Category Archives: Breaking NEWS

12 Signs That An Imminent Global Financial Crash Has Become Even More Likely

Financials

Did you see what just happened?

by Michael Snyder | Economic Collapse | August 12, 2015

The devaluation of the yuan by China triggered the largest one day drop for that currency in the modern era.  This caused other global currencies to crash relative to the U.S. dollar, the price of oil hit a six year low, and stock markets all over the world were rattled.  The Dow fell 212 points on Tuesday, and Apple stock plummeted another 5 percent.  As we hurtle toward the absolutely critical months of September and October, the unraveling of the global financial system is beginning to accelerate.  At this point, it is not going to take very much to push us into a full-blown worldwide financial crisis.  The following are 12 signs that indicate that a global financial crash has become even more likely after the events of the past few days…

#1 The devaluation of the yuan on Tuesday took virtually the entire planet by surprise (and not in a good way).  The following comes from Reuters
China’s 2 percent devaluation of the yuan on Tuesday pushed the U.S. dollar higher and hit Wall Street and other global equity markets as it raised fears of a new round of currency wars and fed worries about slowing Chinese economic growth.

#2 One of the big reasons why China devalued the yuan was to try to boost exports.  China’s exports declined 8.3 percent in July, and global trade overall is falling at a pace that we haven’t seen since the last recession.

#3 Now that the Chinese have devalued their currency, other nations that rely on exports are indicating that they might do the same thing.  If you scan the big financial news sites, it seems like the term “currency war” is now being bandied about quite a bit.

 

#4 This is the very first time that the 50 day moving average for the Dow has moved below the 200 day moving average in the last four years. This is known as a “death cross”, and it is a very troubling sign.  We are just about at the point where all of the most common technical signals that investors typically use to make investment decisions will be screaming “sell”.

#5 The price of oil just closed at a brand new six year low.  When the price of oil started to decline back in late 2014, a whole lot of people were proclaiming that this would be a good thing for the U.S. economy.  Now we can see just how wrong they were.

At this point, the price of oil has already fallen to a level that is going to be absolutely nightmarish for the global economy if it stays here.  Just consider what Jeff Gundlach had to say about this in December…

And back in December 2014, “Bond King” Jeff Gundlach had a serious warning for the world if oil prices got to $40 a barrel.

“I hope it does not go to $40,” Gundlach said in apresentation, “because then something is very, very wrong with the world, not just the economy. The geopolitical consequences could be — to put it bluntly — terrifying.”

#6 This week we learned that OPEC has been pumping more oil than we thought, and it is being projected that this could cause the price of oil to plunge into the 30s

Increased pumping by OPEC as Chinese demand appears to be slackening could drive oil to the lowest prices since the peak of the financial crisis.

West Texas Intermediate crude futures skidded through the year’s lows and looked set to break into the $30s-per-barrel range after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries admitted to more pumping and China devalued its currency, sending ripples through global markets.

#7 In a recent article, I explained that the collapse in commodity prices that we are witnessing right now is eerily similar to what we witnessed just before the stock market crash of 2008.  On Tuesday, things got even worse for commodities as the price of copper closed at a brand new six year low.

#8 The South American debt crisis of 2015 continues to intensify.  Brazil’s government bonds have been downgraded to just one level above junk status, and the approval rating of Brazil’s president has fallen into the single digits.

#9 Just before the financial crisis of 2008, a surging U.S. dollar put an extraordinary amount of stress on emerging markets.  Now that is happening again.  Emerging market stocks just hit a brand new four year low on Tuesday thanks to the stunt that China just pulled.

#10 Things are not so great in the United States either.  The ratio of wholesale inventories to sales in the United States just hit the highest level since the last recession.  What that means is that there is a whole lot of stuff sitting in warehouses out there that is waiting to be sold in an economy that is rapidly slowing down.

#11 Speaking of slowing down, the growth of consumer spending in the United States has just plummeted to multi-year lows.

#12 Deep inside, most of us can feel what is coming.  According to Gallup, the number of Americans that believe that the economy is getting worse is almost 50 percent higher than the number of Americans that believe that the economy is getting better.

Things are lining up perfectly for a global financial crisis and a major recession beginning in the fall and winter of 2015.

But just because things look like they will happen a certain way does not necessarily mean that they will.  All it takes is a single “event” of some sort to change everything.

So what do you believe will happen in the months ahead?

Please feel free to join the discussion by posting a comment below…

 

McDonald’s Franchisees are Terrified for the Future

Six-month outlook for McDonald’s business is the worst in the 12-year history of new survey

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by Hayley Peterson | Business Insider | July 16, 2015

McDonald’s franchisees are terrified for the future of the company, according to a new survey.

The operators’ six-month outlook for McDonald’s business is the worst in the 12-year history of the survey, which was conducted by former Janney Capital Markets analyst Mark Kalinowski.

“At least half of the operators in my region are on the verge of collapse,” one franchisee wrote in response to the survey. “With minimum wage for fast-food workers potentially increasing to incredibly high levels, we are facing a crisis situation. ”

Another said: “The operators sit on a cliff right now. With sales going in the wrong direction, all must be conservative in our decisions. It will take only one bad decision to put any operator down and out.”

 

McDonald’s same-store sales have declined for the past six straight quarters in the US. The company is battling falling traffic, increasing competition from fast-casual chains like Chipotle and Panera, and an eroded brand perception among American consumers.

