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[marketsNews] PRESS DIGEST - Wall Street Journal - Jan 24 Jan 24 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories in the Wall Street Journal. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
Published:1/24/2017 1:02:09 AM
[topics:things/consumer-affairs] Roast potato crackdown phase two: Soon pubs and restaurants will face fines for serving 'overdone' food Published:1/24/2017 12:52:32 AM
[Markets] Currencies: Dollar back to flat after briefly skidding on comments by Treasury pick Mnuchin The dollar slipped to briefly to ¥112.52 in early Tokyo trade its lowest since Nov. 30, before bouncing back, after Trump’s Treasury Secretary pick Steven Mnuchin reportedly said an “excessively strong dollar” could have a negative short-term effect on the economy.
Published:1/24/2017 12:52:29 AM
[marketsNews] Malaysian low-cost long-haul carrier AirAsia X cleared for US flights KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Malaysia's AirAsia X Bhd on Tuesday said it has become Asia's first low-cost carrier to receive approval to operate scheduled passenger flights to any destination...
Published:1/24/2017 12:52:29 AM
[Politics] Obama Sends $221 Million Gift Overseas in Last Hours of His Presidency — Trump Must Be Fuming Obama gets in one last parting shot... Published:1/24/2017 12:52:29 AM
[Politics] DNC Chair Candidate Says His Niece Was ‘Sobbing’ After Trump Won Presidency

The post DNC Chair Candidate Says His Niece Was ‘Sobbing’ After Trump Won Presidency appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:1/24/2017 12:19:34 AM
[Science] OMB pick Mulvaney will have to answer for past statements on the Pentagon's 'slush fund'

Jacqueline Klimas

Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C., will almost certainly face questions during his confirmation hearing on Tuesday afternoon about how he will oversee the Pentagon's war chest if confirmed as the director of the Office of Management and Budget.

The overseas contingency operations account is meant to fund U.S. missions overseas, but in recent years has been used as a way to boost defense spending without repealing the Budget Control Act, since the war chest is not subject to budget caps. Published:1/24/2017 12:19:33 AM

[marketsNews] Goldman Sachs files $1 bln countersuit against Indonesian businessman JAKARTA, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs filed a $1 billion counter lawsuit on Tuesday against an Indonesian businessman who is seeking damages from the U.S. bank for conducting what he called...
Published:1/24/2017 12:19:33 AM
[Europe] Quiqup partners with Hungryhouse to let take-outs in London outsource delivery hungry-house-day-117864 Quiqup, a London-based delivery startup that offers an app and service similar to Postmates in the U.S., has partnered with take-out ordering service hungryhouse to let partner restaurants outsource delivery. Read More
Published:1/24/2017 12:19:33 AM
[PAID] Trump's Pacific Trade Retreat The failure is a strategic win for China and a defeat for Japan’s Shinzo Abe. Published:1/23/2017 11:50:00 PM
[Science] In Jefferson County, Colorado, George Soros found 'justice was not for sale'

Todd Shepherd

Late in the 2016 election cycle, billionaire political activist George Soros made a series of unexpected yet creative moves with his money that paid high dividends. Published:1/23/2017 11:49:59 PM

[topics:things/uk-weather] UK weather: Freezing fog returns as travel misery expected Published:1/23/2017 11:49:59 PM
[marketsNews] PRESS DIGEST- New York Times business news - Jan 24 Jan 24 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on the New York Times business pages. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
Published:1/23/2017 11:49:59 PM
[Leftism] Burn, Baby, Burn? (Steven Hayward) Looks like the left’s 1960s riot nostalgia is returning with a vengeance. The Washington Examiner reports that the stretch limo protesters set afire in Washington on inauguration day was owned by a Muslim immigrant who was opposed to Trump. And he doesn’t know whether his insurance policy will cover damage from rioting. I wonder if Trump might score a PR coup by paying for a new limo for this guy, Published:1/23/2017 11:20:03 PM
[10559445-2859-49a7-86df-066350e0c76f] Cal Thomas: Here's Donald Trump's best chance to unite our country President Donald Trump is unlike any president we have had, perhaps a bigger populist than Andrew Jackson or Theodore Roosevelt. Published:1/23/2017 11:20:03 PM
[marketsNews] More businesses must work with suppliers to curb climate change -study OSLO, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Too few businesses are working with their suppliers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to study that praised 29 companies including General Motors, Sky and Sony...
Published:1/23/2017 11:20:03 PM
[General] Poll: Majority of Californians still stuck living with clowns who support secession

Apparently Californians think about seceding from the United States a lot, kind of like how Madonna thinks about blowing up the White House.

The post Poll: Majority of Californians still stuck living with clowns who support secession appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 11:20:03 PM
[97% consensus] Study: Presenting Deliberately “Weakened” Skeptic Arguments Increases Climate Acceptance Guest essay by Eric Worrall A new study suggests that if people are psychologically “inoculated” with deliberately “weakened” versions of climate skeptic arguments, they are more likely to reject real skeptic positions. The Press Release; Psychological ‘vaccine’ could help immunize public against ‘fake news’ on climate change Sander van der Linden, Anthony Leiserowitz,Seth Rosenthal, Edward… Published:1/23/2017 11:20:03 PM
[marketsNews] JGBs track Treasuries higher, 40-year auction well received TOKYO, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Japanese government bond prices tracked a rise by U.S. Treasuries on Tuesday, with the market drawing additional relief as an auction of 40-year debt was well received by...
Published:1/23/2017 10:49:24 PM
[Science] Spicer responds to Dippin’ Dots invite after railing against the brand

Caitlin Yilek

White House press secretary Sean Spicer has railed against Dippin' Dots on Twitter for several years.

Those tweets were rediscovered over the weekend and retweeted by Twitter users.

On Monday, Dippin' Dots wrote an open letter to Spicer, saying it would like to be "friends rather than foes. Published:1/23/2017 10:49:24 PM

[Entertainment] Everything That Happened on The Bachelor That Did Not Involve Corinne The BachelorWe've come to an agreement with ourselves, ladies and gentlemen. We're not going to write about Corinne anymore. We're not going to give her the satisfaction of owning our...
Published:1/23/2017 10:49:24 PM
[Markets] Marsh on Monday: With Donald Trump as an ‘ally,’ Europe must go it alone Donald Trump is going to put America first, which means Europe must go it alone, writes David Marsh.
Published:1/23/2017 10:49:24 PM
[Markets] Federal judge blocks Aetna-Humana health insurance megamerger Justice Department official hails the decision as a victory for consumers. Published:1/23/2017 10:19:43 PM
[Politics] Without evidence, Trump tells lawmakers 3 million to 5 million illegal ballots cost him the popular vote There is no evidence of widespread illegal voting in the 2016 election. Published:1/23/2017 10:19:43 PM
[Entertainment] Mel Gibson Is a Father of Nine! Actor Welcomes First Child With Girlfriend Rosalind Ross Mel Gibson, Ashley CusatoMel Gibson is ready to enjoy the joys of fatherhood one more time. The actor has welcomed his first child with girlfriend Rosalind Ross, his rep confirmed to E! News Monday...
Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[China] Trump nixes the TPP (Paul Mirengoff) President Trump was busy on his first “working day” in office. The Washington Post describes, albeit in loaded terms, the most important actions he took today. In my opinion, the single most important action was Trump’s executive order formally withdrawing the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal. This move will have both economic and strategic consequences, and the strategic consequences may have economic ramifications down the road. I Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[Aftermath of war] Paul Craig Roberts Asks "Are Americans Racists?"

Authored by Paul Craig Roberts,

“Racist” is the favorite epithet of the left. Every white person (except leftists) is a racist by definition. As we are defined as racists based on our skin color, I am puzzled why we are called racists a second, third, and fourth time due to specific acts, such as favoring the enforcement of immigration laws. For example, President Donald Trump says he is going to enforce the immigration laws. For the left this is proof that Trump has put on the White Sheet and joined the KKK.

The left doesn’t say what a president is who does not enforce the laws on the books. But let’s look at this from the standpoint of the immigration laws themselves. In 1965 a bill passed by the “racist” Congress and signed by the “racist” President Lyndon Johnson completely changed the racial composition of US legal immigration.

In 1960 75% of US legal immigration was European, 5% was Asian, and 19% was from Americas (Mexico, Central and South America and Caribbean Islands).

 

In 2013 10% of legal immigrants were European, 30% were Asian, 55% were from Americas, and 5% from Africa.

The 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act is a very strange law for racists to have enacted. Would racists pass a law, which has been on the books for 52 years, that fundamentally transformed the racial profile of the US by limiting white immigration, thereby ultimately consigning whites to minority status?

We could say the racists did not know what they were doing, or thought they were doing something else. However, the results have been obvious at least since 1980, and the law is still on the books.

We live during a time when there is an abundance of information, but facts seldom seem to inform opinions. The left delights in branding the Founding Fathers racists. The left was ecstatic when a 1998 DNA study concluded that Thomas Jefferson was one of eight possible ancestors of Eston Hemings, a descent of Jefferson’s slave Sally Hemings. The left seized on the implied sexual relationship as proof of Thomas Jefferson’s racism.

Let’s assume Jefferson had a sexual relationship with Sally Hemings. Does this prove he was a racist, or does it prove the opposite? Why is it a sign of racism for a white to have sex with a black? Does this prove that James Bond was a racist in the film “Die Another Day”? Do we really want to define racially mixed marriages as racist, as a white conquest over a black, Asian, or Hispanic?

The left has declared the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution to be racist documents and, therefore, proof that the US was founded on racism. The left is particularly incensed that the Constitution counts enslaved blacks as three-fifths of a white person. Is the three-fifths clause a sign or racism, or was it a compromise to get an agreement on representation in the House of Representatives?

It was the latter. Indeed southerners, such as James Madison and Edmund Randolph, wanted blacks to be counted one to one with whites. It was northerners, such as Gouverneur Morris of Pennsylvania, who wanted blacks to count as fractions of a person. Why was this?

The issue was whether the North or the South would have majority representation in the House. The country already had different economic interests which came to conflict in the War of Southern Secession, which is mischaracterized as a civil war. (A civil war is when two sides fight for control of the government. The Confederacy was not fighting for control of the government in Washington. The South was fighting to secede from the union in order to avoid economic exploitation.)

The southern states were agricultural, and from early colonial times long before there was a United States or a Confederate States of America the absence of a work force meant that the agricultural labor force was imported as slaves. For the South slavery was an inherited institution, and from the South’s standpoint, if blacks were not included in the population on which US representation in Congress would be based, the South would have a minority voice in Congress and would not agree to the Constitution. The three-fifths clause was a compromise in order to move the Constitution toward agreement. It had nothing to do with racism. It was about achieving balance in regional representation in Congress

The Southern Secession resulted from divergent economic interests and was not fought over slavery. In former times when the left had real intellects, such as Charles A. Beard, a historian who stressed class conflict and a founder of the New School for Social Research and president of both the American Political Science Association and the American Historical Association, the left understood the divergence of interests between northern industry and southern agriculture. Those who think Lincoln invaded the South in order to free slaves need to read Thomas DiLorenzo’s books on Lincoln. DiLorenzo establishes beyond all doubt that Lincoln invaded the Confederacy in order to preserve the Union, that is, the American Empire, which has continued its growth into the 21st century.

The preponderance of war correspondence on both sides shows that few were fighting for or against slavery. According to the 1860 US census, slave owners were a small fraction of the Southern population.  The Confederate Army consisted almost entirely of non-slave owners who fought because they were invaded by Union armies.

The large agricultural interests (slave owners) had the money necessary for raising armies and were represented in the governing bodies. So naturally, their interests would be represented in the articles of secession.

As the war began with Lincoln’s invasion of the South, we should look to see Lincoln’s explanation for the war. The reason he gave repeatedly was to preserve the Union. Most historians understood this until “racism” became the explanation of all white history and institutions.

As for Thomas Jefferson, he was opposed to slavery, but he understood that the agricultural South was trapped in slavery. The “discovery” of the New World provided lands for exploitation but no labor force. The first slaves were white prisoners, but whites could not survive the malaria. Native Indians were tried, but they were not only as susceptible to malaria as whites but also used their native knowledge of the terrain to resist those who would enslave them. Blacks became the work force of choice because of genetic superiority in resistance to malaria. As Charles C. Mann reports in his book, 1493, “About 97 percent of the people in West and Central Africa are Duffy negative, and hence immune to vivax malaria.”

Thus, the real “racist” reason that blacks became the labor force was their survivability rate due to genetic superiority from their immunity to malaria, not white racists determined to oppress blacks for racial reasons.

The myth has taken hold that black slavery originated in white attitudes of racial superiority. In fact, as a large numbers of historians have documented, including Charles C. Mann and the socialist economic historian Karl Polanyi, brother of my Oxford University professor, the physical chemist and philosopher Michael Polanyi, black slavery originated and flourished in Africa where tribes fought one another for slaves. The victorious would market their captives to Arabs and eventually as time passed to Europeans for transport to the new world to fill the vacuum of a missing labor force. (See for example, Karl Polanyi, Dahomey and the Slave Trade.)

It is a mystery how the myth of Thomas Jefferson’s alleged racism and love for slavery survives his drafts of the Declaration of Independence. One of Jefferson’s drafts that was abandoned in compromise over the document includes this in Jefferson’s list of King George’s offenses:

“he has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating it’s most sacred rights of life & liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere, or to incur miserable death in their transportation thither. this piratical warfare, the opprobrium of infidel powers, is the warfare of the CHRISTIAN king of Great Britain. determined to keep open a market where MEN should be bought & sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or to restrain this execrable commerce: and that this assemblage of horrors might want no fact of distinguished die, he is now exciting those very people to rise in arms among us, and to purchase that liberty of which he has deprived them, & murdering the people upon whom he also obtruded them; thus paying off former crimes committed against the liberties of one people, with crimes which he urges them to commit against the lives of another.”

Jefferson’s attack on King George sounds like the left’s racist attack on Jefferson.

It is amazing how proud some Americans are of their ignorance and how quick they are to hate based on their ignorance. In America the level of public discourse is so far below the gutter level that a person who ventures forth to tell the truth can expect to be met with violent hatred and every epithet in the book. Criticize ever so slightly the Israeli government’s theft of Palestine, and the Israel Lobby will immediately brand you an “anti-semite,” that is, a hater of Jews who wants to send them to the gas chamber. If you don’t denounce whites, especially Southern whites, as racists, you are not only a racist but also a member of the KKK who wants to lynch blacks.

Yes, I know. It works also in the other direction. If you don’t hate the left, you are one of them. Because I criticized the George W. Bush regime for its war crimes, conservatives branded me a “pinko-liberal-commie” and ceased to publish my columns.

Hardly anyone, even southerners, understands that racism in the South originated in the horrors that were inflicted on the South during the Reconstruction era that followed the military defeat of the Confederacy. The North inflicted blacks on southerners in ways that harmed prospects for relations between the races and gave rise to the KKK as a resistance movement. As Reconstruction faded, so did the KKK. It was later revived as a shadow of its former self by poor whites who were ambitious for personal power.

The question remains: How can President Trump or anyone unite a country in which historical understanding is buried in myths, lies, and the teaching of hate?

Try to imagine the expressions of hatred and the denunciations that this factual article will bring to me.

If we care about humanity and the creatures on Earth, our task is to find and to speak the truth. That is what I endeavor to do.

When the left abandoned Marxism and the working class, the left died. It has no doctrine to sustain itself, just hatreds based on historical ignorance and misunderstanding of the limits within which life is lived. Humans are not superheros or magicians who can reconstruct humanity by waving a wand or smashing evil. Everyone lives within limitations, and the many submit more than do the few.

It is the few who fight against the limits to whom we owe the defense of our humanity.

It is the haters who are the barriers to moral and social progress.

Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[Science] Marlon Bundo, the Pence family rabbit, launches Instagram account

Caitlin Yilek

Marlon Bundo, the Pence family rabbit, had "a productive first day" on the job, according to its newly launched Instagram account.

The rabbit's first photo shows the animal sitting on a desk next to a globe, glasses and telephone.

"Working hard to #makeamericagreatagain," the caption reads.

Marlon Bundo is also dubbed as first "botus" — or "bunny of the United States" — in the caption.

The Pence family introduced the rabbit to the nation in early January.

Vice President Mike Pence posted a photo of his wife, daughter, the rabbit and their two cats on their flight to Washington, D.C.

[Claire Danes] ‘Homeland’ 6×02 Recap: Is Saad a Ninja Turtle Villain?? Saad kind of looks like a boss in a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles video game in that black and white gang photo. If I punch Saad enough, does he start glowing red and blinking? Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[TC] Crunch Report | Sprint Takes 33% Stake in Tidal Sprint takes a 33% stake in Tidal, The SEC is investigating Yahoo, a study from Cambridge on vaccinating fake news, Apple fixes more MacBook Pro bugs and a big Snapchat redesign hits iOS. All this on Crunch Report. Read More
Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[marketsNews] Morning News Call - India, January 24 To access the newsletter, click on the link: http://share.thomsonreuters.com/assets/newsletters/Indiamorning/MNC_IN_01242017.pdf If you would like to receive this newsletter via email,...
Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[General] What time is it when Donald Trump is inaugurated? Time to update the Doomsday Clock!

It looks like the minute hand on the Doomsday Clock will be adjusted Thursday, if we can survive the suspense.

The post What time is it when Donald Trump is inaugurated? Time to update the Doomsday Clock! appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Donald Trump repeats false claim of voter fraud President Donald Trump, repeating an assertion that lacks supporting evidence, told a meeting of congressional leaders Monday that he would have won the popular vote in November if not for voter fraud, according to three people familiar with the discussion.
Published:1/23/2017 10:19:42 PM
[World] Sean Hannity Goes Inside Donald Trump White House & Speaks to Kellyanne Conway

On the first business day of President Donald Trump's administration, Sean Hannity visited 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to give viewers an exclusive look inside the Trump White House.

