Congressman Knows Regular Lobbyist’s Order Without Even Having To Be Told


Posted on 27th March 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues


WASHINGTON—Noting that the Valero Energy representative had been coming to his office for more than a decade now, Sen. John Cornyn (R‑TX) told reporters Thursday that he now knows the regular lobbyist’s order without even having to be told. “Pete always drops in Monday mornings around eight on his way to work—well, you see the same friendly face year after year and you just pick up on what he wants,” said Cornyn, adding that he’s typically already preparing the lobbyist’s usual order of tax breaks and fossil fuel subsidies even as he’s taking off his coat. “Every once in a while, he’ll throw me a curveball and ask for a rider slashing regulations on greenhouse gas emissions, but for the most part, he knows what he likes and sticks with it. The way I see it, folks will always come back if you treat them right.” At press time, the lobbyist had arrived right on time and was getting settled in his usual seat.

Via The Onion

US House Votes 348-48 To Arm Ukraine, Russia Warns Lethal Aid Will “Explode The Whole Situation”


Posted on 25th March 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Tyler Durden's picture

Yesterday, in a vote that largely slid under the radar, the House of Representatives passed a resolution urging Obama to send lethal aid to Ukraine, providing offensive, not just “defensive” weapons to the Ukraine army – the same insolvent, hyperinflating Ukraine which, with a Caa3/CC credit rating, last week started preparations to issue sovereign debt with a US guarantee, in essence making it a part of the United States (something the US previously did as a favor to Egypt before the Muslim Brotherhood puppet regime was swept from power by the local army).

The resolution passed with broad bipartisan support by a count of 348 to 48.

According to DW,  the measure urges Obama to provide Ukraine with “lethal defensive weapon systems” that would better enable Ukraine to defend its territory from “the unprovoked and continuing aggression of the Russian Federation.”

“Policy like this should not be partisan,” said House Democrat Eliot Engel, the lead sponsor of the resolution. “That is why we are rising today as Democrats and Republicans, really as Americans, to say enough is enough in Ukraine.”

Engel, a New York Democrat, has decided that he knows better than Europe what is the best option for Ukraine’s people – a Europe, and especially Germany, which has repeatedly said it rejects a push to give western arms to the Ukraine army, and warned that Russia under President Vladimir Putin has become “a clear threat to half century of American commitment to an investment in a Europe that is whole, free and at peace. A Europe where borders are not changed by force.

This war has left thousands of dead, tens of thousands wounded, a million displaced, and has begun to threaten the post-Cold War stability of Europe,” Engel said.




Posted on 9th March 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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The captured corporate MSM is celebrating the six year anniversary of when the stock market bottomed in March 2009. They will spin a false narrative of Bernanke, Obama and Geithner saving the world with TARP, QE, and the $800 billion Porkulus bill. What great heroes. Bernanke now gets $300,000 for a lunchtime speech at Bank of America gatherings. He is raking in north of $10 million per year now. He made $200,000 per year as the Fed Chairman. His wisdom must be on par with Jesus Christ to get $300,000 for a one hour speech. Bernanke’s Sermon on the Mount tour:

The millions he is getting paid by the Wall Street banks for speeches isn’t a payoff. Right?

Bernanke and Geithner stopped the market from falling in March 2009 by threatening the accounting geeks at the FASB and forcing them to allow fraudulent reporting by the insolvent Wall Street banks. The crisis ended – precisely – on March 16, 2009, when the Financial Accounting Standards Board abandoned FAS 157 “mark-to-market” accounting, in response to Congressional pressure from the House Committee on Financial Services and threats from Bernanke and Geithner on March 12, 2009. That change immediately removed the threat of widespread insolvency by making insolvency opaque. Mark to fantasy was born. Profits for everyone!!!

