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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Why Gold Will Replace U.S. Treasuries as the World's Last Risk-Free Investment

Since surging to a record high $1,917.90 an ounce earlier this month, the price of gold has slipped on profit taking. But don't let that minor correction fool you into thinking gold's bull run is over. The yellow metal's best days are still ahead.

How do I know? Because, unlike U.S. debt, gold can't be downgraded. It has inherent value that's more reliable than the word of even the most powerful country on earth.

Why Gold Will Replace U.S. Treasuries as the World's Last Risk-Free Investment :: The Market Oracle :: Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting Free Website

Three years after Lehman, a new debt crisis looms | Business | The Guardian

Economic downturns usually go through five distinct phases: bubble, denial, acceptance, panic and recovery. This fifth phase officially started two and a half years ago, but the drip-drip of disappointing news from the around the world in recent weeks has made financial markets highly averse to taking risks. Higher unemployment, slower growth, currency tensions have all led to a rush for safe havens.

The markets are now wondering whether this is one of the rare crises that has a sixth phase – relapse. At root, the suspicion is that the problems that caused the crisis in the first place have not been solved, that politicians are offering weak leadership, and that the next few months could see the start of phase two of the Great Contraction.

Three years after Lehman, a new debt crisis looms | Business | The Guardian

Nice......


Sunday, August 28, 2011

"A Wolf In Sheep's Clothing" | ZeroHedge

Submitted by Mike Krieger of KAM LLP

This really bothers me. You have to love that Warren Buffett, the richest man in the world, has deemed himself representative and ambassador for those making $250,000 and more..."People like myself" he says. People that take home $250,000 a year before taxes are somehow in the same category as the richest man in the world? I would say there is a fairly large gap between a $250,000 annual income and a $45 billion empire. And how did the powers that be arrive at this arbitrary yet significant figure of $250,000 as the line for dividing rich and poor? Warren, why not donate your money to the government that you feel so strongly should be funded with more money from the "rich" that you have appointed yourself representative of? I am beyond disgusted by these righteous "do as I say, not as I do folks that have already made a fortune and yet are lobbying for higher taxes as though they are elected representatives for the government's definition of "rich", meanwhile by and large their wealth has already been made and tax policy is immaterial to their incremental future wealth. If he feels so strongly about what people like him should be paying, WHAT'S STOPPING HIM? Pay more then, Warren, if it means so much to you. Nobody is stopping you and the government will gladly accept a larger check from you on April 15th. Meanwhile stop meddling in the business of people that are eons and light years away from you in wealth and are still working daily to achieve their own financial success and stability. And I'm not against paying more in taxes...I'm just against higher taxes as long as it's being funneled to the reckless careless idiots in Washington DC currently in charge of spending it...but that's subject for another conversation altogether.

- Written by a friend of mine last November

A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing

Anyone that has read these pieces for a while knows where I stand on Warren Buffett. Namely I can’t stand him. It has nothing to do with the fact that he has so much money. I am not an envious person and moreover I think having wealth anywhere near his is more of a curse than a blessing. The reason I can’t stand him is because he is a fraud. While he may have been a great investor at one point, he is more of a great actor than anything else. Here is one of the richest people in the world. He sits there in Nebraska, chuckling, drinking his cherry coke and eating hamburgers in this pathetically obvious attempt to convince the masses he is “just like us.” The term wolf in sheep’s was invented for guys like this. Like most people out there I don’t like bad guys. The trick; however, is that the most dangerous bad guys don’t come out and tell you they are bad guys and how they are going to fleece you. What they do is pretend they are the good guys. Pretend that they are on the side of the little guy or working for the “collective good,” which is a preposterous statement because there is no such thing. Human desires and notions of what is a good life are as varied as the stars in the sky. Once we start allowing officials or rich people to define “collective good” you can be sure we are finished.

I am currently rereading Henry David Thoreau’s Walden. Thoreau has been described as “an American author, poet, abolitionist, naturalist, tax resister, development critic, surveyor, historian, philosopher, and leading transcendentalist.” In other words, in my mind a true American hero. I was struck by this line as I was reading it the other day:

If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life, as from that dry and parching wind of African deserts called the simoom, which fills the mouth and nose and ears and eyes with dust till you are suffocated, for fear that I should get some of his good done to me – some of its virus mingled with my blood. No – in this case I would rather suffer evil the natural way. A man is not a good man to me because he will feed me if I should be starving, or warm me if I should be freezing, or pull me out of a ditch if I should ever fall into one. I can find you a Newfoundland dog that will do as much.

Thank you sir.



So back to Buffett. The truth of the matter is, as I and other have exposed these last several years, is that he essentially runs a financial services company. When the system itself was threatened the status quo was threatened. Buffett stepped in and became a government agent once he saw the writing on the wall. He did not step up for America. He did not step up for the people. He stepped up for himself and his legacy. He stepped up to save the status quo because he is the status quo. All of this raises a very serious issue in America right now and one that needs to be dealt with in the next crisis (which has arrived) or we will never be able to recover into the world’s most vibrant and dynamic economy again. A lot of people lament the lack of upward mobility in the U.S. right now and I share those sentiments. However, equally important is downward mobility. What makes the concept of America unique is not merely the concept that the poor can become rich but that the rich can become poor. It is this second part that is the most dangerous to social cohesion when it disappears. Unfortunately, the system that we have today of an unholy alliance between Wall Street, Washington D.C. and the multi-national corporations (including the military industrial complex of course) stands there holding onto all the levers of power to serve as gatekeepers of their own empires.

I read a great article on a related topic recently. It was called “Central Planning and The Fall of the US Empire.” http://globalguerrillas.typepad.com/globalguerrillas/2011/07/journal-central-planning-and-the-fall-of-the-us-empire.html One of the most significant conclusions in my opinion was the following:

The answer is that an extreme concentration of wealth at the center of our market economy has led to a form of central planning. The concentration of wealth is now in so few hands and is so extreme in degree, that the combined liquid financial power of all of those not in this small group is inconsequential to determining the direction of the economy. As a result, we now have the equivalent of centralized planning in global marketplaces. A few thousand extremely wealthy people making decisions on the allocation of our collective wealth. The result was inevitable: gross misallocation across all facets of the private economy.

To see what this extreme wealth concentration looks like as a distribution, we don't have to look further than income distribution in the US (classic power law). The liquid wealth of those on the extreme left of the curve completely outweighs the 99.5% of the population to the right (the distribution is FAR more skewed than most people even imagine -- Republican or Democrat). This graph would also be a good way to demonstrate how decision making in a bureaucratic dictatorship in a country like the Soviet Union looked like before it collapsed.
Once again this brings us back to good old Uncle Warren. Have you noticed that Obama can’t make a speech these days without saying “Warren Buffett say this…or Warren Buffett says that.” I mean give me a freaking break. It seems that Buffett has been named head of the U.S. economy and basically Obama just picks up the phone and whatever uncle Warren says goes, despite the fact that the guy has a huge stake in one thing and one thing only. Preserving the status quo and preserving his legacy.

The Wolf Invests in Bank of America

The interesting thing about today is that I had intended to write this piece on Warren Buffett all week. It was just really fortuitous timing that this Bank of America news came out today. Gosh where to start. First of all, this $5 billion preferred investment by Uncle Warren in preferred stock is extremely bearish for the market, the economy and the financial system. This is not an investment, it is political-economic strategy. It tell us so many things that we probably already suspected. It tells us that Bank of America did indeed need capital. Even worse they probably need so much that they went to Uncle Warren for five big ones so that people would just look the other way and gain “confidence.” This is how out to lunch these guys are. They don’t understand that the root of the lack of confidence is that the people see a country devolving into a Banana Republic led by greedy oligarchs and politicians stealing everything in sight as the ship sinks. So then they roll out the number one crony capitalist in America, tell us he is investing in Bank of America and expect that to lead to confidence!! What a bunch of maniacs run this nation. This is 1789 France folks as I have said many times before.

Second, the fact that TPTB are resorting to Uncle Warren for everything now may mean the Fed is out of the game. No one has confidence in the Fed to come save the day so they need the next thing. That next thing is Uncle Warren. Unfortunately it’s not working and it is not going to work. You can see it in the market today. People are waking up. They are starting to see through the matrix. Buffett is a fraud and a shill. If you follow him it will be right over a cliff.

The Baby Boomer generation is getting old and their ideas about how political systems and economies operate are getting even older. My generation is coming into its own and we will determine our own destinies. You can step aside gracefully or you can be pushed aside. Either way your days of running the lives of this planet are numbered. The Fourth Turning is here.

Peace and wisdom,
Mike

"A Wolf In Sheep's Clothing" | ZeroHedge

Saturday, August 27, 2011

When Gold ETFs Sell Off, Do Other Precious Metals Follow?

The following article from Seeking Alpha is a pretty good summation of gold and silver ETF strategies, minus the caveats I put out there about the fact that you don't "own" the gold or silver. If you are just looking to trade gold and silver as a dollar denominated asset, then this article is actually very good.


