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[SPY] 5 Key Charts For 2018; Some Are Close To Flashing Yellow Published:4/21/2018 6:32:50 AM
[Entertainment] VH1 Divas Live at 20: A Look Back at the Major Music Moment That Almost Never Happened VH1 Divas Live, 1998, Mariah Carey, Aretha Franklin, Carole KingGloria. Shania. Celine. Mariah. Aretha. No, we're not announcing our nominations for America's Mount Rushmore of Music--although, all we can think about now is who we have to...
Published:4/21/2018 6:32:50 AM
[US News] David Hogg responds to group attempting to loosen gun laws with a ‘??’ emoji

Now, THIS is funny… Parkland student activist David Hogg praised the ACLU for this tweet putting schools “on notice” over their disciplinary actions against any student who participated in the 4/20 walkout to protest gun violence: Public schools are on notice: You can't discipline students more harshly for gun violence walkouts than missing class for […]

The post David Hogg responds to group attempting to loosen gun laws with a ‘??’ emoji appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/21/2018 6:32:50 AM
[Markets] Dow Jones 30 and NASDAQ 100 markets rally during the week, but show signs of resistance US stock markets rally during the week but pulled back enough to form shooting stars in both the Dow Jones 30 and the NASDAQ 100. That’s interesting, because it shows that we are perhaps struggling to go higher, and we could see a bit more downward pressure. However, we also have plenty of support underneath. Published:4/21/2018 6:03:05 AM
[Media] Chris Hayes gets fact checked — HARD! — on Hillary Clinton/James Comey

Shot… MSNBC’s Chris Hayes thinks that the memos “former FBI Director James Comey gave to a friend outside of the government” that “contained information that officials now consider classified” is “exactly what happened to Hillary Clinton where “other entities retroactively considering something classified after its creation/dissemination”: The amazing irony is that this is exactly what happened to […]

The post Chris Hayes gets fact checked — HARD! — on Hillary Clinton/James Comey appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/21/2018 6:03:05 AM
[Film] Is this the year that Marvel’s superheroes finally topple Star Wars?
Is this the year that Marvel’s superheroes finally topple Star Wars?
IS THIS the year that Marvel finally tops Star Wars? Judging by early box-office figures and a new Fandango movie poll, this could indeed be the turning point when the Avengers prove more popular than the Rebel Alliance. Ever since Disney-owned Lucasfilm rebooted the space movie franchise in 2015, the biggest Star Wars film of […]
Published:4/21/2018 6:03:04 AM
[Politics] What They Told Us: Reviewing Last Week’s Key Polls

First, it was porn star Stormy Daniels. Now it’s former FBI Director James Comey who’s firing away publicly at President Trump. But Daniels and Comey aren’t faring too well from a public opinion standpoint, while the president’s job approval ratings remain at or near the 50% mark.

Published:4/21/2018 6:03:04 AM
[World] Giuliani adds toughness, star power to legal team for Trump WEST PALM BEACH, Florida (AP) — For weeks, President Donald Trump had grown increasingly frustrated with the cable news chatter that he couldn't hire a big-name attorney for his legal team. Published:4/21/2018 5:39:40 AM
[Markets] Dow Jones 30 and NASDAQ 100 traders sell during Friday session US stock markets were a bit soft on Friday, rolling over and showing signs of exhaustion. Higher interest rates continue to weigh upon the Dow Jones 30 and the NASDAQ 100, but I think there’s plenty of support underneath to eventually turn things back around. Published:4/21/2018 5:39:39 AM
[Society] Must-See Moments: The Comey Memos

The Daily Signal’s Facebook Live show “Top 10” features the top news stories of the week—many of which went misreported by the mainstream media and... Read More

The post Must-See Moments: The Comey Memos appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:4/21/2018 5:39:39 AM
[topics:things/uk-weather] Hail and thunderstorms to hit parts of UK as heatwave continues for the South East Published:4/21/2018 5:39:39 AM
[Entertainment] Jenna Jameson explains her ‘small break from Twitter,’ and it was for a really, really good reason [video]

We haven’t covered Twitchy regular Jenna Jameson for a few days, and here’s the awesome reason why… She’s been off Twitter being a mom and watching her little girl start to walk. Check it out: Reason I took a small break from Twitter. I have a new walker! pic.twitter.com/bGLb2xcwSP — Jenna Jameson (@jennajameson) April 20, […]

The post Jenna Jameson explains her ‘small break from Twitter,’ and it was for a really, really good reason [video] appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/21/2018 5:39:39 AM
[Politics] America Is Mocked By a Purblind Press That Is Vulnerable We are living through an era when the Western democracies are generally reassessing a great deal of assumed conventional liberal wisdom, and have been conducted in this direction by political leadership that is often disparaged in our mainstream press as disreputable rabble-rousing.The most remarkable aspect of it is no longer that there have been sharp populist turns in the American, British, German, Italian, French, Hungarian, Polish, Czech, Austrian and other electorates (including... Published:4/21/2018 5:39:39 AM
[World] N. Korea, setting stage for talks, halts nuclear, ICBM tests SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea announced that it will suspend nuclear tests and intercontinental ballistic missile launches ahead of its summits with Seoul and Washington, but stopped short of suggesting it has any intention of giving up its hard-won nuclear arsenal. Published:4/21/2018 5:05:23 AM
[Politics] Mylan Executives Donate Big Money to Manchin

Executives at Mylan N.V., the pharmaceutical company that drew controversy for increasing the price of EpiPen devices nearly 400 percent, donated heavily to Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin's reelection campaign as the company planned to lay off more than 400 workers in his home state of West Virginia.

The post Mylan Executives Donate Big Money to Manchin appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:4/21/2018 5:05:22 AM
[dbaa4fc1-0a9d-47e7-8ae2-863babc3c410] 'Smallville' actress Allison Mack arrested for alleged sex cult involvement “Smallville” actress Allison Mack was arraigned on Friday at a federal courthouse in New York following her arrest on sex trafficking and conspiracy to commit forced labor charges as part an alleged sex cult, Fox News confirmed Friday. Published:4/21/2018 5:05:22 AM
[Alarmism] 18 examples of the spectacularly wrong predictions made around the first “Earth Day” in 1970 Tomorrow, Sunday, April 22, is Earth Day 2018 In the May 2000 issue of Reason Magazine, award-winning science correspondent Ronald Bailey wrote an excellent article titled “Earth Day, Then and Now” to provide some historical perspective on the 30th anniversary of Earth Day. In that article, Bailey noted that around the time of the first Earth Day… Published:4/21/2018 5:05:22 AM
[Arizona] Republicans Should Be Panicking About the Blue Surge in the Suburbs A Democrat in Arizona's special election has erased the Republican's 10-point lead. Published:4/21/2018 5:05:22 AM
[Markets] Barron's: This tech play debuted with a healthy pop — here’s how to play the stock While shares in Siemens Healthineers have danced higher so far since debuting last month, investors might not want to bet that big gains will continue for the medical-technology stock.
Published:4/21/2018 5:05:22 AM
[] EMT 04/21/18 This EMT needs fluffier pillows.... Published:4/21/2018 5:05:22 AM
[World] N. Korea, setting stage for talks, halts nuclear, ICBM tests SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea announced that it will suspend nuclear tests and intercontinental ballistic missile launches ahead of its summits with Seoul and Washington. But it stopped short of suggesting it has any intention of giving up its hard-won nuclear arsenal. Published:4/21/2018 4:32:35 AM
[topics:things/migrants] Shipping landing lists back Windrush migrants' case Published:4/21/2018 4:32:35 AM
[storytype:standard] Threatened 700-year-old Banyan tree put on intravenous drip Published:4/21/2018 4:03:41 AM
[SPY] The Fed Guides For The Best But Prepares For The Worst Published:4/21/2018 3:34:35 AM
[f09584ed-eb65-4f03-be29-b1d3d1f7c295] How long will I be allowed to remain a Christian? To say that Christians and Christianity are under a withering and brutal attack in certain areas of the world would be an understatement. Published:4/21/2018 3:34:35 AM
[Comedy] Schlumped

When someone is so fucked up from a variety of drugs that they become immobile or it becomes extremely difficult to move.

Yo that nigga schlumped off the oxys and that Killa kush bro.

Published:4/21/2018 2:31:54 AM
[topics:things/dogs] Dog feared to have cancer had actually eaten four teddy bears Published:4/21/2018 2:02:51 AM
[International Relations] North Korean Leader Says ‘We No Longer Need’ Nuclear or Missile Tests The announcement by Kim Jong-un came less than a week before he meets with the president of South Korea. Published:4/21/2018 2:02:50 AM
[topics:things/crime] DNA breakthrough brings arrest in one of Britain's longest unsolved child killings Published:4/21/2018 1:33:16 AM
[World] Natalie Portman addresses snub of 'Jewish Nobel,' backlash JERUSALEM (AP) — Actress Natalie Portman has snubbed a prestigious prize known as the "Jewish Nobel," saying she did not want her attendance to be seen as an endorsement of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Published:4/21/2018 12:31:48 AM
[fcbcf139-cc6d-4e25-8303-793c8155650d] Taylor Swift deals with third alleged stalker this month, authorities say Taylor Swift has millions of fans around the world, but she also continues to draw unwanted attention, authorities say. Published:4/21/2018 12:31:47 AM
[Politics] Britain to ban Disposable Plastic – Cotton Buds, Drink Stirrers, Drinking Straws… Guest essay by Eric Worrall The UK Government has announced a ban on cotton buds, drink stirrers and plastic drinking straws to combat the “scourge” of plastic pollution. Cotton buds and plastic straws could be banned in England next year Consultation to start later this year as Theresa May continues drive against single-use plastic waste… Published:4/21/2018 12:31:47 AM
[Markets] First Quarter GDP Could Be Weaker Than What Republicans Are Hoping For The Federal Reserve of Atlanta does a rolling estimate of GDP growth each quarter. Its current forecast for the March quarter is 2.0%, which would be disappointing for Republicans since they passed the tax cuts late last year. Published:4/21/2018 12:02:22 AM
[PAID] Mr. Comey's Bad Week His memos to himself about Trump don’t help his public claims. Published:4/20/2018 11:33:02 PM
[Christianity] Will Atheists, LGTBQ, and other Leftists join Forces Against Christians in America?

We’re beginning to see some consistency among atheists and homosexuals. Neither group can account for morality in their systems. Atheists are materialists. Matter cannot produce morality. DNA neither knows nor cares about what anyone does. That would include Muslims throwing homosexuals off of high buildings to their deaths. Homosexuals think that once they get rid of ...

The post Will Atheists, LGTBQ, and other Leftists join Forces Against Christians in America? appeared first on Godfather Politics.

Published:4/20/2018 11:33:01 PM
[Christianity] Will Atheists, LGTBQ, and other Leftists join Forces Against Christians in America?

We’re beginning to see some consistency among atheists and homosexuals. Neither group can account for morality in their systems. Atheists are materialists. Matter cannot produce morality. DNA neither knows nor cares about what anyone does. That would include Muslims throwing homosexuals off of high buildings to their deaths. Homosexuals think that once they get rid of ...

The post Will Atheists, LGTBQ, and other Leftists join Forces Against Christians in America? appeared first on Godfather Politics.

Published:4/20/2018 11:33:01 PM
[Entertainment] Grey's Anatomy Renewed for Season 15 and Becomes ABC's Longest-Running Drama Ever Ellen Pompeo, Grey's Anatomy Season 14That sounds you just heard is Grey's Anatomy making history. While it may have seemed like a foregone conclusion, especially with star Ellen Pompeo's massive new contract in...
Published:4/20/2018 11:33:01 PM
[PAID] U.S. Probes Wireless Carriers' Work on SIM Card Alternative The U.S. Justice Department is investigating whether U.S. wireless carriers and an industry trade group teamed up to make it harder for cellphone subscribers to switch providers. Published:4/20/2018 11:02:45 PM
[1747b963-1f61-400a-a806-bfd848b1987c] Natalie Portman to skip 'Jewish Nobel' ceremony, clarifies reason for decision U.S. actress Natalie Portman, this year's recipient of a prize dubbed the "Jewish Nobel," has pulled out of the June awards ceremony in Israel because of extreme distress over recent events in the country, the Genesis Prize Foundation said. Published:4/20/2018 11:02:43 PM
[Government] Liberal Lawyer: I Defend Trump because the ACLU Won’t

Leftwing law professor Alan Dershowitz has been under almost constant attack in recent months because of his perceived “defense” of President Trump in the media. Here’s the thing… Dershowitz isn’t really “defending Trump” per se, he’s actually about the business of defending our civil liberties. Sadly, he seems to be the only person on the ...

The post Liberal Lawyer: I Defend Trump because the ACLU Won’t appeared first on Godfather Politics.

Published:4/20/2018 11:02:39 PM
[Right Column] Delingpole: Liberals Furious that New Head of NASA Is a Climate Change Skeptic
Published:4/20/2018 10:37:03 PM
[worldNews] North Korea says will stop nuclear tests, scrap test site SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea will immediately suspend nuclear and missile tests and scrap its nuclear test site and instead pursue economic growth and peace, the North's state media said on Saturday, ahead of planned summits with South Korea and the United States.
Published:4/20/2018 10:37:03 PM
[Markets] Russia Exposes British Lies On Skripal, But Trail Leads To US

Authored by M.K. Bhadrakumar via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

Moscow says it has proof that the agent used in the UK attack is a chemical weapon patented in the US. So was this a covert operation aimed at ratcheting up tensions between the West and Russia?

The sensational case of the poisoning of the ex-MI6 agent and former Russian military intelligence colonel Sergei Skripal on March 4 in Salisbury, in the UK, is becoming more and more curious. Under a blinding spotlight from Moscow, the British allegation regarding a Russian hand in the poisoning of Skripal is getting exposed. An engrossing plot in big-power politics is also unfolding. There is stuff here for a Le Carre novel.

