they were mad at white people. Shouldn’t they be going to white communities and burning their businesses down? It’s kind of stupid to burn your own black community to the ground. Don’t you think?

Maybe the looters and rioters are smarter than we think. Whitey is armed. White people realize they are the first responder. Amazing how an armed populace keeps their community peaceful.

 

Ferguson In Flames: The Morning After

Tyler Durden's picture

Shortly after 9pmET last night, prosecutors relayed the grand jury’s decision not to charge white Ferguson Police officer Darren Wilson over the death of black teenager Michael Brown… and all hell broke loose…

 

 

 

 

 

And finally… Michael Brown’s mother…

 

Sad…

 

Source: Bloomberg

PELOSI’S EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION

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Posted on 25th November 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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