Monday, December 31, 2012

VIDEO: Dianne Feinstein Says Her Goal is to Disarm All Americans






Government and Big Banks Joined Forces to Violently Crush Peaceful Protests

Washington’s Blog
Dec 31, 2012

The definition of fascism used by Mussolini is the “merger of state and corporate power“.
Government and the big banks are in a malignant, symbiotic relationship. And our economy now exhibits a merger of state and bank power.
Prominent economist Robert Kuttner said in 2009:
What we have is something perilously close to a dictatorship of the Fed and the Treasury, acting in the interests of Wall Street.
The government and banks use anti-terror laws to stifle dissent.
As Naomi Wolf reports, they joined efforts to violently crush the occupy protests:
The violent crackdown on Occupy last fall … was not just coordinated at the level of the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, and local police. The crackdown, which involved, as you may recall, violent arrests, group disruption, canister missiles to the skulls of protesters, people held in handcuffs so tight they were injured, people held in bondage till they were forced to wet or soil themselves –was coordinated with the big banks themselves.
[ A newly-released document] shows a terrifying network of coordinated DHS, FBI, police, regional fusion center, and private-sector activity so completely merged into one another that the monstrous whole is, in fact, one entity: in some cases, bearing a single name, the Domestic Security Alliance Council. And it reveals this merged entity to have one centrally planned, locally executed mission. The documents, in short, show the cops and DHS working for and with banks to target, arrest, and politically disable peaceful American citizens. ….
Plans to crush Occupy events, planned for a month down the road, were made by the FBI – and offered to the representatives of the same organizations that the protests would target ….
The FBI – though it acknowledges Occupy movement as being, in fact, a peaceful organization – nonetheless designated OWS repeatedly as a “terrorist threat”….
The executive Director of The Partnership for Civil Justice Fund – the group which obtained the document – Verheyden-Hilliard points out the close partnering of banks, the New York Stock Exchange and at least one local Federal Reserve with the FBI and DHS, and calls it “police-statism”:
“This production [of documents], which we believe is just the tip of the iceberg, is a window into the nationwide scope of the FBI’s surveillance, monitoring, and reporting on peaceful protestors organizing with the Occupy movement … These documents also show these federal agencies functioning as a de facto intelligence arm of Wall Street and Corporate America.”
The documents show stunning range: in Denver, Colorado, that branch of the FBI and a “Bank Fraud Working Group” met in November 2011 – during the Occupy protests – to surveil the group. The Federal Reserve of Richmond, Virginia had its own private security surveilling Occupy Tampa and Tampa Veterans for Peace and passing privately-collected information on activists back to the Richmond FBI, which, in turn, categorized OWS activities under its “domestic terrorism” unit. The Anchorage, Alaska “terrorism task force” was watching Occupy Anchorage. The Jackson, Michigan “joint terrorism task force” was issuing a “counterterrorism preparedness alert” about the ill-organized grandmas and college sophomores in Occupy there. Also in Jackson, Michigan, the FBI and the “Bank Security Group” – multiple private banks – met to discuss the reaction to “National Bad Bank Sit-in Day” (the response was violent, as you may recall). The Virginia FBI sent that state’s Occupy members’ details to the Virginia terrorism fusion center. The Memphis FBI tracked OWS under its “joint terrorism task force” aegis, too. And so on, for over 100 pages.
Eric Zuesse notes:
The FBI was organizing against the OWS movement even before it was known to the general public, and they kept on their campaign against it, until it was dead.

The FBI’s police-state snooping and tracking of Occupy Wall Street … had begun even before most Americans knew that there was any such movement for the FBI to snoop against.
In other words, the reason why Barack Obama’s “Justice” Department refuses to prosecute even a single one of the mega-bank executives who profited so enormously from having defrauded both mortgagees and the investors in mortgage-backed securities, and who were bailed out by future U.S. taxpayers whose government purchased those remaining “toxic assets” at 100 cents on the dollar, is clear: we live in a police state, and these elite crooks control it. This is not real democracy.
Voters were given a choice in November between a President like that but whose liberal rhetoric is condemnatory of “Wall Street,” versus a professional stripper of corporations, whose rhetoric was overtly supportive of Wall Street. And voters chose the former. But this nonetheless is a police state, not an authentic democracy.
Mussolini would recognize it as fascism.

VIDEO: U.S. Vs. China - Currency Wars And The Great Race To The Bottom




VIDEO: The Criminal Looting Of The Social Security Trust Fund



VIDEO: Ron Paul’s New Year’s Message to Congress




Happy New Year Middle Class: The Fiscal Cliff Is Going To Rip You To Shreds

Michael Snyder
The Economic Collapse
December 31, 2012

The middle class has quite a gift welcoming them as the calendar flips over to 2013. Their payroll taxes are going to go up, their income taxes are going to go up, and approximately 28 million households are going to be hit with a huge, unexpected AMT tax bill on their 2012 earnings. So happy New Year middle class! You are about to be ripped to shreds. In addition to the tax increases that I just mentioned, approximately two million unemployed Americans will instantly lose their extended unemployment benefits when 2013 begins, and new Obamacare tax hikes which will cost American taxpayers about a trillion dollars over the next decade will start to go into effect. If Congress is not able to come to some sort of a deal, all middle class families in America will be sending thousands more dollars to Uncle Sam next year than they were previously. And considering the fact that the middle class is already steadily shrinkingand that the U.S. economy is already in an advanced state of decline, that is not good news. You would think that both major political parties would want to do something to keep the middle class from being hit with this kind of tax sledgehammer. Unfortunately, at this point it appears that our “leaders” in Washington D.C. are incapable of getting anything done. So get ready for much smaller paychecks and much larger tax bills. What is coming is not going to be pleasant.
So what happened?
Weren’t the tax increases only supposed to be for the wealthy?
Well, that is what the politicians always promise, but it is always the middle class that ends up getting hit the hardest.
In this day and age, the big corporations and the ultra-wealthy are absolute masters at avoiding taxes.
For example, Facebook paid approximately $4.64 million in taxes on their entire foreign profits of $1.344 billion for 2011.
That comes out to a tax rate of about 0.3 percent.
Overall, the global elite have approximately 18 trillion dollarsparked in offshore tax havens such as the Cayman Islands.
Keep in mind that U.S. GDP for 2011 was only slightly above 15 trillion dollars.
So the global elite have an amount of money parked in offshore banks that is substantially larger than the total value of all goods and services produced in the United States each year.
According to one estimate, a third of all the wealth in the entire world is stationed in offshore banks. Our politicians are playing checkers and the global elite are playing chess when it comes to taxes. Our current system of taxation is irreversibly broken and should be entirely thrown out and replaced with something else.
And of course under our current system those that are poor don’t pay much in taxes because they are just trying to survive.
So who always ends up getting the painful end of the hammer?
The middle class does, and that really stinks.
Let us hope and pray that our politicians can come together and do something for the middle class. In particular, we should all be screaming and yelling at our politicians about the Alternative Minimum Tax. It was originally designed as a method to “tax the rich”, but unless Congress does something the middle class is about to be ripped to shreds by it. The following is from a recent CNBC article about the AMT…
In a cruel epilogue to 2012, roughly 28 million families would owe the IRS $86 billion more than they anticipated for this year should the country plunge off the cliff, according to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center.
Those families would face the “Alternative Minimum Tax,” which was introduced in 1969 to supposedly guarantee that wealthy Americans could not elude the taxman. But the AMT not only flopped, it was never indexed to inflation. So with each passing year, it seeps away from high society and into the wallets of Target and Wal-Mart shoppers. That sets up a disaster for April 15.
So how much money are we talking about?
According to that same article, many families are about to be socked by tax bills that will be absolutely huge…
On the whole, 98 percent of those with incomes between $200,000 to $500,000 would pay an additional $11,000 in AMT this year, according to the center’s estimates. About 88 percent of those with incomes of $100,000 to $200,000 would need to fork over another $3100, and even the majority of Americans with earnings between $75,000 and $100,000 would have an AMT liability.
Most of the tax increases that will be coming as a result of the fiscal cliff will be for 2013 earnings, but the AMT tax hike will apply to 2012 earnings. So if you end up falling under the AMT, you better get ready to write a very large check to Uncle Sam in just a couple of months.
And the AMT is only just one of the very painful tax increases that American families will be facing. If no deal is reached in Congress, every single middle class American taxpayer will be dealing with significantly higher taxes.
A recent ABC News report entitled “Fiscal Cliff: By The Numbers” detailed some of the other tax increases that you can expect in 2013 


