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Friday, 27 August 2010

Webster Tarpley : Fake Mosque Nuke WWIII


Webster Griffin Tarpley is an investigative journalist an activist and a historian best known for his George Bush: The Unauthorized Biography (1992), which has become an underground classic on the Internet He co-authored American Leviathan: Administrative Fascism Under the Bush Regime (1991), which identified many tendencies which have become prominent today.
An expert on international terrorism with decades of experience, he directed the study Chi ha ucciso Aldo Moro? (Who Killed Aldo Moro?) which was commissioned by a member of the Italian government and published in Rome in 1978. [Aldo Moro was an ex-prime minister of Italy who was murdered by the "Red Brigades," who were ultimately found out to be a front for a fascistic state terror group.]
Against Oligarchy, a collection of Tarpley's essays and speeches, appeared on the Internet in 1996. He also wrote Surviving the Cataclysm (1999), an analysis of the world financial crisis. Tarpley has appeared on CNN Crossfire, Charlie Rose, talk radio, and cable access television across North America.
Webster Griffin Tarpley: Historian, Iconoclast, Investigative Journalist is an activist and historian best known for his George Bush: The Unauthorized Biography (1992), which has become an underground classic on the Internet . He co-authored American Leviathan: Administrative Fascism Under the Bush Regime (1991), which identified many tendencies which have become prominent today.An expert on international terrorism with decades of experience, he directed the study Chi ha ucciso Aldo Moro? (Who Killed Aldo Moro?) which was commissioned by a member of the Italian government and published in Rome in 1978. [Aldo Moro was an ex-prime minister of Italy who was murdered by the "Red Brigades," who were ultimately found out to be a front for a fascistic state terror group.]Against Oligarchy, a collection of Tarpley's essays and speeches, appeared on the Internet in 1996. He also wrote Surviving the Cataclysm (1999), an analysis of the world financial crisis. Tarpley has appeared on CNN Crossfire, Charlie Rose, talk radio, and cable access television across North America. For recent radio appearances by Webster Tarpley, see Authors on the Air. Please see New Releases for synopses of his masterly exposé of 9/11, 911 Synthetic Terror: Made in USA and of George Bush: The Unauthorized Biography, which Progressive Press is also reprinting. Here is what independent journalist Judy Andreas had to say about Webster Tarpley's presentation at the 9/11 Truth conference in NYC : An Evening In Pursuit Of The Truth. Words cannot express what an inspiring, exciting event I attended on September 11, 2004 in New York City... Webster Tarpley gave a superb talk. Mr. Tarpley has a book that will be released in October called 9/11 Synthetic Terrorism Myth of the Twenty-first Century. This book explores the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 as an example of state-sponsored, false-flag terrorism, carried out by a rogue network within the US government - a rogue network which is the current form of the invisible government behind the Iran-contra scandal of 1986-88. Because of the constraints of time, Mr. Tarpley could only touch briefly on the roles of patsies, moles, expert professionals, the controlled corporate media and a privatized command center, as he showed how the empirical evidence around 9/11 made sense. Tarpley demonstrated that the official accounts of the Pentagon crash, the fall of the Twin Towers, the fall of WTC 7, and the crash of United 93 in Shanksville are physically impossible, and the idea that "four misfit highjackers" could pilot commercial jets is beyond the bounds of physical and technical reality.

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The Obama Administration Moves to Ban Lead Ammunition


The Environmental Protection Agency is taking steps to do what Democrats have wanted to do all along but were afraid to – undermining the 2nd Amendment. Banning guns has cost Democrats elections and power so their strategy is to allow us to keep guns but attack ammunition, making it unaffordable. Many will remember that Dems [...]

A Series Of Bombings In Seven Cities In Iraq


In the midst of rising questions and doubts about the capacity of the Iraqi armed forces to ensure the security in the country following the withdrawal of U.S. forces, seven police and army posts were the target of a coordinated car bombings and ...
August 26, 2010, 10:25 am

The Falling Dominoes of American Dominance


“How did it all come to this?”

It’s a question we’ve asked ourselves many times along this Coast-to-Coast Correction Tour. The answers are everywhere…in Wickenberg, Arizona…Livingston, Texas…Lake Charles, Louisiana and here along the border of Mississippi and Alabama…

More on all that in a second. But first, the “noise.”

The Dow Jones Industrial Average managed to eke out a 19-point victory yesterday – a triumph that landed the index about 700 points below its one-month high of 10,700, set back on August 9. The market looks to be rolling over. The government’s “stimulus” effect is wearing off and investors are just now coming to realize that demand – probably for the next two years…and maybe much longer – has already been borrowed and spent. What now, they ask themselves.

Gold sank a few bucks yesterday, but still sits above $1,235 an ounce as we write. The dollar index slumped back below 83.

Meanwhile, unemployment remains at multi-decade highs. The Feds, as usual, do their part to worsen the situation. They keep the system on life-support, extending benefits out 73 weeks (beyond the state’s usual 26 weeks) for the increasingly large bulge of workers who make their way from newly laid-off to long-term, jobless drifters. Even with last week’s decline, the four-week average for initial jobless claims rose to 486,750 – the most since November 2009.

The housing sector, which has led the nation out of seven of the last eight recessions, is now acting as an anchor. New home sales fell 12.4% in July to the lowest level in nearly a half-century, the government reported Wednesday. Sales of previously occupied homes fell to their lowest level in 15 years after a popular homebuyer’s tax credit expired at the end of April. According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, one in 10 American households with a mortgage are at risk of foreclosure this summer. In some states – Nevada, New Mexico, Arizona – that number would be a welcomed improvement.

We remember our first visit to this country, back in the year 2000. It was an eye-opening experience. Having grown up in Australia, we had always dreamed of visiting Washington DC, the power center of the free world, of taking a subway ride in New York City and eating a Philly cheesesteak (whatever that was).

“What must the kids be like in America?” we wondered of our fellow Generation Xers. After all, they were in line to inherit the greatest, most powerful nation on earth. Movies, sports stars, TV shows, fashion… Everything “cool” seemed to come from the United States. When we played video games in primary (elementary) school, all our friends wanted to be the American team. Kids who had never even been to places like Pittsburgh or Atlanta came to school in Pirates and Braves sports caps.

By the time we actually made it to the US, after a year in London, we were at least old enough to realize that Empires don’t last forever. Sure, the US was at the top of its game right now, we reasoned, but that won’t always be the case…

In the first summer of the new millennium, an American family we were staying with in Baltimore kindly took us to see the nation’s Capitol. We wanted to see the Lincoln Memorial and the statues of men, heroes, like Thomas Jefferson. Walking alongside the reflector pool in the afternoon heat, we asked our host family how long they expected the Age of American Dominance to last.

“We’re not going anywhere just yet,” was the response. “We have the greatest military and the strongest economy in the world.”

What would they say now, we wonder, one decade, two wars and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression later.

“Bridge Out” reads a sign just off the Interstate on the way to Meridian, MS. Trucks carrying huge chunks of earth move slowly around the construction pit. Men, shuffle from one foot to the other, leaning on shovels and smoking cigarettes. Residents from a nearby housing project look on from their front yards.

“Putting America to Work” reads another sign. “Project Funded By The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.”

The most powerful nation of the 20th century, once the envy and dream of people from around the world, is getting busy…digging holes.

Joel Bowman
for The Daily Reckoning

The Falling Dominoes of American Dominance originally appeared in the Daily Reckoning. The Daily Reckoning, offers a uniquely refreshing, perspective on the global economy, investing, gold, stocks and today's markets. Its been called "the most entertaining read of the day."

U.S. New Home Sales in Free Fall; American Housing Market on Verge of Collapse


In the wake of the disastrous existing home sales data for July, reported on in my previous blog comment, the Commerce Department released figures for U.S. new home sales for July. They have declined 12.4% from the prior month. More ominously, these figures, when compared with July 2009, reflect a contraction of nearly one third in new home sales. Remember, July of last year was already experiencing a dismal level of new home purchases.

The July new home sales in the United States came in at the poorest level since 1963, reflecting an annual rate of 276,000 sales. To put this number in context, in 1963 the American population was 190 million versus more than 300 million in 2010.

The combination of record contractions in existing and new home sales in the U.S. is indicative of a housing market that, far from recovering, is on the verge of the next phase of a deep collapse. The earlier collapse stemmed from subprime mortgages that defaulted, crippling the global financial system. The second phase is being driven by high unemployment, with no signs of an early turnaround. In this situation, one must be an obtuse optimist to believe that the banks and investment houses will be immune from the impact of what is clearly an accelerating collapse in the residential real estate market in the United States.

