Friday, August 31, 2012

Majority of New Jobs Pay Low Wages, Study Finds

CATHERINE RAMPELL
nytimes.com
August 31, 2012

While a majority of jobs lost during the downturn were in the middle range of wages, a majority of those added during the recovery have been low paying, according to nytimes.com
August 31, 2012

The disappearance of midwage, midskill jobs is part of a longer-term trend that some refer to as a hollowing out of the work force, though it has probably been accelerated by government layoffs.

“The overarching message here is we don’t just have a jobs deficit; we have a ‘good jobs’ deficit,” said Annette Bernhardt, the report’s author and a policy co-director at the National Employment Law Project, a liberal research and advocacy group.

Read more

VIDEO: European Central Bank Pushes For Control Of 6000 Eurozone Banks

FT
August 31, 2012

EU MP from the UK Independence Party, Nigel Farage, criticizes attempt to rule over Europe by central banking warfare.

The would be given sweeping authority over all 6,000 eurozone banks under a plan being drawn up by the European Commission, putting Brussels on a collision course with Germany and the ECB itself, which have urged a more decentralised first step towards “banking union”.


The real hunger games: How banks gamble on food prices – and the poor lose out

Grace Livingstone
The Independent
April 1, 2012

Speculation by large investment banks is driving up food prices for the world’s poorest people, tipping millions into hunger and poverty. Investment in food commodities by banks and hedge funds has risen from $65bn to $126bn (£41bn to £79bn) in the past five years, helping to push prices to 30-year highs and causing sharp price fluctuations that have little to do with the actual supply of food, says the United Nations’ leading expert on food.

Hedge funds, pension funds and investment banks such as Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Barclays Capital now dominate the food commodities markets, dwarfing the amount traded by actual food producers and buyers. Purely financial players, for example, account for 61 per cent of investment on the wheat futures market, according to the World Development Movement report Broken Markets.

Speculative investment in agricultural commodities in 2011 was 20 times the amount spent by all countries on agricultural aid. Goldman Sachs, the largest player in the agricultural commodities market, earned £600m from food speculation in 2009, and Barclays Capital, the world’s third-largest player and largest British bank in this market, earned up to £340m in 2010, according to the report. Goldman Sachs and Barclays Capital declined to comment.

Before it was deregulated in the year 2000, the agricultural commodities futures market was used mainly by farmers and food buyers seeking to insure themselves against changes in the prices of products such as wheat, maize and sugar. When George W Bush passed the Commodities Futures Modernization Act 12 years ago, there was an influx, led by Goldman Sachs, of purely financial players who had no interest in ever buying food, but who sought solely to profit from changes in food prices, says Olivier De Schutter, the UN special rapporteur on the right to food.

Read full report here

World’s Richest Woman Says Poor Should Have Less Fun, Work Harder

David Lazarus
Telegraph.co.uk
August 31, 2012

Mr Katter, an outspoken independent MP from north Queensland, joined a chorus of criticism across the country of Ms Rinehart’s claim that people jealous of the wealthy should “spend less time drinking or smoking and socialising”.

“[She] left out the bit about daddy being a major cattle station owner and the biggest mining magnate in Australia”, Mr Katter said. “That “helps as well. She says here that the minimum average wage of $600 a week should be cut. This is coming from the world’s richest woman.”

Mrs Rinehart, a mining heiress who capitalised on surging commodity prices and growing demand from China and India to build an iron ore empire worth an estimated £19 billion, wrote in her regular column in a resources magazine that Australia has lost its hard-working roots.

Read full article

Obama punishes Americans with another trillion-dollar deficit (four in a row)

J. D. Heyes
Natural News
Aug 31, 2012

As a presidential candidate in 2008, Sen. Barack Obama characterized outgoing-President George W. Bush as “unpatriotic” for adding $4 trillion to the national debt during his eight-year tenure.

In a campaign speech to supporters July 3, Obama said:

“The problem is, is that the way Bush has done it over the last eight years is to take out a credit card from the Bank of China in the name of our children, driving up our national debt from $5 trillion for the first 42 presidents – number 43 added $4 trillion by his lonesome, so that we now have over $9 trillion of debt that we are going to have to pay back – $30,000 for every man, woman and child. That’s irresponsible. It’s unpatriotic.

“Hope” and “change” were Obama’s campaign themes, not “more of the same.” It won him the White House.

What a difference four years make.

To be sure, $4 trillion is a lot of debt, and the president, as a candidate, was right to point out the obvious – if the current generation of voters and lawmakers fail to do the responsible thing and begin working together to pay it off, we will saddle our children with it, and sentence them – and their children – to a life of less freedom and fewer opportunities.

It’s just too bad he didn’t take his own rhetoric to heart.

Hypocrisy, sure, but that’s beside the point

Under Obama’s watch, the U.S. has added nearly $5 trillion in new debt over the course of about three-and-a-half years – a single term – while Bush’s debt was spread out over two terms, making Obama’s the largest accumulation of new debt over the shortest amount of time in the history of the country. Moreover, this year’s budget adds another $1.1 trillion, making it the fourth year in a row the government has run a $1 trillion-plus deficit.

The strategy from the White House and Democratic talking heads has been to dodge responsibility and lay all of it at Bush’s feet, arguing that the recession they inherited was “worse than we thought.” But the recession, we are told, ended in 2009, and Obama’s efforts since to restart the country’s economic engine have fallen flat; his stimulus packages and other economic incentives have not only failed to substantially reduce the unemployment rate, but they have also done virtually nothing to stimulate economic growth, which remains anemic at two percent a year or less. The little growth that has occurred in the economy has literally come in spite of Obama.

What’s more, the president has “owned” three of the last four fiscal years, making his policies, not Bush’s, the driving factor behind the debt increases which have occurred on his watch. If Bush has to own up, Obama has to own up.

So, does that make him “unpatriotic” as well?

Honestly, who cares? The characterization was political theater when Obama said it, and it’s political theater now.

Time is literally running out

The point is we have a debt problem, ladies and gentlemen of Congress, and it is imperative, regardless of which party you belong to, that you solve the problem and stop adding to it.

That will require reviving the lost art of statesmanship and putting the country before your own political careers.

Reducing the dialogue to pointless and inane trivialities will not address what is coming: $16 trillion in overall debt by Election Day, maybe another $5 trillion by 2016 if nothing changes, thereby creating, according to the Congressional Budget Office, a fiscal situation that is simply not sustainable.

“The key issue facing policymakers is not whether to reduce budget deficits,” says Doug Elmendorf, director of the CBO. “The question is when. The question is how.”

Options are few, he says, and none of them are going to be palatable, either to the politicians who must come together and decide on a course of action or to a sizable and growing portion of the American public , whom many of those same lawmakers have turned into a dependency class in order to buy their votes.

“Now, Congress and Mr. Obama are grappling with 2013 and beyond, and CBO said their options range from immediate belt-tightening and a double-dip recession that clears the economic and fiscal air, to continuing to pump money into the economy and delay, but likely worsen, an eventual reckoning,” The Washington Times reported.

Our “leaders” have painted the nation into an economic corner, Elmendorf notes.

“At some point, we will need to adopt policies that require people to pay significantly more in taxes, accept substantially less in government benefits and services, or both,” he said.

And with each new deficit, the problem grows larger, while the options fewer.

The debt clock is ticking. Like a time bomb.

Sources:

http://www.washingtontimes.com

http://www.commentarymagazine.com

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/037013_Obama_deficits_government_spending.html#ixzz257HHErr6

ObamaCare, a Government Takeover of Healthcare

Brian Koenig
New American
Aug 30, 2012

Is ObamaCare a government takeover of medicine?” That’s the question Forbes contributor Carolyn McClanahan posed in a recent blog post, as she attempted to quell “misconceptions” about the President’s Affordable Care Act, while promoting key aspects of the law. McClanahan concedes the law is far from perfect, but that it is “the most significant attempt our country has ever made at reforming our costly and inefficient health care system.”

McClanahan goes on to dispute the common assertion that ObamaCare is a “government takeover” of medicine. Outlining how what she translates as a “government takeover,” the Forbes contributor cites the following variations:

Medicine will be a government-run entity — doctors will be employed by the government and care will be paid for by the government.

All the doctors will be employed by the government, but insurance companies will still exist.

The government will dictate what doctors can and cannot do.