The fix was in. Every Wall Street bank was insolvent in March 2009. Citicorp and Bank of America were dead. There were hundreds of billions in worthless toxic mortgage securities, derivatives, auto loans, and credit card debt sitting on their books. FAS 157 required them to price those assets at what they could sell them for in the market. You remember free market capitalism? Something is worth whatever an independent party is willing to pay. The fat cats love free market capitalism when they are making billions. Not so much when they blow up the financial system and are faced with the consequences of THEIR actions.




Posted on 4th March 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Posted on 14th February 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Posted on 2nd February 2015 by Stephanie Shepard in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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  • The “Audit The Fed Bill” was passed in the House of Representatives with overwhelming bi-partisan support with a vote of 333-92 in September 2014.
  • Senator Rand Paul’s Bill has 30 cosponsors including Ted Cruz (R- Texas), Mark Rubio (R- Florida), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), and Richard Shelby (R-Alabama).
  • If passed it would likely be vetoed by President Obama who this week proposed a $4 trillion budget for fiscal year 2016.
  • Since the 2008 Financial Crisis solutions of Quantitative Easing and ZIRP, the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet has expanded to over $4 trillion.
  • The Federal Reserved paid an all time record high profit of $98.7 billion to the United States Treasury for fiscal year 2014.
  • The first ever partial audit of the Federal Reserve in 2011 by the Government Accountability Office revealed the Federal Reserve secretly gave $16 trillion to domestic and foreign banks between December 2007-June 2010:

Citigroup: $2.5 trillion ($2,500,000,000,000)
Morgan Stanley: $2.04 trillion ($2,040,000,000,000)
Merrill Lynch: $1.949 trillion ($1,949,000,000,000)
Bank of America: $1.344 trillion ($1,344,000,000,000)
Barclays PLC (United Kingdom): $868 billion ($868,000,000,000)
Bear Sterns: $853 billion ($853,000,000,000)
Goldman Sachs: $814 billion ($814,000,000,000)
Royal Bank of Scotland (UK): $541 billion ($541,000,000,000)
JP Morgan Chase: $391 billion ($391,000,000,000)
Deutsche Bank (Germany): $354 billion ($354,000,000,000)
UBS (Switzerland): $287 billion ($287,000,000,000)
Credit Suisse (Switzerland): $262 billion ($262,000,000,000)
Lehman Brothers: $183 billion ($183,000,000,000)
Bank of Scotland (United Kingdom): $181 billion ($181,000,000,000)
BNP Paribas (France): $175 billion ($175,000,000,000)


Ten New Year’s Resolutions for Congress


Posted on 8th January 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues


Guest Post by Ron Paul
Since New Year’s is traditionally a time for resolutions, and since the new Congress convenes this week, I thought I would suggest some New Year’s resolutions for Congress:

1) Bring the troops home — Congress should take the first, and most important, step toward ending our hyper-interventionist foreign policy by bringing our troops home and closing all overseas military facilities. The American people can no longer afford to bear the cost of empire.

2) Pass the Audit the Fed bill — The American people deserve to know the entire truth about how the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy benefits big-spending politicians and financial elites while harming average Americans.

3) Repeal the PATRIOT Act and rein in the National Security Agency — It is approaching two years since Edward Snowden revealed the extent of the NSA’s unconstitutional spying. Yet Congress still refuses to put a leash on the surveillance state. Congress should take the first step toward restoring respect for the Fourth Amendment by allowing Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act to expire.

4) Shut down the Transportation Security Administration — Treating all American air travelers as criminal suspects and subjecting them to intrusive and humiliating searches does nothing to enhance our security. Congress should shut down TSA and return responsibility for airline security to the airlines. Private businesses can effectively protect their customers and employees if the government gets out of the way.

5) End all corporate welfare — Federal programs that provide subsidies or other special benefits to politically-connected businesses cause economic inequality, distort the market, and waste taxpayer money. It also makes political and moral sense to cut welfare for the rich before cutting welfare for the poor. Congress should start dismantling the corporate welfare state by killing the Export-Import Bank and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation. Congress should also reject legislation proposed to benefit one industry or individual, such as Sheldon Adelson’s Internet gambling ban.