Published:1/23/2017 9:48:57 PM
[United States Politics and Government] Trump Repeats Lie About Popular Vote in Meeting With Lawmakers President Trump used his first official meeting with congressional leaders to blame his nearly three-million popular vote loss on illegal ballots. Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[marketsNews] New York City to unveil preliminary FY 2018 budget of $84.67 bln NEW YORK, Jan 23 (Reuters) - New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is preparing to unveil a preliminary $84.67 billion budget for fiscal 2018, approximately more than $1 billion over the current fiscal...
Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[Markets] Futures Flat as Economic Data Becomes Focus; Asia Varied [at TheStreet] - Investors are ditching the Trump trade and can now zero in on what they think of the economy. Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[Politics] MSNBC Host Cites Piece on DNC Chair Candidates Skipping Women’s March for Donor Retreat

The post MSNBC Host Cites Piece on DNC Chair Candidates Skipping Women’s March for Donor Retreat appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[AIG] Building a financial defense line strategically

This important topic we cover in our book Splitting Pennies is possibly THE MOST importact topic in teaching personal finance, and probably the most misleading concept peddled by Wall St. 

Let's face it - Wall St. has a reason to mislead investors, especially retail investors - because they're on the other side of the trade!  That's right.  When you lose - they win.  And due to hedging, they can't actually lose.  

The secret world of hedging - Wall St. doesn't want you to know about because like the insurance industry, it allows investors to protect themselves.  "Options" are thought of as "Risky" which is a highly potent meme that is reinforced by the regulators:

THE RISK OF LOSS IN TRADING COMMODITY INTERESTS CAN BE SUBSTANTIAL. YOU SHOULD

THEREFORE CAREFULLY CONSIDER WHETHER SUCH TRADING IS SUITABLE FOR YOU IN LIGHT OF

YOUR FINANCIAL CONDITION. IN CONSIDERING WHETHER TO TRADE OR TO AUTHORIZE

SOMEONE ELSE TO TRADE FOR YOU, YOU SHOULD BE AWARE OF THE FOLLOWING:

IF YOU PURCHASE A COMMODITY OPTION YOU MAY SUSTAIN A TOTAL LOSS OF THE PREMIUM

AND OF ALL TRANSACTION COSTS.

IF YOU PURCHASE OR SELL A COMMODITY FUTURES CONTRACT OR SELL A COMMODITY OPTION

OR ENGAGE IN OFF-EXCHANGE FOREIGN CURRENCY TRADING YOU MAY SUSTAIN A TOTAL LOSS

OF THE INITIAL MARGIN FUNDS OR SECURITY DEPOSIT AND ANY ADDITIONAL FUNDS THAT

YOU DEPOSIT WITH YOUR BROKER TO ESTABLISH OR MAINTAIN YOUR POSITION. IF THE

MARKET MOVES AGAINST YOUR POSITION, YOU MAY BE CALLED UPON BY YOUR BROKER TO

DEPOSIT A SUBSTANTIAL AMOUNT OF ADDITIONAL MARGIN FUNDS, ON SHORT NOTICE, IN

ORDER TO MAINTAIN YOUR POSITION. IF YOU DO NOT PROVIDE THE REQUESTED FUNDS

WITHIN THE PRESCRIBED TIME, YOUR POSITION MAY BE LIQUIDATED AT A LOSS, AND YOU WILL

BE LIABLE FOR ANY RESULTING DEFICIT IN YOUR ACCOUNT.

UNDER CERTAIN MARKET CONDITIONS, YOU MAY FIND IT DIFFICULT OR IMPOSSIBLE TO

LIQUIDATE A POSITION. THIS CAN OCCUR, FOR EXAMPLE, WHEN THE MARKET MAKES A “LIMIT

MOVE.”

THE PLACEMENT OF CONTINGENT ORDERS BY YOU OR YOUR TRADING ADVISOR, SUCH AS A

“STOP-LOSS” OR “STOP-LIMIT” ORDER, WILL NOT NECESSARILY LIMIT YOUR LOSSES TO THE

INTENDED AMOUNTS, SINCE MARKET CONDITIONS MAY MAKE IT IMPOSSIBLE TO EXECUTE

SUCH ORDERS.

A “SPREAD” POSITION MAY NOT BE LESS RISKY THAN A SIMPLE “LONG” OR “SHORT” POSITION.

THE HIGH DEGREE OF LEVERAGE THAT IS OFTEN OBTAINABLE IN COMMODITY INTEREST

TRADING CAN WORK AGAINST YOU AS WELL AS FOR YOU. THE USE OF LEVERAGE CAN LEAD TO

LARGE LOSSES AS WELL AS GAINS.

IN SOME CASES, MANAGED COMMODITY ACCOUNTS ARE SUBJECT TO SUBSTANTIAL CHARGES

FOR MANAGEMENT AND ADVISORY FEES. IT MAY BE NECESSARY FOR THOSE ACCOUNTS THAT

ARE SUBJECT TO THESE CHARGES TO MAKE SUBSTANTIAL TRADING PROFITS TO AVOID

DEPLETION OR EXHAUSTION OF THEIR ASSETS. THIS DISCLOSURE DOCUMENT CONTAINS A

COMPLETE DESCRIPTION OF EACH FEE TO BE CHARGED TO YOUR ACCOUNT BY THE

COMMODITY TRADING ADVISOR.

THIS BRIEF STATEMENT CANNOT DISCLOSE ALL THE RISKS AND OTHER SIGNIFICANT ASPECTS

OF THE COMMODITY INTEREST MARKETS. YOU SHOULD THEREFORE CAREFULLY STUDY THIS

DISCLOSURE DOCUMENT AND COMMODITY INTEREST TRADING BEFORE YOU TRADE,

INCLUDING THE DESCRIPTION OF THE PRINCIPAL RISK FACTORS OF THIS INVESTMENT.

THIS COMMODITY TRADING ADVISOR IS PROHIBITED BY LAW FROM ACCEPTING FUNDS IN THE

TRADING ADVISOR’S NAME FROM A CLIENT FOR TRADING COMMODITY INTERESTS. YOU MUST

PLACE ALL FUNDS FOR TRADING IN THIS TRADING PROGRAM DIRECTLY WITH A FUTURES

COMMISSION MERCHANT OR RETAIL FOREIGN EXCHANGE DEALER, AS APPLICABLE.

Whoa- where do I sign?  This is an example of how regulators manipulate the presentation of options in order to mislead investors away from something which can protect them from disaster.

Financial tools like options are like any tools, they can be used like insurance, or they can be used as weapons.  Take simple construction tools.  A hammer can be used to build furniture, or destroy furniture.  A hammer can break a window, kill someone - but also it can be used for decades to build fine woodwork (if you are a craftsman).  

Building a financial defense line

This is the personal finance equivalent of hedging.  Hedging with options for example - should be used like an insurance policy.  It's better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it.  

Your financial defense line can be a property that's paid for cash that you can live on for the rest of your life, it could be if you are in the car business an inventory of valuable used cars, it could be a pile of gold bars.  Preppers are one group that understands this concept well - it's the underlying ethos of prepping.  

But the majority of Americans are one paycheck away from disaster.  They 'spend money on things they don't need, with money they don't have - to impress people they don't know'

And of course, the problem with writing such an article is the paradox of education.  Those who understand this concept, are already doing it, and those who don't understand - they don't believe that they need to know it - they have another opinion!  Such thinking is never without punishment in the markets.  

Hedging is all about paying for something you do not need, but may need one day, should an unexpected event happen.  It's a form of insurance.  

There's one kind of insurance that takes this concept too far - life insurance.  But that's a topic for another article.  Common insurance like homeowners insurance, professional insurances like directors' liability insurance, and others; are a type of financial defense line.  For example, did you know in large class action cases where big corporations are involved in fraud - shareholders are settled financially primarily through insurance claims made by plaintiffs attorneys?  Commonly it's thought that companies pay out these big settlements but actually, it's mostly insurance companies.  Wall St. is a huge user of insurance, and hedging - which is why at companies like AIG, the lines between derivatives trading, opaque contracts, and insurance - was widely blurred.

But you don't need a Wall St. bank in order to create a financial defense line, it can be as simple as investing in something for cash that you may need one day 'just in case' but don't need right now, like a property, a container full of canned food - whatever it is to you.

When you HAVE the financial defense line IN PLACE - THEN and ONLY THEN can you go out into the risky market and take risks.  There's a phenomenon that's difficult to quantify, but the fact that you have the defense line, it seems that those investors usually don't lose on the risks they take in the market.  The only analogy that can explain this is a Sierra Club study about bears and men carrying guns; it seems that men who hike in the mountains who carry loaded guns are almost never attacked by bears - but also they never shot any bears, which means the men must emit a pheromone that the bears can sniff.  

Practically, it's better not to enter the market and take risks if you don't have a defense line.  Another example is 'investing money you can afford to lose' - many advisors recommend investing only a percentage of a portfolio (like 5% or 10%) that if the investment is wiped out, the portfolio will remain intact.  There's a few demographics that understand this other than preppers - Texas Oil Investors and Silicon Valley VCs.

In Oil Investing, 9 out of 10 wells may be dry, or just barely break even.  But 1 out of 10 can be a gusher - 1,000% returns, which make up for the dry and average wells.  

Average investors, even if you don't have any retirement or pension, can build a financial defense line - it can mean getting an extra job, doing something for extra income (like selling stuff online) or applying for a research grant you always dreamt of.  It's a myth that you need money to invest.  In fact, most startups are started with 99% persperation and 1% inspiration.  Without money though, you'll have to put MAJOR WORK into your project to really build equity.  In a simple example of a housing project, that means doing the labor yourself which can be 60% - 70% of the costs.  In a business, it means you'll have to do 10 jobs, instead of hiring an accountant, a webmaster, and other things.

Fortress Capital provides hedging, alternative investments, and portfolio consulting - visit www.fortresscapitalinc.com to learn more.

Hey - it's better than sticking a crayon up your nose.  Extended warranty?  How can I lose?

Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Japan says TPP ‘meaningless’ without U.S., but still hopes to save pact Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Tuesday he would continue to advocate free trade, and officials said they hadn’t given up on the Trans-Pacific Partnership despite President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the deal.
Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[Politics] ‘You’re afraid of these women, are you? You sound TERRIFIED!’ – Krauthammer to O’Reilly Bill O’Reilly is all riled up and paranoid about the idiotic “Women’s March” against Trump after the inauguration being funded by George Soros, and Krauthammer used a bit of mockery to bring . . . Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[Politics] ‘You’re afraid of these women, are you? You sound TERRIFIED!’ – Krauthammer to O’Reilly Bill O’Reilly is all riled up and paranoid about the idiotic “Women’s March” against Trump after the inauguration being funded by George Soros, and Krauthammer used a bit of mockery to bring . . . Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[Top Picks] Video: The day the laughter died No, "Sir." Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[World] Asia Markets: Asian markets cool after Trump pulls U.S. out of TPP Asian shares were lacking direction early Tuesday, as the overnight decision by the U.S. to pull out of a regional trade pact, as well as increased protectionist rhetoric, have largely been priced in by the market.
Published:1/23/2017 9:48:56 PM
[World] Fmr Ethics Czar: Trump Holdings Likely Violate Constitution's Emoluments Clause

A member of a team of bipartisan lawyers have been warning President Trump that his family's company's massive amount of real estate and other holdings may be in violation of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution.

Published:1/23/2017 9:19:03 PM
[Affordable housing] Here Are The World's 10 Least Affordable Cities Of 2017

In recent months, we've spent a lot of time writing about the various housing bubbles all over the world with an emphasis on Vancouver, Sydney and Melbourne (see here, here and here).  Now, courtesy of the "13th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey", we have a comprehensive comparison of just how bubbly some of the world's least affordable housing markets have become. 

The study, which analyzed 406 metropolitan housing markets around the world, compared affordability on the basis of a ratio of median homes prices to median gross incomes with anything over 5x considered "Severely Unaffordable."  And while there are obvious flaws in the methodology, including the fact that income isn't adjusted for local taxing policies and building quality, the study at least provides a basis for comparison.

Expensive Housing

 

Not surprisingly, Hong Kong and Sydney maintained their "lead" as the least affordable housing markets in 2016 with Vancouver moving into the number 3 spot with home prices there increasing by the equivalent of a full year's median income in just a single year.

Least Affordable Housing

 

Meanwhile, of the 94 "severely unaffordable markets" in the world, nearly 40% of them were located in the U.S. and another one-third were in Australia.

There are 26 severely unaffordable major housing markets in 2016. Again, Hong Kong is the least affordable, with a Median Multiple of 18.1, down from 19.0 last year. Sydney is again second, at 12.2 (the same Median Multiple as last year). Vancouver is third least affordable, at 11.8, where house prices rose the equivalent of a full year’s household income in only a year. Auckland is fourth least affordable, at 10.0 and San Jose has a Median Multiple of 9.6.

 

The least affordable 10 also includes Melbourne (9.5), Honolulu (9.4), Los Angeles (9.3), where house prices rose the equivalent of 14 months in household income in only 12 months. San Francisco has a Median Multiple of 9.2 and Bournemouth & Dorsett is 8.9.

 

There are 94 severely unaffordable markets, with 36 (of 262) in the United States, 33 (of 54) in Australia, 11 (of 33) in the United Kingdom, 7 (of 40) in Canada, 6 (of 8) in New Zealand and the one market in China. Singapore, Japan and Ireland have no severely unaffordable housing markets.

 

The least affordable among the smaller markets is Santa Cruz (CA) in the United States, with a Median Multiple of 11.6.

Expensive Housing

 

Of course, for anyone who still doubts the source of the 2006/2007 U.S. housing bubble, the relationship between median incomes and housing prices remained fairly constant in the U.S. right up until the Fed decided to utilize near-zero interest rates to manage stock prices shortly after the 2000 tech bubble burst... 

Expensive Housing

 

...a mistake that Yellen & Co. seems to be on a path to repeating.

Published:1/23/2017 9:19:02 PM
[marketsNews] Nikkei falls on strong yen; Trump's protectionism weighs * Report on Mnuchin's comment on dollar weighs on market - analyst
Published:1/23/2017 9:19:02 PM
[Politics] ATR Urges Ind. Lawmakers to Reject Cigarette and Gas Tax Hikes Published:1/23/2017 9:19:02 PM
[Politics] Kellyanne Conway allegedly punched a guy at the inaugural ball Conway was seen pushing two guys apart, then appeared to throw some “mean punches” at one of the brawlers. Published:1/23/2017 9:19:02 PM
[Science] Trump tells top lawmakers 3-5 million illegals voted in election

Anna Giaritelli

President Trump told congressional leaders visiting him at the White House on Monday evening that 3 to 5 million illegal aliens voted in the election, costing him the popular vote.

"Well, we talked about going back through past elections. Published:1/23/2017 9:19:02 PM

[The Blog] Oopsie! Department of Education cops to massive math error on student loans Also: Four Pinocchios for Maxine Waters on "ridiculous" attack on DeVos. Published:1/23/2017 9:19:02 PM
[Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito] NYC Mayor Defends Obama Pardon of Puerto Rican Nationalist Tied to Bombings Bill de Blasio endorsed Barack Obama's pardon of Puerto Rican nationalist Oscar López Rivera. Published:1/23/2017 9:19:02 PM
[Current Affairs] Desperate Intel Insiders Still Trying to Smear Trump

Mr. President, time to grab the big shovels and bring in the high loaders because the intelligence stables are full of manure and you and your team need to get to work cleaning them out. Time to shovel shit. The latest evidence of the continuing effort to smear Donald Trump and his team comes courtesy of the

The post Desperate Intel Insiders Still Trying to Smear Trump appeared first on - NO QUARTER USA NET.

Published:1/23/2017 9:19:01 PM
[Media] ‘Where do you find these idiots you interview??’: Tucker Carlson takes on Enrique Morones on immigration

On Monday’s show, Tucker Carlson took on Enrique Morones of Border Angels regarding President Donald Trump’s immigration reform platform. Here is the video: #TuckerCarlson DESTROYS Border Angels Founder Enrique Morones: Why Is It… https://t.co/wIstkcsCSG via @YouTube @gatewaypundit @theblaze — FILTHY #NEWS (@FILTH_____) January 24, 2017 Enrique Morones: “What @POTUS has said, stated and lived by are […]

The post ‘Where do you find these idiots you interview??’: Tucker Carlson takes on Enrique Morones on immigration appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 9:19:01 PM
[Politics] ‘AND THEY BLEED…” Man, I don’t even know what to say about this. You just have to see it: NAFTA + drycleaners + skype hit= peak Jeff Lord pic.twitter.com/9emCNjEmdg — Liam Donovan (@LPDonovan) January 24, . . . Published:1/23/2017 9:19:01 PM
[] Monday Overnight Open Thread (1/23/17)-General Edition Quotes of The Day Quote I "The world is changing. America is changing. Europe is changing. It started last year with Brexit, yesterday there was Trump and today the freedom-loving parties gathered in Koblenz are making a stand. The genie... Published:1/23/2017 9:19:01 PM
[World] Tucker Battles Mexico Immigration Activist Xenophobic Wall Donald Trump

The founder of an immigration activism non-profit battled Tucker Carlson on Monday over President Trump's plans to secure the Mexican border by building a wall.

Published:1/23/2017 8:49:41 PM
[World] Trump moves to pull US out of big Asia trade deal WASHINGTON (AP) — Charting a new American course abroad, President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the sweeping Trans-Pacific Partnership on Monday, using one of his first actions in office to reject a centerpiece of Barack Obama's attempts to counter China and deepen U.S. ties in Asia. Published:1/23/2017 8:49:40 PM
[Politics] Rep. Mike Pompeo Officially Confirmed as CIA Director

UPDATED: Rep. Mike Pompeo (R., Kansas) was confirmed Monday night as the new Director of the Central Intelligence Agency for President Donald Trump's administration.