For the survey, Kalinowski interviewed 29 franchisees who own and operate 208 restaurants in the US. McDonald’s said that represents only a fraction of their franchisees.

“Approximately 3,100 franchisees own and operate McDonald’s restaurants across the US,” McDonald’s spokeswoman Lisa McComb told us. “Less than 1% of them were surveyed for this report. We value the feedback from our franchisees and have a solid working relationship with them.”

Operators said in the survey that they are squeezed for cash due to high rent, remodeling costs, and new equipment.

One franchisee wrote, “We are tapped out,” and another wrote: “We may be doomed.” A third said, “Everyone is paralysed with fear for their jobs.”

Several complained that the company’s new CEO, Steve Easterbrook, hasn’t made any meaningful improvements to the business since he took over the position in March.

“Mike Andres and Steve Easterbrook promised a rapid turnaround, improved taste and quality, significant SIMPLIFICATION,” a franchisee wrote. “None of that has happened. They added four sandwiches and breakfast all day! … It may be too late for any meaningful recovery.”

Easterbrook unveiled his turnaround plan in May. He said he planned to turn McDonald’s into a “modern, progressive burger company” by restructuring management, refranchising restaurants, and listening more to customers.

“Our recent performance has been poor; the numbers don’t lie,” Easterbrook said at the time. “I will not shy away from the urgent need to reset this business.”

The chain has cut several sandwiches from the menu since Easterbrook took over, but it has also added a new Sirloin burger and new mid-priced sandwiches, including a McChicken sandwich with leaf lettuce and tomato and a double burger with leaf lettuce and tomato.

Some operators said top management is out of touch with what it’s like to run a restaurant and the types of issues that employees face in the restaurants every day.

“For example, labour needed to run stores during lunch hour,” one franchisee wrote. “Our competitors have 6-8 people to run close to the same volume that we need 20-25 people.”

Several franchisees also said the food quality needs to be fixed before the restaurants get upgrades, and many are just hoping for flat sales going forward.

“Brand loyalty is history for us,” one franchisee wrote.

Read more

 

China’s GDP Growth Is a Total Lie

World’s second largest economy is definitely faking their suspiciously consistent growth numbers

050514china2

by Joshua Krause | SHTFPlan | July 17, 2015

I think it’s safe to say that anyone who thinks the United States economy is on the road to recovery, is drinking some serious Kool-aid. As organizations like shadowstats have shown time and time again, our government likes to fudge the numbers on a regular basis. They think they can keep the party going indefinitely, so long as they convince the world that everything is just fine.

Of course, the United States isn’t the only country that’s doing this. Heck, it wouldn’t be surprising if we found out that most governments falsify their economic data. However, it’s a little scary to think that maybe the world’s largest economy isn’t the only one lying to the world. In fact, the world’s second largest economy is definitely faking their suspiciously consistent growth numbers.

“You can’t trust the numbers,” Bill Miller, CEO of LMM Investments, told a room full of investors at CNBC’s Delivering Alpha Conference this week.

Miller spoke on Wednesday, just hours after China announced that it once again hit its gross-domestic-product growth target of 7%.

This despite the fact that its economy seems to be experiencing a major slowdown.

But after 25 years of watching China hit the mythical 7% mark without fail, analysts understand the charade.

There are dead giveaways everywhere. The most obvious way to tell that China’s books are cooked, though, is by looking at how its neighbours are faring.

Miller noted that Singapore’s GDP has dropped 4.6% in just the last quarter, and that their manufacturing sector is down 14%. So why is that so telling? Because, Singapore does a lot of trading with China, and the contraction of their manufacturing industry is being caused by a lack of demand from the Chinese.

You can also look to Australia, another one of China’s major trading partners. They’re also experiencing a significant decline in exports.

But that’s just what’s going on outside of their country. When you look at what goes on in China itself, it’s hard to believe that they would still have consistently high growth numbers. It wasn’t that long ago that their stock market tanked by more than 30%. I can’t recall a single instance where a stock market fell like that, without it causing a contraction of that nation’s GDP.

 

And finally, China’s debt to GDP ratio is off the charts. While a large debt won’t kill the economy if it’s in the process of being paid for, China is experiencing quite the opposite. Their debt is actually increasing faster than their economy is supposedly growing. In 2008, their total debt, which includes business loans and household debt, amounted to 125% of their GDP. Today, that number stands at 207%.

That means that even if they’re not faking their growth numbers, their GDP is still a lie. Their growth is still being fueled by debt, which means that in the big scheme of things, it’s not really growth at all.

China is just like the United States and the EU. They’re just another massive world power that is using their economic clout to throw their weight around the world stage. And that economic clout is a big lie. When the world figures out how insolvent and unsustainable these nations really are, their house of cards is going to crumble.

 

Farage Rocks EU Parliament: Tells Tsipras – ‘Leave the Euro, Reclaim Your Democracy’

Capturefarage

 

Rousing speech met with cheers, applause

by Paul Joseph Watson | July 8, 2015

UKIP leader Nigel Farage gave a rousing speech in front of the European Parliament in Strasbourg today during which he directly told Greece’s Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to lead the Greek people out of the Eurozone and reclaim the country’s democracy.

Farage told Tsipras that his country should have never joined the euro in the first place, but that it was forced to do so by big banks like Goldman Sachs and German arms manufacturers.