6) Repeal and Replace Obamacare — Many Americans are losing their insurance while others are facing increasing health care costs because of Obamacare. Repealing Obamacare is only a first step. Congress should both repeal all federal policies that distort the health care market and restore a true free market in health care.

7) End police militarization — The killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri in August brought the issue of police militarization to the center of national debate. Congress must end all federal programs that provide military equipment to local police forces.

8) Shut down the Department of Education — It is no coincidence that education in America has declined as federal control over education has increased. Congress should de-fund all federal education programs and return control over education to local communities and parents.

9) Allow individuals to opt out — A positive step toward restoring a free society would be allowing individuals to opt out of Obamacare and other federal mandates. Young people should also be granted the ability to opt out of paying Social Security and Medicare taxes in exchange for agreeing to never accept Social Security and Medicare benefits.

10) Allow state governments to opt out — If Congress lacks the votes to end the war on drugs, repeal Obamacare, or roll back other unconstitutional federal programs, it should at least respect the rights of states to set their own policies in these areas. Federal prohibition of state laws nullifying Obamacare or legalizing marijuana turns the Tenth Amendment upside down.

By adopting these resolutions, Congress can make 2015 the year America begins reversing the long, slow slide toward authoritarianism, empire, national bankruptcy, and economic decline.

This article contributed courtesy of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.

Day-Old Congress Most Hated Ever


Posted on 7th January 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Guest Post by Andy Borowitz

The New Yorker

Credit Photograph by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty

WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report) – In a troubling sign for the 114th Congress, a new poll released on Tuesday indicates that the day-old legislative body is the most hated in the nation’s history.

According to the poll, conducted by the University of Minnesota’s Opinion Research Institute, only eight per cent of those surveyed approved of the job Congress is doing, a scathing indictment of the legislators’ first day on the job.

The 114th Congress started the day on a slightly more positive note, garnering a ten-per-cent approval rating, but after the House of Representatives reëlected John Boehner (R.-Ohio) to a new term as Speaker, the number sank to eight.

On the Senate side, Joni Ernst (R.-Iowa), newly elected to the most despised Congress in American history, said that the low approval number was no cause for concern.

“If you ask somebody to pick a number between one and ten, eight is a pretty high number,” she said. “So it’s all good.”

After Senator Ernst made her comment, Congress’s approval rating plummeted to four per cent.

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Unskilled Workers Report for New Jobs


Posted on 4th January 2015 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Guest Post by Andy Borowitz


WASHINGTON (The Borowitz Report)—Sixty-four unskilled workers will report to new jobs in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday as part of a federal jobs program that provides employment for people unable to find productive work elsewhere.

The new hires, who have no talents or abilities that would make them employable in most workplaces, will be earning a first-year salary of $174,000.

For that sum, the new employees will be expected to work a hundred and thirty-seven days a year, leaving them with two hundred and twenty-eight days of vacation.

Some critics have blasted the federal jobs program as too expensive, noting that the workers were chosen last November in a bloated and wasteful selection process that cost the nation nearly four billion dollars.

But Davis Logsdon, a University of Minnesota economics professor who specializes in labor issues, said that the program is necessary to provide work “for people who honestly cannot find employment anywhere else.”

“Expensive as this program is, it is much better to have these people in jobs than out on the street,” he said.

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How a Bipartisan Majority in Congress Shredded the Constitution, Again


Posted on 18th December 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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When the government is waving at us with its right hand, so to speak, it is the government’s left hand that we should be watching. Just as a magician draws your attention to what he wants you to see so you will not observe how his trick is performed, last week presented a textbook example of public disputes masking hidden deceptions. Here is what happened:

Last week was dominated by two huge news stories. One was the revelation by the Senate Intelligence Committee of torture committed by CIA agents and contractors on 119 detainees in the post-9/11 era— 26 of whom were tortured for months by mistake. In that revelation of anguish and error were the conclusions by CIA agents themselves that their torture had not produced helpful information. President Barack Obama acknowledged that the CIA had tortured, yet he directed the Department of Justice not to prosecute those who tortured and those who authorized it.