Are we witnessing a replay of the false flag Gulf of Tonkin attack of August 1964, the imaginary “incident” concocted by the US military to provide legal and political justification for deploying American forces in South Vietnam and for commencing open warfare against North Vietnam?

To recap, Britain alleged without any empirical evidence that a military grade nerve agent of a type known as Novichok was used in Salisbury, saying it was originally developed in the former Soviet Union, and therefore, Moscow’s hand – possibly, even President Vladimir Putin’s hand – was “highly likely”.

Moscow has maintained, on the other hand, that it had destroyed all its chemical weapons and an Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) investigation verified and testified to that.

The British allegation quickly morphed into a large-scale expulsion of Russian diplomats (over 100 of them) by western capitals, under heavy pressure from Washington and London. The US alone expelled 60 Russian diplomats, while Britain expelled 23.

Egg on May’s face

Britain is studiously ignoring the Russian requests for samples of the chemical agent used in the Salisbury attack and for consular access to be granted to the former spy’s daughter Yulia. Meanwhile, Britain instead approached the OPCW to investigate.

The OPCW has now responded that it cannot identify the country of origin of the chemical agent used in the Salisbury attack.

There is egg on PM Theresa May’s face.

However, Russians managed to get their hands on the report prepared for the OPCW by its reputed laboratory in Spiez, the Swiss Center for Radiology and Bacteriological Analysis. According to the Swiss lab’s report, the chemical formula used in the Salisbury attack has been in service in the US, the UK and other NATO countries. Furthermore, neither the Soviet Union nor Russia “ever developed or stockpiled similar chemical weapons.”

That’s more egg on May’s face.

Now comes the bombshell. On April 18, Moscow disclosed that it has formally handed over to the OPCW proof to the effect that the Novichok agent purportedly used in the Salisbury attack actually happens to be patented as a chemical weapon in 2015 in the US and produced in that country. (By the way, unlike Russia, the US is yet to destroy its chemical weapon stockpiles, as required under the Chemical Weapons Convention of 1997.)

Now, not only the British government but Washington too has some explaining to do.

Was Skripal attack a covert op by the West?

Simply put, the Salisbury attack might even have been an Anglo-American joint covert operation undertaken with the ulterior motive to ratchet up tensions between the West and Russia. (The Washington Post reported on Monday that the former National Security Advisor HR McMaster might have hoodwinked President Donald Trump into approving the expulsion under the wrong notion that similar numbers of expulsions by European allies was in the pipeline. In the event though, the Europeans made only token expulsions.)

Britain is steadily edging away from the Skripal case, hoping, perhaps, that the matter will die down. But will Moscow let Britain off the hook?

On their part, the Russians seem to be holding back on some explosive information pointing toward the US’s direct complicity in this affair.

Indeed, if this was McMaster’s swan song, the indefatigable Russophobe probably hoped to kill two birds with one shot – push Russia’s relations with the West to a crisis point and second, scotch the prospects of an early US-Russia presidential summit (which Trump wanted.)

McMaster reportedly tried to stop Trump from congratulating Putin on his big victory in the Russian election on March 18 in a phone conversation where they discussed a possible summit meeting in a near future.

How far all this is linked to Trump’s decision on March 22, finally, to sack McMaster as his National Security Advisor is yet another template. By the standards of military people, McMaster probably has the reputation of being an “intellectual” but the man proved to be an unvarnished Cold Warrior fit for a museum.

From all accounts, Trump never trusted McMaster and the two had an acrimonious relationship. The one-star general who was overlooked for promotion by the Pentagon was Trump’s default choice following the abrupt departure of Michael Flynn.

Michael Wolff narrates a hilarious episode in his book ‘Fire and Fury’ that during the job interview for the NSA post, McMaster tried to impress Trump when he showed up in military uniform with his silver star and launched into a wide-ranging lecture on global strategy. After, Trump reportedly remarked, “That guy bores the shit out of me.”

Published:4/20/2018 10:37:03 PM
[US News] ‘INFILTRATED’! This scene at a new Chick-fil-A in Manhattan might trigger Bill de Blasio & The New Yorker

To the progressive safe spaces!

The post ‘INFILTRATED’! This scene at a new Chick-fil-A in Manhattan might trigger Bill de Blasio & The New Yorker appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 10:37:03 PM
[World] N. Korea, setting stage for talks, halts nuclear, ICBM tests SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea announced Saturday it will suspend nuclear tests and intercontinental ballistic missile launches ahead of its summits with Seoul and Washington, but stopped well short of suggesting it has any intention of giving up its nuclear weapons or scale back its production of missiles and their related component parts. Published:4/20/2018 10:01:10 PM
[427a22d4-0969-47dd-b770-d13749f2cee6] The man who defeated Hitler Dietrich Bonhoeffer's faith gave him the courage to stand against the greatest evil of the 20th century. Published:4/20/2018 10:01:06 PM
[Politics] Police to MS-13 gang ordering cop killings – ‘You’re a bunch of COWARDS!!’ As if things weren’t bad enough for cops, a scumbag MS-13 gang member put out an order to indiscriminately kill police. Cops are calling them out, saying that they will get arrested: . . . Published:4/20/2018 10:01:06 PM
[Markets] Harvard Teens Raise $1M For Crypto Fund Despite "Not Knowing A Lot"

Teens are now setting up crypto hedge funds despite not having much of a clue as to what they're doing. And they don't seem to have trouble finding capital, either.

If you are in the process of trying to gauge whether or not the world of crypto is achieving new highs in bubble status, then look no further than today’s perfunctory Bloomberg article on the crypto world.

Our daily dose of crypto "must have" news comes in the form of an article, published Friday, that details several Harvard undergrad students who woke up one morning and decided they wanted to start a crypto hedge fund. Bloomberg reported,

Bushra Hamid, the 19-year-old daughter of Syrian immigrants, has teamed up with three schoolmates to form Plympton Capital, a hedge fund for investing in digital currencies. Hamid says they aim to launch in six to eight weeks, starting with $1 million. Plympton, named for a street in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has already raised $700,000 from friends and family.

And to give you some indication as to exactly how ready people are to throw money at crypto right now, the article states that they were able to raise $700,000 million from family and friends despite the fact that they may have no clue as to what they are doing:

“We don’t necessarily know a lot, but they have full trust in us,” Hamid said.

Friends - rather, investors - in the fund seem to be a little light on the "due diligence" angle, investing because founder Hamid had one run of success with cryptos:

The quartet began meeting to discuss cryptocurrencies last year, when they each invested in coins independently. Hamid said that last fall she started the Harvard Undergraduate Blockchain Group, in which more than 300 students have shown an interest. Hamid won’t say how much she made on crypto, but a friend was impressed enough with the returns to spur her to action.

“He was instantly, instantly intrigued,” she said. “He said, ‘Start something and I’ll invest.’

The article continues:

While many tech-savvy individual investors have long dabbled in cryptocurrencies, funds became interested in the last few years. About 226 have opened so far, most of them within the last year, managing as much as $5 billion in capital, according to Autonomous Research LLP.

Bitcoin, the bellwether for the entire market, has retreated from last year’s heights, sending the crypto fund returns down 48 percent in the first quarter, according to the Eurekahedge Crypto-Currency Hedge Fund Index.

The article states that they are banking on people their age - and as well as strategies like "technical analysis" to find the right investments:

The Plympton group is banking on the youth movement. A recent online survey of about 2,000 adults conducted by Harris Poll for Blockchain Capital showed that 4 percent of millennials -- people 18 to 34 years old -- have owned Bitcoin, twice the rate of the general population. And 16 percent of millennials said they plan to buy Bitcoin in the next five years.

“Some people might see our age, and see this is a new growing space that’s largely driven by the millennials,” Junaid Zubair, another Plympton founder, said. “That allows for a high sense of liability but also passion and interest. There we might have an advantage.”

Plympton’s plan is to deploy technical analysis, arbitrage opportunities, portfolio optimization, and machine learning to find the right investments, Zubair said. He declined to provide more specifics.

Good luck with that. The formation of this fund comes at the height of the crypto adoption boom and at a time where countries are the furthest along with they’ve ever been in trying to regulate cryptos and initial coin offerings.

These teenagers have anointed themselves as experts due to one of them simply buying and holding cryptos in ostensibly benefiting from one ride up. However, now that crypto adoption has reached what seems like someone of a slow down, it’s going to take more than just being lucky or buying and holding to make consistent returns in the crypto space.

We wrote yesterday about the only types of funds making money in crypto right now: market makers, volatility experts and those with net neutral exposure. Bloomberg reported on Thursday:

Funds specializing in virtual currency market making and arbitrage strategies delivered first-quarter gains even as their mostly bullish peers lost 40 percent on average. That’s a big reversal from last year, when digital assets soared and market-making funds lagged far behind their long-biased counterparts.

Pivot Digital Trading-2, managed by Hong Kong-based Amber AI Group, generated some of the biggest gains among cryptocurrency funds that avoid directional bets. It rose 4.3 percent in March to bring its first-quarter return to 30 percent, according to the firm. Market Neutral Liquidity SP-Institutional, domiciled in the Cayman Islands, earned 5.6 percent in the first quarter, said Cedric Jeanson of BitSpread Group, investment adviser to the portfolio.

The man behind the curtain continues to get his take. The increased volume that comes with crypto's plunge may not be great for traditional “buy-and-hold“ crypto funds or retail investors who only have the means to hold long, but that did not stop market makers, net neutral funds and volatility bettors from cashing in. The article continued: 

The results suggest some managers are finding ways to profit from wild swings in cryptocurrencies without having to predict whether they will rise or fall. Such tactics may appeal to investors who want exposure to cryptocurrencies without their extreme volatility.

Here's a full list of funds that weathered the storm and the methods they used, courtesy of Bloomberg:

We're not sure how fund managers who don't necessarily "know a lot" will be able to engage in these types of strategies, especially if their experience is likely just buying and holding in a Coinbase account. 

Whether or not these Harvard students understand that the only people making money in cryptos right now are those with net neutral exposure where those making a market remains to be seen. But, the fact that there are four partners here, combined with the timing with which they decided to start this fund, has us believing this might be not only the first, but also the last time, we hear about them. 

Published:4/20/2018 10:00:49 PM
[worldNews] North Korea says will stop nuclear tests, abolish test site SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea will immediately suspend nuclear and missile tests and abolish a nuclear test site in a bid to pursue economic growth and peace on the Korean peninsula, the North's state media said on Saturday, ahead of planned summits with South Korea and the United States.
Published:4/20/2018 9:38:18 PM
[Markets] Crimes Of A Monster: Your Tax Dollars At Work

Authored by John Whitehead via The Rutherford Institute,

Let us not mince words.

We are living in an age of war profiteers.

We are living in an age of scoundrels, liars, brutes and thugs. Many of them work for the U.S. government.

We are living in an age of monsters.

Ask Donald Trump. He knows all about monsters. 

Any government that leaves “mothers and fathers, infants and children, thrashing in pain and gasping for air” is evil and despicable, said President Trump, justifying his blatantly unconstitutional decision(in the absence of congressional approval or a declaration of war) to launch airstrikes against Syria based on dubious allegationsthat it had carried out chemical weapons attacks on its own people. “They are crimes of a monster.”

If the Syrian government is a monster for killing innocent civilians, including women and children, the U.S. government must be a monster, too.

In Afghanistan, ten civilians were killed—including three children, one an infant in his mother’s arms—when U.S. warplanes targeted a truck in broad daylight on an open road with women and children riding in the exposed truck bed.

In Syria, at least 80 civilians, including 30 children, were killed when U.S.-led air strikes bombed a school and a packed marketplace.

Then there was a Doctors without Borders hospital in Kunduz that had 12 of its medical staff and 10 of its patients, including three children, killed when a U.S. AC-130 gunship fired on it repeatedly. Some of the patients were burned alivein their hospital beds.

Yes, on this point, President Trump is exactly right: these are, indeed, the crimes of a monster.

Unfortunately, this monster—this hundred-headed gorgon that is the U.S. government and its long line of political puppets (Donald Trump and before him Obama, Bush, Clinton, etc.), who dance to the tune of the military industrial complex—is being funded by you and me.

It is our tax dollars at work here, after all.

Unfortunately, we have no real say in how the government runs, or how our taxpayer funds are used.

We have no real say, but we’re being forced to pay through the nose, anyhow, for endless wars that do more to fund the military industrial complex than protect us, pork barrel projects that produce little to nothing, and a police state that serves only to imprison us within its walls.

Consider: we get taxed on how much we earn, taxed on what we eat, taxed on what we buy, taxed on where we go, taxed on what we drive, and taxed on how much is left of our assets when we die. 

Indeed, if there is an absolute maxim by which the federal government seems to operate, it is that the American taxpayer always gets ripped off. 

This is true whether you’re talking about taxpayers being forced to fund high-priced weaponrythat will be used against us, endless warsthat do little for our safety or our freedoms, or bloated government agencies such as the National Security Agencywith its secret budgets, covert agendas and clandestine activities. Rubbing salt in the wound, even monetary awards in lawsuits against government officials who are found guilty of wrongdoing are paid by the taxpayer.

Not only are American taxpayers forced to “spend more on state, municipal, and federal taxes than the annual financial burdens of food, clothing, and housing combined,” but we’re also being played as easy marks by hustlers bearing the imprimatur of the government. 

With every new tax, fine, fee and law adopted by our so-called representatives, the yoke around the neck of the average American seems to tighten just a little bit more. 

Everywhere you go, everything you do, and every which way you look, we’re getting swindled, cheated, conned, robbed, raided, pickpocketed, mugged, deceived, defrauded, double-crossed and fleeced by governmental and corporate shareholders of the American police state out to make a profit at taxpayer expense.

Yet as Ron Paul observed, “The Founding Fathers never intended a nation where citizens would pay nearly half of everything they earn to the government.”

We are now ruled by a government consumed with squeezing every last penny out of the population and seemingly unconcerned if essential freedoms are trampled in the process. 