“When the bailouts began, they weren’t for the Greek people, those bailouts were to bailout French, German and Italian banks – they haven’t helped you at all,” said Farage to the sound of applause.

“You have been very brave, you called that referendum, when one of your predecessors tried to do the same, the bully boys of Brussels had him removed,” said the UKIP leader as Tsipras looked on.

“There were threats and bullying, but the Greeks stood firm….they will give you no more these people – they can’t afford to – if they give you more they’ll have to give other Eurozone members more – so your moment has come and frankly if you’ve got the courage you should lead the Greek people out of the Eurozone with your head held high, get back your democracy, get back control of your country, give your people the leadership and the hope that they crave,” added Farage.

The response to Farage’s speech – given that he is normally used to being heckled by pro-Brussels MEPs – was quite momentous as loud applause once again filled the room.

“Yes it will be tough for the first few months, but with a devalued currency and with friends of Greece all over the world, you will recover,” concluded Farage to the sound of cheering.

Tsipras looked fairly nonplussed but he was obviously trying to keep a straight face.

The Greek Prime Minister is still planning to strike a deal with creditors before a deadline on Thursday. Speculation is mounting that banks could run out of cash if the impasse continues, followed by civil unrest and riots.

Farage also remarked on what the wider implications of the Greek referendum were for the entire EU.

“The European project is actually beginning to die,” said Farage, adding that the people of Europe have rejected EU federalism time and time again whenever asked.

The UKIP leader said that attempts to make Europeans show allegiance to the flag and anthem of the EU had proven fruitless, noting that the ultimate agenda of a political union had failed.

“The countries of Europe are different – if you try and force together different people or different economies without first seeking the consent of those people it is unlikely to work and the plan has failed,” said Farage, adding that the whole of the Mediterranean now “finds itself in the wrong currency.”

“The continent is now divided from north to south, there is a new Berlin Wall and it’s called the euro,” asserted the UKIP leader.

Continued Fighting In Ukraine Could Lead to Nuclear War: World Leaders

nukebomb

Stakes are too high not to negotiate peace

Washington’s Blog | January 10, 2015

Former Soviet leader and Nobel prize winner Mikhail Gorbachev warned today that the battle in Ukraine could result in a nuclear war:

“A war of this kind would unavoidably lead to a nuclear war,” the 1990 Nobel Peace Prize winner told Der Spiegel news magazine, according to excerpts released on Friday.

“We won’t survive the coming years if someone loses their nerve in this overheated situation,” added Gorbachev, 83. “This is not something I’m saying thoughtlessly. I am extremely concerned.”

One of America’s top experts on Russia – Steven Cohen – has warned that failure to negotiate a peace treaty in Ukraine could lead to nuclear war.

Steven Starr – a nuclear arms expert and senior scientist for Physicians for Social Responsibility – warns that proposed U.S. legislation would be a direct path towards nuclear war with Russia.

Former Polish president – and famed anti-communist activist – Lech Walesa also warned that the U.S. and Nato’s arming of Ukraine could lead to a nuclear war.

Leading American political activist Noam Chomsky agrees.

Australian doctor and Nobel prize winner Helen Caldicott warns:

 

The expansion of NATO to Russia’s borders is “very, very dangerous,” Caldicott said. “There is no way a war between the United States and Russia could start and not go nuclear. … The United States and Russia have enormous stockpiles of these weapons. Together they have 94 percent of all the 16,300 nuclear weapons in the world.”

“We are in a very fallible, very dangerous situation operated by mere mortals,” she warned. “The nuclear weapons, are sitting there, thousands of them. They are ready to be used.”

Caldicott strongly criticized Obama administration policymakers for their actions in forward positioning U.S. and NATO military units in countries of Eastern Europe in response to Russian support of breakaway separatists in the provinces of eastern Ukraine. On –, the U.S. government announced the deployment of the Ironhorse Brigade, an elite armoured cavalry unit of the U.S. Army to the former Soviet republics of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, along the historic invasion route from the West to St. Petersburg.

“Do they really want a nuclear war with Russia?” she asked “The only war that you can have with Russia is a nuclear war. … You don’t provoke paranoid countries armed with nuclear weapons.”

And see this, this, this and this.

Indeed, Eric Zuesse says that the risks are so high – and the American leaders so reckless – that Russia is preparing for an expected nuclear attack by the U.S.

Postscript:   In the 1987 book To Win a Nuclear War: The Pentagon’s Secret War Plans, one of the world’s leading physicists – Michio Kaku – revealed declassified plans for the U.S. to launch a first-strike nuclear war against Russia.  The forward was written by the former Attorney General of the United States, Ramsey Clarke.

In Towards a World War III Scenario, Michel Chossudovsky documents that the U.S. is so enamoured with nuclear weapons that it has authorized low-level field commanders to use them in the heat of battle in their sole discretion … without any approval from civilian leaders.

May cooler heads prevail…

Source

‘Smart’ Pacifier Tracks Tots and Takes Temperature, While Bathing them in Radiation

pacifier-1

Is it a good idea to shove radiation-emitting devices in our children’s mouths?

Like babies, but hate the hassle of having to track their every move? Even worse is misplacing that pesky pacifier. And why’s it always like pulling teeth taking your kid’s temperature?

For years, parents have frustratingly searched for answers to these questions. Luckily, the wait is over.

