Tuesday, May 3, 2011
Gold just plunged by $20 for no reason whatsoever. So let's take a guess at what happened here: some ETF caused the NYSE to hit LRP thresholds, causing numerous stocks to "break", and the result is an immediate algorithmic margin call satisfied by gold selling? Or not, at his point does anyone really care. Point is obvious: scare all holders into submission. Can the royal "they" just confiscate everything not in paper form (and thus out of Fed control) already and end this charade?
Just because Osama Bin Laden has been slain, America can be far from rejoice in the end of terrorism. Al-Qaeda operatives remain far from halted, as figures like Ayman Al-Zawahiri and Anwar Al-Awlaki are still at large. And while America may have disposed of their own "most wanted" terrorist, countries abroad are still plagued by murderous masterminds in Russia, China, India and elsewhere.
The United States government says Osama Bin Laden has been eliminated, but is that the truth or a cunning diversion? Radio host Alex Jones is far too suspicious about the announcement of Bin Laden's death, and at a moment crucial for the re-election of President Obama, Jones alleges that the grand standing and fear mongering purpotrated by the administration is but a "Swiss army knife of excuses" to sell the country on America's other problems.
Paul Craig Roberts
May 3, 2011
If today were April 1 and not May 2, we could dismiss as an April fool’s joke this morning’s headline that Osama bin Laden was killed in a firefight in Pakistan and quickly buried at sea. As it is, we must take it as more evidence that the US government has unlimited belief in the gullibility of Americans.
Making it official. The first post Osama press conference builds the foundation for the official fairy tale.
Think about it. What are the chances that a person allegedly suffering from kidney disease and requiring dialysis and, in addition, afflicted with diabetes and low blood pressure, survived in mountain hideaways for a decade? If bin Laden was able to acquire dialysis equipment and medical care that his condition required, would not the shipment of dialysis equipment point to his location? Why did it take ten years to find him?
Consider also the claims, repeated by a triumphalist US media celebrating bin Laden’s death, that “bin Laden used his millions to bankroll terrorist training camps in Sudan, the Philippines, and Afghanistan, sending ‘holy warriors’ to foment revolution and fight with fundamentalist Muslim forces across North Africa, in Chechnya, Tajikistan and Bosnia.” That’s a lot of activity for mere millions to bankroll (perhaps the US should have put him in charge of the Pentagon), but the main question is: how was bin Laden able to move his money about? What banking system was helping him? The US government succeeds in seizing the assets of people and of entire countries, Libya being the most recent. Why not bin Laden’s? Was he carrying around with him $100 million dollars in gold coins and sending emissaries to distribute payments to his far-flung operations?
This morning’s headline has the odor of a staged event. The smell reeks from the triumphalist news reports loaded with exaggerations, from celebrants waving flags and chanting “USA USA.” Could something else be going on?
No doubt President Obama is in desperate need of a victory. He committed the fool’s error of restarting the war in Afghanistan, and now after a decade of fighting the US faces stalemate, if not defeat. The wars of the Bush/Obama regimes have bankrupted the US, leaving huge deficits and a declining dollar in their wake. And re-election time is approaching.
The various lies and deceptions, such as “weapons of mass destruction,” of the last several administrations had terrible consequences for the US and the world. But not all deceptions are the same. Remember, the entire reason for invading Afghanistan in the first place was to get bin Laden. Now that President Obama has declared bin Laden to have been shot in the head by US special forces operating in an independent country and buried at sea, there is no reason for continuing the war.
Perhaps the precipitous decline in the US dollar in foreign exchange markets has forced some real budget reductions, which can only come from stopping the open-ended wars. Until the decline of the dollar reached the breaking point, Osama bin Laden, who many experts believe to have been dead for years, was a useful bogeyman to use to feed the profits of the US military/security complex.
Dr. Paul Craig Roberts is the father of Reaganomics and the former head of policy at the Department of Treasury. He is a columnist and was previously an editor for the Wall Street Journal. His latest book, “How the Economy Was Lost: The War of the Worlds,” details why America is disintegrating.
Mr. Laurence D. Fink
Chairman and CEO
55 East 52nd Street
New York, NY 10055
Dear Mr. Fink,
I am writing to alert you to a possible circumstance of fraud and manipulation in your popular ETF, SLV, due to the excessive short-selling of its shares. Current reports indicate the most recent level of total short sales now exceed 36 million shares. This is an increase of more than 14 million shares from the previous reported amount. ShortSqueeze.com
Each share of SLV requires that one ounce of silver be held at the Trust's custodian (minus accumulated ed management fees), according to the prospectus. Since short sellers of SLV shares do not deposit metal with the Trust's custodian, this means that the buyers of the more than 36 million shorted shares of SLV do not have metal backing, as required by the prospectus. It is my belief that many of the shares shorted have been shorted precisely because no physical silver was available to deposit. If I am correct, this may constitute fraud and manipulation, possibly on the part of Authorized Participants (APAs) who make deposits and redemptions of metal in the Trust.
I am a silver analyst and a fan of SLV. I had raised this issue with the previous owner and sponsor of the trust, Barclays Global Investors (BGI). I never did receive a satisfactory answer from BGI about the shorted shares issue, although they did agree to list and publish the bar serial number and weights held in the Trust after I publicly urged them to do so. I am hopeful that BlackRock might be more responsive to this issue.
Publicly-traded ETFs that have specific metal backing are highly unique securities. Perhaps a small short position may be overlooked on a temporary basis until the metal is deposited in the Trust due to logistical considerations. But a short position that represents more than 10% of the outstanding shares issued means that many buyers of the shares have no metal backing. This is clearly not in keeping with the spirit of the prospectus that each share issued be backed by one ounce of silver on deposit with the custodian.
I trust you will look into and rectify this circumstance.
Butler Research, LLC
From Zero Hedge:
Last week two hikes of 9% and 10% did nothing, which is why this week's first hike (of many more) by 12% to the maintenance and initial margins was to be completely expected. We believe that nothing short of 100% margin (coupled with not one single ES margin hike by the Globex) will eventually placate the ardent Comex risk managers who are terrified their models may end up being wrong about "stuff." One thing is certain: the panic is palpable and the administration will stop at nothing to prevent the $50 limit order from triggering silver's surge to triple digits. We wish them all the best in this endeavor and are grateful for all BTFD opportunity.Silver Margin Hike 5.2