The other substantial news story was the compromise achieved by Congress and the White House to fund the government through the end of September 2015. That legislation, which is 2,000 pages in length, was not read by anyone who voted for it. It spends a few hundred billion dollars more than the government will collect in tax revenue. The compromise was achieved through bribery; members of Congress bought and sold votes by adding goodies (in the form of local expenditures of money borrowed by the federal government) to the bill that were never debated or independently voted upon and were added solely to achieve the votes needed for passage. This is how the federal government operates today. Both parties participate in it. They have turned the public treasury into a public trough.

Hidden in the law that authorized the government to spend more than it will collect was a part about funding for the 16 federal civilian intelligence agencies. And hidden in that was a clause, inserted by the same Senate Intelligence Committee that revealed the CIA torture, authorizing the National Security Agency to gather and retain nonpublic data for five years and to share it with law enforcement and with foreign governments.

“Nonpublic data” is the government’s language referring to the content of the emails, text messages, telephone calls, bank statements, utility bills, and credit card bills of nearly every innocent person in America—including members of Congress, federal judges, public officials and law enforcement officials. I say “innocent” because the language of this legislation—which purports to make lawful the NSA spying we now all know about—makes clear that those who spy upon us needn’t have any articulable suspicion or probable cause for spying.

The need for articulable suspicion and probable cause has its origins in the Fourth Amendment to the Constitution, which was written to prohibit what Congress just authorized. That amendment was a reaction to the brutish British practice of rummaging through the homes of American colonists, looking for anything that might be illegal. It is also a codification of our natural right to privacy. It requires that if the government wants nonpublic data from our persons, houses, papers, or effects, it must first present evidence of probable cause to a judge and then ask the judge for a search warrant.

Probable cause is a level of evidence that is sufficient to induce a judge into concluding that it is more likely than not that the place to be examined contains evidence of crimes. In order to seek probable cause, the government must first have an articulable suspicion about the person or place it has targeted. Were this not in the law, then nothing would stop the government from fishing expeditions in pursuit of anyone it wants to pursue. And fishing expeditions turn the presumption of liberty on its head. The presumption of liberty is based on the belief that our rights are natural to us and that we may exercise them without a permission slip from the government and without its surveillance.

Until last week, that is. Last week Congress, by authorizing the massive NSA spying to continue and by authorizing the spies to share what they have seized with law enforcement, basically permitted the fishing expeditions that the Fourth Amendment was written to prevent.

How can the president and Congress defy the Constitution, you might ask? Hasn’t every member of the government taken an oath to uphold the Constitution? Doesn’t the Constitution create the presidency and the Congress? How can politicians purport to change it? The answers to these questions are obvious, as is the belief of most of those in government that they can write any law and regulate any behavior and ignore the Constitution they have sworn to uphold whenever they want, so long as they can get away with it.



Posted on 14th December 2014 by T4C in Economy |Politics |Social Issues |Technology

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 December 12, 2014







The year is coming to an end and as expected the 2010 IMF Quota and Governance Reforms have not been passed through the US Congress. True to her word, Christine Lagarde has been quick to respond to the lack of movement on the reforms and has issued a press release.

Things will now begin to escalate across a broad spectrum, with instability in the USD expanding and global stock markets adjusting dramatically. We can also likely expect increases in the valuations of gold as the liquidity crisis deepens and global money seeks liquidity outside of the dollar. The propaganda promoting US instability will increase internationally and the script stating alternative sources of liquidity must be utilized will begin to be distributed to global media outlets.

Ms. Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), made the following statement today:

“The IMF’s membership has been calling on and was expecting the United States to approve the IMF’s 2010 Quota and Governance Reforms by year end. Adoption of the reforms remains critical to strengthen the Fund’s credibility, legitimacy, and effectiveness, and to ensure it has sufficient permanent resources to meet its members’ needs.