Delay and Pray, and Then?


By Jake Weber

While it may be hard to believe, the housing market hasn’t been the worst-performing real estate sector in terms of price. The index for the Case-Shiller Composite-20 index for residential real estate peaked in July 2006, and as of May 2010, the index had dropped by 29.1%.

Considering how dismal the recent housing data has been, we can certainly expect for the Case-Shiller index to continue its downward trajectory. However, it still has some catching up to do with its counterpart that tracks national commercial real estate prices. The Moody’s Commercial Property Price Index peaked in October of 2007, and as of June it had already lost 41.4% of its value.

Making the situation potentially much worse, the price declines in commercial properties have occurred absent a major wave of default in the commercial sector – at least one comparable to what we saw in housing. Rather than accept losses, lenders have been carrying commercial loans on their books at pre-crash values, pushing the problem down the road in a strategy dubbed “delay and pray.”

Rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic has worked for many lenders so far, but as this article from Crain’s Chicago Business demonstrates, procrastination can’t prevent the inevitable:

    A Georgia firm that holds two junior mortgages on the 46-story tower at 500 W. Monroe St. says the building’s loans went unpaid when they came due this month and that the company may foreclose and take control of the property.

    It would be the first foreclosure of a major office tower in the Loop in 11 years and a sign that the market remains mired in the hangover of the debt-stoked valuation bubble that peaked in mid-2007. That’s when Broadway Partners Fund Manager LLC, a once high-flying New York firm, bought 500 W. Monroe for $336.7 million, with a package of loans that made up more than 95% of the purchase price.

    Mr. Fasulo reckons that 500 W. Monroe could be worth about $240 million today, based on an estimate of the building’s net operating income and the return investors would expect since the tower is just 70% leased. That would put its current value at roughly 30% below the 2007 purchase price, a decline in line with national trends. A report last week by New York-based Moody’s Investors Service showed property values in the top 10 U.S. office markets have plummeted 31% since the 2007 peak.

    The building’s current value is also $84 million less than the $324 million Broadway borrowed to buy it. The sunken value, debt load and uncertainty about 500 W. Monroe’s future ownership weigh on leasing efforts, sources say.

    Piedmont, which bought a slice of the tower’s debt in March 2008, said in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing that the borrower missed an Aug. 9 maturity date and that Piedmont exercised its right to extend the maturities of two senior loans, including a $140-million mortgage held by commercial mortgage-backed securities investors.

    The filing says Piedmont is “considering its options for enforcement of its collateral, one of which is a potential foreclosure.”

Lenders have delayed and prayed, but as prices continue to decline, borrowers are finding it much easier just to walk away, or to send “jingle mail,” as this article from the Wall Street Journal put it:

    Companies such as Macerich Co., Vornado Realty Trust and Simon Property Group Inc. have recently stopped making mortgage payments to put pressure on lenders to restructure debts. In many cases they have walked away, sending keys to properties whose values had fallen far below the mortgage amounts, a process known as "jingle mail." These companies all have piles of cash to make the payments. They are simply opting to default because they believe it makes good business sense…

    More landlords are expected to follow suit. Of the $1.4 trillion of commercial-real-estate debt coming due by the end of 2014, roughly 52% is attached to properties that are underwater, according to debt-analysis company Trepp LLC. And as the economic recovery sputters, owners of struggling properties are realizing a big property-value rebound isn’t imminent.

    Owners of commercial property have an easier time walking away than homeowners because commercial mortgages are typically nonrecourse. That means the biggest penalty for walking away is the forfeiture of assets and cash flow they may generate.

    Read the full article here.

The obvious conclusions are that we can expect rents and lease rates to decline further, more defaults and foreclosed properties in the commercial real estate sector. Taking it a step further, this will probably lead to many more bank failures, as much of the commercial mortgages and CMBS are concentrated in the local and regional banks.

Copyright © by Credit Writedowns Site Meter Tags: banking, bankruptcy, foreclosure, Housing, Housing, property

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Catherine Austin Fitts : The Food Co-op trend


Interview with Mother of Tunisian-European Islamic State of Iraq Sniper Abu Sa'd Al-Tunisi: 'I Praise Allah for Having Allowed My Son to Go from Hunting Birds and Fish to Hunting Shi'ite Dogs and American Pigs'


On August 25, 2010, the Al-Ma'sada media group released an interview it conducted with the mother of Abu Sa'd (aka Abu 'Abd Al-Rahman) Al-Tunisi ("the Tunisian"), a sniper who left his home in Europe to join the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), the successor organization to Al-Qaeda in Iraq. The interview was posted on jihadist web forums.

To read the full report, click here.




My Way News - Iran says it test-fires new missile
My Way News reports: "Iran said Wednesday that it has successfully test-fired an upgraded version of a short-range surface-to-surface missile [..] The new version of the missile increases the weapon's range from earlier generations, Vahidi said without providing any further details. Earlier versions of the Fateh-110, which Iran has had for several years, could strike targets up to 120 miles (193 kilometers) away."
My Way News - Iran searching for new domestic uranium deposits
My Way News reports: "Iran said Wednesday it is making the search for new uranium deposits in the country a top priority now that it has started up its first in a planned network of nuclear power plants."
My Way News - Iran says it's ready to sell arms to Lebanon
My Way News reports: "Iran is prepared to sell weapons to Lebanon if Beirut asks for help in equipping its military, Iran's defense minister said Wednesday [...] Iran is a key supporter of Hezbollah, believed to funnel it weapons and millions of dollars in funding, though Tehran denies arming the Shiite group. Hezbollah, also closely allied to Syria, boasts a heavy arsenal of rockets capable of reaching deep inside Israel."

The Economy When Debt Is Everywhere


Debt is everywhere and it certainly is onerous. We all have heard about the sovereign debt crisis, the debt of Greece and the debts of Ireland, Spain, Portugal and Italy. During that process the euro fell from $1.50 to $1.187; which gave euro zone exporters quite an advantage. The euro has since rebounded to a high of $1.33 and for now settled in near $1.28. Business confidence is back, but in the meantime the next course of action is to be higher taxes and austerity. Even consumers believe things are not going to improve. They all probably see the advantages of a cheaper euro. Even the CDS premiums have disappeared, which means at least for now the crisis has been arrested with a Band-Aid called loans – loans that will take these countries years to repay accompanied by years of depression. As a result, Greece is on the edge of revolt.

As a result of austerity, imposed on Greece by its Illuminist led government, unemployment has hit 70% in some places. The country’s budget deficit has been reduced by 40%, truly draconian. Spending by government has been cut 10%, which is more than double what the EU and IMF has required. Bankruptcies abound and purchasing power and consumption have plunged. Consequently GDP has fallen 1.5% in the past quarter and tax revenue has fallen off a cliff. Companies, particularly in Perama and Piraeus still are sending ships to other locations for repairs, because Greek wage costs are still too high. In this world of free trade and globalization the cheapest wage gets the business. That means Greeks are going to have to work harder if they want employment. Experts say GDP will fall 4% this year, which will be severe, with 17% of shops in Athens already filing for bankruptcy.

Instead of this madness Greece’s leadership should have cut government spending by 30%, lowered taxes, defaulted fully or partially on their debt, left the euro and returned to a lower valued drachma. Now they’ll be in depression for years paying off bankers whose loans and bond purchases were professionally ill advised and the funds were created out of thin air.

These measures have the country in depression and there is no light at the end of the tunnel, as bankers clamor for their money. The worst is yet to come as bigger layoffs begin and prices on everything skyrocket.

Greece is on the edge of revolution and well it should be. This IMF imposed tyranny should never have been imposed in the manner in which it has been, crudely.

We haven’t seen the end of the Greek and euro crisis by a long shot and there is a good chance the reaction to such problems could easily spread to Spain, Portugal, Ireland and Italy.

Several months ago in Greece’s largest newspaper, as well as on Greek radio and television, we predicted these results and what is to follow. The answer is to get rid of your false leadership that is selling you into IMF servitude that will last for decades. Like Spain was a military training ground for Germany in the 1930s in preparation for WWII, Greece is being used as a training ground for world economic and financial subjugation as planned by the forces of darkness in its quest for total world domination.

The one-world creators of the euro are aghast at the path five of the 16 members have followed and particularly Greece. As we predicted ten years ago Greece and Italy should have never been allowed into the euro zone because they had cooked their books with the assistance of Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan Chase. One interest rate can never fit all and you cannot have a monetary zone until you have a EU constitution voted for by the people.