If you have no choice, no voice, and no real options when it comes to the government’s claims on your property and your money, you’re not free.

You’re not free if the government can seize your home and your car (which you’ve bought and paid for) over nonpayment of taxes. 

You’re not free if government agents can freeze and seize your bank accounts and other valuables if they merely “suspect” wrongdoing. 

And you’re certainly not free if the IRS gets the first cut of your salary to pay for government programs over which you have no say. 

Somewhere over the course of the past 240-plus years, democracy has given way to kleptocracy  (a government ruled by thieves), and representative government has been rejected in favor of a kakistocracy  (a government run by the most unprincipled citizens that panders to the worst vices in our nature: greed, violence, hatred, prejudice and war) ruled by career politicians, corporations and thieves—individuals and entities with little regard for the rights of American citizens.

As I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, the American kleptocracy continues to suck the American people down a rabbit hole into a parallel universe in which the Constitution is meaningless, the government is all-powerful, and the citizenry is powerless to defend itself against government agents who steal, spy, lie, plunder, kill, abuse and generally inflict mayhem and sow madness on everyone and everything in their sphere.

But what if we didn’t just pull out our pocketbooks and pony up to the federal government’s outrageous demands for more money? 

What if we didn’t just dutifully line up to drop our hard-earned dollars into the collection bucket, no questions asked about how it will be spent? 

What if, instead of quietly sending in our checks, hoping vainly for some meager return, we did a little calculating of our own and started deducting from our taxes those programs that we refuse to support?

If we don’t have the right to decide what happens to our hard-earned cash, then we don’t have very many rights at all. 

If the government can just take from you what they want, when they want, and then use it however they want, you can’t claim to be anything more than a serf in a land they think of as theirs. 

Published:4/20/2018 9:38:18 PM
[Politics] Police to MS-13 gang ordering cop killings – ‘You’re a bunch of COWARDS!!’ As if things weren’t bad enough for cops, a scumbag MS-13 gang member put out an order to indiscriminately kill police. Cops are calling them out, saying that they will get arrested: . . . Published:4/20/2018 9:38:18 PM
[PAID] 4 Cheap Stocks With Growth Potential S&P 500 shares are flying high, but the best deals will be at lower altitudes Published:4/20/2018 9:38:18 PM
[The Blog] Rocket Man no more: North Korea suspending nuclear and ICBM testing

"From April 21, North Korea will stop nuclear tests and launches of intercontinental ballistic missiles."

The post Rocket Man no more: North Korea suspending nuclear and ICBM testing appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 9:00:48 PM
[Markets] The Road To 2025 (Part 3) – USD-Dominated Financial System Will Fall Apart

Authored by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

It’s our currency, but it’s your problem.

– U.S. Treasury Secretary John Connelly to European Finance Ministers, 1971

Today’s post will cover a topic that consumed my thoughts for many years, but one I haven’t discussed much lately. Namely, the terminal nature of a global financial system being propped up artificially by central bank shenanigans.

First, it’s crucial to understand that at the very core of our global economy is a financial system dominated by the U.S. dollar. The USD is a fiat currency directly backed by nothing, the supply of which can be arbitrarily altered and manipulated by a group of unelected bureaucrats in charge of the Federal Reserve. This money system represents the most powerful tool of centralized power on planet earth.

The USD is unique in that it grants the U.S. the “exorbitant privilege”of having a national currency which at the same time serves as the global reserve currency. This was solidified toward the end of World War 2 with the Bretton Woods agreement, and was accepted because the U.S. agreed to offer sovereign nations holding dollars a right to exchange these dollars for gold at a fixed price. This fell apart in 1971, but was shortly replaced with an unofficial “petrodollar” system, which allowed the USD to remain the world reserve currency despite no longer being redeemable in gold.

Before moving on, I want to share a few excerpts from an article I read yesterday titled, The De-Dollarization in China:

Petrodollars emerged when Henry Kissinger dealt with King Fahd of Saudi Arabia, after “Black September” in Jordan.

The agreement was simple. Saudi Arabia had to accept only dollars as payments for the oil it sold, but was forced to invest that huge amount of US currency only in the US financial channels while, in return, the United States placed Saudi Arabia and the other OPEC neighbouring countries under its own military protection.

Hence the turning of the dollar into a world currency, considering the importance and extent of the oil market. Not to mention that this large amount of dollars circulating in the world definitely marginalized gold and later convinced the FED that the demand for dollars in the world washuge and unstoppable.

An unlimited amount of liquidity that kept various US industrial sectors alive but, above all, guaranteed huge financial markets such as the derivatives – markets based on the structural surplus of US liquidity.

Pricing key commodities such as oil, which everyone in the world needs, in USD creates a massive structural support for the dollar versus other government fiat currencies. If other nations constantly have to convert to USD before purchasing commodities, there’s a constant underlying global demand to buy USD on a daily basis. No other country has this sort of structural support for its currency, and it allows the U.S. to be far more fiscally irresponsible than other countries without suffering devastating currency devaluations on the global market.

Despite the tremendous advantage such a system offers the U.S. on the world stage, there haven’t been any rival countries that could realistically challenge it given American economic dominance. This is no longer the case.

As also noted in the article highlighted earlier:

Still today, the US GDP accounts for 22% of world’s GDP, while 80% of international payments are made in dollars.

Hence the United States receives goods from abroad always at comparatively very low prices, while the massive demand for dollars from the rest of the world allows to refinance the US public debt at very low costs.

This is the economic and political core of the issue…

Therefore the United States is about to be ousted as world’s currency due to its continuous series of wars and military failures (former President Cossiga always told me: “The United States is always on the warpath and up in arms, but then it is not able to get out of it”) and, like everyone else, it shall pay for its public debt, which is huge and will be ever more its problem, not ours.

This is absolutely key.

There’s now a huge mismatch between the use of USD in the global financial system and the U.S. share of the world economy. China and Russia are acutely aware of this and have been taking major steps to transition to a more multi-polar currency world. There can be no multi-polar geopolitical world without a multi-polar currency world, which is why they’re working toward dethroning the USD. I believe they will succeed.

Specifically, I think by 2025 the world will have a completely different global financial system from the one chaotically birthed in the 1970s. The USD will lose its total dominance on the world stage, resulting in major implications geopolitically as well as at home. Though plenty of people see this coming, everybody has their own opinion on what comes next. While it can be fun to engage in speculation, nobody really knows what the world financial system will look like in ten or twenty years. Plenty of bureaucrats have their well-oiled plans, and plenty of bloggers are convinced they know, but I promise you, nobody really knows.

Cryptocurrencies have expanded the possibilities greatly. Thanks to Bitcoin, we now have a decentralized, voluntary, open source, free-market global currency. This is one of the most extraordinary creations in human history, and opens up possibilities for our species that never existed before. Sure, nation-states won’t just roll over and give up their money creation addiction any time soon, but the point is we finally have other options and can choose to opt out while still conducting global transactions. In summary, the next few years will be characterized by currency wars, not just between rival nation-states, but also between paranoid and authoritarian nation-states and new free market currencies.

Readers know what I want to see. I will never get excited about transitioning away from the USD just to be under the thumb of another oppressive nation-state currency from Russia or China.

If we want to evolve, explore the limits of human potential and usher in a world of monetary freedom, it’s important to support the key principles represented by Bitcoin. Don’t say “I like the idea, but it’ll be shut-down.” That’s giving up the battle without a fight. I genuinely think we can create a new paradigm for humankind. We have the tools, we just need the will.

Part 1: The Road to 2025 – Prepare for a Multi-Polar World

Part 2: The Road to 2025 (Part 2) – Russia and China Have Had Enough

*  *  *

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Published:4/20/2018 9:00:48 PM
[913dea44-42ac-4128-9b3b-b39c92e0fb9f] Beware of North Korea's nuclear and missile pledge -- Kim's talk is cheap, it's his actions that count North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un’s surprise announcement that his nation will suspend tests of nuclear weapons and missiles and close its nuclear testing site sounds like a momentous victory for the U.S. It’s not – at least, not yet. Published:4/20/2018 9:00:48 PM
[PAID] General Mills Shares Are in the Bargain Aisle It was a bad week for consumer stocks, but some see a bargain as new products promise to jump-start sales growth. Dividend yield: 4.5%. Published:4/20/2018 9:00:48 PM
[] Friday's ONT Has a Certain Je Ne Sais Quoi Thanks for the clarification, I wasn't sure.... Published:4/20/2018 9:00:48 PM
[World] North Korea says it has suspended nuclear, missile testing SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea said Saturday it has suspended nuclear and long-range missile tests and plans to close its nuclear test site ahead of a new round of negotiations with South Korea and the United States. There was no clear indication in the North's announcement if it would be willing to deal away its arsenal. Published:4/20/2018 8:33:06 PM
[Entertainment] How Jennifer Aniston and Selena Gomez's Super Supportive Friendship Came to Be Selena Gomez, Jennifer AnistonThese A-list ladies are supporting each other through it all! Selena Gomez and Jennifer Aniston may seem like a random pairing, but don't get it twisted, because these ladies have...
Published:4/20/2018 8:33:05 PM
[Politics] Broward Sheriff Israel is getting SLAPPED with ‘no confidence’ vote from his officers!! We kinda wondered if cops felt the same way about Broward County Sheriff Israel as the rest of us did, and we’re getting a pretty good indication that they do. They’re getting . . . Published:4/20/2018 8:33:05 PM
[Politics] Broward Sheriff Israel is getting SLAPPED with ‘no confidence’ vote from his officers!! We kinda wondered if cops felt the same way about Broward County Sheriff Israel as the rest of us did, and we’re getting a pretty good indication that they do. They’re getting . . . Published:4/20/2018 8:33:05 PM
[Markets] US Sorghum "Armada" Turns Away From China After Tariffs

China's nearly 200% tariff on imports of US sorghum is already having a profound impact on the global grain trade. And in the latest evidence of how quickly the tariffs have been felt by US producers, Reuters is reporting that an "armada" of cargo ships carrying $216 million of sorghum from the US to China has changed course since Beijing imposed the tariff last week, as grain exporters are suddenly worried about taking a sizable loss on the loads. 

Since the tariff was imposed, the five shipments, which were all destined for China when they were loaded at Texas Gulf Coast export terminals owned by grain merchants Cargill Inc and Archer Daniels Midland Co, are now liable for a hefty deposit to be paid based on the value of the goods. The payment would likely make the shipments unprofitable, according to Reuters.

Sorghum

Beijing announced on Tuesday that it would impose the 178.6% tariff following a brief investigation. That followed the imposition of tariffs as high as 25% on range of products produced in America. In the world of US agricultural products, China has also imposed sanctions on US soybeans - a decision that is expected to create major disruptions for US farmers.

Cargill declined to tell Reuters where the ships that it loaded are heading now that they've been redirected away from China.

The Panamanian-flagged ship called the N Bonanza, was churning its way northeast across the Indian Ocean earlier this week, carrying more than 67,000 tonnes of sorghum from ADM’s elevator in Corpus Christi, Texas, according to Reuters shipping data.

Eleven hours after the anti-dumping deposits were announced, the ship stopped and then slowly tracked northwest.

The RB Eden, a vessel carrying 70,223 tonnes of sorghum loaded at the same ADM terminal, was headed east-northeast through the Indian Ocean off the coast of South Africa. It turned around.

Hours later, the Stamford Eagle - hauling sorghum from Cargill’s elevator in Houston - turned around off the western coast of Mexico.

At least two other vessels have also suddenly changed course: the Ocean Belt and Xing Xi Hai, both loaded at Cargill’s terminal.

It is unclear where the vessels are now heading.

But US exporters aren't the only ones feeling the pain from the tariffs: Suppliers of sorghum on the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic oceans are all hurting

Sorghum is a niche animal feed and a tiny slice of the billions of dollars in exports at stake in the trade dispute between the world’s two largest economies, which threatens to disrupt the flow of everything from steel to electronics.

As of now, the tariffs won't have a significant impact on Archer Daniels or Cargill - two of the world's largest grain merchants. But it is a warning that China won't hesitate to effectiv

"For their overall trade businesses, this is not that substantial. But it’s a warning. If China really does start slapping tariffs on everything, like soybeans and corn, things could get really ugly, really fast," said Bill Densmore, senior director of corporate ratings at Fitch Ratings.

But shipping companies may be forced to discount their cargoes to sell them.

"They’re not in a strong bargaining position considering they’ve got shipments from across the ocean that they have to sell and get the boats cleared out," said economist Daniel O’Brien of Kansas State University in the top U.S. sorghum-producing state.

And falling sorghum prices in Texas have already rattled farmers.

"This tit for tat has to stop, and talks to find reasonable and lasting solutions must begin, for the good of U.S. agriculture and the customers we have spent decades working to win as loyal buyers," said Tom Sleight, president and CEO of the US Grains Council.

But the real reason US producers should worry about an escalating trade war can be found in the backlash to the US's decision to ban sales of semiconductors to China's ZTE, a Chinese smartphone manufacturer.

Across China, citizens rallied in support of ZTE - and condemned the US measures as an attack on China. Restaurants offered ZTE employees free meals. They even "thanked" the US for helping force China to become more self-reliant.

Meanwhile in the US, Trump's aggressive rhetoric has been met with unease and criticism from the business community.

Given that, it's not difficult to imagine which side will be able to hold out longer while striking back with increasingly dramatic penalties.

Published:4/20/2018 8:33:05 PM
[Markets] Workplaces are finally treating mental health days as sick days, even on Broadway Patti Murin canceled an appearance in ‘Frozen’ this week because of a panic attack.
Published:4/20/2018 8:33:05 PM
[World] For Trump, Giuliani adds toughness, star power to legal team WEST PALM BEACH, Florida (AP) — For weeks, President Donald Trump had grown increasingly frustrated with the cable news chatter that he couldn't hire a big-name attorney for his legal team. Published:4/20/2018 8:00:49 PM
[The Blog] Audio: How “John Barron” got Donald Trump on the Forbes 400 list of richest people

The art of the sale.

