The 5th of July

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Posted on 5th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Guest Post by Hardscrabble Farmer

 

“Life without Liberty is Like a body without spirit”

Kahlil Gibran

Independence Day has long been my favorite holiday. My earliest memories center around the picnic-like atmosphere of these annual celebrations, from the deviled eggs and grilled meat to the fireworks displays in the warm Summer darkness. Each year was a nationwide birthday party for the Republic and a means of reminding us of the events that led to our happy lives wherever we lived. I have no doubt that there were those who resented or cared nothing for it, but to me it was the ultimate form of both unity and individualism, even when I barely understood the concepts.

My children have always asked about my childhood as they track the progress of their own and I would regale them with the assorted stories that revolved around this particular day; when Yanna Nikitas threw a cherry Slurpee on my prized yellow Chicago T-shirt and I responded by punching her in her 10 year old face only to be dragged away from the party by my father where I was made to sit in our Buick Skylark until the fireworks were over, soaked in perspiration and miserable.

Afterwards as we drove home in silence we passed a lumber yard that had taken a direct hit from an errant firework and watched as the firemen poured streams of water into the conflagration, my parents faces glowing orange in the darkness and my father reached his hand back to stroke my head, all forgiven. There was the annual rite of my father clipping the reprint of the Declaration of Independence from the New York Times and pinning it to the apple tree in the back yard with a leather handled Estwing hatchet where it fluttered all day in the gentle breeze.

In the Summer of 1976 we watched the tall ships sail up the HudsonRiver and the fantastic, seemingly endless display of fireworks that signaled the Bicentennial and three years later, only days before I was to report for my enlistment in the US Army my closest friends and I hiked up to the top of High Point where we watched fifty local displays of fireworks a thousand feet below us spanning a 360 view of New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania as if we were gods on Olympus.

I can’t recall a single 4th of July that wasn’t filled with food, friendship, family and an abiding feeling of what it meant to be free. On the last year we lived in New Jersey, where fireworks were strictly prohibited by the Nanny State, my oldest son and I drove across the Delaware and picked up several hundred dollars worth of rockets and mortars, flares and roman candles and then under the cover of darkness we packed them into my old rucksack and walked a circuitous route along the hedgerows firing them from a dozen hidden locations to the applause and whistles of the people in town.

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“Greece Is Coming To Your Neighborhood” Marc Faber Warns

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Tyler Durden's picture

“Wake up people of the world and investors. Greece will come to your neighborhood very soon, maybe not this year, but next year or whenever it is, because the world is over infected. And defaults will follow, or they will have to create very high inflation rates.”

That’s Marc Faber’s message to all of those who may still think that Greece doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. In an interview with Bloomberg TV, Faber talks Greece, China, and of course the Fed.

On Greece:

And everybody knows in the world that Greece cannot pay its debt at the current size. So what will happen, in my view, is either Greece will leave the EU and will suffer very badly for a few months, maybe even longer. There will be a cash shortage. Or the EU, and the ECB and the IMF will have to cut a significant haircut. And Tsipras proposed a haircut of something like 30 percent. I don’t think that’s enough. I think they will need a haircut of at least 50 percent.

 

I think the likelihood of contagion is very high. And I have to say when you have a borrower, you also have a lender. And it’s actually, in my view, amazing how the EU kept on pumping money into Greece, partly also to bail out their own banks. And suddenly now the debt is no longer manageable.

 

And I would say, wake up people of the world and investors. Greece will come to your neighborhood very soon, maybe not this year, but next year or whenever it is, because the world is over infected. And defaults will follow, or they will have to create very high inflation rates. 

On China:

Well my view was that after this 100 percent increase in Chinese stocks and huge speculation, and huge speculation on margin, margin index in China, the percent of the economy, was almost twice as large as in the U.S. So it was very large. And my view was that the market would fall from the peak by at least 40 percent.

 

And I still maintain that — that the market will move lower before it starts to move up again. But I don’t think we’ll see a new high in China for some time.

