ECONOMY | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED


ECONOMY

Feb 01 10:24

White House Seeks to Limit Health Law’s Tax Troubles

Obama administration officials and other supporters of the Affordable Care Act say they worry that the tax-filing season will generate new anger as uninsured consumers learn that they must pay tax penalties and as many people struggle with complex forms needed to justify tax credits they received in 2014 to pay for health insurance.

The White House has already granted some exemptions and is considering more to avoid a political firestorm.

Feb 01 10:22

Rise of the robots at AOL lead to job cuts

Media company AOL laid off roughly 150 employees Friday, or 3% of its staff.

The bulk of the layoffs, or close to 100, were in sales, a result of the company's surging growth in so-called programmatic ad sales, according to a person with direct knowledge of the situation who was not authorized to speak on the record.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Automation always sounds like a good idea, but taken to it's ultimate end, it will lead to a nation with 300 million Americans starving and out of work, with all the stores and factories filled with robots that have nothing to do!

Feb 01 10:15

Left Wing Anti-Bankster Party Flips: Hires Bankster to Advise on Debt

This is a strange twist from the pre-election anti-bankster posture of the Syriza party. The Greek government, now run by Syriza officials, has hired US investment bank Lazard to advise it on its debt negotiations with the troika of international lenders, the IMF, World Bank and ECB.

Feb 01 10:13

Oil price will average less in 2015 than during financial crisis, survey finds

Crude oil will likely continue falling before posting only a mild recovery in the second half of this year, a Reuters survey of analysts showed on Friday, with prices set to average even less in 2015 than during the global financial crisis.

Feb 01 09:44

Syriza Won by Being the Opposite of Occupy Anarchists

Webmaster's Commentary: 

INN World Report audio interview

Feb 01 09:18

Nomi Prins: The Sinister Evolution Of Our Modern Banking System

"It takes a pillage." - Nomi Prins

Feb 01 09:11

Russian aggression and the BBC’s drums of nuclear war

The drums of war are beating on the BBC and other mass media, writes Oliver Tickell – naked propaganda about fictitious ‘Russian aggression’ intended to soften us up for a war that could wipe out life on Earth.
We must refuse to fall for the endlessly repeated lies, and tell our politicians that our highest priority of all is peace.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

My reply to BBC and indeed all corporate media. Feel free to use as a template for your own emails.

Corporate media assured us that the USS Main was sunk by a Spanish mine in Havana Harbor, even though Captain Sigsbee reported the cause as an on-board fire. This story of a Spanish mine by the corporate media allowed President McKinley to trick the American people into the Spanish American war. An investigation carried out by Admiral Hyman G. Rickover, the father of America's Nuclear Navy, confirmed Sigbee's report. There had been no Spanish mine.

Corporate media assured us that the Lusitania was not carrying weapons when it was sunk by a German U-Boat, even though the German government had taken out ads in the New York papers warning passengers not to sail on that ship. This story of the sinking of an innocent passenger ship allowed President Woodrow Wilson to trick the American people into World War 1 and divert the war from the original belligerents, Austria-Hungary and Serbia, into a war against Germany. In the 1980s, divers entered the hold of the Lusitania and confirmed it had been smuggling weapons of war to Britain.

Corporate media assured us that North Vietnam launched a torpedo attack against the USS Maddox in the Gulf of Tonkin in August 4th, 1964. Even though Captain Herrick reported that the sonar detection of torpedoes by the Maddox had been an error by an inexperienced sonar operator, the claim of a torpedo attack allowed President Johnson to trick Congress into escalating the Vietnam war.

Corporate media assured is Saddam Hussein had nuclear weapons. Need I say more?

So why would anyone believe the corporate media today when they assure us Russia has invaded Ukraine?

Feb 01 09:10

Apple Delivers Monstrously Worrying Earnings

This growing lack of revenue diversification has some concerned. “A bet on Apple is increasingly a bet on the iPhone,” said Toni Sacconaghi, an analyst for Sanford C. Bernstein & Company. “The good news is, iPhones are great. The bad news is, right now that’s driving over 100 percent of the revenue growth of the company.”