Blue Maestro, a British health technology company, has dumbed-down parents covered.

Introducing the Pacif-i, a high-tech pacifier that syncs with your smart phone to make caring where your baby is a thing of the past.

“[S]ay your kid is the type to make a break for it,” poses Yahoo! Tech as an example. “Anytime the Pacif-i moves more than 20 feet from your connected device, an alarm will go off.”

The Pacif-i comes fully loaded with technology that sends your phone updates on your baby’s temperature, along with a built-in GPS locater to ensure satellites orbiting the Earth know exactly where your kid is at all times.

paci-1

The portable sucking device also “emits a low-energy Bluetooth signal to your phone every two minutes,” reports Yahoo, meaning it’ll automatically douse your baby in microwave radiation every few seconds.

“Officially,” radiation emitted from wireless technologies, such as Bluetooth devices and cell phones, have been dismissed as having little to no adverse effects on human physiology.

However, a whole slew of studies also conversely show radio wave frequencies, the same ones put out by Bluetooth devices, to have a detrimental effect on humans down to the cellular level, even at low doses.

A 2014 study looking at the effects of radio-frequency electromagnetic radiation on sperm quality found that, even in low amounts, “mobile phone exposure was associated with reduced sperm motility and viability.”

Indeed, the health effects of wireless radiation have been known since cell phones began coming into fashion.

The Sunday Mirror in 2001 published an article entitled “The Child Scrambler: What a Mobile Can Do To a Youngster’s Brain in 2 Min,” which detailed the results of a Spanish study researching mobile phone effects on the minds of children.

“Scientists have discovered that a call lasting just two minutes can alter the natural electrical activity of a child’s brain for up to an hour afterwards,” reported the Mirror.

One government doctor called the study’s results “extremely disturbing.”

“It makes one wonder whether children, whose brains are still developing, should be using mobile phones,” British physicist Dr. Gerald Hyland told The Mirror.

“The results show that children’s brains are affected for long periods even after very short-term use.”

“Their brain wave patterns are abnormal and stay like that for a long period.”

“This could affect their mood and ability to learn in the classroom if they have been using a phone during break time, for instance.”

“We don’t know all the answers yet, but the alteration in brain waves could lead to things like a lack of concentration, memory loss, inability to learn and aggressive behaviour.”

In 2013, researchers with BioInitiative 2012 brought the issue before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), along with a preponderance of evidence, proposing “Changes to the Commission’s Rules Regarding Human Exposure to Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields.”

Their petition was accompanied by a detailed chart showing a long list of studies demonstrating the “Reported Biological Effects from Radiofrequency Radiation at Low-Intensity Exposure.”

The following video also illustrates how Bluetooth wi-fi headsets emit dangerous radio frequency levels even when they’re not in use.

 

Watch the YouTube Report filed here…

 

While the new temperature monitoring device is being hailed as a technological milestone, it’s likely a good idea to do some homework on the adverse effects associated with wireless radiation before you put that “smart” pacifier in your kid’s mouth.

 

Lawsuit Claims Prince Andrew Had Sex with Underage Sex Slave

Prince of scum

 Allegedly arranged by former Bear Stearns financier Jeffrey Epstein

Kurt Nimmo | Infowars.com | January 2, 2015

A lawsuit filed in Florida accuses the Duke of York of having sexual relations with an underage sex slave.

The allegation names multi-millionaire financier Jeffrey Epstein who was convicted of soliciting sex with an underage girl.

One such powerful individual Epstein forced (the woman) to have sexual relations with was a member of the British royal family, Prince Andrew (aka Duke of York), the court document states.

Epstein was an options trader at Bear Stearns, the global investment bank that failed in 2008 and was sold to JP Morgan Chase after a Federal Reserve bailout failed to float the securities trading and brokerage firm.

A spokesman for Prince Andrew denied the accusation…

“This relates to long-standing and ongoing civil proceedings in the United States, to which The Duke of York is not a party,” he said.

“As such we would not comment on the detail. However, for the avoidance of doubt, any suggestion of impropriety with underage minors is categorically untrue.”

The British royal family was tainted by its relationship with the late Jimmy Savile. The television presenter, accused of having sex with hundreds of minors, “was in deep with the Royals,” according to Noel Edmonds, the presenter of the BBC’s Deal or No Deal.

Savile, who was a close friend of Prince Charles, stood accused of running an underage sex ring.  A number of high-profile figures were arrested in connection with the sex ring allegedly operated by Savile.

The British political establishment was also linked to child sexual abuse earlier this year.

The Scotland Yard’s Operation Fernbridge revealed 40 members of parliament and peers knew about or took part in a child abuse network.

Source

 

60% of Republicans Want Boehner Out

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Top GOP leader ‘lost the confidence of his own party’

WND | January 2, 2015

As Congress gets ready to convene, a new poll shows a full 60 percent of Republican voters want Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, removed from his position as House speaker.
Boehner has lost the confidence of his own party voters, according to the telephone survey conducted Dec. 26-30 by pollster Pat Caddell on behalf of People’s Poll.

The national poll reveals that only 25 percent of GOP voters would vote to keep Boehner.

The official speaker’s election is scheduled for Jan. 6.

Asked if they believed Boehner has been ineffective at opposing Obama’s agenda, a full 64 percent of voters agreed.