One of the biggest stories in the ETF world over the past few trading sessions has been the Gold SPDR (GLD) taking the top spot among the most widely-held ETFs, finally surpassing SPY for the AUM crown. Yet, just as soon as this happened and gold hit $1,900/oz., investors saw a brutal sell-off in the precious metal, causing prices to fall to their current level around $1,770/oz. While the reasons for this decline are unclear - some blame profit-taking while others point to market manipulation - one has to wonder if a similar situation plagued the rest of the precious metal group and their respective ETFs, specifically, silver, platinum and palladium.


Thanks to some gains in Thursday’s session, as well as strong buying to start the week, GLD is now down just 3.4% over the past five days. While the rest of the precious metal group is also experiencing losses, they vary significantly from metal to metal. The most popular Silver ETF, SLV, is showing losses of roughly 2.6% for the period while the platinum (PPLT) and palladium (PALL) funds, both from ETF Securities, are showing losses of just 1.5% and 0.5%, respectively.

This trend in variation is confirmed by a longer term view of the markets as well. In fact, over the course of 2011, SLV leads the way, showing gains of 40%, while GLD is up roughly 27% in comparison. The two more ‘industrial’ metals of the group, palladium and platinum, are sporting returns of -6.8% and 2.3%, respectively, further demonstrating how different returns can be in this group of metals. This suggests that although many investors may group the metals into the same category, that is probably not very wise from a return perspective, given how the metals each react differently to macroeconomic events.

For example, gold is clearly viewed primarily as a safe haven metal. The product has little use in the industrial sphere and has been used and thought of as money for thousands of years. Meanwhile, silver also shares some of the monetary characteristics with gold, but silver has far more industrial uses than its more precious cousin. In fact, the majority of silver consumption goes to industrial purposes so the metal is just as impacted by fears of inflation and currency debasement as it is by economic growth and industrial production. For platinum and palladium, the uses are almost exclusively in the industrial sphere so they tend to sink when economic environments deteriorate and surge when consumption levels are robust. Since both products are used extensively by the automotive industry, they also tend to be tied to car production and demand more than as an alternative to money, as silver and gold often are.

Domino Effect?

Clearly, although all four of these precious metals share numerous physical properties, their investment experiences can often differ by extreme amounts. Investors need to take this into consideration before buying any precious metal ETF in order to make sure that the metal they are purchasing matches their outlook for the economy. Silver ETFs are probably best for speculators or those looking to make a hedged bet on the economy, while gold is often a better choice for those looking to make a play against the dollar or are expecting more hardship ahead. Meanwhile, palladium and platinum often follow each other, but investors should remember that platinum, thanks to its high per ounce price, is often a more stable play and could be the choice for those looking for more stability in the surprisingly varied precious metals market.


When Gold ETFs Sell Off, Do Other Precious Metals Follow? - Seeking Alpha

Friday, August 26, 2011

"TEOTMSAWKI"

In the US, under GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles) the Federal Government alone has more than $75 trillion in debt and liabilities. That's over $1 million per family of four. This doesn't even mention state, municipal and personal debt - the average family of four in the US has over $100,000 in personal debt.

The next time someone tells you that the US is the "richest country on Earth" correct them. Tell them, "used to be". Now it is the most indebted and bankrupt nation on the planet.

Sure, even right now, things might not look like they are all about to collapse in the US. But they are.

One of these two things will not exist a few years from now: The US Government or the US dollar. Or both.

this is TEOTMSAWKI

"the end of the monetary system as we know it"

The manipulative policies of our banking system are creating a tsunami of fiat money that is going to come sweeping thru here in a wall of water that is going to ASTOUND people in a year or so.

We have piled up debt of a number that I cannot even conceive for NOTHING. NO productivity, no infrastructure, just dumb idiot stuff that actually HURTS people and business and productivity. We have combined that with an attitude of hostility to people who are entrepreneurs enough regulatory and legal rigamarole to keep the average person from wanting to start a business in the first place. This SHOULD be pushing interest rates considerably higher, but we are artificially keeping them low by manipulating the markets (the fed buying treasuries.... esssentially printing money and lending it to the gov't for the sole purpose of keeping rates low). The banks are in such TERRIBLE shape that the printed money is kept in-house and essentially program-traded to shore up their balance sheets to make them look better than they are. It is all fake. All of it.

Reality WILL come crashing in and it is coming soon. I have said before that I don't necessarily look for an utter and complete seize up of the culture on the scale of J Wesley Rawles novels (though it could). That does not change the fact that we are going to witness the spectacular immolation of wealth, on a level and with a speed that is going to have people completely and totally amazed.

It has often been said that bullets and bread are superior to gold when everything blows up, and I agree with that. I just don't look for everything to blow up completely. I think the exoskeleton of our economy will remain, with LOTS AND LOTS AND LOTS of people both out of work and with no place to turn for "benefits." I look for cities to be quasi war zones and there to be real hunger and need. Again, think "FERFAL" rather than "PATRIOTS." In a situation like that, solid "money" is going to rule.

It doesn't have to be gold. Gold is north of 1700 an oz, and even if they do a margin manipulation to drive it down another couple hundred dollars, it is still out of the reach of many people. Silver is getting up there at 40 an oz. For many people, this has become prohibitively expensive, and I realize that. IF IT HASN'T YOU HAVE NO EXCUSE FOR NOT BUYING SOME, THOUGH. Please, for your own good, do so.

BTW, if you are spending 80 bucks an month on cable and tell me you can't afford silver, you are a dumbass. No other way to say it.

Some guys really ARE stretched so thin that silver is a hard buy, though. There are alternatives. Nickels are great but copper pennies are even better.

It takes no time, though to sort out a 25 pound box of pennies. Pre 1982 pennies are 90% copper, and the copper in them right now is worth over 2 cents. This is over a 100% return IMMEDIATELY (but deferred). Immediately, cause you have it in your hand. Deferred because you will go to jail if they catch you melting them down into copper ingots. However, this situation of the law will not last. It is a great small scale hedge......

As an aside, do you have ANY idea how difficult it is to get a 100% ROE in the financial markets? Here copper is 100% and nickels are 25% returns. I know of fund managers who would KILL for those kinds of returns.

In two to five years when a jar of peanut butter costs 20 bucks and the soviet economy looks like a roaring success compared to the USA, you will be ecstatically happy you saved those nickels and pennies (remember: pre-1982... the 1982s had a mix of some coppers and some new minted zincs). You don't have to be in a position of means to hedge yourself, and need not be saying "I would do it if I had the money."

Please, don't be saying "I had more money than I ever imagined. I wish I had put some solid money aside instead of this paper crap."

I mock and sneer a lot at some of the really dumb stuff in our society, and I really don't suffer fools well, I know. This is as serious as I know how to say it, though. We are headed for some really really bad times here, and I want everyone to PROSPER in them (it can be done!).

Thursday, August 25, 2011

We Love Freedom! Wait, What's Freedom? by Jeff Berwick


The US Government's agenda to lobotomize the majority of Americans has been an unequivocal success.

Americans now live in one of the world's least free prison camps yet when asked they will tell you they live in the land of the free and, on top of that, they are attacking and occupying countries who did nothing to them because "they hate us for our freedom"!

They've been indoctrinated all of their formative years in mandatory children concentration camps (public schools or private, government regulated schools) and the Government and Federal Reserve has destroyed the economy to the point that it is the rare mother who actually stays home with her kids. Mom and Dad are both out working because they can't afford not to. And even if they can, the government promotes "women's liberation", which like all government programs, means the opposite of what it is called - and Mom works a full day before returning home exhausted and then giving her kids another few hours of brainwashing via television to complete the full day of programming. They even call it that right to their face... "we now return to your regularly scheduled programming". It's okay, no one ever figures it out.

And if the kids get upset at having to spend eight hours per day in kid jail they are immediately trotted off for their ingestion of toxic chemicals. Adderall. Prozac. Whatever... anything to keep them dumbed down and in line.

You can always spot an American anywhere in the world - not just because they take off their shoes and belt at every airport. Once in Thailand I was in a taxi with an American friend. We drove past a place that looked like it had difficult working conditions (it was a small sewing factory that didn't appear to have air conditioning in the dense heat of Bangkok).


He said, "That's a sweatshop!"

I agreed. They almost certainly were sweating in there! It was hot as hell.

"That should be shut down!" he intoned.

I tried to explain to him that in Thailand the Government doesn't regulate things like that. People of free will are allowed to make their own choices on whether they will work in those places or not. And, in fact, if they had government regulation, all it would mean is much less jobs as employers couldn't afford to employ as many people as they otherwise would (this may ring a bell for most manufacturing enterprises in the US).

His only response was, "What's the government regulated minimum wage here?"

I just hung my head and sighed.


Then, recently, in Mexico, I had met an American and we were walking along when a car flew by in the city at about 80 mph.

"Whoa! What's the speed limit here?" he asked, shocked.

I told him there are no speed limits.

He responded, "That's terrible!"

Yes. Yes. Americans love that freedom, don't they. As long as it is fully regulated, taxed and overseen by some government bureaucrat.