Feb 01 09:05

Here's Some Frightening Honesty (Courtesy Of The US Congress)

A member of my staff caught an obscure resolution that was introduced in the US House of Representatives last week—Resolution no. 41.

The fact that there was essentially no coverage of this Resolution really shows how the mainstream media is completely turning a blind eye to the true fiscal situation of the United States of America.

The entire point of the resolution is to say that the federal government is broke.

Feb 01 09:04

'Chance for a new start': Croatia writes off debts of 60,000 poorest citizens

The Croatian government have gotten creditors on board a plan to erase the debts of some 60,000 poorest citizens. The “fresh start” scheme targets less than 1 percent of the entire debt, but is hoped to boost the economy in the long-term.

Feb 01 09:02

FLASHBACK - Iceland Dismantles Corrupt Gov’t Then Arrests All Rothschild Bankers

Last week 9 people were arrested in London and Reykjavik for their possible responsibility for Iceland’s financial collapse in 2008, a deep crisis which developed into an unprecedented public reaction that is changing the country’s direction.

It has been a revolution without weapons in Iceland, the country that hosts the world’s oldest democracy (since 930), and whose citizens have managed to effect change by going on demonstrations and banging pots and pans. Why have the rest of the Western countries not even heard about it?

Feb 01 09:02

FLASHBACK - Hungary Kills The Rothschild Banks: Ordered To Vacate Country.

The Banking Cabal Invented State Zionism (State Of Israel) Usurping Judaism's (Jew) Non-State Identity.

Just As They Invented Communism, Marxism, Fascism, Nationalism, Socialism, Usurping Other Nation State Identities For Economic Upheaval So As To Institute Centralization Of Money To Their Banks. End Of NWO Story!

Feb 01 08:57

Open letter to the German readers: That which you were never told about Greece

Alexis Tsipras' "open letter" to German citizens published on Jan.13 in Handelsblatt, a leading German language business newspaper.

Feb 01 08:53

White House Is Willing to Become Mediator Between Greece and EU

In an indirect intervention in favor of Greece, in the dispute with the Europeans, proceeded earlier today the White House, during the daily press briefing. According to Washington-based Greek journalist Michalis Ignatiou, the White House intents to assume the role of mediator in order to solve the differences between Greece and its European partners.

Jan 31 20:51

Did The Federal Reserve Make A Major Math Error When Reporting Its December Gold Withdrawals?

According to the NY Fed, 177 tons of gold have been withdawn from its vault in 2014; according to foreign central banks, at least 207 tons of gold were withdrawn from the NY Fed in 2014.

Did a Fed intern make a very glaring math error or is something else going on?

Jan 31 20:48

Caught On Tape: Dijsselbloem To Varoufakis: "You Just Killed The Troika"

Yesterday saw the clearest example yet of Europe's anger that the Greeks may choose their own path as opposed to following the EU's non-sovereign leadership's demands when the most uncomfortable moment ever caught on tape - the moment when Eurogroup chief Jeroen Dijsselbloem (he of the "template" foot in mouth disease) stood up at the end of the EU-Greece press conference, awkwardly shook hands with Greece's new finance minister, and whispered..."you have just killed the Troika," to which Varoufakis responded... "wow!"

Jan 31 20:35

Think Greece is in a mess? Wait till the UK's debt mountain explodes in our face

Our debts, national and personal, are huge. We can never pay them off. Our trade imbalance is just as bad. Our recovery is based entirely on a house-price balloon that could burst in a moment.

The main effort of the Government is to avoid any shocks until the Election is over – but what then?

I feel for the Greeks. I don’t blame them for refusing to endure more collective punishment, though they were foolish – as we are now – to let politicians lead them into a swamp of debt.

But I wonder whether, not far hence, it will be the Greeks who are sympathising with us.

Jan 31 18:27

The Brutal Economics of Blogging

Jan 31 16:45

Hundreds of thousands join Madrid anti-austerity rally

At least 100,000 people poured into the streets of Madrid on Saturday in a huge show of support for Spain's new anti-austerity party Podemos, riding a wave of popularity after the election success of its Greek hard-left ally Syriza.