JOIN THE DON’T BE YELLOW, DUMP BOEHNER NOW CAMPAIGN

“[N]o respected party leader has polled this low among his own party’s voters unless he was embroiled in a major personal scandal,” wrote the Conservative Review.

“With 60% of Republican voters desiring a more conservative Speaker, what does this mean for John Boehner next Tuesday – when members of the House will cast votes for the next Speaker? And how can Boehner continue to lead the opposition to President Obama when he has lost the confidence of his own party?”

Source

Detroit Police Stand with Citizens Who Are Using Guns for Self-Defense

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AWR Hawkins
Breitbart

March 31, 2014

Detroit Police Chief James Craig

With “fatal self-defense shootings on the rise in Detroit,” law-abiding citizens know one thing–Detroit police have their back.

According to The Detroit News, “justified” self-defense shootings in Detroit are hovering around 10 since January 1st.

This is up considerably from 2013, in which “there were 15 justifiable [self-defense shootings] in the city” during the entire year.

And far from criticizing the fact that more and more homeowners are standing up for their lives and property, Detroit Police Chief James Craig said he views this rebirth of self-defense as proof that”more and more Detroiters are becoming empowered.”

Read more

 

Related Articles

Bitcoin: Revolutionary Game-Changer Or Trojan Horse?

 

Washington’s Blog

February 5, 2014

 

Reddit, Virgin Galactic, and Overstock.com now accept Bitcoin.

So do dating site OKCupid and travel site CheapAir.com. Game giant Zynga is now in the testing phase.

Two big Las Vegas hotels accept Bitcoin.

Congressman Steve Stockman (R-Texas) accepts Bitcoin for 2014 campaign contributions. As does a law firm in Australia.

Reuters notes:

Already, 21,000 merchants are using Coinbase to accept Bitcoin from customers.

Indeed, there are websites listing scores of businesses which now accept bitcoin.

(And you can use Bitcoin at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Crate & Barrel, Target, Sears, CVS, Hyatt Hotels, Kohl’s, Burger King, Applebees, Victoria’s Secret, Land’s End, Facebook, Groupon, Banana Republic, the Gap, AMC and Fandango movie theaters, Whole Foods, Wine.com, Wine Enthusiast, Papa John’s, Nike, Adidas, Sephora, Sports Authority, Staples, Zales jewelry, Game Stop, FTD flowers, Zappos and hundreds of other stores if you use Bitcoin to buy gift cards at Gyft.)

But is Bitcoin going mainstream a good thing or a bad thing?

 

People Power … Challenging the Status Quo?

Andy Haldane – Executive Director for Financial Stability at the Bank of England – believes that peer-to-peer internet technology will lead to the break up of the big banks.

Bank of America said “We believe Bitcoin could become a major means of payment for e-commerce and may emerge as a serious competitor to traditional money-transfer providers”

Visa has attacked Bitcoin as being less trustworthy than its well-established payment system.

So it sounds like Bitcoin is shaking up the status quo …

 

Backed by … the Big Banks?

On the other hand, a lot of major mainstream players are backing Bitcoin and other digital payment systems.

Wells Fargo wants to get into Bitcoin in a big way.

JP Morgan Chase has filed a patent for a Bitcoin-like payment system. And Russia’s largest bank is working on a Bitcoin alternative as well.

Ben Bernanke and the Department of Justice have both cautiously blessed Bitcoin.

François R. Velde, senior economist at the Federal Reserve in Bank of Chicago, labeled it as “an elegant solution to the problem of creating a digital currency.” John Browne theorizes:

While crypto-currencies remain insulated from central bank manipulation, governments have thus far been tolerant, perhaps because their capability to track transactions is more advanced than Bitcoin believers admit.

Indeed, Bitcoin is not really that anonymous, as the NSA can track Bitcoin trades.

The NSA can apparently also hack Bitcoin. And see this. Given that the NSA may be changing the amount in people’s accounts, it would be child’s play for them to change the amount in your Bitcoin wallet.

And Yves Smith argues that Bitcoin actually plays into the hands of the central bankers:

Many [Bitcoin enthusiasts] clearly relish the idea of launching a currency outside the control of central banks (plus this beats Cryptonomicon in geekery).

If you believe the hype, you’ve been had. As Izabella Kaminska of the Financial Times tells us, you all are really just doing free/underpaid R&D for central banks, since you are debugging and building legitimacy for one of their fond projects, making currencies digital and getting rid of cash altogether.

I had wondered about the complacency of Fed and SEC officials in Senate Banking Committee hearings on Bitcoin last year.

***

As Kaminska explains (boldface mine):

Central bankers, after all, have had an explicit interest in introducing e-money from the moment the global financial crisis began…

Bitcoin has helped to de-stigmatise the concept of a cashless society by generating the perception that digital cash can be as private and anonymous as good old fashioned banknotes. It’s also provided a useful test-run of a digital system that can now be adopted universally by almost any pre-existing value system.

This is important because, in the current economic climate, the introduction of a cashless society empowers central banks greatly.

A cashless society, after all, not only makes things like negative interest rates possible
[background hereherehere and here]…

It transfers absolute control of the money supply to the central bank, mostly by turning it into a universal banker that competes directly with private banks for public deposits. All digital deposits become base money.

Consequently, anyone who believes Bitcoin is a threat to fiat currency misunderstands the economic context. Above all, they fail to understand that had central banks had the means to deploy e-money earlier on, the crisis could have been much more successfully dealt with.