So why don’t our politicians do something about all of this?
What are they fighting so bitterly about anyway?
Sadly, neither side is actually serious about substantially reducing the size of government deficits or about getting government spending under control.
During a recent interview on CNBC, Ron Paul explained that “they pretend they are fighting up there, but they really aren’t. They are arguing over power, spin, who looks good, who looks bad; all trying to preserve the system where they can spend what they want, take care of their friends and print money when they need it.”
Most in the mainstream media are making it sound like some kind of a “battle royal” is going on in Washington, but as Lou Dobbs recently pointed out, the U.S. national debt is going to end up in just about the same place no matter what happens.
According to Dobbs, if we “do nothing” the U.S. national debt will be approximately 25.8 trillion dollars in 2022.
If “Obama wins”, the U.S. national debt will be approximately 25.4 trillion dollars in 2022.
If “Boehner wins”, the U.S. national debt will be approximately 25.2 trillion dollars in 2022.
You can watch the entire analysis by Lou Dobbs right here



So they are putting all of us through all of this torture even though nothing will really change in the long run no matter who wins?
What kind of a circus is this?
Meanwhile, the reckless spending continues.
Barack Obama has just issued a new executive order that ends the pay freeze for federal workers that had been in place.
So now all federal employees will be getting a nice hefty pay raise.
For example, Vice President Joe Biden brought in $225,521 this year.
Next year, he will make $231,900.
Not that our politicians really need the money. Most members of Congress are millionaires anyway. But if they can get us to pay for it, they might as well go for it, eh?
There are now close to half a million federal employees that bring homeat least $100,000 a year. Plus, it is important to keep in mind that the benefits that federal employees get are absolutely outstanding, and it is close to impossible to actually fire a federal worker.
Life is good if you are working for Uncle Sam.
Meanwhile, our politicians seem determined to keep draining more blood out of the middle class. Even if a “deal” is reached, we will still be hit by some categories of tax increases. Let’s just hope and pray that we don’t get hit by all of the tax increases that are scheduled to go into effect. That would be a financial disaster for millions of families.
So happy New Year middle class. Your taxes are about to go through the roof and our politicians are too busy fighting with each other to do anything about it.
What else will 2013 bring?

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Sorry, Santa Isn’t Real … and Neither Is “Free” Money

