On Thursday, the country's central bank raised its lending rates by 0.25 percentage points.
Friday, June 17, 2011
The intelligence agency said no confidential information was ever at risk but the incident is the latest in a spate of high-profile attacks on targets such as the IMF, US Congress, Citigroup, Sony and Google.
By Elizabeth Flock:
Every July, some of the richest and most powerful men in the world gather at a 2,700 acre campground in Monte Rio, Calif., for two weeks of heavy drinking, super-secret talks, druid worship (the group insists they are simply “revering the Redwoods”), and other rituals.
Their purpose: to escape the “frontier culture,” or uncivilized interests, of common men.
The people that gather at Bohemian Grove — who have included prominent business leaders, former U.S. presidents, musicians, and oil barons — are told that “Weaving Spiders Come Not Here,” meaning business deals are to be left outside. One exception was in 1942, when a planning for the Manhattan Project took place at the grove, leading to the creation of the atom bomb.
A spokesperson for Bohemian Grove say the people that gather there “share a passion for the outdoors, music, and theater.”
The club is so hush-hush that little can be definitively said about it, but much of what we know today is from those who have infiltrated the camp, including Texas-based filmmaker Alex Jones. In 2000, Jones and his cameraman entered the camp with a hidden camera and were able to film a Bohemian Grove ceremony, Cremation of the Care. During the ceremony, members wear costumes and cremate a coffin effigy called “Care” before a 40-foot-owl, in deference to the surrounding Redwood trees.
Bohemian Grove’s spokesperson calls the ceremony “a traditional musical drama celebrating nature and summertime.” The spokesperson also said that while Jones’ comments are inaccurate, the footage is real.
CPM Group's Silver Yearbook 2011 is the most comprehensive source of information, statistics, and analysis on the international silver market. The report begins with a thorough review of silver market trends and fundamentals. It continues with an in-depth analysis of each silver market segment, including mine production, secondary silver recovery from scrap, government disposals, fabrication demand by region and by use, and investment demand. The CPM Silver Yearbook 2011 is used by active silver market participants globally as both a statistical reference guide and tool for understanding the fundamentals and expectations for the international silver market.
In December 2010 Sweden issued two international warrants for Julian Assange's arrest. He has been detained without charge since. This is a guide to the events, investigations and court proceedings that are connected with his extradition.
RussiaToday | 16 Jun 2011
Energising relations and boosting trade is what the leaders of Russia and China have been discussing in Moscow. Negotiating a 30-year gas deal is the next stop on the Chinese leader's trip to the capital.
Read the article: http://www.infowars.com/u-s-invasion-of-libya-set-for-october/
Infowars.com has received alarming reports from within the ranks of military stationed at Ft. Hood, Texas confirming plans to initiate a full-scale U.S.-led ground invasion in Libya and deploy troops by October.
The source stated that additional Special Forces are headed to Libya in July, with a Calvary Division (heavy armor) and three corps deploying in late October and early November. Initial numbers are estimated at 12,000 active forces and another 15,000 in support, totaling nearly 30,000 troops.
This information was confirmed by numerous calls and e-mails from other military personnel, some indicating large troop deployment as early as September. Among these supporting sources is a British S.A.S. officer confirming that U.S. Army Rangers are already in Libya. The chatter differs in the details, but the overall convergence is clear-- that a full-on war is emerging this fall as Gaddafi continues to evade attempts to remove him from power.
Max Keiser, of maxkeiser.com, James Turk, Director of The GoldMoney Foundation and Pierre Jovanovic, jovanovic.com, tell the story of the introduction of Fiat Money to France.
They discuss John Law and how his money printing fix was seen by the French Regent as a way out of the kingdom's debt troubles -- accumulated by past wars and royal extravegence -- a way to avoid the harsh spending cuts that were unavoidable given the difference between income and spending.
Keiser, Turk and Jovanovic talk about the Mississippi Bubble and how speculation in stocks became rampant as banknotes were printed to drive up the value of paper assets, how the French public was caught up in the speculative mania with dreams of untold riches from Louisiana.
They explain how John Law's success and the riches that he brought the crown ensured his promotion to Minister of Finance.