Jan 31 16:24

Income Inequality Soars in Every US State

Income inequality has grown in every state in the US in recent decades, according to a new study published this week by the Economic Policy Institute. The report, entitled The Increasingly Unequal States of America, found that, even though states home to major metropolitan financial centers such as New York, Chicago, and the Bay Area had the highest levels of income inequality, the gap between the rich and the poor has increased in every region of the country.

Jan 31 16:08

Greece's New Finance Minister - Interview on BBC's Newsnight

"As a fan of the BBC, I must say I was appalled by the depths of inaccuracy in the reporting underpinning this interview (not to mention the presenter’s considerable rudeness)."

Jan 31 16:01

The Greek Earthquake

Syriza will not easily sweep the policies of austerity aside, but there is a palpable feeling on the continent that a tide is turning.

Jan 31 15:56

Greece says it will not negotiate with EU-IMF creditors

New finance minister says Athens instead wants direct talks with eurozone leaders to try to cancel some of its debts.

Jan 31 15:54

Podemos Anti-Austerity Party on the Rise, Thousands Protest in Madrid

Following the victory of radical left-wing Syriza party in Greece, thousands of people gathered in Madrid in an anti-governmental rally organized by the Spanish anti-austerity left-wing party Podemos.

Jan 31 14:54

Is Another "Mortgage Meltdown" on the Way?

Jan 31 14:29

Decline of US household income, by group

Jan 31 14:00

UC Davis passes divestment resolution, five other campaigns launched across US

A wave of divestment campaigns has started to roll across the country. In California, students at San Diego State University are planning for next week’s public forum on divestment, while students at Stanford University say they have collected more than one thousand signatures from students supporting their divestment campaign.

Jan 31 13:46

Secession Begins at Home By Jeff Deist

"The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire."
- Robert A. Heinlein

snip: Some people will always support the state, and we shouldn’t kid ourselves about this. It may be due to genetic traits, environmental factors, family influences, bad schools, media influences, or simply an innate human desire to seek the illusion of security.

But we make a fatal mistake when we dilute our message to seek approval from people who seemingly are hardwired to oppose us. And we waste precious time and energy.

What’s important is not convincing those who fundamentally disagree with us, but the degree to which we can extract ourselves from their political control.

This is why secession is a tactically superior approach in my view: it is far less daunting to convince liberty-minded people to walk away from the state than to convince those with a statist mindset to change.

Jan 31 10:44

When FDR made gold illegal to own for everyday people – At the point of a gun (A short video)

FDR, the man who studied Mussolini, who birthed the current intrusive state, who started the drug war in earnest, who put Japanese Americans into concentration camps, who extended the Depression years longer than it needed to be and thereby contributed to the genesis of the Second World War, who tried to pack the Supreme Court, who gave away half of Europe to the Soviets at Yalta, and who confiscated the gold – the real wealth – of the American people.

Jan 31 10:42

Market internals Fade - January

Jan 31 10:29

New Study: Nations 100 Times More Likely to Go to War in Oil-Rich Countries

Carey Wedler
Activist Post

New research from the Universities of Essex and Portsmouth has confirmed what many already know: governments are more likely to intervene in foreign conflicts when oil is involved.

The study, "Oil Above Water: Economic Interdependence and Third Party Intervention" was published in the Journal of Conflict Resolution and studied 69 instances of civil war since World War II where a third party government intervened...

Jan 31 10:01

Greece Is Now a Russia Sanctions Veto. Merkel Is Foaming at the Mouth

Two days ago, Zero Hedge first, and shortly thereafter everyone else, pointed out something stunning: the biggest surprise to emerge so far out of the new anti-Troika/austerity Greek government was not so much its intention to proceed with the first test of "Odious Debt" - this was largely known in advance - but its dramatic pivot away from Germany and Europe, and toward Russia.

As we noted before, not only has Greece already blocked all ongoing privatization processes, a clear snub of Merkel and the Troika which demands the piecemeal blue light special sale of Greece to western buyers as part of the "bailout", but is also looking at plans to reinstate public sector employees and announce increased pensions for those on low incomes: further clear breaches of the Troika's austerity terms.