WashingtonsBlog
December 30, 2012

It’s Time to Create a Grown-Up Economy

Liberal economist Dean Baker writes:
Just as little kids have to come to grips with the fact that there is no Santa Claus, it is necessary for millions of liberals, including many who think of themselves as highly knowledgeable about economic matters, to realize that President Clinton’s policies sent the economy seriously off course.
***
The Clinton economy was driven by a stock bubble. This is not a debatable point. The ratio of market-wide stock prices to corporate earnings was well over 30 to 1 at the peak of the bubble in 2000. This is more than twice the historic average.
Since any good huckster could make millions selling shares in dot.whatever, we had many hucksters starting nutball businesses that never had a prayer of making a profit. This is not much of a long-run economic strategy, but in the short-term it led to an increase in investment.
***
This was the economy that President Clinton handed to President Bush in January of 2001. It was an economy that was being carried by an unsustainable bubble that, in fact, already was in the process of deflating at the time Bush took office.
***
Rubin and his allies control the Democratic Party with their money at the moment. Their financial power will not be easily overcome. However, it is important that people understand that the Rubin-Clinton team is every bit as much about redistributing money from the rest of us to the very rich as the Republicans.
Even Clinton has since slammed Rubin.
This isn’t a partisan issue: Bush was at least as bad, and Obama is a train wreck as well.
Indeed, the “central banks’ central bank” shredded the Federal Reserve and other central banks forblowing bubbles and then using “gimmicks and palliatives” to try to hide the damage.
Quantitative easing – the ultimate “free money” printing press scheme – helps the super-elite, and hurts the real economy and the little guy.
Unchecked fraud and excessive leverage both blow bubbles which lead to economic disaster … but the government is still encouraging both. The government is also encouraging the use of phony accountingby the banks so they can pretend that they’ve got money.
Out-of-control derivatives helped cause the 2008 crash, and yet the government is encouraging andbackstopping derivatives gambling … and the size of the derivatives market now dwarfs the real economy (and any real collateral).
But the problem is even bigger than that.
We pointed out in 2010:
[Highly-regarded economist Michael] Hudson noted in 2004:
Mesopotamian economic thought c. 2000 BC rested on a more realistic mathematical foundation than does today’s orthodoxy. At least the Babylonians appear to have recognized that over time the debt overhead became more and more intrusive as it tended to exceed the ability to pay, culminating in a concentration of property ownership in the hands of creditors.
***
Babylonians recognized that while debts grew exponentially, the rest of the economy (what today is called the “real” economy) grows less rapidly. Today’s economists have not come to terms with this problem with such clarity. Instead of a conceptual view that calls for a strong ruler or state to maintain equity and to restore economic balance when it is disturbed, today’s general equilibrium models reflect the play of supply and demand in debt-free economies that do not tend to polarize or to generate other structural problems.
And Hudson wrote last year:
Every economist who has looked at the mathematics of compound interest has pointed out that in the end, debts cannot be paid. Every rate of interest can be viewed in terms of the time that it takes for a debt to double. At 5%, a debt doubles in 14½ years; at 7 percent, in 10 years; at 10 percent, in 7 years. As early as 2000 BC in Babylonia, scribal accountants were trained to calculate how loans principal doubled in five years at the then-current equivalent of 20% annually (1/60th per month for 60 months). “How long does it take a debt to multiply 64 times?” a student exercise asked. The answer is, 30 years – 6 doubling times.
No economy ever has been able to keep on doubling on a steady basis. Debts grow by purely mathematical principles, but “real” economies taper off in S-curves. This too was known in Babylonia, whose economic models calculated the growth of herds, which normally taper off. A major reason why national economic growth slows in today’s economies is that more and more income must be paid to carry the debt burden that mounts up. By leaving less revenue available for direct investment in capital formation and to fuel rising living standards, interest payments end up plunging economies into recession. For the past century or so, it usually has taken 18 years for the typical real estate cycle to run its course.
***
And as I have previously pointed out, our modern fractional reserve banking system is really a debt-creation system, which is guaranteed to create more and more debts. As then-Chairman of the Federal Reserve (Mariner S. Eccles) told the House Committee on Banking and Currency on September 30, 1941:
That is what our money system is. If there were no debts in our money system, there wouldn’t be any money.
The modern banking system is therefore really a debt-creation system. See this for details.
One thing is for sure. The exponential growth of debt is a structural problem which – unless directly addressed – will swallow all economies which try to ignore it.
No wonder Bill Gross, Nouriel Roubini, Laurence Kotlikoff, Steve Keen, Michel Chossudovsky, the Wall Street Journal and many others say that our entire economy is a Ponzi scheme.
In fact – as we’ve noted for 4 years (and here and here) – the banking system is entirely insolvent. And so are most countries. The whole notion of one country bailing out another country is a farce at this point. The whole system is insolvent.
As we noted in June:
Nobel economist Joe Stiglitz pointed out the Ponzi scheme nature of the whole bailout discussion:
Europe’s plan to lend money to Spain to heal some of its banks may not work because the government and the country’s lenders will in effect bepropping each other up, Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz said.
“The system … is the Spanish government bails out Spanish banks, and Spanish banks bail out the Spanish government,” Stiglitz said in an interview.
***
It’s voodoo economics,” Stiglitz said in an interview on Friday, before the weekend deal to help Spain and its banks was sealed. “It is not going to work and it’s not working.”
[The same is true of every other nation.]
Credit Suisse’s William Porter writes:
“Portugal cannot rescue Greece, Spain cannot rescue Portugal, Italy cannot rescue Spain (as is surely about to become all too abundantly clear), France cannot rescue Italy, but Germany can rescue France.” Or, the credit of the EFSF/ESM, if called upon to provide funds in large size, either calls upon the credit of Germany, or fails; i.e, it seems to us that it probably cannot fund to the extent needed to save the credit of one (and probably imminently two) countries that had hitherto been considered “too big so save” without joint and several guarantees.***
As Nouriel Roubini wrote in February:
[For] problems of that magnitude, there simply are not enough resources—governmental or super-sovereign—to go around.
As Roubini wrote in February:
“We have decided to socialize the private losses of the banking system.
***
Roubini believes that further attempts at intervention have only increased the magnitude of the problems with sovereign debt. He says, “Now you have a bunch of super sovereigns— the IMF, the EU, the eurozone—bailing out these sovereigns.”
Essentially, the super-sovereigns underwrite sovereign debt—increasing the scale and concentrating the problems.
Roubini characterizes super-sovereign intervention as merely kicking the can down the road.
He says wryly: “There’s not going to be anyone coming from Mars or the moon to bail out the IMF or the Eurozone.” [Others have made the same point.]
But, despite the paper shuffling of debt at the national level—and at the level of supranational entities—reality ultimately intervenes: “So at some point you need restructuring. At some point you need the creditors of the banks to take a hit —otherwise you put all this debt on the balance sheet of government. And then you break the back of government—and then government is insolvent.”
While those who believe in Santa think we should ignore fraud, sober adults say we have to throw white collar criminals in jail.
While those who hope to see Rudolph think that debt is a fantastic, sober adults say that bad debt has to be written down. A debt jubilee is needed … especially for “odious” debts.
While the naive belief that banks only loan out money they’ve taken in through deposits is cute, it is time to adopt a grown-up view of money.
There’s no Santa Claus … and there is no such thing as “free money”. It’s time to create a grown up economy.

“Fixing” the Economy New York Times Style: Raise Taxes and Raise Taxes Even More

Bill Anderson
The LRC Blog
December 30, 2012

According to the editors of the New York Times, the way to “fix” our economy is for the State to take even more of our earnings. Of course, they refer to shoving higher taxes at us as “reform,” a watchword for all Progressives who believe that “reform” comes only via expansion of the police powers of the State.
What is needed? Why, raising capital gains rates, income tax rates (for people in the highest brackets), carbon taxes, a value-added tax, inheritance taxes, and, of course, higher business taxes. The editors assure us that “tax reform, done right, could be a cure for much of what ails the economy.” The NYT declares:
Higher taxes, raised progressively, could encourage growth by helping to pay for long-neglected public investment in education, infrastructure and basic research. More revenue would also reduce budget deficits, helping to put the nation’s finances on a stable path. Greater progressivity would reduce rising income inequality, and with it, inequality of opportunity that is both an economic and social scourge.
So, there you have it. Progressive “wisdom” from Mid-Town Manhattan. Such actions, they assure us, will define President Obama’s “economic legacy.” Indeed, the man already has a legacy: depression. I guess that the NYT editors just don’t believe the current downturn is bad enough.