 

I think the economy is very weak by Chinese growth standards. And we’ve seen that also in industrial commodity prices. I think lots of sectors in China are no longer growing. 

On ‘liftoff':

Well, as you know, the majority of Fed’s governors that are voting are those that always they will use any excuse to essentially delay a rate increase. 

Full interview:

WWJD

7 comments

Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Via Knuckledraggin


Bad Karma

7 comments

Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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What if you build it – and they don’t come?fisker lead

Send the bill to the taxpayers!

Twice.

This is how you make money in the New America. Well, the green America.

Don’t earn it.

Steal it.

The “business model” is simple enough: Glom on to a politically high-fashion issue – electric cars, for instance. Then obtain government (meaning, taxpayer) “help” to fund their design and manufacture. When no one – or not enough – people buy your electric wunderwagen, simple declare bankruptcy and walk away.

With your pockets full of other people’s money.

Then, when the smoke clears, do it again.

This is exactly what electric car company Fisker – which produces (well, produced) the $110,000 Fisker Karma – did.

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SUPREME COURT MAKEOVER

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Via Knuckledraggin


TV IS DYING

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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As Netflix, Hulu and other streaming portals emerge, traditional TV is finding itself under increased pressure to retain its place on top of the media food chain. While it is still the most used medium by a wide margin, there are signs that indicate its future may not look quite as bright.

As figures from Nielsen’s quarterly Total Audience report indicate, young Americans are watching less and less TV. Since Q1 2011, the time Americans aged 12-17 spent watching TV has dropped by more than 25%. In the most recent quarter, teenagers spent an average of 17 hours and 52 minutes a week watching live TV, down from more than 24 hours in the first quarter of 2011.

Infographic: American Teens Are Turning Their Backs on TV | Statista

You will find more statistics at Statista


Are You Ready for the e-PATRIOT Act?

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Earlier this month, news emerged that the US government had suffered its worst cyberattack ever.

On June 4, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) revealed that hackers had penetrated its networks, possibly for many months. The data thieves stole personal information of up to 18 million current and former federal government applicants and employees.

There’s a good chance the attack is even worse than what you’ve read about. The OPM hack included a database holding security clearance information on hundreds of thousands of federal employees and contractors. This database contains details of applicants’ financial and investment records, family members, and even names of neighbors and close friends.

Another database that may have been breached includes criminal history, psychological records, and information about past drug use. The hackers might even have acquired detailed personal and sexual profiles obtained through lie detector tests.

With all the talk of Edward Snowden and the supposed “irreparable” damage he did to US interests, this theft is a lot worse. While OPM doesn’t hold personnel records for the CIA, it does for other US intelligence agencies. The hackers now know the identity of hundreds of thousands of federal employees with security clearances. Not only that, they also have sensitive background information on each of them, which they could easily use for blackmail.

Oh, and get this – the breach wasn’t actually discovered by the OPM. It was only uncovered during a sales demonstration by a security company named CyTech Services.

So what does the Obama administration want to do to solve the problem?

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World War III with China dead ahead

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Lockheed Martin
F-35 fighter planes.

World War III? OK, so you’re distracted by Trump vs. Christie? By Wall Street hyping a bull-market recovery? So we forget war, they’re “over there,” nightly news clips of faraway killer bombs.

Wrong, WWIII really is getting closer. At the launch of the Iraq War, the Bush team warned us of the “mother of all national security issues … by 2020 there is little doubt that something drastic is happening … warfare defining human life.” Pentagon generals are planning ahead for that 2020. But most Americans are more interested in their next gadget.

Wake up. USA Today headline: “CIA veteran Morell: ISIS’ next test could be a 9/11-style attack.” That warning’s from an insider with George W. Bush in 2001 when hijacked airliners hit the World Trade Center. Twice acting CIA director, says USA Today’s Susan Page. With Obama in the situation room when word came “Navy Seal Team Six had killed Osama bin Laden.”