The post Rep. Mike Pompeo Officially Confirmed as CIA Director appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[World] Andy Puzder, Labor Secretary designed, draws opposition from unions

Donald Trump is president, and one of his first priorities is getting his Cabinet picks confirmed.

Standing in his way are labor unions and their allies, who are particularly hysterical about one pick: Andy Puzder, CEO of CKE Restaurants, who has been nominated for labor secretary. Mr. Puzder's opposition to ... Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM

[marketsNews] BRIEF-Pinnacle announces pricing of offering of common stock * Pinnacle Financial- Priced its offering of 2.8 million shares of its common stock at a price of $62.50 per share for aggregate gross proceeds of $175 million
Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[Age of Enlightenment] "Common Sense" Part 2 - Addressed To The Inhabitants Of 2017 America

Submitted by Jim Quinn via The Burning Platform blog,

In Part One of this article I explored Thomas Paine’s critical role in the creation of our nation. His Common Sense pamphlets inspired the common people to uncommon acts of courage and heroic feats of valor; leading to the great experiment we call the United States of America. Paine, Franklin and the other Founding Fathers produced a republic, if we could keep it.

John Adams championed the new Constitution precisely because it would not create a democracy, as he knew a democracy “soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself.” Their herculean efforts, sacrifices, and bloodshed have been for naught as we allowed our republic to devolve into a democracy and ultimately into our current corporate fascist warfare/welfare surveillance state. Sadly, we were unable to keep the republic Franklin and his fellow revolutionaries gave us.

“From the errors of other nations, let us learn wisdom.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense

Some might contend Paine’s Common Sense arguments against a despotic monarchy two and a half centuries ago, with an audience of two and a half million colonists, couldn’t be pertinent today in a divided nation of 325 million people. But when you examine the events, actions and catalysts inspiring Paine to pen Common Sense, you see the parallels with the events, decisions and facilitators of our current Crisis.

For more than a decade before the eruption of open hostilities, tensions had been building between colonists and the British authorities. An overbearing far flung British Empire began to pillage the colonies to pay for their corrupt kingdom by shaking them down through the Stamp Act of 1765, the Quartering Act of 1765, the Townshend Tariffs of 1767 and the Tea Act of 1773.

This taxation without representation was met with passionate protest among many colonists, who resented their lack of representation in Parliament and demanded the same rights as other British subjects. These demands were met with arrogant indifference by the monarchy and a haughty parliament. Forcing colonists to feed and house the very soldiers who were being paid with their taxes to repress them was the ultimate insult.

Initially, the colonists just fumed at the domineering disrespect shown them by the British ruling establishment. The pillaging of their hard earned wealth by distant oppressors prompted the colonists to initially organize nonviolent resistance and embargoing British luxury goods. As anger against their authoritarian overseers boiled over, the British cracked down harder in their version of a colonial surveillance state. Colonial resistance eventually led to bloodshed in 1770, when British soldiers opened fire on a mob of colonists, killing five men in what became known as the Boston Massacre.

Parliament eventually backed down and repealed all of the duties except for one symbolic duty on tea. In December 1773 the Samuel Adams inspired Sons of Liberty, dressed as Mohawk Indians, boarded British ships and dumped 342 chests of tea into Boston Harbor. An outraged Parliament passed a series of measures known as the Intolerable or Coercive Acts, designed to reassert imperial authority in Massachusetts. In response, a group of colonial delegates (including George Washington of Virginia, John and Samuel Adams of Massachusetts, Patrick Henry of Virginia and John Jay of New York) met in Philadelphia in September 1774 to give voice to their grievances against the British crown.

This First Continental Congress did not mandate liberation from Britain, but it denounced taxation without representation, maintenance of the British army in the colonies without their consent, and issued a declaration of the rights due every citizen, including life, liberty, property, assembly and trial by jury. The Continental Congress voted to meet again in May 1775 to consider further action, but before it convened again Paul Revere made his fateful ride and local militiamen fired the first shots of the Revolutionary War at Lexington & Concord. These events set in motion Paine’s call to arms and the Declaration of Independence shortly thereafter.

The First American Revolution was the result of at least a decade of government overreach, excessive taxation, disregard for the rights of citizens, elitist arrogance of empire builders, and thuggish intimidation of colonists by the British military. The Americans, most of whom had been born on American soil, felt only vague allegiance to a monarchy across the seas imposing their iron fist of taxation and intimidation upon citizens and their means of livelihood.

There had been growing discontent for decades and the Boston Tea Party catalyst triggered a dramatic change in the colonial mood. The chain reactions happened rapidly thereafter and there was no turning back. Paine realized independence was the only true option and proceeded to inspire that result with his Common Sense pamphlets.

“Until an independence is declared the continent will feel itself like a man who continues putting off some unpleasant business from day to day, yet knows it must be done, hates to set about it, wishes it over, and is continually haunted with the thoughts of its necessity.” Thomas Paine, Common Sense

With this potent image, Paine concluded Common Sense. This illustration captured Paine’s central point throughout the pamphlets that America must break away from Britain. The only question that remained was when the colonies were to become free. Paine believed the time for action was now rather than later, and exhorted his fellow Americans to rise to arms and vanquish their British oppressors.

The moment for transformation had come. It was time for the American people to take back their country from an overbearing, corrupt, evil establishment. The Crisis had reached its regeneracy with Paine’s Common Sense and Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence, two of the most important documents in America history.

Society is a Blessing/Government a Necessary Evil

“Society in every state is a blessing, but government even in its best state is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one; for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries by a government, which we might expect in a country without government, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer…” Thomas Paine, Common Sense

If you are blind to the parallels with our current position in this Fourth Turning, you are either wallowing in willful ignorance or you are a functionary within the debased establishment. One of Paine’s main themes was society was a blessing while government was, at best, a necessary evil.

Paine believed in the power of the people. Society constitutes everything constructive people create through working together. The creation of businesses, inventions, scientific discoveries, art, and literature has never required government. Collaboration among individuals brings about positive outcomes and the advancement of society. People transact business, cooperate, follow societal norms, and live their lives on a daily basis with absolutely no intervention or oversight from an oppressive threatening government entity.

Human beings are fallible creatures with a weakness for the vices of greed, envy, lust, pride and a few others. The only true purpose of government is the protection of life, liberty and property. Paine presented government as an organization whose lone function was to inhibit the wickedness in man.

Government’s fundamental purpose is to provide security from foreign invaders and insure property rights are protected. The success of a government should be judged by the extent to which it fulfills these roles. Society is a force which promotes our happiness positively, while government is a coercive force, which at best has a neutral impact on our lives and at its worse, hampers our lives through coercion.

Paine believed the British monarchy had too much power over the lives of the colonists. The hereditary succession of the monarchy led to the elevation of asses to the throne while pretending he was a lion. King George III was just such an ass.

The purposeful complexity of the British system of government was designed to centralize power in the hands of the few, unlawfully and unjustifiably seizing control from the people. A government should be judged on whether it improves society or makes it worse. If the government does not represent the will of the people then it needs to be discarded or overthrown. The larger the government bureaucracy, the more disordered its decision making, and more likely corruption, tyranny, and taxation will burden the citizens.

Paine scoffed at the absurdity of branches of government checking each other. Once entrenched in power the aristocratic civil servants only served themselves and their financial benefactors. The happiness and well-being of the people was not their concern. Every government, even if its initial design had a noble purpose, devolves into a fetid swamp of control freaks, the tyrannical power hungry, egomaniacal sociopaths, and feckless apparatchiks. It becomes a bane and punisher of the people.

“Society is produced by our wants, and government by wickedness; the former promotes our happiness positively by uniting our affections, the latter negatively by restraining our vices. The one encourages intercourse, the other creates distinctions. The first is a patron, the last a punisher.” Thomas Paine, Common Sense

Government of the People, By the People, For the People

“I offer nothing more than simple facts, plain arguments, and common sense.”Thomas Paine

“We still find the greedy hand of government thrusting itself into every corner and crevice of industry and grasping at the spoil of the multitude. Invention is continually exercised to furnish new pretenses for revenue and taxation. It watches prosperity as its prey and permits none to escape without a tribute.” Thomas Paine, Common Sense

Three generations have passed since Paine’s words inspired a revolution, but they ring as true today as they did during that fateful year of 1776. We have been ruled by an oppressive tyrannical establishment, bent on controlling and regulating every aspect of our lives, over-taxing hard working Americans to pay for its welfare/warfare surveillance state, indebting unborn generations with over $200 trillion of unfunded promises, enriching themselves and their Deep State benefactors, impoverishing the people through systematic inflation, globalizing their jobs to Asia, and treating hard working Americans with utter contempt.

The 2008 Federal Reserve/Wall Street created global financial collapse and subsequent banker bailout, while throwing senior citizens and the common man under the bus catalyzed this Fourth Turning. Main Street and flyover America did not participate in the faux economic recovery flogged by Obama, his minions, and their media mouthpieces.

Propaganda, fake economic data, and a vacuous divisive empty suit Deep State pawn president, running up the national debt by $9.3 trillion while enriching Wall Street, the military industrial complex, and the sickcare complex, did nothing to benefit average Americans. The result of this blatant disregard for the well-being of millions has backfired on the establishment.

The elevation of Donald Trump to the presidency has marked the regeneracy moment of this Fourth Turning. The mood of the country has taken a dramatic turn, with the normal people attempting to take back control of the government from malevolent Deep State financial, military, media, and corporate interests. This invisible government establishment is far more entrenched and malignant than the British monarchy confronted by Thomas Paine.

Just as the Loyalists supported the armed clampdown upon the liberty seeking revolutionaries by the redcoats, the deranged leftist useful idiots rioting in DC and in the liberal urban bastions around the country this past week are at war against normalcy, self-reliance, fiscal responsibility, the family values that built this nation, and the geographic will of 85% of the country.

Despite the wailing, gnashing of teeth, breaking of windows, setting limousines on fire, dressing as vaginas, calling for the assassination of Donald Trump, and overall infantile behavior of the losers in this recent election, the fact remains Trump won the popular vote in 30 states, accumulated an electoral landslide victory, and struck a chord with normal average family people who have been left behind by a government designed to benefit an autocratic few and buy off special interests for their votes.

These supposedly grass roots rallies representing all women were nothing more than another George Soros/Democrat Party funded propaganda effort to discredit Trump’s overwhelming victory. The dying left wing media mouthpieces for the establishment felt a tingle up their legs as they breathlessly reported on the prodigious hatred for a man who has been in office for one day.

Where were these patriots for the last eight years as their savior president droned wedding parties, blew up hospitals in the Middle East, and oversaw the unlawful collection of personal data by his rogue NSA spies? You didn’t hear any of the fake news pundits on CNN or MSNBC mention that 30 million deplorable women had voted for Trump and he crushed Hillary among white women with 53% of the vote.

The vitriolic, unhinged reaction to Trump’s victory by a fearful establishment, their fake news corporate media hacks, and the parasitical special interests dependent upon free shit, should be a wake-up call for the normal, hard-working, tax paying, self-reliant, liberty minded people in this country. The deeply rooted evil establishment and their feckless, toady, easily manipulated, useful idiot minions have declared war on Trump and the normals (aka deplorables) who voted for him.

After the battles of Lexington & Concord the British Empire declared war on the colonies. Many colonists still longed for reconciliation, but Thomas Paine and his fellow patriots knew that was impossible. This was going to be a fight to the death. If they lost, Paine and his brethren would be hanged.

Paine’s simple facts, plain words and common sense bolstered the morale of the American colonists, provided backbone to those on the fence, appealed to the English people’s consideration of the war with America, clarified the issues at stake in the war, and denounced the advocates of a negotiated peace. There was no time to be a summer soldier or sunshine patriot in 1776. We now stand on the precipice of another era of revolution. These are new times, but they will also try our souls. Words do matter. This really is a war and must be fought on all fronts.

The dumbing down of the American populace through the government run public education system results in tens of millions being intellectually incapable of resisting the never ending onslaught of Deep State propaganda through critical thought. Restoring the public’s ability to use common sense, sound reasoning, and good judgement is a virtual impossibility today, as a vast swath of the populace couldn’t name a Founding Father, why we celebrate July 4, or even voted in this past election. There were approximately 231 million eligible voters on November 8 and only 136 million voted. The apathy of the 95 million non-voters is a reflection of our iGadget addicted, debauched, feeble minded, bread and circuses distracted, confederacy of fools culture.

With a population of 325 million, versus the 2.5 million in Paine’s day, the question is how many patriots will be required to vanquish the Deep State sycophants and their useful idiot followers. It has been noted only 3% of colonists truly fought for independence during the American Revolution. One third remained loyal to the crown, one third passively supported independence and another third didn’t support either side. We have a similar dynamic today with about 30% supporting Trump’s revolution, 30% supporting the corrupt establishment, and 40% choosing to not participate. If the 3% still applies, it will only take 7 million out of Trump’s 63 million voters to successfully see the revolution through to its conclusion.

The venomous reaction from the fake news corporate media to Trump’s plain spoken, direct, and truthful, common sense inaugural address reveals his opponents true nature. They called the speech dark, gloomy, scary, and Hitler like. Trump derangement syndrome has clearly infected this insane clown posse of brainless talking heads and vacuous spokesmodels as they mouth the lines written by their establishment employers.

He directly confronted his establishment enemies as they sat in front of him by declaring war on their petty world of corruption, malfeasance, idolatry of power, world domination, globalization, and disregard for the lives of the common people. Just as Paine had declared in 1776, Trump declared this week – there will be no reconciliation, no negotiated peace, and no truce. His war on the establishment will be fought to the finish, with a clear winner and a clear loser. His address is the new Common Sense for common people looking to take back control of their government.

Trump immediately struck at the heart of the Washington DC beltway beast. The people out in the hinterlands, beyond the DC, NYC, LA, SF elitist enclaves, have been left behind and discarded while the connected few reaped unwarranted riches.

“For too long, a small group in our nation’s capital has reaped the rewards of government while the people have borne the cost. Washington flourished, but the people did not share in its wealth. Politicians prospered, but the jobs left and the factories closed. The establishment protected itself, but not the citizens of our country. Their victories have not been your victories. Their triumphs have not been your triumphs. And while they celebrated in our nation’s capital, there was little to celebrate for struggling families all across our land.”

Just as Paine delineated between the liberty seeking patriots and the despotic monarchical regime of King George III, Trump doesn’t play the standard political party games. This is a revolutionary movement. It’s the forgotten men and women versus the non-responsive imperious government.

“What truly matters is not which party controls our government, but whether our government is controlled by the people. The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer. At the center of this movement is a crucial conviction that a nation exists to serve its citizens.”

Trump demolished the fake news storylines of economic advancement, low unemployment, reduced crime rates, and a thriving middle class. The media pundits were aghast when he told the truth about a nation in decay. After 50 years and $10 trillion of Great Society welfare programs, the poverty rate is near all-time highs; 43 million (up by 12 million since recession officially ended in 2009) people depend on food stamps to survive; over 100 million working age Americans aren’t working; real wages are lower than they were thirty years ago; and millions of family sustaining blue collar jobs have been off-shored to Asia in the name of globalization.

Our government run public schools are nothing more than social engineering indoctrination centers wasting $12,000 per student by having mediocre overpaid union teachers flog common core pabulum to disinterested students. They graduate functionally illiterate morons into society, further degrading the civic character of our nation, while in liberal run cities, like Chicago, murder rates skyrocket as black communities implode due to the breakdown of the family unit, welfare mentality, drugs, and placing no value on education. Trump’s assessment of this carnage is dead on.

“But for too many of our citizens, a different reality exists: mothers and children trapped in poverty in our inner cities; rusted out factories scattered like tombstones across the landscape of our nation; an education system flush with cash, but which leaves our young and beautiful students deprived of all knowledge; and the crime and the gangs and the drugs that have stolen too many lives and robbed our country of so much unrealized potential. This American carnage stops right here and stops right now.”

Trump scorched the globalization acolytes and neo-cons with his common sense appraisal of how we’ve wasted our wealth benefiting other countries and global corporations, while disregarding our own decaying infrastructure and families’ dependent upon decent paying jobs to make an honest living. The priorities of the establishment have enriched their corporate masters while destroying a once thriving middle class.

“We spent trillions and trillions of dollars overseas while America’s infrastructure has fallen into disrepair and decay. We’ve made other countries rich, while the wealth, strength and confidence of our country has dissipated over the horizon. One by one, the factories shuttered and left our shores, with not even a thought about the millions and millions of American workers that were left behind. The wealth of our middle class has been ripped from their homes and then redistributed all across the world.”

It is telling how low we’ve sunk as a nation when the intellectual elitists reference Hitler when pandering to their disturbed demagogues of despair while describing Trump’s speech. I guess the author of the Declaration of Independence would be classified as a Nazi by today’s standards, as his words were directly echoed by Trump:

“Peace, commerce, and honest friendship with all nations…entangling alliances with none”Thomas Jefferson

“We will seek friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world, but we do so with the understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their own interests first. We do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone, but rather to let it shine as an example. We will shine for everyone to follow.” Donald Trump

If CNN, MSNBC, or the Washington Post had existed in 1776, they would have classified Thomas Paine as a terrorist, exposing his failed business ventures, failed marriages, and revealing him to be too pugnacious and nasty to be taken seriously. They couldn’t demand that he release his tax returns, since the individual income tax didn’t get enacted until 137 years later in the dreadful year of 1913. They would have glorified King George III as a benevolent father figure and boldly predicted a landslide victory for the British Army against Washington’s ragtag army of farmers.