Even the Tea Party, which is supposed to be the most freedom-minded of the political affiliations in the US has attracted entire throngs of "freedom loving" people who are dependent on government programs and don't even know it.

One of the siren songs of the tea party lately has been, unbelievably, "Goverment, keep yore hands of my medicare!"

It's so hard to spell properly after 12 years of government education, after all.

But, yes, the point, spelled correctly or not is... We are against government involvement in our lives! Now, get out of here and stop messing with our medicare, social security and student loans, goddamn commies!

Cornell university recently did a study to see if Americans equate the money they receive from the US government with government “programs”. They asked Americans if they had ever used a government program.

43% of people on unemployment “benefits” said no. 43% of Medicare recipients said no. 44% of those on Social Security said no.

And to top it off they asked college students receiving Government "education" assistance if they were the recipients of government program and 53% of them said no.

So, we have now reached the point where the majority of 300 million+ people have no idea what freedom is ... have no idea where the money they receive comes from (over 50% of US citizens are net tax recipients)... and who think that the money they get comes from some magical pot o' gold called "Obama's stash".


We Love FREEDOM! Wait.... What's Freedom? Dollar Vigilante

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Legal Obedience by Walter E. Williams

Just WOW!

Walter Williams has given a GREAT essay on obedience to law and what to do when faced with an immoral law. At what time does a moral (or a Christian) man decide that he can no longer keep the civil law?

This is a very very good essay.

What laws are we morally obligated to obey? Help with the answer can be found in Economic Liberty and the Constitution, a 66-page pamphlet by Jacob G. Hornberger, founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation.


Hornberger offers a hypothetical whereby Congress enacts a compulsory church attendance law that requires children to attend church service each Sunday. Parents are penalized if their children fail to comply. Would there be any moral or constitutional legitimacy to such a congressional mandate? The law would be a clear violation of one's natural, or God-given, rights to life and liberty. As to whether it would be constitutional, we have to see whether mandating church attendance is one of those enumerated powers of Congress found in Article 1, Section 8 of our Constitution. We'd find no such authority. Our anti-federalist Founding Fathers didn't trust Congress with religious liberty, so they sought to protect it with the First Amendment to explicitly deny Congress the power to mandate religious conduct. Suppose there's widespread popular support for a church-going mandate and the U.S. Supreme Court rules it constitutional; do Americans have a moral obligation to obey the law?

You might say, "Williams, while there are gray areas in the Constitution, the U.S. Supreme Court would never brazenly rule against clear constitutional prohibitions!" That's nonsense. The first clause of Article 1, Section 10 mandates that "No State shall ... pass any ... Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts." During the Great Depression, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a Minnesota law that restricted the ability of banks to foreclose on overdue mortgages, thereby impairing contracts made between lender and borrower. To prevent this kind of contract impairment – routinely done under the Articles of Confederation – was precisely why the Framers added the clause.


Another, perhaps more egregious example of the Supreme Court's impairing contracts came during President Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal, when the government nationalized gold and made it a felony for any American to own gold. Not only was gold ownership made illegal but it nullified all "gold clauses" in private and government contracts. Writing contracts in gold was a way people protected themselves against government theft, namely inflation. The Supreme Court upheld federal nationalization of gold and nullification of gold contracts in the famous Gold Clause Cases. Today many Americans have turned to gold, driving its price to an all-time high, as a safeguard against what they see as pending inflation. Here's my question to you: If Obama and Congress enacted a law demanding that you turn in your gold, would you be morally obligated to obey such a law?

Decent people should not obey immoral laws. What's moral and immoral can be a contentious issue, but there are some broad guides for deciding what laws and government actions are immoral. Lysander S. Spooner, one of America's great 19th-century thinkers, said no person or group of people can "authorize government to destroy or take away from men their natural rights; for natural rights are inalienable, and can no more be surrendered to government – which is but an association of individuals – than to a single individual." French economist/philosopher Frederic Bastiat (1801-50) gave a test for immoral government acts: "See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime." He added in his book The Law, "When law and morality contradict each other, the citizen has the cruel alternative of either losing his moral sense or losing his respect for the law."

After reading Hornberger's Economic Liberty and the Constitution, one cannot avoid the conclusion that the liberties envisioned by the nation's founders have been under siege, trivialized and nullified. Philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe explained that "no one is as hopelessly enslaved as the person who thinks he's free." That's becoming an apt description for Americans who are oblivious to – or ignorant of – the liberties we've lost.Legal Obedience by Walter E. Williams

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A funny and sadly true Youtube vid

Although it is sometimes tiring to hear Ron Paul supporters incessantly gripe about the media blackout...... the reason they gripe is because IT IS TRUE.

This vid is funny.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Teacher pension fund joins California auditor's risk list

The first fissures here. California is seven times the size of Greece... and in worse shape.

Teacher pension fund joins California auditor's risk list - San Jose Mercury News

Inflation Calculator: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Very handy calculator

Inflation Calculator: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Silver an industrial metal?

There have been many prognosticators and market mavens who have bellowed over and over about how an upcoming economic implosion will cause silver prices to crater.

This is wrong because it is based on the incorrect assumption that silver is primarily an industrial metal. The reasoning goes that when economic activity goes down, the price of silver goes down. The reason this is incorrect is simple: Silver has some industrial uses but has moved back to a monetary metal. One need look no further for confirmation for this than simply look at a spread chart between copper (the ultimate industrial metal) and silver. The spread between the two has diverged to the point that one can no longer claim any correlation at all. That is, silver has decoupled from the industrial demand in determining its price basis. You will find that spread (and other market graphicss) here. Jim Willey points out that silver is reasserting itself as a monetary metal. Therefore, it is primarily an anti dollar play, and its value will be assessed on the basis of the strength of the US Dollar, rather than its industrial usages. China in particular, is buying the stuff as a compliment to its gold purchases http://snarktown.blogspot.com/2011/08/silver-prices-expected-to-reach-100-in.html.

So, the frantic calls why silver is bound to sell off always lead with "recession." They are in serious error. They always have been, but at least you know it and know why, now.

Brother John F. One of the brightest guys out there

Cannot recommend this guy enough.

VERY good comments here. I have subscribed to his youtube channel. You should, too.


Silver Update 8/19/11 - America The Beautiful? - YouTube

The public is ALWAYS wrong......

Funny story:

Denis Gartman finished a speech and got in a cab to catch a flight back to Virginia Beach, where he lives. The cabbie said he looked familiar and Denis told him he was on CNBC from time to time and they guy connected the dots and gave Denis a course on owning gold all the way to LaGuardia. As soon as Denis got home he sold half of his Gold ETF (GLD).

from George Maniere http://investingadvicebygeorge.blogspot.com/

Politicians and Economics

Politicians should stick to what they’re good at, groveling for money to fund their next re-election campaign and making pompous speeches to stir up even more partisan bickering. What they should not do is stop making believe that they know anything about economics. If I bought Harvard University it would not qualify me to teach organic chemistry. Well the same is true of politicians. Just because you have a pleasant smile and a personality that does not completely turn every voter off does not make you qualified to speak about economics. Politicians should simply stick to what they’re good at and if anyone can figure out what they’re good at would you be kind enough to drop me a post and let me know.

ha ha

Gold $2000 and Silver $100 by Years End :: The Market Oracle :: Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting Free Website

Golden Lessons From Helicopter Ben And Spanish Galleons

Until August 15, 1971, wealth was tallied in units of a real and natural thing, gold. It measured out the world’s other real things, its resources and its output.

Its main advantage was that it couldn’t be diddled. That turned the authorities against it; they couldn’t make more of it.

Nuestra Senora de Atocha, a Spanish galleon, sank in a storm off the Florida coast in 1622. When it was found in the 1970s, its treasure of gold doubloons was just as valuable as it was when the ship left Havana 350 years before.

Post 1971, we have a new, avant-garde money system. Wealth is counted up in pieces of paper or as electronic ‘information.’ Each unit has no real value of its own. It only represents a claim against real goods and services. And each year, it purchases fewer of them.

What is most remarkable about this freakish new money system is that it is always on the road to hell but never seems to get there. Since 1971, paper currencies have lost value at a breakneck speed. You’d think their necks would be broken by now.

In 1972, we bought a gallon of gasoline for 25 cents. Now, it is 16 times that much. Gold has gone up 50 times, for a 98% loss to the dollar holder. If this pattern continues for another 40 years, a gold doubloon will buy about what it does today. A dollar will buy nothing.
And then, along came S&P with more bad news: not only is the dollar disappearing, but if you lend money to the U.S. government you might not get it back. The stock market took the news badly. But bond investors bought with even more lusty recklessness than before.

It was as if they really didn’t want the money back anyway. Yields on U.S. 10-year notes fell from around 3% to scarcely more than 2%, giving investors a negative real yield.

The fall in yields should not come as a surprise. Japan’s government debt lost its AAA status in 2002. Yields did not rise. Instead, they stayed between 1% and 2%. Then, last week, Japanese 10-year notes – IOUs of the most deeply indebted nation on earth – reached an all-time high. Yields fell below 1%, briefly.