Jan 31 08:39

What’s Really Happening? with Michael Rivero

A few years ago the gold market manipulation story began taking root in the mainstream media. When Dominique Strauss-Kahn (DSK), former head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), appeared in the spotlight various countries began to question wether their gold, supposedly stored in safe-keeping at the Federal Reserve in New York, was actually still in the vaults.

Michael Rivero, Editor in Chief of What Really Happened, website and radio show, appeared on the History Channel’s “America’s Book of Secrets: The Gold Conspiracy”. This TV program provided some detail of what happened during the DSK arrest for allegedly having a sexual encounter with a chamber maid at a New York City hotel. DSK was actually removed from a plane headed to Germany where DSK was to attend a meeting the next day. DSK had been asking questions about gold the Federal Reserve was suppose to turning over to the IMF.

Jan 31 08:15

Spain rally: Podemos holds Madrid mass 'March for Change'

Tens of thousands of people have massed in central Madrid for a rally organised by radical Spanish leftists Podemos.

The "March for Change" is one of the party's first outdoor mass rallies, as it looks to build on the recent victory of its close allies Syriza in Greece.

Podemos has surged into the lead in recent opinion polls, and says it will seek to write off part of Spain's debt if it wins elections later this year.

Podemos says politicians should "serve the people, not private interests".

Jan 31 05:44

Russia might bailout Greece – finance minister

Greece hasn’t outright asked Russia for a loan, but Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said Moscow wouldn’t rule it out. His statement comes days after Greece openly opposed further economic sanctions against Russia.

Jan 31 05:02

Big Business “Regulators” and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP): Opening the Floodgates to Corporate Plunder

A new leak concerning the talks around the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) indicates that the floodgates could be opened even further for corporate influence. The leak has been analysed by the corporate watchdogs CEO and LobbyControl and shows that corporate influence on EU and US policies might dramatically increase via the chapter on so-called ‘regulatory cooperation’.

Jan 31 04:51

We Are All Greeks Now - Greece, the US and the Neo-Liberal Coup

Since the onset of economic calamity in the West beginning around 2007 ‘official’ response has been framed as modest successes with a few policy errors while the reality is of remote elites and their agents enacting punitive policies under the guise of material economic constraints. In this context the election of Alexis Tsipras and Syriza in Greece appears a radical left turn while the actual economic proposals under discussion appear to be the middle-of-the-road textbook economics that preceded the neo-liberal coup of the 1970s in the U.S. And while Mr. Tsipras has greater understanding of this economics and strategies of economic resolution than do the European and American leadership classes, the levers of resolution remain firmly with this (mis)leadership.

Jan 30 17:30

“We’re on the Verge of a Crisis” and Global Currency Wars Are Triggering It

In financial circles, it is widely acknowledged that the Federal Reserve was about to raise interest rates, but has since changed course and decided to hold firm.

Why? Because currencies are tanking all across the globe, and a stronger U.S. dollar – a double-edged sword – is making export goods more expensive and hurting international business.

Welcome to 2015, the year of the currency wars. Things are about to get volatile, so hold on.

Jan 30 17:06

Most Americans on Brink of Financial Disaster

Jan 30 16:58

Oil prices (January of year)

Jan 30 16:48

The Death Of The American Dream In 22 Numbers

Jan 30 16:37

Why the world is turning against the dollar

Jan 30 16:05

How QE works, in 40 seconds:

Jan 30 16:04

Indian Silver Imports Reach Massive 7,063 Tonnes in 2014!

It appears that the West’s gold is not the only thing flowing East…

Jan 30 15:48

Brazil's Economy Is On The Verge Of Total Collapse

Today's Brazilian economic data follows up quite well to our article from a month ago "Brazil's Economy Just Imploded" and as the earlier article on the crashing Brazilian Real hinted, things for the Brazilian economy how gone from imploding to, well, worse because not only did the twin fiscal and current account deficits rise even more, hitting a whopping 11% of GDP - the worst since August 1999, but its government debt soared to 63.4% in 2014, up from 56.7% a year ago, and the highest since at least 2006. In short - the entire economy is now on the verge of total collapse.