The dying legacy media are the propaganda arm of the establishment and will need to be crushed without impunity by the Trump administration and the hundreds of alternative truth telling media websites representing the Thomas Paines of today. One Thomas Paine cannot influence 200 million people the way he influenced 2.5 million in 1776, but an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men, can make an impact during the most crucial period of this Fourth Turning Crisis.

Trump has pointed out what is wrong with our government. The outcry from those comfortable with the status quo has been spiteful, lashing out irrationally in a crazed manner, which will surely bring more normal people over to Trump’s side. Time and results will convert more to the right side of history.

“A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom. But the tumult soon subsides. Time makes more converts than reason.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense

Just as the British levied taxes on the colonies to pay the debts of their French & Indian War adventures and their sprawling empire, our malevolent surveillance state wages undeclared wars across the globe, having wasted over $6 trillion in the Middle East since 2003, and extracts taxes from our paychecks at the point of a gun to pay for these neo-con wet dreams. The $20 trillion of accumulated debts and the $200 trillion of unfunded future obligations are nothing but tax obligations of our children and unborn generations.

Just as the British military invaded the homes of American colonists, police state thugs roam our streets with impunity, intimidating, shaking down and acting as the truncheon for the establishment. The Fourth Amendment has been gutted by the powers that be, with the First and Second under constant attack.

Paine believed in the common sense golden rule.

“When I was teaching children I began every day writing this on the blackboard: “Do to others what you would like them to do to you”, telling them how much better the world would be if everybody lived by this rule.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense

But he realized everyone does not live by that rule. In fact, very few people live by that rule. They believe they are owed something for being born. The right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness isn’t good enough. The leftists fighting Trump tooth and nail believe they are entitled to special rights, privileges, and benefits. These special snowflakes have been triggered by the big bad mean talking Trump and after getting their paychecks from Soros will angrily protest within their liberal urban blue safe zones. If they ever violently venture into the 85% of the country colored red, the carnage will be instantaneous.

The contemptible fake news media continues to flog the popular vote drivel of a country divided. This map shows a much unified country, unified against the liberal elite and their enslaved welfare state dregs occupying the miniscule blue areas on the map. Those in the blue believe it is their right to subdue the will of those in the red. We disagree. Let the hostilities commence. Over 90% of the legally owned firearms reside in the red areas.

“Common sense will tell us, that the power which hath endeavored to subdue us, is of all others, the most improper to defend us.” – Thomas Paine, Common Sense

Donald Trump had much more to lose than to gain by putting himself through the gauntlet of a presidential campaign. He was ridiculed, scorned, attacked, and dismissed by the ruling oligarchy and their prodigious array of propaganda mechanisms. The surveillance state used all their unlawful powers to discredit him.

He has taken on the thankless task of trying to rectify decades of bad decisions, bad policy, bad finance, bad people, and an entrenched bureaucracy of DC swamp creatures. Trump is a billionaire and could have spent his waning years golfing, mentoring his sons, and enjoying the fruits of his labor. But, like the wealthy colonial landowners Washington, Jefferson, and Madison, Trump has taken a huge risk in fighting the Washington Deep State establishment to make government work for the people again.

His inauguration speech was the first salvo in what will be a long and bloody fight. Common Sense was written in 1776 and the ratification of the U.S. Constitution was still thirteen bloody years in the future. Fourth Turnings never end in compromise. They end with a clear victor and a clear loser. The next eight years will surely try men’s souls.

Trump is fighting against a half a century of establishment rule. As we have seen already, they will not go down without a fight. Are we ready to stand and fight, or will we be summer soldiers and sunshine patriots during this crisis, shrinking from the service of our country? The future of our country depends upon our answer.

Aldous Huxley foretold the willful loss of our freedoms back in 1959. Our chance to vanquish the oligarchs has arrived.

“Under the relentless thrust of accelerating over-population and increasing over-organization, and by means of ever more effective methods of mind-manipulation, the democracies will change their nature; the quaint old forms—elections, parliaments, Supreme Courts and all the rest—will remain. The underlying substance will be a new kind of non-violent totalitarianism. All the traditional names, all the hallowed slogans will remain exactly what they were in the good old days. Democracy and freedom will be the theme of every broadcast and editorial—but Democracy and freedom in a strictly Pickwickian sense. Meanwhile the ruling oligarchy and its highly trained elite of soldiers, policemen, thought-manufacturers and mind-manipulators will quietly run the show as they see fit.”

Aldous HuxleyBrave New World Revisited

Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[World] Kellyanne Conway says she's received 'white substances' in the mail

Anna Giaritelli

Kellyanne Conway, counsel to President Trump, on Monday said she has received pieces of mail that contained suspicious white powder on multiple occasions and has had to employ a security detail for her personal protection as a result of the media's coverage of the new administration.

This was shared matter-of-factly while discussing the press pool's false report over the weekend that the Martin Luther King Jr. Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM

[Entertainment] Laura Prepon Is Pregnant! Orange Is the New Black Actress Expecting First Child With Ben Foster Laura Prepon, Ben Foster, Sundance Film FestivalA baby appears to be on the way for Orange Is the New Black's Laura Prepon! Multiple outlets report that the actress is expecting her first child with fiancé Ben...
Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[TC] Charter Spectrum tweets terrible wifi security advice The Super Bowl is in two weeks. The Patriots vs the Falcons. And Charter Communication’s Spectrum service wants you to change your wifi password to support your favorite team! Don’t do that. Change your WiFi password and show guests where your loyalty lies! #ThatsMyTeam pic.twitter.com/7kg04D7GN9 — Spectrum (@GetSpectrum) January 23, 2017 Don’t change your wifi… Read More
Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[Top Picks] New dispute between White House and intel agents: Did the CIA really cheer Trump during his speech this weekend? Crowds. Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[Politics] The White House may get a golden makeover It’ll be out with Obama’s contemporary stuff, in with the more formal European gilded look. Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[World] Can Bergdahl Get a Fair Trial? His new commander-in-chief has repeatedly said he should be executed. Published:1/23/2017 8:49:38 PM
[World] Watters' World: Reaction to Donald Trump Inauguration, Presidential Trivia

In his inaugural address, President Donald Trump promised to fight for the "forgotten men and women" and transfer power from Washington, D.C back to the American people. So how was Trump's speech received? Jesse Watters hit the streets of New York City to ask the folks...

Published:1/23/2017 8:20:36 PM
[Politics] Trump backs off on deporting illegals receiving Obama amnesty After promising over and over that he would deport illegals on his first day in office, President Trump is signifying that he’s seeking other solutions to the problem. Spicer again indicating that . . . Published:1/23/2017 8:20:35 PM
[Science] Minnesota governor collapses while giving state of the state address

Caitlin Yilek

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton collapsed Monday while giving the state of the state address.

About 45 minutes into his speech, the 69-year-old Democratic governor appeared to faint.

According to the St. Published:1/23/2017 8:20:35 PM

[Media] Media Matters notes how quickly Trump has been offered support from top Dems, like Bernie Sanders

Media Matters noted Monday how quickly Democrats like, um … Bernie Sanders had offered support to President Trump on trade.

The post Media Matters notes how quickly Trump has been offered support from top Dems, like Bernie Sanders appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 8:20:35 PM
[marketsNews] Australia, East Timor aim to agree maritime border by Sept SYDNEY, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Australia and East Timor said on Tuesday they aim to reach an agreement on a maritime border by the end of September, which would end a decade-old row between the two...
Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[Science] Ryan, Pence met to hammer out GOP agenda

Nicole Duran

House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and President Trump are dedicating a good portion of their Monday evening to getting on the same page ahead of the Republican retreat slated to begin Wednesday in Philadelphia.

Trump hosted the top congressional leaders of both parties for a reception Monday at the White House. Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM

[TC] Faraday Future sued by visual effects studio for $1.8 million ff_91_exterior_1_5a0097f5-860d-404e-ba2f-fd5cc318765d There’s a chance some of Faraday Future’s videos and photos feature special effects instead of images of the real vehicles. And now the company known for creating such promos for other automakers is suing Faraday Future for $1.8 million alleging the car company skipped out on the check. According to the lawsuit documents on Jalopnik, Faraday Future contracted The Mill Group in… Read More
Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[Politics] 3 Ways Democrats Can Stall Confirmation of Trump Cabinet

Senate Democrats have dug in their heels to stall confirmation proceedings for President Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominees. Though the Senate confirmed two of Trump’s nominees... Read More

The post 3 Ways Democrats Can Stall Confirmation of Trump Cabinet appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[Abu Sayyaf] Trump Properties Around The Globe Just Became Priority Terror Targets, Experts Say

Just this morning a "progressive" watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of New York alleging that President Trump is violating the constitution by owning business interests around the globe that are receiving payments from foreign governments (we covered it here:  "Ethics Group Will Sue Trump On Monday Over Foreign Government Payments"). 

Of course, as liberals continue their witch hunt for unconstitutional foreign payments to Trump businesses, something they completely overlooked when it came to the Clinton Foundation's myriad of foreign entanglements, they don't seem to be concerned at all with the increased security and insurance costs that the Trump Organization will undoubtedly have to bear as a result of his new title.  Per the Associated Press:

As Trump remains a brand overseas, criminal gangs or militants could target buildings bearing his name in gold, abduct workers associated with his enterprises for ransom or worse, they say.

 

"They may kidnap a Trump worker and not even want to negotiate," aiming for publicity instead, said Colin P. Clarke, a political scientist with the RAND Corporation who studies terrorism and international criminal networks.

 

U.S. brands have been targeted in overseas violence before, but they never belonged to a president. That's the difference. Trump becoming America's 45th president presents a unique challenge given the range of his international business interests.

Trump Towers

 

Unfortunately, the Trump Organization owns and/or has licensed the "Trump" name to several luxury properties around the globe in cities that have been frequent targets of terrorist organizations.

But other properties are in areas that have seen violence, like Trump Towers Istanbul, the Turkish city hit hard by a string of bomb and gun attacks carried out by the Islamic State group. Flags and banners around the site bear the president's name, while private security guards man X-ray machines and metal detectors at its entrances, a standard practice in the city.

 

In Bali, where bombs planted by the Islamic extremist group Jemaah Islamiyah targeting bar-goers killed 202 people in 2002, Trump's organization has licensed the president's name to a planned luxury resort. Bali police spokesman Hengky Widjaja said no one had requested extra security for the property and authorities had no plans to increase their presence there.

 

A Trump-named residential tower is under construction in the Indian city of Mumbai, which was hit by a 2008 terror attack blamed on the Pakistani militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba that killed 166 people. Mumbai police spokesman Ashok Dudhe said he had no knowledge of any additional security around the tower.

 

Another tower is being built in Manila in the Philippines, a nation where Abu Sayyaf militants conduct frequent kidnappings for ransom and where President Rodrigo Duterte wages a brutal crackdown on drug dealers that has killed thousands. Philippine police say they haven't monitored any specific threat toward Trump properties, though a tower rising in Manila sits in an area under an intensified security watch after Duterte declared a "state of lawlessness" following a September bombing.

Asked about security issues, the Trump Organization said in a statement it has "extensive protocols in place at our Trump-owned and -managed properties" in the United States and abroad.  The statement continued: "Our team continues to work very closely with local law enforcement and we are also working in tandem with the local developers at Trump-branded properties worldwide to ensure that all residents, guests and associates remain safe and secure."

As we've previously pointed out, even though Trump's attorneys maintain that it is impossible for the President of the United States to have "conflicts of interest," he has agreed to donate all profits derived from foreign governments to the United States Treasury.  That said, something tell us that fact was conveniently omitted from CREW's lawsuit filed this morning.

Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[Donald Trump] Leftist rioters proved how much Trump hates Muslims and immigrants by torching limo owned by Muslim immigrant Go figure Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Call it Nuveen now: TIAA renames its asset management unit TIAA is one of the oldest names in the retirement industry, founded by industrialist Andrew Carnegie in 1918. But it is stepping away from that history in one part of its business as it seeks more money from outside investors.
Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[Politics] Trump backs off on deporting illegals receiving Obama amnesty After promising over and over that he would deport illegals on his first day in office, President Trump is signifying that he’s seeking other solutions to the problem. Spicer again indicating that . . . Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[topics:places/new-york-city] Death toll up to 21 as heavy storm batters Eastern US with wind and heavy rain Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[The Blog] Committee approves Tillerson for Secretary of State, full Senate vote next week "None of the committee's 10 Democrats voted for Tillerson." Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[Uncategorized] To prove “Love Trumps Hate,” Ithaca Women’s March smashes Trump piñata head The piñata head was filled with VEGAN candy, of course. Published:1/23/2017 8:06:53 PM
[World] Bill O'Reilly Talking Points Memo on Donald Trump vs. the Press, Liberal Activists

In his Talking Points Memo tonight, Bill O'Reilly said there's an effort on the far left to oppose President Donald Trump and get him out of office.

Published:1/23/2017 7:49:44 PM
[Apocalypticism] Doomsday Bunkers Of The Rich & Famous: "You Need So Many Things To Ride Out The Apocalypse"

It used to be that the term "doomsday prepper" evoked a certain visual of an ultra-conservative, bearded woodsman with slightly less than stellar hygiene practices living in the middle of no where with an arsenal of weaponry and a sufficient hoard of dried and canned food to live for years.  But recently that all seems to be changing.  And whether the election of Trump was the catalyst that drove the world's rich to start prepping or simply allowed them to open up about being preppers all along, one thing is certain, "prepping" is growing in popularity among America's billionaires.

In the latest issue of The New Yorker, Evan Osnos takes a look at some of the super-rich that are taking extreme measures to prepare for the apocalypse.  One such wealthy prepper is Silicon Valley's Reddit CEO, Steve Huffman, who admits that he went so far as to get corrective eye surgery, not for convenience or appearance, but bacause "If the world ends...getting contacts or glasses is going to be a huge pain in the ass...without them, I’m fucked.”

Steve Huffman, the thirty-three-year-old co-founder and C.E.O. of Reddit, which is valued at six hundred million dollars, was nearsighted until November, 2015, when he arranged to have laser eye surgery. He underwent the procedure not for the sake of convenience or appearance but, rather, for a reason he doesn’t usually talk much about: he hopes that it will improve his odds of surviving a disaster, whether natural or man-made. “If the world ends—and not even if the world ends, but if we have trouble—getting contacts or glasses is going to be a huge pain in the ass,” he told me recently. “Without them, I’m fucked.”

 

Huffman, who lives in San Francisco, has large blue eyes, thick, sandy hair, and an air of restless curiosity; at the University of Virginia, he was a competitive ballroom dancer, who hacked his roommate’s Web site as a prank. He is less focussed on a specific threat—a quake on the San Andreas, a pandemic, a dirty bomb—than he is on the aftermath, “the temporary collapse of our government and structures,” as he puts it. “I own a couple of motorcycles. I have a bunch of guns and ammo. Food. I figure that, with that, I can hole up in my house for some amount of time.”

Preppers

 

Meanwhile, Antonio García Martínez, a forty-year-old former Facebook executive, decided to buy his own little section of a secluded island in the Pacific Northwest and load it up with generators, solar panels, and thousands of rounds of ammunition.

Last spring, as the Presidential campaign exposed increasingly toxic divisions in America, Antonio García Martínez, a forty-year-old former Facebook product manager living in San Francisco, bought five wooded acres on an island in the Pacific Northwest and brought in generators, solar panels, and thousands of rounds of ammunition. “When society loses a healthy founding myth, it descends into chaos,” he told me. The author of “Chaos Monkeys,” an acerbic Silicon Valley memoir, García Martínez wanted a refuge that would be far from cities but not entirely isolated. “All these dudes think that one guy alone could somehow withstand the roving mob,” he said. “No, you’re going to need to form a local militia. You just need so many things to actually ride out the apocalypse.” Once he started telling peers in the Bay Area about his “little island project,” they came “out of the woodwork” to describe their own preparations, he said. “I think people who are particularly attuned to the levers by which society actually works understand that we are skating on really thin cultural ice right now.”

 

In private Facebook groups, wealthy survivalists swap tips on gas masks, bunkers, and locations safe from the effects of climate change. One member, the head of an investment firm, told me, “I keep a helicopter gassed up all the time, and I have an underground bunker with an air-filtration system.” He said that his preparations probably put him at the “extreme” end among his peers. But he added, “A lot of my friends do the guns and the motorcycles and the gold coins. That’s not too rare anymore.”

Preppers

 

But the award for best wealthy prepper goes to Larry Hall, CEO of the Survival Condo Project, who turned a decommissioned, 15-story nuclear warhead silo into an underground fortress and sold off individual condos to America's rich and famous

He ushered me through, and, in the darkness, I could see the outline of a vast concrete dome, with a metal blast door partly ajar. I was greeted by Larry Hall, the C.E.O. of the Survival Condo Project, a fifteen-story luxury apartment complex built in an underground Atlas missile silo. The facility housed a nuclear warhead from 1961 to 1965, when it was decommissioned. At a site conceived for the Soviet nuclear threat, Hall has erected a defense against the fears of a new era. “It’s true relaxation for the ultra-wealthy,” he said. “They can come out here, they know there are armed guards outside. The kids can run around.”

 

Hall got the idea for the project about a decade ago, when he read that the federal government was reinvesting in catastrophe planning, which had languished after the Cold War. During the September 11th attacks, the Bush Administration activated a “continuity of government” plan, transporting selected federal workers by helicopter and bus to fortified locations, but, after years of disuse, computers and other equipment in the bunkers were out of date. Bush ordered a renewed focus on continuity plans, and FEMA launched annual government-wide exercises. (The most recent, Eagle Horizon, in 2015, simulated hurricanes, improvised nuclear devices, earthquakes, and cyberattacks.)