The post Audio: How “John Barron” got Donald Trump on the Forbes 400 list of richest people appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 8:00:48 PM
[Markets] Nova Scotia Arrests Teen Who Discovered Massive Government Data Breach

A Nova Scotia teenager woke up to 15 police officers raiding his home last Wednesday, after the 19-year-old discovered that the government had uploaded confidential documents to a publicly available database and then took measures to download them. 

"They read us our rights and told us not to talk," said his mother. 

The teen, whose name has been withheld prior to arraignment, was unsatisfied with an answer he received after filling a Freedom of Information request related to a provincial teachers' dispute. He noticed, however, that the URL for the response ended in a long string of digits - and that by simply changing the number (adding or subtracting from it), he had access to other documents provided through similar FoI requests. 

"I decided these are all transparency documents that the government is displaying. I decided to download all of them just to save," the teen told CBC News. "I didn't do anything to try to hide myself. I didn't think any of this would be wrong if it's all public information. Since it was public, I thought it was free to just download, to save," he added.

In response, he wrote a one-line program which grabbed approximately 7,000 public records in order to check them out - which led to the police raid in which authorities seized all the family's electronics - including the phone and computer his father uses for income. 

"They rifled through everything. They turned over mattresses, they took drawers and emptied out drawers, they went through personal papers, pictures," said the teen's mother. "It was totally devastating and traumatic." 

The police also arrested one of the teen's younger brothers as he was walking home from school. Officers also took his 13-year-old sister to question her in a police car. 

"My little ones are asking, 'Will I be able to get a job because we were arrested?'" said the mother. "Our daughter, she was really traumatized, really bad ó brought her to tears, the way they conducted this," said the father.

"People were going into the kitchen, were going into the dining room, going upstairs. They went into the basement. They were [traipsing] through the house, everywhere," added the mother.

"They rifled through everything. They turned over mattresses, they took drawers and emptied out drawers, they went through personal papers, pictures ... It was totally devastating and traumatic."

The 19-year-old faces criminal charges and a possible 10-year prison sentence.

This is eerily similar to what happened to Aaron Swartz when he downloaded millions of public court records with the intention of making them available for free -- only to discover that the courts had routinely failed in their duty to redact sensitive information before making their transcripts available to the public.

When Aaron outed the US courts for failing to take due care with the documents they were meant to be published, revealing that criminals could have been stealing personal information and tracking stalking targets for decades, the FBI came after him. -Boingboing.net

The Nova Scotia teen, charged with "unauthorized use of a computer," says he's been passing the time watching TV and doing paper crosswords because he's no longer allowed to use the internet. He is also worried he'll lose his academic year - which ends in eight weeks.

The 19-year-old facing a criminal charge for downloading files from Nova Scotia's freedom-of-information portal sits in a sofa in his parent's living room in Halifax.

His bedroom is upstairs. That's where police found him sleeping when 15 officers raided the family home last Wednesday morning.

His demeanour is polite, almost meek. When he speaks, his voice is quiet. He could easily pass for younger than 19.  

"Computers have been a part of me for a very long time," he said. -CBC.ca

On Friday, Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil said that the teen "stole" the information, despite the fact that the vast majority of the files having been posted to a public space and redacted prior to release. That said, around 250 of the 7,000 records were prepared for Nova Scotians who requested their own government files - which included un-redacted records that contain sensitive personal information that was never meant for public release

In an interview with CBC news, the 19-year-old says he thought he was "downloading an archive of public information that was supposed to be freely available on the internet."

"I preserve things, I archive the internet. I have history on my computer, and all of that should be saved and preserved," said the teen - who estimates he has around 30 terabytes of online data on hard drives at his home - due to the fact that he has a habit of saving copies of online forums such as 4chan and Reddit, in which content can become difficult to locate over time

The CBC reports that his mother vouches for her son's passion for organizing - even cataloguing his late grandfather's VHS collection of home video and recordings off the television.

"I don't think he did anything wrong. He's a good boy and he saved stuff."

In addition to concerns over his academic progress, the teen also worries about how this will affect his job prospects. "I don't know if I'll be able to get a job if this gets on my record.Ö I don't know what my future will be like," he said. 

"I have never been in the legal system ever in my life.Ö This is the first time for me. All this is first, and it's all new, and I don't know what to do."

"I just had no malicious intent and I shouldn't be charged for this."

Published:4/20/2018 8:00:48 PM
[TC] Orchid Labs is in the process of raising $125 million for its surveillance-free layer atop the internet Orchid Labs, a San Francisco-based startup that’s developing a a surveillance-free layer on top of the internet, has raised a bunch of funding, according to a newly processed SEC filing that shows the year-old startup has closed on $36.1 million. The money comes just five months after Orchid closed on a separate, $4.5 million in funding from […] Published:4/20/2018 8:00:48 PM
[World] North Korea says it has suspended nuclear, missile testing SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea said Saturday it has suspended nuclear and long-range missile tests and plans to close its nuclear test site. Published:4/20/2018 7:34:42 PM
[Markets] Apple and GE Switch Roles; Musk's Super Control of Tesla Explained -- ICYMI Here's what you need to know for Friday, April 20. Published:4/20/2018 7:34:41 PM
[The Blog] Far left protesters target NRA lobbyists’ home

"If I made him uncomfortable at his house, too bad, he deserves it."

The post Far left protesters target NRA lobbyists’ home appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 7:34:41 PM
[Politics] ‘This is a HUGE WIN for President Trump!!’ – CNN correspondent STUNNED CNN’s North Korean correspondent Will Ripley admitted he was “stunned” with the progress that Trump is making with North Korea given their yuge announcement tonight. Watch below: Ripley calls it “extraordinary” and . . . Published:4/20/2018 7:34:41 PM
[Politics] ‘This is a HUGE WIN for President Trump!!’ – CNN correspondent STUNNED CNN’s North Korean correspondent Will Ripley admitted he was “stunned” with the progress that Trump is making with North Korea given their yuge announcement tonight. Watch below: Ripley calls it “extraordinary” and . . . Published:4/20/2018 7:34:41 PM
[Politics] Yes, taxpayer money is going to fund WFP activism After the Working Families Party endorsed Cynthia Nixon, Gov. Cuomo is said to have threatened the funding of nonprofit groups allied with his political enemy. According to WFP leader Bill Lipton, Cuomo told labor leaders they could “lose his number” if they continue to donate to pro-WFP groups like New York Communities for Change, Make... Published:4/20/2018 7:34:41 PM
[Markets] Why The April 14th Missiles-Invasion Of Syria Was A Historic Turning-Point

Authored by Eric Zuesse via The Strategic Culture Foundation,

The April 14th invasion was the apogee, the turning-point downward, for American hegemony, the end of the mono-polar world or U.S. dictatorship that ever since 24 February 1990 the U.S. Government has imposed on all of its foreign allies for them to join the U.S in imposing against Russia — the only other nuclear super-power and thereby the only effective counter-weight to America’s global dictatorship.

The strategy, ever since that time, has been to pick off, one-by-one, Russia’s allies, and bring them into NATO, so as to place missiles right on and near Russia borders, and, effectively, compel Russia to surrender to the will of America’s leaders.

The embarrassing ineffectiveness of the April 14th invasion - it didn’t even get the OPCW, Organization for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons, to cancel its planned investigation of the evidence in Douma Syria regarding whether it was Assad and Putin who have been lying, or instead Trump and his foreign allies who were lying - caps what is actually the U.S. Government’s defeat in its decades-long plan for global hegemony, global dictatorship.

The Washington Post reported, on April 16th, that Trump is angry at his “aides” for their falsehoods, misrepresentations to him about what the result would be if he were to select a particular policy-option — their false advice and predictions on the basis of which he had made the decisions that he had decided, on the basis of their advice, to make, and which results did not happen as they had predicted. It reported that:

Growing angrier, Trump insisted that his aides had misled him about the magnitude of the expulsions [of Russian diplomats]. “There were curse words,” the official said, “a lot of curse words.”

In that news-article was made clear that his “aides” had persuaded him that if he expelled lots of Russian diplomats, he would satisfy not only the American newsmedia but the leaders of allied countries, which would then expel at least as many diplomats as the U.S., in order for the U.S. President to be able to be leading a real “alliance” against Russia, and not to be, essentially, pursuing a go-it-alone anti-Russia policy (and thus hardly any global dictator at all).

The WaPo article indicated that Trump strongly wants to win Putin’s support for his anti-Syria and anti-Iran policies (apparently, Trump is 100% committed to the policies of the royal Saud family and of Israel’s aristocracy, to conquer both Iran and Syria), and that Trump is dumbfounded that European leaders are not following through with the necessary support (of Saudi Arabia’s and of Israel’s policies). (Though George Herbert Walker Bush had intended on 24 February 1990 that the U.S. would be the global dictator; Israel and the Sauds jointly took control of the U.S. Government, and Trump is even more committed to those two aristocracies than Obama was. And, yet, even with the U.S. aristocracy’s support, the Sauds and Israel are failing to achieve their demands.)

Russia resists, and now no reasonable person can question — despite America’s spending ten times what Russia does on the military — that Russia’s weapons are vastly more reliable than America’s are.

(If you click on the video, start viewing at around 1:30:00.) This is a failure also of the corrupt leaderships of America’s allies that joined in the invasion, who now can know that in any country where their billionaires can make profits from war (e.g., Lockheed Martin, BAE, etc.), corruption will flourish even more than ‘defense’ spending does. Why are the Sauds and Israelis being served by America’s foreign policies (against Syria and Iran)? It’s because that is the way for America’s aristocracy to generate wars and to cause the profits of the hundred top military contractors to soar. The only winners are those super-rich who are on the taking side of their government’s expenditures — and, secondarily, their mega-bankers who benefit also from those nations’ continuously soaring debts to fund the permanent-war-for-permanent-‘peace’ economies.

Aristocracies thrive on nothing so much as the sale, to other governments, of wars, and of debts — other governments are their essential market. If an aristocracy’s allies don’t buy, that aristocracy will die. Mainly, aristocrats sell to governments weapons, and then sell, to the public, those governments’ debts.

Finally, the massive corruption in the U.S. military (what Eisenhower had called the “military-industrial complex”) has come home to roost. Not even the projected increases in U.S. ‘defense’ spending (and soaring federal debts) will be able to address the problem — the only result of doing yet more of the same will simply be yet further escalation of the corruption, and of the foreign corpses, cripples, and refugees. For only the most corrupt to be on the receiving end of the benefits cannot be sustained forever. The aristocracies are coming to the end of their tethers, and won’t be able to grab all that they crave to have (which is everything). The U.S. aristocracy’s dream of establishing “Nuclear Primacy” is likewise just a fantasyland.

Russia is now making the commitment to its allies clearer, upping the ante, but if the only allies that the U.S. can get behind its campaign for the Sauds and Israel remain UK and France, then perhaps Trump will prefer a face-saving way out, over invading Russia. However, given the unlimited greed of Trump’s masters, there could be a nuclear war even without any expectation that it would have a ‘winner’. For some people, being (or remaining) king of the hill is even more important than staying alive. Unless some NATO members quit the alliance, the prospect of avoiding World War III will remain unlikely. If Turkey quits NATO, that optimistic prospect will suddenly become likely. Turkey’s President Erdogan holds the most important cards of all.

The Saker remains pessimistic:

Facts [such as this and this] simply don’t matter. And neither does logic. All that matters are perceptions!

And the perception is that “we” (the AngloZionist rulers and their serfs) “kicked” Assad’s “ass” and that “we” will “do it again” if “we” feel like it. That is all that matters in the Empire of Illusions which the AngloZionist Hegemony has become.

The failed missiles-invasion of Syria might be a turning-point in reality; but, if it’s not also a turning-point in the way that Western publics view reality, then WW III will probably come soon. Can the human lemmings be fooled all the way off the cliff? Fooled much farther, we’ll all fall.

Published:4/20/2018 7:34:41 PM
[PAID] MLPs Look Attractive Again, and Yield as Much as 8% Master limited partnerships burned investors before, but the industry has cleaned up its act, oil volumes are rising, and the units are cheap. Published:4/20/2018 7:34:41 PM
[World] Dan Bongino on Murder of Deputies in Florida, MS-13 Threat, Danger to Law Enforcement

Former Secret Service agent and NYPD officer Dan Bongino said cops are increasingly under attack in the United States.

Published:4/20/2018 7:00:55 PM
[World] North Korea says it has suspended nuclear, missile testing SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea said Saturday it has suspended nuclear and long-range missile tests and plans to close its nuclear test site. Published:4/20/2018 7:00:55 PM
[American Ballet Theater] Observed at the YAGP Gala: Ballerinas, Bloggers, Socialites and Olsen Twins This is nothing like 'Black Swan' Published:4/20/2018 7:00:54 PM
[Politics] Dem Congresswoman Rips ‘Ill-Conceived’ DNC Lawsuit Against Trump Campaign: ‘I’m Not Very Supportive Of It’

The post Dem Congresswoman Rips ‘Ill-Conceived’ DNC Lawsuit Against Trump Campaign: ‘I’m Not Very Supportive Of It’ appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:4/20/2018 7:00:54 PM
[Anti-Semitism] Anti-semitic and dumb as a rock, Part Three (Paul Mirengoff) Trayon White is the D.C. Council member who explained that Jewish financiers control the climate and create natural disasters to gain political control. I called him anti-semitic and dumb as a rock. To his credit, White has been trying to make amends. Reportedly, he attended a Passover Seder. In addition he visited the Holocaust Museum. Unfortunately, the museum visit will only reinforce the “dumb as a rock” tag while doing Published:4/20/2018 7:00:54 PM
[Markets] China's Monetary Shell Game

Authored by Jeffrey Snider via Alhambra Investment Partners,

Throughout much of last year, we were told repeatedly that the PBOC was tightening monetary policy. China’s central bank had raised its reverse repo rate twice early on, and then once more last December (and would do so again just last month). These moves coincided with Federal Reserve “rate hikes”, seemingly in line with the whole idea.