The government will make it so onerous to practice medicine that everyone will quit.

McClanahan first addresses spending, citing that, in some capacity the government pays 43 to 36 percent of all healthcare costs, primarily through Medicaid, Medicare, and the military. After ObamaCare reaches full implementation, that amount will spike to more than 49 percent. “It is a clear increase, but nowhere near a 100% government-paid program,” Ms. McClanahan posits. “The private sector will still be responsible for over half of healthcare spending.”



In addition to three other U.S. healthcare systems — private insurance, Medicare and Medicaid, and coverage for the armed forces — there is something called the “self-insured system,” McClanahan explains:

[T]hese are the roughly 40 million or so people who either cannot afford coverage, choose to go without coverage, or have pre-existing conditions which make it impossible to get coverage. The uninsured are at the mercy of a patchwork volunteer system that is inefficient and expensive to run. Some of the current programs to cover the uninsured are funded by the government (taxpayers) and some through charity (benevolent taxpayers), but the majority of the uninsured are left to fend for themselves. Requiring that people obtain coverage and assisting the low income uninsured in paying for that coverage is part of the Affordable Care Act. This is greater government involvement — making people take responsibility, and assisting individuals in fulfilling that responsibility.

While it may be that ObamaCare does not represent a complete government takeover of healthcare (i.e. a single-payer system), it captures numerous components of the system, as well as partially confiscating other more obscure elements. While doctors may not be explicitly employed by federal officials, intrusive regulations have forced them to answer to the government, or their “boss,” if you will.

Government officials have called for higher quality of care, and ObamaCare grants them the authority to impose numerous quality-control standards, much like a CEO or manager would require them to do. The New American reported in May on another scheme the federal government has pursued to take over key aspects of the U.S. healthcare system:

Another regulatory burden ObamaCare imposes on insurance companies is a “rebate program” that requires providers to spend 80 percent of their collected premiums (85 percent for larger employers) on medical care or reimburse the difference to individuals and businesses. The HHS has been touting the purported “rebate program” as an indication that ObamaCare is giving back to Americans.

Highlighting the physician aspect of the debate, McClanahan exploits the claim that ObamaCare will force every physician or individual who practices medicine to leave the profession. While, of course, every doctor won’t transition to a new career, studies show that physician shortages have already become a serious problem, likely due to current and prospective components of the law’s implementation.

Furthermore, the government’s extension of coverage to millions of new Americans has already prompted doctor shortages. The New York Times reported in July that an economically-depressed region in Southern California, the Inland Empire, is expecting widespread physician shortages, as the healthcare law — and, in turn, the government — will be extending coverage in the area to more than 300,000 by 2014:

Other places around the country, including the Mississippi Delta, Detroit and suburban Phoenix, face similar problems. The Association of American Medical Colleges estimates that in 2015 the country will have 62,900 fewer doctors than needed. And that number will more than double by 2025, as the expansion of insurance coverage and the aging of baby boomers drive up demand for care. Even without the health care law, the shortfall of doctors in 2025 would still exceed 100,000.

Further revealing the government’s unrelenting expansion in the U.S. healthcare system, the Congressional Budget Office found that ObamaCare will inflate the national debt $1.36 trillion in seven years after just two crucial mandates reach full implementation. Moreover, the law adds 150 new federal healthcare missions and boards, which will further restrict the consumer’s choice in fulfilling his or her own health needs.

McClanahan attempts to belittle those ObamaCare opponents who allege, “If the government has one iota of involvement in any form, it is a government takeover.” But while President Obama’s landmark healthcare overhaul may not establish a single-payer healthcare system, it has authorized the government to take over crucial aspects of the system, so analysts can arguably conclude that the law has ignited a “government takeover.”

VIDEO: Fed Hints at Third Round of Quantitative Easing


Kurt Nimmo
Prison Planet.com
August 31, 2012

During his Jackson Hole speech on Thursday, Fed boss Ben Bernanke said the privately owned bankster cartel “will provide additional policy accommodation as needed” and may engage in more so-called quantitative easing.

“As the crisis crested, and with the federal funds rate at its effective lower bound, the FOMC [Federal Open Market Committee] turned to non-traditional policy approaches to support the recovery,” Bernanke said.

“The costs of non-traditional policies, when considered carefully, appear manageable, implying that we should not rule out the further use of such policies if economic conditions warrant.”

The Fed has thus far squandered more than $2 trillion in quantitative easing and despite this the economy has slipped further into depression.

“Quantitative easing is a resort to the money printing press,” explains Michael S. Rozeff. “It means seizure and coercion of goods and services from the inhabitants of a country. But it also means either a government that is spending beyond its means, or one whose economy is not strong enough to generate financing by the usual means, or both.”

Operation Twist – the wholesale purchase of long-term bonds swapped for short-term bonds in order to force down interest rates – frittered away an additional $267 billion. Following the Fed’s announcement, markets went into a frenzied tailspin and seasoned observers wondered when the ultimate crash would commence.

During the Jackson Hole speech, Bernanke hinted that the Fed is not finished blowing trillions of dollars in funny money to save an economy seriously taking on water due largely to the Fed’s boom and bust policies. He said “nontraditional policies” like quantitative easing “when considered carefully, appear manageable, implying that we should not rule out the further use of such policies if economic conditions warrant.”

In short, it seems likely the Fed will begin a third round of buying Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities.

Bernanke also said unemployment will continue unless “the economy begins to grow more quickly than it has recently” and it will remain vexing for some time.

“If zero interest rates and quantitative easing could really solve unemployment, there would be no reason not to maintain such policies in perpetuity. Such policies, however, lead to the formation of asset bubbles,” Rep. Ron Paul warned during the last QE boondoggle. “The next bubble is already forming, although which sector will be hit hardest remains to be seen.”

Economists and investors, however, believe we have seen the last of monetary easing, at least for now.

“Only 44 percent of fund managers in the Reuters global asset allocation poll published Thursday now think the Fed will announce a third round of quantitative easing, down from 70 percent in the same poll last month,” the Economic Times reported on August 30.

“Similarly, a poll of economists last Friday gave a 45 percent chance of a new round of quantitative easing resulting from the Fed’s Sept. 12-13 policy meeting, a sharp cut from 60 percent in another poll earlier in the month.”

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Obama Has Stolen $5.3 Trillion From Our Children In Order To Make Himself Look Good

Michael Snyder
The Economic Collapse
Aug 30, 2012

Barack Obama has destroyed the future of America in order to improve his chances of winning the next election. Under Obama, 5.3 trillion dollars has been ruthlessly stolen from our children and our grandchildren. That money has been used to pump up the debt-fueled false prosperity that we have been experiencing. When the U.S. government borrows money that it does not have from someone else (such as China) and spends that money into the economy it is going to make our economic numbers look better. Even if the government spends that money on incredibly stupid things, it still gets into the hands of average Americans who in turn spend that money on food, gas, clothes, etc. If we were to go back and take that extra 5.3 trillion dollars out of the U.S. economy, I guarantee you that we would be in a rip-roaring depression right now. We would look a lot like Greece at this point. For several years Greece has been raising taxes and cutting government spending in an attempt to balance the budget and these austerity measures have resulted in an unemployment rate of over 23 percent and an economy that has contracted by close to 25 percent. Most Americans don’t want to go through pain like that so they are okay with continuing to financially rape our children and our grandchildren. Just imagine how you would feel if your parents died tomorrow and you found out that they had left you with a million dollar debt that you were legally obligated to pay off. How would you feel, knowing that you had just been sold into debt slavery for the rest of your life? Well, that is how our children and our grandchildren are going to feel. We are destroying the greatest economic machine the world has ever seen, we are accumulating the biggest mountain of debt in the history of the planet, and the coming economic collapse that we have caused is going to wipe out the promising future that our children and our grandchildren were supposed to have. If they get the chance, future generations of Americans will curse us bitterly and will spit on our graves. What we are doing to our children and our grandchildren is the kind of stuff that horror movies are made of. You should beashamed of yourself America.

The federal budget deficit for 2012 will be larger than the entire U.S. national debt was 30 years ago. In 1982 Ronald Reagan was in the White House and the U.S. national debt was considered to be a tremendous national crisis. But somehow we have allowed our national debt to grow from about a trillion dollars back then to approximately $16,000,000,000,000 today.