Morell’s new book, “The Great War of Our Time: The CIA’s Fight Against Terrorism From Al Qa’ida to ISIS,” makes clear America is already fighting World War III today. Worse, WWIII will go on for decades, “for as far as I can see,” says the CIA insider.

Yes, WWIII is hot news with the Pentagon brass. The Wall Street Journal just reviewed “The Ghost Fleet” by Peter Singer and August Cole. Singer’s “one of Washington’s pre-eminent futurists.” He’s now “walking the Pentagon halls with an ominous warning for America’s military leaders: World War III with China is coming.”

In fact, even America’s advanced new F-35 fighter jets may be “blown from the sky by their Chinese-made microchips and Chinese hackers easily could worm their way into the military’s secretive intelligence service … and the Chinese Army may one day occupy Hawaii.”

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Judge Dismisses Charges Against Sergey Aleynikov

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Tyler Durden's picture

In a victory for open source software and more importantly, for common sense, a judge has thrown out the charges against Sergey Aleynikov, the ex-Goldmanite of Flash Boys fame who was tragically thrown in front of a kangaroo court after ‘stealing’ some open source code on his way out the door at 200 Wall.

  • FLASH BOYS’ PROGRAMMER IN GOLDMAN THEFT HAS CHARGES TOSSED OUT

As a reminder, the ‘theft’ was essentially inconsequential and amounted to what Michael Lewis likened to the programmer equivalent of someone taking their notebook with them after their last day on the job.

Nevertheless, Aleynikov was arrested and tried by a court that hadn’t the faintest conception of HFT or of programming in general.


Congress Should Protect Itself From The Executive Branch

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Guest Post by Paul Craig Roberts

Gary Hart was a good senator, an independent person. Consequently, he was eliminated with a sexual scandal. The woman was a ten, and the powers that be got rid of Hart. Better to go that way than with an airplane crash or a frame-up that leads to prison like happened to US Rep. George Hanson and others including Dan Rostenkowski, Chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means.

Rostenkowski was eliminated by the despicable Eric Holder, a US attorney at the time who rose to become Obama’s Attorney General, proving the point that in the US government only the totally corrupt succeed. Holder’s false conviction of Rostenkowski was overturned with a pardon by President Bill Clinton. Even former Republican President Gerald Ford regarded Rostenkowski’s conviction as a fraud.

US. Representative James Traficant was another victim of fraudulent proecution. Traficant defended a constituent, John Demjanjuk, who was falsely accused of being a former Nazi concentration camp guard, “Ivan the Terrible.” Traficant’s interference with the arrogant Israeli-serving State Department, many believe, led to him being falsely prosecuted and incarcerated.

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Welcome to Blackswansville

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Guest Post by Jim Kunstler

While the folks clogging the US tattoo parlors may not have noticed, things are beginning to look a little World War one-ish out there. Except the current blossoming world conflict is being fought not with massed troops and tanks but with interest rates and repayment schedules. Germany now dawdles in reply to the gauntlet slammed down Sunday in the Greek referendum (hell) “no” vote. Germany’s immediate strategy, it appears, is to apply some good old fashioned Teutonic todesfurcht — let the Greeks simmer in their own juices for a few days while depositors suck the dwindling cash reserves from the banks and the grocery store shelves empty out. Then what?

Nobody knows. And anything can happen.

One thing we ought to know: both sides in the current skirmish are fighting reality. The Germans foolishly insist that the Greek’s meet their debt obligations. The German’s are just pissing into the wind on that one, a hazardous business for a nation of beer drinkers. The Greeks insist on living the 20th century deluxe industrial age lifestyle, complete with 24/7 electricity, cheap groceries, cushy office jobs, early retirement, and plenty of walking-around money. They’ll be lucky if they land back in the 1800s, comfort-wise.