Now Greek PM George Papandreou, Bilderberger and Illuminists, has invited Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa, one of the founding fathers of the euro to advise the country on its debt management. This certainly is by design, so that Greece will do exactly as Europe’s Illuminists want them to do, and, of course, the IMF as well. The question is how much more debt will be piled onto Greece’s shoulders to bail out European bankers? The first loan was for $141 billion and Greece’s ten-year bonds’ yields are still four times those of Germanys.

There is presently a giant sales job being used on the Greek people to accept Mr. Padoa-Schioppa as their savior. And, of course, a great deal is being made of the fact that he is saving Greece at his own expense – pro bono. We can assure your Europe’s elitists will make sure he is well compensated.

Ten-year Greek Treasury bonds yield 10.6%, whereas Germany’s ten-year bunds yield 2.27%, that is a difference of 8.33%. There is good reason for the giant gap. In fact Greece has never met Maastricht guidelines of public debt of 3% of GDP. No matter how you look at it Greece is headed for default and that was obvious from the beginning. All they are doing is piling on more debt. Default, total or partial, is the only solution. In that process the euro has to be abandoned.

There are those who believe the EU and the IMF have brought Greece time. That may be true, but the cost is depression that might last 30 years and the sale of Greek assets to pay back lenders, all of which will be sold to vulture elitists at $0.30 on the dollar. We also believe that within three years Greece’s debt will be $435 billion. How can Greece service that debt when they cannot service their present debt? That will put Greece into perpetual servitude to the bankers.

The euro and the EU have been failures in our estimation and now the Greek government calls in Mr. Padoa-Schioppa who crafted this failure.

This Padoa-Schioppa is little less than a sherpa, bureaucrat for European elitists.

What this is all about is saving Greece and the euro zone. In that process Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy along with Greece will be neutralized by unpayable debt. The elitists who run Europe know that such events could destroy the EU and they cannot let that happen.

As a result of Greece’s problems in the last five months to May, HSBC has lost 8% of their entire deposit base. The country is in dire financial straights, so there has been a flight of capital. As a result Greek lenders have had to borrow $123 billion in July alone. Portugal, Ireland and Spain have been big borrowers as well. In addition all these countries have falling tax revenue.

We have said from the beginning that Greece and its co-members are all in a death spiral. Austerity is not the only answer. Default is part of that equation.

Twenty countries are headed into bankruptcy and more will follow. That brings up the subject of state debt in the US. America has been in an inflationary depression for 18 months. States have been cutting back for two years, but the budget gaps are still there. The struggle continues as states continue layoffs and cuts. 2011 will be a terrible year and 80% of states expect deficits of more than $200 billion. 2012 looks even worse.

Federal aid could be close to being over, which means further cuts. This means those hit by the depression will lose vital services, and that will further negatively affect the economy. The combined deficits for this year and next could be as high as $300 billion. That means even more cuts and it also makes 2011 a more difficult year than 2010. Worse yet, there is no recovery and there never has been. That was $2.5 trillion created most of which ended up in the casino halls known as international markets. Those who expect tax revenues to rise and unemployment to fall will be very disappointed. We have to laugh at Treasury Secretary Geithner’s comments that the recovery is underway. As soon as he is done at Treasury he should apply for one of the cheerleading jobs at CNBC. Next we await his comments on the perfect head and shoulders technical formation, and breakdown, regarding the Dow and the USDX. The latter is the dollar index. That formation is the worst and denotes deep downside activity. At the moment the states are immediately in more trouble than the federal government.

There has been no relief from unemployment. The U3 may say 9-5/8%, but U6 is 16-5/8% and if you subtract the birth/death ratio, which is a fraud, you get 21-1/2%. This past week the numbers worsened. How can tax revenues rise with so many unemployed?

As unemployment worsens demand for social services, food stamps and Medicaid increases. 69-1/2% of GDP comes from consumers. How can growth occur when household wealth is diminishing? Not to speak of tax increases of 15% next year that our President and his party have promised us as wages and purchasing power fall. Then there will be an attempt to raid retirement benefits by government exchanging those benefits for government guaranteed annuities from an all but bankrupt government. Then there is the behind the scenes discussion for a national transaction tax of 1%. Does it get any worse? You wanted change, and you got it. If you do not throw all these incumbents out of office in November you are doomed. Someone has to tell us how these factors spell recovery.

34 states have announced deficits for 2011. These are doozies. They are the total shortfall as a percentage of the full year 2011 budget. Here are the worst: Nevada 54%; 41.5% from Illinois: New Jersey 38.3%; Arizona 36.6%; North Carolina 30.3%; Utah 30.2%; Connecticut 28.9%; Georgia 26.2%; Minnesota 26%; South Carolina 25.6%; Wisconsin 23.9%; California and Colorado at 21.6% and Florida at 20.2%.

For 2012 the worst are Illinois 52.3%; New York 37.3%; Nevada 36.7%; Mississippi 27.6%; California 25.7% and Minnesota 25%. How is that for incompetence? And, these numbers are going to get worse.

30 states have raised taxes, which could eventually lead to tax revolt. This leads as well to less service and less overall demand, less business and profits, which deepens the downturn. This is truly the worst of all worlds and it is nowhere near over. The federal government supplies about 40% of shortfalls, most of it for Medicaid – the rest goes into a state fund. Some of this assistance to some states ends this year and some by mid next year. Residents can then expect more service cuts and higher taxes. That will reduce GDP and cost perhaps 1 million jobs.

There you have it. This is the direction in which the states are headed. They made no preparations and are essentially buried. Next the administration intends to force pension and retirement plans to buy government securities and to fund federal work projects. This is like in Greece and in other European countries – this is the nightmare of all nightmares.

Last week the Dow fell 0.9%; S&P 0.7%; the Russell 2000 rose 0.2% and the Nasdaq 100 added 0.4%. Cyclicals lost 0.8%; transports added 0.2%; consumers fell 1.3%; utilities dipped 0.6%. High tech rose 2.2%; semis 1.6%; Internets rose 3.5% and biotechs fell 0.6%. gold bullion rose $12.00, the HUI gained 3.2% and the USDX rose 0.1% to 83.01.

Two year T-bills fell 2.5 bps to 0.485%, 10-year notes fell 6 bps to 2.62% and 10-year German bunds fell 12 bps to 2.27%.

Freddie Mac’s 30-year fixed rate mortgages fell 2 bps to 3.90%, one-year ARMs were unchanged at 3.53%, 15’s fell 2 bps to 3.90% and 30-year jumbos were unchanged at 5.37%.

Federal reserve credit fell $6.5 billion, up $82.6 billion YTD, or 5.9% annualized. Fed foreign holdings of Treasuries and Agencies jumped $11.4 billion to a record of $3.176 trillion. Custody holdings for foreign central banks have increased $221 billion YTD, or 11.8%, and YOY 12.9%.

M2, narrow money supply, rose $8.3 billion to $8.644. it is up $132 billion YTD, or 2.5% annualized, and YOY is 2.7%.

Total money market fund assets rose $4.1 billion to $2.826 trillion.

Nationalizing the U.S. mortgage- finance system would turn taxpayers into servants of the ‘housing investment and debt complex,’ according to David Stockman, a former head of the Office of Management and Budget.  This shift would complete a transformation that started during the 1970s, when federal housing subsidies were expanded, Stockman wrote… ‘All principled political opposition to Pimco-style crony capitalism has been extinguished,’ wrote Stockman, a senior managing director at Heartland Industrial Partners. ‘Indeed, the magnitude of the burden already created is staggering.’

July existing home sales were 3.83 million vs. the expert’s estimate of 4.67 million, as June was revised to 5.26 million from 5.37 million. That is the worst results since LBJ was in office. A 27% plunge from July and off 25% from July 2009.

The Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index fell to 11 in August from 16 in July.

Influential bond trader Bill Gross called on U.S. policymakers to implement a nationwide refinancing scheme that he argued will provide of a boost to the economy of between $50 billion to $60 billion.  In prepared remarks during a panel discussion to begin the Obama administration's conference on the future of housing finance, Gross said he favors the consolidation of all the housing finance agencies into a single public entity fully backed by the government.  He said policymakers should quickly re-engineer a refinancing opportunity for all borrowers that are current with their payments and are included in the GSE’s securitized mortgages PIMCO's proposal to introduce refinancing opportunities on a large scale, Gross said -- where 5%, 6% and 7% mortgages are turned into 4% mortgages -- will provide a stimulus of $50 billion to $60 billion in consumption as well as a potential lift of 5% to 10% in terms of housing prices. PIMCO also advocates a 100% public housing finance system, Gross said.