By the end of Obama’s first term, the U.S. national debt will have grown more than it did from the time that George Washington became president to the time that George W. Bush became president.

That is hard to believe.

Obama is going to outdo all the presidents from George Washington through Bill Clinton in just one term.

Amazing.

At this point, the U.S. national debt is more than 22 times larger than it was when Jimmy Carter became president.

This has allowed us to enjoy a standard of living far beyond what we deserved to. We have stolen from the future to make the present more pleasant.

But hardly anybody wants the party to end. Especially not our Congress critters – they are living like kings and queens at our expense. Our “representatives” in Washington D.C. love to give speeches about being “financially responsible”, but most of them never take any serious action about the debt because the way things are working now has been incredibly good to them.

And the truth is that both political parties have been responsible. In 2010, Republicans took control of the House of Representatives with a clear mandate to get government spending under control. Not a single penny of government money can be spent without their permission. But since they took control, the U.S. national debt has increased by another 1.8 trillion dollars.

At this point, this current Congress (controlled by both Republicans and Democrats) has added more to the national debt than the first 97 Congresses combined.

We expect this kind of nonsense from the Democrats, but the Republicans are supposed to know better.

Of course our entire financial system is designed to permanently entrap our federal government in an endless spiral of debt, but neither political party ever talks about that.

Sadly, the U.S. national debt is now more than 5000 times larger than it was when the Federal Reserve was first created.

But we never hear about the link between the Federal Reserve and our national debt from either political party or on the mainstream news.

So most Americans do not even realize that our system is designed to create government debt.

It is absolutely disgusting.

We say that we care about our kids, and yet we are passing down a $16,000,000,000,000 debt to them.

Talk about child abuse.

Most people have a really hard time grasping how much money 16 trillion dollars actually is.

If right this moment you went out and started spending one dollar every single second, it would take you more than 31,000 years to spend one trillion dollars.

And it would take you more than half a million years to spend 16 trillion dollars.

This is a debt that is impossible to pay back. Just look at how it has exploded over the past 40 years….






In a previous article I discussed the distressing rate at which our debt is growing….

It took more than 200 years for the U.S. national debt to reach 1 trillion dollars. In 1986, the U.S. national debt reached 2 trillion dollars. In 1992, the U.S. national debt reached 4 trillion dollars. In 2005, the U.S. national debt doubled again and reached 8 trillion dollars. Now the U.S. national debt is about to cross the 16 trillion dollar mark. How long can this kind of exponential growth go on?

If we can’t even slow down the growth of our debt, how do we ever expect to repay a single penny?

The sad truth is that we aren’t ever going to start paying down our debt. We have gotten to the point where if we take our foot off the debt accelerator we plunge directly into a depression and the entire system collapses. It is like a really sick version of the movie “Speed”.

Where is Keanu Reeves when you need him?

Since Barack Obama entered the White House, he has approved a whole host of measures that have been good for the economy in the short-term. TARP, the stimulus packages, the auto industry bailout and the payroll tax cut are just a few examples.

Barack Obama has wanted to do everything he possibly can to stimulate the economy in the short-term so that he can win again in 2012.

But what about the future?

Barack Obama could not care less about the future. He is just like so many of our other politicians. He is blinded by selfish ambition.

Since Barack Obama became president, the U.S. national debt has increased by an average of more than $64,000per taxpayer.

Are you willing to write a check for your share?

No?

Oh, let’s just pass this horrific debt on to our children, right?

The path that we are on as a nation cannot go on too much longer. The truth is that we are headed for financial oblivion.

A recently revised IMF policy paper entitled “An Analysis of U.S. Fiscal and Generational Imbalances: Who Will Pay and How?” projects that U.S. government debt will rise to about 400 percent of GDP by the year 2050.

Of course we will never get to the point. Our financial system will collapse long before then.

Sadly, the United States already has more government debt per capita than Greece, Portugal, Italy, Ireland or Spain does.

So why are we not like Greece or Spain yet?

Well, it is because we are still able to borrow huge piles of money very, very cheaply.

But at some point that will come to an end, and when it does the consequences are going to be nightmarish.

Historically, the interest rate on 10 year U.S. Treasuries has averaged 6.68 percent. If the average rate of interest on U.S. debt rose to that level today, we would be paying more than a trillion dollars a year just in interest on the national debt.

And when you consider our future unfunded liabilities things get even more frightening.

According to Boston University economist Laurence Kotlikoff, the “fiscal gap” is “the present value difference between projected future spending and revenue”. His calculations have led him to the conclusion that the United States is facing a fiscal gap of 222 trillion dollars.

And this gap is rising at a breathtaking pace.

The following is an excerpt from a recent article co-authored by Kotlikoff….

In 2007, the first year the CBO produced the Alternative Fiscal Scenario, the gap, by our reckoning, stood at $175 trillion. By 2009, when the CBO began reporting the AFS annually, the gap was $184 trillion. In 2010, it was $202 trillion, followed by $211 trillion in 2011 and $222 trillion in 2012.

But if we interrupt this debt cycle we immediately go into a depression.

We are a debt addict that will die without more debt.

Meanwhile, our national ability to produce wealth is going down the toilet.

All over the country businesses are shutting down, factories are being closed and millions of jobs are being sent overseas.

As I wrote about the other day, American families are steadily getting poorer. The middle class is shrinking and the tax base is shriveling up.

Many Americans end up flat broke at the end of their lives these days. In fact, one study found that nearly half of all retirees end up with $10,000 or less when they die.

So where is all of the money for servicing this gigantic national debt going to come from?

Even if Bill Gates gave every single penny of his fortune to the U.S. government, it would only cover the U.S. budget deficit for 15 days.

So what is the solution?

If we keep spending money like this we are doomed, but if we stop spending money like this we are doomed.

And debt is not just a problem that the federal government is facing.

Posted below is a chart that shows the growth of all forms of debt in the United States over the past several decades. 40 years ago, there was less than 2 trillion dollars of total debt owed in the United States. Now there is nearly 55 trillion dollars of debt owed. This generation has destroyed the future and has set the stage for an unprecedented economic collapse. Shame on you America….



Euro collapse imminent, experts believe

Ethan A. Huff
Natural News
Aug 30, 2012

The future does not look very promising for the euro, the flailing currency of the European Union (EU). Speculation among many bankers, company executives, investors, government officials, and others that the euro is about to completely unravel are actually helping to fuel the currency’s decline, say some, a process that many others, including euro architect Otmar Issing, have long believed was inevitable anyway.

The ongoing debt crisis in the “Eurozone,” or the bloc of European countries that are part of the EU, is only continuing to worsen, and EU officials have been unable to come up with a viable policy solution to jump start the EU economy. Meanwhile, the local economies of Greece, Italy, and Spain are in rapid decline with no end in sight, and countries like Germany and Finland that have had to continually prop them are up are growing weary of having to keep the ship afloat, so to speak.

Many European banks have stopped lending across their own countries’ borders, investors have pulled their assets out of European markets, and the Constitutional Court of Germany, one of the key countries holding the EU together, will soon determine whether or not its continued bailout efforts for the worst performing countries in the EU are even legal in the first place. All the signs, in other words, are pointing to an eventual euro collapse.

“Banks, investors and companies are bracing themselves for the possibility that the euro will break up — and are thus increasing the likelihood that precisely this will happen,” writes Martin Hesse for Spiegel Online. “The most radical option to protect oneself against a collapse of the euro is to completely withdraw from the monetary zone.”

Euro architect admits currency in decline

Even Issing, the former chief economist at the European Central Bank who originally helped found and establish the euro, believes the currency was merely an “experiment,” and one that the financial markets of the world are no longer taking seriously. Over the course of this slow debacle, many investors have switched to tangible investments like real estate, rather than take their chances on the euro.

Even the U.S. dollar, which has been on a downward spiral of its own, is viewed by many as more viable than the euro. Because the dollar is perceived as being weak rather than structurally unsound, it is preferable to the euro, and is considered to be the “lesser of two evils.” And it is becoming increasingly obvious that no matter what policy measures are put into place at this point in time, there may be no way to save the euro.

“Over the long term, the monetary union (of the euro) can’t be maintained without private investors,” says Thomas Mayer, a former chief economist at Germany-based Deutsche Bank. If politicians keep trying to prop up the currency with bailouts and other failed policies, he adds, the euro “would only be artificially kept alive.”