Not only that, a “hawkish” PBOC would tend to confirm globally synchronized growth. Shifting stances from the way it had conducted monetary policy during the “rising dollar”, a new directive apparently prioritizing inflation rather than deflation risks is exactly how this central bank would respond to a boom – if it was real.

The narrative, as is usual, contained more inference than evidence. It started with the premise, globally synchronized growth, and then worked backward to find “evidence” of itself. There was never a pickup in Chinese growth, there still isn’t any today, and the PBOC was doing the opposite of tightening particularly later in 2017.

I wrote about these reverse repo theatrics last December under the title Chinese Are Not Tightening, Though They Would Be Thrilled If You Thought That:

It is mere symbolism, which from the Western perspective might seem a bit silly in a “why bother” kind of way, but on that side of the Pacific it is viewed officially as worth the charade so little margin is left in China. For one, PBOC officials know all-too-well that the media will characterize Chinese monetary policy as shifting to, or going further toward, “tightening.” As with both prior “hikes”, the mainstream has dutifully done just that.

And did so again in March. Contrary to all that, there has been a clear downward bias in RMB markets dating back to last October.

What changed in October isn’t exactly clear, but clear enough. Prior, both secured and unsecured funding were being driven by illiquidity not of the policy rate variety but of the more organic kind owing to bank reserve growth that continues to be hugely constrained. The central bank contrary to the Western narrative began to increaseliquidity in those markets. Though it may not seem like it by convention, even the PBOC has to face trade-offs.

They did not, however, use the MLF to the same degree as they had been doing in 2016. The MLF was meant as a targeted gesture, an intentional funneling of funding into only the largest of Chinese banks. It was believed that rather than flood the system with RMB willy nilly, this targeted approach would be more discerning as China’s biggest institutions would take care in how new funding was productively used in the real economy.

It doesn’t seem to have worked out quite in that way. Instead, the big banks began to hoard liquidity for reasons that also aren’t immediately clear (though we can reasonably speculate). Left out of this “reflation” in RMB were smaller and medium-sized real-economy firms.

If the PBOC had been serious about tightening, it would have done a whole lot more than raise its reverse repo 5 bps at a time. I also wrote in December, “If economic and financial conditions were really improving, [RRR] is where monetary policy would respond (you know, like every other time in the past).” Today, they did – only nottightening.

Starting next week, the RRR for large firms will be cut by 100 bps.

This isn’t going to be an isolated maneuver, however, as the PBOC is ordering those banks to use reserves freed up by the reduction to repay MLF borrowings!

We’ve seen this before, in the middle of 2015. This is different, though, and in several important ways.

At root, I continue to believe, is CNY. Beginning early last year, there was a clear choice made to prioritize the currency over every other consideration. Unlike the media, Chinese officials very early on realized the overriding factor in everything (globally) – the “dollar.” Thus, they knew CNY DOWN = BAD.

But how does one reverse that devastating equation? It’s not an easy thing, as it turns out. Authorities tried several times throughout the “rising dollar” period with little success (as noted last week). As a result, they blew through a huge chunk of so-called reserves and the currency dropped anyway as it became self-reinforcing (a run).

To figure out what to do differently, ask yourself, what is it that made CNY a primary target in eurodollar dysfunction? The answer is always risk; prior to 2013, it was widely believed that though China was racking up debt at an alarming rate it would in the end prove entirely manageable made so by a recovery of pre-crisis growth levels. That’s what really changed in early 2014, the realization that maybe there would be no return to that economic state and therefore financial risks were much more than previously believed.

The result was “outflows.”

To combat this perception of risk is therefore two parts simultaneously.

China’s economy needs to be at least stable even if there is no longer any plausible path back to the 2006 economy. Second, the financial system must also be steady so as to buy time in order to try and manage some degree of deleveraging (to stay Japan 1987 rather than have the doomsday debt clock tick far too close to Japan 1989).

The second part is tricky as it almost turns into a loop of circularity; CNY must be stable so that the financial system can be stable so that CNY can be stable. What it means in practice is to reduce all the factors that might be perceived as contributing to its downfall.

Among them, no more “selling UST’s” as the most visible sign of distress (if possible). Instead, the currency is to be given the rock-solid treatment, which given CNY’s historymeans continuing its “dollar” backing. De-dollarization is, at this juncture, being judged as too risky of a proposition.

That would mean great(er) attention to the asset side of the PBOC balance sheet which continues to bleed forex “reserves.” In other words, increases in RMB lending to the market via the MLF or anything else absent an actual increase in forex leaves Chinese RMB more and more unbacked on the money side. Unless forex starts to rise again, which appears very unlikely (CNY rose for months, and they still bled), there is only so much the PBOC can do through these RMB windows without breaking what sure looks like an imposed (policy?) limit (shown above).

So, you don’t want to destabilize CNY by leaving RMB (bank reserves) more and more unbacked, so why not then make big banks pay down the MLF? That would create more margin for the central bank to deal with the prospects for further forex drawdowns in the months ahead.

The obvious downside to withdrawing bank reserves is immediate liquidity. To address what would otherwise be an acute shortfall, shift the burden onto large bank private balance sheets by cutting the RRR. They’ve been hoarding it anyway. The central bank reduces its RMB footprint to better align with “dollar” levels, leaving the private banking system to pick up the liquidity slack in a way that doesn’t endanger CNY. Since you just hiked the reverse repo rate for a fourth time last month, it will leave the “experts” wholly confused. 

I believe that’s the theory, anyway. It’s a further lesson in how to continue to loosen RMB while making the rest of the world think you’re doing something else (at worst neutral). China has a sustained money problem it cannot by definition fix. Next best thing? Hide it. Why?

There is no recovery coming. 

Published:4/20/2018 7:00:54 PM
[Markets] MarketWatch First Take: Pivotal IPO falls short of recent cloud hysteria The recent hysteria for new cloud-software stocks seemed to ease a bit Friday with Pivotal Software Inc.’s initial public offering, but there are obvious questions about whether that is an issue with Pivotal or if enthusiasm is waning overall.
Published:4/20/2018 7:00:54 PM
[] Leveling Up to a Ph.D.: Scholar Examines Racial and Gender Roles in, Get This, Dungeons & Dragons Quality research from @Stanford: "Privilege, Power, and Dungeons & Dragons: How Systems Shape Racial and Gender Identities in Tabletop Role-Playing Games" https://t.co/8JJPLIMzmo pic.twitter.com/QFufikdsZQ— New Real Peer Review (@RealPeerReview) April 14, 2018 The abstract doesn't say too much: Privilege, Power, and... Published:4/20/2018 7:00:54 PM
[Politics] Sessions told White House that Rosenstein’s firing could prompt his departure, too The attorney general made his position known in a recent phone call with White House counsel Donald McGahn. Published:4/20/2018 6:38:12 PM
[World] Rachel Campos-Duffy: President Trump's Poll Numbers High Despite Comey & Media's Attacks

Rachel Campos-Duffy said the end game of James Comey's new book and media blitz is to discredit President Trump and to discourage his supporters.

Published:4/20/2018 6:38:12 PM
[NVDA] AMD And Intel Had A Baby! And It's A Beast! Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[National Security] North Korea Says It Will Stop Nuclear Tests, Abolish Test Site: KCNA

SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea will suspend nuclear and missile tests effective immediately and abolish a nuclear test site in the northern part of the country in a bid to pursue economic growth and peace on the Korean peninsula, state media said on Saturday.

The post North Korea Says It Will Stop Nuclear Tests, Abolish Test Site: KCNA appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[Markets] North Korea says it will suspend missile tests, shut down nuclear test site North Korea says it will suspend missile tests, shut down nuclear test site Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[2018 News] Parkland Middle student struck, killed on Loop 375 after leaving campus during walkout Parkland Middle student struck, killed on Loop 375 after leaving campus during walkout. Of course no one will blame the car, or protest against assault automobiles. Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[Politics] TRUMP TWEETS about DNC lawsuit – makes EXACT point Kimberly Guilfoyle said on ‘The Five’ This is interesting. It kinda looks like el Presidente Trumpo was enjoying “The Five” this evening and decided that he was going to tweet nearly the exact point that Kimberly Guilfoyle made . . . Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[Politics] TRUMP TWEETS about DNC lawsuit – makes EXACT point Kimberly Guilfoyle said on ‘The Five’ This is interesting. It kinda looks like el Presidente Trumpo was enjoying “The Five” this evening and decided that he was going to tweet nearly the exact point that Kimberly Guilfoyle made . . . Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[Uncategorized] North Korea Announced the Suspension of Nuclear and Missile Tests, But What Does That Really Mean? Ahead of the summit with South Korea, North Korea could be acting in good faith...or, they could be removing a bargaining chip from the table in advance. Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[Entertainment] Avicii's Ex-Girlfriend Emily Goldberg Breaks Silence After DJ's Death AviciiThe news of Avicii's passing earlier today has understandably startled the music industry and loved ones are still reeling from the tragic loss. Emily Goldberg, an ex-girlfriend of...
Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[Markets] After the Bell: Dow Drops 202 Points as Fridays Stop Being Fun The Dow fell 201.95 points, or 0.8%, to 24,462.94, while the S&P 500 dropped 0.9% to 2670.14, and the Nasdaq Composite tumbled 1.3% to 7146.13. "Investors rode one big wave this week, with the S&P 500 opening higher on Monday and rallying through midday on Wednesday, then selling off from midday Wednesday through the close on Friday," writes Bespoke Investment Group's Justin Walters. The Dow advanced 102.80 points, or 0.4%, to 24,462.94 this week, while the S&P 500 rose 0.5% to 2670.14. Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[worldNews] North Korea says it will stop nuclear tests, abolish test site SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea will suspend nuclear and missile tests effective immediately and abolish a nuclear test site in a bid to pursue economic growth and peace on the Korean peninsula, the North's state media said on Saturday, ahead of planned summits with South Korea and the United States.
Published:4/20/2018 6:38:11 PM
[The Blog] New FAA reauthorization doesn’t privatize air traffic controllers

Reforms still happen.

The post New FAA reauthorization doesn’t privatize air traffic controllers appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 6:38:10 PM
[Markets] The Singularity? Pornhub Now Accepts Payment In Cryptocurrency

While bitcoin has begun to creep higher once again now that (many hope) the tax overhang weighing on virtual currencies has been lifted, it appears crypto traders have mostly missed a major (and badly needed) milestone for the crypto world:

Pornhub announced Tuesday that it will start accepting payments for its subscriptions and services in the cryptocurrency.

However, you can't use bitcoin, ethereum, litecoin or any of the other most popular digital currencies: Instead, the site is exclusively accepting the Verge coin - a rebranded version of Dogecoindark - a version of dogecoin with enhanced privacy features.

And no, this is not a joke - we checked.

As the Verge points out, the Verge cryptocurrency (which has no connection with the Verge) is anonymity-focused, which is why Pornhub executives say they chose it over other possible partners.

While anybody can view Verge cryptocurrency transactions through its public ledger, the coin uses the anonymity tool Tor and an anonymous network layer I2P to hide IP addresses and locations used in individual transactions.

You can watch the company's creatively titled video announcing the new partnership below.

Published:4/20/2018 6:38:10 PM
[Conservative ideology] Like Thomas Sowell, it was life facts that made me conservative

Thomas Sowell telling said that facts — real world, life facts — ended his Marxist phase. I’ve compiled a list of life facts that made me conservative. Dave Rubin interviewed Thomas Sowell, who has a new book out called Discrimination and Disparities. I will get myself a copy as soon as I’m finished with Dennis […]

The post Like Thomas Sowell, it was life facts that made me conservative appeared first on Bookworm Room.

Published:4/20/2018 6:38:10 PM
[James Comey] Comey Memos: Ho Hum (John Hinderaker) I was on the Howie Carr show a little while ago, talking about the release of James Comey’s memos on his conversations with Donald Trump. Scott has already weighed in on the memos, which you can read in his post or here, and Paul has noted the reaction of Bob Goodlatte, Trey Gowdy and Devin Nunes. These are my thoughts, for what they are worth: 1) The memos do nothing Published:4/20/2018 6:38:06 PM
[Markets] LA Fitness employees called 911 on two black men they said didn’t pay. They had. The incident happened after an arrest at a Philadelphia Starbucks reignited awareness of racial profiling in commercial spaces. Published:4/20/2018 6:00:52 PM
[World] An unexploded WWII bomb forced a mass evacuation in Berlin. There will be more to come. From Berlin to London, unexploded WWII bombs lurk beneath the sidewalks. Published:4/20/2018 6:00:52 PM
[World] North Korea says it has suspended nuclear, missile testing SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea said Saturday it has suspended nuclear and long-range missile tests and plans to close its nuclear test site. Published:4/20/2018 6:00:52 PM
[The Blog] How religious are you and your region? Gallup knows

The faithless Northeast.

The post How religious are you and your region? Gallup knows appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 6:00:51 PM
[Markets] Air Force Awards $1 Billion Contract For "Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon"

The United States Air Force has awarded Lockheed Martin, an American aerospace, defense, security and advanced technologies company, with a $928 million contract to design and prototype new hypersonic missiles. These high tech missiles can travel five times the speed of sound and outmaneuver the most advanced missile defense shields in the world, announced the Department of Defense’s (DoD).

The Air Force is working with Lockheed Martin to design a new hypersonic prototype. The service previously explored the technology with tests of the X-51A Waverider, shown here under the wing of a B-52 bomber. (U.S. Air Force graphic)

Last month, President Donald Trump signed a massive $1.3 trillion military-friendly omnibus bill. The 2,200-page legislation awards the most significant increase in military spending in more than 15-years. The DoD will get its base budget of $589.5 billion and $65.2 billion for its foreign wars. The remainder of the $700 billion will be appropriated to other defense-related programs, such as a broad push to kickstart America’s hypersonic arsenal.

The indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the “design, development, engineering, systems integration, test, logistics planning, and aircraft integration support of all the elements of a hypersonic, conventional, air-launched, stand-off weapon,” the DoD press release stated on Wednesday.

The total value of the contract is worth $928 million over the course of the hypersonic program, which the press release failed to give specifics on timeframes. The design and prototyping will be completed at Lockheed Martin Space Systems facilities in Huntsville, Alabama. Lockheed won the contract after it beat out three other offers. Fiscal 2018 first task order to Lockheed will be for the “research, development, test and evaluation” of the hypersonic program, said the press release.

“This effort is one of two hypersonic weapon prototyping efforts being pursued by the Air Force to accelerate hypersonics research and development,” service spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said in a statement.

“The Air Force is using prototyping to explore the art-of-the-possible and to advance these technologies to a capability as quickly as possible.”  

As we have discussed previously, “hypersonic aircraft and missiles are being developed and tested by the United States, Russia, and China at an accelerating pace.” In other words, the era of hypersonic technology has arrived with a bang. Many of the world’s superpowers have realized that the first to possess these technologies will revolutionize their civilian and military programs.

Now, we understand, why hypersonic missile technology has become a top priority for the Pentagon because, in other words, these high tech weapons have the potential to reshape the post–World War II modern economic system away from the West’s control. Already, Russia and China have conducted numerous successful tests of hypersonic weapons that can carry conventional or nuclear warheads.

The announcement of Lockheed’s billion-dollar hypersonic contract comes as Undersecretary of Defense for Research Michael Griffin presented last month at the McAleese-Credit Suisse Defense Conference in which he warned, “when the Chinese can deploy tactical or regional hypersonic systems, they hold at risk our carrier battle groups. They hold our entire surface fleet at risk. They hold at risk our forward deployed land-based forces.”

Griffin emphasized that Beijing has administered “20 times as many of hypersonic weapon tests as has the United States over the last decade.” He stated Beijing is spending billions to develop and test non-nuclear versions of hypersonic weapons that could render the United States Navy’s nuclear-powered aircraft carriers unprotected against a hypersonic strike.

On Apri 17, Griffin told House Armed Services Committee, “the most significant advance by our adversaries has been the Chinese development of what is now today a pretty mature system for the conventional prompt strike at multi-thousand kilometer range. We will, with today’s defensive systems, not see these things coming.”

While it is shocking to observe how Pentagon officials openly admit that foreign hypersonic threats could be a major headache to the American empire, the reality of a dying nation has been realized with government officials scrambling to infuse Lockheed Martin with $1 billion for hypersonic cruise missiles. What does this all mean you might ask? Well, the Pentagon’s hypersonic program(s) are tremendously behind the eight ball, as Russia and China steam ahead…

Published:4/20/2018 6:00:51 PM
[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Justice Department investigating AT&T and Verizon over collusion claim The U.S. Department of Justice is investigating whether U.S. wireless carriers and an industry trade group teamed up to make it harder for cellphone subscribers to switch providers, according to people familiar with the investigation.
Published:4/20/2018 6:00:51 PM
[US News] TRUMP WINS AGAIN: Kim Jong-un announces halt of nuclear tests; CC @NobelPrize

We’re so old we remember when Dems thought John Bolton and Donald Trump would start WWIII over North Korea. You know, back last Monday. Here’s the latest, however: Breaking: #NorthKorea suspends nuclear and missile tests, shutting nuclear test site ahead of Kim-Trump summit – NK State media — Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) April 20, 2018 Per […]

The post TRUMP WINS AGAIN: Kim Jong-un announces halt of nuclear tests; CC @NobelPrize appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 6:00:51 PM
[Arctic] Curious Circles in Arctic Sea Ice NASA’s Operation IceBridge—the airborne mission flown annually over both polar regions—is now in its tenth year making flights over the Arctic. That’s a lot of flight hours spent mapping the region’s land ice and sea ice. But on April 14, 2018, IceBridge mission scientist John Sonntag spotted something he had never seen before. Sonntag snapped… Published:4/20/2018 6:00:50 PM
[World] North Korea says it will suspend nuclear and missile testing SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — North Korea says it has suspended nuclear and long-range missile tests and plans to close its nuclear test site. Published:4/20/2018 5:42:35 PM
[Politics] BREAKING!! NORTH KOREA HALTS MISSILE TESTING!!! [Updated] North Korea made a YUGE announcement just now… Update: BOOM!! Or rather.. . not boom. Holy moly. You can’t trust anything that regime says, but it’s interesting that they’re even willing to . . . Published:4/20/2018 5:42:33 PM
[Politics] BREAKING!! NORTH KOREA HALTS MISSILE TESTING!!! [Updated] North Korea made a YUGE announcement just now… Update: BOOM!! Or rather.. . not boom. Holy moly. You can’t trust anything that regime says, but it’s interesting that they’re even willing to . . . Published:4/20/2018 5:42:33 PM
[dbaa4fc1-0a9d-47e7-8ae2-863babc3c410] 'Smallville' actress Allison Mack arrested for alleged sex cult involvement “Smallville” actress Allison Mack was arraigned on Friday at a federal courthouse in New York following her arrest on sex trafficking and conspiracy to commit forced labor charges as part an alleged sex cult. Published:4/20/2018 5:42:30 PM
[Markets] If Treasuries Reach 3%, That Would Be Big. Here's Why The global bond market’s primary benchmark, the 10-year U.S. Treasury yield, is knocking on the door of 3 percent, a level it hasn’t topped in more than four years. Published:4/20/2018 5:42:30 PM
[Security] 4 Key Questions Before the Trump-Kim Meeting

President Donald Trump’s upcoming meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un may appear to be a breakthrough between two leaders who openly talked about... Read More

The post 4 Key Questions Before the Trump-Kim Meeting appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:4/20/2018 5:42:30 PM
[The Blog] Union holding a no-confidence vote on Sheriff Scott Israel

"...union reps wanted this vote now, so their views on Sheriff Israel are known before politics come into play."

The post Union holding a no-confidence vote on Sheriff Scott Israel appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 5:42:30 PM
[Politics] Major GOP Donor Foster Friess Announces Run for Wyoming Governor A top Republican Party donor and fundraiser who hasn't held major elected office before but who is wealthy and has national political connections is running for governor of Wyoming.Foster Friess' entry Friday upended Wyoming's deep-red politics much like Liz Cheney's brief... Published:4/20/2018 5:42:29 PM
[World] Michael Cohen, North Korea, Avicii: Your Friday Evening Briefing Here’s what you need to know at the end of the day. Published:4/20/2018 5:42:26 PM
[Entertainment] Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake Celebrate Her Brother's Wedding in Mexico Jessica Biel, Justin TimberlakeLove is in the air! Justin Timberlake recently pressed pause on his Man of the Woods Tour to celebrate the marriage of Jessica Biel's brother Justin Biel and his new wife, Rose...
Published:4/20/2018 5:42:25 PM
[US News] UH OH: More Dems express frustration at the DNC’s ‘sidebar lawsuit’

As we told you earlier, former Obama hack David Axelrod called today’s DNC lawsuit against the Trump administration, Russia and Wikileaks an “ill-timed” “sideshow.” Here it is again ICYMI: All of these sideshows—Comey’s flamboyant roll out; this @DNC lawsuit—seem spectacularly ill-timed and abet @POTUS strategy of portraying a sober and essential probe as a partisan […]

The post UH OH: More Dems express frustration at the DNC’s ‘sidebar lawsuit’ appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 5:42:25 PM
[Markets] Pepe Escobar On Syria, Iran, & "Chaos In International Relations"

Authored by Pepe Escobar via The Asia Times,

Any meaningful political resolution to the turmoil in the Middle East now seems more elusive than ever...

Even in the context of a post-truth geopolitical environment run amok, Russian President Vladimir Putin telling his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani over the phone that any further Western strikes against Syria may “lead to chaos in international relations” should at least be seen for what it is; a massive understatement.

According to the Kremlin, Putin and Rouhani agreed that what cynics are calling the F.U.K.U.S. – or France, UK, US – strikes have damaged the chances of achieving any meaningful political resolution in Syria.

That translates into Putin and Rouhani acknowledging that Washington, London and Paris are pulling no punches to be back in the game, directly clashing with the painstaking Astana peace process led by Russia, Iran and Turkey. 

Significantly, Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari remindedacting US Secretary of State John Sullivan, also over the phone, about “the necessity to prioritize finding a political solution and that the Syrian people alone should determine their own fate.”

This means essentially that the “4+1” – Russia, Syria, Iran, Iraq, plus Hezbollah – which were at the vanguard of destroying ISIS, or Islamic State, and other crypto-jihadi outfits in Syria, remain in synch. The counter-terror HQ of the “4+1” was in Baghdad. As much as Baghdad may harbor ideological divergences with Damascus, their common strategy is built upon the fight against Salafi-jihadis of all stripes.   

United front

Iraq, alongside Lebanon, was one of the very few nations across the Middle East that condemned the US-UK-France strikes. The GCC petrodollar club – led by the House of Saud – predictably supported it, as their agenda never strayed away from regime change.

Moscow, Damascus, Tehran and Baghdad are showing a united front even as the alleged chemical attack in Douma – the reason for the strikes – is being forcefully debunked. Additionally, pesky questions remain unanswered on why more than 100 missiles were necessary to destroy only three largely empty state-run scientific centers in Damascus and Homs.

Even after Damascus and Baghdad declared victory, the Salafi-jihadi galaxy may be seriously wounded in both Syria and Iraq, but is not extinct. Turkey is still cultivating some nasty connections.

So the key variable in the Astana process – which involves complex economic and military trade offs – remains Ankara, which has no intention of abandoning its sprawling Syrian ops before subduing the Kurdish YPG all around.

Incidentally, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, unlike his partners, supported the strikes on Syria. At the same time, Erdogan is itching for the Russian S-400 missile system to be delivered to Turkey as soon as possible, much to the displeasure of NATO. 

The real test for the Astana partners will be Idlib – which is already the subject of fierce negotiations. Iran’s special envoy for Syrian affairs, Ali Akbar Velayati, is on the record as saying the next war objective is in fact Idlib.

Moscow has prodded Erdogan to deliver the Kurdish canton of Afrin – now run by the Turkish military – to Damascus. There’s no evidence – yet – this will be accepted. Russian forces did leave Afrin before the Turkish offensive. So the Turks, in reciprocity, should abandon their bases across Idlib as well. 

The key takeaway is that the US-UK-France troika – not to mention the House of Saud – has absolutely no means to influence these developing facts on the ground. 

Iran targeted by financial missiles

If the strikes on Syria have de facto added to the “chaos in international relations” alluded to by Putin, that may be just the opening compared to the main course; the fate of the JCPOA, aka the Iran nuclear deal, to be decided next month.

The European Union foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, ahead of the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council meeting in Luxembourg, was unequivocal: “The European Union has always made it clear that for us, keeping the agreement in place is vital. It is a strategic interest for the European Union and we will stick to it.”

Pointing to what, for all practical purposes, is a Trump administration May 12 deadline, Mogherini added: “We are doing all we can to work with our American friends to make sure that all parties stay fully committed to the full implementation of the agreement.”

Everyone in Brussels knows Tehran is fully complying with the JCPOA, as stated by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in 10 successive reports.

Still, France, Britain and Germany are dabbling with the notion of sanctions against Iranian “militias and commanders” fighting on the side of Damascus as a means to appease President Trump. Italy, backed by Austria, is vehemently against it.

The bottom line, as diplomats confirmed to Asia Times, is that Trump’s deadline to “fix” the JCPOA simply won’t be met. What really matters for individual EU nations, as discussed in diplomatic circles, is to increase lucrative business with Iran.

Restricted access to US dollars

All this is happening as Iranian central bank governor Valiollah Seif denounced what amounts to a financial missile strike: “Enemies outside of our borders, in various different guises, are fueling this issue and are going to some effort to make conditions tougher for the people.”

Valiollah was referring to the rial crisis. The Iranian currency was trading at 40,000 to the US dollar in 2017, but has just plunged to 60,000 rials to the dollar. Tehran hastily announced a plan to introduce a currency peg at 42,000 rials.

The widespread view in Tehran is that Wahhabi enemies Riyadh and the Emirates are restricting Tehran’s access to US dollars. Not to mention that some stiff Washington bank financing sanctions remain in effect.   

Tehran is facing tough days ahead. Even with the EU remaining committed to the JCPOA, a new batch of Washington sanctions, enthusiastically pursued by John “Bomb Iran” Bolton, could eventually force as many as 500,000 barrels a day of Iranian crude out of the market.

If Washington withdraws – unilaterally – from the JCPOA, or insists on alterations Tehran deems unacceptable, Plan B is already on: Moscow and Beijing are willing and able to help Tehran reboot its civilian nuclear program.

That was discussed already in January by the Deputy Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), Mohammad Ahmadian. China is actively considering the possibility of building small nuclear power plants in Iran.

All that points, once again, to the ongoing, massive Eurasia integration project – the cross-pollination of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and the Eurasia Economic Union (EEU) – featuring, not by accident, the three key nodes: China, Russia and Iran.

And to add it all up, in this case the European arm of NATO even turned off the “aggression” rhetoric; the dogs of war (“Real Men Go to Tehran”) may bark again, but even that won’t force the EU caravan to desist from doing business with Persia. 