You may think that investors have lost their minds. But no more than usual. It’s not the nominal rate that investors care about; it’s the real rate. For 20 years, stocks and property in Japan have gotten hammered. Bond buyers are the only ones who’ve made any money. Deflation takes prices down. Even a zero interest rate gives them a positive return. And it isn’t even taxable.

And now the US Fed follows in Japan’s footsteps. The Fed announced last week that it would continue to lend money for two more years, asking little more than a ‘thank you’ in return. Zero is the going rate at the Fed’s lending window – just as it is in Japan.

When Richard Nixon implemented his new monetary system four decades ago, he set in motion a huge expansion in the world’s supply of cash and credit. Gold was limited. Paper money was left to run wild. Ben Bernanke famously announced how it worked in a 2002 speech, entitled “Deflation: Making Sure it Doesn’t Happen Here,” he explained:

…the US government has a technology, called a printing press (or, today, its electronic equivalent), that allows it to produce as many US dollars as it wishes at essentially no cost. By increasing the number of US dollars in circulation, or even by credibly threatening to do so, the US government can also reduce the value of a dollar in terms of goods and services, which is equivalent to raising the prices in dollars of those goods and services. We conclude that, under a paper-money system, a determined government can always generate higher spending and hence positive inflation.

Bernanke made it sound like a piece of cake. He should have appended a footnote. Inflating is easy when the credit cycle is expanding. When an economy transforms itself from grasshopper to ant, it gets harder. People switch from borrowing, spending and investing to exterminating debt and hoarding cash. That’s why none of the stimulus measures – fiscal or monetary – has done any significant good. And it is why no policy adjustment, short of debt cancellation or hyperinflation, will make any damned difference.

The whole situation is one for the history books. Four decades of paper money – with effectively no limit on credit expansion – have created mountains of debt in all the developed countries. Now, private sector debts are being sloughed off and asset prices wobble – making investors fearful and skittish. The more they sweat, the more they seek the safety of U.S. Treasurys, and the lower interest rates go.

Low rates delay Armageddon if Japan is any indication almost indefinitely. The economy continues on the road to Hell…and picks up speed. When it finally arrives, we don’t know. But we bet the price of gold will be higher when we find out.

Bill Bonner Daily Reckoning


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Social Security disability on verge of insolvency - Yahoo! News

Great news!

Social Security disability on verge of insolvency - Yahoo! News

The Great Collapse Has Officially Begun | ZeroHedge


I’ve been warning of this for well over two years. My primary warnings were:

1) That 2008 was just a warm-up
2) That the REAL Crisis had yet to unfold
3) That the REAL Crisis would make 2008 look like a picnic
Well, the period I’ve been warning of is now here. What’s happening right now is not just a market crash, bear market, deflation, or any other item related to just one asset class.

Instead, this is a collapse of the entire US monetary and political system and the mentality of spending one’s way to wealth.

For 80+ years, the US has operated under a crony capitalist system in which politicians dole out political and economic favors to the chosen few whose bribes/donations funded their campaigns.

This system was aided and abetted by the US Federal Reserve, which dealt with any and all economic issues by printing more money. Whether it was the Asian Crisis, Long Term Capital Management, or the 2008 Crash, the Fed dealt with the issue by opening the floodgates and flooding the financial system with liquidity.

Aside from making moral hazard (the notion that those large firms who screwed up were never actually allowed to fail) the bedrock of the financial system, the Fed also blew a credit bubble which in turn funded bubbles in virtually every asset class: bonds, stocks, real estate, emerging markets, even some commodities.

Indeed, the vast majority of US economic growth over the last 40 years has been fueled by the Fed’s loose money policies. Bill King, an analyst and investor whom I admire, shared the below chart with me a while back. It charts US GDP growth in nominal terms (the dark blue line), the performance of the Dow Jones Industrial Average (the black line), and REAL GDP growth or growth that accounts for inflation (the light blue line).




As you can see, when we account for inflation, the US economic “miracle” of the last 30 years is in fact not all that miraculous. Take away easy credit and Fed funny money and the US GDP has barely grown at all since the ‘70s.

When your entire financial system is built on debt eventually you hit a brick wall. We did this in 2008. The Fed barely held the system together by going “all in” and funneling over $11 trillion in bailouts, backstopping the major US banks, and transferring north of $2 trillion in garbage debt to the public’s balance sheet (these are just the moves we know about).

This effort has now failed as the world collectively realizes that the Fed cannot hold the system together. This began to become clear when QE 2 spent $600 billion and the US got at most three months’ worth of improved economic data (while inflation exploded throughout the global economy, leading to riots, coups, and more).

In simple terms, we’ve now entered the Real Crisis, the END GAME, for our current monetary system. Before the dust settles on this mess, the US and its political, economic, monetary structure will look very very different.

However, before we get there, we will see riots, civil unrest, possibly martial law, for certain a Government shutdown, bank holidays, a debt default/ restructuring, the re-instatement of the Gold standard or something like it (possibly a basket of commodities), food shortages, and more.

We will also see trade wars, possibly another World War, a temporary backlash against globalization, a de-consolidation or fragmentation of corporate America, and other items.

In plain terms, we’re entering a period in history that will rival the Revolutionary war. This country will be very very different by the time it has ended. Many people will lose everything in this mess. Yes, everything. So if you have yet to take steps to prepare for this, you need to get moving NOW!
The Great Collapse Has Officially Begun | ZeroHedge

I think this is significant

When folks like THIS finally are figuring it out, it really is all over:




Silver prices expected to reach $100 in 2012 | China business news

Silver prices expected to reach $100 in 2012

Quit arguing and just BUY SOME!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

QUANTITATIVE REASONING...

"HAS THE FED EVER BEEN RIGHT ABOUT ANYTHING?"

"LET ME SEE IF I CAN THINK OF ANYTHING"

LOL

No Words Needed...

except: "it's over, folks"


Friday, August 19, 2011

"Argentum et aurum comparenda sunt" in Latin means Silver and Gold must be bought. In the past we have advocated both of these precious metals as a way to hedge against inflation, insure against global financial catastrophe, and a way for individuals to practice sound money management even if their governments are turning on the printing presses to fund deficit spending.
History is a great teacher. From as far back as the Roman empire, every fiat currency that has ever existed has ended up being devalued and eventually collapsed along with the underlying economies that housed the currency. A fiat currency by definition is a currency a government has declared to be legal tender, despite the fact that it has no intrinsic value and is not backed by reserves and based solely on faith. The Denarius, Rome's currency, started off as pure silver. Around the time of Rome's collapse, the Denarius contained less then .02% silver and nobody accepted it in trade. This was a early example of true debasement of a currency. The U.S. Dollar is following the same path as the Denarius, since 1920 the dollar has loss 94% of its purchasing power.

Aliens will destroy us to protect themselves: NASA study

"When men cease to believe in God, they don't believe in NOTHING. They believe in ANYTHING"

GK Chesterton

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2011/aug/18/aliens-destroy-humanity-protect-civilisations

Did the Fed deliberately crash the market for the sake of QE3?

According to this article below, this UNATTRIBUTED article was released strategically to crash the world equity markets and was engineered by the Federal Reserve for the sole purpose of justifying another monetary infusion, or QE3....... maybe.

It certainly is an interesting article.

At the very minimum, one has to ask "why?" as the caption does.

The Fed bombed the market - I ask, "Why?" | ZeroHedge

As Chavez Pulls Venezuela's Gold From JP Morgan, Is The Great Scramble For Physical Starting?

YES YES YES, It took a commie thug to finally begin to bring JUSTICE to the corrupt fed and JP Morgan, it's lapdog.

from Zerohedge

In addition to the nationalization of his gold insutry, Chavez earlier also announced that he would recover virtually all gold that Venezuela hold abroad, starting with 99 tons of gold at the Bank of England. As the WSJ reported earlier, "The Bank of England recently received a request from the Venezuelan government about transferring the 99 tons of gold Venezuela holds in the bank back to Venezuela, said a person familiar with the matter. A spokesman from the Bank of England declined to comment whether Venezuela had any gold on deposit at the bank." That's great, but not really a gamechanger. After all the BOE should have said gold. What could well be a gamechanger is that according to an update from Bloomberg, Venezuela has gold with, you guessed it, JP Morgan, Barclays, and Bank Of Nova Scotia. As most know, JPM is one of the 5 vault banks. The fun begins if Chavez demands physical delivery of more than 10.6 tons of physical because as today's CME update of metal depository statistics, JPM only has 338,303 ounces of registered gold in storage. Or roughly 10.6 tons. A modest deposit of this size would cause some serious white hair at JPM as the bank scrambles to find the replacement gold, which has already been pledged about 100 times across the various paper markets. Keep an eye on gold in the illiquid after hour market. The overdue scramble for delivery may be about to begin.


That was written yesterday 8/18/11. Gold and silver both have gone parabolic, with gold up forty four dollars just overnight.