Amateur and PROFESSIONAL Investors Lose Faith In the Economy

Lack of Trust – Caused by Institutional Corruption – Is Killing the Economy

Washington’s Blog
December 29, 2012

We’ve previously documented that lack of trust – caused by institutional corruption – is killing the economy.
Not only amateurs, but also professional investors are giving up on America and other economies that have become untrustworthy.
(When you have financial luminaries such as Bill Gross, Nouriel Roubini and Laurence Kotlikoff saying that America is running a giant Ponzi scheme, it’s hard to get too excited about traditional investing strategies.)
AP once again confirms this fact (commentary by Tyler Durden of Zero Hedge):
As AP discusses in this excellent article, ordinary Americans – defying decades of investment history – are selling stocks for a fifth year in a row. It’s the first time ordinary folks have sold during a sustained bull market since relevant records were first kept during World War II. The answer is both complex and simple but summed up best by a former stock analyst’s comment that in order to buy stocks“You have to trust your government. You have to trust other governments. You have to trust Wall Street, and I don’t trust any of these.” With Fed policy trying to force investors back into stocks (at any cost), a former fund manager notes, presciently that, “When this policy fails, as it will, baby boomers will pay the cost in their 401(k)s.” Are we the new ‘Depression Babies’? We suspect so.
Investors, as you well know, are leaving the equity markets in droves…
Based on AP’s calculations, individuals accounted for 40 percent to 50 percent of money going to U.S. stock ETFs in recent years.
If you assume 50 percent, individual investors have put $194 billion into U.S. stock ETFs since April 2007. But they’ve also pulled out much more from mutual funds – $580 billion. The difference is $386 billion, the amount individuals have pulled out of stock funds in all.
If you include the sale of stocks by individuals from brokerage accounts, which is not included in the fund data, the outflow could be much higher.
But why are investors not buying the propaganda this time and jumping in with both hands and feet…
“You have to trust your government. You have to trust other governments. You have to trust Wall Street,” says Neitlich, 47. “And I don’t trust any of these.”
Defying decades of investment history, ordinary Americans are selling stocks for a fifth year in a row. The selling has not let up despite unprecedented measures by the Federal Reserve to persuade people to buy and the come-hither allure of a levitating market. Stock prices have doubled from March 2009, their low point during the Great Recession.
It’s the first time ordinary folks have sold during a sustained bull market since relevant records were first kept during World War II, an examination by The Associated Press has found.
and…
“People don’t trust the market anymore,” says financial historian Charles Geisst of Manhattan College. He says a “crisis of confidence” similar to one after the Crash of 1929 will keep people away from stocks for a generation or more.
What is at the core of this mistrust or doubt?
People who think the market will snap back to normal are underestimating how much the Great Recession scared investors, says Ulrike Malmendier, an economist who has studied the effect of the Great Depression on attitudes toward stocks.
She says people are ignoring something called the “experience effect,” or the tendency to place great weight on what you most recently went through in deciding how much financial risk to take, even if it runs counter to logic.Extrapolating from her research on “Depression Babies,” the title of a 2010 paper (embedded below) she co-wrote, she says many young investors won’t fully embrace stocks again for another two decades.
“The Great Recession will have a lasting impact beyond what a standard economic model would predict,”
But it’s not just ordinary folks, its professional investors too…
Public pension funds have cut stocks from 71 percent of their holdings before the recession to 66 percent last year, breaking at least 40 years of generally rising stock allocations
as old ‘lessons’ or myths are dismissed…
And old assumptions about stocks are being tested. One investing gospel is that because stocks generally rise in price, companies don’t need to raise their quarterly cash dividends much to attract buyers. But companies are increasing them lately.
Dividends in the S&P 500 rose 11 percent in the 12 months through September, and the number of companies choosing to raise them is the highest in at least 20 years, according to FactSet, a financial data provider. Stocks now throw off more cash in dividends than U.S. government bonds do in interest.
Many on Wall Street think this is an unnatural state that cannot last.
As it seems, for once, a positive lesson is being learned…
”People aren’t looking to swing for the fences anymore,” says Gary Goldstein, an executive recruiter on Wall Street, referring to the bankers and traders he helps get jobs. “They’re getting less greedy.”
The lack of greed is remarkable given how much official U.S. policy is designed to stoke it.
But the powers that be are not happy about it…
Fed policy is trying to suck people into risky assets when they shouldn’t be there,” says Michael Harrington, 58, a former investment fund manager who says he is largely out of stocks. “When this policy fails, as it will, baby boomers will pay the cost in their 401(k)s.”
We’ve noted for years that a strong rule of law – including prosecuting white collar criminals for fraud – is essential to restoring trust in the economy.
But – instead of enforcing the rule of law – the government has become more and more blatant in its corruption:
The top white collar fraud expert in the country says that the Bush and Obama administrations broke the law by failing to break up insolvent banks… instead of propping them up by bailing them out.
And the Special Inspector General of the Tarp bailout program said that the Treasury Secretary lied to Congress regarding some fundamental aspects of Tarp – like pretending that the banks were healthy, when they were totally insolvent. The Secretary also falsely told Congress that the bailouts would be used to dispose of toxic assets … but then used the money for something else entirely. Making false statements to a federal official is illegal, pursuant to 18 United States Code Section 1001.
***
The government made it official policy not to prosecute fraud, even though main business model adopted by the biggest financial crime in world history, the largest insider trading scandal of all time, illegal raiding of customer accounts and blatant financing of drug cartels and terrorists have all gotten away scot-free without any jail time.
***
While Iceland prosecuted its top criminal bankers, and thus quickly got through its financial problems and now has a vibrant economy, the American government has done everything it can to cover up fraud, and has been actively encouraging criminal fraud andattacking those trying to blow the whistle.
The rule of law is now as weak in the U.S. and UK as many countries which we would consider “rogue nations”. See thisthisthisthisthisthisthisthisthisthis and this.
***
Moreover, U.S. government personnel are on the take. They have become so corrupt that regulators are literally sleeping with industry prostitutes … while they pimp out the American people.
The corruption of government officials is staggering, and the system of government-sponsored rating agencies had at its core a model of bribery.
We’ve gone from a nation of laws to a nation of powerful men making one-sided laws to protect their own interests … in secret. Government folks are using laws to crush dissent. It’s gotten so bad that even U.S. Supreme Court justices are saying that we are descending into tyranny.
We noted in 2008 that the only way to fix the bad economy is to throw the bums out who caused – or are now causing – this mess:
As Ralph Waldo Emerson said:
“Who you are speaks so loudly I can’t hear what you’re saying.”
Its like a thief who has been arrested 5 times for burglary. Even though he says all the right things to the judge at sentencing, the judge is still going to throw the book at him.
If the thief is appointed to head a government commission on corruption, do you think people will have confidence in the commission or its proposed actions?
[Obama, Geithner, Bernanke and Holder - kuje] Paulson, Bernanke, Bush, [and the rest of the gang before them] may be saying nice things about fixing the economy, shoring up the financial system and helping American citizens, but people don’t believe them anymore. They’ve been proven liars one too many times.
While the [government] is doing everything in their power to prop up the stock marketuntil they are out of office (or at least until after the election), the problem is them: Americans and people everywhere distrust [government] so much that they see through every superficial magician’s trick that might have worked when people had a less jaundiced eye.
People have woken up to the scam. Americans are no longer quite so gullible about how “good” their government is. They hate [both the Dem and GOP leadership].
Who they are speaks so loudly that we can’t hear what they’re saying.
The only thing that can restore confidence in the economy and the financial system is to replace the whole lot of them (tar and feather them) with honest leaders who will do what’s best for the people.
Forget the “toxic debt” that the talking heads keep referring to. The only way to restore confidence is to get rid of the “toxic leaders” who caused the mess.