The trio also discuss how the bubble popped, how all manner of coercive and increasingly desperate steps were taken to prop up the value of shares in the Mississippi Company, including the printing of increasing amount of banknotes. When the banknotes themselves started to depreciate, gold and silver coin were outlawed in an attempt to force the French to use only paper money. The consequences were disastrous, with commerce paralysed and the economy brought to its knees.
Editor, The Gold Speculator
13 June 2011
One of the primary stimulus measures implemented by the Federal Reserve over the last three years has been the injection of cash into the economy by giving money to the banks. The scale of the cash injection is unprecedented- the Fed has pumped nearly $1.6 Trillion into the banks. But the US economy was in a deep recession, with the potential, it was thought, to slip into the Second Great Depression. The Fed and many demand-side economists believed that adding liquidity during a period of deflationary recession would have a stimulative effect on the economy. With more credit from the Fed, banks would lend more, making more money available to consumers to spend and businesses to expand to meet the increased demand. Recession would then give way to broad economic expansion and prosperity, with low unemployment, rising wages and higher GDP.
The notion that increasing the money stock increases aggregate demand has been around for decades. In 1936, John Maynard Keynes first presented the idea in The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money. Keynes believed that government is more effective than the private sector at stabilizing the business cycle. In his model, control is applied by central bank monetary policy and government fiscal policy. Keynesian theory served as the economic model during the later part of the Great Depression, World War II, and the post-war economic expansion. Japan implemented Keynesian policies in the 1990's. Since the financial crisis of 2007, the US, the UK and much of the EU have relied on Keynesian stimulus programs as the basis of their recovery efforts.
But robust economic recovery in the United States has proved elusive. Although the recession is officially over, GDP growth has slowed, unemployment remains high and housing prices continue to decline. Prices for food, fuel and other necessities are climbing, but wages have stagnated. Today there are renewed fears that the US economy may be entering a double-dip recession. Why has the stimulus failed?
Keynesian economists such as Paul Krugman, Nouriel Roubini and others say the government stimulus was too small to do the job. Others, such as Ben Bernanke say that we must be patient, that there is a lag before monetary policy measures take full effect. There is little political interest in another round of Quantitative Easing (QE3). The wait and see approach is even more frustrating to people hungry for effective leadership.
Taking the Keynesian view, it's easy to point a finger at the banks. Despite the addition of massive Fed credit, the banks are not lending. Rather than extending the new Fed credit to consumers and businesses in the form of mortgages, car loans and business loans, the banks are hoarding $1.5 Trillion in "excess reserves". Certainly, the classic Keynesian expectation is that banks will lend more if given more credit to lend, but that has not been the behavior of the big banks in this era of Fed credit expansion. The banks are treating money as a store of value, rather than capital for investment.
One reason the banks are not lending is they can make money on their excess reserves. The Federal Reserve began paying interest on reserves, for the first time in its history, in October 2008. So rather than make mortgage loans when housing prices are still falling, or make business loans when consumer demand continues to decline, the banks elect instead to pull in their horns. Imagine what $1.5 Trillion in new working capital would do for households and businesses today.
The Austrian economist takes a different view of the current level of excess reserves in the system. First, if Ben Bernanke were an Austrian School economist, there would be no excess reserves in the system, because he would believe in restraint rather than intervention as the guiding monetary principle. Notwithstanding, given the current state of events, the Austrian economist would be happy to see $1.5 Trillion excess reserves not loaned out by the banks. Imagine what the inflation rate would be with another $1.5 Trillion created from thin air chasing scarce commodities today.
We have seen the effects of Fed monetary policy on the US Dollar. The Dollar buys 17% less today than it did in 2009 when the Fed increased its balance sheet with bonds paid for by printing money.
Prudent investors have learned to protect their wealth from the debasement of the currency by the Federal Reserve by buying and owning gold. Since the Fed began expanding the money supply in 2009, gold has nearly doubled in value. Gold has been recognized as a durable store of value for centuries and it is proving again today to be a reliable hedge against economic uncertainty.
In today's economic climate, one may have too much money, but never too much gold.
Investors from around the world benefit from timely market analysis on gold and silver and portfolio recommendations contained in The Gold Speculator investment newsletter, which is based on the principles of free markets, private property, sound money and Austrian School economics.
The second round of quantitative easing (QE2) is scheduled to end June 30, and already there are calls for more financial stimulus to keep the economy from falling off a cliff. The latest call came from Larry Summers, former head of the Obama Administration's financial team.