There will be screaming from JPM. Look for O to cancel his vacay is my opinion. This is going to be VERY bad and when the truth of the short sales, the theft, the fraud, manipulation and dishonesty come out, I would not be surprised to see VERY ugly things happening.

The winners will be the people with hard gold and silver, as the paper markets will rise on this..... until they find out that the paper EVERYWHERE (like with JP Morgan) does not really represent any physical metals. Then you will see the paper investments in items like SLV and GLD and the COMEX futures go south like crazy, with the possible destruction of the Comex. Physical gold and silver will be the "honest" market, and will begin to trade for a substantial premium over paper.

Time to dust it off and watch it again, I think. Turn up your speakers.






As Chavez Pulls Venezuela's Gold From JP Morgan, Is The Great Scramble For Physical Starting? | ZeroHedge

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Listen to what he SAYS, not what others say about him

Ron Paul after the debate.

Great interview

Not a Messiah. Not even close. But a great man!



Bill Whittle: Rich and Poor

GREAT VIDEO!!!



Rich Man, Poor Man

Social Conservatism and the Constitution

Should abortion and same sex marriage be addressed through the amendment process?.

Pajamas Media » Social Conservatism and the Constitution

Gun Rights Win in Florida: State Law Will End Local Restrictions | TheBlaze.com

Starting October 1st, any public official who passes or enforces gun regulations below the state level faces a $5,000 personal fine and could even be removed from office by the governor for enacting or enforcing local gun laws.

Bravo, Florida!

Gun Rights Win in Florida: State Law Will End Local Restrictions | TheBlaze.com

David Stockman: Rick Perry Is Right, the Fed Is “Totally Wrong”

Rick Perry is right, The Fed is wrong. Stockman is the bomb.


David Stockman: Rick Perry Is Right, the Fed Is “Totally Wrong” | Daily Ticker - Yahoo! Finance

Rich decline, and so do revenues. Good job, guys!

The left is absolutely FIXATED on "the rich" and driven by a horror that they may not pay their "fair share." They are so obsessed with this fixation that they are willing to pay massive amounts of tax increases themselves if only they can soak the rich. Well, it is happening.

The chart below, from the IRS 2011 data, shows that the number of rich ARE declining. However, that leads to the inescapable link that the amount of taxes paid into the system by the rich (those with $200,000 or more a year in income) is also declining. Since that accounts for 70%+ of tax revenues, that means that LESS MONEY IS GOING INTO THE TREASURY. The numbers are inescapable. The darling social projects of the left are simply going to vanish, as the "rich" simply take their money off the table and there is not enough revenue to fund them.

Report: Government probe of Standard and Poor's - Yahoo! Finance

Payback time.

What a transparent petty bureaucratic political revenge job.

Report: Government probe of Standard and Poor's - Yahoo! Finance

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

A fraud in charts

Note the obvious temp disparities between CO^2 and the earth's temperature. This is a VERY good article.

ICECAP

Obama’s listening tour: He tours, you listen

Ha ha.

Obama’s listening tour: He tours, you listen | The Daily Caller

Rick Perry faces new flak from the right for suggesting Bernanke is ‘treasonous’ | The Ticket - Yahoo! News

I am NO fan of Rick Perry, but he says some things right.

This is one of them. Ben Bernanke is engaging in activity that was punishable by DEATH under the early laws of the republic, as inflating the money supply is simply a sophisticated form of counterfeiting.

It does not surprise me that Karl Rove and the rest of the George Bush era Republican "leadership" are attacking Perry for saying so.

Rick Perry faces new flak from the right for suggesting Bernanke is ‘treasonous’ | The Ticket - Yahoo! News

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Ha ha- a New Stamp

The Postal Services created a stamp w/ a picture of Obama on it. The Postal Service noticed that the stamp was not sticking to envelopes. This enraged the President, who demanded a full investigation. After a month of testing & $1.73 million in congressional spending, a special Presidential commission presented the following findings:

1. The stamp is in perfect order.
2. There is nothing wrong with the glue.
3. People are spitting on the wrong side

Wanniski and Fed governor Angell backed Gold Standard for Russia! lol

This link is an essay from Jude Wanniski who went with fed governor Wayne Angell to Moscow right after the collapse of the soviet union. Note that Angell advocated the new Russia to go to a gold backed currency! It's interesting to note that the tension in the Baltics really resulted from monetary policy. (It really is the economy stupid). Also note that the writer advocated an eventual international gold backed standard! Is that not PRECISELY what we are facing? Remember Medvedev recently showed the prototype international coin. Is the plan to finish off the dollar and advocate a new gold backed international currency? Why not simply back the dollar with gold and keep our own currency?

Gold is going to win out in the long run. The only real question is going to be how much pain are we going to swallow before we admit that our monetary policy is fatally flawed.

Essays-890914 Mission to Moscow

Mitt Romney with a Drawl or GW Bush's twin?

Rick Perry is a “big government” politician.He is just Mitt Romney or George W Bush redux. Here are a few stats about the man.

When Rick Perry became the governor of Texas in 2000, the total spending by the Texas state government was approximately $49 billion. Ten years later it was approximately $90 billion. How's THAT for reducing the size of government?

He has run a humongous, mind boggling deficit, and run the Texas debt into the ionosphere. The debt of the state of Texas is out of control. According to usdebtclock.org, the debt to GDP ratio in Texas is 22.9% and the debt per citizen is $10,645. In California (got that? CALIFORNIA??), the debt to GDP ratio is just 18.7% and the debt per citizen is only $9932. Texas gov't total debt has more than doubled since Rick Perry became governor. You don't think we have had enough of this kind of crap?

Perry claims that he has a “track record” of not raising taxes. He has repeatedly raised taxes and "fees" while he has been governor. These overall tax rates (call em what you will) are significantly higher than before he took office

You hear a lot about the "Texas miracle" during the recession. It is mostly hype. Even with the oil boom Texas has a HIGHER unemployment rate than 23 other states.

Back in 1988, Rick Perry supported Al Gore for president. In fact, Rick Perry actually served as Al Gore’s campaign chairman in the state of Texas that year. He was recruited to the Republican Party by that champion of smaller government and principled political theorist Karl Rove.

Texas now has one of the worst education systems in the nation. It is centralized, top down, bureaucratic, and almost the ENTIRE creation of Rick Perry (though the mechanism of this creaky ossified dinosaur has been in place for years). The following damning indictment is from Barbara Bush:…. Texas ranks 36th in the nation in high school graduation rates. An estimated 3.8 million Texans do not have a high school diploma. Texas ranks 49th in verbal SAT scores, 47th in literacy and 46th in average math SAT scores. Texas ranks 33rd in the nation on teacher salaries, but the educational bureaucrats are extremely well paid.

The fact that Rick Perry attended the Bilderberg Group meetings in 2007 is enough for me in and of itself to vote against him. If anything screams "PWNED BY THE INTERNATIONAL BANKERS" it is this. You don't have to believe in the Bavarian Illuminati or be a Bircher to to know that the Trilateralists, Bilderbergers, and CFR crowd are a group of internationalist thugs who put the interests of large banks before sovereign national interests.

Texas has the highest percentage of workers making minimum wage out of all 50 states. In 2007, 221,000 residents of Texas were making minimum wage or less. By 2010, that number had risen to 550,000. I recognize that the recession makes taking ANY work necessary for many. But DOUBLING the minimum wage workers?

Rick Perry often gives speeches about illegal immigration, but when you look at the facts, he has been incredibly soft on the issue. If Rick Perry does not plan to secure the border, then he should not be president. He has the longest border with Mexico of any state, and has repeatedly done NOTHING on the issue.

Of MOST concern to me, Perry actually issued an executive order in 2007 that would have forced almost every single girl in the state of Texas to receive the Gardasil vaccine before entering the sixth grade. Perry would have put parents in a position where they would have had to fill out an application and LITERALLY ASK FOR AN EXCEPTION (not guaranteed) or simply submit to an injection of their child with an untested and unproven vaccine. Since then, very serious safety issues regarding this vaccine have come to light. Fortunately, lawmakers in Texas blocked what Perry was trying to do. According to Wikipedia, many were troubled when “apparent financial connections between Merck and Perry were reported by news outlets, such as a $6,000 campaign contribution and Merck’s hiring of former Perry Chief of Staff Mike Toomey to handle its Texas lobbying work.”

Don't drink the kool aid.

The Zombie Wars have begun

The model is simple enough: citizens give up a portion of their freedom and a portion of their money. In return they get safety…protection…and something for nothing. The typical voter believes he will get more than he paid for…he counts on his government to rob those richer than he is and transfer the loot to him.

The system works – for a while. But as these governments mature they become more expensive, rigid, and zombified. More and more people find ways to get something for nothing. More and more join the underclass, because it is easier to live at someone else’s expense, even if you can’t live very well. Pretty soon, there are zombies all over the place.

The Cameron government in the UK – like almost all social welfare governments – spends more than it can afford. It realized it had to stop feeding the zombies so much. It announced cut backs. This week, the zombies counterattacked.