Debt Ceiling Debate Now Set for February 2013

Bob Adelmann
The New American
December 29, 2012

The debt ceiling is expected to be reached officially on Monday, December 31, when the national debt reaches $16.4 trillion. Unofficially, with various “extraordinary measures” employed, the Treasury won’t bump into the real limit until some time in February. Those measures will give the Treasury a little over $200 billion in “headroom,” and since the government is borrowing $100 billion every month, the math is easy. The question then becomes: What happens next?
President Obama has demanded that any discussion about the debt ceiling be deferred until after the fiscal cliff crisis has been resolved. He frankly would prefer that the issue go away entirely, and has offered to take on the responsibility of raising it unilaterally, effectively removing such responsibility from Congress altogether. Using a measure first proposed by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), the White House would request a debt ceiling increase from the Congress and the Congress would then just approve it. If the Congress fails to approve it, the president could then veto the disapproval, unless Congress overrides his veto — a highly unlikely outcome. In simple terms, Obama would be given a credit card with limits that can be raised with a phone call.
This, the president asserts, would give great comfort and assurance to the bond market that the government would never default on its debt, thus keeping interest rates low. Such a measure would also remove the debt ceiling discussion as a hammer by members of Congress to force spending cuts from the White House.
All of this is just a charade, according to Peter Schiff, the CEO of Euro Pacific Capital and supporter of limited government. He wrote that “these debates have become nothing more than exercises in feigned outrage. If Congress wants to control the debt, let them do so. If they don’t care, just continue on the current path.”
Schiff has found agreement from unlikely places. Jay Carney, in a White House press conference earlier this month, said that all raising the debt ceiling does is assure debt holders that they will get paid, or at least have their maturing debt rolled over without incident. And Isabel Sawhill, an economist at the liberal think-tank Brookings Institution, said:
Those who believe that a refusal to raise the debt ceiling will somehow put limits on spending and shrink the size of government are confusing the need to pay obligations already incurred by Congress with the need to rein in future expenses.
Simply put, using the debt ceiling as a hammer is ineffective at restraining the growth of government as it allows the government to pay only for bills the Congress has already run up. It is backward-looking rather than forward-looking. Sawhill added:

Spending restraint is needed … and is the right way to fix rising levels of debt. The debt ceiling itself is an anachronism. As Alan Greenspan once put it, we don’t need both suspenders and belts.
The debt ceiling law was passed in 1917 in response to fiscal conservatives’ demands that the newly created Federal Reserve be limited in how much government debt it was allowed to purchase. By opening the door by just an inch, the Congress allowed the Fed, over time, through the charade of debates over the debt ceiling, to own vastly larger amounts of government debt. Over the past 40 years there have been 91 debt ceiling increases, and government spending has continued to increase apace.
Schiff has seen through the charade and thinks the only benefit to it would be to alert taxpayers that government spending continues out of control.
The last two debt ceiling debates illustrated their ineffectiveness as a tool to bring spending down. In January, 1996, the House refused to increase the debt ceiling and the government had to stop all spending, for just a few days. When Social Security checks were threatened, President Clinton’s popularity rose while that of the House plummeted. The House capitulated and the Treasury got its new debt ceiling.
In the summer of 2011 a similar debt ceiling debate raged which ended with the Budget Control Act of 2011 that allowed the debt ceiling to be raised by the Treasury Department without further input from Congress in exchange for will-o’-the-wisp promises of spending cuts sometime in the future.
No matter how the current fiscal cliff negotiations turn out, there’s another debate waiting to be joined, with a similar outcome likely. Instead of using the debt ceiling as a jousting lance, Congress should attack the spending issue frontally. If it doesn’t, the bond market eventually will do it for them.

Petition: Try Dianne Feinstein For Treason

California Senator’s gun grabbing legislation causes outrage

Paul Joseph Watson
Prison Planet.com
December 28, 2012


The latest White House petition garnering attention demands that Senator Dianne Feinstein be tried in federal court for treason against the constitution for her role in introducing legislation that would go a long way to repealing the second amendment.
The full text of the petition reads;
The Constitution was written to restrain the government. No amendment is more important for this purpose than the 2nd amendment. The 2nd amendment was written so the power could be kept with the citizenry in the face of a tyrannical government. It was well understood the Constitution acknowledged certain rights that could not be limited by government.
Senator Dianne Feinstein has made it clear she does not believe in the Constitution or the inalienable rights of Americans to keep and bear arms. She is actively working to destroy the 2nd amendment with her 2013 assault weapons ban. For this reason we the people of the united States petition for her to be tried in Federal Court for treason to the Constitution.
As we have previously explained, although the White House asserts that it will respond to all petitions that reach 25,000 signatures within 30 days, the Obama administration has instead cherry picked which ones it addresses.
The petition to try Feinstein for treason currently has over 1700 signatures and is climbing rapidly. A separate petition calling for Feinstein, “to be immediately banned from the United States Senate and….prohibited from ever again holding public office in the United States of America,” also has over 1600 signatures.
Despite receiving over a million signatures in total, none of the secession petitions that flooded the White House.gov website last month have been addressed over 45 days later.
The petition calling on Feinstein to be tried for treason is a response to the California Senator’s announcement that she will introduce new legislation early next year that will criminalize millions of American gun owners if approved.
Feinstein’s bill will outlaw guns with magazines over 10 rounds, require a national fingerprint database of all gun owners and ban nearly all handguns.
As Mike Adams explains, “If Sen. Feinstein’s outrageous, unconstitutional and freedom-crushing proposal becomes law, it would require all gun owners to register the serial numbers of all their guns with the federal government. They would have to supply fingerprints, undergo a new round of background checks, and somehow get the “permission” of a local police chief or Sheriff who will vouch for them. This is Feinstein’s wicked way of essentially criminalizing ALL gun ownership by American citizens.”
The legislation has caused outrage amongst second amendment activists because it closely resembles Adolf Hitler’s 1938 Nazi Weapons Law which itself was virtually mirrored by the Gun Control Act of 1968.
According to some observers, Feinstein’s bill represents an act of “political suicide” because it is so extreme that it has little chance of passing and will cost the Democrats untold political capital.
In related news, the petition to deport Piers Morgan for his repeated rhetorical assaults against the second amendment has now obtained over 87,400 signatures following viral media coverage a week after it was created by Infowars.

*********************
Paul Joseph Watson is the editor and writer for Infowars.com and Prison Planet.com. He is the author of Order Out Of Chaos. Watson is also a host for Infowars Nightly News.

VIDEO: FDA Eugenicists Unleash GMO Frankenfish On The Unsuspecting U.S. Food Consumer



VIDEO: Petition Orders Obama's Secret Service To Turn In Their Guns




VIDEO: Tyrannical Gun Grab Bill Will Require Legal Gun Owners To Surrender To ATF Criminals!



Saturday, December 29, 2012

VIDEO: Tyrannical Bitch-Witch Declares War On America!





VIDEO: America Is Now A Captured Slave State! Stop Feeding The Beast!!!