“I have now been informed by the U.S. Administration that the reforms are not included in the budget legislation currently before the U.S. Congress. I have expressed my disappointment to the U.S authorities and hope that they continue to work toward speedy ratification.

“As requested by our membership, we will now proceed to discuss alternative options for advancing quota and governance reforms and ensuring that the Fund has adequate resources, starting with an Executive Board meeting in January 2015.”

The blatant disregard by the US Congress towards the Executive Branch and Treasury, as well as the IMF and G20 countries is staggering. Whether you agree with the reforms or not, the fallout from this will be huge. It could potentially create the pretext for the exchange of USD in foreign reserve accounts with SDR securities, through the substitution accounts….Which may have been the plan all a long. Expect to see almost immediate escalations stemming from this moment.


iron bank


Reform to IMF governance and quota amounts are happening whether America agrees or not, with Plan B being the worst possible outcome.

One specific analysis can determine that the US delay is being orchestrated by China through political campaign funding directed towards the Republicans. China would benefit from delaying the full implementation of the Reforms so it has more time to strengthen its position and internationalize the RMB for inclusion into the SDR basket.

A second analysis could also suggest that the delay is orchestrated by Republican industrial interests for the purpose of weakening or outright preventing Russia from having a seat at the table. Russia has made its intentions known that it has been seeking to have the ruble included in the SDR basket along with the RMB.

In addition, the quota amounts for the Russian Federation would also be higher with the implementation of the 2010 Reforms as written, but could also be extremely larger if Plan B is utilized. With the control that Russia exerts over the European natural gas market, it is problematic for the American interests to allow the EU, and its quota allocations, to slide into the BRICS, and Russian economic influence.

For its part, Russia is playing a patient game and waiting for the inevitable time frame of IMF Reforms to be implemented. Whether through the 2010 Reforms as they were originally written, or through the implementation of Plan B, Russia is very aware that any overt provocation or reaction on its part would instantly be branded as the pretext for excluding the ruble from the SDR basket and lessening the Russian quota amount in the Fund.

Either analysis can be equally considered and the potential merging of both is also likely probable. The US Congress delays the reforms long enough to spoil Russian chances for an increased influence in the multilateral system and China plays both sides knowing that it will be the winner in the end because of the growing usage of the RMB and the Plan B structure.

America, trapped by the amount of USD held in the foreign reserve account of China, is willing to play ball with the PBoC, but cannot accept the full and balanced inclusion of both Russia and China into the multilateral financial system. With Russia on the doorstep of Europe the decision was fairly easy from an economic and geopolitical perspective.

The mandates from the Bank for International Settlements have trickled down to the central banks of the world and it has been made clear that USD liquidity based on the balance of payments system is coming to an end.

The attempts at maintaining the valuation of the USD are coming to an end. The SDR replacement is simply a continuation of the fiat and fractional system of debt based money creation. America was never meant to be the apex, only a transition point to the multilateral. – The Barbarians At The Gate

One other thing:

(People’s Daily Online) 09:19, June 17, 2014

The International Monetary Fund’s headquarters may one day move from Washington to Beijing, aligning with China’s growing influence in the world economy, the fund’s managing director Christine Lagarde said early this month.

“But the way things are going, I wouldn’t be surprised if one of these days, the IMF was headquartered in Beijing,” she said.

Lagarde also pointed out that the U.S. government is an “outlier” among the G20 in refusing to approve IMF reform, and the IMF was trying to give emerging economies like China and Brazil a bigger voice through reform.

Lagarde has no specific schedule for the headquarters’ shift. However, this once again reminds China that there are few international organizations headquartered in its country, which is disproportionate to China’s status as the world’s second largest economy.