Sources for this article include:

http://www.spiegel.de

http://www.reuters.com

http://www.businessweek.com

The Math Behind Italy’s 28,000 “Cash For Gold” Outlets

Mike Krieger
Liberty Blitzkrieg blog

Aug 30, 2012

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about how the Portuguese citizenry was being forced to sell its gold in order to eat. It seems that the Italians have now joined this illustrious club. I mean what do you expect when you allow Goldman Sachs to impose technocrat dictator Mario “Three Card” Monti as your political leader? Here are some excerpts from an article in The Globe and Mail:

Times are now so tough that Valerio Novelli, a ticket inspector on Rome’s buses, is planning to sell his old gold teeth.

“I can’t get to the end of the month without running up debts,” said Mr. Novelli, 56, who has to support an ex-wife and daughter. “I know I won’t get much, but I need the money.”

In a country suffering from economic crisis, buying gold off desperate people has become one of the few boom industries.

“Since I was a child I remember that gold was given as a gift on various occasions and people used to say: ‘Put it aside’,” said Ivana Ciabatti, who represents gold– and silversmiths at employers’ lobby Confindustria.

“We used to laugh at it, but they turned out to be right. Many families are surviving thanks to this gold.”

So people are barely surviving based on the gold passed down from generation to generation, yet the mainstream media here in the U.S. continues to mock gold constantly. Got it. How about this last line from the article:

The pawnbrokers, by contrast, can hardly keep up with business. They normally have the gold quickly melted down and sent abroad, making it one of Italy’s fastest growing exports. Official gold sales to Switzerland leaped 65 per cent last year to 120 tonnes, up from 73 tonnes in 2010 and 64 tonnes in 2009.

That’s not just gold being exported, that is wealth being exported. China says thanks. At least you protected your bankster class from taking a hit on their bond portfolios.

Meanwhile, this whole theme fits in perfectly with an article from The Telegraph yesterday with the fitting title “Unilever Sees ‘Return to Poverty’ in Europe.” That article begins with:

Aug. 27 (Telegraph) – Unilever will adopt marketing strategies used in developing countries in order to drive future growth in Europe.

Then we find out that Unilever will market to Europeans like they do to Indonesians:

“In Indonesia, we sell individual packs of shampoo for 2 to 3 cents and still make decent money,” said Mr Zijderveld. “We know how to do that, but in Europe we have forgotten in the years before the crisis.”

Once again, at least the banksters got bailed out at 100 cents on the dollar. No wonder the elites laugh at the sheeple.

Read The Globe and Mail article here.

Read The Telegraph article here.

VIDEO: Economic Collapse, Foreign Troops & Martial Law with Steve Quayle









Wednesday, August 29, 2012

VIDEO: America Is Being Pillaged And Plundered! Obama Preparing for Total Takeover!!






More GOP Thuggery

Thomas DiLorenzo
Lew Rockwell Blog
Aug 29, 2012

From John Tate, Ron Paul’s campaign manager, on convention shenanigans yesterday:

“Properly elected Ron Paul delegates were stripped from us. And when a motion was made to amend the Credential Committee’s report, it was ignored. Morton Blackwell, a longtime conservative activist and RNC Rules Committee expert, found himself indefinitely detained — along with the rest of the Virginia delegation.

The RNC bus driver responsible for transporting delegates somehow ‘got lost’ for well over an hour until a critical Rules Committee meeting adjourned. [The new rules adopted by that committee] are designed to make the Republican Party a top-down organization and strip power away from state parties and grassroots activists of every stripe. All efforts to vote down these onerous rules were ignored . . . ”

Still believe in the god of democracy? Still believe that your vote “counts”? Still believe these same GOP hacks when they tell you that it is your “duty” to vote in order to sanctify their behavior?

Into the Meat Grinder: A “Market Meltdown the Likes of Which We’ve Never Seen Is Upon Us”

Mac Slavo
SHTFplan.com
Aug 29, 2012

America is about to be put through the meat grinder and despite what President Obama or Governor Mitt Romney say they will do to fix the fundamental issues facing our country, the end result is inevitable.

Neither the Republicans or the Democrats can change what’s coming, because the fact is, they are equally responsible for where we are today.

As Charlie McGrath of Wide Awake News notes, it’s no longer just bloggers and alternative media in the fringe corners of the internet warning about the coming collapse of life in America as we have come to know it.

The crisis of reality is being forecast by some of the most elite institutions and insiders in the world, and we’d better be paying attention.

I want to give you a few predictions and then tell I’ll you who they’re from. It might surprise you.

Prediction number 1: We’re heading headlong into a financial meat grinder.

Prediction number 2: We’re about to plunge off a financial cliff.

Prediction number 3: Major market meltdown the likes of which we’ve never seen is upon on us.

This wasn’t from some alternative media site or somebody that’s peddling gloom and doom.

The first one is from JP Morgan, the second from Ben Bernanke, and the third was from Steven Rattner, former Obama Treasury adviser.

The IMF and the US Congressional budget office are both warning about the largest tax increase and the largest spending cut in history hitting this country.

They’re doing this for a reason.

It isn’t because it’s not going to happen. It is because it’s going to happen.

When it all comes crashing down, when it all comes falling apart, when the sovereign debt landmine explodes around this planet we will be sitting here in a deflationary spiral, the likes of which we have never seen. They will be sitting there ready to swoop in and grab up everything at bargain basement, bottom of the dollar prices. It will be the Tulip bubble all over again. You will be sitting there holding nothing and then blaming your neighbor for being here.

These same criminal elite that promised to end wars, that promised to audit the Federal Reserve, that promised to get our financial house in order, are continuing to expand the power, the role and the control of government.


At this point it is our position that there is nothing – absolutely nothing – that will be done to change the course on which we’ve embarked over the last several decades. The consequences of years of spending, borrowing and centralization of control cannot be reversed.

The system as it exists today, where we enjoy relative wealth, stability and peace, will inevitably experience a complete reset.

The elite know this is coming, as evidenced by their recent actions and the whispers on Wall Street and throughout the upper echelons of finance and government.

Is There Going To Be A Stock Market Crash In The Fall?

The Economic Collapse
Aug 29, 2012

Is the stock market going to crash by the end of this year? Are we on the verge of major financial chaos on a global scale? Well, this is the time of the year when investors start getting nervous. We all remember what happened during the fall of 1929, the fall of 1987 and the fall of 2008. However, it is important to keep in mind that we do not see a stock market crash in the fall of every year. Some years the stock market cruises through the months of September, October, November and December without any problems whatsoever. But this year conditions certainly seem to be right for a “perfect storm” to develop. Technical indicators are screaming that a stock market decline is imminent and sources in the financial industry all over the world are warning that a massive crisis is on the way. In fact, the Telegraph ran a story with the following shocking headline the other day: “Market crash ‘could hit within weeks’, warn bankers“. What you are about to read should alarm you. But it is not a guarantee that anything will or will not happen. When Ben Bernanke gives his speech at the Jackson Hole summit on Friday he could announce to the rest of the world that the Federal Reserve has decided to launch QE3 and that the Fed will be printing up trillions of new dollars. If that happened global financial markets would leap for joy. So it is always a dangerous thing when anyone out there tries to tell you that they can “guarantee” what is about to happen in the financial world. There are just so many moving parts. But if we do not see major intervention by the governments of the world or by global central banks a major financial crisis could rapidly develop this fall. The conditions are certainly right for a stock market collapse, and we could easily see a repeat of what happened back in 2008.

The truth is that the second half of 2012 looks a little bit more like the second half of 2008 with each passing day.

For example, credit default swaps are soaring just like we saw back during the last financial crisis. The following is from a recent article in the Telegraph by Harry Wilson and Philip Aldrick….

Insurance on the debt of several major European banks has now hit historic levels, higher even than those recorded during financial crisis caused by the US financial group’s implosion nearly three years ago.

Credit default swaps on the bonds of Royal Bank of Scotland, BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank and Intesa Sanpaolo, among others, flashed warning signals on Wednesday. Credit default swaps (CDS) on RBS were trading at 343.54 basis points, meaning the annual cost to insure £10m of the state-backed lender’s bonds against default is now £343,540.

The Telegraph also published some ominous warnings from anonymous banking executives in their recent article….

“The problem is a shortage of liquidity – that is what is causing the problems with the banks. It feels exactly as it felt in 2008,” said one senior London-based bank executive.