Among the key factors that prevented them from doing so were very probable public hostility to any attempt to ban outright cash, the difficulty of implementing and explaining such a transition to the public, the inability to test-run the system before it was deployed.

Last and not least, they would have been concerned about displacing conventional banks from their traditional deposit-taking role, and in so doing inadvertently worsening the liquidity crisis and financial panic before improving it…

Almost of all of these prohibitive factors have, however, by now been overcome:

1) Digital currency now follows in the footsteps of a “disruptive” anti-establishment digital movement perceived to be highly accommodating to the black market and all those who would ordinarily have feared an outright cash ban. This makes it exponentially easier to roll out. Bitcoin has done the bulk of the educating.

2) What was once viewed as a potentially oppressive government conspiracy to rid the public of its privacy can be communicated as being progressive and innovative as a result.

3) Banks have been given more than five years to prove their economic worth and have failed to do so. If they haven’t done so by now, they probably never will, meaning there’s unlikely to be a huge economic penalty associated with undermining them on the deposit front or in transforming them slowly into fully-funded fund managers.

4) The open-ledger system which solves the digital double-spending problem has been robustly tested. Flaws, weaknesses and bugs have been understood, accounted for, and resolved.

The balance of the article describes how the central bank digital currency would be launched, and Kazmina finds a plan developed by Miles Kimball of the University of Michigan to be thorough and viable.

Oh, and why would Bitcoin, um, central bank digital currency make it viable to implement negative interest rates? Kaminska tells us:

…the greater the negative interest rate, the greater the incentive to hold alternative coins. The greater the incentive to hold alternative coins ,the greater the incentive to produce them. The greater the incentive to produce them, the greater the chances of oversupply and collapse. The more sizeable the collapse, the more desirable the managed official e-money system ultimately becomes in comparison.

Either way, the key point with official e-money is that the hoarding incentives which would be generated by a negative interest rate policy can in this way be directed to private asset markets (which are not state guaranteed, and thus not safe for investors) rather than to state-guaranteed banknotes, which are guaranteed and preferable to anything negative yielding or risky (in a way that undermines the stimulative effects of negative interest rate policy).

So all these tales … of how liberating and democratic Bitcoin will be are almost certain to prove to be precisely the reverse. Hang onto your real world wallet.

 

Protester: Cops Laughed About Having License to Kill

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“There’s a pack of 12 cops waiting to
smash your #&*@#% faces in”

 

Paul Joseph Watson
Infowars.com

January 30, 2014

A Fullerton resident who was arrested after protesting the acquittal of officers involved in the death of Kelly Thomas said police laughed and joked about having a license to kill while asserting,…

“There’s a pack of 12 cops waiting to smash your #&*@#% faces in.”

30-year-old Adam Walder was thrown into a paddy wagon after riot cops ordered demonstrators to disperse during a protest against the ‘not guilty’ verdict which saw Officer Manuel Ramos and Officer Jay Cicinelli acquitted on all charges of manslaughter and murder.

Kelly Thomas, a mentally disabled homeless man, was beaten, tasered, suffocated and pistol whipped as he lay on a street corner being sat on by no less than six police officers during an incident in July 2011. During the disturbing video of the beating, Thomas can be heard pleading for his father, moaning, “Daddy, daddy, they are killing me,” as officers prolong the assault.

Before the assault, Ramos told Thomas, “Do you see my fists?” They’re getting ready to fuck you up.”

According to the jury in the case, Thomas just coincidentally chose to die of an undiagnosed heart condition in hospital five days after the savage beating having never regained consciousness.

Describing the incident that occurred during the subsequent protest, Walder said he was grabbed by cops after refusing to obey the dispersal order quickly enough and thrown into a police van with several other demonstrators.

While being transported to jail, Walder said the police were laughing and grinning. During the journey, one of the cops leaned over to the protesters and with “malice in his voice” said, “There’s a pack of 12 cops waiting to smash your fucking faces in.”

Another officer then immediately remarked, “And I’ve got two words for all of you, ‘NOT GUILTY,’” prompting laughter amongst all the other cops.

This was clearly a reference to the acquittal of the two officers involved in the Thomas beating. The cops were literally laughing and chuckling about the fact that they can get away with the murder of innocent people.

As Filming Cops highlights, the exchange brings to mind previous incidents where cops have laughed and joked about deliberately hurting peaceful protesters, like the example below where Miami police shot a woman in the head with a rubber bullet and then callously celebrated the fact in front of news cameras.

Watch Tyranny in action here

 

 

 

 

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden nominated for Nobel Peace Prize

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AFP January 29, 2014

Former Norwegian minister nominated NSA contractor Edward Snowden for Nobel Peace Prize.
Former Norwegian minister nominated NSA contractor Edward Snowden for Nobel Peace Prize.

A former Norwegian minister nominated fugitive US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden for the Nobel Peace Prize Wednesday in a letter to the Norwegian Nobel Committee.

“He has contributed to revealing the extreme level of surveillance by nations against other nations and of citizens,” former Socialist Left Party minister Baard Vegar Solhjell told AFP, explaining his move.

“Snowden contributed to people knowing about what has happened and spurring public debate” on trust in government, which he said was “a fundamental requirement for peace”.