Intelligence bill bolsters warrantless spying on U.S. citizens


Posted on 13th December 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

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Know Your Enemy


Via Police State USA

AA 2015 is “one of the most egregious sections of law I’ve encountered during my time as a representative,” wrote Rep. Justin Amash.

House of Representatives

WASHINGTON, D.C. –- With virtually no warning or debate, the Intelligence Authorization Act for 2015 (H.R. 4681) was rushed to the House floor and passed, containing a dangerous section which, for the first time, statutorily authorizes spying on U.S. citizens without legal process.

Representative Justin Amash (R-MI) made a hastened effort to draw attention to the disturbing bill, only hours before the vote was scheduled. If not for Amash’s efforts, the bill would have passed on a “voice vote” — meaning no record would be kept of which Congressmen supported it. Rep. Amash explained in a press release on social media:

“When I learned that the Intelligence Authorization Act for FY 2015 was being rushed to the floor for a vote—with little debate and only a voice vote expected (i.e., simply declared “passed” with almost nobody in the room) — I asked my legislative staff to quickly review the bill for unusual language. What they discovered is one of the most egregious sections of law I’ve encountered during my time as a representative: It grants the executive branch virtually unlimited access to the communications of every American.” — Rep. Justin Amash (R-MI)

Section 309 contains the language which civil libertarians found disturbing. Rep. Amash rushed out a “Dear Colleague” letter to every member of congress, urging each to vote “NO” on H.R. 4681.

Dear Colleague:

Rep. Justin Amash (Image: AP)

The intelligence reauthorization bill, which the House will vote on today, contains a troubling new provision that for the first time statutorily authorizes spying on U.S. citizens without legal process.

Last night, the Senate passed an amended version of the intelligence reauthorization bill with a new Sec. 309 — one the House never has considered. Sec. 309 authorizes “the acquisition, retention, and dissemination” of nonpublic communications, including those to and from U.S. persons. The section contemplates that those private communications of Americans, obtained without a court order, may be transferred to domestic law enforcement for criminal investigations.

To be clear, Sec. 309 provides the first statutory authority for the acquisition, retention, and dissemination of U.S. persons’ private communications obtained without legal process such as a court order or a subpoena. The administration currently may conduct such surveillance under a claim of executive authority, such as E.O. 12333. However, Congress never has approved of using executive authority in that way to capture and use Americans’ private telephone records, electronic communications, or cloud data.

Supporters of Sec. 309 claim that the provision actually reins in the executive branch’s power to retain Americans’ private communications. It is true that Sec. 309 includes exceedingly weak limits on the executive’s retention of Americans’ communications. With many exceptions, the provision requires the executive to dispose of Americans’ communications within five years of acquiring them — although, as HPSCI admits, the executive branch already follows procedures along these lines.

In exchange for the data retention requirements that the executive already follows, Sec. 309 provides a novel statutory basis for the executive branch’s capture and use of Americans’ private communications. The Senate inserted the provision into the intelligence reauthorization bill late last night. That is no way for Congress to address the sensitive, private information of our constituents—especially when we are asked to expand our government’s surveillance powers.

Explained another way, this bill allows information gathered via warrantless federal surveillance to be transferred to local law enforcement for criminal investigations without any type of court order, subpoena or warrant. As pointed out above, this is a drastic change in the nature of the law.

As Police State USA has previously explained, tips gathered from NSA-style spying are considered illegitimate in court. Enforcers had to lie and create a “parallel construction” of the investigation using legitimate means in order to proceed with prosecution. Not even the judges and prosecutors knew about the secret investigations of the defendants.

The Intelligence Authorization Act apparently codifies this practice and makes it the norm in law enforcement.

Unfortunately, on December 10th, 2014, the 47-page intelligence bill passed, 325-100. However, since Rep. Amash requested a roll-call vote, we know the names those who backed it.

ROLL CALL VOTE: H.R. 4681: Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015

The measure already passed the U.S. Senate by unanimous consent on December 9th, and is now on its way to the White House, where President Obama is expected to sign it.

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