Jan 30 15:47

Chevron Slashes 23% Of PA Workforce As US Rig Count Collapses To June 2010 Lows

For the 8th week in a row (something that hasn't happened since June 2009), US total rig count plunged. This week's 90 rig drop to 1543 is the largest so far (with oil rigs down 94 to 1223 - lowest since Jan 2013). The total rig count is now down 20% in the last 8 weeks to the lowest since June 2010 as it tracks the 4-month lagged oil price perfectly. This is the 2nd biggest 8-week drop in 22 years. This - rather unsurprisingly - has led Chevron to decide to cut 23% of its Pennsylvania workforce "due to activity levels." Not 'unambiguously positive' as so many in the central planning bureaus would have everyone believe.

Jan 30 15:45

"Looks Like I'll Be Able To Retire Comfortably At Age 91"

You've probably seen articles and adverts discussing how much money you'll need to "retire comfortably." The trick of course is the definition of comfortable. The general idea of comfortable (as I understand it) appears to be an income which enables the retiree to enjoy leisurely vacations on cruise ships, own a well-appointed RV for tooling around the countryside, and spend as much time on the golf links as he/she might want. Needless to say, Social Security isn't going to fund a comfortable retirement, unless the definition is watching TV with an box of kibble to snack on. By this definition of retiring comfortably, I reckon I should be able to retire at age 91--assuming I can work another 30 years and the creek don't rise.

Jan 30 15:43

Germany Is (Almost) Japan: Bund Yield Plunges To Record 0.33%

At 32.5bps, Germany's 10Y Bund closed at a record low today (within 4bps of Japan's 10Y yield). The Japanification of Europe is almost complete.

Jan 30 15:42

What Happens When The Markets Realize This...?

"The market forces are going to overwhelm us. We’re not going to be able to hold the line anymore. And then you get that rapid snapback in premiums as the market realizes that central banks can’t do this forever. And that’s going to cause volatility and disruption." - Charles Plosser

Jan 30 15:28

Greece will no longer work with troika : Finance minister

Greece’s newly-elected anti-austerity Finance Minister says his government will no longer cooperate with the troika of international lenders or seek aid extension.

Jan 30 12:54

Monsanto's Government Ties

Jan 30 12:19

My Songs Got 151,781 Plays on YouTube. I Received $10…

By the end of 2013 YouTube made their agreement with Swiss copyright society SUISA and thus finally became open to Swiss authors. By the end of January 2014 I was a YouTube partner and started uploading all my content and my so far 28 videos. But above all I was able to monetize the many third party uploads of my music. Or so I thought because it soon became clear that all my views added to next to nothing in my income reports.

Jan 30 12:16

Chevron Slashes 23% Of PA Workforce As US Rig Count Collapses To June 2010 Lows

For the 8th week in a row (something that hasn't happened since June 2009), US total rig count plunged. This week's 90 rig drop to 1543 is the largest so far (with oil rigs down 94 to 1223 - lowest since Jan 2013). The total rig count is now down 20% in the last 8 weeks to the lowest since June 2010 as it tracks the 4-month lagged oil price perfectly. This is the 2nd biggest 8-week drop in 22 years. This - rather unsurprisingly - has led Chevron to decide to cut 23% of its Pennsylvania workforce "due to activity levels." Not 'unambiguously positive' as so many in the central planning bureaus would have everyone believe.

Jan 30 12:16

It Begins: Energy Giant Chevron Suspends Stock Buyback, Blames "Cash Flow Squeeze"

It was less than 24 hours after we posted that either oil will double from here allowing energy companies to grow into a normal P/E multiple, or energy stocks will have to crash by over 40% for the ridiculous 23x to return to its normal, long-term average of 13.6x. Moments ago energy giant Chevron admitted that not only does it not see oil doubling any time soon, but that energy prices are almost certain to go far lower from here, and as a result the company decided that after buying back $5 billion of its shares in 2014, i.e., buying high and higher before the stock crashes may not be the best use of dwindling cash flow, and as a result has just suspended its stock buyback program of the rest of 2015. Yes, energy giant Chevron just ended its buyback!