Demand for loans at the majority of lenders in the U.S. failed to rise last quarter even as banks eased standards for the first time since the credit crisis began, a Federal Reserve survey showed.  Banks eased standards and most terms on loans to businesses of all sizes. The Fed described the change as 'a modest unwinding of the widespread tightening that occurred over the past few years.' Credit standards for small firms were loosened for the first time since late 2006.

Taxpayers must cover at least a third of a $3 trillion bill for public employee pensions even if lawmakers eliminate cost-of-living increases and raise the retirement age, according to an academic study.  ‘Even if states uniformly eliminated generous early retirement deals and raised the retirement age to 74, the unfunded liability for promises already made would still be more than $1 trillion,’ Joshua D. Rauh, associate professor of finance at Northwestern University’s Kellogg Schoo said.

What deflation? Food prices jumped 3.9% in July according to the hokey CPI. They should be substantially higher in coming months.

Record increases in the price of food have kept the rate of inflation above 3pc…The average household will be hit hard and, although many branded goods companies have been able to absorb rising input costs, basics have increased dramatically, according to our own measure of inflation, the Real Cost of Living Index.

Fruit prices have risen by 10pc, fish is up 8pc, vegetables 5pc, while bread and cereal prices have risen by 3pc.

For years we have cited St. Louis Fed research that states ‘food inflation’ is a great predictor of future inflation. And food inflation in Asia, the economic engine of the world, is soaring. Deflation, according to academics and grand poobahs, is a decline in the general price level. This is not occurring in the USA.

As we keep averring, there is deflation of assets, income and living standards while most necessities of life are inflating. So US citizens are being squeezed because deflation of assets and inflation of necessities can coincide.

Inflation comes through the door and wisdom flies out of the window There's no mystery about our inflationary problems - but to solve them we need to face up to some harsh realities.

CPI inflation has exceeded the Bank of England's 2pc target for 43 of the past 52 months. The CPI remained at 3.1pc in July – forcing the Bank to pen yet another letter of explanatio. In the latest, released last week, Bank Governor Mervyn King invoked the spectre not of falling prices, but of 1970s- style price rises, warning of the dangers of "destructive high inflation".

The Obama administration is grappling over how much to force private lenders to pay for apartments and homes for the poor as it presses ahead with a major overhaul of the government's housing policy, officials said.

One option under consideration is simply to require mortgage lenders to provide a portion of their loans to affordable housing, essentially putting the burden on the private sector. Another idea being discussed is to put the onus on government agencies such as the Federal Housing Administration, which makes loans to borrowers who cannot afford to make a standard down payment.

A third choice would be a hybrid of private and public participation. For instance, the government could make private firms pay a fee into a federally administered fund that would subsidize affordable housing.

Anyone that asserts, or asserted over the past few years, that ‘we’re trying to save capitalism’ is either ignorant or deceitful. What solons are trying to save is the US welfare state.

This is why the US economy & financial system is comatose. The requisite restructuring of the economy and financial system would entail market-based solutions and not more government. This, of course, is anathema to liberals and crony capitalists – because they believe they know better than the market.

Businesses may have to start putting leases on their balance-sheets - WHEN you lease something you agree to pay for it bit by bit over time. So it is like incurring a debt, say the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) and America’s Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB). Therefore, it should be on your balance-sheet. This new rule, proposed on August 17th by the two regulators, has shocked companies everywhere. It is up for public comment until December, but could be enacted as soon as June next year.

Today, companies can opt either for a “capital lease”, which goes on the balance-sheet, or an “operating lease”, which does not. By labeling leases as “operating”, firms can appear less indebted than they really are a survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers, an accounting firm, found that it would add about 58% to the average company’s interest-bearing debt.

The American Banker: Reserve Releases Increasingly ‘Ridiculous’

Ask any prudential regulator if it is too soon for banks to be releasing loan-loss reserves, and the answer would be "Yes." Make that, "Hell, yes."

And yet in the second quarter, the biggest banks beefed up earnings by draining reserves.

"If you believe capital is too low, then this is sort of ridiculous," said Bob Eisenbeis, a former Atlanta

Fed official who is now the chief monetary economist at Cumberland Advisors.

Interestingly, Tim Long, the chief national bank examiner at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, used the same word during an interview on the topic.

"For accountants to go in and say, 'Well the recession is over, and now we want you to start making negative provisions,' I think that is just absolutely ridiculous," Long said. "We have got to get this loan- loss model fixed because every time we go into a recession we have the same thing.”

The ABC’s Of The Great American Housing Crisis


It doesn't take a genius to realize that a horrific housing crisis in unfolding right in front of our eyes. Yesterday it was announced that existing home sales plummeted 27 percent in the month of July. Today it was announced that new homes sales dropped to the lowest level ever recorded in July. But why is this happening? Why is the American Dream still dying for millions of American families? Wasn't the recession supposed to be over by now? Weren't home prices supposed to be moving back up by this time? Well, in this article we will attempt to succinctly break down the ABC's of the Great American Housing Crisis. Hopefully this will help people understand why all of this is happening.

A - The Gigantic Mountain Of Unsold Homes Combined With Very Few Buyers Is Going To Force Home Prices Down

For decades, Americans could purchase a home and know that it was inevitable that the value of that home would eventually just keep going up and up and up. But those days are over.

Over the past two decades, we experienced a huge bubble in the housing market. As prices skyrocketed, home builders built homes like crazy and it seemed like virtually everyone in the world was getting a home loan.

But then a funny thing happened.

The bubble popped.

It turns out that millions and millions and millions of Americans could not afford all of those crazy mortgages that were being passed out, and foreclosures have set record after record after record over the last couple of years.

This has resulted in a gigantic mountain of foreclosed homes being forced back on to the market. As of this March, U.S. banks had an inventory of 1.1 million foreclosed homes, which was a new all-time record and which was up 20 percent from one year ago.

Meanwhile, banks and lending institutions have learned their lessons and now it is much, much tougher to get a home loan. Therefore, there are a whole lot less qualified buyers in the marketplace.

So with a ton of homes on the market and very few buyers, it is going to take a long, long time to get all of those homes sold. In fact, there is now over a year's worth of unsold homes sitting on the market in the United States.

And do you realize what happens when supply is very high and demand is very low?

Prices go down.

Right now home owners are very hesitant to lower the prices of their homes much further, but if they want to sell their homes, that is what has got to happen.

B - Without Good Jobs The American People Cannot Buy Homes

Homes sales are never going to get back to "normal" levels until the employment situation in the United States improves.

Today there are over 14 million Americans "officially" unemployed in the United States. But that does not tell the real story.

The real story is that we are rapidly developing a very large segment of the population that is chronically unemployed and completely dependent on the government just to survive.

Today in America is takes the average unemployed worker over 35 weeks to find a job. The number of Americans receiving long-term unemployment benefits has risen a staggering 60 percent in the past year alone.

Not only that, but according to one recent survey 28% of all U.S. households have at least one person that is searching for a full-time job.

So is there any hope that things will start to get better on the employment front?

Well, there might be a month or two where things get marginally better, but over the long-term things are going to keep getting worse.

Every single month, thousands upon thousands of jobs continue to leave the United States and get shipped to China, India and many other nations around the globe where workers are more than happy to work for little more than slave labor wages.

Both the Republicans and the Democrats are doing absolutely nothing to stop this.

So as long as the United States keeps bleeding jobs every single month, there simply is not a lot of room for optimism.

C - The United States Is Getting Poorer Every Single Month And The U.S. Government Is Going Into More Debt Every Single Month

The truth health of an economy should not be measured by how much "consumption" is going on. Rather, the truth health of an economy should be measured by how much richer or poorer it is getting.

Unfortunately, the United States is doing very poorly in that regard right now.

Whenever the trade deficit comes up, most Americans go to sleep, but they shouldn't.

What the trade deficit really means is that every single month the United States is getting poorer.

That is why it is so vitally important.

Every single month, tens of billions of dollars more flows out of the United States than flows into it.

It is an ongoing transfer of wealth that is almost unimaginable.

Take a moment to imagine what would happen if every single month five thousand more dollars flowed out of your bank account than flowed into it.

After some time, you would be quite poor.

Well, that is what is happening to the United States of America.

We are bleeding massive amounts of wealth every single month.

Not only that, but the U.S. government continues to go into more debt every single month.

That means that every single month the interest we are paying on U.S. government debt goes up.

That is another tremendous drain on our national wealth.