One anonymous banker was even bold enough to predict a “market shock” for “September or October”….

“I think we are heading for a market shock in September or October that will match anything we have ever seen before,” said a senior credit banker at a major European bank.

Of course there are analysts on this side of the pond that are incredibly bearish right now as well. The warnings from Europe line up very well with what Bob Janjuah of Nomura Securities has been saying….

Based on the reasons set out earlier and also covered in my two prior notes, over the August to November period I am looking for the S&P500 to trade off down from around 1400 to 1100/1000 – in other words, I expect over the next four months to see global equity markets fall by 20% to 25% from current levels and to trade at or below the lows of 2011! US equity markets, along with parts of the EM spectrum, will I think underperform eurozone equity markets, where already very little hope resides.

Others are issuing similar warnings. Just check out what a couple of Bank of America analysts said in a report the other day….

Our strategists see an unusually high number of macro catalysts over the next 3-6 months that could take markets lower. We expect economic growth to disappoint in the second half of the year in anticipation of the fiscal cliff. This would exacerbate any slowdown from the deepening recession in Europe and decelerating growth in emerging markets. There is also the ongoing tension in the Middle East, the potential for a US credit downgrade and accelerating downward analyst estimate revisions. To top it off, September is seasonally the weakest month of the year for stock price returns.

There has been an unusual amount of chatter in the financial world about the September to December time frame.

That could mean something or it could mean nothing.

But is is very interesting to watch what some top financial insiders are doing with their stocks right now.

Dennis Gartman, the publisher of the Gartman Leter, has dumped all of his stocks at this point.

As I have written about previously, George Soros has dumped all of his stock in banking giants JP Morgan, Citigroup and Goldman Sachs.

Are they just being paranoid?

Or do they know something that we do not?

If you are looking for the next “Lehman Brothers moment” in the United States, you might want to watch Morgan Stanley. Morgan Stanley was heavily involved in the Facebook IPO disaster, earlier this year their credit rating was downgraded, and now there are persistent rumors that Morgan Stanley is in big trouble and that it will be allowed to fail. You can check out some of these rumors for yourself here, here and here.

But of course as I have said all along the center of the coming crisis is going to be in Europe, and many analysts agree with me. For example, the following is what the chairman of Casey Research, Doug Casey, had to say during a recent interview….

Europe is a full cycle ahead of the U.S. Its governments and its banks are both bankrupt. It’s a couple of drunks standing on the street corner holding each other up at this point. Europe is in much worse shape than the U.S. It’s highly regulated, highly taxed and much more socially unstable.

Europe is going to be the epicenter of the coming storm. Japan is waiting in the wings, as is China. This is going to be a worldwide phenomenon. Of course, the U.S. will be in it, too. We’re going to see this all over the world.

Much of southern Europe is already experiencing depression-like conditions. Unemployment in both Greece and Spain is well above 20 percent and both economies are steadily shrinking.

Money is flowing out of Spanish banks at an unprecedented rate right now. Just take a look at these charts. The only thing that is going to keep the Spanish banking system from totally collapsing is outside intervention.

But the truth is that all of Europe is in big trouble. Even German companies are slashing job right now. For example, check out what Siemens is up to….

German engineering conglomerate Siemens (SIEGn.DE) is in early internal talks to cut thousands of jobs in response to a weakening economy, particularly in Europe, a German newspaper reported.

Decisions could be made in October or November, according to daily Boersen-Zeitung, which did not specify its sources.

A Siemens spokesman declined to comment.

We are living in the greatest debt bubble in the history of the world, and at some point that bubble is going to burst in a very messy way.

It is vital that people understand that our system is not even close to sustainable.

Knowing exactly when it will collapse is not nearly as important as understanding that a collapse is absolutely inevitable.

I think what former World Bank economist Richard Duncan had to say recently is very helpful….

“The explosion in credit drove economic growth in the U.S. and around the world, and now that’s the only thing that’s keeping us from collapsing in a debt/deflation spiral,” he said. “[What] I think everybody needs to understand is that the kind of economy that we have now, it’s not capitalism. It has very little in common with capitalism. Capitalism was an economic system in which the government played very little role …. Under capitalism, gold was money and the government had nothing to do with it. Now the central bank creates the money and manipulates its value.”

And he is very right.

We aren’t seeing a failure of capitalism.

What we are witnessing is the failure of debt-based central banking.

And if you think that the global elite are not aware of what is happening then you have not been paying attention.

This summer the global elite have been preparing very hard. Either they are getting very paranoid or they know things that we do not.

If you want to catch up on what the global elite have been up to recently, check out these three articles that I have published previously….

-”Are The Government And The Big Banks Quietly Preparing For An Imminent Financial Collapse?

-”Startling Evidence That Central Banks And Wall Street Insiders Are Rapidly Preparing For Something BIG

-”Jacob Rothschild, John Paulson And George Soros Are All Betting That Financial Disaster Is Coming

If you are waiting for the nightly news to tell you what to do, then you have not learned anything.

Did anyone in the mainstream media warn you about what was about to happen back in 2008?

Of course not.

The “authorities” insisted that everything was going to be just fine and many average Americans were absolutely wiped out.

So don’t expect someone to come along and nicely inform you that your retirement savings are about to be absolutely devastated.

In this day and age it is absolutely critical for people to learn to think for themselves.

Barack Obama is not going to save you.

Mitt Romney is not going to save you.

The U.S. Congress is not going to save you. They are too busy living the high life at taxpayer expense.

The system is not looking out for you. Nobody is really going to care if your financial planning gets turned upside down. This is a cold, cruel world and you need to understand how the game is played. The financial insiders are looking out for themselves and most of them usually are able to avoid financial disaster.

Average folks like you and I are normally not so fortunate.

There are lots of warning signs that indicate that this fall could be a very turbulent time for global financial markets.

Ignore them at your own peril.

$16,OOO,OOO,OOO,OOOBAMA!

Zero Hedge
Aug 29, 2012

November 16, 2011 was a historic date: that’s when the US officially surpassed $15 trillion in debt for the first time since World War 2. We celebrated it by cheering $15,OOO,OOO,OOO,OOOBAMA. Today, August 28, 2012, is when we can unofficially celebrate again, because 286 days after the last major milestone was surpassed with disturbing ease, total US debt following today’s $35 billion auction of 2 Year bonds is, well, in a word: $16,OOO,OOO,OOO,OOOBAMA!

The math?

Take today’s $35 billion in 2 Year bonds.

Continue reading here: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/16oooooooooooobama

VIDEO: The U.S. is Being Destroyed Right Before Our Very Eyes! Alfred Adask, The Publisher Of The AntiShyster News Magazine Reports





Tuesday, August 28, 2012

VIDEO: Ron Paul Schools Fed Chairman On The Value Of Hard Money (silver)





Feds: Too few Americans ‘turn to government for assistance’

Joel Gehrke
Washington Examiner
August 28, 2012

More Americans rely on their families for assistance than the government, so federal officials have undertaken an effort to help people to apply for federal assistance.

“Given that only 15 percent of you turn to government assistance in tough times, we want to make sure you know about benefits that could help you,” USA.gov announced today. The ”government made easy’ website has created a “help for difficult financial times” page for people to learn more about the programs.

The government got that statistic from a poll asking Americans what helps them the most during tough times. Here are the results:

  • Savings 44%
  • Family 21%
  • Credit cards/loans 20%
  • Government assistance 15%

“Government assistance comes in different forms—from unemployment checks and food assistance to credit counseling and medical treatment,” USA.gov reminded readers.

This leg of the financial assistance push has ended. “Although our campaign to highlight Help for Difficult Financial Times has ended, we know that your struggles may continue,” said USA.gov today. “We will keep updating the tools and information we provide to help you get back on your feet.”

VIDEO: Joseph Farah Of World Net Daily - Obama 2nd Term Will Destroy America






Greek Trader Explains Why The Country Is Heading For Rebellion Or Civic Mutiny

Joe Weisenthal
Business Insider
August 28, 2012

A trader in Greece gives Business Insider a grim assessment of the mood in the country right now.

Right now, I am afraid there is very little visibility regarding the political developments in the next few months. You might as well toss a coin.