Jan 30 11:34

Detroit health plan to drop some retirees

Police Sgt. Nancy Headapohl and her husband, Dave, have dedicated a combined 73 years of service to the city.

A former lieutenant, Dave Headapohl served 40 years prior to his retirement in 2006. He was exempt from Medicare and Social Security and got dropped from the city's traditional health insurance plan under changes imposed last March.

Since then, he's been covered under his wife's policy. But that coverage ends under terms negotiated in the city's landmark bankruptcy, leaving him "completely on his own," his wife says.

Jan 30 10:57

Webster Tarpley: An examination of how Syriza won in Greece

In this interview, Dr. Webster Griffin Tarpley explains the demands and policy routes Syriza chose. He examines the need for mass-traction economic demands, principled alliances and a rejection of wedge issues; immigration etc.

Their victory has shocked the ruling class in the UK, and led to an incredibly disingenuous and dangerous propaganda campaign trying to frame Greece as a hub for terrorists.

Jan 30 10:51

Picture: Student Served Most Disgusting “Michelle Obama” Lunch Ever

Recently, major changes came to school lunches because of the efforts of the First Lady, Michelle Obama. The USDA claims that “the new standards align school meals with the latest nutrition science and the real world circumstances of America’s schools.”

It was only recently that dozens of teenagers posted their lunches to social media, specifically calling out Michelle Obama for the reforms she pushed.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

You know you live in a dictatorship when the dictator's wife decides what your children eat for lunch.

Jan 30 10:49

The Country That Refuses to Bow Down to Western Bankers

The powers that be are getting nervous as other countries consider following Greece's lead.

Jan 30 10:48

What U.S. wage growth (Goldman note)

Jan 30 10:17

Dollar Is Wandering Off Track

Jan 30 10:17

U.S. workers still waiting for wage growth

Jan 30 10:11

Canada GDP shrinks on biggest factory drop in six years

The Canadian dollar plunged below 79 cents US today after data showed Canada’s gross domestic product contracted in November as manufacturing dropped the most since January 2009 and on declines in mining and oil and gas extraction.

Jan 30 10:09

Almost half of US households exhaust their salaries

The Federal Reserve has declared economic growth “solid.” But several new reports show most Americans are treading along a dangerous financial tightrope, where one slip could be devastating.

Jan 30 09:52

International alliance of democratic forces opposing the Euro

The groups already involved at that time coming from France, Spain and Austria were again present. Only the Greek participants could not come for obvious reasons but pledged to continue their participation. (See the Assisi call with the detailed names of the groups involved. ) The Finnish Independence Party joined in.

Jan 30 09:49

The Mexican Peso & Brazilian Real Are Collapsing

Back over 15 / USD for the first time since March 2009, the Mexican Peso is tumbling hard this morning... and the Brazilian Real is also tanking (back near 10-year lows) - no clear catalyst aside from further weakness in oil producer and EM FX sentiment.

Jan 30 09:44

DEFLATION: Why the Fed is Really Fighting

Jan 30 09:35

Bet now that shares will fall, says City tycoon who made millions by predicting the credit crunch

A hedge fund manager who made millions after correctly predicting the credit crunch has warned major economies are entering a recession that will be ‘remembered in a hundred years’.

In a letter to his well-heeled customers, Crispin Odey predicted that ‘equity markets will get devastated’ and described it as the best time to bet on shares slumping in value since the recent financial crisis.

Citing the current turmoil in the markets, including a dramatic slump in the oil price and a ‘faltering Chinese economy’, he said: ‘This downcycle is likely to be remembered in a hundred years, when we hope it won’t be rated for ‘How good it looks for its age!’.

Jan 30 09:09

Economically, What We Are Experiencing Right Now Are Birth Pangs Of The Coming Great Depression.