Read more

 

 

 

HSBC imposes restrictions on large cash withdrawals

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BBC News
January 26, 2014

 

HSBC's latest rule follows a worldwide trend towards capitol controls by major banks. Credit: ell-r-brown via Flickr

HSBC’s latest rule follows a worldwide trend towards capitol controls by major banks. Credit: ell-r-brown via Flickr

 

Some HSBC customers have been prevented from withdrawing large amounts of cash because they could not provide evidence of why they wanted it, the BBC has learnt.

 

Listeners have told Radio 4′s Money Box they were stopped from withdrawing amounts ranging from £5,000 to £10,000.

 

HSBC admitted it has not informed customers of the change in policy, which was implemented in November.

 

Read more

 

 

 

Obama ‘lying’ about overhaul of NSA spying programs: Analyst

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Press TV

January 18, 2014

A political commentator charges that President Barack Obama is “lying” about the overhaul of US surveillance practices which have “destroyed civil liberties” and turned the US into a “police state.”

“When Obama says he wants to reign in the NSA, he’s lying,” says Stephen Lendman.

During a major policy speech on Friday, Obama promised some changes to the National Security Agency’s spying programs, but the changes fall short of the drastic cutbacks demanded by privacy groups.

“When Obama says he wants to reign in the NSA, he’s lying,” Stephen Lendman, author, activist and radio show host in Chicago, told Press TV on Saturday.

“Obama has a history of lying, he’s a serial liar, he literally has broken every major pledge he made,” Lendman said. “Can anybody believe that what he said yesterday can be believed, that he’ll actually follow through?”

“Obama defends the indefensible, he addressed sweeping NSA mass surveillance, he defended the worst of police state lawlessness, he believes privacy invasion intrusiveness should comfort us, he lied claiming it makes us safer,” he added.

Privacy rights advocates and tech firms have strongly criticized Obama’s proposed reforms to Washington’s spying activities.

Critics have dismissed Obama’s proposed overhaul, saying the proposals would have little effect and would only preserve the status quo.

Human Rights Watch has sent a letter to Obama, urging him to rein in the NSA’s spying activities and respect the privacy rights of people around the world.

Earlier this month, Amnesty International also sent an open letter to Obama and urged him to “put human rights at the center of US policy” when introducing reforms to NSA programs.

 

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Obama Picks Soros Crony to Lead NSA Probe

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Mike Ciandella
CNS News

January 18, 2013

When President Obama needs help, he can always turn to one of the Soros inner circle. In a speech on Jan. 17, Obama announced that his new Presidential Counsel John Podesta will lead a “comprehensive review of Big Data and privacy,” following the NSA privacy scandal that has dogged his administration.

What he didn’t mention was that Podesta is the founder of the liberal Center for American Progress. CAP has gotten $7.3 million from liberal billionaire George Soros since 2000 and was one of the keystone liberal think tanks founded after the Democrats lost the 2004 election.

Watch the filed Report here

 

Podesta was to have focused on the health care law and climate change issues, according to a Dec. 9, New York Times article.

 

Full article here

 

NSA Official: ‘We Are Now a Police State’

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Matt Vespa
CNS News

January 17, 2014

Last year, high-ranking NSA official Bill Binney said, “We are, like, that far from a turnkey totalitarian state.” Now, Binney says that the U.S. has already become a full-blown police state.

Binney told Washington’s Blog on Wednesday that:

“The main use of the collection from these [NSA spying] programs [is] for law enforcement. [See the 2 slides below].”

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“These slides give the policy of the DOJ/FBI/DEA etc. on how to use the NSA data. In fact, they instruct that none of the NSA data is referred to in courts – because it has been acquired without a warrant.”

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Think Tank: “Extraordinary Crisis” Needed to Preserve “New World Order”

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Author of ‘shock and awe’ doctrine says elite threatened by non-state actors like Edward Snowden

 

Paul Joseph Watson Infowars.com January 17, 2014

Writing for the Atlantic Council, a prominent think tank based in Washington DC, Harlan K. Ullman warns that an “extraordinary crisis” is needed to preserve the “new world order,” which is under threat of being derailed by non-state actors like Edward Snowden.

Image: Atlantic Council Meeting (Wikimedia Commons).

The Atlantic Council is considered to be a highly influential organization with close ties to major policy makers across the world. It’s headed up by Gen. Brent Scowcroft, former United States National Security Advisor under U.S. Presidents Gerald Ford and George H. W. Bush. Snowcroft has also advised President Barack Obama.

Harlan K. Ullman was the principal author of the “shock and awe” doctrine and is now Chairman of the Killowen Group which advises government leaders.

In an article entitled War on Terror Is not the Only Threat, Ullman asserts that, “tectonic changes are reshaping the international geostrategic system,” arguing that it’s not military superpowers like China but “non-state actors” like Edward Snowden, Bradley Manning and anonymous hackers who pose the biggest threat to the “365 year-old Westphalian system” because they are encouraging individuals to become self-empowered, eviscerating state control.

“Very few have taken note and fewer have acted on this realization,” notes Ullman, lamenting that “information revolution and instantaneous global communications” are thwarting the “new world order” announced by U.S. President George H.W. Bush more than two decades ago.

“Without an extraordinary crisis, little is likely to be done to reverse or limit the damage imposed by failed or failing governance,” writes Ullman, implying that only another 9/11-style cataclysm will enable the state to re-assert its dominance while “containing, reducing and eliminating the dangers posed by newly empowered non-state actors.”