In addition, state and local governments across the United States continue to pile up staggering amounts of debt that also must be serviced.

So what does this all mean?

It means that every single month the United States continues to get poorer and poorer and poorer.

That is a recipe for long-term economic problems, and that means that the long-term outlook for the U.S. housing market (and for the economy as whole) is very, very, very bad.

Any questions?

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Islam in Europe] Denmark: Islam’s power, Europe’s new reality


[Islam in Europe] Denmark: Islam’s power, Europe’s new reality

Denmark: Islam’s power, Europe’s new reality

One day Karen Jespersen and Ralf Pittelkow drove from their home in Dragør, over the Øresund bridge, to the Rosengård district in Malmö. They drove around and felt that they’ve arrived in a different world. Shops had signs in Arabic. Only a few spoke Swedish on the street. Veiled women were everywhere. There were satellite dishes on the balconies.

“We thought of a young headscarf-wearing woman who appeared on Swedish TV,” remembers Karen Jespersen. “She said: ‘it feels like Iraq or another Arab country. I feel excellent in Malmö’. Rosengård is a Muslim parallel society where people live their own lives. This provides fertile ground for radical Muslims to have growing influence. All over Europe we see the same trend in many major cities.”

This trend led the athor husband-and-wife team to write the book ‘Islams magt. Europas ny virkelighed’ (Islam’s power, Europe’s new reality). The book is meant as a warning.

Q: A warning against what?

“We show that significant changes occur in European populations with a rapidly growing proportion of Muslims,” says Ralf Pittelkow and adds: “At the same time there’s a trend for more and more young Muslims to denounce European societies and their values. They want their own Muslim communities, where Islam’s values and regulations govern. It scan lead to a completely different Europe with great conflicts.”

The book uses many concrete examples from various European counties to show that there is pressure to increase Islam’s influence in society. This can be seen in the chapters on women’s situation, crime, freedom of speech, fragmenting society, Islamic law, Islamism and terrorism.

Q: It’s been said that the Muslims who are born and grow up in Europe are becoming more integrated. You don’t see any positive trend in that direction?

“Yes, we do,” says Karen Jespersen. “There’s a significant group of youth who integrate and contribute to our society. We stress that Muslims are a diverse group with different view. We point out three groups especially:

On the one hand, there are the Islamists, who want an Islamic society. On the opposite side are the liberal Muslims, who want to integrate Islam in the liberal, democratic society. Between these there’s a very big middle group who accept Islam’s dogmas, but only practice them to a lesser degree. This grou’s development is critical. Unfortunately, a growing portion of them are moving more in the Islamic direction.”

Q: We we must surely give Islam the same religious freedom as other religions?

“Absolutely. But it’s important to understand that Islam is not just a religion like all others. Islam set rules for how society should be organized. The rules can only be implemented in practice if Islam has power in society. Therefore strong Muslim forces are trying to influence the form of European societies. We reject that. Muslims should have freedom to practice their faith. But Islam shouldn’t have power,” says Ralf Pittelkow.

“We point out that Islam’s power shows up in different ways. It can be religious Islamists who want to implement their principles. But at the opposite end, it can also be Muslims gangs, who take control of a neighborhood. Even if they don’t comply to the principles of Islam, it is clear that many of them identify strongly with Islam.”

Q: Why are you so afraid of parallel societies? Isn’t it an expression of diversity?

“It’s not a positive diversity, but on the contrary, a deeply damaging fragmentation and dissolution of society. We’re getting a society where there are deep rifts between the population groups. It undermines one of the most important qualities of a society, namely the trust between people. Denmark is a country with a lot of trust, and it will be a tragedy if we squander it,” says Karen Jespersen.

Q: How will Europe avoid this trend you fear?

“Strictly controlled immigration is a prerequisite for integration to succeed,” says Ralf Pittelkow. “But beyond that it’s about standing fast to European basic values. Above all, we must insist on the tradition of information and freedom, which applies the same rules, the same demands and the same rights to all. No to Muslim special requirements.”

“We will not have gender separation. We will not have male domination over women. We will not have Islamic headscarves in our justice system, educational system and health system. We will not have restrictions on our freedom of speech. We will not have closed off Muslim areas. We will not have burqas or niqabs. We will have air and light, freedom and equality,” says Karen Jespersen.

“the problem is that the elite in European society have shown no joy, pride or resolution when it comes to our values. They have been plagued by guilt and contempt for their own culture and have been way too tolerant for the deeply intolerant features of Islam. This is Europa’s most profound problem: Lacking self-consciousness and fighting spirit,” says Ralf Pittelkow.

Source: Lokalavisen (Danish)

See also Book Review: Islamists and Naivists: An Indictment by the same authors

Posted By Esther to Islam in Europe at 8/23/2010 05:20:00 AM

Dow 5000 in Next Two Years


Those 401ks aren’t going to be worth the paper they’re printed on.

From CNBC:

The Dow Jones Industrial Average  will lose about half of its value over the next couple of years as it follows a Nikkei-like pattern of several sharp rallies in an overall decline, according to Charles Nenner, founder and president of Charles Nenner research.

Stocks are currently in a bear-market rally, and looking at charts and past trends, unemployment and leading indicators suggest the Dow will drop to 5,000 in the next two to two-and-a-half years, Nenner told CNBC in an e-mail.

Deflation will arrive, along with a sharp double-dip recession, pushing the Dow lower, although, like the Japanese market, stocks will see several jumps of 30 percent to 40 percent, he said.

He goes on t say investors should look into “soft commodities” which are things like Wheat and soybeans. Unless they come in long lasting food grade buckets you can store in your fortress I’d think hard about that advice.

Iran Unveils New Bomber Drone and Tests a Surface-to-Surface Missile


To view the clip, click here.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Environmentalists Destroy Next Year’s Sugar Crop


Posted in Survival Food by Rob Taylor on August 24th, 2010

Worried about genetically modified foods contaminating their precious organic beet supply several green groups filed a lawsuit aimed at ending the use of modified crops by sugar beat farmers. Now a judge has sided with the groups and halted the planting of genetically modified crops. The consequences? Since sugar beets are the main source of U.S. made sugar not only will there be sugar shortages, but all foods that use sugar will inflate in price:

Genetically modified seeds make up 95 percent of the seeds used in growing sugar beets, because they’re resistant to roundup and are cheaper to grow. But the judge found that windblown pollen from the genetically altered beets could contaminate crops in adjoining fields, like organic crops. People in the industry say, while the decision doesn’t affect this year’s beets, it creates a problem for 2011.

“We are in a little bit of a conundrum. We don’t have enough seed to plant a full crop, with conventional seeds next year,” said Duane Grant, Chairman of Snake River Sugar Company.

APHIS, or the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, must complete an environmental impact study before any more genetically engineered seeds can be planted. Grant says he would like that study completed soon because his farmers are working with a deadline.

“Our growers are making planting decisions for next year this fall.  We typically order our sugar beet seed in December, and so we’re under a pretty tight timeline,” said Grant.

Putnam says growers in the Gem State can just plant other crops, but sugar beets are the most lucrative. He also said Idaho sugar processors could be in the most trouble, without anything to process until a decision comes down.

“What will they do? Can they sit idle for a year? We don’t know,” said Putnam.

And the biggest impact could be on consumers, considering 50 percent of the nation’s sugar supply comes from beets.

“That is a huge hunk of sugar.  When you take beets out of the equation, then we start running into shortages. We’ll start running into problems. And I think we’ll start to see food prices increase,” said Putnam.

APHIS may adopt interim measures that allow planting of genetically modified sugar beets in 2011. But that would need to happen in a matter of months to give farmers time to plan for next year.

And the chances of the government moving quickly to help these farmers and the sugar industry are slim to none. It’s time to start stockpiling sugar. Right now you can even buy a six pack of 64-ounce canisters for less than $30 online. In a few years, you’ll be lucky to pay $30 for a bag of sugar in your local grocery

Lebanese PM Meets With Jumblatt, Hizbullah Official


Lebanese Prime Minister Sa’d Al-Hariri last night met last night with Lebanese Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblatt and, separately, with Hizbullah official Hajj Hussein ...
August 23, 2010, 4:59 pm

Radioactive boars on the rise in Germany



BERLIN — It was a big shot. A big hog. And a big disappointment.

When Georg van Bebber hauled back his wild boar from Ebersberg forest near Munich after a day of hunting, he was exhilarated about his impressive prey.

But before he could take it home, a Geiger counter showed a problem: The boar's meat was radioactive to an extent considered potentially dangerous for consumption. It needed to be thrown out and burnt.