The signs of the times are everywhere – all you have to do is open up your eyes and look at them. When a pregnant woman first goes into labor, the birth pangs are usually fairly moderate and are not that close together.

Jan 30 08:29

Senate approves Keystone XL pipeline despite veto threat

The Republican-controlled Senate passed a bipartisan bill approving construction of the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline, prompting a showdown with President Barack Obama, who has promised to veto the legislation.

Jan 30 08:28

Head of DHS Regretfully Admits: "I Cannot Print Money. We Need A Continued Partnership With Congress."

"DHS cannot pursue all these important missions alone. I cannot print money. I cannot appropriate money. We need a continued partnership with Congress. We need a FY 2015 appropriations bill... As originally introduced by the House Appropriations Committee, the FY 2015 appropriations bill for the Department of Homeland Security was a good bill. It appropriated $39.7 billion for the Department and funded many of the things we need. On the House floor the bill was amended to include politically-charged language to defund all our executive actions to fix the immigration system. The President has vowed to veto any bill that includes such language."

Jan 30 08:27

Occupied By Wall Street – The Latest TARP Taxpayer Screw-Job Is Revealed

The Treasury-created market has benefited a few savvy investors, while saddling taxpayers with a loss. Three private funds, which the report didn’t name, have won almost half the shares available at auction, often netting either a profit on paper or on the resale, according to the special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program. The Treasury, which has held 185 auctions to date, said it has raised about $3 billion on TARP investments that were originally valued at $3.8 billion, for a loss of $800 million at the auctions.

The Treasury “set up this market where investors could come in quickly and flip and profit,” said Christy Romero, TARP’s special inspector general, in an interview.

Jan 30 08:26

‘Being poor is not a crime’: Civil group files lawsuit to help man imprisoned for failing to pay fines

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed a federal lawsuit against officials in DeKalb County, Georgia after a judge imprisoned a black teenager who was too poor to pay $838 in fines. It all started with a traffic ticket near his home.

Jan 30 08:25

Pentagon to keep secret military spending in Afghanistan

‘The US Defense Department has decided to keep secret its massive spending in Afghanistan, according to Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction (SIGAR).

Jan 30 08:13

Reagan Economist: Washington Will Do Anything It Can To Stop BRICS

Jan 30 08:09

Bank of England chief 'delusional' to claim UK escaped debt trap - economist

Mark Carney’s claim that Britain has escaped a “debt trap” common to Eurozone states has been dismissed by UK economist Michael Burke as “delusional.” Burke says Britain's debt has merely been transferred from private firms to UK homeowners.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

When all the currency is loaned into circulation at interest, there is no escape possible from the debt trap. Britain should remember that the United States fought a revolution against Britain to break free of the Bank of England's predatory practices.

"The refusal of King George 3rd to allow the colonies to operate an honest money system, which freed the ordinary man from the clutches of the money manipulators, was probably the prime cause of the revolution." -- Benjamin Franklin

Jan 30 08:06

EU to Greece: ‘No question of cancelling debt’

"There is no question of cancelling the Greek debt. Other eurozone countries will not accept this," said Juncker Wednesday as quoted by Le Figaro. He added that Brussels is open to dialogue and didn’t want to threaten Greece.

The Greek government was forced to implement austerity measures in exchange for a €317 billion bailout from the troika of creditors of the ECB, IMF and the EU.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Half of Greece's debt was created through fraud between former Greek President Papandreou and Goldman Sachs. The goal of the fraud was to conceal Greece's debt through currency swaps, but the plan actually doubled Greece's debt (and made a fortune for Goldman Sachs). The Troika would have been well advised to consider that portion of the debt odious and drop it. But their greed in demanding the Greek people pay for Papandreou's fraud has brought them to this place where their fear of debt-reduction demands from other EU members will not allow them to reduce Greece's debt, which in turn will drive Greece from the EU and default on their debt, triggering a collapse of the credit default swaps sold against Greece's debt.

Jan 30 07:50

Birth Pangs Of The Coming Great Depression

The signs of the times are everywhere – all you have to do is open up your eyes and look at them. When a pregnant woman first goes into labor, the birth pangs are usually fairly moderate and are not that close together. But as the time for delivery approaches, they become much more frequent and much more intense. Economically, what we are experiencing right now are birth pangs of the coming Great Depression.