At some point, however, I believe we shall reach some kind of
‘social tipping point’ regarding the ability of the Greek households and society to absorb more austerity measures, the consequential continuing steep decline in economic activity and ever rising unemployment. The result may well be social rebellion, maybe even civic mutiny and associated political and parliamentary instability. This is the the game plan that the neo-communists of Syriza have been preparing for over the past year or so and the one that they have actually reinforced whenever and wherever that was possible. Unfortunately, I cannot see a ‘good ending’ scenario, under the present circumstances. Now when this tipping point may be reached, is anybody’s guess. It could very well be, as close as only a few months away. I do not believe that you can find anybody, within or outside Greece, that still sincerely and truly believes that the troika process of ‘internal devaluation’ shall lead to a positive socioeconomic outcome since no effective counter-balancing economic development measures and incentives were ever implemented, or even seriously considered.

Sorry I could not offer a more optimistic or positive picture and I hope that developments soon prove me wrong.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t sound different than what another contact recently told us, about society being at the end of its rope. Another person specifically noted the coming wave of likely tax increases as breaking the country’s back further. The coalition government that came to power this summer is already seeing disillusionment, setting up an opportunity for the far left-wingers of SYRIZA to come to power before too long.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Dallas Fed: Top 5 Wall Street Banks Own More Than 50% Of US GDP

Alexander Higgins
March 25, 2012

The Dallas Federal Reserve blasts too big to fail as a perversion of capitalism, outlining how Wall Street bailouts resulted in an unprecedented concentration of wealth.

The Dallas Federal Reserve has just released its damaging annual report titled “Choosing the Road to Prosperity – Why We Must End Too Big to Fail—Now” which reads much like a manifesto of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

The report holds no punches in pointing out the concentration of wealth that has been amassed in nation’s top Wall Street Banks following the bank bailouts and directly calls out too big to fail as a perversion of capitalism.

If it wasn’t for the pro-federal reserve talking points in the annual report, you could replace the title on the report with “Why We Occupy” and use it as a handout for the Occupy movement.

In any case, the Dallas Federal Reserve’s annual report hammers home the case of why the “Too Big To Fail” Wall Street banks need to be broken up to restore a more balanced approach to economic equality in the United States.

Read more

Germany’s Parliament Votes to Give 66% of Country’s Annual Income Tax Revenue to Banks

The Flu Case
May 23, 2010

Germany’s parliament today passed a bill that will mean that about 66 per cent of the country’s income tax revenue each year will go to banks in the form of interest payments on souvereign dent bonds held by Greece, Portugal and other eurozone nations.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s centre-right coalition government voted to give 123 billion as Germany’s portion of a 750-billion euro loan guarantee package prepared by the European Union and the International Monetary Fund to enable governments to keep up interest payments to banks on souvereign debt.

The bill was passed by the Bundestag with with 319 “yes” votes, 73 “no” votes and 195 abstentions.

The abstentions came from the center-left opposition Greens and Social Democrats (SPD) and a handful of CDU/CSU and FDP backbenchers.

The 123 billion euro bank package comes on top of the 22.4 billon that Germany’s parliament voted to give Greece two weeks ago.

German taxpayers will, therefore, have to give 145 billion euros or 77% of the country’s annual income tax revenue to the banks in the highly likely event of Greece, Portugal and other countries not being able to meet their souvereign debt interest payments.

A German accountancy website allowing people to calculate what portion of their income tax will go to fund the banks reveals that a man earning 30,000 euros a year, and paying income tax of 5,625 euros, will be giving 3,709 euros to banks as part of the 123 billion eurozone “rescue” package.

He will be giving another 675 euros as part of the 22 billion euro Greek “rescue” package.

Germany spends another 40 billion a year paying interest on its national debts, which were created by the bank bailout and stimulus in the first place.

This means that another 1,200 euros of the 5,625 euros collected in income tax from a man earning 30,000 euros a years goes on interest payments on the national debt.

In this case, a total of 5584 euros or 99% in income tax is being paid directly to banks such as Deutsche Bank and Goldman Sachs by the German government in the form of interest payments on national and international eurozone debts.

As a result of this bill, only 41 euros of the total annual income tax of 5,625 could soon be available for the government to spend on education, pensions, hospitals and welfare and such like.

41 euros is 0.72% of the total income tax paid by a man earning 30,000 euros each year.

The Merkel government has just announced a raft of deep cuts and tax hikes, which will increase the proportion of the country’s income flowing to the banks and accelerate an economic collapse that could be much more severe than the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The transfer of almost the country’s entire tax revenues to the banks shows that the politicians in Germany are working hand in glove with banks to loot the people on an unprecedented scale under the smokescreen created by the mainstream media.

Though sold by the controlled media as “aid for Greece”, none of the money will go to the people of Greece.

The 123 billion euros and 22 billion euro packages will go straight to the banks who hold souvereign debt bonds issued by the Greek and other eurozone debtor governments if these cannot raise enough money.

These same banks have been artificially pushing up the interest rate using credit default swaps to maximize their profits, and Germany’s recent bank on naked short selling will do little to stop this practise.

The way governments and regulators acted together to help banks create paper debt and then transfer gigantic sums to those banks under the guise of having to rescue them and pay interest payments on the rescue loan is the subject of a parliamentary investigation and criminal probes in Iceland. Several bankers have already been arrested.

In the USA, the SEC has launched a criminal probe into Goldman Sachs and Deutsche Bank, among others, for their role in creating property debts, which were then used as a pretext to get tax payer funds.

The credit rating agencies are also under investigation in the USA for fraud.

German prosecutors have asked the boss of Deutsche Bank, Josef Ackermann, to testify on the bank’s role in the bankrupting of IKB, triggering the bank bailout and stimulus packages that vastly increased the national debt.

But Germany is just the latest country to push through its part of the 750 billion eurozone package.

Austria’s parliament on Wednesday voted to provide up to euro15 billion in loan guarantees as its share.

In France, the package is set to go parliament on May 31 and is expected to be passed.

Never in recent European history have governments so blatantly looted taxpayers.

If nothing is done to reverse these bills, the economic and social collapse of Germany, Greece and EU nations is inevitable.

Protect The Banks At All Costs

zerohedge.com
August 27, 2012

Give a man a gun, and he can rob a bank. Give a man a bank, and he can rob a country.

Those are the very true words that two weeks ago had a man in Pennsylvania arrested. His purported crime? Terroristic threats, and the attempted robbery of the bank he was protesting!

From CBS:

An Occupy Easton protester faces an attempted bank robbery charge following an arrest at an organized event at a bank – during which the “Occupier” was holding a sign that reportedly read “You’re being robbed.”

According to The Express-Times, Dave Gorczynski allegedly held cardboard signs outside a Wells Fargo Branch that read, “You’re being robbed,” while the other said, “Give a man a gun, he can rob a bank. Give a man a bank, and he can rob a country.”

Occupy Easton reports on their Facebook page that Gorczynski “was at the bank protesting the theft of our tax dollars, our homes, and our economy by the criminal banksters.”

Welcome to the new America — where banks must be protected at all costs. Whether it’s a bailout or a trumped up charge to silence a protestor, if the banks want it, they get it.

The district attorney in the case has dropped the charge of attempted robbery. However, a terroristic threat charge remains.

Meanwhile, the economic evidence is mounting that countries that want to recover need to tell the banks to take a hike.

Joe Stiglitz notes:

What Iceland did was right. It would have been wrong to burden future generations with the mistakes of the financial system.

And Paul Krugman writes:

What Iceland’s recovery demonstrated was the case for letting creditors of private banks gone wild eat the losses.

A funny thing happened on the way to economic Armageddon: Iceland’s very desperation made conventional behavior impossible, freeing the nation to break the rules. Where everyone else bailed out the bankers and made the public pay the price, Iceland let the banks go bust and actually expanded its social safety net. Where everyone else was fixated on trying to placate international investors, Iceland imposed temporary controls on the movement of capital to give itself room to maneuver.

Krugman, it seems — after years of defending bank bailouts — is learning.

But what hope is there of telling the banks to take a hike when law enforcement, politicians and courts will gladly arrest, charge and try an anti-bank protestor exercising their constitutional right to free speech?

Law enforcement, politicians and courts have it upside down. It isn’t banks that need protection from protestors. It’s citizens that need protection from the banks.

FCC eyes tax on Internet service

Brendan Sasso
The Hill
Aug 27, 2012

The Federal Communications Commission is eyeing a proposal to tax broadband Internet service.