 

“I started saying, ‘Well, wait a minute, what does the government know that we don’t know?’ ” Hall said. In 2008, he paid three hundred thousand dollars for the silo and finished construction in December, 2012, at a cost of nearly twenty million dollars. He created twelve private apartments: full-floor units were advertised at three million dollars; a half-floor was half the price. He has sold every unit, except one for himself, he said.

 

Allen told me that, in his view, taking precautions is unfairly stigmatized. “They don’t put tinfoil on your head if you’re the President and you go to Camp David,” he said. “But they do put tinfoil on your head if you have the means and you take steps to protect your family should a problem occur.”

Preppers

 

That said, for some folks a decommissioned nuclear missile silo in the middle of Kansas isn't nearly remote enough if the shit truly hits the fan.  As such, a record number of Americans, 13,401 in the 7 days after Trump's election to be precise (17x the normal volume), have started the process necessary to take up residency in New Zealand.  

If a silo in Kansas is not remote or private enough, there is another option. In the first seven days after Donald Trump’s election, 13,401 Americans registered with New Zealand’s immigration authorities, the first official step toward seeking residency—more than seventeen times the usual rate. The New Zealand Herald reported the surge beneath the headline “Trump Apocalypse.”

 

In fact, the influx had begun well before Trump’s victory. In the first ten months of 2016, foreigners bought nearly fourteen hundred square miles of land in New Zealand, more than quadruple what they bought in the same period the previous year, according to the government. American buyers were second only to Australians. The U.S. government does not keep a tally of Americans who own second or third homes overseas. Much as Switzerland once drew Americans with the promise of secrecy, and Uruguay tempted them with private banks, New Zealand offers security and distance. In the past six years, nearly a thousand foreigners have acquired residency there under programs that mandate certain types of investment of at least a million dollars.

 

Jack Matthews, an American who is the chairman of MediaWorks, a large New Zealand broadcaster, told me, “I think, in the back of people’s minds, frankly, is that, if the world really goes to shit, New Zealand is a First World country, completely self-sufficient, if necessary—energy, water, food. Life would deteriorate, but it would not collapse.” As someone who views American politics from a distance, he said, “The difference between New Zealand and the U.S., to a large extent, is that people who disagree with each other can still talk to each other about it here. It’s a tiny little place, and there’s no anonymity. People have to actually have a degree of civility.”

 

The growing foreign appetite for New Zealand property has generated a backlash. The Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa—the Maori name for New Zealand—opposes sales to foreigners. In particular, the attention of American survivalists has generated resentment. In a discussion about New Zealand on the Modern Survivalist, a prepper Web site, a commentator wrote, “Yanks, get this in your heads. Aotearoa NZ is not your little last resort safe haven.”

Certainly, we wish all the new liberal, Silicon Valley preppers the best of luck in surviving Trump rule.  Alas, if everything turns out ok, and all your preparations were for nothing, we're sure you'll be to sell your underground fortresses to conservative billionaires when Bernie or Elizabeth Warren take the White House in 4-8 years.

Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM
[World] Looking ahead to 2024

Most new cars sold in 2024 will have self-driving capabilities so that the number of auto fatalities will be falling rapidly. That is an easy prediction, because the technologies have already been developed and roll-outs of the new cars are being planned and, in some cases, are underway.

There will ... Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM

[Culture] Social Media-Powered Berniecrats Try to Move the Party Left
Social Media-Powered Berniecrats Try to Move the Party Left
If the newly formed Justice Democrats succeed, it will be with the might of YouTube behind them. The post Social Media-Powered Berniecrats Try to Move the Party Left appeared first on WIRED.
Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM
[US Politics] Sen. Chris Murphy seems to agree that loud ‘bang’ sound is a safety feature built into guns

Sen. Chris Murphy's notion of a gun "silencer" leads some to suspect he hasn't spent much time on the shooting range with one.

The post Sen. Chris Murphy seems to agree that loud ‘bang’ sound is a safety feature built into guns appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM
[Top Picks] Missouri looks at stiffer penalties for attacking cops Throw away the key Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM
[Science] Chile seeks trade deal with China after Trump scraps TPP

Joel Gehrke

President Trump's decision to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership had other countries looking immediately on Monday for new trade partners.

Chile plans to pursue bilateral trade deals with some of the countries that would have been in TPP, but it will also look to the United States chief rival in the Asia-Pacific region. Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM

[marketsNews] UPDATE 3-Canada oil pipeline spills 200,000 liters on aboriginal land CALGARY, Alberta/TORONTO, Jan 23 (Reuters) - A pipeline in the western Canadian province of Saskatchewan has leaked 200,000 liters (52,834 gallons) of oil in an aboriginal community, the provincial...
Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM
[In The News] WATCH: Why Good Teachers Want School Choice Can every child receive a good education? With school choice and competition, yes. The problem? Powerful teachers unions oppose school choice. Rebecca Friedrichs, a public school teacher who took her case against the teachers union all the way to the Supreme Court, explains why school choice is the right choice. Take the pledge for school ...
Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM
[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Senate confirms Mike Pompeo as Trump’s CIA director The Senate on Monday confirmed Rep. Mike Pompeo of Kansas as director of the Central Intelligence Agency, putting a Republican lawmaker in charge of the nation’s top spy agency and helping to fill out President Donald Trump’s national-security team.
Published:1/23/2017 7:49:43 PM
[World] Tom Cotton Chuck Schumer Confrontation CIA Director Mike Pompeo Senate Floor

On Monday evening, Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.) was confirmed by the Senate to be the CIA director, but the perceived delay in the vote by the body's Democratic leader recently led to a tense confrontation on the floor on the night it was originally planned to take place.

Published:1/23/2017 7:20:36 PM
[Politics] Watch: Ted Cruz ambushed by conspiracy nut Alex Jones in elevator interview Conspiracy nutjob Alex Jones ambushed Ted Cruz in an elevator and put some pretty normal questions to him, surprisingly. Rather than ask him about the lizard-alien illuminati shape-shifters who control the global . . . Published:1/23/2017 7:20:34 PM
[Politics] Watch: Ted Cruz ambushed by conspiracy nut Alex Jones in elevator interview Conspiracy nutjob Alex Jones ambushed Ted Cruz in an elevator and put some pretty normal questions to him, surprisingly. Rather than ask him about the lizard-alien illuminati shape-shifters who control the global . . . Published:1/23/2017 7:20:34 PM
[American Presbyterians] Mike Pompeo Is Confirmed To Lead CIA

Just a day after President Trump visited Langley, 53-year-old Kansas Rep. Mike Pompeo has been confirmed by the Senate as CIA Director amidst its most contentious relationship with the White House in decades. As voting continued, there were 67 "yes" votes, more than enough to confirm Pompeo, and 30 voted against. Almost all the opposition was from Democrats, but perhaps most notably Rand Paul voted against him.

As The Hill reports, White House press secretary Sean Spicer on Monday downplayed any friction between the CIA and the president.

He called talk of a rift at the agency a “myth” and noted attendees were “hooting and hollering” and gave Trump a standing ovation.

 

“That doesn’t sound like a huge feud. They were excited. They were clapping. They were cheering when he walked in,” he told reporters. “To see reports that made it sound like there was some fence-mending that needed to happen — that sure didn’t look that way when you walked in.”

 

But the performance drew fire from the CIA’s outgoing director, John Brennan, who said Trump “should be ashamed of himself.”

But it's all over for him now, as Pompeo’s most vexing task may involve finding a way to establish a functional relationship between the CIA and President Trump.

As The Washington Post notes, Pompeo, 53, was a prominent member of the tea party in Congress, known for strident political views.

 He was a fierce critic of Clinton, a determined opponent of the Obama administration’s nuclear accord with Iran, and said at one point that he regarded the U.S. government’s conduct in the attacks on U.S. compounds in Benghazi, Libya, a political scandal that was “worse in some ways” than Watergate.

 

But Pompeo has spent the post-election period seeking to reassure CIA officials and members of Congress that he is prepared to put aside that partisan persona and be an honest broker as director of the CIA.

 

“My job,” Pompeo said during his confirmation hearing, “if confirmed, will be to change roles.”

Pompeo easily surpassed the number of votes required, but most notably Rand Paul voted against him:

So far so good for Trump's nominations, but there is a long way to go...

Published:1/23/2017 7:20:33 PM
[Entertainment] Is Gwen Stefani's Ex Gavin Rossdale Getting in the Middle of Her & Blake Shelton's Relationship? Watch to Get the Scoop! Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani, Gavin RossdaleGwen Stefani and Blake Shelton are still going strong! The couple of over a year took a trip to Mexico this weekend and even shared the stage together at Luke Bryan's 2017 Crash My...
Published:1/23/2017 7:20:33 PM
[World] [Jonathan H. Adler] Does the emoluments clause lawsuit against President Trump stand a chance?

President Trump on Monday in the White House. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press)

Monday morning, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), a liberal government watchdog organization, joined with several prominent law professors to file a lawsuit against President Trump alleging that he is in violation of the emoluments clause (a.k.a. the foreign emoluments clause) of the Constitution. The suit, filed in the Southern District of New York, seeks a declaratory judgment on the meaning and application of the clause, a ruling that Trump has violated the clause and an injunction prohibiting further violations. Those joining CREW in the suit include Harvard’s Laurence Tribe, UC Irvine’s Erwin Chemerinsky, and Fordham University’s Zephyr Teachout. The complaint is here.

One problem for the litigants is that there is virtually no precedent on the scope and application of the emoluments clause, and scholars disagree on what sorts of arrangements would constitute a violation of the clause, and even whether it applies to the president at all.  Historical practice provides some guide, but it’s not dispositive. There have been a handful of memos from the Office of Legal Counsel over the years, but they are not entirely consistent with one another. While we can reject some of the more expansive interpretations of the clause suggested by some commentators, real questions remain about which of the president’s extensive business relationships and interests could give rise to emolument clause violations and under what circumstances. (And even if the president is not violating the emoluments clause, there are still plenty of reasons to be concerned that his investments create other conflicts of interest, and that he should do more to extricate himself from such conflicts, but that’s a subject for another time. This post is focusing on the legal issues.)

CREW faces a bigger problem than trying to convince a federal court that Trump is violating the Constitution. It will first have convince the court that it is entitled to litigate this question at all.  In order to maintain a suit in federal court, a plaintiff must show that the requirements of Article III standing are satisfied. In this case, CREW’s arguments for standing are a stretch. In short, CREW will have a hard time showing that it has suffered a cognizable injury from Trump’s alleged violation of the emoluments clause — an injury that is both actual or imminent as well as concrete and particularized to CREW — let alone that such injury was caused by Trump’s conduct and that it is redressable by a favorable court judgment.

The core of CREW’s argument for standing is that Trump’s violations of the emoluments clause have injured CREW because, as an organization dedicated to policing government ethics and misconduct, these violations give it more work to do and divert resources from other issues. From the complaint:

CREW brings this action to stop and prevent the violations of the Foreign Emoluments Clause that Defendant Donald J. Trump has committed and will commit, which have already injured—and, without a remediable order from this Court, will continue to injure—CREW in the form of a significant diversion and depletion of its time, resources, and efforts. CREW has standing under Havens Realty Corp. v. Coleman, 455 U.S. 363, 379 (1982), because there has been a “concrete and demonstrable injury to the organization’s activities[,] with the consequent drain on the organization’s resources.” See also Ragin v. Harry Macklowe Real Estate Co., 6 F.3d 898, 904-05 (2d Cir. 1993).

For those familiar with standing law, this may seem like an odd argument because, if it were accepted in such broad terms, it would make standing a non-issue for advocacy organizations of all stripes. Environmental organizations, for example, would be able to assert standing for any and all alleged violations of federal environmental laws on the grounds that such violations injure those groups by forcing them to divert resources to police those violations. Instead, as anyone remotely familiar with recent standing jurisprudence knows, environmental groups often have to go to significant lengths to demonstrate standing, lest they be thrown out of court, as has happened in cases such as Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife and Summers v. Earth Island Institute.  Similarly, if standing were as easy to establish as CREW suggests, we would have expected a different outcome in other cases, such as Clapper v. Amnesty International USA as well.

CREW’s standing claim is based upon the Havens Realty case cited above. In that case, the Supreme Court held that a local non-profit, Housing Opportunities Made Equal (HOME), had standing to challenge violations of the Fair Housing Act because such violations frustrated HOME’s purpose. Specifically, HOME operated counseling and referral services to help individuals find homes and advance the cause of increasing housing opportunity, and argued that unlawful housing discrimination made it more difficult and costly to perform those functions. CREW, on the other hand, alleges something quite different. Whereas HOME had to spend more resources because unlawful discrimination made it more difficult to find homes for those it served, CREW claims it has to spend more resources answering press inquiries, explaining the emoluments clause to policymakers and the public, and hiring an additional attorney so CREW may more effectively “counteract” Trump’s ethical and legal violations. In other words, CREW’s argument is that its injury is having to spend money to file this lawsuit and raise awareness about the issues it presents. HOME, in the court’s words, could allege injuries that were “far more than simply a setback to the organization’s abstract social interests.” CREW? Not so much.

Another important distinction between CREW v. Trump and Havens Realty is that the latter concerned a statute with provisions expressly authorizing private suits to enforce its requirements. With this provision, Congress made clear it wanted to do as much as possible to facilitate more stringent enforcement of the FHA’s terms through private litigation, a point Justice Brennan stressed in his opinion for the court. Yet, there is nothing in the emoluments clause nor in any federal legislation creating a cause of action to enforce the provisions terms, let alone the sort of “explicit cause of action” contained in the FHA. This matters because, as the court has stressed time and again, Congress may create procedural rights that ease the standing burden. Without such a statutorily created right, however, CREW’s burden becomes that much greater.

There are other differences between CREW v. Trump and Havens Realty. Josh Blackman identifies some here, such as the fact that HOME sought money damages — a form of relief that would clearly redress their alleged injury — whereas CREW does not. He also notes that Justice Ginsburg cited to Havens Realty quite a bit in Clapper — but that Ginsburg was also writing in dissent.

Perhaps aware of the standing problem facing this suit, CREW decided to file its action in New York, within the jurisdiction of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit, rather than in D.C. This is likely because in Ragin v. Harry Macklowe Real Estate Co.the 2nd Circuit adopted a somewhat more expansive interpretation of Havens Realty than have other circuits, including the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Yet even Ragin does not go as far as CREW needs to sustain this suit, as the plaintiff organization there raised claims much closer to those of HOME in Havens Realty than CREW does here.

Standing is not the only jurisdictional obstacle to CREW’s suit, even if it is the most substantial. Another potential barrier is the Political Question doctrine, which further limits the power of the federal courts. I will address this doctrine, and explain how it might apply to CREW v. Trump, in a follow-up post.

Published:1/23/2017 7:20:33 PM
[marketsNews] PRESS DIGEST- British Business - Jan 24 Jan 24 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories on the business pages of British newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
Published:1/23/2017 7:20:33 PM
[Science] US human trafficking arrests hit all-time high in 2016

Anna Giaritelli

Nearly 2,000 people were arrested in fiscal year 2016 as a result of human trafficking investigations launched by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations branch. Published:1/23/2017 7:20:32 PM

[Artificial Intelligence] Why even the best tech couldn’t give us a precise inauguration headcount TOPSHOT - This view taken January 20, 2017 shows people gathering on the mall to witness President-elect Donald Trump take the oath of office as the 45th president of the United States. / AFP / Paul J. Richards        (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images) Alternative facts aside, attendance at President Trump’s inauguration was low. Citing crowd scientists from Manchester Metropolitan University in Britain, the New York Times reported an estimated 160,000 people attended Mr.Trump’s speech. Yet the administration continues to unrealistically assert that attendance was considerably higher. The President claimed between a million… Read More
Published:1/23/2017 7:20:32 PM
[Entertainment and Hobbies] WATCH: Rings (2017) – TV Store Prank First you watch it, then you die. Watch as hidden cameras capture the reactions of unsuspecting customers when Samara comes for them IRL. 😱 Rings is in theaters February 3, 2017.
Published:1/23/2017 7:20:32 PM
[] Neil Gorsuch Emerges as Trump's Front-Runner for Supreme Court Nominee Here's a brief on him. He's on the 10th Circuit of Appeals right now, appointed by Bush, and thought to be among the most "Scalia-esque" of all possible Scalia replacements. Age: 50. And as I like to say, 50 is... Published:1/23/2017 7:20:32 PM
[World] Newt Gingrich Urges 'Dramatic Overhaul' of White House Press Corps

On "The First 100 Days" tonight, Newt Gingrich reacted to White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer's contentious first formal press briefing, and urged an overhaul of the White House press corps.

Published:1/23/2017 6:47:54 PM
[World] Inauguration Speech Wrongly Demonized Free Trade

Simon Lester

Picking up where he left off during the presidential campaign, President Trump made economic nationalism a central theme of his inauguration speech. Using dark language and imagery, he referred to shuttered factories and workers left behind, and asserted that from now on it will be “America First.”

To this end, he vowed to “protect our borders from the ravages of other countries making our products, stealing our companies, and destroying our jobs,” and claimed that “[p]rotection will lead to great prosperity and strength.” And he set out two simple rules to accomplish all this: “Buy American and hire American.”

For supporters of trade liberalization and an open economy, this speech was alarming. The U.S. economy is much stronger when people can trade freely across borders.

Americans benefit from increased competition from foreign producers, which leads to lower prices and higher quality products.

For supporters of trade liberalization and an open economy, this speech was alarming. The U.S. economy is much stronger when people can trade freely across borders.

By contrast, restricting trade, through protectionist tariffs and other barriers, will lead to a stagnant and inefficient economy. Domestic industries use such measures to keep out foreign competition, thereby increasing their profits, but making American consumers worse off.