"I really would have liked to have this boar," van Bebber said when he recounted the incident in a telephone interview from Bavaria.

Almost a quarter century after the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear meltdown in Ukraine, its fallout is still a hot topic in some German regions, where thousands of boars shot by hunters still turn up with excessive levels of radioactivity. In fact, the numbers are higher than ever before.

The total compensation the German government paid last year for the discarded contaminated meat shot up to a record sum of euro425,000 (about $558,000), from only about euro25,000 ten years ago, according to the Federal Environment Ministry in Berlin.

"The reason is that there are more and more boars in Germany, and more are being shot and hunted, that is why more contaminated meat turns up," spokesman Thomas Hagbeck told The Associated Press.

"But this also shows how long radioactive fallout remains a problem in the environment," he said.

Boars are among the species most susceptible to long-term consequences of the nuclear catastrophe 24 years ago. Unlike other wild game, boars often feed on mushrooms and truffles which tend to store radioactivity and they plow through the contaminated soil with their snouts, experts say.

However, boars are actually the beneficiaries of another ecological crisis — climate change.

Central Europe is turning into a land of plenty for the animals, as warmer weather causes beech and oak trees to overproduce seeds and farmers to grow more crops the boars like to feast on such as corn or rape, said Torsten Reinwald of the German Hunting Federation.

"The number of boars in Germany has quadrupled or quintupled over the last years, as has the number of boars shot," Reinwald said, adding that other countries like France and Poland are seeing a similar proliferation of boars.

Last season, hunters brought home a record 640,000, and following that trend, the amount of contaminated meat also went off the charts. Judging from the total compensation paid out in 2009, about 2,000 to 4,000 boars were found to have levels above the 600 becquerel of radioactivity per kilogram allowed for human consumption. That compares to about 125 to 250 a decade ago.

"The impact of the Chernobyl fallout in Germany, in general, has decreased," said Florian Emrich, spokesman of the Federal Office for Radiation Protection. For example, radiation has ceased to be a problem on fields cultivated with commercial crops, he said.

But forest soil in specific regions that were hit hardest after Chernobyl — parts of Bavaria and Baden-Wuerttemberg in southern Germany — still harbors high amounts of radioactive Cesium-137 which has a half life of roughly 30 years, Emrich said.

In fact, the Cesium from the Chernobyl fallout is moving further into the ground and has now reached exactly the layer where the boars' favorite truffles grow, the Hunting Association's Reinwald said. Therefore, the season for such truffles — a variety not eaten by humans — usually means a rising number of radioactive boars.

Experts so far have no evidence that the animals suffer from the relatively low levels of radioactivity accumulating in their bodies. Still authorities are striving to make sure no tainted meat enters the human food chain.

Hunters and authorities go out of their way assuring consumers that none of the problematic meat will end up on their tables.

"We can guarantee that there is no contaminated meat on the market," said Ulrich Baade, spokesman for the regional hunters association in Baden-Wuerttemberg. "In problematic regions, every single hunted boar will be tested for radioactivity before being sold."

Bavaria and Baden-Wuerttemberg have dozens of testing stations, many of which are run by hunters, and the compensation promised by the German Atomic Energy Law gives them a financial incentive to hand over radioactive meat.

"For a young boar you get 100 Euros from the government, for a larger boar 200," Guenther Baumer, a veterinarian running a testing station in Bavaria, said. "That fully covers the damage."

In fact, it might sometimes be even more lucrative to sell to the state than to commercial outlets.

Hunter van Bebber said that with the gigantic numbers of boars pushing onto the market prices sometimes hit lows of only euro1 per kilogram (about $1.30 for 2.2 pounds) while probably averaging at around euro2.50. For an average 35 kilograms of meat per animal that would mean only about euro90.

Therefore, not everybody is as unhappy as van Bebber.

"The disappointment (when radioactivity is found in meat) is usually rather limited," said vet Baumer.

Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

20 Signs That America Is No Longer The Land Of The Free


The United States was able to defeat Nazi Germany and helped bring down the USSR, but is the U.S. government now quickly becoming just like them? Once upon a time, America was the land of the free and the home of the brave, but today the government has become an oppressive monster that is intrusively embedding itself in our lives in thousands of different ways. Today we are all viewed as potential threats to the "system" that the government has imposed, and therefore everything that we do must be watched, tracked, traced, recorded and controlled. Lip service is still given to ideals such as freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion and freedom of movement, but all of those freedoms are rapidly dying a brutal death. To our forefathers, living the American Dream meant living as free men and women, but today it means living under deep socialist tyranny where the government takes care of us from the cradle to the grave and uses an increasingly oppressive Big Brother police state control system to guarantee our safety.

The following are 20 signs that America is no longer the land of the free....

1 - Government trash snooping has now come to America. The city of Cleveland plans to sort through curbside trash to ensure that people are actually recycling their trash. If it is discovered that they are not recycling properly they will be hit with very large fines.

2- It is becoming increasingly difficult to express free speech online. The city of Philadelphia is actually forcing bloggers to pay them $300 for a business license. In this economic climate, who can afford to pay an extra 300 dollars just to have a blog? So much for free speech in Philadelphia.

3 - All of our DNA will soon be in a database. Barack Obama has been pushing a plan to create a national database that will store the DNA of all individuals who have been arrested, even if they end up not being convicted of a crime.

4 - You should consider nothing you do on the Internet to be private. It is being reported that the Obama administration is now demanding access to all Internet records of all Americans without court review.

5 - Just about anything can be used against you in court these days. In one of the very first military commissions held under the Obama administration, a U.S. military judge ruled that confessions obtained by threatening the subject with rape are admissible in court.

6 - But it is not just Islamic terrorists that are going to get this kind of treatment. According to FBI Director Robert Mueller, "homegrown terrorists" represent just as much of a threat to American national security as al-Qaeda does in 2010.

7 - Be very, very careful about what you post on the Internet from now on. One software company is actually developing software which will be able to identify people from photographs posted on the Internet.

8 - The frightening thing is that the Internet may actually be literally inside the heads of many Americans soon. Intel has stated that it wants microchips inside the heads of their customers by the year 2020.

9- As technology develops, it is inevitable that the government will want to utilize it to track us and to control us. A startup company developing "chipless RFID ink" has already tested its product on cattle and laboratory rats. How soon before it starts getting used on humans?

10- "Pre-crime" is not just for science fiction movies any longer. The Florida State Department of Juvenile Justice has announced that it will begin using analysis software to predict crime by young delinquents and will place "potential offenders" in specific prevention and education programs.

11- Are you ready to start carrying a national ID card? This year U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer and Lindsey Graham have been promoting legislation that would institute a biometric national identification card for all Americans.

12 - These days anyone can be labeled a "terrorist" and denied even the most basic of rights. New legislation being pushed by U.S. Senators John McCain and Joe Lieberman earlier this year would allow the U.S. military to round up large numbers of Americans and detain them indefinitely without a trial if they are believed to "pose a threat" or if they have "potential intelligence value" or for any other reason that the President of the United States "considers appropriate".

13 - The relationship between the police and the public has fundamentally changed. Once upon a time the police were there to protect and serve. But in 2010 police all too often abuse their positions. Just recently, a 32 year old man was beaten black and blue by two Denver Police officers for no apparent reason at all.

14 - We are now so tightly regulated that we can't even honor good police officers any longer. Memorial crosses erected along Utah public roads to honor fallen state highway troopers have been found unconstitutional by a federal appeals court and must be removed.

15 - In 2010, it seems like the government wants to investigate just about everyone and everything. For example, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi recently called for opponents of the proposed Ground Zero mosque to be investigated in order to establish who is funding their activities.

16 - The truth is that it is very dangerous to exercise your free speech in America in 2010. For example, Christians are being arrested in various areas across the United States for quietly passing out Christian literature on public sidewalks.

17 - The U.S. government has become so paranoid that now even milk is viewed as a major threat. Organic milk is now considered such a national crisis that the FDA has been conducting military style raids on Amish farmers in the state of Pennsylvania.

18 - We can't even get on an airplane now without first allowing gawking security officials to get a good look at our naked bodies. The new full body security scanners going into airports all across the United States can actually see through clothing and produce very clear and very detailed images of the exposed bodies of everyone who walks through them.

19 - But the government would never save any of those naked images, would they? Well, the U.S. Marshals Service confessed recently that it had indeed saved tens of thousands of images recorded with a millimeter wave system at the security checkpoint of one Florida courthouse.