‘They don’t treat me right,’ said one zombie quoted in the International Herald Tribune. ‘They just give me enough money to eat and watch TV.’

When they are not eating at taxpayer expense…or watching TV at taxpayer expense…in an apartment paid for at taxpayer expense…wearing clothes furnished at taxpayer expense, they are likely communicating by cellphone or Blackberry or I-phone, also provided at taxpayer expense. This week, the zombies got in touch with one another and decided to upgrade their lifestyles by breaking into shops and stealing things. That too, was at taxpayer expense. But it wasn’t an expense authorized by the peoples’ representatives in Parliament. The zombies had declared war.

The British feds were outraged. They had spent so much money on these people. Why were they biting the hands that fed them? Ah…you know the answer, Dear Reader. Because the system had turned almost a whole generation of people into zombies. Zombies are used to getting something for nothing. If they get it from the feds …or take it directly, what is the difference?

And what else do they have to do? Watching TV all day is boring. For a brief time this week, zombies were on the march.

It probably won’t be the last time. The Zombie Wars have begun.


Daily Reckoning on Zombie Wars

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Fed and "Plunge Protection Team": Are They Manipulating Stocks? | Elliott Wave International

First it was bonds,now the market in general. The Europeans are outlawing short sales, the POMO is buying up stocks.

THIS WILL NOT END WELL. Buy Gold and Silver. BUY IT NOW!


The Fed and "Plunge Protection Team": Are They Manipulating Stocks? | Elliott Wave International

Ames Straw Poll. GREAT RESULTS and "10th amendment run amok"

Bachmann won the straw poll in Iowa with a mere 4,823 votes to Ron Paul's 4,671.

While I congratulate Michelle on her win, the BIG NEWS is that this puts "unelectable" Ron Paul... well, if not "in the race" at least "in the target area" for the race. You can bet the bigwigs in the RNC are absolutely crapping their pants tonight. Look for a STORM of vituperation, attacks and howling yammering outrage from the mainstream conservatives, neocons, and of course the Mitt Romney RINO crowd (the real power brokers in the RNC).

This is such good news for a variety of reasons.

1) Romney, or GWB IV (I call Obama GWB's third term) is on the bank flopping and gasping for air. He can no longer play the role of the aloof front runner. This in and of itself is great news.

2) Bachmann (who I do not support, but like WAY better than most of the republican field) *IS* truly a political outsider, as well. I hate establishment politicians so intensely, so completely, so savagely that I would be willing to elect ANYONE not shaped, formed, guided, and modeled by the DC game....., even risking that they may be swallowed by the establishment (and probably will).

3) Pawlenty and Santorum were SOUNDLY rejected.

Which brings us to the next topic, which was the only domestic topic that got much real play the other night, that of the 10th amendment.

Asked last night whether there was a difference between the state or federal government mandating that an individual buy a product ( health care insurance), Bachmann responded that there was no difference. It is “unconstitutional,” she maintained, regardless of whether it is imposed by the state or federal government. She did not cite which part of the Constitution denies states this authority.

Of course, that’s because no clause in the Constitution prevents states from doing so. Romney, as dismissive of the Constitution as he is, got that one right. Ron Paul also noted that federal government is not empowered to go in and stop states that do bad things.

Rick Santorum then PERFECTLY illustrated the fascist element of the Christian Right when he claimed that their responses were all “the Tenth Amendment run amok.”

I quote Santorum:

Michelle Bachmann says that she would go in and fight health care being imposed by states, but she wouldn’t go in and fight marriage being imposed by the states. That would be okay. We have Ron Paul saying oh, whatever the states want to do under the Tenth Amendment is fine. So if the states want to pass polygamy, that’s fine. If the states want to impose sterilization, that’s fine. No! Our country is based on moral laws, ladies and gentleman. There are things the states can’t do. Abraham Lincoln said “the states do not have the right to do wrong.” I respect the Tenth Amendment, but we are a nation that has values. We are a nation that was built on a moral enterprise. And states don’t have the right to tramp over those because of the Tenth Amendment.


Folks THIS IS NO DIFFERENCE AT ALL from the power weilding thuggery of the left, who will trample your liberties for whatever cause they deem "good." Now, Rick Santorum's "good" is a LOT closer to my view of "good" as both of us have world views which claim to be biblically derived. Again, though, this is NOT THE ISSUE. The issue is, WHAT IS THE ROLE OF THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. The left claims it is to "do good" as does the Christian Right. Now all left to do is fight it out over what "good" is. NO NO NO NO NO NO NO A THOUSAND TIMES NO!!!!!! THIS IS NOT THE FORM OF GOVERNMENT WE HAVE AND YOU ONLY THINK (word used loosely, there) YOU WANT IT. It is a recipe for tyranny and centralized decision making and loss of liberty. My GOD has not the past 150 or so years taught you people ANYTHING??????

Under the 10th amendment, states do have the ability to “DO BAD THINGS”... do stupid things, to violate all but the most basic liberties spelled out in the Constitution. I get so tired of going over this with the knuckle draggers from the right, who clearly have NO idea of the separation of powers. This is, by the way, why almost ALL the energy of the Christian Right has gone toward electing a president, and it took the rise of a secular "tea party" to actually wrest power away from the statists where it REALLY matters, on a state a local level. The Rick Santorums and Michelle Bachmanns of the world are darlings of the right because they have the same top down view of power, that the federal government may step in and "correct" the states and demand they comply. This is, simply, balderdash.

The states have sovereign authority to decide whatever they wish on whatever matters they like, provided that this authority has not already been delegated to the federal government, or has not been explicitly denied them in the Constitution. Again the text of the 10th reads "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

James Madison in the federalist papers (number 45) tells us what the relationship is between the states and feds:

"The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government, are few and defined. Those which are to remain in the State governments are numerous and indefinite. The former will be exercised principally on external objects, as war, peace, negotiation, and foreign commerce; with which last the power of taxation will, for the most part, be connected. The powers reserved to the several States will extend to all the objects which, in the ordinary course of affairs, concern the lives, liberties, and properties of the people, and the internal order, improvement, and prosperity of the State."


Nowhere here does Madison describe the Constitution as empowering the federal government to intervene in a state’s affairs, even when the states are not behaving correctly. In fact, the very purpose of the Tenth Amendment is to enable states to retain the authority and ability to do stupid things (and hopefully good things, too). The right,and the Christian right in particular, is actually arguing for the dissolution of state sovereignty. If this is so, why not just dissolve state governments altogether and let each state have an "office" in DC? This is MINDLESS, and again, a recipe for tyranny.

I never thought I would see the day when "conservatives" are actually arguing essentially that there are no limits to federal power if the other states don't like the activities of a particular state. I expect it from leftists, who hate decentralized power. I expect better from professed conservatives.

Friday, August 12, 2011

The problem is "LEADERSHIP"

Faced with the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression, faced with the weakest job market since WWII, faced with endless debt and out-of-control entitlements, Obama’s policy prescriptions haven’t changed one bit:

1. Soak the “millionaires and billionaires” making as little as $200,000.

2. Regulate the ever-loving life out of the economy.

3. Increase entitlements.

4. Spend, spend, spend.

The fact that these policies haven’t worked hasn’t deterred Obama. Just on Monday he took to the airwaves yet again to call for yet more taxes and yet more spending to fund the expanded welfare and regulatory state he refuses to trim.

Obama isn’t just a failed leader. Unlike Carter, the Smartest Man in the Room™ has proven unable or unwilling to learn on the job. Obama can’t recognize mistakes — even though the evidence is as plain as last month’s hideous jobs report. He will continue to demand that reality conform to his theories, no matter what damage he does to this country. He doesn’t doge, he doesn’t weave — he keeps pursuing failure in the face of failure.

Why? I don’t care why. Maybe it’s his ego. Maybe he really believed all those stoned-out-of-his-mind late-night Harvard bull sessions. Maybe he really is trying to drive this country into the ground, for whatever reason. Maybe, Barack Obama is just a dumbass.

from vodkapundit

Warren Buffet ends the deficit

MASTERFUL!!!

I could end the deficit in 5 minutes," Buffet is reported to have recently told Becky Quick. "You just pass a law that says, that anytime there is a deficit of more than 3% of GDP, all sitting members of Congress are ineligible for re-election."

Brilliant

My take on last night's Republican debate.

Big Winners:

NEWT. Hands down the winner last night. I can't support him for a variety of reasons, but MY GOODNESS he was sharp last night. Passionate, articulate, reasoned, and he tore the mods a new one about the idiot kind of questions they asked... and did it more than once.

HERMAN CAIN. He is articulate and folksy at the same time. He manages to answer questions adroitly without actually saying much, which is theoretically an art politicians are supposed to master. I really liked his humility on one question where he said "I didn't know then, but I have studied, and I know now." He also disarmed people with his "You expect me to answer all that in a minute?" retort to the mod.