The effects are felt by everyone, although they are most significant for those with low incomes and less money to spend.

Such a heavy focus in the inauguration speech on economic nationalism, and the harsh rhetoric used, may suggest that protectionist actions from the Trump administration could be swift and forceful.

Many trade law specialists have recently been discussing the scope of the president’s discretion to impose tariffs, and this speech suggests that everyone should be worried about where U.S. trade policy might go.

At the same time, we need to keep in mind that words are not actions. Rhetoric is easy, but governing is complex. The leaders of Trump’s trade team have been selected, but many of the key political posts still need to be filled.

There will have to be internal debates among the many and varied Trump advisers and appointees on which specific trade actions to take. Before we panic, we should wait and see what actions are proposed. Things might not be quite as bad as we fear.

Trump mentioned the principle of Buy American. To many people, this is just common sense. Aren’t we better off if we buy from our friends down the street than from someone on the other side of the world?

But when you think the issue through, you realize that the answer is no. For one thing, by limiting your buying options, you are likely to spend more money on lower quality products.

For someone who complains about the U.S. government paying too much for products, as Trump often does, looking at the higher expense of excluding foreign competition from U.S. government purchases might convince him to change his mind.

In addition, when America buys American, that encourages Canada to buy Canadian, China to buy Chinese, etc. In other words, other countries will all be buying less from America! Clearly, that is bad news for American businesses, which sell a lot of products around the world.

When speaking to an audience of supporters, this kind of rhetoric can generate applause. But as a matter of economic policy, it does not make much sense.

Deep down, one suspects that Donald Trump knows all this. This is why his own companies invest abroad and import many products. The economy is a global one and businesses and consumers are better off because of it.

This is how Trump practices business. Hopefully he will decide to govern this way as well. When he moves beyond sound bites and into policy formulation, we may see a more balanced approach to trade than has been apparent so far.

Supporters of trade liberalization should definitely be concerned by the tone of the inauguration speech, but remember there will be a team of people, with wide ranging experience and a lot of past support for trade liberalization, making policy.

What they come up with may not live up to any free market ideal, but it may be not nearly as bad as what we heard on Friday.

Simon Lester is a trade policy analyst at the Cato Institute’s Herbert A. Stiefel Center for Trade Policy Studies.
Published:1/23/2017 6:47:54 PM
[Issues] Gun Control Activist Attacks Conservative Radio Host Over Women Defending Themselves

The founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Shannon Watts, attacked conservative commentator and gun rights advocate Dana Loesch on Monday, saying that women like her live to "shoot thugs in the head."

The post Gun Control Activist Attacks Conservative Radio Host Over Women Defending Themselves appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[d1edea25-3e29-41c3-b233-7dd023a10fcf] Michael Goodwin: Why Trump's fierce determination to succeed could be YUUUGE for America Donald John Trump is the most unlikely revolutionary ever to stalk western civilization. Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[Charlie Baker] Elizabeth Warren At Risk Of Losing Her Senate Seat In 2018, New Poll Shows

As Democrats have struggled to rebuild in the "Post-Trump" era, one coping mechanism employed has been to focus on their potential contenders for the White House in 2020.  In fact, about a month ago we published a list, crafted by The Hill, of the top names being tossed around that were expected to make a bid for the Democratic nomination in four years (see "Here's Who Democrats Say Are The Top 15 Presidential Candidates For 2020"). 

Not surprisingly, and proving that Democrats learned very little from the 2016 election cycle, the list included several well-known establishment names including Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama, Joe Biden and even Tim Kaine.  But, right at the top of the list at #1 was the ultra "progressive" Senator from Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren. 

But while Warren might be the Dems' new hope for becoming the first female president in 2020 (something that Lena Dunham desperately needs in her life), a new poll from her home state suggests that she may want to focus on holding her Senate seat in Massachusetts before setting her sites on the White House.  According to a new poll from WBUR, 46% of registered voters in Massachusetts would like to "give someone else a chance" in the Senate while only 44% say Warren "deserves reelection."

Elizabeth Warrent

 

And while Warren's 51% "favorable" rating may provide some comfort to anxious Dems, it would seem concerning that Massachusetts' Republican governor is viewed more "favorably" at 59%.

Elizabeth Warrent

 

While Massachusetts' Republican Governor Charile Baker hasn't announced any plans to oppose Warren in 2018, WBUR notes that the poll numbers from the state, at least as of right now, suggest his bipartisan appeal give him a good chance of defeating the far more polarizing Elizabeth Warren.

But according to a new WBUR poll, only 44 percent think Warren "deserves reelection." Forty-six percent think voters ought to "give someone else a chance."

 

"No one's going to look at a 44 percent reelect number and think that that's a good number," said Steve Koczela, president of The MassINC Polling Group, which conducts surveys for WBUR. "No one's going to look at it being close to even between 'reelect' and 'give someone else a chance' and think that that's reassuring.”

 

Warren’s numbers contrast sharply with those of Gov. Charlie Baker. His favorability rating is 59 percent — 8 points better than Warren. But what’s more striking is that only 29 percent of poll respondents think someone else should get a chance at the governor’s office.

 

How could the state’s top Republican be more popular than its top Democrat? Steve Koczela says it’s about bipartisanship.

 

"When you look at Elizabeth Warren's favorables, only 12 percent of Republicans have a favorable view of her," Koczela said. "When you look at Baker, 60 percent of Democrats view him favorably. So he has bipartisan appeal where Elizabeth Warren really never has.”

Seems there is a downside to being completely dismissive of the will of approximately 50% of the population...even in Massachusetts.

Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[Entertainment] Matt Damon Gets Emotional Sharing How Being a Father Affects His Fight for Clean Water Matt Damon, SundanceEvery 90 seconds, a child under the age of 5 will lose their life due to a lack of access to clean water and sanitation. Matt Damon, co-founder of Water.org, recently shared this chilling...
Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[PAID] Samsung Profit Growth Driven by Component Sales The South Korean tech company recorded its highest operating profit in more than three years, as booming sales of components helped it shrug off last year’s massive Galaxy Note 7 recall. Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[In The News] Trump’s Pick for FCC Chief Hostile to Net Neutrality President Trump named Net Neutrality critic Ajit Pai as the 34th Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. This afternoon, I was informed that @POTUS @realDonaldTrump designated me the 34th Chairman of the @FCC. It is a deeply humbling honor. pic.twitter.com/Joza18aP33 — Ajit Pai (@AjitPaiFCC) January 23, 2017 “I look forward to working with the new ...
Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[topics:things/pregnancy] Grapes of wrath: French wine industry angry at plans for bigger pregnancy health warnings on bottles Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[Science] Senate confirms Pompeo as CIA director

Joel Gehrke

The Senate easily confirmed President Trump's nominee to lead the CIA Monday night, installing a House Republican into the post after a temporary delay of the vote by Democrats critical of government surveillance programs.

The Senate vote means Rep. Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM

[Hardware] Breathometer ordered to refund purchases of its breathalyzers as part of FTC settlement breathometer Breathometer, a startup that quickly rose to prominence due to an appearance on Shark Tank, has agreed to a settlement with the Federal Trade Commission in which it will offer refunds for mobile-connected breathalyzer devices the company sold from 2013 to 2015. The two products — the Original ($49) and Breeze ($99) — were marketed as devices that could detect a user’s… Read More
Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[US Politics] ‘Good job, lefties’: Guess who owned the limo anti-Trump rioters set on fire

"They told me Muslims would suffer under Trump.

They were right."

The post ‘Good job, lefties’: Guess who owned the limo anti-Trump rioters set on fire appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[Featured Stories] Oops: Violent Democrat Rioters Torch Muslim Immigrant’s Limo During Inauguration Tantrum Not that these savages actually give a rat’s ass about Muslim immigrants, but let’s just ponder the reaction if this happened during a Tea Party gathering: Muhammad Ashraf, the owner of Nationwide Chauffeur Services, spoke with the Washington Examiner’s sister … Continued Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[The Blog] Wikileaks issues public appeal: Send us Trump’s tax returns Hmmmm. Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[Aviation] Navy Sticking With Advanced Arresting Gear in Next Carrier The Navy is electing to use the controversial Advanced Arresting Gear on its next Gerald R. Ford-class carrier, John F. Kennedy (CVN-79), USNI News has learned. Earlier this month, the Navy’s chief weapons buyer notified Congress it was set to install the General Atomics-built AAG on JFK following an evaluation between the AAG and the legacy […] Published:1/23/2017 6:47:53 PM
[World] Charles Krauthammer Trump Union Leaders Meet White House Larceny Democrats

Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer said President Trump's meeting with several union leaders was a "great act of political larceny" to the Democrats' detriment.

Published:1/23/2017 6:20:34 PM
[World] Byron York: Trump moves on

Byron York

Donald Trump used the first business day of his presidency to demonstrate the extraordinary power of the White House to change the subject of the national political conversation.

When Monday dawned in Washington, the commentariat was still talking about the events surrounding the inaugural weekend — the size of the crowd on the National Mall, Trump's inaugural address, his appearance at the CIA and press secretary Sean Spicer's testy statement to reporters Saturday evening.

There was dark speculation that the Trump White House had moved into an "alternative facts" era, lying with impunity while blocking the press's role as the representative of the public's right to know what its government is doing.

All that pretty much disappeared within an hour or two. Published:1/23/2017 6:20:32 PM

[Global Economy] Kunstler Warns "We Are Repeating The Greatest Misallocation Of Resources In The History Of The World"

Submitted by Adam Taggart via PeakProsperity.com,

James Howard Kunstler returns to the podcast this week, observing that despite the baton being handed to a new American president, the massive predicaments we face as a society remain the same. And it seems the incoming administration is just as in denial of them as the old.

Kunstler adds fresh critique to his now decades-old warning that we are sleepwalking our way deep into the Long Emergency. The longer we delude ourselves and waste our energies in pursuit of reviving the failed "endless growth" model, the farther our journey back to a sustainable way of living will be when our current system collapses:

I don’t think there is any sense that they really know where we’re headed, what our destination is, and what the imperatives are and what the future is actually telling us that we need to do. Don’t forget that the so-called psychology of previous investment is a very powerful force in American life and it’s prompting us to do everything we can to maintain the investments we’ve already made. Those investments are the ones I have already mentioned: the freeways, the suburban housing developments, the strip malls.

 

A lot of the hope pinned on Trump is based on the idea that he’s assembling this team of mega-competent capitalist movers and shakers who know how to make deals -- the Wilbur Rosses and Rex Tillersons of the world -- and that they are going to conjure up a tremendous surge of economic activity that will be majorly fruitful going forward in the future and produce a tremendous amount of new wealth. Of course the stock market has been pricing that in. But if you really drill down and look what’s going on there, especially the infrastructure plans, the idea that we’re going to revive American manufacturing -- and especially the idea that we’re going to rebuild the happy motoring infrastructure so that we can have 50 more years of that -- that, it seems to me, would amount to once again repeating the greatest misallocation of resources in the history of the world.

 

The last thing that America needs to do is to desperately try to maintain its suburban matrix. There are many other things we can do and ought to do, including reviving main street communities. One of the things we have to think about is reviving the small towns and small cities in American because those are the places of the greatest disinvestment over the last 30 years and we’re going to need them very badly as the global economy withers. It’s not going to disappear; there’s still going to be trade between nations, I believe, outside of some kind of major set of kinetic war conflicts, but we’re going to see the economy of North America turn inward and become more focused on what we can do here. One of the things that that suggests is that we’re going to have to do more with some of the assets and virtues that we have, mainly our inland waterway system because that’s going to also have to take the place of the trucking industry, which is going to be failing over the next 20 years.

Click the play button below to listen to Chris' interview with Jim Kunstler (51m:56s)...

 

Published:1/23/2017 6:20:32 PM
[Gadgets] Civil War short ‘My Brother’s Keeper’ touts bleeding-edge VR cinematography at Sundance My Brother's Keeper Filmmakers are still trying to wrap their heads around VR, and the results are a mixed bag — but as the technology to create catches up with cinematic techniques honed over decades, new and interesting experiences are popping up right and left. One recent example is this short film shot for viewing in VR that had to vault a few of the technical challenges that have held the medium back. Read More
Published:1/23/2017 6:20:32 PM
[Trending Politics] Senate Committee Approves Tillerson for Secretary of State In a party line vote on Monday night, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved President Trump’s nominee for Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. The panel voted 11-10 to approve Tillerson with all votes for Rex coming from Republicans and all votes against coming from Democrats and Tillerson should have no trouble getting approved by the ...
Published:1/23/2017 6:20:32 PM
[Donald Trump] Politics Podcast: The Beginning Of The Trump Presidency Donald Trump’s first few days as president were marked by executive orders, “alternative facts” and mass protests around the country. This week, the FiveThirtyEight politics podcast crew breaks down Trump’s inauguration speech and chats with contributor Julia Azari about what presidents can accomplish in their first 100 days. Plus, University of Denver professor Erica Chenoweth […] Published:1/23/2017 6:20:32 PM
[Uncategorized] Oppression of women in America? THIS is actual female oppression. Published:1/23/2017 6:20:32 PM
[Politics] WHOA: Obama stabbed Israel in the back AGAIN just before Trump inaugural Just hours before Trump’s inaugural, Obama showed what he’s really interested in and what he really cares about – he stabbed our Middle East ally in the back one final time. From . . . Published:1/23/2017 6:20:31 PM
[Politics] WHOA: Obama stabbed Israel in the back AGAIN just before Trump inaugural Just hours before Trump’s inaugural, Obama showed what he’s really interested in and what he really cares about – he stabbed our Middle East ally in the back one final time. From . . . Published:1/23/2017 6:20:31 PM
[marketsNews] DIARY-Top Economic Events to Feb. 28 Political and general news ** This Diary is filed daily ** -----------------------------------------------------------
Published:1/23/2017 6:20:31 PM
[Top Picks] Marie Harf joins Fox News as a contributor "We cannot win this war by killing them." Published:1/23/2017 6:20:31 PM
[Science] House set for rematch on abortion

Robert King

In anticipation of a major pro-life march Friday, the House will vote on a bill this week that permanently restricts federal funding for abortions.

The bill, which advanced through the House Rules Committee Monday night, seeks to make permanent the Hyde amendment, a rider that for decades has been attached to spending bills restricting any federal funding for abortions.

The House passed similar legislation in 2011, 2014 and 2015 and it is expected to pass the bill again, but those bills stalled in the Senate. Published:1/23/2017 6:20:31 PM

[Markets] ASX up in early trade, Samsung announces buyback in Q4 earnings Published:1/23/2017 6:20:31 PM
[] Unfunny SNL "Writer" Katie Rich Suspended "Indefinitely" After Tweeting Baron Trump Would Be History's "First Homeschooled Shoter" But remember, "indefinite" only means for an unspecified period of time, not "permanently." NBC won't comment on it, despite being one of the media companies that was so determined to hound minor congressional staffer nobody Elizabeth Lauten out of a... Published:1/23/2017 6:20:31 PM
[World] Trump moves to pull US out of big Asia trade deal WASHINGTON (AP) — Charting a new American course abroad, President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the sweeping Trans-Pacific Partnership on Monday, using one of his first actions in office to reject a centerpiece of Barack Obama's attempts to counter China and deepen U.S. ties in Asia. Published:1/23/2017 5:49:21 PM
[topics:people/duchess-of-cambridge] Prince Harry says 'dark sense of humour' helps  soldiers get through military service Published:1/23/2017 5:49:21 PM
[ca2ec486-42bd-47a5-af47-cb5335235be2] Spicer, the new sheriff, shakes up the White House press room. How refreshing At his first White House briefing, Trump press secretary Sean Spicer drew nervous tweets from the liberal media for calling on sources outside their comfort zone. Published:1/23/2017 5:49:21 PM
[Politics] Liberal writer that joked about Barron Trump is SUSPENDED from SNL indefinitely Saturday Night Live writer Katie Mary Rich started a public furor when she tweeted a joke about Barron – you can see it here.  But even though she deleted it and privated . . . Published:1/23/2017 5:49:21 PM
[American people of German descent] The Evolution Of Mark Cuban: From "No Doubt The Market Tanks" To "[Trump's] A Big Plus For The Overall Economy"

It has been an 'evolutionary' year for billionaire Mark Cuban as his perspective has shifted from Trump-is-smart, "I'd be his VP" to Trump terror, "no doubt the market tanks," to acceptance to reality...

2/16/2016 - I think Trump is smart. I'd be Donald Trump's VP as long as he said he's listen to me in everything I said we'd be okay.

9/6/2016 - In the event that @realDonaldTrump wins, I have no doubt in my mind that the market tanks. If the polls look like there's a decent chance that Donald could win, I'll put a huge hedge on that's over 100% of my equity positions... that protects me just in case he wins.

11/1/2016 If Trump wins I'm already hedged. My hedge is up a little bit this week because the markets have been down multiple days in a row. I put on the biggest hedge I've ever put on against all my equities and interest-bearing bonds simply because of what I just said. You know, this is not like Brexit where oh, my goodness, there's a big reaction, big selloff and then a big bounce back and things just trickle down.

 

11/9/2016 - We all need to give President-Elect Trump a chance. Support the good. Lobby against what we disagree on. No one is bigger than us all.

And now today...1/23/2017 - I think the discussed economic programs are potentially a big plus for public companies and the overall economy.

As The Wall Street Journal reports, Mark Cuban is now among those who think the Trump administration could be boon to the economy and markets.

The key word: could.

 

The Dallas Mavericks owner and entrepreneur is “playing it by ear” when it comes to the effect President Donald Trump’s policies will have on the stock market. But he thinks there’s possible upside.

 

“I think the discussed economic programs are potentially a big plus for public companies and the overall economy,” Mr. Cuban said in an e-mail Monday morning.