In an Op-Ed piece that ran on Reuters last Sunday, Summers pitched the idea of a $200 billion cut in the payroll tax. The Reuter's story said, "Fiscal support should be continued and indeed expanded by providing the payroll tax cut to employers as well as employees," Summers wrote. "Raising the share of the payroll tax cut from 2 percent to 3 percent would be desirable as well." . . . He also said the economy would benefit from an extra $100 billion in infrastructure spending over the next several years and recommended additional aid to states and cities."(Click here for the complete Reuters story.) The way I see it, Mr. Summers is proposing another $300 billion be added to the national debt.
Summers is not the only high profile economist that wants to print more money. Nobel Prize winning economist Paul Krugman thinks the U.S. didn't provide near enough financial stimulus back in 2009 when Congress passed more than $800 billion in new spending. In a recent New York Times Op-Ed piece, Mr. Krugman said, "In fact, in important ways we have already repeated the mistake of 1937. Call it the mistake of 2010: a "pivot" away from jobs to other concerns, whose wrongheadedness has been highlighted by recent economic data. . . . Back when the original 2009 Obama stimulus was enacted, some of us warned that it was both too small and too short-lived. (Click here to read the complete NYT story.)
Mr. Krugman implies that the money already spent to keep the economy from plunging (which in essence is more than $12 trillion including all Fed actions) has not really caused any problems. He wrote, "This consensus was fed by scare stories about an imminent loss of market confidence in U.S. debt. Every uptick in interest rates was interpreted as a sign that the "bond vigilantes" were on the attack, and this interpretation was often reported as a fact, not as a dubious hypothesis. . . Well, the bond vigilantes continue to exist only in the deficit hawks' imagination. Long-term interest rates have fluctuated with optimism or pessimism about the economy; a recent spate of bad news has sent them down to about 3 percent, not far from historic lows."
Mr. Krugman conveniently leaves out the fact the Federal Reserve has spent more than $600 billion in the past 8 months buying Treasuries that have artificially held rates down. I suspect interest rates would be much higher if quantitative easing (QE 2 or money printing) was not Fed policy. And what about the big increases across the board in food and energy? These are not scare stories but facts that are quite damaging to the economy, especially the unemployed. Still, economists like Krugman claim more money printing will save the day and create jobs. With the 2012 election looming, that will surely be the path taken - inflation be damned.
Economist John Williams at Shadowstats.com thinks that is exactly what Fed Chief Ben Bernanke was signaling last week at the International Monetary Conference in Atlanta. In his remarks, Mr. Bernanke admitted, "Until we see a sustained period of stronger job creation, we cannot consider the recovery to be truly established." In a recent report, Williams said, "Despite the mixed language in his comments on how well Fed policy has been working, I take the more-negative economic tone as an early warning of an eventual QE3 (third-quarter 2011)."(Click here to visit the Shadowstats.com site.)
Renowned gold expert Jim Sinclair was one of many I polled at the beginning of the year (in a post titled "The Most Predictable Financial Calamity in History") who predicted QE would not end on June 30. In an interview with King World News last week, Sinclair said, "We've come to a point now where you can actually predict that if QE was to be stopped, you would see an implosion in the general equity markets, and the wealth effect of that implosion on the decision making outlooks of business managers would be to restrict employment, restrict investment and to restrict earnings. . . . The impact of restricting monetary stimulation will open up a depression that will make the Great Depression look like kindergarten." (Click here for the complete KWN interview.)
Sinclair expects gold to trade much higher this year and predicts after 2015, it will be priced at more than $12,500 an ounce. You should not take Sinclair's predictions lightly. In 2002, he predicted gold (priced at around $350 an ounce) would trade at $1,650 an ounce by January 2011. Today, it is well over $1,500. In 1974, (the average price that year was $159.00 an ounce) Sinclair predicted gold would top out at $900 per ounce in 1980–it hit $887.50. Sinclair says, "If QE is even slowed down, the net result would be a public loss of control on the part of what is seen as the U.S. economic management." So, he expects gold will rise because the powers that be will print more money.
The appointments have taken place despite Mr Obama's campaign promises that he would break with long-established practice and hire people based on their qualifications and experience rather than making patronage appointments.