The Greeks may not recognize this, but they are in the vanguard of a movement that is wrenching the techno-industrial nations back to much older, more local, and simpler living arrangements. The Euro, by contrast, represents the trend that is over: centralization and bigness. The big questions are whether the latter still has enough mojo left to drag out the transition process, and for how long, and how painfully.

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There is Only One Way Out For Greece

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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ECM Greece

Brussels has been dead wrong. This stupid idea that the Euro will bring stability and peace as it was sold from the outset, has migrated to European domination as if this were a game of Thrones. Those in power have misread history almost at every possible level. The assumption that the DMark’s strength was a good thing and this would be transferred to the Euro, has failed because they failed to comprehend the backdrop to the DMark.

LongBranchNJ-DepressionScrip

Germany moved opposite of the USA and moved toward extreme austerity and conservative economics because of its experience with hyperinflation. The USA moved toward stimulation because of the austerity policies which created the Great Depression and led to such a shortage of money many cities had to issue their own currency just to function. The federal government thought, like Brussels today, that they had to sure up the confidence in the bond market and that called for raising taxes and cutting spending at the expense of the people. The same thinking process has played out numerous times throughout history. Our problem is, nobody ever asks – Hey, did someone try this before? Did it work? This is why history repeats – we do ZERO research when it comes to economics. It is all hype and self-interest.

1000 drachma

Greece should immediately begin to print drachma. By no means has the introduction of a new currency been a walk in the park. There is always a learning curve as in the case of East Germany’s adoption of the Deutsche mark, the Czech-Slovak divorce of 1993, and the creation of the euro itself . However, the bulk of transactions today are electronic. That means we are dealing with an accounting issue more than anything.

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HOW THEY CELEBRATE 4TH OF JULY IN THE GUN FREE ZONE OF CHICAGO

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Posted on 6th July 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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It sure is lucky Rahm Emmanuel’s liberal paradise of Chicago has the toughest gun laws in Illinois. Imagine how many people would have been shot if they weren’t so tough. I didn’t see anything about these Chicago festivities on the national MSM news stations. I guess 9 dead black people only matters if they are killed by a white boy. Black lives matter whenever it is convenient for the race baiters like Obama, Sharpton, and Jackson to make it matter. The liberal MSM eats up the racism angle whenever a white person is involved. Of course, 93% of all black shootings were committed by other blacks. That statistic never makes the news. It doesn’t support the storyline.

Is there a flag we can start banning due to the slaughter of black people by other black people in Chicago?

I just know this horrific slaughter of black people by black people will lead to an open dialogue of how white people are to blame. I think stronger gun laws will surely stop criminals from killing people without guns. Maybe if we give the Chicago teacher’s union another $100 million they can teach black kids not to shoot each other. 

9 dead, 47 injured in Fourth of July weekend shootings

Written By Sun-Times Wire
Police investigate bloody clothes near Chicago and Milwaukee avenues, were a man was shot early Sunday, July 5, 2015. | Ashlee Rezin/for Sun-Times Media
Gallery

Fourth of July weekend shootings have left nine people dead — including a 7-year-old boy — and at least 47 others injured since Thursday evening.

Seven-year-old Amari Brown was killed in a shooting that also left a 26-year-old woman wounded late Saturday in the Humboldt Park neighborhood.

Amari, who lived in the 500 block of North Drake, was taken to Stroger Hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1:56 a.m., according to the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Police said Sunday the bullet that fatally wounded 7-year-old Amari Brown on the Fourth of July was meant for his father. Both Amari and the 26-year-old woman were shot at 11:55 p.m. in the 1100 block of North Harding, police said.

The boy’s father, Antonio Brown, is a ranking gang member with 45 previous arrests and was not cooperating with police as of Sunday afternoon as they tried to find his son’s killer, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy said Sunday.

“It’s crazy. Like who would shoot a 7-year-old? He got shot in the chest. Who would do that? To a baby?” Amari’s grandmother, 52-year-old Vida Hailey asked as she waited for news outside Stroger. “All the kids that are getting killed out here – it’s crazy. When is it going to stop?”