 

The potential policies Mr. Cuban is optimistic about: corporate tax cuts; getting rid of the “friction” for small businesses; and reducing and simplifying administrative activities.

 

The big question marks, though, are whether the Mr. Trump’s policies actually get passed, and whether his communication tactics, “create social issues that overwhelm the economic upside.”

 

“The devil is in the details,” Mr. Cuban said. “We will see what actually happens.”

So, how is he investing in this new era? As he always does, he said: He’s long the stock market but hedged against “something catastrophic.” He declined to discuss further.

Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM
[Politics] It’s Time for Leaders to Earn Back the People’s Trust

Conventional wisdom holds that the great malady plaguing American life today is the toxic combination of political polarization and social fragmentation. And there’s a great deal... Read More

The post It’s Time for Leaders to Earn Back the People’s Trust appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM
[World] Limo torched in DC protests belongs to Muslim immigrant, may cost $70,000 in damages

Sean Langille

The limousine that was set on fire during the anti-Trump anarchist protest in downtown Washington on Inauguration Day is owned by a Muslim immigrant who says the damage could cost his company $70,000.

Muhammad Ashraf, the owner of Nationwide Chauffeur Services, spoke with the Washington Examiner's sister publication, Red Alert Politics, about what happened:

In an exclusive interview with Red Alert Politics, Ashraf said he wasn't a supporter of Donald Trump during his campaign, but Friday's protests were completely counter-productive.
"I have a different point of view," Ashraf told Red Alert. Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM

[Media] ‘The face of an abused woman’: Seconds-long clip of Melania Trump proof of troubled marriage, supposedly

So, if you scrub through video of the inauguration ceremony frame-by-frame, you'll eventually find chilling proof of marital trouble.

The post ‘The face of an abused woman’: Seconds-long clip of Melania Trump proof of troubled marriage, supposedly appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM
[Entertainment] Carlos Vives Premieres Music Video for "Al Filo de Tu Amor" Featuring Ariadna Gutiérrez Steve Harvey, Ariadna GutierrezCarlos Vives is featuring a very special lady in his new music video, Miss Universe finalist Ariadna Gutiérrez. The video for "Al Filo de Tu Amor" was shot in New York, and...
Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM
[marketsNews] UPDATE 2-U.S. reaches settlement with Endo on pay-for-delay charges WASHINGTON, Jan 23 (Reuters) - Endo International Plc said on Monday it has reached a proposed settlement with U.S. antitrust regulators under which it will not pay rivals to delay the introduction...
Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM
[Security] Digital Rights Activists Are Glad President Trump Killed TPP
Digital Rights Activists Are Glad President Trump Killed TPP
But they worry about what future deals will mean for privacy and access. The post Digital Rights Activists Are Glad President Trump Killed TPP appeared first on WIRED.
Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM
[Science] Obama bucked Congress, sent $221M to Palestinians on final day in office

Anna Giaritelli

The Obama administration sent $221 million to the Palestinian Authority on Thursday, despite congressional Republicans' efforts to block the move.

Former President Obama's staff informed members of Congress early Friday about the decision, though a few lawmakers were notified Thursday evening by then-Secretary of State John Kerry, according to a report.

Although Congress approved similar funding requests in fiscal 2015 and 2016, House Foreign Affairs Chairman Ed Royce and House Appropriations Committee member Rep. Published:1/23/2017 5:49:20 PM

[World] Trump moves to pull US out of big Asia trade deal WASHINGTON (AP) — Charting a new American course abroad, President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the sweeping Trans-Pacific Partnership on Monday, using one of his first actions in office to reject a centerpiece of Barack Obama's attempts to counter China and deepen U.S. ties in Asia. Published:1/23/2017 5:25:52 PM
[Business] Trump’s FCC Pick Doesn’t Bode Well For Net Neutrality
Trump’s FCC Pick Doesn’t Bode Well For Net Neutrality
New chairman Ajit Pai is poised to undo the Obama administration's legacy on net neutrality, privacy, and more. The post Trump’s FCC Pick Doesn’t Bode Well For Net Neutrality appeared first on WIRED.
Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[Business] Soaring Lease Returns Set To Wreak Havoc Used Car Pricing and Auto Industry Profits

For months we've warned that declining used car prices could spell disaster for subprime auto securitizations (see "Slumping Used Car Prices Spell Disaster For Subprime Auto Securitizations").  While it's always difficult to predict the exact timing of when bubbles will burst, a combination of record-high lease returns in 2017 and 2018, combined with rising interest rates could imply that the auto bubble is on the precipice.

As Bloomberg recently pointed out, strong used car pricing is a critical component required to prop up the overall auto market.  While American's love their brand new cars, if used car prices become too soft then substitution can hurt new car sales.  Add to that the impact of falling residual values on the finance arms of the auto OEMs and you have all the ingredients required for an auto market meltdown.

A glut of used vehicles has started to depress prices. That trend will intensify as Americans will return 3.36 million leased cars and trucks this year, another jump after a 33 percent surge in 2016, according to J.D. Power. The fallout has already begun, with Ford Motor Co. shaving $300 million from its financial-services arm’s profit forecast for this year.

 

“Ford is the canary in the coal mine,” said Maryann Keller, a former Wall Street analyst who’s now an auto industry consultant in Stamford, Connecticut.

 

This drag may be hitting the rest of the industry, too. A National Automobile Dealers Association index of used-vehicle prices declined each of the last six months of last year. If used values weaken more than anticipated, it can lead to losses across the industry, hitting carmakers, auto lenders and rental companies.

 

Lease

 

Unfortunately, the volume of lease returns is only expected to grow even more in 2018 with returns expected to approach 4mm units.

Auto Leases

 

As J.D. Power points out in it's most recent "NADA Used Car Guide Industry Update," the flood of lease returns is driving used car prices lower.

Used Car Prices

 

Of course, how we got here is fairly obvious.  The majority of Americans buy cars based on one factor: monthly payment.  And when it comes to managing your monthly payment to the lowest level possible, leasing is the way to go.  Per the Bank Rate calculator below, buying a $30,000 car comes with a monthly payment of around $600 while leasing the same vehicle might only cost $420 per month. 

Bankrate

 

Of course, why buy a $30,000 Ford for a $600 monthly payment when you could lease a $40,000 BMW for $560?  You can afford it so long as you can cover the monthly payment, right?

Bankrate

 

Not surprisingly, these dynamics have caused lease share of U.S. vehicles to skyrocket in the wake of the "great recession" as people seek to maintain their excessive lifestyles on smaller budgets.

Auto Lease

 

Of course, the problem is that leased vehicles get returned to their originating lenders every 3 years for brand new leases...we wouldn't want anyone driving around in a 5-year-old clunker now would we?  But, as we all know, vehicles have useful lives of 15-20 years.  Therefore, it doesn't take too many excessive lease cycles to flood the market with used supply and bring the whole ponzi crashing down. 

Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[Politics] Upcoming Senate Votes Put Pressure on These 12 Vulnerable Democrats

Confirmation votes for Donald Trump’s Cabinet nominees could be the first indicator of how Senate Democrats from states that went for Trump prepare for re-election... Read More

The post Upcoming Senate Votes Put Pressure on These 12 Vulnerable Democrats appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[TC] Facebook bug would’ve let anyone delete any video buggd Welcome to another episode of “Bug Bounties Work and Are Good!”. Remember that bug from a while back that would’ve let anyone delete your Facebook photos? Turns out a similar bug was lurking for videos. Security researcher Dan Melamed discovered the now-fixed bug lurking in the way Facebook was handling videos attached to events, and walked away with a cool ten grand for… Read More
Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[Entertainment] Jerry O'Connell Weighs In on Live! With Kelly Co-Host Decision: ''Let Them Take Their Time'' Kelly Ripa, Jerry O'Connell, Live with KellyJerry O'Connell isn't in any rush to make his co-host seat on Live! With Kelly permanent. The celeb recently caught up with E! News about ABC's decision to choose Michael...
Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[International events] Obama admin reportedly pulled another shady last-minute stunt with your money

"Can we retroactively impeach him?"

The post Obama admin reportedly pulled another shady last-minute stunt with your money appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[Quick Takes] John Kerry released $221 million to Palestinian Authority just before Trump’s Inauguration In defiance of congressional opposition. Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[Politics] Senate Panel Votes to Advance Rex Tillerson's Confirmation as Secretary of State "It was a close call but I believe the choice I made was the right one," Marco Rubio said of Tillerson's nomination. Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[marketsNews] BRIEF-Hope Bancorp to acquire Seattle-based U & I Financial Corp * Hope Bancorp announces acquisition of Seattle-based U & I Financial Corp.
Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[Science] Chelsea Handler won't interview Melania Trump because she 'can barely speak English'

Caitlin Yilek

Talk show host and comedian Chelsea Handler doesn't ever plan on interviewing first lady Melania Trump because "she can barely speak English. Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM

[Politics] Liberal writer that joked about Barron Trump is SUSPENDED from SNL indefinitely Saturday Night Live writer Katie Mary Rich started a public furor when she tweeted a joke about Barron – you can see it here.  But even though she deleted it and privated . . . Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[Trending Politics] House Budget Chair: Repeal is ‘Rescue plan to stop the bleeding’ In an Op-ed on Monday, interim House Budget Committee Chair Diane Black (R-TN) used the tragic failing of Obamacare in Tennessee to illustrate why the repeal of the failed Affordable Care Act is absolutely critical. In 2013, 28,000 Tennesseans lost their insurance coverage in a single day when a state program called “CoverTN” lapsed after the ...
Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[World] The Wall Street Journal: Bernie Ecclestone out, Chase Carey in as Formula One CEO Chase Carey is replacing Formula One’s Bernie Ecclestone, the tycoon who built the auto-racing franchise into a global force, as chief executive amid Liberty Media Corp.’s deal for the firm.
Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[The Blog] Spicer: Trump in “early stages of decision-making proces” on transfer of US embassy to Jerusalem Leverage. Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[] Army Picks a Replacement for the Standard Sidearm Beretta M9: The Sig Sauer P320 No word on whether they're sticking with 9mm or .45 ACP. Apparently the P320 can be had in either, as well as in .357 SIG and .40 S&W. Actually, the pistol is modular, and this article suggests that the gun... Published:1/23/2017 5:25:51 PM
[World] Greg Gutfeld Monologue on 'Saturday Night Live' Farewell to President Obama

One day after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, “Saturday Night Live” bid farewell to President Barack Obama with a musical number. Greg Gutfeld was not impressed.

Published:1/23/2017 4:50:04 PM
[worldNews] Iraqi forces claim recapture of eastern Mosul after 100 days of fighting BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraqi officials said on Monday government forces had taken complete control of eastern Mosul, 100 days after the start of their U.S.-backed campaign to dislodge Islamic State militants from the city.
Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[American people of German descent] What Trump Means For Vol Trading: "This Is The Start Of Global Regime Change"

Via Artemis Capital Management,

The world changed the night of November 8th when Donald Trump rode a wave of populist anger to become the president elect of the United States of America. Many readers of our investor letters know that Trump’s victory was not a surprise to Artemis… as I observed with fascination how many of friends and family from my birth state of Michigan, most of whom voted for Obama the last two elections, reluctantly admitted in private they were supporting Trump. I cautioned, both in writing and during a speaking engagement at the EQDerivatives Conference in May, that the market was dramatically underestimating the probability of a Trump victory given socio-economic factors and age demographics in swing states like Michigan and Florida. What the consensus failed to see is that the election was not between a Democrat and Republican, but rather a Globalist and a Populist. America wanted a populist of one vintage or the other. The Democratic party didn’t lose the election in November, but in the summer, when they suppressed their alternative populist candidate in favor of an oligarch. This is just the beginning - I’ll double down this a passage from my June 2016 Letter to Investors.


 

What Trump Means for Volatility Trading

Trump is a boost to volatility traders (but not traditional hedging or tail risk) because of his inherent unpredictability. Never before in history has a president been so able and willing to shift a policy debate with a tweet. In a world where we have gotten used to parsing Fed statements for methodically planned hints on policy shifts, Trump is a protectionist bull in a china shop. Trump will keep the price of uncertainty high, and high uncertainty is very good for the business of dynamic volatility trading, but oddly poses a challenge for traditional hedging and tail risk funds.

Uncertainty and volatility are not the same thing. 2016 was a year of low volatility but historically high uncertainty. For example, although the VIX index averaged only 15.82 in 2016 (36th percentile of observations) investor hedging drove the expectation of vol to historic highs as measured by skew, implied volatility premium, and volatility forward premium.

Traditional hedging and tail risk will struggle in an environment where markets remain calm and the cost of uncertainty remains high. Dynamic volatility traders can perform because we can recycle higher priced uncertainty to achieve a better return profile on long optionality. For example, this year Artemis found value by recycling overpriced skew and term premium into volatility-of-volatility and vol-of-vol-convexity.

Trump is the start of Global Regime Change

Trump is the first “populist” US president since Andrew Jackson in 1829 and takes office with a mandate to reverse the course of globalization. Denial is not a strategy and it’s time to face the reality that is coming… the good, the bad, and the ugly. First off, stop underestimating this man – you don’t become leader of the free world through stupidity and luck. The rants and twitter storms are part of a strategy of media control and distraction. Trump knows that if you can’t win, then you change the rules of the game – this is what he has already done with American politics – and what he is about to do to the entire Post-Bretton Woods World Order. If you really want to know a person, watch what they do, and not what they say… or what they tweet.

Trump’s business career was largely comprised of three core strategies 1) Leverage 2) Restructure 3) Brand… in that order. Throughout the late 1970s and 1980s Trump rode a generational decline in interest rates and debt binge to purchase a range of high profile real estate projects including the Grand Hyatt (1978). Trump Tower (1983), the Plaza Hotel (1988) and the Taj Mahal (1988). In the 1990s he went through a total of 6 bankruptcies due to over-leveraged hotel and casino businesses in Atlantic City and New York. In the 2000s he pivoted to move away from debt-driven property investments to building a global brand through the “Apprentice” TV show. Trump will run the country as he ran his businesses…. He will lever, and lever, and lever, and lever… and lever… and then restructure his way to success, or whatever success is defined as by the broadest measure of popularity at any given time. Trumponomics, if it delivers, will be a supply side free for all: massive tax cuts, deficit spending to create jobs, financial and energy deregulation, business creation, and trade protectionism all driving inflation. More importantly, Trump sees bankruptcy as a tool and not an obligation and will have no problem pushing the US to the limits of debt expansion.

“I do play with bankruptcy laws, they’re very good to me!” he once said. Trump may be willing to bring the US to the brink of default if it produces middle class jobs and popularity, and what he understands is that nobody can stop him, not Europe, not China. In a Trump mindset, the US national debt and deficits, or prior commitments (e.g. NATO), are not to be taken seriously as long as we hold all the cards… namely the biggest military in the world, energy independence, world reserve currency, and the world’s largest buyer of consumer goods. He is dangerously right, these geo-political solvency tools are far more powerful than the bankruptcy laws he used to protect his casino assets… the US is just another, bigger, badder, more bankrupt casino with air craft carriers. The media doesn’t seem to understand that Trump’s overtures to Russia and Taiwan are not diplomatic gaffes but rather forms of economic leverage. He is reminding Europe that NATO is nothing without the US, and reminding China that creditor nations lose trade wars. As a negotiating tactic, it may work … or may drive the world to a hot war… or both.

Like it or not --- the old rules are gone. Diplomacy has been replaced by Twitter, and the unexpected is now to be expected. Trump’s world is a zero-sum game – and this means a shock doctrine of US centric re-positioning in trade in a dramatic change from the post-World War II order. The US has the largest military, the best geography, best technology innovation, the largest economy, best demographics in the developed world, and shale-driven energy independence to boot.

Trump won the election by funneling the frustrations of the marginalized white middle class voter humiliated after three decades of wage stagnation… he is the “super-ego” of the American Middle Class… and Trump will restructure the global order to make that voter happy if that is what it takes to get him re-elected.

Trump’s biggest and newest brand is the U.S.A., and he will use nationalism and every publicity stunt possible to create spectacles of economic and military success.

All bets are off, and that is very good for volatility… but potentially very turbulent for the world.

The Trump presidency will mark the reversal of the Post-Bretton Woods World Order ending a multi-decade regime of reflexive globalism. Ever since the 1970s the world been dominated by a self-reinforcing arrangement between Developed-Debtor and Emerging-Creditor nations driving generational trends in currencies, commodities, interest rates, and stocks (see chart). The US provides the largest consumer base in the world, military protection of global trade routes, developed financial markets, and willingness to take on debt --- and the developed world produces cheap goods and in turn buys debt and dollars reinforcing the monetary-military reflexivity. Asset prices rise, debt expands, commodities rise, developed world inflation stays tame, and interest rates drop. The net effect is that the US exports its middle class and inflation abroad and the emerging world absorbs that inflation creating a new consumer class and social stability for authoritarian regimes (China). The financiers, technologists, and emerging world industrialists get richer and richer, while the developed world middle class is marginalized.

Trump marks a populist rejection of this global arrangement, which is going to send the entire world order down a very unpredictable path. Do not underestimate the probability that Trump will not serve out his full term – you do not threaten a multi-decade system empowering a transnational class of global elites without a bloody fight. The rally in the USD is more than just trade protectionism, it is about security and capital flight in anticipation of the new world order. For the US, Trump may be good in the short term but drive stagflation in the long term. For Europe and China, he will be a disaster. Volatility will be forthcoming, but it will be worse internationally than in the US. Markets are dramatically underpricing the three-year forward probability of a European Union breakup, and China’s debt bubble collapse, both of which have been probabilistically amplified by the Trump victory. For evidence of the later consider the current USD funding crisis that is causing inter-bank lending to spike in China, stealth devaluation of the RMB, and surges in Bitcoin. History serves as a guide to periods whereby globalism turned into isolationism, namely the 1910s and 1930s… and the lessons we can apply from those eras to today are further financial crises and higher probabilities of armed conflict between Russia vs. Europe, Iran vs. Saudi Arabia, and China vs. Japan in the next decade. Fourth turnings do not happen quietly.