In an executive order issued by Mr Obama as he took office, it was stated that appointees should sign forms saying that they were not hired because of political affiliations or contributions. Mr Obama required "that government hiring be based upon qualifications, competence and experience, not political connections".
But a Study for the Centre for Public Integrity has found that 27 out of the 36 people who "bundled" donations of more than $500,000 (£307,000) received jobs such as ambassadorships or economic advisory roles. About fifty per cent of bundlers who raised more than $200,000 (£123,000) got jobs.
Louis Susman, a Chicago investment banker with no diplomatic background but who raised $300,000 (£184,500) for the Obama campaign, was appointed American ambassador to London in July 2009.
At the time Robert Gibbs, then White House press secretary, made light of the appointment by saying Susman was qualified for the post "because he speaks English"........read on
"Fukushima is the biggest industrial catastrophe in the history of mankind," Arnold Gundersen, a former nuclear industry senior vice president, told Al Jazeera.
Japan's 9.0 earthquake on March 11 caused a massive tsunami that crippled the cooling systems at the Tokyo Electric Power Company's (TEPCO) nuclear plant in Fukushima, Japan. It also led to hydrogen explosions and reactor meltdowns that forced evacuations of those living within a 20km radius of the plant.
Gundersen, a licensed reactor operator with 39 years of nuclear power engineering experience, managing and coordinating projects at 70 nuclear power plants around the US, says the Fukushima nuclear plant likely has more exposed reactor cores than commonly believed.
"Fukushima has three nuclear reactors exposed and four fuel cores exposed," he said, "You probably have the equivalent of 20 nuclear reactor cores because of the fuel cores, and they are all in desperate need of being cooled, and there is no means to cool them effectively."
TEPCO has been spraying water on several of the reactors and fuel cores, but this has led to even greater problems, such as radiation being emitted into the air in steam and evaporated sea water - as well as generating hundreds of thousands of tons of highly radioactive sea water that has to be disposed of.
"The problem is how to keep it cool," says Gundersen. "They are pouring in water and the question is what are they going to do with the waste that comes out of that system, because it is going to contain plutonium and uranium. Where do you put the water?"
Even though the plant is now shut down, fission products such as uranium continue to generate heat, and therefore require cooling.
"The fuels are now a molten blob at the bottom of the reactor," Gundersen added. "TEPCO announced they had a melt through. A melt down is when the fuel collapses to the bottom of the reactor, and a melt through means it has melted through some layers. That blob is incredibly radioactive, and now you have water on top of it. The water picks up enormous amounts of radiation, so you add more water and you are generating hundreds of thousands of tons of highly radioactive water."
Independent scientists have been monitoring the locations of radioactive "hot spots" around Japan, and their findings are disconcerting.
"We have 20 nuclear cores exposed, the fuel pools have several cores each, that is 20 times the potential to be released than Chernobyl," said Gundersen. "The data I'm seeing shows that we are finding hot spots further away than we had from Chernobyl, and the amount of radiation in many of them was the amount that caused areas to be declared no-man's-land for Chernobyl. We are seeing square kilometres being found 60 to 70 kilometres away from the reactor. You can't clean all this up. We still have radioactive wild boar in Germany, 30 years after Chernobyl."
Japan's Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters finally admitted earlier this month that reactors 1, 2, and 3 at the Fukushima plant experienced full meltdowns.
TEPCO announced that the accident probably released more radioactive material into the environment than Chernobyl, making it the worst nuclear accident on record.
Meanwhile, a nuclear waste advisor to the Japanese government reported that about 966 square kilometres near the power station - an area roughly 17 times the size of Manhattan - is now likely uninhabitable.
In the US, physician Janette Sherman MD and epidemiologist Joseph Mangano published an essay shedding light on a 35 per cent spike in infant mortality in northwest cities that occurred after the Fukushima meltdown, and may well be the result of fallout from the stricken nuclear plant.
The eight cities included in the report are San Jose, Berkeley, San Francisco, Sacramento, Santa Cruz, Portland, Seattle, and Boise, and the time frame of the report included the ten weeks immediately following the disaster........read on
This week Max Keiser and co-host, Stacy Herbert, report on the Times Square hustlers of today, hawking wars and the weapons you need to fight those wars. In the second half of the show, Max talks to Saifedean Ammous about the economics behind the Arab Spring and how the IMF and World Bank loans will just create new Mubaraks and Ben Alis.