The Hidden Plan To Tax Americans Into Garinding Poverty: While The Fiscal Cliff Keeps You Distracted, The AMT Will Rob You Blind

Forbes
by Tony Nitti
Dec. 12, 2012
http://www.forbes.com/sites/anthonynitti/2012/12/12/while-the-fiscal-cliff-keeps-you-distracted-the-amt-will-rob-you-blind/

While the nation’s eyes are affixed firmly on the future tax implications of the fiscal cliff negotiations, few people realize that they stand to pay larger tax bills in 2012 courtesy of a little something Congress could have — and should have – taken care of long ago: the exemption to the alternative minimum tax (AMT).
As a reminder, the AMT is a parallel tax system that was originally designed in 1969 to guarantee that 155 wealthy, enterprising taxpayers would pay some amount of federal income tax. But like the pet alligator that quickly outgrows the family stupid enough to own it, today the AMT threatens to devour us all.

In short, the AMT works like this:

Step 1: Compute your “regular” tax liability.
Step 2: Compute your “alternative minimum tax” liability.
Step 3: Take a generous pull of scotch/curse loudly
Step 4: Pay the higher of Step 1 and Step 2.

In computing your AMT liability, you start with “regular” taxable income before making certain adjustments and arriving at “alternative minimum taxable income.” From there, you reduce your alternative minimum taxable income by an exemption — which is subject to phase-out based on income — before applying the applicable tax rates (26% on income up to a threshold, 28% after that). This gets you to your AMT liability (before credits).

Here’s the problem: when the AMT was enacted, it was done so with one major design flaw that continues to punish taxpayers 40 years later. Inexplicably, Congress failed to index the AMT exemption amount for inflation.
As a result, even if your uninspired work down at the cracker factory yielded nothing more than cost-of-living raises over the past 40 years, you would become more susceptible to the AMT over time purely because the exemption was not increasing in lock-step with your wages. To prevent this injustice, continuous congressional action has been necessary to increase the exemption in the form of a “patch” and keep many middle-class taxpayers outside the reach of the AMT.

To illustrate the effect of the exemption, consider that Congress has increased it from $40,000 in 1986 to $74,450 in 2011 (married filing jointly), and courtesy of that accommodation, the number of taxpayers subject to the AMT has increased from 600,000 to only 4.3 million over that time. This increase is largely attributable to the fact that when former President George W. Bush lowered “regular” tax rates in 2001, he failed to correspondingly lower the AMT rates as well. As a result, the AMT liability of a greater number of taxpayers began to exceed their regular liability. Chalk it up as one more thing we can blame Dubya for.

But even George’s rare misstep pales in comparison to the mess we’re in today, because with less than three weeks remaining in the year, the AMT exemption has not yet been patched for the 2012 tax year. So while the public scratches its collective head at the inability of Congress to come to a deal on 2013 tax rates, many taxpayers don’t realize that unless lawmakers act soon, their 2012 tax liability will increase substantially.
Absent a patch, the AMT exemption — $74,450 for married taxpayers and $48,450 for single taxpayers in 2011 — will plummet to $45,000 and $33,750, respectively, in 2012. According to the Tax Policy Center, should this occur the number of taxpayers subject to the AMT will skyrocket from 4.3 million in 2012 to 31 million in 2012.
 
Making matters worse, this is not a bitter pill that only the rich must swallow. Rather, it’s married couples with multiple kids who earn less than $200,000 and live in a high income tax state like New Jersey who are truly screwed, as if married people with multiple kids living in New Jersey didn’t have enough working against them.
In total, 88 percent of taxpayers with income between $100,000 and $200,000 will pay AMT in 2012 in the absence of a patch, with the additional tax averaging $3,100 per taxpayer. If those income amounts look familiar to you, get your checkbook ready. Let’s break down why:

Income: Deviating from its original intentions, the AMT is no longer the scourge of the wealthy. This is because while the top AMT rate is 28%, the top regular tax rate is 35%. Thus, wealthy taxpayers subject to the maximum tax rate are less likely to have an AMT liability that exceeds their regular liability, unless they engage in substantial sheltering activities (coughcough).


Conversely, if you earn less than $200,000, you generally pay regular tax at rates below the AMT rates of 26% and 28%, making you a prime candidate for the AMT. Traditionally, you have been shielded from the AMT by the patched exemption, but should the exemption reset to $45,000, you’re quite likely to find that your AMT now exceeds your regular tax liability.

Filing Status: As you may have noticed, the exemption amount for married couples is less than double the single exemption. In addition, the 26/28% AMT tax bracket threshold is $175,000 for both married and single taxpayers, generating a significant marriage penalty for AMT purposes. So if you’ve got plans for a late December wedding, before you walk down that aisle, remember that not only is your marriage 50% likely to end in a very expensive divorce, in the interim, you’d only be making yourself more susceptible to the AMT. That’s advice you can use.

Number of Children: If you’re like me, you’ve come to realize that the only thing your kids are good for is the dependency exemption they bring, but be warned: those exemptions are only deductible in determining regular taxable income. They’re added back for AMT, meaning if you’ve got a litter at home, your chances of staying out of the AMT — much like your chances of retaining your sanity — are slim.

High-income state: Remember when I mentioned that certain adjustments must be made to regular taxable income in computing alternative minimum taxable income? The largest of those adjustments comes in the form of the state tax deduction, which is not permitted for AMT purposes. So if you reside in New Jersey, California, or New York, the 10% or so of your income you shell out to the state will do nothing to protect you from the AMT.

So while it pays to keep one eye on the fiscal cliff discussions, the item of more immediate consequence is the AMT patch for 2012. My thoughts? Why, thanks for asking. Because the patch is completely independent of the ongoing Bush tax cut negotiations, this should have been remedied months ago. By waiting this long, the patch has now become just one more piece in the political chess match. My guess, however, is that both parties realize that if they allow 28 million taxpayer to fall into the AMT while the country is still immersed in a recession, what little confidence the public retains in its leaders would be lost. The AMT will eventually be patched for 2012, and then we’ll go through this all over again next December.

UPDATED DECEMBER 13, 2012: As predicted, the AMT exemption is now being used as a bargaining chip in the fiscal cliff negotations. Today, Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that the Senate would not consider a separate bill to patch the AMT; instead, the Senate will only discuss an increase of the AMT exemption if Republicans permit the expiration of the Bush tax cuts for the nation’s wealthiest 2%. And considering that at this point in time, you’d have a better chance of getting Jermichael Finley and Lance Briggs to hug it out than you would the Democrats and Republicans to agree on the Bush tax cuts, we may be in for an expensive 2012.