RON PAUL. Ron is the eveready battery. He keeps on ticking. Consistent, principled, articulate, rejecting the boogeyman of "the world will blow up unless we micromanage everyone's affairs for them," and going away the most PRO FREEDOM guy on the stage. Isn't that what this is all about in the first place?

Big Losers

MICHELLE BACHMAN. She acted like a 14 year old breaking up with her boyfriend in the exchanges with Pawlenty. She did handle the SHAMELESS question by Byron York with grace. How are you going to respond to a theological question on male-female roles in marriage and how that translates into activities in the public arena in 1 or 2 minutes??????? STUPID and clearly a "this is how we want folks to know they shouldn't vote for you, Michelle." That said, she came across as shrill, at least to me. I think I would have said " My team will prepare a paper for the public on the SUBSTANTIVE differences between my responses and Gov Pawlenty's. This issue is too big to be hashed out in this context. Let's leave it at 'we have a serious contention about the underlying facts, not just our opinions.' "

PAWLENTY Did better than last time, but he came across as a big government guy who said "elect me because I know best how to tell you what to do." Plus, I think he was on a contest with Bachmann to see who could model a PMS exchange the best.

SANTORUM - Came across as the angry evangelical and, again, another guy who believes that because he is right (and as a Christian, I DO BELIEVE HE IS RIGHT, AND RESONATED DEEPLY ON MANY ISSUES WITH HIM), that means there should be a federal law about it. His foreign policy was an extension of that. I love Santorum. He has been a champion of the unborn and we all owe him for that. His approach to government is a recipe for fascist totalitarianism, though. If not during his tenure, then the power will still be laying on the floor for the next guy to pick up and use.

as for the rest of them:

Romney is the slick wafflling greasy politico pretty boy. He is what he is. I cannot believe this guy is the "front runner." If Republicans nominate him, I promise I will vote Obama

Gary Johnson was not invited because he was not considered a serious contender. Instead, they invited Huntsman. Brilliant call.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

GREAT ad... even if Pawlenty put it together

California State Agencies

Think about the verbiage of the Declaration of Independence “He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.”

EVERY ONE of these agencies is paid for by taxes from California's citizenry. One example: California Museum for History, Women and the Arts. Enjoy the list.