Published:4/20/2018 5:42:25 PM
[News] Russia Says It Told US Where It Could Bomb In Syria: 'They Did Not Cross These Red Lines' "They were informed about where our red lines are ... " Published:4/20/2018 5:42:25 PM
[topics:people/kim-jong-un] Kim Jong-un: North Korea suspending missile launches and shutting down nuclear test site Published:4/20/2018 5:42:25 PM
[TC] Friday Night Lights is on Hulu now. You’re welcome. Friday Night Lights, the football show that was never just about football (and one of the best shows on television), is now streaming on Hulu. Say goodbye to the weekend is all I’m saying. Hailed as one of the most honest depictions of a functioning adult relationship in its portrayal of the husband and wife […] Published:4/20/2018 5:42:25 PM
[worldNews] North Korea says it will stop nuclear tests, abolish test site: KCNA SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea will suspend nuclear and missile tests effective immediately and abolish a nuclear test site in the northern part of the country in a bid to pursue economic growth and peace on the Korean peninsula, state media said on Saturday.
Published:4/20/2018 5:42:22 PM
[] Darkly Conspiratorial Hillary Clinton: "I Knew They Would Never Let Me Be President" This is a woman, you'll remember, who prized aides like Sidney Blumenthal who would play to and confirm her conspiratorial fantasies. The NYT reporter who covered Hillary for a decade, Amy Chozick, shares some insights into the woman who fell... Published:4/20/2018 5:42:18 PM
[World] Gianno Caldwell: Nancy Pelosi, Democrats Made 'Tactical Error' by Resisting GOP Tax Cuts

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has continued to criticize the Republican tax cuts, despite massive backlash to her infamous "crumbs" remark earlier this year.

Published:4/20/2018 4:59:47 PM
[News] Russian Media Says Trump invited Putin to Visit US: Report “He returned to this topic a couple of times." Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[Issues] State Department Releases Annual Human Rights Report, Says Abortion Isn’t ‘Human Right Under International Law’

The U.S. State Department on Friday released the first human rights report under the Trump administration, revealing it replaced a section previously titled "reproductive rights" that focused on access to contraception and abortion in each country. 

The post State Department Releases Annual Human Rights Report, Says Abortion Isn’t ‘Human Right Under International Law’ appeared first on Washington Free Beacon.

Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[Economy] Federal Government Continues to Give Native American Tribes a Bad Deal

The Department of the Interior has worked steadily to increase opportunity and access to the federal lands and resources under its purview. Earlier this week,... Read More

The post Federal Government Continues to Give Native American Tribes a Bad Deal appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[eminent domain] ‘Little Pink House’ Brings One Woman’s Supreme Court Battle Back Into View Catherine Keener gives a no-frills performance as Susette Kelo, a woman who changed how courts ruled on U.S. law. Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[c96e4800-1f80-4333-a548-885794ddaef9] Avicii smiles with fans in final pics before tragic and mysterious death at age 28 Pictures of Avicii smiling with fans just days before his shock death have emerged. Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[topics:places/new-york-city] Smallville actress Allison Mack arrested in New York sex cult case Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[Entertainment] Could This Be the Wedding Dress Cardi B Wears Down the Aisle? ESC: Cardi B, OffSetIt's almost wedding season! And who better to help us navigate through upcoming celebrity nuptials than our friends who live and breathe tulle and lace all day long. Here, Brides Executive...
Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[Markets] The New York Post: ‘Smallville’ actress Allison Mack arrested for alleged role in sex-slave cult Nxivm Actress said to have been a slave and slave master in cult led by Keith Raniere, who was taken into custody in Mexico last month.
Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[US News] ‘Powerful’ photos capture Secret Service detail standing guard over Barbara Bush

Wow. These “powerful” photos captured Barbara Bush’s Secret Service detail standing guard over their protectee one last time and they will stay by her side until she is buried: Powerful. US Secret Service detail stands at the casket of former First Lady Barbara Bush. Agents have been with her for years and will remain until […]

The post ‘Powerful’ photos capture Secret Service detail standing guard over Barbara Bush appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[Democrats] Perez promotes lawsuit: “No one is above the law” (Scott Johnson) We receive DNC emails addressed to “Rachelle” at our Power Line gmail account. Tom Perez and Keith Ellison are both on a first name-basis with Rachelle, whoever she is. Today’s correspondence promotes the DNC lawsuit against the Russian government, the Trump campaign and other defendants. The element of projection looms large in Perez’s message, as always in the recurring themes of the Democratic Party. The message announces “We’re suing the Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[Markets] North Korea's Kim Says "Mission Complete": Will Abandon Nuke Tests, Seek Peace

Just a few short days after President Trump proclaimed "mission accomplished" in Syria, North Korea's leader has followed suit, reportedly say the nuclear test site in the north of the country has completed its mission and will be abandoned.

Furthermore, Yonhap reports Kim says no further nuclear tests are needed, and will stop launching test-flights of ICBMs on April 21st.

Additionally, KCNA reports that North Korea says it will engage dialogue with the international community to achieve peace and refocus on economic growth.

Seems like that trip to Beijing recently made some serious difference!!

While there are few details, it is hard to misinterpret the Korean headlines.

We are sure President Trump will be quick to congratulate Kim (and himself).

Hard to see how this is not a big win for Trump!

 

 

Published:4/20/2018 4:59:46 PM
[Politics] AWESOME: Mark Levin has been nominated for the National Radio Hall of Fame! Mark Levin has just been nominated for induction into the National Radio Hall of Fame: On behalf of the 2018 Nominating Committee of the National Radio Hall of Fame, I am honored . . . Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Entertainment] Smallville Star Allison Mack Arrested and Charged With Sex Trafficking Allison MackAllison Mack has been arrested and charged with sex trafficking in connection with the purported self-help organization, NXIVM. The former Smallville actress was arrested Friday morning...
Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[structure:news/uk-news] Hither Green: Police arrest remaining suspect in Kent two weeks after burglar was stabbed to death Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Uncategorized] Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel Facing No-Confidence Vote From Deputy Union Sheriff Israel is also under investigation by state and county officials. Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Illustrated editions] Bookworm Beat 4/20/2018 — the “no stoners here” illustrated edition

On 4/20, even stoners would rouse themselves and find enticing the marvelous collection of political posters at today’s illustrated edition. And for no good reason at all, except possibly a desire to torture you, a wonderful moment of overwrought Air Supply: I first heard that song during a very good year in my life and […]

The post Bookworm Beat 4/20/2018 — the “no stoners here” illustrated edition appeared first on Bookworm Room.

Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Markets] The Wall Street Journal: Students across U.S. walk out to mark 19th anniversary of Colorado school shooting Thousands of students nationwide streamed out of their high schools on Friday as part of a nationwide protest of gun violence, the second organized walkout since the February mass shooting at a school in Florida that left 17 people dead.
Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Society] 1 Comment on Conservative Article Costs Iowan Government Appointment

You don’t have to be a Trump nominee to face the Christian inquisition! Just ask Iowa conservatives. The bad blood that’s turned the hearings of... Read More

The post 1 Comment on Conservative Article Costs Iowan Government Appointment appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[The Blog] Today’s hot topics on Relevant Radio: The “great revolt” of 2016 and the governance disconnect; #MeToo and Humanae Vitae

6-7 ET!

The post Today’s hot topics on Relevant Radio: The “great revolt” of 2016 and the governance disconnect; #MeToo and Humanae Vitae appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Markets] Martin Shkreli Will Serve Out His 7-Year Sentence At Minimum Security Prison

As it turns out, Martin Shkreli's post-conviction prediction that he'd serve out his sentence playing Xbox and basketball at a minimum-security "Club Fed" wasn't far off the mark.

After being sentenced to seven years in federal prison after being found guilty on three counts of fraud related to a scheme to raid his former pharmaceutical company, Retrophin, to pay back investors in his failed hedge funds, Shkreli will be serving out his sentence at the Federal Correctional Institution in Fort Dix, NJ.

Shkreli

The prison was once home to former Providence Mayor Vincent "Buddy" Cianci, the New York Post reports.

Though inmates aren't permitted to play video games. The prison is considerably better than the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, home to high-level convicts like El Chapo, the Mexican drug cartel leader.

The 4,266-inmate, all-male FCI Fort Dix is adjacent to a minimum-security satellite camp housing 321 inmates, but Bureau of Prisons records indicate Shkreli is being held in the FCI.

However, it's slightly less liberating than the minimum-security camp in Pennsylvania that his legal team tried - and failed - to have him transferred to, according to CNBC.

Camps are considered safer and more pleasant places to serve a sentence than facilities that have higher security designations.

But in either case, it looks like Shkreli - who will probably be out in four years on good behavior - won't be facing the "hard time" that he had reportedly feared ahead of his sentencing.

Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Middle Column] REPORT: PUTIN FUNDS AMERICA’S ENVIRONMENTAL MOVEMENT
Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[Enterprise] Pivotal Software closes up 5% following IPO, raised $555 million Stock market investors showed lukewarm enthusiasm for Pivotal Software’s debut on Friday. After pricing the IPO at $15, the company closed the day at $15.73. Although it didn’t “pop” for new investors, pricing at the midpoint of its proposed range allowed Pivotal to raise $555 million. Its public company market cap exceeded $3 billion. The enterprise […] Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[] Byron York: Trump's Demand for "Loyalty" Looks Different Now, Given That His First Meeting With Comey Consisted of Comey Basically Saying "We Have a Document Claiming You Paid Whores to Pee on Each Other and All the Media Wants Us to Help Them Publish It" Which sounds a lot like blackmail -- something the FBI, especially under the corrupt leadership of J. Edgar Hoover, was very willing to engage in. Why would Trump wonder about the FBI director's loyalty? Perhaps because in their first meeting,... Published:4/20/2018 4:30:55 PM
[World] In new walkouts, students look to turn outrage to action Once again, they filed out of class. In a new wave of school walkouts, they raised their voices against gun violence. But this time, they were looking to turn outrage into action. Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[IJR Red] Fresno State Professor's Barbara Bush-Bashing Tweets Have University Donors On Edge “They’re outraged.” Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[Right Column] Ore. Paper Credits ‘Clean-Energy Skeptic Donald Trump’ with Saving 350 Solar Jobs with Tariffs
Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[The Blog] Andrew McCabe’s lawyer: We might sue Trump for defamation

“We’ve never seen anything like this before."

The post Andrew McCabe’s lawyer: We might sue Trump for defamation appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[Markets] Stocks end lower but eke out weekly gains U.S. stocks extend losses in late trade to end lower on Friday, as weakness in technology and consumer staples shares offset the latest batch of corporate earnings, which largely continued to beat expectations.... Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[Markets] Putin Warns Russian Students Living In Britain: "Come Home Immediately"

Facing the "noticeable negative impact of Russophobic attitudes," Russian authorities have launched a campaign aimed at bringing home young people studying in the UK and other Western countries.

As The Express reports, Olga Evko - a representative of Rossotrudnichestvo, the Federal Agency for the Commonwealth of Independent States, Compatriots Living Abroad and International Humanitarian Cooperation - is behind Moscow's "It’s time to go home" returnee scheme:

“The question for our youngsters studying abroad is very serious indeed.

“We have real grounds to worry that young Russians may suffer in provocations in countries that show an unfriendly attitude to (us).”

And guess where those overseas students can go when they get back to mother Russia?

Oleg Mansurov, of PreActum entrepreneurial community, told a Moscow conference on the plan that those with education and work experience in Britain “will be ready to take part in ambitious projects and move again, including to the Far East of Russia”.

Yes, Siberia!

Vladimir Putin is seeking to radically boost the economy of eastern Siberia and Russia’s Pacific rim to counter the negative impact of Western sanctions by expanding gas and oil production, gold and diamond mining, as well as nuclear energy and the digital economy.

As The Express notes, the initiative was ridiculed on social media.

Yana Prigozhina said: “I just can't stop laughing. People who invested so much time in the often an incredibly hard step of moving to study abroad are supposed to buy the idea of 'building the digital economy' in the Far East of Russia?”

Referring to a former Gulag transit point in eastern Siberia, Maria G asked sarcastically “Why don't I just swap my PhD in Cambridge for a job in Magadan?

The British embassy was quoted saying “as ever” Russians were welcome in the UK as students or tourists.

Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[Politics] AWESOME: Mark Levin has been nominated for the National Radio Hall of Fame! Mark Levin has just been nominated for induction into the National Radio Hall of Fame: On behalf of the 2018 Nominating Committee of the National Radio Hall of Fame, I am honored . . . Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[Social Media] Out in DROVES! Sean Spicier’s #NationalSchoolWalkout #420Day tweet may be his most TRIGGERING yet

Usually, when we cover Sean Spicier we have to wait a bit for him to post the screenshots of idiots who fall for his tweets, but today the tweet he sent about 420 and #NationalSchoolWalkout freaked SO MANY people out that we were able to grab actual tweets. This is a first … LOL. People […]

The post Out in DROVES! Sean Spicier’s #NationalSchoolWalkout #420Day tweet may be his most TRIGGERING yet appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 3:59:20 PM
[World] Texas Officer Barely Escapes Explosion After Illegal Immigrant Crashes Into House

An illegal immigrant was identified as the man who drove a car into a Texas home, which led to it exploding.

Published:4/20/2018 3:28:45 PM
[topics:organisations/metropolitan-police-service] Stephen Lawrence murder investigation should have continued, best friend claims Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[The Blog] Ty Cobb: The Trump-Mueller interview negotiations are still on, you know

Fixer?

The post Ty Cobb: The Trump-Mueller interview negotiations are still on, you know appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Politics] Former billionaire backer for Rick Santorum announces he’s running for governor Remember the billionaire backer for Rick Santorum back in 2012, Foster Friess? We’ll he’s just announced he’s running for the governor of Wyoming: DC EXAMINER – Republican megadonor Foster Friess told party . . . Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Politics] Former billionaire backer for Rick Santorum announces he’s running for governor Remember the billionaire backer for Rick Santorum back in 2012, Foster Friess? We’ll he’s just announced he’s running for the governor of Wyoming: DC EXAMINER – Republican megadonor Foster Friess told party . . . Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Markets] Dow industrials close down over 200 points; Apple shares hit tech sector Dow industrials close down over 200 points; Apple shares hit tech sector Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Markets] Dow Falls Over 200 Points as Apple's Slump Offsets Gains in General Electric The S&P 500 and Nasdaq traded lower Friday for the second time in five sessions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined Friday for the third day in a row. Despite declines Friday, the three U.S. benchmark stock indexes finished higher for the week. Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Entertainment] Scandal Stars Have a Message for Gladiators Still Not Over That Series Finale Scandal, Season 7"For all of those out there dealing with a Scandal Over hangover, I would suggest maybe having another sip of wine, watching the show one more time, and just remember that all good...
Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[US News] Will he blame the NRA again? Broward County sheriff ‘to face no-confidence vote from his own deputies’

"I can't believe it took this long."