Friday, December 28, 2012

16 Things About 2013 That Are Really Going To Stink

Michael Snyder
Economic Collapse
Dec 28, 2012

The beginning of the year has traditionally been a time of optimism when we all look forward to the exciting things that are going to happen over the next 12 months.  Unfortunately, there are a whole bunch of things about 2013 that we already know are going to stink.  Taxes are going to go up, good paying jobs will continue to leave the country, small businesses will continue to be destroyed, the number of Americans living in poverty will continue to soar, our infrastructure will continue to decay, global food supplies will likely continue to dwindle and the U.S. national debt will continue to explode.  Our politicians continue to pursue the same policies that got us into this mess, and yet they continue to expect things to magically turn around.  But that is not the way that things work in the real world.  Bad decisions lead to bad outcomes.  Instead of realizing that what we are doing is not working, our “leaders” continue to give us more of the same.  As a result, there are going to be a lot of things about 2013 that will not be great.  Sticking our heads in the sand and pretending that everything will be “okay” somehow is not going to help anyone.  We’ve got to make people understand exactly what is happening and why it is happening if we ever hope to see real changes.
The following are 16 things about 2013 that are really going to stink…
#1 Taxes Are Going To Go Up
Even if a fiscal cliff deal is reached, some taxes will still go up next year.  And if no deal is reached, there will be a whole bunch of different tax increases in 2013.
According to CBS News, these tax increases would be very painful for the middle class…
If lawmakers fail to work out any sort of deal, there will be severe long-term consequences for the economy: According to the Tax Policy Center, going off the “cliff” would affect 88 percent of U.S. taxpayers, with their taxes rising by an average of $3,500 a year; taxes would jump $2,400 on average for families with incomes of $50,000 to $75,000. Because consumers would get less of their paychecks to spend, businesses and jobs would suffer.
#2 The Middle Class Is About To Be Scorched By The Alternative Minimum Tax
Of more immediate concern for the middle class is the Alternative Minimum Tax.  Many Americans have never heard of the AMT, but it is truly one of the worst things about our tax code.
If Congress does not act, and right now it does not look promising, millions of middle class households will see a massive increase in their tax bills for 2012.
According to one analysis, households that are forced to pay the AMT will end up paying an extra $3,700 in taxes…
Unless Congress acts by the end of the year, more than 26 million households will for the first time face the AMT, which threatens to tack $3,700, on average, onto taxpayers’ bills for the current tax year. Because those people have never paid the AMT, they have no idea they are in its crosshairs — put there by a broader stalemate over tax policy that has kept Congress from limiting the AMT’s reach.
Do you have an extra $3,700 sitting around to send to Uncle Sam?
If not, you had better contact your representatives in Congress and scream like crazy about passing a fix for the AMT.  They have always gotten it done before, but this year there is so much animosity between the Republicans and the Democrats that nothing may end up getting done.
#3 The Economy Will Continue To Get Worse
Despite all of the talk in the mainstream media and from our politicians that our economy is getting better, the truth is that the U.S. economy continued to decline in 2012.  If you doubt this, just read the 75 statisticsin this article.
And there are a whole host of signs that the economy is starting to slow down even more as we enter 2013.  For example, consumer confidence in the United States has experienced its largest two-month drop in over a year, and retail sales during the holiday season turned out to bequite disappointing.
#4 Good Paying Jobs Will Continue To Be Shipped Out Of The United States
Thanks to decades of “free trade agreements”, workers in the United States must directly compete for jobs with hundreds of millions of workers on the other side of the globe that live in countries where it is legal to pay slave labor wages.
We continue to see millions of jobs being shipped out of the country and our politicians stand by and do nothing.
Most Americans have no idea how this emerging one world economic system works.  The beautiful product that you buy at the big retail store may have been made by someone working in some of the most horrific conditions imaginable.
A 42-year-old woman named Julie Keith recently found this letterinside a box of Halloween decorations that had been made in China…
“If you occasionally buy this product, please kindly resend this letter to the World Human Right Organization. Thousands people here who are under the persecution of the Chinese Communist Party Government will thank and remember you forever.
People who work here have to work 15 hours a day without Saturday, Sunday break and any holidays. Otherwise, they will suffer torturement, beat and rude remark. Nearly no payment (10 yuan/1 month).
People who work here, suffer punishment 1-3 years averagely, but without Court Sentence (unlaw punishment). Many of them are Falun Gong practitioners, who are totally innocent people only because they have different believe to CCPG. They often suffer more punishment than others.”
But both political parties continue to tell us how wonderful it is that we are trading with communist China.  They see no problem with the fact that good paying jobs that used to be performed in America are now being performed by slave laborers on the other side of the planet.  And most Americans continue to support this system by filling their shopping carts with lots of stuff that has “made in China” stamped on it.
#5 Small Businesses Will Continue To Be Destroyed
At the same time, small businesses all over America are being strangled to death by taxes and regulations.  Just consider the following numbers from a previous article
We are told that the economy is supposed to be “recovering”, but the number of “startup jobs” at new businesses has fallen for five years in a row.  According to an analysis of U.S. Department of Labor data performed by economist Tim Kane, there were almost 12 startup jobs per 1000 Americans back in the year 2006.  By 2011, that figure had fallen to less than 8 startup jobs per 1000 Americans.
How is our economy ever going to thrive if we keep killing off our small businesses?
#6 Hunger And Poverty Will Continue To Explode To Unprecedented Levels
As the U.S. economy bleeds jobs and loses small businesses, the number of Americans living in poverty continues to explode.
Here are some numbers to show to people who still don’t understand how desperate the situation is…
-Families that have a head of household under the age of 30 have a poverty rate of 37 percent.
-According to U.S. Census data, 57 percent of all American children live in a home that is either considered to be “poor” or “low income”.
-For the first time ever, more than a million public school students in the United States are homeless.  That number has risen by 57 percentsince the 2006-2007 school year.
#7 The Number Of Americans On Food Stamps Will Continue To Increase
If the economy is recovering, then why does the number of Americans on food stamps continue to soar?
As I wrote about yesterday, about 17 million Americans were on food stamps back in the year 2000.
Today, more than 47 million Americans are on food stamps.
Does anyone want to explain to me how that is a sign that things are getting better?
Back in the 1970s, about one out of every 50 Americans was on food stamps.  Today, about one out of every 6.5 Americans is on food stamps.
How much worse do things have to get before people realize that what we are doing is not working?
#8 Millions Of Americans Are About To Lose Their Unemployment Benefits
During this economic crisis, an unprecedented number of American families have been relying on unemployment benefits in order to stay afloat.
Well, if no agreement is reached in Washington D.C., millions of Americans will shortly lose those benefits
Three million Americans may become unwitting casualties of the political war in Washington over the fiscal cliff.
Since 2008, the federal government has funded extensions of the unemployment insurance offered by states, more than tripling the amount of aid available to the unemployed in some areas. But the program is expensive, with the Congressional Budget Office estimating it would cost $30 billion to extend it through 2013. President Barack Obama wants to extend the benefits for another year, but Congress has already pared back the program, and Republicans insist it represents the kind of largesse Washington can no longer afford.
#9 Our Infrastructure Will Continue To Rot And Decay
The United States once had the most beautiful infrastructure in the entire world.  Our highways, bridges, airports, railroads, sewer systems and electrical grids were the envy of the entire planet.
Well, now we don’t even have enough money to repair what we already have, so our infrastructure will continue to rot and decay in 2013…
Highways and bridges will need $2.5 trillion in upgrades if they are to survive for another 50 years — a must-do to keep commerce thriving. And that figure doesn’t even take into account the airports, railroads, subways, sewage-treatment plants, waterworks, levees, electric grids, pipelines, and all of those other expensive systems that people ignore until they break down.
#10 Many Of Our Major Cities Will Continue To Be Transformed Into Festering Hellholes
A lot of our major cities are also rapidly degenerating.  Detroit is one of my favorite examples, but the same kinds of things could be said about dozens of other major cities all over the country.  The following is a brief excerpt from one of my recent articles
If you can believe it, more than 50 percent of all children in Detroit are living in poverty, and close to 50 percent of all adults living in the city are functionally illiterate.  The high school graduation rate in Detroit is down to about 25 percent, and the city has become a breeding ground for gangs and violence.  The number of murders in Detroit is already higher than last year, and recently groups of young men toting AK-47s have been running around robbing gas stations.  How much worse can things possibly get for Detroit?
#11 State And Local Governments Will Find Ways To Squeeze Even More Money Out Of Us
In case you haven’t noticed, state and local governments all over the country are bleeding cash and are desperate for money.  In 2013 you can expect them to continue to find more ways to squeeze even more money out of all of us.  Here is one example…
Over the course of 2013, the District government will add 134 traffic cameras to its network, more than doubling the size of a system that generated $85 million in revenues for the city in its last fiscal year.
Police spokeswoman Gwendolyn Crump told The Washington Examiner that the city will intensify its camera-based efforts to cite motorists for speeding and stoplight violations while also adding cameras to detect other moving violations.
#12 Drug Cartels Will Continue To Easily Cross Our Borders And Terrorize Our Citizens
The federal government continues to refuse to protect our borders, and that means that drug runners and gang members will continue to pour into the United States.
Down in the Southwest, many ranchers are being absolutely terrorized by these criminals.  The following is from a recent NBC News article
Just before nightfall, 73-year-old rancher Jim Chilton hikes quickly up and down the hills on his rugged cattle-grazing land south of Tucson, escorting two U.S. Border Patrol agents.
He wants to show them the disturbing discovery he made earlier in the day: a drug-smugglers’ camp on his private property.  Stacked together under a stand of trees are blankets, jackets, food, water, binoculars and bales of marijuana from Mexico wrapped in burlap. The smugglers, themselves, are nowhere in sight and are believed to have fled the area, which is about 10 miles north of the Mexican border.
Chilton has had his house burglarized a couple of times and his family regularly encounters groups of armed drug smugglers coming across from Mexico…
Their cattle fences are frequently cut and paths heading north from Mexico cross their property.  Beckham says a smuggler even fired shots at him while he walked his land with a U.S. Border Patrol agent.  Several illegal border crossers have also approached his house at night–one even reaching his hand into their bathroom window.
“Several years ago, one of my children was taking a shower and had a gentleman reach into the shower while he was in there, and he came out screaming, absolutely refusing to take a shower for the next couple months.”
But even if you don’t live along the border, all of this still affects you.  According to government figures, Mexican drug cartels are actively operating in more than 1,200 U.S. cities right now.  They are probably hard at work in the community where you live.
So what is the Obama administration doing to fix the problem?
Not much.
In fact, the Obama administration is actually encouraging people to come to the U.S. and become dependent on the system.  If you can believe it, there is actually a website run by the Department of Homeland Security that teaches immigrants how to apply for welfare benefits once they get into the United States.
#13 Social Decay Will Continue To Accelerate
All over America we are seeing signs of social breakdown.  Here is yetanother example
A woman sleeping on a street bench outside a drug store was doused with an accelerant and set on fire early Thursday morning in Van Nuys.
Witnesses told police that a man poured liquid — possibly a beverage containing alcohol — on the sleeping woman at about 1 a.m. outside a Walgreens store near Van Nuys Boulevard and Sherman Way. He lit a match and ran from the location, witnesses told police.
Who would just run up and set a woman on fire?
Sadly, this is not an isolated incident.  For many more examples like this, please see this article: “20 Shocking Examples Of How Sadistic And Cruel People Have Become“.