The move would funnel money to the Connect America Fund, a subsidy the agency created last year to expand Internet access.

The FCC issued a request for comments on the proposal in April. Dozens of companies and trade associations have weighed in, but the issue has largely flown under the public’s radar.

“If members of Congress understood that the FCC is contemplating a broadband tax, they’d sit up and take notice,” said Derek Turner, research director for Free Press, a consumer advocacy group that opposes the tax.

Numerous companies, including AT&T, Sprint and even Google have expressed support for the idea.

Full article here

VIDEO: This Could Be Ron Paul's Last Major Speach





Bankers Told to Watch What They Say at Bar

Reuters
Aug 27, 2012

In the boom years, conspicuous consumption in the bars was investment bankers’ natural release from long hours in the office. Now the office sits on their shoulders while they sup.

After a series of banking scandals, banks’ compliance teams are ramping up their checks on every aspect of office life, such that even social outings are under scrutiny, with training sessions on what you can and can’t say over a beer with colleagues.

“Everyone is more paranoid, that’s for sure,” said one department head at a European investment bank, where the trading floor is festooned with posters reminding staff to report any suspicious behavior.

At his bank and at least one other European firm, executives said they were being asked to take part in an increasing number of behavioral coaching sessions, including simulations of pub outings.

Full article here

U.S. Debt On Track to Hit $16 Trillion Within Week

Terence P. Jeffrey
CNS News
August 27, 2012

The federal government’s debt could hit an unprecedented $16 trillion this week while the Republican Party is holding its national convention in Tampa, Fla.—in a hall that will prominently feature a running debt clock.

At the close of business on Thursday, Aug. 23, according to the U.S. Treasury, the federal government’s debt stood at $15,976,519,029,144.14. That left it $23,480,970,855.86 short of the $16 trillion mark.

So far in this fiscal year (from Oct. 1 through Aug. 23), the debt has grown by an average of $3,616,398,477.40 per calendar day ($1,186,178,700,586.99 divided by 328 days). Were the debt to grow at that pace in the week following last Thursday’s close of $15.976 trillion, it would hit $16 trillion this Thursday–the day Mitt Romney is scheduled to give his speech accepting the Republican presidential nomination.

However, the debt does not grow in a steady, unbroken daily pace. Instead, it expands and retracts from day to day during the business week depending on the value of the bonds the U.S. Treasury sells and redeems. On a day that the Treasury derives more revenue from selling bonds than it pays out to redeem bonds, the debt increases.

Full article here

Not Even Bernanke Knows What’ll Happen When The Fed Sell Trillions Of Dollars Worth Of Bonds

Bruce Krasting
My Take On Financial Events
Aug 26, 2012

Ben Speaks

House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) wrote a letter to Ben Bernanke and Ben wrote back. The WSJ’s Jon Hilsenrath covered the story (Link). Not surprisingly, Hilsenrath spins the exchange of letters as a triumph for Big Ben.

Bernanke defends the Fed’s efforts as well as he can. But in the absence of definitive information on the success of QE, ZIRP and Twist, the best Ben can do is argue, “it coulda been worse”:

“the Fed’s bond-buying of recent years has helped to promote a stronger recovery than otherwise would have occurred”

Really Ben? In the darkest days of 2008 and 2009 the Fed took actions that helped avoid a complete collapse. But there is very little evidence (if any) to support Bernanke’s claim since then.

There is one section in Bernanke’s letter that got to me. Issa asked if it were premature to consider additional monetary moves, Bernanke responded:

the Fed must make policy in light of a forecast of the future performance of the economy

Come on Ben, your economic crystal ball is cloudy. Want proof?

Continue reading here: http://www.prisonplanet.com/not-even-bernanke-knows-whatll-happen-when-the-fed-sell-trillions-of-dollars-worth-of-bonds.html

VIDEO: Declaration of Independence was/is lawful revolution from criminal government

Washington’s Blog
August 27, 2012

A lawful revolution is in response to government that abjectly violates its own laws, and refuses all reasonable offers to return government limits within its own constitution. It is a revolution that requests its own law enforcement to do their job to arrest obvious criminals in their own government. The central crimes are in unlawful wars that kill millions, and massive economic fraud that harms billions and loots trillions of the 99%’s earnings every year.

Government crimes was America’s challenge that the Continental Congress and Thomas Jefferson addressed in our Declaration of Independence. Please give two minutes of your attention to this central text of being American:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.”

We the People hold these patriots as heroes today. I am a history teacher: the Founders considered themselves loyal to their government BECAUSE its history was one of freedom from tyranny, and overthrowing would-be kings that attempted dictatorial rather than limited government.

The American Revolution only occurred a year after its own government attacked its own citizens under an unlawful standing army attempted to disarm its citizens at Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts. American leaders wrote and offered the “Olive Branch Petition” asking their government to restrain itself within its own laws and essentially forgiving its military-murders of American civilians.

Our government responded in 1775 by calling such Americans “traitors” with no retreat from their orders to arrest American leadership whose only “crime” was asking for lawful government.

That is history; this is today.

As always for today, we ask for peaceful, lawful response to what we allege in good faith as “emperor has no clothes” obvious crimes centering in war and money, and obfuscated by a 1% cartel/corporate media.

My only suggestion to the 99% is to let your heart and mind guide your beautiful, unique, and powerful self-expressions.


VIDEO: Ron Paul - Reclaiming Liberty By Reclaiming Our Language And By Restoring Sound Money











Sunday, August 26, 2012

VIDEO: The Max Keiser Financial Terrorism Report 8/23/12. Food Shortage, Economic Collapse And Contemplating Revolution





84 Statistics That Prove That The Decline Of The Middle Class Is Real And That It Is Getting Worse

The Economic Collapse
By Michael
August 23rd, 2012
http://thetruthwins.com/archives/84-statistics-that-prove-that-the-decline-of-the-middle-class-is-real-and-that-it-is-getting-worse

The middle class in America is being systematically destroyed. Once upon a time the United States had the largest and most vibrant middle class in the history of the world. The rest of the globe looked at us in envy and wondered what we were doing right. But now everything seems to be going wrong for the middle class. Millions of our jobs have been shipped out of the country and competition for the remaining jobs is keeping wages at depressed levels. Meanwhile, the cost of living just keeps going up and up and middle class budgets are being stretched and strained like never before. Millions more Americans fall out of the middle class and into poverty every single year, and government dependence is at an all-time high. Finding a solution to the decline of the middle class is absolutely central to fixing the economic problems in this country. Without a large, thriving middle class this would not be America. The truth is that people from all over the world want to come here because they want to work hard, buy a house, raise a family and provide a better future for their children. This has traditionally been "the land of opportunity", but now the middle class is rapidly declining and none of our politicians seem to have any solutions. With each passing day, the American Dream is slipping through the fingers of millions of hard working American families. We owe it to them to get this thing fixed.

The following are 84 statistics that prove that the decline of the middle class is real and that it is getting worse....

1. According to the Pew Research Center, 61 percent of all Americans were "middle income" back in 1971. Today, only 51 percent of all Americans are.

2. The Pew Research Center has also found that 85 percent of middle class Americans say that it is harder to maintain a middle class standard of living today compared with 10 years ago.

3. 62 percent of middle class Americans say that they have had to reduce household spending over the past year.

4. The average net worth of a middle class family in America was $129,582 in 2001. By 2010 that figure had dropped to $93,150.

5. According to the Federal Reserve, the median net worth of all families in the United States declined "from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010".

6. Back in 1970, middle income Americans brought home 62 percent of all income in the United States. In 2010, middle income Americans only brought home 45 percent of all income.

7. After you adjust for inflation, median family income in the United States has fallen by about 6 percent since the year 2000.

8. Real median household income has decreased by more than 4000 dollars since Barack Obama entered the White House.

9. Amazingly, more than half of all Americans are now at least partially financially dependent on the government.

10. In 1970, 65 percent of all Americans lived in "middle class neighborhoods". By 2007, only 44 percent of all Americans lived in "middle class neighborhoods".

11. If you can believe it, one recent survey found that 28 percent of all Americans do not have a single penny saved for emergencies.

12. The United States was once ranked #1 in the world in GDP per capita. Today we have slipped to #12.

13. The total value of household real estate in the U.S. has declined from $22.7 trillion in 2006 to $16.2 trillion today. Most of that wealth has been lost by the middle class.