The Trump promise of fiscal stimulus, de-regulation, and trade barriers has sent the USD soaring, the stock market higher, market sentiment to all-time highs, and nominal yields back to their highest levels in three years. All-in-all the rally appears a little overdone. It’s eerily similar to the rally that occurred after Reagan was elected in 1980, but the comparison should stop right there. In 1980 the S&P 500 index sported a PE ratio of 9x compared to 21x today, the 10yr UST yield was over 1100 basis points higher at 13.56%, US Debt to GDP was at 30% versus 105% today (not including off balance sheet liabilities and social security) and the top marginal tax rate was 70% vs. 39.6% today. The idea that Trump’s election somehow changes world demographics and deflation overnight, is about as naive as giving Obama the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009 for his role in ushering in a new era of global peace.

When looking at the effect of Trump, I don’t see a return to the 1980s, but rather the late 1990s. The aftermath of the Trump election resulted in an unusual positive correlation between the USD, Yields, and the S&P 500 Index. The last time the USD, Stocks, and UST yields both rose and fell simultaneously was at the height of the dot-com era in 1997-1999 (2008-2009 also experienced periods where all fell). During the late-1990s all three assets rose and declined in concert as the market gyrated between irrationally exuberant growth and international crises (Asia and Russia Default). High volatility and a bull-market co-existed during this time as the VIX averaged 25 between 1997 and 1999 (compared to 15.8 in 2016) as the S&P 500 index rose +98%. If supply side stimulus and animal spirits released by Trump amplify the current bull-market and lead to inflation, expect the second order effects of his policies to cause violent bouts of international turbulence and drawdowns reminiscent of the Asia (1997) and Russia (1998) crises two decades ago. The extent which international turbulence causes significant US equity volatility will depend on contagion effects. For example, in 1998 it took several months for the effects of Russia’s sovereign default to spread, eventually threatening the US financial system via the contagion vehicle of Long Term Capital Management. Expect a similar pattern for a banking crash in China, EU breakup, or regional war.

In the late-1990s overvaluation was concentrated to one asset class with ample room for policy response. Today there are historically high valuations in equities and fixed income coupled with high sovereign debt, unprecedented central bank balance sheets, and poor world demographics. Low beta and high dividend index stocks are the new dot-coms. According to S&P Capital IQ, Russell 2000 index stocks carried a 62 percent valuation premium over non-index stocks in 2015, rising from just 12% in 2006. This time around it may not be possible to print our way out of the next crisis… so mechanisms are already being put in place to “freeze” the assets inside the system... essentially a global version of the Cyprus “Bail-in”… but that is a different story for a different investment letter.

Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[Apps] Oculus’ new film “Dear Angelica” is the most beautiful VR yet dear-angelica-vr We are finally out of the technology demo phase for virtual reality. Dear Angelica is pure art that gracefully leverages the transporting, first-person perspective of a headset to immerse you in a heartfelt story that couldn’t be told on a movie screen. It never hits you over the head with novelty and gimmicks Read More
Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[International] What Trump Moving Embassy to Jerusalem Would Mean

The Trump administration is undecided about relocating the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, a campaign promise that carries historical and symbolic... Read More

The post What Trump Moving Embassy to Jerusalem Would Mean appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[Entertainment] Coco Treats Baby Chanel to Her Very First Yacht Ride During Family Vacation in Miami Coco, ChanelAll aboard Coco's family fun yacht! As the proud mom and fitness guru continued her vacation in Miami, fans were treated to baby Chanel's latest milestone. It's time for this...
Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[marketsNews] BRIEF-RMG Networks Holding files for offer up to 19.54 mln shares by selling shareholders * Files for offer up to 19.54 million shares of co's common stock by selling securityholders Source text for Eikon: Further company coverage:
Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[Entertainment] So ‘tolerant’! Here’s why Chelsea Handler won’t interview Melania Trump

"They told me if Trump was elected anti-immigrant sentiments would be on the rise and they were right."

The post So ‘tolerant’! Here’s why Chelsea Handler won’t interview Melania Trump appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[Science] Trump taps net neutrality foe for FCC chairman

Gabby Morrongiello

President Trump has made Ajit Pai the new chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, following Tom Wheeler's departure last Friday.

Pai had previously served as a Republican member of the FCC before he was chosen to lead the agency under the next administration.

"This afternoon, I was informed that [President Trump] designated me the 34th chairman of the FCC. It is a deeply humbling honor," he tweeted Monday afternoon, adding in a statement that he intends to "bring the benefits of the digital age to all Americans. Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM

[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Trump names net-neutrality critic Ajit Pai as FCC chairman President Donald Trump named Ajit Pai, a Republican member of the Federal Communications Commission, to be the agency’s chairman.
Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[World] Dear Internet, Thank You For Finally Realizing That George W. Bush Is Our Most Adorable President Lovable scamp. Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[Top Picks] Sean Spicer on ending Obama’s executive amnesties: That’s not Trump’s top priority right now "We'll see what Congress moves forward with." Published:1/23/2017 4:50:02 PM
[Politics] GOP senators pitch plan that would let some states keep Obamacare "It is nearly impossible to keep the benefits of the Affordable Care Act without keeping the whole thing,” said Senate Democratic leader Charles E. Schumer. Published:1/23/2017 4:18:35 PM
[World] Intelligence Agencies NSA FBI CIA Investigating Michael Flynn Trump Staff Russia Contact Communications

Several American intelligence agencies continue to investigate whether retired Gen. Michael Flynn's contact with at least one Russian official violates federal laws.

Published:1/23/2017 4:18:35 PM
[Security] The New iOS Update Fixes Big Security Holes, So Get It Now
The New iOS Update Fixes Big Security Holes, So Get It Now
Apple just released an iOS update full of security fixes that you need to jump on. The post The New iOS Update Fixes Big Security Holes, So Get It Now appeared first on WIRED.
Published:1/23/2017 4:18:34 PM
[AFL-CIO] Trump Wins The Unions: Teamsters Praise TPP Withdrawal, Labor Chiefs Describe "Incredible" Meeting With Trump

Shortly after Donald Trump made good on one of his core campaign promises on Monday morning by signing an executive order formally withdrawing the U.S. from the Trans-Pacific Partnership free-trade deal, Trump told labor union leaders that he would renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement "at the appropriate time."

The remarks came at the start of a meeting at the White House with leaders of construction, carpenters, plumbers and sheet metal unions, during which Trump pledged to stop trade deals that harmed American workers. 

According to the White House, participants included North America's Building Trades Unions President Sean McGarvey, Laborers' International Union of North America President Terry O'Sullivan, SMART sheet metal workers' union President Joseph Sellers, United Brotherhood of Carpenters President Doug McCarron and Mark McManus, president of the United Association that represents plumbers, pipefitters, welders and others. The union meeting also included several local union officials and follows a gathering of 12 chief executives of large companies at the White House to discuss revitalizing the U.S. manufacturing economy.

“This is a group that I know well,” Trump said referring to the union bosses, adding “we’re going to put a lot of people back to work” and “stop the ridiculous trade deals.”

When Trump said the administration “just officially terminated TPP,” it prompted applause from the labor chiefs (and this time it certainly wasn't by paid members of the studio audience), who later described their meeting with Trump as "incredible."

Trump also added that he doesn’t blame former President Obama for decades of bad trade deals, which - at least mathematically - makes sense.

But even more notable, was the dramatic pivot by the US labor unions, historically stalwart democrat supporters, who have suddenly emerged as big supporters of Trump policies, and perhaps no one more so than AFL-CIO President Rich Trumka who said TPP withdrawal is "a good first step toward building trade policies that benefit workers."

As a reminder, nearly all major unions endorsed Trump's rival, Hillary Clinton, during the presidential election campaign: they now appear to be shifting their allegiance.

Below is the full statement issued by the Teamsters' Jimmy Hoffa, who said "Withdrawal from TPP the Right Choice for U.S. Trade Policy"

The following is a statement from Teamsters General President James P. Hoffa on President Donald Trump signing an executive order to formally withdraw the United States from the Trans Pacific Partnership. 

 

“Today, President Trump made good on his campaign promise to withdraw the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership. With this decision, the president has taken the first step toward fixing 30 years of bad trade policies that have cost working Americans millions of good-paying jobs.

 

“The Teamsters Union has been on the frontline of the fight to stop destructive trade deals like the TPP, China PNTR, CAFTA and NAFTA for decades. Millions of working men and women saw their jobs leave the country as free trade policies undermined our manufacturing industry. We hope that President Trump’s meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto on Jan. 31 opens a real dialogue about fixing the flawed NAFTA.

 

“We take this development as a positive sign that President Trump will continue to fulfill his campaign promises in regard to trade policy reform and instruct the USTR to negotiate future agreements that protect American workers and industry.”

And with that statement, pundit attention will closely follow the Trump-Trumka relationship which promises to be one of the more interesting in US politics over the next few years. As Axios points out, "Trump and top advisers like Steve Bannon see an opportunity to destroy traditional political alliances. Their theory worked in the election: They peeled white working class voters (and many union households) away from the Democrats. Now, they believe that delivering major items for this constituency — watch also for a confrontation with Big Pharma — could further wreck the Democrats' hold on organized labor."

Published:1/23/2017 4:18:34 PM
[Forests] Wacky Claim: Forests ‘held their breath’ during global warming hiatus From the UNIVERSITY OF EXETER comes this wacky headline: Forests ‘held their breath’ during global warming hiatus, research shows Global forest ecosystems, widely considered to act as the lungs of the planet, ‘held their breath’ during the most recent occurrence of a warming hiatus, new research has shown Global forest ecosystems, widely considered to act… Published:1/23/2017 4:18:34 PM
[World] House Republicans praise Air Force secretary nominee

Jacqueline Klimas

Members of the House Armed Services Committee who previously served with President Trump's choice to lead the Air Force praised her as a competent and qualified choice.

Heather Wilson graduated from the Air Force Academy and previously served in the House as a Republican from New Mexico. Published:1/23/2017 4:18:34 PM

[Science] Schumer to Trump: 'We await real action on trade'

Susan Crabtree

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer ripped President Trump for pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal in one of his first actions rather than declaring China a currency manipulator, as he promised to do his first day in office.

Schumer said he and Trump have similar views on trade and their concern over the impact of big, multi-country trade deals on Americans workers. Published:1/23/2017 4:18:34 PM

[marketsNews] UPDATE 3-Motor racing-Liberty completes F1 takeover, Ecclestone replaced LONDON, Jan 23 (Reuters) - Bernie Ecclestone's 40-year reign as Formula One's commercial supremo ended on Monday with the sport's new owners Liberty Media replacing the 86-year-old Briton with...
Published:1/23/2017 4:18:34 PM
[Feminism] Going Gaga: A Very Judd Sequel (Steven Hayward) I see that my tongue-in-cheek post yesterday about Ashley Judd going gaga at the Wymyn’s March generated a lot of comments, and I do apologize sincerely for not attaching a warning to viewers about it. But as we’re inquiring after celebrities going gaga, it sent me racking my brain trying to remember what it was that my old mentor M. Stanton Evans once said about Lady Gaga, who as you Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[World] SNL Writer Who Called Barron Trump a 'Homeschool Shooter' Has Been Suspended Indefinitely “NBC will not be commenting.” Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[The Blog] Former Clinton spokesman implies Trump is a tyrant "...Sic Semper Tyrannis — Thus Always to Tyrants." Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[Entertainment] Millie Bobby Brown Is the Latest Celeb to Score a Calvin Klein Campaign Millie Bobby Brown, Calvin Klein Millie Bobby Brown is Calvin Klein's latest celebrity muse. The Stranger Things starlet joins an exceptionally long list of A-listers who've lent their Hollywood good lucks to...
Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[topics:organisations/conservative-party] Even Remainers think May's deal respects the referendum result, and five other charts explaining what Brits want from Brexit Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[new jersey politics] In Plainfield, the Rev. Brown Kicks off Her Mayoral Campaign In a packed restaurant with outside overflow, former Plainfield Councilwoman At Large, Reverend Tracey L. Brown announced her candidacy for Mayor. “Plainfield is one of the best cities in the state of NJ, but lacks the leadership needed to take us to the next level," said Brown. "I have a love for this city and I’d like to think this city has a love for me. During these difficult times we are facing, I truly believe I can be the leader that this city needs.” Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[Politics] BREAKING: Ajit Pai is Trump’s new FCC Chairman This is fantastic news. Trump has picked Ajit Pai, an opponent of Net Neutrality, as the new FCC Chairman: BREAKING: Ajit Pai has been named the new chairman of the FCC by . . . Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[Politics] BREAKING: Ajit Pai is Trump’s new FCC Chairman This is fantastic news. Trump has picked Ajit Pai, an opponent of Net Neutrality, as the new FCC Chairman: BREAKING: Ajit Pai has been named the new chairman of the FCC by . . . Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[Apps] Yahoo surprises no one by pushing back its Verizon acquisition close date yahoo-mail-dead Yahoo reported its fourth quarter earnings to date, where as usual the financial metrics don’t really matter because the company is in the process of getting acquired by Verizon. There is, however, a very interesting footnote: the acquisition, expected to close in the first quarter, is getting pushed back to the second quarter this year. The company offered basically no explanation for… Read More
Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[Entertainment] Gasp! Another writer questions Taylor Swift’s dedication to female empowerment

Not preaching progressive politics is likely how Taylor Swift has managed to amass and those 83 million Twitter followers.

The post Gasp! Another writer questions Taylor Swift’s dedication to female empowerment appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[Business ] iPhone assembler Foxconn may invest $7B in US display plant Foxconn, a major assembler of iPhones and other electronics, may invest $7 billion in a plant for manufacturing display panels that would create as many as 50,000 jobs in the U.S. Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[Markets] Looking to get a mortgage in 2017? Here’s what you need to know Over the next 12 months, here are some things to keep in mind as you consider your financing.
Published:1/23/2017 4:18:33 PM
[PAID] Yahoo Sees Verizon Deal Taking Longer Than Expected Yahoo, subject of two huge data breaches that have cast a shadow over its deal with Verizon Communications Inc., pushed back its expected closing date for the transaction, citing “work required to meet closing conditions.” Published:1/23/2017 4:18:32 PM
[Eagle Daily Investor] Income investment expert Bryan Perry shares with you his view that may help to guard your portfolio against inflation. Published:1/23/2017 4:18:32 PM
[] Schumer Delaying Pompeo's Confirmation as Head of CIA After Having Promised to Confirm All NatSec Heads By Last Friday Senator Burr has a pointed summation: "He lied." So what's this about? Here's what I think it's about: The Democrats are banking on a lunatic scenario whereby Michael Flynn or others on Trump's staff are found to have conspired with... Published:1/23/2017 4:18:32 PM
[WFC] Wells Fargo: When The Dust Settles Published:1/23/2017 3:48:00 PM
[PAID] Apple Takes a Bite Out of Qualcomm The timing of la lawsuit throws completion of the NXP Semiconductors deal into question, along with future royalties. Published:1/23/2017 3:48:00 PM
[de321a6a-cde8-4f5e-aeec-015de8a0b288] Heather Mac Donald: Who really has the 'darker' vision of America -- the Left or Donald Trump? What is a better word for the more than 6,000 black men shot dead on the streets in 2015? The media have been clucking their disapproval at the “darkness” of Donald Trump’s inaugural speech... Published:1/23/2017 3:48:00 PM
[Across the Curve] "Sell The Inauguration" - Dow & Dollar Drop As Bonds & Bullion Pop

Was it really that easy - Buy The Election (hope), Sell The Inauguration (reality)?...

 

The Dow continues to cling to unchanged for 2017 (small caps red)...

 

Since the inauguration...

 

VIX was the main play thing in American markets again (but The Dow ended down for the 6th day in the last 7... NOTE - the overnight futures ramp dragged cash up to perfectly tag stops at Trump Address highs...

 

Europe's VIX spiked most in 4 months today, above 17...

 

Notably, Treasury VIX remains notably elevated relative to Equity VIX post-Trump...

With SKEW at over 146, markets have only been more fearful of a collapse twice in its 27 year history...

Breadth remains divergent for the S&P 500...

 

But Kuwait is in panic melt-up mode...

 

Bank stocks dropped once again (contining the trend of up-down-up-down started since the beginning of 2017)...

 

Notably XLF - the US financials ETF - has fallen to key 50-day moving average...

 

QCOM was crushed but it didn't really help AAPL...

 

While the biggest Emerging Market ETF ripped higher today (as the dollar dropped), we note that it suffered a 'death cross'...

 

While health insurers all tumbled on the the Aetna, Humana deal blockage, only Aetna held on to losses...

 

Trumphoria is stalling as financial conditions have tightened post-election...

 

The 30Y Treasury yield fell back below 3.00% - notably, the 30Y yield has gone nowhere since 2 days after the election...

 

Treasury yields fell across the curve with the long-end outperforming...(note bonds did sell off after Europe closed)

 

Two words - "policy error"?

 

The Dollar Index extended its losses from Friday afternoon, stalling at Fed rate-hike lows...

Yen and Sterling strength were the heaviest weights on the dollar index today but everything was bid against the greenback...

 

While not the perfect analog, one wonders if the post fiscal year spike in the USD is starting to fade once again...

 

Crude slide despite USD weakness but copper gained...

 

Gold closed at its highest since Nov 17th...

 

Bonus Chart: Turning Japanese?

 

Published:1/23/2017 3:48:00 PM
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