We need to admit that we have a major problem on our hands.  Violent crime in the United States increased by 18 percent in 2011, and another huge increase is expected when the numbers for 2012 come out.
America is changing, and not for the better.

#14 Global Food Supplies Will Continue To Dwindle
Did you know that for six of the last eleven years the world has consumed more food than it has produced?
As a result, global food reserves have reached their lowest level in almost 40 years.
So what is going to happen if the world continues to eat more food than it makes?
Let us hope that there is not another major drought in 2013.  If there is, we could be looking at a very serious food crunch.
#15 Wall Street Will Continue To Resemble A Giant Casino
Our financial system seems to have not learned any lessons from the financial crash of 2008.
Instead of admitting their mistakes, they just continue to engage in even more reckless behavior.
Today, there are four major U.S. banks that each have more than 40 trillion dollars of exposure to derivatives.
At some point that house of cards is going to collapse and we will be facing a derivatives crisis of unprecedented magnitude.
Will it be in 2013?
#16 The U.S. National Debt Will Cross The 17 Trillion Dollar Mark
In 2013, our national debt will blow past the 17 trillion dollar mark and start heading toward 18 trillion dollars.
How stupid can we possibly be?
During the first four years of the Obama administration, the U.S. national debt has grown by about as much as it did from the time that George Washington took office to the time that George W. Bush took office.
It really takes something to match more than 200 years of debt accumulation in less than four years.
But our politicians don’t seem to care about all of this debt.  They will continue to steal more than 100 million dollars from our children and our grandchildren every single hour of every single day.  That is beyond criminal, and yet the American people don’t seem to care.
What in the world has happened to this country?
Of course not everything about 2013 will be bad.  Personally, I am looking forward to an exciting year.  I have a new book that will be coming out, and my family is blessed and healthy.  I would like to wish all of you a very blessed 2013.  Things may be falling apart all around us, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t have a great year even in the midst of all the chaos.

Will ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Accelerate Millionaire Deaths?

John Carney
CNBC.com
Dec 28, 2012

Because the “fiscal cliff” will not stop for death, it looks as if death’s carriage may make a “kindly” stop to pick up some American millionaires this year, to paraphrase Emily Dickinson.
In 2010, after a year in which the estate tax was zeroed out altogether, Congress passed a law that set the estate tax at 35 percent and exempted all estates under $5 million, adjusted for inflation. That law expires in January 2013 when the exemption will fall to $1 million and the tax will rise to 55 percent.
Many families are faced with a stark proposition. If the life of an elderly wealthy family member extends into 2013, the tax bills will be substantially higher. An estate that could bequest $3 million this year will leave just $1.9 million after taxes next year. Shifting a death from January to December could produce $1.1 million in tax savings.
It may seem incredible to contemplate pulling the plug on grandma to save tax dollars. While we know that investors will sell stocks to avoid rising capital gains taxes, accelerating the death of a loved one seems at least a bit morbid—perhaps even evil. Will people really make life and death decisions based on taxes? Do we don our green eye shades when it comes to something this serious?

Full article here