Ullman concludes that the elimination of non-state actors and empowered individuals “must be done” in order to preserve the new world order. A summary of their material suggests that the Atlantic Council’s definition of a “new world order” is a global technocracy run by a fusion of big government and big business under which individuality is replaced by the trans-humanist singularity.

Ullman’s rhetoric sounds somewhat similar to that espoused by Trilateral Commission co-founder and regular Bilderberg attendee Zbigniew Brzezinski, who in 2010 told a Council on Foreign Relations meeting that a “global political awakening,” in combination with infighting amongst the elite, was threatening to derail the move towards a one world government.

Ullman’s implied call for an “extraordinary crisis” to reinvigorate support for state power and big government has eerie shades of the Project For a New American Century’s 1997 lament that “absent some catastrophic catalysing event – like a new Pearl Harbour,” an expansion of U.S. militarism would have been impossible.

In 2012, Patrick Clawson, member of the influential pro-Israel Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) think tank, also suggested that the United States should launch a staged provocation to start a war with Iran.

Ullman’s concern over failing state institutions having their influence eroded by empowered individuals, primarily via the Internet, is yet another sign that the elite is panicking over the “global political awakening” that has most recently expressed itself via the actions of people like Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, Bradley Manning and their growing legion of supporters.

Related Articles

 

 

Government & Mainstream Media Covering Up Fukushima Radiation Wave Hitting US

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As radiation levels spike and mutated wildlife washes ashore, government and media promote delusion.

 

Anthony Gucciardi
Infowars.com

January 8, 2014

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Radiation hot spots are popping up around the United States thousands of percentages higher than ‘background radiation’, mutated wildlife is being found dead on the same West Coast beaches where increased radiation levels have been documented by independent researchers and the Fukushima TEPCO plant workers have been caught using duct tape to fix their nuclear equipment. But according to both the Japanese and United States governments, these events mean absolutely nothing.

In fact, you must be a conspiracy theorist if you fail to believe the official story that it was likely red-painted utensils that led to a spike in documented radiation levels along the California coast (yes, the government actually offered this up as an official answer). And you must absolutely be a conspiracy theorist if you have the gall to actually look back to late 2011, when researchers presented their findings regarding the impending wave of Fukushima radiation that was already being recorded within the country.

Information going back to 2011 shows that scientists were already concerned about an increase in radiation levels and the overall fallout from the dilapidated Fukushima plant. We can even go back to the declaration by scientist Marco Kaltofen of the Worcester Polytechnic Institute that radioactive ‘hot particles’ had been found at 2 out of the 3 radiation monitoring stations in Boston. As you are likely aware, hot particles are microscopic pieces of radioactive material that can absolutely wreak havoc on your body via the deliverance of concentrated radiation.

And these particles, according to Kaltofen, were already being found in Boston as far back as 2011.

Now enter a new flurry of stories that have seemingly been popping up one after another as radiation levels are continually being monitored around the nation — namely the West Coast, where the bulk of Fukushima-linked scenarios have been documented. In what sounds like an apocalyptic plot for the latest thriller film, we have mutated whales now washing up dead on the West Coast in the first ever documented case of conjoined gray whale calves. We even have elevated radiation readings as far away as St. Louis, Missouri.

Coincidentally, of course, this is happening at the same time that radiation hot spots exceeding a 1,400% increase over ‘normal’ levels are being reported by researchers. It’s even happening at the same time that similar 500% increases have been disregarded by government officials who admit they have no idea what’s going on but fervently deny any connection to Fukushima in any capacity whatsoever. In fact, that has always been the mantra of these government health officials: We have no idea what’s really going on, but it’s definitely not Fukushima!

Because just as the Japanese government has assured its citizens that Fukushima is perfectly safe and poses no real threat to your health while secretly reviewing studies that reveal the plant released massively more radiation than admitted and led to 78% of the radioactive waste being dumped into the Pacific Ocean, the United States government would much rather silently purchase 14 million doses of potassium iodide than tell you that there may be some cause for concern.

The very core of the Fukushima disaster timeline that has been regurgitated by the mainstream media and government agencies alike was almost exclusively based on information provided by plant operator TEPCO — a company that is now on record as having lied to the population of the world in a major way. And there were no signs they would ever tell the truth unless forced to. It wasn’t until an independent investigation revealed the actual levels of radiation released from the plant (around 2 1/2 times more than TEPCO would even admit) that TEPCO was forced to go on record and state that the radiation levels they released were indeed much lower than reality.

However, the independent investigation into Fukushima radiation levels not only exposed the lies by TEPCO regarding the radiation explosion at the plant, but it also found that around 78% of the caesium-137 released by the plant was funneling into the Pacific Ocean. The plant now states that the three reactor meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi plant released about 900,000 terabecquerels of radioactive substances. About 20% fell on Japanese land, 2% somewhere on land outside the country, and a whopping 78% remainder is believed to have entered the Pacific Ocean.

At the very least, the Japanese and United States governments should be preparing citizens for what scientists said could last ‘thousands of years’: the Fukushima nightmare. And that begins with admitting that the threat is real. Because unless we really prepare ourselves and work together as a planet to truly fix the Fukushima plant and ensure that the 1,4000+ rods do not cause yet another massive meltdown (as experts say they likely will during transfer), we really will be facing a radioactive nightmare of epic proportions.