California Academic Performance Index (API) * California Access for Infants and Mothers * California Acupuncture Board * California Administrative Office of the Courts * California Adoptions Branch * California African American Museum * California Agricultural Export Program * California Agricultural Labor Relations Board * California Agricultural Statistics Service * California Air Resources Board (CARB) * California Allocation Board * California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority * California Animal Health and Food Safety Services * California Anti-Terrorism Information Center * California Apprenticeship Council * California Arbitration Certification Program * California Architects Board * California Area VI Developmental Disabilities Board * California Arts Council * California Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus * California Assembly Democratic Caucus * California Assembly Republican Caucus * California Athletic Commission * California Attorney General * California Bay Conservation and Development Commission * California Bay-Delta Authority * California Bay-Delta Office * California Biodiversity Council * California Board for Geologists and Geophysicists * California Board for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors * California Board of Accountancy * California Board of Barbering and Cosmetology * California Board of Behavioral Sciences * California Board of Chiropractic Examiners * California Board of Equalization (BOE) * California Board of Forestry and Fire Protection * California Board of Guide Dogs for the Blind * California Board of Occupational Therapy * California Board of Optometry * California Board of Pharmacy * California Board of Podiatric Medicine * California Board of Prison Terms * California Board of Psychology * California Board of Registered Nursing * California Board of Trustees * California Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians * California Braille and Talking Book Library * California Building Standards Commission * California Bureau for Private Postsecondary and Vocational Education * California Bureau of Automotive Repair * California Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair * California Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation * California Bureau of Naturopathic Medicine * California Bureau of Security and Investigative Services * California Bureau of State Audits * California Business Agency * California Business Investment Services (CalBIS) * California Business Permit Information (CalGOLD) * California Business Portal * California Business, Transportation and Housing Agency * California Cal Grants * California CalJOBS * California Cal-Learn Program * California CalVet Home Loan Program * California Career Resource Network * California Cemetery and Funeral Bureau * California Center for Analytical Chemistry * California Center for Distributed Learning * California Center for Teaching Careers (Teach California) * California Chancellors Office * California Charter Schools * California Children and Families Commission * California Children and Family Services Division * California Citizens Compensation Commission * California Civil Rights Bureau * California Coastal Commission * California Coastal Conservancy * California Code of Regulations * California Collaborative Projects with UC Davis * California Commission for Jobs and Economic Growth * California Commission on Aging * California Commission on Health and Safety and Workers Compensation * California Commission on Judicial Performance * California Commission on State Mandates * California Commission on Status of Women * California Commission on Teacher Credentialing * California Commission on the Status of Women * California Committee on Dental Auxiliaries * California Community Colleges Chancellors Office, Junior Colleges * California Community Colleges Chancellors Office * California Complaint Mediation Program * California Conservation Corps * California Constitution Revision Commission * California Consumer Hotline * California Consumer Information Center * California Consumer Information * California Consumer Services Division * California Consumers and Families Agency * California Contractors State License Board * California Corrections Standards Authority * California Council for the Humanities * California Council on Criminal Justice * California Council on Developmental Disabilities * California Court Reporters Board * California Courts of Appeal * California Crime and Violence Prevention Center * California Criminal Justice Statistics Center * California Criminalist Institute Forensic Library * California CSGnet Network Management * California Cultural and Historical Endowment * California Cultural Resources Division * California Curriculum and Instructional Leadership Branch * California Data Exchange Center * California Data Management Division * California Debt and Investment Advisory Commission * California Delta Protection Commission * California Democratic Caucus * California Demographic Research Unit * California Dental Auxiliaries * California Department of Aging * California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs * California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control Appeals Board * California Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control * California Department of Boating and Waterways (Cal Boating) * California Department of Child Support Services (CDCSS) * California Department of Community Services and Development * California Department of Conservation * California Department of Consumer Affairs * California Department of Corporations * California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation * California Department of Developmental Services * California Department of Education * California Department of Fair Employment and Housing * California Department of Finance * California Department of Financial Institutions * California Department of Fish and Game * California Department of Food and Agriculture * California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CDF) * California Department of General Services * California Department of General Services, Office of State Publishing * California Department of Health Care Services * California Department of Housing and Community Development * California Department of Industrial Relations (DIR) * California Department of Insurance * California Department of Justice Firearms Division * California Department of Justice Opinion Unit * California Department of Justice, Consumer Information, Public Inquiry Unit * California Department of Justice * California Department of Managed Health Care * California Department of Mental Health * California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) * California Department of Personnel Administration * California Department of Pesticide Regulation * California Department of Public Health * California Department of Real Estate * California Department of Rehabilitation * California Department of Social Services Adoptions Branch * California Department of Social Services * California Department of Technology Services Training Center (DTSTC) * California Department of Technology Services (DTS) * California Department of Toxic Substances Control * California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) * California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVets) * California Department of Water Resources * California Departmento de Vehiculos Motorizados * California Digital Library * California Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise Certification Program * California Division of Apprenticeship Standards * California Division of Codes and Standards * California Division of Communicable Disease Control * California Division of Engineering * California Division of Environmental and Occupational Disease Control * California Division of Gambling Control * California Division of Housing Policy Development * California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement * California Division of Labor Statistics and Research * California Division of Land and Right of Way * California Division of Land Resource Protection * California Division of Law Enforcement General Library * California Division of Measurement Standards * California Division of Mines and Geology * California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) * California Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources * California Division of Planning and Local Assistance * California Division of Recycling * California Division of Safety of Dams * California Division of the State Architect * California Division of Tourism * California Division of Workers Compensation Medical Unit * California Division of Workers Compensation * California Economic Assistance, Business and Community Resources * California Economic Strategy Panel * California Education and Training Agency * California Education Audit Appeals Panel * California Educational Facilities Authority * California Elections Division * California Electricity Oversight Board * California Emergency Management Agency * California Emergency Medical Services Authority * California Employment Development Department (EDD) * California Employment Information State Jobs * California Employment Training Panel * California Energy Commission * California Environment and Natural Resources Agency * California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) * California Environmental Resources Evaluation System (CERES) * California Executive Office * California Export Laboratory Services * California Exposition and State Fair (Cal Expo) * California Fair Political Practices Commission * California Fairs and Expositions Division * California Film Commission * California Fire and Resource Assessment Program * California Firearms Division * California Fiscal Services * California Fish and Game Commission * California Fisheries Program Branch * California Floodplain Management * California Foster Youth Help * California Franchise Tax Board (FTB) * California Fraud Division * California Gambling Control Commission * California Geographic Information Systems Council (GIS) * California Geological Survey * California Government Claims and Victim Compensation Board * California Governors Committee for Employment of Disabled Persons * California Governors Mentoring Partnership * California Governors Office of Emergency Services * California Governors Office of Homeland Security * California Governors Office of Planning and Research * California Governors Office * California Grant and Enterprise Zone Programs HCD Loan * California Health and Human Services Agency * California Health and Safety Agency * California Healthy Families Program * California Hearing Aid Dispensers Bureau * California High-Speed Rail Authority * California Highway Patrol (CHP) * California History and Culture Agency * California Horse Racing Board * California Housing Finance Agency * California Indoor Air Quality Program * California Industrial Development Financing Advisory Commission * California Industrial Welfare Commission * California InFoPeople * California Information Center for the Environment * California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (I-Bank) * California Inspection Services * California Institute for County Government * California Institute for Education Reform * California Integrated Waste Management Board * California Interagency Ecological Program * California Job Service * California Junta Estatal de Personal * California Labor and Employment Agency * California Labor and Workforce Development Agency * California Labor Market Information Division * California Land Use Planning Information Network (LUPIN) * California Lands Commission * California Landscape Architects Technical Committee * California Latino Legislative Caucus * California Law Enforcement Branch * California Law Enforcement General Library * California Law Revision Commission * California Legislative Analyst’s Office * California Legislative Black Caucus * California Legislative Counsel * California Legislative Division * California Legislative Information * California Legislative Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Caucus * California Legislature Internet Caucus * California Library De velopment Services * California License and Revenue Branch * California Major Risk Medical Insurance Program * California Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board * California Maritime Academy * California Marketing Services * California Measurement Standards * California Medical Assistance Commission * California Medical Care Services * California Military Department * California Mining and Geology Board * California Museum for History, Women, and the Arts * California Museum Resource Center * California National Guard * California Native American Heritage Commission * California Natural Community Conservation Planning Program * California New Motor Vehicle Board * California Nursing Home Administrator Program * California Occupational Safety and Health Appeals Board * California Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board * California Ocean Resources Management Program * California Office of Administrative Hearings * California Office of Administrative Law * California Office of AIDS * California Office of Binational Border Health * California Office of Child Abuse Prevention * California Office of Deaf Access * California Office of Emergency Services (OES) * California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment * California Office of Fiscal Services * California Office of Fleet Administration * California Office of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Implementation (CalOHI) * California Office of Historic Preservation * California Office of Homeland Security * California Office of Human Resources * California Office of Legal Services * California Office of Legislation * California Office of Lieutenant Governor * California Office of Military and Aerospace Support * California Office of Mine Reclamation * California Office of Natural Resource Education * California Office of Privacy Protection * California Office of Public School Construction * California Office of Real Estate Appraisers * California Office of Risk and Insurance Management * California Office of Services to the Blind * California Office of Spill Prevention and Response * California Office of State Publishing (OSP) * California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development * California Office of Systems Integration * California Office of the Inspector General * California Office of the Ombudsman * California Office of the Patient Advocate * California Office of the President * California Office of the Secretary for Education * California Office of the State Fire Marshal * California Office of the State Public Defender * California Office of Traffic Safety * California Office of Vital Records * California Online Directory * California Operations Control Office * California Opinion Unit * California Outreach and Technical Assistance Network (OTAN) * California Park and Recreation Commission * California Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) * California Performance Review (CPR) * California Permit Information for Business (CalGOLD) * California Physical Therapy Board * California Physician Assistant Committee * California Plant Health and Pest Prevention Services * California Policy and Evaluation Division * California Political Reform Division * California Pollution Control Financing Authority * California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo * California Postsecondary Education Commission * California Prevention Services * California Primary Care and Family Health * California Prison Industry Authority * California Procurement Division * California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) * California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) * California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) * California Real Estate Services Division * California Refugee Programs Branch * California Regional Water Quality Control Boards * California Registered Veterinary Technician Committee * California Registrar of Charitable Trusts * California Republican Caucus * California Research and Development Division * California Research Bureau * California Resources Agency * California Respiratory Care Board * California Rivers Assessment * California Rural Health Policy Council * California Safe Schools * California San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission * California San Gabriel and Lower Los Angeles Rivers and Mountains Conservancy * California San Joaquin River Conservancy * California School to Career * California Science Center * California Scripps Institution of Oceanography * California Secretary of State Business Portal * California Secretary of State * California Seismic Safety Commission * California Self Insurance Plans (SIP) * California Senate Office of Research * California Small Business and Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise Certification Program * California Small Business Development Center Program * California Smart Growth Caucus * California Smog Check Information Center * California Spatial Information Library * California Special Education Division * California Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Board * California Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR) * California Standards and Assessment Division * California State Administrative Manual (SAM) * California State Allocation Board * California State and Consumer Services Agency * California State Architect * California State Archives * California State Assembly * California State Association of Counties (CSAC) * California State Board of Education * California State Board of Food and Agriculture *California Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) * California State Children’s Trust Fund * California State Compensation Insurance Fund * California State Contracts Register Program * California State Contracts Register * California State Controller * California State Council on Developmental Disabilities (SCDD) * California State Disability Insurance (SDI) * California State Fair (Cal Expo) * California State Jobs Employment Information * California State Lands Commission * California State Legislative Portal * California State Legislature * California State Library Catalog * California State Library Services Bureau * California State Library * California State Lottery * California State Mediation and Conciliation Service * California State Mining and Geology Board * California State Park and Recreation Commission * California State Parks * California State Personnel Board * California State Polytechnic University, Pomona * California State Railroad Museum * California State Science Fair * California State Senate * California State Summer School for Mathematics and Science (COSMOS) * California State Summer School for the Arts * California State Superintendent of Public Instruction * California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) * California State Treasurer * California State University Center for Distributed Learning * California State University, Bakersfield * California State University, Channel Islands * California State University, Chico * California State University, Dominguez Hills * California State University, East Bay * California State University, Fresno * California State University, Fullerton * California State University, Long Beach * California State University, Los Angeles * California State University, Monterey Bay * California State University, Northridge * California State University, Sacramento * California State University, San Bernardino * California State University, San Marcos * California State University, Stanislaus * California State University (CSU) * California State Water Project Analysis Office * California State Water Project * California State Water Resources Control Board * California Structural Pest Control Board * California Student Aid Commission * California Superintendent of Public Instruction * California Superior Courts * California Tahoe Conservancy * California Task Force on Culturally and Linguistically Competent Physicians and Dentists * California Tax Information Center * California Technology and Administration Branch Finance * California Telecommunications Division * California Telephone Medical Advice Services (TAMS) * California Transportation Commission * California Travel and Transportation Agency * California Unclaimed Property Program * California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board * California Unemployment Insurance Program * California Uniform Construction Cost Accounting Commission * California Veterans Board * California Veterans Memorial * California Veterinary Medical Board and Registered Veterinary Technician Examining Committee * California Veterinary Medical Board * California Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board * California Volunteers * California Voter Registration * California Water Commission * California Water Environment Association (COWPEA) * California Water Resources Control Board * California Welfare to Work Division * California Wetlands Information System * California Wildlife and Habitat Data Analysis Branch * California Wildlife Conservation Board * California Wildlife Programs Branch * California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) * California Workers Compensation Appeals Board * California Workforce and Labor Development Agency * California Workforce Investment Board * California Youth Authority (CYA) * Central Valley Flood Protection Board * Center for California Studies * Colorado River Board of California * Counting California * Dental Board of California * Health Insurance Plan of California (PacAdvantage) * Humboldt State University * Jobs with the State of California * Judicial Council of California * Learn California * Library of California * Lieutenant Governors Commission for One California * Little Hoover Commission (on California State Government Organization and Economy) * Medical Board of California * Medi-Cal * Osteopathic Medical Board of California * Physical Therapy Board of California * Regents of the University of California * San Diego State University * San Francisco State University * San Jose State University * Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy * State Bar of California * Supreme Court of California * Teach California * University of California * University of California, Berkeley * University of California, Davis * University of California, Hastings College of the Law * University of California, Irvine * University of California, Los Angeles * University of California, Merced * University of California, Riverside * University of California, San Diego * University of California, San Francisco * University of California, Santa Barbara * University of California, Santa Cruz * Veterans Home of California

Lets all "go green"



I am all for clean air, clean water, unprocessed foods, and unpolluted healthy existence. However, there is a silliness about the Greens which is stupifying. You should note that the green movement is continually flacking stupid gimmicky stuff like "turning off our lights" in order to ........ what? Protest electricity generation? Protest electrical power itself? Protest the wicked capitalism which supplies the electrical grid?

Well this is what the night in an ecologically pristine environment unpolluted by capitalism looks like. This is North and South Korea. The North is in the grip of a Stalinist dictator and the South is a thriving democracy. One is totalitarian statism and one is free.

Electricity is truly a gift from God. It is the difference between the Dark Age and the present age…but not for everyone. Much of Africa is in darkness. too. People who hate civilization and the humans who created it are welcome to live out in the wilderness or in some primitive backward country where they burn dung to cook their meals.

If America doesn’t start building more coal-fired plants, nuclear plants, and other generators of electricity, we too shall live in darkness when the sun goes down. Be warned, the present administration is doing everything possible to make that future happen.

I am ALL FOR clean power sources and am actually hoping to have my next home "disconnected" as much as possible from the grid. However......, well, just grab a look at that picture again. Famine, anyone?