14. Back in 2007, 19.2 percent of all American families had a net worth of zero or less. By 2010, that figure had risen to 32.5 percent.

15. Since the year 2000, incomes for U.S. households led by someone between the ages of 25 and 34 have fallen by about 12 percent after you adjust for inflation.

16. In 1984, the median net worth of households led by someone 65 or older was 10 times larger than the median net worth of households led by someone 35 or younger. Today, the median net worth of households led by someone 65 or older is 47 times larger than the median net worth of households led by someone 35 or younger.

17. Corporate profits as a percentage of GDP are at an all-time high. Meanwhile, wages as a percentage of GDP are near an all-time low.

18. There are now 20.2 million Americans that spend more than half of their incomes on housing. That represents a 46 percent increase from 2001.

19. The average American household spent approximately $4,155 on gasoline during 2011, and electricity bills in the U.S. have risen faster than the overall rate of inflation for five years in a row.

20. Over the past decade, health insurance premiums have risen three times faster than wages have in the United States.

21. Health insurance costs have risen by 23 percent since Barack Obama became president. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, health care costs accounted for just 9.5% of all personal consumption back in 1980. Today they account for approximately 16.3%.

22. Back in 1983, the bottom 95 percent of all income earners had 62 cents of debt for every dollar that they earned. By 2007, that figure had soared to $1.48.

23. Total home mortgage debt in the United States is now about 5 times larger than it was just 20 years ago.

24. Total consumer debt in the United States has risen by 1700 percent since 1971.

25. Recently it was announced that total student loan debt in the United States has passed the one trillion dollar mark.

26. One study found that approximately 41 percent of all working age Americans either have medical bill problems or are currently paying off medical debt.

27. According to a report published in The American Journal of Medicine, medical bills are a major factor in more than 60 percent of the personal bankruptcies in the United States. Of those bankruptcies that were caused by medical bills, approximately 75 percent of them involved individuals that actually did have health insurance.

28. According to a report released in 2010, Americans spend approximately twice as much as residents of other developed countries do on health care.

29. According to one recent survey, approximately 10 percent of all employers in the United States plan to drop health coverage when key provisions of the new health care law kick in less than two years from now.

30. According to one recent survey, approximately one-third of all Americans are not paying their bills on time at this point.

31. The wealthiest 20 percent of all Americans now control 84 percent of all the wealth in America.

32. Right now, over 50 percent of all stocks and bonds are owned by just 1 percent of the U.S. population.

33. Back in the 1970s, the top 1 percent of all income earners brought in about 8 percent of all income. Today, they bring in about 21 percent of all income.

34. 40 years ago, the top 1/10,000th of all U.S. households brought in about 1 percent of all income. Today, they bring in about 5 percent of all income.

35. Today, the wealthiest 1 percent of all Americans own more wealth than the bottom 95 percent combined.

36. The wealthiest 400 families in the United States have about as much wealth as the bottom 50 percent of all Americans do combined.

37. The six heirs of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton have a net worth that is roughly equal to the bottom 30 percent of all Americans combined.

38. At this point, the poorest 50 percent of all Americans collectively own just 2.5% of all the wealth in the United States.

39. The following is how income gains in the United States were distributed during 2010....

-37 percent of all income gains went to the top 0.01 percent of all income earners

-56 percent of all income gains went to the rest of the top 1 percent

-7 percent of all income gains went to the bottom 99 percent

40. The U.S. economy lost more than 220,000 small businesses during the recent recession.

41. The percentage of Americans that are self-employed fell by more than 20 percent between 1991 and 2010.

42. Overall, the number of "new entrepreneurs and business owners" dropped by a staggering 53 percent between 1977 and 2010.

43. In 2010, the number of jobs created at new businesses in the United States was less than half of what it was back in the year 2000.

44. The average pay for self-employed Americans fell by $3,721 between 2006 and 2010.

45. In the United States today, there are 240 million working age people. Only about 140 million of them are working.

46. Since the year 2000, the United States has lost 10% of its middle class jobs. In the year 2000 there were about 72 million middle class jobs in the United States but today there are only about 65 million middle class jobs.

47. Back in 1950, more than 80 percent of all men in the United States had jobs. Today, less than 65 percent of all men in the United States have jobs.

48. Right now, approximately 25 million American adults are living with their parents.

49. According to one study, between 1969 and 2009 the median wages earned by American men between the ages of 30 and 50 dropped by 27 percent after you account for inflation.

50. According to U.S. Representative Betty Sutton, America has lost an average of 15 manufacturing facilities a day over the last 10 years. During 2010 it got even worse. That year, an average of 23 manufacturing facilities a day shut down in the United States.

51. At this point, one out of every four American workers has a job that pays $10 an hour or less.

52. Today, about one out of every four workers in the United States brings home wages that are at or below the poverty level.

53. If you can believe it, the United States actually has a higher percentage of workers doing low wage work than any other major industrialized nation does.

54. Back in 1980, less than 30% of all jobs in the United States were low income jobs. Today, more than 40% of all jobs in the United States are low income jobs.

55. At this point, only 24.6 percent of all jobs in the United States are considered to be good jobs.

56. Right now, approximately 48 percent of all Americans are either considered to be "low income" or are living in poverty.

57. Approximately 57 percent of all children in the United States are living in homes that are either considered to be either "low income" or impoverished.

58. In the United States today, somewhere around 100 million Americans are considered to be either "poor" or "near poor".

59. In 2010, 2.6 million more Americans descended into poverty. That was the largest increase that we have seen since the U.S. government began keeping statistics on this back in 1959.

60. It is being projected that when the final numbers come out later this year that the U.S. poverty rate will be the highest that it has been in almost 50 years.

61. It is also being projected that about half of all American adults will spend at least some time living below the poverty line before they turn 65.

62. Today, one out of every six elderly Americans lives below the federal poverty line.

63. It was recently reported that 1.5 million American families live on less than two dollars a day (before counting government benefits).

64. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the percentage of "very poor" rose in 300 out of the 360 largest metropolitan areas during 2010.

65. According to one recent poll, 18.2 percent of all Americans have not been able to buy enough food to eat at some point during this past year.

66. Households that are led by a single mother have a 31.6% poverty rate.

67. In 2010, 42 percent of all single mothers in the United States were on food stamps.

68. At this point, approximately 22 percent of all American children are living in poverty.

69. According to the National Center for Children in Poverty, 36.4 percent of all children that live in Philadelphia are living in poverty, 40.1 percent of all children that live in Atlanta are living in poverty, 52.6 percent of all children that live in Cleveland are living in poverty and 53.6 percent of all children that live in Detroit are living in poverty.

70. Since 2007, the number of children living in poverty in the state of California has increased by 30 percent.

71. Child homelessness in the United States has risen by 33 percent since 2007.

72. There are 314 counties in the United States where at least 30% of the children are facing food insecurity.

73. Approximately one-fourth of all American children are enrolled in the food stamp program.

74. It is projected that half of all American children will be on food stamps at least once before they turn 18 years of age.

75. Since Barack Obama became president, the number of Americans living in poverty has risen by 6 million and the number of Americans on food stamps has risen by 14 million.

76. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 49 percent of all Americans live in a home where at least one person receives benefits from the federal government. Back in 1983, that number was below 30 percent.

77. Federal housing assistance outlays increased by a whopping 42 percent between 2006 and 2010.

78. Approximately 50 million Americans do not have any health insurance at all right now.

79. Back in 1965, only one out of every 50 Americans was on Medicaid. Today, approximately one out of every 6 Americans is on Medicaid.

80. It is being projected that Obamacare will add 16 million more Americans to the Medicaid rolls.

81. Overall, the amount of money that the federal government gives directly to the American people has risen by 32 percent since Barack Obama entered the White House.

82. According to a recent report produced by Pew Charitable Trusts, approximately one out of every three Americans that grew up in a middle class household has slipped down the income ladder.

83. If you can believe it, more than 100 million Americans are enrolled in at least one welfare program run by the federal government at this point.

84. In the United States today, 77 percent of all Americans are living to paycheck to paycheck at least some of the time.

In compiling the information above, I relied heavily on research that I had previously done for The Economic Collapse Blog and The American Dream Blog.

So what do all of you think about the decline of the middle class?

Feel free to post a comment with your thoughts below....