20 - Things have gotten so bad that we can't even sing the national anthem during a visit to a national monument any longer. A group of high school students made national headlines recently when they revealed that they were ordered by a security guard to stop singing the national anthem during a visit to the Lincoln Memorial.

The Document that Should Stop the Islamic “Victory Mosque”


Douglas J. Hagmann

By Douglas J. Hagmann
Northeast Intelligence Network
Racists, Xenophobes and bigots. Those are just a few terms used to describe the opponents of the Islamic center planned near Ground Zero. These characterizations could possibly be avoided, however, by more fact-based protest.
To date, defenders of the center seemed undeterred, despite all that is known about the project front man. Look just a bit deeper.
Among the golden nuggets of evidence produced during the trial of the United States vs. The Holy Land Foundation et al is a document that should end any ambiguity concerning the true intent of Feisal ABDUL-RAUF in his quest to construct an Islamic center at Park Place. In fact, it should be cause to reexamine all Islamic centers and mosques that fall within a certain criteria. Cataloged as “Exhibit 003-0085” by the U.S. federal government, a document translated from Arabic to English titled "An Explanatory Memorandum, On the General Strategic Goal for the Group In North America" details the objectives of the Muslim Brotherhood in America.
Feisal ABDUL RAUF is indeed an adherent and promoter of the Muslim Brotherhood’s goals and objectives. Any doubt to his Muslim Brotherhood connections can be quelled by the excellent and timely report by Alyssa A. Lappen, which is required reading for factual insight into ABDUL RAUF’s link to the Muslim brotherhood.
Clearly, according to this document, the objective of the Muslim Brotherhood is to convert the U.S. into an Islamic nation through sabotage and subterfuge. It is a handbook to achieve that end. The author painstakingly describes the process of “settlement,” among others, and further described its meaning and the methods to be employed:

The process of settlement is a “Civilization-Jihadist Process” with all the word means. The Ikhwan* must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and “sabotaging” its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions. [Emphasis added].

The succinct analysis by Ms. Lappen of point 17 of the document clearly illustrates that “[b]uilding Islamic centers equals building military “battalions,” points from which to later stage the planned destruction of the West.”
And what better place inside our front lines is there but within the perimeter of destruction at Ground Zero?
[* Ikhwan (Arabic for brothers) was the Islamic religious militia which formed the main military force of the Arabian ruler Ibn Saud.]

Monday, 23 August 2010

Gerald Celente : The Too Big to Fail Is Killing the Middle Class


Gerald Celente : The good news is they can borrow money for almost nothing , it's a low interest rate they got a lot of cash , the bad news is they are squeezing everybody else , and it is not only in High Tech , it's in Pharmaceutical it's in agriculture it's in retail , this nation went from a nation of main street mom and pop businesses to wall street and to the too big to fails ...." "we have ten banks controlling eighty percent of the action , how many community banks have been wiped out right now !?!? in the credit cards business we have three banks controlling two thirds of the action when we look at what the nation used to be and what it is , now the gap between the rich and the poor is the widest in the United States of any industrialized nation , ten percent of the nation controlling 93 percent of the assets ! ...the strenght of a nation is in the base of its middle class , America becomes strong again when the middle builds big again" Gerald Celente explains....etc....
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Lebanese Website: IRGC Commander Visited Syria in Secret


The Lebanese website Now Lebanon reports, citing an official source in Damascus, that Mohammad Ali Jafari, commander of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), recently paid a secret visit to ...
August 22, 2010, 11:01 am

Military Sees Increase in Recruitment


Marietta - U.S. military recruitment is continuing to meet and exceed goals, as it has since the economic downturn first fully gripped the nation, and the military is also now attracting a higher number of college graduates. Pentagon statistics show there were more than 6,400 new recruits who had bachelor's degrees last year, compared to 5,400 in 2008, a nearly 17 percent jump. The number of recruits with associate degrees also saw a slight increase, from 2,380 to 2,570. About 5.2 percent of all 2009 military recruits had college degrees. The trend is taking place in Ohio as well, said Lt. Kristine McAndrews, with the local recruiting district's Navy headquarters in Columbus. "Recruitment is up, we're exceeding goals, and we have a lot of high-quality recruits who are in the top percentage of their classes," she said. "As far as college graduates go, we're seeing more now, too." McAndrews said specific numbers couldn't be released Friday, but that the increase was modest. U.S. Department of Defense numbers show that in July the Army was at 104 percent of its recruitment goal, the Navy and Air Force were at 100 percent, the Marine Corps was at 99 percent - with an intentional slow-down due to high total fiscal-year recruitment numbers.

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Indigenous Prophecy - America is dying from within


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Surprise! Obama’s Home Mortgage Program a Failure


Not quite a dismal failure yet, as only 50% of people are dropping out. For people who don’t understand economics (lefties) this is acceptable:

WASHINGTON (AP) – Nearly half of the 1.3 million homeowners who enrolled in the Obama administration’s flagship mortgage-relief program have fallen out.

The program is intended to help those at risk of foreclosure by lowering their monthly mortgage payments. Friday’s report from the Treasury Department suggests the $75 billion government effort is failing to slow the tide of foreclosures in the United States, economists say.

More than 2.3 million homes have fallen into foreclosure since the recession began in December 2007, according to foreclosure listing service RealtyTrac Inc. Economists expect the number of foreclosures to grow well into next year.

“The government program as currently structured is petering out. It is taking in fewer homeowners, more are dropping out and fewer people are ending up in permanent modifications,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics.

Besides forcing people from their homes, foreclosures and distressed home sales have pushed down on home values and crippled the broader housing industry. They have made it difficult for homebuilders to compete with the depressed prices and discouraged potential sellers from putting their homes on the market.

Approximately 630,000 people who had tried to get their monthly mortgage payments lowered through the government program have been cut loose through July, according to the Treasury report. That’s about 48 percent of the those who had enrolled since March 2009. And it is up from more than 40 percent through June.

Another 421,804, or roughly 32 percent of those who started the program, have received permanent loan modifications and are making their payments on time.

RealtyTrac reported that the number of U.S. homes lost to foreclosure surged in July to 92,858 properties, up 9 percent from June. The pace of repossessions has been increasing and the nation is now on track to having more than 1 million homes lost to foreclosure by the end of the year. That would eclipse the more than 900,000 homes repossessed in 2009, the firm says.

Lenders have historically taken over about 100,000 homes a year, according to RealtyTrac.

In other words, this was throwing away tax payer money to help people who put themselves in positions it was impossible to fix. Makes sense.

The economy is getting better though, right?

Tehran Bureau: Ahmadinejad Says Iran Ready for Nuclear Talks


In an interview published today in Japan, Iran's president said his country is ready for immediate talks with world powers over a nuclear fuel swap deal...

The Hindenburg Stock Market Omen Doomed to Crash and Burn?


This week’s plunge in U.S. stocks triggered a technical indicator known as the Hindenburg Omen that may signal a more severe selloff, according to analysts who follow charts to predict market moves.

The market signal, named for a German zeppelin that caught fire and crashed more than seven decades ago, occurs when an unusually high number of companies in the New York Stock Exchange reach 52-week highs and lows. The indicator last occurred in October 2008, according to UBS AG.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index yesterday completed the biggest three-day decline since July 1, after an unexpected increase in unemployment claims added to evidence an economic recovery is weakening. The benchmark gauge for U.S. stocks has dropped 3.4 percent so far this week as Federal Reserve policy makers said growth “is likely to be more modest” than they previously forecast.

The indicator may suggest “a savage equity downturn is imminent,” said Albert Edwards, a London-based strategist at Societe Generale SA, who has told investors to favor bonds over stocks for more than a decade. “Equities are tottering on the edge as increasingly recessionary data becomes apparent. It would not take much to tip them over that edge.”

The Hindenburg signal was triggered yesterday as the proportion of stocks reaching new one-year highs and lows both exceeded 2.2 percent of the total listed on the NYSE, according to Michael Riesner, a technical analyst at UBS in Zurich.

Rising Market

The number of stocks at a 52-week high must not be more than twice the number marking lows, the technical theory also says, according to analysts. The indicator is only valid in a rising market, as defined by the NYSE Composite Index’s rolling average value in the last 10 weeks. It must also occur when the NYSE McClellan Oscillator, a measure of market momentum, is negative.

The Hindenburg Omen must be confirmed with a second occurrence within 36 days, according to Riesner. He said the signal occurred seven times in 2008 as the S&P 500 posted its biggest annual drop since the Great Depression.