Jan 30 00:34

High End Retailer Kate Spade Closing Stores

Jan 30 00:33

Ford’s earnings for 2014 plunge 56 percent

Jan 29 23:49

Why the Damage to the Economy Caused by the Oil Crash Is Going to Get Progressively Worse

We are really starting to see the price of oil weigh very heavily on the economy and on the stock market. On Tuesday, the Dow was down 291 points, and the primary reason for the decline was disappointing corporate sales numbers. For example, heavy equipment manufacturer Caterpillar is blaming the “dramatic decline in the price of oil” for much lower than anticipated sales during the fourth quarter of 2014. Even though Caterpillar is not an “energy company”, the price of oil is critical to their success. And the same could be said about thousands of other companies. That is why I have repeatedly stated that anyone who believes that collapsing oil prices are good for the U.S. economy is crazy. The key to how much damage this oil collapse is going to do to our economy is not how low prices ultimately go. Rather, the key is how long they stay at these low levels. If the price of oil went back to $80 a barrel next week, the damage would be fairly minimal.

Jan 29 19:00

We Are The Generation That Gets To Witness The End Of The American Dream

The “American Dream” has been transformed into a very twisted game of musical chairs. With each passing year, more people are falling out of the middle class, and most of the rest of us are scrambling really hard to keep our own places. Something has gone horribly wrong, and yet Americans are very deeply divided when it comes to finding answers to our problems.

Jan 29 18:58

Syriza's Original 40 Point Manifesto

18. Nationalization of banks.

...

That could stir things up a bit

Jan 29 18:57

The Biggest "Hamilton Oil Shock" In History

The most cautionary episode to today was the 62% drop in oil prices from November 1985 to July 1986, although the Hamilton measure is much smaller. Similar to today, most believed this would prove to be a boost to GDP growth. Indeed, the consensus was forecasting average 2.3% GDP growth to increase 0.3pp, but it actually fell 0.9pp (based on the as reported GDP data, third release). This downward surprise continued for three quarters.

Jan 29 16:57

Under mattress, in freezer: Americans hiding cash

Where to stash your cash? Some Americans are sleeping on it—literally. -- While banks are still the go-to solution for most consumers, 29 percent say they’re keeping at least some savings in cash bills and coins, according to a new survey of 1,820 adults from American Express. Of those holding cash savings, 53 percent are hiding it in a secret location

Jan 29 16:46

STOCKMAN: ‘When third bubble collapses will be day of reckoning’

"We've had two huge bubbles that collapsed already in this century," he said. "When this third bubble collapses—and surely it will—I believe that will be the day of reckoning. The credibility of all this central-bank-dominated, Wall-Street-coddling policy will be totally repudiated, and maybe then we can clean the slate and start over."

Jan 29 16:31

U.S. home ownership rate falls to 20-year low

Jan 29 16:18

Gilts hit historic low as fall in oil price brings deflation closer to Britain

Falling inflation and the prospect of official interest rates being kept on hold for longer sent the government’s benchmark measure of borrowing costs tumbling to an all-time low on Thursday.

With the prospect of the rapid fall in oil prices bringing deflation to Britain within the next few months, the yield, or effective interest rate, on 10-year gilts touched 1.396% at one point during the day – lower than during the worst point of the eurozone crisis of 2012, and the first time in history it had been below 1.4%. They closed at 1.42%

If sustained, the downward move in gilt yields will have implications for the cost of servicing the government’s near-£100bn budget deficit and reduce the cost of long-term mortgages. Pensions, however, will suffer a drop in investment returns.

Jan 29 16:12

WTF Chart Of The Day: Baltic Dry Index Crashes To Lowest In 29 Years

Quietly behind the scenes - and not at all reflective of a collapsing global economy (because that would break the narrative of over-supply and pent-up demand) - The Baltic Dry Index plunged over 5% today to 632... That is the lowest absolute level for the global shipping rates indicator since August 1986...

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