The post Will he blame the NRA again? Broward County sheriff ‘to face no-confidence vote from his own deputies’ appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Politics] Comey Was Under Investigation by OSC for Possible Hatch Act Violation Former FBI Director James Comey was being investigated by the Office of Special Counsel for possibly violating the Hatch Act before his firing, The Washington Times reports.The OSC ended its investigation when Comey was dismissed, since the office only handles government... Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Advertising Tech] German Supreme Court dismisses Axel Springer lawsuit, says ad blocking is legal Germany’s Supreme Court dismissed a lawsuit yesterday from Axel Springer against Eyeo, the company behind AdBlock Plus. The European publishing giant (which acquired Business Insider in 2015) argued that ad-blocking, as well as the business model where advertisers pay to be added to circumvent the white list, violated Germany’s competition law. Axel Springer won a partial […] Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Politics] Dems’ Stormy Daniels problem and other comments Political scribe: Dems’ Stormy Daniels Problem James Comey, Stormy Daniels and Michael Cohen “represent an inescapable threat to Republicans” come November’s midterm elections, suggests Ronald Brownstein at The Atlantic. But they also “pose a challenge for Democrats, too.” Because the intense media attention they attract is keeping the Dems’ economic message from “breaking through.” Besides,... Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Markets] Weekend Reading: The Return Of Stagflation

Authored by Lance Roberts via RealInvestmentAdvice.com,

One of the worst possible outcomes for the U.S. economy, and ultimately for investors, is stagflation. Of course, if you weren’t around in the 60-70’s, there is a reasonably high probability you are not even sure what “stagflation” is. Here is the technical definition:

stagflation – persistent high inflation combined with high unemployment and stagnant demand in a country’s economy.”

How can that happen? Exactly in the way you are witnessing now.

While the current Administration is keen on equalizing trade through tariffs, trade deals, and trade deficit reduction, they have also embarked on a deficit expanding spending spree which has deleterious long-term effects on economic growth. At the same time, the administration is attacking our major trading partners, particularly China, leading to a push to shift away from the U.S. dollar as a reserve currency.

What does all that mean?

Here is the problem with the current trajectory.

  • A weaker dollar leads to higher commodity prices creating cost-push inflation.

  • As fears of inflation infiltrate the markets, interest rates increase which raises borrowing costs.

  • As the dollar weakens, exports come under pressure which comprises about 40% of corporate profits.

  • Higher input costs, borrowing costs, and weaker profits ultimately force corporations to suppress wage growth to protect profits.

  • As wage growth is suppressed, particularly with a heavily indebted consumer, demand falls as higher costs, both product and borrowing costs, cannot be compensated for.

  • As demand falls, companies react by reducing the highest costs to their bottom lines: wages and employment.

  • As profits come under pressure, stock prices fall which negatively impacts the “wealth effect” further curtailing consumptive demand.

  • As the economy slumps into recession, unemployment rise sharply, demand falls, and interest rates decline sharply. 

As I discussed just recently, the bottom 80% of U.S. households are heavily indebted with no wage growth to offset the rising costs in “non-discretionary” spending requirements of rent, utilities, food and healthcare and debt payments.

However, as the dollar weakens, the input costs to manufacturers rise leading to concerns of inflationary pressures which pushes interest rates higher.

The biggest risk to the markets, and investors, is both the current Administrations trade policies, particularly as it relates to China, and the reduction of the Federal Reserve’s balance sheet. Combined, these two represent the largest buyers of U.S. Treasuries which is most inopportune at a time where the fiscal deficit is set to swell creating a surge in U.S. debt issuance. (The chart below is the annual rate of change of foreign holdings of U.S. Treasuries versus the annual change in interest rates.)

Furthermore, this is all occurring at a time when global liquidity is being withdrawn.

The removal of global policy stimulus has naturally come about as the world economy finally managed a couple of quarters of synchronised growth in 2017. But our view is that this growth is tenuous and very late-cycle, particularly in China and the US, as the credit cycle has already turned. And the next challenges for markets are just around the corner.”

While much of the mainstream media continues to promote expectations of a global resurgence in economic growth, there is currently scant evidence of such being the case. Since economic growth is roughly 70% dependent on consumption, then population, wage, and consumer debt growth become key inputs into that equation. Unfortunately, with real wage growth stagnant for the bottom 80%, demographics running in reverse, and consumers extremely leveraged, a sustained surge in economic growth to offset higher interest rates becomes unlikely.

So, to summarize, we have a depreciating dollar policy from the White House, which is inflationary, with the Fed and foreign purchasers of our bonds not keeping pace with burgeoning deficits. With inflation, not generated by economic growth but by a weak dollar instead, pushes interest rates higher, the combination is a deadly one-two punch for the economy. This is an outcome to which the market is currently ill-prepared for.

Just something to think about as you catch up on your weekend reading list.

Economy & Fed

Markets

Most Read On RIA

Research / Interesting Reads

“The trick of successful investors is to sell when they want to, not when they have to.” – Seth Klarman

Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[Markets] The Tell: Stock-market investors brace for months of political uncertainty as midterms approach Political uncertainty will be an even bigger factor for investors as the November midterm elections approach, says Goldman Sachs.
Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[] Justice Department "Reviewing" At Least Two of the Memos Comey Leaked to His Pal To Leak to the NYT, For Possible Violations of Classified Material Law Oh. One of the memos contained information that wasn?t classified when Comey turned it over to a Columbia law school professor, but was later upgraded to ?confidential,? the lowest level of classification, The Wall Street Journal reported. In the other,... Published:4/20/2018 3:28:44 PM
[World] Leak crackdown talk yields rare Comey, Trump agreement WASHINGTON (AP) — James Comey and President Donald Trump seem to disagree on most everything, but the ex-FBI director's memos show consensus on at least one thing: the need to hunt down leakers. Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[Entertainment] The Surprising Place Olivia Wilde Wears Cannabis Oil ESC: Olivia WildeAs Snoop Dogg would say, "today's the day to blaze up." If, however, legally partaking in 4:20 celebrations is not your thing, there's an alternative approach to cannabis...
Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[The Blog] Kevin Williamson on his very brief stint at the Atlantic

"...ask which ideas get you sponsorships from Google and Pepsi and which get you fired."

The post Kevin Williamson on his very brief stint at the Atlantic appeared first on Hot Air.

Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[Markets] Dow falls nearly 300 points at low Friday as weekly gains are in jeopardy Dow falls nearly 300 points at low Friday as weekly gains are in jeopardy Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[79edf14d-68e5-4731-8382-511e980a9e3f] Sen. Tammy Duckworth bringing baby to Senate floor shines new light on working parents At just 10 days old, the daughter of Sen. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., wasted no time making history. Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[IJR Red] Long List of Celebrities Signs Letter Condemning NRA: 'Your Time Signing Checks in Our Blood Is Up' "We're going to make sure the whole world sees your bloody hands." Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[celebrity homes] Barack and Michelle Obama Won’t Leave Their Vacation Lives Behind The former first family is hoping for a new addition to their $8.2 million Kalorama home to help. Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[Economy] Federal Mortgage Down Payment Assistance Puts Taxpayers at Greater Risk

In January 2017, the Obama administration decided to reduce the mortgage insurance premiums charged by the Federal Housing Administration. Fortunately, after taking office later that... Read More

The post Federal Mortgage Down Payment Assistance Puts Taxpayers at Greater Risk appeared first on The Daily Signal.

Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[Politics] David Limbaugh Changes Mind on Comey Conservative writer David Limbaugh has changed his mind when it comes to former FBI Director James Comey, describing his recent behavior as “disgraceful,” in CNSNews on Friday. Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[Markets] "How Do You Take Your Coffee?"

"Don't say black..."

 

Source: MichaelPRamirez.com

Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[US News] BACKFIRE alert! Claire McCaskill camp’s ‘elitist’ jab at GOPer ends in self-inflicted embarrassment

"The Left can't meme."

The post BACKFIRE alert! Claire McCaskill camp’s ‘elitist’ jab at GOPer ends in self-inflicted embarrassment appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[PAID] Don't Buy Russia's Stocks---Buy Its Bonds Amid new U.S. sanctions, sovereign bonds available in specialized overseas funds have gotten cheaper and are relatively safe. Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[structure:news/uk-news] Measles alert issued after holidaymakers return from Europe with bug Published:4/20/2018 2:59:34 PM
[Markets] The New York Post: New York to permanently ban cars from Central Park Mayor Bill de Blasio on Friday called the city’s decision to ban cars permanently from the internal streets of Central Park a “sea change” for the landmark’s estimated 42 million annual visitors.
Published:4/20/2018 2:59:33 PM
[World] French President Emmanuel Macron Sits Down With Chris Wallace

Chris Wallace will sit down for an exclusive interview with French President Emmanuel Macron this weekend on "Fox News Sunday."

Published:4/20/2018 2:28:40 PM
[Russian Interference in 2016 US Elections and Ties] Michael Cohen Has Said He Would Take a Bullet for Trump. Maybe Not Anymore. Roger Stone says Mr. Trump has long treated Mr. Cohen, his lawyer and fixer, “like garbage.” Now he could end up cooperating in a criminal investigation against Mr. Trump. Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[Uncategorized] Democrats Lawsuit Alleges Conspiracy Between Trump’s Campaign, Russia, Wikileaks to Disrupt 2016 Election Desperation is NOT a good look. Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[Entertainment] Avicii Dead at 28: A Look Back at His Best Musical Collaborations AviciiThe world has lost a musician whose beats always got the party started. Tim Bergling, more commonly known publicly as Avicii, has died at the age of 28 years old, his rep confirmed to E!...
Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[Markets] Inflation Is The Caboose Of The Economy

Authored by Robert Kesler via KesslerCompanies.com,

Inflation has once again become a hot topic of discussion.

Core CPI has returned to 2%, oil is near $70 a barrel, and copper is well over $3 per pound. What is easily forgotten, yet not hard to show, is that inflation is the last of the lagging indicators. In fact, headline CPI is best correlated to the economy (coincident indicators) with a 21 month lag!

The chart below shows that inflation tends to reach its peak well after the recession has begun. In our most recent recession, from 12/2007 – 06/2009, CPI peaked in July of 2008, Copper peaked on 7/2/2008 and Oil peaked on 7/3/2008. This was in the middle of recession, a full year after interest rates had peaked and nine months after the stock market peaked.

While counter intuitive, it would not be unusual for inflation to continue climbing as we get closer to a recession as interest rates continue to fall. Interest rates are much more interested in the outlook for future inflation than what it has measured in the last 12 months.

The lagging inflation surge of 2008 did affect interest rates negatively, but only temporarily (3 months), and within a much bigger primary trend of falling interest rates (see above).

Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[dbaa4fc1-0a9d-47e7-8ae2-863babc3c410] 'Smallville' actress Allison Mack arrested for alleged sex cult involvement, reports say “Smallville” actress Allison Mack has been arrested for her alleged role in a sex slave cult, multiple reports revealed Friday. Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[topics:people/prince-charles] Prince Charles is confirmed as the successor to the Queen as next Head of the Commonwealth Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[American Society] The Conscious Act of Forgetting

Trayon White, the Washington D.C. councilman who earned national scorn last month when he blamed this winter’s persistent snow on the work of a shadowy ...

The post The Conscious Act of Forgetting appeared first on Commentary Magazine.

Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[US News] OUCH! David Axelrod pours ICE-COLD water on DNC’s lawsuit, and the Dems WON’T like it

Nailed it.

The post OUCH! David Axelrod pours ICE-COLD water on DNC’s lawsuit, and the Dems WON’T like it appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[Politics] Rep. Brat: Comey, McCabe Both Can't Be Telling the Truth Former FBI Director James Comey and his ex-deputy director, Andrew McCabe, have been contradicting each other with their versions of what occurred with the investigation into 2016 Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, and both can't be telling the truth, Rep. Dave Brat said Friday. Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[Advertising Tech] YouTube ads for hundreds of brands still running on extremist and white nationalist channels It's been more than a year since YouTube promised to improve controls over what content advertisers would find their ads in front of; eight months since it promised to demonetize "hateful" videos; two months since it said it would downgrade offensive channels; and yet CNN reports that ads from hundreds of major brands are still appearing as pre-rolls for actual Nazis. Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[Markets] The Fed: Fed must be alert to imbalances given unusual timing of fiscal stimulus, Brainard says The Federal Reserve must be on the lookout for imbalances given the unusual timing of the fiscal stimulus, said Fed Governor Lael Brainard, on Friday.
Published:4/20/2018 2:28:39 PM
[Entertainment] Listen to Liam Payne & J Balvin's New Single "Familiar" J Balvin, Liam PayneIt's finally here! J Balvin and Liam Payne Fans, today is your day. The two singers released their new single "Familiar." And if you have a Spotify subscription,...
Published:4/20/2018 1:58:48 PM
[US News] ‘Is that a THREAT?’ Andrew Cuomo channels ‘a mob boss’ with this anti-NRA tweet

"This is grossly irresponsible."

The post ‘Is that a THREAT?’ Andrew Cuomo channels ‘a mob boss’ with this anti-NRA tweet appeared first on twitchy.com.

Published:4/20/2018 1:58:48 PM
[Politics] House GOP Campaign Arm Raises $4M Less Than Dems in March The National Republican Congressional Committee raised $10.5 million in March - almost $4 million less than its Democratic counterpart, The Hill is reporting. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) brought in $14.3 for the same time period. Published:4/20/2018 1:58:48 PM
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