“It’s an interesting name but what you really have as a technical background is a classic distribution phase in the market,” Riesner said. “It’s the classic tug of war between bulls and bears that you have there.”

In technical analysis, investors and analysts study charts of trading patterns and prices to predict changes in a security, commodity, currency or index. UBS is ranked as the top bank for equity technical analysis and charting according to a 2010 Thomson Extel survey.

To contact the reporter on this story: Alexis Xydias in London at

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15 Signs That The U.S. Housing Market Is Headed For Complete And Total Collapse


The U.S. housing market is dying. You will only hear hints of this on the mainstream news and from the politicians in Washington D.C., but as statistic after statistic continues to roll in, the reality of what is happening is becoming very difficult to deny. Up until the end of April, the giant tax credit that the U.S. government was bribing home buyers with helped stabilize the real estate market, but now that the tax credit has expired the decline of the U.S. housing market has resumed. Mortgage defaults continue to set new records. Foreclosures continue to set new records. Home repossessions by banks continue to set new records. The number of homes being constructed and the number of Americans applying for home loans is at stunningly low levels. For decades, owning a home has been touted as the very heart of "the American Dream", but today that dream is out of reach for an increasing number of Americans. Why? It is because there are not nearly enough jobs for everyone. Without a jobs recovery, there simply is not going to be a housing recovery. Unfortunately, as the U.S. economy continues to come apart like a 20 dollar suit, even more Americans are going to lose their jobs and the U.S. housing industry will continue to experience a very painful decline.

The truth is that this is not a short-term downturn in the housing market. During the past two decades, an insane amount of debt fueled an artificial housing bubble that drove home prices to ridiculous levels. Now the U.S. housing market is trying to correct itself, and no matter how many trillions of dollars the U.S. government throws at the problem the fundamentals of the marketplace are still going to have their way eventually.

So exactly how bad are things out there right now?

The following are 15 signs that the U.S. housing market is headed for a complete and total nightmare....

1 - Sales of new and existing homes in the U.S. are at depressingly low levels. For example, during the month of May sales of new homes in the U.S. declined to the lowest level ever recorded. Yes, you read that correctly. The U.S. Department of Commerce began tracking sales of new homes back in 1963, and since that time the number of new homes sold has never been as low as it was in May. Not only that, but existing home sales (which had been faring a bit better) are also showing signs of serious decline. In the month of July, sales of existing homes in southern California fell nearly 22% from a year earlier. In Austin, Texas sales of homes declined 25% from a year ago in the month of July. The truth is that home prices are still way too high. As prices begin to decline that should help home sales a bit, but the truth is that the days of the real estate boom are gone and they not coming back.

2 - Construction of new homes in the United States has screeched to a standstill. There are way too many homes for sale already, and so most home builders have dramatically cut back on their building plans. Construction of new homes in the U.S. and applications to build new homes in the U.S. both fell to their lowest levels in more than a year during the month of July. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like this is going to turn around any time soon. An important measure of home builder confidence fell to a 17 month low in August. There is a whole lot of pessimism in the housing industry right now, and that means that the employment outlook in all of the industries that depend on the housing industry is likely to continue to be quite grim.

3 - Americans do not seem very eager to apply for home loans right now. The Mortgage Bankers Association recently announced that demand for loans to purchase U.S. homes has sunk to a 13-year low. Very, very few people pay cash for their homes these days, so without more loans there is not going to be an increase in housing sales.

4 - Foreclosures continue to set new records. The number of home foreclosures set a record for the second consecutive month in the month of May. According to RealtyTrac, a total of 1.65 million U.S. properties received foreclosure filings during the first half of 2010. That is a stunningly high figure. All of these foreclosures are just going to add to the massively bloated inventory of unsold homes in the United States. As of March, U.S. banks had an inventory of approximately 1.1 million foreclosed homes, which was up 20 percent from a year ago. Somehow U.S. banks have to get rid of this giant mountain of homes. Needless to say, this is going to have a significant depressing effect on housing prices.

5 - Banks across the United States are ramping up their efforts to repossess homes. The days when homeowners in default could endlessly sit in their homes rent-free is coming to an end. U.S. Banks repossessed 269,962 U.S. homes during the second quarter of 2010, which was a new all-time record.

6 - U.S. banks are writing off a staggering amount of mortgage debt. In fact, major U.S. banks wrote off approximately $8 billion on mortgages during the quarter of 2010, and if this pace continues it will even exceed 2009's staggering full-year total of $31 billion.

7 - The number of Americans falling behind on their mortgages continues to increase. The Mortgage Bankers Association recently announced that more than 10% of all U.S. homeowners with a mortgage missed at least one mortgage payment during the first quarter of 2010. That was a new all-time record and represented an increase from 9.1 percent during the same time period in 2009. Mortgage delinquencies are also growing at a very alarming pace at mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. As of March 31st, serious mortgages delinquencies at Fannie and Freddie had increased over 50 percent from a year earlier as the Christian Science Monitor recently explained....

As of March 31 this year, 6.3 percent of mortgages held by Fannie and Freddie are either seriously delinquent or in foreclosure. Although that's down slightly from the figure three months earlier, it represents a big one-year rise (from 3.9 percent in early 2009).

8 - Because of so many Americans defaulting on their mortgages in recent years, banks and lending institutions have significantly tightened their lending standards. It is much more difficult to get a home loan at this point. If you have tried to get a home loan lately you know exactly what is happening. Higher lending standards mean that less people get home loans. If less people get home loans, less homes will be sold. With less competition in the marketplace, home prices will continue to decline.

9 - Home prices are still way, way too high for most people to be able to afford them. The truth is that only the top 5 percent of all U.S. households have earned enough additional income to match the rise in housing costs since 1975. The housing market got way, way out of balance over the last couple of decades, and market fundamentals are going to try to push housing prices down to a level where average Americans can actually afford them.

10 - Americans need jobs to be able to afford homes, and right now unemployment is at stunningly high levels. According to one recent survey, 28% of U.S. households have at least one member that is looking for a full-time job. The number of the long-term unemployed in America continues to set record after record. So where did all the jobs go? They got shipped overseas and they aren't coming back. The debt-fueled prosperity of the last couple of decades masked that reality for a time, but now that the debt bubble is beginning to pop it is rapidly becoming apparent that the U.S. economy now cannot provide nearly enough jobs for everyone. But without a jobs recovery there simply is not going to be a housing recovery.

11 - Record numbers of Americans continue to go bankrupt. The truth is that the American people are tapped out. 1.41 million Americans filed for personal bankruptcy in 2009 - a 32 percent increase over 2008.

12 - Even Barack Obama, usually the biggest cheerleader for the economy, is admitting that the housing market is in bad shape. "The housing market is still a big drag on the economy as a whole," Obama said recently. "It is going to take some time for us to absorb this inventory, that was really too high."

13 - The giant tax credit that the U.S. government was offering to home buyers artifically inflated the U.S. housing market up until April of this year. But now that it is gone, there is no more safety net for the U.S. housing industry. The market fundamentals that have been trying to force housing prices down are going to continue to do so, and unless the U.S. government intervenes it is inevitable that we are going to see housing prices decrease significantly.

14 - The two "twin pillars" of the U.S. mortgage industry are a complete and total mess. It is being reported that it could take up to 5 trillion MORE dollars to completely "fix" Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. But without Fannie Mae and Freddic Mac we might not even have a mortgage industry at this point. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the Federal Housing Administration and the Veterans Administration backed approximately 90 percent of all U.S. home loans during the first half of 2010.

15 - The overall U.S. economy is absolutely drowning in debt, and as this debt bubble bursts it is going to take the U.S. housing market down with it. Right now, the total of all government, business and consumer debt in the United States is somewhere in the neighborhood of 360 percent of GDP. At no point in U.S. history has that number ever gotten anywhere close to that high. It is the biggest debt bubble in the history of the world, and it is beginning to pop. As it does, one of the areas that will be hit the hardest will be the housing market.

Those waiting for U.S. housing prices to return to the levels of three or four years ago are living in fantasy land. Absent the onset of hyperinflation (which would cause the price of everything to rise dramatically), housing prices are simply not going to return to those levels.

The U.S. economy is in decline. The employment situation is going to go from bad to worse. Americans without jobs are Americans that cannot buy homes. Millions of Americans who are employed are finding it increasingly difficult to make it from month to month. The truth is that there is no way that Americans can afford the ridiculously inflated home prices that we have seen over the past decade any longer.

So, yes, the U.S. housing market is headed for a complete and total nightmare.

So what do you think? Do you agree? Do you disagree? Feel free to leave a comment below....